Good Bill Hunting

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The Bill DeMott allegations and their denial have have been well documented during the past week. This article isn't interested in debating or taking sides, I'll leave that to the people that actually know or knew Bill to fight it out as there seem to be plenty on each side of the fence, each with their own opinions. This is instead a look at his career in the wrestling business for those who are wondering who exactly this person is and how he got to where he is today.

Bill DeMott

On 6th March 2015 Bill DeMott announced his resignation as NXT Head Trainer on Twitter, following allegations of gross misconduct, with the following statement: "I deny the recent allegations made about me, however, to avoid any embarrassment or damage to the WWE, I’ve decided to step down from my role effective immediately." But he was hardly a household name, who was he and how did he come to be in such a prestigious position?

DeMott was trained in the 1980's by WWE Hall of Fame inductee Johnny Rodz who is recognised as one of the first jobbers in the history of wrestling. Rodz also trained the Dudley's, Tommy Dreamer and Taz amongst others in "The World's Famous" Gleason's Gym in Brooklyn. He began with a stint as "Crash The Terminator" in the AWF, where he won the Heavyweight title from Steve Strong in 1992, before moving to Japan and winning the World Tag Team title in W*NG with partner Mr Pogo, a Japanese hardcore wrestler who was once a Tag Team Champion in Canada with the Dynamite Kid.

This success in Japan continued when he won a 16 man tournament to become the first ever W*NG World Heavyweight Champion in 1993. He also appeared in IWA where he faced Rick Patterson in his Texas Chainsaw Massacre inspired "Leatherface" gimmick in a barbed-wire baseball bat match. He then returned to the USA and competed in ECW under his "Crash" guise, defeating Pitbull #1 at Ultimate Jeopardy 1994, before moving again and winning a battle royal to become the first ever PCW champion.

DeMott's work hadn't gone unnoticed and at the request of the influential Kevin Sullivan he was signed by WCW in 1995. He didn't continue with the gimmick that had brought him so much success in Japan however and was given the names "The Laughing Man" and "The Man of Question" for his first dark matches. For his TV début as part of Sullivan's Dungeon of Doom (a stable whose reason for existence I have some sympathy with) his name was changed slightly to "The Laughing Man" Hugh Morrus (get it!?). "T.L.M." was eventually dropped and he was just known as Hugh Morrus.

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Morrus defeated Chris Kanyon in a dark match at SuperBrawl VI, then briefly formed tag teams with Joey Maggs and Scott Norton before being invited to a Japan/US All-Star tournament in Japan along with WCW head-liners like Flair, Sting and Luger. At his second SuperBrawl (VII) however it was back to working a dark match. The dissolution of the Dungeon of Doom did nothing for DeMott's progress in WCW which is summed up by the fact he is probably most famous for being Bill Goldberg's number one victim.

DeMott then joined Jimmy Hart's First Family stable with Jerry Flynn, like his trainer a former WWE jobber, and ex-Nasty Boy Brian Knobs where he found relative success and received something of a push. After victories on Thunder, Nitro and MTV's Ultimate Video Bash he was awarded a new three year contract with the company in 1999. In typical WCW style the stable suddenly disbanded and "angry Morrus" was launched with DeMott squashing a number of wrestlers until Vince Russo came riding manically into town with his new direction for the company.

What came next sounds on paper like a gimmick Vince McMahon tricked WCW into thinking he was going to use, so that they in fact would "steal" it with the end result being a magnificent prank on WCW. DeMott at Slamboree 2000 became "Captain Rection" then after forming the stable Misfits In Action with Booker T and Chavo Guerrero Jr. took on the new title General Hugh G. Rection. What actually happened was the stable became immediately popular with fans and they went on to feud with Team Canada consisting of Lance Storm and the turncoat Hacksaw Jim Duggan. At Halloween Havoc 2000 General Rection defeated Duggan & Storm in a handicap match for the United States title. Further success was to come when General Rection & Alex Wright won the WCW World Tag Team titles, then the US title was recaptured by "G.R." at Mayhem 2000.

After losing the title to Shane Douglas the Misfits In Action disbanded and DeMott went back to being known as the more family friendly Hugh Morrus until WCW ceased to exist. So began his first stint with WWE as part of the Invasion angle. Performing under the name Hugh Morrus he made his debut doing a run in during an IC title match between Kane and Christian on 04 June 2001 Raw. Things went downhill from here and DeMott was quickly relegated to wrestling (and losing) on secondary programs such as Heat. After being (Kayfabe) fired by Vince McMahon in 2002 Morrus worked in the company's developmental territory HWAwhere he became a tag team champion with fellow fallen star Raven.

2002 proved to be a life changing year for DeMott as after being involved, and injured, in a motorcycle accident he took a position as, which seems funny when you say it now, a "hardass" trainer in Tough Enough III. He did make a brief return as a competitor on Velocity in June 2002 and then Smackdown under his real name and strangely received something of a push where he squashed numerous established wrestlers such as Crash Holly and 2015 WWE Hall of Fame Inductee Rikishi. By February 2003 this brief flirtation with fame had terminated and he was back to wrestling exclusively on Velocity. After a, not for the first time, bizarre character turn that now saw him telling knock-knock jokes (nothing offensive may I add) before matches, he decided to officially hang up his boots in October 2003 and became a commentator for just over 12 months on Velocity.

Bill DeMott

After Tough Enough 4 DeMott became a full time trainer for WWE working in DSW where he was also a booker. He was released on January 19, 2007 after, 'ahem', receiving some criticism regarding his methods. DeMott continued to compete as a wrestler before his return to WWE in 2011 where he would take up his old role as Head Trainer in WWE Tough Enough. As he had done last time at the end of recording he moved into a developmental territory as head trainer, this time FCW which of course later became the now sensational NXT. He continued his role as Head Trainer when the WWE Performance Centre opened it's doors in 2013.

DeMott has not had a staggering career but has certainly had respectable one as a performer with title wins in Japan and the USA and as a result must have a good all-round knowledge of the industry. What the future holds for him now remains to be seen, but what has become clear is that many in the industry have respect for him so there may be other opportunities on the horizon. What we do know is none will be as glamorous or high profile as his most recent.

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