In my house, wrestling was the first sport that was on my television well before football or basketball. Being five years old, and having my dad come in my room to sneak me out to watch Saturday Night’s Main Event were some of the best times a kid could have. Once the Macho Man came out and did his thing, the night was complete. I could fall asleep and wait until the next televised program came on, whether it was Superstars, Prime Time Wrestling, or whatever.
Randy Savage was one of a handful of wrestlers who could have the crowd in the palm of his hand without the aid of a mic, which was a rarity, because the man sure could talk. He could just come out to the graduation song, and the people would rise from their seats to pay homage. Whether he was a face or a heel, the crowd would go crazy for Savage, and for anyone who’s watched wrestling over the years, they know that’s not a quality that many possess. The man was truly one-of-a-kind.
The man had charisma and talent. Outside of Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair, I can’t think of any another wrestlers who has the optimum level of both. Sure, some have incredible talent, but they lack the charisma, and some have incredible amounts of charisma, but they aren’t that great in the ring.
The Macho King had both. It was the reason there was, and still is, no hesitation on my part to rank him where I ranked him on the top ten greatest wrestlers/entertainers in my lifetime, despite the backlash from some of my peers. The man did so much work during his time in the ring that it clearly speaks for itself.
He’s also the reason my cousin BJ has a long gash on his leg, due to me delivering an elbow drop from my top bunk onto his leg, which caused a framed picture of Michael Jordan to crack and slice his leg open when we were little. We both freaked out, because we knew a whooping was coming from our parents for wrestling in the house, but that’s the effect The Macho Man had on us as kids. Surely, there are others who have similar stories as well.
His match against Ricky Steamboat is rightfully held as one of the greatest matches of all-time. The man gave us the greatest tournament run of all-time when he won the vacant WWF World Title at WrestleMania IV. He made us all believe Hulk Hogan was trying to get at Miss Elizabeth from the moment he won that belt, to Saturday Night’s Main Event, to Superstars, to the actual event itself.
In the old days when he went on the Arsenio Hall Show and talked wild, it made you want to spend your last $40-50 bucks to order WrestleMania V, so you could see him against Hulk Hogan. It’s amazing when you look back on those days and realize how polarizing he was. At WrestleMania IV, he was arguably the most popular wrestler, but one year later, at WrestleMania V, in the exact same location as the previous event, he was the most hated wrestler on Earth.
The man was turned up 24/7; he was literally crunk all the time. When Savage introduced Zeus to the masses, well before we knew the man as Debo, it made you want to order Summerslam and watch them take on Hogan and Brutus the Barber Beefcake. When he rushed The Ultimate Warrior at the Royal Rumble with a stage light and a scepter to the head, causing him to lose the World Title to Sergeant Slaughter, it motivated you even more to see their career-ending match at WrestleMania VII, a match that Savage carried the entire damn time.
When Ric Flair had pictures of Elizabeth, it made you want to see Savage bust his head to the white meat, and that's exactly what he did. The man was the original showstopper, and even when he wasn’t the main event, his matches were the ones you always remember and talk about years later.
When a ceremony was held in the middle of the ring to proclaim him Macho King Randy Savage, it was one of the most underappreciated moments in wrestling history. In the ring, you had Million Dollar Man, Slick, Akeem the African Dream, the Brain Busters, Mr. Perfect, Dino Bravo and other memorable heels, and they were all there to pay homage and coronate him as Macho King Randy Savage.
An argument can be made that he was not only the best Intercontinental Champion of all-time but also the greatest WWF World Champion of all-time. The man held the titles when they meant something. His two reigns as WWF Heavyweight champion get more respect than modern-day sissies holding it seven, eight, nine, or God knows how many times.
The belt wasn't passed around like a cheap suit, or even back when the belt would change hands during one of the four big pay-per-views. Nope, the man held the world title for over a calendar year, and if you’re someone who grew up on old-school wrestling, the impact of Savage’s reign is undeniable.
Now we will see arguably the biggest waste of time in the history of wrestling when the WWE decides to honor the Macho Man with an induction to the Hall of Fame, which is certainly coming, now that he’s gone. The fact that Savage didn’t get in while he was alive and able to address the fans is one of the most despicable, unforgivable, and irresponsible acts in the history of mankind. They can keep their disingenuous and trifling nomination, but B-Lew has warned me it’s coming, so I, along with other Macho Man fans, may as well prepare to be thoroughly insulted.
Randy Savage is loved everywhere. The man is revered by die-hard fans, casual fans, and fans that didn’t even care for wrestling much at all. It was refreshing to see ESPN, CNN, Washington Post, and other news outlets that really don’t pay much attention to the sport like that pay homage to Savage. It simply serves as another reminder of a man who had such an impact while he was around, and anytime Pomp and Circumstance is played at a commencement ceremony, it will simply serve as another reminder that the memory of Randy Savage will live on forever and a day.
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