August 3rd was a very emotional night in the PWA Arena, as "The Franchise Player" Chris Cruit announced his shocking early retirement.
The name "The Franchise Player" embodies everything about Chris Cruit. For many PWA fans he is the manifestation of the Premiere Wrestling Alliance itself. Chris Cruit is a triple crown champion and the first ever PWA Heavyweight Champion. His classic feud with Randy The Rowdy Hillbilly headlined many of the early PWA events, and he also created historic moments against Tommy Forte and as tag team champion with "Outlaw" Tony James.
At Red, White, and Bruised, Chris Cruit lost his PWA United States Championship to Randy The Rowdy Hillbilly in the main event. While he did lose that match, there was little to suggest the sad announcement to come. At PWA's show on August 3rd, Cruit revealed that he had been considering retirement after some back problems, but his chiropractors were able to give him new life. Just as Cruit thought he might have a new lease on life in the ring, he suffered a heart attack August 1st, just two days before the event.
Doctors recommended Chris retire as a result of his recent health scare, and "The Franchise Player" heeded those warnings, leaving his boots in the center of the ring as a sign of his retirement.
The PWA won't be the same without Chris Cruit, but his legacy lasts in the form of his son, PWA Superstar Kevin Cruit. PWA fans may not have always seen eye to eye with the cranky and combative Cruit, but he always gave them everything he had and left it all in the ring. He will be missed. PWAOhio.com would like to wish "The Franchise Player" a happy retirement.