If Only: Five Wrestlers Whose Books I Would Love to Read
Nothing against Larry Zybi…
Wait, let me look this up.
Nothing against Larry Zbyszko, but I don’t currently have his autobiography on my shelf. It isn't really all that likely to end up there, either.
I'll get to Bruno Sammartino’s book.
I’ve already read all of Mick Foley’s books (yup, even the novels). Books by Bobby Heenan and Bret Hart were devoured.
Chris Jericho’s book was forced down the throat of a dear friend as soon as I finished it with the helpful advice of, “you have to read this!”
But there are so many other wrestlers I need to read books about. Wrestlers who strike me as more interesting than Larry Zbyszko. Books not yet written.
With a lot of wrestlers out there, the limited amount of information we have about them just makes them seem like very interesting people.
In the hands of a good writer or co-writer, someone who can ask the right questions and do the research, I think these would definitely be books that could be up there with Foley’s first.
Let's look at a few of them...
Bam Bam Bigelow
Not just a guy who wrestled in every major federation, headlined Wrestlemania, was respected in the original ECW, and was still involved in more Wrestlecrap memories than anyone, this was also a guy who pulled three kids out of a burning building.
There has to be a hell of a lot more to Bigelow. In a lot of ways he did end up as one of many typical wrestling tragedies, but his life (from the distant outside) seemed a little less typical.
Rob Van Dam
I’ll save you the cheap jokes about how it would be printed on rolling paper.
Here’s what I like about RVD—you know that even though he excelled at wrestling, he had a life outside of the ring.
Yes, there will be all of the ECW history and the “coming up with Sabu” stuff, and the “watching Vince defecate all over ECW” stuff, the “since he isn’t under contract to WWE he could tell us how much they paid him for that one-night return spot on Raw” stuff, etc.
But he could also explain how he managed to retire young, move on to other interests, and not become bitter (you might have your own theories about that last one).
Seriously, why is this book not written yet? I know the guy is busy, but couldn't he just dictate it or something?
There is undoubtedly a wealth of material already out there. I’d settle for it all being shoved into book form.
Cornette has long been considered one of the most informed and opinionated people in wrestling.
If you’ve ever read his blogs or watched his interviews, you know it doesn’t even matter that he happened to be close to the center of some pretty major storms.
He is THE wrestling historian.
Now what’s the history of Jim Cornette?
When the biopic for Muhammad Ali came out a few years ago starring Will Smith, one of the main criticisms levied against it was that it was just a bunch of re-shoots of fights and interviews that people have already seen.
This is where a good co-writer would come into play.
Yes, Savage had a very notable career, from the early Wrestlemania era up to the turn of the century.
But I’d like to know more about his early career and choosing to be a second-generation wrestler during the stretch between heydays.
I want to know more about the Lawler feud and the outlaw federation. That stuff just seems interesting to me.
Valentine was supposedly the inspiration for The Wrestler (I think I read that in the Observer).
Another second-generation guy from the territory days who was in the early Wrestlemania's, but one who stayed on the under-card longer and can probably provide a more neutral perspective of the scene in general, making the book informative and not just looking like the liner notes for a greatest hits collection.