Shannon Claire Spruill[2] (born July 17, 1975)[2] is an American professional wrestler, actress and valet.[2]
She is best known for her appearances with World Championship Wrestling between 1999 and 2001 under the ring name Daffney and for working for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2008-2011), where she used the ring name "The Governor", a caricature of Alaska governor and former United States Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin, before returning to her Daffney ring name and gimmick.

Due to her release from TNA in March 2011, she is currently wrestling in independent wrestling circuit promotions.

A "military brat", Spruill was born on the Wiesbaden Army Airfield, a United States Air Force base in Wiesbaden, West Germany where her father was stationed. In 1976 the family returned to the United States, residing first in Salt Lake City, Utah, then in Savannah, Georgia and finally on the Scott Air Force Base in St. Clair County, Illinois. They later relocated to Oxford in the United Kingdom for three years, before moving to the Ramstein Air Base in Germany until 1987, when her father, by then a Lieutenant Colonel, retired.[1]

Spruill graduated from Georgia State University in March 1998 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Film and Video production, with minors in Acting and Music. She went on to work in Media Production before becoming an actress.

Professional wrestling careerEdit

World Championship Wrestling (1999–2001)Edit

In November 1999, she responded to a World Championship Wrestling (WCW) contest looking to acquire new talent and was hired.[9][10] In WCW, Spruill played Daffney, the mentally deranged, besotted girlfriend of David Flair, managing him and Crowbar. One of Daffney's hallmarks was a high piercing scream when she was lurking at ringside. The gimmick was based in part on Mallory Knox, the character played by Juliette Lewis in the film Natural Born Killers. Spruill has cited Batman supervillainess Harley Quinn as the original inspiration for the character.[11] Spruill's first appearance was on the December 6 episode of Nitro, when she was shown sitting on her bed and chanting Flair's name.

On May 15, 2000 Spruill and Crowbar defeated WCW World Cruiserweight Champion Chris Candido and his girlfriend Tammy Lynn Sytch in a mixed tag team match and were declared co-champions. The following week on the May 22 episode of Nitro, Crowbar and Spruill faced one another to determine the undisputed World Cruiserweight Champion. Crowbar held back during the match, but still dominated the smaller Spruill. After Candido entered the ring and hit Crowbar with a reverse piledriver, Spruill inadvertently pinned him while trying to revive him and thus became the second woman ever to hold the Cruiserweight Championship.[12] Her reign lasted until June 7 when Lieutenant Loco pinned Disco Inferno in a three-way title defense while Spruill was hurt following interference from Miss Hancock.[13] Spruill went on to feud with Hancock, who had stolen the affections of Flair.[14] Spruill defeated Hancock in the promotion's first ever Wedding Gown match after Hancock removed her own dress. Spruill then became solely the valet for Crowbar. She had a brief feud with Shane Douglas's valet, Torrie Wilson, but was rarely used as a wrestler.

Daffney was notable for her constantly changing hair color, wide selection of T-Shirts with slogans on them, and her propensity to scream loudly and shrilly for no apparent reason. She began screaming at the suggestion of WCW writer Ed Ferrara.[1] Though Spruill's somewhat gothic character earned her a small but loyal fan base, she was released by WCW on February 2, 2001 due to budget cutbacks (WCW itself was purchased by its rival, the World Wrestling Federation, a month later).

Independent circuit (2002–present)Edit

[1][2]Daffney during an Anarcy Championship Wrestling event in March 2009.Spruill opted to continue wrestling, attending Dusty Rhodes' Turnbuckle Championship Wrestling training camp in Kennesaw, Georgia for eight months.[14]

She made several appearances for the fledgling Total Nonstop Action Wrestling promotion in 2002 as Shannon and Shark Girl (valet of Shark Boy),[10] and worked for Xtreme Pro Wrestling in 2003 as Lucy, the manager of Vic Grimes.[1] She also appeared in Ring of Honor, where she debuted on April 26, 2003 as Lucy, the valet of the Second City Saints.[10] In July 2003, Spruill was signed to a developmental deal by World Wrestling Entertainment. She worked in Ohio Valley Wrestling as the manager of Aaron Stevens until she was released on December 17 of the same year.[10]

