Hailing from Cobb County, Georgia, the Big Boss Man — real name Ray Traylor — was an imposing figure. He made the leap to WWE in the ’80s, playing foil to Hulkamania and battling Hulk Hogan in several high-profile matches. After his stint as a bad guy, Boss Man lost some weight, gained a step or two, and became a huge fan favorite in the late ’80s and early ’90s in WWE.
On Monday, it was announced that Traylor, as his Big Boss Man character, is headed to WWE’s 2016 Hall of Fame. Trailer did make his way to WCW in the mid-to-late ’90s, playing himself, but he didn’t rise much more than a brief tangle with the NWO. Fans will probably remember Traylor more for his work as Boss Man — at SummerSlam ’91, he competed in a match with The Mountie where the loser would have to spend a night in jail. Traylor won that match to the delight of the audience.
Traylor was one of the best big guys who ever competed in a pro wrestling ring. Despite his size, he was fast on his feet, performing maneuvers like sliding under the bottom rope to the outside, spinning, and pouncing back in the ring to deliver a blow with the quickness of a gazelle.
Traylor, sadly, died in 2004, at only 41 years old. He joins Sting, The Godfather and The Fabulous Freebirds as this year’s announced inductees.