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The Grand Wizard

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Kondor View Drop Down
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    Posted: 08/January/2018 at 18:30
I was watching some old footage of early 80's WWF and started to think that if he hadn't died, the Grand Wizard could have been to the WWF Intercontinental Championship what Captain Lou Albano was to the WWF World Tag Team Championship. 

What I mean by that is this. We all know how much Captain Lou Albano dominated the W/WWF's tag team division throughout the 70's and early 80's. He would manage a bad guy tag team to the belts, then after they'd lose it to the latest babyface team, he'd come back with a new team to take the tag belts back. Repeat this for a 15 year period. 

But when I mentally traced the first couple years of the WWF Intercontinental Championship, I started to realize The Grand Wizard was monopolizing that belt just the same as Albano was the Tag Team Championship. When Pat Patterson won the North American Championship (and that mysterious tournament in Rio De Janeiro to win the South American Championship to become the first Intercontinental Champion) in 1979, he was a bad guy managed by the Wizard. But during that reign Patterson turned good. Then in 1980 the Wizard came in with Ken Patera to take the belt away from Patterson. 

Patera later lost the belt to Pedro Morales. But then in 1981 into the WWF comes Magnificent Muraco with the Grand Wizard, who took the belt from Pedro to begin their big feud. 

I also note that in his first WWF run from 1978 to 1982, Greg Valentine was also managed by the Wizard. When Valentine returned to the WWF in 1984, the Wizard had already passed away. Valentine was managed by Captain Lou Albano at the time he won the Intercontinental Championship from Tito Santana. But likely he would have been placed back with the Grand Wizard had the Wizard still been alive. So The Wizard would have had four Intercontinental Champions already, and possibly a pattern. Of course incidentally enough during Valentine's reign Albano turned good. Valentine replaced him with Jimmy Hart, who had just come in from Jerry Lawler's Memphis territory, thus making the first hook up for those two.       

So my point is that the Grand Wizard possibly could have been the main heel manager for a series of Intercontinental Champions for who knows how long had he not passed away. I know that by the late 80's Bobby The Brain Heenan became the premier bad guy manager in the WWF, but I can easily picture Ravishing Rick Rude with the Wizard as a manager had he lasted that long, possibly into his Intercontinental Title reign in 1989. 

Of course the Wizard's biggest Title victory was when he managed Superstar Billy Graham to the WWWF World Championship in 1977 and early 1978. This relationship seems like an anomaly, as people who love to analyze booking say that managers are good for doing the talking for guys who normally are not good at talking or otherwise don't like to talk (see Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar today.) Yet Graham as many agree was an awesome talker and light years ahead of his time. The Wizard and Graham were absolutely awesome together, I can't say enough. 

All in all I am really starting to appreciate the Grand Wizard, he was one of the greatest personalities and talkers ever. His interaction with Vince McMahon during interviews was great.  

Edited by Kondor - 08/January/2018 at 19:09

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