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Vito LoGrasso
Ring name(s) Skull Von Krush[1]
Von Kruss
Vito LoGrasso[1]
(Big) Vito[1]
Billed height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)[1]
Billed weight 250 lb (110 kg)[1]
Born June 18, 1969 (1969-06-18) (age 40)[1][2]
Brooklyn, New York
Billed from Little Italy, Manhattan, New York
Trained by Johnny Rodz[1]
Debut 1990[1]

Vito Joseph LoGrasso[2] (born June 18, 1969)[2] is an American professional wrestler, of Italian origin, best known for his work in World Championship Wrestling as Big Vito and more recently World Wrestling Entertainment and working for their "developmental territories" Ohio Valley Wrestling and Deep South Wrestling as Vito.[1]

Contents

Career

Extreme Championship Wrestling (1990–1999)

LoGrasso started wrestling in 1990. He first made his professional debut in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) as Skull Von Krush (also appearing as a WWE (then WWF) jobber on early editions of Monday Night Raw simply named "Von Kruss"), a generic big wrestler who began with a subtly "evil foreigner" gimmick.

Later he changed his name to Vito "The Skull" LoGrasso and becoming a member of "Da Baldies" stable, who, in stoyline, claimed to be an offshoot of a real life New York street gang, and as such took issue with New Jack calling himself a "Gangsta" and began a feud with him.[1] Vito worked a couple of shows with the now defunct LIWF with Billy Alaimo and was on the Junkyard Dog memorial show in a casket match at The Elks Lodge in Queens, New York.

World Championship Wrestling (1999–2001)

In 1999 Vito left ECW for World Championship Wrestling (WCW) where he teamed with Johnny the Bull as The Mamalukes.[3] Managed by Tony Marinara The Mamalukes captured the WCW World Tag Team Championship twice, and were, in storyline, jointly awarded the WCW Hardcore Championship.[1] After being awarded the championship, however, Vito and Johnny were forced to face each other in a match to crown one champion, which Vito won.[1]

In December, 2000 the Mamalukes reunited and teamed together until March, 2001 when WCW was bought out by the WWF.

In 2001 when the World Wrestling Federation purchased WCW Vito was one of the wrestlers who was lost in the shuffle, neither becoming a part of The Invasion nor taking one of the large ticket buyouts offered.

Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2004)

Vito also had a brief run in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling in late-2004 with Glenn Gilberti, Trinity and Johnny Swinger as the "New York Connection".[4] His only feud was with "Irish" Pat Kenney, in which they exchanged victories.[5][6]

World Wrestling Entertainment (2005–2007)

In early 2005, Vito worked dark matches for the now renamed World Wrestling Entertainment and signed a contract with them in July.[7] He was assigned to their Ohio Valley Wrestling developmental territory for several months until he was ready to be called up to the main roster.

Vito made his debut on WWE television on the August 6 episode of WWE Velocity, where he helped Nunzio win the WWE Cruiserweight Championship from Paul London.[8] Together Vito and Nunzio reformed the Full Blooded Italians stable, acting mostly as a tag team together on Velocity with scattered appearances on SmackDown!.[1]

Vito and Nunzio turned heel once again (after a short flirtation with being faces with a brief feud against then-heel, Gregory Helms) in March 2006 under an angle in which Vito announced that he wanted to be recognized as a "Godfather" and he would wear a blazer and glasses.

Beginning in May, various wrestlers such as Orlando Jordan and Paul Burchill began approaching Nunzio in backstage situations and spreading rumors that they had, in storyline, seen Vito in public places in various forms of cross-dress.[9][10] Nunzio originally wouldn't hear of any such thing until the June 2 SmackDown! when Vito came down the ramp, in a dress, to collect Nunzio after losing a match.[11] The next week, after arguing about Vito's clothing choices, the two former friends faced each other in a match which Vito won after hitting Nunzio with The Code of Silence.[12] Not long after, Nunzio joined the ECW brand, leaving Vito on SmackDown! alone.[13]

The idea for the gimmick (which came from Vito himself) seemed to originate on The Sopranos, who also had a character named Vito who had recently been outed as a homosexual (though he was never seen in women's clothing).

