Thursday, December 15, 2011

Old School Profile - Ole Anderson

When we talk about the 4 Horsemen and where it all started we have to give credit to Ole Anderson. The elder statesman of wrestling's premier faction.

Anderson actually was big part of adding credibility to the group before it was officially a faction. After watching a young Marty Lunde wrestle Ole thought the young man resembled him a little and would make a good Anderson. So the young Lunde was transformed into the man we all now know as The Enforcer Arn Anderson. When they wanted to help get a young man over in the Carolinas named Ric Flair he was billed a cousin of the Andersons.

The Minnesota native began his wrestling career in 1967 in Verne Gagne's AWA as Rock Rogowski. His birth name is Alan Robert Rogowski. He was trained by the legendary Gagne. During his time in the AWA he held AWA Midwest Heavyweight and the AWA Midwest Tag Team Titles.

Ole and Gene Anderson
After going to NWA territories like Jim Crockett and Georgia Championship Wrestling, Rogowski became an Anderson. He replaced Lars Anderson in the legendary Minnesota Wrecking Crew.

The team of Ole and Gene dominated tag team wrestling in the south in the late 60's and the 1970's. They had feuds with stars like Mr. Wrestling and Mr. Wrestling II, Wahoo McDaniel and The Briscoes.

Also during this time Ole started working behind the scenes as a booker. He booked for both Jim Crockett and Georgia Championship Wrestling. There was a time where he booked both promotions at the same time. During this time he would put together supercards with stars from both promotions. He then went on to take the job full time with GCW until The Briscoes sold their stake in the promotion to Vince McMahon.

Enter Arn Anderson
During April of 1985 Mid Atlantic Wrestling (Jim Crockett Promotions) and Championship Wrestling from Georgia essentially merged and Anderson was tagging with Thunderbolt Patterson. The enter a young man from Rome, GA named Marty Lunde. The story is that Ole took a liking to young wrestler and the rest is history and Marty became Arn Anderson.

As the newest incarnation of the Minnesota Wrecking Crew they had big shoes to fill. By most accounts Arn was just a capable replacement for Gene but helped take the legacy of the team to new heights. In 1986 The Andersons joined up with Ric Flair and Tully Blanchard to form the 4 Horsemen.

The most dominant and famous faction in the history of the sport. Ole's first run with the group lasted into 1987 when he was kicked out in favor of Lex Luger. Around that time he was retiring and taking time to watch is son Brian wrestle.

Ole came back to the business with World Championship Wrestling(WCW) in 1989 to reform the Four Horsemen with Flair, Arn and Sting. Sting was kicked out of the group after he would not relinquish a title shot again Flair that he earned. He then retired again to manage the Horsemen, that now included Barry Windham and Sid Vicious..

By 1990 Anderson had became head booker for WCW as they were transitioning away from the NWA. He came up with a few creative ideas during that time, the most notable being The Black Scorpion. Voiced by Anderson and performed by Flair he was a nemesis of then Heavyweight Champion Sting. Around 1991 when Bill Watts took control over WCW Anderson became a referee. In 1993 the company was taken over by Eric Bischoff whom released Anderson's son and then later fired Ole after there was some animosity between the two.

Ole has has stayed away from the business, but wrote a book on it called Inside Out. He is very critical of the abilities of his former follow Horseman Ric Flair by criticizing that Flair has wrestled the same match for years.

Ole Anderson Shoot Interview

Title History
AWA Midwest Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
AWA Midwest Tag Team Championship (2 times) – with Ox Baker (1), and The Claw (1)
NWA Florida Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Ron Garvin
NWA Florida Television Championship (1 time)
NWA Columbus Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
NWA Georgia Tag Team Championship (17 times) – with Gene Anderson (7), Ivan Koloff (5), Lars Anderson (2), Rene Goulet (1), Ernie Ladd (1), and Jerry Brisco (1)
NWA Georgia Television Championship (2 times)
NWA Macon Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
NWA Macon Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Gene Anderson
NWA National Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Thunderbolt Patterson (1)
NWA Southeastern Tag Team Championship (Georgia version) (1 time) – with Gene Anderson
Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling / Jim Crockett Promotions / World Championship Wrestling
NWA Atlantic Coast Tag Team Championship (4 times) – with Gene Anderson
NWA Eastern States Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
NWA Mid-Atlantic Tag Team Championship (3 times) – with Gene Anderson
NWA National Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Arn Anderson
NWA World Tag Team Championship (Mid-Atlantic version) (8 times) – with Gene Anderson (7), and Stan Hansen (1)
WCW Hall of Fame (Class of 1994)

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Ric Flair and The 4 Horsemen

Ric Flair and The 4 Horsemen