Well-known Pro Wrestling broadcaster Josh Mathews joins RotoExperts.com this season to chronicle his Fantasy Football exploits. This week, Josh introduces himself and talks about what to expect from him this season. Follow him @realjoshmathews on Twitter.
If there were popular Fantasy Leagues for Professional Wrestling and one could have made a profit over the past 15 years, I would be a millionaire 100 times over. No, I would be a billionaire! I have spent almost half my life providing a soundtrack for Pro Wrestling on TV. I spent my 20s and early 30s working for WWE in Stamford, CT, and the last three years I have brought my craft and the skills I have acquired to Global Force Wrestling (GFW) and our flagship show IMPACT. Wrestling started as my passion and became my career and I never looked back.
When I was 20 years old, WWE and MTV joined powerful forces and ventured into the world of Reality TV together. The joint venture was called “Tough Enough” and they received over 5,000 submission tapes (yes, VHS tapes), invited 2,500 to NYC to audition and then 13 of us were selected to live in a house and train to be wrestlers. I was the runner-up on the series, but my future was sealed. From wanting to be a wrestler to being part of the entire show and calling the action, all while having the best seat in the house to watch incredible athletes do what they do best was thrilling.
The one question I get asked more than anything else, after nearly 15 years in this world, is “how have you lasted so long in Pro Wrestling at this high level?” It isn’t an insulting question, it is just that most people don’t have careers that span this amount of time in the modern era. For every Lashley and Rey Mysterio, who have found the secret to success in our world, there are dozens if not hundreds that have tried, flirted with success and ultimately needed to find a different way to put food on their tables. So how do I manage? How do I get to hang around? Skill? Maybe. A better word is passion. Passion for what we do and passion for the growth of our business. A passion for wrestling.
However, wrestling isn’t my only passion. I love all sports and if I had to put them in order it would be College Football, NFL Football, PGA Golf, NBA Basketball and finally MLB. What about eSports? We will get into that later. I also like to make these sports more interesting as a viewer. Hello Fantasy!
I don’t get into many Fantasy leagues outside of the NFL. When it comes to the PGA and any Major, I have “my guys” that I take every tournament. I rotate between Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Dustin Johnson depending on who is hot and what course they are playing at that weekend. Basically, The PGA’s Young Guns are “my guys” and I need to add Justin Thomas to that list after what he did at the PGA Championship recently. On that note, Thursday – Saturday were completely lackluster and I wanted so badly for it to be a great tournament. The Golf Gods listened and Sunday was everything it needed to be and Thomas was laser focused. I had both Spieth and Rory to win at +700 and +450, respectfully. I was done after Thursday. That was the worst feeling in the world. Rory was the favorite going in and when Spieth said he was the biggest threat in the field, my money was on the frontrunner.
College Football is my most beloved of all sports, but admittedly, I find the Fantasy leagues for NCAA daunting to say the least. So many games, so many teams and as an Oregon Ducks fan, I found myself leaving SEC players on the bench and starting PAC 12 players that I most likely shouldn’t. I feel this year, with a better understanding of different areas of each game, I will find more success in daily NCAA leagues. Also, my Ducks aren’t in serious contention to challenge for a Playoff spot. However, Oregon returns Royce Freeman to the backfield and the dude is phenomenal. With “Rolls Royce” back in Eugene, I am confident he will find his way onto my team each and every week.
Now, like most, I am in an NFL Fantasy League and I mess around with the daily leagues on sites like FanDuel and DraftKings. My successes and failures come from the same place. I am a sucker for a shiny new toy. I would have taken Ezekiel Elliott in the first round last year. I took Reggie Bush at number 1 in his rookie year in a keeper league and was convinced the silky smooth back from USC was going to be the next Barry Sanders.
My goal this year and with this weekly platform is to grow as a Fantasy player. Player? Is that accurate? A Fantasy owner seems more appropriate. So that is the goal with what is happening here. I will write about my lineups, the guys I think will have breakout weeks and years. I need help from you guys, though! Send me your comments on twitter @RealJoshMathews and Instagram @JoshMathews and let’s get interactive with Fantasy Football this season.