The world of professional wrestling is a lot like any type of work environment. People can often make friends with their coworkers at the office, warehouse or wherever they work. But not everyone can get along. Sometimes, it’s as simple as a personality conflict. Other times, it can be someone getting a promotion another person felt they deserved more.
Wrestling only has so many top spots available on the match card. That means there are only so many big paydays available with each promotion. Right away, competition can often lead to jealousy that one wrestler has; especially if someone else had any kind of creative control behind the curtain.
Tensions have arisen between so many different wrestlers. More often than not, many of the same culprits are often at the center of attention. Legends like Triple H, Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan haven’t always been viewed in a positive light by their peers. Over the years, dedicated fans of the business can often recall the number of times certain superstars were accused of hurting another wrestler’s push.
For a long time, Bret Hart held a grudge against Shawn Michaels after the Montreal Screwjob at the 1997 Survivor Series. While it did last until they publicly hugged it out during a 2010 episode of RAW, it was one of the most talked about grudges in recent memory.
But while The Hitman and The Heartbreak Kid were able to hug out their differences, there are a number of wrestlers who still hold grudges with each other to this day – some have lasted a few years and others have lasted a few decades.
15 Ashley Massaro and Tammy Sytch
This grudge comes out of the “well, that escalated quickly” category. Tammy Sytch, formerly known as Sunny, was at one point a bright young women’s star in the WWE. But in the last few years, she’s dealt with money, drug and alcohol problems. This has led her to accept an adult film contract with Vivid Entertainment. But apparently, Sytch has been contacted for “escort services,” to which she tells fans to contact Ashley Massaro.
Sytch brought up Massaro being linked with an escort agency in 2008. Apparently, the two have problems that go farther back. In 2011, Sytch wrote on social media about how Massaro was disrespectful and dressed “like a stripper.” Massaro would also fire back in defense again. Both times, Sytch was the one to call out Massaro first.
14 Konnan and Curtis Axel
Konnan had a respectable run in the WCW during the Monday Night War, mostly because he wasn’t competing under the Max Moon gimmick like he did in WWE. But he does have a mind for the business that fans respect. In October 2013, a fan asked who Konnan would write off. Within a list of six names, he included Curtis Axel. Why? Because he felt that the son of Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig didn’t have the personality and charisma needed to succeed in wrestling.
Axel would respond by saying that Konnan was just trying to get social media popularity. It was a small Twitter war that continued with Konnan saying that Axel couldn’t handle the criticism. The former WCW superstar would add that Axel’s time on the microphone was cut for a reason. For what it’s worth, Axel did have a slight push as the WWE Intercontinental Champion before falling down the card the last few years.
13 Paige and Lana
Being a successful female superstar in the WWE can almost be more cutthroat than it is for the men. Sometimes, the fights between WWE's women can spill out onto social media. C.J. Perry, known best by WWE fans as the Ravishing Russian Lana, decided to fire towards Paige through Twitter in 2015. Apparently, the two have a history that dates back to them spending time in WWE’s developmental brand, NXT.
Lana claimed that not only was Paige a “phony anti-diva,” but that Paige was also a bully down in NXT. Paige then responded quickly with claims that Lana lies “all the time.” She even claimed that Lana was trying to get a storyline. There was a tweet where it looked like the two had come to a mutual understanding. But it’s hard to imagine the words exchanged about their NXT past was easily forgotten.
12 Ken Anderson against both Randy Orton and John Cena
Mistakes can happen in the world of professional wrestling. However, one can only get away with botched moves and untimely injuries for so long. Ken Anderson was actually viewed as one of the next major stars in the WWE as Mr. Kennedy. While injuries were certainly holding him back from world titles, nearly hurting Randy Orton with a botched suplex in his return in 2009 didn’t help his case at all.
Anderson recently said in an interview that he felt it was a scheme against him with John Cena and Orton telling Vince McMahon that Anderson was dangerous in the ring. Obviously, Anderson hasn’t forgotten about how he was cut from the WWE. He even claims that the video of the match shows that Orton’s neck never came close to hitting the canvas; contradicting the complaints that led to his 2009 WWE release.
