Paul Randall Wight, Jr. (born February 8, 1972)
is an American professional wrestler, currently
signed to World Wrestling Entertainment wrestling
on its SmackDown! brand, under the ring name,
(The) Big Show. He is also known for his appearances
with World Championship Wrestling (WCW) as The
Giant. Wight is the only man in professional wrestling
history to win the WWE, WCW and ECW Championships.
World Championship Wrestling (1995–1999)
in Aiken, South Carolina, Wight became involved
in professional wrestling when Danny Bonaduce
introduced him to Hulk Hogan at a charity basketball
event in early 1994. Discovered in 1994 by Jim
Strauser, owner of a Karaoke distributorship,
Strauser viewed Wight as a potential NFL prospect
and flew him back to Chicago. Wight showed little
interest in Football but expressed interest in
professional wrestling. Strauser then contacted
Bonaduce, who hosted a Chicago radio show, and
arranged for the meet up between Wight and Hogan.
Wight trained under Larry Sharpe at Sharpe's Monster
Factory for seven months and then signed with
World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in March 1995.
He polished his wrestling skills at the WCW Power
Plant, where at one point he possessed the ability
to perform a moonsault.
debuted in WCW during Bash at the Beach in 1995.
He introduced himself as "the Giant",
claiming to be the son of André the Giant
and blaming Hogan for the death of his "father".'Hulk
Hogan shot Andre in the chest and went to jail
for 12 years'. Wight joined the Dungeon of Doom,
who were at war with Hulk Hogan and his allies,
and immediately began a heated feud with Hogan.
At the Fall Brawl, Wight attacked Hogan while
he was fighting the leader of the Dungeon of Doom,
Kevin Sullivan, in a steel cage match. After Wight
destroyed Hogan's Harley-Davidson Motorcycle using
a monster truck, Hogan challenged him to a "Monster
Truck Battle" at Halloween Havoc. On October
29, 1995, the Battle took place atop Cobo Hall,
with each man driving a monster truck and trying
to force the other truck out of a circle, as in
a Sumo Wrestling Contest. Hogan won the match
when Wight descended from his vehicle and appeared
to fall from the roof. Later that night, Wight
came to the ring with The Taskmaster and challenged
Hogan for the WCW World Heavyweight Championship
in what would be his WCW in-ring debut. Wight
was awarded the victory by disqualification after
interference from Jimmy Hart, Hogan's manager.
Hart then revealed that the contract Hogan had
signed (which he had written) had a clause stating
that the title would change hands on a disqualification,
and, as Hart had intentionally caused a disqualification,
Wight was the new World Heavyweight Champion.
The title was held up one week later as a result
of the controversial finish of the match.
tried to reclaim the title at World War 3 but
was foiled by Hogan, and Randy Savage won the
vacant title. Wight teamed with Ric Flair to defeat
Hogan and Savage at the January 23, 1996 Clash
of the Champions XXXII, but was decisively beaten
by Hogan in a cage match at SuperBrawl VI.
a short feud with The Loch Ness Monster, Wight
won the World Heavyweight Championship a second
time by defeating Ric Flair. After Hogan formed
the New World Order, he defeated Wight for the
Championship at Hog Wild following interference
from Scott Hall and Kevin Nash. Wight joined the
nWo twenty three days later, citing Ted DiBiase's
money as his primary motivation. He feuded with
Lex Luger and the Four Horsemen. Wight was thrown
out of the nWo on December 30 for asking Hogan
for a World Heavyweight Championship title shot.
He fought against the nWo along with Sting and
Lex Luger, winning the WCW World Tag Team Championships
twice. In 1997 he began a feud with nWo member
Kevin Nash, who constantly dodged Wight, failing
to appear for their scheduled match at Starrcade.
