This week it was announced that the Macho Man Randy Savage will make his long overdue entrance into the WWE Hall of Fame this year. It was also revealed that it will be his former Mega Powers partner Hulk Hogan that will induct him. In this piece, Brian looks at the real life relationship animosity between the two.
As we find out that Randy ‘Macho Man’ Savage is about to be inducted into the WWE’s Hall of Fame…fans everywhere rejoiced. When it was revealed that Hulk Hogan would be the man to induct Savage into the Hall…it was more of a mixed bag of emotions. Some love the idea…while other hate it. It all depends what you know of the situation and whose side you ultimately favor.
It’s no secret that there has always been a love/hate relationship between the two stars. A professional jealousy sure…but also a deep personal animosity between the former Mega Powers tag team. It at times became a he said this and he did that sort of thing. For the most part though, many felt that before Randy died of a heart attack in 2011…he was still holding a resentment towards Hogan. Hulk on the other hand claims the two were able to mend a lot of fences before he passed.
Is what he claims true? Is it just guilt? We will probably never know the complete truth without Randy to confirm or deny anything…but what we do know, is this last Mega Powers event at the 2015 Hall of Fame ceremony in California, was made possible by Randy’s kid brother Lanny Poffo.
According to Lanny, Savage didn’t want to go into the Hall of Fame alone…he preferred that the entire Poffo wrestling family be inducted together. The reasoning behind Savage’s lone induction was as a tribute to all his fans worldwide. And as for Hulk Hogan doing the inducting? Lanny apparently signed off on that too…claiming that regardless of their love/hate relationship…deep down Randy loved or wanted to love Hulk Hogan.
Is Lanny just trying to be diplomatic? Perhaps…We do know for a fact that the Hall of Fame inductees don’t always get their choice of people to induct them. Take Jerry Lawler for instance…he asked for and was denied his request to have longtime legendary Memphis announcer Lance Russell induct him. Instead, he had to settle for actor William Shatner. I am certainly not discounting Lanny’s claim…just trying to see things at every angle.
As for what caused a rift between Savage and Hogan to begin with….we first must do a little background on Savage first. According to several wrestlers including the likes of George ‘the Animal’ Steele and others…Randy Savage had a short fuse and an extremely jealous nature. Especially when it pertained to his then wife Elizabeth Hulette. There are several stories where Savage made Elizabeth keep her head down and not make eye contact with anyone whenever backstage at an arena. He would sometimes lock her in a dressing room until it was time for a match or time to go home. Hulk Hogan even has claimed that he built a gated fence around his home where only he had the key…so Liz couldn’t go out when he wasn’t home.
According to George Steele, Vince McMahon once asked Steele to grab Elizabeth’s ankle during a match and when George did it…Savage went berserk backstage afterwards. There was another incident where Steele had to carry Liz over his shoulder and take her to the back during a match. After the match…Savage was livid and screamed, “What are they going to think that George is doing to my wife?” That was apparently the type of individual Savage was during his marriage to Elizabeth.
That brings us to an alleged incident that apparently destroyed Hulk and Randy’s friendship for years. Hulk Hogan stated that there came a point when Savage and Liz bought a home near his friend Hulk Hogan and his wife Linda. Speculation was, Savage could trust Hulk and Linda to keep an eye on his wife when he wasn’t around. Jim Hellwig aka The Ultimate Warrior says that while Savage was on the road with the WWF…Hulk made a play for Liz. Elizabeth politely turned down Hulk…but it evidently didn’t end there. Stories had Hulk and his wife Linda…having a key to that gated fortress that Randy and Liz lived in and they took her out multiple times. They allegedly got in Liz’s ear that she shouldn’t put up with Randy’s insane jealous mood swings and maybe she should consider divorcing him.
As fate would have it, Elizabeth did eventually separate and file for divorce from Randy and Randy blamed the Hogans. The personal and professional jealousy was ignited….and both went back and forth in various interviews of how each person was a liar or a backstabber or a cheat and a phony. Hogan claimed that Savage stole his style of doing promos…while Savage accused Hogan of always trying to keep Savage down as a main event player.
If you look back at Wrestlemania 9, you’ll notice Hulk Hogan with a black eye. The WWF at the time stated that Hulk was involved in a jet ski accident. For storyline purposes, the WWF claimed that Ted Dibiase hired a group of thugs to attack him. The other story was that Hulk and Macho got into a fight concerning Savage’s now ex wife Elizabeth and this was the end result.
The two seemingly reconciled when Savage followed Hulk to WCW and even teamed with one another multiple times. Why did Randy go to WCW? Did Elizabeth who was still on friendly terms with both Mega Powers help in a temporary reconciliation? The friendship eventually dissolved again as Savage had a contract dispute with WCW and left the company. Some believed Hogan was in the ear of WCW management and that Savage just wasn’t worth the money anymore.
A few years after Savage left WCW…while promoting his rap album…Savage spoke about Hogan and it wasn’t very complimentary. He claimed Hogan was a sneak, a cheat and not a man. He challenged Hogan to a legit fight and put it on pay per view. He said all the money from that ppv would go to a charity of Hogan’s choice or his choice…a Children’s hospital. Hogan never responded to that challenge.
So here we are, Randy Savage is finally being inducted into the Hall of Fame with Hogan going to speak about his love for a fallen brother. Regardless if some of the things that were alleged were true or not…when you think Savage…you can’t help think Hogan in the same thought. My hope is that Savage can finally get the adulation by himself with Hogan overshadowing his legacy. Dig it?