Alex Wright

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Alex Wright
Alex Wright wrestler.JPG
Ring name(s)Alex Wright[1]
Berlyn[1]
Billed height6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)[2]
Billed weight225 lb (102 kg)[2]
Born(1975-05-17) May 17, 1975 (age 38)[1]
Nuremberg, Germany[1]
Billed fromGermany
Trained bySteve Wright[1]
Debut1991[1]
Retired2003
 
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Alex Wright
Alex Wright wrestler.JPG
Ring name(s)Alex Wright[1]
Berlyn[1]
Billed height6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)[2]
Billed weight225 lb (102 kg)[2]
Born(1975-05-17) May 17, 1975 (age 38)[1]
Nuremberg, Germany[1]
Billed fromGermany
Trained bySteve Wright[1]
Debut1991[1]
Retired2003

Alexander "Alex" Wright[3] (born May 17, 1975) is a German-British former professional wrestler and professional wrestling promoter.[3] He wrestled professionally in Germany and Japan before signing with World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1994.[1] He became known for his distinctive pre-match dancing as well as his technical in-ring ability that would ultimately lead him to WCW championship gold.

He remained a prominent mid-card performer during his seven-year tenure with WCW, including reigns as a one time Cruiserweight Champion,[4] a one time World Television Champion[5] and a one time World Tag Team Champion with Disco Inferno.[6]

He was the Owner, Founder and CEO of New Sport Entertainment GmbH[7] which is the company that owns New European Championship Wrestling.

Professional wrestling career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Alex was trained by his father Steve Wright, a British professional wrestler.[1] He wrestled his first match in 1991 in Germany when he was sixteen years old.[1] He wrestled in his hometown during his early career and also worked in Japan.[2]

World Championship Wrestling (1994–2001)[edit]

Das Wunderkind (1994–1996)[edit]

Wright was discovered by World Championship Wrestling in mid-1994 when WCW did a tour through Germany.[1] He signed a contract with Time Warner, the parent company of WCW, and went through more training at the WCW Power Plant. He originally wrestled as a babyface and was known as "Das Wunderkind" (German for "prodigy", literally "wonder child") Alex Wright. His entrance music was of the techno genre, which was popular in some American and German dance clubs at the time, and he often danced as he walked to the ring or once he got in the ring. His first feud was with Jean-Paul Levesque, whom he defeated at Starrcade in December in both men's pay-per-view debut.[1][8] In his early career, Wright went undefeated in matches against several WCW superstars including Bobby Eaton in January 1995 at Clash of the Champions[1][9] and Paul Roma at SuperBrawl V in February '95. However, the latter saw Roma's contract later terminated by WCW because of his stiff performance and his ignorance of instructions to put Wright over during the match.[10] WCW had Wright feud on and off from time to time with another wrestler who danced in the ring or on his way to the ring named the Disco Inferno. This made for an interesting, sometimes humorous feud; with Wright representing modern dancing and music, and Disco Inferno representing older dancing and music.

Wright wrestled against Arn Anderson for the WCW World Television Championship on an episode of WCW Saturday Night, and beat Arn by DQ. The title did not change hands though, as Wright was unable to win by pinfall or submission. Thus, a rematch for the title was scheduled for the next pay-per-view. Wright's first loss was to World Television Champion Arn Anderson at Slamboree in May.[1][11]

Due to WCW's partnership with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), Wright participated in NJPW's Best of the Super Juniors Tournament and finished third in the tournament.[1] He started wrestling against fellow cruiserweight and babyface Brian Pillman, whom he defeated in the opening match at The Great American Bash.[1][12] On the July 16 edition of Main Event before Bash at the Beach, Wright teamed up with Marcus Bagwell to face Dick Slater and Bunkhouse Buck in a losing effort.[13] He had encounters with other up and coming WCW stars, such as Diamond Dallas Page in August at a Clash of the Champions.[14] In September of '95 on a Monday Nitro, Wright wrestled famed ECW wrestler Sabu. Sabu was able to win the match, but then continued to beat Wright after the match was over; even going so far as to put him through a table. Referee Nick Patrick reversed his decision, disqualifying Sabu for his violence and giving the win to Wright. He had several matches against Eddie Guerrero, with a very notable match taking place on The Main Event before Fall Brawl 1995: War Games,[15] which resulted in a draw. Wright also had several matches in '95 and '96 against Dean Malenko. In January 1996, at another Clash of the Champions, Malenko was able to pin Wright.[16]