In 1998 at Souled Out the two finally met in the
ring, but Nash accidentally injured Wight's neck
when he botched a Jackknife Powerbomb. When Nash
left the nWo and formed his own stable, the Wolfpac,
Wight rejoined the nWo to oppose Nash and his
allies. Nash eventually ended Wight's WCW career
when he defeated him following a run-in by Scott
Hall and Eric Bischoff.
with his remuneration, Wight allowed his WCW contract
to expire on February 8, 1999.
World Wrestling Federation / Entertainment (1999–2006)
signed a ten-year contract with the World Wrestling
Federation on February 9, 1999. He debuted as
a member of Vince McMahon's stable, The Corporation,
at the February 1999 St. Valentine's Day Massacre
event. During the McMahon vs. Steve Austin cage
match, Wight tore through the canvas from underneath
the ring and attacked Austin. However, he cost
McMahon the match when he threw Austin into the
side of the cage and the cage broke, spilling
Austin outside to the floor and granting him the
victory. Wight subsequently served as McMahon's
performed as "Big Nasty" Paul Wight
for several weeks before being renamed "Big
Show" Paul Wight. He then gradually dropped
his real name, eventually being referred to simply
as The Big Show, sometimes shortened to simply
Big Show. McMahon wanted to ensure that Corporation
member The Rock would retain his title at WrestleMania,
so he had Wight face Mankind at WrestleMania XV
for the right to referee the main event. Wight
incapacitated Mankind, but got disqualified in
the process, meaning that neither man would be
referee. After a furious McMahon slapped Wight,
he punched McMahon. Wight concluded his feud with
Foley in a Boiler Room Brawl before joining Mankind,
Test, and Ken Shamrock in a stable known as The
Union who fought against the Corporation, and
later against the The Corporate Ministry. Wight
and The Undertaker later formed an unlikely alliance
against X-Pac and Kane. Wight and The Undertaker
twice won the WWF Tag Team Championship.
The Undertaker was sidelined with injuries, Wight
set his sights on the WWF Championship. After
Steve Austin was run-over at the 1999 Survivor
Series, Wight was given his place in the triple
threat match for the WWF Championship. He pinned
Triple H in the match that also featured The Rock
to become champion.
the same time, Wight feuded with the Big Boss
Man. After it was announced that Wight's father
was terminally ill with cancer, the Boss Man had
one of his crooked police colleagues (falsely)
inform Wight that his father had died, and then
mocked Wight's tearful reaction. Several weeks
later, when it was announced Wight's father had
actually died (in reality, Wight's father had
died years before), the Boss Man interrupted the
ten bell toll by reciting an offensive poem. Later,
he invaded the funeral and used a chain to couple
the coffin to the hearse, towing the coffin away
with a grief stricken Wight clinging on to it.
At Armageddon, The Boss Man faced Wight for the
title, but even the presence of Bossman's protégé
Prince Albert did not offset Wight's considerable
size advantage, and Wight defeated him to retain
the January 3, 2000, episode of RAW Triple H defeated
Wight for the WWF Championship, using a title
shot that he had won from Vince McMahon at Armageddon.
Trying to regain the title, Wight participated
in the Royal Rumble and was the runner up, losing
to The Rock. Wight was convinced that he had won,
and eventually produced a video tape that showed
The Rock's feet striking the ground first. He
was then given a match with The Rock at No Way
Out, with the WrestleMania title shot on the line.
Wight defeated The Rock when Shane McMahon interfered,
knocking The Rock out with a chair shot. The Rock
was desperate to reclaim his title shot, and eventually
agreed to a match with Wight on the March 13,
2000 episode of RAW - if he won, the WrestleMania
title match would become a triple threat match,
and if he lost, he would retire from the WWF.
