Eli Drake

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Eli Drake
Eli Drake at Slammiversary XV.jpg
Drake in July 2017
Birth name Shaun Ricker
Born (1982-11-11) November 11, 1982 (age 35)
Hagerstown, Maryland, U.S.
Residence Los Angeles, California, U.S.[1]
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Deuce
Dick Rick
Dick Rick Leykis
Eli Drake
El Hijo de Trump
Shaun Ricker
Slate Randall
Billed height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)[2]
Billed weight 234 lb (106 kg)[2]
Billed from Los Angeles, California
Trained by Cody Hawk
Debut 2002

Shaun Ricker (born November 11, 1982) is an American professional wrestler currently signed to Impact Wrestling under the ring name Eli Drake, where he is the current Impact Global Champion in his first reign. He is also a former one-time TNA King of the Mountain Champion.

Ricker appeared as a cast member on the TNT reality series The Hero, hosted by The Rock.

Professional wrestling career

Independent circuit (2002–2011)

Ricker began working regularly for the Heartland Wrestling Association (HWA) in 2002 under the ring name Deuce. On November 9, 2004, Deuce would win the HWA Television Championship and lost it on January 4, 2005.[3] He went on to compete in various matches that included singles and tag-team action before challenging unsuccessfully for the HWA Heavyweight Championship against Chad Collyer in a Title vs. Career match held on October 31, 2006.

Ricker would not return to HWA until late 2007 returning under the ring name Dick Rick at HWA Reborn in a losing title match against Brian Jennings for the HWA Heavyweight Championship on November 9. During 2008, Dick Rick competed in numerous tournament-styled matches for the Number 1 contender status for the HWA Heavyweight Championship. He won a three-way match against Deja Vu and JT Stahr on November 5 for the No 1 Contender title. On November 12, Rick lost to Jake Christ in the title match for the HWA Heavyweight Championship. After wrestling in an unsuccessful four-way elimination match for No. 1 Contender status on March 18, 2009, Rick went on to compete in several more tournament-styled matches before wrestling his last HWA match on June 3, losing to JT Stahr.

After HWA, Ricker started working for Mach One Wrestling (M1W) in late 2009. His first match was on M1W Fight Night, losing to Tommy Wilson on October 16. He then won two consecutive matches in singles action against Andrew Hellman during M1W Fight Night on October 23 and again on October 30. Ricker went on to team with Willie Mack to defeating Andrew Hellman and Sonny Samson. He faced and lost to Brian Cage in singles and tag-team action during the months of November and December. Cage would be the man Ricker would later form the team known as Natural Selection. Finding initial success as a tag team, Ricker and Cage went on during January month in 2010, competing in a tag team tournament, winning all of their matches including the final match for the M1W Tag Team Championships on January 29 from the team of The RockNES Monsters (Johnny Goodtime and Johnny Yuma).[4] However, the champions lost the titles to the same team they defeated to first win them at the M1W event on April 16.[4] Ricker's last match for M1W was on October 29, 2011, defeating Nick Madrid at M1W Wrath Of Con III.

During December 2010, Ricker moved to work for the promotion NWA Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. He rejoined forces with Brian Cage, reforming The Natural Selection tag team and won the NWA Heritage Tag Team Championship on December 8, from The RockNES Monsters.[4] After holding the titles for over 200 days and defending them against the likes of Young Hollywood and Rasche Brown and Slymm, the Natural Selection lost them to The Tribe due to the Brian Cage missing the event and becoming a two on one handicap match.[4] Understandably upset after Cage's actions, Ricker would feud with him for several month, staying even on victories until late 2012 when Ricker defeated Cage.[5]

Ricker wrestling as Slate Randall in February 2014

After this win, Ricker earned a shot at Adam Pearce's NWA World Heavyweight Championship which took place on December 4 and Ricker lost. Throughout 2012, Ricker would aim high, trying to earn himself a championship shot which included numerous battle royals and even made it to the finals of the Percy Pringle III Cup where the winner would earn a shot at any championship, any time, any place. Rickers feud with Cage would resurface in late 2012 and culminated in a casket match which Ricker won. With this massive win Ricker finally found singles success in by winning the 30-Man Red Carpet Rumble for the CWFH Heritage Heavyweight Championship in homeage to his late friend and manager Percy Pringle on May 5, 2013 and successfully defended it that same night against Ryan Taylor.[6]

Ricker would lose the championship to Scorpio Sky in a loser leaves Hollywood match later that night, this match was scheduled to air on June 2, on tape delay, but was never aired due to the controversial finish.[6] After the cameras went off Ricker got on the mic and thanked all of the fans for coming out. He said this would be the last time we would see him in a ring for Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. All of the wrestlers came out from the back and gave Ricker a standing ovation. However he made one more final appearance defeating Scorpio Sky's fellow Experience members Big Duke and Xtian Cole, making it his final television appearance.

