Chris Lindsey (July 26, 1983) is an American professional wrestler, better known by his ring name, Roderick Strong. He is currently signed to World Wrestling Entertainment, appearing with their developmental territory, NXT.
He earned an American football scholarship to the University of South Florida, where he majored in Business for two years before postponing his academic career.
In the autumn of 1994, Lindsey's father, a former collegiate wrestler, began training as a wrestler under Jim Neidhart. After Lindsey attended several training sessions and met Harry Smith, a second generation wrestler, he decided to become a wrestler. Lindsey was trained by Neidhart and a number of other wrestlers in Tampa, Florida and debuted in 2001 as Roderick Strong on the Floridia] independent circuit.
Strong wrestled his first match for the Independent Professional Wrestling promotion, competing in a twenty-man cruiserweight battle royal. He was initially one-third of a stable known as "Risk Factor" with The Kamikaze Kid and Kid Lethal before he formed a tag team with his trainee and (kayfabe) brother, Sedrick Strong. The Strong Brothers defeated Wrongful Death (Naphtali and Dagon Briggs) for the IPW Tag Team Championship on June 28, 2002 in St. Petersburg, Florida. They held the title until September 20, when they lost to Naturally Marvelous (Scoot Andrews and Mike Sullivan) in a steel cage match in which Roderick suffered a concussion.
After Sedrick cost the Strong Brothers a number of matches, Roderick turned heel on February 8, 2003, betraying Sedrick and aligning himself with the Alliance of Defiance, a dominant heel stable.
After IPW closed down in late 2003, Strong began working for NWA Florida, a promotion which had had a working relationship with IPW for two years. Strong defeated David Babylon for the Florida Unified Cruiserweight Championship on July 19, 2003 in St. Petersburg. While Strong was champion, the title was renamed the Florida Unified Junior Heavyweight Championship. He lost the title to Jerrelle Clark in a four-way match on December 13, 2003 in St. Petersburg. Clark vacated the title on January 10, 2004 after winning the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship, and Strong defeated Mikey Batts for the vacant title on[February 21 in the Viking Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He lost the title to Sedrick Strong on April 29, 2004, in New Port Richey, Florida.
Ring of Honor
Strong joined the Pennsylvania-based Ring of Honor (ROH) promotion in September 2003. On May 22, 2004, at Generation Next he formed a stable known as Generation Next with Alex Shelley, Austin Aries and Jack Evans. Generation Next quickly dominated the ROH roster, declaring themselves the future of wrestling. After defeating several other stables, they defeated CM Punk, Ace Steel, John Walters and Jimmy Jacobs (mentored by Ricky Steamboat) on October 2 at The Midnight Express Reunion.
Strong began punctuating his ring style with stiff offense, acting as the enforcer of Generation Next. In November 2004 he formed a regular tag team with Evans, and on December 26 he, Evans and Aries threw Shelley out of the group when he refused to resign as leader. Strong and Evans continued to team throughout early-2005, but were unable to win the ROH Tag Team Championship. On July 9, 2005 at Escape from New York, Strong faced CM Punk for the ROH World Championship, but was defeated. On September 24 at Survival of the Fittest 2005, Strong defeated Samoa Joe, Jay Lethal, Generation Next teammate Austin Aries, and Colt Cabana to win the titular event, thus earning himself another shot at the ROH World Championship in the future.
On October 1 at Joe vs. Kobashi, Jade Chung aligned herself with Strong (and the remainder of Generation Next) after he defeated her former client, Jimmy Rave. The following night, Strong defeated James Gibson in his last match for Ring of Honor before returning to World Wrestling Entertainment. Following the match, Gibson gave a farewell speech in which he called Strong the "MVP" of Ring of Honor.
Strong lost to ROH World Champion Bryan Danielson on October 29 in Woodbridge, Connecticut and on November 5 in Chicago, with the match going over 45 minutes. On December 17 in Edison, New Jersey at Final Battle 2005, Strong teamed with Aries to defeat Sal Rinauro and Tony Mamaluke for the ROH Tag Team Championship.
