Gene Snitsky Retiring From Wrestling - A Look Back At His Career | PWPIX.net

Gene Snitsky Retiring From Wrestling

Snitsky

Gene Snitsky plans to retire from wrestling.

On Friday, the 48-year-old former WWE Superstar announced in a post on Instagram that he plans to leave wrestling behind for good after working a few more shows. He wants to spend more time with his girlfriend and focus on weight training.

Snitsky wrote, “Only gonna do a few more shows!!!!! I’ve decided to move on and focus more on other things like @carianneb1 for instance…. And ofcourse weight training and appearances just no more in ring competition lol…..”

“I’ve been losing the love over the last few yrs and honestly don’t like the way wrestling is going….. Just wanna thank all my fans…. for without you there would never have been a SNITSKY!!!! I truly love my fans and always will…… Thx for taking the time to watch me perform it means the world to me!!!!!”

Snitsky — real name Eugene Alan Snisky — is best known for his time in WWE (2004-2008). Before wrestling, he played college football at the University of Missouri and was on the pre-season roster in 1995 for the Birmingham Barracudas of the Canadian Football League (CFL).

Snitsky began his wrestling career in 1998 teaming with his cousin, A.J. Petrucci, on the independent circuit. Petrucci worked as an enhancement talent for the World Wrestling Federation from 1984 to 1986 and held the ECW World Tag Team Championship twice as part of a tag team called The Super Destroyers (in 1992 and 1993).

In 2001, Snitsky joined the Allentown, Pennsylvania-based World Xtreme Wrestling (WXW) under the name “Mean” Gene Snitsky and won the WXW Tag Team Championship with college friend Robb Harper. Doing a football gimmick, they called themselves The Twin Tackles, with Petrucci acting as their “coach.” Snitsky started wrestling on his own and won the WXW Heavyweight Championship on October 19, 2003.

Snitsky trained under WWE Hall of Famer Afa at WXW, who secured him a tryout match at a Raw television event on October 20, 2003, in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania. In a dark match before Raw aired live on Spike TV, Snitsky lost to Tommy Suede.

“I wouldn’t say it was great, but it went well enough to get me signed,” Snitsky said in a 2014 interview with WWE.com.

WWE offered Snitsky a developmental contract a few months later and he joined Ohio Valley Wrestling in Louisville, Kentucky in June 2004. As the brother of Mike Mondo, he began wrestling under the moniker of “Mean” Gene Mondo (a name inspired by WWE Hall of Famer “Mean” Gene Okerlund). Snitsky did not stay in OVW for long, however.

On September 13, 2004, Snitsky made his WWE debut on Raw in a No Disqualification Match against Kane. As Kane prepared to injure Snitsky, he was distracted by Lita, who was pregnant with Kane’s child. Snitsky would use the distraction to hit Kane from behind with the chair, causing Kane to fall on Lita. The blow caused Lita to miscarry her unborn baby.

When interviewed about the incident, Snitsky vehemently said, “It wasn’t my fault” (which would go on to become his catchphrase). This facilitated a face turn for Kane and established Snitsky as a heel.

Snitsky, who debuted against Kane as an apparent jobber, told WWE.com in 2014 that he was only supposed to make a one-night appearance and return to OVW to continue training. However, the angle with Kane and Lita had gone over so well that WWE officials made a last-minute decision the following week to promote Snitsky to the main roster permanently. WWE even had Snitsky fly on their corporate jet to arrive at Raw in time for the show.

As a result of the incident, Snitsky and Kane began to feud, leading to a Weapon of Choice Match at Taboo Tuesday on October 19, 2004. The match ended with Snitsky using a steel chair to crush Kane’s larynx. This angle was done to remove Kane from television, who was taking time off to film the WWE-produced movie, See No Evil.

During a segment on Chris Jericho’s “Highlight Reel” where Lita appeared as a guest — on November 8, 2004, on Raw — Snitsky came down to the ring with a baby in his arms. He would then mock Lita’s misery and shockingly punt the baby (a plastic one) into the crowd to everyone’s disgust.

Their feud resumed at the New Year’s Revolution on January 9, 2005, with Kane returning to beat Snitsky. Three weeks later on Raw, Snitsky lost a Steel Cage Match against Kane to end the feud.

