|Birth name||Paul Neu|
|Born||July 9, 1966|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||American Avalanche|
Paul the Grizzly
|Billed height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Billed weight||403 lb (183 kg; 28.8 st)|
|Billed from||Omaha, Nebraska|
|Trained by||Brad Rheingans|
|Debut||January 3, 1987|
Paul Neu (born July 9, 1966) is an American professional wrestler. He is perhaps best known under the ring name P.N. News and for his stints in Extreme Championship Wrestling and World Championship Wrestling. He currently works on the European independent circuit as Cannonball Grizzly and in the United Kingdom as American Avalanche.
- 1 Professional wrestling career
- 2 Personal life
- 3 Championships and accomplishments
- 4 References
- 5 External links
Professional wrestling career
Early career (1987–1991)
After debuting in 1987 and a two-year run in the Don Owen owned, Portland Territory as The Avalanche, Neu traveled to Europe to compete for the Catch Wrestling Association under the ring name Cannonball Grizzly in 1989.
World Championship Wrestling (1991–1992)
Upon his return to the United States in 1991, Neu joined World Championship Wrestling. He made his debut for the promotion on the May 11 episode of World Wide Wrestling as P.N. News, a rapper gimmick fashioned after P.M. Dawn, where he defeated Terry Bronson in 44 seconds.
He soon began a brief feud against World Television Champion "Stunning" Steve Austin. At The Great American Bash, News and Bobby Eaton defeated Austin and his partner Terry Taylor in a scaffold match. During a house show on June 21, News inadvertently injured Dave Sheldon, who was performing under the ring name the Angel of Death. The injury came about when News botched his Broken Record finishing move during their match, as he splashed Sheldon's knees instead of his torso, which sidelined Sheldon for almost an entire year in order to recover. As a result, News was taken off television, his feud with Austin was dropped, and he was used solely at house shows and sporadically at pay-per-views. Despite this, News faced Austin in a match for the World Television Title at Clash of the Champions XVII on November 19, but was unsuccessful in winning the title.
After their feud, News was moved down the card and on December 21 at Starrcade, News teamed with Steve Armstrong in a losing effort to Ron Simmons and Thomas Rich. On January 21, 1992, News made his final tv appearance, defeating Diamond Dallas Page at Clash of the Champions XVIII. Following this, News wrestled solely on house shows before being released on March 15, 1992.
Catch Wrestling Association (1992–1998)
After leaving WCW, Neu returned to the Catch Wrestling Association in late 1992 under his Cannonball Grizzly ring name and gimmick. On November 5, 1995, Grizzly and John Hawk defeated August Smisl and Ulf Herman to win the World Tag Team Championship for the first time. On December 16, Grizzly and Hawk lost the titles to Smisl and Tony St. Clair. After the loss, Grizzly began teaming with his cousin Bruiser Mastino, with their tag team being known as The Brotherhood. On July 7, 1996, Grizzly and new tag team partner Jesse James Armstrong won the World Tag Team Title before losing them to August Smisl and Ulf Herman on August 3. After the title was vacated, Grizzly and Wildcat Brookside won the title on December 21 after defeating Tony St. Clair and Mick Tierney in a tournament. They would hold the title until it was vacated in July 1997. On October 10, 1998, Grizzly would then face Brookside to determine who would claim the vacant Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship, but he lost the match via countout. Neu left the promotion in late 1998.
British wrestling (1993-present)
Neu was also a familiar face in British Wrestling at this time, wrestling for All Star Wrestling as American Avalanche and for Orig Williams' BWF as Raging Bull, including appearances on Williams' Reslo Welsh language TV wrestling show on S4C. Fellow wrestler Robbie Brookside's Video Diary filmed in 1993 for BBC2, includes footage of Neu both in the ring and backstage out of character. Neu, as Avalanche, has continued to make appearances for All Star into the 21st century, often teaming with Joe E Legend as an arrogant American heel tag team, or as part of the World Riot Squad heel faction.
Extreme Championship Wrestling (1999)
On September 17, 1999, Neu, under his P.N. News ring name and character, debuted in Extreme Championship Wrestling in a losing effort to Spike Dudley. News then joined Da Baldies, a heel stable composed of wrestlers who were all bald. At November to Remember, Da Baldies (News, Spanish Angel, Tony DeVito and Vito LoGrasso) defeated New Jack and The Hardcore Chair Swingin' Freaks (Axl Rotten and Balls Mahoney) in a handicap match. On November 19, News and LoGrasso lost to The Hardcore Chair Swingin' Freaks in a Loser Leaves Town match, ending Neu's stint in ECW.
Hiatus and Return (2000–present)
On November 17, 2000, Neu, as Cannonball Grizzly, returned to wrestling and won the European Wrestling Promotion's first-ever Hardcore Knockout Tournament after defeating Hercules Harrison in the semi-finals and then Big Tiger Steel in the finals. Ten days later, he won the EWP World Heavyweight Championship after defeating Bam Bam Bigelow. On November 26, 2003, Grizzly lost the World Heavyweight Championship to Thunder. On December 17, 2011, Grizzly defeated Thunder to reclaim the EWP World Heavyweight Title. On October 6, 2012, he defended the World Heavyweight Championship against Fit Finlay, although their match ended in a no contest and thus resulted in Grizzly retaining the World Heavyweight Title.
Neu was married to a woman named Connie. He has since married Anja von Stanic, whom he also trained as a professional wrestler in 2007 and managed him while both were members of a stable called The Firm before Anja retired from professional wrestling in 2008. He is also a cousin of Mike Halac, who was best known for his stint in the World Wrestling Federation as Mantaur.
Championships and accomplishments
- Catch Wrestling Association
- European Wrestling Association
- EWA World Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- European Wrestling Promotion
- EWP World Heavyweight Championship (2 times)
- Pacific Northwest Wrestling
- Professional Wrestling Alliance (Germany)
- PWA World Cup Championship (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- Riotgas Wrestling Alliance
- RWA International Championship (2 times)
- World Championship Wrestling
- Rookie of the Year (1991)
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter
- Other titles
- EWA Iron Man Championship (5 times)
- "Cagematch profile".
- "Various News: Wrestling Birthdays, Wrestling Returns to ESPN Classic Tonight posted by Larry Csonka on 07.09.2013".
- "OWOW profile".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 8".
- "Dark Pegasus Video Review: Great American Bash '91 posted by J.D. Dunn on 12.21.2008".
- "Cagematch match listings".
- "Ask 411 Wrestling 01.23.13: Undertaker vs. Austin, Royal Rumble, Drug Addicts, More posted by Ryan Byers on 01.23.2013".
- "The Chrononaut Chronicles: Clash of the Champions XVII posted by Joel Thomas on 01.31.2012".
- "Going Old School: Starrcade '91 posted by Matt Adamson on 02.18.2008".
- "The Chrononaut Chronicles: Clash of the Champions XVIII posted by Joel Thomas on 02.03.2012".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 7".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 6".
- "CWA World Tag Team Championship title history".
- "Cagematch match listings, part 2".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 4".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 3".
- "EWP Wrestling Festival 2000".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 2".
- "Cagematch match listings, page 1".
- "The Firm's Cagematch profile".
- "CWA World Tag Team Championship history".
- "Cagematch title listings".
- "NWA Pacific Northwest Tag Team Championship history".