Sport or not, wrestling is most certainly a form of live entertainment. Taking it a step further, wrestling is actually the world's most popular variety of interactive theater. Fans, ideally, dictate what happens in the wrestling ring and how storylines end up playing out, with the most skilled wrestlers able to subtly adjust their performances based upon the live crowds in front of whom they're working.
Wrestling fans are the most important part of the equation, and over the past couple of decades, they've come to realize it. Fans have become more and more vocal, not willing to settle for a simple cheer or jeer in order to express their opinions about the shows they attend. In recent years, especially, some crowds have even tried to make themselves the stars of the show - and have succeeded.
One of the easiest ways for wrestling fans to express themselves is to chant a shared sentiment en masse. Again, fans have been doing this for years, and they usually just stick to the names of their favorite wrestlers. Other chants, though, have taken on a life of their own, traveling from city to city, crowd to crowd.
They've altered the face of wrestling - some for better, some for worse...
Scott Fried is a Slammy Award-winning* writer living and working in New York City. He has been following/writing about professional wrestling for many years and is a graduate of Lance Storm's Storm Wrestling Academy. Follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/scottfried.
*Best Crowd of the Year, 2013