Template:Pwstatbox Terrence Gene Bollea, best known as Hulk Hogan and Hollywood Hogan (born August 11, 1953 in Augusta, Georgia), is an American professional wrestler and actor. He is currently the star of the VH1 reality show Hogan Knows Best and also makes occasional appearances for World Wrestling Entertainment on the RAW brand.
During his 1980s heyday wrestling for the World Wrestling Federation as the wholesome babyface character 'Hulk Hogan', Terry Bollea became one of the highest-drawing, most popular wrestlers in the history of the business. After flagging popularity, a steroid scandal, 'retirements' and lawsuits damaged his momentum in the 1990s, he jumped ship to the WWF's then-rival, World Championship Wrestling.
He later turned heel and became a sneering bad guy in July 1996, re-energizing and redefining his career as the greedy and manipulative villain Hollywood Hogan, eventually returning to face status and the WWE. During his long career, he appeared and starred in several movies and TV shows, and now busies himself with occasional World Wrestling Entertainment appearances and the management of the music career of his daughter, Brooke Hogan.
Hogan is now officially recognized as a fourteen-time World Heavyweight Champion, since his two American Wrestling Association title reigns were recently validated. His loyal fans are referred to as "Hulkamaniacs." Hulk Hogan is also the spokesperson for the Legends of Wrestling video game.
- 1 Career
- 2 "The Icon" versus "The Legend"
- 3 Legacy
- 4 Controversy
- 5 In wrestling
- 6 Trivia
- 7 Title history
- 8 Awards
- 9 Accomplishments
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
Hogan was born to Italian-American Pete Bollea and Ruth Bollea, who is of French, Italian and Panamanian descent. Early in life, Terry Bollea was a standout in minor league baseball, and also spent ten years as a rock musician, playing bass guitar in several Florida-based rock bands, including "Ruckus" and "Infinity's End." Many of the wrestlers who competed in the Florida "territory" (U.S. pro wrestling had long been divided into unlinked, individually-controlled statewide / regional promotions, until the WWF's 1980s national-scale rise drove many out of business) at that time would visit the bars in which Bollea was performing. Terry's impressive physical stature soon caught the attention of former top-drawing wrestler Jack Brisco and his brother Jerry, both of whom convinced Bollea to give wrestling a try. Terry had been a wrestling fan since boyhood and was eager to give it a chance, and trained for nearly two years under the watchful eye of legendary wrestler Hiro Matsuda, a hard-nosed taskmaster who casually (and to instill respect, purposefully) broke Bollea's leg during their first training session.
Terry Bollea wrestled his first professional match in Tallahassee, Florida on August 19, 1977 as The Super Destroyer, wrestling B. Brian Blair to a draw. In addition to the former, Terry also used other ringnames early in his career, including Terry 'The Hulk' Boulder, and Sterling Golden. In those formative years, Terry would go on to win his first wrestling championships, the National Wrestling Alliance Southeastern Heavyweight Championships recognized in Alabama and Tennessee, respectively. Terry even had an early shot at the NWA World Heavyweight Championship -- its holder generally recognized as the industry's #1 draw -- in January 1979, facing NWA kingpin Harley Race.
World Wrestling Federation: The First Run
On November 13, 1979 Bollea made his debut in the World Wrestling Federation and was given the name "The Incredible" Hulk Hogan by Vince McMahon Sr., then the majority owner of the WWF. In his debut, Hogan wrestled three matches in Allentown, Pennsylvania during one of the WWF's marathon television tapings. Hogan was scripted to win all three bouts, squashing Harry Valdez in the first match, Paul Figueroa in the second, and Ben Ortiz in the third. One month later on December 17, Hogan made his Madison Square Garden wrestling debut, defeating Ted DiBiase in 11 minutes, 12 seconds.
The later, official explanation for the chosen name was that many considered Bollea to be physically bigger than Lou Ferrigno, who at the time was starring in the critically acclaimed TV series The Incredible Hulk. McMahon also wanted him to be a tough, working-man brawler with a possible Irish background at the same time, thus the name "Hogan." A deal was later struck with Marvel Comics to use the 'Hulk' name. In February 2005, Bollea himself purchased the rights to the "Hulk Hogan" stage name.
Hogan started out in the WWF as an arrogant heel, clad in a golden cape and managed by the late "Classy" Freddie Blassie. During his first run with the WWF, Hogan feuded intensely with WWWF (World Wide Wrestling Federation) World Heavyweight Champion Bob Backlund, "Mr. U.S.A." Tony Atlas, and a man he had met previously in the deep South, and would see much more of down the road in his career: the late 7'4", 520-pound André the Giant. Hogan and André would go on to clash in a historic match on August 9, 1980 in front of 36,295 fans in Shea Stadium in Flushing, NY. This was part of the WWF's Showdown At Shea event. In 1981, Sylvester Stallone personally offered him a part in the movie Rocky III. Hogan wanted to use this opportunity for a potential movie career, but industry etiquette demanded that he first ask for his boss' permission. Knowing that he could not refuse this opportunity (it could dramatically increase his drawing power / earning potential, since wrestling fans -- and promoters -- in each territory would want to see "the big guy from Rocky III in person"), Bollea took the part anyway. When McMahon Sr. found out (as Bollea knew he would), he fired Hogan from the WWF as a result.
