As the WWF grew into one of the world's largest sports entertainment promotions in the '80s and '90s, many wrestlers tried to enhance their figures (specifically muscles), by taking steroids.
Obviously, steroids have been one of the biggest forms of cheating for some professional athletes—namely MLB players like Sammy Sosa, Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, among others. But in the WWE, many superstars juiced up simply to look bigger, tougher and stronger.
In 1994, Vince McMahon went to court for allegedly handing out steroids to his performers. But Hulk Hogan saved McMahon's neck by claiming that he was never forced or encouraged to take steroids.
McMahon may have won the trial, but it's been evident throughout the years that many of his wrestlers took steroids, especially many big names. Here are five WWE legends that took steroids during their careers.
A third-generation superstar, Randy Orton has already put on a tremendous career that will put him in the WWE Hall of Fame someday. The nine-time WWE and four-time World Heavyweight Champion hasn't had a career without controversy, however.
In 2012, Orton received a 60-day suspension after violating WWE's Talent Wellness Program. He's been suspended twice for such an incident, and the WWE has a rule where it's three strikes, and you're out.
Orton is only 37 years of age and has plenty of time to keep adding on to his impressive legacy. But after being busted for juicing up twice, he has to learn the lesson of keeping it all natural. Or else.
Lex Luger was supposed to be the next big thing in WWF. After Hulk Hogan and Vince McMahon chose to part ways, the latter pushed Luger to become the next face of the company. He gave Luger his own bus "The Lex Express", and billed him as "The All-American", to get him over with the fans.
But Luger simply had the physique and muscles, nothing more. He couldn't put on any good matches nor was he able to hype himself up the way guys like Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage could.
Talking with ESPN, Luger confessed to taking steroids and other "recreational" drugs throughout his life. Luger started taking steroids during his football career (before becoming a wrestler) and suffered many health issues throughout his life.
Thankfully, Luger has become clean and healthy and works with the WWE's wellness policy.
"Macho Man" Randy Savage delivered promos like no other during the '80s. He was totally the Cream of the Crop....OOOOOOOOH YEAAAH!
As Savage arose to the top of the WWF ladder when it came to top-tier performers, he also took the steroids to help his in-ring skills and overall look. Tragically, Savage died of a heart attack in 2011 (at the age of 58) while driving. It's widely believed that the use of steroids contributed to Savage's untimely passing.
Seeing how huge he was (especially in Spider-Man), it was clear that Savage took steroids anyway. No human can be that jacked on muscles without taking steroids.
The Ultimate Warrior was one of the most influential stars that helped grow the WWF in the '80s and early '90s. Every kid that grew up watching him got pumped with adrenaline every time they heard his song blast as he sprinted to the ring.
The thing is, Warrior also wouldn't deny that he used steroids frequently throughout his career. It was quite obvious just looking at him, but it's also sad that they may have contributed to his untimely death at the age of 54 (from a heart attack).
Apparently, Vince McMahon suspended Warrior for using the steroids. That led to his bitter exit from the WWF, where he'd eventually head to WCW for a brief tenure before retiring.
As mentioned in the intro, Vince McMahon could have done some serious time in jail had Hulk Hogan not bailed him out in the trial. However, The Hulkster himself was guilty of juicing up, though the man with the 24-inch pythons turned out to be the most marketed wrestling star ever, brother.
Back in 2013, Hogan did an interview and confessed to using steroids early in his career, saying "the correct thing to do at the time," and that "doctors would write you a prescription for a steroid, where every sport in the world was doing it." He did add that they're not to be used in helping someone improve their athletic ability, and we've learned that they're meant for medical purposes.
Being the biggest name that professional wrestling has ever known, Hogan still needed to use the steroids to enhance his career. The good news is that he's lived a fairly healthy life long after his wrestling career. Let's hope it stays that way.
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