World Wrestling Entertainment / WWE (2006–2008; 2013–2014)

Ricker made his first World Wrestling Entertainment appearance in 2006, teaming up with Jon Moxley to take on Big Show. His second appearance was in 2008 in a dark match on the ECW program, teaming with Gene Snitsky in a losing effort against Cryme Tyme.

In May 2013, Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported that Ricker, along with several other independent wrestlers, was undergoing the necessary medical testing required to be signed to WWE. He reported to the WWE Performance Center. Ricker using the new ring name Slate Randall, defeated Yoshi Tatsu in a dark match at the NXT's October television tapings. On August 1, 2014, he was released from his WWE contract.[7]

Return to the independent circuit (2014–present)

After his release from WWE, Ricker returned to wrestling on the independent circuit. On September 5, at Full Impact Pro's Fallout, he (along with Mason Ryan and Michael Tarver) participated in a trios tournament, but they were defeated by the Full Impact Puerto Ricans (Lince Dorado, Jay Cruz, and Jay Rios) in the semifinals.[8] On November 21, 2014, Ricker defeated Kenny King at FSW Luck of the Draw.[9]

Total Nonstop Action Wrestling / Impact Wrestling / Global Force Wrestling

The Rising and early feuds (2015–2016)

On February 16, 2015, Ricker participated in TNA One Night Only's TNA Gut Check tournament, where he defeated Crazzy Steve to qualify for the final match of the night which was a five-way elimination match which was won by Tevita Fifita.[10] On March 14, 2015, Ricker, under the name of Eli Drake, participated in the Impact Wrestling tapings. Drake joined Drew Galloway and Micah to form The Rising, defeating The Beat Down Clan.[11] On the July 1 episode of Impact Wrestling, The Beat Down Clan defeated The Rising in a 4-on-3 Handicap match, forcing The Rising to dissolve. On July 15 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake turned heel when he cost Galloway a match against the TNA World Heavyweight Champion Ethan Carter III. On the August 5 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake defeated Drew Galloway. On the August 19 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake faced Galloway in a No Disqualifications Match but lost the match. On the September 9 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake, Jessie Godderz and Kenny King faced Robbie E, Tigre Uno & Micah in a losing effort.

On October 4, 2015, at Bound for Glory, Drake competed in a twelve-man Bound For Gold Gauntlet match which was won by Tyrus.[12] Drake participated in the TNA World Title Series as a member of group Future 4, along with Jessie Godderz, Micah and Crimson advancing the round of 16 along with Godderz where he would be losing in the round of 16 to Mahabali Shera, thus failing to advance to the quarterfinals and being eliminated from the tournament. On the January 5, 2016, the first live edition of Impact Wrestling episode on Pop Eli Drake and Jessie Godderz started feuding with Kurt Angle and Drew Galloway which led to a match at TNA One Night Only Live, which was won by The Wolves.

On January 26, 2016, Drake won the Feast or Fired match and the briefcase that contained a title shot for the future TNA King Of The Mountain Championship. On the February 9 episode Of Impact Wrestling, Drake was attacked by Grado who had been fired after his Feast or Fired briefcase contained the pink slip. Later that night Drake interrupted him backstage and told him "he better shut up about whatever he thinks he knows" and then attacked Grado again and had him escorted out of the building through the tunnel. Drake feuded with Grado once again who was masked as Odarg the Great feuding him backstage with Jessie Godderz and telling him he was going to be facing against him. This led the match on the February 16 episode of Impact Wrestling, which he lost, and led to the rematch at TNA Lockdown special episode of Impact Wrestling in the Six Sides of Steel match, in which he's unsuccessful due to interference from the returning Mahabali Shera who went on to team with Odarg the Great and pulling his mask off from his face. On the March 15 live edition of Impact Wrestling he received another rematch against Grado in a Ladder match, the career of Grado on the line, however he was defeated by Grado to end the feud.

