NWA Member: Sam Avey
Admitted to Organization: September 1949
Tulsa Office: 1547 S. Gillette
Phone Number: Madison 6-7045 (1955)
NWA Member: Leroy McGuirk
Admitted to Organization: September 1951
Tulsa Office: 2020 S. Birmingham
Phone Number: 7-0058 (1955)
Avey booked Memphis, Tennessee as part of his territory.
A striking contrast in Tulsa wrestling history is the change over from a time in which the city
featured the biggest professional wrestling heavyweights in the sport to highlighting
primarily junior and light heavyweight grapplers. Avey's metamorphosis occurred in the
early 1930s, paving the way for future superstars Leroy McGuirk and Hugh Nichols to
display their astounding athletic abilities. Avey later claimed he made the shift to lighter
wrestlers when the wrestling boom hit the east and the name heavyweights flocked to the
larger cities like New York City and Boston. That left his territory void of the kind of talent
necessary to run weekly operations. But that was about the same time McGuirk was turning
professional, and with him as the cornerstone of the promotion, Avey was able to keep his
Unlike many similar situations in which he booked the NWA World Junior Heavyweight
champion, Leroy McGuirk didn't also hold "Baron" Michele Leone's contract. Leone was
techinically "controlled" by the Johnny Doyle Booking Agency, which later became the
California Wrestling Office. McGuirk reportedly boosted his percentage to 12 1/2 percent
from the usual ten.
According to a report in the DOJ records, if there was a $1,000 gate with Leone on the bill,
this would be the breakdown:
1. 52 1/2 percent goes to the NWA booker right off the bat instead of the usual 50%.
2. From there, the 52 1/2 percent would be broken down in the following ways:
1. 12 1/2 percent to McGuirk for booking Leone
2. 10 percent goes to Leone
3. 10 percent to Leone's opponent
4. 20 percent to the preliminary workers
This breakdown may have varied, but this was what it normally looked like.
On March 10, 1953, Avey was elected president of the Tulsa Rotary Club.
Research by Tim Hornbaker
December 23, 2010
|Tulsa Booking Office