Posts Tagged ‘Roddy Piper’

WrestleMania VI is widely viewed as the first changing of the guard moment of the Hulk Hogan era. The Ultimate Warrior dethroned Hulk Hogan to win the WWE Championship , with the plan being for him to be the next top guy. Recently on The Steve Austin Podcast, Hogan talked about that moment and the importance of keeping yourself relevant despite a loss.

“I had my gimmick going,” Hogan said. “All the sudden the Ultimate Warrior comes along, and he has the neon colors on, I have a big set of arms and one big ab, he has a 12-pack. All the sudden I’m sitting in a room and seeing Vince look at him and not really look at me anymore and Vince is calculating the dollar signs. I could see Vince seeing him as a better money-making package than me because I had been along for a while.”

“When we did the WrestleMania thing, we did the build-up pretty good. Then it gets time to go over the finish, and whether I’m going over or not, I have the same two questions: Why are we doing this, and what happens next? When I was told to put the Warrior over, I asked those questions and Vince said, ‘I think the red and yellow is over, we have gotten everything we can out of it.’ And I was like, ‘Damn, Vince what if after the finish I point to God, give him the belts and leave, but I do that slow Three Stooges turn, I go back and gaff his ass and call myself Triple H, Hollywood Hulk Hogan? He said, ‘that would never work and you can’t be a heel.’ So, he squashed that.”

Despite his proposed heel turn not working, Hogan had another idea on how he could stay relevant. That idea became a landmark WrestleMania moment. 

“I knew if I slid back out there and grabbed that belt from Hebner, looked up to God and said okay and handed it to him, it would work,” Hogan exclaimed. “He is the one that pulled me in for the hug and he said, ‘I love you’. Now, when I leave, I was betting on the people to follow me going down that aisle. And when you watch, every person is watching me down that aisle, not him celebrating in the ring.”

Detractors of Hogan have long accused him of going into business for himself or being selfish. Hogan not only denies that allegation, but says he wanted his opponents to be worth more money after a match with him than they were before. 

“A lot of people don’t understand you have to take care of the other guy, more than yourself,” Hogan explained. “When I first went to New York and beat the Sheik, because to me it was a shoot. Anytime a man makes more money than me, that’s a shoot because I want your spot. When I came back in ’84, Vince always paid the champion more money, I tried to hold him to that as long as a could.”

“The other thing I fought for is whoever I worked with, whether they beat me, it was a DQ, a Job, whatever. They were worth more money going out then they were coming in. I could go into a building and face Piper or Orndorff and say, ‘Vince wants me to go over tonight.’ And they could say I’m not doing a job.’ There was no control like there is today. So I had to sit down with these guys and if they didn’t want to put me over talk with them and say ‘How can we work this out? Because I do not want someone else coming in here, taking your spot and making this main event money. Because we can come back for 2 and 3.’

Going back to his opponent at the Ultimate Challenge, Warrior had said some scathing things about Hogan and his family in some YouTube videos. Shortly before his death, Hogan was able to make amends with his longtime rival. 

“All of a sudden he started doing YouTube videos talking about stuff I had done and my wife hitting on him and stuff,” Hogan recalled. “When we get to WrestleMania 30 all the boys are staying at a hotel, but he is staying at a house outside of town. Vince comes up to me and says ‘At the Hall of Fame, WrestleMania or Raw, we do not want you talking to Warrior. We are going to fly you two to Connecticut and have a sit-down.”

“At WrestleMania, we were at the Superdome from noon on and Nick and I got bored. So, we found a gold cart and we decided to drive it around. All sudden we are riding around, it must have been a mile, we were heading back to where we came from and I see this guy in a suit and it was the Ultimate Warrior. I had Nick stop and I jogged up to him and said, ‘Hey Jim.’ He starts saying no and I say no man, we are cool I love you and I had no idea WWE had a camera on him. He was drenched in sweat and I said I apologize for whatever I did, and I just want to be friends. We shook hands, and he said he wanted to start over. At Raw I was sitting with Vince and I said get the camera off him, he doesn’t look good and the next day he passed away.”

Over the span of a 30-year career, there have been a handful of matches that really stand out for Dustin Rhodes, f.k.a. Goldust. The latest is his brother vs. brother showdown with Cody at AEW’s Double or Nothing.

Rhodes talked about the other matches in his career that are a cut above during an interview with Sports Illustrated.

“Here’s the deal, by the end of 2015, there were three matches that were my tops. As soon as we did The Shield vs. The Brotherhood in 2013, that took the first spot,” revealed Rhodes. “But before that, there was the War Games with Sting’s Squadron vs. the Dangerous Alliance in 1992 and the WrestleMania XII match against Roddy Piper. That match was number one with me for a long time because it put me on the map as Goldust. It was before its time and it was legendary, the Hollywood Backlot Brawl, and it did a lot for me.

