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Ring Ka King - TNA Wrestling in India
Ring Ka King - TNA Impact Wrestling in India
The WWE has the world "World" right in it's name.
World Wrestling Entertainment.
Well to be fair they actually do have the word "Wrestling" in their name too, but they ignore that and call themselves "Entertainment".
But the WWE may soon have a challenger in the "World" division.....TNA.
Yes TNA (who also has the word "wrestling" in their name Total Nonstop Action Wrestling) is looking to challenge the WWE on the world stage....and they are starting in India.
Starting January 14th, 2012, TNA will begin showing "Ring Ka King", which means King of the Ring (I can't believe the WWE isn't suing over that) on Colors, a Hindi language Indian entertainment channel based in Mumbai.
Well unfortunately the Ring Ka King promotion ended.
It would have been great to see TNA in other countries with different promotions, but alas it was not to be.
But I am leaving this up as a "what might have been".
Of course India is no stranger to "real" wrestling, with accounts of wrestling between wrestlers Bhima and Jarasandha in the Sanskrit epic, Mahabharata (dating back to between the 8th and 9th centuries BCE) and even several of their own wrestling styles, Malla-yuddha being the oldest.
And this isn't India's first brush with pro wrestling.
Bollywood actress Isha Koppikar hosted a wrestling TV show called "100 Percent De Dhana Dhan" a while back which was also on the Colors network.
And there have been famous Indian wrestlers here in the United States and Canada like Tiger Jeet Singh, The Great Khali and Gama Singh.
TNA appears to be pulling out all the stops with this promotion.
They have sent pro wrestlers Matt Morgan, Mickie James, Magnus, Harry Smith, Luke Gallows, Chavo Guerrero, Chris Masters, Scott Steiner and Shawn Daivari to be in the tapings and are having Savio Vega, Sonjay Dutt and Nick Dinsmore train some of the Indian talent there.
Should "Ring Ka King" catch on, it looks like TNA is grooming Indian stars to stay there and run their own show, kinda like TNA: India.
Adding to that idea is the rumor that the Indian talent has been signed to multi-year contracts.
From all reports, it looks like Indian fans are loving the tapings so far.
And the TNA stars appear to be having a ball there, cutting loose with fans that many of whom are new to the sport...err...entertainment form.
According to Lordsofpain.net at the first taping, the Balewadi Sports Complex in Pune held about 1500 people.
It was filled and they turned away about 1000 more...and this was with basically no promotion.
Of course there is a learning curve.
PWTorch.com reported that at one of the tapings, "Big Poppa Pump" Scott Steiner almost started a riot when he started "antagonizing" fans near the guardrail.
With the tough Indian censorship process, how will fans react to women wrestling in India?
Since Mickie James went, I am thinking maybe that would be an option, though two women in spandex (or in Mickie's case cut off jean shorts) wrapped around each other in the middle of a wrestling ring might get the place burned to the ground.
When the 1996 film "Fire" opened in India, some movie theaters were attacked by Hindu fundamentalists.
So no "Long Kiss Goodnight" Mickie.
