Indy Wrestling Announcer The Young Professor on the Duke Loves Rasslin Podcast

Jan 19, 2019 - by Steve Gerweck

“The Young Professor” Matt Graifer has made quite a name for himself on the Florida Indy Wrestling scene over the past two years. During a recent interview on the Duke Loves Rasslin Podcast “The Young Professor” discusses the difference between Ring Announcing and Commentating, how he got his Moniker plus tips for aspiring announcers. (14:15 Mark):

Story Behind the Monkier “The Young Professor” (14:46)
I became a College Professor at the age of 25 and I figured I could use a few more years out of calling myself Young. “Young Professor” is easier for everyone to remember than my real name Matt Graifer and people in the Central Florida area have really clung to it.

Trivia Hosting (15:42)
w I’m an Area Manager for a National Trivai Company called Challenge Entertainment and my territory is mostly Central Flordia.

Ring Announcing for Indy Promotion Go Wrestle (18:00)
Go Wrestle is a training Dojo outside of Daytona Beach Florida and I’ve been their Ring Announcer for an entire year now. We run shows weekly at 8PM right in the heart of Daytona Beach Florida. We’re right near Orlando, the hotbed of Pro Wrestling in Florida, so we get a lot of great talent that comes through.

Key Differences Between Ring Announcing and Commentating (18:55)
Both are speaking roles but that is where the similarities end. The Ring Announcer has more of a hosting type role. They certainly have a major impact on the live experience for the fans in attendance because the Ring Announcer generates the tone and sets the mood for the wrestlers on the other side of the curtain. When it comes to Commentary that is a lot more about keeping the viewing engaged who are on the outside of the arena. You could do play by play, where you’re describing all of the moves in the ring or providing more of a backstory which helps with character development of the wrestlers or some of the ongoing storylines of the product. I enjoy both but they both have their own unique challenges from a professional standpoint.

Memorizing Wrestler Info and Tipping the Crowd (20:06)
I watch on TV a lot and although some people are able to memorize I find that pretty difficult. I actually keep a very small notepad in my pocket, write all the stats down and keep it folded in the palm of my hand. I wish I could be good enough to memorize everyone, but with the roster changing every week it’s a little more challenging to do that. I think it’s more important to pronounce the Talent’s name properly because my job is to get these guys over one way or another. If they’re a babyface I want them to sound exciting, big and fan friendly. If they are a heel I want them to sound dastardly, angry, mean and kind of tip the crowd into the direction of where they should be going in terms of who they should cheer and who should they boo.

Lessons Learned from other Wrestling and Combat Sport Ring Announcers (22:02)
It’s a lot of listening to the nuances; the inflection voices, where they put their pauses. I’ve even started paying attention to how they move; some are very stoic while others move a little more. I’m a guy from New Jersey, I talk a lot with my hands, but I had to trim that down a little bit because I don’t want any Ricky Bobby hands up while I’m announcing the wrestlers lol. Ring Announcing requires a lot of paying attention. I don’t treat what I do like I care how many people are in the crowd. I treat it like I’m smack dab in the middle of Madison Square Garden and I think that has what’s given me the opportunity to continue to do this and have so many opportunities over the past year.

Working with Indy Promotion FEW and Elijah Burke (32:16)
Elijah Burke has a charity in Jacksonville Florida called the Love Alive Charity and it’s aimed at helping homeless people in the area. They’re going to be providing food and clothing for the homeless in Jacksonville on Saturday morning January 12th. Saturday night at 7PM we’re going to be having a full blown charity wrestling event with Elijah Bruke, Headbanger Thrasher and some of the best Indy talent in Florida for Fighting Evolution Wrestling(FEW).

“The Young Professor” goes into even more detail about Ring Announcing for 75 Boxing matches in one weekend, being the on field voice for the Jacksonville Sharks of the Arena Football League plus how he uses Pro Wrestling in lessons he teaches in College. All of this PLUS The Duke calls out Wrestling Vets and Fans regarding the backlash against Prescilla Kelly. Hear the latest edition of the Duke Loves Rasslin Podcast on Soundcloud, Itunes, Youtube and other leading Podcast Apps!

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