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Independent Wrestling Federation
WWE’s Darren Young Makes an Impact
A Knight’s Tale Blog
by Kevin Knight, IWF Wrestling School Trainer
Posted: July 12, 2010
The date was September 8, 2002, and I remember it like it was yesterday. That was the day that current WWE Superstar Darren Young, fresh out of high school, entered the Independent Wrestling Federation Training School in West Paterson, NJ, to begin his in-ring training. As a former standout football star and amateur wrestling champion at Union High School, he had a presence about him like no other.
His first match took place in December 2002 and BoneCrusher Fred Sampson (as he was known in the IWF) made an immediate impact. He is the youngest man to ever hold the IWF Heavyweight Championship, having defeated me in May 2003. He would hold that title on two occasions, as well as become an IWF Tournament of Champions winner in 2004, and a three-time IWF Commissioner’s Cup Tag Team Tournament winner with three different partners in 2003, 2004 and 2006.
Young was signed by WWE in May 2009 and began training at Florida Championship Wrestling in Tampa, FL, under the supervision of WWE Developmental Coach Dr. Tom Prichard. It took him six and a half long years to finally get his big break. After making his mark on season one of the NXT program, Young is now making a big name for himself on Raw and SmackDown. And he truly deserves it.
During his time at IWF, he was the first one to show up for training and live events, and the last one to leave. He had an insatiable thirst for knowledge and stopped at nothing to achieve his goals. He is a shining example that if you want something bad enough, work hard enough, and spill your blood, sweat and tears, you will succeed.
Another former IWF Heavyweight Champion and IWF Wrestling School graduate, Fady the Arabian Bull, follows in Young’s footsteps after signing with WWE in June. Hats off to future WWE Champions Darren Young and Fady the Bull, who will always be remembered fondly in the IWF for their positive contributions!
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