(born February 9, 1963) is an Italian American monster truck driver and former professional wrestler currently signed to WWE. She is best known under her ring names Madusa (shortened from Made in the USA) and Alundra Blayze. Her early career was spent in the American Wrestling Association, where she once held the AWA World Women’s Championship. In 1988, she was the first woman to be awarded Pro Wrestling Illustrated’sRookie of the Year. The following year, she signed a contract with All Japan Women’s Pro-Wrestling, making her the first foreign wrestler to do so.
She later joined World Championship Wrestling (WCW), where she was a member of the Dangerous Alliance, a group of wrestlers managed by Paul E. Dangerously. In 1993, she joined the rival World Wrestling Federation (WWF) under the name Alundra Blayze. In the WWF, she feuded with Bull Nakano and Bertha Faye, while holding the WWF Women’s Championship three times. Two years after joining the WWF, Miceli returned to WCW, showing up on an episode of Monday Nitro to throw the WWF Women’s Championship belt into a trash can; she was blacklisted by the WWF (later WWE) for the next 20 years as a result. In her second WCW run, Miceli feuded with Bull Nakano and Oklahoma, and became the first woman to hold the WCW World Cruiserweight Championship. After training wrestlers such as Torrie Wilson, Stacy Keibler, and Nora Greenwald (Molly Holly) at the WCW Power Plant, she left the company in 2001. On March 28, 2015, she was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, under the Alundra Blayze moniker.
Miceli competes in the world of monster trucks. She drives a truck named Madusa, and won the 2004 co-championship at the Monster Jam World Finals for freestyle in the first-ever three-way tie. The following year, she was the only female competitor in the Super Bowl of Motorsports, and she won the Racing Championship in the Monster Jam World Finals.
Professional wrestling career
American Wrestling Association (1986–1989)
In 1984, Miceli trained with Eddie Sharkey in Minneapolis and began working on the independent circuit for $5 a match. In 1986, she started wrestling in the American Wrestling Association (AWA) feuding with Sherri Martel as Madusa Miceli. After Martel left the AWA, she replaced her as “Mr. Magnificent” Kevin Kelly’s manager, who often teamed with Nick Kiniski as “The Perfect Tag Team”. In a tournament final, she won the AWA World Women’s Championship over Candi Devine on December 27, 1987. At that time Madusa also began managing the AWA World Heavyweight Champion Curt Hennig. She later lost the title to Wendi Richter on November 26, 1988. Hennig and Madusa joined the Diamond Exchange, a stable led by Diamond Dallas Page that included Badd Company. With Badd Company she faced the team of the Top Guns (Ricky Rice and Derrick Dukes) and Wendi Richter at the only AWA pay-per-view SuperClash III. Both Badd Company’s Tag-Team Title and Wendi Richter’s AWA World Women’s Championship were on the line, but since Richter pinned Miceli, Badd Company remained the champions.
In 1988, Miceli was also the first woman to be awarded Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s Rookie of the Year.
All Japan Women’s Pro Wrestling (1989–1991)
Miceli wrestled a six-week tour for All Japan Women’s Pro-Wrestling at the beginning of 1989, where she won the IWA Women’s title from Chigusa Nagayo before dropping it back to her the very next day. She then began training in Japan, learning the Japanese wrestling style, as well as Muay Thai, kickboxing, and boxing. She eventually signed a three-year deal with All Japan, which made her the first non-Japanese wrestler to do so. In addition, she worked for the TWA, feuding with Luna Vachon, whom she faced in a Hair vs Hair Mixed Tag Team match in September 1991. Miceli and her partner Eddie Gilbert defeated Vachon and Cactus Jack, which resulted in Vachon having her head shaved.
World Championship Wrestling (1991–1993)
She then went to WCW and helped Paul E. Dangerously form his Dangerous Alliance. She acted primarily as Alliance member Rick Rude’s valet. On October 25, Dangerously kicked her out of the Dangerous Alliance at Halloween Havoc. She, however, defeated him by count-out on November 18, 1992 at the Clash of the Champions.
