Can We Please Have a Moment of Silence
This month let us celebrate the life and legacy of Eddie Guerrero Tags: moment silence eduardo gory eddie guerrero word life production new quality entertainment

Eduardo Gory "Eddie" Guerrero Llanes (October 9, 1967 – November 13, 2005), was a Mexican-American professional wrestler and a member of the Guerrero wrestling family. He performed in Mexico and Japan for several major professional wrestling promotions, and in the United States, performed for Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), World Championship Wrestling (WCW), and World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Guerrero's gimmick was that of "Latino Heat," a crafty, resourceful wrestler who would do anything to win a match. His catchphrase became "I Lie! I Cheat! I Steal! But at least I'm honest about it!" and was used in one of his entrance themes; he partly used this phrase in the title of his 2005 autobiography, "Cheating Death, Stealing Life."

Guerrero is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time. At the time of his death, industry veterans Kurt Angle and William Regal both described him as "the best wrestler in the business" with Angle adding Guerrero "might have even been the best ever", while CM Punk and Sasha Banks have since regarded him as the greatest professional wrestler of all time. Others such as Gerald Brisco, Dusty Rhodes and Paul "Triple H" Levesque have all labeled him as one of the greatest talents of all time.

Despite being a villain for most of his career, he was popular in and out of the ring. He experienced various substance abuse problems, including alcoholism and an addiction to painkillers; these real-life issues were sometimes incorporated into his storylines.

Guerrero won 23 titles during his career, including 16 between WWE, WCW, ECW, and Asistencia Asesoría y Administración (AAA), encompassing the WWE Grand Slam Championship. He was also a posthumous inductee into the WWE, AAA, Wrestling Observer Newsletter and Hardcore halls of fame.

Guerrero was born and raised in El Paso, Texas, where he graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School (La Jeff) in 1985. He attended the University of New Mexico as New Mexico Highlands University on an athletic scholarship. It was there that Guerrero entered collegiate wrestling before moving to Mexico to train as a professional wrestler. He followed in the footsteps of his brothers and father, who also wrestled in Mexico. As a boy, he would attend the wrestling promotions held by his father Gory Guerrero at the El Paso County Coliseum. Guerrero's father allowed him and his nephew Chavo to wrestle each other during intermissions.

Guerrero began wrestling as the original Mascara Magica in CMLL until his departure in 1992. He then left the company to pursue a career with AAA. Although the Mascara Magica gimmick was popular, CMLL owned the rights to the character. Guerrero then appeared on a televised AAA show as Mascara Magica, only to then unmask himself along with the aide of his tag team partner that night, Octagón. He was the first luchador to voluntarily unmask and was also immediately physically attacked by the opposing tag team for doing so.

Asistencia Asesoría y Administración (1992–1994)

In Mexico, he wrestled mainly for Asistencia Asesoría y Administración (AAA), teaming with El Hijo del Santo as the new version of La Pareja Atómica (The Atomic Pair), the tag team of Gory Guerrero and El Santo.

After Guerrero turned on Santo and allied with Art Barr as La Pareja del Terror (The Pair of Terror), the duo became arguably the most hated tag team in lucha libre history. Along with Barr, Konnan, Chicano Power, and Madonna’s Boyfriend, Guerrero formed Los Gringos Locos (The Crazy Americans), a villainous stable. Guerrero later said that no matter how many people joined Los Gringos Locos, the stable was all about Art. Locos feuded mostly with El Hijo del Santo and his partner Octagón, eventually ending in a Hair vs. Mask match at the first lucha pay-per-view in America, When Worlds Collide, which they lost.

Guerrero and Barr's first break would come when they were noticed in late 1994 by the owner of Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), Paul Heyman, and were approached about wrestling for him in 1995. Barr, however, died before he could join ECW with Guerrero.

New Japan Pro Wrestling (1993–1996)

In 1993, Guerrero began wrestling in Japan for New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), where he was known as the second incarnation of Black Tiger. He became more successful upon his return when he won the Best of the Super Juniors 1996 tournament of junior heavyweights. He received a shot at the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion The Great Sasuke at Skydiving J, but lost the match.

Extreme Championship Wrestling (1995)

Guerrero won the ECW World Television Championship from 2 Cold Scorpio in his debut match for Extreme Championship Wrestling, and went on to have a series of acclaimed matches with Dean Malenko before they both signed with World Championship Wrestling later that year. Guerrero lost the ECW Television Championship to Malenko on July 21 of that year, but Guerrero regained the title on July 28. Guerrero lost the ECW Television Championship back to 2 Cold Scorpio on August 25.The next day, they had their last match which ended in a draw in a two out of three falls match at the ECW Arena. After the match, the locker room emptied and the two were carried around the ring by their fellow wrestlers while the crowd chanted "please don't go".

World Championship Wrestling

Early years (1989–1995)

Guerrero debuted in WCW in 1989 as a jobber, most notably wrestling Terry Funk. In 1991, he would return for Wrestle War, wrestling a dark match, teaming with Ultraman to defeat Huichol and Rudy Boy Gonzalez.

Guerrero returned to WCW in late 1995 along with Dean Malenko and Chris Benoit with whom he had worked with in NJPW and ECW.  During his first few pay-per-view events, he competed in dark matches against Alex Wright. His first televised pay-per-view appearance was at World War 3 where he competed in the 3-ring, 60-man World War 3 battle royal for the vacant WCW World Heavyweight Championship. Guerrero was one of the final nine men in the battle royal until he was tossed out of the ring by Four Horsemen members. At Starrcade 1995, Guerrero represented WCW in a WCW vs. NJPW World Cup tournament. He lost to Shinjiro Otani in the match, but WCW went on to win the series.

United States and Cruiserweight Champion (1996–1997)

In 1996, Guerrero received several shots at the United States Heavyweight Championship against Konnan at Uncensored and Ric Flair at Hog Wild. He feuded with Ric Flair and the Four Horsemen during 1996 after Guerrero's partner Arn Anderson turned on him during a tag team match against Ric Flair and Randy Savage. In late 1996, he feuded with Diamond Dallas Page after defeating him in a match at Clash of the Champions XXXIII. He started feuding with DDP to steal his nickname of "Lord of the Ring" but lost. Guerrero participated in a tournament for the vacant WCW United States Heavyweight Championship and defeated DDP in the final round at Starrcade 1996 to win the United States title.

In 1997, Guerrero defended the United States Heavyweight Championship against Scott Norton at Clash of the Champions XXXIV, Syxx in a ladder match at Souled Out, and Chris Jericho at SuperBrawl VII. His reign came to an end at Uncensored when Dean Malenko defeated him for the title.

After losing the United States Heavyweight Championship, Guerrero feuded with Jericho focusing on Jericho's Cruiserweight Championship. He challenged Jericho for the title at Clash of the Champions XXXV but lost. Guerrero demanded a rematch for the title. In the opening match of Fall Brawl 1997, Guerrero defeated Jericho to win the WCW World Cruiserweight Championship. He dropped the Cruiserweight title to Rey Mysterio Jr. at Halloween Havoc in a Title vs. Mask match where Mysterio's mask was also on the line. On the November 10 episode of Monday Nitro, he regained the Cruiserweight title from Mysterio, and made a successful title defense against Mysterio at World War 3. After retaining the title against Dean Malenko in the opening bout of Starrcade 1997, Guerrero dropped the title to Último Dragón the following day on the December 29 episode of Nitro.

Feud with Chavo and latino world order (1998)

Main article: Latino World Order

On the March 9, 1998 episode of Nitro, Guerrero's nephew Chavo Guerrero lost to Booker T in a match. After the match, Guerrero suplexed Chavo to teach him a lesson. On the March 12 episode of Thunder, he defeated his nephew Chavo in a match and forced him to become his "slave". At Uncensored, Chavo was forced to support Guerrero when he faced Booker T for Booker's WCW World Television Championship. Guerrero lost the match after receiving a missile dropkick. Guerrero and Chavo feuded with Último Dragón. Chavo lost to Dragón at Spring Stampede. At Slamboree, Guerrero defeated Dragón despite interference from Chavo. After the match, Chavo kissed Eddie and began to display insane behavior. At The Great American Bash, Chavo got an upset victory over Guerrero. They faced each other in a Hair vs. Hair match at Bash at the Beach which Guerrero won. Continuing to show his crazy behavior Chavo would shave his own head while Guerrero looked on in disbelief. Guerrero saved Chavo from beatings by Stevie Ray, seeming that he would align with Chavo but he wanted his release.

Despite his success and popularity, Guerrero had been one of many wrestlers who were frustrated at never being given a chance to be main event stars in WCW. These frustrations came to a head when Guerrero requested that WCW President Eric Bischoff either push his character or give him a raise for family reasons. Bischoff responded by allegedly throwing coffee at Guerrero (however, in his autobiography, Guerrero states that Bischoff accidentally knocked his coffee off the table and that it was a complete accident that he was hit). Furious, Guerrero demanded Bischoff release him from his contract on a live episode of Nitro. Guerrero then left the company for a period of months, angry at Bischoff for what he had done. Guerrero later returned to WCW, leading to the belief that maybe Guerrero's angry speeches against Bischoff were actually a work (Guerrero later confirmed it to be a worked shoot). Guerrero would later contradict himself on WWE's DVD Monday Night War claiming that he tried to put personal differences aside for the good of the company, yet found himself angry and outraged once more because of Bischoff's supposed continued refusal to elevate Guerrero and other similar wrestlers. He let Brian Adams pin him and get an upset victory in a match.

On-screen, Guerrero responded to Bischoff's actions by forming the Latino World Order (LWO), which was a take-off of Bischoff's New World Order. The group was an answer to Bischoff's "refusal" to push Latino wrestlers in ways they felt they deserved. The LWO was formed in October when Guerrero returned to WCW, with Héctor Garza and Damien.The group eventually grew to encompass almost all the Mexican wrestlers working for WCW at the time. They mainly feuded with Rey Mysterio Jr. and Billy Kidman because they wanted Mysterio to join the group. He faced Kidman in a match for the WCW Cruiserweight Championship but Mysterio interfered and helped Kidman win the match and keep the title. However, Guerrero was involved in a serious car accident on New Year's Day, 1999 that cut short the LWO storyline. Guerrero survived the accident and returned to wrestling in a matter of months.

The Filthy Animals (1999–2000)

Main article: The Filthy Animals

After his return on the May 31, 1999 episode of Monday Nitro, Guerrero became a founding member of The Filthy Animals alongside Rey Mysterio Jr. and Konnan. They feuded with the Dead Pool (Insane Clown Posse and Vampiro). They received two straight victories over the Dead Pool at Road Wild and Fall Brawl. They next feuded with The Revolution (Shane Douglas, Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, and Perry Saturn). Guerrero was victorious over Saturn by disqualification in a singles match at Halloween Havoc. At Mayhem, the Animals lost to Revolution in a mixed tag team elimination match. When Vince Russo was fired as WCW booker and replaced by Kevin Sullivan, Guerrero asked for and received a release from his contract on January 19. He signed with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) in 2000 along with fellow WCW stars Benoit, Malenko, and Saturn.

World Wrestling Federation

The Radicalz (2000)

Main article: The Radicalz

Guerrero, Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko and Perry Saturn debuted in the WWF on the January 31, 2000 episode of Raw is War as The Radicalz, interfering in a match involving the New Age Outlaws. During his first match with the WWF, a tag team match with the Radicalz against the Outlaws, Guerrero performed a Frog Splash off the top rope and severely injured his elbow on the landing. As a result, he was sidelined for several weeks.

