Former WCW Tag Team Champion, ‘The Natural’ Butch Reed, has suffered two massive heart attacks in 2021.
On February 2, the Instagram account of Butch Reed posted a picture of the star in his prime with the troubling news of his recent health issues, stating:
“Prayers for @realbutchreed. 2 massive heart attacks in 2021. He is fighting like the champion he is but still need as many prayers as possible. Thanks for the pic @awrestlinghistorian.”
A stand-out star of NWA Central States, Mid-South Wrestling and Championship Wrestling from Florida in the early to mid-eighties, Butch Reed was famous for his impressive power and ‘real’ style of wrestling.
While Feuds with Nikolai Volkoff, Jim Neidhart, Jim Duggan, Dick Murdoch and Terry Taylor put him on the map and reigns as NWA International Heavyweight Champion, GWF North American Champion and Mid-South North American Heavyweight Champion legitimised him as one of the greatest up and comers in the industry, it was his series with Ric Flair over the NWA World Heavyweight Championship – that included a stunning one-hour time limit draw – that made him a bona-fide star.
A switch to the then World Wrestling Federation in 1986 was mean to have yielded a WWF Intercontinental Championship victory over Ricky Steamboat, but when plans changed – he was rumoured to have no-showed a live event where he would have captured the gold – he dyed his hair blonde and competed as an updated version of Sweet Daddy Siki under the guidance of Slick.
While rivalries with Tito Santana and Don Muraco – a replacement for Billy Graham – kept him busy, it was clear that he wasn’t destined to reach the heady heights he was capable of and Reed departed the company for the NWA in 1988.
No longer seen or considered a singles draw, after a year Reed was partnered with Ron Simmons in the team Doom and went on to capture the WCW Tag Team Championships from rivals The Steiner Brothers at NWA Capital Combat 1990 on May 19. Sadly, the team were badly mishandled by the company big-wigs – despite the best efforts of creative – and the team split in 1992 when Reed turned on Simmons.
Inside the Ropes wishes Butch Reed a very speedy recovery.