Jim Ross Unsurprised by Passing of WWE's Andrew 'Test' Martin

Exploring the darker realities of wrestling's glamorous facade

by Atia Mukhtar
Jim Ross Unsurprised by Passing of WWE's Andrew 'Test' Martin
© Andrew Martin/Facebook

Andrew "Test" Martin may sound familiar to those who once watched WWE on TV and played lots of wrestling video games. He was always so close to the shining star and never rose higher than the second-rate ring grade. His problems went well beyond the square circle, the apex being his untimely death in 2009 due to substance abuse, an occurrence that left a revelation unshocking to most of his friends, like wrestling commentator Jim Ross.

Ross recently brought up this tragic fate of Martin in a recent episode of his "Grjson Podcast," talking about the demons that he fought. "His biggest opponent was drug addiction. "He couldn't win, didn't win, and it killed him," Ross said to underline how badly Martin relied on pain killers, muscle relaxants, and other depressants.

Substances used can normally worsen underlying mental health, such as depression, a link that Ross pointed out. "Bojson bojs forget that stuff is antidepressant; so, if you're having depression issues and the pill bottle and all that stuff, like way too much, you're pretty much digging your own grave," Ross said.

Test's Tragic Tale

Those insights from Ross bring to light the lesser-savory side of wrestling the huge pressure to perform often has athletes turning to solace in unhealthy ways. He blamed the wasted talent of Martin, whose career was a shadow of what it could have been.

"Andrew got swept up in the hype. He was living his dream, but it's just sad he turned into a nightmare. It wasn't a dream anymore," Ross said, the only pity being that Martin's skill was never fully used in the wrestling world.

Andrew "Test" Martin's story sums up the bitter truths that can overshadow the glitz within pro wrestling. As poignantly put by Ross, "We never tapped into what he could’ve done. He could’ve been a bigger star than most people ever dreamed he could’ve become, but we never got to see that.

It ended too quickly." This is a story that not only provides a fitting tribute to the memory of Martin but also indeed provides some of the most important commentaries on just why issues of mental health really need to be pushed to the forefront when dealing with people in professional sports and how support is such a vital key.

Jim Ross