Leo Kruger

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Leo Kruger
Leo Kruger.jpg
Ring name(s) Dameon Duke[1]
Leo Kruger[1]
Presley Jackson[1]
Ray Bourne[1]
Ray Leppan[1]
Rey Bourne[1]
Adam Rose[2]
Billed height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)[3]
Billed weight 220 lb (100 kg)[3]
Born (1979-07-20) 20 July 1979 (age 34)[1]
Johannesburg, South Africa[4]
Billed from Musha Cay Islands, Bahamas[5]
Johannesburg, South Africa[3]
Trained by FCW Training[1]
Paul Lloyd Sr.[1]
Debut 1995[1]

Raymond Leppan (born 20 July 1979) is a South African professional wrestler better known by his former ring name Leo Kruger. He is signed to WWE, where he is working in their developmental territory NXT Wrestling and currently performing as Adam Rose.[2] Leppan is a former two-time FCW Florida Heavyweight Champion.

Professional wrestling career[edit]

South Africa[edit]

Leppan debuted as a professional wrestler at the age of 16.[4] He worked in South Africa with Paul Lloyd Jr., known as the tag team Pure Juice. He also wrestled as "Dameon Duke" in World Wrestling Professionals.[1] While there, Duke won the WWP World Heavyweight Championship by defeating Tornado in 2007 and lost it to Fury the following year.[6]

World Wrestling Entertainment[edit]

Developmental territories (2010–present)[edit]

After Leppan's United States work visa cleared, he was able to debut in Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW) under his real name on 25 February 2010, in a losing effort against Curt Hawkins.[1] Two weeks later, Leppan was defeated by Eli Cottonwood.[1] The following week, Leppan changed his ring name to "Leo Kruger", chosen as a tribute to his relative and former President of South Africa Paul Kruger, before losing to Johnny Curtis.[1][4] On 18 March, Kruger picked up his first win since joining FCW by defeating Jacob Novak.[1] At the television tapings on 20 May, Kruger challenged the former Paul Lloyd, Jr. and fellow South African wrestler, Justin Gabriel to a match. At the television tapings on 10 June, Kruger lost to Gabriel, but in a rematch on 1 July, Kruger reversed the result.[7] In mid-2010, Kruger formed a team with Derrick Bateman, known as The Handsome Man Express. The duo challenged Los Aviadores (Hunico and Epico) for the FCW Florida Tag Team Championship on 2 July, but were unsuccessful.[8] On 8 July, Kruger teamed with Tyler Reks to challenge Los Aviadores again for the championship, but was unsuccessful. Kruger then went on a winning streak, defeating Big E. Langston, Bateman, Austin Watson, Husky Harris, and Wes Brisco, before finally losing in a mixed tag team match, when he and Kaitlyn lost to Brad Maddox and Jamie Keyes on 9 September. Kruger's final match in 2010 was at the television tapings on 23 September, when he lost to Bo Rotundo.[7] Following the match, Kruger lost feeling in his arm, and it was discovered that he had broken his neck.[3] While recuperating, Kruger became a commentator for the FCW television program.[3]

After Bo Rotundo was injured in September 2011, his FCW Florida Heavyweight Championship was vacated and a tournament set up to determine the new champion.[9] Kruger defeated Percy Watson to make it to the final, a fatal four-way match against Husky Harris, Damien Sandow, and Dean Ambrose.[10] Kruger won the match and the championship, his first in FCW.[11] Kruger then appeared in dark matches prior to the SmackDown television tapings on 20 and 27 September, losing to Trent Barreta and defeating Johnny Curtis respectively.[12][13] Kruger successfully defended the championship against Harris on the 24 October episode of FCW television and on the 14 November episode of FCW television, Kruger defeated Harris and Richie Steamboat in a triple threat match to retain the FCW Florida Heavyweight Championship.[14][15] On the 18 December episode of FCW television, Kruger successfully defended the championship against Seth Rollins, after interference from Antonio Cesaro.[16]

In late December 2011, Kruger appeared at several WWE house shows, losing to Alex Riley on 27 and 28 December.[17][18] On 30 December, he teamed with Riley and Mason Ryan to defeat Tyler Reks, Curt Hawkins, and JTG in a six-man tag team match at a Raw brand house show.[19] On 2 February 2012, Kruger lost the FCW Florida Heavyweight Championship to Mike Dalton.[20] He regained the championship from Dalton three weeks later on 23 February, but lost it that same night to Seth Rollins.[11]