Fact of Life and Namer of Dummies (2016–2017)

On the May 31 episode of Impact on Pop, Drake cashed in his Feast or Fired briefcase for his shot at the TNA King of the Mountain Championship, defeating Bram who was just viciously attacked by Lashley, winning his first title in TNA.[13] On June 12 at Slammiversary, Drake defeated Bram to retain the championship.[14] On the June 28 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake hosted a Fact of Life segment, inviting James Storm as his guest, where he proceeded to insult him; Storm eventually hit Drake with the Last Call, igniting a feud between the two.[15] The next week on the July 5 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake defended the King of the Mountain Championship against Storm, but intentionally disqualified himself to save the title.[16] However, on the August 4 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake lost the King of the Mountain Championship to James Storm. Drake entered in the Impact Grand Championship tournament on the September 8 episode of Impact Wrestling, defeating Jessie Godderz in the first round. However, he was defeated by Aron Rex on the September 22 episode of Impact Wrestling in the semi final. At Bound for Glory Drake won the Bound for Gold. On the October 6 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake started a feud against Ethan Carter III, after his Fact of Life segment. On the October 27 episode of Impact Wrestling, Eli Drake and Aron Rex defeated Ethan Carter III and Jessie Godderz in a tag-team match. On the November 10 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake cashed is Bound for Gold opportunity but failed to win the TNA World Heavyweight Championship against Eddie Edwards. On the November 24 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake faced EC3 in a title shot vs. voice match where if Ethan lost, he would lose his Heavyweight title shot and if Drake lost, he would not be able to talk for the rest of 2016. EC3 won the match by submission.

On the January 5 episode of Impact Wrestling, Eli Drake had a confrontation against The Broken Hardys during his returning Fact of Life segment, which led to a tag team match for their TNA World Tag Team Championship at One Night Only: Live!, teaming with Tyrus, which never happened. However, his association with Tyrus continued, Tyrus helping him to take the red case during the Race for the Case on the January 19 episode of Impact Wrestling. On the February 2 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake cashed is Race for the Case briefcase for a match against Ethan Carter III, but was defeated. After the match, Tyrus and him attacked EC3, but they were assaulted by the Death Crew Council. On the February 9 episode of Impact Wrestling, Eli Drake and Tyrus were defeated by The Death Crew Council a handicap match. During the match, Drake abandoned Tyrus and leaving him alone. A match was scheduled between Drake and Tyrus two weeks later, who ended by a victory of Tyrus by disqualification. After the match, Drake proposed more money to Tyrus for keeping him as a bodyguard, which Tyrus accepted. On the March 16 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake and Tyrus were defeated by Garza Jr. and Laredo Kid. During the match, Drake unintentionally hit Tyrus, causing the lose. On the April 13 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake and Tyrus, alongside Bram and Lashley as Team Josh Mathews were defeated by Team Jeremy Borash (Alberto El Patron, Chris Adonis, Magnus and Matt Morgan).

On the May 4 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake was defeated by Alberto El Patron and failed to be the number one contender for the GFW Global Championship. The following week, with the help of Tyrus and Chris Adonis, he attacked Impact Grand champion Moose after his match against Marshe Rockett. On the June 1st episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake was defeated by Moose and failed to win the Impact Grand Championship. At Slammiversary, Drake and Chris Adonis were defeated by Moose and DeAngelo Williams.

Global Champion (2017–present)

On the August 24 episode of Impact!, Drake won a 20 man gauntlet match, from the second entrant position, to win the vacant GFW Global Championship for the first time. This is Eli Drake's first world title reign from a major wrestling promotion in his career.[17] The following week, Johnny Impact and Eddie Edwards interrupted his championship celebration, which led to a tag-team match on the main-event, which Drake and Chris Adonis won. On the September 7 episode of Impact!, Drake successfully retained his title against Matt Sydal. The following week, after Johnny Impact wins a title shot after defeating Low Ki, Drake and Adonis brutally assaulted him. At Victory Road, Drake successfully retained his title against Impact. After the match, he and Adonis attacked him, but Impact was saved by Garza Jr.. On October 1, Drake successfully defended the title in Japan for Pro Wrestling Noah against Cody Hall.[18] On the October 19 episode of Impact!, after Impact defeated Adonis, Drake assaulted him and whipped him with his belt. The following week, Drake and Adonis were defeated by Impact and Garza Jr.. On the November 2 episode of Impact!, Drake and LAX were defeated by Impact and oVe. After the match however, Drake attacked Impact and striked him with a Gravy Train on the wood ring. At Bound for Glory, Drake retained his title against Johnny Impact after a chair shot of the returning Alberto El Patron on this last.

