April 13, 1937|
Arvida, Quebec, Canada
|Died||June 19, 1997
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Stan Stasiak|
|Billed height||6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)|
|Billed weight||270 lb (120 kg)|
|Billed from||Buzzard Creek, Oregon|
George Emile Stipich (April 13, 1937 – June 19, 1997), better known by his ring name Stan "The Man" Stasiak, was a Canadian professional wrestler and the fifth WWWF Champion. He is the father of former professional wrestler Shawn Stasiak. He also raised a daughter Brittany, who stayed by him to his very last day.
Born George Stipich, Stasiak made his wrestling debut in Quebec, Canada. He used the nickname "Crusher" early in his career and used a bear hug as a finisher. Later on in his career, he adopted the heart punch as his finishing move.
During his third stay with World Wide Wrestling Federation, he would get one of the biggest opportunities of his career. Stan "The Man" Stasiak won the WWWF Championship on December 1, 1973, defeating Pedro Morales. Unlike wrestlers today, Stasiak was given little notice about winning the title before it took place. According to him, he was sitting in the dressing room in Philadelphia and the road agent came to discuss the match. Stan considered this a formality as he had been having the same discussion, nearly verbatim, in every major city on the Eastern seaboard for the last two months. However this time, it was different. The agent told Stasiak that Morales was to give him a belly to back suplex and as the ref makes the count, Stan raises his shoulder up after two, while Morales' shoulder stays down, thus the title changes hands. According to friend and fellow wrestler Frank Dusek, the company wanted to make Bruno Sammartino its champion again but did not want Sammartino to defeat current champion Pedro Morales in the process. Stasiak was used as a transition champion, defeating Morales for the belt and holding it for just nine days before losing it to Sammartino on December 10, 1973. In 1974 to 1975 he fought Johnny Valentine in NWA Mid Atlantic and Toronto.
For several years he was the tag team partner of The Gladiator and wrestled primarily out of the Cow Palace in San Francisco. Stasiak and The Gladiator maintained a fairly long term rivalry with the team of Ray Stevens and Peter Maivia.
Stan Stasiak also had a WWWF title shot against "Superstar" Billy Graham in 1977, and an AWA title shot against Nick Bockwinkel in 1978 in Toronto. From there he went to Pacific Northwest where he teamed with Roddy Piper. In the early 1980s he did commentary there and also worked as a photographer. In 1984, Stasiak retired from the ring and became a security guard for a shopping center on his return to Toronto. In 1997, he died of heart failure.
Championships and accomplishments
- Maple Leaf Wrestling
- NWA All-Star Wrestling
- NWA Big Time Wrestling
- Pacific Northwest Wrestling
- Stampede Wrestling
- The Night Stan Stasiak Became World Champ, by Frank Dusek.
- Stan "The Man" Stasiak Online World of Wrestling