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Hants County native Lil’ Blay working to make dream of wrestling stardom a reality

Cody Brown, a.k.a. Lil’ Blay, is currently co-holder of the UCW tag-team championship and the WNS tag-team championship. - CONTRIBUTED
Cody Brown, a.k.a. Lil’ Blay, is currently co-holder of the UCW tag-team championship and the WNS tag-team championship. - CONTRIBUTED

Recent Windsor show brings wrestler full circle

WINDSOR, N.S. —

Attending a live show in Windsor at age seven, he told the promoter and the ring announcer that he was going to be a wrestler someday.

He was right. 23-year-old Cody Brown, now perhaps better known as Lil’ Blay, grew up in Cogmagun and later moved to Windsor. After enjoying success in amateur wrestling while attending Avon View High School, Brown began training for a professional career.

Brown said he got into amateur wrestling thinking that it would help him break into the professional ranks. He said this really wasn’t the case, although his amateur background did serve as a great tool once he turned pro.

He made his debut at age 17 and soon after wrestled his first match in his home community of Windsor with MainStream Wrestling Entertainment. A few weeks ago, Brown came back to Windsor, wrestling at a Wrestle Nova Scotia show promoted as “Lil’ Blay’s House Party.”

He was driving through town with one of his tag-team partners, “Dynamite” Dylan Davis, on their way to the gym when he spotted the sign outside the Windsor War Memorial Community Centre with his name prominently featured.

Seeing his name on the marquee, it resonated with Brown that wrestling has brought him full circle back to where it started. He saw a video clip the other day from his first match in Windsor in 2013.

He realized how much he has changed and evolved as a wrestler – and a person – since.

Another thing that struck him was that there were so many more people, including friends and family members, there to watch him this time.

“A bunch of people that I haven’t seen in a long time rolled up there,” Brown said.

LIVING THE DREAM

Every time a fan asks for an autograph or to have a photo taken with him, he thinks back to when he was a fan.

“It’s so weird to be on the other side of the perspective, on the other side of the autograph,” he said.

It also brings back childhood memories of living with his grandmother. There was a stack of cardboard boxes by his bed and he would practice signing his autograph on them. He believed even then that someday people would be asking for his autograph.

When he was growing up, he thought wrestling was “the sweetest thing ever” and he always believed it was something he could do. He didn’t know anyone who wrestled and he always wondered how to become one. It was a fascination that never left him.

“Being a wrestler is something that not everyone can do,” Brown said. “If you can be good at doing something that most people can’t do, that gives you something about yourself that you can’t find in most places.”

His goal going forward is simple: earning a living by doing what he loves.

“I want wrestling to pay my bills,” Brown said. “I want people, when they talk about really good wrestlers, that my name comes up in the conversation.”

LOTS OF BOOKINGS

Now a resident of Dartmouth, Brown’s schedule keeps him on the road and on his toes. Having just gotten back from the airport on Aug. 26 after wrestling for Cross Body Pro Wrestling in Ontario, Brown said he’s been booked every weekend all summer and that this would continue throughout the fall.

He has now wrestled in every province in Canada, in the New England states and in Florida. As of Aug. 26, he had 408 professional bouts to his credit. Over the next couple of months, he’ll be wrestling with various promotions across the Maritimes and in Ontario, Quebec, Vermont and Maine.

He hopes to get signed to a contract someday and he has his sights set on wrestling internationally in countries such as England, Japan and Mexico.

Brown said he’s willing to do for wrestling what most people wouldn’t do. He enjoys the adventure, including travelling to new places, meeting new people and learning new things.

LEARNING THE ROPES

Brown said he’s learned something from just about everyone he’s worked with in wrestling and those who have helped him along the way are too numerous to name.

He credits wrestler and promoter Devin Chittick for breaking him into the pro ranks. He’s trained with Massive Damage, Tyson Dux, Kato and many others. More recently, Markus Burke has helped him accelerate his career.

When asked what advice he would give to a young person interested in getting involved in pro wrestling, he said, “Remember that everybody knows one thing that you don’t.”

Brown is a talented chain wrestler capable of stringing complex sequences of maneuvers together. He also employs a high-flying ring style, incorporating a lot of acrobatic moves off the turnbuckles and ring ropes into his repertoire. He’s capable of body slams and other power moves but his aerial attack always gets a great reaction from the fans.

“I could slam a person, but it would be much easier for me to just throw myself at you and twist when I do it,” Brown said.

Aside from Lil’ Blay, Brown has also wrestled as Cody Youngblood, Cody Blade and “Youngblood” Cody Blayde.

Kirk.starratt@kingscountynews.ca

DID YOU KNOW?

Lil’ Blay will be wrestling for…

  • Ultimate Championship Wrestling in Spryfield on Aug. 30 and Riverview, New Brunswick, on Aug. 31.
  • Wrestle Nova Scotia in Shelburne on Sept. 7.
  • Seaway Valley Wrestling in Cornwall, Ontario, on Sept. 14.
  • North Shore Pro Wrestling in Saint-Apollinaire, Quebec, on Sept. 20.
  • Ultimate Championship Wrestling in Spryfield on Sept. 27 and Moncton, New Brunswick, on Sept. 28.
  • ETWA Pro Wrestling in Newport, Vermont on Oct. 5.
  • Pro Wrestling Takeover in Carmel, Maine on Oct. 12.

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