American Wrestling Association
After filming his scene for Rocky III, Hogan made his debut in the Minnesota-based American Wrestling Association, owned and promoted by former nine-time AWA World Heavyweight Champion and two-time NCAA Champion Verne Gagne. Hogan's first AWA match took place on August 1, 1981 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he defeated Tony Leone and Chuck Greenlee in a handicap match. Hogan started his AWA run portraying his heel character from the WWF, but AWA fans reacted much differently to Hogan. The audience couldn't get enough of the muscular Hogan, and soon AWA bookers (the underlings of the promoter, responsible for figuring out profitable match-ups and the matches' details) were compelled to turn Hogan face. On May 28, 1982, Rocky III premiered in theaters nationwide. Hogan's role in Rocky III was "Thunderlips: The Ultimate Male", a buffed, egotistical pro wrestler who took on Stallone's Rocky Balboa in a wrestler vs. boxer charity match. The role would garner international media attention for Hogan, and soon he was riding the crest of a wave of popularity, the likes of which had rarely been seen before for a professional wrestler. The seeds for what would become the cultural movement known as Hulkamania were planted.
New Japan Pro Wrestling
During this period of Hogan's career, he was not competing strictly under the AWA (or any) banner. A great deal of Hogan's early success was achieved in New Japan Pro Wrestling. Japanese wrestling fans were in awe of the gargantuan blond American, and nicknamed him "Ichiban" (which translates to "Number One"). Hogan first appeared in Japan on May 23, 1980, while he was still with the WWWF. He would tour the country from time to time over the next few years, facing a wide variety of opponents ranging from Tatsumi Fujinami to Abdullah the Butcher. When competing in Japan, Hogan used a vastly different repertoire of wrestling moves, relying on more "scientific" (i.e., technical, more amateur style-seeming) looking traditional wrestling holds and maneuvers as opposed to the power-based (feats of strength), brawling style U.S. fans were accustomed to seeing from him. On June 2, 1983, Hogan became the first International Wrestling Grand Prix tournament winner, defeating Japanese wrestling icon Antonio Inoki by knockout in the finals of a 10-man tournament featuring top talent from throughout the world. Hogan and Inoki also worked as partners in Japan, winning the prestigious MSG Tag League tournament two years in a row, in 1982 and 1983.
World Wrestling Federation: Hulkamania Runs Wild
Hogan, now a face, was a great box-office success in the AWA, and was lured back to the World Wrestling Federation in late 1983 by Vince McMahon, Jr. after he bought the organization outright from his father. Hogan had been growing increasingly frustrated with the AWA's backstage politics, which kept the AWA World Heavyweight Championship out of his reach, despite blatantly obvious fan demand for him to "win" it. On two different occasions, Hogan had been scripted to win the AWA Championship from heel champion Nick Bockwinkel and have it revert back to Bockwinkel by contrived technicality. This was a common plot device in the business -- especially in territories much smaller and less lucrative than the AWA at that time -- done repeatedly to milk audience anticipation that the face would topple the heel 'next time'. In a spring 1983 show in Minneapolis (the AWA's home market), this same plot played out, as it had profitably done before. But this time, Gagne had greatly underestimated his fans' anticipation; after the 'badguy-retains-title-via-technicality' routine had played out, fan displeasure was so strong, only Bollea's pleas (on the PA system, in-character as Hogan) kept them from rioting (this outcome was officially overturned by the AWA board in April 2005 -- over 10 years after Gagne's company had stopped doing live shows -- thus making Hogan an officially recognized "two-time former AWA World Champion"). Hogan was also upset with promoter Verne Gagne's demands for a percentage of his Japanese earnings in exchange for the AWA Championship. McMahon, Jr. wanted to turn the WWF into a nationwide (and then worldwide) entity, leveraged on Hulk Hogan's charisma, body, and name power. Hogan would become one of the most popular wrestlers ever, with his loyal fans known as "Hulkamaniacs."
Hulk Hogan played the role of an honest and courageous hero, encouraging children to "train, say their prayers and take their vitamins". Hogan made a dramatic return to the WWF on January 3, 1984 during a marathon TV taping in Allentown, Pennsylvania, saving Bob Backlund from a three-on-one assault at the hands of the Wild Samoans. Weeks later on January 23, Hogan won the WWF Championship for the first time, pinning The Iron Sheik in New York's Madison Square Garden. McMahon's "Hulkamania" marketing strategy had been launched.
Hogan would remain WWF Champion for four years and 13 days, overcoming such challengers as André the Giant, "Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff, Rowdy Roddy Piper and King Kong Bundy, drawing record houses, PPV buyrates and TV ratings in the process. He co-hosted Saturday Night Live on March 30, 1985 and even had his own CBS Saturday morning cartoon during this lucrative run, titled Hulk Hogan's Rock 'n Wrestling, in which he was voiced by Brad Garrett.
On March 31, 1985, the inaugural WrestleMania took place at Madison Square Garden, featuring Hogan in a tag team main event, with Mr. T his partner. Hogan would go on to headline the first nine WrestleManias, from 1985 to 1993.
