Pro Wrestling: The 50 Most Controversial Figures in Wrestling History
Yesterday, I created a list of some of the most controversial moments in wrestling history. None of that controversy, however, is possible without the people behind it. There are even stories from backstage that are just as controversial and downright wrong. There are a lot of disturbing stories from the world of professional wrestling.
These 50 personalities come from all over the wrestling world. There are wrestlers, managers, management, and owners of promotions. There are Hall of Famers, future Hall of Famers and nearly forgotten talent. Personalities in this list are from WCW, WWE, ECW and TNA.
Let's not delay any more because we have 50 different names to get to on this list.
50) Ted DiBiase
Everybody had a price for The Million Dollar Man.
He was so upset about not winning the WWF Championship that he bought it from Andre the Giant. When he couldn't have that, he created his own Million Dollar Championship.
There was also a lot of buying the services of superstars and offering to give money to fans for tasks, only to prevent them from winning.
Who could forget DiBiase kicking the basketball away from a young fan who nearly won money from dribbling the ball enough times in a row?
The Hall of Fame wrestler and founder of Money Inc. has always brought controversy in the way he throws money around. DiBiase used to always say that he always got his way, which was the truth.
49) Michael Cole
Most of what Michael Cole has done that has been controversial is storyline.
He screwed Jerry Lawler from winning the WWE Championship. He then mocked Lawler about the death of his mother. He has called Daniel Bryan a dork, made fun of nearly anyone on commentary with him and has gotten beat up by Alex Riley for going after him as well.
Cole had some real-life controversy on his hands a few months ago, when he tweeted gay slurs about Josh Mathews. Cole removed the tweet and immediately apologized, but it led to some sensitivity training and a relationship between GLAAD and WWE earlier this year.
The eight rookies from the first season of NXT debuted as Nexus on an episode of RAW.
Since that night, only one (David Otunga) has stayed with Nexus, while three more moved on to The Corre, one looked to gain redemption, one won a briefcase, one was released and one has fought an injury.
This isn't about what happened to these eight men, but rather how that night of their debut went down.
The eight men were given free range to destroy anything and everything. The destruction went a little too far when Daniel Bryan choked Justin Roberts with a tie, which was seen as too much by WWE management.
As for the rest of the action, the warpath by Nexus was greeted by many negative comments from parents, who could not believe seeing the act on a TV-PG show. Notice that following that night, Bryan was fired (only to be rehired), and Nexus attacks were not as destructive.
47) Brian Pillman
Brian Pillman was referred to as a "loose cannon" from his most famous gimmick and his real-life unpredictable personality.
His most controversial comments came as a member of the ECW roster after leaving WCW. Eric Bischoff claims that Pillman was released to go to ECW, cause controversy and go back to WCW with that momentum. Pillman, however, used the publicity to head to WWE instead.
Pillman went to ECW and referred to Bischoff as a "gofer", as well as some other things I'll choose to not say on this website. He also threatened to urinate in the ring.
Backstage, he used the "N-word" when calling the tag team of New Jack and Mustafa N.W.A, the same name as the rap group.
Not only were his comments controversial, but Pillman used the gimmick developed in WCW, brought publicity in ECW and used that all to make it to WWE.
46) John Cena
Poor John Cena has no idea why he is even on this list. He has a good reason to pout in this picture. No matter what John Cena does, he is booed by half of the crowd and cheered by the other half.
Cena is the marquee name in the business today, which should be a good thing for him, but it only brings him grief. Cena brings in a lot of money for his company, but only gets criticized for it.
Cena brings new moves into matches all the time but still gets reminded that he uses the same five moves to end matches.
Poor John Cena. He's controversial, even when he doesn't want to be.
45) Diamond Dallas Page
There has to be some respect for Diamond Dallas Page. His journey into the professional wrestling circuit is rather inspiring and it is hard to hate the guy's work ethic.
However, having a 35-year-old rookie in WCW win all the titles that he did rubbed some people the wrong way.
