The Messiah (wrestler)
|Birth name||William C. Welch|
December 18, 1977 |
|Resides||Los Angeles, California|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Iron Mike Ehrhardt
|Billed height||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|Billed weight||210 lb (95 kg)|
|Trained by||Carlito Montana
Slam U Wrestling Gym
|Debut||November 11, 1996|
Professional wrestling career
Welch's professional career began on November 11, 1996, after being trained at the Slam U. Wrestling Gym in Sun Valley, Los Angeles, California. He worked for the school's parent company, the Slammers Wrestling Federation for a time, losing his first professional match there to El Sprito. In the Slammers Wrestling Federation, he worked under the name Iron Mike Ehrhardt.
Xtreme Pro Wrestling (1999–2001)
On November 20, 1999, Welch made his Xtreme Pro Wrestling debut under a mask as The Blunatic, where he lost to Nicole Bass. The following week, The Blunatic teamed with Felony to face Bass in a handicap match, but was again defeated. On December 17, Welch debuted his new ring name The Messiah, a holy man gimmick, where he defeated Johnny Webb. The Messiah soon rose up the card and eventually became a main eventer while wrestling against Extreme Championship Wrestling alumni such as Sabu, Chris Candido and New Jack. The Messiah cemented his spot as one of XPW's main stars when he won both the World Heavyweight and the King of the Deathmatch Championships to become the company's first and only double champion.
Combat Zone Wrestling (2002–2006, 2007, 2010)
After leaving XPW due to both personal issues and an uneasy feeling over the promotion's pornographic ties, Welch made his debut in Combat Zone Wrestling on January 12, 2002 under his Messiah ring name and gimmick, where he accepted then-World Heavyweight Champion Justice Pain's open challenge. At the first Tournament of Death on August 31, Messiah competed in the tournament despite not being an official entrant. Though he managed to defeat Adam Flash in the first round, Messiah lost to Nick Mondo in the semi-finals. Despite the loss, Messiah defeated Flash to win the Iron Man Championship on October 12 before later defeating Justice Pain for the World Heavyweight Championship on December 14. After losing the Iron Man Title to Nick Mondo on February 8, 2003, Messiah later lost the World Heavyweight Title to Zandig on October 25. Messiah would go on to win the World Heavyweight Title two more times before leaving the company in December 2006.
One year later, Messiah made a one-night return to compete for the World Heavyweight Title against defending champion Ruckus and Nick Gage, the latter of whom won the match and the title. On July 10, 2010 at the CZW and Jersey All Pro Wrestling co-event Acid-Fest: A Tribute to Trent Acid, Welch returned to compete as The Messiah in a 28-man battle royal, which was ultimately won by Helter Skelter.
Independent circuit (2007, 2009, 2011)
After leaving CZW in 2006, Messiah wrestled three matches for Pro Wrestling Unplugged in 2007 before taking a hiatus. On July 25, 2009, Messiah returned to wrestle a match for the Alternative Wrestling Show, which he lost to Johnny Goodtime. On July 10, 2011 at the second Acid-Fest event, Messiah and Adam Flash defeated Devon Moore and Drew Blood in a tag team match.
On August 1, 2002, Welch was attacked in his home by two men and had his thumb cut off during the assault. The attempted hit made national media coverage and was featured on the September 21, 2002 episode of America's Most Wanted.
Welch married Renell Madison on October 14, 2006.
- Signature moves
- Carlito's Way (Military press dropped into a cutter)
- Cross Factor (Sitout facebuster, sometimes from the top rope)
- Diving crossbody
- Figure four leglock
- Godsmack (Spinning fireman's carry stunner)
- Holy Roller (Running somersault senton from the apron to an opponent outside the ring)
- Snap suplex
- Side slam
- Springboard leg drop
- Springboard moonsault
Championships and accomplishments
- Combat Zone Wrestling
- Mexican pro Wrestling
- MEXPRO Heavyweight Championship (1 time, current)
- Millennium Pro Wrestling
- MPW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Pacific Championship Wrestling
- PCW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- River City Wrestling
- RCW Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Scott McKenzie
- Xtreme Pro Wrestling
- "Messiah profile". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2009-04-25.
- "Cagematch profile".
- Woods II, Wes (2000-09-05). "Xtreme wrestling; Insane entertainers take the sport in a bloody direction". Online 49er. Retrieved 2009-04-25.
- "The Story of The Messiah".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 2".
- Rose, Mark (2003-07-16). "The Story of The Messiah". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2009-04-25.
- "Cagematch match listings".
- "Video game appearances".
- "America's Most Wanted airs episode containing Messiah story tonight".
- "CZW championship histories".
- "NWA Florida King of the Deathmatch Championship history".
- "RCW Tag Team Championship history".
- "XPW King of the Deathmatch Championship history".
- "XPW World Heavyweight Championship history".