He is the single biggest name in the history of North American professional wrestling. Hulk Hogan was more than just a top babyface during his runs in the WWE, WCW and then again with the WWE. Hogan was a figure who helped the WWE enter the mainstream and become worth mentioning on national broadcasts of shows such as SportsCenter. During the height of the popularity of Hulkamania, Hogan was featured in movies and television shows outside of the ring. The Hulkster is more of a pop culture icon than he is just a legendary wrestler.
The resume built up by Hogan over the decades would, at the very least, match up with that had by any other wrestler before, during or after his runs in the WWE and WCW. Hogan was in main events of iconic shows that will live on for generations so long as pro wrestling continues to exist. One would not be overstating the point if he said that Hogan was one of the main reasons that WCW became a wrestling superpower during the 1990s. Each time that fans may have thought that they had seen the last of Hogan as a wrestling personality, he has managed to come back and prove his doubters wrong.
2015 was an ugly year for The Hulkster as it pertains to his career with the WWE, his reputation and even the legacy that he will be leaving behind. An ugly legal matter resulted in despicable comments that Hogan had made in the past becoming public knowledge, and the WWE thought it wise to part ways with Hogan. That is just one of the many things that fans would prefer to forget about both the wrestler and the man. Unfortunately, being able to forget is not the same as being able to forgive, and that reality may lead to Hogan never again appearing live on a WWE show.
Wrestling fans should forget literally everything about Hulk Hogan's time in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling. Forget about the “Immortal” stable that was basically a horrible recreation of the New World Order. Forget about the ugly and bad matches in which Hogan was involved. Forget about the feuds with Sting and the Aces & Eights group. What was an attempt by TNA to make the company an actual rival of the WWE failed in almost every aspect and Hogan eventually made his way back to the WWE, almost as if his run in TNA never took place.
14 The Lies
13 Hulk Hogan Beats Randy Orton
Well before he was “The Viper” or any other dumb nickname the WWE has given him, Randy Orton was known as “The Legend Killer” who earned victories over well-known and respected wrestlers. It thus only made sense that Orton would be given the win when he wrestled Hulk Hogan at SummerSlam 2006. This is Hogan we're talking about, though, so of course that didn't happen. Hogan survived a scare, he dropped the leg on Orton, he took the pinfall, and he then posed in the middle of the ring. It was not a great night for a man with a history of not doing what is best for business.
12 Wrong Place
Unlike many of the moments mentioned in this piece, this one is at least humorous and completely harmless. Hogan was cutting a promo at the start of WrestleMania XXX when he referred to the venue as the Silverdome. There was just one problem: WrestleMania XXX was taking place at the Superdome. While the live slip-up was joked about during and after the broadcast, it is still not one of the prouder moments in Hogan's illustrious wrestling career. Wrestling fans choose to forget about this one mistake if for no other reason than nobody is perfect.
11 Hulk Hogan Beats Shawn Michaels
Back in 2005, “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels was still one of the best wrestlers in the business. Hulk Hogan, meanwhile, was but a shell of his former self. The long-believed story is that the Hogan versus Michaels SummerSlam 2005 match was supposed to be a series of encounters, a series that never materialized after Hogan allegedly refused to do a job to HBK. Whatever happened behind the scenes, what is known is that Michaels ridiculously oversold Hogan offensive attacks during their one and only match. It is almost as if Michaels was trying to send a message to those of us watching.
10 Hogan Loses to Yokozuna
We now know, after the fact, that Hulk Hogan and manager Jimmy Hart were both planning on moving on from the WWE in 1993 when Hogan defended the title against Yokozuna. It is a wrestling tradition that a guy on his way out of a promotion would do a clean job to a performer who would remain in that company. Hogan did not follow this unwritten rule, though, and thus the finish to the match had to include a “photographer” blinding Hogan with a fireball before Yokozuna could get his win. He may have gotten pinned on that night, but Hogan nevertheless still got his way.
9 The War Bonnet
Depending on your age or how much of Hogan's career you have followed over the years, you may have already forgotten about this brief period. Hogan was feuding with Bad News Brown and Ted DiBiase when he debuted what he referred to as his “War Bonnet,” a gladiator helmet that had a fist on top of it for reasons that were never really explained. We get it that the WWE wanted to push just about any kind of Hogan merchandise out there during this era. A “War Bonnet” was not something that got over with fans and it now something that should be forgotten.
