Tigerman’s Unorthodox Grips Hold No Terror, Steele Asserts

Philadelphia Inquirer – April 13,1928
By Perry Lewis

Three young American wrestlers who are seeking recognition as championship contenders, and one veteran who is generally recognized as the most dangerous challenger Ed (Strangler) Lewis is consistently avoiding, will go into action tonight at Aurelio Fabiani’s fortnightly mat entertainment at the Arena.

The native-born grapplers who are rarin’ to go are Ray Steele, of California; Paul Jones, Texas cowboy, and Nat Pendleton, formerly of Princeton. The veteran referred to is John Pesek, Bohemian by birth and Nebraska rancher by choice.

Steele meets Pesek in the finish match. It will be the first time the burly Californian ever came to grips with the Bohemian Eel, which probably accounts for the fact that Ray has been going around with a contented expression on his rugged features. Those who have met Pesek once or twice wear a very serious look when they are rematched with him. They are pretty sure that something very important is about to happen to them.

Not so Steele. Since Ray prevented Jim Londos from pinning him for two hours and nine minutes, he has become one of the most confident young men in the wrestling business. He has convinced himself that he is good, and he doesn’t fear even the resourceful Pesek.

“Only my fool carelessness in letting Londos ‘play groggy’ with me cost me that match,” explained Steele after he had finished his last workout yesterday. “I want another chance at Londos, and Fabiani has promised to match us if I can get by Pesek. I believe I am stronger than the Bohemian, and I am going to be mighty careful that he doesn’t catch me in any of his trick holds as he did Jones.”

Fabiani also has given his promise to Pesek to do everything possible to get him a match with Londos provided he disposes of Steele. He may be able to make good, but if he does, those who know Londos’ reluctance to mix with the Bohemian will admit he is a wizard.

It is to be regretted that Londos declines to take on Pesek and Shikat. Everyone who knows his wrestling is convinced that the Greek could hold his own with any grappler in the world. There is no reason why he should fear Pesek, Shikat, Lewis or any other man who ever stepped on the mat, and if he would consent to engage in an elimination series with the first two named and Hans Steinke the mat game might get somewhere.

Before Pesek and Steele come in grips tonight, four other wrestlers will meet in two time-limit preliminaries. Paul Jones will attempt to start another upward climb after being given a setback by Pesek two weeks ago, and at the expense of John Maxos, another Greek Adonis. This bout is limited to forty-five minutes.

Nat Pendleton makes his first appearance in Philadelphia in a thirty-minute bout with Fred Meyers, greatest of Jewish grapplers. Nat, who was an amateur champion before he turned pro, has been in the West, camping on the trail of the Strangler and trying to force the champion into a title match.

“No use,” said Pendleton yesterday. “Lewis tells me to go out and beat certain men, and I know if I do beat them he will never talk business with me.”

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