Hulk Hogan has recalled a conversation he had with Vince McMahon where he was told that WWE nearly closed down.
The relationship between Vince McMahon and Hulk Hogan has been an interesting one for the last 40+ years. When Vince was building WWE in the early to mid-1980s, Hulk Hogan became his WWE World Heavyweight Champion in 1984 and for most of the next decade, Hulkamania carried WWE.
In 1994, Hulk Hogan decided to leave WWE and go to WCW, which meant that he went from being Vince’s top guy to the top guy for WWE’s rival promotion.
After the New World Order formed in 1996 with Hulk Hogan turning heel to join Scott Hall & Kevin Nash (both of them left WWE months earlier), WCW really caught fire. The much-talked-about Monday Night Wars saw WCW Nitro compete head-to-head against WWE Monday Night Raw with Nitro dominating the battle for 83 straight weeks before the tide turned in 1998 when WWE put their World Title on “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.
On a recent episode of A&E Biography WWE Legends cover the New World Order, Hulk Hogan claimed that WCW was beating WWE so badly that Vince McMahon told him that Vince nearly closed WWE.
“That was the goal, was to become the number one company. I don’t think the goal was ever to put Vince out of business even though we got really, really close. I had a conversation with Vince where he was just a couple of weeks away from shutting the doors.”
A few years later, WWE was buying WCW and Hogan returned to work for WWE in 2002 for one more reign as the WWE Undisputed Champion.
Fast forward to today and Vince McMahon is looking to sell WWE perhaps for as much as $9 billion if he gets his way.