Over the Top Rope

Rock Riddle's
Wrestling Revue

by Rock Riddle, the Original "Mr. Wonderful" of Professional Wrestling

Scheduled Publication Date:   October 5, 2006

Click on any of the smaller photos to enlarge

I stood slightly less than six feet tall.  My arms measured just over18½-inches and I weighed a solid 236 pounds.  I was fairly strong.  My best single-rep bench press, for example, was just under four hundred pounds.  If any of that is even slightly impressive to you, you may be surprised that over ninety percent of my opponents were bigger and stronger than I was.  That was fine with me.  From the age of sixteen, when I first began training for my professional career, I accepted the reality of the business and I expected to be facing larger opponents.  I enjoyed seeing the expressions of disbelief and astonishment on the faces of the fans when I body-slammed 300+ pound opponents.

Every once in a while the wrestling promotion would surprise me by pitting me against a smaller wrestler.   Such was the case when I worked for promoter Lee Fields’ National Wrestling Alliance-sanctioned “Gulf Coast Wrestling.”  The promoter’s son, Ricky, was destined from birth to become a top professional wrestler.  After all, he was born into the business with two generations of wrestling greatness already in his blood.  He was just making the transition from referee to wrestler when I first met him.  He was probably about eighteen years old, but already a very talented wrestler.  He was a couple of inches shorter than I, and he probably weighed about 205 pounds.  I loved the fact that I was going to be able to wrestle him.  I was excited that we had the potential for a running feud.  I knew that once I did an interview (a “promo”) on live television, it would become instantaneously obvious to the wrestling promotion that there was big money to be made with a Riddle-Fields "program."

It was another “flat-out Saturday.”  I was booked for an 11:00 a.m. live TV show in Pensacola, Florida, a 3:00 p.m. live TV show in Southern Alabama, and a live “house show” that night.  “This is great,” I thought.  “Two opportunities – on live television – to set up the fans and the promoters for ‘Riddle-Fields’ matches.   Life doesn’t get any better than live television!”  I was already scheduled to wrestle Ricky Fields a week or so down the line, and it was Pensacola television promo time!  Yes!

The announcer and I were standing in front of the wrestling ring as the TV station came back from commercial.  “Ladies and gentlemen,” the announcer began, addressing the audience at home, “it is now my dubious honor to once again interview the man who calls himself ‘Mr. Wonderful,’ Rock…”  “Hold it right there, Mr. Part-Time Local-Yokel Announcer Wannabe,” I interrupted.  “It’s not me who gave myself the ‘Mr. Wonderful’ title.  No, it’s the tens of millions of women all over the world who constantly fantasize about me -- they hope beyond hope that they might someday be able to be in my presence -- they are the ones who rightfully gave me the name of ‘Mr. Wonderful.’”  I pulled a pair of scissors from my overnight bag and held them up.  “I expect an apology from you.  By the way, is that a tie you’re wearing, or is that how you dry your socks?”  I had cut off his tie on live television several weeks earlier, so he knew what I was about to potentially do.  “I apologize,” he said rather quickly.  “It’s just that many of the fans think you gave yourself the name.  They say you act like you’re better than they are.”  “Of course.  That’s because I am,” I said.  “It’s obvious that I’m vastly superior to the fans.  They pay to see me.  I don’t pay to see them.” 

The announcer regained his composure and continued with the interview.  “So, Rock.  I understand you are scheduled to wrestle an amazing up-and-comer, Ricky Fields… ”  I grabbed the microphone and pushed the announcer out of frame.  Now, it was MY show!  “Listen, you,” I began, “I am Mr. Wonderful.  I am the diamond-ring-and-Cadillac man.  I am the man who possesses the body that men fear and women love.  I am a main-eventer.  I am the reason people pay to see wrestling.  There is no way I should be wrestling this little kid.  He’s a midget.  He has no business in my industry.  He was a lousy referee and now he’s a lousy wrestler.  So, because his daddy is the promoter, Junior gets a shot at Mr. Wonderful.  Well, isn’t it interesting how inbreeding and politics works here in the Deep South?”  The boos from the TV audience were deafening.  “Little Ricky,” I continued, “has someone he idolizes in this business.  Do you know who that is?  Do you think it’s his Daddy, the wrestler I defeated dozens of times?  Of course not.  It’s me, Rock Riddle, Mr. Wonderful!  This little boy wants to grow up to be just like his hero.  But, his little toothpick arms will never look like these.”  I gave the camera a biceps pose.  “Sure, he idolizes me.  Of course, he wants to grow up to be like me.  But, he never can.  He’ll never grow any taller.  He’ll always be a scrawny little punk.  Maybe if he trained really hard, he could grow up to be a jockey.  And, even though he’s growing his hair long and putting peroxide on it, he’ll never look like me.  Let’s face it.  The kid will always be ugly.”

The thought hit me in mid-sentence.  I smiled slightly, picked up my scissors again, and continued.  “Hey, little boy.  Hey, Fields.  My long blond hair is beautiful.  Your scraggly hair is an insult.  I think when we wrestle; I’ll do you a favor and cut your hair for you.”  I smirked.  “You pitiful little boy.  When I cut your hair, you’re going to be even shorter.  Then, when you cry like a little baby, you can look like one, too.”  The floor director was giving me the ten-second countdown.  “I’m going to humiliate you even more than you have already humiliated yourself.  Get ready, kid.  You’re going to be beaten and bald.  Just when you thought you were on your way up, I’m going to retire you from the wrestling business.”  That was the set-up for a great series of matches with Ricky Fields. 

Fast forward to the first Fields-Riddle match.  Dothan, Alabama Arena.  A full house.  I’m standing in the ring, holding up a pair of pointed-end scissors, taunting the crowd.  As I’m arguing with the fans, Ricky Fields enters the ring.  When I turn around, he hits me so hard that I go flying backwards with the scissors catapulted out of my hands into the air high above the heads of the fans.  I’m not sure exactly what happened.  I still had my robe and sunglasses on.  I think Ricky pinned me.  I know that the crowd was going crazy – more than even I was used to – as I made my way back to the dressing room.  I was told not to leave the building until more police arrived.  It seemed that the scissors had come down in the crowd and stuck in some lady’s nose.  I’ll continue the story next week and let you know the amazing outcome.  Until then, keep those e-mails coming!

This column welcomes your wrestling-related questions.  You may contact the author via email: RockRiddle@hotmail.com or Rock@HollywoodSuccess.com.  Be sure to put "Wrestling Question" in the subject line.

About the author:  Rock Riddle wrestled professionally for over 8½ years and helped sell out major arenas all over the country.  He held numerous titles including the Americas Tag Team Championship (with John Tolos) and the East Coast Tag Team Championship (with Rocky Montana.)  At the height of his career, he was given top billing over the heavyweight championship of the world.  He is extremely well-connected in the world of professional wrestling and knows the business exceptionally well.  His fascinating biography, complete with over 100 photos and lots of additional information, is available at www.HollywoodSuccess.com – just click on "Rock Riddle Bio."    If you have missed any of Rock’s columns, they are all available on the website by clicking "Wrestling Revue."

© 2006 Rock Riddle & Hollywood Success.

Previous Column Wrestling Revue Home Page Next Column

Copyright © 2015 -- APS Entertainment, Hollywood Success Marketing and Public Relations and Rock Riddle -- All Rights Reserved
APS Entertainment, 6464 Sunset Blvd., Suite 740, Hollywood, CA  90028
Serving the Entertainment Industry Since 1978 -- Same address and phone for over 30 years
(323) 462-2777  --  e-mail:  Rock @ HollywoodSuccess.com

Home ] Up ]