As we draw closer to WWE’s much anticipated “Cruiserweight Classic” we here at Real Sport are taking a look at some of the competitors that WWE have handpicked from around the world.
Today the man in the spotlight is TJ Perkins.
Where He Wrestles
TJ Perkins is a veteran of the independent scene. While he is best known for his short stint in WWE in 2009 Perkins has been wrestling since 1999, when he debuted at the age of 14 under a mask.
Perkins main training came at the famous New Japan Pro Wrestling LA Dojo with Rocky Romero and Bryan Danielson and holds the record as the youngest non-japanese wrestler to compete with them when he was just 18. Since then Perkins has been all around the world competing, from Mexico with CMLL to EVOLVE on the east coast of America and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla in the west.
Perkins has also been in Ring of Honor and most recently in TNA where he wrestled full time from 2013 to January 2016.
While Perkins has the athletic ability and body control to fly around the ring like a madman he also has terrific chain wrestling and mat wrestling skills. His qualifying match with Fred Yehi was a terrific display of smooth mat work and realistic holds and then pace-quickening flips and fast kicks. Perkins has an array of moves that can make an audience gasp and lose their minds.
As a former WWE employee and veteran hand Perkins can be trusted to put on a WWE-level match and guide some of the less experienced wrestlers through the show. I think Perkins will go quite far in the tournament and could potentially reach the latter stages. He’s not a favourite to win but is certainly a dark horse.