King Kong Bundy Passes Away | Bonehead Picks

King Kong Bundy Passes Away

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Another legend of the squared circle has left this earth too soon.

King Kong Bundy, known as one of the biggest (literally) heels to ever grace the ring, passed away on Monday at the age of 61.

Bundy’s career spanned over three decades, beginning in 1981 for the World Wrestling Federation under the ring name Chris Canyon. However, that name did not last for long due to his towering appearance and “walking condominium” like figure. His ring name became King Kong Bundy.

He bounced around from the AWA, NWA, Mid South and other various promotions for a few years, dominating opponents and initiated his “five count” stipulation. Instead of the classic three count for a victory, Bundy would force the referee to count to five, a gimmick that stuck with him throughout his entire pro wrestling career even in his later WWF years.

When returning to the WWF in 1985, Bundy was booked as a monster heel relatively quickly. Bundy dominated Special Delivery Jones at the very first WrestleMania, defeating him in 17 seconds. He tore through opponents left and right under the tutelage of Jimmy Hart.

However, it wasn’t until he was traded by Hart to Bobby Heenan in which Bundy began to see his biggest success.

When joining the Heenan family, it added extra credibility to Bundy and he flourished. He destroyed even more opponents, defeating them with the five count. He became Heenan’s big man that the manager desperately needed to fill out his Heenan Family stable and assist Big John Studd to try and take out Andre The Giant. Bundy and Studd feuded with Andre and Hulk Hogan for a bit, with it eventually leading to a WrestleMania II showdown between Bundy and Hulk Hogan inside of a steel cage for the WWF title. The build for the match had been tremendous. Bundy had assaulted Hogan at Saturday Night’s main event with splashes and avalanches and questioned Hogan’s toughness. It became the perfect match to main event the card. Although Bundy did lose to Hogan at WrestleMania, it was a great way to close out the second ever WrestleMania and also solidified Bundy’s spot as a top guy.

He continued to feud with Andre The Giant as a member of the Heenan Family following WrestleMania and teamed with Big John Studd up until Studd left the company in late 1986.

During this time, Bundy was the inspiration for the hit television show Married With Children, a comedy starring Ed O’Neill, David Faustino, Christina Applegate and Katey Sagal. They were the Bundy’s, a direct homage to King Kong Bundy. Bundy even played Uncle Irwin one of Peg’s (Sagal) relatives on the show for a few episodes as well as playing himself where he wrestled Bud (Faustino) in a match. Bundy’s appearances on the show displayed his range as not only a legitimate tough monster, but the comedic side of him.


At WrestleMania III, Bundy did the unthinkable when he decided to illegally body slam and hit an elbow drop on Little Beaver during the six man interpromotional match. Rules stated that Bundy could not attack the “little” wrestlers and he could only attack Hillbilly Jim on the opposite team and the same rules applied for Jim. All four little wrestlers then attacked Bundy in a comical segment.

Bundy disappeared from WWF in 1988 and stayed away from pro wrestling for the most part until his return in 1994, where he joined Ted DiBiase’s Million Dollar Corporation. Bundy was once again the muscle in a deep stable as he provided DiBiase with a heavy to take down all of the big names in the WWF. Bundy ended up facing The Undertaker at WrestleMania XI, but was defeated in one of Undertaker’s more lackluster WrestleMania matches. After that loss, Bundy eventually disappeared from the WWF and finished his pro wrestling career on the independent circuit, wrestling his final match in 2007 to “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan.

Bundy’s memorable career will never be forgotten and hopefully will end up in the WWE Hall of Fame one day.

Thank you for the memories, King Kong Bundy. May you rest in peace.


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(Photo Via – WWE)


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