Today, our birthdays outnumber our deaths, and that’s a good thing.
A name that most will likely not recognize, Malia Hosaka turns 45 today. She wrestled in ECW, WCW, and WWF in the 90’s. In WCW, she was managed by Sonny Onoo, and competed in a tournament to crown the first WCW Women’s Champion. She is best remembered for her WCW Nitro and WCW Saturday Night matches against Madusa. On an episode of Raw, she once posed as a fan who answered Ivory’s open challenge for the WWF Women’s Championship, but was beaten down by Nicole Bass. She once accompanied Taka Michinoku to the ring, but her development pretty much ended there. She was nearly paired with Essa Rios as “Asphrodisia”, but that role went to Lita instead. She still wrestles on the independent circuit. Happy birthday Malia.
The “Shakespeare of Song” and co-star of One Night in Milwaukee, Aiden English, turns 30 today. Fun fact: he studied acting, with a focus on stage combat, at Columbia College Chicago, along with fellow wrestler Becky Lynch. Happy birthday Aiden.
UPDATE: I didn’t realize that one of my all-time favorite wrestlers, the man-beast Rhyno, is also celebrating a birthday today. He turns 43. Happy birthday oh master of the gore.
UPDATE AGAIN: I need to get better at this. Former Divas Champion and 2018 Mae Young Classic competitor Kaitlyn is 32 today. Happy birthday Kaitlyn!
Wrestling history is filled with young and tragic deaths, and today is the 17th anniversary of one of them.
British wrestler “Gentleman” Christopher Adams came to prominence in Fritz Von Erich’s World Class Championship Wrestling. He has a long list of championships and accolades, which include:
NWA American Heavyweight Champion – 4 times
NWA American Tag Team Champion – 2 times
WCCW Television Champion – 3 times
WCWA Television Champion
WCWA World Heavyweight Champion
WWF Light Heavyweight Champion
Since he won the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship while in the UWA during a cross-promotion event, his title reign is no longer recognized by WWE, nor are any other reigns prior to December, 1997. That wipes out the reigns of Adams, Perry Aguayo, Fishman, Gran Hamada, Villano III, Rambo, Sangre Chicana, Pegasus Kid, Aero Flash, The Great Sasuke, El Samurai, Ultimo Dragon, Jyushin Thunder Liger, and Shinjiro Otani, all of whom won the belt while in UWA or NJPW.
Adams was also named “Most Inspirational Wrestler of the Year” by Pro Wrestling Illustrated in 1986.
He later wrestled in WCW’s midcard and was supposed to be part of the Blue Bloods with Steven Regal and David Taylor, but due to legit personal issues with Regal, the idea was scrapped. He wrestled Randy Savage in the first match in WCW Thunder history. He pinned Savage, but J.J. Dillon reversed the decision and awarded Savage the victory via disqualification due to Lex Luger’s interference. After being primarily used as a jobber over the next year, he asked for and was granted his release, and returned to Texas as a promoter and part-time wrestler.
In April of 2000, Adams and his girlfriend were found unconscious inside a friend’s apartment, having overdosed on GHB and alcohol. Adams recovered, but his girlfriend later died, and the next year, Adams was charged with manslaughter. On October 7, 2001, while awaiting trial, he was fatally shot in the chest in a drunken brawl with a friend. He was 46. The friend claimed self-defense, and was acquitted of all charges. Another tragedy in a long line of them in professional wrestling.