Despite popular belief, sharing a locker room doesn’t always lead to lasting friendships. It’s true even in professional sports like football, hockey, and basketball, where athletes are on the same team and share a common goal of winning. Look no further than the Richie Incognito bullying scandal a few years back with the Miami Dolphins. Teammates aren’t always going to get along.
Now take that logic and apply it to the WWE locker room. Sure, the wrestlers are all teammates in theory, hoping each week to put out a quality product for the fans to enjoy, but they’re also competing with each other for standing in the company, championship opportunities, and larger paychecks. Add in the fact that they have to inflict pain upon each other as part of their job and you have a dangerous combination that doesn’t always help with the development of friendships. Wrestling is entertainment; it’s business, but it’s also politics. You’re not going to love everyone, but as you’ll see in this list, there’s more than a few competitors who seem to enjoy being involved in real-life feuds and won’t ever let them go. And if you’re an avid wrestling fan, you probably already know the handful of guys we’re talking about.
15. Triple H/Goldberg
Don’t be fooled by the fact that Goldberg is now wrestling two minutes a month for the WWE. He still hates The Game. The two might be cordial when necessary, but, in essence, Hunter is Goldberg’s boss and find me a man who doesn’t hate their boss and we’ll call you a liar.
Prior to returning to the squared circle for a match against Brock Lesnar at Survivor Series, Goldberg and the WWE, particularly Triple H, didn’t get along. Speaking at a Lexington Comic-Con event in 2015, he criticized the promotion for doing things for themselves instead of the fans and said he’d like to “rip Triple H’s head off his body,” which generally isn’t a disposition that can be changed within the span of a year, regardless of how it seems.
14. Mr. Kennedy/Randy Orton
Mr. Kennedy was an intriguing and entertaining figure during his time in the WWE, but his main event push came to a sudden halt despite the fact he was a Money in the Bank winner who seemed poised for a World Championship run. Not only did he not get the push many expected he would, he was suddenly released from the WWE, later resurfacing as Ken Anderson with TNA.
His release stemmed from a match against Randy Orton, in which the latter accused Kennedy of being a stiff and a dangerous worker to WWE management for apparently dropping him on his neck. Kennedy disputes the claim to this day and has even accused John Cena of having a role in his release. Prior to his release, Kennedy and Orton were “super tight” and to this day their ex-wives remain in contact, though it’s safe to say they aren’t talking anytime soon.
13. Alberto Del Rio/Sin Cara
Sin Cara and Alberto Del Rio go way back. And so does their hatred for each other. They occasionally wrestled together as a tag team in Mexico and have always had good in-ring chemistry, but that wasn’t the case during a WWE match in which Del Rio says he stiffed Sin Cara and proceeded to lay a beating into him in the ring after Sin Cara asked the referee to stop the match because he suffered a broken finger. According to Del Rio, the match in question happened two weeks before Sin Cara left the company.
If only that was the extent of their real-life heat. Many wrestlers on this list positively hate each other, but none have had weapons drawn on them as a result – except Del Rio. During a shoot interview, he confirmed a rumor that a member of Sin Cara’s posse pulled a gun on him backstage at a 2012 show in Mexico.
12. Triple H/CM Punk
The WWE is an ego-driven industry which can often cause jealousy and hatred between individual wrestlers. That’s even more of the case when you put together two over-inflated egos who seem to have come into conflict with over half of the roster – Triple H and CM Punk. After leaving the WWE in 2014, Punk discussed at length his issues with Triple H on Colt Cobana’s Art of Wrestling podcast.
His complaints seemed to be centered around the idea that he simply wasn’t treated well by management and had communication issues with Triple H, who would often dismiss his concerns. He slammed Hunter for not responding to questions about a royalty check and, two days later, on his wedding day, Punk received a letter stating he was fired and in breach of his contract. Most of all, Punk was rattled about part-time superstars receiving main event billing at PPVs like WrestleMania while full-timers had to scratch and claw for that status.
