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Drew Galloway

McIntyre in December 2009
Ring name(s) Drew Galloway[1]
Drew McIntyre[2]
Billed height 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)[2]
Billed weight 18 st (250 lb; 110 kg)[2]
Born June 6, 1985 (1985-06-06) (age 24)
Ayr, Scotland, United Kingdom[1]
Billed from Ayr, Scotland[2]
Trained by Justin Richards[3]
James Tighe[3]
Mark Sloan[3]
Colin McKay[3]
Spinner McKenzie[3]
Debut 2001[4]

Drew Galloway (born June 6, 1985)[1] is a Scottish professional wrestler currently signed with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) on its SmackDown brand as Drew McIntyre, where he is the current Intercontinental Champion.

He began training from the age of 15 in England, before moving back to Scotland to begin his career. Before long he became a regular in British Championship Wrestling (BCW) using the gimmick "Thee" Drew Galloway, winning their Heavyweight Championship twice along with the Heavyweight Championship of Insane Championship Wrestling. He also found success abroad in Irish Whip Wrestling, winning their top title. During this time he completed an undergraduate degree in criminology.

After touring the independent circuit around the British Isles, Galloway moved to the United States in 2007 to sign with WWE. Along with a brief stint on the SmackDown brand, he spent time in developmental territories Ohio Valley Wrestling and Florida Championship Wrestling, the latter where he won their Heavyweight and Tag Team Championships, before redebuting on SmackDown and quickly winning the Intercontinental Championship.

Contents

Professional wrestling career

Galloway began training for professional wrestling at the age of 15[1] at the Frontier Wrestling Alliance's Academy when his family moved to the south of England[5] to Portsmouth.[6] In the FWA Academy he was trained by the promotion's operator Mark Sloan along with Justin Richards and James Tighe. Galloway also cites the promotion's established stars helping out with training, including Doug Williams, Paul Birchall and Alex Shane.[3]

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British Championship Wrestling (2003–2007)

In 2003, Galloway made his debut for the inaugural show of British Championship Wrestling (BCW), operating in the Greater Glasgow area. While there he honed his wrestling skill further, training under Colin McKay and later Spinner McKenzie[3] and developing the character of "Thee" Drew Galloway, a cocky narcissist.[7] His first match, at February's No Blood, No Sympathy: Night 1, saw him lose against Stu Natt.[8] He picked up his first win on the second night in a tag team match alongisde Wolfgang, defeating Blade and Stu Pendous.[9] By December, Galloway was being managed by Charles Boddington who aided him in his first significant success and would go on to manage him for the next four years. On 5 December, Boddington announced that BCW Heavyweight Champion Spinner McKenzie had been fired and thus would be stripped of the title; Boddington then instantly gave the belt to Galloway.[10] Stevie Knight took exception to this and challenged him to a match that very night at Bad Tidings: Night 1, winning the championship.[11] Galloway earned a non-title win over Knight the following February in 2004, at Night of The Fan[12] but Knight exacted revenge by knocking Galloway out of the King of BCW tournament.[13]

Later that year, Galloway had a series of matches against American veterans. In June, he was defeated by The Honky Tonk Man[14] and later that month lost in a tag team match to Marty Jannetty and Highlander, with Sabotage on his side.[15] In November, at the aptly titled Lo Down, Galloway main evented in a double count-out match against D'Lo Brown.[16] He then had a brief series of feuds; in March 2005 he defeated Jay Phoenix[17] but their rematch in November, officiated by Mick Foley, ended in a no contest.[18] In May 2006 after their lengthy feud in Irish Whip Wrestling, Galloway lost[19] then won in successive matches against long term rival Sheamus O'Shaunessy.[20]

In November 2006, in the main event of Live in East Kilbride, Galloway teamed with Lionheart and pinned BCW Heavyweight Champion Highlander who was tagging with Wolfgang.[21] This earned put him in contention for the title at December's No Blood, No Sympathy IV. The match was booked as an "I Quit" match with Conscience as the special guest referee with Galloway gaining his second BCW Heavyweight Championship.[10][22][23] He would go on to hold the title through most of 2007, vacating it[10] after he relocated to the United States in September.[1]

Irish Whip Wrestling (2005–2006)

