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    ibiza69's Avatar
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    The Dead Pool 2002!!!

    The Dead Pool 2002
    by Paz Iamnoone
    www.t-mag.com
    Editor's note: This is the 5th installment of The Dead Pool. For those of you who are new to the site, The Dead Pool began as a gruesome extension of the game where players bet on which Hollywood celebrity ó based on either advanced age or plain old hard living ó is going to die in the coming year. We took the same "game" and applied it to bodybuilders.

    We get a lot of flack for this column, but if we can psychically slap one of the Pool's members into reevaluating his fasttrack to death, then it's worth it. As always, the names have been changed to protect the walking dead.


    Has it really been over four years since the Dead Pool first appeared in the fifth-ever online edition of T-mag? Lordy, how the time does fly!

    Apart from the bodybuilders mentioned in the pool who recognize themselves among the list of daredevil drug doings, the only real criticism has been that to date, not one of the men or women on the Pool has kicked the bucket. Either the rumors of steroid excess have been greatly exaggerated, or else perhaps these drugs aren't as dangerous as we would imagine. But consider this: just over the past twelve months we've witnessed the deaths of both Mike and Ray Mentzer ó both longtime admitted users of anabolics ó and more recently Master's Olympia competitor Hans Hopstaken, the ripped bald dude on the cover of Dan Duchaine's manifesto Bodyopus. All three were under fifty years of age when they passed from this earth in an age when the average life span for men is now seventy-five.

    What I'm getting at here is that this here Dead Pool is still talking about a group of people who probably won't be paying the price for their drug use for a few more years. While none of these guys livin' la vida loca will likely meet their maker in the next year, they're all flirting with disaster and daring the Grim Reaper to make his move long before they reach a ripe old age ó like 50. Here are this year's top picks:


    Usta Be-Someboddy

    You have to feel at least a little sorry for this big, balding, cross-eyed freak. Just a few years ago, he was knocking on the door to the Mr. Olympia, and even won the Arnold Classic. Usta was one of the first real monsters in bodybuilding, competing at 285 pounds at 5' 11" and putting the fear of God into men like Dorian Yates. But over the past couple years, Usta has been steadily slipping down the ranks. At the most recent Olympia and Arnold Classic, he was ridiculed and reviled for the gobs of Synthol evident in his rear delts and barely cracked the top ten at both events. Since he's only 35, he has no intentions of giving up. Instead, he'll just keep pumping in the drugs and hope the judges suddenly start to like him again. I just wonder how much longer his poor, battered body can hold up.


    Log Cabin

    This guy just turned pro by winning the NPC Nationals heavyweight title at 5' 7", 220 pounds. He also has the distinction of having beat Jay Cutler for the Overall at the Teen Nationals almost ten years ago. Log is a good ole Texas boy who you would probably guess to be around 35-40 years old by looking at him. His hairline has receded halfway up his scalp, and the weathered face looks like it's been around a while. Here's the kicker: Log is only 26 years old! If you've ever known a heavy steroid user, you know that one side effect of long-term use that nobody seems to mention is premature aging. Not only does the face show the wear and tear, but if you were to slice open some of these studs while they were in their late twenties, you'd find the battered and abused organs of a 50-year-old alcoholic or drug addict.

    Log has built a great deal of thick muscle over the years with very heavy training combined with what has to be massive doses of the good stuff ó Test, d-bol, Anadrol , and so on. These are the most effective mass-building agents, but also the most toxic. Now he has the size and muscle maturity most 26-year-old bodybuilders can only dream of. I have a feeling he may have to pay a hefty price for it somewhere down the line. Perhaps the saddest aspect to all this is that Log is built like a tree stump, and will never be able to compete against the more aesthetic types despite having all the muscle in the world.


    Super Synthol

    You probably know this big ugly bastard from the ubiquitous ads and 40-page "special reports" he's featured in that appear in just about every single bodybuilding magazine every month. Super has the Superman logo tattooed on his shoulder just like Lee Priest, and is credited with having the largest and strongest arms in the world. For those of us who consider the injection of oily lumps into your bi's and tri's the most ludicrous mockery of bodybuilding possible, this claim is an insult to our sensibilities. But let's move beyond the Synthol because that's hardly worthy of Dead Pool membership. Let's start with the fact that this big 300-pound mamaluke has yet to turn thirty, but like Log Cabin, he'd have no problem fitting in with the guys atttending their 20th or 25th high-school reunions.