Latino Heat (2000)

Guerrero as European Champion with Chyna at the 2000 King of the Ring

In March 2000, Guerrero, who was wrestling as a villain, began pursuing the affections of Chyna, who he referred to as his "Mamacita". At the time, Chyna was allies with Chris Jericho and initially rejected his advances. The night after WrestleMania 2000, on the April 3, 2000 episode of Raw Is War, Guerrero faced off against Jericho for the European Championship. During the match, Chyna turned on Jericho and helped Guerrero win, and later explained her actions by declaring that she could not resist his "Latino Heat". After Chyna abandoned Lita to be attacked by The Dudley Boyz, he and Chyna began a feud with Essa Rios and Lita, ending in a European title defense at Backlash, which was also billed as the night of Guerrero's prom (he was said to have just earned a GED). Guerrero defeated Rios after arriving at ringside in a 1957 Chevrolet, even wrestling in his tuxedo pants and a bow tie. Guerrero successfully retained the title against former Radicalz friends Saturn and Malenko in a Triple Threat match at Judgment Day, before losing the title to Saturn at Fully Loaded. The two slowly began to become popular with the fans but over the next few months, friction began to build between Guerrero and Chyna.

Chyna was upset when Guerrero pinned her to advance in the King of the Ring tournament. Then at SummerSlam that August, Guerrero and Chyna wrestled a mixed tag team match against Trish Stratus and Val Venis, who at the time was the reigning Intercontinental Champion. The Intercontinental Championship was on the line in the match, and whoever scored the pin would win the title. Guerrero's team won the match, but Chyna scored the pin on Trish and became a two-time Intercontinental Champion. Although Guerrero said he didn't mind that his partner was the champion, on the September 4 episode of Raw Is War he went to WWF Commissioner Mick Foley and asked to be inserted into Chyna's title defense against Kurt Angle claiming that he did not want Angle to hurt his "mamacita". During the course of the match, Angle knocked down Chyna with the title belt and Guerrero laid on top of her to try to revive her. However, this resulted in Guerrero "accidentally" pinning Chyna as her shoulders were still on the mat, and thus Guerrero won the match and his first Intercontinental Championship. Chyna became visibly uncomfortable as Guerrero began to cheat in order to retain his title, while Guerrero was upset that Chyna was posing for Playboy magazine, even trying to invade the Playboy Mansion to stop the photo shoot. Just when it appeared that Chyna would leave Guerrero, he proposed to her and she accepted. At Unforgiven, Chyna helped Guerrero in retaining his title against Rikishi. The engagement was called off when Guerrero was caught showering with two of The Godfather's hos (one was Victoria) claiming that "two Mamacitas are better than one".

The Radicalz reunion (2000–2001)

 

Guerrero turned into a villain as a result of the incident. Then, the Radicalz reunited and feuded with the reformed D-Generation X (Chyna, Billy Gunn, Road Dogg, and K-Kwik). They defeated DX at Survivor Series in an elimination tag team match and assisted Triple H in his match with Stone Cold Steve Austin. Guerrero was later defeated by Gunn for the Intercontinental Championship on the Thanksgiving edition of SmackDown. At Rebellion, Guerrero and Malenko lost to Gunn and Chyna. Benoit left the group to focus on a singles career while the rest of the Radicalz feuded with Lita and the Hardy Boyz (Matt and Jeff). At Armageddon, the Radicalz defeated the Hardyz and Lita in an elimination tag team match.

In early 2001, Guerrero feuded with Chris Jericho, Benoit, and X-Pac over Jericho's Intercontinental Championship. At No Way Out, the four men faced each other in a Fatal Four-Way match, which Jericho won. Guerrero focused on the European Championship, feuding with the champion Test defeating him at WrestleMania X-Seven to win his second European Championship with help from Saturn and Malenko. In April, Radicalz feuded with Test and his partners. Guerrero eventually left the Radicalz, siding with the Hardy Boyz and Lita. At this point, Guerrero developed an addiction to pain medication stemming from his 1999 car accident and in May 2001 was sent to rehab. To explain his absence, a storyline was created where Guerrero was "injured" by Albert in a match. On November 9, 2001, he was arrested for drunk driving and was subsequently released by the WWF three days later.

Independent circuit (2001–2002)

Guerrero started wrestling on the independent circuit after his release from WWF. On February 23, 2002 he faced Super Crazy on the debut show of Ring of Honor known as The Era of Honor Begins to crown the first-ever IWA Intercontinental Champion. Guerrero lost the match. On February 24, he debuted in the Australian promotion World Wrestling All-Stars (WWA) at The Revolution beating the champion Juventud Guerrera and Psicosis in a Triple Threat match for the WWA International Cruiserweight Championship. On March 1, he defeated the champion CM Punk and Rey Mysterio in a Triple Threat match for the IWA Mid-South Heavyweight Championship. He dropped the title back to Punk one day later on March 2. He vacated the WWA Cruiserweight title in April 2002 after returning to WWF.

Guerrero returned to the WWE on the April 1, 2002 episode of Raw, attacking Rob Van Dam. He feuded with Van Dam, defeating him for his second WWE Intercontinental Championship at Backlash. After retaining the title against Van Dam at Insurrextion and Judgment Day, he finally lost the belt to Van Dam on the May 27 episode of Raw in a ladder match. Guerrero then feuded with Stone Cold Steve Austin, but Austin left the WWE before a match could take place. Chris Benoit returned to WWE the night Guerrero lost the title and reunited with him. Guerrero and Benoit feuded with Ric Flair for a while and Guerrero lost a match to Flair at King of the Ring.

Guerrero lies on a corner, one of his characteristic traits

On August 1, 2002, Guerrero and Benoit began to wrestle exclusively for WWE's SmackDown! brand. Guerrero feuded with Edge, to whom he lost at SummerSlam. Guerrero continued his feud with Edge, whom he defeated at Unforgiven; they then had a No Disqualification match two weeks after Unforgiven on SmackDown which Edge won thus ending the rivalry. With Benoit focusing on Kurt Angle, Guerrero aligned himself with his nephew Chavo, forming the tag team Los Guerreros. In contrast to a previous WCW storyline with his nephew, Chavo fully agreed with his uncle as their slogan stated "We lie, we cheat, and we steal, but at least we're honest about it." In order to push the new tag team, vignettes were produced, which included things such as the two finagling their way into a rich lady's house and throwing a pool party. These segments marked the beginning of the rise of popularity for the team, especially Eddie, who continued to use the mannerisms.

The duo entered the eight-team tournament for the new WWE Tag Team Championship, sneaking past Rikishi and Mark Henry in the opening round, before starting a feud with the newly formed tag team of Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit. In one of the team's definitive moments, Chavo told Benoit that his former friend Guerrero was assaulted by his tag team partner Angle. Benoit ran to make the save, only to have himself locked inside a room. Guerrero then appeared in the room and assaulted Benoit with a steel chair. Benoit and Angle managed to overcome their differences and eventually defeated Los Guerreros in the tournament semi-finals. Later on, Benoit and Angle won the title. Benoit and Angle then fought for a trophy for being the first WWE Tag Team Champion. Much to Benoit's surprise, Los Guerreros helped him win the match.

At Survivor Series, Los Guerreros faced the new champions Edge and Rey Mysterio and the team of Angle and Benoit for the title. Guerrero made Mysterio submit to The Lasso From El Paso to win their first WWE Tag Team Championship. They were defeated by Team Angle (Charlie Haas and Shelton Benjamin) on the February 6, 2003 episode of SmackDown!. Los Guerreros and Team Angle began feuding with each other. Los Guerreros participated at WrestleMania XIX as contenders for the Tag Team Title, along with the team of Benoit and Rhyno. Both teams lost to Haas and Benjamin in a Triple Threat match. At Backlash, Los Guerreros lost to Team Angle in a rematch.

Teaming with Tajiri and United States Champion (2003–2004)

Five days prior to Judgment Day, Chavo tore his biceps, forcing Guerrero to look for another partner. He chose Tajiri. They won the WWE Tag Team Championship, Guerrero's second and Tajiri's first at Judgment Day by defeating Team Angle in a ladder match. The following week, Guerrero and Tajiri managed to retain their title by cheating. In addition, they also defeated Roddy Piper and his protégé Sean O'Haire in Madison Square Garden. After Guerrero and Tajiri lost the titles to Team Angle on the July 3 episode of SmackDown!, Guerrero turned on Tajiri, slamming his partner through the windshield of his low-rider truck. The next Smackdown! Guerrero said he did it because during the match Tajiri had accidentally hit his low-rider. Despite being portrayed as the heel, when Guerrero asked the audience if they blamed him for doing it, the audience responded by yelling "No!"

Guerrero in 2004

In July 2003, Guerrero competed in a tournament for the United States Championship. He managed to advance to the final round, defeating Último Dragón and Billy Gunn in the process, where he would meet Chris Benoit. At Vengeance, Guerrero turned to his cheating tactics, hitting Benoit with the belt at one point in the match. Guerrero tried to get Benoit in trouble by placing the title belt on top of the unconscious Benoit. It did not work, however, since he knocked out the referee earlier with a belt shot to the kidneys. The match ended with interference and a Gore from Rhyno, Benoit's own partner, who was furious at the team's failure. Guerrero himself said that this was a major point in the character of Latino Heat, since he himself realized that the fans wanted to see him lie, cheat, and steal. Guerrero pinned Benoit and won the United States Championship.

At SummerSlam, Guerrero retained his title by defeating Rhyno, Benoit, and Tajiri in a Fatal Four-Way match. He turned face again by engaging in a rivalry with John Cena. On the September 11 episode of SmackDown!, Guerrero challenged Cena to a "Latino Heat" Parking Lot Brawl match for the United States Championship, which Guerrero won with help from his returning nephew, Chavo. The next week, Los Guerreros defeated The World's Greatest Tag Team (previously Team Angle) to win the WWE Tag Team Championship, making Guerrero a double champion.

Guerrero engaged in a feud with Big Show, which involved Guerrero giving Big Show some laxative laced burritos and then later spraying Show from a sewage truck. The feud ended when Guerrero dropped the United States title to Big Show at No Mercy. Four days later, Los Guerreros lost the Tag Team Championship to the Basham Brothers (Doug and Danny). They began feuding with the Basham Brothers, but failed to regain the titles at Survivor Series. As Los Guerreros attempted to regain the tag team title, things began to go downhill between Chavo and Guerrero and animosity began to build. Chavo then attacked and turned on Guerrero after he suffered a beating from The Bashams. Guerrero feuded with Chavo and defeated him at the Royal Rumble to settle their feud.

WWE Champion (2004–2005)

Guerrero, with best friend Chris Benoit celebrating as reigning World Champions at WrestleMania XX

When Chris Benoit jumped to Raw after winning the Royal Rumble, using his title shot to go for Triple H's World Heavyweight Championship, Guerrero won a 15-man Royal Rumble style match on the January 29, 2004 episode of SmackDown! to earn a shot at the WWE Championship. After becoming the number one contender, Guerrero elevated himself to main event status and began feuding with the WWE Champion Brock Lesnar. At No Way Out, Guerrero defeated Lesnar in the main event to win the WWE Championship. The victory made him a Triple Crown and Grand Slam Champion in the process. His next feud was with Kurt Angle, whom he defeated at WrestleMania XX to retain his title in his first big defense. At the end of this event, Guerrero celebrated in the ring with longtime friend Chris Benoit, who had just won the World Heavyweight Championship.

