This is the 321st installment of the ‘Wrestling with Sin‘ series. A group of stories that delves into the darker, underbelly of pro wrestling. Many of the stories involve such subjects as sex, drugs, greed and in some cases even murder! As with every single story in the Sin series, I do not condone or condemn the alleged participants. We simply retell their stories by researching interviews, newspapers, magazines and various other sources of media.
Don’t Bennett Against Him
Former Ring of Honor, TNA and WWE wrestler Mike Bennett revealed his battles with addiction to prescribed pain medication. It all started back in 2013, when Bennett suffered a knee injury and was prescribed pain medication. At first, Bennett was able to manage the pain pills…but that all changed when Bennett was booked on a tour of Japan.
Before the tour, Bennett asked his doctor for a stronger prescription to help him make it through his bookings. It was during his time in Japan, that Bennett became completely addicted to paid medication. The addiction caused Bennett to become isolated and he cut off most of his friends and family. Bennett would even push his wife Maria Kanellis away.
Bennett also admitted that when he signed with WWE, he was still heavily addicted to pain pills and was in no real shape to be on the road for the promotion. Luckily for Bennett, his wife stuck by his side and helped him enter a drug rehab to get himself clean.
New Zealand wrestler Travis Banks was accused by a former trainee of his… wrestler Millie McKenzie…of carrying on a secret affair. McKenzie was just 17 years old at the time of the affair and said it was an abusive relationship. One where Banks tried to control her and also cheated on her with other women.
Banks, who was employed by NXT UK, released a statement about the accusations saying…
Millie was a trainee of mine at Fight Club: Pro. She was also a close personal friend. We would be at shows together, attend the same social events, travel together and hang out at the wrestlers house where I was living. It was through this friendship a consensual relationship formed.
The relationship broke down between both parties and it ended. After it ended we agreed to talk it out. We apologized to each other for any individual actions behind the relationship breakdown. After seeing these comments, I can only repeat my apology. I am truly sorry for any pain caused by the relationship.
McKenzie immediately responded to Banks statement by saying:
How dare you Travis. I never had anything to apologize for. You manipulated your position of power over me. At 17 years of age, I had no idea what a relationship actually entailed. The mental and emotional hurt you put me through is INEXCUSABLE and I am not the only one of your trainees that you’ve done this to. You are a liar, a manipulative person with no conscious and you always believe your in the right. You are NOT RIGHT. I am not scared of you anymore, you hold no power over me to all the people that messaged saying they wish they could have done more at the time. PLEASE help me now to create a safe working environment for me again and others. Don’t protect him this time just because he’s your friend.
Travis Banks was eventually released from NXT UK.
Don’t Judge Me
Alphonse Bisignano was an Italian born boxer turned professional wrestler in the early 1930’s. Bisignano would make Des Moines, Iowa his adopted home and open up a supper club. He also bootlegged liquor and operated an illegal casino above his restaurant. Bisignano’s restaurant was raided by police and he was arrested. He was forced to pay a fine of $1,000 and had his establishment closed for a full year.
While at a local YMCA, Bisignano confronted the judge in his case…Judge Harry Grund. Bisignano allegedly “roughed up” the judge and threatened to expose him as being corrupt. Bisignano was convinced that Judge Grund had targeted him specifically in the raid. Eventually, the wrestler appeared in court and issued an apology to the judge….he wrote:
“I have been under a terrific strain for several weeks, due to the fact that I have been tied up in litigation in both this court and in other courts.”
“Furthermore only a few days before I had my controversy with you at the Y.M.C.A., some police officers came to my home and served a summons on my wife, who was then and is now in a delicate condition, and upon my four little children, the youngest of whom is only three and a half years old, involving the suit now pending against me in the district court. This youngster was only a few months old when the suit was filed. The combination of all of these things made me think that my family and I were being singled out and prosecuted. I, of course, have never been able to understand why my four little innocent children should be required to answer for my conduct, innocent or otherwise.
“I desire to and do therefore offer my apologies to the Court and repeat that I am sorry the incident occurred.”
My Brother’s Keeper
Independent wrestler ‘Big Daddy Yum Yum’ Byron Wilcott was shot multiple times while standing in the doorway of his Shreveport, Louisiana home. Wilcott was shot in the wrist, the abdomen and thigh. Thankfully, his wounds were not life threatening. The shooter was an aspiring rapper named ‘B Will.’
B Will’s real name is Brian Alexander Wilcott…the brother to the professional wrestler. B Will allegedly shot Wilcott because according to the rapper….the wrestler was “talking too loud.” B Will was arrested and charged with aggravated second-degree battery. His bond was set at $500,000.