Shane McMahon, now actively supporting Wight's
bid to become champion, appointed himself as the
special guest referee. However, The Rock triumphed
when Vince McMahon assaulted Shane and donned
the referee shirt, personally making the three
count following a Rock Bottom.
the March 20 episode of RAW, Triple H agreed to
defend the title against The Rock and Wight on
the condition that the match would not take place
at WrestleMania. Triple H managed to pin Wight,
but Linda McMahon forced him to defend the title
at WrestleMania in a fatal four way elimination
match, with Mick Foley as the fourth man. Wight
was the first man eliminated from the match at
WrestleMania 2000 after the other three competitors
worked together against him.
WrestleMania, Wight began mimicking other wrestlers,
lampooning Rikishi as Showkishi, The Berzerker
as Shonan the Barbarian, and Val Venis as The
Big Showbowski. He faced Kurt Angle at Backlash
and came to the ring dressed like his friend and
role model Hulk Hogan, complete with skullcap/wig
and yellow tights. "The Showster" defeated
Angle with ease. When Shane voiced his disapproval
of Big Show's antics, Wight began feuding with
his former manager. At Judgment Day on May 21,
Shane defeated Wight in a falls count anywhere
match following interference from Big Boss Man,
Bull Buchanan, Test, and Albert. Wight returned
two months later, apparently intending to gain
revenge on Shane. Instead, he attacked The Undertaker
and sided with Shane, forming a short-lived stable
known as "The Conspiracy" with Shane,
Chris Benoit, Edge, Kurt Angle, and Christian.
After The Undertaker threw Wight through a table,
he was removed from WWF television for the remainder
of the year. Wight was sent to Ohio Valley Wrestling,
a WWF developmental territory, to lose weight
and improve his cardiovascular fitness.
returned at the 2001 Royal Rumble, but was eliminated
by The Rock. Angered by his quick elimination,
he proceeded to chokeslam The Rock through the
announcer's table at ring side before he left
the arena, (this however did not eliminate The
Rock as he never went over the top rope). He then
began competing for the Hardcore Championship,
which he lost to Kane in a triple threat match
which also included Raven at WrestleMania X-Seven.
The Invasion, Wight remained loyal to the WWF.
He faced Shane McMahon, the on-screen owner of
WCW, in a last man standing match at Backlash
and was defeated following interference from Test.
He was also part of the victorious Team WWF at
Survivor Series 2001, though he was eliminated
early in the proceedings.
was the number six pick of Ric Flair (representing
the RAW brand) in the March 25, 2002 draft. He
joined the newest incarnation of the New World
Order, feuding with Steve Austin, but the stable
disbanded after Kevin Nash was injured.Wight achieved
little success on RAW after this, at one point
even losing to the much smaller Jeff Hardy. Wight
began a feud with Booker T, but lost the majority
of his matches. He then feuded with the Dudley
Boyz, but was once again repeatedly defeated.
late 2002, Wight was traded to SmackDown!. Upon
arriving on SmackDown!, Wight immediately challenged
WWE Champion Brock Lesnar. He became a two-time
WWE Champion and a four time World Champion (first
two being the WCW Championship) when he defeated
Lesnar in Madison Square Garden at the Survivor
Series, after Brock's manager Paul Heyman turned
on him. He lost the title to Kurt Angle a month
later at Armageddon.
January 2003, Wight lost a Royal Rumble qualifying
match to Lesnar. He then began feuding with The
Undertaker, leading to Wight and his partner A-Train
losing to The Undertaker at WrestleMania XIX.
He then renewed his feud with Brock Lesnar and
wrestled him four times for the WWE title (including
a Stretcher match at Judgment Day) but was unsuccessful
in his attempt to regain the title. On the June
26, 2003 edition of SmackDown! Wight, Shelton
Benjamin, and Charlie Haas defeated Mr. America
(Hulk Hogan), Brock Lesnar, and Kurt Angle in
a six-man tag team match when Show pinned Mr.
