Billy Watson

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Billy Watson

title history

  • Canadian Heavyweight title defeating Earl McCready (June 5, 1941);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Nanjo Singh (April 30, 1942);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Hevyweight title defeating Nanjo Singh (January 28, 1943);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Yvon Robert for vacant title (June 10, 1943);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title (July 1944);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Frank Sexton (October 26, 1944);
  • NWA (National Wrestling Association) World Heavyweight title defeating Bill Longson (Febuary 21, 1947);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Nanjo Singh (June 3, 1948);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Fred Atkins (August 2, 1949);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Yvon Robert (November 17, 1949);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Yvon Robert (October 12, 1950);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Pat Flanagan defeating Athol Layton & Hans Hermann (August 28, 1952);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Yvon Robert defeating Tiny & Al Mills (January 12, 1953);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Hombre Montana defeating Tiny & Al Mills (January 7, 1954);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Tex McKenzie defeating Tiny & Al Mills (June 16, 1954);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Paul Baillargeon defeating Karol & Ivan Kalmikoff (December ??, 1954);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Lord Athol Layton defeating Karol & Ivan Kalmikoff (July 14, 1955);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Ilio DiPaolo defeating Karl Von Schober & Fritz Von Erich (December 8, 1955);
  • NWA (National Wrestling Alliance) World Heavyweight title defeating Lou Thesz (March 15, 1956);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Pat O` Connor defeating Ed & Bill Miller (May 9, 1957);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Gene Kiniski (June 6, 1957);
  • NWA (Calgary) Canadian Heavyweight title won a tournament (1958);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Yukon Eric defeating Fritz Von Erich & Gene Kiniski (Febuary 13, 1958);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Bobo Brazil defeating Stan & Reggie Lisowski (May 22, 1958);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Bernard Vignal defeating Stan & Reggie Lisowski (August 28, 1958);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Yukon Eric defeating Nikita & Ivan Kalmikoff (November 13, 1958);
  • NWA (Toronto) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Gene Kiniski (June 18, 1959);
  • NWA (Vancouver) British Empire Heavyweight title (July 1959);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Ilio DiPaolo defeating Don Leo Jonathan & Gene Kiniski (December 21, 1959);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Ilio DiPaolo defeating Karol & Ivan Kalmikoff (April 21, 1960);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Open Tag Team titles w/Ilio DiPaolo defeating Mike & Doc Gallagher (August 18, 1960);
  • NWA (Vancouver) Pacfic Coast Tag Team titles w/Roy McClarty defeating Ivan & Karol Kalmikoff (November 6, 1961);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Yukon Eric defeating Chris & John Tolos (December 28, 1961);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Bill Soloweyko defeating Chris & John Tolos (January 18, 1962);
  • NWA (Vancouver) Pacfic Coast Tag Team titles w/Mr. Kleen defeating Killer Kowalski & Gene Kiniski (March 5, 1962);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Billy Red Lyons defeating Chris & John Tolos (March 28, 1962);
  • NWA (Vancouver) Pacfic Coast Tag Team titles w/Bearcat Wright defeating Hard Boiled Haggerty & Gene Kiniski (July 9, 1962);
  • NWA (Vancouver) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Gene Kiniski (August 23, 1962);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Bruno Sammartino defeating Sweet Daddy Siki & Bulldog Brower (September 27, 1962);
  • NWA (Vancouver) British Empire Heavyweight title defeating Mike Sharpe (December ??, 1962);
  • NWA (Vancouver) Canadian Tag Team titles w/Dan Miller defeating Sweet Daddy Siki & Kinji Shibuya (November 11, 1963);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Johnny Valentine defeating Fred Atkins & Professor Hiro (August 13, 1964);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Johnny Valentine defeating Fred Atkins & Professor Hiro (October 9, 1964);
  • NWA (Winnipeg) International Tag Team titles w/Don Leo Jonathan defeating Roy Heffernan & Al Costello (January 9, 1965);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Bulldog Brower defeating Masked Yankees (July 10, 1966);
  • NWA (Tornonto) International Tag Team titles w/Bulldog Brower Awarded (December ??, 1967);
  • NWA (Toronto) International Tag Team titles w/Mark Lewin defeating Tiger Jeet Singh & Bull Curry (August 25, 1968);

Career Highlights

England:

  • 1936: Billy Watson wrestled in England along with fellow Canadians Al Kormann and Tiger Tasker..
  • Billy Watson was given the name “Whipper” by newspapers in England after adopting ‘the irish whip’ as one of his moves..
  • July 1940: Billy Watson and his first wife, Patricia, left England just as the WWII was starting up, and returned to North America..

Toronto:

  • Whipper Watson began wrestling at Maple Leaf Gardens in 1940, starting a long relationship with promoter Frank Tunney..
  • Whipper Watson was one of the first wrestlers to cross into mainstream celebrity becoming one of Toronto’s most popular citizens..
  • February 21, 1947: Whipper Watson defeated “Wild” Bill Longson for the NWA World title and lost it to Lou Thesz two months later..
  • November 12, 1953 – Toronto: Billy Watson & Yvon Robert wrestled Al & Tiny Mills with Boxing Champion Joe Louis as referee..
  • March 15, 1956: Whipper Watson defeated Lou Thesz to recapture the NWA World title, but lost it back to Thesz on November 9, 1956..
  • Whipper Watson best-remembered matches may be a series against Gorgeous George in 1959..
  • ~~~The feud led to both George and his wife/valet having their head shaved in the ring after Watson defeated George..
  • Whipper Watson was very active in the offices of the NWA: Maple Leaf (Toronto) territory along side Frank Tunney..
  • Billy Watson continued to wrestle in Toronto until November 1971 (age 55), when he nearly lost his left leg after being hit by a car..
  • Billy Watson did have a series of bouts against The Sheik in Maple Leaf Gardens, which Watson always lost by DQ or countout..
  • 1970s: Billy Watson mostly wrestled in tag matches..

Retirement:

  • November 30, 1971: Billy Watson was injured when a car slid into him and nearly severed his leg ending what had been a 40 year career..
  • ~~~Billy Watson retired after the accident but still made appearances at shows to promote his protege Dewey Robinson..
  • 1978: There was a “Whipper Watson Appreciation” Event promoted in Toronto at the Maple Leaf Gardens
  • Billy Watson held an annual Easter Seals skate-a-thon at the Toronto Gardens..
  • February 4, 1990: Billy Watson died after suffering a heart attack while in Florida..