Jorge González (wrestler)
|Birth name||Jorge González|
January 31, 1966|
El Colorado, Formosa, Argentina
|Died||22 September 2010
San Martín, Chaco, Argentina
|Cause of death||Complication from diabetes and heart issues|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Giant González
|Billed height||7 ft 7 in (2.31 m)|
|Billed weight||460 lb (210 kg)|
|Trained by||WCW Power Plant|
|Debut||May 19, 1990|
|Retired||December 8, 1995|
Jorge González (31 January 1966 – 22 September 2010) was an Argentine basketball player and professional wrestler. He was best known for his appearances in World Championship Wrestling under the ring name El Gigante between 1989 and 1992 and in the World Wrestling Federation under the ring name Giant González in 1993. He is best remembered for his one-on-one match against the Undertaker at WrestleMania IX.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Basketball
- 3 Professional wrestling career
- 4 Other media
- 5 Retirement and death
- 6 In wrestling
- 7 Championships and accomplishments
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
González stood 2.32 m (7 ft 7 in), making him the tallest Argentine basketball player in history. He started his career with the youths of Hindú Club de Resistencia at the age of 16 (and already 2.19 m (7 ft 2 in) tall). Subsequently, León Najnudel, then coach of the Argentine national team, recommended the board of Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata to sign the player for the team's Argentine second division roster. During 1986, González helped Gimnasia achieve promotion to the Argentine first division. He then signed for Sport Club Cañadense, but saw little action due to an injury that left him out of the fields for 9 months.
Coach León Najnudel included González in the Argentine national team that took part of the 1985 South American Basketball Championship (bronze medal) and the 1988 Tournament of the Americas (5th place), where he attracted the attention of the Atlanta Hawks' scouts.
González took part in the 1988 NBA Draft, being chosen by the Atlanta Hawks in the third round (#54 selection). Along with Hernán Montenegro (drafted #57), they became the first Argentine players drafted in the NBA. The Hawks bought the player's rights from his Argentine team for a 30,000 Argentine australes fee. However, he was unable to adapt to the physical demands of NBA basketball, partly due to a serious knee injury.
Professional wrestling career
World Championship Wrestling (1989–1992)
In 1989, Hawks owner Ted Turner offered González a job as a professional wrestler in World Championship Wrestling (WCW), which Turner also owned. After a year of training, González was introduced to fans as El Gigante on May 19, 1990 at the pay-per-view Capital Combat. Wearing shorts, he competed as a fan favorite and billed as being close to eight feet tall.
Over the next two years, he feuded with Ric Flair for the WCW World Championship, participated in a 'Chamber Of Horrors' match in 1991 and also had a date on TBS with Missy Hyatt. He also participated in a feud with Sid Vicious and the One Man Gang. The point of the feud was to determine who the real 'giant of WCW' was. He also had a cross promotional stint in the New Japan Pro Wrestling promotion before signing with the World Wrestling Federation in 1993.
World Wrestling Federation (1993)
González competed as "Giant Gonzalez" during his time in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) as a villain, and managed by Harvey Wippleman. González grew a beard and wore a full body suit that featured airbrushed muscles with bushy hair attached. He was introduced at the Royal Rumble in January 1993, where he eliminated Wippleman's nemesis The Undertaker from the Royal Rumble match despite not being an official participant. At WrestleMania IX, Gonzalez lost to The Undertaker by disqualification after he knocked out the Undertaker using chloroform. After another loss to The Undertaker at SummerSlam the feud came to an end. After the match, Wippleman berated him, before Gonzalez turn on Harvey Wippleman, and turning face in the process. Though the foundation was later set for a feud with González and Adam Bomb, it never truly began. His last appearance in WWF was on the October 4 episode of Monday Night Raw in a 20 man battle royal match for the Intercontinental Championship. Before the match starts, González was first eliminated by "Macho Man" Randy Savage, Diesel, Bastion Booger, 1-2-3 Kid, Marty Jannetty, Adam Bomb and Bam Bam Bigelow. Three days later, WWF announced that Gonzalez left the company after his WWF contract had expired on October 7, 1993.
After his departure from the WWF, González wrestled in the Japanese promotions New Japan Pro Wrestling and WAR (Wrestle and Romance) until his retirement from wrestling, and used his old ring name El Gigante. His last singles match in Sendai, Japan on 8 February 1995, against and lost to The Great Muta. On December 8, 1995 for WAR, his last match and teaming with Koji Kitao against and lost to Shinja and Typhoon by count out. After his final match, González left WAR immediately.
González played the role of Manny, a carnival sideshow giant in a 1993 episode of Baywatch, who befriends Hobie, but later falls into the water and his large size makes it difficult to be rescued. In 1994, Gonzalez made a short appearance as Eryx the Boxer in Hercules in the Underworld, a television prequel film from the television series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. González also had roles in the 1993 and 1994 Thunder in Paradise double-episode turned movies.
Retirement and death
In December 1995, González officially retired from professional wrestling due to serious health issues. González returned home to Argentina immediately.
After his retirement from wrestling, González lived on a ranch in Argentina in his later years. In October 2009, he was confined to a wheelchair, and also had to use a dialysis machine due to his failing kidneys. González married and had one step-daughter.
|Wikinews has related news: Former professional wrestler Giant González dies aged 44|
On 22 September 2010, Gonzalez died of complications from diabetes and severe heart issues, in his hometown of San Martin, Argentina at the age of 44.
Championships and accomplishments
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked him #112 of the 500 best singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 1991
Luchas de Apuestas record
|Winner (wager)||Loser (wager)||Location||Event||Date||Notes|
|El Gigante (career)||One Man Gang (hair)||Atlanta, Georgia||Live event||August 25, 1991|||
- "Jorge Gonzales". Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved 2008-01-25.
- "Giant Gonzales's Warned Profile". Warned. Retrieved 2008-01-25.
- "Un dolor Gigante". Olé (in Spanish). 2010-09-24. Retrieved 2010-09-25.
- "Jorge González Tallest Man Argentina". Retrieved 2015-03-06.
- Shields, Brian and Kevin Sullivan (2009). WWE Encyclopedia. DK/BradyGAMES. p. 112. ISBN 978-0-7566-4190-0.
- "Remembrances 2010". 1wrestling. Retrieved 2011-09-23.
- "Adiós al Gigante González, un personaje de leyenda del básquet argentino". Clarín (in Spanish). 2010-09-25. Retrieved 2010-09-25.
- "WWE News, Rumors, Results & InformationFormer WWE Star Giant Gonzalez Passes Away". Rajah.com. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
- "Falleció el basquetbolista más alto de Argentina". Télam (in Spanish). 2010-09-24. Retrieved 2010-09-25.
- "WWE News, Rumors, Results & InformationWhatever Happened To Giant Gonzalez?, Jim Cornette Speaks Out, Paul Orndorff". Rajah.com. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
- "WCW The Great American Bash Tour - August 25, 1991".