America. This was Hogan's last WWE appearance
as Mr. America. For several months afterwards,
WWE hyped up Big Show as the man who retired Hogan
at Madison Square Garden (where the six-man tag
team match was held). In a twist of irony, at
No Mercy Wight defeated Eddie Guerrero for the
WWE United States Championship and then formed
an alliance with the then WWE Champion Brock Lesnar;
he abandoned a departing Lesnar immediately before
WrestleMania XX. At WrestleMania XX, Wight lost
the United States Championship to John Cena.
the April 15, 2004 episode of SmackDown!, Wight
promised to quit if he failed to defeat Eddie
Guerrero that night. He lost to Guerrero, and,
believing that Torrie Wilson had laughed at him
for losing, upended her car and threatened to
throw her off a ledge. Then-General Manager of
SmackDown! Kurt Angle ascended the ledge to try
and talk some reason into Wight, but Wight chokeslammed
Angle off the ledge, concussing him and (kayfabe)
breaking his leg. Paul Wight was not seen nor
heard from on WWE television for months.
mid-2004, Wight was reinstated by new General
Manager Theodore Long, Wight returned two weeks
earlier than his promo made out he was coming
back. He returned during a lumberjack match between
Eddie Guerrero & Kurt Angle and beat down
everyone in his path. At No Mercy, Wight fought
Kurt Angle. In the weeks before the match, Wight
claimed to have "lost his dignity" when
Angle tranquilized him in the middle of the ring
using a dart gun and shaved his head (Wight retained
his bald head until October 2005).
2005, Wight began pursuing the WWE Championship
once more, challenging John "Bradshaw"
Layfield to a barbed wire steel cage match at
No Way Out. After Wight chokeslammed Layfield
through the ring, Layfield managed to crawl to
the outside, winning the match and retaining his
April 3, 2005, at WrestleMania 21, Wight faced
Sumo Grand Champion Akebono in a worked sumo match;
the match was added to the show to attract a strong
pay-per-view audience in Japan, where Akebono
is considered a sporting legend. In the weeks
preceding the match, Wight pushed over a jeep
driven to the ring by Luther Reigns to show that
he was capable of moving the marginally heavier
Akebono. Wight lost to Akebono at WrestleMania.
Wight subsequently feuded with Carlito Caribbean
Cool and his bodyguard, Matt Morgan.
June 27, Wight was traded back to RAW in the 2005
WWE Draft Lottery, preventing him from participating
in a scheduled six-man elimination match for the
SmackDown! Championship. He successfully pinned
Gene Snitsky in a tag team match which turned
into a singles match when both men's partners
brawled backstage. After squashing his scheduled
opponents for several weeks, Wight returned to
his rivalry with Snitsky. On August 22, he foiled
Snitsky's harassment of backstage interviewer
Maria. On August 29, Snitsky hit Wight with the
ring bell immediately after Wight had won a match.
As a result, Wight and Snitsky were placed in
a match at Unforgiven on September 18 in which
Wight defeated Snitsky. On September 26, Wight
defeated Snitsky again in a street fight.
October 17, Wight defeated Edge and was thus entered
in an online opinion poll, with the winner of
the poll facing John Cena and Kurt Angle in a
Triple Threat match for the WWE Championship at
Taboo Tuesday on November 1. The poll was won
by Shawn Michaels, meaning that the other two
options would wrestle for the Tag Team Titles.
Wight teamed with Kane to defeat Lance Cade and
Trevor Murdoch for the World Tag Team Championship.
the weeks preceding the 2005 Survivor Series,
Wight became involved in the rivalry between the
RAW and SmackDown! brands. He and Kane invaded
the November 11 episode of SmackDown! and, along
with Edge, attacked Batista (inadvertently injuring
him in the process). On the November
14 episode of RAW, Wight and Kane defeated SmackDown!
