Maven (wrestler): Difference between revisions

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American professional wrestler

Maven Huffman (born November 26, 1976)[2] is an American television personality, YouTuber and professional wrestler.[7] He is best known for his time with WWE under his first name, where he is known for co-winning the inaugural season of Tough Enough alongside Nidia Guenard. He also became a three-time WWE Hardcore Champion.[5]

Early life[edit]
Maven Huffman[1] was born on November 26, 1976, in Crimora, Virginia.[2] Huffman’s father is African-American and his mother was Argentinian.[2] After his mother died in a car crash, he was adopted by his maternal uncle and his aunt, who began raising him at 2 years old.[2] His aunt died from cancer in 2004.[2] Huffman graduated from Wilson Memorial High School in Fishersville, Virginia before attending Eastern Mennonite University in Harrisonburg, Virginia.[2]
In 1999, he moved to Portland, Oregon, where he began playing baseball for the Aloha Knights team.[2] Prior to becoming a professional wrestler, Huffman was a middle school teacher at Twality Middle School in Tigard, Oregon for two years.[8][2]

Professional wrestling career[edit]
World Wrestling Federation/Entertainment (2001–2005)[edit]
Tough Enough and Hardcore Champion (2001–2003)[edit]
Huffman began his professional wrestling career in 2001 upon being selected to participate in the inaugural season of Tough Enough, a reality television show used by the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) to find new WWF stars. Ultimately, Maven would become the co-winner of the competition alongside Nidia Guenard, and he was sent to the Heartland Wrestling Association (HWA) to receive further training.[2]
On the October 4 episode of SmackDown!, Maven made his in-ring debut against Tazz, one of his Tough Enough trainers, who forced him to submit to the Tazzmission.[5] Following the match, Tazz helped Maven to his feet before clotheslining him, thus starting a feud between the two.[5] After losing to Tazz via submission in a rematch the following week on SmackDown!, Maven clotheslined Tazz following the match.[5] On the October 18 episode of SmackDown!, Maven won his first wrestling match as he defeated Tazz with assistance from Tough Enough co-winner Nidia Guenard.[5] Following this brief feud, Maven began a feud with The Undertaker after he eliminated Undertaker from the 2002 Royal Rumble by dropkicking him from behind; Undertaker responded in turn by returning to the ring, eliminating Maven.[9][10] He proceeded to hit him with a steel chair, and beating him all the way back to the concession stand area.[5]
On the January 28, 2002, episode of Raw, Maven was awarded a title bout by WWF co-owner Ric Flair against Chris Jericho for the Undisputed WWF Championship by virtue of never actually being eliminated from the Royal Rumble, but lost after submitting to the Walls of Jericho.[11] After the match, Maven was attacked by The Undertaker.[11] On the February 7 episode of SmackDown!, Maven faced Undertaker for his WWF Hardcore Championship, and after interference from The Rock and his Tough Enough trainer Al Snow, Maven defeated Undertaker to win the Hardcore Championship, the first championship of his career.[12] Their feud ended after The Undertaker defeated Maven and Al Snow in a 2-on-1 handicap match when The Undertaker made Maven submit to the Dragon Sleeper.[13] At WrestleMania X8, Maven lost the Hardcore Championship to Spike Dudley during a match with Goldust due to the title’s unique 24/7 rule, but won the title back the same night from Christian due to the same rule.[14] The following night on Raw, Maven was attacked by a debuting Brock Lesnar during his Hardcore Championship defense against Al Snow and Spike Dudley. Maven was the tenth pick for SmackDown! in the WWF draft due to being the Hardcore Champion, but he was punished by Vince McMahon after he lost the title to Raven on the March 28 episode of SmackDown!. Maven was traded to the Raw brand on November 4, 2002, where he confronted Christopher Nowinski with his former trainer Al Snow.