    The hairline is high enough that he could try the comb-over, but instead almost every picture you see of him has him wearing that trendy hip-hop type of stocking hat (dang, it must be cold in these gyms!). His off-season pictures really tell the whole unhealthy story. His face is puffy and red, and if his gut isn't as big as Greg Kovacs' maternity-like monstrosity, it has to be close. The giant belly is often a tell-tale sign of possible heavy GH use, the long-term effects of which we really don't know about yet. The late Lyle Alzado blamed GH for his brain tumor, and who's to say he was wrong? Super Synthol, it doesn't seem to me as if you plan on surviving your thirties, and that's way too short a life.


    Greg Hostile

    The heavy steroid use is a given with this hostile character, who is constantly either punching people or threatening to kick people's asses. Greg is not a nice guy ó one of the few real thugs in our sport. He served less than two years in prison in the late 90's, but maybe society would be better off is they'd never let him out. Greg won his first major amateur show at 202 pounds and now competes at around 240, with the standard giant gut that seems to be par for the course these days with the big boys.

    It's been suggested that steroids are probably the least risky thing he partakes in. The recreational drugs, specifically Nubain and Ecstasy, are a good deal more dangerous in the short term. (His prison sentence was related to selling and distributing at least one of these two recreational drugs, so it's not too far a leap of logic to think that he might still partake in one or both of them.) While I have yet to hear about anyone dropping dead after administering a shot of Sustanon , plenty of unlucky teenage kids have been taken away from rave parties in an ambulance after popping a bad "bean" or two.

    What could be more dangerous than his regular use of steroids and recreational drugs? How about that insane temper and vicious attitude? Studies have shown that hostile people are many times more likely to die of a heart attack. Given the seething rage that boils inside this IFBB pro ó on top of using drugs that lead to high blood pressure and possibly damage the coronary arteries ó Greg is an obituary waiting to be written.

    And I can tell you his blood pressure has to be astronomical, at least in the off-season. I saw a picture of Greg straining with several hundred pounds on a squat machine, and I swear to God his face was as purple as an eggplant ó and he's white! The real tragedy is that this guy has been such a bad guy for so long that I worry that the turnout for his funeral would be wayyy on the light side.


    Barkus Mule

    If you asked a cartoonist, say one of the guys over at Mad magazine, to come up with a depiction of a bodybuilder totally blown up on megadoses of steroids and other drugs, I bet they'd come up with something that looked very much like Barkus, the German Giant. Mule is a perfect example of someone who has simply packed on far too much muscle on his frame to the point where it's disgusting. He owns one of the very largest bellies in bodybuilding, possibly the whopper of them all. It seems as if he could give birth to triplets at any time ó 10-year-old triplets, that is. And now his belly button has protruded out over the past year into something that looks like a little thumb sticking out. That can't be a good sign.

    At 5' 11", this dude stomps around at 315 in the off-season, dialing it down to 280 pounds of nasty, lumpy muscles that seem more like a random collection of bodyparts than a physique. Since foreigners like Andreas Munzer and Momo Benaziza have historically had the worst luck, poor Barkus might be posing down with them on that Olympia stage in the sky soon.


    Chip Younger

    Chip's on a roll, having just place very high at the Olympia, and having won another major contest. The best thing about it is that this kid is only 28 years old. But wait, there's more. Chip looks a good deal older, as you may expect, and also sports one of the least healthy-looking faces in the iron game. Swollen and red, he has the jutting brow and jaw of a caveman, something that has become more pronounced over the past few years.

    I can't say what his drug regimen may consist of, as previous Dead Pool writers have had closer access to that gossip, but riddle me this. Chip is only 5' 9". His off-season weight is a pretty hard 300 pounds, and he competes at 265 with all the water sucked out. What amounts of anabolics would it take to support that much muscle? Those of us who dabble in performance-enhancing drugs have a good idea. The steroid dose for someone at that size would be around 3-6 grams per week, plus all the extras, like GH, insulin , and T3 and clenbuterol as a contest nears. Chip has done incredibly well for such a young man, but is probably gambling with his life span in the process.