At World War 3, Wright took part in the first-ever three-ring 60-man battle royal for the vacant World Heavyweight Championship, which was won by Randy Savage.[17] At Starrcade, WCW wrestlers faced NJPW wrestlers in a World Cup of Wrestling. Wright represented WCW against NJPW's Koji Kanemoto (for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship even though WCW never announced it as such) but ended up losing the bout to Kanemoto.[18] Wright then began a feud with Dick Slater, to whom he lost at Uncensored in a singles dark match.[19] At Slamboree, Wright was forced by WCW to be teamed with his wrestling and dancing nemesis Disco Inferno, in a tag team match against Slater and Eaton. Wright and Disco lost when Disco was pinned.[20] In June of '96, famed Japanese wrestler Antonio Inoki helped put together the World Wrestling Peace Festival, which was held in Los Angeles. Wright wrestled and lost to Chris Benoit on that card. On the August 10 edition of Saturday Night that aired immediately before the pay-per-view Hog Wild, Wright defeated Bobby Eaton in a rematch.[21]

At World War 3, Wright again participated in a three-ring, 60-man battle royal, with the winner getting a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship. The battle royal was won by The Giant.[22] In January '97 on Clash of the Champions, Wright lost to Japanese wrestler Masa Chono, who had recently come to the U.S. and joined the NWO.[23]

Heel turn, Cruiserweight Champion and World Television Champion (1997)[edit]

WCW had Wright wrestle in several tag team matches with what some might call sub-par tag team partners. Wright and the rotating list of wrestlers he had as partners would usually lose to tougher teams. And ironically, though Wright was still popular on the television programs WCW Pro and WCW Saturday Night, he was losing popularity, and even getting booed by some fans, on Monday Nitro and on some pay-per-views. Some believe that these two things combined began to frustrate Wright. On the May 12, 1997 edition of Nitro, Wright partnered with Ice Train against Konan and Hugh Morrus of the Dungeon of Doom. When Ice Train needed some help, Wright claimed to be unable to continue due to a sudden, unexplainable knee injury and left Ice Train to wrestle the other two opponents by himself. Wright was then pushed as a heel in the summer of 1997. On the July 28 edition of Nitro, he defeated Chris Jericho to win the Cruiserweight Championship.[2][4][24] After winning the title, Wright began a feud with Jericho at that point, including a successful title defense against Jericho at Road Wild,[25] before dropping the title back to Jericho on August 16 edition of Saturday Night.[2] However, five days later, he defeated Último Dragón on the August 21 edition of Clash of the Champions to win the World Television Championship.[2][5][26] Wright was able to successfully defend the TV title against Lord Steven Regal on an episode on Monday Nitro. Though Regal was also a heel, the fans disliked Wright so much, they often cheered or rooted for Regal during the match.

At Fall Brawl, Wright made a successful title defense against Último Dragón in a rematch[27] before dropping the title to rival Disco Inferno on September 22 edition of Nitro.[2][28] Wright feuded with Steve McMichael after McMichael's valet Debra left him and became Wright's valet. She ordered the feud[2] and in the rivalry, Wright defeated McMichael at Halloween Havoc,[29] with help from Goldberg, who promptly attacked Wright postmatch. The next month at World War 3, McMichael took out Goldberg prior to their match and Wright was literally dragged to the ring by Debra to wrestle McMichael again, and this time suffered a defeat.[30]

Wright would go on to be managed by Debra for a little while longer. Debra would often try to illegally interfere in matches to help him win, but the plan would usually backfire, causing Wright to lose. After a string of losses that Wright claimed was her fault, he fired Debra on a Monday Nitro. Although he was still competing as a heel, his firing of the despised Debra garnered him some applause by the crowd in attendance at the arena that night.

The Dancing Fools (1998)[edit]

Wright would then begin to patch things up with former rival Disco Inferno as they began teaming in 1998 to form a moderately successful tag team called the Dancing Fools, which at times also featured Japanese wrestler Tokyo Magnum in the role of a tag-along who regularly attempted to imitate their dancing styles.[2] Wright and Inferno feuded with The Public Enemy (Johnny Grunge and Rocco Rock), including a loss to Grunge and Rocco at Road Wild.[31] Wright then began an angle where he claimed that he was the best WCW wrestler to come out of Europe.[2] British Bulldog, however, disputed Wright's proclamation,[2] leading to a feud between Wright and Inferno against Bulldog and Jim Neidhart. The feud culminated at Fall Brawl, where the Dancing Fools lost to Bulldog and Neidhart.[32] After suffering losses, Wright and Inferno split and began singles careers again.

Wright feuded with another fellow European wrestler, Fit Finlay, because he blamed Finlay for ending his father's career.[2] Wright took his father's revenge from Finlay by beating him at Halloween Havoc.[2][33]

Wright again competed in the 60-man battle royal at the '98 edition of World War III, with that year's battle royal being won by Kevin Nash.

