In a dramatic turn of events, the WWE has cut all ties with its biggest superstar in history. Hulk Hogan merchandise and references have been removed from the website, in addition, Hogan has been removed as a judge on Tough Enough after the WWE confirmed that Hogan’s contract has been terminated.
“WWE terminated its contract with Terry Bollea (aka Hulk Hogan). WWE is committed to embracing and celebrating individuals from all backgrounds as demonstrated by the diversity of our employees, performers and fans worldwide.”
[adinserter block=”1″]The move comes at a time when Hogan appeared to have the most solid relationship he has had in years with Vince McMahon and the company. Hogan has not only been a good soldier since he’s come back, he’s also openly talked about working towards a return to the ring at WrestleMania 32, even telling people that Vince is supporting it. That return and his tenure in the WWE appears to be in serious jeopardy.
This comeslight of recent revelations coming out of the legal battle between Hulk Hogan and Gawker over Gawker.com posting Hogan’s sex tape. There are rumors flying around that Hogan is recorded using several racial slurs, including the N-word. The tape was allegedly leaked to the National Enquirer.
Mediatakeout.com claims to have heard this audio and concluded, “there can be NO DOUBT that Hulk Hogan is a racist . . . at the level of the KU KLUX KLAN.” The commentary also reports that the audio is expected to be leaked online today which does explain the WWE’s preemptive response to the tape.
National Enquirer did indeed release the transcript and it’s bad…real bad for Hogan. Here is an excerpt.
“I don’t know if Brooke was f*cking the black guy’s son,” Hulk raved, the sources add.
“I mean, I don’t have double standards. I mean, I am a racist, to a point, f*cking n*ggers. But then when it comes to nice people and sh*t, and whatever.”
According to sources, he said: “I mean, I’d rather if she was going to f*ck some n*gger, I’d rather have her marry an 8-foot-tall n*gger worth a hundred million dollars! Like a basketball player!”
Finally the finish, “I guess we’re all a little racist. Fucking n*gger.”
I tried accessing Hogan’s superstar page on WWE.com and he is indeed no longer there. His merchandise has also been removed the website from what I see as of this morning also. The only comment from Hogan on all of this comes from his Twitter.
“In the storm I release control,God and his Universe will sail me where he wants me to be,one love. HH” – @HulkHogan
WWE confirmed that Hogan’s latest run with the WWE is either over or at least on hold until this all blows over. If over for good, this would seemingly put an end to Hogan’s fourth return since leaving TNA (who ironically is in the process of putting out a best of Hulk Hogan in TNA video) in 2013.
[adinserter block=”2″]Quite frankly I don’t even know what to say about this story. I don’t know Hulk so I have no idea whether he is racist or not. However, he certainly appears to admit it on the recording. Hogan’s career is over. There is no way in this day and age that Hogan could recover from this, nor would anyone in entertainment do business with him. Depending upon how it went down with Vince and the WWE, I could see a situation where the company does bring him back in some capacity in a few years after this blows over as something of a redemption story. That said, any chance he had at a final match in WWE is over.
The irony of this is that Hogan brought it on himself. If not for Hogan’s $100 million lawsuit against Gawker, there is a high probability that these recordings would have never surfaced. It is a huge gamble for the Hulkster. Hulk could be sitting home with $100 million when all is said and done yet at the day he had to sell his legacy to get it.
Update: Hogan’s attorney told PEOPLE that Hogan resigned from the WWE. “He decided to resign from WWE because he didn’t want to put them or his family through this.”
Hogan also released a statement to PEOPLE.
“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,” Hogan said to PEOPLE.
“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,” Hogan told PEOPLE. “I am disappointed with myself that I used language that is offensive and inconsistent with my own beliefs.”