In March, he started a feud with fellow Texan John "Bradshaw" Layfield (JBL) after JBL interrupted Guerrero's match with Booker T. The rivalry would soon turn personal when at a non-televised live event, JBL caused Guerrero's mother to suffer a (kayfabe) heart attack. At Judgment Day, Guerrero defended his WWE title against JBL and retained the title after getting himself disqualified, hitting JBL with the championship belt. The match witnessed Guerrero bleed heavily mid-way in the match, and later cause him to go into shock after the event had ended. A few days after Judgement Day, Guerrero, Rey Mysterio and Rob Van Dam faced JBL and The Dudley Boyz in a tag-team match. During the match, Guerrero suffered an illness collapsing to the ring. JBL, smart and worried in that situation, pinned Guerrero forcing the referee count to allow reliefs. WWE, within fan's incertitude and concern, formalized what happened as a way to emphasize Guerrero's bladejob at Judgement Day. At The Great American Bash, Guerrero defended the title against JBL in a Texas Bullrope match. JBL won after Angle (who was General Manager of SmackDown! at the time) reversed the decision after Guerrero appeared to have retained the title. On the July 8 episode of SmackDown!, Guerrero pulled a switcharoo with Shannon Moore, who was wrestling as "El Gran Luchadore" and wore the costume. The next week on SmackDown!, Guerrero faced JBL in a steel cage match for the WWE title where El Gran Luchadore appeared again and cost Guerrero the match; he later revealed himself as Kurt Angle. Guerrero continued his feud with Angle again. At SummerSlam, Guerrero lost to Angle after submitting to his ankle lock. Guerrero then allied himself with the Big Show. Each week Angle and his new allies Luther Reigns and Mark Jindrak began targeting Guerrero and Big Show. Guerrero defeated Reigns in a singles match at No Mercy. General Manager Theodore Long booked a Survivor Series Elimination match between a team led by Guerrero and a team led by Angle. Guerrero's team consisted of himself, Big Show, John Cena (replacing the originally chosen Rey Mysterio), and Rob Van Dam. At Survivor Series, Guerrero's team defeated Angle's team. Guerrero, along with Booker T and The Undertaker, then challenged JBL for a WWE Championship rematch. Along the way, Guerrero found a partner in Booker T. At Armageddon, Guerrero and Booker's initial teamwork broke away, and the match ended with JBL pinning Booker following the Clothesline From Hell. Afterwards, Guerrero and Booker briefly and unsuccessfully attempted to win the Tag Team Championship.

Last feuds (2005)

At the Royal Rumble, Guerrero entered at #1 and lasted 28:11 before being eliminated. In a humorous skit before the Rumble, he drew his number the same time Ric Flair drew his. In an attempt to get a better draw, Guerrero switched his number with Flair's (and stole Flair's wallet in the process). Theodore Long made him return both items before the match. Flair would enter at #30. At No Way Out, Guerrero teamed up with longtime friend and sometimes rival, Rey Mysterio and defeated The Basham Brothers to win his final title, the WWE Tag Team Championship for a fourth time, with it being Mysterio's third reign. Many expected the new champions to defend their title at WrestleMania 21, but after encouragement from Chavo, Guerrero challenged Mysterio to a one-on-one match instead so they could "bring the house down". The two wrestled a match at WrestleMania with Mysterio getting the win. Although visibly frustrated, Guerrero congratulated his partner. After several mishaps in the weeks following WrestleMania, the growing tension between Guerrero and Mysterio finally erupted when they lost their tag team championship to the new team MNM (Johnny Nitro and Joey Mercury) on the April 21 episode of SmackDown!. Although the next week they received a rematch to regain the title, Guerrero slowly began turning heel again by abandoning his partner, whom he had considered "his family" earlier in the show.

Guerrero and Mysterio with the WWE Tag Team Championship belts

At the end of the May 5, 2005 episode of SmackDown!, he attacked his former tag team partner, Mysterio, leaving him bruised and bloody after suplexing him onto a set of steel steps thus completing his brief heel turn. Guerrero, having turned heel, then adopted a new, somewhat sociopathic gimmick. During this time, he also stopped driving his low-riders down the ring and walked to the ring slowly with a frown on his face, gained a new theme which was a darker remix of "Lie, Cheat, And Steal" and started using his other finishing move, the Lasso from El Paso, more often. At Judgment Day, Guerrero lost to Mysterio by disqualification after hitting Mysterio with a chair.

On the June 30 episode of SmackDown!, Guerrero threatened to reveal a secret about Mysterio and his son Dominick. The storyline grew to involve the families of both men, with both sides pleading for Guerrero not to reveal the secret. Mysterio defeated Guerrero again at The Great American Bash, a match with a stipulation that if Guerrero lost, he would not tell the secret. Yet Guerrero revealed the secret anyway on the following episode of SmackDown! – telling Dominick and the audience that Guerrero was his real father. In the following weeks, Guerrero revealed the details of the secret in a series of what he called "Eddie's Bedtime Stories". During that time he now had a dark comical gimmick. He claimed that he had a child out of wedlock (Dominick) while his marriage was going through hard times. He claimed he then allowed Mysterio and his wife, who were "having trouble conceiving", to adopt the child as their own. At SummerSlam, Guerrero lost a ladder match over Dominick's custody to Mysterio. Their feud ended when Guerrero gained a victory over Mysterio in a steel cage match.

Following his feud with Rey Mysterio, Guerrero was named number one contender to the World Heavyweight Championship and given a title match with Batista. Despite this, Guerrero quickly proclaimed himself to be Batista's friend. Batista was well aware of Guerrero's sneaky reputation, and despite eventually accepting his friendship (initially to keep an eye on him), Batista would continually play mind games with Guerrero to expose his true intentions. A series of matches with MNM only supported Batista's suspicions that Guerrero was up to no good, as Guerrero appeared to have reverted to his cheating ways. In response to Batista's suspicions, Guerrero helped Batista win a match against his tag team partners, John "Bradshaw" Layfield and Christian. Batista defeated Guerrero at No Mercy to retain the World Heavyweight Championship in what would be Guerrero's last pay-per-view match. During the match, Guerrero struggled with a decision about whether or not to use a steel chair to secure the victory, eventually opting not to use it and losing as a result. Though the two demonstrated mutual respect after the match, Guerrero seemed displeased by the loss. Guerrero told Batista that he realized how low he had sunk since losing the WWE Championship in 2004, having attacked his best friend Rey Mysterio. Guerrero told Batista that shaking his hand at No Mercy had returned his respect to him. After the match, Batista called Guerrero back out and sang "Happy Birthday" and, along with the crowd, celebrated Guerrero's 38th birthday. He would make his entrance the following SmackDown! using his signature low rider and old entrance theme with Batista, turning face again for the last time. He wrestled his last match on SmackDown!, airing November 11, defeating Mr. Kennedy using his signature lie, cheat, and steal tactics, which allowed him to advance to the Survivor Series team. On the date of his death, a triple threat match between himself, Batista, and Randy Orton was supposed to take place to air on the following episode of SmackDown! for the World Heavyweight Championship, in which Guerrero had been booked to win the title so Batista could take time off to heal from an injured back. Orton was given Guerrero's spot in the Traditional Survivor Series Elimination match between Raw and SmackDown!, which SmackDown! would win, with Orton being the sole survivor.

Other media

Guerrero, as Black Tiger, in Toukon Retsuden 3

 

On March 13, 2004, Guerrero (WWE Champion), along with Big Show, Trish Stratus and Chris Jericho, made a guest appearance on MADtv as he and the other wrestlers "beat up" Frank Caliendo (portraying Jay Leno) while Aries Spears (portraying The Tonight Show Band leader Kevin Eubanks) watched on. There have also been several DVDs and books released about his life and career, including Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story (DVD, 2004), Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story (book, 2005), and Viva La Raza: The Legacy of Eddie Guerrero (DVD 2008). In addition, the song "We Lie, We Cheat, We Steal" that he performed with Chavo was released on the WWE Originals CD.

Guerrero's catchphrase during the later part of his career with WWE was "Viva La Raza" (which is Spanish for "Long Live the Race"). In the mid parts of his career, Guerrero took the title of "Latino Heat", which was also his theme song in the early 2000s. He has also been featured in WWE's Best Smackdown matches video of its 15-year Friday Night span, upon the show being moved to Thursday nights on Thursday January 15, 2015, he features in 5 of the top 15 matches including the number 1 spot where his No Disqualification bout with Edge topped the list of best Smackdown matches.

Guerrero appears in the video games Virtual Pro Wrestling 64, Toukon Retsuden 3, WCW Vs. The World, WCW/NWO Revenge, WWF No Mercy, WWF Smackdown 2, WWF Smackdown!: Just Bring It, WWE SmackDown! Shut Your Mouth, Legends of Wrestling II, WWE SmackDown! Here Comes The Pain, Showdown: Legends of Wrestling, WWE Day of Reckoning, WWE SmackDown! vs Raw, WWE Day of Reckoning 2, WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw 2006, WWE SmackDown vs Raw 2007, the PSP version of WWE SmackDown vs Raw 2008, WWE All-Stars, WWE '12, WWE '13, and WWE 2K14.

Personal life

Guerrero is survived by his widow Vickie Guerrero. They were married on April 24, 1990, and had two daughters: Shaul Marie Guerrero and Sherilyn Amber Guerrero. Guerrero also has a third daughter named Kaylie Marie Guerrero. During his two-year separation from Vickie, he had a relationship with a woman named Tara Mahoney. After the two broke up, he reconciled with Vickie. Eddie and Tara remained close friends until his death in 2005. Guerrero was close friends with fellow wrestlers Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, Rey Mysterio, and Batista.

Guerrero was a born-again Christian.

Death

On November 13, 2005, Guerrero was found unconscious in his hotel room at The Marriott City Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, by his nephew, Chavo, who attempted CPR. However, Guerrero was pronounced dead when paramedics arrived at the scene. He was 38 years old. An autopsy revealed that Guerrero died as a result of acute heart failure due to underlying atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Guerrero's wife Vickie Guerrero claimed that he had been unwell in the week preceding his death. On the November 30 episode of WWE Byte This!, Chavo said that Guerrero had been working hard and was at peak physical fitness as a result, doing cardio and weight training exercises every day.

The episodes of Raw on November 14, 2005 and SmackDown! on November 18, 2005 each aired as tributes to Guerrero similar in format to the tribute show held for the late Owen Hart who died in 1999 after an entrance stunt went wrong and fell to his death. All storylines were put on hold, and no WWE employees were forced to perform, although several matches took place, including one featuring Chavo, who finished the match with his uncle's frog splash. Raw started off with all the superstars and several personnel on stage, as Vince McMahon addressed the live crowd before finishing with a ten-bell salute. In addition to the Raw and SmackDown tribute shows, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling dedicated the pay-per-view TNA Genesis (which aired the evening of his death) to Guerrero, while Ring of Honor named their next show "Night of Tribute". Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), WWE's former developmental territory, also paid tribute to Guerrero on their television taping following his death. Many of the wrestlers there wore arm bands with "E.G." on them. Eventually, other wrestlers, primarily his nephew Chavo and friends Mysterio and Christian, paid tribute to him in their matches by using the Frog Splash, Guerrero's finisher. Combat Zone Wrestling also paid tribute to Guerrero with a ten-bell salute during one of their cards. Wrestlers CM Punk and Rey Mysterio dedicated some of their matches to Guerrero. The 3 Doors Down song "Here Without You" was used as a tribute song for Guerrero, as was Johnny Cash's cover of the Nine Inch Nails song "Hurt".