“It was one of the key moments that skyrocketed my career, but personally, this match with Cody has topped them all. I could quit happy now if I wanted to. There is nothing I could do to top what I did with Cody at Double or Nothing. Cody is a tremendous talent with an unbelievable mind, just like dad had, and he’s quite the performer. He’s quite the force to be reckoned with, and watching him and seeing the way he reminds me of dad, it’s amazing. Along with Randy Orton, I always considered myself one of the smoothest workers in the business. But Cody is also so smooth. He can create magic, but you need a partner to dance with. I was his partner, and he was mine. We went to the dance, and we knocked their socks off. What a time to be a wrestling fan, to see that and go back in time and see how the old school way still gets people invested in their stories.

“There weren’t 30 writers for this match, people who are just a bunch of ‘yes men’ scared to death of a man. There was a small group, and that’s all you need to create a magical environment. That environment was such a difference from where I came from, and it was a pleasure to be around them. AEW is going to skyrocket, and they already have their fan base. I’m glad they’re there.”

Rhodes spent most of his career with WWE including six different stints, the last of which ended earlier this year. He has lots of knowledge of the promotion which could be useful for AEW and he was asked what specifically AEW can learn from WWE.

“Cody’s been there and learned a lot over 10 years. Plus, the fact you have Jon Moxley and Chris Jericho and myself, we can show the young kids how it is to be on TV and how to do this on a television basis. That’s a lot different than live events. There are cameras, it’s live, there are commercial breaks, and you’ve got to learn the process. But they’ll learn quickly,” said Rhodes.

“I’m very excited to see them team up with Tony Khan. The less hands in the kitchen, the better it’s going to be. If you keep this circle small, it’s going to be great. I have nothing but positive thoughts for AEW and their future.”

While WWE has gone great lengths to avoid acknowledging AEW’s presence, it’s clear that they are aware of their new competition. Rhodes was asked if people in WWE are paying closer attention to AEW than other wrestling promotions.

“Without a doubt. Double or Nothing, top to bottom, was a great show, and it put them on notice,” stated Rhodes. “I really believe that my match with Cody made them say, ‘They mean business.’

“They’ve been around a long time, and Vince knows how to run a business. That’s what he’s done forever. They’re going to be around, they’re not going anywhere. AEW, we have to focus on growing our own brand. This is a brand to be reckoned with, and I want everyone to know it.”

Wrestling Inc.’s Andy Malnoske caught up with WWE Hall of Famer Greg Valentine over WrestleMania Weekend at WrestleCon in Manhattan to talk about his career highlight and favorite WrestleMania moment. Valentine made multiple appearances at WWE’s biggest event of the year, but for him, WrestleMania XX was at the top when he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.

WrestleMania I, WrestleMania II, or III—they were all good,” Valentine said. “To top it all off would be WrestleMania XX at Madison Square Garden when they put me in the Hall of Fame. That was a big accomplishment and a good accolade for myself. The was the biggest shining moment.”

Valentine’s career began in 1970 where he won numerous titles along the way, including the WWE Intercontinental Championship and WWE Tag Team Championship (with Brutus Beefcake). Expanding things a bit, Valentine was then asked what stood at the top of the mountain in regards to his career achievements.

“I tell ya what, the fans picked this one,” Valentine began. “The Dog Collar Match from Starrcade 1983 against Roddy Piper, the late-great Roddy Piper. The Dog Collar Match, the most intense match of all-time. Gotta put a big mark for that.”

The WWE Hall of Fame statue reveal at WrestleMania 35 Axxess in Brooklyn today was for WWE Hall of Famer “Rowdy” Roddy Piper.

Piper’s entire family was in attendance for the reveal ceremony, according to PWInsider. WWE Hall of Famers Sting, Ric Flair, Brutus Beefcake, Jimmy Hart and Ricky Steamboat were also present, among others.

WWE has now revealed bronze statues at Axxess events over the years for Flair, Piper, Bruno Sammartino, Dusty Rhodes and the Ultimate Warrior.

Ric Flair and Charlotte Flair were the latest guests of the Photo Shoot series on the WWE Network. Both Ric and Charlotte are featured on the “Wooo” edition of WWE 2K19, and gave the viewers an inside look of the photo shoot that is placed on the video game cover.

During the series of images that came on the screen, Flair had the chance to go down memory lane, calling Dusty Rhodes the most creative mind in the pro wrestling business, and Roddy Piper the greatest bad guy in the business. He stated that his angle with Randy Savage over Elizabeth was fun, but was tough because Savage and Elizabeth were “fighting at the time.”

Regarding his WrestleMania 18 match against the Undertaker, he stated that he was 55 at the time (he was actually 53), but it was one of the “greatest nights of [his] career.”

“[Undertaker] single-handedly helped restore my self-confidence, which was totally gone,” said Flair. “At that point in time, I was 55 years old, and just didn’t see myself back in the ring. Mark really got me up and running.”