Regardless of his passion for cross dressing, Vito continually explained that he was a straight man; including one instance of asking Diva Ashley Massaro out on a date while wearing a dress, to which she agreed.[14] After this he began to "have more fun" during his matches, running around and waving his dresses and otherwise interacting with the fans, turning him once again face.[15] As the gimmick took off various people began kayfabe voicing problems with a man wrestling while wearing a dress, including color commentator JBL (who refused to do commentary with him) and wrestlers Montel Vontavious Porter[16] and William Regal[17] who (kayfabe) threatened SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long with a sexual harassment lawsuit to get out of a match with Vito.[18] At the same time, WWE began to "censor" any incidents of Vito's dress raising and exposing his (bethonged) buttocks. Despite his detractors, once he started wearing a dress Vito began an undefeated streak which didn't end until over four months later when he was defeated by Elijah Burke after interference from his partner Sylvester Terkay.

On November 2, 2006 WWE.com announced that Vito would be posing (non-nude) for the April 2007 edition of Playgirl. On May 15, 2007, Vito was released from his WWE contract.[19]

Deep South Wrestling

Vito defeated champion Bradley Jay and Ryan O'Reilly in a three-way round robin match to win the DSW Heavyweight Championship on January 25, 2007.[1] Almost immediately upon winning the title he underwent a gimmick change, losing the dress and instead adopting martial arts-style trunks, a headband, and wrestling without shoes.[1] When asked on DSW TV he announced that he changed his style of dress because his opponents were citing it as a distraction and claiming his clothing was the reason they were losing to him. The look was briefly shown during the Lumberjack tag match on Sunday Night Heat at WrestleMania 23, between Carlito and Ric Flair against Chavo Guerrero and Gregory Helms, Vito was grouped with the face lumberjacks. He held the title until February 22, when he lost it back to Bradley Jay.[1]

Online Radio

Vito formally hosted in 2004 along with Ryan Clark and Matt Boone a webshow on WrestleZone.com called WZR Radio which still airs today on WZROnline.com. Vito made a guest appearance on WZR on September 16, 2008 answering Questions from callers he also talked about his days in ECW and WCW also talking about his dress gimmick on SmackDown. On The Wednesday September 24, 2008 Special edition of WZR Radio Ryan Clark and Richard Gray reported that Vito had been arrested, Vito made another guest appearance on the October 21, 2008 edition of WZR which was a 3 hour show with the first 2 hours talking about WWE with Richard Gray and Ryan Clark, the 3rd hour Richard left and was replaced by Matt Boone.

Personal life

He was previously married to a woman named Kathy, with whom he had four children.[1] The marriage ended in divorce, but they remained friends.Kathy died of cancer on September 1, 2007.[20] He is currently in a relationship with wrestler and model, Noel Harlow. She is the first woman in the wrestling business he has dated in his twenty year career [21]

In wrestling

  • Facts
    • Vito's tour March 2010 of Nepal makes him the first former ECW, WCW, TNA, WWE, Superstar to work in that country.[25]

