DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE
Many wrestlers move on to become managers or colour commentators. Names such as Bobby Heenan, Jesse Ventura, Larry Zbysko, and the American Dream Dusty Rhodes come to mind. But Diamond Dallas Page did it complete opposite, because he started as a manager and later followed it up as a colour commentator, and in 1991 he started as a wrestler and his hard-work ethic have made a star.
Diamond Dallas worked in the night-club business before and after he started working as a wrestling manager in the American Wrestling Association. He started in March 1988, where he was manager for Badd Company (Paul Diamond and Pat Tanaka), a team he lead to the AWA World Tag Team Titles at March 19. During his time in the AWA, Page also managed Col. DeBeers and Madusa.
Page worked for the AWA at 12 dates over a period of nine months, where they filmed all the television shows in one day. After the relationship with AWA ended Page started working for Florida Championship Wrestling, where he worked along side the Dean of Wrestling, Gordon Solie, as a colour commentator. In 1990 Dallas received a tryout with the WWF as an announcer, but never got the job. When FCW went down, Page was still involved in the club business until Dusty Rhodes returned to WCW started booking and brought Page in on a small contract in early 1991.
In WCW Dallas started managing the Fabulous Freebirds, he also got the Diamond Dolls, who he paraded down the aisle with. Page soon managed the Freebirds to a shot at the NWA World Tag Team Titles when the Freebirds, who consisted of Ron Garvin and Michael P.S. Hayes, defeated Doom (Butch Reed and Ron Simmons) on February 24, 1991. Before that match took place, Page unveiled the stable's new road manager, Big Daddy Dink, formerly known as Oliver Humperdink, who interfered in the match.
The Freebirds couldn't hold on the title for long, they lost them to the Steiner Brothers, actually before winning the title. Scott Hall was then introduced to the stable, under the name Diamond Studd. The Freebirds then went on to defeat the Young Pistols for the vacant NWA United States Tag Team Titles on May 19, 1991. During this time, Studd was involved in a feud with Tom Zenk over who was the biggest stud in WCW. Page and Studd even attacked Zenk during a television taping. Studd went on to prove that in fact he was the top stud by defeating Zenk at the 1991 Great American Bash. Soon after that the Freebirds lost the NWA United States Tag Team Titles to the Patriots.
Page also worked for the WCW as a colour commentator with Eric Bischoff, Page said that they were the B team. There were rumors about the WCW wanted to take the Diamond Studd away from Page, and at that time Magnum T.A. told Page that he should put on a pair of tights and go into the ring himself. Page followed his advice and headed down to the Power Plant, where Buddy Lee Parker, The Assassin, and Dusty Rhodes transformed Dallas into a wrestler.
Page's first match in the WCW was a tag team match, where he alongside the Diamond Studd faced Kevin Sullivan and his partner. After the match Page got good remarks from wrestlers and announcers, but it didn't help him much, because he was then put on the "job" list as you can see in the Pay-Per-View section.
But Page worked on and brought other wrestlers into his stable, a certain Scotty Flamingo (Raven) and Vinnie Vegas (Kevin Nash), these relationships have been used in some angles as you will discover. Page went in the corner of Scotty Flamingo, at Clash of the Champions XXI on November 18, 1992, when Flamingo fought Johnny B. Badd in a boxing match. Flamingo won this bout with a little help from Page who filled Flamingo's glove with water.
In late 1992 Page's career took a turn for the worse when he tore a rotator cuff in a tag match with Tex Slazenger and Shanghai Pierce (Now known as the Godwinns). During his layoff, Jake "The Snake" Roberts taught him psychology, what to do and when to do it, and how to do it. During his layoff Page wasn't employed by WCW
Page was rehired by WCW in early 1994 by Eric Bischoff. But that didn't help him much, he was still used to put the other wrestlers over. The WCW however wanted to do something for him, so he got a bodyguard, Max Muscle, and the Diamond Doll (Kimberly), who wasn't treated very good, to accompany him to the ring. Kimberly also got the job to rate Page's moves in the ring, with a scoreboard, although it was Page who yelled to her which to raise, usually a 10 or a 10+.
It didn't change his winning streak though, so instead he challenged wrestlers to arm wrestling contests, promising a date with Kimberly to the one who could beat him. Page defeated jobber after jobber in the contest until he challenged the big goof, David Sullivan, who had a rabbit which he brought to the ring. The stipulations for the contest was that if Page won he would get the rabbit and if Sullivan won he would get the date with Kimberly. The contest should be at the Great American Bash. Sullivan went on to defeat Page and win the date with Kimberly, though he didn't get much out of it, since he was attacked by Page and Max Muscle.