After gaining momentum in Scotland, Galloway began wrestling dates across the Republic of Ireland with Irish Whip Wrestling (IwW) continuing to use "Thee" Drew Galloway as his gimmick. With Charles Boddington still in his corner, he competed in three contests during his first appearance on 23 July 2005 for Whiplash TV.[7] After losing to "SOS" Sheamus O'Shaunessy[24] he found a similar fate against Mad Man Manson, sparking a feud between the two.[7] Despite these two losses, his status abroad meant he was already booked in a Ten-Man Gauntlet match to determine the top contender for the main title. Galloway was whitewashed the entire evening, losing to Vic Viper.[24] The following day at Gym Wars Manson was absent so Galloway tried to avenge his loss with O'Shaunnesy but it ended in a double count-out.[25] Over the next few months Galloway recruited various wrestlers, even his manager Boddington, in a series of tag team and even handicap tag team matches against Manson and his teams.[26][27][28] He picked up his first victory in October against Sean South in a warm-up for that event's main event six-man tag team match.[27] The rivalry between Galloway and Manson was finally settled in November at IwW's final show from the SFX Theatre. Their brutal and bloody Street Fight saw Galloway gain respect from for his tenacity and endurance[7] but his losing streak continued.[29]

With his rivalry against Manson settled in their Street Fight and despite having only won one match with the company, Galloway was given a shot at the IwW International Heavyweight Championship owing to his show stealing performances with Manson.[7] On 28 January 2006 he received his first title match against Sheamus O'Shaunnesy, evolving their rivalry from previous battles.[30] The rivalry quickly took on a patriotic flavour, with Galloway's blue colours of Scotland clashing O'Shaunnesy's green colours of Ireland, mirroring the Old Firm football derby between Glasgow Rangers and Glasgow Celtic, respectively.[7] This football allusion became particularly prominent when the two met again at Verona Football Club once again for the title, though the match changed into a Lumberjack match, the result and champion remained the same.[31] Galloway remained focussed, proving his dominance and determination for the championship by defeating JC Williams and Brian Roche in a handicap match on 17 March.[32] This match earned him a Two Out Of Three Falls match against the champion the following day in which O'Shaunnesy won two falls to one;[33] the next day produced the same result.[34] Again Galloway proved himself a fierce competitor, twice making Vic Viper acquiesce in "I Quit" matches in April.[35][35] With their rivalry intensifying, Galloway's next challenge to O'Shaunnesy was given the stipulation of a Last Man Standing match. Once again, the Irish native retained the title,[36] as he would also do in June with the same stipulation.[37]

Finally, on 28 August 2006 Galloway managed to beat the reigning Irishman and won the IwW International Heavyweight Championship in a singles match.[38][39] He successfully defended the belt that evening against Go Shiozaki.[7][39] In November, Galloway took the championship to London, England to defend it at Real Quality Wrestling's Rebirth in November against Jody Fleisch,[40] though the match would be broadcast on the 20 December episode of RQW TV.[41] However, Galloway was not able to commit to fully defending the title, due to other bookings in his homeland and his academic studies, he was thus forced to relenquish the championship in January 2007.[7][42]

Touring Great Britain (2005–2007)

While BCW became his home promotion and he made regular appearances for IwW, Galloway made several appearances around the independent circuit. In 2004, he appeared for the fledgling International Pro Wrestling: United Kingdom (IPW:UK) at their aptly titled Show 2.[43] Despite losing to Aviv Maayan in his first showing,[44] by the time he returned in May 2005 his reputation made him notorious enough to compete in their main event Five Way Elimination match to determine the best of British heavyweights. Galloway was eliminated first by Andy Boy Simmonz with a small package pin.[45]

In between studying, Gallow competed in several tours of All Star Wrestling[1] against competitors including TJ Wilson, PN Neuz, Chad Collyer and Brody Steele during 2006.[46] On 15 October 2006 Galloway competed in Insane Championship Wrestling's (ICW) debut show Fear & Loathing, defeating Darkside and Allan Grogan in a Three Way 30 Minute Iron Man match to become the first ICW Champion. He lost the ICW Championship on 22 July to Darkside in a Five-Man Elimination match also involving Jack Jester, Wolfgang and Liam Thomson.

