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Famous Like Me > Actor > L > John Layfield

Profile of John Layfield on Famous Like Me

Name: John Layfield  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 29th November 1967
Place of Birth: Athens, Texas, USA
Profession: Actor
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
John "Bradshaw" Layfield
Stage names John "Bradshaw" Layfield
Vampiro Americano
Death Mask
John Hawk
Justin "Hawk" Bradshaw
"Blackjack" Bradshaw
Height 6 ft. 6 in. (198 cm)
Weight 297 lbs (135 kg)
Born November 29, 1967
Hometown Sweetwater, Texas
Billed from New York City
Trained by Brad Rheingans
Debut 1992

John Charles Layfield, born November 29, 1967, in Sweetwater, Texas, is an American professional wrestler, competing in WWE's Friday Night SmackDown brand. He is currently better known as John 'Bradshaw' Layfield, or 'JBL' for short.

Prior to his professional wrestling career, Layfield was a successful football player for Abilene Christian University collegiately, and then the Los Angeles Raiders professionally. He also had a short stint in the CFL. He is also known outside the wrestling ring as a conservative political commentator, and has recently been featured on the Fox News and CNBC channels. He has also written a best-selling book on financial planning, Have More Money Now (ISBN 0743466330). While Layfield continues to perform for the WWE, he also hosts a nationally-syndicated weekend talk radio program bearing his name.

Early career

John Layfield was trained initially by Brad Rheingans, and started wrestling in the now-defunct Global Wrestling Federation in Texas in 1992. His first gimmick was Johnny Hawk. He was billed as the cousin of the famous Windham brothers, who are also from Sweetwater, but he is not actually related to them in real life. He formed the "Texas Mustangs" with the late Bobby Duncum, Jr. and they quickly won the tag team titles. They dropped the Tag titles to Ian & Axl Rotten (Bad Breed). Layfield also won the NWA North American title defeating Kevin Von Erich. Two months later he lost the NWA North American title to Greg "The Hammer" Valentine.

Then, after three and a half years touring the independent circuit in various forgettable guises, Layfield first appeared in the WWF (now WWE) as Justin "Hawk" Bradshaw in late 1995. His initial gimmick was that of a sadistic cowboy/mountain man, similar in tone to Stan Hansen. Managed by Dutch Mantell, the character fizzled out by the end of the year, perhaps remembered only for a feud with Savio Vega. Layfield then quickly paired up with his pretend cousin, Barry Windham, to form "The New Blackjacks.", complete with the traditional 'Blackjack' gimmicks of handlebar moustaches and short, jet black hair.

Acolyte Protection Agency

Windham's injuries piled up throughout 1997, so the team quietly disbanded and Layfield wrestled only occasionally on TV as a generic brawler simply called 'Bradshaw', sometimes teaming with fellow Texan Terry Funk. In late 1998, Bradshaw teamed alongside former WCW World Champion Faarooq to form a powerhouse tag team managed by The Jackal. Bradshaw and Faarooq were then "sacrificed" by The Undertaker and became "Acolytes". Bradshaw and Faarooq became the first members of The Undertaker's new stable, The Ministry of Darkness. Afterwards, Bradshaw and Faarooq captured Dennis Knight. The Undertaker rechristened Knight, and renamed him Mideon. Few months later Bradshaw and Faarooq, along with Mideon captured Mabel. The Undertaker, just like Mideon, rechristened Mabel and renamed him Viscera. For the following weeks The Ministry feuded with The Brood, a group of blood-sucking 'vampires'. The Ministry ended up victorious and took The Brood's members, Gangrel, Christian, and Edge. The Ministry went on to feud with The Corporation. As part of The Ministry, Bradshaw feuded with Ken Shamrock. The Ministry would be defeated by Stone Cold Steve Austin, and The Undertaker went on hiatus and their dark gimmick faded.

The duo turned face to become cigar-smoking, bar-brawlers-for-hire. In jeans and t-shirts, Bradshaw and Faarooq became the Acolyte Protection Agency (APA), with their early motto being "We need beer money".