Various feuds and departure (2003–2005)[edit]
Maven entered the 2003 Royal Rumble. He attempted to eliminate The Undertaker by using a dropkick like he did the previous year, but failed and was eliminated by The Undertaker. Maven fought World Heavyweight Champion Triple H on the March 10 episode of Raw, but lost.[15] In 2004, Maven received the biggest push in his career, even gaining a victory over then-Evolution member Batista. Maven then took part in an Elimination Match at Survivor Series, teaming with Randy Orton, Chris Benoit, and Chris Jericho to face Triple H, Batista, Gene Snitsky, and Edge for the power to control Raw for one month.[16] Maven was attacked backstage by Snitsky prior to the match, but after Benoit was eliminated, Maven arrived to join his teammates.[16] He was eventually eliminated by Triple H.[16] Orton was the sole survivor and as a result, he and his team had control of Raw for one month.[16]
Maven was the first to control Raw, booking himself in a World Heavyweight Championship match against Triple H on the November 15 episode of Raw, who tried to get out of it by offering Maven a place in Evolution.[17] He declined, but despite interference from Jericho, Benoit, and Orton, Triple H retained the title due to interference from Snitsky and Ric Flair.[17]
On the November 29 episode of Raw, Maven competed in a battle royal to determine the number one contender for the World Heavyweight Championship, but was eliminated by Eugene.[18] The following week on Raw, Maven faced Eugene in a singles match, which he lost by disqualification after attacking Eugene’s injured knee during the match before choking him out. After the match, Maven attacked Eugene’s tag team partner William Regal as Regal came to help him, thus turning heel in the process.[19]
Following this, Maven began feuding with Shelton Benjamin over Benjamin’s Intercontinental Championship, culminating at New Year’s Revolution in a singles match for the title.[20] Before the start of the match, Maven proceeded to blast the Puerto Rican crowd before Benjamin quickly defeated him in just a matter of minutes by using a roll-up.[20] Maven then cut a promo on Benjamin, stating that the match “didn’t count”, and challenged him to a re-match.[20] Benjamin accepted, and Maven was defeated in only seconds yet again following the T-Bone Suplex.[20]
Following his feud with Benjamin, Maven formed a tag team with Simon Dean, where he acted as a dedicated user of Dean’s “Simon System” brand of nutritional products.[4][21] After beating jobbers for a month, at Backlash, Maven and Simon Dean competed in a Tag Team Turmoil match for the World Tag Team Championship which was won by The Hurricane and Rosey. The team came to an end when Dean was traded to the SmackDown! brand, while Maven was subsequently released by WWE on July 5, 2005.[5][22] According to Huffman, Vice President of Talent Relations John Laurinaitis explained he was let go for not having progressed to the level the company was expecting, especially after having been advised to put more focus on honing his ring-work prior to shows.[23]
In October 2023 in his YouTube video, Huffman revealed that Laurinaitis had offered him to return to WWE in 2008, saying that Huffman had been gone long enough and he will not be known as the “Tough Enough kid” anymore if he returned. Huffman declined due to the guaranteed money he was making in his Homeshipping Network role, a decision he said he regretted.[24] In a December video, Huffman revealed that WWE was ready to offer him to be trained as an announcer at the WWE Performance Center in 2020. The deal fell through as his interview with WWE was on March 11, 2020, the day when the World Health Organization announced that COVID-19 became a pandemic.[25]

Independent circuit and semi-retirement (2005–present)[edit]
On November 19, 2005, Maven wrestled his first match following his WWE departure, where he lost to Slyck Wagner Brown via disqualification in a match for NWA Cyberspace.[5] On February 10, 2006, Maven joined United Wrestling Federation Live and teamed alongside Jeff Jarrett to defeat Team 3D.[5] On March 31, 2006, Maven wrestled his first match for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, where he and Jarrett lost to Jeff Hardy and Kip James in a tag team match.[5] After wrestling sporadically for the UWF and on house shows for TNA throughout the year, Maven wrestled his final match on October 5, 2007, where he lost to Test in a match for Full Throttle Wrestling.[5]
On July 11, 2015, Maven announced his return to pro wrestling. His return match took place at Brian Myers’ Create A Pro Wrestling Academy in Long Island, New York on July 19, 2015.[26] Maven teamed with Johnny Clash to defeat The Warren Cousins (Mikey Warren and TJ Warren) in his first match since 2007.[27]
On September 26, 2015, Maven teamed with Brian Myers in a losing effort against The Cam-An Connection (Anthony Greene and Cam Zagami).[28]
On April 16, 2016, Maven teamed with Myers and Pat Buck in a six man tag team match losing to Aesthetic Males (Beefcake Charlie, Damian Gibbs and Mike Del) in a match for the WrestlePro promotion.[29]
Maven would return to wrestling in 2021. He defeated Matt Cardona for the vacated FWF Tough Enough Trophy Street Fight title on October 9, 2022. On July 23, 2023, Maven won a 26-man battle royal for Dropkick Diabetes 7 in Youngstown, Ohio.