A new storyline was introduced in early 1987: Hogan was presented a trophy for being the WWF Champion for three years. André the Giant, a good friend (who could also be seen pouring champagne over him in the Madison Square Garden locker room in the interview scene following his title win) came out to congratulate him. Shortly afterwards, André was presented a slightly smaller trophy for being "undefeated in the WWF for 15 years." In actuality, André had suffered a handful of countout and disqualification losses in the WWF, but had never been pinned or forced to submit in a WWF ring. Hogan came out to congratulate André, but André walked out in the midst of Hogan's speech. Then, on an edition of Piper's Pit, Hogan was confronted by Bobby Heenan. Heenan announced that his new protege was André. André then challenged Hogan to a title match at WrestleMania III, ripping the t-shirt and crucifix off of Hogan.
WrestleMania III, held on March 29, 1987 at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan, set a North American indoor attendance record for any sporting event. A crowd of 93,173 fans witnessed Hogan successfully defend the WWF World Heavyweight Championship against André the Giant. The match would become the most famous of Hogan's career, one which saw Hogan bodyslam the 520-pound Frenchman before pinning his shoulders to the mat. The match was considered to being a "passing of the torch" between one of the biggest stars in wrestling of the 1970s, André, and the biggest star in wrestling of the 1980s, Hogan. Years later, Hogan stated that André was so heavy, he felt more like 700 pounds.
Hogan lost the belt in extremely controversial fashion to André on NBC's "The Main Event" on February 5, 1988, thanks to a convoluted scam involving "The Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase and "evil" twin referee Earl Hebner (in place of the match's appointed arbiter, his twin brother Dave Hebner). The WWF Championship was vacated for the third time in its 25-year history, and all this in turn led to Hogan's on/off friend "Macho Man" Randy Savage taking the vacant title in a tournament at WrestleMania IV a month later.
Together, Hogan, Savage, and manager Miss Elizabeth formed a partnership known as The Mega Powers. As fate would have it, the Mega-Powers would soon implode from within, due to Savage's burgeoning jealousy of Hogan and his paranoid suspicions that Hogan and Elizabeth were "more than friends." A feud between Hogan and Savage began, which culminated with Hogan beating Savage for his second World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania V on April 2, 1989. Hogan's second run lasted a year, during which time he starred in his first movie, No Holds Barred; the movie was the inspiration of a feud with Hogan's co-star in "No Holds Barred" Tiny Lister, Jr., who appeared at wrestling events as his movie character, Zeus; Zeus was an unfazable monster heel who was "jealous" over Hogan's higher billing and now wanted revenge. However, Hogan was easily able to defeat Zeus in a series of matches across the country during late 1989. Also during his second run, Hogan won the 1990 Royal Rumble Match, last eliminating Mr. Perfect. He dropped the title to Intercontinental Champion The Ultimate Warrior, on April 1, 1990 at WrestleMania VI. It was the first time in over seven years that Hogan was pinned.
Hogan soon became embroiled in a heated feud with the 468-pound Earthquake, a mountain of a man who gained infamy by crushing Hogan's ribs in a sneak attack on "The Brother Love Show" in May 1990. On TV, announcers explained that Hogan was depressed over his injuries and his WrestleMania VI loss to The Ultimate Warror, and both took such a huge toll on his fighting spirit that he wanted to retire. Viewers were asked to write letters to Hogan and send postcards asking for his return (they got a postcard-sized picture in return, autographed by Hogan, as a "thank you"). Hogan returned by SummerSlam 1990 and dominated Earthquake in a months-long series of matches across the country.
On March 24, 1991, Hogan stood up for the USA against Iraqi-sympathizer Sgt. Slaughter, outwitting him for his third WWF World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania VII. Hogan lost the title to Undertaker at the Survivor Series on November 27, 1991, in an infamous bout marred by interference from the legendary "Nature Boy" Ric Flair. Just six days later, Hogan regained the title in a match held on a special pay-per-view named Tuesday In Texas. In the ensuing five months, Hulk Hogan announced he was contemplating retirement from wrestling and 'bowed out' against Sid Justice at WrestleMania VIII on April 5, 1992. He later reconsidered, and was back in the ring within a year.
A lot of fictitious rumors surround the Hulk Hogan sensation, employed in part by the WWF and later WCW to sensationalize and hype up their star name. Hogan dyed his hair platinum blonde and wore a bandana. His usual colors were yellow and red; as a heel they were black and white. One statistic about Hogan that did stand, at least at the time, was that he had the largest arms in professional sports, a title he legitimately held only for a few years. Hogan's "24-inch pythons" were the most commonly used phrase in reference to his arms.
Hulk Hogan's incredible crossover popularity led to several television and movie roles. Along with 1982's Rocky III, he starred, as mentoned above, in No Holds Barred (1989), as well as Suburban Commando (1991), Mr. Nanny (1993), Santa with Muscles (1996), and 3 Ninjas: High Noon at Mega Mountain (1998). He made two appearances on The A-Team (in 1985 and 1986), and starred in his own TV series, Thunder in Paradise, in 1994.
Hogan returned to the WWF in January 1993, helping out his longtime friend Brutus Beefcake in his feud with Money Inc.. Hogan scooped his fifth WWF World Heavyweight Championship on April 4 of that year, overcoming Yokozuna in an impromptu bout at WrestleMania IX. He lost the title back to Yokozuna in June 1993 at King of the Ring after a camera exploded in his face, temporarily blinding him, and departed the WWF two months later. An impending steroid scandal led to Vince McMahon deciding to phase out large, muscular wrestlers such as Hogan and give the top spots to smaller, more technically sound wrestlers such as Bret Hart. After Hogan left the WWF, he decided to concentrate on movies and TV, and take time off from professional wrestling.
