|Birth name||John Benson Williams|
June 1, 1970 |
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Ian Rotten
|Billed height||5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
|Billed weight||240 lb (109 kg)|
|Billed from||Louisville, Kentucky
The Fifth Ward, Houston, Texas
|Trained by||Axl Rotten|
|Debut||August 10, 1990|
John Benson Williams (born June 1, 1970) is an American professional wrestler better known by his ring name Ian Rotten. He has wrestled in Global Wrestling Federation (GWF), Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), and his former wrestling promotion IWA: Mid-South.
Professional wrestling career
After becoming a fan of Dusty Rhodes and "Superstar" Billy Graham while growing up in Florida and Baltimore, Maryland, John Williams, began his career under the name Johnny Lawler, the storyline illegitimate son of Jerry "The King" Lawler. However, after heat from Jerry Lawler and a short stint as hockey gimmick Zach Blades, Williams went to wrestle for Skandor Akbar in the Global Wrestling Federation.
After ECW approached Brian Knighton with the idea of having a tag team gimmick of brothers, Brian searched for just the right person to fill the spot. Running out of options, Brian turned to one last person in hopes to not pass on a deal of a lifetime, a trainee at the time, John Williams. With trainee in tow they became Ian and Axl Rotten, the Bad Breed. The Bad Breed defeated the Texas Mustangs (Bobby Duncum, Jr. & Johnny Hawk) for the GWF Tag Team Championship in January 1993. In June 1994 in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), the Bad Breed started a feud with The Public Enemy over the ECW Tag Team Championship, but never won the title.
Williams was fired from ECW in late 1995 after a dispute between himself and Paul Heyman in the locker room. Allegedly, as told by New Jack, Ian Rotten became so distraught and distressed during the back stage confrontation that he left the building "in tears". After being fired from ECW Ian Rotten moved to Kentucky, where he started a wrestling hotline. He founded the IWA Mid-South promotion in early 1996. The group became the subject of controversy under various issues. One of which has been deemed the "Ian Rotten Rule" in the state of Kentucky, which is why there is now an Athletic Commission in that state. Story goes that Ian Rotten was a not-so-truthful person when it came to telling the state of Kentucky about the death matches that took place and the weapons/blood/ etc. Instead, Ian Rotten chose to lie time and time again, causing the Commission to crack down on the rules and guidelines within the state. To this day, Ian Rotten is not allowed to apply for a professional wrestling license in the state of Kentucky. Afterwards, IWA Mid-South moved there promotion to the other side of the river and started even more controversial news when a video of the matches was sent to local police forces. The IWA and local police were quick to assure the public that the matches were acting, and that no one was hurt.
In 2005, a concussion forced Williams into semi-retirement
As of 2017, Williams had his last match vs. "Marvelous" Mitch Ryder and announced his retirement after the match.
As of May 2017, his retirement was short lived as he returned to the ring in a battle royal for Rockstar Pro in Ohio.
Championships and accomplishments
- Anarchy Championship Wrestling
- Global Wrestling Federation
- Independent Wrestling Association Deep South
- Independent Wrestling Association Mid-South
- Independent Wrestling World
- IWW Heavyweight Cup Championship (1 time)
- Juggalo Championship Wrestling
- Mid American Wrestling
- NWA New Jersey
- NWA Revolution
- NWA Revolution Tag Team Championship (1 time) - with Danny McKay
- Pro Wrestling Unplugged
- PWU Hardcore Championship (1 time)
- westside Xtreme wrestling
- "Ian Rotten". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2008-09-11.
- Heyman, Paul (Executive Producer) (July 1, 1995). Hardcore Heaven 1995 (Videotape). Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Extreme Championship Wrestling.
- Thacker, Matt (August 5, 2008). "No charges from Sellersburg wrestling video". The Evening News and The Tribune. Indiana.