Shaun Ricker (born November 11, 1982) is an American professional wrestler, better known as Eli Drake. He is signed to IMPACT Wrestling, where he is a former IMPACT World Champion and IMPACT World Tag Team Champion with Scott Steiner. He has won three Feast or Fired briefcases.
Ricker appeared as a cast member on the TNT reality series The Hero, hosted by The Rock.
Professional wrestling career Edit
Independent circuit (2003–2011) Edit
Ricker began working regularly for the Heartland Wrestling Association (HWA) in 2003 under the ring name Deuce. On November 9, 2004, Deuce would win the HWA Television Championship and lost it on January 4, 2005. He went on to compete in various matches that included singles and tag-team action before challenging unsuccessfully for the HWA Heavyweight Championship against Chad Collyer in a Title vs. Career match held on October 31, 2006.
Ricker would not return to HWA until late 2007 returning under the ring name Dick Rick at HWA Reborn in a losing title match against Brian Jennings for the HWA Heavyweight Championship on November 9. During 2008, Dick Rick competed in numerous tournament-styled matches for the Number 1 contender status for the HWA Heavyweight Championship. He won a three-way match against Deja Vu and JT Stahr on November 5 for the No 1 Contender title. On November 12, Rick lost to Jake Christ in the title match for the HWA Heavyweight Championship. After wrestling in an unsuccessful four-way elimination match for #1 Contender status on March 18, 2009, Rick went on to compete in several more tournament-styled matches before wrestling his last HWA match on June 3, losing to JT Stahr.
After HWA, Ricker started working for Mach One Wrestling (M1W) in late 2009. His first match was on M1W Fight Night, losing to Tommy Wilson on October 16. He then won two consecutive matches in singles action against Andrew Hellman during M1W Fight Night on October 23 and again on October 30. Ricker went on to team with Willie Mack to defeating Andrew Hellman and Sonny Samson. He faced and lost to Brian Cage in singles and tag-team action during the months of November and December. Cage would be the man Ricker would later form the team known as Natural Selection. Finding initial success as a tag team, Ricker and Cage went on during January month in 2010, competing in a tag team tournament, winning all of their matches including the final match for the M1W Tag Team Championships on January 29 from the team of The RockNES Monsters (Johnny Goodtime & Johnny Yuma). However, the champions lost the titles to the same team they defeated to first win them at the M1W event on April 16. Ricker's last match for M1W was on October 29, 2011, defeating Nick Madrid at M1W Wrath Of Con III.
During December 2010, Ricker moved to work for the promotion NWA Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. He rejoined forces with Brian Cage, reforming The Natural Selection tag team and won the NWA Heritage Tag Team Championship on December 8, from The RockNES Monsters. After holding the titles for over 200 days and defending them against the likes of Young Hollywood and Rasche Brown and Slymm, the Natural Selection lost them to The Tribe due to the Brian Cage missing the event and becoming a two on one handicap match. Understandably upset after Cage's actions, Ricker would feud with him for several month, staying even on victories until late 2012 when Ricker defeated Cage.
After this win, Ricker earned a shot at Adam Pearce's NWA World Heavyweight Championship which took place on December 4 and Ricker lost. Throughout 2012, Ricker would aim high, trying to earn himself a championship shot which included numerous battle royals and even made it to the finals of the Percy Pringle III Cup where the winner would earn a shot at any championship, any time, any place. Rickers feud with Cage would resurface in late 2012 and culminated in a casket match which Ricker won. With this massive win Ricker finally found singles success in by winning the 30-Man Red Carpet Rumble for the CWFH Heritage Heavyweight Championship in homage to his late friend and manager Percy Pringle on May 5, 2013 and successfully defended it that same night against Ryan Taylor.
Ricker would lose the championship to Scorpio Sky in a loser leaves Hollywood match later that night, this match was scheduled to air on June 2, on tape delay, but was never aired due to the controversial finish. After the cameras went off Ricker got on the mic and thanked all of the fans for coming out. He said this would be the last time we would see him in a ring for Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. All of the wrestlers came out from the back and gave Ricker a standing ovation. However he made one more final appearance defeating Scorpio Sky's fellow Experience members Big Duke and Xtian Cole, making it his final television appearance.
World Wrestling Entertainment / WWE (2006–2008, 2013–2014) Edit
Ricker made his first World Wrestling Entertainment appearance in 2006, teaming up with Jon Moxley to take on Big Show. His second appearance was in 2008 in a dark match on the ECW program, teaming with Gene Snitsky in a losing effort against Cryme Tyme.
