Sad news to report as King Kong Bundy (real name Christopher Pallies) has passed away at the age of 61. Bundy began his career in the early-80s, first gaining recognition in Texas-based World Class Championship Wrestling where he got the ‘King Kong’ name, feuding with the Von Erichs and wrestling Fritz Von Erich in the latter’s ‘Retirement’ match. Bundy moved on to the WWF in 1985 and memorably defeated S.D. Jones in record time a the inaugural WrestleMania (in canon it was 9 seconds, in reality it was closer to 30). He rode this momentum to the main event of WrestleMania 2, coming up short in his pursuit of the WWF Championship against Hulk Hogan in a Steel Cage match.
Bundy left the WWF and toured the independents until returning in 1994 as part of Ted DiBiase‘s Million Dollar Corporation, facing The Undertaker at WrestleMania XI. In addition to pro wrestling Bundy was known for his appearances on Married…With Children as well as other TV shows/films. He retied from in-ring competition in 2007.
Pro Wrestling Update sends its condolences to Bundy’s family and friends.
Torrie Wilson has been announced as the next member of the 2019 Class of the WWE Hall of Fame, reports espnW. Wilson began her pro wrestling career in 1999, first with WCW and later on with WWE until a back injury forced her out of action in 2008. She remained out of the industry until last year when Wilson made her return as part of the first-ever Women’s Royal Rumble match at, uh, Royal Rumble. Wilson joins D-Generation X and The Honky Tonk Man as the currently announced induction class, though a certain Barber is rumored to be announced as well in the coming weeks.
The 2019 WWE Hall of Fame Induction ceremony will take place on April 6th live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.
Hey here’s a thing out of left field; WWE.com reports that Michael Che and Colin Jost, the anchors for Saturday Night Live’s ‘Weekend Update’ segment’, will appear tomorrow night on Monday Night RAW in Philly. WWE and SNL have worked together in the past, from Hulk Hogan‘s co-hosting stint in the 80s to The Rock‘s first hosting stint during the Attitude Era.
Given the show’s anti-Trump stance and the fact one of the McMahons actually serves in Trump’s cabinet, this is a surprising turn of events. Honestly I wouldn’t mind Che and Jost ripping on WWE, that would be hilarious, but I doubt WWE will let them go as far as they could so I’m not sure what’s to be gained here. All I know is I can’t wait to see what happens…the next day via YouTube.
Instead of getting our announced Gargano/Cesaro match last night, WWE instead surprised the fans with the reunion of The Hardy Boyz and the return of Matt Hardy who appears to be a lot less Woken sans the blonde streak. They defeated The Bar in their return match. Cool moment, and if The Hardy Boyz are going to be back in full-time action that’s alright too I guess, but I wanted Gargano/Cesaro DAMMIT.
WWEFastlane got a wrench thrown in its plan during the opening of last night’s SmackDown Live. Before the contract could be signed between WWE Champion Daniel Bryan and Kofi Kingston, Mr. McMahon interrupted and replaced Kingston with a ‘more marketable’ superstar: the returning Kevin Owens. Owens signed the contract, taking Kingston’s place at Fastlane, then teamed with Kingston later in the night and got the pin over Bryan in the tag team main event to prove his worthiness. Owens had previously been sending in cell phone promos saying he was a ‘month out’ from returning to the ring, so this was definitely a shock.
I’m interested to see how this story progresses; Owens seemed like a possible WrestleMania contender so does that mean that Kingston is going to actually get the big event nod and take on Bryan at the Grandest Stage of Them All? Or will Kingston end up the third man in the WWE Championship match next weekend at Fastlane. I really really REALLY hope it’s the former. #KofiMania y’all.
The Honky Tonk Man has been announced as the next inductee in the 2019 WWE Hall Of Fame class, reports CBS Sports.
Honky, real name Wayne Ferris, joined the then-WWF in 1986 initially as a babyface Elvis impersonator but the crowd reaction was less than positive and he turned heel in short order, taking on ‘The Colonel’ Jimmy Hart as his manager. Honky went on to win the Intercontinental Championship, surprising everyone, by defeating Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat in 1987. He would go on to a record-setting (and still standing) reign, spending 454 days as champion before losing it (in very short order) to The Ultimate Warrior at SummerSlam 1988. Honky went on to form the tag team Rhythm ‘n’ Blues with Greg ‘The Hammer Valentine’ and had one more banner performance, a live rendition of ‘Honka Love’ at WrestleMania VI, before departing the company full-time in 1991.
Honky has made appearances here and there in the WWF/E since then, including a stint as manager of Rockabilly (Billy Gunn), as well as a very brief run in WCW challenging fellow music impersonator Johnny B. Badd for the Television Championship. His WCW run was so well-regarded that Eric Bischoff often mentions that Honky was his favorite person to fire.
The planned 70th birthday for ‘The Nature Boy’ Ric Flair turned sour at the end of RAW last night as the returning Batista decided to send a message to Triple H by beating up their mentor backstage before he could enjoy the festivities. Presumably this is to set up Triple H vs. Batista at WrestleMania, the match that Batista has previously stated was the only match he would return for. Interesting that he’s coming back as a heel too; WWE isn’t even going to flirt with the babyface version of Batista after how his last return in 2014 turned out. I’m actually pretty bummed that I missed this, but thankfully YouTube had my, and everyone else’s, back for this one.