Championships and accomplishments

  • Big Time Wrestling
    • BTW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
  • European Wrestling Promotion
    • Ironman Hardcore Knockout Tournament (2002)
  • United States Extreme Wrestling
    • UXW United States Championship (1 time)[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w "Big Vito". Online World of Wrestling. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/b/big-vito.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  2. ^ a b c "Individual's Charge Report - LOGRASSO,VITO JOSEPH". Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. 2008-09-25. http://www.hcso.tampa.fl.us/pub/default.asp?/Online/qdisp/bn=08057586. Retrieved 2008-09-25. 
  3. ^ "The Mamalukes". Online World of Wrestling. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/m/mamalukes.html. Retrieved 2009-05-08. 
  4. ^ "NWA: Total Nonstop Action PPV; July 14, 2004 - Nashville, Tennessee - Aired Live". Online World of Wrestling. 2004-07-14. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/tna/040714.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  5. ^ "NWA: Total Nonstop Action PPV; July 21, 2004 - Nashville, Tennessee - Aired Live". Online World of Wrestling. 2004-07-21. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/tna/040721.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  6. ^ "NWA: Total Nonstop Action PPV; August 4, 2004 - Nashville, Tennessee - Aired Live". Online World of Wrestling. 2004-08-04. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/tna/040804.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  7. ^ "WWE SmackDown! Results - February 24, 2005". Online World of Wrestling. 2005-02-24. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/smackdown/050224.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  8. ^ "WWE SmackDown! Results - August 4, 2005". Online World of Wrestling. 2005-08-04. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/smackdown/050804.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  9. ^ "Tragic Homecoming". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-05-12. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/05122006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  10. ^ "Seeing red". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-05-19. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/05192006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  11. ^ "All hail the king". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-02. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06022006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  12. ^ "Hell week continues". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-09. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06092006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  13. ^ "An Extreme Debut". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-13. http://www.wwe.com/shows/ecw/archive/061320061/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  14. ^ Dee, Louie (2006-06-23). "Family tradition". World Wrestling Entertainment. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06232006/. Retrieved 2008-01-27. 
  15. ^ "Lashley reigns supreme". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-30. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06302006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  16. ^ "Friday knightmare". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-30. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06302006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  17. ^ "Signing Bonus". WWE. 2006-09-01. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/09012006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  18. ^ "All the King's men". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-09-08. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/09082006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  19. ^ "Vito released". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2007-05-15. http://www.wwe.com/inside/news/vitoreleased. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  20. ^ Press Release: Big Vito speaks about the passing of his ex-wife & more
  21. ^ Big Vito's Facebook page
  22. ^ a b c d e f "Disco Inferno & Lash Leroux Vs The Mamalukes /w Tony Marinara". World Championship Wrestling. WCW Starrcade. 1999-12-19.
  23. ^ a b "Flair, Crowbar & Daffney hijack announce table; Fit Finlay & Brian Knobbs vs. The Mamalukes w/Disco Inferno". World Championship Wrestling. WCW Monday Nitro. 2000-01-24.
  24. ^ a b "The Mamalukes profile". Online World of Wrestling. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/m/mamalukes.html. Retrieved 2009-09-09. 
  25. ^ [http://www.prowrestlingfans.com/inc/printArticle.php?articleID=28929

External links


Vito LoGrasso
Ring name(s) Skull Von Krush[1]
Von Kruss
Vito LoGrasso[1]
(Big) Vito[1]
Billed height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)[1]
Billed weight 250 lb (110 kg)[1]
Born June 18, 1969 (1969-06-18) (age 41)[1][2]
Brooklyn, New York
Billed from Little Italy, Manhattan, New York
Trained by Johnny Rodz[1]
Debut 1990[1]

Vito Joseph LoGrasso[2] (born June 18, 1969)[2] is an American professional wrestler, of Italian origin, best known for his work in World Championship Wrestling as Big Vito and more recently World Wrestling Entertainment and working for their "developmental territories" Ohio Valley Wrestling and Deep South Wrestling as Vito.[1]

Contents

Career

Extreme Championship Wrestling (1990–1999)

LoGrasso started wrestling in 1990. He first made his professional debut in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) as Skull Von Krush (also appearing as a WWE (then WWF) jobber on early editions of Monday Night Raw simply named "Von Kruss"), a generic big wrestler who began with a subtly "evil foreigner" gimmick.

Later he changed his name to Vito "The Skull" LoGrasso and becoming a member of "Da Baldies" stable, who, in storyline, claimed to be an offshoot of a real life New York street gang, and as such took issue with New Jack calling himself a "Gangsta" and began a feud with him.[1] Vito worked a couple of shows with the now defunct LIWF with Billy Alaimo and was on the Junkyard Dog memorial show in a casket match at The Elks Lodge in Queens, New York.

World Championship Wrestling (1999–2001)

In 1999 Vito left ECW for World Championship Wrestling (WCW) where he teamed with Johnny the Bull as The Mamalukes.[3] Managed by Tony Marinara The Mamalukes captured the WCW World Tag Team Championship twice, and were, in storyline, jointly awarded the WCW Hardcore Championship.[1] After being awarded the championship, however, Vito and Johnny were forced to face each other in a match to crown one champion, which Vito won.[1]

In December, 2000 the Mamalukes reunited and teamed together until March, 2001 when WCW was bought out by the WWF.

