Monday, March 2, 2009

In and Out the Wrestling Ring with BigBoyFloyd.

The man who wrestled throughout the 1980s and early 1990s as "The Russian Nightmare" Nikita Koloff was born as Nelson Scott Simpson on March 9, 1959.

In 1984, Simpson was going to try out for the USFL when Road Warrior Animal, a professional wrestler from the Minnesota area, called him to ask him to become a professional wrestler. Simpson decided to go with wrestling and was told to shave his head bald and to show up. Jim Crockett,Jr., the promoter of the NWA's Jim Crockett Promotions, renamed him Nikita Koloff, the Russian Nightmare, and teamed him with "uncle" Ivan Koloff and Don Kernodle, a turncoat American. Koloff went to great lengths to keep the "Evil Russian" gimmick as realistic as possible. He even learned some Russian and refused to come out of character, even when away from the ring.

Koloff continued to improve and became a big enough heel to get a match against NWA World Champion Ric Flair at The Great American Bash 1985 on July 6. Koloff lost to Flair and was even attacked by a fan during the match, but he established himself as a superstar in the wrestling business. It was shortly after Koloff's first main event, which drew tremendous heat, that Vince McMahon first approached with an offer to leave the NWA for the burgeoning pastures of the WWF. McMahon promised Koloff an immediate push, suggesting either a program with Tito Santana, during which he would win the Intercontinental Championship, or a program with Hulk Hogan that would culminate the following year at Wrestlemania 2. Nikita turned him down, believing the massive push that had been booked for him in the NWA, namely the planned feud with Magnum T.A., would give him greater leverage down the road to secure a more lucrative contract with McMahon.

In spring of 1986, Koloff started one of the biggest, most anticipated feuds in the history of Jim Crockett Promotions when he attacked NWA United States Champion, Magnum T.A.. The two were then booked to in a best-of-seven series, which took place during The Great American Bash 1986 tour. The winner of the series would be declared champion. Koloff and T.A. wrestled all summer and ended up tied after six matches with one no contest. The final match took place on August 17 and featured run-ins by Krusher Kruschev and Ivan and several false-finishes. Nikita defeated T.A. to win the title.

In October 1986, Magnum T.A. was involved in a career-ending car accident, when his Porsche crashed into a telephone pole. Dusty Rhodes saw an opportunity amidst the accident. The Soviet Premier Mikhail orbachevv had been growing in popularity throughout the country with his political reform of Glasnost and Perestroika. The era of evil, Russian heels was coming to an end. Rhodes decided to strike while the iron was hot, booking Koloff to become a face and his greatest ally against the Four Horseman. The historic moment took place on October 24 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Rhodes needed a partner to take on Ole Anderson and James J. Dillon in a cage match. The fans in Charlotte erupted when Koloff entered the cage to help Rhodes. This evening secured Koloff as one of the top faces in the NWA.

After StarrCade 1986, Koloff was firmly established as one of the NWA's most popular stars, which made him an even more inviting target for Vince McMahon. His first offer having been rebuked, McMahon made a bid for Koloff's services that dwarfed his earnings from Jim Crockett. This time, however, McMahon could not give him the WWF Intercontinental title (which was already promised to Rickey Steamboat, nor could he give him the Wrestlemania 3 main event with Hulk Hogan (which would be his historic confrontation with Andre the Giant). Instead McMahon could only offer Koloff a program with Jake "The Snake" Roberts and the promise of a major push. Koloff again declined.

Nikita would continue to wrestle for the NWA in major feuds until late 1988, when he wife was diagnosed with Hodgkins disease. After she passed he went into semi-retirement, then retired fulltime when he was hurt in a match against Big Van Vader in 1993.
Click Here to read his wikipedia page

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