Jesse "The Body" Ventura

Ventura / Greg Gagne article from

Greg Gagne spent the first eight years of his career building his name: Greg Gagne.

Unlike his father, Greg's career didn't take off. At least, not at first.

Sure, Greg was destined for greatness with his dropkick, his salt-resistant eyes and his dropkick, but circumstances kept making his in-ring efforts a struggle.

Not blessed with superhuman strength, Greg found himself in tough with big guys. Not blessed with great brawling abilities, Greg found himself in tough with pugilists. Not blessed with basic mat skills, Greg found himself in tough with everybody else.

Greg floundered for years. From 1973-1980, Greg was in the shadows in the AWA, always hoping his next match would be his breakthrough match.

And then something happened. Jesse Ventura joined the AWA.

Ventura and his partner Adrian Adonis were the East-West Connection. Ventura, from California, was the muscleman hippy. Adonis, from New York City, was the leather-clad technician.

They were quite the homoerotic duo.

Greg was wrestling on the undercard when Ventura and Adonis entered the AWA.

One night at Crusher's Bar, Gagne was talking about his troubles with another young AWA hopeful; Jim Brunzell. Brunzell, who was also known as Jim, who was also known as Jumpin' Jim, and was also known as Jumping Jim, saw Ventura and Adonis enter the establishment.

The East-West Connection was victorious that night against the classic team of Scrap Iron Gadaski and Jake "Milkman" Milligan.

They were in great spirits, but Brunzell and Gagne weren't. Brunzell had lost a singles match that night against The Bruiser. Gagne lost his match against a circus clown named Midge.

Greg was still covered in greasepaint when Ventura and Adonis saddled up to the bar. They offered to buy Brunzell and Gagne a couple of beers.

Greg went ballistic. Every word he said was strung together.


Ventura laughed and poked Greg in the chest. Gagne went flying off his stool and smashed through a pane of glass.

Ventura couldn't believe his eyes. He tried to help Gagne, but Brunzell would have none of it.

While Brunzell argued with Ventura, a drunk walked toward Greg and whizzed on him.

Later, Greg woke up in his house, smelling like urine. He vowed revenge. And he chose his battle color: yellow.

Piss yellow.

Gagne and Brunzell fought with Ventura and Adonis all over the AWA circuit.

Gagne and Brunzell became known as The High Flyers. And during the course of their feud with Ventura and Adonis, Gagne and Brunzell won the AWA tag titles.

Greg finally had gold to go with his yellow.