Kevin Nash (born July 9, 1959) is an American professional wrestler, booker, and commentator who played a smaller but significant role in the "Monday Night Wars". Not a particularly technical performer, he is more famous for his invincibility and backstage power.
Like most wrestling stars to come out of the nineties, Nash cut his teeth in WCW as a jobber. Despite his 7-foot frame, good looks, and dry wit on the mic, WCW simply could not get him over, even after giving him two of the best talkers in the business (Kevin Sullivan and Diamond Dallas Page) as managers. His first 3 years were a flop, but he did fall in with the right crowd, who gave him a leg up into joining WWE. Ever the maestro, Vince McMahon accomplished what WCW could not: He came up with the right gimmick (Diesel) and angle (Shawn Michaels' bodyguard), and with Vince's marketing know-how, Nash emerged as a leather-clad Adonis whom no one could cross and survive. He also became close acquaintances with Hulk Hogan, who invited Nash to join him at WCW—this time with total creative control.
With the help of mutual friend Scott Hall, the amigos came up with "The Outsiders", which would evolve into the wildly-successful nWo angle. The group dominated the ratings for two years and rocketed WCW into becoming the world's most profitable wrestling company.
But in 1999 it all started to go wrong: Hogan and Nash (no longer billed as Diesel) killed the WCW World Heavyweight Championship with their "Fingerpoke of Doom" idiocy, discredited Ric Flair and tried to run him out of WCW, and hatched the most ridiculous and camp storylines wrestling had yet seen (until Vince Russo came along), all designed to push Nash, Hall, and their small circle of friends into the spotlight at the expense of homegrown talent.
After the company was bought up by WWE, Nash waited out his contract and bummed around on TV for a while, until he was finally released in 2003. He left again for greener pastures (emphasis on green), this time following Hogan to TNA and rebooting the nWo angle with the help of Jeff Jarrett, who more or less filled in for Hall. Nash remained with the company until 2011, and has made semi-regular appearances on WWE programming ever since. He was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2015.
Nash is also a thespian. He honed his craft in such classic roles as Super-Shredder in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze, The Russian in The Punisher, and Bass Armstrong (himself a Hogan parody) in DOA: Dead or Alive. You may know him best as Tarzan from Magic Mike.
The Other Wiki has a more detailed account of his career, as usual.
"Look at the adjective: Trope:"
- Aborted Arc:
Jay Hunter: Maybe it was Hogan! Maybe it was Sting! And eventually: Stop asking.
- The Mystery of the White Hummer. It was originally pitched as a way to get Carmen Electra (a friend of Nash) or Sable over, but negotiations with both fell through, and the story was left unresolved for years.
V1: Sorry. The name... sticks out quite a bit. CARMEN ELECTRA?
OOC: W-what... why was she tryin' to kill Kevin Nash?
Jay: Why you gotta hassle me about this, man?
- His match with CM Punk was canceled due to Nash not being able to be cleared to compete due to taking cardiovascular medication and the risk of being off it for an extended period.
- Achilles' Heel: Nash has become infamous for his susceptibility to tear his quads.
- Affably Evil: Nash turned on Sting four times in 1999-2000 alone, and each time they went back to being buddies again. Oh, you.
- The Atoner:
- Nash expressed some regrets for his misdeeds in WCW, which led to him working with a couple of young guys at TNA like Chris Sabin or Alex Shelley. Partially averted, because he kept lambasting guys like Chris Jericho, though. (And he regularly took the piss out of Impact, much like in his Nitro days.)
- Even carried over into his character in TNA upon his exit from the company. This was used as his reason for refusing to go along with the Immortal conspiracy, especially after Hogan got rid of his Wolfpac buddies.
- Bad Guys Do the Dirty Work: Kevin Nash, the "independent contractor", brought the boys out of the dark ages where nobody discussed money and wrestlers were in competition with each other instead of the promoter for end dollars.
- Badass Beard/Beard of Evil: It is arguable how successful Diesel's own run as WWF Champion was, but he did have a memorable beard during that run and during the initial runaway success of the nWo and Wolfpack.