Even still, DDP joined WWE during the Alliance storyline in 2001 as a masked man who was stalking Sara, the wife of The Undertaker.
It was DDP's most controversial storyline in his wrestling career. He also changed his gimmick to a motivational speaker, which DDP does in real life. In a way, I think he was even creepier as a motivational speaker.
44) Lex Luger
Lex Luger was wildly popular in the 1990s, but he has had many personal demons attached to his personal life.
Luger had many legal issues in the 2000s. He had a domestic dispute with his girlfriend, rear-ended a car under the influence and watched his girlfriend overdose and die all in about two weeks in 2003.
After his girlfriend died, Luger got in trouble with the law with possession of drug possession on many counts.
Luger also didn't make many friends in the wrestling business. Luger jumped ship to WCW after not being happy in WWE. Eric Bischoff, in charge of WCW at the time, was reluctant to call Luger because he did not like the guy professionally.
He ended up getting signed by WCW and showing up on the very first episode of Nitro, just eight days after appearing at WWE's SummerSlam pay-per-view.
43) Jake "The Snake" Roberts
Jake Roberts was known as The Snake for his cold stare, unwavering attitude and his pet snake, Damien.
Roberts innovated the DDT, one of the most popular moves in wrestling today. Roberts was very troubled, abusing drugs and neglecting his family in favor of his career.
There was belief that with such terrible care for himself, his family and his opponents, the only thing that Roberts ever cared about was Damien.
Even that wasn't true, when Roberts was charged in 2004 for locking Damien in a garage of his London home and allowing him to starve to death.
The Bizarre One may not put up with much from his Twitter followers, but Goldust has always been a great worker.
He never took advantage of being the son of Dusty Rhodes, especially because that relationship was so estranged for so many years.
Goldust's main avenue of controversy was through his gimmick. Homosexuality was a taboo in pro wrestling until Dustin Rhodes became Goldust.
While Goldust has repeatedly said that he, nor his gimmick, is gay, his mind games and actions have all done more than enough to get people talking.
Let's not even touch on his phase as The Artist Formerly Known as Goldust.
41) Gene Snitsky
Gene Snitsky probably deserved a better showing in WWE, but it never seemed to work for him.
Snitsky was a powerhouse and a decent worker in both the ring and on the mic, but Snitsky never became a big draw. In fact, his name brings two things to mind. The first was storyline and the other is a recent Twitter controversy.
Snitsky was billed as the guy to knock Lita off the ring and onto the floor, losing her storyline child with Kane. This led to Snitsky ripping off promos that Eli Cottonwood must have channeled.
Snitsky's greatest moment in WWE, unfortunately, is saying that "it wasn't my fault" and kicking a toy baby into the crowd.
As for the Twitter controversy, Snitsky recently bashed The Miz on the social networking site, using homophobic slurs. Snitsky has since said that his Twitter was hacked, but that remains to be proven.
Rikishi was never very controversial, even if he did show off his butt in his ring attire.
His greatest claim to fame came in his biggest push in WWE, when he was put in as the man who ran over "Stone Cold" Steve Austin.
It may not seem as big as some of the real-life controversy from other people on this list, but that storyline captivated the audience and was something to talk about in WWE for a very long time. It is still one of the most shocking moments in WWE history.
Rikishi's reasonings were based off darker skinned wrestlers being held back. Rikishi taking out Austin paved the way for The Rock to win his first world championship.
39) Brock Lesnar
Brock Lesnar was a great rising star. He was billed as "The Next Big Thing," and that was nothing further from the truth.
Lesnar won a King of the Ring, a Royal Rumble and was a three-time WWE Champion. Lesnar was on top of the company in such a short amount of time.
Lesnar got a little in over his head. Lesnar had been heavily invested on by WWE, but Lesnar considered jumping to the National Football League a week before his match at WrestleMania XX against Goldberg.
