A recent episode of The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani show featured WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan as the guest. One of the topics discussed included Hogan’s thoughts on potentially wrestling for one last time in WWE.
“You know what’s so funny, Shane McMahon called me. He goes, ‘Hey, you got one more in you, old man?’ I said, ‘Take it easy with the old man stuff, brother.’ I said, ‘What do you want to do?’ He goes, ‘All you gotta do is stand in the middle of the ring, and I’ll come do it.’ I said, ‘Right now, my back needs a little more work, but that’s something we can talk about next year.’ I’ve always wanted to have a retirement match. I’m not moving around the way I should be, so I’m going to keep working and keep training and keep doing rehab and see where I’m at about six months from now. All I found out in the wrestling business, brother, is you never say never.”
When asked to clarify when this conversation with Shane McMahon took place, Hogan responded:
“I talked to Shane probably about three months before WrestleMania, and he happened to be at Madison Square Garden, and I guess there’s a place in Madison Square Garden where they got the Hall of Fame, and they’ve got my boots up there, and they got my tights. He took a picture standing in front of it, and Shane called me at home. He goes, ‘Hey, look at that picture I just sent you.’ I looked at it, he goes, ‘Well, you got one more in you?’ I said, ‘What are you talking about?’ He started running storylines by me to try to ramp us into that mode. I said, ‘Those were all good storylines, whether you’re coming at me like, ‘Hulk, you quit. My father made you and you left, you walked out on my father,’ which I did. Or go the opposite way, that ‘my dad did you wrong,’ because him and his dad go back and forth all the time. ‘My dad did you wrong, I wanna revitalize your career.’ There’s several things we came up with. I told him, ‘I just need to get my feet underneath me more. Now’s not the time, not this WrestleMania, definitely not. Let’s talk about four or five months from now and see where I’m at.”
On the topic of having a potential match at next year’s WrestleMania 40 event and Stone Cold Steve Austin being his dream opponent for it, Hogan stated:
“If he would get in the ring with me, that’s the reason I went back to wrestle The Rock was to get in the ring with ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin because me as a bad guy; as Hollywood Hogan, I could have tore the place down with him because he was the ultimate good guy at the time, but I think he was having some physical problems with his legs and nerve damage, and he was about at the end of his run. So if I had one guy to get in there with, it’d be him. I just don’t know, with all this time passing and both of us getting older and wiser if it would even make sense. You have to be crazy to back in there at my age, anyway. I just haven’t talked to him about anything like that ever, so if he would get in the ring, he would be the guy.”
On the topic of if he had ever felt that his wrestling legacy would have been erased after racist comments he made in the past became public, Hogan stated:
“There was a temporary situation where I thought, ‘Okay, where’s this going to end up at? Where’s this gonna wind down? Where’s the legacy, where’s this, that.’ At the end of the day, there had been so much goodwill with the Hulk Hogan brand, and people knew me so well, I mean I’ve been around over 40 years. People know me so well, from Mike Tyson to Brutus Beefcake to Vince McMahon to Verne Gagne to Bret Hart, everybody knows me so well that they knew that I would come back and I would become the person that I was. There was a temporary situation with the surgeries and some of the racial stuff that went down. It was a speed bump, but that’s not who I was, and everybody knew that. So it was a tough time, but the main thing that really got me were the surgeries over the last ten years. That was the thing that was in question. When you come out of a back surgery and someone tells you you’re never gonna walk again, that will really screw your head up. The rest of this stuff, I had a bunch of people on my side, I had a huge support system. People that knew me stuck with me, and it’s just been amazing to see how the fans have stayed with me.”