Vince McMahon, Steve Austin: 13 Strange WWE Disappearances
Not every wrestler can have an emotional goodbye like Ric Flair or Shawn Michaels had.
Most just suddenly disappear, never to be heard from again.
Who knows whatever happened to The Repo Man, Val Venis, T.L. Hopper and countless others. They just stopped showing up for work.
On most TV shows when an actor leaves, there's usually an on-air explanation for the character's departure.
In the show, we find out that a character may have quit their job, died or moved to another town. We're given a reason why they're no longer around.
Not in wrestling.
When a wrestler leaves the company, nine times out of 10 their character is just gone. Weeks or months later we're left wondering where they went.
With that in mind, here are 13 of the strangest wrestling exits we've seen so far...
Matt Morgan Jumped by the Mexicools
Matt Morgan joined WWE as a member of Team Lesnar, and ended his run with the company after being beat with a rake.
There seems to be a recent trend in WWE.
If you have a decent push, and are suddenly squashed, you may be on your way out.
Matt Morgan was having a tough time in the WWE. He was saddled with a lousy stuttering gimmick, and wasn't getting over.
On an episode of SmackDown, he was set to face off against William Regal, who had just been traded from Raw.
Morgan never got a chance to wrestle that night.
He was quickly jumped by The Mexicools. The three men took turns beating down the giant, who didn't stand a chance.
Regal was lucky enough to escape unscathed, but it would be the last we ever saw of Morgan in the company.
D'lo Brown Thrown in the Trunk
photo from gerweck.net
D'Lo Brown wasn't Thuggin' and Buggin' for long.
After spending years in the mid-card, D'Lo teamed up with former referee, newly turned manager, Teddy Long.
The pairing seemed to work out well for both guys. D'Lo was finally winning matches again, and Long was getting his voice heard.
The duo was short lived though, as Long brought Rodney Mack into the fold.
On the February 16, 2003 episode of Sunday Night Heat D'Lo was attacked from behind from by Mack.
He then opened up the trunk of a car and tossed D'Lo in.
It wasn't until 2008 when D'Lo escaped, and briefly returned to the WWE.
photo from wwe.com
After six years of terrorizing WCW and the WWE, the NWO was fired.
Apparently that was the way to get rid of them for good. Somehow nobody had ever thought of that before.
The WWE version was a lousy imitation of what the group once was, but Shawn Michaels, Kevin Nash, X-Pac and The Giant were still a unit.
Then Nash re-injured his quad. The next week McMahon had enough.
He may have brought the group into the company, but he decided to fire them anyway.
Why you might ask? Well, there really wasn’t a good reason storyline wise.
It’s too bad that perhaps the most dangerous stable in wrestling history was given such a lackluster send off.
A final match would have been nice, but that would have required planning.
photo from wwe.com
A few wrestlers have been put in a body bag over the years, but they at least end up returning at some point.
Gunner Scott was not so fortunate.
Scott had an incredibly brief run in WWE, lasting under three months. In that time he was mentored by Chris Benoit, and even scored a pinfall over Booker T.
Things were going just fine until he met The Great Khali.
After a losing effort against Mr. Kennedy, The Punjabi Playboy came to the ring and put the rookie in a bodybag to send a message to The Undertaker.
It was the last we ever saw of Scott.
One can only hope that someone at least remembered to unzip him.
photo from forum.kooora.com
It was one and done for The Zombie in his professional wrestling career.
WWE’s version of ECW was set to debut on the SciFi channel. There were rumors at the time that the show was going to have science fiction elements to it.
Fans were worried.
To play off those fears, ECW very briefly debuted a character known as The Zombie.
In his sole appearance, he shambled his way down to the ring, and cut an inspiring, but unintelligible promo.
It was a grave mistake.
The Sandman obviously wasn’t a fan of the act. He came to the ring and canned the undead wrestler. We never saw The Zombie again.
One can only hope that he was able to find a fulfilling afterlife outside of the squared circle.
It was a fitting end to the Eric Bischoff character in WWE
After years of making life a living hell for every Raw babyface as the GM of the show, he was put on trial for his crimes.
With Vince McMahon as the judge, it seemed that Bischoff stood little chance of keeping his job.
At the end of the night, we found out his fate. He was "firrrrrrrrrred!"
John Cena then laid him out with an FU for good measure.
To bid him farewell, Vince McMahon picked up the former Vice President of WCW and tossed him in a dump trunk.
Bischoff did eventually appear again in the company 10 months later, but it was the last we saw of him as a full time character.
In some ways it was the the final exclamation point on the decades long WCW vs. WWE feud.
Goldberg and Brock Lesnar
photo from 1337x.org
WWE had been building to an epic showdown with Lesnar and Goldberg for months.
At WrestleMania, the two were set to face off.
As exciting as the buildup had been, it was the backstage news that overshadowed the match.
It was assumed that it was going to be Goldberg’s last match with the company, as he’d only signed a one year deal.
What shocked the company was that it was going to be Brock Lesnar’s final match too.
Lesnar grew sick of the travel, and just didn’t want to do it any longer. On short notice, he quit.
Fans soon found out, and the New York City crowd booed the two out of the building.
It was truly a bizarre spectacle watching two of the biggest stars of their era being hated on so much.
The match itself was a dud.
The two didn’t seem very interested in delivering a memorable final performance, and in a somewhat surprising move, Goldberg won clean.
We’ve still never seen Goldberg back in any form in WWE, and we didn’t see Lesnar again until 2012.
photo via onlineworldofwrestling.com
I don’t want to sound like an old man, but back in my day Hell in a Cell matches were brutal.
They were so brutal that they effectively ended a man’s professional career, which lead to him ending his life…many times.
