“The Marquee” Bruce Santee
Height: 6’4″ | Weight: 275
Hometown: St Petersburg, Florida
Pro Debut: November, 2000
Where Have You Seen Him: 2007 Jeff Peterson Memorial Cup (lost to Matt Cross in 2nd round), IPW Hardcore, NWA Florida, Pro Wrestling Riot, WWE, TNA Wrestling, Full Impact Pro, Elite Wrestling Entertainment (defunct), Pro Wrestling Fusion, Division 1 Pro Wrestling, Pro Wrestling Warfare, Alliance Wrestling Force (defunct), American Combat Wrestling (defunct), UXW (defunct)
Championships Held: NWA Florida Heavyweight champion, NWA Florida Tag Team champion, IPW World Heavyweight champion, IPW Tag Team champion, 2 Time Rage in the Cage winner, D1PW Heavyweight champion.
Alan Wojcik: You were a surprise entrant in last year’s Jeff Peterson Memorial Cup (replacing the injured Kenny King.) What did you think when the JPC organizers said, “Can you join the roster…oh yeah and make weight by the weekend”?
Bruce Santee: It’s funny you should ask Alan. Was I honored to be in the tournament? Definitely. Did I have trouble making the weight? Well let’s just say I went into the tournament at a legit “Jakked” 285 lbs, and since its a year later I can say I know a few scale calibrators that were able to “help” me make the 225lb weight limit.
I look at it like this; there shouldn’t be a weight limit in the tournament. Sure Jeff Peterson was a cruiserweight, but honestly, he didn’t give a crap how big you were, he would never back down. That was the kind of fighter he was, both in and out of the ring. So the fact that I cheated to make weight shouldn’t be an issue, as I am sure Jeff Peterson was upstairs popping for my every move. As he would have done the same thing if he needed to.
Alan Wojcik: You manhandled your opening round opponent TJ Mack but lost in a shocking upset to Matt “M-Dogg 20 “Cross.
Bruce Santee: Are you kidding me? I didn’t lose that match. This is a prime example of why I feel Instant Replay should be implemented into Professional Wrestling. This was the biggest blunder since the 1999 NFC Championship game where Bert Emanuel’s CATCH was ruled incomplete, that would have sent the Bucs to Super Bowl 34. I mean, I dominated that entire match. I got robbed. I must say that Matt Cross was a great fighter, there were several times that I could have put him away and didn’t, the fact that he held on, and found an opening to beat me, I have to take my hat off to him. Regardless of how shitty the officiating was that match.
Alan Wojcik: I know we have talked about this before but for the new readers, share some of your memories of Jeff Peterson.
Bruce Santee: Like I said before, Jeff was a fighter. I remember attending one of my first Indy shows, and Jeff was wrestling a then “green” Naphtali (Al Bino). They tore the house down. Jeff was that kind of talent. It didn’t matter who you put him in the ring with, he was gonna give it his all, and make sure his opponent gave their all.
Alan Wojcik: On your Myspace blog dated in January you talked in detail about a shoulder injury. What did you choose to do about it and what is your current health stauts?
Bruce Santee: I had a labral tear in my right shoulder. I consider myself a pretty bad mofo, so I chose not to get surgery on it, and kinda rehab it myself. My rehab isn’t what one would call “conventional”. I mean with a Labral tear, I should be doing rubber-band type exercises. Not me, I feel if there is no pain, then there is definitely no gain. So for Rehab, I load the Olympic bar up, and military press until I cannot move my shoulder anymore. It seems to be working, as now 9 months later, I feel better. It is always going to bother me, but that comes with the profession. We beat ourselves up in that ring, so I am not going to let a little Labral tear slow me down. The pain helps me, as every time I throw a lariat, it hurts…. so I take that pain out on my opponents head when I ‘Bring it”.
Alan Wojcik: This past WrestleMania weekend you teamed with Jon Davis to take on the Heartbreak Express (Sean & Phil Davis) in what is being called the bloodiest match in recent Florida wrestling history. A Triple Death Match Challenge where 1st fall was a Double Dog Collar Chain match, 2nd fall was a Double Barb Wire Baseball Bat match and it ended with a Anything Goes match. Davis talked about it in his Peterson Cup Profile. What do you remember of this match and would you perform under these conditions again if asked by a promoter?
Bruce Santee: What do I remember about this match? The fact that I had everyone’s blood all over me. The fact that I could have caught Herpo-Clamyda-Aids from either of the Heartbreak Express. Have you seen how many rats those guys nail, especially the “big boned” one?
Aside from the 12 STD’s I probably caught, I was also beaten up with Chains, Chairs, Signs, Tables, even a Low Carb Muscle Milk shaKe, which in my opinion is a HUGE PARTY FOUL!!!
That was easily the most violent match I have ever been a part of, and anyone that was there would say it was the most violent match in the HISTORY of Florida wrestling. This is not the type of match that myself and Jon are accustomed to. I have NEVER done any kind of hardcore match in my 8 year career. I don’t think Jon had either.