    Leif Lingveldsen

    Oh, these wacky Europeans. Leif is from the Viking homeland of Norway, and appears to be one of those foolhardy few who will take any amount of steroids they can get their hands on to get to the top. At 5' 8", "Glutezilla," as he's known for his striated ass, competes at 255 and gets up to 300 pounds in the off-season. His face is bloated even when in contest condition, and the rest of the year looks like a big red sausage. Leif is also just 27 years old, but may have the liver and kidney function of someone twice his age. I know there is nothing healthy about pro bodybuilding, but I would hate to see this nice young kid get sick or worse.


    Doug Oldblood

    Okay, I can kinda' understand why these young guys would be such kamikazes with their drug use. After all, they're trying to make a living (however slim the chances of that) at this flex-for-pay thing. But why on earth would a guy pushing fifty, with a successful trucking business, a wife and kids, do the same? Doug shocked everybody in 2001 by showing up at the Master's Olympia looking positively gnarly ó thick and shredded at 5' 10", 240.

    An argument could even be made that he should have beaten Vince Taylor. But holy smokes, if the body doesn't cry out rampant steroid abuse , the face does. Doug has that common Neanderthal GH brow and cheekbones, plus the beet-red face and disappearing hairline. If he did indeed overdo the drugs, you have to wonder why he's subjecting his aging body to the chemical cocktail it would most likely take to look like this. After all, the prize money for winning the Master's O is probably what he pulls in every week from his business.


    Carl Matumbo

    Still chugging along, this New Yorker has become the poster boy for anabolic excess. With the deformed facial features you'd expect to see on a villain in one of the latest computer-animated flicks from Dreamworks, Carl makes no secrets about his steroid abuse ó not that he could with a mug and receding hairline like he has anyway.

    Matumbo also has the big pregnant belly, and now writes a column in Muscular Development called, appropriately enough, "The Anabolic Freak." Hard and vascular at 5' 9", 280 pounds, Carl seems to have never met a drug he didn't like. He writes with authority on using all manners of steroids, GH, insulin, and even the dreaded Synthol.

    His face and body may be a walking nightmare, but he has nonetheless endeared himself to the devoted cult of wannabe freaks. Since Carl nearly completed medical school, it's safe to say he certainly knows what he's doing compared to the average juicehead. But as safe as he thinks he's playing it, I doubt that he can be destined to die an old man in a rocking chair. My guess is more likely that he'll die a very big man before his time, and good luck finding a casket big enough for that mongo carcass.


    Muscles Jackson

    I was ready to take this guy off the list for this year, but he put himself back on. After well-publicized health problems with his kidneys and more recently colitis, Muscles had announced his retirement from bodybuilding and swore up and down he would never use steroids again. He even showed up at the 2001 Olympia looking lean, clean, and healthy. Then a funny thing happened. The supplement company that had been sending a regular paycheck dropped him from his contract. Uh oh, how to afford the fancy cars and beautiful home, not to mention support his bodacious little wife and four children? Just as Al Pacino's Michael Corleone character reverted to his mob boss lifestyle in Godfather III ("They just keep pulling me back in!"), Muscles knew of no other way to make a living than to return to the IFBB. Now he's slated to compete in the 2002 Olympia.

    Despite several sincere plans announced on his web site last year that he intended to make a statement and do it naturally, I doubt he'll follow through. Natural guys, if they make it to the Olympia, can expect to place right around dead last, and the cash prize for that is the big donut ó nothing. Muscles needs cash and has been as high as second place at the O before, so don't be overly shocked if he says to hell with his health and comes in properly jacked-up.

    If I'm wrong, I'll be glad and I'll be the first to apologize.


    The Chief

    The last man to make the 2002 Dead Pool is the top bodybuilder in the world right now. When the Chief first competed as a pro back in 1992, he was about 215 pounds soaking wet at 5' 11". Around '96 or so he started to really expand, and now he's so ridiculously huge (265 in contest shape, 315 off-season) that no bodybuilder alive can hope to beat him. His stomach, once tight and small, is now so bloated that he can't even suck it in. I believe that he can keep on winning the Olympia unless he suffers an injury or serious health problem, but the odds of that are actually fairly high.


