Professional wrestling is one of the most physically demanding industries in the world. The wrestlers who perform each and every week are forced to deal with a tremendous amount of stress; not only do they have to be at their physical peak because they’re television stars, but they’re traveling close to 340 days out of the year. Striving to be the best in a competitive environment must be exhausting even for the most seasoned of professionals.
These days, wrestlers have it much harder than the grizzled veterans of the past. In the 1980s and 1990s, most professional wrestlers were taking steroids and using illegal drugs. While the party drugs didn’t help, taking steroids did aid in their physique. However, the WWE has a implemented a strict drug testing policy in recent years. Wrestlers rarely fail drug tests for anything other than marijuana in this day and age. However, that also means strict diets and workout plans must be regimented into their traveling schedules.
Not only is living on the road terrible for a wrestler’s personal life, but it can also be terrible for their health and overall physical well being. Luckily, things are better for the wrestlers of today. However, the ones of yesterday weren’t so fortunate.
Many of the wrestlers on this list have either partied too much or worked in the business for too damn long. Some of the physical transformations that you will see are shocking. So, without further ado, here is our list of The Top 15 Wrestlers Who Look Nothing Like They Used To.
15. Shawn Michaels
In the 1990s, Shawn Michaels was one of the most physically fit Superstars in the WWE. He was very muscular, and he had a full head of hair. The girls loved him back then, and they probably still do till this day. With that being said, Shawn’s appearance has changed drastically over the years.
Today, HBK is suffering from male-pattern baldness. He is nowhere near as muscular either, but that is to be expected with age. Also, one of Shawn’s eyes is crossed these days. Nonetheless, HBK is still one of the greatest Superstars of all time, but his physical transformation is definitely noticeable to say the least.
Sting is one of the most accomplished wrestlers in the history of the business. With that being said, his look has changed several times over the years.
In the 1980s, Sting had bleach blonde hair, and he wore bright colored face paint. In the mid-90s, Sting’s face paint changed from bright to dark and ominous. His new look was modeled after the lead character from the hit film ‘The Crow.’ He also grew his hair out long and dyed it black.
Sting continued using ‘The Crow’ look for most of his career. However, as time passed by, he began losing his hair and muscles. Today, Sting is 57 years old, and he’s a long way from that beach surfer type he used to be.
13. Bubba Ray Dudley
For the majority of his career, Bubba Ray Dudley has always been a bit overweight. However, he lost a significant amount of weight during his run as Bully Ray in TNA.
In recent years, it seems that Bubba Ray has gained quite a bit of the weight back. But, in 2014, he looked lean and jacked. Aside from looking better in TNA, he was also a better performer. Sadly, Bubba Ray has lost control of his eating habits once again. For a moment there, Bubba Ray Dudley was almost unrecognizable.
12. Ric Flair
The “Nature Boy” Ric Flair is known as one of the greatest wrestlers of all time. However, the years have not been all that kind to Flair. In his prime, Ric was a gorgeous man with beautiful blonde hair. He also had impressive biceps that would drive women mad. Flair actually underwent a body transformation early in his career as a plane crash in 1975 forced him to change his style and he kept himself trim the remainder of his career.
Today, Ric Flair’s age shows. He looks nothing like he used to. I have a feeling that his bad drinking habits only increased the wrinkles on his face.
Back in the early 1990s, X-Pac was just a kid. As a matter of fact, he was known as the 1-2-3 Kid. X-Pac was a fresh faced young man back then. He had long hair and youth on his side.
Today, X-Pac is a middle aged man who has drank far too much alcohol and taken way too many drugs. His face is weathered down these days, and his hairline has been pushed back at least 4 inches. The only thing that remains the same about X-Pac are the bandannas that he wears.
10. Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho has always been one of the biggest stars in the WWE. However, he’s gone through quite the physical change over the years.
In his younger days, Jericho had long hair and a thick beard. Today, Y2J has short hair and a baby face. While Chris Jericho still looks great for his age, he has gained a considerable amount of weight over the years. Looks aside, Jericho can still perform like he used to, and I guess that’s all that really matters.
9. Diamond Dallas Page
Diamond Dallas Page was the man in WCW in the late 1990s. His career was quite amazing, but not many people know that he actually began wrestling at the age of 35.
