Wrestlers, like rock stars and actors, often make a lot of money in a short period of time. The more foolish ones tend to spend all that money under the assumption there will always be more money arriving. But in some cases, the money train stops and the person is left with nothing.
Nowadays athletes, celebrities, and even wrestlers are taking better care to save their money. Often an organization will bring in experts to speak with the employees about how to and why it is important to save for retirement. Some wrestlers have been smart with their money and are now allowing it to work for them in their later years. Others, however, have been left with nothing once their in-ring days ended and now need to find ways to keep money coming in even as they approach or are in retirement.
In some rare cases, there are wrestlers who would spend all the money they made almost as soon as they made it yet still somehow managed to keep their head above water throughout their career. Those examples are the exception, however, and not the norm. In this article, we shine a spotlight on ten wrestlers who saved their money wisely and another five that lost it all through foolish spending and poor planning.
15 Saved - Mick Foley
Mick Foley has been notoriously thrifty with his money throughout his long wrestling career. Foley is the type of performer who has a reputation for sharing hotel rooms, sharing rental cars, and sharing anything he doesn't want to spend full price on.
What Foley is not thrifty with, however, is the time he spends working on charitable causes or donating to worthy charities. Foley is a committed family man and has four kids, one of which is currently working in the business behind the scenes. While Noelle Foley does not have an official role with WWE, Vince McMahon has said he sees star potential in her, just not as a wrestler. Foley's oldest daughter tried out at the WWE Performance Center but was turned down. Dewey Foley is currently working on the WWE creative team.
14 Saved - Chris Jericho
47-year-old Chris Jericho's in-ring career might be winding down, but the native from Winnipeg Manitoba ,Canada has more than a few business ideas for his post-wrestling life. Jericho spends a lot of his time touring with his somewhat-decent heavy metal band Fozzy, and is organizing a giant wrestling themed cruise in 2018. The cruise will feature a tournament from Ring of Honor, standup comedians, bands, and lots of wrestling fans. His net worth is currently estimated at $18 million but if that cruise turns out to be a big hit - we could see that number skyrocket in years to come.
This isn't to say his wrestling career doesn't have a few more stellar matches in it. On January 4th, 2018, Y2J's going to wrestle his first match outside of WWE in 17 years when he takes on Kenny Omega at the Tokyo Dome.
13 Lost It All - Brutus Beefcake
There is a brewing rivalry going on between Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake and Hulk Hogan. The two long-time friends formed a friendship in the late 80s and have had something of a falling out in recent years. Beefcake announced through his social media that he is about to write a tell-all book which might share some stories that Hogan would rather keep untold.
As for his personal life, Beefcake was not smart with his money. This led to him having to take a job at the Boston subway system in 2004. After he left out his bag of cocaine at his station, he promptly caused an anthrax scare in the building.
Back in 2015, his estimated net worth was valued at $700,000 (which seems overly generous). Beefcake was a big star in the 1980s and should have more left than he does.
12 Saved - Kurt Angle
Former Olympic gold medalist and current Monday Night Raw General Manager, Kurt Angle, is worth an estimated $20 million. That number should only increase now that he has returned to WWE.
The Pittsburgh native has divided his career between WWE and an 11-year stint in TNA Wrestling. He was paid well while he was in TNA and left the company once they stopped being able to afford contracts such as his. It is believed he earned about a half a million a year while in TNA which is approximately half what he was making in WWE, but the easier work schedule allowed his body to heal and reduce his dependence on painkillers and other medications.
Angle did have some great matches in TNA, though the audience he performed in front of was smaller. His rivalry with Samoa Joe is arguably the best thing the promotion has ever done.
11 Saved - Big Show
The Big Show has been wrestling for 20 plus years. While his schedule is heavily reduced these days, Big Show has never had to go too long without a pay since his career began. He's been smart with his money too.
While Big Show was a big star early in his career, he hasn't been pushed at the top of the card in a long time. For him to be worth $20 million is a testament to his wise spending.
Unfortunately for fans of the 45-year-old, he has announced that this upcoming WrestleMania will be his last. He had hoped to take on Shaquille O'Neil at last year's WrestleMania but it didn't come to pass. With a net worth estimated to be over $20 million, we most likely won't see Big Show asking for money through a GoFundMe account.
10 Lost It All - Jake "The Snake" Roberts
Thank You to the Awesome folks that came out tonight to @TractorTavern here in #Seattle. I have amazing fans, that I will never take for grantef. Thank You to Ryan and the rest of the staff at a terrific venue. Thank You to #DripCityCoffee too for the tasty brews they dropped off for me and @y2koolaid. #UnspokenWordTour #WWE #wwehof #Comedy #JakeTheSnakeRoberts #JakeTheSnake
For every dollar Jake "the Snake" Roberts made in the wrestling industry during the 80s and 90s, he spent at least half of that on drugs and alcohol. Jake Roberts' career was plagued by his personal demons and it looked like his life would be cut short as a result of them as well.
Five years ago, Diamond Dallas Page invited Jake Roberts to come live in his house. At the time, Jake was broke, addicted to alcohol and drugs, and in poor health. Nowadays he's gotten his life back together. He looks great, seems healthy, and has an estimated net worth of $500,000. While that's not bad, the amount of money Roberts made in his career most likely eclipses that total many times over. Luckily for Jake, it's not a bad time for aging wrestling legends, as they can make money at conventions and autograph signings.
9 Saved - Brock Lesnar
Brock Lesnar's WWE contract comes up for renewal in 2018. Speculation is that Lesnar would like to return to Mixed Martial Arts, although he will have to serve the remainder of a one-year suspension should he choose to do that.
Lesnar failed a drug test from UFC 200 that earned him a one-year suspension. He is currently officially retired from MMA which means he is not being drug tested or serving his suspension. He would have to go back in the drug testing pool for a period before being eligible to fight MMA again. If he signs another WWE contract that will probably be it for his fighting career.
Lesnar and Sable have two kids of their own nowadays. Brock has admitted to living a simple life on his ranch in Canada, refusing to live by the ways of technological advances. With such a mind-set, you can guess he's saved some money.
8 Saved - Triple H
Having married into the McMahon family, it's unlikely Triple H will ever have to worry about money again in his life. Although a dramatic divorce from Stephanie could bring that about, mind you. Wouldn't that be interesting if Stephanie fell madly in love with another wrestler somewhere down the line...
As of this writing, Triple H's net worth is estimated at $25 million. The difference between him and his fellow wrestlers, however, is that Triple H will continue making that kind of money while working as an executive for WWE.
Triple H's in-ring career isn't quite over, however, he recently wrestled at the Survivor Series Pay-Per-View and is scheduled to do so again when WWE tours India next month. He's not getting any younger, but neither are a lot of the part-timers on the roster.
7 Lost It All - The Ultimate Warrior
It is rumored that the Ultimate Warrior was close to the end of his money when he made a deal to return to the WWE. The deal included him being inducted into the Hall of Fame as well as market a line of Warrior merchandise and be featured in the WWE 2K video game.
Warrior and WWE had multiple disputes over the amount he was paid during his time with the company. Financial disputes would be what would eventually cause his first stint with the company to end. Had that stint been allowed to continue, Warrior would have been the most highly paid wrestler of the era not named Hulk Hogan.
Thanks to his deal with WWE in 2013, he managed to secure a financial future for his family before his death.
6 Saved - Hulk Hogan
Following his divorce, Hulk was in terrible shape but that didn't last long. Hulk Hogan has a net worth estimated to be approximately $25 million. It should be taken into consideration, however, that Hogan did win a $115 million lawsuit against Gawker recently. The problem is it's not overly clear how much of that money Hogan will actually receive.
Hogan is the man who helped take pro wrestling to the next level in the 1980s. While many wrestlers were making a good living before that, Hogan was the first guy to really bank in the multi-millions of dollars in North America as a wrestler.
His popularity really exploded following his appearance in Rocky III, however, the AWA still wasn't convinced he had what it took to be a top guy in their company. Fortunately, Vince McMahon saw in Hogan what he needed to in order to take his promotion to the national stage. The rest is history.
5 Saved - John Cena
40-year-old John Cena is worth an estimated $10 million more than his boss, Triple H. Although considering Cena's popularity, at this point his fans and followers are his bosses as opposed to Vince or Triple H.
In fact, John Cena almost never even made it to the main roster. There were concerns while he was in developmental that he didn't have what it took to be a star on the main roster. Also of note, however, is that John Cena's class of WWE developmental prospects also featured Batista, Brock Lesnar and Randy Orton - so the competition was stiff back then.
If it hadn't of been for Paul Heyman wanting to bring Cena to the SmackDown brand during the first ever brand-split era, there's no telling if John Cena would have been as successful as he has.
4 Lost It All - Scott Hall
By the time Scott Hall moved into Diamond Dallas Page's house five years ago, it looked like it was all over for him. He didn't have the money he needed to get a hip operation and DDP had to help him put out a GoFundMe account for fans to donate to.
Hall did manage to get the surgery and Diamond Dallas Page was able to succeed where countless rehab programs had failed. Nowadays, Scott Hall looks good, sounds good, and is doing much better financially as well. Now that he's not spending all of his money on drugs and is still appearing at signings and conventions - Scott Hall's net worth has increased to $3 million. Here's to hoping that net worth can continue to increase in the right direction.
3 Saved - Stone Cold Steve Austin
Stone Cold Steve Austin loves to identify with the "working man" but he has significantly more money than any other working man does. With an estimated net worth of $45 million, Steve Austin cashed in from the Attitude Era and was smart with that money.
Austin's financial success almost didn't happen either. By far the most lucrative years in his career were at the very end of his time in the ring. A neck injury sustained during a match with Owen Hart put his career in jeopardy. He had to change his style as a result and was just able to hold on long enough to cash in on his exploding popularity.
The 52-year-old hasn't slowed down in his old age though, he's still hustling by hosting his own podcast, reality show, and appearing in movies and TV shows.
2 Saved - The Rock
The Rock made a lot of money during his time in WWE but he eclipsed that in Hollywood. He became the champion of Hollywood in much the same way he became the champion of WWE. In 2016, the Rock was named the highest paid man in Hollywood. They might not give you a championship belt for that honor but they do give you a lot of money - which is probably better.
Not only is Rock one of the most successful wrestler of all-time and one of the most successful Hollywood actors of all-time, he might even be President of the United States one day. There is a groundswell of support for the Rock to run for President of the United States in 2020 and he has reportedly even began to put a team together to see if such a run is feasible.
1 Lost It All - Ric Flair
Ric Flair was at the top of the wrestling industry for a longer amount of time than most people on this list even wrestled for. Flair should be the richest guy mentioned in this article and in fact, if we're talking only about the amount of money he earned, he would be.
Flair's motto when it comes to money, however, is to spend it all and make more tomorrow. By all accounts, that's exactly what he did. He would spend his money on limousines, fancy restaurants, and high-priced alcohol. Not to mention the Rolex watches and the tailored suits. Oh and those four divorces pretty much emptied his wallet out as well.
In the end, though, Flair is left with an estimated net worth of $5 million. To put that in perspective, Ric Flair has 1/3 of the amount of money left than Mick Foley does.