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Alvin Burke, Jr. (born October 28, 1973) also known as Hassan Hamin Assad, is an American professional wrestler, currently signed to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) on the Raw brand under the ring name Montel Vontavious Porter, or MVP.

Burke was trained by former professional wrestlers Soulman Alex G and Norman Smiley. Burke wrestled for numerous independent promotion early in his career, including a stint in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA). During his time in these promotions, he won various championships in singles competition. Burke signed with the WWE in 2005 and was assigned to WWE's developmental territory Deep South Wrestling (DSW) in McDonough, Georgiamarker.

After being promoted to the SmackDown brand, Burke made his WWE wrestling debut in October 2006. In 2007, he captured the WWE United States Championship, making it his first title reign with the company. His reign was the longest since WWE came into possession of the championship in 2001 and the third longest in the title's entire history. That same year, Burke captured the WWE Tag Team Championship alongside Matt Hardy. He won the United States Championship for the second time on March 17, 2009.

Professional wrestling career

Early career

Burke first entered professional wrestling after completing 9½ years of an 18½ year prison sentence for armed robbery and kidnapping which he started at the age of sixteen. Burke entered the professional wrestling business through the help of a corrections officer in his prison who also worked as a wrestler in the independent circuit. After being trained by former professional wrestlers Soulman Alex G and Norman Smiley, Burke made his wrestling debut in 2002. He worked for many different companies on the independent circuit using the name Antonio Banks, including appearances with Full Impact Pro (FIP), and Future of Wrestling, where he won the FOW Tag Team Championship with Punisher. During his time in FIP, he wrestled Homicide for the FIP World Heavyweight Championship at the Ring of Honor show, Do or Die IV on February 19, 2005, but did not win the title. He also made sporadic appearances for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA), and wrestled on the April 20, 2003 episode of TNA Xplosion. He appeared again for TNA on the August 6, 2004 episode of TNA Impact!, with Sal Rinauro as his tag team partner, losing to America's Most Wanted. He also wrestled for Coastal Championship Wrestling (CCW) and Elite Wrestling Entertainment in 2005, competing against wrestlers like Jerry Lynn and D'Lo Brown. In CCW, he won the CCW Heavyweight Championship on August 20, 2005, by defeating Blackhart and Bruno Sassi in a Three way match.

World Wrestling Entertainment

In 2005, after a number of live events and dark matches, Burke signed a developmental contract with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) and was assigned to their developmental territory Deep South Wrestling. He originally wrestled under his "Antonio Banks" ring name, but then developed the Montel Vontavious Porter (MVP) in-ring persona: an arrogant, self-obsessed athlete partially inspired by the fictional NFL wide receiver Rod Tidwell (Cuba Gooding, Jr.) from the 1996 film Jerry Maguire and the real-life wide receiver Terrell Owens.

SmackDown! (2006–2009)

As MVP, he made his first appearance on WWE television on the August 4, 2006 episode of SmackDown!, during which announcers described him as a coveted free agent. The initial angle involved MVP appearing backstage and in arena crowds, often flanked by women and/or a bodyguard, and talking to SmackDown! General Manager Theodore Long about the contract his (unseen) agent was supposedly aggressively negotiating. Throughout his segments, commentators described MVP as arrogant, noting that he would stop conversations in the middle to answer his mobile phone or admire his own jewelry while people were speaking to him. Finally, on September 26, 2006, video of a press conference announcing the signing of MVP to "the largest contract in SmackDown! history" was uploaded to WWE.com. view

MVP made his in-ring debut at No Mercy as a villain with a ring entrance featuring an NFL-like inflatable tunnel, before defeating Marty Garner. During the match, commentators Michael Cole and John "Bradshaw" Layfield (JBL) decried the choice of opponent, since it had been implied that it would be someone "more competent", and joined in with fans mocking his athletic suit styled ring gear, calling him "pathetic" while the fans chanted Power Ranger. On the following week's SmackDown!, MVP demanded a tougher opponent to prove his mettle, which was answered by Kane—making his SmackDown! debut. The two feuded for the next two months, with MVP narrowly scoring wins over Kane in a Street Fight and a Steel Cage match before losing to him in an Inferno match at Armageddon, from which he suffered storyline 1st degree burns. Because of the burns he was "out of action" for a short time, during which color commentator JBL expressed rage with the fans for cheering a match where the only way of achieving victory is to set an opponent on fire.

When the Kane feud died down, MVP began a feud with the WWE United States Champion Chris Benoit over Benoit's title. During the build up for a title match with Benoit, MVP appeared on SmackDown! introducing various supposed champions from around the world, defeating them in squash matches. MVP lost to Benoit at WrestleMania 23 and at Backlash, but finally defeated Benoit in a Two out of three falls match at Judgment Day, with MVP taking the United States Championship, his first WWE title, in two straight falls. MVP credits his time working with Benoit for improving his in-ring skill.