Despite it being his only appearance for NWA: Scottish Wrestling Alliance (NWA:SWA), Galloway represented Team SWA against Team Sinner in the titular match for the March 2006 Clan Wars event, being eliminated first by Highlander who was using the ropes.[47] At the end of the month he appeared at the inaugural event for Premier British Wrestling (PBW) earning a shot to become the first PBW Heavyweight Champion by defeating Allan Grogan but losing to Wolfgang in the main event. In October he was entered into a contendership match to win another chance at the title, but was beaten by Dave Moralez.[48]

Galloway's reception continued to precede him, being placed in contention for RQW's Not Just For Christmas tournament to crown the inaugural RQW Heavyweight Champion. Representing IwW, having made his IwW Title defence against Fleisch earlier in the year, Galloway faced SAS Wrestling's El Ligero[49] going through to the semi-final only to lose to One Pro Wrestling's Pac by count out. Galloway continued to appear in April, taking his rivalry with 'SOS' Sheamus O'Shaunnesy to London with a double count-out[50] which led to a rematch in June where Galloway picked up the victory in a Street Fight. Later on that evening, having made a statement with his win over O'Shaunnesy, Galloway attacked the RQW Heavyweight Champion Martin Stone during his title defence against Takeshi Rikio.[51] This attack led to what would be Galloway's final match in the UK at August's Summer Brawl. Despite attacking Stone earlier in the evening, Galloway could not pick up the victory and failed to win the title.[52] Galloway's very last appearance was serving as a referee for PBW on 15 September in a match that saw Darkside defeat Lionheart to become the championship contender.[53].

World Wrestling Entertainment

In late 2006, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) went on tour in Europe and before their filming of SmackDown in Manchester, Galloway had a try out match against O'Shaunessy. The following year in April the two received another try out matches in London.[54] Later in 2007, on 12 October, Galloway made his televised WWE debut during SmackDown using the name Drew McIntyre. He appeared as a fan friendly villain, imploring the crowd to cheer for him due to seeking dual citizenship with America while accompanied by villainous fellow Briton Dave Taylor. He defeated Brett Major[55] in his first week and the following episode defeated his tag team partner Brian Major with the help of Taylor.[56] McIntyre was moved to the Raw brand in the new year, but after a win against Charlie Haas on 4 January he disappeared from television.[57]

Ohio Valley Wrestling (2007–2008)

After moving to Kentucky, Galloway made his debut in Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) on 26 September with a win over fellow FWA Academy alumnus Paul Burchill. He soon changed his name to Drew McIntyre and teamed with Burchill to take on The Major Brothers (Brian and Brett) in a losing effort. In October, McIntyre found a new partner in Stu Sanders forming a tag team called The Brit Pack. Still they failed to defeat The Major Brothers, both in a tag team match and a Four Corners tag team match elimination match. The Brit Pack picked up their first victory on the 31 October TV tapings over Dirty Money and Scott Cardinal. The win propelled McIntyre to gain an OVW Television Championship match against Colt Cabana.[58] In 2008, Mcintyre gained momentum with a winning streak that built towards a non-title match against OVW Heavyweight Champion Evan Bourne which McIntyre won by disqualification, after interference. His final match in OVW was on 29 February with a win over Scott Cardinal.[59]

Florida Championship Wrestling (2008–2009)

On 15 April 2008, Galloway reformed The Brit Pack with Stu Sanders, now going under the name of The Empire to take on The Puerto Rican Nightmares (Eric Pérez and Eddie Colón). The Nightmares won the match, however, and with it a shot at the FCW Florida Tag Team Championship.[60] Once The Nightmares won the titles, The Empire received two consecutive chances to win the belts and became Tag Team Champions on 6 May.[61] Their first title defence was against McIntyre's old rival Sheamus O'Shaunnesy but his partner 'Sterling' Jack Gabriel' accidently hit them and The Empire capitalised to retain their titles.[60] The Empire would be less fortunate on 12 July when they lost the championship to Joe Hennig and Gabe Tuft.[61] On 16 August, The Empire imploded when McIntyre faced Sanders in a singles match which ended in a double count-out and their rematch on 30 September ended in a time limit draw. The following week McIntyre was entered into a contest for the FCW Florida Heavyweight Championship and defeated Tuft to make it into the final but lost to Eric Escobar (the former Eric Peréz). McIntyre closed out the year with an unsuccessful attempt to gain the Heavyweight Championship in a Four Way match but Escobar won the title from O'Shaunnesy.[62]

McIntyre in a match against Finlay.