- Bash Brothers: With all members of The Kliq at different times, but especially with Scott Hall. His turn on Jeff Jarrett came after Jarrett accidentally struck Hall.
- The Big Guy/The Brute:
- He sees himself as one. When asked about the The Nexus, specifically after they attacked The Undertaker to help Kane bury him alive, Nash described Wade Barrett performing the Wasteland looking like a boy trying to hold up a man and boasted that he'd beat the piss out of him and take his girlfriend.
- Scott Hall explained that he would usually start the match when they would team together because he firmly believed you had to "showcase the big man" and make Nash's tag in a big deal.
- Bodyguard Betrayal: To Shawn Michaels in 1994, as part of a Heel–Face Turn.
- Deadpan Snarker. Almost always, in and out of character.
- Dented Iron: No surprise for a wrestler his size. He looks good, still pretty ripped and since his face hasn't aged much since his WCW days could actually pass for a lot younger when he colors his hair, but he's still carrying plenty of injuries and has trouble being on his feet for long periods of time.
- Didn't See That Coming: He Jackknifed CM Punk at SummerSlam 2011.
- Dumb Muscle: While his partnership with Samoa Joe was supposed to be about Kevin Nash curing Joe of his affliction with this trope, Kevin Nash more often than proved himself to be the dumb muscle.
- Fingerless Gloves: During his WWF run as Diesel.
- Finger Poke of Doom: The recipient of said poke, and will Never Live It Down.
- Finishing Move:
- As Diesel and his real name, the Jacknife Powerbomb.
- As Oz, he used the Emerald City Slam (a sidewalk slam) and the Emerald City Twister (a spinning crucifix toss)
- As Vinnie Vegas, he used Snake Eyes (throwing your opponent face first into a turnbuckle.) It remains a staple move for big wrestlers.
- The Gambler: You got to know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away... from a terrible gimmick. He wasn't the first WCW wrestler to wear the Gambler's mantle, even if his name was Vinnie Vegas.
- The Giant: His wrestling style. He is one of the best examples of it actually, when directly compared to frequent partner Scott Hall or the interim Diesel, Kane.
- Glass Cannon: Big, deals out lots of punishment, extremely injury prone. How injury prone? After suffering a bicep injury that took nearly ten weeks to recover, he made his return in a tag team match and within twelve seconds of ring action, managed to tear his quad and was put on the shelf for the next nine months.
- He's Back: He's return to WWE in Royal Rumble 2011 as Diesel. SummerSlam 2011 and Royal Rumble 2014 as Kevin Nash.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Scott Hall, for something approaching two decades. Say whatever you like about Hall and Nash as wrestlers, but as this blog post shows, they mean a hell of a lot to each other.
- Hostile Show Takeover:
- As one-third of "The Outsiders", ex-WWE stars who quickly turned WCW into their playground.
- As part of the Main Event Mafia, he, Booker T and Scott Steiner hijacked an episode of TNA Impact!. While Steiner took the job of ring announcer, Nash and Booker became "Chet Lemmon" and "Black Snow" on commentary, taking the piss out of the entire company during their tenure.
- Informed Ability: As Diesel, Vince McMahon sold him as a sex-hungry powerhouse who couldn't be touched. This certainly didn't translate in practice as WWF Champion, however, as he became the lowest-drawing WWF Champion of all time.
- It Will Never Catch On:
- Inverted. While working as a booker in WCW, Nash thought actual wrestling was becoming passe, and resolved to prove it by having the first hour of Nitro contain all pre-taped segments and absolutely no matches. The end result was a 2.9 hourly rating — the only time ratings would dip below 3 during the Monday Night Wars — and he was shortly yanked from WCW Creative.note
- Nash once referred to Benoit, Guerrero, Perry Saturn, and Dean Malenko as the "Vanilla Midgets", due to their short stature (by pro wrestling standards) and introvert personalities. As head booker in WCW, Nash also felt that WCW's Cruserweights, like Chris Jericho and Rey Mysterio Jr., would never be considered credible Main Eventers. While it's arguable that Saturn and Malenko were indeed not really as memorable during their time in WWE and so have somewhat faded into obscurity over time, all of the rest of the above named went on to win world championships in WWE.
