Joe Laurinaitis rose to fame (along with Michael "Hawk" Hegstrand) as "Animal" of the Road Warriors tag team. The Road Warriors were one of the most successful and popular teams in wrestling. Unfortunately, Hawk passed away in 2003, but Animal still carries on the legacy of this great team.
I've met Laurinaitis several times. The first time, he was promoting his book, The Road Warriors: Danger, Death and the Rush of Wrestling. I think it was one of the better wrestling biographies.
A couple years ago, Jason and I traveled to Fort Wayne, IN to Heroes and Legends Fan Fest with Laurinaitis as one of the biggest draws. Face-painted as usual, Animal did not disappoint. He had his trademark shoulder pads available for photo ops. We talked a bit about his son James, who had just signed with the New Orleans Saints. We all agreed that we were hoping he would join the Chicago Bears.
Laurinaitis is just one of many great wrestling guests brought in by Jayson Maples for Heroes and Legends. Some are simply there to pose and sign autographs, but some step in the squared circle, too. It all adds up to a great day of wrestling nostalgia and action.
Scheduling and distance have prevented me from attending more Heroes and Legends events, but my desire is there. I hope to make it out there more often in 2018. Jayson is a great guy and he puts on excellent events.
The next Heroes and Legends event is scheduled for Saturday, April 21. Check out HeroesandLegendsWrestling.com for all of the info.
Jason Fleigel, me and Road Warrior Animal in Fort Wayne, IN-March 2016.