It’s easy to lose count of the number of awful gimmicks that have graced the square circle and WCW certainly had their fare share. One of which was the Yeti. Today we ask’Whatever Happened to?‘ Ron Reis, the man under the bandages.
Ron Reis was trained to become a pro wrestler by the late, great ‘Big’ John Studd aka John Minton. After starting his career on the independent circuit, Reis got his big break in 1995, when he was signed by World Championship Wrestling (WCW)
On October 29th, 1995, Reis debuted for WCW wrapped up like a mummy and called ‘The Yeti.’ He was a member of Kevin Sullivan’s Dungeon of Doom and attacked Hulk Hogan during his match against fellow Dungeon member the Giant.
In reality, this was not supposed to be Ron Reis’ big debut for the promotion. According to Reis himself, the original choice to play the Yeti was none other than Jorge Gonzalez better known as Giant Gonzalez in the WWF and El Gigante in his previous stint with WCW.
The problem was, Gonzalez fell ill from diabetes and was sent home to his native Argentina. WCW management still wanted to go through with the angle, so they decided to use Reis instead. Knowing that this gimmick wasn’t a permanent one for Reis, WCW used bandages and wrapped him from head to toe like a mummy covering his identity. As we all know by now, the Yeti gimmick failed miserably and Reis was quickly repackaged.
By the beginning of 1996, Reis was given a new gimmick of a giant ninja from Japan aptly named ‘The Super Giant Ninja.’ Thankfully, this too was a masked gimmick as it was also very short lived. He then adopted the name ‘Big’ Ron Studd as an homage to his trainer and mentor but that too didn’t last very long.
His most successful gimmick came when Reis was aligned with Raven and his Flock in 1998. H was given the simple name of ‘Reese’ and was the pseudo enforcer of the stable. Reese like many others in the Flock didn’t speak just brawled with whoever Raven wanted destroyed. Raven’s Flock eventually disbanded and Reese became a casualty after a loss to former Flock member Saturn. Reis left WCW and wrestled in Japan and various Indy promotions before calling it a career.
So, whatever happened to Ron Reis?!? While Reis will do the occasional wrestling match or appearance at a convention….Ron Reis now resides in Atlanta, Georgia and is a district sales manager for a wine distributor in that area. He is also married with children.
You can read all previous ‘Whatever Happened to?’ pieces here.