On March 19, 2007, Sports Illustrated posted on its website an article in its continuing series investigating a steroid and HGH ring used by a number of professional athletes in several sports. This article mentioned several current and former WWE wrestlers, including Guerrero, who was alleged to have obtained hCG and the steroid stanozolol in early 2005. At the time of the alleged steroid usage, the WWE had not yet instituted its Wellness Policy in which wrestlers are tested for substances, which was stated by WWE.com on the day the article was released.

Hall of Fame and legacy

Guerrero was posthumously inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame on April 1, 2006, by Rey Mysterio, his nephew Chavo Guerrero, and Chris Benoit in Chicago, Illinois, on the night before WrestleMania 22. His widow, Vickie Guerrero, accepted the honor. The next night at WrestleMania, Rey Mysterio won the World Heavyweight Championship, and dedicated the victory and the title to Guerrero.

There have been several tributes made to honor Guerrero since his induction into the Hall of Fame, including a package that featured not only his time on SmackDown!, but expanded to his life outside the ring; a special titantron feature of WWE Hall of Famers who had competed in the Royal Rumble, which aired before the 2011 event, included Guerrero; and a place on the WWE Top 50 Superstars of All Time DVD, as voted by fellow superstars, who placed him 11th.

Guerrero has also been featured in the game WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw 2006, which was completed during mid-2005 and Guerrero provides his own voice. The game attracted some minor controversy due to an in-game story where Guerrero is placed into a coffin by The Undertaker. The coincidence was more resounding in the United Kingdom, where the game was released during the week of Guerrero's death. He also appeared as a legend in the games WWE SmackDown vs Raw 2007, WWE SmackDown vs Raw 2008 (PSP only), WWE '12, WWE '13 and WWE 2K14 and is included on the WWE Legends roster in the THQ video game WWE All Stars.

Guerrero's family members within the business have also made numerous references to Guerrero, ranging from simple gestures and anecdotes to the adaptation of his signature moves and mannerisms in the ring. When his brother Hector signed with TNA, Hector looked up to the sky and mentioned how his father and brother have inspired him and he thanked them. On the October 2, 2009 episode of SmackDown!, a special episode celebrating the show's ten-year anniversary, a video tribute to Guerrero was played on the TitanTron, set to the song "Hear Me Now" by Boyce Avenue. At WrestleMania XXVI, Vickie Guerrero competed in a ten-Diva tag team match, in which her team was victorious after she climbed the turnbuckle, pointed to the sky and performed a frog splash to secure the victory. On the November 15, 2010 episode of Raw, WWE Legend and Guerrero's older brother Chavo Guerrero Sr. gestured to the sky and shouted "Eddie!" as he was introduced. On the 10th anniversary of his death, Lilian Garcia released a tribute song to Eddie called 'Live On'. At WrestleMania 32, Sasha Banks wore a similar ring attire to Eddie's as a tribute to him. She has stated that the reason why she decided to become a wrestler was watching Eddie win the WWE Championship at No Way Out 2004.

Source: Wikipedia

This month we celebrate the life and legacy of Prince Tags: legacy prince celebrate life death word life production new quality entertainment

Prince ( June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016)

Prince arrived on the scene in the late Seventies, and it didn’t take long for him to upend the music world with his startling music and arresting demeanor. He rewrote the rulebook, forging a synthesis of black funk and white rock that served as a blueprint for cutting-edge music in the Eighties. Prince made dance music that rocked and rock music that had a bristling, funky backbone. From the beginning, Prince and his music were androgynous, sly, sexy and provocative. His colorful image and revolutionary music made Prince a figure comparable in paradigm-shifting impact to Little RichardJames BrownJimi Hendrix and George Clinton. While 1999Purple Rain and Sign ‘O’ the Times remain Prince’s best-known albums, the artist’s deep discography is full of funky treasure.

To understand Prince, one must appreciate the extent of his musical obsession. He has always been a willing servant of his tireless muse. “There’s not a person around who can stay awake as long as I can,” he claimed in a 1985 interview. “Music is what keeps me awake.” Because he is a workaholic, it’s difficult to keep track of all he’s recorded for himself and others in his orbit. There are reputedly hundreds of unreleased songs in Prince’s vault. In 1998, he unveiled some of these leftovers on the five-CD set, Crystal Ball. That leviathan followed Emancipation (1996), a three-disc set of new material. The single discs Chaos and Disorder (1996) and New Power Soul (1998) also came out during the same time frame. That’s 10 CDs’ worth of music in a three-year period – much more material than most artists manage in a lifetime – and it doesn’t even include albums by Chaka Khan (Come 2 My House) and Graham Central Station (GCS 2000) on which Prince played a major role. Given such prolific output, it doesn’t take long to realize that Prince isn’t just a musician but a force of nature.

One must also accept the fact that Prince is a genuine American eccentric who defiantly marches to the beat of his own funky drummer. Consider that in 1993 he changed his name from Prince to an unpronounceable cipher: a hybrid of the symbols for male and female. He was thereafter referred to (at his own suggestion) as “The Artist Formerly Known as Prince” or simply “The Artist.”

“I follow what God tells me to do,” Prince explained. “It said, ‘Change your name,’ and I changed my name to a symbol ready for Internet use before I knew anything about the Internet.” In May 2000, he went back to being Prince. Although his motivations may sometimes seem mysterious, Prince is never uninteresting and always capable one more hit record or a return to stardom.

Purple RainAround the World in a DayBatman, and Diamonds and Pearls have sold more than 2 million copies apiece. Purple Rain alone sold 13 million copies and topped the album charts for nearly half a year at the height of Prince’s reign in the mid-Eighties. As Rolling Stone contended in 1989, “Perhaps more than any other artist, Prince called the tune for pop music in the Eighties, imprinting his Minneapolis sound on an entire generation of musicians both black and white.”

Prince Rogers Nelson was born and raised in Minneapolis. He was named after his jazz musician father. The product of a broken home, Prince found refuge in music. By his early teens he’d mastered multiple instruments and was fronting his first band, Grand Central. A demo tape by the young prodigy resulted in major-label interest, and an 18-year-old Prince signed to Warner Bros., insisting on the right to self-produce. His first two albums, For You (1978) and Prince (1979), unveiled a budding genius and one-man band. For You included “Soft and Wet,” an early glimpse at Prince’s uncensored sexuality, while the latter produced Prince’s first hit, “I Wanna Be Your Lover” (Number 11). Interest in the youthful rising star was further kindled by Dirty Mind (1980), a provocative and sinuously funky album that appeared like a directional marker at the start of the Eighties. The jittery, New Wavish “When You Were Mine” became a club hit, yet Dirty Mind largely proved too hot to handle for radio. Still, the rising buzz about Prince continued when he opened for the Rolling Stones on their 1980-81 tour. Prince’s fourth album, Controversy (1981), was highlighted by the pulsing title track.

Prince’s breakthrough was 1999 (1982), a self-produced double album made at his home studio. He’d toned down, if not entirely tamed, the hardcore sexuality, and the longish, danceable tracks appealed to disco and New Wave fans alike. Whereas many saw divisions in the culture – in terms of everything from musical preferences to skin color – Prince forged a party-minded unity around the various audiences’ shared interests in “dance, music, sex, romance.” Those were the priorities outlined in “D.M.S.R.,” one of 1999’s key tracks. The album launched three major singles: “Little Red Corvette” (Number Six), “1999” (Number 12) and “Delirious” (Number Eight). As Kurt Loder wrote, “[1999] marked the point at which Prince’s seamless fusion of white rock and roll and black dance-funk became commercially undeniable.” The way had been paved the way for Prince’s stratospheric ascent with the album and movie Purple Rain.

One of the defining releases of the Eighties – along with Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. – Purple Rain (1984) elevated Prince from cult hero to superstar. The movie, loosely based on Prince’s life story, was set in Minneapolis and his real-life hangout, the First Avenue & 7th Street Entry Club. Prince wrote the treatment and played the lead role of “The Kid.” The film included electrifying performances by Prince and the Revolution – his racially and sexually integrated band, which included guitarist Wendy Melvoin, keyboardists Matt Fink and Lisa Coleman, bassist Brown Mark and drummer Bobby Z.  Purple Rain also showcased other acts under his umbrella, most notably The Time, who were fronted by Prince’s extroverted foil, Morris Day. The film grossed $80 million and the album, which won Prince an Oscar for Best Soundtrack, rained hits for a year: “When Doves Cry” (Number One), “Let’s Go Crazy” (Number One), “Purple Rain” (Number Two), “I Would Die 4 U” (Number Eight) and “Take Me With You” (Number 25). Even Prince’s non-LP B sides from the period, such as “17 Days” and “Erotic City,” achieved a certain popularity.

For any other artist Purple Rain would have been a hard act to follow, but Prince already had another album, Around the World in a Day, in the can. A tour de force of psychedelic soul released in 1985, it became his second consecutive Number One album and the first to appear on his own Paisley Park label (a Warner Bros. subsidiary). With Prince-mania in full effect, the album generated two more Top 10 hits: “Raspberry Beret” (Number Two) and “Pop Life” (Number Seven). Even a bad film, Under the Cherry Moon – Prince’s first real miscue – couldn’t halt his momentum, as the accompanying soundtrack, Parade (1986), included the classic “Kiss,” his third Number One single.

Prince hit an artistic peak with Sign ‘O’ the Times (1987), his first album since 1999 not to be co-credited to the Revolution. A double album that was trimmed down from an intended triple, Sign ‘O’ the Times was Prince’s most musically expansive and lyrically incisive album. On the sobering “Sign ‘O’ the Times” (Number Six), Prince enumerated a catalog of social ills (AIDS, crack, gang violence) over a skeletal funk track. Other hits from the album included “U Got the Look” (Number Two), a duet with Sheena Easton, and “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man” (Number 10). Paisley Park – a 65,000-square-foot multimedia production facility, with three studios and a soundstage – opened for business that same year.

Around this time Prince talked of dueling identities within himself, conjuring characters that represented his good side (“Camille”) and dark side (“Spooky Electric”). The latter had its say on The Black Album, a controversial, hardcore set that was aborted shortly before its intended release. In its place came Lovesexy (1988), which contained the terrific “Alphabet St.” (Number Eight). Commercially, Prince found himself back on top in 1989 with his soundtrack to the first Batman movie. Prince’s dense, tangled funk meshed with film producer Tim Burton’s dark, gothic vision, and his Batman album and “Batdance” single both shot to the top of the charts. A year later, Prince made another of his own movies, Graffiti Bridge. Although it was panned, the double-album soundtrack – with performances by Prince, a reunited Time, Mavis Staple and Tevin Campbell – was compelling, particularly the impassioned “Thieves in the Temple” (Number Six).

In the early Nineties, Prince assembled a backing band, the New Power Generation. They debuted on Diamonds and Pearls (1991), Prince’s most accessible and hit-filled album since Purple Rain. Everything about it was elaborately conceived, including the holographic cover. The album returned Prince to radio with a string of funky, upbeat hits: “Gett Off” (Number 21), “Cream” (Number One), “Diamonds and Pearls” (Number Three) and “Money Don’t Matter 2 Night” (Number 23). It would turn out to be Prince’s biggest album of the Nineties. It was followed in 1992 by an album that marked the first appearance of the symbol that Prince would formally adopt a year later as his name. Ironically, the disc whose title was a symbol – and therefore referred to as The Love Symbol Album - opened with a song called “My Name Is Prince” (Number 36). The numerology-minded “7” peaked at Number Seven, but Prince’s most infectious funk workout, “Sexy MF,” proved too profane for radio.

