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Wrestling / Pampero Firpo

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Juan Kachmanian (April 6, 1930 – January 9, 2020) was an Argentinian professional wrestler of Armenian descent best known for his work under the name Pampero Firpo. He debuted in 1953 and also wrestled under the names Ivan the Terrible and The Missing Link (not to be confused with another wrestler with the same name.) He wrestled heavily in the old Los Angeles and Pacific Northwest territories. Among his in-ring achievements, he was a 4x NWA (Detroit) United States Heavyweight Champion, a 1x Texas Heavyweight Champion and a 3x NWA Americas (Los Angeles) Heavyweight Champion. He retired in 1986 and worked as a postal clerk in San Jose, CA.

"The Wild Tropes of the Pampas":

  • Afro Asskicker: His wild flopping hair was his most immediately identifiable trait.
  • Animal Motif: Bears, somewhat subtly for the "genre" standard
  • Arch-Enemy: The Sheik, for one. Firpo actually turned face after the Sheik hit him with his fireball. He also feuded with Nick Bockwinkel and Al Madril.
  • By the Hair: Subverted in that he usually ignored someone pulling on his hair or just answered with a headbutt, though Bobo Brazil managed to make it work on him in Big Time Wrestling. On the other hand it was usually played straight when he pulled on another man's air, which he usually did with reckless abandon.
  • Bash Brothers: Skull Murphy, Larry Hamilton, Neff Maivia
  • Beard of Evil: Not too long but one of the bushiest of his era.
  • Big "YES!": A drawn-out "Ohhhh yeahhhhh!" was his Catchphrase well before Randy Savage started using it.
  • Carpet of Virility: Type 2. To represent his savagery rather, though he was considered manly to some extent too.
  • Chairman of the Brawl: It's pro wrestling, so it's no surprising he's got his hands on a few folding chairs, though in Big Time Wrestling he'd take the seats of fans right in front of the security and or police presence.
  • Chokeholds: Favored lots of illegal chokes applied from the rear, often to a seated opponent.
  • Companion Cube: His shrunken head. It comes with the territory of being a wild man from Argentina.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: The word Garfio is Spanish for claw.
  • Finishing Move: Bear Hug, "El Garfio" (Claw hold)
  • Lampshade Hanging: During a match with Gary Vallon(who would become handsome Jimmy Valiant one of the commentators said the only proper opponents to pit against Pampero were people just coming into the business or the top man of the territory, on the basis he was bound to seriously hurt somebody. It ended up going about three minutes in what they called the longest match they had ever seen him in.
  • No Indoor Voice: Every word was almost a sentence and usually shouted.
  • Red Baron: "The Wild Bull of The Pampas". Less remembered are "The Monster" and "The Eighth Wonder Of The World", the latter due to André the Giant becoming more associated with the title.
  • The Worf Effect: Summed up in the Body Press magazine interview on Pampero's opponents, where Bobo Brazil said "You must defeat him to have any future."
  • Toothy Issue: Had gaps in his lower teeth, which enhanced his look.
  • Villainous Underdog: Versus the traveling face Haystacks Calhoun
  • Wild Man: He was prone to random fits of biting, scratching or arbitrarily squeezes miscellaneous parts of his opponent's bodies.
  • Wrestling Monster: And one of the first successful ones to turn face. He asked for no mercy and refused to give any in kind, or so he claimed.