In May 2013, Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported that Ricker, along with several other independent wrestlers, was undergoing the necessary medical testing required to be signed to WWE. He reported to the WWE Performance Center. Ricker using the new ring name Slate Randall, defeated Yoshi Tatsu in a dark match at the NXT's October television tapings. On August 1, 2014, he was released from his WWE contract. Ricker would later explain that his release was due to not getting along with then-head coach Bill Demott.
Return to the independent circuit (2014–present) Edit
After his release from WWE, Ricker returned to wrestling on the independent circuit. On September 5, at Full Impact Pro's Fallout, he (along with Mason Ryan and Michael Tarver) participated in a trios tournament, but they were defeated by the Full Impact Puerto Ricans (Lince Dorado, Jay Cruz & Jay Rios) in the semifinals. On November 21, 2014, Ricker defeated Kenny King at FSW Luck of the Draw.
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling / IMPACT Wrestling Edit
The Rising and early feuds (2015–2016) Edit
On February 16, 2015, Ricker participated in the One Night Only: Gut Check tournament, where he defeated Crazzy Steve to qualify for the final match of the night which was a five-way elimination match which was won by Tevita Fifita. On March 14, Ricker, under the name Eli Drake, participated in the Impact Wrestling tapings. On the April 10 episode, Drake joined Drew Galloway and Micah to form The Rising, defeating The Beat Down Clan by DQ. On the June 3 episode of Impact Wrestling, The Rising defeated the Beat Down Clan in a clean victory. On the July 1, the BDC defeated The Rising in a 4-on-3 handicap match, forcing The Rising to dissolve. On July 15, Drake turned heel when he cost Galloway a match against the TNA World Heavyweight Champion Ethan Carter III. On the August 19 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake lost to Galloway in a No Disqualifications match.
On October 4, at Bound for Glory, Drake competed in a twelve-man Bound for Gold Gauntlet match which was won by Tyrus. Drake participated in the Impact World Title Series as a member of group Future 4, along with Jessie Godderz, Micah and Crimson advancing the round of 16 along with Godderz where he would be lose to Mahabali Shera, thus failing to advance to the quarterfinals and being eliminated from the tournament. On the January 5, 2016, the first live edition of Impact Wrestling on Pop TV, Eli Drake and Jessie Godderz started feuding with Kurt Angle and Drew Galloway which led to a three-way match at One Night Only: Live, which included The Wolves.
On January 26, Drake won the Feast or Fired match and the briefcase that contained a title shot for the TNA King of the Mountain Championship. On the February 9, Drake was attacked by Grado who had been fired after his Feast or Fired briefcase contained the pink slip. Later that night Drake interrupted him backstage and told him "he better shut up about whatever he thinks he knows" and then attacked Grado again and had him escorted out of the building through the tunnel. Drake feuded with Grado once again who was masked as Odarg the Great feuding with him backstage alongside Jessie Godderz . This led the match on the February 16 episode of Impact Wrestling, which he lost, and led to the rematch at Lockdown special episode of Impact Wrestling in the Six Sides of Steel match, in which he's unsuccessful due to interference from the returning Mahabali Shera who went on to team with Odarg the Great. On the March 15, Drake lost against Grado in a Ladder match, with the career of Grado on the line.
Fact of Life and Namer of Dummies (2016–2017) Edit
On the May 31, Drake cashed in his Feast or Fired briefcase for his shot at the TNA King of the Mountain Championship, defeating Bram who was just viciously attacked by Lashley, winning his first title in TNA. On June 12 at Slammiversary, Drake defeated Bram to retain the championship. On the June 28, Drake began hosing the Fact of Life segment, inviting James Storm as his guest, where he proceeded to insult him; Storm eventually hit Drake with the Last Call, igniting a feud between the two. The next week on the July 5 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake defended the King of the Mountain Championship against Storm, but intentionally disqualified himself to save the title. However, on the August 4 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake lost the King of the Mountain Championship to James Storm in a rematch.
Drake entered in the Impact Grand Championship tournament on the September 8 episode of Impact Wrestling, defeating Jessie Godderz in the first round. However, he was defeated by Aron Rex on the September 22 episode of Impact Wrestling in the semi-final. At Bound for Glory Drake won the Bound for Gold. On the October 6, Drake started a feud against Ethan Carter III, after his Fact of Life segment. On the November 10 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake cashed in his Bound for Gold opportunity but failed to win the in World Heavyweight Championship against Eddie Edwards. On the November 24 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake faced EC3 in a title shot vs. voice match where if Ethan lost, he would lose his Heavyweight title shot and if Drake lost, he would not be able to talk for the rest of 2016. EC3 won the match by submission.