Flair also saw a picture of him and Ricky Steamboat, and called him the greatest babyface in the history of pro wrestling.

“There will be arguments about this, [but] not many that can stand. [Steamboat is] the greatest babyface of all time,” said Flair. “I don’t think anyone had better matches in the history of the business than Steamboat and I had. [His] physique, second to none. Legitimately tough, and one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet in your life.”

Flair has also stated in numerous other interviews that Steamboat was his all-time best rivalry, and he enjoyed working in the ring with him the most.

The peak of their long rivalry was in 1989. At the Chi-Town Rumble on February 20, 1989, Steamboat was able to defeat Flair in front of 8,000 fans, commencing his first and only reign as NWA World Heavyweight Champion. Steamboat retained the title for two-and-a-half months before losing it back to Flair at WrestleWar in Nashville, TN, on May 7.

Charlotte spoke with Yahoo! Sports on the ESPN “Body Issue” photo shoot and Ronda Rousey. Here are some of the highlights:

Being the first WWE Superstar to be in ESPN’s “Body Issue”:

“I’ve always been a huge fan of the issue and growing up as an athlete, it was very encouraging to see that strong was being shown as sexy. So, the athletes very much inspired me and I guess almost helped me full comfortable in my own skin. I’m an athlete, I am sexy. It was obviously a bucket list but a WWE superstar had never been in the issue, so when I found out that they were going to have me in the 10th anniversary issue, I was like is this real? I kept annoying our talent relations department like, ‘I really am picked, they aren’t going to change it? For sure?’ Up until the shoot, I kept checking in. I was just so excited and the fact that the women have worked so hard for WWE for so many years to be more than just eye candy, more than just the women are divas. Just to show the world that we are athletes and have so much to offer.

The Body Issue reaches a whole different demographic in that they can see wow, women’s wrestling has come this far and she’s an athlete. I hope this opens doors for more women to be represented in years to come in the issue to a whole new demographic. I was very honored and very excited and it also made me feel proud to be an athlete because I know when I first started, I had such a hard time. How do you do your makeup? How do you look like a star? How do you dress like a diva? And here I am almost six years later and I am so proud I grew up playing sports and that I have an athletic body and I just hope it sends that message all over.”

If she was nervous during the photo shoot:

“Well, doing a moonsault naked is totally different. But no, I completely committed to the project and told them I wanted to do it without makeup. I actually had a black eye from Asuka from WrestleMania that I do not regret. I wanted it to be shown because we shot the week after WrestleMania. I was kind of excited about it. I get to show off my battle wound. I think just the message that being who you are in any shape, any size, no makeup, completely raw, is just so important and that’s what I just kept thinking about. It was almost like a weight lifted off my shoulders. This is who I am. I’m so proud of my body. I’m so proud to be an athlete. I wouldn’t change anything.”

Ronda Rousey’s run in WWE:

“I’m blown away. How fast she has picked everything up, especially with her match against Nia Jax at Money in the Bank. I know my dad texted her and said the same thing, just Roddy Pipper would be so proud of her. She gets better every time she’s out there and it doesn’t look like she’s going to slow down at any point. I know she will become the Raw women’s champion at some point and it’s an honor to have her part of our division. She’s blown my mind with how fast she’s picked this up.”

Charlotte also discussed the Special Olympics and watching Raw with Ric Flair. You can check out the full interview by clicking here.

Despite stating on a recent interview that there is no WWE deal yet and she will not be in the United States due to filming in Colombia, former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey appeared at the close of the Royal Rumble pay-per-view. Rousey stared at the women’s Royal Rumble winner, Asuka, as well as the current titleholders, Charlotte Flair and Alexa Bliss.

Noticeably, Rousey was donning a t-shirt inspired by her wrestling hero, the late “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, as well as his jacket. Following the Royal Rumble, WWE would shoot footage of Rousey doing a photo shoot and returning the jacket to Piper’s son, Colt Toombs.

Piper’s daughter, Ariel Teal Toombs, was interviewed by TMZ and shared her feelings of Rousey wearing her dad’s jacket.

“Honestly, I feel honored,” said Toombs. “It’s so empowering to see a woman like Ronda, like, coming into wrestling right now. And then, on top of it, her wearing his jacket, that symbolism is very sweet. She’s just so great about carrying the torch and showing her Piper pride.”

Toombs was then asked if Rousey could carry the Piper legacy to the new generation of wrestling fans.

“The beauty of Ronda is that she’s bringing in her own fanbase,” Toombs responded. “So she has a whole lot of fans that maybe weren’t even Piper fans that she’ll be bringing her own element to. There’ll never be another ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper. There just won’t. We can all pay tribute to him and do our best, but I think that Ronda is gonna do a great job taking the talent and the fighting charisma she has, and becoming her own new thing. And I think this is just her paying tribute because dad was so much a part of her life.”