Berlyn (1999)[edit]

At the beginning of 1999, Wright was kept off WCW television for an extended length of time until May, when promotional spots began appearing on WCW television featuring Wright as a surprising new Rivethead-style character named Berlyn (an intentional misspelling of the city Berlin, the capital of Wright's home country Germany), with a black Mohawk and goatee replacing his blond hair. He was clad entirely in black with a long trench coat and arrogantly refused to speak English. He spoke through a female interpreter and was accompanied to the ring by a large wrestler known as The Wall. The promos coincided with the aftermath of the Columbine school massacre, which threw a hitch in WCW's plans. Sensing the unintentional similarities in dress between Berlyn and the teenage killers, WCW delayed the debut of Berlyn for several months. Despite the shock value upon his debut, which occurred on August 30 on Nitro, Berlyn never really got over with fans.

Wright was supposed to face Buff Bagwell at Fall Brawl shortly after his debut and had been booked to defeat Bagwell, who would not take the loss. WCW claimed that Bagwell had missed his flight to Winston-Salem, North Carolina (where the event was taking place). In reality, Bagwell was in the arena but did not want to job. WCW replaced Bagwell with Hacksaw Jim Duggan, and Wright's problems continued as Duggan no-sold all of Wright's offense and was totally uncooperative with him in the ring. The match was thought to have killed the character before it had a chance to have begun.[34] Berlyn took revenge on Bagwell, and defeated him the next night on Nitro.[2][35] Afterwards, Berlyn attacked Scott Armstrong and began a feud with Brad Armstrong. Alex (as Berlyn) and Brad Armstrong had a match at Halloween Havoc, which Berlyn lost. But after the match, Berlyn and The Wall attacked Armstrong.[2][36] Although Berlyn had been given a respectable push after the fiasco with Duggan and Bagwell, irreparable damage had already been done to the character. WCW furthered the damage by giving The Wall a singles push, leaving Wright to flounder in the mid-card.[2]

On the October 25 edition of Nitro, it was announced that a tournament would be held for the vacant World Heavyweight Championship and the finals would occur at Mayhem.[2][37] On the following edition of Nitro, Berlyn participated in the tournament but lost his first round match to Vampiro.[2][38] Berlyn began a small feud with Vampiro and cost him his second round match in the tournament against Buff Bagwell.[2][39] At Mayhem, Vampiro defeated Berlyn in a Dog Collar match after the Wall turned on Berlyn.[2][40] Berlyn then feuded with the Wall before again disappearing from WCW television again.

Boogie Knights, World Tag Team Champion and departure (2000–2001)[edit]

After several months off from wrestling, Wright returned under his real name on the September 27, 2000 edition of Thunder during a match between former partner, Disco Inferno, now renamed "Disqo", and Konnan. Wright helped Disqo in getting the victory and the duo reunited as the Boogie Knights.[2][41] Wright was now completely bald, but had completely returned to his previous dancing mannerisms. The Boogie Knights began a feud with the Filthy Animals while they also feuded with two members of the Natural Born Thrillers (Sean O'Haire and Mark Jindrak), who were the World Tag Team Champions at the time. At Halloween Havoc, the three teams participated in a triangle match but O'Haire and Jindrak won the match.[2][42] They were scheduled to take on O'Haire and Jindrak in a match for the titles, but Disqo was sidelined with an injury, leading to General Rection substituting for him. Rection and Wright would then go on to win the World Tag Team Championship from O'Haire and Jindrak at Millennium Germany on November 16.[2][6][43] However, four days later, on Nitro, Wright and another substitute Elix Skipper lost the titles to Chuck Palumbo and Shawn Stasiak, two other members of the Natural Born Thrillers.[2][44]

Wright then started an angle where he kept KroniK (Brian Adams and Bryan Clark) as his bodyguards to squash other cruiserweights. At Mayhem, Wright and KroniK faced Billy Kidman and Rey Misterio, Jr. in a 3-on-2 handicap match. However, KroniK betrayed Wright by abandoning him, leading to him being pinned.[2][45] Disqo eventually returned from his injury and the Boogie Knights gimmick lasted until WCW was purchased by World Wrestling Federation (WWF) in March 2001. Wright remained under contract with AOL Time Warner, as his contract was not bought out by the WWF.