After her release from WWE, Spruill decided to retire from professional wrestling.[12] Intending to focus on her acting career, she sold her wrestling boots to her then-roommate, Mickie James. While retired, Spruill worked as a personal trainer. In June 2005, she posed for a website owned and operated by wrestling divas Francine and Missy Hyatt.[3][12] In February 2006, Spruill returned to the independent circuit. Spruill debuted in Women's Extreme Wrestling on April 6 under the ring name Lucy Furr ("Lucifer"), acting as a lumberjill in a match between Amy Lee and Tai Killer Weed.[4] On June 2, 2006 in Irondale, Alabama, Spruill faced El Mexico for the NWA Wrestle Birmingham Junior Heavyweight Championship. With the help of her manager, Robert Fuller (who referred to Spruill as his "Million Dollar Baby"), Spruil defeated El Mexicano to win her third wrestling title.[3] In February 2007, she began making appearances with Georgia Wrestling Promotions both as a manager and a referee.

In April 2007, Spruill debuted as Daffney for Shimmer Women Athletes. She conducted an interview where she revealed her goal was to return to what she did from the beginning of her career and that was to manage. Later that evening she appeared as the manager of the wrestler MsChif. In April 2008 she began wrestling as her Shark Girl character. However, she returned to wrestling as Daffney after only a couple of months.

On November 8, 2009, at the tapings of Volume 27 Daffney turned heel on Rachel Summerlyn as the two of them were facing the International Home Wrecking Crew. Later in the night on Volume 28 Daffney got disqualified in a match with Summerlyn, after she did not release an illegal hold off her opponent.[15] On April 11, 2010, at the tapings of Volume 31, Daffney defeated Summerlyn in a No Disqualification match.[16]

Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2008–2011) Spruill re-emerged in TNA on the June 5, 2008 edition of TNA Impact! as Daffney. She was planted in the audience along with fellow wrestlers Amber O'Neal and Becky Bayless. The three women volunteered to wrestle Awesome Kong in the $25,000 Challenge. Daffney was selected and subsequently defeated by Kong.[2]

The Governor (2008–2009)Edit

In December 2008 Spruill started playing the role of Alaska governor Sarah Palin in skits involving the Beautiful People.[12] On the January 15 edition of Impact! it was revealed by Taylor Wilde and Roxxi that "Sarah Palin" was indeed fake, and it had all been a big joke by Roxxi and Taylor to get revenge on The Beautiful People.[2] They then proceeded to muck the Beautiful People as Spruill, Taylor and Roxxi celebrated.[2] The next week she was seen in an interview with Lauren, where they made fun of the Beautiful People. The Beautiful People then proceeded to viciously attack "The Governor" before being pulled away by Cute Kip as Spruill lay injured.[2] On the February 5, 2009, edition of Impact! she made her return by attacking the Beautiful People, this time complete with entrance video and theme.[2] She made her PPV debut at Destination X in a winning effort when she teamed with Roxxi and Wilde to defeat The Beautiful People and Madison Rayne.[2]

Daffney; alliance with Dr. Stevie (2009–2010)Edit

As a result of having her hair cut by the Beautiful People on the March 19 edition of Impact!,[2] Spruill transformed into her old Daffney ring name and gimmick on the April 2 edition of Impact!, when she appeared in on-screen psychiatrist Dr. Stevie's office for a therapy session.[2][12] On the April 16 edition of Impact!, she teamed with Stevie's other patient Abyss to defeat the duo of ODB and Cody Deaner in a mixed tag team match.[2] She competed in the Queen of the Cage match at Lockdown against ODB, Madison Rayne and Sojournor Bolt, but failed to win the match.[2] On the May 14 edition of Impact!, Daffney turned heel by assaulting Taylor Wilde, because she did not save her when The Beautiful People cut her hair.[12] At Sacrifice Wilde defeated Daffney, who had Abyss and Dr. Stevie in her corner, in the first ever knockouts' Monster's Ball match.[12] After she and Dr. Stevie began associating themselves with the returning Raven, Daffney defeated Wilde with their help in a rematch on the June 4 edition of Impact with her swinging fisherman suplex named the Lobotomy.[2] The following week Daffney assaulted Wilde backstage after provoking her by attacking her on-screen best friend, backstage interviewer Lauren, earlier on the same night.[2] Daffney and Raven were defeated by Abyss and Taylor Wilde at Slammiversary in a Monster's Ball mixed tag match.[2] During the match Wilde slammed Daffney onto a pile of thumbtacks.[12] The following Thursday on Impact!, she and Wilde faced off in the first ever Knockout's "Match of 10,000 Tacks", which she lost.[2]