Going into 2009, McIntyre entered into a rivalry with Joe Hennig but their first match in February ended in a double count-out. McIntyre interfered in Hennig's match the following week, costing him the match. On 26 February Hennig defeated McIntyre[63] and went on that night to win the Florida Heavyweight Championship from Escobar. Their feud ended abruptly when Hennig vacated the title after an injury causing McIntyre to be elevated into title contendership, beating Escobar for the vacant championship on 19 March. McIntyre would regularly defend the title until 11 June when Tyler Reks (the former Gabe Tuft) won the belt in his second attempt.[62] Later that month McIntyre failed to win a 14 Man Battle Royal for a chance to regain his gold. On 25 June McIntyre was set to team with O'Shaunnesy against the returning Hennig and DJ Gabriel (the aforementioned Jack Gabriel) but when neither team would work together a Four Way was booked with O'Shaunnesy being victorious. McIntyre and O'Shaunnesy both failed to win back the Florida Heavyweight Championship in mid-July from Reks, with McIntyre receiving a singles opportunity the next day with the same result.[63]

SmackDown (2009–present)

On 28 August 2009, McIntyre returned to the SmackDown brand, disregarding his previous time on WWE television, and established himself as a villain by attacking R-Truth as he entered the ring, using his new double underhook DDT finishing move, the Scot Drop which would quickly change its name to the Future Shock.[64] McIntyre would continue to attack Truth over the following weeks, claiming to be on the show to wrestle not to party like Truth.[65] On 18 September, while Haas was waiting to face R-Truth McIntyre came to the ring explaining Truth had been injured backstage; he then attacked Haas.[66] On 25 September, WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon, in character, introduced McIntyre as a "future World Champion" that he had personally signed after which Truth made a return attack against McIntyre.[67] The following week McIntyre continued to crash parties by making a speech at the Decade of SmackDown celebration until Truth put him through a table and the anniversary cake.[68] This all led to McIntyre's first proper match since his return at the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view (PPV). At the event, McIntyre defeated Truth in under five minutes again using his DDT finisher.[69][70]

McIntyre as the Intercontinental Champion in December 2009.

McIntyre faced Truth once more in a singles match and won by countout to represent SmackDown at Bragging Rights[71] but the episode before the PPV the entire team, captains aside, was replaced leaving McIntyre omitted from the event.[72][73] McIntyre briefly feuded with Finlay with their first match not starting when McIntyre attacked him before the match began,[74] their second match ending in double disqualification after a brawl broke out and McIntyre hit Finlay with his own shillelagh.[75] Their final match saw a decision, with McIntyre winning in under two minutes.[76] At Survivor Series, McIntyre had a place on The Miz's team for the traditional Survivor Series Elimination match. McIntyre, The Miz and his former rival Sheamus (previously Sheamus O'Shaunessy) were the surviving members on their winning team.[77]

Being the only SmackDown superstar to survive against Team Morrison, McIntyre faced and defeated Morrison a few weeks later,[78] putting him in line for Morrison's Intercontinental Championship at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs. Days before the event, Morrison mocked McIntyre's Scottish heritage by dressing as a Braveheart-inspired William Wallace,[79] but at TLC, McIntyre managed to pin Morrison after a thumb to the eye to win the Intercontinental Title, his first championship in WWE.[80] McIntyre retained the title against Morrison and later against Kane using underhanded tactics[81][82] before his undefeated streak in WWE came to an end in a non-title Money in the Bank qualifying match against Kane on the 26 February episode of SmackDown.[83] The following week, however, General Manager Teddy Long was forced by Mr. McMahon to expunge the loss from official records, but McIntyre instantly lost again to Matt Hardy in another Money in the Bank qualifying opportunity.[84] This match was also removed from the records book by Mr. McMahon and McIntyre was given one last qualifying opportunity the next week, only this time, by order of Theodore Long, the Intercontinental Championship was at stake. McMahon handpicked the opponent, who was Seattle native Aaron Bolo. McIntyre won the match, giving him another MITB chance and retaining his championship.

Personal life

Having grown up in Prestwick, Ayrshire, Galloway studied at Prestwick Academy and completed a criminology degree at Glasgow Caledonian University.[85] He is a supporter of football team Rangers F.C. and considered being a professional football player when he was younger.[86] He also posed as a model in his early days of wrestling.[87]

On January 9, 2010, the Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported that Galloway was engaged to WWE Diva Tiffany with plans for a May wedding.[88] |Tary T

In wrestling

Championships and accomplishments

References

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