Baby Doll (wrestler)

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Baby Doll
Nickla Roberts.jpg
Baby Doll in August 2010
Birth name Nickla Ann Roberts
Born (1962-02-13) February 13, 1962 (age 52)[1]
Lubbock, Texas, United States[1]
Resides Fayetteville, North Carolina, United States[2]
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Andrea, the Lady Giant[3]
Baby Doll[3]
Billed height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Billed weight 190 lb (86 kg)[3]
Trained by Lorraine Johnson
Jake Roberts
Nick Roberts
Nelson Royal[2]
Debut 1984

Nickla Ann Roberts (born February 13, 1962) is an American semi-retired professional wrestler and valet, better known by her ring name, "The Perfect 10" Baby Doll. She is best known for her appearances with World Class Championship Wrestling and Jim Crockett Promotions in the 1980s.[3][1]

Professional wrestling career[edit]

Roberts was born in Lubbock, Texas to Nick Roberts and Lorraine Johnson. Both Nick Roberts and Johnson were professional wrestlers and promoted weekly events at the Fair Park Coliseum. During her childhood, Roberts sold programs at her father's events, in the process befriending future wrestlers Bruce and Keith Hart and Kerry and Kevin Von Erich. From an early age, Roberts aimed to become a professional wrestler.[1][2][4]

World Class Championship Wrestling (1984)[edit]

In the summer of 1984, while training to become an emergency medical technician (EMT), Roberts overheard her parents say that her childhood crush, World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) wrestler Gino Hernandez, was in need of a valet. Unbeknownst to her parents, Roberts contacted David Manning, the WCCW booker, and proposed that she could manage Hernandez. After Manning agreed, Roberts left college and traveled to San Antonio, Texas, making her debut alongside Hernandez in the sold-out Freeman Coliseum. She went on to train under Nelson Royal for the remainder of the summer.[2]

Performing under the ring name Andrea, the Lady Giant (a reference to André the Giant), Roberts was booked to dominate both male and female wrestlers in the ring. Her character had a punk haircut and typically wore leather pants, a leather jacket, metal studded belts, spiked dog collars and wristbands and scarves and T-shirts relating to rock bands such as Aerosmith and Mötley Crüe. Hernandez and Roberts feuded with Mike Von Erich and his manager, Sunshine.[3][1][2]

Jim Crockett Promotions (1985-1987)[edit]

Roberts left WCCW in December 1984. In February 1985, she joined the National Wrestling Alliance member Jim Crockett Promotions (JCP). She was introduced by Tully Blanchard as his new manager, "The Perfect 10" Baby Doll. She assisted Blanchard during his feuds with Dusty Rhodes and Magnum T.A.. After Rhodes defeated Blanchard for the NWA World Television Championship at The Great American Bash on July 6, 1985, Roberts was forced to be Rhodes' valet for 30 days. During this time, vignettes aired in which Rhodes tried to turn her into a "real lady." [3][2]

In 1986, Blanchard adopted James J. Dillon as his manager, a pairing that would result in the formation of the original Four Horsemen. After Blanchard publicly fired Roberts and slapped her for failing to save him from an attack by Magnum T.A., she was rescued by Dusty Rhodes, and went on to assist Rhodes during his feud with the Four Horsemen.[3]

During a weekly Monday night television taping in Greenville, South Carolina in 1986, Jim Cornette and Beautiful Bobby Eaton attacked Roberts with a tennis racquet. She responded by introducing The Warlord as her newest client. The Warlord briefly feuded with Big Bubba Rogers before leaving JCP to further his training. At the 1986 Great American Bash on July 5, 1986, Roberts, Rhodes and Magnum T.A. defeated Cornette and The Midnight Express in a steel cage match.

On August 9, 1986, Roberts turned on Rhodes, helping Ric Flair retain the NWA World Heavyweight Championship during a title bout with Rhodes in St. Louis, Missouri. Roberts briefly managed Flair before the JCP booking office sent her to the NWA Central States territory due to their disapproval of her marriage to fellow wrestler Michael "Sam Houston" Smith.[3][1]

Universal Wrestling Federation (1987)[edit]

In 1987, Roberts left JCP and joined the Oklahoma City, Oklahoma-based Universal Wrestling Federation (UWF) alongside her husband. Upon leaving the UWF, she began appearing on the independent circuit with Houston.

Jim Crockett Promotions (1988)[edit]

In 1988, Roberts returned to Jim Crockett Promotions, managing Larry Zbyszko during his feud with Barry Windham over the NWA Western States Heritage Championship. Her tenure was short lived as her husband was then working for the rival World Wrestling Federation (WWF) in what was regarded as a conflict of interest.[1]

World Wrestling Federation (1988)[edit]

Roberts heard about the WWF restarting their women's division and trained with Nelson Royal to improve her ring-skills alongside her sister-in-law Robin Smith. Both tried out with the WWF, but Smith was chosen over Roberts.[5]

Independent circuit (2005, 2007-present)[edit]

At the inaugural WrestleReunion event on January 29, 2005 in Tampa, Florida, Roberts accompanied Jeff Jarrett to ringside for his successful defense of the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in a bout with Tully Blanchard. She went on to manage a number of wrestlers on the independent circuit throughout the late 2000s (decade).[4]

Personal life[edit]

While at high school, Roberts set several records for the shot put.[2]

Roberts married fellow wrestler Michael "Sam Houston" Smith on July 30, 1986 in Lubbock, Texas.[6] She gave birth to two daughters; Mikka Tyler Smith, in 1991, and Mikala Joy Smith, in 1992. Roberts retired from professional wrestling upon the birth of her second daughter, opting to devote her time to her children. She and Smith separated in 1991, briefly reconciled in 1992 and ultimately were divorced on February 17, 1995.[3][1][2][7]

After retiring from professional wrestling, Roberts worked in a number of fields, including baggage handling, cable installation, the manufacture of apparel for wrestlers and the United States Postal Service. She now works for Wal-Mart.[3][2]

In wrestling[edit]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Stoy, L. "KM Interviews... Nickla "Baby Doll" Roberts". KayfabeMemories.com. Retrieved 2009-04-25. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Mooneyham, M. (August 9, 2009). "Baby Doll born for the business". The Post and Courier. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Marvez, A. (26 March 2009). "Marvez: Catching up with 'Baby Doll' Nikla Roberts". ScrippsNews. Retrieved 2009-04-25. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Baby Doll". OnlineWorldofWrestling.com. Retrieved 2009-04-25. 
  5. ^ Brian Elliot (2010-07-10). "Baby Doll: From star attraction to single mom". Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved 2010-07-10. 
  6. ^ Texas Marriages
  7. ^ Texas Divorces, 1968-2002
  8. ^ Royal Duncan & Gary Will (2000). Wrestling Title Histories (4th ed.). Archeus Communications. ISBN 0-9698161-5-4. 

External links[edit]