Being a WWE Star means you’re a celebrity. With WWE being a popular company lots of wrestlers have become famous. John Cena is the top star whose hit it big. Not only has Cena achieved lots milestones inside the ring, earned millions of dollars, and is now transitioning to Hollywood.
However, there’s been lots of WWE stars who had a good life, yet they lose everything. It could be due to addiction problems, being blacklisted from promotions, a costly divorce, health problems, or losing money. Throughout the decades there’s been superstars who’ve experienced a fall from grace. One of the most notable names that comes to mind is Hulk Hogan. He was once on top of the world, now his career taken a nosedive due to various problems.
It’s sad to see these former stars fall on hard times. A wrestler you grew up watching on television can now barely take care of themselves or their family. Seeing these WWE stars in bad shape makes you wonder how they ended up like this. You also wonder if they’ll ever be able to get back on their feet. There have been cases where down on their luck wrestlers have managed to revive their careers and regain everything they lost. Yet, sadly for some WWE stars it’s still a struggle and there have been a few wrestlers who have met a tragic end.
So let’s take a look at the WWE stars who seemed to have it all, but ended up losing everything.
15 Joey Mercury
Joey Mercury’s wrestling career hit its peak in 2004 when he was paired with John Morrison to form the team of MNM. Together with Morrison, they won the tag team championships three times. While Mercury was tearing it up on camera, behind the scenes he was battling an addiction, which started when he was in his teens.
It was during the height of his career when he first entered rehab. Shortly after returning to wrestling, Joey suffered a facial injury that started his addiction to painkillers and led to his release from WWE. Mercury’s addiction got so out of hand that he had financial issues and almost lost his house. However, his good friend CM Punk stepped in to help with Joey’s financial problems and encourage his friend to seek treatment. Today, Joey Mercury is sober and is working as a WWE agent.
14 Lex Luger
Lex Luger had the physique and look of a star. In the early 1990s, WWE had pegged him as their next top guy. However, fans didn’t catch on to Luger’s gimmick and he soon departed the company for WCW, where he had success as their World Heavyweight champion.
Yet, following his departure from wrestling in 2001, Luger’s career went downhill. He became hooked on illegal substances, which would lead to numerous legal issues for the star. In 2003, he assaulted his girlfriend Miss Elizabeth during an argument. A few weeks later, Elizabeth tragically passed away and Luger was arrested for possession. He avoided jail time, but was sentenced to five years probation. But that wasn’t the end of Luger’s problems. In 2007, he suffered a spinal infection, which left him temporarily paralyzed. After extensive physical therapy, Luger eventually regained his ability to walk.
Virgil’s only claim to WWE fame is being know as The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase’s bodyguard. It’s a shame Virgil could never get any of the millions his boss threw around because he could surely use some. Since departing WWE in 1994, Virgil’s career hit a standstill. He did briefly wrestle in WCW, but nothing he did was memorable. Virgil finally retired from wrestling in 2000 and since then Virgil’s antics have become talked about among wrestling fans.
The wrestler is known to attend conventions, however no one lines up at his table to get his autograph. There have been reports that he used to hound fans in order to get them to buy an autographed picture. As if that wasn’t enough, Virgil set up a GoFundMe account begging fans to donate to help make him a millionaire. Maybe he could reach out to Ted DiBiase for help.
12 Scott Hall
Scott Hall won over WWE audiences with his suave, egocentric character Razor Ramon. Hall excelled at being a heel and he won the coveted Intercontinental championship four times. Yet, like many wrestlers during that era, Hall became heavily addicted to harmful substances. Hall’s addiction became so bad that his wife divorced him. You'd figure that'd be a wake-up call for the wrestler, but it wasn't.
His substance abuse continued to the point where he was arrested several times for disorderly conduct. Aside from his legal problems, Hall also suffered a string of health problems. In 2010, he was diagnosed with epilepsy, which caused him to have severe seizures. Realizing his life was spiralling out of control, Hall accepted the help from fellow wrestler Diamond Dallas Page. Thanks to Page’s care, Hall is now clean and making strides to regain control of his life.