When the fans think of DDP, they think of a man with long blonde hair. DDP was also pretty jacked back in the day. The master of the Diamond Cutter looks very different these days.
Diamond Dallas Page’s hairline has receded considerably, and his face as aged quite a bit. He no longer has muscles like he used to. However, he is 60 years old, and there’s not much he can do about that. Nonetheless, DDP is still in terrific shape. He credits his physique to his hit workout program DDP Yoga.
8. Triple H
The King of Kings debuted in the WWE as Hunter Hearst Helmsley. Before WWE, he competed in WCW, mainly used as a jobber. He had long blonde hair and a decent physique. However, as the years passed by, Triple H grew in size. He went from an ordinary sized wrestler to a powerhouse of a man.
The Game was in his physical prime in the mid-2000s. He was jacked beyond belief, and he had facial hair like a Viking. Fast forward to today, and we have an entirely different looking man altogether.
Triple H is no longer the rebel who founded D-Generation X. He shaved his head and joined Vince McMahon’s business team. Hunter is a changed man all around. While he still maintains his physique, he looks nothing liked he used to.
7. The Undertaker
The Undertaker is an iconic Superstar who has stood the test of time. Taker has been entertaining the WWE fans for nearly 30 years.
When he debuted in the company, The Undertaker had long, reddish brown hair. Today, Taker’s hairline has receded significantly. Last year, he sported a mohawk that made him look older than he is.
Speaking of age, The Undertaker is far past his prime. His physique has changed for the worse, and his face looks extremely weathered. But, that is to be expected as time goes by.
In his prime, Edge was in tremendous shape. He also had long hair and a rather thick beard.
These days, Edge has short hair, and his beard is well kept. He is much skinnier these days as well. Edge looks extremely different when compared to his younger self. The “Rated-R Superstar” is no longer a wild man.
Edge is in a committed relationship with Beth Phoenix. The couple has one child together, and there is another one on the way.
5. The Rock
Dwayne The Rock Johnson has gone through one of the most drastic physical changes of all time. The Rock debuted in the WWE in 1996. He was known as Rocky Mavia. In those times, he had an afro with long sideburns. His physique was average when compared to other wrestlers.
These days, The Rock is one of the most muscular athletes in all of sports entertainment. He is ridiculously jacked and fit. Another thing that changed about The Rock was his hair. A few years ago, The Rock shaved his head bald.
The Rock is one of the few entries on this list who actually changed for the better.
4. Daniel Bryan
Believe it or not, Daniel Bryan was once a clean-shaven baby face. Today, he is known as one of the hairiest WWE Superstars of all time.
Before he grew his beard and hair out, Bryan was actually quite handsome. But, his ridiculously long facial hair makes him look like a lumberjack. With that being said, he is married to one of the hottest women in WWE history. So, I’ll stop hating right about now.
3. Joey Mercury
Mercury debuted in the WWE as Johnny Nitro’s tag team partner. The team was known as MNM, and they both looked like rock stars.
Joey Mercury had long hair and wore gold chains in his younger years. Today, he is completely bald. His fashion style has also changed drastically as well. The last time was saw Joey Mercury was in a suit and tie. He looks absolutely nothing like he used to, but his transformation isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
2. Bret Hart
Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart had one of the most successful careers in the history of professional wrestling. He had a great physique in his prime, and he also had a thick head of black hair.
After his career was cut short by Bill Goldberg, Bret Hart suffered greatly outside of the ring. In 2002, Hart had a stroke which disfigured his face. More recently, “The Hitman” was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Thankfully, Bret Hart beat the cancer, and he is now healthy once again.
The wrestling business caused a lot of stress in Bret Hart’s life. His hair is now white, and his physique is no longer muscular. The Hitman is doing better these days, but he’s shell of his former self.
1. Lex Luger
In his prime, Lex Luger had one of the best physiques of all time. He was literally built like a Greek God. Luger was so muscular and good looking that the WWE gave him the nickname of the Narcissist.
Fast forward 20 years, and you have a completely different looking human being. Nearly all of Lex’s muscles are gone, and his face has been destroyed from years of drug and alcohol abuse. Furthermore, he can barely walk these days due to an impinged nerve in his neck.
Luger’s physical transformation is a sad sight to see. With that being said, Lex has found God. He no longer abuses alcohol or drugs, and he does his best to contribute to charities for those who are in need.
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