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Independent wrestling has always been a major focal point in Hardway HQ’s history.


However, over the past few years, I’ve been struggling on where I’ve wanted to take things with the website. Sometimes the journey to discovering a new venture is a long and bumpy road. After struggling with the process, including trying to force ideas to come together, I was at wits end. I came very close several times to just shutting down the website.


Suddenly, it hit me.


Throughout 2023, Bankie Bruce had been writing a lot of hype pieces for events for American X Wrestling, based out of Hamburg, PA. It has been uplifting for the website and for me personally. Wrestling had been a sore spot for several years, and going to and writing about AXW really rejuvenated my passion for the independent scene.


Recently, I’ve been finding different promotions around the circuit and enjoying the beginnings of young performers taking their first steps into this industry, as well as independent promotions grinding to put on events in different regions of the United States. I’ve been able to enjoy the scene again; however, there truly isn’t a hub to help promote the smaller feds in this modern age.


In the 2000s and early 2010s, two men had different, but similar visions on the goal of supporting independent wrestling: Sean McCaffrey with the Declaration of Independents and Dan McMillan from Snap Mare. 


Both men helped keep eyes on the day-to-day of the indy scene and, in my opinion, helped the growth of talent and promotions. However, McCaffrey left pro wrestling to become an extremely successful blogger and author on New York Rangers hockey, and McMillan slowly faded from the public eye, focusing on his family and personal life. So proud of both of them.


But there has been a void of content based around the independents in the modern era.


Hardway HQ will try to fill that void. Bankie Bruce and I will write content regarding upcoming independent shows, undiscovered pro wrestlers, and revisiting the history of the independent circuit.


Also, we will intend to craft video and audio content later into 2024 as well, supplementing fans of the future of the business.


This is going to be a long-term process, but I intend to deliver the goods. Bankie Bruce will continue to give his Hot Takes on all things independent. And, unlike some platforms, we intend to bring the absolute positive out in professional wrestling. Even though turbulent times in this incredible artform, there is always a sense of optimism and hope that I want to illustrate here.


Please join us on this journey. The world of independent culture has never been more prevalent right now on Hardway HQ. And we hope you join us.


Jon Harder

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