The wrestling was shocked by another death on Saturday night, but this time it wasn’t an aged veteran at the end of his life. At an event for Lucha Libre World in London, England, in a match against fellow luchador Juventud Guerrera, Silver King suffered what is believed to be a massive heart attack in the ring. Paramedics arrived at the venue quickly, but he was pronounced dead at the scene. For the match, Silver King was wearing a mask as his villainous Ramses character he portrayed in the 2006 Jack Black film, Nacho Libre.
Lucha Libre’s Silver King Dies In Ring Following Heart Attack at 51
César Cuauhtémoc González Barrón was a second generation luchador, following his father, the original Dr. Wagner, into the family business at the age of 18 in 1985, alongside his older brother, Dr. Wagner Jr. He worked primarily for the Universal Wrestling Association (UWA), gaining early success as part of the tag team Los Cowboys with Texano, winning the UWA World Tag Team Championships as well as being 2x World Wrestling Association (WWA) World Tag Team Championship in Mexico as well.
He would make his US debut with World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1992, in a one-off tag team match with Los Cowboys in a match for the NWA World Tag Team titles at WCW Clash of Champions. In 1993, he joined Consejo Mundial De Lucha Libre (CMLL), where he captured the CMLL World Tag Team titles with Texano once again, and in July of 1994, captured the CMLL World Heavyweight Championship.
In 1997, he joined WCW full-time as part of the companies newly revitalized Cruiserweight Division, joining other top lucha stars like Rey Mysterio Jr., Eddie Guerrero, Juventud Guerrera, Psicosis and more, where he competed until 2000. His biggest moment in WCW was challenging Juventud unsuccessfully for the WCW Cruiserweight title at WCW Fall Brawl in 1998.
In 2001, he debuted with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), where he took up the mantle and mask of the new Black Tiger, becoming the third man (behind Mark Rocco and Eddie Guerrero) to assume the role. During his time with NJPW, he competed in and made the semi-finals in back to back NJPW Best of the Super Juniors at VIII (2001) and IX (2002).
In 2008, he switched his Japanese affiliation to All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW) and that March won the AJPW World Junior Heavyweight title. A year later, he jumped from CMLL to Asistencia Asesoria y Administracion (AAA), winning AAA World Tag Team gold in 2010.
Since 2015, he had worked primarily as a freelancer with various Mexican independent promotions, as well as international bookings around the world.
The staff of Last Word on Pro Wrestling offers its condolences to the entire Barrón family and Silver King’s peers and fans around the globe.
WWE is saddened to learn that Lucha Libre legend and former WCW star Silver King has passed away at age 51. https://t.co/mAge65OmeN
— WWE (@WWE) May 12, 2019
The CAA is saddened to report tragic the in-ring passing of Silver King. Our condolences to his family, friends and fans. May he rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/KwcI4vtdHT
— CauliflowerAlleyClub (@CACReunion) May 12, 2019
— Chris Jericho (@IAmJericho) May 12, 2019
I am saddened to hear about the passing of Silver King. Like so many of the great Luchadores that helped Americans appreciate Lucha Libre and make Nitro the success it was, he will be missed. Thank you and RIP.
— Eric Bischoff (@EBischoff) May 12, 2019
It was an honor to have been friends & shared the ring with the great Silver King. He & Tejano were an amazing team. He truly was one of the greats & I'm heartbroken to learn of his passing. 🙏 #RIPSilverKing pic.twitter.com/WhM1zM9jfp
— Sean Waltman (@TheRealXPac) May 12, 2019
If you saw a lot of 123 Kid matches, you saw some Silver King moves I appropriated. #RIPSilverKing
— Sean Waltman (@TheRealXPac) May 12, 2019
R.I.P. Silver King
— Shinsuke Nakamura (@ShinsukeN) May 12, 2019
RIP Silver King 🙏
— PAIGE (@RealPaigeWWE) May 12, 2019
Damn terrible news. Silver King was one of the best “bases” I saw in Lucha and I’m thankful I got to work with him in WCW. All my best to his family and friends. #RIPSilverKing https://t.co/hLmagVr65H
— Hurricane Helms (@ShaneHelmsCom) May 11, 2019
I always love showing this pic to ppl because Silver King physique is so outta control. He was the definition of bad ass. RIP to the legend. pic.twitter.com/hrAwEWaFd9
— Joaquin Wilde (@joaquinwilde_) May 12, 2019
Terrible news of Silver King passing away in the ring tonight
He was a star in Mexico, Japan & WCW
He was Ramses in movie Nacho Libre
Pray for strength for his family pic.twitter.com/FYVk4i59qo
— Tommy Dreamer (@THETOMMYDREAMER) May 11, 2019
The news of Silver King’s passing hits me hard. I was lucky to be able to tour & work New Japan with him. Such a great person. Rest In Peace, good sir.#RIPSilverKing
— Christopher Daniels (@facdaniels) May 11, 2019
Absolutely awful news emerging about the confirmation of Silver King passing away this evening. Such a horrible situation, my heart goes out to all involved as well as to his loved ones. Tragic.
— Ligero (@Ligero1) May 11, 2019
Saddened to learn about the passing of Silver King. He was such a incredible and versatile performer. My deepest condolences to his family.
— Samoa Joe (@SamoaJoe) May 12, 2019
So sorry to hear of the passing of ledendary Luchador Silver King. I had the chance to watch him work many times in IWA Japan in 1995. He was awesome. https://t.co/3OKSN2AU5u
— Mick Foley (@RealMickFoley) May 12, 2019
Words can not describe how sad this makes me feel. Rest easy Silver King, you will forever be a champion. I hope the best for his family and fans.
— KEN SHAMROCK (@ShamrockKen) May 12, 2019
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