WWE had Lesnar sign a no-compete clause, preventing him from competing in mixed martial arts or other wrestling organizations until June 2010. Despite this, Lesnar competed in Japan in 2005 and 2006 after trying to make an NFL roster failed.
Lawsuits would last a few years after WWE tried to prevent Lesnar from competing elsewhere. Lesnar ended up winning these court cases and had the freedom to compete wherever he wished. It was about as messy of a divorce as you can imagine.
38) Chavo Guerrero
Chavo Guerrero and WWE also had a pretty messy divorce earlier this year.
After feeling neglected for the last time from WWE, Chavo asked for his release one month ago today. In the time since then, Chavo has let his Twitter do the talking.
From his Twitter name, @mexwarrior, Chavo was very critical of the CM Punk/John Cena match prior to the Money in the Bank pay-per-view. Guerrero received a lot of negative tweets from fans about criticizing the two, especially when they delivered a five-star match.
On top of these recent events, Chavo was one of those caught violating the Wellness Policy in 2007. Earlier that year, Chavo was one of the last people to receive a message from Chris Benoit during the weekend of his double murder-suicide.
37) Dixie Carter
TNA President Dixie Carter was brought into the failing wrestling promotion in 2002. Two months after joining the team, a key investor in TNA dropped out from the group.
With TNA's future in jeopardy, Carter called in a favor to her parents, who owned Panda Energy, which purchased 71 percent of the company.
Carter also ruffled some feathers by volunteering to appear before Congress in 2007, in the wake of the Chris Benoit double murder-suicide, about steroids in professional wrestling.
Considering that she had no direct links to WWE or Benoit, it seemed very disrespectful for Carter to jump into the spotlight and throw TNA's name into headlines about a WWE-related tragedy that has not been experienced in TNA.
36) "Macho Man" Randy Savage
WWE and Savage parted ways in 1994 and were not very friendly until burying the hatchet prior to passing away tragically.
As for Hogan's relationship with Savage, that was not able to be repaired. Savage put out a rap album that included a diss track for Hogan called "Be A Man." The lyrics get a little vicious, so do yourself a favor and look up the words and listen to the song.
There's a reason that Sid's career is as lopsided and uneven as it was.
When he was high, Sid was on top of the world. When he wasn't, it was almost embarrassing to watch. Sid showed a lot of potential but would become the poster boy for what happens when a world title is given to a guy who cannot draw money.
Sid rose to the top of the mountain, and in the two-month reign that Sid had in his first go-around with the world title, WWE had historic lows in pay-per-view buyrates and could not even sell out a Royal Rumble where Sid was defending against Shawn Michaels in Michaels' hometown of San Antonio.
Sid would get one more chance just weeks later, when WWE had to shuffle WrestleMania plans around by having Bret Hart win the vacated championship and lose it to Sid right after. Sid would be thrown into a WrestleMania world title match against The Undertaker.
It was one of the worst WrestleManias, in terms of buyrates, in the event's history. The Undertaker won, obviously, and Sid never got another shot, obviously.
34) Kevin Sullivan
In discussion with my friend about this list, he insisted that I put Kevin Sullivan on the list for what he referred to as "literally booking his divorce." Let's explain, for those who don't know.
Kevin Sullivan was not just a wrestler for WCW but was also a booker. Sullivan went into a program with Chris Benoit. In the storyline, Sullivan's valet, Woman, would be stolen away from him by Benoit, leading to the feud between the two.
In order to keep the feud realistic and prevent breaking kayfabe (since Woman, portrayed by Nancy Benoit, was Sullivan's real-life wife at the time), Sullivan urged his wife to stay with Benoit in public, holding hands and staying in the same hotel. This led to Nancy divoricing Sullivan and marrying Benoit in real life.
A classic example of kayfabe gone wrong, Kevin Sullivan quite literally, as my friend stated, booked his own divorce.
Bill Goldberg was one of the most dominant men in professional wrestling history and stands tall as one of the greatest creations from the WCW Power Plant.
