WWE Hall of Fame, Class of 2014 Profiles: Carlos Colon
Jay Shannon returned to discuss the career of the “King of the Caribbean”, Carlos Colon.
In the history of wrestling, there have been many families. Calgary had the Harts. Texas had the Funks and the Von Erichs. Minnesota was the home of the Gagnes. When it comes to Puerto Rico, the island nation belongs to one family…the Colons. The patriarch of this legendary family, Carlos Colon, is the fifth member of the WWE Hall of Fame, Class of 2014. Let’s take a look at his long and storied career.
The Early Years
Carlos Edwin Colon Gonzalez, Sr. was born in Santa Isabel, Puerto Rico in 1948. The Colon Gonzalez family moved to Brooklyn, New York in early 1961. Young Carlos became fascinated with professional wrestling, especially in the careers of Antonino Rocca and Miguel Perez. Carlos would eventually join the gym where his two idols regularly trained. Carlos became friends with numerous wrestlers that came to the gym and learned from many of them. Carlos is considered “self-trained” though he does give credit to many of the men that he learned from. By 1966, Carlos had earned the respect of the local promoter and he wrestled his first match, at the Boston Gardens, against Bobo Brazil. That first match took place on February 16,1966. Within months, Carlos became a fixture on the East Coast Territorial Circuit. Carlos was also brought into Eastern Canada to perform. Carlos would eventually move to Montreal to be more centrally located for wrestling work.
The birth of the WWC
By 1973, Carlos was ready to return to his homeland of Puerto Rico. He moved back there and created a wrestling organization with partner, Victor Jovica. They built Capitol Sport Promotions (not to be confused with the original parent company of the WWE (Capitol Wrestling Corporation). They began to run shows, on Saturday and Sunday, on local WAPA-TV. Colon mixed local talents and Caribbean Legends alongside US wrestlers like Bruiser Brody and Stan Hansen. He also helped elevate men like Abdullah the Butcher to world-wide phenoms. Much like Verne Gagne had done in the Minneapolis-based AWA, Carlos set himself as the top star in his own company. He would hold the WWC Universal title on 26 different occasions. His feuds with men like Bruiser Brody and Abdullah the Butcher were true blood fests that both excited and shocked the fans.
Later Years and becoming a true Legend
On January 6, 1983, Carlos competed against “Nature Boy” Ric Flair in a match that was meant to unify the WWC Universal Title and the NWA World Title. Carlos won the match and the title but the match was never “officially” recognized by the NWA. Flair got the belt back on January 23rd. No record ot the win was ever announced on any NWA programs.
Colon would also make several appearances in the WWWF/WWF/WWE. His most memorable appearance was as part of the 1993 Royal Rumble. Carlos also appeared to support his sons, Carlito and Primo (Eddie). During his career, Carlos Colon held every possible championship in the WWC, most of them multiple times. After retirement, Carlos has remained active, backstage, at WWC and has helped train future superstars.
Carlos Colon has toured the world, several times over. He has help bring dozens of wrestlers from being good wrestlers to being Legends. A brilliant businessman who took a sport that he loved and turned it into one of the most profitable entities in the wrestling world. For all his various abilities, inside and outside the ring, Carlos Colon has definitely earned his place as an honored member of the WWE Hall of Fame.