In early 2002 Bradshaw and Faarooq split due to the WWE Draft. During this split Bradshaw became a multiple-time Hardcore Champion during this period and a European Champion. He dropped the European title to Christian in a "dark" (non-televised) match on November 1, 2001 before SmackDown! started the night's episode.

In the September of 2002, Layfield suffered a torn left bicep at a house show event. He was out of action for six months until returning to Ohio Valley Wrestling and then a few weeks later, to the active roster of the WWE. He returned on an episode of "SmackDown!" which saw him and his old friend Faarooq helping The Undertaker from the hands of Chuck Palumbo and Johnny Stamboli. This return saw Layfield with a new look. A cut-off long hair, dyed blond and clean-shaven beard. Since then, he and Faarooq has been competing for the WWE Tag-Team Championship.

The APA has won several Tag Team Title reigns, in WWE and Ohio Valley Wrestling.


The APA gimmick then continued on-and-off until early 2004, when Faarooq quietly retired (kayfabe) and was swiftly fired from the WWE. Layfield instantly changed his gimmick to a posh New York businessman (John Bradshaw Layfield, or JBL for short) on the SmackDown! brand. His new look quickly earned him boos. As part of the gimmick he regularly rides a white "Longhorn" limo to the ring and wearing $2,000, 10-gallon hats. His gimmick change was accompanied by a dramatic and to many fans, mystifying rise in overall status, with Layfield moving from his traditional spot in the lower midcard to pay-per-view main events within the span of a month.

At Judgment Day 2004, John Bradshaw Layfield defeated Eddie Guerrero via disqualification in a WWE title match when Eddie hit Layfield with the WWE title. Guerrero would repeatedly hit Layfield with a steel chair, busting open Layfield.

Many observers had considered Layfield's future in WWE to be in doubt after an incident that occurred during a WWE house show in Munich, Germany, on June 5, 2004. In an attempt to draw a negative reaction he gave the crowd several Nazi salutes and goose-stepped around the ring. Such a display, if used to incite riot or for other political purposes, is illegal in Germany. The German government did not prosecute since the display was intended as part of the showmanship of wrestling.

On June 8, 2004, CNBC, which had recently hired Layfield to regularly appear on one of its shows after he had become prominent as a financial commentator, terminated its relationship with Layfield for his actions in Munich. However, Layfield's actions did not prevent WWE from putting its championship belt on him. Some have even speculated that it was this incident which encouraged and strengthened the decision to make him WWE champion.

JBL went on to win the WWE Championship controversially from Guerrero on June 27, 2004 at the WWE Great American Bash pay-per-view, where the decision was reversed during the Texas Bull Rope Match by then GM Kurt Angle, awarding not only the match but the title to JBL.

JBL won several squash matches for the next couple of weeks. After finding himself with no contender, JBL announced that he wouldn't be defending the title at the second biggest pay-per-view of the year, SummerSlam. However, The Undertaker came and said that he doesn't have any opponent for SummerSlam either, so he decided to challenge JBL. Around this time, JBL hired Orlando Jordan to help him in his battles for the WWE Championship. At SummerSlam, JBL landed more than four Clotheslines From Hell, but couldn't keep The Undertaker down. The match finally ended when Undertaker used the title belt, ending the match in disqualification. After the match, The Undertaker chokeslammed JBL through the top of JBL's white limousine. New GM Theodore Long booked a rematch at No Mercy. JBL hired former Ministry members Gangrel and Viscera to take down The Undertaker. The Undertaker defeated them in a Handicap Match, however. The Undertaker also captured Orlando while JBL tried to send a message by beating Hardcore Holly into a bloody mess. At No Mercy, JBL retained the title by hitting the Clothesline From Hell, despite some help from Jon Heidenreich.

During late 2004, JBL would feud with Booker T and Eddie Guerrero for the WWE Championship.

The 'JBL' character has slowly become more egotistical with time, at first mimicking the actions of a JR Ewing-style businessman running for office (campaign speeches, kissing babies etc) but now referring to himself as "a Wrestling God", much to the on-screen disdain of RAW's then-World Champion, Triple H.

