Yep, that one reddish-brown lion with the green eyes and the scar over the eye is based off TLK's Scar lol.
No problem! Sharpening Your Claws can help to get skills, and just getting higher in level (maybe impression too, not definite on that one though). I know once you hit Dreamboat on impression, you gain skill every time you "increase" your impression.
I always lost to other lions, including Scar in the beginning XD
Defending lions get a bonus, so if your skill is much higher than their's, you have a better chance of winning. Right now I'm finding it difficult since even lower level lions are higher in skill than mine >.<. Most of them anyway, I've managed to find a few that aren't.