World Championship Wrestling
In June 1994 Hogan was expensively lured back to the ring by Ted Turner's World Championship Wrestling, which was the WWF's main competitor at the time. When Hogan signed with WCW, officials (namely, Eric Bischoff, who convinced Hogan to join WCW in the first place) hoped that they could relive the glory days of Hulkamania, but everyone involved also knew it would be tough to convince many loyal, old-school WCW fans of Hogan's worth, particularly the southern fans that were traditionally anti-WWF. Hogan was also at this time given virtually absolute creative control over his onscreen character. Hulk Hogan's contract signing on June 11 was held at Disney World in Orlando, following a garish, red-and-yellow ticker tape parade.
Hogan won the WCW World Heavyweight Championship in his debut match, overcoming Ric Flair in a genuine 'dream' match on July 17. After tussling with Flair, Vader, and the Dungeon of Doom for the next eighteen months, Hogan dropped the belt and began to only appear occasionally on WCW shows. WCW fans were clamouring for younger, more exciting international stars such as Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero, and were growing tired of seeing Hogan's "red-and-yellow good guy" persona they had seen for ten years in the WWF. Hogan soon reinvented himself as a heel (his first time playing a heel role since 1981) and returned full-time on July 7, 1996.
Scott Hall and Kevin Nash both left the WWF in early 1996 and returned to their old employer, WCW. They were portrayed as 'Outsiders' and quickly announced their intent to "take over" WCW, with the help of an unnamed third member of their team (initially rumored to be Bret Hart). At the Bash At The Beach PPV, Hall, Nash and their partner were scheduled to face the WCW trio of Sting, Randy Savage, and Lex Luger. The third partner did not begin the match, and, after Luger left the match due to an injury, some assumed that he would be the "third man." When Hogan came out, many expected him to attack Hall and Nash. However, in one of the most shocking moments in wrestling history, Hogan leg dropped Randy Savage and declared himself to be Hall and Nash's partner, with the trio comprising what Hogan dubbed the New World Order.
Hogan soon dyed his beard black and renamed himself Hollywood Hogan. Hogan managed to redefine the heel character: rather than the traditional "bad guy" Hollywood Hogan gave birth to a more realistic, street-smart villain, with none of the usual wrestling gimmicks and devices. Some have placed Hollywood Hogan as one of the best and most effective heels in pro wrestling history.
After defeating The Giant at Hog Wild on August 10, 1996, Hogan held the WCW World Heavyweight Championship for most of 1997. During this period he grappled with Roddy Piper, Randy Savage and many more. The ever-expanding nWo gang concurrently became the hottest concept in wrestling too, helping WCW to achieve 83 straight Monday night ratings victories over the WWF. The black-and-white nWo t-shirt also became one of the highest-selling pieces of wrestling merchandise ever during 1997.
Hogan then lost the belt to Sting in a hugely-hyped, 18-months-in-the-making match at StarrCade in December 1997. The event was also the highest-drawing PPV in WCW's history. After a lackluster 1998 spent wrestling celebrity matches with buddies such as Dennis Rodman and Jay Leno while TV ratings began to decline, Hogan announced his retirement, and also attempted to launch a run for the US Presidency in November (at the behest of his boss Ted Turner, who felt Hogan was popular enough to capture the nation's highest office). He was back in the ring alongside a reformed nWo within weeks however, and eventually turned on what was left of them in July 1999 and swiftly returned to his familiar, red-and-yellow wearing babyface persona. Injuries and frustrations were mounting up however, and Hogan was soon absent from TV from October 1999 to February 2000.
Soon after his return to WCW TV, Hogan began feuding with Billy Kidman. Then, at Bash at the Beach 2000, Hogan was involved in a very controversial, real-life incident with WCW booker Vince Russo. Hogan was scheduled to wrestle Jeff Jarrett for the WCW World Heavyweight Championship. Hogan felt that he should win so he used the clause in his contract that gave him creative control over all the finishes of his matches. Russo was furious at Hogan because he did not think that Hogan should be the champion.
Unbeknowest to Hogan, Russo told Jarrett to lay down in the middle of the ring and asked Hogan to pin him straight away. A visibly confused Hogan complied, then got on the microphone and told Russo "That's why the company is in the damn shape it's in, because of bullshit like this!" Russo responsed by coming out and saying that he wanted to get rid of all the "old guys" and that since Hogan refused to job to Jarrett a new WCW World Heavyweight Championship would be created, setting the stage for a title match between Booker T and Jeff Jarrett later that night. Hogan was never seen or mentioned on WCW television after the event and he filed an unresolved defamation of character lawsuit against WCW and Vince Russo soon after. It was later revealed in 2005 on Vince Russo's website that the entire incident had been staged.
World Wrestling Entertainment: The Comeback
From July 2000 to November 2001, Hogan was extremely quiet and out of the public eye. He had been dealing with self-doubt and depression following the Vince Russo incident, wondering if what Russo had said about him was true. The majority of the Internet wrestling community at the time had largely agreed with Russo's sentiments, feeling Hogan was "washed-up" and had been "holding down younger talents" for too long. Hogan wanted to prove his detractors wrong, and show them that he still had another run or two left in him.
