WWE Hall of Famer Rikishi has called for his brother Umaga to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as the Samoan Bulldozer marks 13 years since his untimely death in 2009. The former Too Cool member was inducted himself in the Hall of Fame in 2019 and wants to see his fellow Samoan given the nod for his legendary reign as Intercontinental Champion and his many iconic battles in the WWE.
In a tweet marking the anniversary of Umaga’s death, Rikishi called for him to be inducted, stating that the time for him to be honoured by the WWE was “long overdue”. The full tweet read;
“I feel it’s long overdue. #UmagaHOF Class of 2022. What you say @WWEUniverse? Should my brother go in this year ?? #UmagaClassOf2022”
Umaga is one of the most fondly remembered monsters in WWE in the past 20 years. The “Samoan Savage” was a crazed beast, billed from the isle of Samoa, and slaughtered any opponents who dared get in his way.
He was large, over 300 pounds according to the WWE, but possessed an agility that few him his size could even comprehend. His character was one in which you believed he had the ability to overpower anyone in his path and nobody could stop him once he set his eyes on his target.
While you had monster heels at the time, like Big Daddy V or the Great Khali, none of theme invoked the fear into you that Umaga did when you laid eyes on his tattooed face and snarling grin as he destroyed his opponent with his deadly Samoan spike.
His run (under this character) in WWE lasted only 4 years before he was unceremoniously released due to his drug issues. He went on to wrestle on the little known tour of Australia called “Hulkamania: Let The Battle Begin”, which featured the first ever wrestling matches of Hulk Hogan in Australia. Umaga, then known as Osu Fatu, wrestled on each leg of the tour which culminated in a match against Mr Anderson (WWE’s Mr Kennedy) in Sydney on 28 November 2009.
Sadly, this would be his final match of his career. He would wrestle in four matches on the tour, mainly tag matches, but his singles match against the former Mr Kennedy would be his last and would be a defeat.
Less than a week later, Umaga died from a heart attack. He was only 36 when he passed away on December 4, 2009, less than six months from his release from WWE. He left behind two brothers, including Rikishi but has continued to inspire the next generation of Samoan superstars, like Roman Reigns and The Usos.
He had a number of big moments in WWE that cemented him in the memories of fans forever. He wrestled John Cena a number of times for the WWE Championship but the most impressive was their Last Man Standing bout at the 2007 Royal Rumble event. Cena won the match by choking out Umaga with the ring rope, but the match went far to show just how good Umaga was and how he could work a main event program. He could have even became world champion had drug issues not derailed his push in WWE.
However, his most famous match in WWE came at Wrestlemania 23. He was handpicked to wrestle at the event by WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, in the much publicised “Battle of the Billionaires”. He was chosen to wrestle Bobby Lashley, with the ECW Champion chosen by future President of the United States Donald Trump to be his champion in the encounter. The billionaire whose chosen wrestler lost the match would be forced to have their head shaved, so the stakes could not have been higher for McMahon and Trump.
In a brilliant match that was refereed by the legendary “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, Umaga was defeated by Lashley and, as stipulated, Vince McMahon would have his head shaved by Austin, Trump and Lashley. While he lost again, he was given the chance to wrestle on the biggest stage possible and showed just how much WWE valued Umaga.
Should Umaga be in the WWE Hall of Fame? Let us know what you think in the comments below or click down below to read about why Chris Jericho left WWE