Still, Prince seemed to be on a roll. In August 1992, he signed a contract extension with Warner Bros. for six more albums (at $10 million apiece), and he acquired the title of vice-president with the label. By mid-decade, however, relations would sour as he began appearing in public with the word “SLAVE” scrawled on his face while agitating to get off the label.

In 1993, Prince’s greatest hits were released in two volumes – The Hits 1 and The Hits 2 – and as a deluxe package that appended a third disc, The B-Sides. All three configurations went platinum, though the three-pack charted highest (Number 19). The artist’s final album as Prince, Come, appeared in 1994, as did (for a limited time) the long-shelved Black Album. That same year, Prince launched an independent label, NPG Records, with a various-artists compilation, 1-800-NEW-FUNK. His next single – “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World” (Number Three), which also appeared on NPG – marked a return to hitmaking form.

Meanwhile, relations with Warner Bros., to which he was still contracted, were deteriorating badly. The release of The Gold Experience (1995), which contained “I Hate U” (Number 12), was delayed while he squabbled with the label. Disenchanted with what he saw as an unfairly one-sided relationship between label and artist that rendered the latter a “slave,” Prince was let out of his contract with Warner Bros. in 1996. His last album of new music for the label was Chaos and Disorder (1996). “The problems I had with so-called majors,’ he later said, “were regarding ownership and long-term contracts.” Liberated from such concerns, he quickly resumed his prolific ways. Emancipation (1996), a three-disc set, attested to the artist’s creative explosion after being granted contractual freedom.

Subsequent releases have included New Power Soul (1998), an earthy album credited to New Power Generation; 1999: The New Master, a re-recording of “1999,” plus six remixes; and Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic (1999), the most visible of Prince’s later discs. Distributed through a special arrangement with Arista, Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic gave Prince the best of both worlds: artistic ownership of his work and major-label distribution. The album was notable for its production credit: Prince, which marked the first time he’d reverted to his old name (and not the unpronounceable symbol) in six years.

It was followed by a series of releases that were largely marketed via Prince’s website, including The Rainbow Children (2001), a mystical and spiritually themed suite, and One Nite Alone Live (2002), a three-disc box set. NEWS (2003), an album of lengthy, jazz-funk instrumentals, garnered a Grammy nomination for the ever-resourceful artist known formerly and forever as Prince.

Prince passed away on April 21, 2016. He was 57.

See more at: https://rockhall.com/inductees/prince/bio/#sthash.4CNEvsFg.dpuf

Source: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Celebrating the life of Michael David Larsen AKA Eyedea Tags: michael david larsem eyedea those we've lost word life production featured blog

Micheal David Larsen (November 9, 1981 – October 16, 2010), better known by his stage name Eyedea, was an American rapper of Lebanese and Irish origins. He was battle freestyle battle champion and songwriter from Saint Paul, Minnesota. He had appeared as a solo artist under the pseudonym Oliver Hart, and as the MC half of the duo Eyedea & Abilities (along with longtime friend and collaborator DJ Abilities)] Larsen was first signed under Slug's independent hip-hop label Rhymesayers before founding his own record label "Crushkill Recordings". Eyedea's style of music is philosophical, abstract, political and poetic.

Eyedea first stepped into the hip-hop scene battling against other emcees at notable freestyle joints. His notable wins which included a victory at Scribble Jam (1999) and the televised Blaze Battle sponsored by HBO (2000), turned Eyedea into a hip-hop mogul. Notable hip-hop outlets have labeled Eyedea as a legendary freestyle icon. Eyedea has released numerous albums alongside DJ Abilities where the two performed under the duo name "Eyedea & Abilities". In 2001, Eyedea & Abilities released their debut studio album First Born, which included their successful single "Big Shots". The single was later chosen to appear on Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4. In 2004, Eyedea & Abilities released their second studio album titled E&A, which included the singles "Paradise" & "Man vs Ape". In July 2009, Eyedea & Abilities released their third and final studio album called By the Throat, which was followed by highly acclaimed positive ratings. The lead single "Smile" is Eyedea's most viewed music video on YouTube and was listed in Abbey's top 10 best hip-hop songs ever, respectively.

In 2014, Eyedea ranked #2 on Abbey Magazine's Top 25 'greatest freestyle emcees of all-time'. Eyedea died in his sleep on October 16th, 2010 at age 28; the cause of his death was ruled as an accidental overdose. Eyedea was a member of the music groups Eyedea & Abilities, The Orphanage, Face Candy, Carbon Carousel, Puppy Dogs and Ice Cream, and Guitar Party.

Eyedea lived just east of Downtown Saint Paul, Minnesota, where he attended Highland Park Senior High School.

Eyedea became known as a battle MC, touring the circuit between 1997 and 2001. During this time, he won top prizes at Scribble Jam '99, the Rock Steady Anniversary 2000, and Blaze Battle New York 2000. He contributed a track to the Anticon compilation, Music for the Advancement of Hip Hop. Additionally, he toured extensively as second MC and support DJ for Atmosphere.

In 2001, he released First Born with his partner DJ Abilities (collectively, they were initially called the Sixth Sense, but later changed the name to Eyedea & Abilities). In 2002, under his pen name "Oliver Hart", he released the self-produced The Many Faces of Oliver Hart, or: How Eye One the Write Too Think. In 2004, he reunited with Abilities to release the self-titled album E&A.

All of Eyedea's releases have been on the Rhymesayers record label, with the exception of the Carbon Carousel EP, which was released on his own Independent music label, Crushkill Recordings. In addition to touring independently and with Rhymesayers labelmates and members of Face Candy, Eyedea & Abilities participated in the Def Jux-sponsored "Who Killed the Robots?" tour, titled by Eyedea.

He was signed to Rhymesayers Entertainment and collaborated with Slug of the underground hip hop group Atmosphere as well as Sage Francis, Aesop Rock, and Blueprint. He was also a member of a MC super group called "The Orphanage" along with Slug, Aesop Rock, Blueprint, Sage Francis & Illogic. Although never releasing a full CD to the public, songs were recorded and released.[2]

After Eyedea released This Is Where We Were, recorded with his live freestyle rap/jazz group Face Candy, he created Carbon Carousel, an alternative rock band. They have released one EP, entitled The Some of All Things, or: The Healing Power of Scab Picking. This brought on speculation that Eyedea & Abilities were no longer together. However, in August 2007, the duo announced on their Myspace that they would be at the Twin Cities Celebration of Hip-Hop performing old songs and new material.

In December 2007, Eyedea & Abilities embarked upon their Appetite for Distraction Tour with Crushkill labelmate Kristoff Krane and Minnesotan duo Sector7G.

The summer of 2009 saw Eyedea & Abilities joining the touring hip hop festival Rock the Bells for a limited number of dates, performing alongside such acts as Sage Francis, Evidence, M.O.P. and the Knux. E&A also performed at the first Rock the Bells concert in 2004, infamous for being Ol' Dirty Bastard's last performance with the Wu-Tang Clan.

In 2011, an EP of 4 of Eyedea's freestyles, previously released in 2010 but only sold at live shows, were made available for 'pay what you want' download. Guitar Party a group consisting of vocalist (and first grader) Mijah Ylvisaker, drummer J.T. Bates (Face Candy, Carbon Carousel, The Pines) and guitarists Jeremy Ylvisaker (Carbon Carousel, Alpha Consumer, Andrew Bird, The Cloak Ox), Jake Hanson (Halloween, Alaska), Andrew Broder (Fog, The Cloak Ox) and Micheal Larsen (Eyedea & Abilities, Carbon Carousel, Face Candy) released a recording of the only live show they had managed to play before Eyedea's death called 'Birthday [I feel Triangular]' .The second Face Candy album was released on May 24, 2011 on Rhymesayers. This album was recorded in two days at the Winterland studios and one night in front of an audience at St. Paul's Black Dog Cafe.

Death

Eyedea died in his sleep on October 16, 2010. He was found dead by his mother, according to friend. Cause of death was released November 18, 2010 and ruled an accident, from "opiate toxicity," according to the Ramsey County medical examiner's office. The specific drugs found in Larsen's system have not been revealed to the public.Various hip-hop artists went on their Twitter accounts to pay their tribute to him.

On December 25, 2013, it was announced on Eyedea & Abilities' Facebook page that a star was registered under the name Eyedea to commemorate Larsen on the web site Online Star Register.

Source: Wikipedia

 

Let's celebrate the life of the former NFL Player - Steve McNair Tags: former steve mcnair word life production new quality entertainment featured blog

No pain, no gain. If that’s the case, Steve McNair was light years ahead of the rest of the NFL. Each Sunday seemed to bring a new injury—as well as a great story about how he overcame it. When Steve broke into pro football, all his teammates could talk about was his jaw-dropping athletic talent. Soon they couldn’t stop raving about his superhuman toughness. The NFL and its fans were shocked when they heard the news of his murder in the summer of 2009. The game lost more than a great player. It lost one of its most inspiring and generous people. This is his story…

GROWING UP

Steve LaTreal McNair—the fourth of five sons—was born to Lucille and Selma McNair on February 14, 1973. (Click here for a complete listing of today's sports birthdays.) The McNairs’ marriage ended when Steve was eight, leaving his mom to watch over five rambunctious boys by herself. One of 11 children herself, Lucille knew something about single-parenting. She and her siblings had been raised by her mother, “Grandma Hattie.” The experience forced them to pull together and taught Lucille the importance of a strong and loving family.

Life was often very hard for the McNairs. The family lived in Mount Olive, a small farming town in Mississippi about 100 miles north of the Chandeleur Sound. Their modest home was located on Clarence Deen Road, named for the man who resided at the end of it. Steve and his brothers woke up each morning to feed the chickens and pigs, pick vegetables, and get a jump on their other chores.

Lucille worked the graveyard shift at a nearby electronics factory, starting after the boys were in bed and coming home as they finished their breakfast. She made less than $200 a week. Though money was rarely available for new clothes or toys or athletic equipment, the McNair boys never complained.

Steve was a lot like his mother—determined and patient. And while all of the McNairs were athletic, Steve was something special. Among other things, he could scramble into a tree’s high branches in seconds. This ability earned him the nickname “Monk” from Lucille, who said he looked like a monkey going up a tree. Steve was tough, too. Lucille recalls the time when Steve burned his hand after setting a pile of leaves on fire. She bandaged the wound, and soon he was back to his old self.

 

Steve was supremely talented in every sport he tried,but football was his favorite. In pickup games on a field the neighborhood kids called “Mount Olive Arena,” he could out-run and out-throw all of his friends. The contests were usually rough affairs, and Steve sometimes came home with tears in his eyes. But he seemed to thrive on the physical punishment. Indeed, a bump, bruise or bloody lip only made him want to play better.

Steve’s only real source of frustration as a kid was walking in the shadow of his oldest brother, Fred. The quarterback for Mount Olive High School, he Fred was the town’s biggest celebrity. As much as Steve admired his brother, he also hated being compared to him. Lucille squelched the potential sibling rivalry when she told Steve that Fred could be the perfect role model. He pondered the advice, and then decided his mom was right. Steve began to attend all of Fred’s practices, tossed the football with him whenever possible, and talked about the nuances of playing quarterback. The youngster soon started to dream about a career in the NFL.

