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April 3, 2010

Reports: Former WCW and WWE wrestler Chris Kanyon dies

Chris Kanyon (real name Chris Klucsaritis) died Friday night, according to multiple Internet reports. He was 40. is reporting that Kanyon’s death is believed to be a suicide from an overdose of pills.

Kanyon – who wrestled in WCW from the late ’90s to 2001 and then worked a few years for WWE – had spoken in the past about suffering from bipolar disorder.

Kanyon was an underrated worker who at one point was dubbed “The Innovator of Offense” in WCW. His first significant role in the company was as masked wrestler Mortis in 1997. He eventually dropped that gimmick and formed The Jersey Triad with Diamond Dallas Page and Bam Bam Bigelow in 1999. Kanyon received his biggest push in 2000 after turning on feuding with Page during WCW’s final year in business.

He went to WWE after the company purchased WCW in 2001, but he was never given a push and was released in early 2004.

Kanyon, who made headlines a few years ago by announcing his homosexuality, made sporadic appearances on independent shows in the years after his WWE release.

My condolences to Kanyon’s family and friends.

Posted by Kevin Eck at 2:42 PM | | Comments (26)


U know what, If you follow wresting you can remember of all the wrestlers who has died over the years. Im not talkin about the ones who died of old talkin about the 1s who died by murder (Dino Bravo), Heart Conditions due to past drug use (Eddie Gurerro), Doing dangerous stints for the WWE show (Owen Hart), the list just goes on and on. Here a list of wrestlers who have died b4 the age of 60:Chris Von Erich (Von Erich Family Tree) - 21
Mike Von Erich - 23
Louie Spiccoli - 27
Art Barr - 28
Gino Hernandez - 29
Jay Youngblood - 30
Rick McGraw - 30
Joey Marella - 30
Ed Gatner - 31
Buzz Sawyer - 32
Crash Holly - 32
Kerry Von Erich - 33
D.J. Peterson - 33
Eddie Gilbert - 33
The Renegade - 33
Chris Candido - 33
Test - 33
Adrian Adonis - 34
Gary Albright - 34
Bobby Duncum Jr. - 34
Owen Hart - 34
Yokozuna - 34
Big Dick Dudley - 34
Brian Pillman - 35
Marianna Komlos - 35
Umaga - 36
Pitbull #2 - 36
The Wall/Malice - 36
Emory Hale - 36
Leroy Brown - 38
Mark Curtis - 38
Eddie Guerrero - 38
John Kronus - 38
Davey Boy Smith - 39
Johnny Grunge - 39
Vivian Vachon - 40
Jeep Swenson - 40
Brady Boone - 40
Terry Gordy - 40
Bertha Faye - 40
Billy Joe Travis - 40
Chris Benoit - 40
Larry Cameron - 41
Rick Rude - 41
Randy Anderson - 41
Bruiser Brody - 42
Miss Elizabeth - 42
Big Boss Man - 42
Earthquake - 42
Mike Awesome - 42
Biff Wellington - 42
Brian Adams (Crush) - 43
Ray Candy - 43
Nancy Benoit (Woman) - 43
Dino Bravo - 44
Curt Hennig - 44
Bam Bam Bigelow - 45
Jerry Blackwell - 45
Junkyard Dog - 45
Hercules - 45
Andre the Giant - 46
Big John Studd - 46
Chris Adams - 46
Mike Davis - 46
Hawk - 46
Mitsuharu Misawa - 46
Ludvig Borga - 47
Steve Dunn - 48
Cousin Junior - 48
Dick Murdoch - 49
Jumbo Tsuruta - 49
Rocco Rock - 49
Sherri Martel - 49
Steve Williams - 49
Moondog Spot - 51
Ken Timbs - 53
Uncle Elmer - 54
Pez Whatley - 54
The Angel of Death - 54
Eddie Graham - 55
Tarzan Tyler - 55
Haystacks Calhoun- 55
Giant Haystacks - 55
Buddy Rose - 56
The Spoiler - 56
Kurt Von Hess - 56
Moondog King - 56
Gene Anderson - 58
Dr. Jerry Graham - 58
Bulldog Brown - 58
Tony Parisi - 58.........So who wants to agree that the wrestling industry has a curse on their hands?

Very sad, Kevin and you were spot on with Kanyon being under-rated and under-utilized. I always enjoyed his matches, even when he was saddled with carrying David Flair. I would like to see TNA and WWE get back to aknowledging the deaths of wreslers with a pre-show memorial final bell

RIP Chris. Who bettah than Kanyon? Nobody!

I feel so bad for Chris, and even his family. I feel bad because I wonder how many people truly tried to help Chris when they knew he was struggling and hurting. I truly enjoyed him as Mortis & Kanyon, and missed him when he left televised wrestling. The wrestling world has lost another good man.

For a fake industry as wrasslin, it sure does claim a lot of lives at a young age. They need to eliminate the house shows and just go all TV. Everyone now knows Wrassling is fake. It doesn't even look real anymore like in the glory days of the 70's and 80's (pre Hulk Hogan).

Sad to hear this, RIP Kanyon.