Original diva Sunny had everything to become WWE’s poster girl. She was blonde, good looking, and had an athletic physique. Even though she never wrestled, she had potential as a valet. Unfortunately, no one will ever know what could’ve come of Sunny’s WWE career. After less than three years, she left the company.
Like many wrestlers, Sunny has fallen on hard time in recent years. Addiction along with legal trouble has landed her stints in rehab and the courtroom. Her mounting legal issues has caused a financial strain, which caused her to sell her Hall of Fame ring on eBay. As if that wasn’t enough, she’s also started an adult film career. She starred in a porn film for Vivid Entertainment, plus she also has a Skype business where she "chats" with clients.
10 Jake "The Snake" Roberts
In the 80s, Jake “The Snake” Roberts was one of WWE’s big wrestlers. Fans loved watching Roberts bring his python Damien to the ring and lay the reptile on his unconscious opponents.
But behind the scenes, Roberts was dealing with addiction that nearly took everything from him. His issues were so bad that it lead to an estrangement with his daughter and it caused him numerous health problems. It also led to Roberts losing most of the money he earned during his wrestling days. Roberts did enter rehab in 2007, but it wasn’t too long afterwards that he fell off the wagon again. It wasn’t until 2012, when Roberts moved in with his friend Diamond Dallas Page that he was able to make changes in his life. With the help of Page, Roberts was able to lose weight and kick his habit.
9 Ric Flair
Ric Flair’s reputation for being a stylin’ and profilin’ jetsetter was just as much a part of real life as his onscreen persona. The 16-time world champion had an illustrious career in WWE earning him lots of championships along with a vast wealth.
However, in recent years, The Nature Boy has fallen on tough times. Four divorces drained him of the millions he had saved up. Aside from his financial issues, Flair’s penchant for drinking and partying caused him numerous problems. His hard drinking reportedly led him to getting kicked out of an airport lounge. In the summer of 2017, Flair’s drinking and partying finally caught up to him when he was hospitalized for stomach issues. Flair was placed in a coma and it looked like he wasn’t going to make it. But Flair pulled through and is making changes to better his life.
There’s no question that Chyna will go down in history as one of WWE’s most popular wrestlers. The Ninth Wonder of the World’s accomplishments is amazing; Women’s champion, Intercontinental champion, and first woman to enter the Royal Rumble.
Chyna’s tenure in WWE came to an end in 2001 following the revelation that her boyfriend Triple H was having an affair with Stephanie McMahon. Chyna had difficulty moving on following the end of her WWE career. She moved to Los Angeles in hopes of pursuing a career in modelling and acting, but was unsuccessful. She became an addict, which landed her in rehab several times. Plus, she ventured into an adult film career. After years of battling addiction, Chyna passed away in April 2016 at the age of 46. Such a tragic ending to a prominent WWE figure.
7 Jeff Hardy
As the high-flying member of The Hardy Boyz, Jeff Hardy is beloved by the WWE Universe. He’s a Grand Slam champion, who’s won every title in WWE. He had everything he ever wanted. Yet, Jeff almost threw it all away. Jeff’s addiction is well-known among the wrestling community. It’s what reportedly lead to his first departure from the company in 2003.
After taking some time off, Hardy returned to the company in 2006 and would experience his biggest success by winning the World Heavyweight Championship. Yet, as his success continued to grow, so did his addiction. He left the company again in 2009 and shortly afterwards was arrested for trafficking. The arrest finally made Jeff seek help and after a stay in rehab, he appears to have gotten his act together. In 2017, he and Matt made their long-awaited return to WWE.
6 Luna Vachon
Growing up in a wrestling family, Luna Vachon was destined follow in her relative’s footsteps. Luna made waves during the Attitude Era with her blonde crumpled hair and biker attire. Her most famous feud came with Sable and apparently it transitioned to real life. Luna was reportedly angry over the fact that Sable was getting a championship opportunity and she wasn't. Vachon's attitude problems kept her from getting a shot at the title and it eventually lead to her release from the company in 2000. After her departure from WWE, Luna Vachon kept a low profile.
