Monday, January 12, 2009

James J. Dillon / JJ Dillon

Most people probably remember James J. Dillon as a manager.
But before that he was a wrestler.
But did you know he took the ring name James J. Dillon because he couldn't wrestle under his real name?
Dillon was born Jim Morrison on June 26, 1942 and he started his wrestling career in 1971, the same year that Jim Morrison, the lead singer of the Doors, died.
JJ started out wrestling in the Mid-Atlantic, Texas and Florida areas and became a headliner when he went to the Canadian Maritimes in 1973.
Before he became known as a manager, he held titles in Central States Wrestling, Championship Wrestling from Florida, the Eastern Sports Association and NWA Western States Sports. He held the Heavyweight Wrestling Championship in all four promotions at one time.

But everyone probably remembers him best as a manager.
When he first started managing, several of the wrestlers he managed went on to become wrestling legends.
Ron Bass, Black Bart, "Nature Boy" Buddy Landel, Jimmy Garvin and the One Man Gang to name a few.

Dillon's real fame began when he managed Tully Blanchard.
Tully and JJ began to hang out with Ric Flair and his "cousins," Ole and Arn Anderson and after they "broke" Dusty Rhodes' leg, they soon became known as the legendary wrestling stable, "The Four Horsemen.".
They feuded with Dusty Rhodes, Magnum TA, Barry Windham, The Rock 'N Roll Express, Nikita Koloff , and The Road Warriors. And they usually held most of the major belts as well.

Even with all this fame, Dillon was let go from WCW where he moved to the front office of the then WWF. This didn't last long as he moved back to the WCW and was the WCW Commissioner in 1996 when the nWo storyline started.
You can love him or hate him for this, but Dillon was responsible for bringing in Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara to the WCW.

JJ retired from the business, but returned briefly in 2002 as the commissioner of TNA.

JJ made his first (and so far only) appearance on WWE at Ric Flair's retirement party when he showed up with Tully Blanchard, Barry Windham and Arn Anderson.

He wrote a book "Wrestlers Are Like Seagulls-From McMahon To McMahon" about his career and his personal life.

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