On the November 9 episode of Impact!, Drake was challenged for a title match by Petey Williams, which Drake accepted, but for the next week. He tried to attack him shortly after but Petey takes quickly the advantage of him.

Other media

In 2013, Ricker appeared on the TNT reality television show The Hero, which was hosted by The Rock.

In 2015, Ricker appeared in the "Boyle-Linetti Wedding" episode of the Fox sitcom Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Ricker plays the nonspeaking role of Mario, a male body builder who's getting married. Detective "Terry" Jeffords (Terry Crews) plays the minister.

In wrestling

Championships and accomplishments

References

  1. ^ "Shaun Ricker (@TheEliDrake) - Twitter". twitter.com. 
  2. ^ a b c "Eli Drake". ImpactWrestling. 
  3. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "HWA Cruiserweight Championship « Titles Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". www.cagematch.net. 
  4. ^ a b c d "NWA/CWFH Heritage Tag Team Title (California)". Wrestling-Titles.com. 
  5. ^ "Shaun Ricker CWFH History". [permanent dead link]
  6. ^ a b Kreikenbohm, Philip. "NWA World Women's Tag Team Championship « Titles Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". www.cagematch.net. 
  7. ^ Johnson, Mike (August 1, 2014). "Five WWE releases". PWInsider. Retrieved August 1, 2014. 
  8. ^ "FIP FALLOUT 2014 iPPV REPORT: WHICH TEAM WOULD SURVIVE THE TOURNAMENT OF SIX MAN TAG TEAMS? - PWInsider.com". www.pwinsider.com. 
  9. ^ "FSW Luck of the Draw". 
  10. ^ "TNA Gutcheck One Night Only PPV Taping Results". 
  11. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "IMPACT Wrestling #561 « Events Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". www.cagematch.net. 
  12. ^ "TNA Bound For Glory Results (10/4) – New #1 Contender 'Bound For Gold', EY vs Angle, New World Champion!". 
  13. ^ "4/23 TNA IMPACT WRESTLING TAPING RESULTS FROM ORLANDO, FLORIDA TO AIR ON POP TV BEGINNING IN MAY". 
  14. ^ "TNA Slammiversary: Bram Vs. Eli Drake (TNA King Of The Mountain Title Match) - WrestlingInc.com". 
  15. ^ "TNA Impact Wrestling Results (6/28) - 3-Way Main Event, X-Division Battle Royal, Matt Hardy Addresses Brother Nero - Page 3 of 7 - Wrestlezone". 28 June 2016. 
  16. ^ "TNA Impact Wrestling Results(7/5): Jeff Hardy Vs Matt Hardy Final Deletion, Ultimate X - WrestlingInc.com". 
  17. ^ Martin, Adam. "SPOILERS: 8/17 GFW Impact TV taping results from Orlando, Florida". WrestleView. Retrieved August 17, 2017. 
  18. ^ "Great Voyage 2017 in Yokohama vol.2". Pro Wrestling Noah (in Japanese). Retrieved 2017-10-01. 
  19. ^ "Eli Drake Championship Celebration - Impact Wrestling". 28 August 2017. 
  20. ^ "Eli Drake - Impact Wrestling". 
  21. ^ "Blue (Full Release)". Impact Wrestling. Retrieved 2017-05-23. 
  22. ^ "CWFH Heritage Heavyweight Championship history". 
  23. ^ "CWFH Heritage Tag Team Championship history". 
  24. ^ "Ironman Heavymetalweight Title". Wrestling-Titles.com. Retrieved 2016-08-12. 
  25. ^ "FSW Heavyweight Championship history". 
  26. ^ "EWF Heavyweight Championship history". 
  27. ^ "Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) 500 for 2016". The Internet Wrestling Database. Retrieved September 1, 2016. 
  28. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "PWR Heavyweight Championship « Titles Database « CAGEMATCH - The Internet Wrestling Database". www.cagematch.net. 
  29. ^ "Title Change Takes Place at Tonight's TNA Impact Wrestling Tapings". 

External links

Eli Drake on Twitter

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