It’s a sport where everyone looks to stand out and every individual searches for a gimmick or that little piece of pizzazz in order to get themselves over. Some doll themselves up, clad more in costume than ring attire, possessing a painted face or a mask, or some other bright and shiny piece of flair meant to set them apart from everyone else on the show, simply trying to get a head and gain a couple of inches in the ever-changing world of independent wrestling, a revolving door of face trying to find esteem and relevance.
You can look at these guys all day long and they still couldn’t hold a candle to Keith Lee, one of the hottest talents on the independent circuit today. You don’t need a gimmick or piece of flair when you were undoubtedly born to be a professional wrestler. Keith Lee possesses it all; he has the look and size down pat, at 6’2-290 lbs, he looks to be a more athletic version of WWE favorite “Big E” in stature, with a technical prowess that could make the “best of the best” of his smaller counterparts blush and take note.
My initial impression of Keith Lee was one of awe. Of all of the wrestlers working the small, independent show I attended, Lee was the only one oozing the “it” factor when stacked up against a card full of costumed characters and budding talent, looking very much like a seasoned veteran who has seen it all before. He was cool and collected, playing to the small crowd, treating the audience of fifty or so people like they were a sea of faces in some far off arena more worthy of the spectacle. It was an intimate moment for the small group of Midwest wrestling fans, mostly the die-hard’s who had driven in from miles out to catch a rare show in a small Southwest Kansas burg, all of which left with smiles on their faces not believing a man of such size could be so technically sound, as Lee came off the top rope to hit one of the most beautiful moonsaults (#doomsault) I have ever seen.
Keith Lee began actively competing in 2005 and has since competed in too many respectable promotions to list, but names like CZW, NWA, Ring of Honor, Beyond Wrestling and others fill up his lengthy resume. His list of opponents are a literal “whose, who” as he has taken on the likes of Colt Cabana, The Briscoes (Jay and Mark), Hernandez, Chris Hero and Zack Sabre Jr. and has shown he has no problem in having great inter-gender matches as well, touting opponents like Kimber Lee and Angelus Layne.
Keith is currently booked to compete for the Beyond Wrestling organization on January 28th, 2017 and has most recently competed in one of Chris Hero’s final independent wrestling bouts as he returns to NXT and to his Kassius Ohno gimmick. With impressive size, force, skill and years worth of accolades and titles under is his belt, 2017 seems to be the year the world takes notice and will truly “bask in Lee’s glory”.
photo credits – heelfacewrestling/@KeithLee