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He promptly forgot about that moment. It finally occurred to Raschke that the Claw could become a signature finishing move. First he had to get the blessing of an established claw-wielder, Fritz Von Erich real name: Jack Barton Adkisson , the owner of the Texas pro wrestling territory. Von Erich signed off, but the Baron points out that he gave the move his own distinctive spin. But someone else got rich off it.


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Verne Gagne was always small for a behemoth. When Gagne debuted as a heavyweight contender in , the bill listed him at 5-footinches and pounds. Gagne arrived on the scene with a perfect babyface backstory: He grew up on a farm in Corcoran, Minnesota, and walked to school at Robbinsdale High. At the University of Minnesota, he played football for the Gophers, while becoming a national collegiate wrestling champion. He even earned a slot as an alternate on the U. Olympic wrestling team. So in , he parlayed his individual TV success into real power by buying out the reigning promoter in the Midwest, the Stecher family.

Over the following decades—confronting the bad guy in every mid-sized arena from Winnipeg to Omaha—Gagne rarely lost control of that belt. Nobody would fuck with him. Even more damaging to the AWA and Gagne, the McMahons also modernized the prevailing code of handshake deals between wrestlers and promoters. That is to say, they stole the talent. Speaking over the phone from Florida, Okerlund told me that he gave Verne a chance to make a counteroffer.

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What wrestling fans probably never knew is that McMahon offered the Gagnes a buyout, too. The AWA rumbled on for a few more years.


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  • But by , the WWF had become the leering global face of wrestling. He lost his estate on Lake Minnetonka through eminent domain. In a Bloomington senior facility, a disturbed Gagne body-slammed a year-old fellow resident, killing him. They wore singlets. They coined weird nicknames.

    WWE: 50 Most Painful Wrestling Moves in History

    They bashed their opponents with chairs. A former wrestler, Sharkey became the second most successful wrestling trainer in state history behind Gagne himself. After becoming stars, they insisted Gagne give a refereeing contract to their old trainer. A bona fide working-class hero, Lisowski took a disturbing amount of punishment every match—before usually emerging victorious. The quintessential jabroni—or jobber—Jay started on the carnival circuit, wrestling farmers, apes, and bears. He would later make every AWA star look good every Saturday for decades.

    The moniker? Jay ran a lawn service. Instead, his destiny was to become the biggest, blondest, most cartoonishly pumped-up babyface of all time. The men met as walk-on football players—QB and receiver—at the University of Minnesota. And he did.

    An awkward athlete in the ring, Ventura possessed an astonishing gift at the mic, delivering some of the greatest promo interviews of all time. The former Navy vet moved on to checkered achievements in a sprinkling of media and government jobs. Okerlund mistook rocker Tom Petty a personal pal, Ventura bragged for the race car driver Richard Petty. Everyone, that is, except the wrestlers themselves. Verne Gagne was a nearly religious adherent to kayfabe: He believed the integrity of the business depended on it.

    Help! I'm Trapped in a Professional Wrestler's Body (Help! I'm Trapped) by Todd Strasser

    All that changed in the Vince McMahon revolution of the s. The stars of the AWA may not have broken kayfabe, but they damaged a lot of other things: knees, marriages, sobriety, and, yes, feelings, too. In the AWA, the pain was always real. For Ali, it was a tune-up for a closed-circuit main event against Japanese wrestler Antonio Inoki in For Jay it was just another payday. MSP: Verne Gagne was the special referee that night.

    Help! I'm Trapped in a Supermodel's Body, p.1

    Did you have a legitimate chance to win? I'm trapped in a professional wrestler's body, Tod Strasser Resource Information. The item Help! I'm trapped in a professional wrestler's body, Tod Strasser represents a specific, individual, material embodiment of a distinct intellectual or artistic creation found in Grosse Pointe Public Library. Creator Strasser, Todd. Summary After they switched bodies with the lunch ladies, Jake and Andy swore they wouldn't use Mr.


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    • Dirksen's body-switching machine again, but Jake really wants to know what its like to be a professional wrestler. Language eng. Publication New York, Scholastic, Extent p. Note "An Apple Paperback. Isbn Label Help!

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