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Hi folks! After the events of Battleground and Monday Night Raw I'd like to take you back in time, to talk about my favourite ever superstar that has graced a WWE ring. Whether he is Mankind, Cactus Jack or Dude Love. I've never been inspired and amazed so much by someone like Mick Foley.
He was my favourite WWE superstar growing up. I could relate so much to him while I was at school. He was fat and couldn't run properly, so was I! I must say our similarities did end at eating worms from the school playground as that's never been high up on my favourite foods. I think it was the fact that he was so different from your regular ripped, oiled up, physically fit athletes. Let's face it he was a tubby, scraggy regular guy who put his life on the line every night of the week for our pleasure.
I first remember seeing Mankind around the time of the Attitude Era. He would come down to the ring and pull out his hair, talk to himself and generally be very disturbing. I totally bought into that character and I'm sure Mick would even say so did he. How else did he pull it off so perfectly? Those childhood memories or torment and suffering were how he faced his demons, through Mankind. Living in the boiler room, befriending rats and making a sock puppet for a friend was how he got through his days.
No Mick Foley article can be written without discussing the most infamous match of all time - Hell In A Cell. I recall watching this match live and it was the most intense match in the history of wrestling for me. The unique way to start a match on top of the Cell was enough in itself. But true to Mick's career he wanted to give more to the fans. It wasn't good enough that he had started up there, and got thrown off around 20 feet, and got choke slammed through it, as well as being backdropped onto a pile of thumb tacks!! Credit has to go to The Undertaker too as throughout this match he continued to keep the crowd interested by choke slamming Terry Funk, Foleys' long time best friend, out of his shoes!
Mick is a talented author as well, and he became a New York Times Bestseller with his book Have A Nice Day! A Tale Of Blood And Sweatsocks. It took me a while to read it but there are so many stories of his career from when he first started out, sleeping in his car on the way to shows across the country, to tales of his family and how he met his then wife to be. He is so humble in the way he tells the story and it draws you in and feels like you know him as a friend or family member. A well deserved Bestseller and if you haven't read it's can't recommend it enough. It also explains the origin of the name Cactus Jack, but I will let you find that out yourselves.
Some of my favourite memories of Mick Foley were when he finally had a shot at the WWF Championship. I'd never wanted someone to be champion more than him, and during his feud with The Rock and The Corporation the buildup was great. Vince also screwing Mankind in reference to the Montreal Screwjob just had you on his side so much. He was totally over with the fans when it came to The Rock versus Mankind on Monday Night Raw and Stone Cold had one of the biggest pops of the night when he came out! He went on to win the title that night in one of the proudest moments of his career, and for myself as a fan!
The tales of his days in New Japan, ECW and WCW all provide hilarious reading. And a real insight to life on the road for a pro wrestler. It really is a wonder that him and Terry Funk ever made it out alive with their stories of King Of The Death matches in Japan, where the ring ropes are replaced with barbed wire and they have C4 explosives on the ring mat!! That resulted in Foley getting 3rd degree burns on his arms.
Cactus Jack was also a highlight of his career for me. He was just so hardcore it was great to see him in ECW which in my opinion, was his home. He did debut in WWF and wrestled well, but the blood sweat and tears of ECW just fitted so well with his demented persona and violent background. I also can recall his hardcore match at WrestleMania 22 match against Edge with Lita. The barbed wire, the thumb tacks and of course the baseball bat wrapped with barbed wire. It had everything, including Foley's signature moveset of a double arm DDT and a swinging neck breaker. I miss those moves. The climax of the match led to Lita coating a table in lighter fluid and setting it alight, only for Edge to spear Foley through the ropes landing onto the table! Something we won't be seeing anytime soon in WWE.
A true superstar in the sense of the word and my favourite wrestler of all time. He has done so much for the fans, and deserves his family time. Make sure you follow him on Facebook and Twitter as he updates from a fans perspective, including likening Bray Wyatt to a Mankind type character. Now THAT would be a great match. A 'Boiler Room Brawl Match'! Now you're talking.
Thanks for taking the time to read wrasslin' fans!
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