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Precious Lucy: The First Lady Of Hardcore

By MIKE ALTAMURA -- for SLAM! Wrestling
Precious Lucy, she's more than just a pretty face. (Photo courtesy of http://preciouslucy.multimania.com/)

There's something special about this 5'3', 137-pound French-Canadian diva known on the wrestling circuit as Precious Lucy. Her unique and unprecedented hardcore style of grappling essentially has multitudes of critics branding her as a "pioneer" and "leader" of women in wrestling. However, in a recent interview with SLAM! WRESTLING, Lucy remained quite modest about it all: "I don't know if I'm a pioneer but if that's the way people feel about me, well, I must say that I'm really honoured. Maybe all the pain, blood, sweat and tears means something after all. The only thing that matters to me is to make the fans happy and enjoy what I do."

Lucy has battled through all the hard yards and been subjected to many undue hardships as a result of the rigid path she's followed to stardom. So, it's no wonder she's quite restrained in recommending a similar road for female grapplers in the coming years. "In a way, I really hope that few women will walk down the same road I did but, on the other side, I wish that they could go a different way. It was so hard [coming through the ranks] and sometimes I'm asking myself if it was really worth it. It would have been so much easier for me to act like all the girls you see on TV and try to look like a Barbie doll and do a few flips," Lucy candidly told SLAM!. She proceeded to inform us on why she took such a hard ridden path rather than simply walking down the glamorous lane of T and A like so many others.

"All my life, I've been challenged by guys (I was the only girl in my neighbourhood) and the saying you can't do this or that because you are a girl just made me sick. I guess I developed the bad syndrome of 'what you do, I can do better'. I went through hell because I'm that kind of woman who wants to make this world better. I want to be unique and I'm a terrible perfectionist. I have to push the limits to feel good and complete as a wrestler." And, over the past 4 years, Lucy has more than just pushed the limits: she's reached sky heights and worked numerous positions within the wrestling industry. Whether it's as a wrestler, commissioner, manager, valet or a referee, Lucy knows how to fulfil the job with aplomb.

Lucy credits her initial role in wrestling, a manager, as helping her dramatically in her interaction with the crowd and how to play to the audience. However, when it comes to valeting, she's quite frank in stating it clearly is not for her. "I felt so stupid [valeting]. The 'be pretty and shut up', or 'scream as much as you can' job is definitely not for me. Usually, when I was entering a new promotion, that's how promoters would bring me in, then I would turn on my man and well, beat him up. Sometimes, the transition from valet to wrestler was so long that I would get tired of the promotion. Some girls are really good as valets and they do a great job, but I just feel so bad when I'm out there around the ring." On the other hand, Lucy has thoroughly enjoyed being in 'the middle of the action' as a referee and credits her commissionership role as helping to develop her microphone skills and techniques. As for her job as a wrestler, Lucy revealed to SLAM! that "it developed everything I can imagine and actually made me a better person. I've learnt to accept myself, be confident and so much more."

Precious Lucy is no slouch in the ring; always willing to go through tables, take chair shots or be on the receiving end of a death-defying bump by a much larger male counterpart. Needless to say, such an intense style comes at a price. Lucy was recently sidelined due to knee complications, but fortunately the injury wasn't as severe as first suspected.

"At the beginning, the doctor thought that my knee was completely ripped but after going through many tests (too many), the verdict is that I did suffer from a torn meniscus, pulled muscles and ligaments well, everything you can imagine I guess," Lucy amusingly stated. The good news is that she's back in centre ring and the injury is well on the mend. "I'm glad nothing was ripped and that time will heal the injury. No surgery needed!" the Hardcore star optimistically said.

Despite the complications with her knee, Lucy is quick to assert that her body, physically, is intact. "I'm pretty impressed about my physical condition. When I went to see the doctor, he made a complete check-up of my bones and everything is perfect. I really thought that something, at least one thing would be wrong… but nothing at all. The only things that I consider a bit weak are my knees."

As for competing against much larger foes and the battering that causes on her body, Lucy fearlessly said, "It never has been a problem. My body has a pretty good reaction to pain. I'm not saying that I love pain but I can deal with it." The driving force behind Lucy's desire to keep on breaking the foundations for women in wrestling no matter what the physical ramifications are is chiefly her will to prove people who've doubted her wrong.

Precious Lucy made her wrestling debut in mid 1997, donning the name Lucifer a mystifying, gloomy and dark persona. She recalls the coming together of Lucifer and the development of the gimmick.