In the months following the eventual demise of WCW in March 2001, Hogan underwent surgery on his knees, in order for him to wrestle again. As a test, Hogan worked a match in Orlando, Florida for the XWF promotion run by his longtime handler Jimmy Hart. Hogan defeated the late Curt Hennig in this match, and felt healthy enough to accept an offer to return to the WWF in February 2002. Inititally, Hogan returned as leader of the original nWo with Hall and Nash. Soon after arriving, he fought a memorable match against The Rock at WrestleMania X8 on March 17, 2002. This was Hogan's only WrestleMania match fought as a heel, but the crowd cheered wildly for Hogan, effectively turning him face during the match. The Rock cleanly won the contest, but befriended Hogan at the end of the bout and helped him fight off Hall and Nash, who were upset by Hogan's conciliatory attitude.
After the match, Hogan was a definite face again, and had a month-long reign as Undisputed Champion in the spring of 2002 after defeating Triple H at WWE Backlash. After an angle with Brock Lesnar in August 2002, Hogan went on hiatus. He returned in early 2003 to battle The Rock once again and defeated Vince McMahon at WrestleMania XIX. He then had another run as Hulk Hogan (with the old "Hulk Rules" logo being revived and altered as "Hulk Still Rules") and later, the mask-wearing spoof superhero Mr. America.
Mr. America was another Hulk Hogan alter-ego. Mr. America was actually Hulk Hogan in disguise, wearing a mask. He used Hulk Hogan's Real American theme music. He was the subject of a story line after Hollywood Hulk Hogan was forced by his boss Vince McMahon to sit out the rest of his contract after he won at WrestleMania XIX because McMahon wanted Hulkamania to die.
On May 1, 2003 Mr. America debuted on SmackDown! on Piper's Pit, in which Vince appeared and claimed that Mr. America was Hulk Hogan in disguise, Hogan shot back by saying "I am not Hulk Hogan, brother!"
The feud continued though the month of May, with a singles match between America and Hogan's old rival Roddy Piper at Judgement Day. Zach Gowen was also involved in the feud on the side of Mr. America.
Vince tried desperately to prove that Mr. America was indeed Hulk Hogan, but failed on all accounts. Mr. America even passed a lie detector test.
Mr. America's last WWE appearance was on the June 26, 2003 edition of SmackDown!, where The Big Show, Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas defeated Mr. America, Brock Lesnar and Kurt Angle in a six-man tag team match when Show pinned Mr. America. After the show ended, Mr. America unmasked to show the fans that he was indeed Hulk Hogan. The next week, Hogan quit the WWE due to frustration with the creative team. On the July 3, 2003 edition of SmackDown!, McMahon showed the footage of Mr. America unmasking as Hogan and 'fired' him. For several months afterwards, WWE hyped up Big Show as the man who retired Hogan at Madison Square Garden (where the six-man tag team match was held), in order to give Big Show some more credibility. In a twist of irony, Big Show was first discovered by Hogan himself, and in 1995 was pushed as a major threat to Hogan's WCW Championship reign.
A few months after Mr. America ceased to exist, Hulk Hogan worked a match for New Japan Pro Wrestling, beating Masahiro Chono at the Ultimate Crush II event. Hogan had been looking to make his debut for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, but another knee surgery delayed negotiations, and the deal was never finalized.
Hall of Famer
Hogan was inducted by Sylvester Stallone, into the WWE Hall of Fame on April 2, 2005. The Hulkster was greeted with a loud standing ovation which lasted several minutes prior to his acceptance speech. During his speech, Hogan was interrupted more than once by fans chanting "One more match!" The following night at WrestleMania 21, Hogan gave them a teaser of things to come, saving Eugene from an attack at the hands of Muhammad Hassan and Khosrow Daivari. On May 1, 2005, Hogan gave the fans what they had asked for, when he teamed with Shawn Michaels to defeat Hassan and Daivari at Backlash.
The "one more match" chants and claims began to be come more frequent for Hogan, whom by the time he was finished competiting in his match at Backlash, claimed to have second thoughts of hanging up the boots. On the June 27 edition of RAW Hogan was announced as the mystery tag team partner of WWE Champion John Cena and Shawn Michaels in a match against Chris Jericho, Christian and Tyson Tomko, and since then he has considered to have taken a part-time wrestling status, only wrestling every now and then. It is believed that, like The Rock, he may also consider wrestling around the season of WrestleMania.
"The Icon" versus "The Legend"
Hogan then appeared the following week on the July 4 edition of RAW as the special guest of Carlito on his talk-show segment, Carlito's Cabana. After being asked disrespectful questions by Carlito concerning his daughter Brooke Hogan, Hogan proceeded to attack Carlito. This was then followed up by an appearance of Kurt Angle who made more dirty comments about Brooke, which further upset Hogan. Hogan was eventually double teamed by Carlito and Angle, but was saved by Shawn Michaels. Later that night, Shawn Michaels and Hogan defeated Carlito and Kurt Angle in a tag match. During the post match celebration, Michaels delivered Sweet Chin Music to Hogan and walked off. The following week on RAW, Michaels appeared on Piper's Pit and challenged the Hall of Famer to face him one-on-one for the first time. Hogan appeared on RAW one week later and accepted the challenge. The match took place on Sunday, August 21, at SummerSlam.
One thing that Hogan and Michaels had in common prior to the event is that at SummerSlam, the two of them had never lost in a one-on-one match scenario. That would change on August 21, 2005.