The problem with this, however, was that Goldberg developed an ego as his long winning streak grew. There are the stories of him challenging Chris Jericho to a fight backstage, and Goldberg getting beaten up in the process.
There is the heat that Goldberg brought on himself when coming to WWE. His departure was equally controversial as his last match, at WrestleMania XX against Brock Lesnar, was one of the WrestleMania matches with the most negative responses ever.
32) "Stone Cold" Steve Austin
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin is one of those gimmicks in WWE history that can change an entire era of wrestling. Almost single-handedly, Austin's gimmick prompted the Attitude Era.
He would do and say pretty much anything he wanted to. Even now with WWE programming being TV-PG, Austin has free range to do just about anything he feels like.
Austin also had the chance to voice his opinions about how to book his character. One shining example was his refusal to drop the WWE Championship to Triple H, forcing WWE management to hire Mankind back strictly to win the championship from Austin at SummerSlam 1999 and lose it to Triple H the following night on RAW.
Also, who can forget the episode of RAW where Austin visited Brian Pillman's home in what has been known as "Pillman's Got A Gun."
31) "Rowdy" Roddy Piper
Whenever you had an answer for the "Hot Rod," "Rowdy" Roddy Piper would change the questions.
Piper is still one of the most free-spoken and controversial stars in WWE history. Piper's Pit is one of the most speculated segments ever hosted on WWE programming.
Heels wish they could generate half of the heat that Piper could. Even while he generated so much heat, Piper was still able to be beloved by the fans, and his lack of a world championship in WWE is still one of the great crimes in the promotion's history.
30) Rey Mysterio
Rey Mysterio has received much criticism for his push following the death of his friend, Eddie Guerrero.
While this may not be his fault entirely, it still rubbed many wrestling fans the wrong way that Mysterio, who weighed 175 pounds, was being given a world championship with the world "heavyweight" on it.
As WWE has enforced weight classes in the past, it suddenly became a non-issue in storyline. Only in a video game storyline did WWE ever embrace that Rey was too light to be a world champion.
Mysterio has gained some heat from fans in recent years for his usage of the underdog tag, even as a two-time world champion and competing for a possible third world title tonight on RAW. How many times can an ex-champion still be an underdog?
How come nobody ever falls onto the middle rope unless they face Mysterio and his 619 finisher? How come Mysterio has to have a greater winning percentage than any other face in WWE today, while not jobbing to younger talent to get them over?
Mysterio refused to drop the Intercontinental Championship to Dolph Ziggler in 2009, costing Ziggler nearly a year-and-a-half before capturing the gold.
Lita was a beloved Diva in the late 1990s and early 2000s in WWE.
She was looked on as one of the most agile and athletic female competitors in quite some time. Teamed with The Hardys for most of her tenure, fans began to turn on Lita, whose real name is Amy Dumas.
Dumas dated Matt Hardy in real life but cheated on him with Edge after Hardy was released from his contract.
This led to a real argument on WWE programming as Hardy called in to argue with Dumas about it. WWE capitalized on the idea by hiring Hardy back to have a feud with Edge over their real-life love triangle.
28) Wendi Richter
Wendi Richter was one of the best female wrestlers during The Rock N' Wrestling Connection that brought WWE mainstream in the 1980s.
Accompanied by Cyndi Lauper, Richter regained the Women's Championship at the first WrestleMania. It was her second reign; her first reign was Richter winning the title from The Fabulous Moolah, ending what is often billed as a 28-year-long reign.
Her title defense at Madison Square Garden, where that reign began, would be her last match with the company. In 1985, what is referred to as "The Original Screwjob" took place.
Moolah, dressed as The Spider Lady, pinned Richter without Richter knowing that it was the end of the match. The referee counted to three without caring if Richter counted out.
Vince McMahon had apparently had difficulty in having Richter signing a new contract, while Richter said that she was still in a five-year deal. It may have been a screwjob on Richter's behalf, but a screwjob does not come without deserving it in some regard. We will use this point again later on.