"Lucifer was inspired especially by my teacher's new gimmick. When he changed his character for 'The Devil's Machine' I thought that Lucifer would be a perfect manager for him (and wrestler later). I was dressed in black only, and I was not smiling a lot although I was complaining all the time to make the crowd angry. My entrance music was Darth Vader's Imperial March I just love Star Wars and I always had a big fascination about the Dark Side and death. Maybe that's because my father died when I was so young. That's the main reason why I loved the Undertaker so much. There was a bit of myself in his character."

Lucy furthermore remembers how she used the character to cover up some insecurity within her at the time. "The colour (of Lucifer's clothing) black was also to hide my body. I didn't like the way I looked back then and it was really hard for me to go out there and perform looking the way I used to. I used to be 187 pounds of pure fat. I just hated myself - that character just represented the way I felt about myself." Lucy straightforwardly outlined to SLAM! WRESTLING that if she had to go back to such a gimmick, she 'would certainly change a few things', in particular the way she looks, although, on the other hand, would retain the dark coloured clothing. Lucy proceeds to state; "black is a good colour for me." Then comically says, "There is no way I can wear colors like white now… they'll turn red anyway."

If I had to go back to such a gimmick, I would certainly change a few things but I thought about it many times. I want to change the way I look and I have a pretty good idea of what I want and yes, it is inspired from that first gimmick.

At the tender age of 19, Precious Lucy would rocket to stardom in 1999, appearing on various TV shows, publications and wrestling events nationwide. However, don't be fooled… the year was full of arguably more lows than highs for wrestling's number one hardcore queen. In essence, the sudden rise to fame wasn't the cause of Lucy's low morale but instead a feeling of being held back and having restricted freedoms.

"What was hard to deal with is the fact that sometimes, people would not let me talk and say what I wanted to," Lucy recalls from the hectic period. "I had to say what the promoters wanted me to say even if it was not the way I felt about a situation and even if the interview was about me and not the promotion. When I watch some of the old interviews I notice that a promoter was interrupting me so he could answer for me and talk about himself instead. Because of this, even talk show hosts, when I was mentioning about how hard wrestling was for a woman and what I've been through, would stop me. It was as if they didn't care, and didn't want to see the truth not to mention that few of them were pissed off because I couldn't talk." When given the opportunity to speak though, Lucy thrived on the publicity: "all the interviews I did one-on-one with the host were pretty good and they helped me a lot."

Many of the problems Lucy faced in 1999 can be related to her brief stint with Jacques Rougeau's 'International Wrestling 2000'. Lucy initially met Rougeau on a TV show focusing on Combat sports and soon after became an IW2000 commodity. No matter how hard she tries to recall vivid memories from her time with IW2000, the bad ones will forever outshine them.

"He wanted me to be his 'Miss Elizabeth' and I tried very hard but couldn't," Lucy told SLAM! in regards to the image Jacques Rougeau had set out to derive from her at IW2000. "I could not use chairs, tables, nothing I like. It had to be a family show and in the year 2000, I think this thing is way behind. I'm not judging his ideas, it's just that I don't feel good being involved in things I don't like or don't believe in. I felt like I was being held back. Plus, Jacques didn't want me to wrestle for anybody else but [at the same time] he is producing only 2 to 3 shows a year. I love my job too much to only wrestle 2 or 3 times a year."

Also, after about a year of working for him, Jacques told me that he didn't want me to wrestle for anybody else but he is producing only 2 to 3 shows a year. I love my job too much to only wrestle 2 or 3 times a year. The final straw in her association with IW2000 came after an office meeting with Jacques Rougeau, Lucy revealed to SLAM!. She remembers, "One day, he (Rougeau) asked me to come in his office to talk about the possibility to fight guys on his shows because it was too hard to find decent women workers. He said that no hardcore would be allowed and that it was OK for me to fight men but I had to give him one thing in exchange - I would have to lose a match against a midget and they would shave my head bald. There's nothing wrong about losing but shaving my head and losing my daytime job was not a good idea. I decided to leave the company and it was a great move in my career."

Through all the pain and agony endured, Lucy still remains appreciative of Rougeau and what he provided her with. "I'll always be thankful for what Jacques did for me and the great advice he gave me but it just couldn't work. I was not happy at all. I would give up anything for this business, but not my daytime job. I have bills to pay and unfortunately, wrestling doesn't help with those bills," she stated.

2001 was a groundbreaking year for Lucy. She thrived when pitted against 433-pound mammoth, J.C. Owens in a series of matches. Lucy declared that what makes her matches against J.C so unique is the utter 'difference in size', some 297 pounds! Lucy recalls when first asked to work with J.C.: "I never thought such a match could happen and I almost had a heart attack when a promoter told me I was fighting Owens. I really thought it was a joke. But when I realized it was true I must say I was really happy about it because it would give me a chance to know what I could do against such an opponent."

