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George Wells
Ring name(s) George Wells
Master Gee
Billed height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Billed weight 240 lb (110 kg)
Born October 1, 1947 (1947-10-01) (age 62)
Oakland, California, United States
Resides Oakland, California
Debut c. 1973
Retired c. 1992

George Wells or Welles (born October 30, 1947) is a retired American professional wrestler and Canadian Football League football player who competed in North American regional promotions during the early 1970s and 1980s including the Continental Wrestling Association, Pacific Northwest Wrestling, Stampede Wrestling, the National Wrestling Alliance and the World Wrestling Federation, most notably as the opponent of Jake “The Snake” Roberts at WrestleMania 2. It was during this live PPV match that Roberts, after having defeated Wells, had placed his pet snake “Damien” on Wells causing him to foam at the mouth. [1][2]

A popular star in the San Francisco-area during the late 1970s, he is also credited as being the only African-American to hold the now defunct NWA United States Heavyweight Championship.

Contents

Early life

Born in Oakland, California, he graduated in 1966 from Oakland Tech High School and later attended Laney College and New Mexico State University playing college football and competed in the heavyweight division in several Amateur Athletic Union national tournaments.

In 1971, he played in the American Bowl in Florida and later the fourth round draft and signed by the Dallas Cowboys, before being traded to the San Francisco 49ers. Moving to Canada, he competed in the Canadian Football League for eight years with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Saskatchewan Roughriders as a defensive making all-pro four times and played in five play-off games and three Grey Cups, winning one. He also averaged 30 to 36 quarterback sacks during four of his last five seasons. [3]

Entry into professional wrestling

In 1974, Wells began wrestling professionally in northern California during the off season although he lost early matches to Kinji Shibuya in Sacramento, California on March 20, Blackjack Slade in San Francisco, California on April 20 and Dick Slater in San Jose, California on May 13 and in a rematch at San Francisco on May 18, 1974. He would however score one of his earliest victories defeating Terry Garvin in Sacramento on December 26, 1974. [4]

He would continue wrestling on televised events in the San Francisco area for the next three years and eventually scored impressive victories of veterans such as Mr. Saito, Norman Frederick Charles III, The Hangman, Butcher Vachon and, teaming with Al Madril, the Royal Kangaroos defeating them on January 26, 1977.

During early 1977, he would feud with Butcher Vachon dominating their matches in February and again teamed with Al Madril to defeat Vachon and the Black Marvel in a tag team match on February 23, 1977.

Wells would later briefly feud with Bob Roop, Buddy Austin and Hiro Ota during late March and early April, losing to Roop on April 2 although he later defeated him in a rematch via disqualification seven days later. Losing to Hiro Ota on April 13, he later defeated Mr. Saito on April 27 and teamed with Moondog Mayne to defeat Hiro Ota and Tank Patton three days later on April 30.

Although teaming with Darling Dagmar and Pepper Gomez in a 6-man tag team match against Bob Roop, Marie Laverau and Masked Superstar on May 11, Wells experienced a brief losing streak after being defeated by Bob Roop on May 14 and Mr. Saito on May 28 and later left the San Francisco-area.

Stampede Wrestling and the National Wrestling Alliance

In early 1978, he began wrestling for Stampede Wrestling and teaming with Jerry Morrow defeated Mr. Hito and Michael Martel in February 1978 although they lost the titles to Norman Frederick Charles III and the Cuban Assassin later that year. He also had a short stint in Gene and Mike LeBelle’s World Wrestling Alliance fighting to a draw with Bad News Allen in Los Angeles, California on July 13, 1979. [5]

While in the St. Louis-area, he substituted for Matt Borne teaming with Frank Hill to defeat Roger Kirby and Steve Hall on September 14 as well as defeating The Turk by disqualification on October 15 and teamed with Dick the Bruiser and David von Erich in a 6-man tag team match to defeat Lord Alfred Hayes, "Bulldog" Bob Brown and Ox Baker on October 19, 1979.

