Vito Joseph LoGrasso (June 18, 1964), also known as Big Vito or simply Vito, is an American professional wrestler currently competing on the independent circuit. He is best known for his time with World Wrestling Entertainment, World Championship Wrestling, and Extreme Championship Wrestling.
Extreme Championship Wrestling (1990-1999)
Vito LoGrasso started wrestling in 1990. He first made a name for himself in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) as Skull Von Krush, a generic big wrestler who began with a subtly "evil foreigner" gimmick who never rose above jobber to the stars category. Later he changed his name to Vito "The Skull" LoGrasso and becoming a member of "Da Baldies" stable, who claimed to be an offshoot of a real life New York street gang, and as such took issue with New Jack calling himself a "Gangsta" and began a feud with him.
World Championship Wrestling (1999-2001)
In 1999 Vito left ECW for World Championship Wrestling (WCW) where he teamed with Johnny the Bull as The Mamalukes (also known as "The Paisains" for a short time). Managed by Tony Marinara The Mamalukes captured the WCW Tag Team title (twice), and were (kayfabe) jointly awarded the Hardcore title.
After being awarded the Hardcore title Vito and Johnny were forced to face one and other in a match to crown one champion, which Vito won.
In 2001 when The World Wrestling Federation purchased WCW Vito was one of the wrestlers who was lost in the shuffle, neither becoming a part of The Invasion nor taking one of the large ticket buyouts offered.
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2004)
He had a brief run in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling in late-2004 with Glenn Gilberti, Trinity and Johnny Swinger as the "New York Connection". His only feud was with "Irish" Pat Kenney, in which they exchanged victories.
World Wrestling Entertainment
In Early 2005 Vito worked dark matches for the now renamed World Wrestling Entertainment and signed a contract with them in July. He was assigned to their Ohio Valley Wrestling developmental territory for several months until he was ready to be called up to the main roster.
Vito made his debut on WWE television on the August 6 episode of WWE Velocity, where he helped Nunzio win the WWE Cruiserweight Championship from Paul London. Together Vito and Nunzio reformed the Full Blooded Italians stable, acting mostly as a tag team together on Velocity with scattered appearances on SmackDown!.
Vito and Nunzio turned heel again (after a short flirtation with being faces) in March 2006 under an angle in which Vito announced that he wanted to be recognized as a "Godfather" and he would wear a blazer and glasses.
Beginning in May various wrestlers such as Orlando Jordan and Paul Burchill began approaching Nunzio in backstage situations and spreading rumors that they had (kayfabe) seen Vito in public places in various forms of cross-dress. Nunzio originally wouldn't hear of any such thing until the June 2nd SmackDown! when Vito came down the ramp, in a dress, to collect Nunzio after losing a match. The next week, after arguing about Vito's clothing choices, the two former friends faced each other in a match which Vito won after hitting Nunzio with The Code of Silence. Not long after Nunzio joined the ECW brand, leaving Vito on SmackDown! alone.
The idea for the gimmick seemed to originate on The Sopranos, who also had a character named Vito who had recently been outed as a homosexual (though he was never seen in women's clothing).
Regardless of his passion for cross dressing, Vito continually explained that he was a straight man; including one instance of asking Diva Ashley out on a date while wearing a dress. After this he began to "have more fun" during his matches, running around and waving his dresses and otherwise interacting with the fans, turning him once again face. As the gimmick took off various people began (kayfabe) voicing problems with a man wrestling while wearing a dress, including color commentator JBL (who refused to do commentary with him) and wrestlers Montel Vontavious Porter and William Regal (who (kayfabe) threatened SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long with a sexual harassment lawsuit after a match with Vito). At the same time, the WWE began to "censor" any incidents of Vito's dress raising and exposing his (bethonged) buttocks. Despite his detractors, once he started wearing a dress Vito began an undefeated streak which didn't end until over four months later when he was defeated by Elijah Burke after interference from his partner Sylvester Terkay.
On November 2, WWE.com announced that Vito would be posing (non-nude) for the April 2007 edition of Playgirl Magazine.
Vito defeated champion Bradley Jay and Ryan O'Reilly in a three-way round robin match to win the Deep South Wrestling Heavyweight Championship on January 25, 2007. After winning the title he was removed from the WWE.com SmackDown! roster page. Almost immediately upon winning the title he underwent a gimmick change, losing the dress and instead adopting martial arts-style trunks, a headband, and wrestling without shoes. When asked on DSW TV he announced that he changed his style of dress because his opponents were citing it as a distraction and claiming his clothing was the reason they were losing to him. He held the title until February 22, when he lost it back to Bradley Jay. Vito currently is a professional actor and has several films set for release.
Vito is married to CZW/ROH/WEW wrestler/manager Noel Harlow.
Championships and accomplishments
- Ironman Hardcore Knockout Tournament (2002)