The feud ended at the Bash at the Beach, where Dallas pinned Sullivan, this turned out to be the turning point of his career. Dallas went on to defeat Alex Wright at the Champions XXXI, this earned him a shot at the TV Title against then champion Renegade. The two clashed at Fall Brawl, September 17th, 1995, Page dominated the bout with the limited Renegade, and Page won the match and the title with a helping hand from Max Muscle, who held Renegade's legs so Page could put on the Diamond Cutter for the win.
The feud with Johnny B. Badd
Page wasn't able to hold on to the title for long, but his feud with Johnny B. Badd made people take notice. Page lost the TV Title to Badd at Halloween Havoc in a great match, Kimberly then threw salt in the open wound, when she ranked Badd's victory a 10+. Page was mad and wanted a rematch at World War III and stated that if he lost, Badd would acquire Kimberly's services. Page lost the match, but the feud continued, with Page staring at the ceiling at SuperBrawl VI, where he lost 6.6 million dollars to Kimberly. Page then had to sell a pair of his wrestling tights at a WCW television taping to get some money back to pay his bills, during the process he couldn't afford the services of Max Muscle.
Dallas continued his feud with Johnny B. Badd, and gained revenge, when he caused Badd to loose the title to Lex Luger. Page then and challenged him to a Loser Leaves WCW match, but some weeks before the event Badd was released from his contract, so instead Dallas fought the Booty Man, who won the match and got Kimberly under his arm. So with the match lost Dallas was forced to leave the WCW, but since the contract was against Badd, Dallas returned, and he was more than ready to prove himself. Upon his return, WCW played it like there was a secret benefactor, who supported Page, but the angle was never fully played out.
Page certainly proved himself, at Slamboree where Dallas entered the Battle Bowl, where he was teamed up with the Barbarian. First the team overcame the team of Meng and Hugh Morrus and thereafter the team of Rick Steiner and the Booty Man. DDP was ready for the battle royal, and after a tough battle he was the last man standing in the ring, and was declared the "Lord of the Ring" and was awarded a ring. The "Lord of the Ring" title was going to be a title like the other titles in the WCW.
Page vs Eddy Guerrero
Dallas defended the title against Marcus Bagwell and Jim Duggan with success on pay-per-view and others at television tapings and house shows. Eddy Guerrero was the next contender for the title, and in an entertaining match, despite their contrary styles, Guerrero came out on top, and received three consecutive Diamond Cutters for his victory. Dallas took the ring, and it hasn't been seen since.
Eddy got injured because of the Diamond Cutters, so his nephew Chavo wanted to defend the family honors, but he also became a victim of the Diamond Cutter. DDP and Eddy continued their feud during the end of 1996, Dallas won at Halloween Havoc.
Page and the nWo
The New World Order wanted Dallas to join them, and it was his former friends Scott Hall and Kevin Nash who asked him, but Dallas didn't want any part of it, and Hall was on the receiving end of a Diamond Cutter. At Starrcade, where DDP and Eddy battled for more than glory, because it was the final for the in the US Title tournament, Eddy came out on top, when Hall blasted interfered, which was the end of the feud with Eddy.
Page then helped Guerrero to beat Scott Norton of the nWo in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on January 22, 1997 at Clash of the Champions XXXIV. 4 days later at nWo's Souled Out, Page lost to Scott Norton via count-out after Page decided to leave the ring. Several members of the nWo came to the ring during that match and gave Page an nWo T-shirt. Page put the shirt on, gave Norton a Diamond Cutter, left the ring, and ripped the nWo shirt in half.
DDP vs Savage
The ongoing war with the nWo continued with Buff Bagwell, whom he defeated at SuperBrawl. On Monday Nitro on February 24, 1997, Page was challenged to a match by Scott Hall, which he accepted, later that night during the match, Page was attacked by Randy Savage, who dropped three elbows on Page, along with other nWo members and covered with spray paint. This was only the start of one of the hottest feuds in 1997.
At WCW Uncensored 1997 on March 16, 1997, Page was being interviewed by Gene Okerlund when he was attacked by Randy Savage and spray painted on. Savage appeared in the crowd with pictures from an issue of Playboy that Kimberly appeared in, and told the world that DDP and Kimberly was married. Kimberly came out to Page crying, and when DDP looked over at Kim, Savage attacked him.
That all led to the Spring Stampede 1997 altercation between the two, which they headlined. Page defeated Savage in a no disqualification match. Both men were injured in that match, Page suffered a bruised shoulder. At Slamboree Savage was being interviewed, when DDP came to ring, and accused Savage of kissing Hollywood's ass, Hogan attacked DDP with a crutch at Nitro, May 11th, Savage ran back to ring only to be hit by the crutch.
After many attacks on Page by the nWo on Nitro, a rematch between Savage and Page was signed for WCW Great American Bash 1997. Savage defeated Page in this no-disqualification lights-out match after Scott Hall came in and gave DDP the Outsider Edge. Page then challenged Hall and Savage to a tag match at bash at the Beach 1997. Page said he had a mystery partner he would unveil then. The partner turned out to be Curt Hennig. However, Page and Hennig had an altercation during that match and Page was left to wrestle Hall and Savage by himself, and eventually lost.