27) Matt Hardy
Matt Hardy told us that he would not die when he was in WWE. When he left WWE, he didn't warn us that he would be making creepy YouTube videos.
The decorated tag team champion never hit his potential with WWE and was only brought back to the company to capitalize on his real-life feud with Edge and Lita, which we addressed earlier.
Hardy's cult following in WWE has all but faded away since his release from WWE and inclusion in the TNA roster. Now in TNA, Hardy doesn't seem to really have a place, but rather is taking up a roster spot that could be utilized by a young up-and-coming wrestler.
Melina Perez has been more trouble than anything in recent years.
Originally featured on Tough Enough, but held out of the cast, Melina worked hard to make it to WWE and was the manager for MNM, a tag team of Joey Mercury and Johnny Nitro (later John Morrison). Melina met Morrison during Tough Enough, and the two are still dating today.
However, there are many stories backstage of Melina's activities with other members of the roster; the most famous of these events is with Batista. There are also stories of similar acts being performed with other superstars.
Melina is also responsible for getting Morrison in hot water for teaming with Trish Stratus at the last WrestleMania. Morrison gave the infamous "cold shoulder" in defense for his girlfriend, but it likely cost him a world championship.
25) Ultimate Warrior
The Ultimate Warrior's journey with WWE has been so tumultuous that they even made a DVD about how he couldn't handle the pressure of the main event.
Warrior had many problems with Vince McMahon, getting fired over pay disputes at WrestleMania 1991. When McMahon wanted to bring him back at WrestleMania VIII, Warrior apparently gained some creative control but still did odd storylines like being under a spell by Papa Shango.
Warrrior was fired again from WWE after failing a drug test. After a few years, Warrior was hired again in 1996, only to be released from his contract again later that year.
WWE claimed that it was to grieve the death of his father, but Warrior claimed that McMahon breached their contract by selling Warrior merchandise without giving him a percentage.
Warrior no-showed some events and was released a third time from WWE. Warrior even wrestled a few matches in WCW but proved to be too costly for a full contract with the company.
24) Jeff Jarrett
Jeff Jarrett is another superstar who bounced back-and-forth from WWE and WCW for contract disputes.
The worst of which was in October 1999, when Jarrett was Intercontinental Champion and was going to drop the championship at No Mercy to Chyna.
The event was the day after Jarrett's contract ran out, leading to the belief that Jarrett wrestling to drop the title at the event was done on purpose to have Jarrett get paid more for his appearance without a contract. Jarrett was friendly with Vince Russo, who had left WWE for WCW right before that.
After WCW was bought by WWE in 2001, Jarrett was released from his contract and started TNA the following year. Since then, Jarrett has been the champion in his own company six times, drawing criticism from fans.
23) Earl Hebner
Earl Hebner is the only referee on this list, mainly for being one of the more corrupt referees in the history of wrestling. Whenever you know the name of a referee, you know it is probably not a good thing.
Hebner was the referee who claimed that Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan at the first Main Event in 1988, despite Hogan getting a shoulder up.
Hebner was also the referee for the Montreal Screwjob, when he rang the bell when Bret Hart had never tapped out to Shawn Michaels.
22) Sean Waltman
Known as The 1-2-3 Kid or X-Pac, Sean Waltman is one of the members of the famed Kliq, the group of friends backstage that would do whatever they wanted to do.
It was this spirit that prompted Waltman to join D-Generation X with friends Shawn Michaels and Triple H. Waltman would also become a member of the nWo, which was started by friends Kevin Nash and Scott Hall.
21) Scott Hall
Speaking of Scott Hall, the man once known as Razor Ramon had many controversial moments outside of The Kliq, even in recent years.
In 2008, Hall rushed the stage at a roast for The Iron Shiek after a comedian made a joke about Owen Hart's death. Hall is believed to have been drunk for the incident.
Hall was also arrest for disorderly conduct last year. In the report, he claimed to be unemployed, despite being signed to TNA at the time. TNA would release him a month later.