wrestlers and reigning WWE Tag Team Champions
MNM in an inter-brand, non-title match. On November
21, Wight and Kane "injured" Batista
by delivering a double chokeslam onto the windshield
of a car. At Survivor Series, Wight, Kane, Carlito,
Chris Masters, and team captain Shawn Michaels
represented RAW in a match with Team SmackDown!:
JBL, Rey Mysterio, Bobby Lashley, Randy Orton,
and Batista. SmackDown! won the match, with Orton
being the sole survivor. Wight drew with Rey Mysterio
in an inter-promotional match held on SmackDown!
after Kane interfered and the match was declared
a no-contest. Following the match, Wight and Kane
attacked Mysterio until The Undertaker chased
them from the ring. Wight and Kane returned to
SmackDown! on December 2, defeating Mysterio and
JBL after JBL abandoned the match, claiming the
referee had poked him in the eye. Following the
match, Wight and Kane's attempt to assault Mysterio
was once again foiled, this time when Batista
ran in to see them off. As a result, Wight and
Kane were booked to face Batista and Mysterio
at Armageddon on December 18. They won the match,
which pitted the Tag Team Champions from each
brand against one another.
the December 12 episode of RAW, Wight took part
in a qualifying match for a shot at the WWE Championship
in an Elimination Chamber match at New Year's
Revolution on January 8, 2006. Wight lost to his
opponent, Shawn Michaels, by disqualification
after Triple H hit Michaels with a steel chair,
intentionally costing Wight the match and the
title shot. In retaliation, Wight cost Triple
H his qualifying match with Kane later that evening.
On the December 26 episode of RAW, during the
contract signing for the announced match between
Wight and Triple H at New Year's Revolution, Triple
H struck Wight in the hand that Wight apparently
favors when using the chokeslam with his sledgehammer.
The following week, Wight attacked Triple H while
wearing a cast on his hand, using the padding
provided by the cast to punch a hole in a chair
held by Triple H, destroying a monitor from the
announcers' table that Triple H intended to throw
at him and chasing Triple H away from the ring.
At New Year's Revolution, Triple H defeated Wight
after striking him in the head with his sledgehammer.
Wight was one of eight participants in the 2006
Road to WrestleMania Tournament, the winner of
which would receive a shot at the WWE Championship.
On the February 13 episode of RAW, Wight faced
Triple H in the tournament semi-finals in a match
that ended in a double count out. As a result,
Wight and Triple H faced Rob Van Dam (the winner
of the opposing semi-finals) in a Triple Threat
match to determine the winner of the tournament
on the February 20 episode of RAW. The match was
won by Triple H after he pinned RVD.
the weeks following the tournament, Wight and
Kane feuded with Chris Masters and Carlito, leading
to a World Tag Team Championship title match being
scheduled for WrestleMania 22. Wight and Kane
defeated Carlito and Masters in the opening bout
of WrestleMania 22, marking Wight's first victory
at WrestleMania after suffering six defeats. On
the following evening, Wight and Kane lost the
World Tag Team Championship to Spirit Squad members
Kenny and Mikey following copious interference
from the other members of the Spirit Squad. They
faced Spirit Squad members Johnny and Nicky in
a rematch one week later, but lost via disqualification
after Kane "snapped" and left the ring
to attack the other members of the Spirit Squad.
The ensuing feud between Kane and Wight culminated
in a match at Backlash on April 30, 2006 that
ended in a no contest.
WWE vs. ECW Head to Head on June 7, Wight jumped
to the returning ECW brand; he removed his RAW
shirt to reveal an ECW shirt during a twenty man
battle royal including members of the RAW and
SmackDown rosters against members of the ECW roster.
He went on to win the match for ECW by eliminating
Randy Orton. Wight went on to appear at One Night
Stand on June 11, attacking Tajiri, Super Crazy,
and the Full Blooded Italians after their tag
the July 4, 2006 episode of ECW on Sci Fi, Wight
beat Rob Van Dam (RVD) to win the ECW World Championship
with the assistance of ECW's General Manager Paul
Heyman, who declined to make the three-count for
Van Dam after RVD hit his signature Five Star
Frog Splash on the Big Show. Heyman then instructed
Big Show to chokeslam RVD onto a steel chair,
before making the three-count. The fans almost
rioted when Wight became the ECW World Champion,
throwing drinks and empty cups into the ring,
as Heyman and Wight celebrated. The victory
made him the first ever professional wrestler
to hold the WWE Championship, WCW World Heavyweight
Championship, and ECW Championship. He is also
the first non ECW Original to hold the ECW title.
