VIDEO: On This Day - April 19, 1934 Ox Baker is born
Posted by: Elio Cannella reporting for WrestlingNewsSource.com on Apr 19 2012
On this day - April 19,1934 Douglas A. Baker better known by his ring name Ox Baker is born in Sedalia, Missouri. Baker is a former wrestler and actor who was feared for his dreaded finisher the Heart Punch. Baker often referred to it as the Hurt Punch after his famous catchphrase ”I love to hurt people”. He appeared in several movies including Blood Circus and Escape Vrom New York.
Baker Was an amateur high school wrestler, boxer and football player in 1962 before getting thrown out of school. In the 1960s, he approached Kansas City Missouri promoters inquiring about wrestling and was paid $300 for his first night. Following this night, he went on to train with Pat O’Connor, Buddy Austin & Bob Geigel. He began his career by defeating Frank Hickey in Kansas City, Missouri.
Initially, he debuted as a kind, horn rimmed, glasses wearing simpleton but soon evolved into one of the most hated and feared villains in the history of professional wrestling.
In 1967, Baker worked for the WWWF under the moniker of the ”Friendly Arkansas Ox”. He worked most notable at the Market Street Arena in Philadelphia. There, he teamed with Armand Hussein To take on Gorilla Monsoon in a handicap match
Baker went on to fight in other promotions throughout North America in the 1970s. He fought in Detroit, Stampede in Calgary as well as the AWA.
It’s believed that Baker’s short stay in the WWWF in 1980 was due to Vince McMahon Sr. being unimpressed with his ringwork.
He wrestled for Dick The Bruiser’s WWA territory in Indianapolis where he defeated ”Cowboy” Bob Ellis for the World Heavyweight Championship. He also went onto defeat Carlos Colon for the WWC Title in Puerto Rico. He's been a multi-time tag champion tea,ing with the likes of Ole Anderson & Skandor Akbar to win titles in both NWA & NWF. Baker teamed with Big John Studd to capture the WWA Tag Team Titles in 1976. He teamed with Superstar Billy Graham to capture the Florida TagbTeam Titles as well.
Baker won the US title from The Sheik and also entered into a memorable feud with Randy ”Macho Man” Savage in Savage's promotion which he ran with his father Angelo Poffo and his brother Lanny Poffo
June 13, 1971 Baker and his partner were wrestling in an AWA Tag Team Championship match against Alberto Torres and ”Cowboy” Bob Ellis. Torres was injured during the match and died three days later. Reports indicate that Torres died of a ruptured appendix but Baker’s Heart Punch was blamed
August 1, 1972 Baker faced Ray Gunkel a popular wrestler. It's been said that during the match Gunkel dropped dead from The Heart Punch but reports state otherwise. Gunkel, in fact, died of a heart attack due to over-indulgence at a essay rant prior to the match. The truth is that Gunkel had won the match and died in the dressing room after the match. In both of these cases, Baker was ”blamed” for the death
Ox Baker can now be seen at the NY based promotion Pro Wrestling Syndicate where he works as a manager