Though JBL held the title for many months every title match was won controversially; on August 15, 2004, JBL defeated the Undertaker by disqualification in a WWE title match, when Undertaker hit JBL with the WWE title just as the referee was revived. Undertaker went on to attack JBL and chokeslamming him through the roof of his limo after the match. At WWE No Mercy on October 3, 2004, JBL defeated the Undertaker in a Last Ride Match with the help of Heidenreich. On November 14, 2004 JBL was able to defeat Booker T to retain his WWE Championship by hitting Booker in the face with the title belt when the referee was knocked out, and got by Guerrero, Booker T and The Undertaker in a Fatal Four Way at the Armageddon PPV, in December after interference by Heidenreich who incapacitated the Undertaker allowing JBL to take advantage and hit Booker with the Clothesline From Hell to get the pinfall victory.

JBL's luck continued in early 2005, and on January 30, 2005 at the Royal Rumble, Layfield sneaked past both The Big Show and Kurt Angle in a Triple Threat match when he pinned Angle after the Clothesline From Hell, and emerged with his title intact from the WWE's first-ever Barbed-Wire Steel Cage Match at No Way Out on February 20, 2005 against the Big Show. JBL won the match when Big Show chokeslammed JBL off the top rope through the ring, JBL managed to crawl out from under the ring apron before show could make it to the floor, winning the match by escape.

Finally, on April 3, 2005, Layfield lost the title to John Cena at WrestleMania 21 in Los Angeles. His unbroken nine-month championship reign had been the longest in a decade. JBL later came out the victor in a four-way elimination match against Big Show, Booker T, and Kurt Angle to regain the number one contender's status for Cena's title, but was once again defeated by Cena at Judgment Day in May 2005, this time in an "I Quit" Match.

On June 12, 2005, Layfield appeared at the WWE-promoted ECW One Night Stand pay-per-view, as an anti-ECW "crusader". In the course of the night however he stiffed Brian Heffron (The Blue Meanie), genuinely reopening legitimate cuts Heffron had sustained two days earlier at another event. Layfield and Heffron have had a real-life rivalry for several years, and as a result of the incident, the former ECW wrestler Tracy Smothers challenged Layfield to a shoot fight anywhere at anytime; Layfield has so far failed to respond to this challenge. However, the WWE would capitalise on the situation by re-signing Heffron to a short-term deal. On the July 7, 2005 episode of SmackDown!, Heffron was reunited with his old Blue World Order associates, Nova and Steven Richards, and defeated Layfield with the help of the World Heavyweight Champion, Batista.

Layfield and Batista then met in a match at The Great American Bash on July 24th, 2005 for the World Heavyweight Championship. JBL won the match via disqualification after the champion, Batista, hit him and his Chief of Staff, Orlando Jordan in the head with a steel chair.

The following Tuesday taping, JBL faced The Undertaker for the right to be named the number one contender to the World Heavyweight Championship. JBL won due to interference from the Undertaker's rival, Randy Orton and an RKO, and would face Batista in a rematch for the title at the SummerSlam pay-per-view on August 21st, 2005. On the following week's "Smackdown!", during the contract signing, Batista allowed JBL to choose the stipulation for the title rematch. This prompted him to make the encounter a "No Holds Barred" match.

At Summerslam 2005, Batista and JBL did indeed face each other in a "No Holds Barred" match which saw both wrestlers take full advantage of the stipulation. At one point, Batista even speared JBL through the security barrier at ringside. In the end, Batista hit JBL with two Batista Bombs, one on the ring, and another on the steel ring steps, a reminder of how he defeated Triple H two months prior. JBL was pinned and Batista retained his title. JBL then lost another rematch with Batista on the September 9, 2005 edition of Friday Night SmackDown, this time a Texas Bullrope Match (the same match JBL won the WWE title in), and was therefore ruled out of title contention.

On the September 16, 2005 edition of Friday Night SmackDown!, JBL lost to Rey Mysterio after a springboard moonsault, and afterwards hired Jillian Hall in order to "fix" his career. This began a winning streak and feud with Rey Mysterio. At WWE Homecoming, JBL was involved in the SmackDown! vs. RAW brawl to end the show. At No Mercy on October 9, 2005, JBL defeated Rey Mysterio to get his revenge from his loss against Rey Mysterio on the September 16 edition of SmackDown!.