- The Juggernaut: He trounced The Giant, buried Goldberg, pinned AJ Styles clean... He even took a Humvee to the face and showed up at the next PPV no worse for wear. (He never even "lost consciousness" in the crash.) It took Mick Foley giving his all to dethrone him.
- Mean Character, Nice Actor:
- In WCW, he was well-liked as a person despite his awful booking. In the ring, despite his poor skills, he was a very safe worker, and almost never hurt anyone despite having a typically dangerous finisher, the powerbomb.note
- Even wrestlers who hated the Kliq will usually agree that Nash, along with Hall, was generally the most reasonable member of the group, and was a much nicer guy without his buddies egging him on.
- Miles Gloriosus: Just check out Nash's entrance to the match where the Fingerpoke of Doom happened. Some say the pyros are still going off to this day. At one point, Nash looks back and is like, "...Jesus, still?"
- No-Sell: He's tried to justify the Fingerpoke of Doom several times by saying that any match between the two of them would have been terrible. Since Hogan and Nash had two of the biggest egos in wrestling (and receive a hearty dose of the blame for the collapse of WCW), there's a chance he might be right. Oddly, Nash and Hogan would feud later that year.
- Nothing Personal: Nash and Hall have been friends for most of their professional lives, but he had no qualms about squashing Hall and making a mockery of his alcoholism in '99. Perhaps Hall thought he deserved it and was thankful to Nash for keeping him on payroll, but the viewing audience found it pretty tasteless. Kicking a man while he's down? Even Ed Ferrera would give it a rethink.
- One-Man Army:
- Kevin Nash vs. the New Blood. Yes, you read that right. When's the last time you saw someone get over an entire freaking company?
- In an episode of Botchamania, he is portrayed by Sean Bean's Boromir [!], with Creative Control represented by orcs. He cuts down a swath of jobbers before getting struck by arrows (labeled "Firing of Scott Hall"), causing his heat to dissipate right before the words "AOL Time-Warner Merger" land the killing blow on him.
- Parts Unknown (as Master Blaster Steele): "The Steele Mines"; (as Oz): "Emerald City"
- The Pornomancer: Big Sexy isn't a gimmick; it's a lifestyle. He's the kind of man who can fornicate with women just by glancing at them.
- Power Stable:
- (in WCW as Vinnie Vegas): The Diamond Exchange (led by Diamond Dallas Page and also including Scott Hall as the Diamond Studd and Scott "Raven" Levy as Scotty Flamingo.)
- (in WCW As Himself): The New World Order, as the second ever member, after Hall; and The Millionaires' Club, with Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Sting, Diamond Dallas Page, Sid Vicious, Lex Luger, Miss Elizabeth, Kimberly Page and Kronik.
- (in WWE): The revived nWo.
- (in TNA): The Kings of Wrestling, with Hall and Jeff Jarrett; and The Band, with Hall, Waltman and Eric Young.
- (in Juggalo Championship Wrestling) The jWo.
- Put on a Bus: Following his loss to Triple H at TLC.
- Red Baron:
- After beating The Giant, he dubbed himself "Big Sexy, The Giant Killer". Later shortened to just "Big Sexy".
- As Diesel, he's "Big Daddy Cool".
- Was also called "Silver Fox" for a short time in TNA.
- Reverse Psychology: His "pick me" rant from the Thunder Video Game adaptation. Nash tries to get the player not to choose him. Even IN A VIDEO GAME, Nash doesn't want to job.
- Ring Oldies: Even with head full of gray hair, Kevin Nash was still out in the ring, squashing No Limit, a tag team who were on their way into the IGWP tag title scene, on TNA Impact!.
- The Rival: Nash played basketball in high school, and was ranked the #2 player in Michigan. The #1 player? Earvin "Magic" Johnson.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: From the looks of things, he spent more time studying the politics of wrestling from HBK and Hunter than how to put on good matches.