Now on the independent scene, Hall made headlines earlier this year by appearing drugged up and drunk to an indy booking. Hall needed two men to help him into the ring and video was taken of Hall slurring and looking disoriented.
Hall apparently thought he was in England, when he was actually in New England. Hall was still wearing a bracelet from a hospital during the event.
20) Kevin Nash
Kevin Nash was also a member of The Kliq, who pulled off The Madison Square Garden Incident on May 19, 1996.
With his obligations fulfilled in WWE, Nash embraced Shawn Michaels, as well as Scott Hall and Triple H in the middle of the ring at Madison Square Garden, breaking kayfabe at a house show.
In November 1994, Nash took part in another match at MSG, defeating Bob Backlund in a record eight seconds for the WWE Championship.
To this day, wrestling fans cannot understand why this was done in such a way.
19) Kurt Angle
Kurt Angle was an Olympic gold medalist that became a pro wrestler.
Angle is one of the most decorated wrestlers in wrestling history but left WWE after testing positive for Wellness Policy violations in 2007.
Angle joined TNA and has since been charged multiple times with driving under the influence. With his steroid use exposed, Angle's muscular build began to fluctuate in his time in TNA.
Angle has made headlines recently with the intent of wanting to wrestle in the Olympics again.
18) John Bradshaw Layfield
John Bradshaw Layfield is a very smart individual that has made a name for himself in the ring and on Wall Street.
Layfield's gimmick as a wealthy man is based off his real-life knowledge for the stock market. Layfield has also been credited with having ideas used later by WWE, including Tribute to the Troops.
Layfield is also known as a loud, brash and arrogant man, which may not be much of a stretch either. Layfield has been described as someone who personally bashed young wrestlers like The Miz.
Layfield was also seen at a house show in Germany in 2004 doing some Nazi salutes in an attempt to draw heat from the crowd.
17) Jeff Hardy
Jeff Hardy's drug use has existed for a long period of time and has led to multiple suspensions in both WWE and TNA, as well as having two stints with both companies.
Hardy is currently awaiting a court case for a variety of prescription pills and cocaine in North Carolina.
The final straw for TNA was his state of condition at Victory Road this past March, when Hardy appeared in no shape to defend his TNA Championship against Sting.
A no-disqualification match between the two ended up lasting just 90 seconds.
Hardy has not officially been released from TNA, but has had no mentions in the four months since the incident.
16) Jerry "The King" Lawler
Jerry Lawler has had more than his fair share of controversy over the years.
He has had three wives, the latter formerly being known as The Kat in WWE. After she was released in 2001, Lawler left the company in protest, only to return four months later and gain separation from his wife.
Lawler missed the Survivor Series in 1993 after being indicted and abducting a 15-year-old girl. The charges were later dropped.
Lawler is also related to The Honky Tonk Man and is the father of Grandmaster Sexay.
15) Triple H
A 13-time champion in WWE, Triple H has had much of his career successes thrown into question with his allegiances to the McMahon family.
Triple H married Vince McMahon's daughter, Stephanie, in 2003, and has had three daughters with her. His large amount of victories, as well as being able to win in seemingly any match, has had many wrestling fans upset over the years.
Now with him seemingly taking over for Vince McMahon as the authority figure on television, it is hard to see what additional controversy he will be involved in.
Along with being a main part of DX and a member of The Kliq, Triple H has now become a member of the creative team backstage.
The signing of Sin Cara earlier this year has been a pet project of his, making it all the more shocking when Sin Cara was suspended for violating the Wellness Policy.
14) CM Punk
CM Punk is really straightedge, just like his gimmick.
With this bit of information, you would wonder how Punk could even be controversial.
When you watch his actions from the last few weeks and the headlines he has brought with it, it is no wonder he is on this list.
13) Muhammad Hassan
Muhammad Hassan was an Arab-American gimmick played by Mark Copani.
Copani is actually Italian in real life but portrayed a man who was upset about his lack of respect as an Arab man in a post-9/11 world.
