CW Anderson, best remembered for his run with the original Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) in the late 1990s, announced his retirement from pro wrestling on Sunday, ending a 27-year career in the squared circle.
CW Anderson was originally supposed to be a professional baseball player – he was drafted out of high school as a catcher by the San Diego Padres in 1989. But Anderson – real name Chris Wright – opted to go to college to complete his education and rejected signing with the MLB club. In 1993, he turned to professional wrestling as a new sport, debuting under a mask as El Chico. He impressed indie wrestlers Pat and Rocky Anderson, who had kayfabe been a part of the infamous Anderson “family” in pro wrestling that include Ole Anderson, Lars Anderson, Arn Anderson, and their “cousin” Ric Flair. El Chico’s mask was removed and he joined the “family” as CW Anderson. A North Carolina native, he also began working with the Organization of Modern Extreme Grappling Arts (OMEGA), the indie promotion run by Matt Hardy and Tracey Caddell.
In 1998, Anderson joined WCW’s school at the Power Plant, but ended up rejecting an offer to join World Championship Wrestling (WCW), and instead joined ECW in 1999, where he became a part of the New Dangerous Alliance alongside Lou E. Dangerously, Billy Wiles, and Elektra. He would later form another stable alongside Simon Diamond and Johnny Swinger. He remained with ECW until it’s closure in 2001.
Following ECW’s demise, CW Anderson headed to Japan where he began working for Pro Wrestling ZERO1, a relationship that lasted until 2007, as well as joining a new upstart US indie in 2002 called Major League Wrestling (MLW). There he founded the stable The Extreme Horsemen, which featured former Four Horsemen Barry Windham and JJ Dillon, as well as former ECW stars Steve Corino, Simon Diamond, and Justin Credible.
While not initially brought into the WWE as part of the initial WCW/ECW Alliance during the Invasion angle, Anderson would ultimately make his WWE in 2004, first appearing on WWE TV on WWE Velocity in December against former ECW alumni Spike Dudley. He would appear at ringside during the WWE produced ECW One Night Stand PPV in 2005, before joining the rebooted WWE ECW on SyFy in 2006. His WWE tenure was brief, being released in January of 2007.
Since then, CW Anderson has remained a fixture in the Mid-Atlantic territory with multiple indie promotions, including West Virginia’s Vicious Outcast Wrestling (VOW) and North Carolina’s Premier Wrestling Federation (PWF), as well as stints with Tommy Dreamer‘s House of Hardcore. In 2016, he began working with North Carolina’s America’s Most Liked (AML) Wrestling, where he continued to compete up until his retirement announcement on Sunday.
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