Steve entered Mount Olive as a freshman in the fall of 1987. The 13-year-old quickly developed into a four-sport star (in football, basketball, track and baseball) for the Pirates. The Seattle Mariners were impressed enough to offer him a contract in 1990. The money was tempting, but Steve, Fred and Lucille all agreed that he should turn it down. Being an NFL quarterback was his primary goal, and all three felt it was within his reach.

By this point, Steve was ranked among the nation’s top high-school signal callers. As a junior, he led Mount Olive to the state championship. In his senior season, he shattered all of Fred’s records. Steve might have been an even better free safety than a quarterback. In 1990 alone, he picked off 15 passes, raising his career total to 30, which tied the mark established by Terrell Buckley at Pascagoula High School. An All-State selection, Steve was named an All-American by Super Prep magazine.

Steve was recruited heavily by schools all over the southeast, including Florida State. But every major program wanted him as a defensive back. Steve considered himself a quarterback and refused to go to any college that didn’t share this view. That essentially narrowed his choice down to Alcorn State in Mississippi, where coach Cardell Jones recognized Steve for what he was: a once-in-a-lifetime prospect.

Steve was familiar with Alcorn State because Fred had played there. Located in Lorman (a two-hour drive from Mount Olive), the school—with a student body of 3,300—competed in football at the Division 1-AA level. Though the Braves didn’t attract much media attention, Steve felt comfortable with his decision. Above all, he relished the opportunity to pilot Jones’s wide-open, shotgun passing attack.

Steve got his shot at Alcorn State’s starting job midway through the first quarter of the team’s opener in 1991. With the offense looking sluggish against Grambling, Jones turned to the freshman, who sparkled in a 27-22 victory. Steve went on to have a marvelous year. What he couldn’t accomplish through the air. he achieved on the ground, combining for a total of 3,199 running and passing yards—good for fourth in Division 1-AA. The Braves, meanwhile, exceeded all preseason expectations with a record of 7–2–1.

ON THE RISE

Steve’s breakthrough campaign helped raise Alcorn State’s profile in the Southwestern Athletic Conference. Though it had been eight years since the school’s last league title, the Braves were beginning to get noticed by national publications. And of course, every time the Braves were mentioned, Steve was the focal point of the story.

He lived up to his press clippings in 1992, throwing for 3,541 yards and 29 touchdowns, and running for 10 more scores. The Braves fashioned a record of 7–4, including a last-second victory in their rematch with Grambling. In that contest, Steve returned from a severely sprained ankle to ignite a dramatic comeback. With Alcorn State trailing late in the final period, he moved the team deep into Tigers’ territory. Then, despite limping badly, he tucked the ball under his arm and dove into the end zone for the winning touchdown. The victory over Grambling helped the Braves qualify for the 1-AA playoffs, where they were blitzed by powerful Northeast Louisiana, 78-27.

Heading into his junior season, Steve was beginning to attract the interest of national reporters. Sports Illustrated, The Sporting News and The New York Times all ran feature stories on him. NFL scouts were intrigued by his combination of skills, too. Steve—by this time dubbed “Air McNair”—was big and strong, could run faster than most running backs and receivers, and had a cannon for an arm.

Some wondered, however, whether the pro game might be too complex for him. Steve was facing unsophisticated defenses almost every game, and he always had the out of running if he didn’t spot a receiver in the clear. In the NFL, by contrast, every down was like solving a math problem. Those who claimed Steve’s resume did not add up to a pro career reopened a debate that had been troubling football for more than two decades: Was there a bias against black quarterbacks?

Terrell Buckley, 1992 Classic

To his credit, Steve chose not to enter into the conversation. As far as the issue of race was concerned, he saw no benefit in addressing a point that players like Doug Williams and Warren Moon had already put to bed. He also brushed aside questions regarding his “football IQ.” A good student since his days at Mount Olive, he was confident he could handle the intricacies of the NFL. At Alcorn State, Steve worked hard in the classroom and boasted a solid B average. In fact, getting his diploma was a matter of great pride. Because Fred had left Alcorn State before graduating, Steve stood to be the first in his family to earn a college degree.

Steve guided Alcorn State to another good year in 1993, as the Braves upped their record to 8-3. Despite defenses designed to stop him, he racked up more than 3,000 yards through the air and a total of 30 touchdowns. Named First-Team All-SWAC for the third year in a row, Steve propelled himself squarely into the national spotlight. But the season wasn’t all smiles for him. Unfortunately, he played through a good part of it with a heavy heart after learning that Grandma Hattie passed away.

The pressure on Steve in his final college campaign was unlike anything he had ever experienced. Despite playing Division 1-AA, Alcorn State was ranked in the Top 20 by some preseason polls, and he was a legitimate candidate for the Heisman Trophy. On top of that, his status in the NFL draft—and millions of dollars—seemed to be at stake each time he took the field.

The first game of the year ended in a 62-56 defeat at the hands of Grambling. But as losses go, it was not a terrible one. With the Tigers rolling up the points, Steve was forced to go for broke on almost every possession. In the process, he threw for 485 yards and five touchdowns. On the game’s final play, he lofted a perfect pass to Percy Singleton, who dropped the ball for what should have been the tying score.

Doug Williams card

The following week, against Tennessee-Chattanooga, Steve made headlines again. This time he amassed 647 total yards—the most ever in a Division 1-AA game—and passed for eight touchdowns. Not only did the performance raise eyebrows among Heisman voters, it also put Steve on pace to eclipse Ty Detmer’s record of 15,049 career yards.

Steve continued to gobble up yards as the season progressed. Against Southern University, he surpassed his own single-game mark with 649 yards. In the playoffs against Youngstown State, he completed a record 52 passes. When it was all said and done, Steve had gained nearly 6,000 yards rushing and passing, along with an amazing 53 touchdowns. In the process, he surpassed more than a dozen records (including Detmer’s). Named an All-American, Steve won the Walter Payton Award and finished third in the Heisman voting behind Rashaan Salaam and Ki-Jana Carter.

 

The Senior Bowl was Steve’s first stop on his way to the pros. He used the game to showcase his skills as a drop-back passer, demonstrating that he could do more than scramble from a shotgun formation. Next he wowed scouts at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis. Steve also revealed a thoughtful and intelligent side that coaches loved.

Among those impressed were the Houston Oilers, owners of the third pick in the draft. The team had won just twice in ‘94, a woeful record that cost coach Jack Pardee his job. Jeff Fisher, a former defensive back with the Chicago Bears, was hired to replace him and remained the head man going into 1995. At the top of his wish list was a big-time quarterback.

After Carter and Tony Boselli went with the first two picks, the Oilers selected Steve. They quickly signed him to a seven-year contract worth $28 million. The first thing the 22-year-old did with his money was build his mom a new house in Mount Olive. She broke down in tears when he showed her the plot of land. It was the same place she had picked cotton as a girl.

During training camp, Steve tried to absorb as much about the pro game as he could. He also weathered Houston’s hazing rituals, including wrestling a pig in a mud pit. Every one of Steve’s teammates grinned at how easily he handled the task.

Going into the ’95 season, Fisher told Steve that he would not become the starter until the team felt he was ready. Owner Bud Adams had dismantled the Oilers over the summer, and the coach saw no reason to rush along his rookie. Besides, with Chris Chandler in camp, Houston had a veteran calling the signals. Steve spent the year working with quarterback guru Jerry Rhome, whom the Oilers hired specifically to groom him. On the inactive list for half of the season, Steve didn’t see his first action until the last two series of the fourth quarter in a November game versus the Browns in Cleveland. Late in the season, he also appeared briefly against the Detroit Lions and New York Jets.

The Oilers, meanwhile, surprised many onlookers by holding their own with a record of 7-9. Chandler enjoyed a fine year, finishing as the AFC’s fourth-best passer, while Fisher molded the defense—led by linebackers Al Smith and Michael Barrow and an excellent secondary featuring Blaine Bishop and Darryll Lewis—into one of the league’s most improved units.

Expectations were mixed for 1996. The defense figured to be strong again with the linebacking corps and secondary remaining in tact. In addition, rookie tackle Bryant Mix, a former teammate of Steve’s at Alcorn State, helped shore up the front four. The offense, by contrast, had yet to find its identity. Ohio State running back Eddie George, the Oilers’ first-round draft choice, figured to be an impact player as soon as the offensive line gelled. Until then, the team decided it would stick with the experienced Chandler, leaving Steve once again to ride the bench.

This year would be different, however. Promoted to first back-up, Steve assumed more responsibility off the field, in practice and during games. Chandler could see the writing on the wall—he was just keeping a spot warm for Steve. Chandler barely spoke to the second-year quarterback and complained loudly that he was being taken for granted.

Houston’s coaching staff and players observed how adeptly Steve dealt with this sticky situation. Fisher began inserting him in games when his chances of success were greatest. Then, in December, Steve got the start against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Though the Oilers fell 23-17, he threw for more than 300 yards and managed the offense with tremendous poise. The performance helped convince Fisher that Steve was ready to be his #1 quarterback. Overall, Steve got into 10 games, passing for 1,197 yards and six touchdowns.

The Oilers ended the ’96 campaign at 8-8, including six wins on the road. The team’s problems at home stemmed from Adams’s plan to move the franchise to Tennessee. Fans in Houston reacted angrily, and the Astrodome turned into a haven for visiting squads.

Fod Stevem Fisher’s vote of confidence in him bolstered his spirits. So did his June marriage to college sweetheart Mechelle Cartwright. More than 1,500 people attended the wedding, making it one of Mississippi’s biggest social events of the year.

Steve’s first season as a starter in 1997 produced another .500 record. Playing their home games at the Liberty Bowl in Memphis, the Oilers began the campaign slowly and finished the same way. For the first time under Fisher, the defense showed cracks, dropping to 22nd in the NFL. Though the team used its top draft choice on defensive end Kenny Holmes, it had trouble rushing the quarterback. As a result, the Oilers were victimized by opponents with good passing attacks. A tough stretch in late November also exacted a heavy price, as the club faced three games in 11 days. A 41-14 drubbing at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals dashed any real hope of a playoff berth.

For Steve, the upside was his development into one of the league’s rising stars. His 2,665 passing yards were the most for the Oilers since Warren Moon in 1993, and his 13 interceptions were the fewest for a single season in franchise history. Steve was most dangerous when he looked to run. He led team in rushing touchdowns with eight and ranked second behind George with 674 yards on the ground, the third-highest total for a quarterback in NFL history.

Eddie George, 1996 Upper Deck

In 1998, the Oilers officially changed their name to the Tennessee Titans and took important steps toward becoming an AFC powerhouse. Steve had an excellent year, setting career highs with 492 attempts, 289 completions, 3,228 yards and 15 touchdowns. He also cut his interceptions to 10, helping his quarterback rating climb to 80.1. With defenders back on their heels, Steve and George both had more room to run. The two combined for nearly 2,000 yards and nine touchdowns. As Fisher had hoped, the Titans were turning into a team built for postseason success. Though they lacked a big-play receiver, their offense controlled the ball with great effectiveness.

Tennessee’s pressing need remained an impact player on defense. Fisher’s system relied on power along the line and speed at linebacker and in the secondary. The team had plenty of the latter, thanks mostly to Bishop and free safety Marcus Robertson. Up front, however, the Titans again were unable to apply much pressure on enemy passers. This shortcoming didn’t hurt much in the AFC Central, where the team went 7-1. But outside the division, Tennessee won only once. In fact, losses to the Chicago Bears, San Diego Chargers and Seattle Seahawks—who had just 17 victories between them—sunk the Titans, who ended at 8–8.

