Lex Luger, Ultimate Warrior: 5 Wrestling Conspiracies That Won't Go Away
You would think with the large amount of strange things that happen in wrestling, you wouldn't need conspiracy theories.
Crazy things like The Montreal Screw Job, dozens of tragic wrestler deaths and David Arquette becoming WCW champion actually happened!
But the rumors and conspiracies of wrestling are part of what makes being a fan so fun.
Just a few weeks ago, fans had different theories of why Ryback couldn't lift up Tensai for his finisher. While that one is doubtful to be a long lasting conspiracy, let's take a look at the ones that have staying power.
Here are the top-five wrestling conspiracies that just won't go away.
No. 5: Steven Regal Roughed Up Goldberg, Gets Fired
It makes for a great story.
The wildly respected, under appreciated veteran shows up the green star whose push has gone to his head.
Fans have speculated that Steven Regal began to "shoot" (using legitimate moves in an attempt to hurt his opponent) on Goldberg in a match.
If you watch the match, it does last longer than the average Goldberg squash did. The whole thing looks kind of clunky. Did Regal take out his frustration on the rising phenom?
Regal was fired shortly after the match, leaving fans to believe it was because of how he embarrassed Goldberg.
Sadly, it just wasn't true.
Basically, Goldberg was asked to wrestle a longer match than usual and wasn't accustomed to it. Regal used moves that Goldberg wasn't used to taking, which made it look awkward.
Check out the match, there aren't any vicious punches thrown, Goldberg isn't locked helpless in any submissions and Regal could have easily dead-weighted the finisher, but he didn't.
Regal was simply fired for "personal demons". Luckily he overcame them.
No. 4: Randy Savage Punched Hulk Hogan Before WrestleMania IX
Something was wrong with Hogan's face at WrestleMania IX. More so than usual...
It looked like someone had socked him in the eye!
But who could it have been? The possibilities were endless. Just about any WWF wrestler wouldn't have minded punching him in the mush.
When fans started to think about it, they came to a couple of conclusions: Randy Savage or Bret Hart.
Savage and Hogan had a notorious love/hate relationship for years. The two's personal lives even paralled their onscreen characters as they went from The Mega Powers to arch-enemies.
In the story line, Savage began to believe that Hogan was hooking up with his wife Elizabeth. The rumor goes that before WrestleMania IX, Savage found out that Hogan boinked his wife in real life and gave him a top rope elbow drop to the eye (or more likely just a punch).
But what would mild-mannered Hart's motive be for blasting the Hulkster?
How about for taking away his spotlight and the title at WrestleMania?
Instead of Bret Hart winning in the main event like most thought he would, Yokozuna walked away with the title.
It wasn't meant to be though, as Hogan came out and got a match on the spot. Within seconds, he laid out the big man and captured the gold.
Also, Bret Hart isn't shy about punching a man in the face, just ask Vince McMahon
These made for great stories, and were much more interesting than the truth.
According to Hogan, in his autobiography (and nothing else has ever emerged disputing this) it was just a jet skiing accident.
No. 3: Luger's Big Mouth Costs Him the World Title
Lex Luger seemed destined for great things in the WWF.
Somehow, they just never came through for him.
He seemed destined to win the WWF Championship at SummerSlam 93, but instead won the match by count-out and didn't bring home the gold.
It wasn't until WrestleMania when he had his next shot at the title.
Again, it seemed that he would be the chosen one for the company's future. But he was unable to pin Yokozuna, and later that night it was Bret Hart who walked out with the championship.
How could Luger possibly have been screwed over twice?
Over the years, rumors started to swirl that Luger was supposed to win the title until he bragged about it at a bar the night before. Word got back to McMahon, and he changed his mind to Hart becoming the champ instead.
It's not as outlandish as some rumors, but it just wasn't true either.
In fact, Lex Luger told James Guttman of Pro Wrestling Insanity that he was never scheduled to win the WWF Championship and he knew months beforehand when Vince told him:
"Lex, you know you're not going to be winning the belt at WrestleMania."
Luger even disputed the fact that he was at a bar, and said that he was at a friend's house over two hours away from the arena.
Don't feel too bad for Lex, he did finally win the big one when he was in WCW, and he could tell anyone he wanted to.