- Screw the Rules, I Make Them!:
- Had a clause in his contract (known as a Favored Nations clause in sports) making him the highest-paid guy in WCW. If they started paying somebody else more, Nash's salary would automatically go up to equal it.
- While there is a lot of blame to go around for the death of WCW, Nash created an atmosphere which ensured guys such as Chris Jericho, Eddie Guerrero, and Chris Benoit would never be elevated, while Nash and his buddies could have all the TV time and championships they desired. This finally led to the hot talent taking their business to WWE. It didn't end up too badly for them: they might have made a name for themselves in WCW and ECW, but it was in WWE that they really became stars. He eventually got called out for it by CM Punk, among other people.
- Big Sexy comin' outta the closet, ooh yeah! (There was an obsession with drag in both promotions at the time.)
- While on Nitro commentary, Nash mocked the fans who said he didn't know how to book the show, boasting that he knows enough to book himself into a retirement angle so he doesn't have to take any bumps and still make big money.
- When Christian Cage was stomping around backstage demanding for people to partner with him against the Angle Alliance, Kevin Nash said he was too busy to help. When Christian inquired what was eating up his time Nash replied it was being paid to do nothing.
- Surprisingly does this A LOT in shoot interviews. He is very aware of his limited wrestling talent and his reputation and pokes fun of himself quite often.
- Sex Sells: While he was in charge of TNA Impact!, he forced The Beautiful People into a Mud Wrestling match with each other, figuring it would draw a large rating.
- Silver Fox: TNA ran a competition to give women the chance to be Kevin Nash's valet. This bit him in the ass in WCW when Sting/Savage baited him into a road accident with a tart-filled limo.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: Big Kev uses the word "fuck" the way most of us say "uh" or "and".
- Small Name, Big Ego: Nash has historically done just about anything he could to get out of jobbing cleanly whenever possible. This unwillingness to put other wrestlers over has not always been well-received. In fact, during the Outsiders' various WCW World Tag Team Championship reigns, they imposed what they called "Wolfpac Rules," which allowed other nWo members (including Randy Savage and Syxx [Sean Waltman], the latter being considered a third champion) to sub for one of them, usually Nash, in title defenses.
- Smug Snake:
- Spiritual Successor: It's been said many times by many people: Roman Reigns is Diesel all over again.
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Oh yes, and as a booker for WCW he made himself look pretty good at the expense of other guys. While it's true that a lot of them were middling talents, the same could be said for Bret Hart when he was starting out.
- Squash Match: The last time the WWE Title changed hands at a non-televised event, Nash as Diesel was the squasher with a simple boot and jackknife to Bob Backlund to win in 8 seconds at MSG.
- Tacky Tuxedo: One of the failed experiments... complete with over-gelled hair and a leisure suit. Dear God, it's horrible.◊
- Take This Job and Shove It: His departure from TNA in late 2010 was not exactly amicable.
- Tall, Dark, and Snarky: It could be said Kevin Nash has been far more celebrated for the promos he cuts than any of the wrestling matches he's had. People would tune into Impact just to hear him talk.Audience to Nitro girls: SHOW YOUR TITS
Nash: I would, but the air's too cold.
- Traumatic Haircut: Had his famously long hair cut off after being knocked out in a match by Chris Jericho. Behind the scenes, he was required to cut his hair for his role in The Punisher. He kept the short hair for a while in TNA, but eventually grew it back. He cut it short again after his program with Triple H ended and has kept it that way.
- True Companions: The Kliq.
- Vitriolic Best Buds:
- With Shawn Michaels. Even though they are best of friends, Nash will readily admit that Michaels could be insufferable at times.
- With Bret Hart. While "best buds" may be an overstatement, they became very complimentary of each other and seem to consider each other friends. However, back when they were both wrestling, they had a lot of public creative differences, including one where Bret refused to take Nash's Jack knife Power Bomb during their match in a non-ending for fear that it would "look like he could've lost". It proved the last straw for an already disgruntled Nash who ended up leaving the company shortly after.