The Cabinet

During JBL's time as WWE Champion, Layfield employed "staff" to work for him, the stable was entitled The Cabinet. At its peak the stable contained Orlando Jordan; who is his Chief-of-Staff. Doug and Danny Basham were his Co-Secretaries of Defense until "quitting" the Cabinet on the June 16, 2005 episode of SmackDown!. Amy Weber was also a member, being JBL's image consultant, but later left the WWE due to alleged harassment. The WWE explained Weber's absence by saying that JBL "fired" her, after an episode of "SmackDown!" which aired in Japan. That episode saw Weber accidently shoot JBL with a tranquilizer gun. Jordan has been the only member not to have been announced to have left the group, though no mention of The Cabinet has been made since just after SummerSlam 2005. During late September JBL employed the services of fixer Jillian Hall, though she has never been announced as a member of The Cabinet.

Outside the Ring

The JBL gimmick can be credited to his real-life rise as a successful Wall Street investor. After the publication of his first book Have More Money Now, he became a stock analyst for Fox News Channel and later joined the CNBC television program Bullseye as the program's only conservative analyst.

On February 11, 2005, Layfield married FOX News Channel financial analyst Meredith Whitney. Former tag-team partner Ron Simmons was the best-man, helping to quash internet rumors that the pair had fallen out due to Layfield's alleged inaction and gloating over Simmons' firing a year previously. They are in fact still very close friends.

Layfield hosts his own nationaly-syndicated talk radio show (The John Bradshaw Layfield Show ). The show broadcasts Saturday mornings and Sunday afternoons on affiliate stations of the Talk Radio Network, features Whitney as his "sidekick", and is devoted to political topics.

JBL also hosts his own show on every week, where he gives out his "weekly awards". A new show is usually uploaded on JBL's homepage on Thursday or Friday.

He has also recently revived an old family business selling fishing lures. Dubbed "The Original Layfield Lure", it is available through Sports Authority.

JBL was also named in one Abilene Christian University's all-century team, selected for the first team offensive line. This was to commemorate ACU's 100 year anniversary of its beginning.

JBL is currently writing a second book which will focus more on politics than finance. The possible title for this book is, "The JBL Solution."


Previous managers

  • Uncle Zebekiah
  • Skandor Akbar
  • The Jackyl
  • Jacqueline
  • Amy Weber
  • Orlando Jordan
  • Jillian Hall

Finishing and signature maneuvers

  • Clothesline From Hell
  • Powerbomb
  • The Last Call (Fallaway Slam)
  • Swinging Neckbreaker
  • Big Boot
  • DDT
  • Backhand chop

With Faarooq

  • Spike Powerbomb
  • Backdrop / neckbreaker combo
  • Double Spinebuster


  • "I am who I say I am, and I am a wrestling...GOD!"
  • "The People will remember this day..."
  • "What I say, I do, and what I do, I do very, very well"
  • "You will bow down at my feet, for i am a wrestling...god!"
  • "Dave Batista is built like Tarzan; I will make him look like Jane!"
  • "Now chant my name!"
  • "I smell like smoke 'cause i've been through fire!"
  • "I don't care if this whole damn buliding falls down,I'm about to win a title"
  • "Work harder,work smarter!"

Championships and accomplishments

World Wrestling Entertainment

  • 1-time WWE Champion
  • 3-time WWF World Tag-Team Champions (with Faarooq)
  • 18-time WWE Hardcore Champion
  • 1-time WWE European Champion

Global Wrestling Federation

  • 2-time GWF Tag Team Champion (with Bobby Duncum, Jr., then Black Bart)

Memphis Championship Wrestling

  • 1-time MCW Tag Team Champion (with Faarooq)

Ohio Valley Wrestling

  • 1-time OVW Southern Tag Team Champion (with Faarooq)

Other titles

  • 1-time NWA North American Heavyweight Champion
  • 2-time Catch Wrestling Tag Team Champion (with Fit Finlay, then Cannonball Grizzly)

Pro Wrestling Illustrated

  • PWI ranked him # 496 of the 500 best singles wrestlers of the "PWI Years" in 2003.
  • PWI ranked him 5th in PWI Top 500 (2005)