Hassan's words were poignant and true but brought a lot of headlines, especially when actions in a storyline with The Undertaker happened alongside real-life terroristic actions.
Hassan was addressed in media outlets, including The New York Post.
The controversy was too much for UPN to deal with, and Hassan was pulled from television for it, effectively releasing him.
12) Chris Benoit
Chris Benoit was a great wrestler for WCW and WWE but never got along well with the backstage politics in WCW.
In a last-ditch effort to keep him, Benoit was given the WCW Championship but did not stay and had his title stripped. In WWE, Benoit became a world champion and was on his way to a Hall of Fame spot before murdering himself and killing his wife and son.
Benoit has been blacklisted since then, and WWE has changed their business model to avoid speaking about areas like steroids, concussions and Benoit as a person.
No clips of him or mentions of him are made in any DVDs or record books.
We have already spoke on Edge's relationship with Lita. What also needs to be said is Edge's drug use and subsequent Wellness Policy violations.
In 2007, Edge was revealed as a key figure in a steroid ring throughout the company. Edge admitted to taking steroids in 2004 after his neck surgery but stopped after it slowed him down.
He did, however, take HGH to help after spinal fusion surgery from doctors' recommendations.
Edge received three types of illegal drugs from 2004 until early 2007.
10) Bret Hart
Bret Hart may have been the victim of The Montreal Screwjob, but he has also been the figure behind some controversy.
Mainly, there has been a lot made between him and Ric Flair.
Flair has complained that Bret uses the death of Owen Hart and the screwjob to draw sympathy from people.
Vince McMahon has been quoted as saying that he is thankful that WCW never utilized Bret's full potential and it led to WCW's demise.
I still can't feel a whole lot of sympathy for Bret Hart. Basically, you don't get a screwjob on you without deserving it to an extent.
9) Randy Orton
Randy Orton is a modern-day problem for the WWE roster.
He was the guy who cost Kofi Kingston his push for missing a spot during a match. He was also the guy who got Mr. Kennedy fired for nearly hurting him in a match.
Orton also violated the Wellness Policy but was never punished formally for it. Amy Weber called him a "dirtbag" in a 2009 interview with OhSoDivalicious and claimed that she left the WWE "on account of pure harassment and being treated like a piece of dirt by some of the male wrestlers for no reason." According to PW Torch in 2005 (h/t Wrestlezone), Weber also said that Orton "did something to her," which was the main reason for perhaps taking legal action against the WWE.
Oh yeah, Rochelle Loewen also told the Voice of Wrestling radio show (h/t Wrestleview) that Randy Orton poured baby oil and tanning lotion all over her belongings.
8) Jim Cornette
There may not be a person who has a better track record with shoot promos than Jim Cornette.
Cornette has pretty much made a career from being able to grab a microphone and saying whatever he felt like.
Go on YouTube and have a ball listening to Cornette talking about anything and everything. If you don't think he deserves being here, just go ahead and look it up.
7) Shawn Michaels
Shawn Michaels has been in the back pocket of WWE for a very long time.
Michaels was the person responsible for carrying out the Montreal Screwjob. He is one of the rare men to be members of both DX and the nWo.
Michaels took some time off from WWE, and, in that time, was often backstage at WCW tapings. He was never made public for doing so, but he ended up marrying a Nitro girl.
6) Hulk Hogan
Hulk Hogan has had controversy follow him for many years.
In WWE, Hogan drove out many superstars by being the top guy. Hogan refused to drop his WWE Championship to Bret Hart, who was a face, instead choosing to drop it to a heel Yokozuna.
Hogan also refused to lose the title clean to Yokozuna. Because of that, Hogan was not resigned.
Hogan also shockingly testified in a 1994 trial about Vince McMahon and steroids in the company. Hogan then went to WCW and began to have similar booking problems with that company.
After starting nWo, Hogan had problems with Vince Russo, who was a writer previously in WWE. Hogan would end up pulling creative control and forcing himself out of WCW.
