Saturday, April 08, 2023

The 2023 Tragos/Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame Award Winners Announced


The 24th annual George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame (TNTHOF) Induction weekend will take place July 20-22 in Waterloo, IA.   In addition to the award winners announced below, the following wrestling legends have already committed to attending:

TNTHOF Board President Gerry Brisco, John Bradshaw Layfield (JBL), James Beard, Wes Brisco, Colt Cabana, Tommy “Wildfire” Rich, "The Boogie Woogie Man" Jimmy Valiant, Baron Von Raschke, JJ Dillon, B. Brian Blair, Bob Roop, Nord the Barbarian/Berserker, Thunderbolt Patterson, Jonard Solie, Ric McCord, Joe Malenko, and many more to announce in the coming weeks.

All Access Passes are $140 and can be purchased here.  The Tragos/Thesz Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization that 100 percent of the All-Access Pass goes to preserving and growing the weekend.  The All Access Pass includes all events, a meal Thursday night at the Dan Gable Museum, events and autograph sessions throughout Friday and Saturday, an Impact Pro Wrestling show Friday night, a dinner and Hall of Fame induction banquet Saturday evening.  In addition, there will be a silent auction, a roundtable legends Q & A and a team trivia contest.   The complete schedule will be released in May. 

More: The 2023 Award Winners Announced ...

The TNTHOF is proud to announce the class of award winners for 2023.  Board President Gerry Brisco said “The 2023 TNTHOF weekend is looking to be the biggest one yet.  We have a great lineup and we will use the upcoming months to keep growing it.  Bring a friend July 20th!”

The Lou Thesz World Heavyweight Championship Award is presented to individuals in the professional wrestling industry who have used their skills in the realm of public service. It is named in honor of Lou Thesz, a 15-time world champion who is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time.  This year’s winner is Bill DeMott, who competed in Japan, ECW, WCW, and WWE during his career as Crash the Terminator, Hugh Morrus, and his own name.  DeMott created the Keri Anne DeMott Foundation to raise awareness of drunk driving and advocate for stricter penalties.

The Frank Gotch Award is given to a professional wrestler who brings positive recognition to professional wrestling through work outside the ring. It is named in honor of professional wrestler Frank Gotch, a Humboldt, Iowa native who became one of the best-known athletes in the world during the early 1900s. The 2023 recipient is Haku, who was a multi-time title holder in Japan, WCW, and WWE.  He is also considered to be one of the toughest wrestlers to ever enter the ring. 

The Gordon Solie Award is given to an individual that excels in pro wrestling broadcasting, including television and podcasting.  It is named for the “Dean of Professional Wrestling”, Gordon Solie, who excelled in professional wrestling broadcasting during his four decade career. Conrad Thompson will receive the award for his work on multiple pro wrestling podcasts.  

The Jim Melby Award recognizes excellence in professional wrestling journalism and/an outstanding historian.  It is named in honor of Jim Melby, a professional wrestling historian and journalist who set the highest standard within his profession. Tom Burke is the 2023 Melby Award recipient.  Burke is a lifelong wrestling fan who has preserved the history of professional wrestling and happily shares that information with other fans.

New in 2023, the Jack Brisco Spotlight Award will be given in the name of Jack Brisco.  Les Thatcher, who contributed to professional wrestling as a wrestler, commentator, promoter, and trainer, will receive the inaugural award.  

Another new award for this year is the TNTHOF Trainer Award.  For the first time, the TNTHOF will recognize an individual for excellence in training others for professional wrestling.  Professor  Boris Malenko trained a “who’s who” of wrestling, including his sons Joe and Dean Malenko, Tugboat, Sean Waltman, Bob Orton Jr., and Buddy Landel.  The award will be accepted by Joe Malenko.   


For more information or to ask any questions you may have, please email or 
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A look at the 2022 Class of the Tragos-Thesz Hall of Fame

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