Athletes are known for having hefty paychecks that guarantee them comfortable lives if they are in control of their financial situation. Wrestlers are no different as they can earn plenty of money throughout their careers, especially those who manage to make it to the WWE. During the 90s, at the peak of the Monday Night Wars, all talents were generously compensated for their services as competition heated up between WWE and WCW.
But since wrestlers put their bodies through so much agony, they are bound to sustain some serious injuries that may cut their careers short. Although there are options available for careers afterward, not all of them are willing to pursue a venture outside of the ring. We have seen some stars transition into backstage officials, road agents or commentators, but it’s unrealistic to expect the WWE to employ every single former Superstar.
Many Superstars earned plenty of money throughout their careers, only to eventually blow their money on their lifestyle or medical bills. Once wrestlers grow older, they are less likely to find bookings on the independent scene and if they happen to find a gig, it certainly won’t be enough to pay their bills.
You will surely be surprised to see many of your favorite stars from the past on this list, and it will definitely sting to know that they have ongoing financial troubles. With today’s list, we look at 15 wrestling stars who are now flat broke.
15. X-Pac – Wasting Away
X-Pac has been wrestling for so many decades but he continues to struggle financially. Although most wrestlers from his generation have retired by now and are set up for life, the same cannot be said about X-Pac who will likely have to be active in some capacity for the rest of his life to pay the bills. Despite having worked for top companies like WWE, WCW, and TNA, X-Pac wasted all his riches away.
For many years, X-Pac struggled in battling his addictions despite trying to recover, although he could never quite overcome it. Being one of Triple H‘s best friends, he will probably be looked out after as long X-Pac is willing to cooperate and avoid any trouble. Although X-Pac continues to compete on the independent scene, his bookings have gotten fewer in recent times.
14. Virgil – Scammer
Virgil is best known to wrestling fans for his time spent alongside Ted DiBiase where he had a memorable run for many years. These days, Virgil’s reputation has taken a major hit for his infamous autograph signing sessions. Virgil has been named as one of the worst wrestlers to meet in real life as he always attempts to scam money out of wrestling fans. He has been known to fake signatures from the likes of Ted DiBiase so he can sell them to fans at wrestling events.
Tough times call for tough measures and Virgil has become living proof of that. Long gone are his prime days with the WWE and he hasn’t seen a major paycheck in years, which is the very reason why Virgil has attempted to make a living in so many ways. Trying to get money off wrestling fans was his way of trying to get creative.
13. Perry Saturn – GoFundMe
The tale of Perry Saturn is a sad one that is guaranteed to make fans feel terrible, especially those who grew up watching him during his time with ECW, WCW and then later on WWE. Saturn has also been credited with saving a woman’s life when she was being assaulted by a group, although it sadly ended with Saturn being shot while he defended her. Since then, his financial troubles have worsened to the point where he was homeless for many years and had trouble with addiction.
In recent times, there was a GoFundMe page started to help him out, and it was supported by many of his peers including Chris Jericho. Saturn’s physical appearance has significantly changed since we last saw him on WWE television, but fans haven’t forgotten him as they assisted in raising 40K through his campaign page in a relatively short time.
12. Dynamite Kid – Medical Fiasco
Dynamite Kid is an innovator who doesn’t nearly get the credit that he deserves for having been one of the top technical wrestlers for many years. He was a major influence on some top Superstars from modern history, who have all listed him as one of their influences. But he is now mostly talked about due to his controversial personal life with some domestic abuse being involved, as well as tales about his behavior among other wrestlers.
After suffering many injuries, Dynamite Kid was forced to retire early from wrestling before he eventually had to be in a wheelchair at all times. As he got older, his medical bills worsened, and it’s been reported that WWE has dropped their care of the former Superstar, which left him facing tough times on his own, despite some fans’ attempt to help him through the creation of many funds in his name.
11. Sunny – No More Ring
For many years, Sunny was at the top in the wrestling industry, managing to establish herself as the true first Diva in history. But despite all the glory that she had during her WWE run, she wasn’t around for many years so it’s safe to say those checks were spent a long time ago. If you need any further proof that Sunny has been going through financial trouble, she sold her WWE Hall of Fame ring shortly after being inducted in 2011.
And since she has to make ends meet one way or another, Sunny resorted to offering shows to her fans on Skype with different options depending on the price. She has managed to burn all her bridges with the WWE, so it’s understandable as to why she hasn’t tried to get a role with them, but one does have to wonder how long she can manage.
10. Marty Jannetty – Huge Lawsuit
As part of The Rockers, Marty Jannetty formed one of the most iconic tag teams with Shawn Michaels. While his partner went on to establish himself as an all-time great, Jannetty’s career hasn’t been so memorable or successful since the break up of the team. While Jannetty hasn’t been homeless like many of his peers, nor did he ever hit rock bottom, money has been tight for many years since he hadn’t been receiving worthy paychecks in a long time.
He has also made some investments that backfired on him, and was part of a lawsuit that cost him some of his fortune. More recently, he took to social media to announce to his fans that he had been offered a contract to perform in some adult films, although he declined out of worry that his family would look down on him for participating. Jannetty did consider taking up the offer which tells you plenty about where he is today.
9. Sabu – Blacklisted
Sabu may not get the credit that he deserves these days, but he is one of the most influential figures in modern wrestling history, and many would argue that he pushed the landscape of wrestling to new levels. After having wrestled for ECW and WWE for so many years while putting his body through some serious damage, he is unable to wrestle at the moment due to some of the injuries he sustained during the course of his career.
