WWE Classic Superstars - 'Rowdy' Roddy Piper

Posted: Wednesday, March 19, 2008 by Shaun in Labels: ,

Via Wiki,
Roderick George Toombs (born April 17, 1954) better known by his ring name "Rowdy" Roddy Piper, is a Canadian professional wrestler, and film actor. Raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, attending Windsor Park Collegiate. He is billed from Glasgow, Scotland and is known for his signature kilt and bagpipe entrance music. He earned the nickname "Rowdy" by displaying his trademark "Scottish" rage, spontaneity, and quick wit, and is also nicknamed "Hot Rod". He is currently signed to World Wrestling Entertainment. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2005 by "Nature Boy" Ric Flair.

After being expelled from junior high and having a falling out with his father, Piper hit the road and stayed in youth hostels wherever he could find them. By the age of 16, he was the youngest wrestler in the history of professional wrestling and he made his pro debut in Winnipeg, against Larry Hennig. Piper lost the match in ten seconds. He was a boxer and an amateur wrestler before he started to become a pro wrestler. He won the Golden Gloves boxing championship. He was awarded a Black Belt in Judo from American Judo champion, instructor, stuntman, and professional wrestler, Gene LeBell. He has held more than 38 professional wrestling titles and has won more than 7,000 professional matches.

Around this time WWF owner Vince McMahon contacted Piper, who however insisted on serving out his contract with Jim Crockett. Piper started in the WWF in late 1983 and at the same time fulfilled dates with Crockett. On his way out of Crockett's promotion he turned heel which set the stage for his WWF run in 1984. He started as a manager at first, due to the injuries he sustained during his dog collar match with Greg Valentine, but soon started wrestling full-time. Piper came in as the manager for Paul "Mr. Wonderful" Orndorff, and soon began to wrestle with Orndorff as well. Later that year, he was given his own interview segment called Piper's Pit, in which he talked to other superstars, and which frequently ended in a fight between Piper and his guest.

The Piper's Pit segments were very popular and helped create the feuds Piper had with other wrestlers. He even went as far as insulting superstars, such as André the Giant, Mr. T, and preliminary wrestler (jobber) Frank Williams. According to Piper's autobiography, Piper's Pit was completely unscripted, and was in fact so popular that it was taken on the road. In addition to pleasing many of his fans who wanted to see the Pit in person, it accomplished other things: it gave Piper the opportunity to heal some nagging injuries while still retaining his heat with the fans.

In one infamous Piper's Pit, Piper had an interview with Jimmy Snuka. Piper started insulting Snuka's Polynesian heritage by bringing out pineapples, bananas, and dropping coconuts onto the table; this was to make Snuka "feel at home" in an act of "remorse" after Snuka was not given much time to speak the previous times he was on Piper's Pit. Snuka took offense to this and Piper then attacked Snuka by smashing him over the head with a coconut and shoving a banana in his face. He followed this up by whipping Snuka with his belt. Snuka was legitimately knocked woozy allowing Piper to leave before Snuka, now seriously enraged, could fight back. This incident led to a long feud between the two.

Another feud, this time between Piper and Hulk Hogan erupted soon after, and became what was at the time the highest-profile feud in wrestling history, thanks to the involvement of pop singer Cyndi Lauper, where Piper kicked Lauper in the head- and even attacked Captain Lou Albano- with Hogan seeking revenge as a result.

In 1985, MTV broadcast The War To Settle The Score, featuring a main-event matchup between Piper and Hogan, who was accompanied to the ring by Lou Albano, Cyndi Lauper, and Mr T. This event set up the very first WrestleMania, which pitted Piper and Paul Orndorff against Hogan and Mr. T. Mr. Wonderful was pinned by Hogan when Piper's bodyguard "Cowboy" Bob Orton interfered and mistakenly struck Orndorff instead of Hogan with his trademark "injured" arm covered in a plaster cast.

Later in 1985, Piper paid tribute to Portland promoter Don Owen, who first set him on the road to superstardom, by making a special appearance at the PNW 60th Anniversary Wrestling Extravaganza on May 21 in Portland. Although he was competing as a heel in the WWF at the time, Piper played the face role in his match at the PNW supercard as he defeated Buddy Rose.

In Born to Controversy, Piper recalled how he had to keep Mr. T busy with tie-ups and other shoot wrestling moves to keep Mr. T's lack of wrestling ability from being seen by the fans, thus ruining the match. From this situation, Piper and Mr. T's real-life relationship became hostile, leading to the inevitable conclusion that they be put into a feud with one another. Piper once again faced Mr. T, this time alone, in a boxing match at WrestleMania 2 in 1986. Piper lost the match by disqualification after bodyslamming Mr. T. In Born to Controversy, Piper admits that he is embarrassed looking back upon this match and wishes he had just taken Mr. T out in the first place.

Following a leave of absence from the WWF, Piper returned to find his Piper's Pit segment replaced by The Flower Shop, a segment hosted by the then effeminate wrestler Adrian Adonis. Piper (returning as a babyface) spent weeks crashing Adonis' show and trading insults, leading to a "showdown" between the two segments that ended with Piper being assaulted and humiliated by Adonis, Piper's former bodyguard Orton (now in Adonis' employ), and Don Muraco. The trio left Piper with his face covered in red lipstick lying in the middle of the remnants of the Piper's Pit set which had been destroyed. In response, Piper stormed the set of Adonis' show and destroyed it with a baseball bat. This led to their Hair vs Hair match at WrestleMania III, which was billed as Piper's retirement match from wrestling before becoming an actor full-time. Piper won the match with the assistance of the newly turned face Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake, who had been sheared by Adonis shortly before the match.

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