Snitsky would then battle Shelton Benjamin in three matches in February 2005, with each competitor winning by disqualification when the other used a chair, and Benjamin winning the rubber match. Shortly after WrestleMania 21, Snitsky took time off from WWE as a result of a blood clot forming in his stomach.

Snitsky returned to Raw on May 28, 2005, in a match against Chris Benoit. Snitsky acted as a “hired gun” for Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff, who vowed to destroy ECW with the help of Raw Superstars.

Lita forgave Snitsky a few weeks later and he came to the aid of both her and her new boyfriend, Edge, in their battles against Kane.

Snitsky’s time on Raw would continue uneventfully, save for a few months in a tag team with Tyson Tomko. They had some success together, earning an opportunity to challenge for the World Tag Team Championship. The pair were unable to win the titles from Big Show and Kane, both of whom Snitsky had feuded with in the past. The team split in April 2006 when Tomko quit WWE.

Snitsky then turned face and formed a tag team with Goldust, defeating various tandems on Heat, which eventually earned them an unsuccessful title shot against The Spirit Squad. However, this team was also broken up when Goldust was released from WWE in June 2006.

After being relegated to Heat, Vince McMahon offered him a new look and a new start.

“Mr. McMahon said, ‘Snitsky, I want you to go home and shave all your hair off and go see the makeup lady to see what we can do to make your teeth look dirty or yellow,’” Snitsky recalled in a 2014 interview with WWE.com.

After a call to a New York City stage makeup company, the monster was ready to be unleashed, but only after a painstaking application of tooth makeup. It’s a process Snitsky doesn’t miss.

“You had to get your teeth perfectly dry first,” he explained. “Then you painted it on and dried it. It was interesting.”

The end result was the grotesque psychopath that steamrolled into the relaunched ECW in early 2007. The reborn Snitsky terrorized CM Punk, Bobby Lashley, and even Extreme Exposé.

Snitsky’s time in “The Land of Extreme” was short, as he was drafted back to Raw in June 2007. In his first match back, he quickly beat The Miz.

The monstrous WWE Superstar went on an undefeated streak that summer, which was eventually put to an end by John Cena, albeit via disqualification.

After suffering a clean loss to Intercontinental Champion Jeff Hardy on Raw on December 3, 2007, Snitsky found himself competing less often on Monday nights.

Feeling he had more to offer, he came to an agreement with WWE officials on his release.

On December 11, 2008, WWE announced the release of Gene Snitsky from his contract, thus ending his association with the organization after over four years.

Dave Meltzer reported in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that WWE officials felt Snitsky wasn’t going to be the headliner they had hoped for, and since he was set to turn 39 the following month, “felt they could give his spot to someone younger.”

Meltzer wrote, “They obviously felt for some time he wasn’t going to be a headliner, and since he turns 39 in a few weeks, felt they could give his spot to someone younger. He was signed five years ago and there were attempts to push him because of his size, but he was a notoriously bad worker at the time. He got a little better, but by that point, fans saw him as something other than a star.

“There were several attempts to give him a push, but he wasn’t ready early, and if he ever was ready later, fans had already perceived of him as a big klutzy guy and never seriously bought him, even with his size, as a guy with star potential. He’d been one of those forgotten guys on the roster for most of the past few years so his being released wasn’t much of a surprise. He’s a guy who probably could have gotten regular work in Japan if it was another era because of his size, or even Mexico, but with the foreign groups employing few Americans, his odds aren’t that good. I don’t see TNA having any interest in him unless someone influential like Angle went heavy to bat for him.”

Following his departure from WWE, Snitsky continued battling for various independent promotions across the United States. In the summer of 2014, he had a brief stint in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA), aligning with company president Dixie Carter.

He only wrestled one match for the company, competing in a Hardcore War match on Impact Wrestling where he teamed with EC3, Rhino and Rycklon (aka Ezekiel Jackson) against Bully Ray, Devon, Tommy Dreamer and Al Snow in a losing effort. Although Rhino took the pinfall loss from Devon, Carter fired Snitsky and Rycklon later in the show. As she demanded they get out of her ring, she called both a “stupid has-been.”

With Carter down two men, this resulted in Bully Ray following through on his promise to put her through a table.