PROGRESS co-founder Jim Smallman has announced today that he plans to step away from the promotion later this year.
Smallman – who also serves as the company’s ring announcer – took to Twitter to explain his decision. His final show will be the Chapter 100 event on December 30th.
His fellow co-founders Glen Joseph and Jon Briley will continue to run PROGRESS as normal.
Seven year journey
The trio started the company back in 2012. In the seven years since, they’ve grown the promotion from drawing 350 fans to running Wembley Arena in 2018.
This month also sees PROGRESS tour Canada for the first time. They have previous ran shows across America and Australia.
Smallman said on his decision to leave PROGRESS: “Now on December the 30th of this year, it’s Chapter 100. The 100th PROGRESS Chapter, something after Chapter 1, we never thought we’d actually get to, and here it comes on December the 30th. Now, this is an incredibly important Chapter to me, because after thinking about it long and hard, for both myself and for my family, it will be my last PROGRESS Chapter.
“I’ll be leaving the company, I’ll no longer be ring announcing, I’ll no longer be a part of the behind-the-scenes team. Instead, I’ll be leaving it solely to Jon [Briley] & Glen [Joseph], who will continue to smash it out of the park every single show.
“The best part about all this is, the next time after December the 30th if I go back to a PROGRESS show, I’ll be down in the best possible position as a fan. I’ll also enjoy some of the best shows independent wrestling will ever put on.
“But until then, I’m still around so in Canada next week and beyond, I’m still going to be ring announcing, and we can have a good time. And apparently, at Chapter 100, I’m allowed to do some mental stuff. So thanks everybody, see you soon.”
Over the last year, Smallman has also served as a producer for NXT UK, a role he will continue.
The news comes less than 24 hours after Newcastle-based Defiant Wrestling announced it would no longer be running shows.
The founding father and ‘higher power’ of the ESSR army, Steven oversees the operation of the Suplex Retweet podcast series and is the show’s primary host. With a broad knowledge of the industry, Steven leads discussions on a wide range of subjects from stables to WCW.
For some reason, he thinks John Cena’s real name is Allen Jones and is madly in love with Becky Lynch.