    Off the Dead Pool list ó Congratulations

    It's always my pleasure to remove bodybuilders from this list whenever they demonstrate either a sudden concern for their health, or otherwise suggest that they have what can only be described as an immunity from serious health problems, possibly some form of super power like Bruce Willis' character in Unbreakable.

    First up is Kevin Levrone, who was on the first Dead Pool and seemed for a few years to have a devil-may-care attitude about his steroid use. At the 2001 Olympia, we learned that Kevin only trained three months for the show, spending the remainder of the year at a drug-free weight of 220 versus his customary 270-280 at 5-9. Presumably, he got on a cycle just long enough to be able to compete at around 235, nearly twenty pounds lighter than what he has been in the past. And since he was smaller, it makes sense that he's far more conservative with the types and amounts of performance-enhancing drugs he uses. Bravo, Mr. Full Blown! May you live long and prosper. Since both his parents died of cancer, I think he's making a very smart move by not tempting the odds.

    Our other IFBB pro to leave the list is Lee Priest, who's been practically a fixture in the pool until now. Interviews with Lee have consistently discussed his drug use, which is almost laughably light compared to many of his fellow pro's. Though many of us wanted to attribute his incredible muscle thickness to insane drug cycles, it seems that very heavy, hard training coupled with extremely gifted genetics are more likely responsible.

    And how about this? In 2000, the diminutive Aussie was diagnosed with a left ventricle that was operating at sub-par efficiency. After days of inconclusive and contradictory rest results, he checked out of the hospital and drove to his gym, where he proceeded to knock out 20 reps in the leg press with 1,000 pounds to test his mortality. Not only did he survive this, but he has since gone on to win his first of what will hopefully be several IFBB events. It was nice having you in the Pool, Lee, but it's much better to have you off the list!


    Well, that's our Dead Pool for this year. Expect some very angry letters to appear in Reader Mail from some of these guys who'll swear up and down that they're not taking unnecessary risks with their health. Who are they fooling? Reasonable doses of steroids over moderate periods are remarkably safe, but the insane amounts of drugs these guys pump in virtually year-round can't possibly be good for their internal organs. It's unfortunate that the standards for physique competition have progressed to the point where athletes need to risk their lives to be competitive, but that's where we are in 2002.

    For those of you who'll never even compete, much less for prize money or publicity, be cautious. Our time on this earth is short enough without us engaging in practices that can curtail it even further. I doubt any man on his deathbed at age 45 or 50 would agree that being a big muscle freak was worth losing twenty years off the tail end of life. Take care, exercise moderation, have regular check-ups and blood work done, and for God's sake think of those who love you before you decide to use massive doses of bodybuilding drugs.

    Many of the men on the list will probably never stop what they're doing unless they are forced to. Don't you follow in their footsteps

  2. #2
    ibiza69's Avatar
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    their real names...

    >Usta Be-Someboddy - nasser el sonbaty
    >Log Cabin - branch warren
    >Super Synthol - matt duval
    >Greg Hostile - craig titus
    >Barkus Mule - markus ruhl (common how easy was that)
    >Chip Younger - jay cutler
    >Leif Lingveldsen - tommy thorvildsen(spelling)
    >Doug Oldblood - don youngblood
    >Carl Matumbo - dave "jumbo" palumbo
    >Muscles Jackson - mike francoise
    >The Chief - ronnie coleman

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    muscles Jackson is Flex Wheeler

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    Originally posted by ibiza69
    their real names...

    >Usta Be-Someboddy - nasser el sonbaty
    >Log Cabin - branch warren
    >Super Synthol - matt duval
    >Greg Hostile - craig titus
    >Barkus Mule - markus ruhl (common how easy was that)
    >Chip Younger - jay cutler
    >Leif Lingveldsen - tommy thorvildsen(spelling)
    >Doug Oldblood - don youngblood
    >Carl Matumbo - dave "jumbo" palumbo
    >Muscles Jackson - mike francoise
    >The Chief - ronnie coleman
    Thanks I was wondering who they were!

