A Star Shattered: Chapter Twelve
Tammy gives a brief background on Ron Simmons prior to his career in pro wrestling. Simmons played football at Florida State and played in the NFL for the Cleveland Browns. When his career came to an end, he looked to jump into pro wrestling, which is something several athletes have done. Simmons ended up working for Bill Watts in Mid-South because Watts saw money in him.
Considering Watts was known to be a bit of a racist, he had success in promoting other African American wrestlers. Ernie Ladd and Junkyard Dog had earned quite a bit of success under Watts booking. Watts made Simmons the first African American NWA/WCW World Champion in 1992. Simmons also had success teaming with Butch Reed going by the name Doom and being managed by Nancy Sullivan.
When Simmons jumped to the WWF, Vince McMahon couldn’t wait to transform Simmons into a monster. However, Tammy didn’t understand what Vince renamed Simmons Faarooq and made him wear gladiator gear.
Ron was a talented in-ring performer, but lacked on the interviews and that was where Tammy came into the picture. She thought it was a great opportunity to venture into the singles ranks. However, she was told that management wanted them to act like a couple. She’d have to kiss Simmons with tongue.
It was the first time she said no to something that was given to her. She was with Chris Candido and she couldn’t force herself to kiss someone that she wasn’t attracted to at all. She was a little confused to selling merchandise as a babyface and then act like a heel alongside Faarooq.
The fans wanted to cheer for her and they wanted to cheer for Faarooq since they knew him as Ron Simmons. They were confused just as the fans were too. Faarooq had some success managing to get to the finals of the WWF Intercontinental Championship tournament where he lost to Marc Mero. Mero had introduced his wife on TV, Sable. Tammy says, “UGH. We’ll get to that later.”
Following the loss, Sunny made it clear that they weren’t business partners any longer and she was going to focus on the most important person… herself!
Chapter Thirteen coming soon!