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This Day In Wrestling History – August 1st‏



Trivia

2002 – WWE Niagara Falls opens, the first dedicated WWE retail and entertainment site

2007 – The Undertaker is inducted to the GERWECK.NET Hall of Fame, securing 94% of the reader vote. This remains the highest number of ‘Yes’ votes in GERWECK Hall of Fame history

2008 – Lou Thesz is inducted into the GERWECK.NET Hall of Fame, securing 79% of the reader votes

2009 – Chris Jericho is inducted into the GERWECK.NET Hall of Fame, securing 89% of the reader votes

2010 – Paul Heyman is inducted into the GERWECK.NET Hall of Fame, securing 80% of the reader votes

Events

In 2011, NJPW G1 Climax XXI: The Invincible Fighter was held in Fukuoka, Japan. The event mostly featured G1 Climax League matches

– Kota Ibushi defeats Ryusuke Taguchi to retain the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Title
– Hirooki Goto defeats Hiroyoshi Tenzan
– Yujiro Takahashi defeats Tetsuya Naito
– Satoshi Kojima defeats Minoru Suzuki
– MVP defeats Shinsuke Nakamura
– Yuji Nagata defeats Hiroshi Tanahashi

Title Changes

1979 – Angelo Mosca defeats Bob Sweetan to win the TSW Brass Knucks Title

1980 – El Halcon defeats Gino Hernandez to win the WCCW American Heavyweight Title. Also, Kerry von Erich & Sweet Brown Sugar defeat Stan Stasiak & Tim Brooks to win the vacant Texas Tag Team Titles

Birthdays

Happy birthday to one-time WCW Tag Team Champion Bunkhouse Buck (62), tag team legend Devon (40) and WWE referee Mike Chioda (48)

In Memoriam

The wrestling world has lost two personalities on this date.

Firstly, in 2002, former Portland promoter Don Owen died at the ripe old age of 90. Owen was the son of famed boxing promoter Herb Owen and began working for his father as a food and drink vendor in the 1920′s. In the coming decades, Don and brother Elton would occasionally step into the ring where necessary, but both preferred to work behind the scenes. When Herb died in 1951, Don took over the business and became a founding member of the NWA. He secured a local TV deal in 1952 and would keep it running (under the names ‘Portland Wrestling’ and ‘Big Time Wrestling’) for close to 40 years, making it probably the longest-running wrestling show in history. He became one of the best-loved promoters in America, due to his reputation for fairness and offering good pay. Due to this, his PNW promotion attracted and/or trained many of the big names of the era, including Curt Hennig, Roddy Piper, Jesse Ventura, Jimmy Snuka and George Wagner (before he became Gorgeous George). The promotion held firm through to the 1980′s, when the WWF’s expansion started to take it’s toll. Eventually, Owen sold the company to Sandy Barr and lived out a quiet retirement before passing of natural causes at his home in Eugene, Oregon. He is still remembered as the ‘standard-bearer’ of professionalism amongst promoters.

Secondly, in 2004, 2-time NWA Light Heavyweight Champion Ken Timbs died aged 53. Timbs began his professional career in Ole Anderson’s Georgia territory, debuting in 1978, but soon found himself competing in Joe Blanchard’s San Antonio-based SCW promotion. Here, he formed ‘The Fabulous Blondes’ with Eric Embry and the pair would go on to compete together through to the mid-80′s, by which time they were 3-time SCW Tag Team Champions. After leaving SCW, he had a stint on the independents before moving to Mexico, where he became a 2-time EMLL/NWA Light Heavyweight Champion. He also became the Guatemalan Heavyweight Champion before returning to the US in the mid-90′s, though he became semi-retired soon after. He battled heart disease for several years before eventually succumbing to a heart attack

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