If you ask him, the character Bob Backlund has never lost the WWE Championship. Backlund was in his physical prime in the early 1980s and was a part of what many in wrestling consider the end of an era.
Backlund was then the WWF Champion, and Vince McMahon felt it was time to give the belt to the popular personality of Hulk Hogan.
Backlund ended up dropping the title to The Iron Sheik and then the Sheik quickly gave the title off to Hogan.
Bob Backlund debut for the American Wrestling Association (AWA) in 1973. Backlund’s clean cut look and technical approach made him a natural face, and he quickly got over with the fans. After leaving the AWA, Backlund traveled the United States, working for the National Wrestling Alliance in its various territories.
In 1974, Backlund wrestled in Texas, for Dory Funk, Jr. and Terry Funk’s Amarillo, Texas-based Western States Sportspromotion. In March, he defeated Terry Funk for the NWA Western States Heavyweight Championship (the promotion’s top title).
Backlund held it for two months, before losing it to Karl Von Steiger in May.
Bob Backlund had an in-ring career that spanned nearly 40 years and including two reigns as WWE Champion.
He feuded with some of the biggest names in wrestling history and was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2013.
Andy Malnoske of Wrestling Inc. caught up with Backlund at WrestleCon where Backlund revealed that the proudest moment of his career had nothing to do with what happened in the ring.
“I’m most proud of a book from a gentleman who I was his childhood hero. I told him my life story and he put it on paper,” said Backlund.
“I go around and talk to a lot of kids at wrestling tournaments. I talk to the moms and dads.
If they purchase the book, I explain to them that mom and dad should read the book first and highlight the spots where I learned a lesson.
“I learned six things from high school wrestling and I talk about that in the book and these six things are what made me very successful….
When I left to go into the wrestling business, I was very confident that I was going to use these principles and that I was going to get to the top.”
In the mid-1990s, Backlund had a presidential gimmick in which he campaigned to be the President of the United States.
He even confronted a Bill Clinton impersonator at ringside and he talked about how that angle came about
“Well, they needed a different president…That’s all. They needed someone else. I had fun doing that,” stated Backlund.
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