WWE Championship Reigns
Preceded by:
Eddie Guerrero
First Succeeded by:
John Cena

WWE European Championship Reigns
Preceded by:
The Hurricane
First Succeeded by:
WWE World Tag Team Championship
Preceded by:
Kane and X-Pac
First reign Succeded by:
Hardy Boyz
Preceded by:
Hardy Boyz
Second reign Succeded by:
X-Pac and Kane
Preceded by:
Dudley Boyz
Third reign Succeded by:
Diamond Dallas Page and Kanyon

WWE Hardcore Championship
Preceded by:
Stevie Richards
First reign Succeded by:
Preceded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Second reign Succeded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Preceded by:
Stevie Richards
Third reign Succeded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Preceded by:
Stevie Richards
Fourth reign Succeded by:
Preceded by:
Stevie Richards
Fifth reign Succeded by:
Stevie Richards
Preceded by:
Christopher Nowinski
Sixth reign Succeded by:
Stevie Richards
Preceded by:
Chris Nowinski
Seventh reign Succeded by:
Justin Credible
Preceded by:
The Big Show
Eighth reign Succeded by:
Justin Credible
Preceded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Ninth reign Succeded by:
Justin Credible
Preceded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Tenth reign Succeded by:
Johnny The Bull
Preceded by:
Johnny The Bull
Eleventh reign Succeded by:
Preceded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Twelfth reign Succeded by:
Preceded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Thirteenth reign Succeded by:
Stevie Richards
Preceded by:
Shawn Stasiak
Fourteenth reign Succeded by:
Jeff Hardy
Preceded by:
Johnny The Bull
Fifteenth reign Succeded by:
Tommy Dreamer
Preceded by:
Tommy Dreamer
Sixteenth reign Succeded by:
Tommy Dreamer
Preceded by:
Tommy Dreamer
Seventeeth reign Succeded by:
Tommy Dreamer
Preceded by:
Tommy Dreamer
Eighteenth reign Succeded by:
Crash Holly

External Links

  • WWE Profile
  • OWW Profile

World Wrestling Entertainment Champions
Rogers | Sammartino | Koloff | Morales | Stasiak | Sammartino | Graham | Backlund | Inoki | - | Backlund | - | Backlund | Iron Sheik | Hogan | Andre | - | Savage | Hogan | Warrior | Slaughter | Hogan | Undertaker | Hogan | - | Flair | Savage | Flair | Hart | Yokozuna | Hogan | Yokozuna | Hart | Backlund | Diesel | Hart | Michaels | Sid | Michaels | - | Hart | Sid | Undertaker | Hart | Michaels | Austin | Kane | Austin | - | Rock | Mankind | Rock | Mankind | Rock | Austin | Undertaker | Austin | Mankind | Triple H | McMahon | - | Triple H | Big Show | Triple H | Rock | Triple H | Rock | Angle | Rock | Austin | Angle | Austin | Jericho | Triple H | Hogan | Undertaker | Rock | Lesnar | Big Show | Angle | Lesnar | Angle | Lesnar | Guerrero | Layfield | Cena