Ring Ka King Roster
Abyss - Chris Parks
Aghori Saaya - Manjit Singh
American Adonis - Chris Mordetzky
Barood - Sandeep
Bulldog Hart - Harry Smith
Chavo Guerrero Jr. - Salvador Guerrero
Deadly Danda - Saurabh Gujjar
Dr. Nicholas Dinsmore - Nicholas Dinsmore
Gurv Sihra (Ring Ka King Tag Team Champion)
Harv Sihra (Ring Ka King Tag Team Champion)
Isaiah Cash - Drew Hankinson
Jeff Jarrett - Jeffrey Jarrett (Founder and "The Boss of RDX")
Jimmy Rave - James Guffey
Joey Hollywood - Joseph Meehan
Jwala - Tajinder
Mahabali Veera - Amanpreet Singh (Ring Ka King Heavyweight Champion)
Matt Morgan - Matthew Morgan
Maxx B - Max Basnet
Mumbai Cats - Unknown
Pagal Parinda - Vikash Kumar
Pathani Patthe 1 - Ashab Ahmad Malik Hashim
Pathani Patthe 2 - Unknown
Roscoe Jackson - William Mueller
Romeo Rapta - Dinesh Kumar Rapta
Scott Steiner - Scott Rechsteiner
Sheik Abdul Bashir - Dara Daivari
Sheik Mustafa Bashir - Arya Daivari
Shera - Harjeet Singh (American Adonis' translator / Wrestler)
Sir Brutus Magnus - Nicholas Aldis
Sonjay Dutt - Retesh Bhalla
Tony Broadway - James Maritato
TNT - Juan Rivera
Yamamotoyama - Yamamotoyama Ryūta
Zema Ion - Michael Paris
Zoravar - Sarvesh Kumar
Alissa Flash/Raisha Saeed - Melissa Anderson
Angelina Love - Lauren Williams
Mickie James - Mickie James
The Sun reported on December 21st that seven foot tall, 328 pound "The Blueprint" Matt Morgan defeated Scott Steiner in the final of an eight-man tournament to win the first Ring Ka King Heavyweight Championship.
However I have heard that at the next taping, Sir Brutus Magnus defeated Morgan to become the new champion.
At the same taping, Chavo Guerrero and David Hart Smith became the first Ring Ka King Tag Team Champions.
But wait...that's not all!
There are rumors that if the Ring Ka King project goes well in India, it may not be the last.
There is talk of other such projects in Japan and possibly...China.
Harbhajan to endorse Ring Ka King
The Times of India has an article about Ring Ka King, mentioning the fact that cricketer Harbhajan Singh will be the show's goodwill ambassador.
Harbhajan to endorse Ring Ka King
Update - Ra Ka King in the US and the Announcer
Several people have asked and from what I understand, you will not be able to get Ra Ka King here in the States unless you have the Colors Network as part of the Asian package on Dish Network.
However if you are in the UK, you can watch it on COLORS/Sky (channel 829).
Indian DJ and TV host Siddharth Kannan (A.K.A. SID K) will be doing commentary for Ra Ka King.
Although SID K doesn't have any experience with wrestling, the Colors Network wanted someone who could "connect with the masses."
It's also been announced that Ring Ka King will debut in India starting Saturday, January 28th and Sunday January 29th.
Update - Will Ring Ka King popularise wrestling in India?
An article from The Times Of India about Ra Ka King...
"The new wrestling-based reality show is set to hit desi telly, and its goodwill ambassador, cricketer Harbhajan Singh, hopes the show will help in popularising the sport among the urban youth."
Read the article here
The Times of India Article About Mahabali Veera
Standing tall at 6'2 and weighing a whopping 110 kgs, Mahabali Veera is a modern-day gladiator. Mahabali aka Amanpreet Singh is a Chandigarh munda, who has won several championships in Punjab, believes that his journey so far on Ring Ka King: Wrestling Ka Mahayuddh on Colors has been a memorable one.
Ring Ka King Updates 11-7-2012
I checked Impact Wrestling and they still have a page up for Ring Ka King, but I can't find their page on the Colors website anymore and their Twitter feed hasn't been updated since February 20th, 2012.
Is Ring Ka King A Good Idea?
Should TNA spread out to more countries like this?
First Episode of Ring Ka King
Colors TV has been kind enough to post the entire first episode of Ring Ka King on YouTube.
Here is the first episode, and you can click the YouTube logo in the bottom right of the viewer to watch all the other parts on YouTube.
After the way WWE acts about their shows, we should all thank TNA and Colors for being kind enough to do this.
Ring Ka King's Mahabali Shera
On September 22nd, 2014, TNA signed Mahabali Shera who had competed in Ring Ka King in India.
In RKK, he had defeated Sir Brutus Magnus to become the last RKK World Heavyweight Champion that they had before TNA closed the promotion.
So far he is the only wrestler from Ring Ka King that has been signed.