When WWE rebranded its developmental territory, FCW, into NXT Wrestling,[21] Kruger's NXT television debut took place on the second episode of the rebooted WWE NXT taped at Full Sail University, where he defeated Aiden English.[22] On the 1 August episode of NXT, Kruger was inserted into the Gold Rush Tournament to crown the first NXT Champion, where he was defeated by Richie Steamboat in the quarter-finals.[23] In September, Kruger's character was tweaked into that of a deranged hunter and mercenary.[24][25] In December, Kruger formed an alliance with Kassius Ohno;[26] Kruger and Ohno defeated Tyson Kidd and Justin Gabriel on the 2 January 2013 episode of NXT.[27] On the 16 January episode of NXT, Kruger defeated Trent Baretta.[28] On the 30 January episode of NXT, Ohno and Kruger entered the NXT Tag Team Championship Tournament to crown the inaugural champions and defeated Alex Riley and Derrick Bateman in the first round.[29] On the 6 February episode of NXT, Kruger and Ohno were defeated by Adrian Neville and Oliver Grey in the semi-finals.[30] Kruger then moved on to feud with Justin Gabriel when he attempted to attack Gabriel's injured partner, Tyson Kidd;[31] Kruger won the series of matches 2-1.[25][32][33] Kruger next set his sights on Bo Dallas's NXT Championship.[34] On the 18 July NXT, Kruger won a triple threat match against Sami Zayn and Antonio Cesaro to become number one contender.[35] On 7 August, Kruger fought Dallas for NXT Championship, but lost.[36] Kruger eventually feuded with Zayn with the feud culminated in Zayn winning a two-out-of-three falls match on the 1 January 2014 NXT.[37]

Adam Rose (2014-present)[edit]

Leppan was then removed from TV and his ring name was changed to Adam Rose.[2] With the name change, he debuted a new eccentric rock star character at live events. On the January 30 tapings, he made his NXT TV debut with his new Adam Rose gimmick.

From the post-WrestleMania Raw on April 7, WWE aired introductory vignettes for Rose.[38]

In wrestling[edit]

  • Nicknames
    • "The South African Super Studd"[46]
    • "The Exotic Express"
  • Entrance themes
    • "Let It Go" (Instrumental) by Shanks Mansell and Carlton Hayes
    • "World Goes Wild" by Above Envy
    • "Break Away" by CFO$

