By Ryan K. Boman, Editor in Chief
At 6’1″, 250 pounds, Impact Wrestling’s Ethan Carter III is a mix of pro wrestling powerhouse, and pop star personality. The man known more commonly to fans as simply, ‘EC3’, has long been regarded as one of the best young wrestlers of this generation, with the kind of potential to go from ‘great’ to ‘legendary’.
As he prepares for Impact’s annual pay-per-view event, Slammiversary, on July 2nd in Orlando, EC3 appears set to carry the banner for the battle-tested company.
“Right now, physically, I’m in the best shape of my life,” he says. “Because I strive to be the best everyday. I don’t think I’ve ever been better than where I’m at right now.”
Where he’s at, is a company with a long history in pro wrestling but a relatively new identity. After spending over 14 years in existence operating as Total Nonstop Action wrestling, the company re-branded itself earlier this year, adopting the name of its flagship television show.
After being purchased by Anthem Entertainment earlier this year, the company pushed the reset button, unveiling a new moniker, a new logo, and a new set. After four years with the company, EC3 remains one of their biggest stars, despite all the changes.
“It’s Slammiversary, our 15th year as a wrestling company, and to be honest… there have been ups, there have been downs.” he recollects. “Who would have thought it would have come this far? But, we’re here, and it’s going to be a hell of a night.”
At the company’s July mega event, he will battle another former champion, James Storm, in a strap match. During the blood and guts brawl, the two will attempt to inflict as much pain as possible with the unforgiving leather, and it’s all fair play.
“I needed to make an example of somebody,” EC3 says, as he turns up the volume on his personality. “For myself, it’s not personal for me and James. For him it probably is.”
It seems like such aggressive behavior from a seemingly normal guy.
EC3 was born Michael Hutter in suburban Cleveland and is a 12-year veteran of the grappling game. At just 34, his wrestling resume is sprinkled with accolades, having won his first world title in 2015 from the legendary Kurt Angle.
“In this industry, there’s not a lot of things that work out perfectly,” he says. “Sometimes, you take what you can get, or have an idea what your dream scenario is.”
“In that moment, I had the dream match. I had the world heavyweight title match against a guy I dreamed about having a match with, Kurt Angle, and I was victorious.”
“So, that certainly was a feather in my cap and a moment when it all came together perfectly.”
Part of Impact’s immediate plans include global expansion. The company recently wrapped up a set of historical TV tapings in Mumbai, India on back-to back nights. As one of the headliners, EC3 was at the forefront of that tour and said it was a huge building block for his company.
“We have a great partner in Sony Six (television) in India,” EC3 says of the trip. “It was a very successful trip. We were able to bring American television wrestling cameras to India for the first time, so it was great. Very, very cool.”
With a whole new attitude and solid international partnerships, more opportunities will arise for the photogenic superstar. Heading into his match on July 2nd, EC3 feels that he and his company are truly ready to make an ‘impact’.
“I feel like I’m the face of Impact Wrestling. I feel like no matter what happens from here, I am the man that can lead this company. At Slammiversary, I’m going to prove that once again.”