EXCLUSIVE: O’Shay Edwards talks being trained by Robert Gibson, representation in wrestling, ROH’s dojo, more

O'Shay Edwards chats with Andrew Thompson about his experience in the Ring of Honor dojo, representation in wrestling, participating in Shawn Spears and Tully Blanchard's social media challenge and much more.

“The Big Bad Kaiju” O’Shay Edwards has been in the wrestling business coming up on six years now. Throughout his six years, he has secured himself a spot in the Ring of Honor dojo and is a staple on the Future of Honor talent roster. O’Shay Edwards stands at 6’3, 270+ pounds and he’s determined to continue making waves in professional wrestling wherever and whenever the opportunity is provided.

This past November, O’Shay won the Prime Time Pro Wrestling Heavyweight Championship. Prime Time Pro Wrestling is an independent promotion based out of Washington D.C. and Edwards is heading the promotion as its top champion. In early March, the promotion held its ‘Butch vs. Gore’ show and O’Shay Edwards retained his title during the event by defeating Billy Dixon. It was also the first time that the promotion streamed live on IWTV. While speaking with Edwards, he told POST Wrestling that it’s not a surprise to see PTPW grow into what it’s now and added that the promotion will continue to do their own thing.

“Overall, it’s humbling, but at the same time, it’s one of those things of where this wasn’t no fluke. We came this far because we’re good. I’m a southern transplant, but at the same time, I’ve been down since day one, so, for me, this isn’t anything of a shock. This isn’t really a spoiler. We expected to be here, we plan on being here and when this keeps going, we’re gonna continue to keep doing what we do.”

As mentioned, O’Shay is five years into his wrestling career. He shared some of his backstory and how he got into the sport. O’Shay shared that he was trained by multi-time NWA World Tag Team Champion and Rock ‘n’ Roll Express member Robert Gibson. On his first day of his training, Gibson told O’Shay to not embarrass him and O’Shay responded with, “I’ll see what I can do.”

From that point on, O’Shay would make his way around the independent scene and eventually landed at ROH’s dojo which led to him becoming a regular in the Future of Honor division.

“I’m five years in going on six pretty soon — from Atlanta, Georgia, trained by Robert Gibson. People say that. People say, ‘Oh snap!’ Yeah, Rock ‘n’ Roll Express. So, when I moved up here from Atlanta, he was just like, ‘Hey man, just don’t embarrass me’, and I was like, ‘Alright, we’ll see what we can do.’ But I came up here through the DMV or I call it the Grapitol region because I’m in the Ring of Honor developmental system. So I train there with Ring of Honor. From time to time I get to travel with them and then I do a lot of Future of Honor shows as they pop up. But, I’m here now. I don’t plan on going anywhere anytime soon and if somebody’s got something to say differently, well, I’m 6’3, 280 pounds. I ain’t a hard man to find.”

The progression of African-Americans in professional wrestling is something that has been on a uptick but has not come without a few hurdles along the way. O’Shay agreed with the sentiments that things have improved but there is still much more road that needs to be traveled for the playing field to be leveled. With that, O’Shay wants to be known for who he is as an individual and leave the business better than it was when he walked into it. He elaborated more on the topic and closed his thoughts by saying that he wants people to see him for what he is and not for what they see.

“Right, things have improved but we still got a long way to go. I’m an advocate for representation matters. Not so much for what people will think that we are. Not so much what people want to assume that we are. I am who I am. The fact that I’m black, well, that’s here nor there. A lot of people say ‘For the culture’ and all that good stuff and that’s great, but I’m always just — I am who I am. For the culture is great, but at the end of the day, I want to leave this business better than what I found it. So regardless of who I am to some people, my blackness doesn’t define me when I step into that ring because at the end of the day, you don’t see the fact that I’m black, you see that I’m a wrestler and then on top of that, you put in the fact that I’m a damn good wrestler on that. It’s just really one of those things where it’s like, ‘Oh okay. He’s good. He just so happens to be black.’ I’m like, ‘Yeah, see me for who I am, not for what you see.’”

All Elite Wrestling’s Shawn Spears and Tully Blanchard started a challenge of sorts on social media to find the ‘perfect’ partner for Spears in AEW. Hundreds of wrestlers submitted videos of themselves explaining why they would be an asset to the duo of Spears and Blanchard. O’Shay Edwards was one of the wrestlers who submitted a video and he figured why not give it a shot. Although he’s aware that Spears, AEW or Blanchard may not the see the video, there are other promoters out there who may see his video and might want to bring him in for work.

“Last time I checked, it’s like 4,700 so, out of 4,700, you only need one. That was fun, I enjoyed doing it. It’s one of those where as corny as it’s gonna sound, like the lottery, you can’t win if you don’t play. So, you shoot your shot. Let’s see how close I can get. Some people get to shoot a layup, some people get to throw a free throw, some of us got to shoot three pointers, some of us gotta go half court and well, some of us gotta shoot from the other side of the court but as long as you’re on the court, you still got a shot. So it was one of those [things] where I could sit here all day long and think about it, or I was like, ‘Hey screw it. Give me 30 seconds. I can say a lot in 30 seconds.’”

There are a handful of names in the Ring of Honor dojo who O’Shay Edwards thinks people should be on the lookout for. Several names who went unmentioned will be in the ROH Women’s World Championship tournament. Edwards name-dropped the likes of Gia Scott, Joe Keys, Eric Martin and Ken Dixon among others. O’Shay believes that everybody in that dojo is there for a reason and they all earned their respective spots by putting in the work.

“Man, there’s a bunch, and these people that are in there man, they are… they’re great. You got guys like Ken Dixon, you got guys like Joe Keys, Dante Caballero, Gia Scott and she’s getting better and better. It’s scary how better she’s getting. You got Chuckles The Clown, you got Eric Martin. Everybody who’s in that dojo is in there for a reason. Not because they know somebody, not because of who they are. It’s because they’re good and Ring of Honor sees something in them and they wanna get in on the ground level with that so, being in there is humbling. It’s a honor and a privilege, but every time I show up there, it’s one those things I tell people all the time, ‘I’m here for a reason and I’m here to show you why I’m here.’”

The O’Shay Edwards of six years ago is different from the O’Shay Edwards of today in a professional and personal sense. I asked O’Shay what advice would he have for his younger self who was just starting his career in wrestling and the current PTPW Champion was candid in his response about the hurdles he had to overcome to get where he is now.

“’You’re gonna have to work three times as hard than the other guy. You’re going to have to hit hard and then you’re going to have to hustle even harder. You’re going to have to drive farther than the next guy. You’re going to have to wrestle better than the guy after that. This is a marathon. This isn’t a sprint, and if you just stay the course and if you keep grinding, it’s coming. You just have to trust that it’s coming.’”

O’Shay Edwards was scheduled to be in a tag team match on March 15th and on the opposite side of the ring was going to be AEW’s Orange Cassidy. That match was going to occur under the Maryland Championship Wrestling banner but due to the Coronavirus outbreak, the promotion’s next four shows were cancelled. To keep up with everything O’Shay Edwards, he can be found on Twitter @AllDamnDayOShay and on Instagram @all_damn_day_oshay.

Our full interview can be watched below or on the Andrew Thompson Interviews YouTube channel.

[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=osG7D8z3yag[/embedyt]

 

About Andrew Thompson 4197 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.