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y "Leo Kruger". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c http://www.pwinsider.com/article/82308/results-and-thoughts-from-final-nxt-house-show-in-tampa.html?p=1
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Leo Kruger". NXT Wrestling. Archived from the original on 19 January 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c Fishman, Scott (29 April 2012). "South African friends looking to reunite in WWE". The Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 30 April 2012. Retrieved 30 April 2012. 
  5. ^ https://twitter.com/WWEAdamRose
  6. ^ a b "WWP World Heavyweight Title". World Wrestling Professionals. 1 July 2011. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  7. ^ a b "Florida Championship Wrestling (2010)". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  8. ^ Mize, Adam (2 July 2010). "7/2 FCW Results in Melbourne, Fla.: Nexus angle continues, Kaval main events, Hennig vs. Hawkins". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  9. ^ "Superstars of the Week: Leo Kruger". Florida Championship Wrestling. Archived from the original on 28 December 2011. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  10. ^ Namako, Jason (10 October 2011). "FCW Results – 10/9/11". WrestleView. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  11. ^ a b c "Champions Roll Call". Florida Championship Wrestling. Retrieved 17 March 2012. 
  12. ^ Tedesco, Mike (20 September 2011). "SPOILERS: WWE NXT for September 20". WrestleView. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  13. ^ Tedesco, Mike (27 September 2011). "SPOILERS: WWE Superstars for September 29". WrestleView. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  14. ^ Namako, Jason (25 October 2011). "FCW Results – 10/24/11". WrestleView. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  15. ^ Namako, Jason (14 November 2011). "FCW Results – 11/14/11". WrestleView. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  16. ^ "Florida Championship Wrestling TV report for 12–18". Wrestling Observer/Figure Four Online. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  17. ^ Martin, Adam (28 December 2011). "Second report of 12/27 WWE event at MSG". WrestleView. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  18. ^ Mientus, Joe (28 December 2011). "12/28 WWE results Pittsburgh, Pa.: Punk vs. Miz steel cage, Miz mic work, battle royal, Lawler, Cena vs. Kane". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 29 December 2011. 
  19. ^ Tedesco, Mike (31 December 2011). "12/30 WWE Results: Hartford, Connecticut". WrestleView. Retrieved 2 January 2012. 
  20. ^ Meltzer, Dave (2 February 2012). "Two title changes at tonight's FCW tapings". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved 4 February 2012. 
  21. ^ "WWE News: FCW name being phased out". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved 7 June 2013. 
  22. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S NXT REPORT 6/27: Week 2 of New NXT season - Bateman vs. Curtis main event, Cesaro, Seth Rollins, Steamboat". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 14 July 2012. 
  23. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT RESULTS 8/1: NXT Title tournament begins with Rollins, Steamboat, McIntyre". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 9 August 2012. 
  24. ^ Chiverton, George. "CHIVERTON'S NXT SCOUTING REPORT: Latest evaluation & rankings of WWE's top Developmental stars". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 7 October 2012. "Kruger is a changed man ... He's got a hunter gimmick ... his persona has gone from confused to straight up crazy." 
  25. ^ a b James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORTS 4/17 & 4/24 & 5/1: Jericho in action, The Shield, Clash of Champions featuring several title matches, Paige vs. Summer Rae feud continues, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  26. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT RESULTS 12/5 - WEEK 24: Kidd main event, Cesaro, Shield member in action, Overall Reax". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  27. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 1/2: Developmental kicks off 2013 with NXT Title match, Shield added to storylines, Big E.'s role before main roster call-up". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  28. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 1/16: PAC debuts, released Barreta & injured Kidd wrestle, Sandow and Cesaro(?) team, Overall Reax". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  29. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT RESULTS 1/30: Tournament continues, Bo Dallas in main event, returns of Bateman, A-Ry & Mason Ryan". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 1 June 2013. 
  30. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 2/6 - Week 32: Tag Tournament continues, Bo Dallas's main-roster debut carries over, Overall Reax". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 15 February 2013. 
  31. ^ Chiverton, George. "CHIVERTON'S NXT SCOUTING REPORT: Latest Rankings & Evaluation of WWE Developmental roster". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 11 August 2013. 
  32. ^ James, Justin. "JAMES'S WWE NXT RESULTS 2/27: The Shield attacks in the main event, a match so bad that it's good, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 11 August 2013. 
  33. ^ Chiverton, George. "CHIVERTON'S NXT SCOUTING REPORT: Latest Rankings & Evaluation of top WWE Developmental prospects". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
  34. ^ Namako, Jason. "WWE NXT Results - 6/27/13 (#1 Contenders Match)". Wrestleview. Retrieved 8 August 2013. 
  35. ^ Namako, Jason. "WWE NXT Results - 7/18/13 (Neville/Graves vs. Wyatt Family)". Wrestleview. Retrieved 8 August 2013. 
  36. ^ Trionfo, Richard. "WWE NXT REPORT: UNITED STATES TITLE ON THE LINE; NXT TITLE ON THE LINE; DANCE SUPREMACY IN NXT ON THE LINE; TYLER BREEZE IS TYLER BREEZE; AND MORE". PWInsider. Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  37. ^ James, Justin. "James's WWE NXT results 1/1 - Week 79: Zayn/Generico in 2/3 Falls match, Kingston, Natalya, Overall Reax". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 3 January 2014. 
  38. ^ Caldwell, James. "Raw news: Bryan's first night as champ, Taker update, Cesaro joins Heyman, Warrior returns, RVD returns, Paige debuts & wins Divas Title, other NXT intros, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 8 April 2014. 
  39. ^ a b c d Trionfo, Richard. "WWE NXT report: current and former NXT champions in action; women's title tournament finishes the first round; number one contenders for the tag titles determined; and more". PWInsider. Retrieved 28 June 2013. 
  40. ^ a b Trionfo, Richard. "WWE NXT report: number one contender match; six divas in action; the Shield send a message; the Wyatt Family makes their presence known". PWInsider. Retrieved 9 March 2013. 
  41. ^ a b c Martin, Adam. "FCW Results- 5/27/12". Wrestleview. Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  42. ^ "WWE NXT TV report - Top contenders for tag title match". Wrestling Observer. Retrieved 12 August 2013. "Leo won the match with a high stepping Lariat called The Slice and submitting Dante" 
  43. ^ a b Trionfo, Richard. "WWE NXT Ohno versus Harper; Rusev and Lefort are no more; a new recruit For the 'mean girls'?; and more". PWInsider. Retrieved 21 December 2013. 
  44. ^ a b Trionfo, Richard. "WWE NXT report: if you like the Shield, this is the show for you to watch; big title match announced for next week; Kidd and Gabriel versus Ohno and Kruger; and more". PWInsider. Retrieved 9 January 2013. 
  45. ^ Namako, Jason. "WWE NXT Results - 12/11/13 (Kruger vs. Zayn)". WrestleView. Retrieved 21 December 2013. 
  46. ^ "Leo Kruger - FCW profile". Florida Championship Wrestling. Archived from the original on 1 August 2012. Retrieved 21 December 2013. 
  47. ^ "Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) 500 for 2012". The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved 25 August 2012.