    Peace,
    CC

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    sad...i hope they all make it past 50 and beyond to prove them wrong.

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    Adam185 is offline New Member
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    dont worry all of this is bullshit anyway

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    ibiza69's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Adam185
    muscles Jackson is Flex Wheeler
    you're right bro, it is flex wheeler. i was thinking mike francoise because of the colitis thing, because mike also had a severe case of colitis that ended his carreer. mike never got 2nd at the olympia but flex did.

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    I'm real curious to see Flex at the Olympia.

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    Originally posted by Adam185
    dont worry all of this is bullshit anyway
    What exactly do you mean by that? If you think that implying that someone can die from excessive drug use is "bullshit", what fake name would you like us to give you when you make the list? J/K bro.

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    You have to ask yourself, what is it you really want outta life before you die? would you sacarfice 30 years of your life to stand out in a crowd among hundreds?

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    Originally posted by latman49


    What exactly do you mean by that? If you think that implying that someone can die from excessive drug use is "bullshit", what fake name would you like us to give you when you make the list? J/K bro.
    I mean that the main reason they put this on t-mag.com is just for people to see their site and buy their products, but it' still entertaining to read

  12. #12
    AnabolicAlien Guest

    hehe...

    this old one needs a bump...

    after seeing olympia 2004 this is an interesting read...

    A.A.

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    bump

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    i thought super synthol was greg valentino
    Last edited by P Rock; 11-13-2004 at 07:52 PM.

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    This is old but a great read.

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    This needs a serious bump, becuase it was right on the money with Don Youngbloods' predictions. Don was a local cat and he had his yellow H1 serviced at the dealership where I used to work, until he passed away last
    May 2005. But there is a little romance in the dead pool, because I am sure that most members of this forum would trade in a life of 40+ years spent in a cubicle for the glory and demi-god status that an IFBB pro carries.

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    where dead pool 2006?

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvd220
    where dead pool 2006?

    They get posted over on another bb'ing site. I don't believe the 2006 one is out yet but here's the most recent if you're interested.

    The Dead Pool, 2005
    Part 7 of Bodybuildingís Most Infamous Internet Series
    by Osama Ben Rotten


    When this feature made its debut back in 1998, it lit up the emerging bodybuilding message boards like wildfire, and subsequent versions continued to do so in the following years. Everyone was determined to guess who these drug abusing, "at risk" bodybuilders were. And the bodybuilders who recognized themselves, or thought they did, flew into self-righteous rages and fired off furious rebuttals.

    Some of them were quite intelligent in their statements, while others went to the point of threatening TC and other ******** staff with bodily harm and/or legal action. Since the last edition appeared on the site over two years ago now, we've received literally thousands of inquiries and requests for another Pool.

    The casualties of the muscle world have continued to grow. Hopefully, the intentions of the Dead Pool will come across for what they are: a cautionary commentary against drug abuse.


    Steroids : No Longer Bodybuildingís Dirty Little Secret

    Since the last Dead Pool ran in 2003, we've witnessed an unprecedented media blitz surrounding steroids. First came the BALCO scandal where the public learned that a high-profile laboratory, which produced legitimate nutritional supplements, was also manufacturing new "designer" steroids that were being used at the highest levels of amateur and professional sports.

    Huge sports figures like Marion Jones and Barry Bonds were implicated, and the timingó several months before the Summer Olympics in Athensócouldnít have been more opportune for reporters in need of attention-grabbing headlines.

    Last spring at the Arnold Classic and again in the fall at the Olympia, DEA agents subpoenaed big name bodybuilders in relation to BALCO and other steroid distribution cases they were building. In most cases, this was tactfully done in their hotel rooms, but pro-bodybuilders Dennis James and Milos Sarcev were confronted by federal agents right on the expo floor of the Olympia in front of hundreds of onlookers.

    Dennis James

    Following this came the release of Jose Cansecoís book, Juiced, which many feel directly led to congressional hearings about steroids in Major League Baseball earlier this year. So to say that awareness of steroids among the public and inside the government has increased exponentially in the last two years, would be an understatement.