11 Melina and Candice Michelle
It was mentioned earlier how sometimes the women in professional wrestling can have some of the bigger arguments. Melina Perez was certainly known for having a bit of a difficult personality to work with. Especially when she would get into heated arguments with other WWE Divas. In 2007, Candice Michelle said in an interview that Melina had stolen one of Michelle’s moves.
Melina then felt that the only reason Michelle was working in the WWE was because of her physical appearance. Both continued to go back and forth through a combination of blogs and social media. It continued up until both women left the WWE. Neither person is currently involved with any wrestling promotion as they have both moved on to other things. Still, the grudge was never settled between Michelle and Melina.
10 CM Punk and Triple H
CM Punk was always known for dropping a vocal pipebomb in the wrestling community. The infamous podcast interview on Colt Cabana’s The Art of Wrestling Podcast featured a lot of them. One of Punk’s biggest beefs in the WWE was with Triple H. It was no secret that Punk wanted to be in a WrestleMania main event, but was booked to feud with Triple H at WrestleMania XXX.
Punk said that during a discussion with Vince McMahon and Triple H, Punk would turn to Triple H and say that Hunter needed to face Punk more than the other way around. Since then, Triple H has responded on Steve Austin’s podcast. Triple H pointed out that their feud in 2011 was based on McMahon’s booking decisions. It's clear that there is still animosity between them and there's no interest from either side in patching things up.
9 Scott Steiner and Triple H
Scott Steiner once received one of the biggest pops when he made his WWE debut in 2002. That’s because he still had a lot of momentum from a very successful singles run in WCW as a former World Heavyweight Champion. It looked like he was going to get a big push when he was set to feud with Triple H right away. But unfortunately, the two never had a good match and Steiner would fall below even the mid-card status.
Since then, Steiner has blamed Triple H for the poor booking and has taken shots at Triple H since then. These shots include, but are not limited to, saying he was sleeping with the boss’s daughter and made other derogatory remarks to both Triple H and his wife. Steiner has since broadened his complaints to the entire promotion with a tirade about the WWE and their “illegal” legends contracts.
8 Triple H and Bret Hart
Bret Hart certainly was worthy of the tagline “the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be.” But in recent years, it seems that Bret “The Hitman” Hart has become a bit more cantankerous in his older age. This has happened despite being able to mend the bridge between himself and the WWE long after the controversial Montreal Screwjob at the 1997 Survivor Series pay-per-view.
In a 2013 interview with WrestleTalk TV in the United Kingdom, Hart would talk about Triple H and how he felt that he wasn’t anything special. Hart said the man known as “The Game” was an okay wrestler. But he felt that Triple H never really was at that next level as many of the other top wrestlers from 1990s were. Since then, Hart’s appearances have been sporadic at best with the most recent at the Payback pay-per-view in 2016.
7 CM Punk and Ryback
Not everything about CM Punk’s lengthy run as the WWE Champion from 2011 to early 2013 wasn’t all sunshine and lollipops. According to Punk in the controversial podcast interview with Colt Cabana, there were a few broken ribs and other injuries suffered along the way. While he was mostly criticizing the WWE medical staff, Triple H and Vince McMahon, Punk took some painful shots towards Ryback.
Punk claimed that Ryback may have injured him on purpose. Ryback would respond in a few interviews since then denying the claim. Ryback also made a comment about how Punk was making excuses so that the fans would feel sorry for him when he decided to quit the WWE. Both have left the company since then, but neither are probably meeting for pizza anytime soon.
6 Scott Steiner and Ric Flair
Scott Steiner arguably had his best singles run of his professional wrestling career while working for WCW in the dying days of the company. Steiner was a former WCW World Heavyweight Champion and also held the World Television Championship and United States Heavyweight Championship a few times each. However, Steiner also had issues behind the scenes in WCW. Back in 2000, Steiner cut a promo claiming that Ric Flair stole the Nature Boy gimmick from Buddy Rogers.
