The Destroyer defended the WWA title for 10 months including some great matches against Giant Baba at the sold-out Olympic Auditorium in LA.
The Destroyer continued to wrestle legends during his run with the WWA – Dick the Bruiser, “Cowboy” Bob Ellis, and Pedro Morales to name a few.
In June 1964, Beyer returned to Los Angeles and beat Dick “The Bruiser” for another WWA title. Beyer lost the title to Bob Ellis in September, won it back in November, and then lost it for the last time in March 1965 to Pedro Morales.
Between 1966 and 1972, Dick Beyer wrestled as masked man Doctor X while in Minneapolis working for the AWA, although you were still known as “The Destroyer” elsewhere.
The Destroyer wrestled as “Dr. X’ in the Midwest because Verne Gagne wanted to keep the top spot in the territory.
August 17, 1968 – AWA: Dick Beyer (wrestling as Dr.X) defeated Verne Gagne for the AWA world heavyweight title.
August 14, 1970 – AWA Comiskey Park: Paul Diamond defeated Dr. X (Dick Beyer).
The Destroyer:The Destroyer in Japan:
The Destroyer was the first North American to “get over” in Japan.
The Destroyer feuded with Rikidozan in the most significant series of matches in Japanese history.
The Destroyer holds the distinction of holding the last singles victory over Rikidozan.
The Destroyer in Canada:
The Destroyer left Japan in 1979 and then wrestled in Toronto and Montreal. His opponents there read like a Hall of Fame membership – Terry and Dory Funk, Andre the Giant, Bob Backlund, Nick Bockwinkel, Mad Dog Vachon, to name a few.
Dick Beyer paved the way for other American wrestlers to play their trade in Japan.
2010 – Dick Beyer inducted Gorgeous George into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Greg Kelly wrote: I found a bit online about Dick Beyer and Mark Lewin’s bad blood which resulted in The Destroyer’s tour here (Australia) being cancelled by Barnett and Doyle, Lewin’d dislike of Beyer went back to 67 in LA when Beyer wouldn’t job for the WWA champion Lewin, Beyer told Verne Gagne that he was planning a world tour but had a hole in his schedule from Jan to March 71 so Gagne said that Barnett had been bugging him for talent for ages so Gagne rang Barnett in front of Beyer and offered Barnett the choice of either Destroyer or Dr X and that Beyer would work for $650 a week, Barnett said that he’d like the Destroyer but when Beyer was working in Samoa he rang Australia and found out out that it had been cancelled, he found out that Lewin who was a big star here went to Barnett and had it cancelled, he’d told Barnett that it was him or Beyer, Lewin was doing big business here so Beyer was cancelled, Dick went to New Zealand for Steve Rickard instead initially as himself and then as Destroyer and did sell out business there so then Barnett wanted him again but Dick said no he’d had his chance, Beyer did an interview at the office of a New Zealand newspaper as himself and then returned a week later with the mask on and nobody at the newspaper recognised that it was the same guy. (I went looking for that article where I found the info about their heat and it was by Steve Yohe, he’d be better off with the credit than me.)
BottomlessJack wrote: ..One of The Destroyer’s last runs was in April-June of 1984 with Bill Watts’ Mid-South Wrestling. The Destroyer came in to actually groom a man he had trained and converted from collegiate wrestling to the pro’s in Mark Ragin. In order to get Ragin a spot with Mid South and really teach him the ways of the ring, Destroyer came in and worked the horn with Mark for a month or two, usually leading to draws IIRC. The most noteworthy thing about this run was The Destroyer actually wore a yellow “Assassin’s” mask and was called The Shadow! He had televised matches with both Magnum TA and Terry Taylor, both matches were competitive but short with the faces grabbing the wins. Hope this helped.
Richard J. Beyer
July 11, 1931
Buffalo, New York
Height and Weight
5'10" 265 lbs
The Intelligent, Sensational Destroyer
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