Sean and Phil specialize in these violent matches, but Jon and I wanted to fight them and BEAT them at their own game. Unfortunately, they won the war. However, in the end, Jon and I won everyone’s respect, as we fought the most violent team on the indies, and went toe to toe with them, out of our element. Jon Davis has permanent scaring on the back of his head. I feel that was one of the breakout moments for both of us, as we showed versatility in performing and “stealing the show” so to speak, in a match that was out of our element.
Alan Wojcik: In D1PW you won their heavyweight championship but had the shock of a lifetime when former IPW Hardcore star Billy Fives came out of retirement to challenge you for the championship.
Bruce Santee: Billy Fives and I have a little bit of history. When I first broke into the business, he was my first “real” singles feud. We did a 6 month program, and I learned so much from the guy. A few years later, he decided he was done with wrestling, as he wanted to continue to focus on his martial arts school. Much to my surprise after I won the belt, he wanted to come out of retirement to wrestle me. Most people would feel honored, as Billy is a legend in this state, and many feel he would have made it to the WWE had he actually wanted to. I actually felt insulted. I felt like it was a slap in the face. That little girl wanted to try and steal MY SHINE, MY MOMENT.
Billy is a tough dude, and throws some of the hardest kicks I have ever felt. Everytime we are in the ring together, I am sore for weeks thereafter. He ended up defeating me in January of this year and taking my Championship. However in the end I got my revenge, and most importantly, my D1PW Heavyweight Championship back, by beating him in front of his home crowd, and his mentor Norman Smiley.
Alan Wojcik: At their 2nd Anniversary event (to be held October 25th, www.d1pw.com for info) you get to add to the list of former WWE superstars you have face when you take on Savio Vega.
Bruce Santee: Savio Vega is Puerto Rican. Bruce Santee is 1/2 Puerto Rican 1/2 Redneck. I donated blood a few years ago, and told Florida Blood services to drain my Puerto Rican vein. Why you may ask? Well have you seen how Puerto Rican’s parade around like they run things here in the U.S? Do they forget that we (the U.S.) OWN them?
Savio is one of the greatest wrestlers to ever come out of that island. Unfortunately for Savio, he has to realize that this isn’t Puerto Rico. He is coming to D1PW, he is coming to the Marquee’s house. I don’t care about his past, because this is the present, and I am the NOW. Savio will become just another “name” that will be lookin’ up at the lights once the night is over.
Alan Wojcik: Pro Wrestling Fusion’s webmaster recently wrote about you saying among other things, “He’s self-professed villain…with the name Bruce Santee on the Marquee..broken bodies & shattered dreams are not far behind.” Your thoughts on those descriptions and in your words what is a Bruiserweight?
Bruce Santee: The webmaster is obviously speaking from first hand experience; I am all of that, and more. As far as a BRUSIERWEIGHT… It symbolizes everything I am. It is a guy that can go to a bar, drink 12 beers, and take out any, and everyone in the bar, legitimately. A lot of guys in wrestling are comic book geeks with no athletic ability whatsoever. They just grew up and said “I want to be a wrestler”, and they paid to train, some of them found gyms, and there are a few on TV weekly STEALING money. These guys aren’t legit, they were never athletes, you can tell by their in ring work. I played football for ten years, amateur wrestled for six, and excelled at Baseball and Soccer. I AM an athlete. A Brusierweight is a guy that has a hard hitting, athletic, no nonsense style in the ring. Bruiserweight isn’t a weight class, it’s a way of life, both inside and outside of the ring.
Alan Wojcik: You are never near controversy (please insert sarcasm here) so it was a surprise to read online about you and several wrestlers having issue with the promoters of the Orlando based “I Believe in Wrestling” group at their August event. Do you wish to share some insight on what went down?
Bruce Santee: It is a bunch of he said/ she said B.S. that fans should not be exposed to. Everything has been cleared up and all parties involved have moved on.
Alan Wojcik: Another controversy broke out last fall when Florida Championship Wrestling took over the buildings run by American Combat Wrestling, effectively shutting down the promotion and leaving the roster out in the proverbial cold. What did you think of this and how did you come to join Pro Wrestling Riot?
Bruce Santee: Ralph Mosca was the owner/promoter of ACW, which ran weekly shows at Bourbon Street Nightclub in New Port Richey. These shows were very successful and had a large “underground” type following.
Once the WWE Developmental moved down here, they were looking for places to work. What better building to try and get than one that has a built in following, on a weekly basis. So to my knowledge, Steve Keirn approached Mosca about running there, and of course Mosca, doing what is best for him, accepted and made money on the deal. I can’t fault a man for doing what is best for him, especially when it’s WWE coming in and asking for the favor. The possibilities are endless.
A few of the guys were upset at the deal, and I can see their sides too, but again, it was business. So FIP owner Sal Hamaoui had a vision. He saw that there was a lot of talent in that area that would be out of work that were a draw in that area. He decided to form Pro Wrestling Riot, and I was approached about being one of the top Babyfaces in the company. The storylines and continuity in this promotion are great. The crowds are very old school; they love the faces, and want to kill the heels. This has become the hottest promotion in Florida, in only its first year.
