WWE wrestler dies at 68

Lanny Poffo was a WWE wrestler known as “Leaping Lanny” and “The Genius,” as well as the younger brother of WWE legend “Macho Man” Randy Savage (1952–2011) and the son of wrestler Angelo Poffo (1925–2010).

Pro wrestler

Poffo wrestled with several smaller promotions, including International Championship Wrestling and Mid-South Wrestling, before joining the WWE in 1985. He first wrestled as Leaping Lanny Poffo, becoming known for reciting poetry in the ring before a match. The poems, penned by Poffo and written on Frisbees, typically made fun of his opponent; he flung the Frisbees into the audience after reading their contents. Poffo turned heel in 1989, taking on the new ring name of the Genius. As the Genius, he still wrote poetry, as well as arrogantly pontificating and writing out mathematical equations during matches. Poffo’s profile was raised in 1989 when he and Curt “Mr. Perfect” Hennig (1958–2003) defeated Hulk Hogan at “Saturday Night’s Main Event XXIV.” He left the WWE in 1994 and wrestled on and off until 2020 with smaller promotions. Poffo also published two books of his poetry.

Poffo on growing up in a wrestling family

“I wouldn’t know it any other way. I thought it would be odd to have a father that wasn’t a wrestler and a brother that wasn’t a type-A personality like the ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage.” —from a 2005 interview for Interactive Wrestling Radio


Tributes to Lanny Poffo