His first major feud as the Champion was against Matt Hardy, whom he started claiming to be better than at everything, after defeating him at the Great American Bash. When MVP was legitimately diagnosed with the heart condition Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, it was written into the storyline, with MVP blaming the condition for his losing an arm wrestling match against Hardy. When MVP was given an interview segment during SmackDown!, the VIP Lounge, it was used to bow out of a scheduled boxing match at Saturday Night's Main Event – with Evander Holyfield replacing him, and eventually punching out MVP during the bout. On the August 24, 2007 episode of SmackDown!, MVP bragged to General Manager Teddy Long that he could win the WWE Tag Team Championship with anybody, prompting Long to grant him a Championship match alongside the next person who entered the room, Matt Hardy. The following week, MVP and Hardy took the championship from Deuce 'n Domino, making MVP a double champion. MVP and Hardy's contentious relationship had them competing with each other in various ways while MVP proclaimed himself "Captain" of the team and refused to defend his United States Championship. Their reign together came to an end on the November 16, 2007 episode of SmackDown! (taped on November 13), after Hardy demanded a shot at the United States Chamionship, but MVP declined, and announced they had a Tag Team Championship defense against John Morrison and The Miz instead. They lost the match, and immediately afterwards, MVP invoked the rematch clause, but they lost that match as well. MVP then attacked Hardy, targeting his knee, which in storyline had been injured during the matches, and put him "out of action". Hardy suffered a legitimate ruptured appendix while he was off television, putting their feud on hold. While Hardy recovered, MVP engaged in short feuds with Rey Mysterio and Ric Flair. He participated in the Money in the Bank ladder match at WrestleMania XXIV, and during the match, Hardy made an unannounced return and knocked MVP from the ladder with his signature Twist of Fate maneuver, reigniting their feud. At Backlash in 2008, MVP dropped the title to Hardy, ending his record reign at 343 days, the third longest in the history of the belt.

Beginning on the August 29, 2008 episode of SmackDown, MVP developed a losing streak that lasted over five months, losing in both singles and tag team matches. At Unforgiven, he challenged for the WWE Championship in the Championship Scramble match, but was unsuccessful. The losing streak meant that, in storyline, MVP did not receive "his contract incentive bonus", and also was no longer allowed his usual entrance with the NFL-like inflatable tunnel. During this losing streak he had a short feud with The Great Khali. On the January 16, 2009 episode of SmackDown, MVP finally broke the losing streak by defeating Big Show in a Last Man Standing match with help from Triple H, as he was fighting to ensure that Triple H would be allowed to compete in the Royal Rumble match, in the process turning him into a fan favorite. At the SmackDown taping on March 17, he won the United States Championship for the second time by defeating Shelton Benjamin. At WrestleMania XXV, MVP competed in the Money in the Bank ladder match for the second year in a row, but failed to win.

Raw, Worlds Strongest Tag Team (2009-present)

On April 13, 2009, MVP was drafted as the first overall pick to the Raw brand as a part of the 2009 WWE Draft. As a result of being the reigning WWE United States Champion, he transferred the title to Raw for the first time in history. He lost the title to Kofi Kingston on the June 1 episode of Raw. He has since formed a tag team with Mark Henry, challenging Chris Jericho and The Big Show for the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship at the Breaking Point pay-per-view, in which they failed to win the titles.

Personal life

Burke grew up in Opa-locka, Floridamarker, and his father was a police officer. He joined a gang when he was 12, describing it as "a graffiti gang", which later turned into a street gang. He spent six months in a juvenile detention center after a robbery. He later completed 9½ years of an 18½ year prison sentence for armed robbery and kidnapping which he started at the age of sixteen. Due to his past criminal record, Burke is barred from visiting some countries for international tours such as Japan. He is, however, able to visit other countries through special permits and background checks for recent behavior.

In October 2007, Burke was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, a rare condition that causes the heart to beat faster than normal.

Burke has acquired numerous tattoos through his life, including; a portrait of Malcolm X on the upper left portion of his chest, the sarcophagus of King Tut on his left upper biceps, the legend "Monte Cristo" along with the phrase "The best revenge is living well" in script on his right forearm (both references to the book The Count of Monte Cristo) and an Eye of Horus on the back of his left arm. He also has a number of homemade gang related tattoos that he had done when he was a teenager, which he is no longer proud of.

Burke has stated that he was a video game fan growing up and that the finishing maneuver he used on the independent circuit, the Malicious Intent, was inspired by a similar move performed by a character in the Tekken series.

Burke has been a fan of Manchester United F.C. since he was 13; he recently wore a team shirt on an episode of Raw. His favorite player is Eric Cantona.

In wrestling

  • Finishing moves




  • Signature moves




  • Nicknames
    • "MVP"
    • "The Franchise Playa"
    • "Half Man, Half Amazing"
    • "The Ballin' Superstar"
    • "The Captain of the Team" (Used while teaming with Matt Hardy)
    • "The Man with 3 Halves" (Used during his WWE Tag Team Championship reign)




Championships and accomplishments

  • Coastal Championship Wrestling
    • CCW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)










References



External links




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