Mad Dog Vachon
Class of 2010
Mutli Time AWA Champion
Hall of Fame Rating
6 out of 10
Mad Dog Vachon was the third of the AWA megastars to join the WWE Hall of Fame.
And he may be one of the last, as there aren’t many AWA men who would be referred as that.
Like other territories throughout the 60-80s, only one or two stars remained on top for many years.
Bruno Sammartino dominated as WWWF champion from 1961-1969. That is eight years long. Yet, that amount pales in comparison to the domination of wrestler/promoter Verne Gagne, who held the belt 10 times in 20 years from 1960-1980. (Back when face championship reigns were at least a year)
In the 60s, Vachon was AWA’s go to villain, holding the belt 5 times in the mid sixties. And this is when no one beat Verne Gagne.
This led to his position as the quintessential company man for the AWA. If AWA had survived, he along with fellow Hall of Famer, Nick Bockwinkel would be remembered as patriarchs of the company and very fondly. He was a staple of his time and that organization.
Yet, Mad Dog could never be a professional wrestler today. His type doesn’t exist anymore. Short, ugly, hairy former Olympians don’t even exist today.
Its a change in times. First, wrestlers today are all pretty. The worst looking successful wrestler today has either got to be The Great Khali due to his giantism….
Or Kane, who is more of a hold over to the previous generation.
The top talent of the last ten years all have female fans, as they are good looking men.
Mad Dog is an ugly man. An extremely ugly man. His gimmick was of a horrifying monster of man, squished into the smallest package. In Vachon’s time, the average wrestler looked like Verne Gagne.
Looks are important today but so is ability to act a script. At least today. The old fashioned promo was a thing of beauty. And some could do it. Some could not…without racism
Vachon had the ability to become his character. His words made no sense, his focus manic and over the top. In the world of 60-80s wrestling it worked. The impression he gave was all that mattered. After all kayfabe said that this was really who this man was.
Mad Dog was a scary man. His scratchy brambly voice even sounds frightening in French, the most beautiful language.
It literally sounds like Mad Dog created his own language.
And that sums up Mad Dog’s lasting impact. He was the got to company man player who had a unique and memorable character. Whether he
Vachon was the third AWA megastar inducted. Verne Gagne joined in 2006, Nick Bockwinkel in 2007, and Vachon in 2010. As the WWE continued to become more and more integrated with wrestling history, it only made sense to include the historically relevant Mad Dog.
2010, although one of the weaker classes in notable star power, did feature some very highly respected ring veterans. Mad Dog’s inclusion made sense and still does today.
Opens Door For?
Other AWA centric inductees. One of the likiest would be Larry Zybysko, who also spent time in the WWE in the early 80s
Reasons this shouldn’t have happened.
None. And with Mad Dog’s passing, it is good it happened when it did, 3 years before his death.