In the third installment of ‘Superstars of Yesteryear’ post, we look at Darren Dozdov, better known to WWF fans by his ring names Puke or Droz.
After a short career in NFL, Darren Drozdov would become a professional wrestler. It was his antics in NFL that led to his signing. He gained notoriety for throwing up during a Monday Night Game of football which led to his nickname Puke. It was this off the wall behavious that led to his signing with the WWF and his hiring by Vince McMahon, where he woudl regurgetate into a bucket, was featured in the Beyond the Mat documentary. His brief wrestling career with the WWF ended cruelly after just one year after a botched powerbomb broke his neck, rendering him a quadriplegic.
Before his wrestling career, Drozdov had a brief run as a professional football player for New York Jets and Denver Broncos. He gained his nickname “Puke” following throwing up on Monday Night Football. It was reported that he had vomited at nearly every game that season and would reportedly see a psychiatrist for a “chronic vomiting” problem. It is little surprise that this off the wall athlete would soon find himself entering the world of wrestling.
After a run in the indies, he appeared in ECW as part of a stable of invaders from the WWF alongside Lance Wright, Brakkus, Doug Furnas and Phil LaFon.
He made his WWF debut in dark matches and on WWF Shotgun Saturday Night. His Raw debut came as an associate of the Legion of
Doom as Puke, and he was the unofficial third member of the group. In late 1998, he also competed in the Brawl for All tournament drawing with Road Warrior Hawk in the first round, defeating Savio Vega via points in the second round before losing to Bradshaw in the semi-finals.
His run with LOD was controversial with the storyline playing on Hawk’s real life battles with alcoholism. Hawk was deemed to be unfit to wrestle and Drozdov took his place in the team. The situation ended with accusations that Drozdov had been the “enabler” of Hawk’s problems and had dosed the L.O.D. member to take his place in the team.
During one segment, Hawk was shown to have fallen off the TitanTron. This culminated at the UK PPV WWF Capital Carnage when the Legion of Doom, made up of Droz and Animal, took on The Headbangers. During the match, Drozdov entered the ring to defend Animal who was on the receiving end of an illegal double-team by The Headbangers. Mosh rolled up Drozdov for the win. After the match, an enraged Animal and Drozdov began to brawl with Drozdov walking away from the ring in disgust, effectively ending his run with the LOD.
After Drozdov’s stint with the Road Warrior he came into his own after a heel turn. He began to build a stable of wrestlers who shared his bizarre lifestyle. He added Prince Albert – now Tensai in the WWE – to his faction as his personal “body piercing artist” and Vic Grimes who was brought in briefly as Key, his storyline dealer.
Droz’s professional career came to an end in October 1999 when a botched powerbomb resulted in him landing on his head, and fractured two disks in his neck. He remains employed by the company, and began contributing articles and essays for website and magazine content. He has since regained the use of much of his upper body and arms.
All the other ‘Superstars of Yesteryear’ pieces can be located here.