EDITOR'S NOTE: The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Michigan Wrestling Organization. Some dialog may not be suitable for readers of all ages.
Throughout the history of the Michigan Wrestling Organization, there has been many a conflict between family members that at one time or another had to be settled in the ring. Some of the family squabbles were more of a personally feud between the two rather than the spirit of competition in hopes of achieving championship success. The Clouses, the Steeles, the Blackwells, Rex Havoc & Laura Phoenix. Every feud involving the members of these families all have one thing in common: the foundation of each conflict was founded on personal animosity. But in the case of the latest family fallout within the MWO, all the other family feuds look like a minor disagreement over what toppings should be ordered on the pizza they’ll be sharing at dinnertime compared to what may be coming in late October.
The Dean Boys, Tyler and Tyson, have spent the last few years delighting MWO fans with their brand of high-flying offense and an unmistakable drive that ultimately led them to the MWO Tag Team Championship. Known as today’s rendition of The Underdogs team (yeah, I went way back to 1998 for that reference), the Deans became two of the most popular wrestlers in the Michigan Wrestling Organization. When they finally captured the titles, it was a crowning achievement that the fan base celebrated with Tyler and Tyson. That’s not to say that their attention on their fans hadn’t cost them a win or two, but the Dean Boys were known for giving back the love to the people who cheered for them. The “Cinderella story” of the Deans’ rise to the tag titles slammed into an immovable wall in the form of the Disciples of Darkness. And as the Dean Boys prepared to defend their titles at Slam-a-Thon, they were in for the fight of their lives against Jack Teryn & Victor Cross. It wasn’t the fact that Teryn & Cross dominated the match and won the championships from the Deans that made it headlines, it what would happen following the June supercard.
After the Disciples dominated the defending champs, the faction would continue to punish the Deans until they decided to physically carry Tyson out of the MWO Studio. It would be months before Tyson would be seen again. Meanwhile, the unknown was tormenting Tyler to the point that it began to affect his performances in the ring. In July, he was clearly distracted during his rare shot at the MWO Championship title during the live event at Soberfest. While Tyler had been pleading for the return of his brother, or at the very least some sort of update on his wellbeing, the Disciples of Darkness had apparently been pushing their vision and influence on Tyson. When the missing Dean finally reemerged, something was clearly different. Not just his physical appearance, but something inside Tyson has changed. For Tyler, it’s not the change he was hoping for.
The Disciples of Darkness are in control of Tyson Dean in some way. Skullz and Tragedy Ann are at the controls of Tyson as if he was a character in a video game, and the Ruler and Duchess of Parts Unknown as pushing the buttons. Tyson has ambushed Tyler on a few occasions, but for whatever reason Tyler has refused to fight back. Until now, anyway. The brothers will be on opposite teams at Trick-or-Slam in the elimination tag team match, but before then they will fight on October 21. The one match that Tyler Dean did not want to be involved in is the one he must win the most. For Tyler, it’s believed he can save his brother from the evil clutches of the dark faction. But in reality, is he capable of such a feat?
Here’s the thing, Tyler Dean’s care for Tyson is admirable. It really is, but if he thinks he can wage a one-man war against what’s probably the dominant group in the MWO and be successful, he’s sorely mistaken. Going into Trick-or-Slam he may have the support of THEE Cody Leedy, Blackwell, and the Creature Feature John Campbell as his teammates in the 8-man tag match, but what happens after October 27? Are Blackwell, Leedy, and Campbell going to forego their own aspirations to help Tyler try to liberate Tyson from the Disciples? Blackwell and Leedy may be the closest thing to regular allies for Tyler, but that’s only because they’re current the top-ranked contenders to the MWO Tag Team titles, held by Teryn and Pure Fury Jeff Clouse.
And besides, who’s to say that Tyson Dean wants to be “saved” from the Disciples? The impact that the faction has had on former tag champ has been pretty remarkable. For example, Tyson Dean went one-on-one with Triple Crown champion John Campbell during a recent event at the MWO Studio. Was that kind of opportunity going to be presented to Tyson without the influence of the Disciples of Darkness? Hard to say but more than likely, the Dean Boys probably would’ve remained in the tag team division. The way things are now, maybe the Disciples brainwashing Tyson was the best thing for both of the Dean brothers.
But it’s unlikely that’s how this story will unfold. Tyler Dean is preparing to risk it all for the sake of his brother. What he may lack in basic intelligence with the mindset of taking on an army by himself, Tyler makes up for with his heart and determination. That cannot be overlooked or denied. But in the grand scheme of things, is this a war that the Deans really want? Time will tell.