Page got his revenge on Savage, at Nitro, July 7th, when DDP came to ring dressed as La Parka, and pinned Savage in a mere seconds. But Page still had unfinished business with Hennig, but lost to Hennig at Road Wild.
The next week on Nitro, Page teamed with Lex Luger to take on the Outsiders, Scott Hall and Kevin Nash, the World Tag Team Champions, in the main event. Luger and Page won via disqualification after the rest of the nWo attacked them.
Three nights later at Clash of the Champions XXXV, Page and Luger fought Hall and Savage in the main event. Before the match, Kevin Nash said Savage could defend his title for him, making this a World Tag Title Match. During the match, Savage punched Page right in the eye, temporarily blinding him. When Luger went over to DDP to help him, DDP thought it was an nWo member, and gave Luger a Diamond Cutter. Hall went on to slowly cover Luger and get a win for the nWo.
On the next Nitro, DDP came to Luger's aid when Luger was out, and Luger accidentally put him in the torture rack. These series of misunderstandings continued the next week on Nitro when Page and Luger fought Hall and Savage again. at the end of the match, when both Luger and Page were in the ring at the same time, Luger went to nail hall with a forearm, when Hall ducked, Luger hit Page, who was behind Hall, giving the nWo the win.
The next week on Nitro, the two finally decided to settle their differences, and fought in the ring. In the middle of the match, the nWo came to ringside. After the nWo began to interfere, Luger and Page stopped fighting each other and fought the nWo together. They then embraced in the ring.
Luger and Page fought Hall and Savage again at WCW Fall Brawl: War Games 1997 on September 14, 1997. Luger scored the win for the duo when he rolled Hall up and Larry Zbysko made the 3 count because Hall knocked out 2 referees in the match.
The next week on Nitro, DDP challenged Savage to a lights out match at Halloween Havoc, and Savage accepted. On the October 6, 1997 edition of Monday Nitro, Page beat the Disco Inferno via disqualification in a Television Title Match. Page had Disco beat with a Diamond Cutter and the Television Title in his grasps, but Savage came to the ring and attacked DDP. They brawled to the outside where Savage was ready to give Page a piledriver on the concrete, but WCW interim commissioner Rowdy Roddy Piper came to ringside and stopped him. DDP turned Savage around and gave him a Diamond Cutter on he concrete. Page and Piper escaped through the crowd from the nWo, and Savage was carried away on a stretcher.
The next week on Nitro, DDP became the new United States Heavyweight Champion! Or so it seemed at the time. He beat Curt Hennig while Curt was distracted watching Ric Flair at ringside. The referee, Randy Anderson, made the 3 count just before Ric Flair got to Hennig in the ring. Randy Anderson tried to take the title away from DDP, because Anderson disqualified Page, but Piper came to the ring and declared Page the new US Champ. For some odd reason, WCW gave Hennig the title back.
Page went on to face Randy Savage again in a Las Vegas Sudden Death Match at Halloween Havoc 1997. The rules were simple, the man that couldn't continue after being knocked out for 10 seconds lost the match. Well this match was all over the arena. Elizabeth, Savage's manager, even started attacking Page. That made Kimberly come out and start fighting with Elizabeth, Kimberly hadn't followed DDP to the ring after an attack by Savage. DDP and Savage fought to the backstage area. The referee was hit and knocked out. Then there was a fake Sting at ringside that nailed DDP with the bat, which made it impossible for Page to respond to the 10 count. It was later announced that Hogan was the fake Sting.
The next night on Nitro, Page challenged Hogan to a match for the WCW World Title, because of his actions. In a entertaining match Dallas defeated Hollywood by disqualification, when the nWo stormed the ring. Hollywood took his revenge though, at World War 3, when Hogan after the battle royal gave DDP three Diamond Cutters on the belt.
Dallas had a face-off with Curt Hennig at Nitro, November 10th, this time Page won the match by disqualified when he Hennig whacked him with the US Title, the same result came at December 1st, when the nWo stormed the ring. Ric Flair was set to face Curt Hennig for the US title at Starrcade 1997, December 28. Hennig attacked Flair on Nitro, which put Flair out of the title match. DDP came to the rescue and challenged Hennig to the match at Starrcade, which Hennig accepted.
The two put on a good match, and in the end the Diamond Cutter did the job and Dallas was declared the new US Champion.
DDP vs Benoit vs Raven
After becoming US Champion, DDP granted Chris Benoit a shot at the US Title, because Benoit was made out of the same stuff as DDP. Their first match took place at Thunder, February 5th, 1998, where Raven and his flock destroyed the match. But DDP granted Benoit another shot at SuperBrawl VIII, where DDP came out on top.