A Right Transatlantic Villain
Gori Ed Mangotich
After joining the Lincoln stable in 1962 Gori Ed could be seen regularly on opposition bills against those other Lincoln stars Judo Al Hayes, Rebel Ray Robinson, Mike Marino, Wayne Bridges, Bob Kirkwood and others.
An indication of his place in the Lincoln hierarchy was Ed being one of the wrestlers chosen by Lincoln to appear in the 1962 promotional documentary "The Wrestling Game," his match against Judo Al Hayes the second on the bill in a show available on You Tube at the time of writing (November, 2017).
When the BBC broadcast professional wrestling in 1965 the services of Ed were called upon once more, Judo Al Hayes again the opponent.
Unlike Bridges, Kirkwood or Dave Larsen Gori Ed was no Lincoln discovery; he had a wrestling history going back at least a decade.
Lincoln billed Gori Ed as a Canadian lumberjack, which we assumed to be another example of wrestling promoters and the fluidity of truth. Well, the lumberjack bit might well be a bit of fiction, but Gori Ed Mangotich was a Canadian. We found him working on Canadian bills in June, 1952, admittedly billed as a "Rugged Yugoslav." The following summer Ed and tag partner Red Garner were working in Ontario and said to be "The biggest Torontos villains." Heritage member Carlton St remembers Gori Ed back home in Canada as the star of the Ontario circuit.
In Britain we find Ed in October, 1954, against Charlie Fisher. Further matches followed against Al Hayes, Mike Marino, Gerhardt de Jaeger and others. The visit lasted into the spring of 1955 and it was during this period Ed made friends with the Australian wrestler Paul Lincoln.
We find references to Ed in Canada during 1955 and 1956, but from then on he wrestled in Britain, at some point presumably settling here, setting up home in Surrey. In the late 1950s Ed worked mainly for Dale Martin Promotions in the south of the country but with the occasional jaunt north.
By 1960 Paul Lincoln, who had by then moved into wrestling promotions, was seeking talented wrestlers to fill his bills. Gori Ed Mangotich was one of the many who responded to the call, and in July 1962 we find him working for Lincoln. Thus began the part of his career most fondly remembered by British fans, working with the likes of the Wild Man of Borneo, Dr Death, Mike Marino, and the myriad of colourful characters that made Lincoln shows so exciting for the fans.
With the merger of Lincoln and Dale Martin Promotions the high profile days of Gori Ed Mangotich were behind him. He remained an exciting and experienced wrestler, at times donning the Dr Death hood himself, and seeing out his wrestling days for the independent promoters.