Wrestler of the Day – July 13: Mike Knox

Here’s a guy who is better than you would think. Today is Mike Knox, currently known as Knux in TNA.

Knox started in 1998 and we’ll pick things up as a jobber on Heat at some point in 2003.

Maven vs. Mike Knox

Knox shoves him into the corner to start but gets caught in an armbar. Off to a hammerlock as commentator Al Snow is very proud of his student. A dropkick stops Mike’s comeback and we hit another armbar. Knox sends him into the buckle and gets two off a neckbreaker, only to miss a middle rope elbow. A nice spinwheel kick gets two for Maven and he nails a middle rope bulldog. Maven heads up top for a missile dropkick and the pin.

Rating: D. Maven gets less impressive every time I watch him. There’s just nothing to him and he never has anything worth watching. To be fair though he was a glorified rookie at this point who didn’t have enough experience to do anything significant in the ring. Nothing to see here and Knox was just a jobber.

He would head to the big company full time in 2005 and start in Deep South Wrestling. However, that company is REALLY hard to find video of, so first up in WWE was ECW on Sci-Fi, including this match on July 4, 2006.

Mike Knox vs. Little Guido

Knox says Kelly is his so we don’t get to see her. The fans chant at him as they should. Guido jumps him to the pop of the night. He hits a dropkick to the side of the head but a second attempt misses, allowing Knox to take over. The fans want pizza and think Knox can’t wrestle. Knox goes into an EXTREME series of bodyslams as the fans think this is boring. Guido tries to get something going but gets his head kicked off and the spinning downward spiral ends this.

Rating: F. This match, if it wasn’t already, proves that ECW is dead. Guido was a big deal (kind of) in ECW, but here he’s a jobber. You know, like everyone that isn’t one of the top ECW guys. And to Mike Knox? The most generic of generic big men ever? They were going off on him here. Imagine what he would have gotten in the ECW Arena. But this is the new ECW, where the fans mean nothing and the ECW Originals are a stable 8 months from now.

Knox would appear on the December to Dismember PPV with his girlfriend Kelly Kelly.

Ariel/Kevin Thorn vs. Kelly/Mike Knox

Kelly dated Knox apparently and at this point is an exhibitionist and AWFUL. I mean she’s ridiculously bad so we get Knox and Thorn. Knox has no beard at this point and is somehow more worthless than he was before. Oh dang it they’re letting him talk. Oh good Kelly is talking instead. She likes Punk, who gets a chant. That chant didn’t happen though. No one likes Punk. What people want is HARDCORE HOLLY AND TEST!!!

Thorn is a vampire and Ariel is a fortune telling gypsy or something. She would become Salinas in TNA in case you’re more familiar with them. This is a freaking disgrace. I’m glad no one bought it as it makes things seem a bit better. No one cares about this either as since both girls can’t wrestle we more or less have a Knox vs. Thorn match. And here they are. At least Kelly looks hot. Kelly tries to get the tag to Knox but he leaves. Note: the fans chant for Punk to come make the save. To make sure it’s clear: Punk is WAY over. Sandman makes the save instead which gets a nice pop.

Rating: D-. Kelly looking hot is the only reason this passes. I just want to get to the end of this.

Knox would stop meaning much after the early story. Here’s a match from ECW on May 20, 2008.

Mike Knox/Layla vs. Colin Delaney/Kelly Kelly

Layla beats up Kelly to start but gets headscissored down to the floor. Back in and a cross body gets two on Layla with Knox making the save. Knox LAUNCHES Colin out to the floor, allowing Kelly to hit the K2 for the pin on Layla.

Oddly enough, Knox would get a pretty solid push later in the year, including a spot in the Raw World Title match in the Elimination Chamber at No Way Out 2009.

Raw World Title: Kofi Kingston vs. John Cena vs. Kane vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Mike Knox vs. Christ Jericho

Cena is out first to a pretty decent pop and is the reigning champion coming in. This is easily the high point of Knox and his beard of awesome. Kane is your jobber of the day here as he’d never win a world title right? Now we get to the meat of the match as Kofi comes out and Edge jumps him, taking his place in the match. I’ll get to the big problem with this at the end. Also the winner is pretty clear now isn’t he? A Conchairto ends Kofi and Edge jumps into his pod.

Rey comes down to help Kofi as Jericho is out so we’ll start with them. They already had that epic feud over the IC Title so there’s automatic history here. Both guys fight for control and Rey can’t get a 619. Rey gets a flip over the ropes and the beating is on. Rey takes a HARD shot into the glass. Mysterio steals the Spiderman spot from RVD and gets a rana and seated senton to take over.

Kane is in third and goes right for Rey. Jericho tries to jump Kane and it gets him nowhere. Rey fights with what he can but there’s only so much he can do against a guy the size of Kane. Rey manages to get both of them in position for the 619 but Kane pops up to stop him. Rey, the superhero that he is, manages to get the big man down and get the area code move (he’s screwed if that ever changes). Jericho adds a Codebreaker for no cover as Lawler is criticizing them too. A seated senton off the top of a pod gets rid of Kane. Was there a need to take out Jericho first though? Anyway Kane is gone.