Nowadays, Hogan is in charge of TNA, and while he is no longer a full-time wrestler, Hogan still books favorable to himself.
5) Paul Heyman
Paul Heyman has been a very controversial figure in wrestling for over two decades.
Heyman was a great manager in WCW before moving to Eastern Championship Wrestling. Heyman would grow to have ECW (who would later change the Eastern to Extreme) be the third-best promotion behind WCW and WWE.
ECW would make stars and grow a cult following while being the cutting edge promotion. They were smaller and could be more bold than their competition.
ECW would end up folding, and Heyman would travel to WWE, where he would replace Jerry Lawler on commentary. It worked perfectly for the Invasion storyline as ECW joined with WCW as an alliance against WWE.
After that angle, Heyman then became a manager for Brock Lesnar before becoming SmackDown general manager and eventually having ECW come back as a brand of WWE.
Upset about the direction of the new ECW, Heyman left WWE and has done his own thing, despite reports of joining UFC and TNA.
Heyman has also been more than outspoken, spouting off seething promos about Vince McMahon and the WWE.
4) Eric Bischoff
Eric Bischoff had a lot of casualties over the years in WCW, as well as WWE and even now in TNA.
Bischoff's problem was that he was trying to one-up WWE while running WCW, meaning that money got spent in wasteful places and put a lot of strain on creative control.
Horrible gimmicks came into WCW, which only added to the financial problems. Bischoff was relieved of his duties, and when he tried to come back into the picture, failed to buy WCW over WWE.
Years later, Bischoff threw his weight around in WWE when he was put in as an authority figure. Since joining TNA in 2009, Bischoff has nearly created a brand new WCW with few successes and a lot of questionable calls.
3) Ric Flair
The Dirtiest Player in the Game is also one of the most controversial men in wrestling history.
Flair's list of people with backstage altercations is a who's who of superstars and authority figures in the last two decades.
Flair nearly got into it with Eric Bischoff backstage at a WWE event over the booking from back in the WCW days. Flair also held a big grudge over Hulk Hogan for his treatment of his son, David Flair, back in WCW.
For all you old school wrestling lovers, Flair was very critical of the legacy of Bruno Sammartino, once saying that Sammartino was "a Northeast star who couldn’t draw fans outside New York."
2) Vince Russo
Vince Russo was actually a good writer in WWE, making the promotion as large as it was in the 1990s.
Russo had Vince McMahon to bounce ideas off, meaning not everything went through the writing room and onto television.
When WCW lured Russo away, he got full control, and those bad ideas went into the script for WCW. One of those ideas was giving himself the World Championship, among countless others.
Russo is now a part of the writing team in TNA, essentially bringing WCW back to where it was a decade ago with Bischoff, Russo and Hogan.
1) Vince McMahon
Oh, Vince McMahon. For everything that you have done to make this business great today, you have made it just as terrible at the same time.
McMahon brought us WrestleMania but also brought us the XFLl. He brought us The Attitude Era but also caused the Montreal Screwjob. McMahon has developed many great characters but has also destroyed so many more.
Vince has been a great and personable guy to some but has harassed others.
McMahon has run WWE with kid gloves in the last decade or so. McMahon is a politician in every sense of the word. When something controversial happens, he wants to backpedal from it, unless it is him doing it.
McMahon ran away from the Chris Benoit situation but avoided the talk of steroids and head trauma. McMahon used the Eddie Guerrero tragedy to push the Wellness Policy for positive press but picked and chose the offenders.
McMahon has now taken his great company and made it a PG machine for the kiddies, a far cry from what it ever was, even when superstars only performed leg drops and bodyslams.
This is all not including the fact that McMahon took the idea of regional wrestling organizations and pushed them all out of business for his own mega promotion. McMahon turned WWE into the Wal-Mart of wrestling companies.
I could go all day about Vince McMahon, but as much as there is stuff to talk about, his era of being a corrupt and controversial wrestling figure is quickly wrapping up.