It’s me, it’s me, it’s DDP
Diamond Dallas Page was born Page Joseph Falkenburg, Jr on April 5th, 1956 in Point Pleasant, New Jersey. The name Dallas was a nickname that came from his love of the NFL team, the Dallas Cowboys. I guess it is rather odd for a kid in Jersey to be a fan of the Cowboys. Anyway, Dallas was raised by his father until he was eight. Then he lived with his grandmother, who raised him the rest of the way. He was dyslexic as a youngster and as a result, never felt tremendously comfortable at school. Thankfully, he found his way to the basketball team, where he would make varsity as a sophomore.
His first foray into professional wrestling came in Canada in 1979. It was less than impressive. Due to poor training beforehand and a prior knee injury, DDP stunk up the joint. This scared him away from being in a ring for a while. In the 1980’s, he managed for the AWA, while also managing his own burgeoning nightclub called Norma Jeans in Fort Myers, Florida. The club was known for its pink Cadillac, which DDP famously drove to the ring at WrestleMania VI.
Then in 1991 Dallas began his long journey up the ladder of World Championship Wrestling as the manager of the famous team, the Fabulous Freebirds (Michael P.S Hayes and Jimmy Garvin). His time as a manager in the company saw him run the likes of Scott Hall and Big Daddy Dink (your guess is as good as mine). Then, fearing an oncoming shakeup, DDP decided to take Magnum T.A‘s advice and train to be a wrestler – at 35 years of age. So he packed up and went to the WCW Power Plant, their training facility, and got to work.
Diamond Dallas Page was trained by Dusty Rhodes, Buddy Lee Parker, and The Assassin. He made his debut in a tag match later that year and was relegated to that dark, dusty corner of the locker room reserved for jobbers. DDP took this as his chance to get better and better, spending every day he wasn’t working back at the Power Plant. An injury in 1992 took him out of action for two years, but he took it as his cue to learn more. He sought out Jake Roberts to teach him about the psychological aspects of the business. He couldn’t have picked a better person to learn from. No one was better at getting into a fan’s head than Jake the Snake. His promos dripped with an intensity you could never really nail down.
You were never sure how you felt about Jake. He could slip in and out of being a heel or face. DDP used this to great effect, but he saw his career his its highest peak as a face. It was during the NWO days. He was the only Main Event level talent that never joined the NWO. He always cut his own path. Fans got behind him because of it. They loved to see the walking underdog story unfold before their eyes. There was no way anyone could have foreseen DDP getting over like he did. He was near his forties when he became a star. By all rights, he was just some dude from New Jersey.
The difference between him and everyone else was the sheer amount of work he did to get where he got. He needed to. that was the only way for him to distinguish himself. That, and a crazy charisma that could not be ignored. He made the Diamond Cutter into a show stopping move. It’s up there with the best finishing moves in the history of the business. He always knew when to bust it out. It always came at a moment that made you stand up from your seat.
The three time WCW World Heavyweight Champion had a short and really f–king weird run in the WWE. He was introduced by way of some really creepy segments featuring Undertaker’s wife Sara. Taker would get done with a match and all of a sudden, one of the stalker tapes would start playing. I don’t say any of this in a good way. I’m trying my best to explain it without coming off too critical, but what the hell happened here? How did DDP become the guy who wanted to assumedly rape and murder the Dead Man’s wife? He later revealed that he didn’t care about Sara and only did it to make an impact. See, he wanted to take on the biggest dog in the yard.
Thing is, if you do an angle like that, featuring videos like those, it brings to mind the two awful things I mentioned. He didn’t really get very far in the WWE and I’m pretty sure that played a big part in it. He had to carry around being Sara’s stalker. It didn’t really matter much, though, by that point. What with the dude being like fifty years old. He’s mostly been finished in the ring since then. He worked for TNA for a while, as well as JWO, and still makes some sporadic appearances in WWE from time to time. He was last seen during the 2015 Royal Rumble match.