Bobby “The Brain” Heenan was named the No. 1 manager in WWE history on the federation’s website last week.
Strangely enough, while I think you could easily rank Heenan as the greatest manager ever in wrestling, I might take umbrage with him being called the top WWE manager.
Don’t get me wrong – Heenan was menacing, funny, and effective as a mouthpiece for his various wrestlers. But his performances from the AWA may be even better than his WWF material.
Plus, being nostalgic as I am, I view the “holy trinity” of WWF managers as Captain Lou Albano (No. 5 on the list), the Grand Wizard (No. 7 on the list), and Classy Freddie Blassie (No. 4).
When I first started watching wrestling in 1981, these three Continue reading
I love indie wrestler Colt Cabana’s podcasts. I don’t get to listen to them as often as I’d like, but when I do, I’m vastly entertained. Cabana has a real knack for bringing out behind-the-scene stories from his guests.
Case in point: His recent podcast with “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase, one of the best heels from the 1980s. DiBiase recalled when Bam Bam Bigelow debuted in the WWF in 1987 with a bad attitude.
According to DiBiase, Andre the Giant took issue Continue reading
On February 5, 1988 – 25 years ago today – I and tens of millions of others saw Hulk Hogan lose the WWF Heavyweight Title to Andre the Giant on NBC.
It was a huge moment, as Hogan had not been pinned since he returned the federation and won the belt in January 1984.
I was working at JCPenney outlet store in Billerica, MA, on a Friday night shift, and it killed me that I couldn’t see this big match on TV at home. But luckily, the store had a home electronics section, so I made my way over to the TVs when the match came on. About a dozen other people, mostly shoppers, also watched.
Andre, who had lost to Hogan the year before at WrestleMania III, got his revenge thanks to what at the time was a unique angle involving Continue reading
This weekend’s teaming of the Rock and John Cena at Madison Square Garden marks the 25th edition of the Survivor Series. I remember when that show debuted in 1987, only it and WrestleMania were on the WWF pay-per-view calendar.
As such, the Survior Series was a much bigger event during its early years than what it turned into. The show was originally founded on 10-man (or 10-team or 10-woman) tag team matches — that was it. No single matches, no title bouts. I actually enjoyed the focus on those early shows because they offered something different and allowed you to continue feuds and plotlines without necessarily having the feuding parties pin each other.
A case in point was the main event of the first Survivor Series: Continue reading
Even by today’s tattoo standards — you know, the unwritten rule that 50% of pro wrestlers and MMA fighters must have ink on their arms or shoulders — Bam Bam Bigelow’s tats were wild. The guy had a fireball sketched on his head.
But I think what was even more surprising than Bigelow’s appearance was his impressive agility for a guy who appeared to weigh more than 350 pounds. He could dropkick foes and often went to the top rope. And he wasn’t afraid to bump for an opponent.
When he came into the WWF in 1987, I think everyone assumed he would be a heel. The bad guy managers like Bobby “The Brain” Heenan and Jimmy Hart vied for his services, but in the end Bigelow actually proved to be a babyface and hired Continue reading
In his bout-by-bout report from UFC 118 in Boston on the Wrestling Observer’s website, Dave Meltzer made a few mentions about fights taking place in the stands at the TD Garden. “Another fight in the crowd. I think they’re going for the record,” Meltzer wrote.
Wow, have times changed in Boston. When I started going to WWF cards in 1981 in the old Boston Garden, you pretty much were guaranteed to see several real scraps in the crowd during each show.
The reasons for the fights ranged from people just being drunk to arguments about Continue reading