    But we here at the Dead Pool arenít terribly concerned about all the legal issues and whether or not some slugger deserves to be banned from the Hall of Fame. Our chief mission is to point out the health risks of steroid abuse , using notable bodybuilders as examples. The names are always changed to protect them, though in many cases it doesnít take an FBI code-breaker to figure out who they are.

    To those we may happen to offend, we apologize in advance, and ask that you please understand the intention of the Dead Pool, which is to discourage bodybuilders, bodybuilder wannabes, and guys who just want to look jacked in a tight shirt from going overboard and risking their health.

    Big muscles are great, but they arenít worth dying for.


    An Unfortunate Prophecy Comes True

    In early April of 2004, Trevor Smith passed away at just 33 years old. Trevor was one of the subjects of the 2003 Dead Pool. In case you missed it, hereís what was said about him (using the name Shiver Schmidt):

    "This man isnít even a competitive bodybuilder. He has achieved some degree of notoriety by publishing an obscure magazine, having his own supplement company, and promoting himself as one of the biggest and strongest men who's ever lived. All well and good, but get thisóShiver is six-one and carries 400 pounds on his strained frame! Let me say it one more time: 400 pounds.

    "Though he swears up and down his bodyfat level is around ten percent (and he stays covered up to conceal the truth), his bloated face and enormous gut make me think itís more like twenty percent or better. Shiver is seen at some of the major contests, and sweats profusely at all times even in cool temperatures and standing still. Being a very well-educated man, Shiver has said on his web site and magazine that his own personal choice is to indefinitely cycle steroids eight weeks on, four weeks off.

    "Whether this is any healthier than other drug protocols is up for debate, but what isn't arguable is that weighing 400 pounds is very dangerous. That poor heart must be working like a sonofabitch to pump blood through that humongous body. Several other men of this size have died young of heart attacks. Shiver, if you read this, please donít be another one to add to that list."

    Trevor was found on the floor of his home by a real estate agent. No official cause of death was ever released to the media. Trevor was in the midst of a divorce and many speculated that he had taken his own life. Later reports mentioned a brain aneurysm. Since his estranged family and ex-wife never made an official statement, I suppose we'll never know if Trevorís steroid use and/or inhuman dimensions had anything to do with his untimely death. But you sure have to wonder.

    Another more recent death was that of Robert Benavente, a former overall champion of a large regional contest in Florida called the Southern States. Robert was just thirty years old. The cause of his death was listed as a massive heart attack. Thousands of people die of heart attacks every day in the USA, but for someone so young and seemingly healthy to die this way does raise questions.

    Robert Benavente

    Two additional dead bodybuilders make you wonder if the extreme lifestyle of modern bodybuilding played a role. Both happened in January of 2004 as Masters Mr. Olympia champion Sonny Schmidt died at age 49 of cancer, and pro-bodybuilder Derrick Whitsett succumbed to a heart attack at age 37 following a mugging that had resulted in a blood clot in his brain.

    Bring Out Yer Dead!

    It's with no joy that we bring you the 2005 candidates for the Dead Pool. We donít want these men to die or have any major health problems, and we arenít saying we're positive that they're flouting fate with their drug regimens. How could we know for sure who's doing what? We only report on what we see and make assumptions based on what we know from years of experience and observation.


    Sumtypa BigMuffhead

    This man will be the easiest to figure out, since his misadventures with diuretics last fall have been widely reported. It should be noted that while steroids have never been known to kill anyone fast, diuretics certainly have. The late Mohammed Beniziza is a prime example.

    Sumtypa collapsed in his hotel room after competing at the 2004 Mr. Olympia contest, blood streaming from his nose, and soiled from his own vomit. It was actually Shawn Ray, summoned to the room by a friend of Sumtypaís, who called 911 and saved his life. Mr. BigMuffhead should've learned from his near-death experience, but guess what? Just a week later, the same scenario played out after he competed in one of the European Grand Prix shows.

