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Leon White (born May 14, 1957), known in the wrestling world as Vader, is one of Professional Wrestling's legendary big men, having made a name for himself all over the world, including WCW, WWE, and Japan.
As usual, That Other Wiki has an article on his career.
Not to be confused with Darth Vader.
Tropes associated with Vader include:
- Acrofatic: Specially considering his finisher, the Vadersault (which is, indeed, a Moonsault)
- Badass: A legit tough guy inside and outside the ring.
- Bald of Awesome/Bald of Evil
- The Brute: Made a career out of it.
- Catch Phrase: The aforementioned "Vader Time" shtick.
- Cool Mask
- Demoted to Extra: What he eventually became in the WWF. He went from challenging for the WWF title at Summerslam 1996 to losing to a young Bradshaw in 1998.
- Hogan not selling the VaderBomb AT ALL helped kill his drawing power in WCW.
- Evil Redhead
- Eye Scream: In 1990, during an All Japan/New Japan supercard show, Vader faced fellow brawler Stan Hansen in a match. During the match, Hansen, who, like Vader, is known for his incredibly stiff style of fighting, landed a punch which caused Vader's right eyeball to pop out of socket. Fortunately, the eyeball was contained by the swelling of his eyelid.
- And then, later in that same fight, he pushed his eye back in the socket with his own fingers.
- Fingerless Gloves
- Game-Breaking Injury: See Megaton Punch below; Vader couldn't walk for three days after that match.
- Heroic Blue Screen of Death: Vader suffers one following his match with Kane at Over the Edge 1998, to the point where he calls himself a "piece of shit." (Clip starts at 2:58)
- Homage: Some of Jack Swagger's moves are taken from Vader.
- Large Ham
- Law of Chromatic Superiority
- Lightning Bruiser: Especially during his younger years.
- Mean Character, Nice Actor: As noted by Mick Foley in his first autobiography Have A Nice Day: A Tale Of Blood And Sweatsocks, despite being a sadistic, merciless monster heel in the ring, Vader was very sweet and friendly behind the scenes, and on one occasion cried inconsolably after he believed he'd accidentally paralysed a rookie with a Vader Bomb when he couldn't feel his legs afterward (luckily this was not the case).
- Megaton Punch: Delivers one to Ken Shamrock in one the latter's earliest WWF matches. Shamrock was one of the only ones who could legitimately tolerate Vader's stiff style (despite Shamrock himself being green as goat shit at the time). After several minutes of Shamrock kicking Vader as hard as he could around the legs and thighs, Vader winds up and throws a punch/clothesline that levels Shamrock.
- Moment Killer: One of the biggest anticlimax promos in WWE history occurred on his time. When he did his "WHAT TIME IS IT?!" at the end, the woman interviewing him mentioned it was about 15 minutes until the PPV started. It deflated Vader.
- Funny Background Event: But what everyone remembers about that promo is Road Warrior Hawk entering in the background, realizing he was walking in on the promo, gawking in surprise, and walking back out.
- Another example for both came in 2005. Vader had been brought in by Jonathan Coachman (along with Goldust) for a beatdown on Batista (who was filling in for Stone Cold Steve Austin for a match at Taboo Tuesday.) Vader and Goldust laid Batista out (I know, right?) and then, as the villainous trio were making their exit, Vader jumped off the apron... only to lose his balance and promptly fall on his ass. Not that that match had much steam going into Taboo Tuesday as it stood, but that COULDN'T have helped.
- The Worf Effect: Was used to help Kane get over at a Pay Per View, and in order to build credibility for Kane as a monster heel, Kane had to annihilate Vader. Notably very controversial at the time, as Vader had built up a huge amount of credibility as a monster heel in WCW and Japan over the years. His career never truly recovered from such a devastating loss.
- Wrestling Family: His son Jesse is currently training in WWE's development system FCW.