World Wrestling Federation (1993–1995)
Miceli as Women’s Champion in June 1995
In 1993, the WWF reinstated its Women’s Championship, a title that had been vacant since 1990, and Miceli was brought in by the company to revive the women’s division. She debuted under the ring name Alundra Blayze, because WWF owner Vince McMahon did not want to pay Miceli to use the name Madusa, which she had trademarked. She wrestled in a six-woman tournament to crown a new Women’s Champion, and in the finals, she pinned Heidi Lee Morgan on December 13 to win the title. After the tournament, Miceli asked WWF management to bring in new women for her to wrestle. In mid-1994, Bull Nakano joined the WWF roster and began feuding with Blayze. Blayze defeated Nakano at SummerSlam, but lost the belt to her on November 20, 1994 in Japan at the Big Egg Wrestling Universe event. Five months later on April 3, 1995, Blayze regained the title from Nakano on an edition of Monday Night Raw. As part of the storyline, immediately following the win, she was attacked by Bertha Faye, who broke her nose.According to Rhonda Sing (Faye), the storyline was written so Miceli could take time off to get breast implants and a nose job. She returned to the ring in August 1995, losing the Women’s Championship to Faye at SummerSlam on August 27. Two months later, she won the title a third time, defeating Faye on October 23. In December, due to financial troubles the WWF was having at the time she was released from her contract and was stripped of the title following her jump to rival company World Championship Wrestling, and the WWF Women’s Championship remained vacant until 1998. Miceli was blacklisted by the WWF for the next 20 years, owing to her participation in a controversial incident upon returning to WCW during which she dropped the WWF Women’s Championship Title into a trash can..
Return to World Championship Wrestling (1995–2001)
In December 1995, Miceli signed with WCW, and as part of a storyline by booker Eric Bischoff, showed up on WCW Monday Nitro on December 18, where she threw the WWF Women’s Title belt into a trash can. She later admitted that she regretted the action and would not have done it had Bischoff not coerced her. Miceli immediately began using the Madusa name again, and the company brought in Bull Nakano to feud with her; they battled in a match at Hog Wild in August 1996. Due to pre-match stipulations, Madusa was allowed to destroy Nakano’s motorcycle after the match.
The company then decided to establish the WCW Women’s Championship, but Madusa lost to Akira Hokuto in the finals of the tournament to crown the first champion on December 29 at Starrcade. On June 15, Hokuto retained the title against Madusa at The Great American Bash in a Title vs. Career match. The latter then took a nearly two-year hiatus from the company.
Madusa returned to WCW in April 1999 as part of Randy Savage’s faction Team Madness with Gorgeous George and Miss Madness. After that storyline ended, Madusa entered into a tournament for the WCW Championship, but she was defeated and eliminated from the tournament. She was later re-entered into the tournament in a match against Evan Karagias, but was eliminated the next week. After her elimination, Madusa put all her focus on managing Karagias. After Karagias won the WCW World Cruiserweight Championship at Mayhem, he was found flirting with Spice of the Nitro Girls. At Starrcade, however, Spice gave Karagias a low blow during the match, and Madusa pinned him to become the first female ever to win the WCW World Cruiserweight Championship. Spice then aligned herself with Madusa and became her manager for a short time.
In January 2000, Madusa developed a rivalry with Oklahoma. In a farcical Evening Gown match on an episode of WCW Thunder on January 12, Madusa defeated Oklahoma by stripping off his dress, but he attacked her after the match. She eventually lost the Cruiserweight belt to Oklahoma at Souled Out on January 16, 2000.
In the meantime, Miceli became an instructor at the WCW Power Plant, where she helped train women such as Nora Greenwald (Molly Holly) to wrestle. Before WCW’s collapse, she engaged in a brief feud with Torrie Wilson and Shane Douglas, who defeated her and partner Billy Kidman at Fall Brawl in a Mixed Tag Team Scaffold match. Madusa took a big bump during this match and wasn’t seen again on WCW TV. She left the company when she heard that Vince McMahon, the owner of the World Wrestling Federation, was going to buy WCW. Because she had a previous falling-out with McMahon, she opted not to stay with the company. She retired from professional wrestling for good in 2001 because she did not like the direction in which women’s wrestling was going; according to her, it was becoming less about real wrestling and more about Bra and Panties matches.
Return to WWE
Hall of Fame (2015)
On March 2, 2015, it was announced that Miceli would be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame class of 2015, under her Alundra Blayze moniker. On Twitter, she said this was a sign of respect, since that was her name in WWE, but “that bitch Madusa will be on stage speaking.”During her speech, in response to constant questions about her dumping the WWF Women’s Championship belt in the trash on Monday Nitro, her inductor, Natalya, wheeled a trash can onstage. Miceli (calling herself both Madusa and Alundra Blayze) withdrew the belt, which she stressed was a good-looking “women’s wrestling belt”, and said it was finally “back home where it belongs” after 20 years. She held the belt on her shoulder, and referred to herself as the reigning WWF Women’s Champion.
Part-time appearances (2015–2016)
Followed her Hall of Fame induction, she made a special appearance during the WrestleMania 31 event the following day on March 29, along the other Hall of Fame inductees.
On January 27, 2016, Miceli appeared on WWE Network’s program Table for 3, along fellow wrestlers Ivory and Molly Holly.
Mae Young Classic (2017–present)
On July 12, 2017, it was announced that Alundra Blayze would be a color commentator for the Mae Young Classic tournament alongside Lita and Jim Ross.
World Wonder Ring Stardom (2015)
In September 2015, Miceli was appointed the commissioner of Japanese women’s promotion World Wonder Ring Stardom.