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   April 19, 2014



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Curtis Axel (Joe Hennig), "Mr. Perfect" Curt Hennig and Larry "The Axe" Hennig


Curtis Axel as Intercontinental champion in June 2013. Photo by Mike Mastrandrea

Joseph Curtis Hennig, born on October 1st 1979 in Minnesota, is a third generation wrestler and the son of the late, great Mr. Perfect as well as the brother of fellow pro-wrestler Amy Hennig. Best known under the name Curtis Axel, his gimmick in the WWE references not only his father Curt but also his grandfather Larry "the Axe" Hennig. He first appeared under the World Wrestling Entertainment Banner in 2007, when he accepted the organizations Hall of Fame ring on his fatherís behalf alongside his mother, grandfather and siblings.

He decided to follow in his fathers footsteps approximately 2 years after his sudden passing and, using his real name, made his debut as a professional wrestler in July of 2007 alongside fellow heritage-heavy star Ted DiBiase for the organization WLW. After his run in the company, which included a 9-month-undefeated-streak, Hennig made his way to FCW, winning titles on multiple occasions and teaming with different partners, during his stint, Brett DiBiase and indie-wrestling-veteran Kaval among them. His name was changed to Michael McGillicutty, though his heritage was never denied or hidden during the time of the persona change. He would make his WWE Debut as an NXT Rookie under his new gimmick under the tutelage if Kofi Kingston. Coming in second after the end of the second season of the show he went on to become a part of the Nexus, a team comprised of talent that has appeared on the aforementioned season of NXT under the leadership of Wade Barrett and later CM Punk. Partnered with Justin Gabriel, McGillicutty was even able to secure the WWE Tag Team titles, though his stay on the main roster was ultimately cut short with the dissolve of the New Nexus as he lost the titles and was sent back to NXT shortly thereafter. Hennig would go on to lose several matches on different WWE shows like Superstars or Saturday Morning Slam while playing a prominent role on the NXT roster where he started feuding with Tyson Kidd and would later on turn Face as part of a tag team with Bo Dallas while still playing a heel on WWE television.

Repackaged as Curtis Axel, Hennig made his return to Raw on May 20th 2013 as part of Heymanís posse and was able to secure multiple victories over Triple H as well as John Cena in his first appearances, though he would not get a pinfall over either of them. Apart from this push, Joseph was also able to win the WWE Intercontinental Championship at WWE Payback. As part of the aforementioned team under Paul Heyman he would go on to turn on former partner and mentor CM Punk and would subsequently begin a long-lasting feud.

CURTIS AXEL STORIES

  • Dec. 6. 2013: Constant improvement Curtis Axel's mantra
  • Aug. 30, 2013: Curtis Axel a star on the rise

    "MR. PERFECT" CURT HENNIG STORIES
  • March 6, 2003: Wrestlers mourn death of Perfect
  • Curt Hennig Career Record

    LARRY "THE AXE" HENNIG STORIES
  • Dec. 14, 2005: Larry Hennig one tough guy