Blackjack Lanza has died at 86 … pro wrestling legend hailed as ‘one of the greatest minds in the business’
- Wrestler was active in the ring for more than two decades
- He wrestled in a tag team called The Blackjacks with the late Blackjack Mulligan
- He later worked as a road agent for WWE
- Lanza was inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame in 2006
Pro wrestler Blackjack Lanza has died at 86, WWE boss Vince McMahon said Wednesday.
‘Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Jack Lanza,’ McMahon said on social media. ‘He was a man’s man, respected and beloved by all. He worked for and loved WWE for many years. His loyalty and dedication will never be forgotten.’
The pro wrestler had been featured in organizations including the AWA, NWA and WWF in more than two decades in the ring.
The latest: Pro wrestler Blackjack Lanza has died at 86, WWE boss Vince McMahon said Wednesday
The grappler, who was inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame in 2006, wrestled in a tag team called The Blackjacks with the late Blackjack Mulligan and managed by the late Bobby Heenan; he later worked as a road agent for the organization.
His cause of death has not been revealed, TMZ reported.
Across the wrestling landscape, a number of Lanza’s peers paid memorial to their late colleague.
Legendary announcer Jim Ross tweeted, ‘Just heard from old, Winnipeg friend Bob Holliday that Jack Lanza has passed away at the age of 86. Jack was our lead agent during the Attitude Era. Helluva hand.’
The grappler was inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame in 2006
The wrestler was active from the 1960s thru the 1980s before settling into a road agent postion for WWE
WWE boss Vince McMahon paid tribute to the late pro wrestling personality
Legendary announcer Jim Ross took to Twitter to remember Lanza
Triple H lauded Lanza’s candor and guidance as an agent in remembering him
He had previously called Lanza ‘one of the greatest minds in the business’ in a 2016 tweet
Triple H lauded Lanza’s abilities as a road agent for the wrestling organization.
‘Certain talent will seek certain agents for advice, but EVERYONE sought out Lanza’s,’ he wrote. ‘The sweetest man but incredibly tough & 100% dedicated to making us better. Jack often didn’t tell you what you wanted to hear, but ALWAYS told you what you needed. I’ll miss you dearly my friend.’
He had previously called Lanza ‘one of the greatest minds in the business’ in a 2016 tweet.
AEW star Matt Hardy recalled how ‘Lanza was the lead road agent when my brother & I first started full time with @WWE, and ‘treated us great & taught us so much about working & surviving on the road.’
He added, ‘Saddened to hear about Jack’s passing. My thoughts go out to his family & loved ones.’
Former WWE writer Vince Russo called Lanza one of his ‘true mentors’ who ‘taught [him] so much.
‘I would have never wound up where I was without him. Never. Thank you for all you passed along to me. You will never be forgotten.’
Sean Waltman said he ‘loved Jack Lanza’ and was ‘so sad to learn he passed away.’
A number of Lanza’s wrestling peers shared kind words and memories
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