According to Steiner, Flair was extremely upset by the promo. This led to anger from top WCW officials who would eventually suspend Steiner. Steiner was leaving an arena after hearing the news before confronting Flair in the parking lot. Steiner said Flair quickly denied having anything to do with the suspension while running away. Steiner has often been videotaped cutting shoot promos on Flair.
5 Shawn Michaels and Jim Cornette
Shawn Michaels was once viewed as a tough guy to work with. Well, that was more of a PG-friendly version to describe how The Heartbreak Kid was viewed during the height of HBK's career. However, many people have raved about how Michaels turned his life around after becoming a born-again Christian. It was a big part of his second, more successful run in the WWE from 2002 until his retirement match at WrestleMania XXVI.
However, not everyone has changed their opinion of The Heartbreak Kid. Jim Cornette, who could also be nicknamed by some as the “angry grandpa” of professional wrestling, called out Michaels as unprofessional during a 2011 YouShoot interview. Cornette would use many of the earlier mentioned non-PG “compliments” in regards to Michaels’ backstage influence hurting Vader’s WWE run in the mid 1990s.
4 Triple H and Kurt Angle
Kurt Angle’s departure from the WWE initially looked to be on good terms with the company. However, there was some heat when he decided to sign with TNA Wrestling and continue working. That likely didn’t earn him any bonus points with the WWE at the time. But in recent years, Angle has talked publicly with multiple sources about how there were talks of interest between both he and the WWE for a return.
Back in 2014, Angle pitched a return to Triple H and Vince McMahon, although the latter told Angle that Triple H was now in charge of talent relations. Reports show that Triple H was not happy with Angle talking about a possible return when very little was said. A lot of this is said to stem back to their days in the Attitude Era, as there was always reported hostility between the two men.
Angle has brought return rumors back to the wrestling news sites a few months ago. But considering how he upset Triple H, there’s a good chance he won’t be coming back anytime soon, if at all.
3 Hulk Hogan and Bret Hart
Bret Hart was once a young WWE Champion going into WrestleMania IX against Yokozuna. It was not the most memorable event in WrestleMania history. The biggest “highlight” was Hart losing to Yokozuna after Mr. Fuji threw salt in Hart’s eyes. After the match, Hulk Hogan would come and “save the day,” leading to him having an impromptu match to defeat Yokozuna for the WWE Championship. The angle was initially supposed to lead to Hogan later dropping the title to Hart, but Hogan felt Hart wasn't a worthy successor to his reign over the WWE and refused to drop it.
Hart would explain later on that he was told about Hogan's decision and felt crushed. Since then, Hart has had a grudge against Hogan. That obviously continued when Hogan would lose his WWE contract in the fall of 2015 after the racial tirade was released in Hogan’s sex tape. Hart would go on to say that he hoped he never got back into the WWE again.
2 Chris Jericho and Goldberg
Goldberg and Chris Jericho's problems started back in WCW, when the two began working a program. The idea was that the feud would lead to a PPV match between the two, but Goldberg balked at the idea, thinking Jericho wasn't a believable threat to his character.
When Goldberg went to WWE in 2003, those old feelings crept up and led to a backstage fight between the two. After Jericho won the altercation, the matter was taken to wrestlers court, where Goldberg was ordered to apologize to Jericho and admit he was the better wrestler.
When asked on Twitter a couple months ago if he was now getting along with Goldberg, Jericho replied "Who?". Now, this could very well have been tongue in cheek, but both men have yet to say that they've officially buried the hatchet.
1 Shawn Michaels and Hulk Hogan
While they were on separate shows during the infamous Monday Night War of the 1990s, Shawn Michaels and Hulk Hogan each had their fair share of backstage power. Michaels was a top star in the WWE while Hogan was attracting fans to WCW at the time. So there was a risk that there would be a clash of egos when they had a feud at SummerSlam in 2005. While Hogan was okay with Michaels’ promos leading up to the match, Hogan had backstage complaints.
This led to Michaels making the decision to “oversell” all of Hogan’s offense. This included basic punches sending Michaels flying like a ragdoll. According to Michaels, this was meant to be the first of three matches with the first two being split. But Hogan would say that an unprofessional Michaels led to him backing out after SummerSlam. No pleasantries have been exchanged since.