Still, there was reason for optimism. The Titans had endured another year in a makeshift home, this time at Vanderbilt Stadium in Nashville. Construction on a state-of-the-art facility was under way, and a new fan base was growing in numbers.

MAKING HIS MARK

The Titans entered the 1999 campaign feeling like the postseason was within their reach. The offense was looking good with tackles Jon Runyan and Brad Hopkins emerging as stars, while free-agent blocking back Lorenzo Neal joined the lineup to boost the production of George. Speedster Yancey Thigpen, meanwhile, gave the team a solid deep threat. Steve spent the summer working on long-ball drills in anticipation of an excellent passing year.

The most important addition to the team was Jevon Kearse, taken with the 16th pick in the draft. Along with second-round choice John Thornton, the “Freak” provided Tennessee’s defensive line with energy and athleticism. The pair of rookies instantly transformed the club’s stagnant pass rush. With the rest of the unit unchanged, Fisher hoped for big things from his defense. The strategy heading into the season was to beat up opponents in the first half, keep games close, and then let Steve and George do their thing in the final 30 minutes.

Steve was fantastic in the season opener against the Bengals. In a 36-35 win, he completed 21 of 32 passes for 341 yards and three touchdowns, including a 47-yard bomb to Thigpen. Afterwards, however, the news was bad. In pain for most of the preseason, Steve was diagnosed with an inflamed disk and needed surgery. In his place stepped Neil O’Donnell, a veteran who had guided the Pittsburgh Steelers to the Super Bowl four years earlier. During the next five games, O’Donnell led the Titans to a 4–1 record.

Steve’s first game back found the Titans playing the surprise team of the year, the St. Louis Rams. Sharp as a tack, he threw a pair of touchdown passes and ran for a third score to give Tennessee a 21–0 lead. But the explosive Rams—who boasted the trio of Kurt Warner, Marshall Faulk and Isaac Bruce—clawed back and managed to set up the game-tying field goal. When Jeff Wilkens missed the kick, the Titans escaped with a 24-21 victory.

With Steve at the helm, Tennessee stormed to wins in seven of its last nine, good for a record of 13-3 and second place in the AFC Central. Kearse was magnificent, registering 14.5 sacks, while George ran for more than 1,300 yards. Steve, however, was the team’s heart and soul. Though his back still bothered him, his performance never suffered. Spreading the ball around—tight end Frank Wycheck topped the team with 69 receptions—Steve kept everyone on the offense happy and involved. While his numbers didn’t blow away anyone (2,179 yards and 12 TDs on 56.5% passing), he inspired his teammates with his rare brand of toughness. In addition to his disk problem, Steve played through a bad case of turf toe and bruised ribs.

Tennessee opened the playoffs at home against the Buffalo Bills in a Wild Card game. The Titans appeared to take control with a safety, a short touchdown run by Steve and a field goal by Al Del Greco. But the Bills roared back to go ahead 13–12. On a crucial third down late in the fourth quarter, Steve made a super run to set up another Del Greco field goal. Buffalo’s Rob Johnson responded with a scoring drive that seemed to put the game on ice. But on the ensuing kickoff, the Titans pulled off the now-famous “Music City Miracle,” scoring on a crazy lateral play to claim the most unlikely of victories.

Next up for Tennessee were the Colts in Indianapolis. Much to Fisher's delight, Steve executed the game plan perfectly. Though the Titans were down 9-6 at intermission, they were battering the Colts with their physical, ball-control offense. In the second half, George ran wild on the tired Indianapolis defense, and Tennessee held on for a 19-16 win.

One step away from the Super Bowl, the Titans travelled to Jacksonville for the AFC Championship Game. Steve, who had burned the Jags with five touchdown passes earlier in the year, felt confident. So did Fisher, who decided to turn his quarterback loose. Down 14-10 at the half, Tennessee started the third quarter looking to deliver a knockout blow. When Steve piloted the Titans to a touchdown on their first possession, the game was in the bag. Tennessee cruised 33-14 and advanced to the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history.

Seeing through a winning strategy in their rematch with St. Louis was easier said than done. The Titans needed to pressure Warner and punish Faulk and the Ram receivers. Things didn’t go particularly well in the first half and only got worse in the third quarter, as St. Louis scored to go up 16–0.

That’s when Steve and the Titans started pecking away. George bulled in twice from in close, and then Del Greco kicked a 43-yarder to knot the score. With time ticking away, the Rams prepared to mount one last drive from deep in their own territory. Warner looked for Bruce on a pass play but rushed his throw with Kearse in his face. The agile receiver adjusted beautifully and grabbed the pass in stride. He split the Titan defense and pulled away for an incredible 73-yard touchdown.

The score came so quickly that Tennessee still had time left on the clock. Steve moved the Titans down the field with several short passes and a magnificent scramble. With time left for one play, he used the sure-handed Wycheck as a decoy and looked for receiver Kevin Dyson, who was angling toward the goal line. Steve drilled the pass to Dyson who turned to the goal line. But linebacker Mike Jones had not taken the bait and was able to pull him down a yard short of the end zone. In a game no one deserved to lose, the Rams celebrated a 23-16 victory. Warner—who threw for 414 yards—was named MVP. Steve finished the contest with a combined 278 yards and newfound respect from the whole football world.

Steve’s spirited effort in the Super Bowl helped earn him a new contract with the Titans, who inked him for six years at $47 million, including a two-tiered signing bonus of $16 million. Steve understood the implications of the deal. The Titans were betting that he could get the team back to the big game and win it all.

Steve McNair,

1998 Upper Deck Choice

The club looked like it was on its way to doing just that after posting the AFC’s best record (13-3) in 2000. George racked up the most yards of his career, while fourth-year wideout Derrick Mason developed into a threat on the outside. The speedy receiver did double duty, also making his presence felt as a kick and punt returner. The defense, meanwhile, was the NFL’s most dominant unit. Kearse forced opponents to alter their blocking schemes, which opened the field for the rest of the Titans. In turn, defensive coordinator Gregg Williams was able to utilize a full package of blitzes, which produced 55 sacks. In the secondary, cornerback Samari Rolle rose to the ranks of the league’s best.

The Titans, however, were given a taste of their own medicine in the playoffs, when the Baltimore Ravens manhandled them 24-10 at Adelphia Coliseum. Steve was as much to blame as anyone. The Ravens crowded the line, daring him to beat them with his arm. Though he moved the ball between the 20’s, he couldn’t finish off drives.

Steve’s problems against Baltimore were a microcosm of his campaign. He started every game but one and posted the best quarterback rating of his career (83.2). He also ran the ball well, gaining more than 400 yards. But in the red zone, the Oilers often stalled. Opponents shadowed Steve with a “spy” to limit his running options. Enemy defenses also knew that Steve normally didn’t take chances throwing downfield. His leading receiver was again Wycheck, who caught most of his passes underneath the coverage.

Steve’s conservative approach was the result of two factors. Injuries certainly played a role. Early in the year, Steve suffered a severely bruised sternum that never really healed. He also logged most of the season with a sore right shoulder. After the campaign, in fact, he had surgery to repair the damage.

Steve’s ‘00 performance was also affected by Tennessee’s offensive philosophy. As long as he had been the starter, Fisher’s strategy called for him to manage games by handing off to George and avoiding mistakes. If he was going to change, the Titans had to open up their game plan, too.

That process had actually already begun, thanks to the teachings of offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger. Formerly an assistant with the Denver Broncos, he had joined the coaching staff after Tennessee’s Super Bowl loss. Heimerdinger worked closely with Steve. Heading into the 2001 campaign, the two were ready to overhaul the Titans’ attack. Their timetable was further pushed along because George had foot surgery in the offseason and was not completely healthy by the opener. Tennesse had no choice but to spread the offense and throw the ball downfield.

The club also found itself playing catch-up most weeks. Indeed, the defense suffered when Williams left to coach the Bills, while injuries and suspensions robbed the unit of several key contributors. Tennessee plummeted in every defensive category, including points allowed and turnover differential. The Titans finished tied for third in the newly formed AFC South at a disappointing 7-9, including five losses at home.

In the midst of all this misery, Steve reasserted himself as the team’s unquestioned leader. On opening day against the Dolphins, Miami’s Jermaine Haley buried him on a dubious hit, which reaggravated Steve’s right shoulder injury. He sat out the following game against Jacksonville, and then returned for a grudge match versus the Ravens. Though the Titans lost, Steve’s teammates marveled that he was even on the field.

From there, the 28-year-old put together his most productive year as a pro. With no running game to speak of, Steve registered career passing highs in yards (3,350), completions (264), touchdowns (21) and QB rating (90.2). He was also the team’s most effective rusher, tying George for the club lead with five scores. Named to the Pro Bowl for the first time, Steve did it all with a sore right shoulder and right thumb. The second injury happened in November and made it difficult for him to grip the ball. As usual, Steve fought through the pain and refused to come out of the lineup. After the season, he had another shoulder operation, which caused him to miss the trip to Hawaii.

Steve entered the 2002 season determined to lead the Titans back to the playoffs. After the first five games, however, the team appeared destined for another sub-par year. At 1-4, Tennessee was being outplayed in nearly every phase of the game. The defense was adjusting to several new faces, including rookie tackle Albert Haynesworth and free-agent safety Lance Schulters. Another change was the promotion of linebacker Keith Bulluck to the starting lineup.

On offense, Steve searched for support from someone other than Mason. George was getting plenty of carries, but his production didn’t necessarily justify all the work. While the Titans were putting points on the board, they weren’t firing on all cylinders.

Frustrated by his team’s lackluster performance, Fisher called a closed-door meeting and blasted his players. Steve responded by taking matters into his own hands. After guiding Tennessee to a win over the Jaguars, he claimed honors as AFC Player of the Week with a fourth-quarter comeback in a 30-24 victory over the Bengals. The Titans won their next three to push their record to 6-4.

Two weeks later, Steve authored a virtuoso performance in the swirling winds of the Meadowlands against the Giants. With Tennessee trailing in the fourth quarter, he rallied his troops to another dramatic win. On the day, he completed 30 of 43 passes for 334 yards and three touchdowns.

Riding the emotion of the victory over New York, Tennessee ran the table to go 11-5, good for the second-best mark in the AFC. To a man, the Titans credited Steve for their amazing turnaround. With the defense decimated by injuries, including large chunks of time missed by Kearse and linebacker Randall Godfrey, the team depended on its offense to carry the load. Steve thrived under the pressure. Despite his normal collection of painful bumps and bruises, he enjoyed the finest year of his career, with personal bests in nearly every significant offensive category.

The real story of Steve’s season was not told by the stats, however. During one five-week stretch, his body was so badly battered that he simply couldn't practice. Still, he gutted it out every Sunday, starting all 16 games. Before the postseason began, the Titans learned that Steve finished third in the MVP voting, behind Rich Gannon and Brett Favre. The news irritated his teammates, who felt their quarterback was penalized for having far fewer offensive weapons than the Oakland and Green Bay quarterbacks.

Derrick Mason, 2003 Fleer Showcase

Tennessee opened the playoffs with a controversial 34-31 victory over the Steelers, as a penalty flag gave kicker Joe Nedney a second chance at a game-winning field goal. A week later. the Titans visited Oakland in the AFC Championship Game. With the high-powered Raiders lighting up the scoreboard, the onus again fell on Steve to deliver a victory. He got Tennessee to the fourth quarter down by three points, but the defense crumbled and the Titans lost 41-24.