11. New Jack/Taz
We have to take every beef involving New Jack with a grain of salt, given the former ECW wrestler has heat with half of the people he used to work with, but his comments about Taz are both hilarious and accurate. Speaking that he wouldn’t work with Taz because he didn’t want to put him over – and knew he would have to – New Jack commented: “I knew Taz before he turned orange. When Taz was a fat little white boy working for Johnny Rodz, and he said Taz quit every week for two months.”
New Jack criticized him for trying to be like Mike Tyson by developing a twitch and eventually getting an ego so large it became unbearable. He also corroborated a story about RVD slapping Taz, claiming everyone in the ECW locker room lost respect for the man after the incident.
10. Ashley Massaro/Tammy Lynn Sytch
It hasn’t exactly been a memorable past few years for WWE Hall of Famer Tammy Lynn Sytch, better known as Sunny. Already on probation, she was arrested again in September of 2016 for not showing up to her court-ordered drug test. Anyone who had been following her personal life prior to the arrest wouldn’t have been surprised. She had been performing Skype shows for fans to make a quick buck, a fact which had been known by some, but exposed publicly by former WWE diva Ashley Massaro.
The two had been involved in an online war of words when Sunny, responding to questions about whether or not she was an escort, accused Ashley of being one out of the blue. The WWE Diva Search winner didn’t take too kindly to the claim and responded by posting a screenshot she had been sent of a naked Sunny performing for a webcam show.
9. CM Punk/Ryback
What would we have to talk about if it wasn’t for podcasts; more specifically if CM Punk didn’t appear on them? During an episode of Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast, Punk expressed his hatred for working with Ryback, whom he claimed injured him multiple times. Ryback is a jacked-up superstar in the mold preferred by Triple H, so draw your own conclusions, but Punk apparently felt so strongly about working with Ryback that he said his matches with him took 20 years off his life.
According to Punk, Ryback was “the steroid guy,” who couldn’t perfect a slam to save his life. Ryback responded with a tweet featuring eight Ryback action figures standing over a CM Punk figure and a broken table. The tweet was quickly deleted, but his response included an indirect shot at Punk: “For the record if I quit for being fragile and insecure I would make up excuses too.”
8. Dana Brooke/Lana
Dana Brooke has a bone to pick with Total Divas as well as one of its castmates, Lana. During an episode of the show, Lana cried on the shoulder of Natalya, claiming Brooke had stole a move that she had been developing in training. The Total Divas Twitter account later tweeted out a gif of the move with the tagline “Dana Brooke steals my move.” It was all in the spirit of promoting the show, sure, but Brooke didn’t seem too pleased about the way everything went down.
Brooke had been garnering backstage heat prior to the incident for rumors circulating that she was romantically involved with a creative team writer and that was the reason for her push. The Total Divas bit put her over the edge and she responded, noting she had been doing the move in NXT.
7. CM Punk/Jeff Hardy
CM Punk has rubbed many wrestlers the wrong way throughout his career for his ego and backstage politicking, but it’s his straight edge lifestyle that doesn’t sit right with Jeff Hardy. Following Hardy’s departure from the WWE, CM Punk cut a brilliant promo in which he impersonated the former WWE World Heavyweight Champion and all his in-ring mannerisms, while also referencing his drug use and “excessive” lifestyle.
In an even more brilliant shoot, because it was equal parts hilarious and depressing, Hardy fired back at Punk at a diner, calling Punk a nerd, telling him to go f*** himself, and claiming he made Punk into a superstar. He also expressed doubt that Punk is straight edge, suggesting he probably takes Ambien to sleep.
6. Paul London/Matt Hardy
Jeff Hardy isn’t the only Hardy Boy to be involved in some real-life heat. In fact, we’re only getting started when we reference Matt Hardy’s war of words with former WWE wrestler Paul London. Like with Hardy’s other major conflict, this one came down to a woman, reportedly Ashley Massaro. After Hardy’s relationship with Ashley ended, she began dating London, and, according to London, Hardy wasn’t too thrilled with the relationship.
