Built as tough as an American-made automobile, The Man Beast from Detroit has had more than a few crash tests in the squared circle. Now, Rhyno is on SmackDown Live to show he can hang with The New Era.
Rhyno began his career wrestling for small companies in Canada where he became close friends with future ring allies Christian and WWE Hall of Famer Edge, but he first rose to national prominence in the original incarnation of Extreme Championship Wrestling. Debuting in mid-1999, the powerhouse took the renegade company by storm as he destroyed Extreme icons like Raven, Tommy Dreamer and The Sandman. Soon, even the highly-passionate hardcore fan base began to take notice of the devastating and impactful “GORE!”
Rhyno didn’t just defeat opponents. He ended them – barreling through his rivals like a full-steam-ahead locomotive. At CyberSlam 2000, he defeated Yoshihiro Tajiri for the ECW Television Championship. Over the ensuing months, Rhyno defended his title against all comers, including Jerry Lynn, Raven, Mikey Whipwreck, New Jack, Spike Dudley and even Rob Van Dam – who had vacated the title after a 23-month reign – but all were unable to topple The Man Beast.
At ECW’s final pay-per-view, Guilty as Charged 2001, Rhyno made history. Immediately after The Sandman won the ECW Championship in a grueling matchup, The Man Beast appeared in New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom and pinned his rival to win the title in just one minute, becoming the first competitor to simultaneously hold ECW’s two singles championships. The company ceased operations later that month.
Rhyno kept moving and debuted in WWE two months later. He rekindled his longtime friendships with Edge and Christian and helped his allies win the tag titles at WrestleMania X-Seven. The trio joined with Kurt Angle to form Team RECK and all four members advanced to the semifinals of the 2001 King of the Ring Tournament.
Staying true to his ECW roots, Rhyno won the Hardcore Championship on three occasions early in his WWE tenure and joined the ECW portion of The Alliance during 2001’s Invasion. When Chris Jericho made nasty remarks about Stephanie McMahon, Rhyno fought for the ECW owner’s honor and even Gored Y2J straight through SmackDown’s set. He later picked up the prestigious United States Championship from former ECW rival Tajiri.
Then, after nearly a decade away from WWE’s rings, The Man Beast made a surprise appearance on NXT in early 2015, flattening Elias with a Gore that brought the NXT Universe to its feet. The Man Beast would remain a semi-permanent fixture in NXT before returning to the main roster later that year, joining forces with fellow ECW Alumni The Dudley Boyz and Tommy Dreamer to take on The Wyatt Family in an Eight-Man Elimination Tables Match at WWE TLC.
After reemerging in NXT during the summer of 2016 to take on Samoa Joe, The Man Beast would follow up that blockbuster match by becoming a huge free agent. After signing with SmackDown LIVE, Rhyno teamed with Heath Slater to become the first-ever SmackDown Tag Team Champions. Rhyno & Slater then moved to Monday Night Raw as part of the 2017 Superstar Shake-up.