Retirement[edit]

Wright fell out of the spotlight after the folding of WCW, and has not appeared on American television since then. Wright stated in an interview that WWE could not sign him as he was one of the few that was under contract with AOL Time Warner at the time.[46] He also stated that he took a break from wrestling as he was not happy with the backstage politics in WCW that were happening at the time.[46] In the years following, Wright has stayed away from regular active competition, only wrestling on rare occasions for German wrestling promotions NAWA and GWP. After working as a banker and fitness instructor he opened a pro-wrestling school called "The Wright Stuff" in Nuremberg, Germany. In 2009 he started his own wrestling promotion called New European Championship Wrestling (NEW).

In wrestling[edit]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Other media[edit]

Wright appears in the wrestling themed episode of Louis Theroux's Weird Weekends. In this episode, Wright mentions that he was to debut his new character (Berlyn) that night in WCW.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u "Alex Wright Profile". Online World of Wrestling. Archived from the original on 20 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y "Alex Wright Bio". Accelerator's Wrestling Rollercoaster. Retrieved 2008-03-14. [unreliable source?]
  3. ^ a b "The Wright Stuff - Pro Wrestling School - Impressum". Retrieved 12 June 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c "WWE Cruiserweight Championship official title history". WWE. Archived from the original on 13 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  5. ^ a b c "N.W.A./W.C.W. World Television Title". The Great Hisa's Puroresu Dojo. Archived from the original on 26 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  6. ^ a b c "W.C.W. World Tag Team Title". The Great Hisa's Puroresu Dojo. Archived from the original on 26 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  7. ^ Alex Wright. "New European Championship Wrestling". New Sports Entertainment GmbH. Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  8. ^ "Starrcade 1994: Triple Threat results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. "Alex Wright pinned Jean Paul Levesque" 
  9. ^ "Clash of the Champions XXX results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 16 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  10. ^ "SuperBrawl V results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 2 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  11. ^ "Slamboree 1995: A Legend's Reunion results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  12. ^ "The Great American Bash 1995 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 20 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  13. ^ "Bash at the Beach 1995 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 28 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  14. ^ "Clash of the Champions XXXI results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 16 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  15. ^ "Fall Brawl 1995: War Games results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Retrieved 2011-02-07. 
  16. ^ "Clash of the Champions XXXII results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 16 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  17. ^ "World War 3 1995 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  18. ^ "Starrcade 1995: World Cup of Wrestling results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  19. ^ "Uncensored 1996 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 24 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  20. ^ "Slamboree 1996: Lord of the Ring results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  21. ^ "Hog Wild 1996 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 20 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  22. ^ "World War 3 1996 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  23. ^ "Clash of the Champions XXXIV results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 16 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  24. ^ "WCW Nitro: July 28, 1997". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  25. ^ "Road Wild 1997 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 20 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  26. ^ "WCW Clash of the Champions XXXV: August 21, 1997". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  27. ^ "Fall Brawl 1997: WarGames results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 21 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  28. ^ "WCW Nitro: September 22, 1997". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  29. ^ "Halloween Havoc 1997 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  30. ^ "World War 3 1997 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  31. ^ "Road Wild 1998 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 20 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  32. ^ "Fall Brawl 1998: WarGames results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 21 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  33. ^ "Halloween Havoc 1998 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  34. ^ The Saturday Matinee News Report 11.30.02
  35. ^ "Monday Nitro: September 13, 1999". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  36. ^ "Halloween Havoc 1999 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  37. ^ "Monday Nitro: October 25, 1999". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on 2007-12-24. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  38. ^ "Monday Nitro: November 1, 1999". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on June 10, 2003. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  39. ^ "Monday Nitro: November 8, 1999". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on 2008-02-25. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  40. ^ "Mayhem 1999 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  41. ^ "Thunder: September 27, 2000". The Other Arena. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?][dead link]
  42. ^ "Halloween Havoc 2000 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  43. ^ "WCW Millennium Final at Oberhausen(German Pay-Per-View), Germany: November 16, 2000". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  44. ^ "WCW Nitro: November 20, 1999". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on October 26, 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-15. [unreliable source?]
  45. ^ "Mayhem 2000 results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Archived from the original on 22 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  46. ^ a b "Alex Wright Wrestling Shoot Interview". YouTube. Retrieved 2012-10-10. 
  47. ^ a b c World Championship Wrestling, TNT (1995-09-11). "Alex Wright vs Sabu". WCW Monday Nitro.
  48. ^ "Other arena's finishing movelist". [unreliable source?]
  49. ^ a b World Championship Wrestling, TNT (2000-11-13). "Goldberg vs The Boogie Knights". WCW Monday Nitro.
  50. ^ a b World Championship Wrestling (1995-01-25). "Alex Wright vs Bobby Eaton". WCW Clash of the Champions.
  51. ^ a b c World Championship Wrestling, TNT (1995-06-09). "Alex Wright vs Chris Jericho". WCW Monday Nitro.

External links[edit]