In 2001 when the World Wrestling Federation purchased WCW Vito was one of the wrestlers who was lost in the shuffle, neither becoming a part of The Invasion nor taking one of the large ticket buyouts offered.

Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2004)

Vito also had a brief run in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling in late-2004 with Glenn Gilbertti, Trinity and Johnny Swinger as the "New York Connection".[4] His only feud was with "Irish" Pat Kenney, in which they exchanged victories.[5][6]

World Wrestling Entertainment (2005–2007)

In early 2005, Vito worked dark matches for the now renamed World Wrestling Entertainment and signed a contract with them in July.[7] He was assigned to their Ohio Valley Wrestling developmental territory for several months until he was ready to be called up to the main roster.

Vito made his debut on WWE television on the August 6 episode of WWE Velocity, where he helped Nunzio win the WWE Cruiserweight Championship from Paul London.[8] Together Vito and Nunzio reformed the Full Blooded Italians stable, acting mostly as a tag team together on Velocity with scattered appearances on SmackDown!.[1]

Vito and Nunzio turned heel once again (after a short flirtation with being faces with a brief feud against then-heel, Gregory Helms) in March 2006 under an angle in which Vito announced that he wanted to be recognized as a "Godfather" and he would wear a blazer and glasses.

Beginning in May, various wrestlers such as Orlando Jordan and Paul Burchill began approaching Nunzio in backstage situations and spreading rumors that they had, in storyline, seen Vito in public places in various forms of cross-dress.[9][10] Nunzio originally wouldn't hear of any such thing until the June 2 SmackDown! when Vito came down the ramp, in a dress, to collect Nunzio after losing a match.[11] The next week, after arguing about Vito's clothing choices, the two former friends faced each other in a match which Vito won after hitting Nunzio with The Code of Silence.[12] Not long after, Nunzio joined the ECW brand, leaving Vito on SmackDown! alone.[13]

The idea for the gimmick (which came from Vito himself) seemed to originate on The Sopranos, who also had a character named Vito who had recently been outed as a homosexual (though he was never seen in women's clothing).

Regardless of his passion for cross dressing, Vito continually explained that he was a straight man; including one instance of asking Diva Ashley Massaro out on a date while wearing a dress, to which she agreed.[14] After this he began to "have more fun" during his matches, running around and waving his dresses and otherwise interacting with the fans, turning him once again face.[15] As the gimmick took off various people began kayfabe voicing problems with a man wrestling while wearing a dress, including color commentator JBL (who refused to do commentary with him) and wrestlers Montel Vontavious Porter[16] and William Regal[17] who (kayfabe) threatened SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long with a sexual harassment lawsuit to get out of a match with Vito.[18] At the same time, WWE began to "censor" any incidents of Vito's dress raising and exposing his (bethonged) buttocks. Despite his detractors, once he started wearing a dress Vito began an undefeated streak which didn't end until over four months later when he was defeated by Elijah Burke after interference from his partner Sylvester Terkay.

On November 2, 2006 WWE.com announced that Vito would be posing (non-nude) for the April 2007 edition of Playgirl. On May 15, 2007, Vito was released from his WWE contract.[19]

Deep South Wrestling

Vito defeated champion Bradley Jay and Ryan O'Reilly in a three-way round robin match to win the DSW Heavyweight Championship on January 25, 2007.[1] Almost immediately upon winning the title he underwent a gimmick change, losing the dress and instead adopting martial arts-style trunks, a headband, and wrestling without shoes.[1] When asked on DSW TV he announced that he changed his style of dress because his opponents were citing it as a distraction and claiming his clothing was the reason they were losing to him. The look was briefly shown during the Lumberjack tag match on Sunday Night Heat at WrestleMania 23, between Carlito and Ric Flair against Chavo Guerrero and Gregory Helms, Vito was grouped with the face lumberjacks. He held the title until February 22, when he lost it back to Bradley Jay.[1]

Online Radio

Vito formally hosted in 2004 along with Ryan Clark and Matt Boone a webshow on WrestleZone.com called WZR Radio which still airs today on WZROnline.com. Vito made a guest appearance on WZR on September 16, 2008 answering Questions from callers he also talked about his days in ECW and WCW also talking about his dress gimmick on SmackDown. Vito made another guest appearance on the October 21, 2008 edition of WZR which was a 3 hour show with the first 2 hours talking about WWE with Richard Gray and Ryan Clark, the 3rd hour Richard left and was replaced by Matt Boone.

