Pro Wrestling has lost another one of its favorite sons. Former AWA world tag team champion, Playboy Buddy Rose was found dead in his home by his wife on Wednesday. Rose is remembered by a lot of fans for a variety of pro wrestling accomplishments. It is fair to say that there will never be anyone like Playboy Buddy Rose in wrestling again.
Buddy Rose’s career spanned three decades wrestling for some of the biggest companies in the world. Rose’s big break came in the early 1980s in the WWE, then known as the WWWF. This is where I remember Buddy Rose. Rose was a top heel and had an incredible series of matches with then champion Bob Backlund. In my opinion, Backlund’s matches with Rose were some of the best of his entire title reign.
See a promotional video of Playboy Buddy Rose from Portland Wrestling by clicking here.
Rose would return to the WWF in the mid-1980s for some sporadic appearances. Rose never achieved the glory of his previous run. Rose’s biggest claim to fame in wrestling may be one match. Ironically, Rose would wrestle this match in a mask. Rose wrestled Tito Santana in the opening match at the first WrestleMania. Rose wore a mask and wrestled as the Executioner.
Rose is probably known most for his series of matches against the Midnight Rockers, Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty. Rose teamed with Doug Somers for a classic run against the Rockers in the AWA in 1985. Two of those matches have been memorialized on WWE home video. One match in particular, a bloodbath from ESPN has become legendary in its own right. Rose’s brief run in the AWA earned him his only world championship, winning the AWA tag team titles with Doug Somers.
See the legendary Midnight Rockers vs. Buddy Rose and Doug Somers bloodbath on the WWE – From the Vault: Shawn Michaels DVD by “>clicking here.
See the Midnight Rockers battle Playboy Buddy Rose and Doug Somers on the WWE – The Shawn Michaels Story: Heartbreak & Triumph DVD by clicking here.
Rose returned the WWE in the early 1990s.for an infamous run. Unlike his past stints in the WWE, Rose worked mainly as an enhancement wrestler. Rose was heavier than ever and didn’t have any high-profile matches. Vince McMahon actually turned Rose into a running joke by continually poking fun at his weight. WWE produced a legendary video at the time entitled, “Buddy Rose Blow Away Diet.” This was Rose’s last national run.
Click here to see the Buddy Rose Blow Away Diet.
Rose was a polarizing figure among wrestlers. Nobody would ever doubt his in-ring credentials. Many wrestlers including Shawn Michaels, Curt Hennig, and the Nasty Boys credit him with helping them when they were younger. Other wrestlers have not been too kind to the Playboy. Like him or not, nobody ever dared take credit away from him as being one of the best while in his prime.
“He knew what his role was, and he always seemed to press the right buttons to make himself a most unique character that stood out from the rest of the pack,” Fink said on his WWE Universe blog.
My condolences go out to the friends and family of the late Playboy Buddy Rose.
Headlocks and Eye Gouges – I will be back on Pro Wrestling Radio this Wednesday night May 6 at 7 PM/EST. I will talk more about Playboy Buddy Rose and I want your thoughts. I’ll also be talking about all of the fallout news in pro wrestling, mma, and more. Call in with a question or comment at -877-800-8834. Listen live at http://www.tvbydemand.com/radio_prowrestling_radioshow.asp 7-8:30 PM/EST this and every Wednesday night.