At Bound for Glory, Daffney interfered in a Monster's Ball match between Abyss and Mick Foley, who had assigned Abyss' rival and Daffney's associate Dr. Stevie as the special guest referee of the match.[2] During the match Abyss chokeslammed Daffney from the ring apron through a barbed wire board, although reports indicated she had suffered a broken arm,[17] it was later reported to be inaccurate although she had instead suffered a concussion.[18][19] On the November 12 edition of Impact! Raven once again returned to TNA to reform the group of himself, Dr. Stevie and Daffney.[20]

Going solo (2010–2011)Edit

[3][4]Daffney posing in the ring in 2010.Daffney spent the next couple of months mainly managing Stevie and Raven, before making her in-ring return on the February 18, 2010, edition of Impact!, losing to the TNA Women's Knockout Champion Tara via disqualification, after hitting her with a toolbox. After the match, Daffney continued her assault, before being dragged away by Dr. Stevie.[21] The following week on Impact! she annihilated ODB in similar fashion as it was noted that she had her eye set on the title.[22] On the March 8 edition of Impact! Daffney cost Tara and her tag team partner Angelina Love the Knockout Tag Team Championship by hitting her with the Women's Knockout Championship belt during a match for the vacant titles.[23] At Destination X Daffney failed in her attempt to win the Knockout Championship from Tara, but managed to steal her spider Poison from her after the match.[24] The following day on Impact! Daffney used distraction from Poison to pin Tara in an eight Knockout tag team match to earn her a First Blood match for the Women's Knockout Championship the following week.[25] The following week Tara defeated Daffney in a First Blood match after hitting her with a toolbox.[26] The following week Daffney was one of the four winners in an eight knockout Lockbox match, contested for four keys to four boxes containing prizes. During the contest Tara, one of the three other winners, won back Poison, while Daffney came up empty handed and was forced to strip down, but before she could she was attacked by Lacey Von Erich.[27] The attack resulted in a match on the April 19 edition of Impact!, where Daffney, now seemingly a face, and a partner of her choice, ODB, unsuccessfully challenged Von Erich and Velvet Sky for the TNA Knockout Tag Team Championship.[28] At the following day's Impact! tapings, Daffney was injured in a dark match against Miss Betsy in her tryout match and was taken to a hospital, where she was diagnosed with a deeply bruised sternum, a severe stinger, and a concussion[29][30]

On May 26 it was announced that Spruill had been cleared to return to wrestling.[31] She made her return at the June 14 tapings of Xplosion, wrestling once again as a heel and defeating Taylor Wilde with the help of a chain, only to have the referee of the match catch her afterwards, leading to Wilde defeating her after a restart.[32][33] On the December 9 edition of Impact! Daffney teamed with Sarita in a first round match of a tournament for the vacant TNA Knockout Tag Team Championship, where they were defeated by the Beautiful People (Angelina Love and Velvet Sky).[34]

Release From TNA (2011)Edit

This marked Daffney's final appearance for TNA as on March 15, 2011, her contract with the promotion expired and was not renewed. Spruill announced that she had filed a workers' compensation claim against TNA for injuries suffered while wrestling for the promotion.[35]

Wrestlicious (2009–2010)Edit

In early 2009 Spruill took part in the first season tapings of Wrestlicious, which started airing in March 2010, using the character of Draculetta.[6] She debuted on March 17 in the main event of the third episode of Takedown, teaming with White Magic in a tag team match, where they lost via disqualification to the team of Lacey Von Erich and Amber Lively.[36]

Personal lifeEdit

She was previously married to guitarist Rich Ward of Stuck Mojo and Chris Jericho's band Fozzy,[14] and has also dated fellow wrestler CM Punk.

On July 19, 2011, Spruill was arrested in Hillsborough County, Florida for "driving under the influence with property damage".


In wrestlingEdit

[5][6]Daffney doing her trademark scream on the turnbuckles.*As Daffney

Championships and accomplishmentsEdit


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External linksEdit

Official Website