It has already been an eventful week in pro wrestling between Jeff Hardy’s DUI arrest and subsequent suspension, Andrade El Idolo and the Lucha Brothers being taken off AEWxNJPW Forbidden Door due to lucha libre politics while Andrade also alleged he hadn’t been paid by AAA. At least he hasn’t burned any championship belts over that dispute, unlike Jake Crist.
Yesterday evening, Crist, who many may remember from his stint in Impact Wrestling, posted a video of him dousing two championship belts he held for the promotion IWA Mid-South with gasoline, before proceeding to light them on fire.
“Ian Rotten, I’ve given you three and a half, almost four weeks now, it’s probably been four weeks!” Crist exclaimed. “I’ve given you a f*cking month to give me my money. Now that you’ve burnt this bridge, I think I have a little burning to do myself.
For everyone that’s been screwed over by a promotion this is for you! For the people!!! No excuses, you should have paid me, what’s done is done! pic.twitter.com/ScDLi4SNyX
— Jake Crist (@TheJakeCrist) June 13, 2022
Since releasing the video, Crist has gotten a ton of support from other wrestlers.
“I stand with Jake Crist,” death match wrestler John Wayne Murdoch stated on Twitter. “I will not be a part of IWA moving forward.”
I stand with @TheJakeCrist I will not be apart of IWA moving forward.
— RABBIT KING 🐰 (@TheDukeJWM) June 14, 2022
Several other wrestlers also supported Crist, including former Impact/WWE star Zachary Wentz (who fans will remember as Nash Carter) and Neil Diamond Cutter.
“Pay your talent,” wrote Wentz.
“Accountability,” started Diamond Cutter. “I said that last night in a space. If we can’t hold people accountable for their actions then nothing will change. I have to stand by @TheJakeCrist to hold IWA accountable for their actions!
Pay your talent. https://t.co/oDFUJPq7qA
— Zachary Wentz (@ZacharyWentz) June 14, 2022
Accountability. I said that last night in a space. If we can't hold people accountable for their actions then nothing will change. I have to stand by @TheJakeCrist to hold IWA accountable for their actions!
— Neil Diamond Cutter (@FearlessNeil) June 14, 2022
“Since it has been the talk of indie wrestling the last couple of days I have decided that I am going to withdraw from IWA Mid-South’s King of the Deathmatches,” death match wrestler Tank tweeted. “I stand with Jake Crist and John Wayne Murdoch.”
Since it has been the talk of indie wrestling the last couple of days I have decided that I am going to withdraw from @IWAMidSouth King of the Deathmatches. I stand with @TheJakeCrist and @TheDukeJWM.
— The Bloodbath Behemoth (@Tank_Est1996) June 14, 2022
Founded in 1996, IWA Mid-South is run by wrestler Ian Rotten, who many will remember from his days wrestling for ECW during the mid-90s. Running out of Indiana, IWA Mid-South was a starting place for talents such as Colt Cabana, Chris Hero, and CM Punk, with the latter two having several famous matches for the promotion.
Despite their well-known alumni, IWA Mid-South has been embroiled in controversy in the past, whether it be the Mike Levy incident or Rotten being accused of not paying talent. One such story involved current WWE executive Jeff Jarrett getting into a confrontation with Rotten’s son after a reported pay dispute between Jarrett and Rotten.
The two belts Crist burned were the IWA World Championship and the IWA Mid-South World Junior Heavyweight Championship; he had held both belts for 275 and 228 days respectively. At this time, Rotten has yet to comment on Crist’s actions and appears to have not been active on Twitter since early June.
Have a news tip or correction? Send it to [email protected]