If a marriage between mainstream entertainment and a form of sports was possible, it would be professional wrestling; especially the kind that went down on WWE. The WWE universe has offered up a plethora of memorable characters who have kept up their Kayfabe just as much off camera as they have on it. However, with entertainment comes a generous helping of urban legends that have come to be associated with the fake/sometimes too real world of wrestling.
The lines between truth and falsehood are often deliberately blurred by the notorious Vince; owner of WWE. However, some rumors and urban legends are so insane that it was a surprise when they turned out to be true! Others were accepted as the truth and were eventually found out to be complete fiction. Whatever the eventual truth, wrestlers have had equally interesting personal lives. So much of what went on inside the ring and behind the scenes was muddled that urban legends were a matter of daily occurrence in the business. However, fans and their theories can sometimes blow a simple truth out of proportion and on other occasions, the overinflated theory can be the actual truth.
Here are some examples of urban legends that have proven to be true, false and complete head-scratchers over the last three decades.
15 True: Triple H’s Affair With Christy Hemme
If the WWE kept a file for every nasty scandal that was a PR nightmare for Vince, this one would be the most expensive and irritating for the WWE owner. While the rumors were never corroborated by anyone, nor given any kind of credibility by a member of the WWE, the circumstances surrounding the firing of Christy Hemme were too suspicious to have played out the way it did.
According to this legend that circulated mostly on the internet, Triple H cheated on Stephanie McMahon with the winner of the Diva search. Hemme was the winner of the original Diva search contest and had all the fans rooting for her, but WWE fired her out of the blue with no public explanation for the act.
Considering the circumstances, money, and time that went into the Diva Search contest, chances are there is truth in the matter.
14 False: NWO Were Vince’s Spies
After Hogan transitioned to mainstream Hollywood, the legendary wrestler’s career was brought back to life and the “New World Order” by and large became the ratings king, beating WWE for its longest 88-week run. Sports entertainment became synonymous with the “NWO”. However, it all eventually crashed not because of two wrestlers but rather because of WCW’s merger with Time Warner. This shifted the focus away from wrestling and the ousting of Ted Turner was the final nail in the coffin of WCW.
The urban legend that Kevin Nash and Scott Hall were sent by the WWE to WCW to break them from the inside is preposterous which came from the rumor that both Kevin and Scott were still under WWE contract. WCW offered lucrative contracts to both wrestlers and the truth was quite simply a corporate takeover.
13 True: The Rock’s Refusal To Work With Shawn Michaels
If you are a wrestling fan, chances are you too were left wanting The Rock in a ring with Shawn Michaels. The possibility was talked over and considered a lot at WWE, however, the ratings dream never went down due to Rock’s refusal to share the same quarter of space with Shawn.
This turned out to be true. According to reports right before Shawn Michaels retired, he tried to sabotage a fresher Rock’s career. However, when Shawn eventually left, Rock was becoming a sensation. Upon Shawn’s second arrival, the possibility of a match was discussed as Rock was making appearances but had moved to Hollywood. Rock refused blatantly to do anything with Shawn Michaels because there was too much in their shared history. According to Bret Hart, Rock’s dislike was well-founded; Triple H and Michaels tried their best to block Rock from rising through the ranks.
12 False: Bret Hart Knew About The Montreal Screw Job
It is truly sad that this urban legend exists. Bret Hart did not know about the Montreal Screw Job and it was a stunt pulled by Vince to undermine the wrestler without his knowledge. Bret knowing about the arrangement has just as much factual basis as the rumor that Vince has control over his sneezing.
The Montreal Screw Job was the most honest and vicious uppercut in WWE history. It was also the most deserving; Vince got what was a long time coming. Bret Hart was livid that Vince was co-conspiring with Shawn Micheals to have him drop the belt in a phantom Match. Vince was fuming at Bret’s decision to leave for WCW. However, Vince’s underhanded tactics had him lose Bret from the WWE ring for 12 consecutive years and a nasty bruising.
11 True: Blue Dotting Christian's Face
Vince is an egomaniac with a career that is fraught with ridiculous behavior patterns that were frowned upon by everyone, from WWE administration to Wrestlers alike. Vince’s special interest in revenge and humiliating tactics to bring down wrestlers has made him the most ruthless boss ever. McMahon was never a Christian fan especially because of his good fortune as a singles star.
WWE never saw him as someone worthy of becoming a main attraction. According to a confession made by one of the writers of WWE, Vince was not a fan of the wrestler’s appearance and wanted a large blue dot blocking his face every time he was on screen. JBL’s insults directed towards Christian’s looks add legitimacy to this urban legend. Since JBL was often another mouthpiece for Mahon, the insult reflected his true feelings.
10 False: Hogan’s “Savage” Black Eye
According to reports, the black eye that was spotted on Hulk Hogan during WrestleMania IX was given to him by his contemporary Macho Man AKA Randy Savage. While this theory beefed up along the way with people believing it as the truth and fans relishing in the existence of this urban legend, Hogan was very clear in his memoirs about the Jet Ski accident that was the real cause of his black eye.
It is truly a shame that Hogan’s match after a one year interval was overshadowed by his bruise. According to the stories, Savage was going through a rough divorce with Elizabeth and he punched Hogan in a fit of rage, blaming him for his marriage falling apart. However, despite fan excitement, this was not the case and since Savage is not even alive to disagree, the rumor was labeled false.
9 True: Andre The Giant Drank 156 Beers
Andre the Giant was just that; a giant. However, to have such prowess for keeping down his liquor that he guzzled down 156 beers in one sitting seems a little too far-fetched to be real. Those who were close to Andre swore that he had the skill and capacity to drink a plane dry before takeoff if he had the motivation to do so.
