Wednesday, September 24, 2014

What If Wednesday: Hulk Hogan Stays in the WWF

Hogan vs. Yokozuna King of the Ring 1993
Photo courtesy: WWE
By Kevin Hunsperger
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter

For eight plus years, Hulkamania was running wild in the WWF.  Hulk Hogan took the world by storm when he won the championship in January 1984.  Despite a few other champs along the way, Hogan essentially remained the company's top guy until early 1992.

Hogan disappeared after Wrestlemania 8, but eventually returned to win the title back at Wrestlemania 9.  His reign on top was short lived as he left the WWF for good (at the time) after the King of the Ring pay per view in 1993.  A year later, he showed up in WCW and the rest is wrestling history.  But what if Hogan had stayed with the WWF?

Photo courtesy: WWE
Clearly at the time, the company was shifting directions.  I think most of you know that was due to the ongoing steroid investigation.  Let's take that out of the mix for this scenario and focus on the talent.  Even though Hogan's departure hurt the company in the early years, it ended up helping to revive the business and ultimately put WWF on top in the Monday Night War.

The Narcissist
Photo courtesy: WWE
I don't think Lex Luger would have swapped his Narcissist persona for the All American hero he became after Hogan left.  Hogan and Yokozuna would have likely feuded through the summer, and like he'd always done, Hogan would prevail.  This would have lead to a Luger-Hogan match at Wrestlemania X.  But because fans always left Wrestlemania happy, I think Hogan would have won that match.  Eventually though, something would have to change, as Hulkamania became boring, just like when he was in WCW.  But not before beating the likes of Razor Ramon, Diesel, and a heel Shawn Michaels.

I don't know if Vince McMahon would have pulled the trigger on a heel turn, especially since I don't think WCW would have been competing with WWF as vigorously.  Without Hogan in WCW, I don't believe the defections like Randy Savage, Diesel, and Ramon would have happened.  WWF would have remained on top.

Steve Austin & Hogan
Photo courtesy: WWE
By the same token, I don't think Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, or Steve Austin would have had the opportunities they received either.  I like Hogan, but I think he would have continued to be in the spotlight and the changes that happened in the company (and the business) would have never occurred had he not jumped ship.  So long story short, Hogan's departure ended up making a lot of people a lot of money and provided fans with new heroes and lots of great memories.

1 comment:

  1. The fact is, Hogan is what the wrestling world revolves around to this day. Everyone will forever be compared to him and no one will ever be able to match up to his popularity, influence and star power. Brother!!!!