After officially retiring from professional football in 1980, he began competing in Central States Wrestling teaming with Pat O’Connor to defeat Pak Song and Ron McFarlane (substituting for an injured Mongol) on March 28 and later teamed with O’Connor and Dick the Bruiser in a 6-man tag team match against Bulldog Bob Brown, Dick Murdoch and Ed Wiskowski on April 11, 1980.

He would also team with Kerry Brown losing to Takachio and Pak Song in St. Louis, Missouri on April 7 although they would later defeat Billy Howard and Ed Wiskoski in Kansas City, Missouri on June 5. [6]

Entering singles competition, he fought to a draw against Ed Wiskowski on April 25 before losing to him in a rematch on June 7 for the NWA United States Heavyweight Championship (he had previously held the title since defeating Bob Sweeney on December 12, 1979) and was defeated by Takachio on June 13. Later that year, he began feuding with Dewey Robertson losing to him and Swede Hanson in a tag team match with Don Kernodle on September 9, although he later defeated him in a singles match in Forest City, North Carolina on September 11, 1980.

The two would begin teaming with each other later that year, defeating The Sheepherders in Spartanburg, South Carolina on December 6, six days later, defeated them for the Mid-Atlantic Tag Team titles in Richmond, Virginia on December 12, 1980.

Mid-Atlantic region

Returning to Canada for a one time appearance defeating Sgt. Jacques Goulet and Ben Alexander in Toronto, Ontario on December 28, they continued to defend their titles in the Carolinas throughout the next year defeating Kim Duk and Tenryu on January 1 and in a rematch four days later on January 5 and continued to feud with Goulet teaming with Kim Duk, Swede Hanson and Gene Lewis in unsuccessful attempts to win the tag team titles. Wells and Kernodle would remain undefeated until February 19 when they lost the titles to Mr. Fuji and Tenryu in Norfolk, Virginia.

Although continuing to team with each other, losing in a rematch against Mr. Fuji and Tenryu on April 5, they would eventually break up following their victory over Gene Lewis and Tenryu on May 12, 1980.

Wells remained in the Mid-Atlantic region for a few more months and defeated Swede Hanson by disqualification on January 20, 1981 [7] before leaving the territory and later defeated Jerry Stubbs for the NWA Alabama Heavyweight title before losing it to Jimmy Golden that same year.

Central States Wrestling

Wells would again face Kernodle upon returning to Central States Wrestling, defeating Kernodle and Ray Hernandez in a tag team match with Mark Romero on June 10 and again in a singles match on July 15, 1983. He would later team with Ron Ritchie to defeat The Sheiks (Roger Kirby & Abdullah the Great) to become the Central States tag team champions in August before losing the titles back to them that same month.

Touring the Midwest with the short-lived USA Pro promotion in 1984, he was the last heavyweight champion appearing at the last event defeating Tom Zenk in Minneapolis, Minnesota on March 28, 1984. [8]

In 1985, he would once again feud with Kernodle losing to him May 29, in a 6-man tag team match with Swede Hanson and Ivan Putski against ”Big” John Studd and manager Bobby “the Brain” Heenan on May 30 and again in later singles rematches in East Rutherford, New Jersey on June 7, Kalamazoo, Michigan on July 10 and Milwaukee, Wisconsin on July 12. [9]

From Hartford to Memphis

He soon debuted in the World Wrestling Federation, although he was generally used as a preliminary wrestler regularly appearing on WWF Prime Time Wrestling, although he did have some success teaming with Lanny Poffo. He would also appear at several major WWF events, losing to Adrian Adonis at the WWF Michigan State Fair supercard on August 28, 1985 and Jake “The Snake” Roberts at WrestleMania 2 on March 7, 1986.

Leaving the WWF in early-1986, he began wrestling in the Memphis-based Continental Wrestling Association as Master Gee and feuded with Junkyard Dog and Butch Reed, breaking the leg of Reed during a “ghetto street fight” when he refused to release Reed from a modified figure-four leglock.