As impossible as it is to believe, it is most probably true, even if the exact figure is altered, he definitely drank over 100 beers in one sitting. According to reports, it wasn’t like Andre to do such a thing, but he might if he felt like putting on a show and getting people to wonder if he would do it just to entertain people. However, Andre the Giant was known to have a legendary ability for consuming grub and suds alike.
8 False: Vince Doesn’t Sneeze
WWE had an amazing, unmatched run for as long as it did. However, later the storylines became abysmal, the gimmicks irritating and overall, nearly every tactic, bit and story that worked as shock value was propagated by WWE.
However, this particular urban legend was not only false, it was also biologically impossible. But the owner preceded to let it slide, never really airing any comments against the ridiculous legend that he doesn’t sneeze and somehow had the capacity, strength, and stamina to control it. According to the legend, Vince considered sneezing a sign of weakness and had mastered control over it. As if this notion alone was not idiotic enough, according to rumors, Vince insulted anyone who sneezed around him for being weak!
Even for WWE standards, this rumor was a new low for the entertainment platform.
7 True: Undertaker’s Fear Of Cucumbers!
Every human being has fears and unique set of eccentricities; the WWE wrestlers have had their fair share (probably more than their fair share) of both. An urban legend so absurd surfaced about the most legendary character to ever have come out of the WWE; Undertaker, that no one could possibly take it seriously.
Undertaker has a fear of cucumbers! Yes, it’s true, if the many wrestlers that have referenced it multiple times in their interview are to be taken at their word. On one particular episode of “Table for 3’ that featured Big Show, Kane and Mark Henry brought up the stories about the Undertaker freaking out every time Paul Bearer placed a cucumber in his things. Since all of these wrestlers are good friends with the Undertaker it is hard to imagine them lying about something so silly.
6 False: Lita’s Method Of “Payment”
Everyone was shocked to see the new Lita. In the start of her career, she was clumsy and simply poor at wrestling. While she was young and perfect for the attitude era of professional wrestling, her technique was nothing at all, really. Reportedly she got impressed by Rey Mysterio’s technique in the ring and decided to travel all the way to Mexico to learn a few tricks of her own.
She returned and was a completely different fighter. However, her method of payment become the talk of the town, with a rumor circulating around various circles and the internet that she had been sleeping with her tutors to pay them. Lita herself said that she had supported her tuition by working as a club dancer. That is far more plausible than her sleeping her way to wrestling graduation!
5 True: Inappropriate JBL
John Bradshaw Layfield, or JBL, became famous for all the wrong reasons. He carved a name in backstage hazing. While the rumors were shut down repeatedly by the WWE, more than one wrestler came forward; bitter about JBL’s bullying. Many wrestlers have claimed that JBL walked inappropriately into the locker rooms and even touched them inappropriately.
JBL’s antics fall in a legal grey area but, what really pushed his behavior into the harassment territory was his offer of helping young, reluctant wrestlers wash! As if this wasn’t disturbing enough, there were reports that he would jump in the shower with someone as an attempt at unnerving them.
While it seems hard to believe that these rumors could have substance, the repeated complaints give them a ring of truth. At this point, it would be hard to talk about JBL’s career without mentioning the tale of his backstage bullying.
In the end, all we are left with is: why JBL?
4 False: Two Ultimate Warriors
Jim Hellwig has been the one and only warrior. The rumors about another person playing the “Ultimate Warrior” started when Jim returned after a long absence with a different getup, shorter hair, and a far more defined physique.
The difference was enough that when the warrior returned to WWE for Wrestle Mania VIII, it became the longest standing urban legend that the new entry was not the same man as the legendary “Ultimate Warrior”. While the myth brings more mystique to the legacy of the Warrior, it is not the truth.
Fans still find the truth boring and while the WWE is full of other entertaining truths, the Warrior’s changed outlook was something that fans had a hard time adjusting to due to his previous superstar status. It is perhaps his record that made this urban legend more appealing than the truth.
3 True: Flasher Ric
Ric Flair was such a wild character that any urban legend surrounding him wouldn’t be too out of the ballpark of truth. According to one particular rumor that has been kept alive for as long as Ric Flair has been around is that he loves to strip naked in public places. His comfort with his nudity is a truth that many wrestlers have seconded. Those who have been witness to Ric’s stripping act can say for sure that this legend is definitely true.
Ric considered it humorous to walk around in his robe, flashing anyone he deemed worthy of the full force of his nudity. This game of peek-a-boo was done in airplanes and hotels where the public was subjected to this indecent exposure to get a laugh out of those around him.
2 False: The Vicious Squirrel
Sid Vicious was an avid pet keeper and lover of animals. According to reports, he had a habit of bringing a squirrel with him wherever he went for a while. He had the animal with him even in the locker room. According to the legend, Sid was dared that he wouldn’t be able to keep the squirrel in his underwear for more than a minute.
The story further states that to win a bet Sid placed the squirrel in his underwear and squirmed around for half a minute before the squirrel attached to his family jewels, mistaking them for real nuts, and while the very thought is painful, it is nonetheless very unlikely that Sid would be this vicious to his own body. Especially if he was an animal lover who probably understood what would go down if he tried to trap a squirrel like that.
1 True: Lawler’s Defecated Crown
This is a stinky one, literally. According to the legend, The Kliq was famous for taking revenge by actual defecation. In his mind, this was a way of bringing humility to those that were in dire need of the virtue. The Kliq has issues with everyone and Jerry Lawler was the unlucky receiver of The Kliq’s unique lesson in humility.
Many in the WWE circles called Lawler impossible, arrogant and unnecessarily entitled. Leave it to the Kliq to bring a prince down and how do you do it? By defecating in his crown, of course! While the reports are hard to believe, but, multiple wrestlers have corroborated the story.