In fourth is Knox who is evil because he felt like being evil. There was something so refreshing about that and I loved it. He doesn’t really have a point to beating on Rey. He just kind of likes it. Simple but effective. Jericho sends him out to the cage but the springboard cross body doesn’t work at all. Rey gets caught in a Tree of Woe in the cage which is kind of a cool visual.

Knox is a generic big man but he does the job pretty well. He tries to set Rey for his finisher back in the ring but Jericho grabs a Codebreaker for the pin to get us to the final four. That one I can understand as Jericho had an opening and Mike had one arm free instead of two so it was more taking an opening rather than saving Rey. Anyway Edge is in fourth.

Rey goes right after him and the beating is on. Jericho gets both guys down and can kind of pick his spots. Lionsault to Rey gets knees and an Edge-O-Matic gets two on Jericho. Spear misses Rey and the Codebreaker misses Edge. Jericho stops the 619 to Edge for no apparent reason other than hatred of Mysterio I suppose. Tower of Doom spot as Jericho gets a sunset bomb on Edge out of the corner as Edge hits a release German on Rey, who is more or less dead.

Here comes Cena and Edge does his best Vince imitation as he turns around to meet him. Cena goes off on everyone but mainly focuses on Edge. Various moves take down just about everyone as Cena is ALL fired up. Five Knuckle Shuffle to Edge as it’s all Cena. FU to Edge is blocked by a Codebreaker to Jericho. 619 to Cena sets up the spear from Edge and CENA IS GONE!!! Edge is totally shocked that he finally pinned Cena.

It’s Rey vs. Jericho vs. Edge once the match gets going again after more or less stopping cold after that. Rey sets for a 619 to both Canadians but Edge gets out of the way. Jericho grabs the Walls but is rolled up by Rey to get us down to one on one for the title. Spear eats turnbuckle and Rey gets a rollup for two and a BIG reaction from the crowd which is totally into this.

Rey gets that soccer style kick to the side of the head for another long two. The announcers talk about the show vs. show thing which is rather stupid but we’ll just go with it as they insist it’s a big and important thing or whatever. Rey gets his fourth long two off a tornado DDT. Rey goes for some kind of a springboard move but Edge kicks him in the face to put him back down.

Powerbomb on the cage can’t hit as Rey counters into a facejam on the cage. FREAKING OW MAN! Rey modifies the 619 to kick Edge in the back of his head. In a SICK spot, Rey charges at Edge but gets launched into the air and into the glass which he literally bounces off of. FREAKING OW MAN PART DEUX THE SEQUEL WITH MOST OF THE ORIGINAL CAST GONE AND A WEAKER STORY THAT IS RIDING ON THE NAME OF THE ORIGINAL! Spear ends it as Rey is mostly dead already.

Rating: A-. Another great match here, but this is what I hated about it that I mentioned earlier on: Edge was distraught about losing his world title two and a half hours ago so he goes out and wins another. What could have been a big devastating loss for Edge that gave him something to do for a few months as he tries to get the title back is thrown away as he now has the OTHER world title and is just fine for it. It makes it seem like the world title is easily replaceable which isn’t what it should be at all. Anyway, the match was very fun and the crowd was into it the whole time, making this an excellent match.

After falling back down the card, Knox was rarely involved in anything major. Here’s a tag match from Smackdown on September 4, 2009.

Finlay/Great Khali vs. Mike Knox/Kane

Kane is all psycho and evil here (no really) and has a Singapore Cane match coming up with Khali at the PPV. Finlay and Knox get us started with Finlay being dropped face first on the buckle. Kane misses the clothesline and it’s off to Khali, sending Kane running away. Khali puts the Vice Grip on Knox who bails to the floor. We take a break and come back with Khali clotheslining Kane down and chopping him in the corner.

Back to Finlay vs. Knox with Finlay hitting the running earthquake drop for two. Apparently Finlay is afraid of Knox for some reason. Finlay is sent shoulder first into the post and it’s off to Kane to work over the arm. Knox works on an armbar followed by a crossbody of all things for two. Back to Kane who gets low bridged by Finlay. Khali has to save his brother/manager Runjin Singh and in the distraction, Finlay hits Knox with the shillelagh for the pin.

Rating: D+. This didn’t really work and was longer than it needed to be. Knox vs. Finlay was a feud but it was barely explained here. At least with Kane he’s naturally evil and therefore it’s easy to plug him into a story. Other than that there wasn’t much here and the match wasn’t that interesting as a result.

Knox would leave the WWE soon after this and head to TNA after a year on the independent circuit. He would appear as part of the Aces and 8’s biker stable, but wouldn’t be identified for his first few major matches. Here’s a showdown with World Champion Austin Aries at No Surrender 2012.

Austin Aries vs. Arm Breaker

This is non-title of course and Aries is in workout clothes instead of trunks. Before the match, Aries talks about this being a war which is fine with him, because Aries is the God of War. Aries calls out the big man but he won’t let the masked man in. He does the HBK laying on the top rope to sucker the Arm Breaker in. The champ pounds the guy down and hits the suicide dive.