“He realized that he didn’t have the goods, that women just didn’t like him, and that I was a sincere person who had charm, who attracted females, and he became jealous,” London said in a candid interview with Power Slam. “He’s just not a very good human being,” he continued. For whatever reason, that comes across as more hurtful than any expletive-laden rant. The two went back and forth with insults for a period of time and London eventually challenged Hardy to a fight, but was shot down.
5. Scott Steiner/Hulk Hogan
“I’m going to kill you” is generally a great meaningless threat prior to a fight between two parties who have no desire to actually kill each other. It’s not something you say about a man to his wife. That’s how much Scott Steiner hates Hulk Hogan, as he allegedly grabbed The Hulkster’s wife at an airport in 2015 and told her he was going to kill her husband when he lands.
Steiner has made his hate for Hogan public since their time together in the WCW and, when asked for comment on the story, responded to TMZ by calling Hogan a punk. During the Gawker controversy that plagued Hogan in 2015, Steiner took to Twitter to gloat, “now does everybody believe me that hogan is a piece of sh*t.” It’s safe to say The Hulkster and Big Poppa Pump won’t be making up anytime soon.
4. Ken Shamrock/Triple H
Ken Shamrock has incredible respect for the WWE, even more so than the UFC. In fact, the former star of both companies has said on several occasions that Vince McMahon is much easier to work for than Dana White, who he noted was incapable of handling UFC fighters. That’s not too surprising to hear, given that Shamrock was given a rapid push to main event status upon joining the WWE during the Attitude Era.
One of the wrestlers who helped put Shamrock over was, surprisingly, Triple H. It’s something The Game seemingly hasn’t done in a decade, but back then he didn’t quite yield the power he does now. Shamrock has claimed Triple H has a huge ego (surprise) and has also referred to CM Punk as a spoiled brat for leaving WWE. We’ve got a great hate triangle between the three of them.
3. Bret Hart/Hulk Hogan
Scott Steiner wasn’t the only former wrestler to gloat when Hulk Hogan found himself in hot water over some racist language caught on a sex tape. The Excellence of Execution stated he was glad Hogan got caught and added that he hoped the WWE would remove him from the Hall of Fame and sever all ties.
In retirement, Hart has often criticized Hogan for his lack of wrestling ability and his unwillingness to put over up-and-coming stars, feeling The Hulkster held him back during his stints with WWE and WCW. Perhaps, quite accurately, Hart summed up Hogan’s career in a single quote: “The only thing Hulk Hogan ever knew was how to make Hulk Hogan. He couldn’t tell you how to make AJ Styles or Samoa Joe. What’s Hulk Hogan going to tell Samoa Joe?”
2. Val Venis/John Morrison
Val Venis is a straight shooter who, since leaving the WWE, hasn’t been weary of offending anyone or making enemies. In 2011, he spoke his mind following John Morrison and Melina’s cold-shoulder treatment to Trish Stratus at WrestleMania.
At the time, Melina was dating Morrison and believed she was owed Trish’s spot at Mania. Val Venis disagreed. He said he lost the little bit of respect he had left for Melina and went postal on Morrison, stating “[You’re] nothing but a champ ass b**ch who has zero nuts. Zero nuts!” He then went on to peddle the gossip of Melina sleeping with Batista and Mike Knox, using it to belittle Morrison for not doing anything about it. “The reality is, Trish has proven time and time again, to the entire world for that matter, that she has way bigger balls than you’ll ever have.” We’ll leave you with image.
1. Randy Orton/Bubba Ray Dudley
Bubba Ray Dudley has been a target of many who claim he’s stiff. Renee Dupree has spoken at length about the multiple concussions he received from Bubba, although he hasn’t been as critical of the former studdering Dudley Boy as Randy Orton. The Legend Killer sparked a legend of his own when he called Bubba “the most out of shape, fat, non-work-ethic-having person” he knew.
Orton might not have been eloquent in his criticism of Bubba, but it’s hilarious, if not over-the-top exaggeration. He also blamed him for breaking his foot during a match, claiming he only thought of himself while wrestling. Sure, Orton is a jerk, but you can always count on him to bring the heat, and you can bet there’s no chance he plans on patching things up with Brother Ray.
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