Road Warrior Animal

Dec 18, 2009 - by Steve Gerweck

Photo credit: World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.

Photo credit: World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc.

Real name: Joseph Laurinaitis
Height: 6’2″
Weight: 285 lbs.
Date of birth: September 12, 1962
From (kayfabe): Chicago, IL
Resides: Minnesota
Pro debut: November 1982
Trained by: Eddie Sharkey
Finishing move: Doomsday Device
Audio: Gerweck interviews Road Warrior Animal


– Ole Anderson teamed Animal with partner Hawk in Georgia Championship Wrestling, and they became the Road Warriors.
– The Legion of Doom, managed by “Precious” Paul Ellering, originally consisted of Hawk and Animal, the Spoiler, and Jake Roberts.
– On June 11, 1983, the Road Warriors won a tournament to capture the NWA National Tag Team title.
– On November 19, 1983, The Road Warriors beat Mr. Wrestling II and Magnum TA in New Orleans, LA.
– In 1984, Hawk and Animal worked for both the NWA and Verne Gagne’s AWA.
– The Road Warriors defeated Buzz and Brett Sawyer on January 28, 1984 to regain the NWA National Tag Team title.
– On May 20, 1984, Hawk and Animal defeated the Junkyard Dog and Sweet Brown Sugar to claim the NWA National Tag Team title in Atlanta, GA.
– The Road Warriors defeated Crusher and Baron Von Raschke on August 25, 1984 in Las Vegas, NV to capture the AWA World Tag Team title.
– The Road Warriors made their All Japan Pro Wrestling debut on March 9, 1985.
– On April 19, 1986, the Road Warriors won the inaugural Crockett Cup Tag Team tournament in New Orleans, LA.
– The next night, Hawk and Animal defeated Jimmy Garvin and Michael “P.S.” Hayes at the AWA’s Wrestle Rock in Minneapolis, MN.
– On May 17, 1986, the Road Warriors and Dusty Rhodes defeated Ivan and Nikita Koloff and Von Raschke in Baltimore, MD to capture the NWA World Six Man Tag Team title.
– On March 12, 1987, the Road Warriors captured the NWA International Tag Team title from Jumbo Tsuruta and Genichiro Tenryu in Tokyo, Japan. The duo held the titles for more than a year.
– Hawk, Animal, and Rhodes defeated Ric Flair, Tully Blanchard, and Arn Anderson on July 9, 1988 in Chicago, IL for their second NWA World Six Man Tag Team title.
– At the 1988 Great American Bash, the Road Warriors, the Garvins (Ronnie and Jimmy), and Steve Williams defeated Kevin Sullivan, Mike Rotunda, Ivan Koloff, Al Perez and the Russian Assassin in a “Tower Of Doom” match.
– On October 29, 1988, the Road Warriors defeated the Midnight Express for the NWA World Tag Team title in New Orleans, LA.
– Hawk, Animal, and Gen’ichiro Tenryu claimed the NWA World Six Man Tag Team title on December 7, 1988 in Chattanooga, TN.
– At Chi-town Rumble ’89, the Road Warriors defeated Steve Williams and Kevin Sullivan.
– The Road Warriors, the Midnight Express and Williams defeated the Samaon Swat Team and the Freebirds at the 1989 Great American Bash in a “War Games” match.
– At Starrcade ’89 in Atlanta, GA, Hawk and Animal defeated Doom.
– At Capital Combat ’90, the Road Warriors and Norman the Lunatic beat Sullivan, Bam Bam Bigelow, and Cactus Jack.
– A short time later, the Road Warriors signed with the WWF, and the company referred to them as the Legion of Doom.
– At Wrestlemania VII in Los Angeles, CA, the Legion of Doom beat Power and Glory in a mere 59 seconds.
– On March 30, 1991, Animal and Hawk defeated Hulk Hogan and Genichiro Tenryu via count out at the Tokyo Dome before 46,000 fans.
– At Summerslam ’91 in New York, NY, the Legion of Doom defeated the Nasty Boys for the WWF World Tag Team title.
– On December 12, 1991 in Tokyo, Japan, the Legion of Doom defeated Earthquake and Typhoon.
– Hawk and Animal downed Money Inc. at the 1992 Summerslam in London, England. Days later, Hawk informed the WWF he had quit the company.
– Animal was teamed with Crush (Brian Adams) as the new LOD, but it didn’t work. Unable to wrestle due to a back injury, Animal collected on his Lloyds of London insurance policy.
– Animal, Hawk, and the Power Warrior beat Rick and Scott Steiner and Scott Norton on April 29, 1996 in Tokyo.
– In February 1997, Animal and Hawk agreed to re-join the WWF.
– At Wrestlemania XIII, the Road Warriors and Ahmed Johnson defeated Savio Vega, Crush, and Faarooq in a “Chicago Streetfight” match.
– The Road Warriors defeated the Godwinns at the 1997 Summerslam in East Rutherford, NJ.
– On the October 7, 1997 edition of “Raw is War,” Animal and Hawk captured the WWF World Tag Team title from the Godwinns.
– At the 1997 Survivor Series, the Road Warriors, Ahmed Johnson, and Ken Shamrock defeated the Nation of Domination.
– Animal and Hawk became LOD 2000 at Wrestlemania XIV in Boston, MA and won a 15-team battle royal. The team was managed by Sunny.
– Animal and Hawk defeated the Disciples of Apocalypse at the 1998 “Over the Edge.”
– The Road Warriors and Johnny Ace defeated Kenta Kobashi, Jun Akiyama, and Hakushi on May 2, 1999 in Tokyo.
– At Judgment Day ’98, LOD 2000 and Darren Drosdov defeated Skull, Eight Ball, and Paul Ellering.
– Animal turned out to be the “mystery opponent” revealed at WCW’s 2000 PPV Sin.
– On June 22, 2002, the Road Warriors defeated the Headshrinkers in Atlantic City, NJ.
– On December 18, 2002, the Road Warriors made a surprise appearance on a NWA TNA PPV.
– Animal and Hawk defeated Todd and Mike Shane in a IPW Hardcore Tag Team title match on March 1, 2003 in Yokohama, Japan.
– On July 7, 2003 in Miyagi, Japan, the Road Warriors defeated Shiro Koshinaka and Riki Choshu.
– At the Great American Bash ’05, Road Warrior Animal and Heidenreich defeated MNM in Buffalo, NY to win the WWE Tag Team title.
– At No Mercy 2005, LOD ’05 and Christy Hemme defeated MNM and Melina.
– On the March 3, 2006 edition of Smackdown, Animal turned on Matt Hardy.
– WWE released Animal on June 6, 2006.
– Road Warrior Animal teamed with Kensuke Sasaki on September 1, 2007 at the Differ Ariake to defeat Yasshi and Shuji Kondo in 6:11 before a near sell out crowd of 1,700 fans. Sasaki wore face paint as Power Warrior, the same name he used when teamed with Road Warrior Hawk in the 90’s. Animal and Sasaki were billed as the Hell Raisers, the team name used by Sasaki and Hawk.
– On April 2, 2011, The Road Warriors and Paul Ellering were inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame by Dusty Rhodes in Atlanta, GA.

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