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Wrestling Against Addiction

Professional wrestlers fight in an Ohio church today to help those grappling with opiate addiction.


Wrestlers slam each other, and addiction.
Photo via

By Fionna Agomuoh


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Could this be the addiction fundraiser of the century? Wrestlers are sizing up each others' muscles and mustaches today at the Rivertree Christian Church in Stark County, Ohio; they're going mano-a-mano not just with each other but with opiate addiction. Proceeds of the first annual Dustin Batdorff Invitational: “Dropkick the Addiction,” will benefit drug awareness and education as well as the SOLACE group (Surviving Our Loss and Continuing Everyday), an organization dedicated to the family and friends of opiate addicts and OD victims. The event was inspired by tragedy: wrestler Anthony Batdorff, who goes by the name "Juice Jennings" and will be in the ring, organized the whole thing in memory of his younger brother, Dustin Batdorff, who died of a heroin overdose the weekend before he was scheduled to go to rehab last September. “I’d like to think he’d really get a kick out of this,” says Batdorff. He asked for the help of his family church to provide a location for the professional wresting event. The unorthodox venue is large enough to hold a ring, large-screen TVs and seating for up to 1200 spectators. With plenty of hype surrounding the rumble, the goal is to draw a crowd of at least 1000. And wrestling enthusiasts are anticipating the answer to a big question: who has the largest mustache, Jeremy “The Butcher” Madrox or Megastar Marion Fontaine?

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