8 Hogan versus Warrior in WCW
This could top a list of things about Hulk Hogan we would like to forget if we were talking about just what happened during the entire feud. Ultimate Warrior “haunting” Hogan via a mirror during a segment of Nitro was one of those moments that could make you feel embarrassed for watching pro wrestling. The match that Hogan and Warrior had in WCW was given a rating of “minus five stars” by wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer. Those who were watching only WWE television in 1998, and thus missed out on this feud to forget, are better off for it.
7 Fingerpoke of Doom
Some may consider it to be the most controversial and worst World Championship change in the history of WCW. Hogan and new champion Kevin Nash entered the ring for a main event title match of Nitro on January 4th, 1999 and the two former friends seemed ready to do battle. Out of nowhere, Hogan downed Nash with a single finger before scoring the pinfall and winning the championship. Whether or not this single night was the unofficial start of the downfall of WCW could be debated. It seems logical to suggest, though, that WCW and the business, in general, would have been better off had this never occurred.
6 Hogan versus The Undertaker at Judgment Day 2002
It was a nice piece of nostalgia when Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall showed up to the WWE as the New World Order in 2002. Hogan being turned babyface and also being given a run with the WWE Championship even got over with fans for a period of time. Hogan eventually had to lose the belt, however, and his run with the championship ended at Judgment Day 2002. The Undertaker and Hogan had one of the worst matches either man has ever had while working in the WWE and it was 'Taker who had his hand raised when all was said and done. Don't go back and watch this. Just forget that it happened.
5 Bash at the Beach 2000
Bash at the Beach 2000 has become infamous for being one of the nails in the coffin of WCW. Jeff Jarrett and Hulk Hogan were supposed to have a match with the World Heavyweight Championship on the line, but Jarrett fell to the mat right at the start of the match. A visibly disgusted Hogan cut a promo on Vince Russo before winning the match via pinfall, Russo later cut a promo on Hogan and then stripped The Hulkster of the title, and Hogan never again worked for WCW before the company died. It could have all been a work, a shoot or somewhere in-between. In the end, though, it is better if we all forget it happened.
4 The Hulkamania Tour
After Hulk Hogan had agreed to work for Total Nonstop Action Wrestling in 2009 – something that everybody who had to watch that company would like to forget – he and other wrestlers took off on a tour of Australia. Hulkamania: Let The Battle Begin was a fine idea, on paper, but seeing even short videos of Hogan and Ric Flair battling it out well past their primes was nothing short of sad for fans who had watched those two legends of the business when the wrestlers were in their primes. It's good some people made some money off of this, but the tour should be forgotten.
3 Hogan's Wife
Plenty of people out there have a type. Take one look at the women that Hogan has married during his life and one could deduce that the Hulkster is attracted to a certain kind of woman. That Hogan had begun a relationship with a blonde named Jennifer McDaniel after The Hulkster had divorced his wife would not, on its own, have been all that big of a deal except for one thing: Multiple gossip websites went out of the way to point out that McDaniel looked quite a bit like Hogan's daughter Brooke. Whether or not that is true is up to you, but some of us would prefer to just forget about the whole thing.
2 The Sex Tape
Everything about this story is, for lack of a better term, scummy. The thought of Hogan merely being involved in a sex tape in his late 50s may be something that the majority of fans would like to forget. That the tape also featured the estranged wife of Bubba the Love Sponge, one of Hogan's friends, did not help the matter. Worst of all for Hogan is that this sex tape would lead to the former wrestler dealing with multiple legal matters and it would also serve as what could be the beginning of the end of his WWE career. One has to imagine that Hogan wishes that tape had never been made in the first place.
1 The Racist Comments
It is the controversy that resulted in the WWE terminating Hogan's contract in 2015. Numerous instances of Hogan using racist and also homophobic language in the past were made public, and thus the company had no choice but to cut ties with the man who was a cornerstone of the WWE and the business in the 1980s. In a perfect world, somebody's past transgressions that broke no laws and did no physical or emotional harm to any one individual would not cost that person so much. With that said, nobody can blame the WWE for distancing itself from Hogan. As of January 2016, Hogan is still essentially blacklisted by the WWE.