Paul Heyman Claims WWE Legends Hulk Hogan vs The Ultimate Warrior Breathed “Envy and Jealousy”

Published 05/25/2021, 8:30 AM EDT


Older wrestling fans or even some young wrestling enthusiasts know the impact of WrestleMania VI. The event housed the notorious Hulk Hogan vs The Ultimate Warrior, locking their horns in a champion vs champion match,

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Often seen as a “transitional” or “passing-the-torch” match, it remains one of the most hyped-up events in WWE history. Back then, fans had to be either Team Hogan or Team Warrior.

The promos leading to the match publicized the match even more. Dubbed “The Ultimate Challenge”, the match had the biggest superstars fighting to stay relevant. Their promos became so real that the fans had a hard time separating fiction from reality.

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But was it all fiction? According to industry insider Paul Heyman, there was some amount of truth in it. Both of them were fighting to be the face of the company for the upcoming years.

“How can there not be professional envy and jealousy between Hulk Hogan and The Ultimate Warrior?” Paul Heyman said. “Ultimate Warrior was designed to replace Hulk Hogan. How could Hulk Hogan not resent that?” and vice versa.

“If you’re gonna compete with somebody for the number one spot, by design you have to think ‘here’s why I’m better than that person,'” Heyman pondered on their emotional states. “The very nature of the competition between the two was going to breathe envy and jealousy.”

Warrior did not just have to step into the ring, but he had to match up to Hulk’s household reputation and “box-office expectations.” Paul said, “The pressure on Warrior to deliver. It is mind-boggling to think that pressure did not crush him!”

Despite Warrior looking up to Hogan, he had to make sure he was worthy of being the next face of WWE (then WWF).

What happened during the WrestleMania 6 match between Hulk Hogan and The Ultimate Warrior?

Initially, it was Hogan who issued the “Ultimate Challenge” to see who is the more powerful. Metaphorically, it also meant who could win over the crowd better. Warrior’s Intercontinental Championship and Hogan’s World Heavyweight Championship were on the line.

The stadium erupted in cheers as Warrior won the match with the Warrior Splash after countering Hogan’s leg splash. Not only was it a technical match but also a match running on the heightened emotions from the crowd, a battle of two generations.

Warrior became the first man to hold both the Intercontinental and World titles simultaneously. He vacated the latter as per then-WWE rules. Warrior was finally crowned as the new face of WWE.

However, his relationship with the company and Vince McMahon deteriorated soon. As Warrior always felt he wasn’t fairly compensated compared to Hulk Hogan, he started making exuberant claims.

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His claims included demanding half a million dollars for a single SummerSlam match against Randy Savage, a higher percentage of profits from his merchandise. McMahon agreed back then but promptly fired him after the PPV.

Warrior came back in 1996 but left again. WWE lost the one who was destined to be the face of the 90s wrestling in contempt. Warrior’s rise and fall were one of the most disheartening stories in WWE.

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Angana Roy

1082 articles

Angana Roy is a WWE and AEW author for EssentiallySports, having published more than 800 professional wrestling articles. She is currently pursuing higher studies in English language and literature from the University of Calcutta and has over three years of experience in journalism. As a life-long fan of the sports entertainment brand of pro-wrestling, her work consists of live coverage of weekly shows, PPVs, speculating the future course of storylines and everything in between.

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