Friday, May 20, 2011

"Macho Man" Randy Savage dead at 58

From WWE.com:
WWE is saddened to learn of the passing of one of the greatest Superstars of his time, Randy Poffo, a.k.a. Randy “Macho Man” Savage. Poffo was under contract with WWE from 1985 to 1993 and held both the WWE and Intercontinental Championships. Our sincerest condolences go out to his family and friends. We wish a speedy recovery to his wife Lynn. Poffo will be greatly missed by WWE and his fans.

I got a text at work from my fiancé, "Randy Savage died" and my heart sank into my feet. I ran to the nearest computer and saw the story from TMZ, heart attack while driving. Though he's been largely out of the spotlight for the last decade, the wrestling world just lost one of its most influential, talented and all-around awesome performers.

Ask anyone, regardless of whether or not they've watched a single minute of professional wrestling, to name five wrestlers and they'll probably tell you: Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, The Rock, Andre the Giant and "Macho Man" Randy Savage. Though Hogan cast a huge shadow in the 1980s, Savage managed to emerge as one of the biggest names in the industry. For those of you too young to remember, Savage was the Rock to Hogan's Stone Cold... except Savage was unquestionably better in the ring.

Savage has a laundry list of fantastic matches, but perhaps more importantly, he also has a long list of matches that were his opponent's best. Hogan vs. Savage at WrestleMania 5? I'd say it's Hogan's best match ever. Warrior vs. Savage at WrestleMania 7? Easily Warrior's best match ever. Jake Roberts vs. Savage on Saturday Night's Main Event in 1986? Jake the Snake's best match ever and perhaps the greatest bad guy vs. bad guy match in history. Ted DiBiase vs. Savage, take your pick of the event, but for my money, I'd say MSG 1988 is DiBiase's best match ever. We could also probably have a hearty debate about whether or not Ricky Steamboat's best match was against the Macho Man or the Nature Boy. Regardless of style, Savage quietly gave several very different performers the first match on their highlight reels.

And of course, his talent wasn't limited to what went on from bell to bell, Savage was one of the greatest talkers the industry had ever seen. Whether he was talking about his opponent, proposing to Miss Elizabeth or selling Slim Jims, when Savage talked, we listened. Prior to WrestleMania 27, I listed my top five WrestleMania feuds and voted for Randy Savage vs. Ric Flair as my all-time favorite. Perhaps one of the greatest stories ever told in professional wrestling and it should come as no surprise considering the ridiculous levels of talent involved. We sympathized with Savage because he told a story any of us could relate to, something we've probably all live through at some point and we got to experience the cathartic moment when he not only silenced the loudmouth Flair, he took he WWE Championship.

That's my favorite Randy Savage moment and he gave us many more great WrestleMania moments, he gave us numerous wrestling moments, period. It speaks volumes about his legacy that even after being out of the spotlight for so long, they all remain so memorable. Regardless of which was your favorite, we all have one, because it was impossible to watch the Macho Man and not care. There aren't a lot of wrestlers that had a career as long as Savage's that you could say that about.

There has not, nor will there ever be, another Macho Man. Farewell, Randy Savage.

5 comments:

  1. Great tribute Razor. I was at work and my phone was blowing up, after reading the texts of the news, I was speechless and I lost my train of thought. I'm heartbroken. I realize we lose a lot of names in the business, and taking nothing away from the other names, but a name and a personality of the likes of Macho Man Randy Savage was more noteworthy than usual. Like you said, he's one of those names people know.

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  2. R.I.P Macho Man. You will be remembered.

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  3. I always think about this appearance on The Arsenio Hall show before WM5:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQxyD0Q7GtU

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  5. One of the best retrospects I've ever read on recently deceased wrestlers. Good job, Razor. I've been a fan of Savage since I was old enough to know what wrestling was. About '95, when he first came to WCW. His thing with Hogan at the beginning? Good times. I enjoyed everything about his career (even his poorly conceived rap album) and I'll definitely remember him always. RIP Macho Man Randy Savage.

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