The match between Hogan and Michaels would turn out to be the main event of the night, and the two collided in a battle of Legend vs. Icon. The match went back and forth, with two referees getting knocked out and HBK using a steel chair to try to gain an advantage. Even after hitting his Sweet Chin Music, Hogan still kicked out and took it to Michaels, finally hitting him with his legdrop and scoring the victory. HBK extended his hand to him, telling him that he "had to know," and Hogan and Michaels shook hands. Michaels left the ring to allow Hogan to celebrate with the crowd.
On October 3, 2005, Hulk Hogan publically challenged Stone Cold Steve Austin to a match, possibly to be held on April 2, 2006 at WrestleMania 22. Austin was rumored from the outset to be apathetic about the match, and his departure from WWE in November 2005 following a creative dispute apparently further diminished the likelihood of the match happening.
Today, Hulk Hogan is semi-retired from wrestling, appearing for occasional matches with WWE and managing the singing career of his teenage daughter Brooke Hogan. A reality series featuring Hogan, Brooke, wife Linda, and son Nicholas, titled Hogan Knows Best, premiered on July 10, 2005, on VH1. The pilot episode was the highest-rated reality show debut in VH1 history.
Hulk Hogan has been the subject of controversy throughout the latter part of his career. Many fans and wrestlers alike considered him a "politician" who used his influence to secure a spot at the top of the roster. Hogan is often regarded as an egomaniac with an inflated view of his own importance and the extent of his contributions to professional wrestling. When asked about his apparent refusal to job or sell moves in a 2005 interview, Hogan stated, "Verne Gagne, for three years, told me not to go down to a knee. That put me into a spot where everybody wanted to say 'Well, he doesn't want to do a job. He can't work. He can't take bumps.' Promoters said 'Man, if you go off your feet, we're not going to make any money. You're the Hulk!' You need to know the whole picture of this business."
Despite his success, Hogan rarely wrestled technically proficient matches in the United States, relying more on his charisma than his pure wrestling ability. He is widely regarded as having acted as a catalyst in the gradual movement of professional wrestling away from sport and towards entertainment.
Hogan's personal conduct has rarely come under intense scrutiny, with even his most fervent detractors focusing on his alleged politicking. Nonetheless, several incidents have somewhat marred Hogan's character, most prominently the aforementioned steroid scandal. In 1993, Hogan was rumored to have sustained a black eye immediately before WrestleMania IX at the hands of Randy Savage, who supposedly believed that Hogan had committed adultery with his ex-wife, Miss Elizabeth. The official explanation provided by the WWF was that Hogan had injured his eye in a jet ski accident. In January 1996, Hogan was sued for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman named Kate Kennedy, but was acquitted of all charges.
Finally, Hogan's lengthy career and multiple faux retirements have led to jibes about his inability to "leave the spotlight". Hogan continues to wrestle despite having an artificial hip and various nagging injuries. As early as 1994, the WWF parodied Hogan (then working for WCW) with a character known as "The Huckster". In August 2005, Shawn Michaels humourously impersonated Hogan in a parody of Larry King Live in which "Hogan" moved with the assistance of a walker and suffered from back cramps.
- "What'cha gonna do, What'cha gonna do brother when Hulkamania runs wild on you?"
- "Train, say your prayers, and eat your vitamins." (The "Demandments")
- There was a fourth demandment: believing in one's self
- "To all my little Hulkamaniacs, say your prayers, take your vitamins and you will never go wrong."
- "This is where the power lies, brother!"
- "God created the Heavens, he created the earth! He created all the Hulkamaniacs! Then, he created a set of 24-inch pythons, brother!"
- "Hulkamania is runnin' wild like it's never ran before!"
- "Anything less would be too civilized."
- A parody of an advertisement for Right Guard deodorant where Hogan uttered the slogan "Anything less would be uncivilized."
- "When you're nWo, you're nWo for life."
- "When you're with the nWo, when you're with Hollywood, you're just...too...sweet!"
- "What'cha gonna do when the 24-inch pythons run wild on you?"
- "Well let me tell you something, brother!"
- "Well, ya know something Mean Gene..."
Finishing and signature moves
- Running leg drop / Atomic leg drop
- Big Boot
- Axe Bomber (Crooked Arm Lariat)
- Golden Squeeze bearhug (aka the "Super Southern Squeeze")
- Hogan is one of the very few to be an inductee of both the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame (2003) and the WWE Hall of Fame (2005).
- Hogan has appeared on the cover of Pro Wrestling Illustrated Magazine more times than any other wrestler (a total of 81 times, including the 25th Anniversary issue.)
- He was on the cover of Sports Illustrated in April 1985. Next to the swimsuit issue, the magazine was the year's best seller. He is one of only two professional wrestlers to ever appear on the cover of SI; the other is Danny Hodge.
- Hulk Hogan earned $1.8-million for his match against "Macho Man" Randy Savage at WrestleMania V, April 2, 1989.
- Among the many wrestlers of the current era who cite Hulk Hogan as a primary influence: John Cena, Trish Stratus, Edge, Eugene, Rhyno, and Big Show.
- Hollywood Hulk Hogan made a cameo appearances in Muppets From Space as "Man in Black" and in Gremlins 2: The New Batch as himself. Hogan also appears in Spy Hard, gets tagged in when Leslie Nielsen's character is getting beaten up, and then rips his shirt off and throws a few punches.
