Where Are They Now?: Jimmy Wang Yang

Page 1 of 4
December 18, 2013

Life has always been a party for Jimmy Wang Yang. He lived out his childhood fantasies in the squared circle from the moment he graduated high school, travelling the world as a member of the WCW and WWE rosters. Today, he’s keeping the party going with a unique business venture — Jimmy’s Redneck Party Bus, a Cincinnati-based celebration on four wheels.

It may sound like an unexpected career turn for the man born James Yun, but the truth is that everything about his career has been unexpected. He can trace his beginnings back to a Halloween night in suburban Georgia. A die-hard wrestling fan, Yun had heard that WCW star Diamond Dallas Page lived in the area and hatched a simple plan to meet him.

“We went to every house until we found DDP,” he said with a laugh. “He was really cool. He was so much cooler than I would have been to fans stalking my house.”

After getting a picture with the former WCW Champion, Yun told DDP that he was interested in becoming a wrestler. He didn’t expect the response he got from Page.

Classic photos | Current photos | Video highlights of Yang

“He said, ‘When you get old enough, come back and I’ll take you to the Power Plant.’ That’s when I thought it could actually happen. It really motivated me.”

Yun and his friends ended up heading back to DDP’s place on several occasions, once to help him put up Christmas lights. That connection helped the teenager get his foot in the door with WCW.

“I had my contract in June 1999, a week before I graduated high school,” Yun explained. “When [WCW officials] came and saw me, I was 17. They asked me if I was 18 and I totally lied. They liked me and wanted to sign me. I graduated and a week later, I was at the WCW Power Plant.”

The Power Plant, headed up by Sgt. Buddy Lee Parker and WWE Hall of Famer Paul Orndorff, had a reputation for being a tough facility to get into, let alone graduate from. Yun was in for a wake-up call when he got there.

“It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life,” he said. “We’d do 500 squats and 300 pushups before lunch. We didn’t really learn about wrestling, we learned how to be the best athletes possible.” 

ArticlesYou May Also Like