WWE announced the unthinkable Monday night: it will induct the Ultimate Warrior into the WWE Hall of Fame the night before WrestleMania in New Orleans.
Ultimate Warrior, whose real name is Jim Hellwig, burst onto the national scene during the late 1980s with his incredible build, colorful attire, non-stop energy and his memorable promos.
He quickly rose up the ranks as one of the more popular stars of that generation with his career peaking at WrestleMania VI when he defeated Hulk Hogan for the WWE Championship in a very memorable match.
However, Warrior did not make a whole lot of friends during his time on top of the business, as a number of former wrestler have been open and candid in their dislike of him.
Warrior also got in hot water with WWE on a number of occasions, which brought about a WWE-produced DVD titled “The Self-Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior,” which was released in 2005.
It is the first and only time WWE released a DVD essentially downgrading one of its biggest stars.
But with Bret Hart as living, proof, never say never when it comes to the world of professional wrestling.
A hint that Warrior’s rocky relationship with WWE had been sort of repaired was his involvement in the promotion of the WWE 2K14 video game last year.
The relationship must have been patched up so much that WWE Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon decided it was finally time to for Warrior to take his rightful place in the Hall.
“The Ultimate Warrior was the most intense, colorful, competitive and outspoken superstar in sports-entertainment history, and his contributions to WWE were extraordinary,” McMahon said on WWE.com. “We are thrilled to induct the Ultimate Warrior into the WWE Hall of Fame.”
Warrior was the first name announced for the 2014 Hall of Fame Class as more will be announced the coming weeks.
Until Monday night, Warrior’s name had always been brought up amongst those who deserved to be inducted that hadn’t. One of the biggest names of yesteryear that has still yet to be inducted is “Macho Man” Randy Savage.
[Video courtesy of WWE]