Alan Wojcik: In Riot you formed some alliances with old IPW Hardcore friends, namely Sedrick Strong and Sideshow. What made you say no to rejoining 911 Inc and the “Hardcore Giant” Ron Niemi?
Bruce Santee: To me, 911 was always like one big homosexual circle jerk. Ron loved telling the boys how great they were, and in turn the boys would tell him and each other how great they were, all the while they were trying to knife each other in the back. Ron Niemi has turned on Mike Sullivan, Buck Quartermaine, the Shane Twins (and now they are back with him) and now me. What makes the members now think the same thing won’t happen to them? Ron Niemi does what is best for Ron Niemi, and nobody else, there is no loyalty within 911. I am looking this weekend to rid wrestling of 911 Incorporated once and for all.
Alan Wojcik: Next Friday night you get the chance to soften up a 911 Inc. member before WarGames. Give us a scouting report on your opponent, Dark City Fight Club member Kory Chavis.
Bruce Santee: Kory Chavis has been around over ten years, so he has experience over me. We have been to war many times this past year. But, what he doesn’t have is the pure strength, anger, and hunger I have. On Friday night, Kory and I will go to war again. My only goal for that match is beat him, and beat him convincingly. This won’t be a wrestling match; this will be a straight up fight. It won’t be for the weak at heart.
Alan Wojcik: At the Saturday evening of the Peterson you, Sedrick Strong, Sideshow & The Black Market( Joey Machete’ & Shawn Murphy) will enter the WarGames to take on 911 Inc. (“Hardcore Giant” Mike Shane, Francisco Ciatso & Shawn Osborne) My question is have all of you gone completely insane!! WarGames is going to brutalize all ten of you, making you bleed from places no one knew was possible.
Bruce Santee: Extreme circumstances require extreme measures. Sure this match is going to be brutal, but there has to be a resolution to this feud. Wrestling matches couldn’t do it. Tables Matches couldn’t to it. Street Fights and I quit matches couldn’t do it….. so now, it’s time to make one TEAM quit, in the most brutal match of all……WAR GAMES. Some careers may come to an end this Saturday night.
Alan Wojcik: Looking over the sixteen names in this year’s tournament (Erick Stevens, Nooie Lee, Rhett Titus, Kenny King, Sal Rinauro, CJ O’Doyle, Brad Attitude, Chris Gray, Tommy Taylor, Jaison Moore, Gran Akuma, Larry Sweeney, Chris Jones, Craig Classic, Jon Davis & Jigsaw) if you were a betting man who would be your odds on favorite to win it all?
Bruce Santee: I ALWAYS bet on BLACK! Kenny King or Jon Davis will take this whole thing, hands down.
Alan Wojcik: Let’s step away from wrestling for a moment and talk about your beloved Tampa Bay Buccaneers. 1-1 with quarterback controversy still brewing with Jeff Garcia and Brian Griese. If you were the GM or coach who is your starter and where do you see the Bucs by season’s end?
Bruce Santee: Actually after that come from behind victory yesterday, we are now talking about the 2-1 Tampa Bay Buccaneers. This is your traditional Bucs team, with a solid, hard hitting defense, and a below average offense. Brian Greise looked good in the 4th Qtr and Overtime yesterday. Greise is a system QB, and I think right now he is the guy that can run Gruden’s offense the best.
Yes I think Garcia is getting the shaft on the deal, considering he was a Pro Bowl QB last year, but he spoke out against the team and front office in the off season. To be sucessful in this league, you can’t speak out against your team or coach, especially when your coach is a prick like Jon Gruden. Gruden hold’s personal grudges and I think this is a prime example of that. Being a true Bucs fan, I will stand behind whatever QB is put on that field. Right now, Greise is the man.
Alan Wojcik: As always you are the only wrestler I do “word association” with so here we go, Pro Wrestling Riot.
Bruce Santee: Good Times, one of the best things going right now.
Alan Wojcik: “Supermodel” Amy Love.
Bruce Santee: Crazy Bitch. But I love her. She is a great wife and great supporter.
Alan Wojcik: Mister Saint Laurent.
Bruce Santee: Knows how to get people talking.
Alan Wojcik: The Hearbreak Express.
Bruce Santee: Violent inside the ring, great politicians outside the ring.
Alan Wojcik: FIP owner Sal Hamaoui.
Bruce Santee: Great Businessman
Alan Wojcik: 911 Inc’s Francisco Ciatso.
Bruce Santee: Very talented, entertaining. Another guy WWE/TNA is missing the boat on.
Alan Wojcik: Ron Niemi.
Bruce Santee: Great mind for the business
Alan Wojcik: Erick Stevens.
Bruce Santee: Dedicated
Alan Wojcik: Wrestling announcer Lenny Leonard.
Bruce Santee: The best at what he does
Alan Wojcik: Jeff Peterson.
Bruce Santee: A fighter
Alan Wojcik: “the Marquee” Bruce Santee.
Bruce Santee: If the WWE REALLY WANTS to make money… here I am
The 2008 Jeff Peterson Memorial Cup is this Friday & Saturday Night. For event locations, tickets and the full card, log onto http://jpc2008.com