On March 31 in Chicago, Strong faced Bryan Danielson a third time for the ROH World Championship, with a 60-minute time limit, but Roderick came up short with Danielson rolling up Strong at the 56 minute mark for the victory.
With new member Matt Sydal and Jack Evans touring in Japan Strong and Aries announced that there was no longer a need for Generation Next.
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
In his first major appearance with Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, Strong lost a special "Showcase Match" to Austin Aries at the TNA Unbreakable 2005 pay-per-view on September 11, 2005. On September 22, it was announced that he had signed a contract with TNA, and would wrestle A.J. Styles on the first episode of TNA iMPACT! on Spike TV on October 1. Strong went on to lose the subsequent bout.
In December 2005, Strong toured Japan with the Dragon Gate promotion. In 2006, he formed a stable in TNA with Austin Aries and Alex Shelley. In February 2006, he and Aries were both suspended for two months for arriving four hours late for the pay-per-view TNA Against All Odds 2006. He returned to TNA in April 2006 although has only been used once since then.
On June 28, 2006 reports circulated that Strong had been released from TNA. Roderick Strong's profile was also removed from TNA's website emphasizing the release, though no official word has been announced.
Full Impact Pro
Strong is considered one of the primary wrestlers, and lead babyface, in Ring of Honor's sister promotion, Full Impact Pro, which operates out of Florida. He finally won the FIP Heavyweight Championship in a title-versus-career match against Bryan Danielson, who at the time was both the FIP and ROH Champions, on November 10, 2006, in Inverness, Florida. Only the FIP title was on the line.
Pro Wrestling Guerrilla
Strong had his first match in Pro Wrestling Guerrilla on February 12, 2005. He only had a total of two matches in that year. After a win with Jack Evans against El Generico and Human Tornado (collectively known as Two Skinny Black Guys at the time), the two challenged Davey Richards and Super Dragon for the PWG World Tag Team Championship. The duo lost their shot at the belts. Throughout 2006, Strong collected himself a number of wins in one-on-one matches, almost reaching the Finals of the Battle of Los Angeles tournament, but losing to Richards in a Singles match.
On November 17, 2006, Strong would team with Richards for his second shot at the World Tag Team Championship, this time against Dragon and B-Boy. The duo would go on to capture the belts, marking Strong's first title win in PWG. They would go on to lose the titles the next night to B-Boy and Dragon. The match also involved the teams of Chris Hero / Claudio Castagnoli (their Ring of Honor feud wasn't mentioned in the announcement of the match) and Alex Shelley / Chris Sabin.
On October 19, 2016 episode of NXT on the WWE Network, Strong making his debut by teaming with Austin Aries in the first round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament, and defeating Tucker Knight and Otis Dozovic.
- Finishing moves
- Strong Hold (Elevated Boston crab while kneeling on the opponent's back or a straight jacket)
- End of Heartache / Strong Breaker (Vertical suplex lifted and dropped into a double knee backbreaker)
- Death by Roderick (Fireman's carry double knee gutbuster)
- Gibson Driver (Sitout double underhook powerbomb) – adopted from James Gibson
- Inverted cloverleaf, sometimes with bodyscissors
- Sick Kick (Single leg running dropkick)
- CX '02 (Crucifix cutter)
- CX '03 (Straight jacket Gory neckbreaker)
- Signature moves
- Backhand chop
- Power-Breaker (Powerbomb onto the knee)
- Double underhook suplex
- Multiple rib breakers
- Multiple backbreaker variations
- Argentine, sometimes while dropping to a kneeling position
- Canadian, sometimes while dropping to a seated position
- Capture suplex onto the knee
- Double underhook
- Half nelson
- Olympic slam
- "Messiah Of The Backbreaker"
- Tag teams and stables
- Wrestlers trained
- Entrance themes
Championships and accomplishments
- NWA Florida X Division Champion (2 times)
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter
- 2005 Most Improved Wrestler