The UCW Radio Host Louis Velazquez had the opportunity to have WWE Pro Wrestling Star Lanny “The Genius” Poffo on the Show.
Lanny Poffo began wrestling in the NWA territories in the 1970s before becoming a star and champion in International Championship Wrestling. Over the course of his regional career, Poffo both tag teamed and feuded with older brother Randy. Upon the ICW’s folding in 1984, he joined Randy in the CWA before traveling with him again to the World Wrestling Federation in June 1985. The brother angle was never worked in the WWF and the relationship was never mentioned on-air.
While Lanny never reached the heights as it relates to popularity as his brother Randy “Macho Man” Savage did in the WWF, he still managed to find a niche for himself as a minor fan favorite. As Leaping Lanny Poffo, the Wrestling Poet, he would bring Frisbees to the ring, read a short ode written on one of them that he himself had penned, and throw the Frisbees into the crowd. Each poem typically ridiculed his opponent and created an opening or basis for a continued feud. Poffo wrestled a high-flyer style at a time when big, heavy wrestlers still dominated the promotion. He was one of the first wrestlers in North America to utilize the moonsault in their arsenal, though the announcers referred to it at the time as a “leaping backflip”. He made some publicity in late 1986 and early 1987 by competing in a series of Bunkhouse Battle Royals in full knight’s armor.
In April 1989, Poffo was re-introduced as a heel wrestler and became The Genius, adopting a highly intelligent, sniffy persona and wearing an academic cap and gown to the ring. He officially turned heel at the Boston Garden on March 18, 1989 still known as Leaping Lanny, he berated Hulk Hogan and stuck up for his brother Randy Savage in his poem. This was a mere two weeks before Wrestlemania V. His poems now ridiculed the face wrestlers, and he now behaved in an even more effeminate manner to infuriate the crowd. During the match, the Genius would construct a mathematical equation that would tilt the balance of the match in his favor. In addition, the Genius also served as a manager (and occasional tag team partner) for Mr. Perfect.
On the November 25, 1989 edition of WWF Saturday Night’s Main Event, The Genius beat WWF Champion Hulk Hogan by count out due to Mr. Perfect hitting Hogan with the championship belt. Later in the show, Mr. Perfect and Poffo took a hammer to the belt, shattering it to pieces. Later, The Genius was the manager of the Beverly Brothers . It was in this capacity that Poffo last appeared in the WWF, at Survivor Series 1992.
Outside of wrestling, Poffo has released a collection of poems and limericks, most of which were related to drug and alcohol awareness, directed toward young children. Poffo is a staunch anti-smoker and has released a book of limericks entitled Limericks from the Heart and Lungs!. He is also a certified credit counselor. He was last seen on television in infomercials as an endorser of Tony Little’s Gazelle Freestyle exercise machine.
Poffo is still on good terms with WWE, having written a poem for WWE.com in 2007 for the “Battle of the Billionaires” at WrestleMania 23 between Vince McMahon and Donald Trump.
“Lanny Poffo is one of the most genuine people in the wrestling business, I consider him to be a great example of professionalism as well as being an inspiration to children through his poetry and books, he is just a great all around guy.” said Louis Velazquez, host of The UCW Radio Show.
Poffo Family Picture