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Savage Speaks: Bam Bam Bigelow

Marc Muchnik Monday, March 10, 2008
Bam Bam Bigelow. For years I knew him as “the big guy who did cartwheels.” Despite being in a prominent role in each of the Big 3 (WCW, WWE, ECW) at some point in his career he never truly found his niche. How, oh how could this be? Look at him, awesome outfit, awesome tattoos, all over his head like a true beast, a great and unique look, killer nickname (Beast from the East). Not only that, but he could back it up in the ring. Vader is the best big man ever, but Bam Bam is right behind him. An ensigueri, a top rope headbutt. Attempted moonsaults a lot but never really got them down. But damn, Bigelow could have easily been a focal point of a promotion as EITHER a killer heel or a bad ass face. He was believable as a guy who could kick some serious ass. Why did he never get a chance to shine?

Bam Bam’s first prominent wrestling role was in WCW against Barry Windham for the US title. He wrestled as a face and they wrestled at Starrcade . Honestly, I don’t know a lot about this period for him, but the match was said to be somewhat of a disappointment on Bam Bam’s end. Unfortunately. the highlight of Bam Bam’s career in WCW the first time around was a hilarious promo that Ric Flair cut on him. As would be a theme in his career, it just never clicked and he was off to the WWE.

Bam Bam came into the WWE amidst much hub bub in the late 80s. All of the managers were vying to get him. But The Orange Goblin was atop the mountain, and business was good with him on top, brotha. Whoa Bam Bam, do I really need to give you the rub dude? Anyways, Bam Bam’s first high profile appearance in WWE was Survivor Series 1987, where he was left alone with Andre. Imagine if he had defeated the Giant, been a top face for a while as Hogan’s pal and then stab him in the back and take his title? Throw in Bobby Heenan, and you have gold Jerry, gold. Needless to say, Bam Bam was jobbed out to the utterly immobile Giant and next was squashed by the one man gang at wrestlemania 4. As long as I have my title hulkamaniacs. They stick him with Oliver Humperdink? Guy was a heel manager his whole life and he played a shitty face. Bam Bam then left and came back as a heel. His highlight was definitely King Of The Ring 1993 when he went to the finals. He got lazier in the ring because he could see no one had faith in him. Then they job him out to a football player. That never helps.

ECW was a pretty cool period for Bam Bam. He worked that style for the first time in his career. I remember when he turned on Taz to form the Triple Threat with Candido and Douglas, which was cool. Still though, the highest he ever got was the TV title. The ONLY title he’s ever held aside from the WCW hardcore title. His matches with Taz didn’t really click either.

Arriving in WCW in the late 90s amidst similar hub bub, Bam Bam called out Goldberg like a true badass. This was big for WCW, which was definitely a more toned down product than the racy Raw episodes. “I want Goldberg! I want Goldberg!” The feud should have headlined Starrcade as the title match. I remember being so excited about this when it happened. At a time when WCW was having exciting moments fewer and further between them. Needless to say, they went with Kevin Nash because he had to end Goldberg’s streak. And then Hogan had to be champion again. And that killed Goldberg too. Two birds with one stone! And Bam Bam was left to be involved in taser attacks by Scott Hall. The taser, one of the truly mind numbingly and lazy ideas in wrestling. It sucks. Do a move for Christ sake. Now a Razor’s Edge on Bam Bam, that would be impressive. The raging fire started by Bam Bam’s entrance into WCW had turned into an unlit candle. He did some hardcore matches later in WCW, they reformed the ECW triple threat one night and then of course completely forget about it subsequently. Obviously, after being fucked with for so lon, his heart just didn’t seem into. Or maybe he wasn’t well, or both. RIP Bam Bam. As a good friend of mine has always said, “Bam Bam’s my champion.” Amazing to think what could have been.

24 comments:

Denise said...

Awesome tribue. RIP Bam Bam.

Brian said...

...Really? The ECW TV Title?! Unfortunately, you've forgotten about his run with the ECW World Heavyweight Championship. During the period Rick Rude was working both ECW and WWF shows, he was "hand-picking" challengers for ECW Champion Shane Douglas to face on ECW weekly TV. This is how Al Snow made his way to ECW. Well, one week Rude's opponent for Douglas was none other than one third of the Triple Threat, Bam Bam Bigelow, who proceeded to take Douglas' title for a run at the top. He was ECW World Champion.

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