    Though he's clearly a man who's been taking mass quantities of steroids for many years, itís his reckless use of diuretics that put him right at the top of the 2005 Dead Pool. Of course, itís hard to blame the guy when current judging standards demand that these athletes be as dried-out as a piece of old beef jerky. In fact, "dry" has become a complimentary term to describe an athlete who has successfully managed to rid his body of as much body fat and water as possible, even though this achievement is about as healthy as popping five Vicodins and chasing them down with a quart of vodka.

    Sumtypa is a married man with children over in Europe, so we hope his luck doesnít run out, or should we say, his kidneys donít suddenly shut down.


    Ivan Overhypalov

    Letís stay right in Europe, Eastern Europe in this case, for Dead Pool front-runner number two. Ivan has competed in just two pro-shows so far, both overseas, and both times he's taken second to Ronnie Coleman. The Weider magazines have put him on their cover and promoted him as the next Great White Hope.

    Ivan is just 27 years old, but competes at over 280 pounds at 5'11". In his interviews, he's complained about how tough it is to find quality food and supplements in his country, but from the looks of things, steroids seem to be quite available. Ivan has built a whole lot of size in a very short time, and the pressure on him to live up to the unrealistic expectations set for him could very well lead to throwing caution to the wind with regards to the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

    If he saw it as the ticket to stardom and a way out of his crappy country to live in glamorous LA, the temptation would be even greater.


    Pustalo Eyesmell

    Pustalo had a banner year in 2004, finally breaking into the top three at the Mr. Olympia at a massive 245 pounds at 5'8". Just five months later, he won his first pro-show at 260 pounds. Much of that fifteen additional pounds was muscle, but as critics noted, a lot of it had gone straight to his distended belly. "Pregnant" and "bloated" were just a few choice adjectives tossed around, and Internet boards tore him apart, accusing him of GH and insulin abuse above and beyond even what his fellow proís are all reportedly doing.

    But in the modern world of pro-bodybuilding, where bigger is better and where Mr. Olympia weighed in last year just a healthy dump away from 300 pounds with striated glutes, can Pustalo be guilty of anything but trying to keep up with so-called progress?

    Pustalo is married with two kids, so nobody wants to see him check out of life early. Letís hope he lives a long and happy life, and doesnít miss out on seeing his kids grow up just because he needed to be a big freak.


    Biff Baxter

    Biff probably has more business sense than any other pro-bodybuilder alive today. The guy has tons of contracts and is definitely cashing in on what he knows is a relatively brief window of opportunity. The only reason we're even discussing him here is that he's been quoted many times over the years saying he planned on retiring by the age of 31 or 32, citing a strong concern for his health and longevity. As I write this, he's approaching age 32 and shows no signs or retiring.

    Having taken second place at the Mr. Olympia on two occasions, it seems he may not quit until he finally claims that elusive and most prestigious title. Thirty-two isnít old at all, but Biff has been a heavy gear user since he was just eighteen years old, or at least thatís the conclusion most of us would draw based on the gains he's made. In that first year of training he went from 180 to 240 pounds and won the Teenage Nationals. Just four years later he won the Nationals and turned pro.

    Biff carries 300 pounds on his 5' 9" frame, and his bloated, red, distorted face are mocked by some as being the "poster boy look" for steroid and GH use. We canít and wonít say we're certain of the same, but still, he just doesnít look like a healthy guy. Certainly in his off-season incarnation he appears to be far older than what his driverís license would indicate. And if his skull gets any bigger or more deformed, it's going to pop out of his skin!

    Again, we wish no ill will upon Mr. Baxter and have no idea what he does or doesnít do with regards to drugs, but it wouldn't be a total shock if some serious health problem did befall him.


    Al Smackswood

    Al is another guy caught up in playing the "size at all costs" game. His physique isnít pretty, but damn, is it big. Smackwood tips the scales on contest day at nearly 280 pounds at 5' 11", resembling a prize Heifer more than a man. His waistline was never petite, but recently it has expanded even further, lending some credence to the theory that he may just be taking things a bit too far, pharmaceutically speaking.

    All of these men have people who love and care about them, and Al is no exception. Our fingers are crossed that he doesnít pop up in the gossip section of any of the magazines, with two years separated by a hyphen following his name.


