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  Oct 5, 1999

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One Man Gang still going strong

By GREG OLIVER -- SLAM! Wrestling

The One Man Gang.
Below, Akeem with his manager Slick.
The One Man Gang is leery about being considered a 'Hero' of wrestling. For one, he's still active on the independent scene and expects to sign a contract with ECW in the near future.

Then there's the fact that he's only 39.

"I don't consider myself old," OMG told SLAM! Wrestling from his Baton Rouge, Louisiana home where he lives with his wife and son. "I'm still active. I don't consider myself retired." Since he started out wrestling at only 16, people who meet him on the street expect him to be much older than he actually is.

In fact, he believes that fans today think that someone is either "retired or dead" if they are not on either WWF or WCW TV shows.

One Man Gang, whose real name is George Gray, said that the Heroes of Wrestling PPV on Sunday, October 10 will be just another day of work, even though he is facing the Madman from the Sudan Abdullah the Butcher for the first time in his career.

"It's not going to be for the tame," he said, explaining that his strategy against Abby was simply to "come out alive."

He will be preparing for the brutality of the match by participating in the southern swing of ECW next weekend before Sunday's show.

"ECW's hardcore as they say," he said. During the five months or so that he's been working for them off and on, he's broken a bone in his leg during a match against Rob Van Dam, been knocked out on a couple of occasions and hurt his ankle.

OMG said that an ECW contract is on the horizon, and that he will be in the upcoming ECW video game.

Originally from Chicago, OMG grew up in South Carolina. He was always a wrestling fan, and got involved with a local independent promotion at 16. His first big break came as Crusher Broomfield with the Angelo Poffo-run ICW in Kentucky. Up next was Mid-South, where he was dubbed the One Man Gang by promoter Bill Watts and announcer Jim Ross.

He's been on top of the WWF, and considers main eventing against Hulk Hogan at New York's Madison Square Gardens the highlight of his career. Surprisingly, he doesn't even speak ill of the Akeem character -- he's just happy to leave it behind him, as it is trademarked by the WWF.

In WCW, he was briefly the U.S. heavyweight champion back in December of 1995.

For now though, OMG is happy on the independent circuit working weekends. "I'm surviving ... I'm not complaining too much," he said. The indies allow one to "control your own little thing", booking yourself when and where you want to be.

The Heroes of Wrestling promoters caught him a little off guard when they called. The call came "out of the blue" and he was "totally shocked by it."

One Man Gang isn't sure if the idea of a Legends pay-per-view will actually succeed with the public, but he does know that he is looking forward to the actual event.

"I'm looking forward to seeing some of the guys I haven't seen in a while," he said. "I just don't keep up with the guys."

Heroes of Wrestling headlines

  • Oct. 11, 1999: Heroes PPV a disappointment
  • Oct. 8, 1999: Orton-Snuka to clash once more
  • Oct. 5, 1999: One Man Gang still going strong
  • Sep. 30, 1999: Reasonable goal for Heroes of Wrestling