A few months back, a giant burst onto the scene in NXT. His name was Lars Sullivan. His gigantic features, fearsome power, and menacing stare instantly catapulted him to the top of the WWE developmental brand.
I saw him wrestle last year at an NXT live event in Richmond. His athletic ability combined with his size is sure to make him a star. WWE is still the land of the giants. Larger than life characters still dominate the brand. Braun Strowman is just the latest gigantor to run amok in WWE.
But unlike Kane, the Undertaker, or even Strowman, Sullivan shares something with wrestling legend Andre the Giant. And it could mean his career and possibly life will be cut dramatically short. Sullivan has been off-tv a while due to injury and possible health problems.
He’s had some problems with the knee that he had reconstructive surgery on and there are also issues with his pituitary. He had surgery a few years ago, after coming to WWE when they found out his look and freak size was due to acromegaly, the same thing guys like Andre, Antonio Silva, Giant Silva, Great Khali, The French Angel and Choi Hong-man all had which led to their larger than life features like giant hands and giant feet and there were some issues relating to the surgery. He’s expected back training very shortly
Acromegaly is caused by the pituitary gland producing too much growth hormone. This leads to enlarged features in the hands, feet, and head. Often times it is due to a benign tumor on the gland and can be remedied via surgery. Effecting children, the condition will lead to gigantism, which is what happened with Andre, Sullivan, and The Big Show. There is no genetic predisposition for either disease. Other side effects can include headaches, joint problems, diabetes, and sleep apnea.
Unlike Sullivan, Andre chose not to be treated for the condition, which is believed to have caused his early death from a heart attack.
Thankfully Sullivan got the treatment he needed early and will likely stave off future health issues.
As Meltzer noted, he will be back training and likely to the top of the NXT card soon.
Share your thoughts on this story and on Lars Sullivan and your memories of Andre The Giant in your comments below.