- Hulk Hogan appeared in a 1986 video called "Real American" performed by Rick Derringer. The video features him "playing" a guitar across all of America (actually, he was only standing in front of a blue screen while clips of American landmarks shot across the screen, and also features him in certain wrestling scenes.
- Hogan is rumored to have taken down talented amateur wrestler Verne Gagne with a front facelock following a heated dispute that became physical.
Theme songs/entrance music
Hogan's earliest entrance music is Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger", the chart-topping song from Rocky III. It was later replaced by the theme song to Hogan's animated series "Hulk Hogan's Rock 'n' Wrestling" (which was entitled, simply, "Hulk Hogan's Theme", and credited to "The WWF All-Stars" in its appearance on The Wrestling Album), and later by his best-known entrance theme, a track called Real American performed by Rick Derringer. The accompanying music video for Real American, featuring clips from Hulk Hogan's various WWE matches, Hogan riding his motorcycle, and stock, black and white footage of various forms of crashing intercepting between footage of a guitar playing Hogan behind a blue screen (at various American landscapes), was memorably critiqued on Beavis and Butt-head.
However, Hogan cannot use the song Real American outside of WWE. Even though Jimmy Hart wrote the song, Vince McMahon had the song copyrighted right before Hulk Hogan left for WCW, preventing him from using it (the song was originally the theme music for Mike Rotundo and Barry Windham, the USA Express). He used the song American Made which can be found on the Hulk Rules CD, then the nWo theme and later the Wolfpac theme for his Hollywood Hogan character while in WCW, and Voodoo Child (Slight Return) by Jimi Hendrix for when he entered as Hollywood Hogan in WCW and for his Hollywood Hulk Hogan character in WWE after the WWE nWo was disbanded. Towards the end of his last WWE run, he wore a mask and was known by the name Mr. America, once again making his entrance to Real American. Upon his return in 2005 for the WWE Hall of Fame induction and subsequent appearances he also uses Real American.
Pre-World Wrestling Federation era
- February 1979 – NWA Southeastern Heavyweight Title (Southern division)
- Defeated Ox Baker (as Terry Boulder) – Alabama
- Lost to Austin Idol on June 20, 1979 – Mobile, Alabama
- December 1, 1979 – NWA Southeast Heavyweight Title (Northern division)
- Defeated Dick Slater (as Sterling Golden) – Knoxville, Tennessee
- Lost to Bob Armstrong on December 25, 1979 – Knoxville, Tennessee
- April 18, 1982 – AWA World Heavyweight Championship
- Defeated Nick Bockwinkel (as “Incredible” Hulk Hogan) – Saint Paul, Minnesota
- April 24, 1983 – AWA World Heavyweight Championship (2)
- Defeated Nick Bockwinkel (as “Incredible” Hulk Hogan) – Saint Paul, Minnesota
- NOTE (1) :The first decision was reversed by AWA President Stanley Blackburn for "hitting the champ with an illegal object."
- NOTE (2) :The second decision was also reversed by Stanley Blackburn, due to Hogan throwing Bockwinkel over the top rope during the match, which was against AWA rules at the time.
- Both of these rulings were overturned on April 4, 2005 by the AWA, who recognized Hogan as a two-time former champion.
- June 2, 1983 – IWGP Heavyweight Title
- Defeated Antonio Inoki by knockout in tournament final – Tokyo
- Lost to Antonio Inoki by countout on June 14, 1984
World Wrestling Federation era
- January 23, 1984 – WWF World Heavyweight Championship
- Defeated The Iron Sheik – New York, New York
- Lost to André the Giant on February 5, 1988 (@ The Main Event)
- NOTE: This is Hogan's longest reign with the World Wrestling Federaton Championship; the third longest title reign ever; Bruno Sammartino has the longest title reign at seven years, eight months, and one day.
- April 2, 1989 - WWF World Heavyweight Championship (2)
- Defeated Randy Savage – Atlantic City, New Jersey (@ WrestleMania V)
- Lost to The Ultimate Warrior on April 1, 1990 (@ WrestleMania VI)
- March 24, 1991 - WWF World Heavyweight Championship (3)
- Defeated Sgt. Slaughter – Los Angeles, California (@ WrestleMania VII)
- Lost to The Undertaker on November 27, 1991 (@ Survivor Series 1991)
- December 3, 1991 - WWF World Heavyweight Championship (4)
- Defeated The Undertaker – San Antonio, Texas (@ Tuesday in Texas)
- Title is declared vacant due to disputed finish
- April 4, 1993 - WWF World Heavyweight Championship (5)
- Defeated Yokozuna – Las Vegas, Nevada (@ WrestleMania IX)
- Lost to Yokozuna on June 13, 1993 (@ King of the Ring 1993)
- NOTE: After Yokozuna defeated Bret Hart for the title by cheating, Hogan came down and was challenged by Yokozuna's manager Mr. Fuji on behalf of the champion. After a failed attempt to cheat, Yokozuna is defeated by Hogan in twenty-five seconds, the quickest World Heavyweight Championship victory until Diesel's eight second victory over Bob Backlund on November 26, 1994.
World Championship Wrestling era
- July 17, 1994 – WCW World Heavyweight Championship
- Defeated Ric Flair – Orlando, Florida
- Lost to The Giant on October 29, 1995 by disqualification
- NOTE: The match with The Giant had a stipulation that allowed the title to change hands despite disqualification.
