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Wrestling / John Nord

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John Nord (born October 18, 1959) is a retired Americannote  professional wrestler best known for his time in the AWA as Nord the Barbarian in the mid-1980s and as The Berzerker in WWE from 1991-1993. He also competed for New Japan Pro-Wrestling, All Japan Pro Wrestling, WCW, World Class Championship Wrestling in Dallas, "Cowboy" Bill Watts' Mid-South Wrestling/Universal Wrestling Federation and other territories. He made his PPV debut at Survivor Series 1991 on Col. Mustafa (The Iron Sheik)'s team with Skinner (Steve Keirn) and Hercules in a losing effort against the team of "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan/Sgt. Slaughter/"The Texas Tornado" Kerry Von Erich/"El Matador" Tito Santana. While he never won a title in his career, he was named by Pro Wrestling Illustrated their "Rookie of the Year" for 1985, beating out Kendall Windham, Dan Spivey and Sam Houston (Jake "The Snake" Roberts's brother.)

He has nothing to do with that song from Clerks, the Science Fiction Literature series Berserker or the other wrestler called the Barbarian.

"Nordic Tropes"

  • Arch-Enemy: Greg Gagne, the Von Erichs, Jimmy Snuka, Davey Boy Smith, The Undertaker
  • Ax-Crazy: Once, as the Berzerker, said, "Yes, Master Fuji, I will rip his head off for you!"
  • Bash Brothers: Stan Hansen (in Japan), Boris Zhukov, Barry Darsow (in WCW)
  • Beard of Evil: Until he shaved it off sometime in between leaving WWE and before he showed up in WCW in late 1997.
  • The Berserker: Well, duh.
  • The Brute: For Sheik Adnan Al-Kaissie
  • Cool Helmet: He was a wrestling Viking, what else would you expect?
  • Cool Shades: In WCW. While teaming with Barry Darsow, one of their routines was that after Nord had submitted an opponent with the camel clutch, Darsow would place the shades on Nord's face while he maintained the clutch.
  • Cool Sword: Nearly stabbed The Undertaker with it.
  • Dumb Muscle: His finisher in WWE was throwing his opponent over the top rope to be counted out. He would always try to win this way, even in title matches.
  • Expy: Of Bruiser Brody.
  • Finishing Move: Legdrop; (as the Berzerker) Throwing his opponent over the top rope to be counted out; (as himself in WCW) Camel Clutch.
  • Heel: Was this for much of his career and is best known in this role.
  • Heel–Faith Turn: Under his lumberjack gimmick, he disappeared for a while, and then came back as a born again Christian. That is, a lumberjack who'd been in the mountains for several months and been inspired by the beauty of nature to find God and turn face. A very rare instance of a wrestler with a religious gimmick being a face.
  • Horny Vikings: WWE originally called him the Viking before settling on the Berzerker.
  • I Have Many Names: Nord the Barbarian, the Viking, the Berzerker and his own.
  • It's All About Me: For a time in WCW, he'd walk to the ring wearing a shirt that on the front read "If you don't like me..." and on the back read, "There's something wrong with you."
  • Kitschy Local Commercial: Often appeared in-character in commercials for his brother's car dealership, where he would power-slam people who missed payments onto car hoods.
  • Light Is Not Good: During his WCW run he wore all white for a time, but was still solidly a heel.
  • Mauve Shirt: During his WCW run he didn't lose very often but he didn't get pushed either - both singles and while teaming with Barry Darsow, he mostly beat up jobbers on the C-shows like Pro and Worldwide. In fact, he won his only televised match on Nitro (against The Barbarian), and his only losses were to Goldberg and in the 60 man World War III battle royal.
  • Meaningful Name: Something of a coincidence, but, he played a Viking and his name is NORD.
  • Mighty Lumberjack: Complete with the flannel shirts and axes.
  • Parts Unknown: Often billed from there as both the Barbarian and the Berzerker, though sometimes in the AWA he was billed from "Norwegia."
    • The Lumberjacks were billed from The Great North Woods, which is a real area. However, it is a region that stretches across four states and into Quebec, Canada, and the AWA never specified where in the Great North Woods they were supposed to be from at any point during the team's existence.
  • Power Stable: The Sheik (Sheik Adnan Al-Kaissie)'s Army, in the AWA.
  • Religious Bruiser: Had a Bible-thumping gimmick at one point.
  • Squash Match: Modern fans best know him for that time he utterly annihilated then rookie Shawn Michaels.
  • Tag Team: The Breakfast Club, with the Grappler (Len Denton) in NWA Pacific Northwest Wrestling
  • Villain Team-Up: With Papa Shango against The Undertaker and the Ultimate Warrior in 1992.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Once while walking to the ring for a squash on WCW Worldwide, he said something about how he wakes up every day thinking about what he could do to the NWO. He never really got any kind of chance.
  • The Worf Effect: Goldberg actually worfed a bit for Nord, in that in the first move of the match Nord knocked Goldberg flat with a big boot. Granted, Goldberg recovered and went on to squash Nord, but at the time Goldberg sold so little that it was a pretty big deal.
  • Wrestling Doesn't Pay: The Lumberjacks.