RF VIDEO sat down with another legend from the wrestling as Baron Von Raschke took part in our newest shoot interview After a successful amateur wrestling career and a stint in the United States Army, James Raschke started in professional wrestling in 1966 in the American Wrestling Association as a referee. He was soon wrestling under the name of Jim Raschke, playing off of his amateur wrestling notoriety in the area. He eventually changed his ring name to Baron von Raschke and claimed to be from Germany. He would do a goose-step and then put his finisher known as the “brainclaw”, on his opponent. His most memorable quote came at the end of an interview where – running out of time before the next match and not fully hearing the question – he simply blurted out, “Dat is all da people need to know!”.
Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s he held numerous singles and tag team titles throughout several NWA and AWA territories, as well as wrestling for the WWWF where his claw hold was “censored” by a huge RED “X” on WWWF TV because of the blood it would draw when applied. In 1978 he was recognized as the first NWA Television Champion (the Mid Atlantic Television title had been renamed).
In May 1984, Raschke and the Crusher defeated Jerry Blackwell and Ken Patera for the AWA World tag team title. They would lose the belts in August of that same year to the Road Warriors. In 1986, he wrestled for the NWA’s Jim Crockett Promotions reuniting with former tag partner Paul Jones (who was now a manager) as part of Paul Jones’ Army. He also filled in for the injured Krusher Khruschev defending the NWA World Six-Man Championship with Ivan and Nikita Koloff.
He was briefly in the WWF in 1988 as the manager for The Barbarian and The Warlord (The Powers of Pain) under the name of The Baron, but was released shortly after his arrival. Raschke resurfaced in the AWA, returning to the ring to feud with Soldat Ustinov and Teijho Khan in late 1988. He then went on to captain “Baron’s Blitzers” during the ill-fated Team Challenge Series. When the AWA folded, Raschke continued to wrestle for independent promotion primarily in the Minnesota area, retiring in 1995.
RF VIDEO talked about every name that he has come into contact with during his career from the AWA to the NWA and even the WWF. One of the many highlights of this DVD is when Baron tries to do the interview in character for the first five minutes until we inform him that we just want him to be himself. The transition is amazing to watch. If your a fan of the AWA or NWA or wrestling from the 80’s this is a shoot your going to want to get your hands on!!!
Talk about your amateur career in Nebraska
Memories of qualifing for the 1964 Olympics and the injury that kept you from competing
What lead you into entering professional wrestling?
Memories of wrestling in Montreal
Who did you work with early on in Montreal?
Memories wrestling working in Detroit
Memories of wrestling Pat O’Connor in St. Louis and learning the claw
Memories working for Dick the Bruiser in Indianapolis
Memories wrestling Moose Cholak
Memories of a young Bobby Heenan
Memories of teaming with Jimmy Valiant
Memories of Ernie Ladd
Thought on working for Bob Luce in Chicago
Memories working in Pittsburg against Bruno Sammartino
Memories of your first tours of Japan
Memories of Horst Hoffman
Memories of Superstar Billy Graham & Dusty Rhodes
How did Verne take to you coming into the AWA after training you years before?
What led you to going to the WWWF?
Memories of your debut in Mid-Atlantic against Giant Baba
Initial impressions of Ricky Steamboat
Memories teaming with Greg Valentine
Memories of your matches against Paul Orndorff & Jimmy Snuka
What led you from teaming with Valentine to Paul Jones?
Impressions of Steamboat & Jay Youngblood as a team
What was like it like working babyface for the first time after you and Jones split?
What led you to working in Georgia?
Any good stories living in Charlotte?
Memories of a young Ric Flair
Was their anyone who came through Verne’s camps who you were impressed with early on?
What was it like working in Germany?
Were you aprehensive going to Germany working your character?
What was the style like over there compared to the U.S.?
How did you adapt to the round system?
How had the AWA changed when you were first there to your return in the early ’80’s?
How involved was Greg Gagne behind the scenes?
Memories teaming with the Crusher
Thoughts on being involved in the Road Warriors title win
Early impressions of the Road Warriors
Was their any aprehension in the Crusher dropping the titles to them?
What was it like working for Verne Gagne?
Memories of Wally Karbo
What was the moral in the AWA locker room after the WWF was starting to hit big?
Did you ever have any conversation with the WWF when they hit their boom period
Early memories of Vince McMahon Jr.
Early impressions of Hulk Hogan
Did you think Hogan would become the draw he would be later on?
How did you wind up back working for Jim Crockett Jr.?
Memories working with Ivan & Nikita Koloff
Memories teaming with the Barbarian at the ’86 Crockett Cup
Memories being a part of Paul Jones’ Army
What was it like being managed by Jones?
Memories feuding with Jimmy Valiant
What led you to going to the WWF to manage the Powers of Pain?
Why do you think your WWF run was so short-lived?
What was it like being in the AWA during it’s final years?
Why do you think the AWA went under?
Thoughts on the Team Challenge Series
Do you think Verne was out of touch on where wrestling was headed?
What was the locker room moral like during the AWA’s final years?
Did you feel an attachment to the AWA since you were trained by Verne?
What are your feelings on the current nostaglgia trend in wrestling?
What have you been doing after wrestling?
Have you ever been recognized while teaching?
What do you think of the state of the business today?
Thoughts on Bobby Heenan’s quote on you in his book
Any favorite ribs or road stories?
Who were your favorite people to work with?
Who were your favorite opponents?
What matches really stand out in your career?
Word association where we list almost every wrestlers name from the AWA and have Baron tell stories on each guy