- August 10, 1996 - WCW World Heavyweight Championship (2)
- Defeated The Giant (as “Hollywood Hogan”) – Sturgis, South Dakota
- Lost to Lex Luger on August 4, 1997
- August 9, 1997 - WCW World Heavyweight Championship (3)
- Defeated Lex Luger (as “Hollywood Hogan”) - Sturgis, South Dakota
- Lost to Sting on December 28, 1997
- April 20, 1998 - WCW World Heavyweight Championship (4)
- Defeated Randy Savage (as “Hollywood Hogan”) - Colorado Springs, Colorado
- Lost to Goldberg on July 6, 1998
- January 4, 1999 - WCW World Heavyweight Championship (5)
- Defeated Kevin Nash (as “Hollywood Hogan”) - Atlanta, Georgia
- Lost to Ric Flair on March 14, 1999
- NOTE (1) : The “winning” match was a joke match where Kevin Nash laid down and allowed Hogan to pin him. This match is often called the "Fingerpoke of Doom" match, especially in the Internet wrestling community.
- NOTE (2) : The match with Ric Flair was supposed to be a First Blood Cage Match; however, the match ended with Hogan being counted out in a figure four leglock.
- July 12, 1999 - WCW World Heavyweight Championship (6)
- Defeated Randy Savage (as “Hollywood Hogan”) - Jacksonville, Florida
- Lost to Sting on September 12, 1999
- NOTE: The following “match” is not considered an official title reign.
- July 10, 2000 - WCW World Heavyweight Championship
- Defeated Jeff Jarrett (as “Hollywood Hogan”) - Daytona Beach, Florida
- NOTE: In this match, Vince Russo, upset that Hogan had opted to use his creative control clause to win the title, ordered Jarrett to lie down for Hogan. Hogan "won" the title and left the arena. A few minutes later, Russo cut a promo deriding Hogan for being a selfish "son of a bitch", and said that the title Hogan won was now known as the "Hulk Hogan Memorial Title". A new WCW World Title was created and put up in a match between Jarrett and Booker T, which was won by Booker. It should also be noted that Vince Russo and the WCW were both sued by Hogan for defamation of character as the result of this event, and may have included the AOL/Time-Warner conglomerate as well. Vince Russo had been determined to place Jeff Jarrett as the centerpiece of WCW storylines, and did not wish to give fans the expected payoff of the feud that had been developed by the concept of the older, established stars of WCW, the so-called Millionaire's Club' who were the de facto good guys, against the 'younger' talent of the 'New Blood'. Hogan and Jarrett were the de facto representatives of the respective factions.
World Wrestling Entertainment (WWF/WWE) era
- April 21, 2002 - WWE Undisputed Championship (6)
- Defeated Triple H (as “Hollywood Hulk Hogan”) - Kansas City, Missouri (Backlash 2002)
- Lost to Undertaker on May 20, 2002 (@ Judgment Day 2002)
- July 4, 2002 - World Tag Team Championship
- Defeated Billy and Chuck with Edge (as “Hollywood Hulk Hogan”) - Boston, Massachusetts
- Lost to Lance Storm and Christian on July 21, 2002 (Vengeance 2002)
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) ranked him # 1 of the 500 best singles wrestlers of the "PWI Years" in 2003. He was also ranked twice in the best tag teams of the "PWI Years". He was # 44 with Antonio Inoki and # 57 with Randy Savage.
- Hogan also won numerous PWI Awards over the years. He won Most Inspirational Wrestler in 1983 and 1999. He won Comeback of the Year in 1994 and 2002. He won Most Popular Wrestler of the Year in 1985, 1989 and 1990. He won Wrestler of the Year in 1987, 1991 and 1994. He won Most Hated Wrestler of the Year in 1996 and 1998 while he was with the nWo. He was involved in the Match of the Year in 1985 (with Mr. T vs. Paul Orndorff & Roddy Piper at WrestleMania), 1988 (vs. André the Giant on NBC), 1990 (vs. Ultimate Warrior at WrestleMania VI) and 2002 (vs. The Rock at WrestleMania X8). He was involved in the Feud of the Year in 1986 (vs. Paul Orndorff).
- Winner of 1982 MSG Tag League tournament with Antonio Inoki.
- Winner of 1983 MSG Tag League tournament with Antonio Inoki.
- Winner of 1990 Royal Rumble.
- Winner of 1991 Royal Rumble.
- Member of Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame (inducted in 2003).
- Member of WWE Hall of Fame (inducted in 2005).
- Autobiography: Hollywood Hulk Hogan (2003) with Michael Jan Friedman
- nWo: Back In Black (WWE Home Video, 2002)
- Hulk Still Rules (WWE Home Video, 2002)
- Hulk Hogan Endorsed Web Site
- WWE RAW profile
- WWE Interactive fan forums
- WWE Hall of Fame profile
- Hulk Hogan.co.uk
- Template:Imdb name
- Official Hogan Knows Best page
- Hulk Hogan match results 1977-2005
- Hulk Hogan profile - Australian Sports Entertainment
- Hulk Hogan & The Wrestling Boot Band - Hulk Rules
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| colspan = 3 align = center | Royal Rumble Winners
| width = 30% align = center | Preceded by:
Big John Studd | width = 40% align = center | First Time | width = 30% align = center | Followed by:
Himself |- | width = 30% align = center | Preceded by:
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Ric Flair |- Template:End box