On the January 5 episode of Impact Wrestling, Eli Drake had a confrontation against The Broken Hardys during his returning Fact of Life segment, which led to a tag team match for their TNA World Tag Team Championship at One Night Only: Live!, teaming with Tyrus, which never happened. However, his association with Tyrus continued, with Tyrus helping him to take the red case during the Race for the Case on the January 19 episode of Impact Wrestling. On the February 2 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake cashed in his Race for the Case briefcase for a match against Ethan Carter III, but was defeated. After the match, Tyrus and him attacked EC3, but they were assaulted by the Death Crew Council. On the February 9 episode of Impact Wrestling, Eli Drake and Tyrus were defeated by The Death Crew Council in a handicap match. During the match, Drake abandoned Tyrus. A match was scheduled between Drake and Tyrus two weeks later, which ended in a victory of Tyrus by disqualification. After the match, Drake proposed more money to Tyrus for keeping him as a bodyguard, which Tyrus accepted. On the March 16, Drake and Tyrus were defeated by Garza Jr. and Laredo Kid. During the match, Drake unintentionally hit Tyrus, causing the loss. On the April 13 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake and Tyrus, alongside Bram and Lashley as Team Josh Mathews were defeated by Team Jeremy Borash (Alberto El Patron, Chris Adonis, Magnus and Matt Morgan).
On the May 4 episode of IMPACT!, Drake was defeated by Alberto El Patron and failed to be the number one contender for the GFW Global Championship. The following week, with the help of Tyrus and Chris Adonis, he attacked Impact Grand Champion Moose after his match against Marshe Rockett. On the June 1, Drake was defeated by Moose and failed to win the Impact Grand Championship. At Slammiversary, Drake and Chris Adonis were defeated by Moose and DeAngelo Williams.
Championship reigns (2017–2018) Edit
On the August 24 episode of IMPACT!, Drake won a 20-man gauntlet match, from the second entrant position, to win the vacant GFW Global Championship for the first time. This was Drake's first world title reign from a major wrestling promotion in his career. The following week, Johnny Impact and Eddie Edwards interrupted his championship celebration, which led to a tag team match in the main event, which Drake and Chris Adonis won. On the September 7 episode of IMPACT!, Drake made his first successful title defense against Matt Sydal. The following week, after Johnny Impact won a title shot after defeating Low-Ki, Drake and Adonis brutally assaulted him. At Victory Road, Drake successfully retained his title against Johnny Impact after repeated interference from Adonis and a low blow. After the match, he and Adonis attacked him, but Impact was saved by Garza Jr.. On October 1, Drake successfully defended the title in Japan for Pro-Wrestling NOAH against Cody Hall. On the October 19, after Impact defeated Adonis, Drake assaulted him and whipped him with his belt. The following week, Drake and Adonis were defeated by Impact and Garza Jr.. On the November 2 episode of IMPACT!, Drake and LAX were defeated by Impact and oVe. After the match however, Drake attacked Impact and gave him a Gravy Train on the exposed ring boards. At Bound for Glory, Drake retained his title against Impact after the returning Alberto El Patron turned heel and hit Impact with a steel chair.
On the November 9, Drake was challenged to a title match by Petey Williams, which Drake accepted, but for the next week. He tried to attack him shortly after, but Williams quickly took advantage of him. The following week, Drake successfully defended his championship against Williams. On the December 7 episode of Impact Wrestling, Drake and Adonis were defeated by Impact and Williams. After the match, Drake was assaulted by Alberto El Patron. At Genesis, Drake defeated Impact and El Patron in a Six Sides of Steel match to retained his title. On the February 1, Drake's promo was interrupted by the returning Austin Aries, who challenged him to a match for the IMPACT Global Championship, which Drake accepted after Adonis attacked Aries with the title. However, immediately afterwards, Drake lost the title to Aries, ending his reign at 146 days. Drake got his rematch on the February 15 episode of IMPACT!, but failed to regain the title.
