Sunday, July 22, 2007

John Kronus (1969-2007)

THE death toll continues to rise. This time it's Kronus of The Eliminators, who passed away in his apartment on July 18, aged 38.
Kronus hadn't been on the rasslin' scene for a while but he was pretty huge in the mid-to-late 90s in Japan, ECW and XPW.

In particular, he and Perry Saturn were a spectacular high-spot tag team in ECW, billed as "the world's greatest tag team", which was Paul Heyman's usual hyperbole.

Still, Kronus was very impressive for a big man, doing all those top-rope, high-impact moves.

I watched a stack of matches a while back featuring Kronus and New Jack as ECW tag champs (known as "The Gangstanators") in 1997, when their respective tag team partners were out of commission. They made a pretty entertaining duo and got involved in some heavy-duty brawls.

Kronus quit ECW in 1997 and worked for XPW from 1999-2001. He'd basically quit wrestling by 2002.

I remember seeing Kronus live when he toured Australia with Mark Lewin's ill-fated High Risk Wrestling promotion in 1999. Kronus worked in Sydney under the name of "Brute Force" and wrestled Primo Carnera III ("Big Guido" in ECW) in a fun hard-core bout. Actually, it was the best match on a pretty horrible card. At one point, Kronus grabbed my briefcase (I'd come straight from work to see the show at Homebush) and smashed it over Primo's head. The blow would've smarted a bit as I had a big hard-cover book inside it at the time. I'm proud to say the big split in my briefcase comes courtesy of Kronus and Primo.

The most recent thing I saw Kronus in was a weird scene in Rob Black's S&M video Violence On Violence (2000). He and scary-looking muscle woman Nicole Bass stage a horrible worked fight, which even features Kronus gigging himself in front of the camera. Very bizarre.

Anyway, that's my memories of Kronus. Another dude in his grave way too young.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

REVIEW: UWF, Merrylands RSL, July 1

Scarlett eats ringpost

IT'S been a tough week, but I shook off my depression and - after wrapping up some pressing business - headed to Merrylands to catch as much as I could of this arvo's UWF card.

I arrived during intermission, only to be told by Ed Lock that I'd missed a scorching cruiserweight championship match between champ Alex Rudka and challenger MH Cydell. Bummer.

Still, the second half of the card was pretty entertaining. I enjoyed the rematch between Kristy Steele and the evil Scarlett. Steele went over, gaining revenge on Scarlett for last month's rough-house tactics. It was a solid bout, and infinitely better than their previous encounter.
Next was an old-school match-up with rookie Shane Steele fighting Greg Stekker for his UWF Australian Championship. The match ended when Stekker SPIKED Steele's head into the mat. Looked nasty, but Shane seemed okay afterwards.
The main event was the highlight for me - talented Mikey Lord and brusing Morbid took on Noramak and Grynder. Sadly, Grynder's funny-as-fuck manager Big Bad Bomar wasn't at ringside (and neither was ring announcer Trevor Singleton. I wonder who did the noon-day weigh-ins of the wrestlers in his absence?).
This was a pretty cool bout with Lord and Morbid going over in the end. Hey! Is it me or does Grynder remind me of the old NWA's Big Green Machine (God rest Ray Traylor's soul)?
Anyhow, the card helped a lot in cheering me up - even though the events of this last week still hung heavy over everyone I talked to. The atmosphere may have been a bit subdued, but it was still great chatting with Ed, Fozz, Nick, Bec and everyone else at the show.
The UWF really is coming along in leaps and bounds - I really look forward to attending their cards each month.
But I'll be distraught if big bad Trevor isn't on the microphone next time. That guy is freaking awesome!