Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Remembering Art Donovan

Art Donovan, who made his name as an American footballer with the Baltimore Colts, died this past weekend at the age eighty-eight.

Donovan's career spanned twelve seasons where he played in one hundred and thirty-eight games. He won the NFL championship on two occasions, made the All Pro team five times, he was the first Colt to ever be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and you know what he will probably be remembered for just as much as the tremendous feats he accomplished in football?

His time as a WWF commentator.

In the summer of 1994, around the time of Vince McMahon's trial for steroid distribution, the World Wrestling Federation hosted its second annual King of the Ring pay-per-view in Baltimore.

As Donovan was a Baltimore hero, someone within the WWF thought it would be a masterstroke to bring the former football player to the event and use him as a color commentator for the evening.

It made for one of the most awkward nights in wrestling history.

If your name happened to end in Savage or Monsoon, that is.

Donovan had no idea who any of the wrestlers he was watching were. He would constantly ask questions like 'how much does this guy weigh?'. 'who is the fella?', 'is he dead?'

It got to the point where Gorilla Monsoon and Randy Savage were trying their best to avoid some of the questions that he was asking.

When news of his passing made it to my consciousness, I couldn't help but look up the highlights of the King of the Ring debacle. However, I did it while wearing my throwback Baltimore Colts cap.

Thankfully for Art Donovan, his record on the field is enough to overlook his one-night pro wrestling career.

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