Spicolli as "Rad Radford" in 1995
|Birth name||Louis Mucciolo Jr.|
|Born||February 10, 1971|
San Pedro, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Died||February 15, 1998 (aged 27)|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||Overdose|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Body Snatcher|
|Billed height||5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
|Billed weight||258 lb (117 kg)|
|Billed from||San Pedro, California |
Seattle, Washington (as Rad Radford)
|Trained by||Bill Anderson|
Louis Mucciolo Jr. (February 10, 1971 – February 15, 1998) was an American professional wrestler. He performed in Mexico under the ring name Madonna's Boyfriend, for the World Wrestling Federation as Rad Radford, and in Extreme Championship Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling in the 1990s as Louie Spicolli. He is sometimes credited as being the inventor of the Death Valley driver finisher and even wore T-shirts in WCW stating it, though some say it was created by Joshi wrestler Etsuko Mita.
Professional wrestling career
Early career (1988–1995)
At the age of 17, Mucciolo began training with "Big" Bill Anderson after the two met at a wrestling show held at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena. He debuted in 1988 aged 17, working as a jobber for the World Wrestling Federation, using the ring name Louie Spicolli and would continue to use this name in squash matches until March 1995. His occasional appearances saw him lose to many of the WWF's top stars, though he did register two victories in 1993, defeating The White Knight (actually his trainer, Bill Anderson) and The Lightning Kid. He also picked up a victory on March 13, 1995 over Greg Davis, his last appearance before being repackaged.
In 1989, he traveled to Tijuana, Mexico with Tim Patterson and his trainer, Bill Anderson, with whom he formed a stable known as "Los Mercenarios Americanos" ("The American Mercenaries"). They were a trio of masked villains who feuded with Los Villanos (Villano I, Villano III, Villano IV and Villano V). The Mercenarios were forced to unmask in July 1991 and then disbanded in 1992.
Spicolli worked on the independent circuit, appearing with Herb Abrams' Universal Wrestling Federation as "Cutie Pie". He traveled to Arizona in 1991, where he won the Interwest Wrestling Federation Heavyweight Championship as "The Zodiac". After several appearances in the WWF as an enhancement talent in 1992, Spicolli returned to Mexico as "The Killer Blonde" and made several appearances with Frontier Martial-Arts Wrestling in Japan, before getting fired by Atsushi Onita for throwing a bottle of urine out the bus window. In 1994, Spicolli appeared briefly with Smoky Mountain Wrestling, feuding with Chris Candido for the United States Junior Heavyweight Championship. He left shortly afterward and joined Asistencia Asesoría y Administración as "Madonna's Boyfriend", one of Los Gringos Locos along with Eddie Guerrero, Konnan, and Art Barr. He wrestled in a six-man tag team match at When Worlds Collide on November 6, 1994, which, as of 2016, was the only pay-per-view that AAA has held in North America. This exposure led to Spicolli being offered jobs by many promotions.
World Wrestling Federation (1995–1996)
In April 1995, the WWF repackaged Spicolli as "Rad Radford", a fan of grunge, and purportedly the boyfriend of Courtney Love. He worked an angle with the Bodydonnas, wanting to join (despite his comparatively poorly toned body) and was eventually admitted as a "Bodydonna-in-training". This lasted until Survivor Series, when he was thrown out of the group because his physique was not good enough. Spicolli achieved little success as Radford, rarely getting victories over other name talent.
In 1996, Spicolli was found unconscious by a neighbor after overdosing on Soma and suffering a seizure. He was in intensive care for several days before making a recovery. The WWF, still mindful of the controversy that the steroid trials a few years back had brought, released him on the condition that he would not work for the rival WCW promotion for a year.
Extreme Championship Wrestling (1996–1997)
Spicolli struggled with depression before joining Extreme Championship Wrestling in July 1996 as a face. He later turned heel and feuded with Tommy Dreamer. He left the company on bad terms after owner Paul Heyman discovered that he had been covertly negotiating with both WCW and WWF. Moreover, Spicolli's continued drug abuse was seen as an embarrassment to the company.
Spicolli was a mainstay of the Empire Wrestling Federation for the company's first two years of existence. He performed there as a favor to his trainer Bill Anderson, who at the time was co-owner of the company.
World Championship Wrestling (1997–1998)
Spicolli signed with WCW in late 1997 and became the lackey of his friend, New World Order member Scott Hall, dubbing himself "The Real Innovator" in order to mock Tommy Dreamer (known by the nickname "The Innovator of Violence"). Spicolli later began commentating during matches, and impressed many with his wit, though he was admonished after making a joke concerning the Oklahoma City bombing after commentator Tony Schiavone referred to a forthcoming "bombshell". Hall and Spicolli soon feuded with Larry Zbyszko, with Spicolli stealing Zbyszko's golf clubs, bringing them to the ring, and breaking them over his knee while Hall made sarcastic comments on the mic. This resulted in a match between Spicolli and Zbyszko being booked for SuperBrawl VIII on February 22, 1998. However, the match never took place due to Louie Spicolli's death one week before the match.
Spicolli had stopped taking drugs after renewed fears for his health, but the news that his mother was terminally ill with cancer led to a relapse. On February 15, 1998, Spicolli died at the age of 27 after overdosing on Soma and wine, choking on his own vomit in his sleep. Investigators found an empty vial of the male hormone testosterone, pain pills and an anxiety-reducing drug. The Los Angeles County coroner's office determined the drugs might have contributed to his heart condition.
Championships and accomplishments
- American Wrestling Federation
- AWF Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Interwest Wrestling Federation
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- Southern California Pro-Wrestling Hall of Fame
- Inducted 2001
- World Wrestling Association
- "Louis Spicolli's accelerator profile".
- "Power Slam". This Month in History: February. SW Publishing. January 1999. p. 28. 55.
- "Louis Spicolli's OWOW profile".
- Shields, Brian; Sullivan, Kevin (2009). WWE Encyclopedia. Dorling Kindersley. p. 239. ISBN 978-0-7566-4190-0.
- RSPW Tidbits
- Headlocks and Backdrops
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- Guerrero, Eddie (2005). Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story. Simon and Schuster. pp. 105–106. ISBN 0-7434-9353-2.
- "Historical Cards". PWI Presents: 2007 Wrestling Almanak and book of facts. Kappa Publications. p. 160. 2007 Edition.
- Cawthon, Graham (2015). the History of Professional Wrestling Vol 5: World Championship Wrestling 1995-2001. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. ISBN 1499656343.
- Reynolds, R. D.; Alvarez, Bryan. The Death of WCW: WrestleCrap and Figure Four Weekly Present. ECW Press. p. 125.
- "Wrestling deaths and steroids". USA Today. March 12, 2004. Retrieved May 11, 2010.
- Royal Duncan & Gary Will (2000). Wrestling Title Histories (4th ed.). Archeus Communications. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4.