The Hogan-Warrior feud: Part I

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The Hogan-Warrior feud: Part I

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By: SmarkCentral

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Wrestling is built on rivalries.  It has many elements to it, but at its core, it’s driven by competition and scripted hatred.  We’ve all enjoyed epic feuds like Rock Vs Austin, nWo Vs WCW, and Steamboat Vs Flair, but sometimes the real life feuds between some of our favorite superstars can be just as or even more compelling.  Take for instance the feud between Hulk Hogan and the Ultimate Warrior.

Most of us have witnessed the epic clash these two huge personalities had at WrestleMania VI.  It was a great match that saw two of the most popular wrestlers ever take each other to the limit.  In the end, Hogan lost and rode off into the sunset a defeated hero.  It told a great story and it was supposed to be Warrior’s launching point for becoming the next Hogan, but something happened – business dropped off.  Wrestling had lost its luster once again.  Warrior was left to carry the torch alone and Hogan was off the Hollywood to film movies.  The debate over who was truly responsible for this drop off is still debated to this day.  Was it the guy holding the belt (Warrior)?  The guy who left him to drown in a pool of suck (Hogan)?  Was it the company that failed to put it all together?  Or did the public just lose interest?  No matter the cause, this is what began a heated, real life feud between two of wrestling’s behemoths.

The bottom line was business dropped off for one reason or another and the blame fell on Warrior for not duplicating Hogan’s success.  This of course led to Hogan taking over as top dog once again after Warrior dropped the belt to Sgt. Slaughter.  Things didn’t improve with Hogan as champion, but of course Hogan blamed it on the fallout from Warrior’s title run.  Unfortunately, Warrior was not around long enough to prove his case.  After SummerSlam 91, Warrior was fired because he held Vince up for his WrestleMania VII payday, but that didn’t stop Hogan from calling when he was ready to shoot his next movie.

Warrior would return at WrestleMania VIII in spectacular fashion ironically enough to save Hogan from a Psycho Sid/Papa Shongo beatdown.  The two celebrated as if they were best of friends, but it was simply Hogan’s way of leaving Warrior out to dry again.  However, this time he did not leave with Warrior holding the belt.  Earlier that night Macho Man Randy Savage beat Ric Flair for the WWE title.  Now with Warrior back in the fold and Savage as champ, Hogan was a free man.  Everything was coming up Hogan.

Fast forward a few years and Hogan is in WCW with Savage and the whole gang.  Warrior didn’t come along for the ride, but that’s not to say Hogan didn’t try.  Since, Warrior was not willing to jump on board, Hogan and company decided to create their own Ultimate Warrior in the Renegade.  It was a colossal failure on Hogan’s part.

Hogan began realizing that the 80’s were long gone and people were getting tired of the whole red and yellow, say your prayers bullshit so Hogan and Eric Bischoff decided to turn Hogan heel.  Not only did he turn, but they decided to have him lead a giant heel faction which of course became the New World Order.  Once the summer of 1998 arrived, the nWo had either destroyed every credible face in the company or the face had joined one of the now two nWo factions (Hollywood and Wolfpac) so there was no one for Hogan to fight until he called his old “friend”, the Warriaaaah.  Hogan wouldn’t admit it publicly, but it was later rumored that Hogan only brought the Warrior to WCW so he could beat him and avenge his WrestleMania VI loss.  Hogan and Bischoff denied it up and down, but given the size and fragility of Hogan’s ego it is conceivable that he needed to avenge a loss in a sport where the outcomes are predetermined (sorry to all the five year olds I just made cry).  Warrior basically did it for the payday, but could not believe to the levels Hogan would stoop to make himself feel and look better. The Halloween Havoc rematch would be the last time Warrior and Hogan would be face to face in the ring or out of it.

By 2002-2003 things seemed better, Hogan was back in the WWE for one final run and Warrior was getting ready to have a DVD put out about his career.  Unfortunately, negotiations between Warrior and the WWE broke down and Warrior was off the project.  Instead of dropping the DVD, WWE put it out anyway with an incredibly negative and biased spin that showed their side of Warrior’s career and his dealings with Vince McMahon.  Hogan was on it since he was in good standing with Vince at the time and was running off at the mouth about how Warrior didn’t draw, couldn’t wrestle, etc which once again opened up old wounds.

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