Well what a day this particular Friday was for news. In case you haven’t been paying attention, or maybe just haven’t tuned into ANY form of social media today, you probably missed the bombshell of the day. The corporate giant WWE lowered the boom in a big way on Friday, firing the iconic figure known as Hulk Hogan and practically erased him from history.
So let’s recap…The National Enquirer released details from what has turned into a controversial set of tapes that led to WWE breaking things off with the man known as a worldwide icon that we all grew up watching. The tapes feature Hogan making comments to Heather Clem, who we all remember as the woman he was secretly filmed having sex with back in 2012. He was reportedly mad at his daughter Brooke, who he accused of sleeping with a black man while Hogan was paying for her musical aspirations.
Obviously Hogan’s comments can’t be posted here if for no other reason than moral standards, but it included the ultimate no-no in racial slurs and several mentions of it. He admitted to having “double standards” and that he was a racist to a point. It was met with immediate attention from WWE. According to various reports, they viewed the tape on Thursday night and took quick action. They erased virtually every mention of him from their official website and pulled him from their weekly reality show “Tough Enough.” Hogan went on to issue the following statement on the situation.
Eight years ago, I used offensive language during a conversation. It was unacceptable for me to have used that offensive language. There is no excuse for it, and I apologize for having done it. This is not who I am. I believe very strongly that every person in the world is important and should not be treated differently based on race, gender, orientation, religious beliefs, or otherwise. I am disappointed with myself that I used language that is offensive and inconsistent with my own beliefs.
His apology and statement appears to have fallen on deaf ears. WWE contacted most of their licensees and partners on Friday morning to inform them that ALL references to Hogan and all images of him for current or planned licensing projects be dropped immediately. They went on to cancel plans for everything from action figures to music and other projects that were related to him under the WWE label. Hogan is not currently listed in the Hall of Fame section of the WWE website, due to officials ordering the site to be scrubbed of any mention of him. It’s very similar to the treatment given following the death of Chris Benoit and his family.
There is another threat coming from The National Enquirer, that could make things worse for Hogan. They are promising that more comments from that video will be released soon. Media tabloid company TMZ says they have seen the tape with Hogan’s racist comments. His attorney David Houston told TMZ that Hogan resigned from WWE on Thursday, which goes against WWE’s statement that they terminated his contract. It’s interesting to note that TNA Wrestling, whom Hogan worked for in recent years prior to his WWE return, also removed him from their Alumni roster and pulled all of his merchandise from the ShopTNA website.
Houston spoke with various media outlets on Friday about the situation and confirmed that the comments on the tape were made back in 2006. The transcript of the comments made was in a sealed deposition that is part of Hogan’s $100 million lawsuit against Gawker for posting the online video of him having sex with Heather Clem. For those unaware, Heather was the wife of Hogan’s former best friend and Florida radio DJ Bubba The Love Sponge. The sex video is on the same tape as the comments.
Houston says he has his suspicions and threatened to bury Gawker if it is revealed that they leaked the transcripts. Gawker president and General Counsel Heather Dietrick denied having any involvement with the leak and went on to say that Hogan has only one person to blame for what he said and no one from Gawker had any role in leaking that information.
It’s going to be very interesting to see what happens over the next few days. With Hogan’s reputation now tarnished, how will he respond to new threats that more controversial content could be released? You definitely want to keep a close eye around here, as more information will be released as soon as it is made available.