This guy was never used in the right way in the business. Had a lot of talent but never really given a chance to prove it.

Great on the mic, great in the ring. A huge loss to the wrestling world.

Very talented.

Now thats the a real loss. May his soul rest in peace.

I was sad when I read this. He was one of the last people I'd expected to die young since he'd been out of the business for so many years.

Kevin -

How do you get your hair to look like that? Amazing!

Sad news. I always thought Kanyon was one of the more entertaining guys in wrestling. Very funny on the mic. He had some excellent matches with DDP.
Yet another wrestler dies before his time.

Great work Fernano, Their are more names and all that says is that too many of these guys are dying way too young.
Many names on your list that shocked me. Once again great work.


Another talented wrestler is gone too early. Kanyon was never given a fair chance to shine. WCW did give him more of a push than WWE. I'm suprised Vince couldn't come up with a good angle for Chris. I can understand why he was deppresed.

Wrestling doesn't have a "curse", it just has a lot of overachievers who become hooked on the responses of the crowd. Cheers and boos, both give a huge rush to the men and women who go out there and put their bodies on the line to entertain.

But if they can't keep getting that response, it becomes like withdrawing from a drug....and with similar reactions.

RIP Kanyon...I hope that the rassling ring up in heaven gives you what you couldn't find in the ones on earth

Really Sad, Drugs are the main reason most of these athletes are not here today....Really sad.!!

Sad, very good in the ring and well above average in the mic. The last comment tells it all sort of, yes drugs are the main reason most of these folks are gone but conversely it is also the main reason many of them could continue to wrestle, with the insane "fake" bumps and even crazier schedule, without pain killers they would never get to work nearly as much. Anything misused can kill you from McDonald's to alcohol,drugs and guns, these people need a union to help protect them from the unscrupulous promoters,doctors and hangers on,someone to REALLY look out for their well being not just play lip service to it like McMahon when the sh** hits the fan. Haven't heard a whole lot since Benoit, sure the occasional suspension but these are mainly for appearances. And stop testing for pot no one ever died from smoking weed--ever, test for the stuff that's killing,these handy pot suspensions to get out from under a contract belies my point. RIP Kanyon and all the rest.

I don't think of it is a "curse" and more as a byproduct of the physical requirements of the sport. Simply put, the human body wasn't designed to take the sort of abuse that wrestlers put themselves through, night in and night out. Sadly, unless there is a drastic overall on how the business as a whole operates, I don't see this stopping anytime soon or at all.

OK. I understand that you need a certain look and a certain attitude to be successful in the WWE. I understand that if you do not have that certain look and attitude, you're going to go only so far up the ladder. You're a commodity to Vince and once you're not "it" anymore, he doesn't have a whole lot of use for you. It doesn't matter what you did for me yesterday, if you're of no more use to me today, "good luck in your future endeavors". Well, while you may just be a piece of meat to Vince, anybody in the working world knows that, as a boss, Vince has not cornered the market in that attitude or way of doing business. Heck, Kev, look at how your own bosses have pretty much dismantled the Sun.

It's a hard life. But Vince doesn't cram the stuff up their noses. And Vince doesn't shoot the stuff into their veins. And Vince doesn't shove the pills down their throat. And Vince didn't choke out his wife and kid and then hang himself. Vince is a pr---. I am certain he will tell you that himself. But whatever happened to personal responsibility? Where does Vince's responsibility end and personal responsibility begin?

In spite of Al Snow's assertations about "your word" this and "your word" that during "Tough Enough", wrestling has been run by liars and cheats and con-men and thieves for decades. And there have been cheaters and alcoholics and drug addicts for decades. Now you throw steroids and growth hormones into the mix. There's no curse. There's no underhanded seedy plot to rid the world of all its pro wrestlers. People make bad decisions. People make bad choices. You lay down with dogs, you're gonna wake up with fleas.

You can run down a list of movie stars or other sports starts or shipyard workers or mailmen or grocery store baggers and probably come up with the same list.

This may be an ignorant question, but why is it that so many people in this profession end up committing suicide?


i am glad to see so many people here appreciated chris kanyon and understood how incredibly talented he was and that he never got his just due! i spent a few years on the independent wrestling circuit and believe me, when it came to in-ring ability-- chris kanyon was one of the best!! rip, chris.

I was a very close personal friend to Chris. I usually cringe reading comments people make about tragedies, since they can sometimes be very insensitive.

It brought a tear to my eye to read so many positive thoughts about Chris.

Trust me when I say this, he LOVED the wrestling business, and knowing that you all were entertained by his persona would have meant the world to him. He loved all of his fans, he really did. Thanks for supporting Chris.

Wrestling isnt fake it is predetermined, there is a difference, the outcome is known by the wrestlers beforehand but many of the injuries and all of the blood is real. just look at a classic mick foley match.

Kanyon was truly one of the best wrestlers to never break the glass ceiling. He always entertained me and I will always remember him.

A demise of immense wrestling talent.

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About Kevin Eck
The Baltimore Sun's Kevin Eck blogs about professional wrestling.
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