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Matt Striker, WWE Wrestler joins Essentially Fit Radio

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Essentially Fit

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Matt Striker seemed destined to work for the New York City Board of Education until retirement age. But, while Striker loved the opportunity to reach young people in the classroom, he remained enamored with professional wrestling. So, in his spare time, Striker began to train for the mat with a television mainstay of his childhood: the unpredictable Johnny Rodz, a WWE Hall of Famer who ran a wrestling school out of Gleason's Gym, beneath the Brooklyn Bridge.

Soon, Striker was wrestling for various small promotions while still meeting expenses as a teacher. Filling in for a teacher on maternity leave at a Long Island middle school, Striker noticed one student eying him with curiosity. After a while, Striker's nocturnal profession became a topic of discussion in class. Striker used that to discuss goals and motivate his students. He took that approach with him to Cardozo High School in the fall of 2004.

Then, in December, Striker had a chance to go overseas to wrestle. He called in sick to free up the necessary time. There were no repercussions until he appeared in the Angle Invitational on Raw. In Queens, Striker's students instantly recognized their teacher. It didn't take long for students and teachers to figure out that he'd been in Japan when he was supposedly ill. It began a furor that resulted in national media coverage and his forced resignation from his teaching job. The exposure, however, thrust Striker into the national spotlight and launched his WWE career.

Striker has shown solid technique as a competitor on both ECW and Raw. After proving himself in the ring, he took on a new role behind the mic as an ECW color commentator.

Striker then made his way to Friday nights, bringing his extensive knowledge and unique, witty brand of banter to the SmackDown stage.