Remembering The Mad Dog

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Riddick
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Remembering The Mad Dog

Post by Riddick » 02-28-2021 08:14 PM

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WWE HOF Induction

Maurice Vachon growled. He barked. He even bit. And, aptly enough, they called him the Mad Dog. One of the biggest pro wrestling stars to ever come out of Canada, the 1948 Olympian completely transformed his persona from a clean-cut, accomplished ex-amateur standout to a brawling, tough-talking mat villain of the highest order.

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'NUMBER 1' Mad Dog Music Vid

A decade of working the various territories helped the small but fearsome Vachon hone his heel character. Filing his fingernails until they were razor sharp, Mad Dog bit, clawed and stomped his way through the wrestling landscape and by the mid 1960's had established a solid reputation as a menacing, bloodthirsty brawler.

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Crusher Cuts Up Mad Dog

As a threat to champ Verne Gagne (another ex-Olympian who recruited Vachon) and perennial favorite Reggie "The Crusher" Lisowski in the American Wrestling Association, Vachon’s wild and unpredictable style, along with his inimitable interviews, made him one of the hottest box office draws in the business.

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Mad Dog & Baron Discuss "The Conspiracy"

"He was truly a mad dog in the ring and in his character," said longtime friend Jim Raschke, who credits Vachon with helping him create his own Baron Von Raschke alter ego more than five decades ago. "He taught me everything I needed to know about being not liked in the business," said Raschke.

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"It's A Pine Box"

"He was a classic in every sense of the word," said the late 'Mean' Gene Okerlund. "He was kind of a favorite of mine and I think he was a favorite of the boys in the locker room, and certainly even though the fans at one time or another probably hated him vehemently, he ended up being kind of the guy that they loved to hate."

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Baron, Mad Dog & The Hulkster

As hated as he was during the first quarter-century of his wrestling career, Vachon became a fan favorite during his later years in the business. "I worked my entire career to be hated and still the fans love me. I must’ve done something wrong," Vachon would later joke.

Raschke, who like the Mad Dog would eventually shed the villain tag and become a fan favorite, recalls the many times the two would meet for breakfast. "Do you want toast with those eggs?" waitresses would ask Vachon. "Yes ... and burn it!" the quirky Frenchman would routinely reply in his gravelly growl.

It was that same voice that years earlier had sent chills down the spines of thousands of wrestling fans who believed every terrorizing word that came out of the mouth of one of wrestling’s all-time greatest bad guys.

"He was hilarious and a good guy to be around. He was the best. He truly was," said Raschke. "He was a real character... an original. There’ll never be another 'Mad Dog.'" FULL ARTICLE

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Riddick
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Paul ''Butcher" Vachon RIP

Post by Riddick » 03-02-2024 09:01 AM

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"Butcher" Paul Vachon was fierce. The burly, bald, bearded, barrel-chested brawling baddie and brother of "Mad Dog" formed one of the greatest tag teams in history. Wrestling in some 40 countries over a 32 year career, Paul was also a singles contender challenging the top champions of his day.

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Paul was the adoptive father of the equally fierce and fabulous Luna Vachon. He was not only the brother of Mad Dog Maurice but also Vivian Vachon, who died tragically in a car crash. In 1973, the family was the subject of a documentary The Wrestling Queen.

In the documentary 350 Days, he reminisced on how he got his ring name. Mad Dog suggested "Paul the Pig" but it didn’t appeal to him, so they settled on the gory-sounding "Butcher." The Vachons went on to win many prestigious titles, including the AWA Tag Team Titles, which they held for an amazing 623 days from 1969 to 1971.
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He cited their roughest & toughest match as a top-of-the-card bout with Dick The Bruiser and The Crusher in a cage at Comiskey Park in front of 30,000 people.

Younger fans are likelier to recall his 1984 TV wedding on WWF Tuesday Night Titans, originally planned as a real ceremony for Paul & his fiancée at Madison Square Garden. But when she broke the engagement, Vince McMahon decided to substitute a lengthy series of skits, an early stab at the soaps-for-men genre he would create on the USA Network.

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Audiences watched a scripted narrative in which "Captain Lou" Albano objected to the marriage until he found out the bride wasn’t a virgin - all leading to a massive, messy pie fight at the reception. Vachon ducked out of that battle early, he remembers. "I had my brand-new suit; I knew to stay out of the way."

In an interview looking back at his life & career, Vachon said “Life is but a collection of memories, and people ask me why were you a wrestler if it wasn’t for the money? I was really in it for the stories I can tell. And I can tell a lot of stories. I want to be remembered as somebody who wanted to see the world. And meet lots of people and be friendly with lots of them. I wanted to be happy, and I figured that’s what would make me happy. It did, and I’m grateful for that."

Over the years, Paul Vachon battled colon and throat cancers and dealt with various issues stemming from Diabetes. He passed away on February 29th 2024 at age 86.

More About Paul

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