    Vito Vanity

    Our final entry in the dubious 2005 Dead Pool is just 23 years oldóand he loves reminding members of the bodybuilding message boards of this fact. Vito is just about the most vain, self-absorbed character in a sport made up of just such personalities, starting thread after thread about himself and posting up hundreds of photos. This invariably leads to board members trashing him for his hairpiece and what appear to be arms and calves full of the dreaded site-enhancement oil generically known as Synthol.

    Vito seems to thrive on the hatred, perhaps because it's at least some form of attention and publicity. If indeed he's already losing his hair and shooting up his muscles with Synthol at only 23 years old, this doesn't bode well for his future. Seeing as he hasnít even competed at a pro-qualifier yet, one can only imagine the lengths he'll be willing to go to in order to succeed at that level.

    Sadly, his ego has made him one of the most hated bodybuilders on the Internet, and there would be many who'd take a sick satisfaction in seeing him get sick, or worse.


    The Live Pool Champions

    Now itís time to recognize a few athletes who are far from belonging in the Dead Pool. We call this group "The Live Pool."


    Kevin Levrone and Dorian Yates

    At the last Olympia and Arnold Classic, Internet trolls posted up photos of the downsized former champions Kevin Levrone and Dorian Yates, laughing at how "tiny" the once-monstrous men had become. Some of them gloated how the two must have been "all steroids," and now that they had ceased to take them, looked no more impressive than the average natural bodybuilder.

    This is a load of crap. Both Kevin and Dorian trained like animals while they competed, and both amassed long lists of top titles, with Dorian having been Mr. Olympia for six consecutive years. Are these guys smaller now that they have clearly decided not to bother with performance-enhancing drugs (or at least use less)? Yes, and they also look younger and healthier.

    Dorian owns a successful supplement company, and Kevin has a supplement contract and is trying to break into Hollywood as an actor, where a more athletic build is definitely preferred over his massive former look. By putting the needles and pills behind them, both men are surely adding years to their lives and should be commended. And ironically, I bet both are still far bigger and stronger than any of the idiots insulting them anonymously on the Net could ever hope to be.

    Yates in his "prime"


    Runner-up: Gunter Schlierkamp

    Gunter Schlierkamp was also seen at the recent Arnold Classic expo, noticeably lighter and taking up less sheer space than usual. The Internet trolls were beside themselves with glee as they posted up the most unflattering photos they could find.

    But Gunterís last show was the Olympia in October of 2004, and his next isnít until the 2005 edition this fall. Rather than stay on a heavy steroid cycle straight through like some of his less health-conscious peers seem to have done, he did the smart thing and cleaned out for a while, giving his body a break not only from the drugs, but from the burden of carrying around 340 pounds on his six-foot frame. In our book, that makes him one wise man!


    Honorable Mention: Mark Dugdale

    The usual pattern for bodybuilders when they turn pro these days is to do whatever it takes to show up at their pro-debut with an additional ten to thirty pounds of muscle so that they have a better chance against "the big boys." Mark Dugdale won the 2004 USA Championships at a weight of about 195 pounds, with a shapely physique that wasnít the biggest in the show at all, but the best.

    Eight months later he made his pro-debut at the Ironman weighing the same 195 pounds, again looking fantastic. Mark owns a multi-million dollar grocery wholesale business and is married with three young daughters. There's obviously a lot more to his life aside from bodybuilding, and he seems intent on competing as a pro on his terms.

    From what we can ascertain, his health and longevity are much higher priorities than trying to beat Ronnie Coleman. Good for you, Dugdale!


    Who Will Live Until 2006?

    Until next time, if there is a next time, remember that steroids donít kill peopleópeople who callously abuse steroids and neglect their health kill people. Steroids can be used safely and in moderation by responsible adults who take care to monitor their health through regular check-ups and blood work. But when youíre talking about the Dead Pool and professional bodybuilding, itís a whole other world, where getting big and freaky at any cost overrides health concerns.

    We donít like having to put out this Dead Pool thing, but if it makes people think twice before dong something stupid, then it has done its job.
    Last edited by Ejuicer; 05-03-2006 at 08:49 AM.

  19. #19
    Big Bapper's Avatar
    Big Bapper is offline Member
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    Thought the Dead pool was dead, thanks for the update.

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