During a Hell in a Cell match between Triple H and Chris Jericho in 2002, referee Tim White injured his shoulder. He never fully recovered, which lead him into an early retirement.
At Armageddon 2005, White re-emerged in a segment at a bar he owned. Josh Matthews went to interview him about the brutality of the upcoming cell match.
White was depressed.
The cell had made him a broken man. He then reached under the counter, picked up a shotgun and walked off-screen.
We heard a shot. It seemed as if White killed himself.
We later found out that he survived, and had somehow only shot his foot. WWE then had more fun with this as he tried to kill himself in increasingly ridiculous ways (hanging, rat poison).
If this wasn't incredibly tasteless in the first place, the first sketch aired only a month after Eddie Guerrero’s death.
Sure, Tim White is alive and well, but his sendoff was an apparent suicide on live TV.
The Spirit Squad
photo from hbksource.net
Young, athletic and talented, the Spirit Squad burst onto the scene in 2006.
Unfortunately, they were saddled with a terrible gimmick.
Five grown men were reduced to portraying cheerleaders.
As goofy as it was, it seemed to generate some pretty good heat for awhile.
Then WWE made the group DX’s personal jobbers.
The entire stable lost multiple handicapped matches against the veterans, and needed to be repackaged.
WWE needed to make sure that we knew these guys weren’t ready for prime time. On their last televised appearance, DX once again got the best of them, and sent them packing.
The five men were beat up and put in a box that was stamped with a “send back to OVW” sticker.
Being placed in a small container with no air-holes, and then shipped across the country was probably not good for their health.
It seems that only two survived.
Only Dolph Ziggler and Kenny Dykstra ever made another appearance in WWE.
Undertaker Goes to Heaven… or Something
The mid-'90s was a strange time in the WWF.
The company was past the Hogan/Ultimate Warrior era, and was still a couple years away from The Attitude era.
They had a bit of an identity crisis.
Royal Rumble 1994 was one of the strangest moments of that time. It all went down when The Undertaker faced off against Yokozuna in a casket match.
It took a virtual army to put the dead man down, but he was eventually shut in the casket and hauled off.
Then things got supernatural.
Fog mysteriously emerged from the casket, the lights turned off and a video of Undertaker in the casket started to play on the screen.
Undertaker then appeared to die, and his spirit rose.
As we all know, Undertaker didn't actually die, but he did take seven months off to heal a back injury.
Vince Wants to Make Babies!
photo via mrigfx.deviantart.com
I have a hunch Linda that what you want is another baby! And Linda, if you want another baby, I'm your genetic jackhammer!
-Vince McMahon, June 26, 2000 Raw
In the late '90s, the Vince McMahon character was everywhere. He was involved in all of the top feuds, and was starting to get a little stale.
McMahon decided to take himself off of TV for awhile, but he did so in an incredibly strange way.
He said that he had been neglecting Linda, and wanted to go home and spend more time with her... and have a baby.
That's right, the 55 year old Vince, and 52 year old Linda were apparently going to conceive a child.
On the way out, Vince tried to make amends with The Great One.
He tried to let bygones be bygones and shake The Rock's hand. Of course Rock couldn't pass this opportunity up, and gave his boss the parting gift of a Rockbottom.
We have no idea if Vince and Linda tried to get pregnant, but sadly (or happily) there was never another McMahon child.
Steve Austin: The End of an Era
It would be like John Wayne becoming a coward in a big fight.
-Jim Ross, June 17, 2002
Steve Austin was frustrated with the WWE.
It seemed that the company was playing politics with him, and he wasn't too pleased.
At WrestleMania 18, it was The Rock who was set to face off against Hulk Hogan. Austin was given Scott Hall.
While Hall wasn't a bad wrestler, he was far beneath Hogan in popularity. It left a bad taste in Austin's mouth.
Another backstage incident a few months later was the final straw for Austin.
During the King of the Ring tournament, the WWE wanted Austin to lose clean to Brock Lesnar in an unadvertised match on Raw.
Austin thought that was a terrible idea and refused to show up.
The next show basically revolved around bashing Steve Austin.
Vince McMahon, The Rock and even Jim Ross all took turns voicing their displeasure of him.
McMahon memorably announced the end of "the Stone Cold era" to a live audience.
Of course, it wasn't the last we did see of Austin, but it was a strange time for one of the biggest stars of all time.
Paul Bearer has been murdered three times in his WWE run, so far, none have been permanent.
Bearer’s first death surprisingly came at the hands of The Undertaker.
At The Great American Bash 2004, Taker took on The Dudley Boyz in a 2-1 Concrete Crypt Match.
If Undertaker lost, Heyman would then encase Bearer in concrete from a cement truck. Why this was legal would be a good question for the police.
Anyway, Undertaker won and then pulled the switch himself!
It appeared that he killed an innocent man, so he must have turned heel right? Nope!
Basically it wasn't mentioned again.
We wouldn’t see Bearer for another five years.
Bearer’s second demise was at the hands of Edge.
The Rated R superstar kidnapped Paul Bearer for weeks. He was hoping to get under Kane’s skin.
Edge had used lookalikes and fake dummies to trick Kane, but then took the real one and somehow placed him on top of two ladders while Bearer was in a wheelchair.
Kane, thinking it was a fake Bearer, pushed the ladders over. Unfortunately, it was the real one.
He must have fell 40 feet onto concrete.
Edge, who was the babyface in the feud, stood there with a smirk on his face after witnessing a man's possible death.
A year and a half later, Bearer returned again, only to be locked in a freezer by Randy Orton and later Kane.
No one knows if he’s still in there. You can imagine that we'll see him again someday, and will probably be killed in an increasingly ridiculous situation.