Sabu has been in need of a hip surgery for some time although he couldn’t quite afford it, which is why a GoFundMe was made in his name to support him. Sabu’s money trouble worsened in the past few years since he got into some trouble with an independent promotion, and it is said that many companies have blacklisted him since then due to his behavior.
8. Kamala – Forced To Retire
When Kamala made his WWE debut, he was definitely a unique figure who managed to immediately draw the fans’ attention. But despite working for the company for so many years, he faced too much trouble throughout his life to be able to live comfortably. The younger wrestling generations got to know Kamala as he made many appearances during the 2000s, and although he managed to wrestle at an advanced age, Kamala was forced to retire.
Wrestling was certainly out of the question once his legs had to be amputated, and his financial trouble took a turn for the worse as he struggled to pay his medical bills. Fans were touched by Kamala’s story, which is why they supported a fundraising attempt to support the former WWE Superstar. Even after all these years, fans still hold Kamala in high regard and are more than willing to help him as much as possible.
7. Rico – Health Issues
In recent years, we have seen plenty of wrestlers come forward to talk about what the industry has done to their long-term health. During the early to mid-2000s, Rico was able to successfully break into the industry during his time in the WWE as a manager and then later on as a wrestler. But as he got older, the demand for his services decreased and Rico is now left with hefty medical bills.
In recent times, there was a GoFundMe page started in his name to assist him in paying off some medical bills. Rico managed to make 7k through contributions from fans and fellow wrestlers. It has been reported that Rico has been battling some serious health issues, and was in much need of help as he struggled to cover all his bills and expenses.
6. Scott Hall – Unreliable
Scott Hall‘s troubles have been well documented over the years. Despite having been employed by the WWE and WCW for years, he doesn’t really have much to show for it. Hall was one of the highest earners during the 90s and continued receiving paychecks well into the 2000s. But as his health got worse, his appearances got fewer. Hall’s addictions got the best of him at times, which hindered his wrestling career as WWE avoided working with him for the majority of the 2000s.
As for his independent bookings, they got fewer as the years went by, since he earned a reputation as unreliable – there have been a few instances where he either showed up intoxicated or didn’t even bother to make it. The glory days are well behind for Hall but at least we know he is taken care of, since he has many close associates in the industry who have looked out for him, including Kevin Nash, DDP and Triple H.
5. Lex Luger – No Forgiveness
Lex Luger is a name that is rarely mentioned these days as WWE have tried to mostly erase him from history. Upon his debut in the company, he was supposed to replace Hulk Hogan at a time when the company was attempting to produce a new crop of stars. Although Luger’s career got off to a great start, he didn’t last too long as he made the decision to jump over to WCW in 1995.
Some believe that Vince McMahon never forgave him for leaving since he was supposed to be his next big star. Luger continued to wrestle for WCW until its eventual demise in 2001 and then made many appearances in TNA. But Luger’s health problems continued to pile up and he was forced to retire from the ring, as he had been in a wheelchair at some point. It seems like Luger didn’t have much savings as he has struggled financially for the past couple years.
4. Tony Atlas – Average Joe
Tony Atlas has had a respectable wrestling career that was awarded with an induction into the 2006 WWE Hall of Fame. He was a part of history alongside his partner, Rocky Johnson, when they became the first African-American team to capture the tag championships. Problems arose between them and cut their reign short, but it is highly believed that Atlas could have gone on to have an even better career if he hadn’t caused some trouble in the WWE locker room.
More recently, Atlas has been making random appearances at WWE events from time to time and was signed to a Legends contract. Despite the company reportedly supporting him, Atlas has landed in some financial woes that got him into some troubles. Although he never struggled enough to be homeless like some names on the list, he is to be leading a very average life at the moment.
3. Gorgeous George – Heartbroken And Nearly Homeless
Gorgeous George’s career was short-lived compared to some of the names who found their way on this list. She had a memorable run alongside her ex-boyfriend Randy Savage in WCW, who hooked her up with a job in the late 90s. Once the couple broke up and WCW came to an end, one could say that George’s career basically came to an end as she has been rarely seen since then.
She does resurface from time to time to make appearances on the independent scene, as well as at meet and greet events, but we can’t imagine that the demand is high enough to make a living out of it. According to some rumors, George was completely broke at one point and nearly went homeless before she somehow overcame her financial struggles. These days, George only makes the news when she discusses the late Randy Savage in an interview.
2. Ric Flair – Flamboyant Flair
Ric Flair is one of the few wrestlers who lived their gimmick in real life; he was advertised as flashy and carried on his famous lifestyle for decades. We have all heard Flair brag about how many women he has hooked up with throughout his career, and how much money he spent. After years of being a big spender, Flair got into some major debt that was only made worse by Flair’s many divorces.
In 2008, Flair had his final WWE match against Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania, and it was the perfect ending to a storied career – or so most people thought. The retirement was only a few months ago, and it wasn’t long before Flair returned to TNA to compete once again in the ring. As it turned out, Flair was in financial trouble and needed the checks to keep coming in to support him.
1. Jerry Lynn – Medical Procedures
Jerry Lynn is one of those Superstars who doesn’t get nearly as much credit as they deserve. With a career spanning 25 years, he has wrestled for all major wrestling companies including WWE, WCW, ECW, TNA, and ROH. A rare feat that hasn’t been accomplished by many names, Lynn boasts an impressive career as he played a vital part in the careers of many beloved stars. But despite having been active for decades, Lynn went through some financial troubles in recent years. A GoFundMe page was made to help him out with several procedures.
He managed to receive $18,300 from fans who were quick to support him morally and financially. Many wrestling stars also contributed to the campaign and promoted it across their social media accounts, which goes to prove that he is well-respected among his peers. Lynn successfully underwent the scheduled procedures and is said to be fine at the moment.
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