She made news in 2009 when her home burnt down causing her to lose most of her possessions. Despite fundraising efforts from Mick Foley, Luna was forced to move in with relatives following the house fire. Less than a year later, Vachon passed away from an overdose.
5 Maven Huffman
In 2001, Maven Huffman made history when he was crowned the first winner of WWE’s reality competition show Tough Enough. As the winner, he received a contract along with $100,000. Maven had the look and athletic ability of a true wrestler. During his brief time in the company, he became a three-time Hardcore champion and feuded with big stars such as The Undertaker.
Following his release in 2005, Maven went on to star on the VH1 reality show The Surreal Life. During one episode, Maven revealed to his housemates that he was addicted to painkillers. Maven continued to struggle with his addiction for years until he was arrested in 2012 for doctor shopping in order to secure more. He then entered rehab for his addiction, which appears to have helped. He’s currently working as a bouncer for a New York nightclub and is planning to make a return to the wrestling ring.
As a five-time Women’s champion, Melina was one of the most popular female stars during the Divas Era of wrestling. She had the looks, charisma, and athletic ability to keep audiences entertained. But her affair with Batista along with an inflated ego led to problems in her personal and professional life.
After nearly seven years with WWE, she left the company in 2011. Following her release, she wrestled for independent promotions. She even wrestled for the popular Lucha Underground, but was let go after only one appearance due to attitude problems. Since then Melina has taken a break from the squared circle, but does occasionally attend wrestling conventions. As for her personal life, Melina’s on-again/off-again relationship with longtime boyfriend John Morrison continued to be tumultuous. They were reportedly involved in a domestic dispute in 2012, but no charges were filed. The couple finally parted ways in 2015.
3 Miss Elizabeth
During the 1980s, Miss Elizabeth became famous when she served as the valet for her real-life husband Randy Savage. While Randy was the true star of the power couple, Elizabeth turned heads when she came down to the ring in her evening gowns. She and Randy enjoyed lots of success during their time in WWE. Sadly, their fairy-tale love story came to an end in 1992.
Yet, the two continued to work together during their time in WCW. It was also here that Elizabeth met Lex Luger. The couple began dating, yet their relationship was different from her life with Randy. In 2003, Luger was arrested for battery when he hit Elizabeth following an argument at their home. A few weeks later, Elizabeth passed away due to an overdose. Such a sad ending to someone considered The First Lady of Wrestling.
Sean Waltman aka X-Pac rose to fame in WWE, when he was a member of the popular stable D-Generation X. He won the tag team championship along with a slew of midcard titles. After nearly a decade with the company, he left in 2003.
After his departure, X-Pac began dating his friend and former wrestler Chyna. The two had a turbulent relationship, which consisted of substance abuse, abuse allegations, and the release of a "tape". Their relationship ended in 2005. But Waltman’s substance abuse continued after his split with Chyna. His addiction became so bad that he was arrested several times for possession. But thanks to the help of Triple H, Waltman is now seeking treatment for his addiction, although he still struggles in his ability to remain sober.
1 Hulk Hogan
Throughout the 80s and 90s, Hulk Hogan was one of WWE’s popular stars. He became the face of WWE along with a cultural icon. Following the end of his wrestling career, his career continued to skyrocket thanks to endorsement deals.
In 2005, he made the transition to reality star thanks to his show Hogan Knows Best. Yet, the success of his reality show also became his downfall. Following the end of the show, Hogan and his wife Linda divorced due to his affair with another woman. The divorce cost Hogan most of his millions. But that wasn’t the end of Hogan’s problems. He was also at the centre of a "tape" scandal, which involved him and the wife of his best friend. Most recently, Hogan came under fire when tapes were released in which he made racist remarks. The scandal caused WWE to terminate their contract with Hogan.