Personal life

He was previously married to a woman named Kathy, with whom he had four children.[1] The marriage ended in divorce, but they remained friends. Kathy died of cancer on September 1, 2007.[20] Vito is currently dating fellow wrestler and model Noel Harlow.[21]

Vito's tour March 2010 of Nepal makes him the first former ECW, WCW, TNA, WWE, Superstar to work in that country.[22]

In wrestling

Championships and accomplishments

  • Big Time Wrestling
    • BTW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
  • European Wrestling Promotion
    • Ironman Hardcore Knockout Tournament (2002)
  • United States Extreme Wrestling
    • UXW United States Championship (1 time)[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w "Big Vito". Online World of Wrestling. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/b/big-vito.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  2. ^ a b c "Individual's Charge Report - LOGRASSO,VITO JOSEPH". Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. 2008-09-25. http://www.hcso.tampa.fl.us/pub/default.asp?/Online/qdisp/bn=08057586. Retrieved 2008-09-25. 
  3. ^ "The Mamalukes". Online World of Wrestling. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/m/mamalukes.html. Retrieved 2009-05-08. 
  4. ^ "NWA: Total Nonstop Action PPV; July 14, 2004 - Nashville, Tennessee - Aired Live". Online World of Wrestling. 2004-07-14. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/tna/040714.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  5. ^ "NWA: Total Nonstop Action PPV; July 21, 2004 - Nashville, Tennessee - Aired Live". Online World of Wrestling. 2004-07-21. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/tna/040721.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  6. ^ "NWA: Total Nonstop Action PPV; August 4, 2004 - Nashville, Tennessee - Aired Live". Online World of Wrestling. 2004-08-04. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/tna/040804.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  7. ^ "WWE SmackDown! Results - February 24, 2005". Online World of Wrestling. 2005-02-24. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/smackdown/050224.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  8. ^ "WWE SmackDown! Results - August 4, 2005". Online World of Wrestling. 2005-08-04. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/results/smackdown/050804.html. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  9. ^ "Tragic Homecoming". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-05-12. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/05122006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  10. ^ "Seeing red". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-05-19. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/05192006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  11. ^ "All hail the king". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-02. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06022006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  12. ^ "Hell week continues". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-09. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06092006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  13. ^ "An Extreme Debut". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-13. http://www.wwe.com/shows/ecw/archive/061320061/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  14. ^ Dee, Louie (2006-06-23). "Family tradition". World Wrestling Entertainment. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06232006/. Retrieved 2008-01-27. 
  15. ^ "Lashley reigns supreme". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-30. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06302006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  16. ^ "Friday knightmare". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-06-30. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/06302006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  17. ^ "Signing Bonus". WWE. 2006-09-01. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/09012006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  18. ^ "All the King's men". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2006-09-08. http://www.wwe.com/shows/smackdown/archive/09082006/. Retrieved 2007-12-23. 
  19. ^ "Vito released". World Wrestling Entertainment. 2007-05-15. http://www.wwe.com/inside/news/vitoreleased. Retrieved 2009-05-09. 
  20. ^ Press Release: Big Vito speaks about the passing of his ex-wife & more
  21. ^ Big Vito's online world of wrestling Profile
  22. ^ [1]
  23. ^ a b c d e f "Disco Inferno & Lash Leroux Vs The Mamalukes /w Tony Marinara". World Championship Wrestling. WCW Starrcade. 1999-12-19.
  24. ^ a b "Flair, Crowbar & Daffney hijack announce table; Fit Finlay & Brian Knobbs vs. The Mamalukes w/Disco Inferno". World Championship Wrestling. WCW Monday Nitro. 2000-01-24.
  25. ^ a b "The Mamalukes profile". Online World of Wrestling. http://www.onlineworldofwrestling.com/profiles/m/mamalukes.html. Retrieved 2009-09-09. 

External links

File:WWE ring.jpg Professional wrestling portal








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