Hulk Hogan was on 101.1 ESPN today with Randy Karraker, D’Marco Farr and Bob Ramsey talking about TNA Lockdown and assorted other stuff.
-He started out in character, cutting a promo on the St. Louis weather and then asking “Wait, am I supposed to be Hulk Hogan today?”
-He put over St. Louis’ wrestling history, from the Chase to the Kiel Auditorium, and told a story about getting two black eyes from Harley Race after kicking him as hard as he could in a match.
-He says he will not be wrestling again, and not on Lockdown.
-His business matters with TNA come up, and Vince becomes the point of discussion. He says he and Vince worked together for a long time, but after a while he realized that Vince only saw him as an employee and Hulk gave him everything he had only for Vince to not give any back.
-He was asked if his mission was to bury Vince as competition: “No, not at all”. Said that he wanted to bring the competition back to wrestling and said that “there’s always room for everyone to eat at the table”. Said a lot of fans told him they stopped watching when he left the airwaves. His response is that they are bringing the Monday Night Wars back for the older fans who were disillusioned with McMahon’s product and hopes that the old and new fans can come together.
-A co-host and Hogan both talked about how sports like football and baseball have taken cues from wrestling on how to create brands, personas, etc. and that McMahon was the first person to come up with the PPV concept.
-Jimmy Hart was in studio, and he and Hulk mentioned their viewpoint on working together in wrestling: “Two sticks are harder to break than one”, meaning that as long as they stick together they cannot fail. Puts over Hart as the hardest working guy in the business.
-Mentioned his wife “falling in love with an 18 year old”, Nick’s accident, and how his family “fell apart”, but said he prayed to be happy and has found it these days.
-Told a story about Paul Orndorff about his stiffness in the ring. They were friends in high school and apparently took liberties with each other in the ring as part of their old high school rivalry. Said Orndorff legitimately dropped him on his head with his piledriver.
-Favorite wrestler of all time: Andre The Giant. “He encompasses what this business should be about. Total professional 24/7.”
-Story about his first day of training: “First day I went and trained with a japanese wrestler and he broke my leg the first day”.
-Said Andre beat him up for “7 years” training him to become a wrestler.
-On turning heel and becoming Hollywood Hogan – “It was a business decision. At the time I had just gone to work for Turner and I had just had the whole huge run in the WWF, and I always had the situations to overcome, so I had to always go through stuff”. He said that starting in WCW after the WWF steroid trial was like a whole new start for him, and that Ted Turner came to him and said “Hulk, you can put lightning in a bottle, what can you do this time?”. Bischoff had the idea to turn him heel. Hogan says he thinks he changed and re-invented the wrestling business by having fans cheering for the heel and that it gave the business a “nitrous boost”.
-On Tiger Woods: “Brother, the first day that happened, I called one of my friends, who is great friends with Tiger, and I told him, are you with Tiger? He said yes. I said, let me tell you something boss. This is a vaccuum. And because you depend on the public and fans, and brand yourself a certain way, you owe an apology to these people, and the longer you wait, you’re going to keep turning your back on these people. And I knew the longer he waited, the more people will turn on you. As long as you tell the fans the truth, then it stops.”
-Said when he went on Arsenio Hall and was asked about doing steroids and said “No.”, he should’ve said “No, but I did do them for a time when they were legal”. Says that everybody needs to come clean. Interesting.
-Said he grew the fu manchu for his girlfriend in high school, but keeps wearing it these days because of a scar he received from Riki Choshu in Japan on his mouth.
-Heavily plugged the March 8th show and Lockdown, studio clapped it up pretty uproariously when he announced that he was returning to the ring for the Flair/Styles vs. Hogan/Abyss match. Hart and Hogan put over Abyss hard at the end and called him the “new John Cena”, but said for Abyss to “keep the mask on brother”.
-“If Ric Flair’s wife can beat him up, I know I can!” – Hogan’s last words on the show.
As far as presentation and elocution, Hogan came off very well. Of course his stories were a bit much but that is par for the course.
credit: Jimmy Korte, Wrestling Observer
Tags: Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, TNA, WWE