No. 2: The Ultimate Warrior Is Dead!
Hey all right! The Ultimate Warrior is back!
Wait a second... he looks slightly less muscular, and his hair is blonde!
The only logical explanation is that he must have died, and the WWF never told us and decided to re-cast him with someone that otherwise looks exactly like him, and wrestles just as terrible as he ever did!
Poor Jim Hellwig, or should I say Warrior (after all, he did legally change his name to that)?
Part of what makes this rumor so enduring is how creepy it is.
Supposedly, when Warrior disappeared from the WWF in 1991, and returned in 1992, fans thought he looked different. A rumor started that he died. WWF had clearly found some big guy, slapped face paint on him and taught him how to suck at wrestling.
Even in the age of the Internet, it still remains one of wrestling most enduring conspiracies.
Just a year ago, Warrior was still having to deny that...well, that he's still alive.
However, the death rumors did lead to the most entertaining (well, actually the only entertaining) part of Warrior's WCW run.
When Warrior made his way to the ring on his debut, all Hogan could do was look at him and say "I... I thought you were dead."
No. 1: Macho Man and Stephanie
This is the one that just won’t go away. The grandaddy wrestling conspiracy of them all.
Did the Macho Man and an underaged Stephanie hook up? Is that why Savage seemed to be blackballed from the WWF?
It sounds absolutely ridiculous...but could it possibly be true?
The story goes that after the Macho Man left the WWF for WCW, Vince McMahon found out some information that led him never wanting to do business with him again.
But there's no way that Stephanie and Macho Man hooked up right?
Surprisingly, Dave Meltzer, perhaps the most credible wrestling journalist of all time isn't so sure:
“I think that the reason is the same reason that everyone says. It’s the reason everyone in (WWE) says. It’s the reason that is the only one that makes any sense. So I think that’s the reason. I can’t come up with any other reason. I don’t know. I mean, I’ve heard that reason from so many people that are not internet rumourmongers, I mean people who – all I know is that within the company as far as the top people, they all believe it, and nobody knows for sure, because it’s never brought up.”
It does seem a bit odd…think about it, nearly every big-name wrestler who angered McMahon at one point in their career was eventually brought back.
Why would a former WrestleMania main-eventer not make a single appearance on WWE television from 2001 (when WCW ended) to his death in 2011?
Take a look at some other big names that got second (or third, or fourth) chances with Vince.
-McMahon vowed to never work with Hogan again, but he came back and even won the WWE title.
-Steve Austin returned after badmouthing the company on TV, refusing to job to Brock Lesnar and even after Vince announced the end of the Steve Austin era on live TV.
-Nash and Hall left the WWF after the Madison Square garden Incident (where they broke character and hugged HHH and HBK), and kicked off the Monday Night War. Both were rehired by Vince for the NWO story line.
-Roddy Piper told HBO that he hated himself when wrestling. WWE tried to make him happy and released him. That was in 2003.
-Sable once tried to sue the company for $110 million! She was welcomed back.
-Ultimate Warrior was offered multiple chances to enter the WWE Hall of Fame, even after holding up Vince for money multiple times and battling him in court.
-Brock Lesnar, who the WWE had invested so much in, left with short notice yet was later welcomed back after his UFC run.
Everyone, every big name, except Savage had some sort of role in the company after their falling out with Vince.
What also seems suspicious is how long-standing employees seem clueless to the real reason as well.
Perennial company man Jerry Lawler seemed to give his explanation as to why he replaced Macho Man, and why Vince would still hold the grudge.
But it doesn't add up.
According to King, Macho Man suddenly appeared on Nitro and that was the first McMahon knew about it. Then he asked King to take over, and he's had the job ever since.
It's too bad that Macho Man left for WCW in 1994 when Lawler took over, and that Nitro started in 1995 so the channel changing story makes no sense.
Add George "The Animal" Steele, and Roddy Piper to not knowing the truth either.
If it was purely business related, how could one single WWE star not know what happened?
In the end, besides one interview with WWE magazine (which didn't even mention the interview on the cover), Macho never had any direct role with WWE again.
I'm not saying this rumor is true, but there is something strange going on. Maybe this rumor isn't as crazy as it seems.
At this point, we may never find out, which should leave this conspiracy alive for years.