Hall of Fame
WWE Superstars - ECW
Franklin Roberto (Bobby) Lashley (born July 16, 1976) is an American professional wrestler, currently performing for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) on its Extreme Championship Wrestling brand, under the ring name Bobby Lashley. He is the reigning ECW World Heavyweight Champion.
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On September 23, 2005, Lashley made his televised WWE debut on SmackDown! under the name Bobby Lashley (or sometimes just Lashley). Lashley was introduced as a three-time National Amateur Wrestling Champion, four-time All-American, a two-time Armed Forces Champion and a 2002 Silver Medalist at the Military World Championship. In his first match, he squashed Simon Dean then, in his pay-per-view debut at No Mercy 2005, defeated Dean once again.
On the November 11, 2005 episode of SmackDown!, Lashley defeated Orlando Jordan in a qualifying match for a place on Team SmackDown! at the 2005 Survivor Series where, despite a dominating performance, he was the first to be eliminated.
On January 6, 2006 Lashley became the first announced participant from SmackDown! to be entered into that year's Royal Rumble. At the Royal Rumble Lashley was the 8th wrestler to enter the match, but was eliminated quite early (6th) by RAW's World Tag Team Champions Big Show and Kane.
Following the Royal Rumble, Lashley began a feud with John "Bradshaw" Layfield leading up to a match at No Way Out 2006. The match ended up being Lashley's first loss in singles competition thanks to interference from Finlay.
During February and March, Lashley was involved in an intense feud with Finlay which saw the pair brawl on many occasions even until the pair were put into a in a Lumberjack Match that Finlay won (after use of his shillelagh).
On April 2, 2006 Lashley competed in his first WrestleMania (WrestleMania 22) in a losing effort in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match.
Lashley next entered SmackDown!s King of the Ring tournament. He lasted until the finals, defeating Mark Henry and Finlay in the process. During the finals, held at Judgment Day he was defeated by Booker T with help from Finlay. Later, as Booker was being crowned, Lashley speared Booker from his throne.
These acts developed into a feud with the newly named "King Booker" and the other members of his court, Queen Sharmell, Finlay and William Regal. During this feud Lashley won his first professional wrestling championship by defeating John "Bradshaw" Layfield for the United States Championship, which he lost to Finlay a little less than two months later. He also defeated King Booker in a cage match in the main event of an episode of SmackDown!.
Not long after losing the title, Lashley was declared unable to compete according to a physician who stated that during an annual exam, Lashley was found to have elevated enzymes of the liver; therefore, would not be cleared to wrestle until further evaluation. On July 28, 2006, WWE.com stated that Lashley was cleared to compete. Lashley soon made his return to the SmackDown! roster to continue his feud with the court and went on to earn his first match for the World Heavyweight Championship at No Mercy 2006 against King Booker. This match later became a four way bout that also included Batista and, Booker's ally, Finlay, which King Booker won after pinning Finlay.
On November 14, 2006, Lashley moved brands to ECW, due to personal issues with Michael Hayes, making a surprise appearance on an episode of ECW on Sci Fi to take out Hardcore Holly and sign a contract for the final spot in the Extreme Elimination Chamber match for the ECW World Heavyweight Championship at December to Dismember 2006. At December to Dismember, Lashley was the 5th person released into the match. He speared The Big Show, and ended up pinning Big Show to become the new ECW World Heavyweight Champion and the first person of African American descent to hold the title. This was his first ever World Championship