Television career[edit]
In July 2005, Huffman was featured in episode three of MTV’s The 70s House where he and other WWE wrestlers competed in a game of dodge ball.
In March 2006,[5] it was announced by VH1 that Huffman would be a participant in the sixth season of The Surreal Life.[30][31] On the first episode, he was picked by the existing castmates as the seventh and final cast member in a “15 More Minutes of Fame Reality Hunk Pageant,” beating four other reality “hunks”, including former American Idol contestant Corey Clark.
Subsequently, Huffman was a host for a show on BET J called BET’s J List. He also appeared on the Home Shopping Network’s weekday morning show, HSN Today, as its exercise and wellness expert as well as the co-host of HSN’s NFL Pro Football Fan Shop.[30] He was terminated from HSN after his arrest.[32]

Filmography[edit]

Personal life[edit]
According to fellow professional wrestler Konnan, Huffman is his nephew. On July 29, 2021, Maven stated during an interview with Chris Van Vliet that he’s not related to Konnan.[33]
After his 2012 arrest, Huffman worked as a bouncer in New York City.[31][32] Maven was an account executive with the Brooklyn Nets basketball team until September 2019.[25] On July 29, 2021, Maven stated during an interview with Chris Van Vliet that he now works in finance, specifically on Wall Street.[34]
Beginning in July 2023, Huffman began uploading videos to YouTube, talking about his experiences within WWE.[35]

Legal issues[edit]
On April 2, 2012, Huffman was arrested in Florida, and after the police revealed that he was doctor shopping due to an addiction to oxycodone and hydrocodone. He was released on a $2,000 bond and faced up to 5 years in prison if convicted of doctor shopping.[36] On April 11, Huffman revealed that he was seeking help for his addiction and underwent WWE’s former talent rehabilitation program.[37][32]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

References[edit]

^ a b “Maven On Finding YouTube Success, His Favorite Tough Enough Star”. YouTube. WrestleZone. Retrieved October 6, 2023. 7:25 to 7:50

^ a b c d e f g h i j k l “Official Biography”. MavenHuffman.com. Archived from the original on January 28, 2013. Retrieved May 23, 2008.

^ a b Shields, Brian; Sullivan, Kevin (2009). WWE Encyclopedia. DK. p. 200. ISBN 978-0-7566-4190-0.

^ a b c d “former Bio”. WWE. Archived from the original on June 2, 2005. Retrieved May 23, 2008.

^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o “Maven Profile”. Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved April 13, 2008.

^ a b “About Maven Huffman”. YouTube.

^ Rating WWE Wrestlers I Worked With. July 21, 2023. Event occurs at 7 minutes 22 seconds. I get asked all the time. I still do shows and, y’know, guys and promoters are always asking “Do you wanna wrestle? Will you wrestle?” and I’m like, ‘absolutely not!’

^ Pilson, Ty (May 27, 2001). “Maven ravin’; Former teacher gets top marks for good luck”. Slam! Sports. Canadian Online Explorer. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ Royal Rumble 2002: Maven pulls off a shocking upset by. February 17, 2012. Event occurs at 2 minutes 40 seconds. Maven went through the ropes, not over the ropes, let’s point that out. ~ I don’t think Maven’s going to want to continue on in this rumble anyway when the Undertaker’s through with him.

