Butcher Brannigan

Joseph Novo (September 3, 1948 – September 6, 2009) was an American professional wrestler who appeared in Championship Wrestling from Florida, IWA Australia, World Wide Wrestling Federation and Stampede Wrestling. He appeared in many territories during his career.

Butcher Brannigan
Born(1948-09-03)September 3, 1948
Cream Ridge, New Jersey
DiedSeptember 6, 2009(2009-09-06) (aged 61)
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s)Butcher Brannigan
Joe Nova
Buck Brannigan
The Grappler
Billed height6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Billed weight290 lb (130 kg)

Professional wrestling careerEdit

Early careerEdit

Novo made his wrestling debut in 1970. In the summer of 1972 he went to Japan to work for Japan Wrestling Association

World Wide Wrestling Federation (1971-1972)Edit

In 1971 he made his debut as in the New York for the World Wide Wrestling Federation as Joe Nova who worked as a jobber. He would have matches against Gorilla Monsoon, Jimmy Valaint, and Chuck O'Connor.

Championship Wrestling from Florida (1972-1973)Edit

Novo would wrestle as Joe Nova from Championship Wrestling from Florida in 1972. He would feud with Bob Orton Jr., Tony Garea, and Frank Hester.

World Class Championship Wrestling (1973)Edit

In 1973 he went to Fritz Von Erich's World Class Championship Wrestling in Texas. He wrestled as Butcher Brannigan. He scored a victory over the Khosrow Vaziri on October 23 who later became known the Iron Sheik.

Return to World Wide Wrestling Federation (1973-1975)Edit

He would return to the Northeast as Butcher Brannigan and later Butcher Nova. He feuded with Spiros Arion. He wrestled at Madison Square Garden on April 14, 1975 as he lost to Édouard Carpentier. He left the company later that year.

Stampede Wrestling (1975-1976)Edit

In 1975 he went to Calgary, Alberta for Stu Hart's Stampede Wrestling. On December 12, he lost in the tournament final to Frankie Laine for the Stampede North American Heavyweight Championship.

Return to World Class Championship Wrestling (1977)Edit

In 1977 Brannigan returned to WCCW and feuded with Ivan Putski and Scott Casey. He left later that year.

WCW Australia (1977-1978)Edit

He went to wrestle for World Championship Wrestling in Australia in 1977. This would be the peak of his career. Teaming with Bugsy McGraw and defeated Rick Martel and Larry O'Dea for the NWA Austra-Asian Tag Team Championship. Dropped the titles to O'Dea and Ron Miller on May 2, 1977. He would feud with O'Dea and Mario Milano. Afterwards he won the titles three more times with Killer Karl Krupp, Les Roberts, and Ox Baker.

In August 1978 he and Les Roberts won a tournament to win the vacated tag titles in Papua New Guinea. They dropped the belts to Larry O'Dea and Mario Milano on October 1. Then on October 27 found a new partner Ox Baker and defeated O'Dea and Milano. They dropped the titles to Andre the Giant and Ron Miller becoming the last champions on December 8. The promotion folded at the end of the year.

Later careerEdit

He went to wrestle for NWA Hollywood between 1978 and 1980. Later on he wrestled as Buck Branngian. From 1979 to 1982 he wrestled for Georgia Championship Wrestling. In 1980 he returned to Championship Wrestling from Florida as a jobber. Also made appearances for Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling in 1982.

On September 17, 1981 he won the NWA British Empire/Commonwealth Championship defeating Steve Rickard.

In 1982 he went to England to wrestle for Joint Promotions as Crusher Brannigan.

In 1983 once again won the NWA (New Zealand) British Empire/Commonwealth Heavyweight title.


He died just a few days after his 61st birthday on September 7, 2009 of kidney failure and heart disease.

Championships and accomplishmentsEdit


External linksEdit