January 16, 1949|
|Died||March 20, 2011(aged 62)|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Red Sutton
The Big Kahuna
Sir Oliver Humperdink
Big Daddy Dink
|Billed weight||252 lbs.|
|Debut||1965 (Involved in business)
Spring of 1973 (Official)
John Jay Sutton (January 16, 1949 – March 20, 2011), better known by his ring name Oliver Humperdink, was a professional wrestling manager who worked for Jim Crockett Promotions, Florida Championship Wrestling and the World Wrestling Federation.
In the early and mid 1960s, John Sutton began to get to know several wrestlers while working as an usher in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He eventually landed a job as a sort of security guard for the American Wrestling Association (AWA). In 1973, he met Paul Vachon when he went to work at Grand Prix Wrestling (GPW) in Montreal. At GPW, Sutton worked as a manager and an occasional wrestler. He also refereed for a time. Sutton began managing the Hollywood Blonds after they split with their manager, Johnny Rougeau. Both Don Jardine and Dale Hey are credited with coming up with the name "Sir Oliver Humperdink". Jardine claims to have come up with the name, believing it would draw heat from francophone fans in Quebec who hated anything English.
In 1974, Humperdink went to Florida Championship Wrestling and was put into an angle with Mike Graham and Kevin Sullivan. Two years later, he began working with the Hollywood Blondes once again.
He worked for the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA)'s Jim Crockett Promotions in the 1980s where he managed Greg Valentine, Paul Jones and The One Man Gang. He left the company in 1983 but returned five years later before the company folded. While still in the NWA, he formed a stable known as the "House of Humperdink". As a singles wrestler, he held the NWA Florida Heavyweight Championship and NWA Central States Television Championship.
In 1987, the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) approached Humperdink and offered him a job. As a part of the WWF, he managed Bam Bam Bigelow. That same year, he also began managing Paul Orndorff during his feud with Rick Rude. His gimmick was that of a face, but Sutton did not like the gimmick off-screen. He managed the duo during the first ever Survivor Series in a match that they lost when Bigelow was pinned by André the Giant. Humperdink also managed Bigelow during WrestleMania IV when he lost in the first round of a WWF Championship tournament.
When he returned to the NWA in 1988, he managed The New Wild Samoans (Solofa Fatu, Samu, and the Tonga Kid). He also returned to the side of Bigelow in his feud with Barry Windham in a match at Starrcade.
He worked for World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in the early 1990s as "Big Daddy Dink", a biker-type gimmick. In WCW, he managed the Fabulous Freebirds (Michael Hayes and Jimmy Garvin). Off-screen, Sutton hated his new gimmick and WCW's office politics. He retired in 1993. In 1995 he returned to manage Bob Orton Jr and The Hangmen in the American Wrestling Federation.
In the 1960s, Sutton was in a car crash and nearly died when he hit a snow bank. After recovering from the incident, his health deteriorated. In 2001, he went through surgery to replace his aortic valve in Key West. He was equipped with a pace maker and made a full recovery. The Cauliflower Alley Club helped pay for some of his medical expenses. Sutton returned to the hospital in 2008 after heart troubles complicated a case of pneumonia. In early 2011, it was announced that Sutton was diagnosed with cancer of the bladder. He entered a hospice having refused chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
He went to the annual Cauliflower Alley Club conventions every year.
- Bam Bam Bigelow
- Paul Orndorff
- Ivan Koloff
- One Man Gang
- Dale Valentine
- Jerry Brown
- Bruiser Brody
- Superstar Billy Graham
- "Bad Bad" Leroy Brown
- Kevin Sullivan
- Dick Slater
- Paul Jones
- Jos LeDuc
- "Maniac" Matt Bourne
- Lord Humongous (Jeff Van Camp or Sid Vicious)
- Greg Valentine
- Ox Baker
- Hercules Hernandez
- Kareem Muhammad
- Abdullah the Butcher
- The Nightmare
- Gene Anderson
- The Great Muta
- Bugsy McGraw
- Nikolai Volkoff
- Bob Orton, Jr.
Tag teams managed
- The Funk Brothers (Dory Funk, Jr. and Terry Funk)
- The New Wild Samoans (Fatu, Samu, Tonga Kid)
- Fabulous Freebirds (Jimmy Garvin, Michael Hayes, and Badstreet), with Diamond Dallas Page and Little Richard Marley
Championships and accomplishments
- "Oliver Humperdink profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2009-09-08.
- Caldwell, James (March 20, 2011). "Legendary wrestling manager Sir Oliver Humperdink dies at age 62". Pro Wrestling Torch.
- Matt Mackinder (January 17, 2008). "Sir Oliver Humperdink recalls career of yesteryear". SLAM! Wrestling. Retrieved 2008-04-04.
- "House of Humperdink". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2009-09-08.