^ “Maven wasn’t eliminated in the 2002 Royal Rumble?, you sure about that?”. YouTube. April 18, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2019.

^ a b “The SmarK RAW Rant – January 28 / 2002 posted by Scott Keith on 01.29.2002”.

^ “The SmarKdown Rant – February 7 / 2002 posted by Scott Keith on 02.07.2002”.

^ “The Undertaker: Opponents & Partners – Internet Wrestling Database (IWD)”. Profightdb.com. Retrieved June 12, 2019.

^ Powell, John; Molinaro, John F. (March 18, 2002). “Old vs. new at WrestleMania; Triple H crowned WWF Champion”. Slam! Sports. Canadian Online Explorer. Archived from the original on April 19, 2015. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ “Monday Night Raw — March 10, 2003”. Online World of Wrestling. Retrieved November 23, 2018.

^ a b c d Sokol, Chris (November 15, 2004). “Orton survives at Series”. Slam! Sports. Canadian Online Explorer. Archived from the original on July 20, 2012. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ a b “WWE Raw Results – November 15, 2004”. Online World Of Wrestling. November 15, 2004. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ “WWE Raw Results – November 29, 2004”. Online World Of Wrestling. November 29, 2004. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ “411’s LIVE Raw Coverage 12.06.04 Eugene Vs Maven posted by Alex Obal on 12.06.2004”.

^ a b c d Tylwalk, Nick (January 15, 2005). “No Revolution: Triple H prevails”. Slam! Sports. Canadian Online Explorer. Archived from the original on April 19, 2015. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ “WWE Raw Results – March 7, 2005 – Heat Tapings”. Online World Of Wrestling. March 7, 2005. Retrieved October 12, 2008.

^ “WWE releases several Superstars”. World Wrestling Entertainment. July 8, 2005. Archived from the original on April 20, 2009. Retrieved February 1, 2023.

^ Hamdy, Ahmed (August 12, 2023). “Released WWE star says he deserved to be fired by John Laurinaitis for “what he didn’t do””. Sportskeeda.com. Retrieved September 13, 2023.

^ Defelice, Robert (October 6, 2023). “Maven Discusses A Meeting With Pat Patterson Nearly Leading To WWE Return, Rules Out Full-Time Comeback In 2023 | Fightful News”. Fightful. Retrieved December 30, 2023.

^ a b Tessier, Colin (December 29, 2023). “Maven Was Set To Accept Offer To Return To WWE As Announcer In 2020, COVID Halted Plans | Fightful News”. Fightful. Retrieved December 30, 2023.

^ Martin, Adam (July 11, 2015). “First “Tough Enough” winner returns to the ring on 7/19″. Wrestleview.com. Retrieved July 11, 2015.

^ “Create A Pro Wrestling Show IV”.

^ “LPW Fall Frenzy”.

^ “WrestlePro Results 4/16/2016”.

^ a b “Meet guest expert Maven Huffman”.

^ a b “Former WWE Tough Enough Winner Maven Working as a Bouncer posted by Jeremy Thomas on 09.30.2013”.

^ a b c Huffman, Maven (October 28, 2023), I was a WWE wrestler. 7 years later, I got arrested. – YouTube, retrieved December 30, 2023

^ “MLW VIP: MLW Radio Extra: September 3, 2014”. Mlwradio.libsyn.com. September 3, 2014. Retrieved June 12, 2019.

^ “Maven reveals what he does now after leaving pro wrestling”. Ringsidenews. November 4, 2020.

^ “Maven Huffman – YouTube”. YouTube. August 17, 2023.

^ “WWE Wrestler Maven Huffman Arrested on Drug Charges”.

^ “Maven admits to prescription drug abuse; seeking treatment”.

^ a b “Awards”.

^ “Pro Wrestling Illustrated Top 500 – 2003”. Wrestling Information Archive. Archived from the original on June 16, 2008. Retrieved August 5, 2008.

^ “WWE Hardcore Championship history”. WWE. Retrieved May 23, 2008.

External links[edit]

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