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Thomas Ricca (born June 7, 1968) is an American professional wrestler, better known by the ring namesTony Ricca and The Pharaoh. He is also the promoter of the New Jersey-based promotion Arena Kaged Wrestling (AKW). Tony Ricca is a founder of Cannoli World. He is in the top 10 list of WWE superstars on Cameo.




Early career:

American professional wrestler Tom Ricca grew up in Hammonton, New Jersey

He trained as a professional wrestler under Larry Sharpe at the Monster Factory and debuted in November 1990 as one half of the tag team called “The Hammonton Hitmen”. 

His debut was an event that help benefit the troops that were serving in the Gulf War. After his debut, Ricca was asked to work independently as “The Hammonton Hitman”.


In 1991, Ricca was contracted with WWE / World Wrestling Federation. Ricca wrestled under the name Tony Ricca on house shows and on WWF Superstars of Wrestling on FOX TV Network. One of the largest venues during that year was on July 29, 1991, against Hacksaw Jim Duggan at the Worcester Centrum in Worcester, Massachusetts. 

This was a TV taping that aired Nationally on FOX TV Network on August 31, 1991, during Labor Day weekend and was commentated by WWE owner Vince McMahon and commentator Roddy Piper. He continued to wrestle with the WWE until he completed his contract. He went on to persue a persona (The Pharaoh) that would catapult him to a different level that no one had seen.


The Pharaoh:

After wrestling with WWE in 1991, Ricca looked to create the right persona for his career. In 1992, during Easter weekend, Ricca, watching The Ten Commandments with friends, saw the Pharaoh character. That was the start of his most popular persona known as The Pharaoh. Before his debut as The Pharaoh, he decided to further his training by taking private gymnastic lessons from an Olympic Gold Medalist from Bolivia to execute a new type of flying backflip (currently known as a moonsault) which he dubbed “The Sphinx”. 

He was the first in Pro Wrestling to bring that fast acrobatic style to wrestling in the U.S.A. Ricca debuted as The Pharaoh on June 12, 1992, and won using “The Sphinx”. Following Ricca’s debut as the Pharaoh, Ricca was approached by former WWE referee Dick Woehrle to see if he was interested in working on his shows in the Caribbean, Europe, Africa and Asia. Ricca accepted and instantly became Woehrle’s top prospect and was introduced in late 1992 to WWE (WWF) President Gorilla Monsoon. Monsoon thought The Pharaoh would be a good fit in the WWE for a long term contract and invited him to the WWE Headquarters in Stamford, CT to discuss future work for a multi year contract with WWE as he accepted as The Pharaoh. However, in 1993, Ricca was injured in a motor vehicle accident and was unable to continue wrestling for an extended amount of time. Following the contract, Ricca wrestled as The Pharaoh on the independent circuit.


Pro Wrestler Ranking:

Ricca was Ranked as the Number one Wrestler in American Pro Wrestler Rankings for one year in 1991 as Tony Ricca and the following two years as The Pharaoh which he had won all of his matches.

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