Drake returned on the March 15 episode of IMPACT! during the Feast or Fired where he was the last wrestler to pick a briefcase alongside Ethan Carter III, Moose and Petey Williams. The following week, it was revealed that he picked up the briefcase for a IMPACT World Tag Team Championship match, which he didn't want as he no longer had a tag team partner. Then, he challenged Moose for a case (Tag Team Championship) vs. case (World Championship) match on the April 5 episode of IMPACT!, which he won, thanks to an intervention of oVe. The following week, Drake revealed his tag team partner to be Scott Steiner and at Redemption on April 22, Drake and Steiner defeated The Latin American X-change to become the new IMPACT World Tag Team Champions. On the April 26 episode of IMPACT!, Drake and Steiner defeated LAX in a rematch to retain the Tag Team Championship. After the match, Drake said that it was the time for him to cash in his World Championship briefcase, but he was confronted by Austin Aries and IMPACT World Champion Pentagón Jr. Drake and Steiner tried to attack them but were quickly defeated. Two weeks later, Drake cashed in his World Championship briefcase against Pentagón Jr., but failed to win the title. On the May 17, Drake and Steiner lost the titles against Z&E (DJZ & Andrew Everett). After some tensions between the two partners, a match was scheduled at IMPACT special episode Under Pressure, which Drake won after a chair shot.
Various feuds (2018–present) Edit
On the June 7, during his Fact of Life segment, Drake ranked Moose number one in his top 5 dummies in IMPACT. Moose confronted Drake later and challenged him for a match to determine the number one contender to the IMPACT World Championship at Slammiversary XVI. Drake accepted the challenge and attacked Moose. The following week at a House of Hardcore event, Drake was defeated by Moose. On June 25, Eli Drake signed a new contract with IMPACT Wrestling.
On the July 12 episode of IMPACT!, Drake flirted with Grado's girlfriend, Katarina, during a backstage segment. This led to a match between Drake and Grado later that night, which was won by Drake. After the match, he tried again to flirt with Katarina, but Drake was stopped by Joe Hendry. The following week, Drake was defeated by Hendry.
Eli Drake's Open Challenge (2018–present) Edit
In wrestling Edit
- Finishing moves
- Blunt Force Trauma (Knee lift transitioned into a discus clothesline)
- Bottom Rung (Belly-to-back side slam)
- Gravy Train (Over-the-shoulder back-to-belly piledriver)
- Signature moves
- Float-over DDT
- Inverted stunner
- Leaping elbow drop, with theatrics
- Jumping neckbreaker
- Skylord Slam (Front powerslam)
- Springboard moonsault
- Swinging neckbreaker
- "The Defiant One"
- "The Last of a Dying Breed"
- "The Namer of Dummies"
- "The Perpetual Motion Machine of Badassery"
- "The Prince of Eternia"
- Chris Adonis
- Percy Pringle III
- Entrance music
- Independent circuit
- "Scarface (Push It to the Limit)" by Paul Engemann
- "Fame" by David Bowie
- Total Nonstop Action Wrestling / IMPACT Wrestling
- "Wish It Away' (Edit) by Psyko Dalek (used as a member of The Rising)
- "The Ghost in Us" by Dale Oliver (used as a member of The Rising)
- "Eli Drake" by Dale Oliver
- "Let's Talk" by Dale Oliver
- Independent circuit
Championships and accomplishments Edit
- Championship Pro Wrestling
- CPW Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Jackpot and Sin City Syndicate
- Championship Wrestling from Hollywood
- CWFH Heritage Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- NWA Heritage Tag Team Championship (2 times) – with Brian Cage
- Red Carpet Rumble (2013)
- DDT Pro-Wrestling
- Ironman Heavymetalweight Championship (1 time)
- Future Stars of Wrestling
- FSW Heavyweight Championship (2 times, current)
- Empire Wrestling Federation
- EWF Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Great Goliath Battle Royal (2011) – with Josh Dunbar
- Heartland Wrestling Association
- HWA Television Championship (1 time)
- Attack of the Trios (2009) – with Dean Jablonski and Jon Moxley
- Mach One Wrestling
- M1W Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Brian Cage
- M1W Tag Team Championship Tournament (2010) – with Brian Cage
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- PWI ranked him #94 of the top 500 singles wrestlers in the PWI 500 in 2016
- Pro Wrestling Revolution
- PWR Heavyweight Championship (1 time, current)
- Total Nonstop Action Wrestling / IMPACT Wrestling
- GFW / IMPACT Global / World Championship (1 time)
- IMPACT World Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Scott Steiner
- TNA King of the Mountain Championship (1 time)
- Gauntlet for the Gold (2016, 2017 – Heavyweight)
- Race for the Case (2017 – Red Case)
- Feast or Fired (2016 – King of the Mountain Championship contract)
- Feast or Fired (2018 – World Tag Team Championship contract)