Back inside Aries pounds away some more but gets crotched to give the Arm Breaker the advantage. The Arm Breaker keeps pounding away and takes over even more on the champ. This isn’t a match mind you as there’s no referee and the bell never rang. A clothesline spins Aries around and the Arm Breaker loads up a powerbomb but Aries throws powder in his face. A dropkick sends the Arm Breaker to the floor and Aries dives out onto him.

The Arm Breaker gets in a shot and grabs a chair, but back in the ring Aries hits him with a roll of coins and the brainbuster. Aries goes for the mask but here comes the gang. The locker room empties out and it’s a big brawl. In case you care, the fight ran just under ten minutes or so.

Knox would be one of the two members of the Aces and 8’s team at Bound For Glory 2012.

Aces and 8’s vs. Sting/Bully Ray

Sting and Ray both have facepaint. Aces and 8’s have theme music now. They bring out Joseph Park who looks a bit near death. There are two members here, one in a plaid t-shirt and another in a black one. We’ll call plaid shirt #1 and black shirt #2. This is No DQ and a brawl starts on the floor. Sting fights #1 and Ray has some issues with #2. #2 seems to be the taller of the two.

Sting gets sent into the announce table as the fans chant for Bully. Sting and Ray double team #1 and the fans want tables. The Stinger Splash hits the barricade as it has all but one time that I can ever remember. #2 and Sting start in the ring with Sting in trouble. Off to #1 who hits a clothesline for two. Park is chained to the barricade at ringside. #2 hits another clothesline for another two on Sting.

A bit boot gets another two and Ray is starting to play cheerleader. Sting makes a fast comeback and tries the Scorpion but #1 breaks it up. A suplex is countered by Sting into the Death Drop but Sting doesn’t cover for some reason. Double tag brings in #2 and Ray with Ray cleaning house. A middle rope shoulder takes #2 down and the fans are way behind Ray. Ray double clotheslines them down and a splash gets two on #1.

#1 brings in a chair but Ray hits a big boot to stop the shot. A third Aces and 8’s guy, pretty clearly Wes Brisco, comes in and hits Ray low. Park gets spat on and breaks the chain off the barricade. He comes in and destroys the third guy before beating him up the ramp. The match breaks down and #2 gets caught in a Doomsday Device. Double splashes crush #2 in the corner again and it’s Table Time with Sting playing Bubba’s role. Ray gets the table but #1 pulls Sting to the floor. Another member of Aces and 8’s comes in and spinebusts Ray through the table to give #2 the pin at 10:51.

Rating: C. Not much of a match here but the point is that Aces and 8’s won. How this makes anything any different is beyond me but this story hasn’t made much sense in the entire time it’s been running. Hopefully we’ll get some more to this tonight because if this is it, then it’s going to feel flat. The match was pretty much fine.

He would eventually be unmasked and nicknamed Knux as a play on his old name. Knux would try to get some revenge on Chris Sabin for taking Bully Ray’s World Title on Impact, September 5, 2013.

Knux vs. Chris Sabin

Ray is at ringside and is already distracting Sabin. Sabin’s headlock is easily countered by the powerful Knux so Sabin wants a test of strength. Chris suckers him in and wisely goes after the knee with some dropkicks before wrapping it around the ropes for another dropkick to the knee. Knux easily slams Sabin down and stops Sabin cold with a big boot.

Sabin is catapulted throat first into the bottom rope for two and we hit the neck crank. A belly to back suplex puts Sabin down again and a middle rope legdrop gets two for Knux. Knux misses a running crotch attack into the ropes and hurts his knee again. Sabin hits a missile dropkick so Ray sends in the hammer to Knux, only to have Sabin intercept it and knock Knux silly for the DQ at 6:00.

Rating: C-. This was somewhat better than I was expecting but the ending better be part of a bigger angle. Sabin was world champion about three weeks ago and now he’s losing to Knux? It was a decent big man vs. little man match though this was a nice surprise given what I was expecting.

We’ll wrap it up with Knux returning as a carnival owner in what is definitely a new character. From Impact on May 8, 2014.

Kazarian vs. Knux

The Menagerie is a carnival themed stable comprised of Knux, his good looking sister Rebel, two men on stilts, Crazy Steve (a clown) and the Freak (a masked muscle man). Kaz jumps Knux from behind to start but is easily thrown down. He does score with a top rope missile dropkick and a kick to the jaw but stops to yell at Crazy Steve. Kaz turns around and runs into the Freak, allowing Knux to throw him back into the ring. A Sky High powerbomb is enough for the pin on Kaz at 2:16.

Mike Knox is a guy who wasn’t much to see but he’s gotten better once he put on some muscle mass and shaved his head. He’s decent as a power enforcer and can fill in the roster of a stable well enough and that’s not the worst job in the world to have. His matches aren’t great, but he can be a decent tag or six man guy.

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and pick up my new book of on the History of ECW Pay Per Views at Amazon for just $3.99 at:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LWSOTGK

And check out my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

2 comments

  1. Bida18 says:

    Why didn’t you include his 1 on 1 matches with Rey Mysterio? They were pretty good.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    It was late and I was tired.