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Top 15 "Where Are They Now" Stories of 80s Wrestling Stars

The 1980s was a golden decade for the professional wrestling industry. Vince McMahon helped turn the WWE into a national wrestling territory that eventually swallowed up its competitors one by one. World Championship Wrestling went from being a television show and a brand to emerging as its own organization, one that would, in the 1990s, directly compete with the WWE. There were jobs available for stars and also for midcard workers who would not perform in main-event spots, and fans who had plenty of time on their hands and also the ability to record television could watch hours upon hours of different wrestling programs on a weekly basis.

Some wrestlers evolved from being stars to only fans who watched shows put on by the WWE and the National Wrestling Alliance to household names recognized by even casual viewers. Hulk Hogan was one of the wrestlers responsible for making WrestleMania a massive success that propelled the WWE to the top of the industry. 2015 has been rather unkind to the Hulkster, as comments that he made in the past came back to haunt him and led to World Wrestling Entertainment parting ways with the wrestler. “Nature Boy” Ric Flair, on the other hand, still pops up on WWE television every now and again.

Then, there are the stories of the wrestling stars from the 80s that are somewhat hard to read. One man has been on an up-and-down roller coaster ride of a personal life and the hope is that his latest attempt to save himself has been successful. Some others have found jobs working for the WWE, either as agents or as tutors for acts who hope to be the next great stars to work in the wrestling business. The wrestling world is better today than it was in the 1980s in several ways. With that said, it is understandable that fans would feel nostalgic about what was a special time for the industry.

15 15. Greg Valentine 

via onlineworldofwrestling.com

14 14. Tito Santana 

via deathvalleydriver.com

13 13. Ted DiBiase 

via heartofdavidministry.com

12 12. Road Warrior Animal 

via unomatch.com

The surviving half of the famous Road Warriors/Legion of Doom tag team that dominated opponents in the 80s still makes appearances at independent wrestling shows. Animal explained during an interview for the “Jobbing Out” podcast (h/t Wrestle Zone) that he approached the WWE about a job before Dusty Rhodes passed away in 2015:

11 11. Jim Duggan 

via globalforcewrestling.com

10 10. Jesse Ventura 

via thelibertarianrepublic.com

9 9. Rock 'n' Roll Express 

8 8. Ricky Steamboat 

via miamiherald.com

7 7. Bob Backlund 

via amazon.ca

6 6. Gene Okerlund 

via wklh.com

5 5. The Iron Sheik 

via 411mania.com

4 4. Arn Anderson 

3 3. Jim Ross 

via bleacherreport.com

2 2. Terry Funk 

via gruemonkey.com

1 1. Jake Roberts 

via bleacherreport.com

Odds are that you are at least somewhat familiar about the personal battles that Jake “The Snake” Roberts has been through over the decades. The master of the “DDT” finishing move has been downed by his demons time and time again, but he has managed to get back on his feet thanks, in part, to Diamond Dallas Page. Roberts has credited Page and the DDP Yoga program for helping him get and stay clean. “The Resurrection of Jake Roberts” is a documentary about the fall and then rise of “The Snake,” and it is a positive story about one of the biggest wrestling stars of the 80s. Here's hoping the story has a happy ending.

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Top 15 "Where Are They Now" Stories of 80s Wrestling Stars