Over the next several weeks, Wight defeated many
other wrestlers from other brands, such as Ric
Flair, Kane, and Batista to retain his championship.
However, he lost to Undertaker at the Great American
Bash in the first ever Punjabi Prison match; he
was a substitute for The Great Khali, who was
removed by SmackDown! General Manager Theodore
Long and replaced with Wight as punishment for
an attack on The Undertaker shortly before the
match. He also had a brief feud with Sabu, whom
he defeated at SummerSlam.
after, he joined Vince and Shane McMahon in feuding
against D-Generation X. At Unforgiven, Wight and
the McMahons were defeated by DX in the first
ever Handicap Hell in a Cell match.
November 5 at Cyber Sunday he faced John Cena
and King Booker in a Champion of Champions match.
The fans voted for King Booker's World Heavyweight
Championship to be on the line. Booker won the
match following interference from Kevin Federline,
who was just beginning a feud with Cena at the
time. At Survivor Series, Cena wrestled Big Show
in a traditional 10 Man Survivor Series Tag Team
Match, with Cena and ECW newcomer Bobby Lashley
leaving as the sole survivors of the match after
Cena pinned Big Show to claim the victory due
to a major double team with Lashley. Wight then
began a feud with Lashley, who left SmackDown!
to join the ECW brand to participate in the Extreme
Elimination Chamber match at December to Dismember
for the ECW Championship. At the event, when it
was Lashley's turn to come out of his pod, Paul
Heyman had his men keep Bobby Lashley in his pod.
Due to that, Lashley had to use his table to break
out of the top of the pod. Later on, Lashley speared
The Big Show and pinned him to win the match and
claim the ECW Championship, after busting Wight
open by breaking one of the plexiglass pods with
the Big Show's face.
December 6, following an unsuccessful rematch,
WWE.com announced that Wight was taking time off
from the ring to heal injuries he has sustained
during wrestling in ECW. In an interview he said
"I’m a raw-boned bastard that breaks
things and moves the immovable objects. When I’m
injured, I can’t do those things. I’m
much more valuable healthy both mentally and physically,
and this hiatus will help me to get there".
Clash of Legends (2007)
his sole wrestling match during his 15 month hiatus
from WWE, Wight wrestled Hulk Hogan at the Memphis
Wrestling independent event PMG Clash of Legends
on April 27, 2007 in Memphis, Tennessee, losing
following a leg drop. The bout was presented as
a "rematch" of the March 29, 1987 match
between Hogan and André the Giant at WrestleMania
III, which Hogan won in a similar fashion. In
a press conference on April 12, Wight announced
that he had reduced his weight by 60 lb (27 kg/4.3
st) since leaving WWE and had given up smoking.
When referred to as "Big Show", Wight
stated that this was his "slave name"
and that he was to be referred to as Paul "The
Great" Wight ("Great White") Wight
subsequently began training at the Phantom Boxing
Club in Miami with the intent of becoming a professional
to WWE (2008–Current)
returned to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)
under his last used ring name (The) Big Show,
at No Way Out, stating that he had lost 108 pounds.
He then got into a kayfabe physical confrontation
with boxer Floyd Mayweather which was originally
thought to had led to Wight receiving a broken
nose, however, information coming from within
the WWE has advised this was not the case. The
confrontation occurred after Big Show threatened
to give Rey Mysterio a chokeslam. On February
22, Big Show was then assigned to work on the
SmackDown! brand after attacking Mysterio. (Credit: