The lives of the wrestlers outside of the ring have witnessed some of the biggest train wrecks in the sports world. Every wrestler has a different story ranging from some performers that have normal lives outside of the spotlight to those that turn into hot messes. Prior eras of wrestling featured way more train wrecks than the current crop of stars. Performers like John Cena, Daniel Bryan and Roman Reigns have very little negative stories attached to their lives. This is a huge change from the 80s, 90s and even part of the early 2000s.
WWE and the entire business did a great job in creating positive change. However, the memorable train wrecks still exist thanks to all the stories associated to their names. All of the names on this list had long histories of drama outside of the ring. This comes from failing to get along with others to having addiction issues to just causing trouble for themselves. Some of the names on this list have actually made complete changes to turn their lives around. Others are still stuck in their ways. We’ll take a look at what everyone is up to as we look at fifteen of the biggest train wrecks in wrestling history and where they are today.
15. Scott Hall
The legendary career of Scott Hall saw a downfall when his personal demons got the better of him. Hall has been addicted to both drugs and alcohol for decades spanning from the peak of his career until recent years. It seemed like all hope was lost as Hall continuously relapsed despite attending rehab on WWE’s request countless times.
Things changed for the better when Diamond Dallas Page invited his friend Hall to move in and start living a similar lifestyle. The work out regime of DDP Yoga and the structure of a clean living led to Hall finally overcoming his demons. Hall lives a happier life these days enjoying time with family, making appearances at independent shows and being part of the WWE family again. WWE inducting Hall into their Hall of Fame was considered the greatest honor of his career.
The success of Melina saw her became a fixture in the Women’s Division during her early years on the WWE main roster. Melina did a great job as both a wrestler and a manager for MNM. However, the success clearly got to her head. Melina became a consistent story in online reports due to being involved in drama with other wrestlers backstage all the time.
Mickie James and Candice Michelle were just two of the women’s wrestlers of the time that saw Melina publicly insult them in blogs for no reason. The whole love triangle between Melina, Batista and John Morrison led to most wrestlers faulting Melina for the tension backstage. Melina seems to have benefited from her time away from WWE. The veteran still wrestles on the independent circuit after attending college for a few years and now shows a lot more positivity.
13. New Jack
The antics of New Jack have been well documented both in the wrestling world and in the court room. New Jack earned the reputation for being one of the most unpredictable and dangerous performers in the industry during the ECW years. Fans loved him, because everyone knew he would legitimately do what he wanted. New Jack has been arrested for numerous crimes and that doesn’t even include his actions in the ring.
Many wrestlers have refused to work with New Jack due to the dangers. New Jack’s unpredictability has seen him snap in the ring against opponents and in his personal life. The failed relationship between New Jack and fellow wrestling personality Terri Runnels ended with him trying to sell nude pictures of her to fans. New Jack has returned to the ring after a short retirement to wrestle on independent shows these days. He’s also a married man tying the knot recently.
12. Lex Luger
Lex Luger was one of the top names during the Monday Night Wars yet is not celebrated for his career. WWE loves to release DVDs or make documentaries on the WWE Network about all the major players from the era. Luger however is set to the side due to his troubles outside of the ring. WCW made him a major player but it was always obvious he was among the major steroid users.
Luger would see things hit rock bottom when getting arrested following the death of his girlfriend Miss Elizabeth. Various illegal drugs were found in their home when police searched it following her death due to an overdose. Luger received jail time for violating his probation and became a sad story in the world of wrestling. The recent years have seen Lex overcome temporary paralysis. Luger makes appearances at wrestling conventions and has a relationship with WWE helping their Wellness Policy.
11. Teddy Hart
The potential of Teddy Hart landed him a WWE contract at the record breaking age of 18. WWE wanted Teddy on the roster due to his natural athleticism and his pedigree of being a member of the Hart family. Unfortunately, the discipline and respect instilled into the legendary Harts such as Bret and Owen didn’t follow suit. Teddy found his way into trouble from his WWE days and never got out of it.
Despite being young and having a great shot at success, Hart sabotaged his own chances at success. WWE released him due to his drug use and butting heads with other wrestlers. Outside of WWE, it continued as Teddy has wanted to fight CM Punk, Samoa Joe, Kurt Angle and others due to negative interactions. Hart was even accused of rape in recent years showing how far he has fallen. After avoiding jail time, Teddy is still appearing at the occasional independent wrestling show and training cats to do tricks that can work in the ring.
10. Perry Saturn
Perry Saturn’s life has seen many dark turns as his time in the spotlight ended. WWE released Saturn in 2002 after losing faith in him. Saturn lost control and brutally beat up a young local performer working against him in a dark match for botching. Following his WWE release, Saturn tried continuing his career for a few years before falling off the radar. The topic of Saturn’s whereabouts became a topic online with no one knowing where he disappeared to.
It later became known that Saturn was actually homeless after his drug addiction completely destroyed his life. Saturn developed an addiction to meth and it led to him being homeless for over two years. The recent return to the wrestling circles saw Saturn appear at conventions as he tries to get his life back in track. Saturn stated he’s dealing with a traumatic brain injury and joined a class action lawsuit against WWE.
9. Jim Cornette
The story of Jim Cornette is unlike any other on the list. Most of the wrestlers had addiction issues or made poor decisions they regret. Cornette’s train wreck status is just an extension of his personality. The managing skills and impressive promo work of Cornette landed him jobs with WWE, TNA and ROH over the past fifteen years. All of them ended in drama.
Cornette was fired by WWE for slapping Santino across the face. TNA parted ways with him when he threatened to kill Vince Russo. Another tirade at ROH saw Cornette yell at the medical staff for moving too slow to help an injured wrestler. Cornette stands by his actions and still carries his train wreck attitude. The current job of Cornette has him cutting wild promos in TNA/GFW under new management and hosts a weekly podcast trashing many personalities in wrestling.
8. Buff Bagwell
The negative stories about Buff Bagwell all showcase the attitude issues bringing him down. Bagwell’s entire career was a consistent headache for those that had to deal with him. 2 Cold Scorpio teamed with Buff in the early 90s during Bagwell’s early WCW career and discussed how much of a prima donna he was to deal with.
Despite having a successful tenure making great money in WCW for almost a decade, Bagwell witnessed his career fall apart in 2001. WWE purchased WCW and wanted Buff to become a top star for their version of the brand. Bagwell’s backstage melt downs and having his mom call in sick for him each led to his demise. The current life of Buff has him on a retirement tour. Bagwell is wrestling the last few shows for unknown independent promotions since he burned his other bridges.
7. Jeff Hardy
Jeff Hardy is one of the all-time great WWE stars that struggled to ever get his personal issues in order. The love from fans and his overall talent could have led to so much more as a singles star. Instead, Jeff settled for just being another great wrestler. Multiple instances of drug use hurt Hardy from violating WWE’s Wellness Policy to getting arrested to performing under the influence in a TNA ring, his biggest career low.
Hardy claims the incident of him clearly being under the influence against Sting is what made him realize he needed to change his ways. This coincided with his first child being born as another huge factor. Jeff has been sober for years now and his life is better for it. The past few years of success in TNA, ROH and now back in WWE gave a great comeback story. Hardy hopes to continue by adding memorable moments to his WWE career.
6. Dynamite Kid
Dynamite Kid was viewed as the more talented member of the British Bulldogs tag team with Davey Boy Smith but their careers didn’t follow that belief. The talent and high-risk moves of Dynamite Kid influenced a lot of the future wrestlers like Dean Malenko and Chris Benoit. Bret Hart even goes out of his way to name Dynamite Kid as one of his best opponents whenever asked about his career.
The problem is Dynamite Kid treated friends, family and fans with no respect. This led to his career crashing down before he could ever truly reach the top of a major promotion. Dynamite Kid is not doing well these days with health issues negatively impacting his life. An injury paralyzed him leaving him in a wheelchair for many years now. After suffering a stroke recently, Dynamite Kid needed help from a fundraiser to get back home to England. Hopefully there are better days ahead for the former wrestler.
The least memorable member of the Kliq was Sean “X-Pac” Waltman. It wasn’t a knock on him, but the careers of Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall always overshadowed him. Waltman lived their partying lifestyle harder than the rest despite being the youngest. The use of drugs and alcohol would follow X-Pac from the 90s to recent years.
From his drama with Chyna in the early 2000s to multiple arrests to almost committing suicide, almost every story associated with Waltman’s name was heartbreaking for a long time. Recent years have seen him completely clean up his life. Waltman was arrested in April for what was believed to be meth pills. Drug tests and lie detector tests both cleared X-Pac’s name in legal and public settings. Waltman hosts a podcast and seems to be happier than ever these days. He even wrestles on independent shows every now and then.
Virgil is one of the worst wrestlers to develop an ego that got out of control. The push of Virgil in the early 90s by WWE gave him his one chance to break out as a singles star. Virgil failed in the role and is still remembered for being Ted DiBiase’s manservant. It’s only fitting that WCW hired him for a similar role. Under the new name of Vincent, he worked alongside DiBiase as a member of the New World Order.
This was his last true stint in the spotlight. Virgil has been hustling at conventions for years trying to get money out of fans in exchange for autographs and pictures. At one point, fans caught Virgil setting up a merchandise table in a random New York train station. Virgil also charges fans to have dinner with him in real life. The train wreck reputation of Virgil is now a parody that he uses to try to make money by charging fans for everything imaginable.
3. Tammy Sytch
The biggest female wrestling personality train wreck of all time would have to be Tammy Sytch. Formerly known as Sunny in the WWE, Sytch had the world in her hands as a huge star. Fans of the era viewed her as a goddess thanks to her superb looks and charismatic personality. A combination of substance abuse issues and a bad attitude led to her demise.
Sytch got into drama cheating on her boyfriend Chris Candido with Shawn Michaels and bragging about it. The recent years have seen Sytch go in and out of jail for driving under the influence and assaulting her ex-boyfriend. Her train wreck status was even worse outside of the courtroom. Sytch made her adult movie debut and now offers private Skype shows for fans online.
2. The Iron Sheik
The Iron Sheik is one of the most unique personalities. Despite the peak of his career coming in the early 80s as the man to drop the WWE Championship to Hulk Hogan, Iron Sheik has remained somewhat relevant due to his antics. The legend appeared on Howard Stern and other high profile radio shows to trash numerous wrestlers, especially Hogan.
A running bit of Iron Sheik was that he would badly beat up Hogan if the two ran into each other. Naturally, they hug and embrace every time they’re in the same place. Drug and alcohol addictions impacted the instances of Iron Sheik talking trash. However, the entertainment has become such a bit that Iron Sheik still does it now as part of the job. It appears he;s in a better place these days but still makes outlandish tweets on a daily basis.
1. Jake Roberts
The biggest train wreck at his absolute lowest point was definitely Jake Roberts. Every 80s wrestling fan has fond memories of Roberts due to his superb work as a character and in-ring performer. Sadly, his drug and alcohol abuse destroyed the latter end of his career and his life for many years. Roberts became known for always being under the influence rather than his wrestling genius.
Beyond the Mat showcased Roberts sabotaging his relationship with family in favor of his addictions. Roberts started showing up to shows under the influence and it hurt his reputation even more. Similar to the Scott Hall story, Diamond Dallas Page brought Roberts into his home and saved his life.
Roberts cut out the substances and started doing the DDP Yoga workouts. Life is better for Roberts these days as he’s clean and gets to spend time with his family again. WWE has welcomed him back into the company for appearances and he signs autographs at conventions for diehard fans.
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