Several months later, Steve found himself in unfamiliar territory. In May of 2003, he was arrested for DUI and illegal gun possession. His blood alcohol was above 0.10, and a 9-mm handgun had been sitting in the front of the car. Steve made no excuses for his lapse in judgment and issued a heartfelt public apology. His family, coaches, teammates and fans all forgave him.

Heading into the ‘03 season, McNair and the Titans were one of the favorites to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. The roster was virtually the same from the year before. The question was whether several key players—Steve, George and Kearse most notably—could stay healthy. With Bulluck and Rolle playing like Pro Bowlers, Tennessee’s defense was re-emerging as one of the league’s hardest-hitting and most opportunistic units. The offense, meanwhile, had the potential to be explosive. Fisher’s ability to adjust his coaching strategy to fit his talent was a major advantage.

Early in the year, Steve established himself as a legitimate MVP candidate. Tennessee won nine of its first 11, and he was the primary reason why. Steve was putting up the kind of pass-happy stats he had produced during his career at Alcorn. In a 30-13 drubbing of the Steelers, he hit on 15 of 16 attempts, three of which went for touchdowns. He torched the Houston Texans for 421 yards and three more scores.

But Steve’s all-out style of play again caught up to him. In December, a gimpy calf and ankle kept him on the sidelines for two games. Still he finished with the best numbers of his career, including 24 touchdown passes and a QB rating of 100.4. The Titans ended at 12-4, the same record as the Colts, but Indy took the AFC South by virtue of its two victories over Tennessee. The MVP voters were duly impressed by Steve and Peyton Manning, deciding the two should share the award.

For Steve—who always placed the team before himself—the recognition was overwhelming. He was so emotional in his press conference that he was almost moved to tears. Some of his teammates were upset, only because they felt the MVP should have been Steve’s alone.

In the playoffs, the Titans first visited the Ravens in Baltimore. Steve was clearly hobbling, but the thought of not suiting up never crossed his mind. Though he threw three interceptions, his presence in the huddle was enough. Tennessee controlled the ball with a bruising running game and held on for a 20-17 win.

The team’s next foe was New England, in bitterly cold Massachusetts. The Patriots—winners of 12 straight to conclude the regular campaign—were well rested but also well aware of Tennessee’s talent and tenacity. Down 14-7 at the half, the Titans tied it up in the third quarter on an 11-yard pass from Steve to Mason. The Patriots grabbed the lead again with four minutes to go on a field goal by Adam Vinatieri. Though Steve drove Tennessee into New England territory with time winding down, his fourth-down desperation heave to Drew Bennett fell incomplete. The receiver actually had his hands on the ball but couldn’t haul it in. Afterwards, Steve was praised for his gutty effort. Of course, he would have settled for a win and the silent treatment from the media.

Steve and the Titans faced big expectations for 2004, even though they were weathering major roster changes. George left via free agency, opening the door for Chris Brown to become the team's feature back. Steve lost another weapon when receiver Justin McCareins was shipped to the New York Jets for a second-round draft choice. On defense, Kearse also hit the road, signing with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Steve and the Titans opened against the Dolphins with encouraging results. Brown rushed for 100 yards on 16 carries, and while Steve completed only nine passes, one went for a TD in the 17-7 victory.

After a pair of losses, Steve missed the season's fourth game with a bruised sternum, an injury suffered the previous week against Jacksonville. He returned with an excellent effort in a 48-27 blowout of the Packers, but then he played terribly in a home loss to Houston. In one of his worst games in recent memory, Steve was intercepted four times and fumbled once.

At 2-3, Tennessee was off to a slow start, but the blame wasn't all Steve's. The offensive line had yet to ge—he was getting pounded, including eight sacks in the first three contests of the year. When the Minnesota Vikings knocked him out in the first quarter of their October meeting, he reaggravated his sternum injury. Steve missed the next two games.

He didn't suit up again until November, when the Titans visited the Jaguars. With Tennessee languishing at 3-6, this was a make-or-break contest. Steve and his teammates responded with a gutty 18-15 victory. But they followed with a flat performance in Houston. Steve enjoyed his best day of the season (25 for 42 for 277 yards and 3 touchdowns) with nothing to show for it.

Afterwards, Steve reassessed his team's dwindling playoff hopes. Still ailing, he chose to end his campaign early. For the first time in his career, it seemed his perpetually poor health had raised serious concerns in his own mind. At one point, he even talked of retirement.

Without their leader, the Titans limped home. Billy Volek showed flashes of brilliance filling in for Steve, but Tennessee no longer scared opponents on either side of the the ball. Losers of four of their last five, they finished at 5-11. Steve's numbers—1,343 yards, nine total touchdowns and a 73.1 QB rating—were his lowest since 1996.

Late in December, Steve underwent an operation to correct the pain he felt during the 2004 season. The problem was that he had cartilage instead of bone in his sternum—an unusual condition for anyone, and certainly far from ideal for a pro football player. Doctors removed some bone from his hip and used it in his chest.

The operation was a success, and Steve was healthy enough to start 14 games in 2005. He was working at a disadvantage, however, as salary cap challenges ravaged Fisher’s defense. Steve managed to put plenty of points on the board, but the Titans won only one game in September, October, November and December, finishing 4–12. Steve passed for 3,161 yards and 16 touchdowns. So despite h’is teams poor recor, he was recognized with his third Pro Bowl selection.

Steve and the Titans decided to part ways after the season. They agreed that if his agent could engineer a fair trade, the team would take it. In June, a deal for a fourth-round draft pick was worked out with the Ravens, a club with a defense like the Titans of old. The franchise had lacked a first-rate quarterback and hoped Steve would be at least a short-term solution. He was that and quite a bit more. Steve played in every game in 2006 and led Baltimore to a 13–3 record, which was good for first place in the AFC North.

Steve completed 63 percent of his passes and topped 3,000 passing yards again. He made his fourth and final Pro Bowl. His dream season ended in the playoffs with a 15–6 defeat at the hands of the Super Bowl-bound Colts.

Steve logged his final NFL season in 2007. In an injury-riddled campaign, he missed 10 games due to back, shoulder and leg injuries. In Week 9 against the Steelers, James Harrison buried him again and again. Steve finally had to leave the game. He passed for only 1,113 yards on the year as the Ravens went 5–11, costing coach Brian Billick his job.

Steve McNair,

2003 USA Today Sports Weekly

NFL defenses didn’t have McNair to kick around any more in 2008. He made a graceful exit from the game to which he had given so much. His retirement was short-lived, literally. On July 4, 2009, police found his body in a Nashville apartment, along with that of a woman, Saleh Kazemi, whom Steve had been dating for several months. Both had been shot through the head. An investigation was immediately launched, and Steve’s death was ruled a homicide.

Within days, police revealed that McNair was shot twice in the chest and twice in the

head while he was asleep. Kazemi had pulled the trigger and thenthen turned the gun on herself. She apparently suspected McNair of having another mistress and talked openly to friends about her plan to "end it all." McNair will be sorely missed by family, friends, and NFL fans everywhere.

STEVE THE PLAYER

Steve’s legs were his most important attribute. Not only was he a tremendous runner, he was also a load for oncoming pass rushers to bring down. He was most dangerous when he broke the pocket, as opposing defenses were almost helpless to stop him. If they pursued him too aggressively, he’d zip a pass to an open receiver. If they hung back in coverage, he’ld tuck the ball under his arm and take off.

Steve didn’t run as much late in his career, which was partly a function of the pounding he’s absorbed over the years. But it also demonstrated the evolution of his decision-making process. He realized that sometimes shedding a defender, throwing the ball away and surviving for another down with manageable yardage was the best play.

Accuracy had been a problem at times for Steve, despite his year-in, year-out 60+ passing percentage. Steve worked hard on his footwork to correct this flaw. He spent time every off-season on his drop-backs, creating rhythm and a smoother delivery. As any quarterback will attest, hitting receivers in stride has a lot to do with proper set-up.

Leadership was the area where Steve has made his reputation. In pressure situations, he was cool and confident. His willingness to play with pain was a constant source of inspiration to his teammates. In turn, there was nothing they wouldn’t do for him.

Source: Jock Bio

Let us celebrate the life of the late great Robin Harris Tags: celebrate life robin harris please moment silence word life production new qulaity entertainment feature

Robin Hughes Harris (August 30, 1953 – March 18, 1990) was an American comedian and actor, known for his recurring comic sketch about Bébé's Kids.

Robin Harris was born in Chicago, Illinois. His father, Earl, was a welder, and his mother, Mattie, was a factory seamstress. In 1961, the family moved to Los Angeles where he attended Manual Arts High School and attended Ottawa University in Kansas. During this time, he began to hone his craft of comedy. He worked for Hughes Aircraft, a rental car company, and Security Pacific Bank to pay his bills. In 1980, he debuted at Los Angeles’ Comedy Store.

During the mid '80s Robin worked as the master of ceremonies at the Comedy Act Theater. His “old school” brand of humor began to gain him a mainstream following. Harris made a promising feature debut playing a no-nonsense bartender in the feature film I'm Gonna Git You Sucka (1988). Harris performed in director Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing (1989). As "Sweet Dick Willie," Harris served as part of the neighborhood "Greek chorus" that commented on the events of an increasingly tense day. Harris was Pop, the no-nonsense, quick-witted father of Kid in House Party (1990). He followed up later that year with a small turn as a jazz club MC in Mo' Better Blues. He also had a role in Eddie Murphy's Harlem Nights (1989). Fellow comedian and actor Raymond "The RayVolution" Baxter credits Harris with him becoming a stand up, "I saw Mr. Harris at home in Chicago at a club my aunt worked for and he was nice enough to see me after a set and joke around with me. He said I was funny enough to get on the circuit at 11! So that day I went to work on my material..."

Bébé's Kids

In Harris' "Bébé's Kids" routines, Harris' girlfriend Jamika would insist that he take her son and friend Bébé's three children with them on a date, as she continually agreed to babysit them. The children would regularly make a fool out of and/or annoy Harris. "We Bébé's kids," they would proclaim, "we don't die...we multiply."

The Hudlin Brothers had intended to make a feature film based upon the "Bébé's Kids" sketches, but Harris died while the film was in pre-production. Bébé's Kids instead became an animated feature—the first ever to feature an all-black main cast—directed by Bruce W. Smith and featuring the voices of Faizon Love (as Harris), Vanessa Bell Calloway, Marques Houston, Nell Carter, and Tone Lōc.

In the early hours of March 18, 1990, Harris died in his sleep of a heart attack in his Chicago hotel room after performing for a sold out crowd at the Regal Theater. Harris was transported back to California, and interred in Inglewood Park Cemetery, near Los Angeles. House Party 2 and Spike Lee's Mo' Better Blues (which was released five months after his death) were dedicated to his memory. Through archive footage, in House Party 2, a photo of Harris comes to life and tells Kid "Keep your mind on them books and off them 'gals!", which was actually taken from a scene in the original House Party. In House Party 3, when uncle Vester (played by Bernie Mac) looks at a photograph of Harris, he tells Kid how he misses his father and wishes he was alive, and that he "owes him" $150.

At the time of Harris' death, his wife was pregnant with their son, Robin Harris, Jr .

In 2006, a posthumous DVD entitled We Don't Die, We Multiply: The Robin Harris Story (2006), was released. The film features never before seen performances by Harris and accolades from his contemporaries Martin Lawrence, Bernie Mac, Cedric the Entertainer, D.L. Hughley, Robert Townsend, and Joe Torry. The film also features a rap performed and dedicated to Harris by his son, Robin Harris, Jr.

Source: Wikipedia

RSS
Spread the word
Search

This website is powered by Spruz