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This bit from a CM Punk tweet made me laugh: Most IWA shows he would look out the curtain and say“well if they riot, we got em out numbered boys!”

One of my favourites. From a hot fireu babyface teaming with Steve Armstrong, to his fucking elite feud and team with Tony Anthony, and even towards the end of the 90s just being super duper fun in th

This is a sad one. Like many others my first exposure to Tracy was Freddie Joe Floyd. I was however vaguely aware of his career from Smoky and the USWA as I was an occasional reader of PWI and similar

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Watching late 80s and early 90s NWA / WCW PPVs and Clash of the Champions and enjoying the Southern Boys / Freebirds feud made it worth paying for the network alone.

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Gutted. Always been fond of Tracy. In the ring, on the mic and just in general. He always came across as a really good guy in shoot interviews and stuff as well. Thought he’d be older than 58 so that makes it even more sad.

It’s a shame he got to the WWF smack bang in the middle of that ‘everyone’s got to have a goofy gimmick’ period in 1996 and got saddled with the Freddie Joe Floyd thing that went nowhere. He was never getting a main event run in the WWF but they certainly could’ve done better with him than that.

 

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7 minutes ago, wandshogun09 said:

It’s a shame he got to the WWF smack bang in the middle of that ‘everyone’s got to have a goofy gimmick’ period in 1996

Speaking of which, 

 

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Yeah, he’s told that story a few times in interviews. Think he said that was within a couple of hours of being in the locker room on his first day there and he knew he was fucked when Taker got all pissed off about it. Undertaker and Shawn Michaels are about the only wrestlers I can recall hearing him have a real problem with. And JBL from the Blue Meanie thing at the first ECW One Night Stand. 

I’m sure I’ve posted this on here before but look at this for random. Tracy Smothers vs Michael Hayes on WWF Shotgun in 1999.

 

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We'll start slow and taper off, kid. If I'm not in the ring when you get there, start without me...

Tracy was great. I got to spend some time around him on some shows in the Northeast in 2006/7 and he was just a treat. 

I was but a young trainee at the time but he couldn't have been nicer and he really busted his arse in his matches, trying to teach his rookie opponents and give fans their money's worth. 

He also had an edge to him and I've heard some stories from some of the other lads that I won't repeat here (nothing too salacious, don't worry), but I've never come across someone who didn't like him and wasn't glad to see him booked. 

I wasn't familiar with his work outside of ECW at the time, but his stuff with Steve Armstrong is just timeless and I always find myself going back to watch it. 

RIP to a great guy who did a lot for many. 

Edited by SaitoRyo
'Taper off' not 'peter out'
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The guy had a much bigger influence on the industry than people think. A whole generation of indie wrestlers from the mid 2000s who rose to significant positions in the top companies from 2010 onwards and influenced the next generation all name check Smothers as a key influence and one of the main guys who taught them proper wrestling psychology.

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Like many have said I have some great memories of spending time with him during 1PW shows/weekends that always make me smile when thinking back on them. 

He was a great worker and seemed a really decent person. 

I'll never pass through Doncaster without thinking of his friendly greeting to the fans...... How y'all doing ya Doncaster Donkeys? 

RIP Tracy, my thoughts are with your family and friends 

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Like many on here, my first clear introduction to the man was as Freddie Joe Floyd in WWF in 1996, and it certainly didn’t leave a lasting impression. 

It was only when I saw him in ECW, and got older that I became aware of who he was and his body of work, and then when I saw his Smoky Mountain Wrestling run, I fully appreciated how good he was. A true lesson in not letting WWE (or indeed one group) shape your view of someone.

I’ve always appreciated in the last 20 years how selfless he was from the stories I heard and when even some of the most jaded, miserable or mean spirited people in wrestling (Taz, CM Punk, Jim Cornette, New Jack in shoot interviews) had nothing but good things to say about him, that is the measure of the man.

RIP Tracy Smothers.

Edited by uklaw
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Such a great heel. Don't make em like that anymore. Enchanting. You can watch him for hours wondering what he may say. Is he PC? Nope. Some of his shtick raised an eyebrow in Doncaster but he is who he is. Haven't seen alot of him but he always draws heat, every single time. 

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This is a sad one. Like many others my first exposure to Tracy was Freddie Joe Floyd. I was however vaguely aware of his career from Smoky and the USWA as I was an occasional reader of PWI and similar mags with Indy reports, so was mildly interested to see him, Bill Irwin, Johnny Gunn and Dirty White Boy show up in the WWF around the same time with their personas altered. Unlike many others, I tend not to look back at it as “what a disrespectful shitshow”. I think of that particular intake as the WWF deciding they knew who their stars were and who they wanted to make into stars, and needed extra bodies to work semi-competitive programs with the latter on the weekend shows to see if they rose to the occasion. For every Justin “Hawk” Bradshaw you want to have a look at you need two or three Freddie Joes or Alex Porteaus on rotation to make them look good. The criteria was “We need model pros to make some of our guys look good” so the message to a Tracy Smothers was “we can definitely find work for a guy as good as you even if the ppv card is full” - I think that’s a decent compliment.

My next and best exposure was a WCW match on a second hand VHS from a car boot. Not the lauded one, but Dustin Rhodes & The Young Pistols vs Michael Hayes, Jimmy Garvin & Badstreet from Bash 91. My mind explodes now thinking about Dustin, Smothers and two Armstrongs in the same match. This fantastic eliminator saved a dogshit tape and made it worth the nearly-nothing I’d paid for it.

Later on, I started catching the FBI on the ECW broadcasts on Bravo. As was common in ECW, Tracy was in somewhat of a different role to previous in his career. I really enjoyed the gimmick without 100% knowing why. Again, typical of ECW.

Which brings me to the live experiences of 1PW as others have already described. On paper, Blue Meanie vs Tracy Smothers sounded like nothing I was going to be interested in by 2005. In reality the feud and nonsense it lead to was a highlight of many shows overloaded with serious rasslin. Smothers was a riot, and seemed to be genuinely enjoying himself.

I won’t bullshit you and say I’m as familiar with his entire body of work as many here are, but he was a very entertaining guy to watch and clearly he gave a lot back to the business. “Everybody dies!” - sadly, he was right.

 

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