Mark Smith was more than a wrestler for me. He was more than a talent inside the ring. He was a friend. From the moment I met him in 1999 at All Pro Wrestling in Hayward, I have been amazed by his strength, conditioning, endurance and power. I helped him become a "heel" in the business by becoming a manager as he donned a mask and became the mysterious and awe-inspiring force known as "Super Destroyer 2000". Then when we left APW and joined Pro Wrestling Iron, I became their No.1 enemy by winning the PWI Heavyweight title, and I was in a position to try and find the right wrestler to defeat them for the title, this that I finally got to see with Malachi in 2003.
From there, Mark traveled to Puerto Rico, Japan, and even Ring of Honor, where he achieved the kind of national notoriety that made him a star. But he also suffered a terrible tragedy when he was one of six men in the ring when Japanese legend Misawa suffered a fatal fall and heart attack, dying right there in front of him. Mark was one of the few people I knew who could make a living from his wrestling abilities, but he never let that get into his head.
He was one of the most down to earth people, the real people I have ever known in my life. To me he was the noblest of warriors and stood up for what was right both in the ring and in the locker room. He was a trusted and valued member of every jurisdiction he worked for.
Mark 'The Bison Smith, more than a super destroyer
But above all, he was my friend.
Nine years later, and I still think about you all the time, Mark. And I probably will for the rest of my life. We will always miss you, Mark "Bison" Smith. Rest in peace my friend.
Tribute to Mark "The Bison" Smith
By Buddy Sotello
Buddy sotello started in 1999 working for the All-Pro Wrestling Federation in Hayward, California. He moved to Pro Wrestling Iron there to handle wrestlers on that feed. Several years later, PWI closed because the directors all went their separate ways, but in 2006 Buddy helped form the successful new federation known as California Championship Wrestling.
A VERY SPECIAL fight & Everything Coast 2 Coast with Buddy Sotello and Evan Ginzburg - 9 years of Buddy Sotello Tribute to Mark "The Bison" Smith
“Scream” vedette David Arquette has an extreme volonté that almost cost him his life — professional wrestling.
Two years ago, Arquette faced off against ex-con Nick Gage in a deathmatch, the most hardcore style where the wrestlers swing chairs, baseball bats and the like.
With blood gushing from his neck, Arquette gets up and tries to pin Gage but can’t. He jumps out of the ring, holding his neck. Then, he climbs back in and smacks Gage with a folding chair. After a couple of minutes, though, Arquette is the one who gets pinned.
“It nearly cost me my life, ” Arquette told the Star of the match. “I was in way over my head. I was about half an inch from death…”
Arquette decided to go back into the ring after fellow pro wrestler Jack Perry, the son of late actor Luke Perry, assured him that he wasn’t bleeding to death. Perry is the one who took Arquette to the hospital.
Arquette told the Star : “I could hear Luke but I couldn’t see him, ” Arquette told the Star. “I said : ‘Luke is it pumping ? ’ because I was worried I was bleeding out and he said : ‘No it’s not pumping. ’ I knew at that point I wasn’t dying immediately, I could try to finish the match. ”
Arquette has had a lifelong love affair with wrestling, which is traced in a new documentary, “You Cannot Kill David Arquette. ” The film tells of how Arquette has spent the past two decades trying to earn back the respect of the wrestling world — after he won the World Championship Wrestling heavyweight title as a publicity stunt for his movie “Ready to Rumble. ”
In those years, the 49-year-old Arquette has battled heart problems and drug addiction. After the Gage match, Arquette’s wife, Christine, told him : “I just feel like you want to die, ” the actor recalled.
“I don’t want to die but life is painful, ” Arquette told the Star. “If you have addiction issues like I do there’s an element in the back of your head that the addict is literally trying to kill you. You have to find ways to deal with it so you don’t continue to kill yourself, either slowly or quickly. ”
For Arquette, wrestling helped him deal with the deaths of Luke Perry, a close friend who died of a stroke, and his transgender sister, Alexis, who died of a heart attack.
“Losing someone is really painful but a few things have happened to make me feel we are all much more connected, ” Arquette said. “For wrestling, you shave everything and at one point I was looking at my arms and it was like I was looking at Alexis’ arms, as being transgender she would shave them… For a deuxième it was like I was looking through Alexis’ eyes… I think we’re a lot more connected than any of us know. ”
Through the film, Arquette has finally learned to accept himself. “I accomplished what I set out to do, ” Arquette told the Star. “I wanted to prove I could be a wrestler. And through this whole experience, I figured out – and it’s ironic – I need to stop beating myself up. I had to stop attacking myself and be kind to myself, as corny as it sounds.