Matt "Rosey" Anoa'i Dies At Age 47

Former World Tag Team Champion passes away.

rosey scott steiner
WWE.com

Multiple outlets are reporting the death of former wrestling star Matt Anoa'i, who competed in WWE as Rosey from 2002 to 2006. Anoa'i passed away Monday night at the age of 47.

The son of WWE Hall of Famer Sika, Anoa'i first broke into the business via his family's training camp and would go on to compete in ECW, Puerto Rico, Japan, and on the U.S. independent scene. He began teaming with cousin Eddie Fatu as The Island Boys, and the pair was soon signed to a WWE developmental contract.

Upon being called up to the main roster in 2002, Anoa'i was renamed "Rosey" while Fatu was christened "Jamal." As Three Minute Warning, the pair served as enforcers for Raw GM Eric Bischoff, but the team was short-lived, as Jamal was released in 2003. Rosey then turned face and paired up with The Hurricane, taking on the role of his "Super-Hero in Training." Eventually, Rosey graduated to a full-fledged super-hero, and the pair won the World Tag Team Titles.

After losing the belts, The Hurricane turned heel and split up the team. Fatu was rehired and the company planned to reunite Three Minute Warning, but before they made it to TV, Anoa'i was released from his contract. Fatu, who died in 2009, was given the new gimmick of Umaga.

Since his release, Anoa'i had competed on the indies, but had phased out his wrestling career in favor of co-promoting with his father. Meanwhile, his younger brother Roman Reigns has become one of the top stars in WWE.

Though Anoa'i was hospitalized in 2014 for congestive heart failure and atrial fibrillation, there is no cause of death available yet. The staff of WhatCulture extends our deepest sympathies to the entire Anoa'i family.

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Scott Fried is a Slammy Award-winning* writer living and working in New York City. He has been following/writing about professional wrestling for many years and is a graduate of Lance Storm's Storm Wrestling Academy. Follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/scottfried. *Best Crowd of the Year, 2013

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