High Desert Daily
(Victorville) Destiny: it is something we all think of from time to time. What we are meant to do with our life is debatable, but we all feel a sense of a true calling at some point. For 22-year-old Blake Butler, that calling is in the squared circle known as professional wrestling.
Butler, a lifelong resident of Victorville, is living his dream right now as a professional wrestler by the name of Blake Grayson. You can see it in his body language, in his demeanor; when wrestling is the subject of a question, his face lights up with enthusiasm. The journey to follow in the footsteps of legendary performers like Terry “Hulk Hogan” Bollea, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson started at a young age, and grew from there.
“I always wanted to be a professional wrestler, back since I was around five years old, ever since the Macho Man Randy Savage. My uncle actually got me into it, he was always doing moves on me: power bombs and suplexes and such. I was always mesmerized by it. It’s always been my passion, I just love being in the ring honestly.” Butler said in an interview with High Desert Daily in his hometown of Victorville, CA.
Butler turned his love of the profession into a reality in 2010, as he began wrestling with Xtreme Zone Wrestling, or XZW: a local wrestling organization that hosted shows in Apple Valley. He started as Onyx, the muscle for a stable of wrestlers known as “The Fame”, which eventually led to his partnering with Alpha Omega Wrestling of Palm Springs, which is where he currently wrestles as the cocky Blake Grayson.
“Blake Grayson is a straight up cocky guy: he think’s he’s better than everyone else, and thinks everyone else needs to get in shape. If you go to an AOW show, you’ll see what I mean about this guy,” Butler says with a chuckle. His character comes to the ring complete with a shake weight as he bickers with fans about them all needing to lose weight. The reactions from the crowd vary, but the reaction from Butler on the inside is a sense of honor: honor for being able to be in the ring and perform for the fans.
“It’s a beautiful thing in the ring: if you have any problems or if your stressed out, for those two hours in the ring everything is gone. It’s truly amazing to be in the ring.” Butler chose the name for his in-ring persona not by chance, but as a homage to another constant in his life; the love for comic books. “If anyone knows me, I am a huge Batman fanatic. So while thinking of names, I know Batman’s sidekick is Robin, whose real name is Dick Grayson so I put the two together and nowadays you call me Blake Grayson.”
To be able to perform at the caliber of a professional wrestler is no easy feat, as you are constantly putting your body through challenge after challenge. “It takes a lot out of the body. Right now I wrestle in Alpha Omega Wrestling in Palm Springs. We train 3-4 days out of the week; I work out 5 days a week, and it really does take a toll on your body if you don’t know what you’re doing in the ring. The easiest things are the moves that can destroy you the most.”
Growing up with a dream of becoming a pro wrestler is no different than any other dream: you have to deal with constant barriers trying to prevent you from reaching the top of your own personal ladder. Butler recalls some words of wisdom he received from wrestling legend when he thinks anyone looking at breaking into the very competitive business, “Well, its like (Former WWE Star) Marty Jannetty told me at an old High Risk Wrestling show a few years back: you need patience, and you have to stay confident. There’s going to be a lot of dream killers that will tell you that you can’t do it. But you have to keep pushing and keep trying, and put all your heart into it.”
Alpha Omega Wrestling features a talented roster of individuals in addition to Blake Grayson: Drake Fortune, Steven Andrews, Anjul Stone and former WWE Tough Enough contestant Eric Watts just to name a few. In the past, AOW has had talent like former Impact Wrestling stars The Young Bucks, who are also from the High Desert. In March, Blake Grayson will be a part of a tag team battle royal that includes former WWE talent Rikishi and the tag team Too Cool. A show in Victorville is being planned for Spring 2013.
For more information on Alpha Omega Wrestling, including upcoming shows, make sure to visit them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/alphaomegawrestling.