World Tag-Team Champions
Graham/Tyler | Gotch/Goulet | Scicluna/Laukea | S. King/Ja. Strongbow | Garea/Calhoun | Tanaka/Fuji | Garea/Ho | Ji. Valiant/Jo. Valiant | DeNucci/Rivera | DeNucci/Barrett | Blackjacks (Lanza/Mulligan) | Parisi/Cerdan | Kowalski/Studd | - | Strongbow/Wolf | - | Tanaka/Fuji | DeNucci/Bravo | Pierre/Eric | Garea/Zbyszko | Jo. Valiant/Je. Valiant | Putski/Santana | Backlund/Morales | - | Samoans (Afa/Sika) | Garea/Martel | Moondogs (Rex/King) | Moondogs (Rex/Spot) | Garea/Martel | Fuji/Saito | Ja. Strongbow/Ju. Strongbow | Fuji/Saito | Ja. Strongbow/Ju. Strongbow | Samoans (Afa/Sika) | Johnson/Atlas Adonis/D. Murdoch Rotundo/Windham | Iron Sheik/Volkoff | Rotundo/Windham | Valentine/Beefcake | Bulldogs (Dynamite/Smith) | Hart Foundation (B. Hart/Neidhart) Santana/Martel | Demolition (Ax/Smash) | Brain Busters (Anderson/Blanchard) | Demolition (Ax/Smash) | André/Haku | Demolition (Ax/Smash) | Hart Foundation (B. Hart/Neidhart) | Nasty Boys (Knobbs/Sags) | LOD (Hawk/Animal) | Money Inc. (DiBiase/I.R.S.) | Disasters (Earthquake/Typhoon) | Money Inc. (DiBiase/I.R.S.) | Steiners (R. Steiner/S. Steiner) | Money Inc. (DiBiase/I.R.S.) | Steiners (R. Steiner/S. Steiner) | Quebecers (Jacques/Pierre) | Jannetty/1-2-3 Kid | Quebecers (Jacques/Pierre) | MOM (Mabel/Mo) | Quebecers (Jacques/Pierre) | Headshrinkers (Samu/Fatu) | Diesel/Michaels | - | Holly/1-2-3 Kid | Gunns (Billy/Bart) | O. Hart/Yokozuna | Gunns (Billy/Bart) | - | Bodydonnas (Skip/Zip) | Godwinns (Henry/Phineas) | Gunns (Billy/Bart) | O. Hart/Bulldog | Michaels/Austin | Austin/Love | - | Headbangers (Mosh/Thrasher) | Godwinns (Henry/Phineas) | LOD (Hawk/Animal) | Outlaws (Dogg/Gunn) | Cactus/Chainsaw | Outlaws (Dogg/Gunn) | Kane/Mankind | Undertaker/Austin | Kane/Mankind | Outlaws (Dogg/Gunn) | Shamrock/Bossman | O. Hart/Jarrett | X-Pac/Kane | APA (Bradshaw/Faarooq) | Hardyz (M. Hardy/J. Hardy) | APA (Bradshaw/Faarooq) | X-Pac/Kane | Undertaker/Big Show | Rock 'N' Sock Connection (Rock/Mankind) | Undertaker/Big Show | Rock 'N' Sock Connection (Rock/Mankind) | Outlaws (Dogg/Gunn) | Hollys (Hardcore/Crash) | Mankind/Snow | Outlaws (Dogg/Gunn) | Too Cool (Sexay/Hotty) | (Edge/Christian) | Hardyz (M. Hardy/J. Hardy) | RTC (Buchanan/Goodfather) | Rock/Undertaker | E&C (Edge/Christian) | Brothers of Destruction (Undertaker/Kane) | Power Trip (Austin/HHH) | Jericho/Benoit | Dudleyz | APA (Bradshaw/Faarooq) | DDP/Kanyon | Brothers of Destruction (Undertaker/Kane) | Rock/Jericho | Booker/Test | Hardyz (M. Hardy/J. Hardy) | Tazz/S. Dudley | B&C (Billy/Chuck) | Rikishi/Rico | Hogan/Edge | Storm/Christian | Hurricane/Kane | Jericho/Christian | Booker/Goldust | Regal/Storm | Dudleyz (B. Dudley/D. Dudley) | Regal/Storm | - | Morley/Storm | RVD/Kane | La Résistance (Duprée/Grenier) | Booker/RVD | Evolution (Flair/Batista) | Benoit/Edge | La Résistance (Grenier/Conway) | E&R (Regal/Eugene) | Regal/Tajiri | The Super Heroes (Hurricane/Rosey) | Cade/T. Murdoch

World Wrestling Entertainment European Champions (inactive title)
Bulldog | Michaels | Helmsley | Hart | Helmsley | Brown | X-Pac | Brown | X-Pac | McMahon | - | Mideon | Brown | Jarrett | Henry | Brown | Bulldog | Venis | Angle | Jericho | Guerrero | Saturn | Snow | Regal | Holly | Regal | Test | Guerrero | M. Hardy | Hurricane | Bradshaw | Christian | Page | Regal | Dudley | Regal | J. Hardy | Van Dam

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article John Layfield