Lucy was essentially compelled to alter her wrestling style against Owens, and their two matches have been nothing short of enthralling. "I definitely can't bring him (Owens) down on the mat with usual moves I perform so I had to find another way," Lucy said. "It was a great challenge. I must say that for a man of his size, he's pretty impressive and he moves! He is the best super-heavyweight around without a doubt. On our first encounter I won a belt but on the other I got really beat up but it's still a good memory anyway." In one of her more notable showings, Lucy was worked into an angle with wrestling great Tony Atlas, however, the one-on-one matches between the two unfortunately, never took place. Nevertheless, Lucy recalls the 'angle' and her experiences with Mr. Atlas quite vividly. "As he was wrestling another guy, I showed up, spit on him, kicked him and punched him many times in the face for real. This whole thing was to set up a shoot match between the two of us, Lucy stated about the initial proceedings of the 'angle'. She then jokingly backed her stiff in-ring action against Atlas by outlining that "Tony liked to get hit, what can I say?".

As for the lessons learnt from the first confrontation with Mr. Atlas, Lucy said, "I learnt that I was a pretty good hitter because his face was so swollen that I could not recognize him. I think it helped me to develop a shooting and stiff style."

Although the 'angle' came to an untimely and premature end, Lucy still is extremely fond of Atlas: "Tony is a great guy and I had a lot of fun with him. He had always encouraged me to push the limits and be strong. I haven't seen him in a while and I miss him very much."

When asked who her dream in-ring opponent would be, Lucy without hesitating believes it would be Chris Benoit."Definitely, it would be Chris Benoit. I feel that I could learn so much from him. He's such a great technical wrestler. All the combinations of moves he knows just amaze me," Lucy told wrestlingguys.com. On the hardcore side of things, she considers legend Terry Funk as the ideal opponent. "I would like to know how much pain I can take and I think he would be the man I would have to go through to find out." Finally, Lucy would like to wrestle a man who combines both technical and hardcore wrestling in Steve Corino.

Precious Lucy strikes a pose. (Photo courtesy of http://preciouslucy.multimania.com/)
As a youngster, Lucy was an ambitious and ever-talented singer and musician. "I used to sing and play bass in a band before wrestling came into my life. I was doing pretty good back then and I think I could have gone somewhere in the business, Lucy informed SLAM!. Her decision to quit her music aspirations and focus on wrestling still lingers in her mind. "I quit everything for wrestling - I just hope I made the right choice although many times, I regret it. I still play guitar once in a while and I sing a lot in the car when I'm on the road. I'll even participate in some karaoke just for fun."

Outside of the wrestling scene, Lucy is quite an artistic woman. "I love to create web sites and arts. I'm creating my own outfits and I like to draw people. The human face has so many features; it's pretty interesting." Lucy is also a fitness fanatic away from the ring. "I'm always in the gym and dieting because I'm afraid to get fat again. Too bad it's like an obsession now." Moreover, she's currently passing down some of her wrestling savvy to referee Sweet Cherry, who she's formed a close bond with. "She's like my sister and has a lot of potential [as a wrestler]," Lucy stated.

She considers her fearless attitude and drive to give the fans whatever they want as her greatest attributes and revealed to SLAM! WRESTLING that when it all comes down to it, she's very emotional - an aspect of herself which she inevitably dislikes. An open attitude follows Lucy wherever she goes. As we found out, she's quite content just to work for any federation who gives her an opportunity to perform. Not much to ask now, is it? " I'll work for anybody I can. Anybody who will give me a chance, trust me on what I can do and where I can give it 110% is a great promotion to work for," Lucy stated.

Lucy is not hung up about wanting to think what the future will present, but openly said that she's thinking about it 'all the time'. She reminisces on some hearty words of inspiration she received from an ex-ECW worker in May this year when thinking of the future. 'When somebody will give you your chance and let you do what you do best, well, this person will be rich, so as you,' are the exact words of the former ECW performer. Lucy is quite comical and rational on her chances of furthering herself in the wrestling ranks: "I just hope it will happen soon. Wrestling being my full-time job would make me the happiest person on earth… but I have to be realistic."

It seems only a matter of time before this hardcore queen explodes globally. Just make sure to see her in action when you get the time - it'll be well worth the trouble.

Mike "Kryptonite" Altamura is a freelance writer currently living in Australia. He can be contacted via email at MIKE ALTAMURAL




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