Saturday, August 21, 2010

Late Lance Cade: ‘Addict’ (Linda McMahon’s Dismissal) Or Untreated Brain Trauma Victim (Plenty of Circumstantial Evidence)?

[posted 8/19/10 to]

The new issue of Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter has a full and very revealing biography of World Wrestling Entertainment’s Lance Cade, who died last week at age 29 from the usual euphemistic “heart failure.”

Brazenly and outrageously, Senate candidate Linda McMahon, has kicked dirt on Cade’s grave – to repeat the words of another former WWE performer and current sports brain-injury activist, Chris Nowinski. While calling scrutiny of her wrestlers’ deaths “fair game,” McMahon lumped Cade together with all the other presumably subhuman “addicts” whose untimely demises foul her ill-gotten fortune.

But as Meltzer’s story shows, the circumstantial evidence shows that Cade (real name Lance McNaught), addict or not, was certainly a prima facie candidate for the brain trauma disease now being called Chronic Traumatic Encephelopathy.

The Meltzer piece can be viewed (subscribers only) at It tells of how Cade, who had been trained and pushed by WWE great Shawn Michaels, “was beaten down with one brutal chair shot after another and … left for dead, in what looked like and it turns out was punishment,” in a “no disqualification match” with Michaells on the October 6, 2008, edition of Raw.

The “punishment” was for having violated etiquette in not having shown enough gratitude to Michaels, who had more seniority and status, and had gifted Cade with a “clean pinfall” win over him in a prior match.

Not so incidentally, this took place nearly a year after Vince McMahon told CNN, in a fall 2007 documentary, that WWE was banning chair shots to the head. In fact, cranial chair shots continued all the way to January 2010 – by which time Linda’s Senate campaign was well under way.

Irv Muchnick

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