Discussion in 'ROH Feed' started by ROHNEWS, Jan 29, 2016.

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  1. BrianFury
    After 16 years of toiling on the independent wrestling circuit, Brian Fury was contemplating retiring from in-ring competition.

    He had enjoyed tremendous success in the New England area, but except for one fleeting moment in 2013, Fury’s dream of making it on a national stage proved elusive.

    Fury, also the head trainer at the renowned New England Pro Wrestling Academy, was coming to grips with the reality that he was destined to be a star-maker but never a star.

    And then he received a phone call that changed everything.

    “I literally had started making making plans to finish up my in-ring career and focus on training when I got the call from Ring of Honor to take part in the [2016] Top Prospect Tournament,” Fury said. “It made me realize that I don’t have to stop doing this. I know I can match up with anyone in the world in the ring. I still have a lot to offer and a lot to prove.”

    Fury is off to a good start. He defeated Shaheem Ali in the first round of the fifth annual Top Prospect Tournament to advance to the semifinals on Feb. 6 at a national TV taping in Nashville, TN., where he will face the winner of the Action Ortiz vs. Leon St. Giovanni match.

    The finals will also take place that night, with the winner receiving an ROH contract and a future title shot at the ROH World Television Title.

    This isn’t the first time that Fury has been on the verge of breaking through in ROH.

    Two-and-a-half years ago, Fury won a four-way Proving Ground match on TV to earn a shot at then-ROH World Television Champion Matt Taven.

    Although Fury came up short against Taven, he believed he made a positive impression on ROH officials and had a future with the company.

    Just five days after getting his foot in the door with ROH, however, Fury suffered a broken ankle. He would be out of action for eight months after having a steel plate and seven screws inserted in his left ankle.

    The injury took its toll on Fury mentally as well as physically.

    One of Fury’s opponents in the four-way Proving Ground match was War Beard Hanson, who is currently one-half of the ROH World Tag Team Champions. Fury was forced to watch from the sidelines as Hanson received an invitation to the 2014 Top Prospect Tournament and went on to win it.

    “If I hadn’t been injured, I probably would have gotten Hanson’s spot,” Fury said. “I know I could have defeated that field of eight, just like I know I can defeat this year’s field of eight.”

    Determined to come back better than ever, Fury went through intense physical therapy and got into the best shape of his life.

    Seeking a fresh start, he also cut his hair and got new ring gear.

    “When I came back from my injury, I didn’t want to be the same stale person,” he said. “I wanted to be a new entity.”

    The ankle injury also forced Fury to rethink his in-ring style.

    “I’ve never been the biggest guy, so I could always do the high-flying things,”said Fury, who is 6-foot and 218 pounds,” but now my style is more grounded and more intense. If the occasion calls for it, though, I can still do some high-flying. I will do whatever it takes.”

    Fury made a successful return to the ring, but when the 2015 Top Prospect Tournament rolled around, he did not receive an invitation.

    Two of his students did, however, including Donovan Dijak, who won it.

    Watching a man he had trained secure an ROH contract was bittersweet for Fury.

    “When Dijak stole the show, I was very proud,” Fury said. “But I knew that if given the opportunity, I could do the same thing.”

    At 36, Fury is the oldest Top Prospect competitor (tournament participant Lio Rush was just 4 years old when Fury had his first match in 1999), but he believes his experience gives him an advantage over his younger opponents.

    “Hands down, my experience will lend a great hand in being able to outthink and outmaneuver my opponents,” said Fury, who has wrestled in Mexico and been in the ring with former ROH World Champions "Mr. Wrestling" Kevin Steen, "Die Hard" Eddie Edwards and Jerry Lynn, as well as the likes of Shelton Benjamin, Tommy Dreamer and Tomasso Ciampa.

    Having come up through the ranks in New England, Fury definitely has the pedigree to win the tournament. The four previous winners have all come from the New England area.

    “I am known as the face of New England because of how long I’ve been there and what I’ve accomplished,” Fury said. “I will keep that streak alive. There’s no way I can be denied any more.

    “I am undeniable.”

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