He would also appear in World Class Championship Wrestling feuding with the Dingo Warrior, he and WCCW World Tag team Champion Matt Borne lost the tag team titles to the Dingo Warrior and Lance von Erich on November 17 (Wells had substituted for an injured Bart Sawyer). After losing to the Dingo Warrior in a "chain match" at the supercard Thanksgiving Star Wars '86 on November 27 and Lance von Erich at Christmas Star Wars '86 on December 25, Wells left the promotion.

Later years

After a brief appearance in Dominic Denucci's NWF All-Star Wrestling in 1987, losing to Sgt. Jacques Goulet in a televised match on September 8, Wells would remain inactive for most of the late 1980s until his eventual retirement in 1992.

Returning to Oakland, Wells is currently one of the leading drug councilors in the San Francisco Bay area. Having suffered from drug-related issues throughout his athletic career, he primarily works with teenage drug addicts. [10]

Unfortunately, George continues his struggle with addiction. Sometimes he is more of a client than a counselor at downtown Berkeley recovery centers. A testament to his willingness to "step into the ring", he continues to deal with his problems and maintains a positive outlook on life.

Championships and accomplishments

Finishing Move: The Avalanche Favorite Moves: Football Tackle The Headscissors The Powerslam

References

  1. ^ Powell, John (July 2002). "Wrestlemania 2: Caged Heat". SLAM! Wrestling. http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Wrestling/Wrestlemania20/WrestleMania2.html. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  2. ^ Gutschmidt, Adam (2003-10-23). "Wrestlemania 2: Bigger, Badder…Better?". OnlineOnslaught.com. http://www.oowrestling.com/features/20031023.shtml. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  3. ^ Dave Meltzer. The Wrestling Observer's Who's Who in Pro Wrestling. Turlock: Pro Wrestling Observer Newsletter, 1986.
  4. ^ Rodgers, Michael (2003). "An Illustrated History of Professional Wrestling in Northern California, 1974 Match Results". Ring Around the Northwest. http://homepage.mac.com/viktor2/btw/1974%20Results.html. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  5. ^ "Wrestling Results Archive: Bad News Allen". SLAM! Wrestling. 2005-06-30. http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Wrestling/ResultsArchive/Wrestlers/coage.html. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  6. ^ "Wrestling Results Archive: Kerry Brown". SLAM! Wrestling. 2005-07-30. http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Wrestling/ResultsArchive/Wrestlers/brown-kerry.html. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  7. ^ Finley, Sam; Bourne, Dick (June 2007). "Mid-Atlantic Wrestling Gateway presents, Columbia, SC – Township Auditorium". Mid-Atlantic Wrestling Gateway. http://midatlanticgateway.com/Almanac/calendar_pages/columbia_cal_8101.htm. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  8. ^ Morton, Gerald W.; O'Brien, George M. (June 2007). "Tom Zenk’s Pro Wrestling Debut in USA Pro Wrestling". Z Man. http://www.geocities.com/Colosseum/Arena/9893/bday2.htm. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  9. ^ "Wrestling Results Archive: Dewey Robertson". SLAM! Wrestling. 2007-08-12. http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Wrestling/ResultsArchive/Wrestlers/robertson-dewey.html. Retrieved 2007-12-09.  
  10. ^ "Former athlete helping Blacks with drug addictions". The Globe, Bay Area. 2005-08-17. http://www.theglobenewspapers.com/webarchives/05Aug17/health.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  
  11. ^ "N.W.A. Central States Tag Team Title". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/centralstates/nwa/cs-t.html. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  
  12. ^ "N.W.A. Mid-Atlanitc Tag Team Title". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/midatlantic/ma-t.html. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  
  13. ^ "N.W.A. Canadian Tag Team Title (Vancouver)". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/canada/bc/nwa/bc-can-t.html. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  
  14. ^ "N.W.A. United States Heavyweight Title (San Francisco)". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/ca/sf/rs/sf-us-h.html. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  
  15. ^ "N.W.A. Alabama Heavyweight Title". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/us/al/al-h.html. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  
  16. ^ "Stampede International Tag Team Title". Puroresu Dojo. 2003. http://www.wrestling-titles.com/canada/ab/calg-t.html. Retrieved 2007-10-09.  

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