WWE is one the world’s largest wrestling empires. Unfortunately, it’s known that many talents are fired by WWE each year, and some simply cannot continue due to body injuries. All of them, even wrestlers like Shawn Michaels had to leave the ring, leaving an empty spot in the ring and in our hearts. But we wonder, what happens after? What do our favorite WWE stars choose to do in their future endeavors and do they ever go back? Unfortunately, not all of them find success outside of WWE. Some retire, others choose a different career path, and others may get lost in even darker places…
Scott Hall – Then
If you haven’t heard of Scott Hall, then maybe you’ve heard of his ring name, Razor Ramon? He began his career with the American Wrestling Association, (AWA) before moving to the WWF. He won the WWF Intercontinental Championship an amazing four times, from 1995 straight through to 1999. This is the best streak this competition has ever seen, making him quite the record breaker. All in a days work, eh?
Scott Hall – Now
Scott is now semi-retired, and is one of the founding members of the New World Order. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2014. As a role model to many people, he is open about his struggles with substance abuse, and his road to recovery with the help of professionals and important people in his private life. His son, Cody Hall, is also a professional wrestler, following in his dad’s footsteps.
Sable – Then
Sable was one of the first Divas in the WWE. Who can forget her fight with Luna Vachon, and Jacqueline, where she actually became the 2nd WWF Women’s Champion for her win. Though he started out as the good guy, she seen became the heel (the villain)and ended up suing the WWE for $110 million. She cited claims of poor working conditions and sexual harassment. Aside from professional wrestling, she also featured on the cover of Playboy three times.
Sable – Now
In 2004, Sable officially retired from the WWE to have more time to spend with her family. Sable was married to Wayne Richardson in 1986, and the two had a daughter together. Sadly, Richardson passed away in a drunk driving accident. Her second husband, Marc Mero, was also in the professional wresting game and they were married in 1993. 11 years later, they were divorced and she then married another professional wrestler, Brock Lesnar. They had been together ever since.
Booker T – Then
Booker T Huffman Jr has a CV to be proud of, becoming the first ever African American Wrestler to win the world champion six times. Throughout his career he has actually managed to scoop a shocking 35 titles, making him one of the best wrestlers of all time. This photo shows him in his prime, doing what he loves, and looking every inch the part.
Booker T – Now
Life has changed somewhat for Booker T since then, and he began working as a color commentator for SmackDown. He was also the General Manager of SmackDown for a time, alongside Eve Torres and Theodore Long. In 2012, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. He retired in 2016, and now works for pay per views as a panellist when he isn’t spending time with his gorgeous family off screen.
Kane – Then
Kane was born in Torrejon de Ardoz, Spain in 1967, but came to American with his parents who were in the US Airforce at the time and station overseas. In college, he saw a WWE special on television in his dorm room, and decided he loved it so much that he wanted to pursue professional wrestling. Of course, he was 300 pounds a the time, so he was already qualified. Originally, he was going for a football career, but after a knee injury, he knew he needed to change his plan.
Kane – Now
Nowadays, the retired wrestler lives a pretty normal life in Knoxville, TN. In 1995, he married Crystal Goins and the couple had two daughters. He and his wife now own The Jacobs Agency (an Allstate franchise). He is also big into politics now, speaking publicly about it on his blog and podcasts . In fact, he has just recently announced his plans to run for mayor of his town. It’s a far cry from professional wrestling, but maybe it’s time for an enormous change.
Stacy Keibler– Then
You might remember Stacy from her first TV debut on WWE, which was totally unforgettable. It aired in 2001 during an episode of SmackDown! She was brought out into the ring by Shane McMahonin to serve as a distraction to Rhyno, making him lose the match. She was also one of the original four girls to wrestler in the first-ever tag team Bra and Panties Match. Stacy lost the match, but not before being stripped down to her yellow bra and panties.
Stacy Keibler – Now
Nowadays, Stacy has stepped back from her crazy days as a model and professional wrestler. Instead, she spends her time with her husband, Jared Pobre (CEO of Future Ads), and their young daughter, Ava.
Randy Orton – Then
Randy Orton is definitely a WWE legend, as he is a 13-time world champion, he’s held the WWE Championship nine times, and the WWE World Heavyweight Championship four times. He is actually the 3rd generation of professional wrestler in his family, his grandfather being Bob Orton, Sr., his father being “Cowboy” Bob Orton, and his uncle being Barry Orton. Before joining the WWE, Randy wrestled for Mid-Missouri Wrestling Association-Southern Illinois Conference Wrestling.
Randy Orton – Now
These days, Randy Orton lives in St. Charles, Missouri and is married to Samantha Speno. The couple had their first daughter, Alanna Marie, in 2008. The couple divorced in 2013, and Orton was married again in 2015 to Kimberly Kessler. The couple had a daughter, Brooklyn Rose, in 2016. In 2007, there was a huge scandal written in Sports Illustrated concerning Orton’s illegal substance use for performance enhancement.
Lita – Then
Lita might be what you know her as, but this powerful woman was born Amy Christine Dumas, and is not just a wrestler, but also a singer and a WWE analyst to boot! She has worked with both Extreme Championship Wrestling, as well as being signed with the WWE. You might remember her in the trio Team Xtreme which also housed Jeff and Matt Hardy. Not content to win the championship once or twice, Lita actually has won four times.
Lita – Now
If you’re hot on the music scene, you might already know that Lita has enjoyed a successful music career since she gave up the wrestling game in 2006. Her rock band is called the Luchagors, and she also has her own radio show which is called Amy’s Discordia. Not content with the music world, Lita also entered the world of acting, appearing in some reality TV shows like The Weakest Link, Fear Factor, and Headbangers Ball.
Goldberg – Then
It’s not at all surprising from this photo that the man you’re looking at held the longest winning streak in professional wrestling. He was also the 5th wrestler to ever win the WCW Triple Crown. Bill Goldberg simply goes by Goldberg, and is more than just a wrestler. He is also a football player, and a mixed martial arts color commentator. Goldberg is proud of his Jewish heritage, including refusing to wrestle on Yom Kippur.
Goldberg – Now
Recently, Goldberg has returned to WWE, appearing on Raw with a rivalry with Brock Lesnar. He has not ruled out coming back again in the future. Goldberg might look like the strong serious type, but he’s a softie at heart, advocating for many animal charities to stop illegal animal fighting, as well as visiting children in hospital who are having cancer treatments. He is married to Wanda Ferraton and they have one child together.
Scotty 2 Hotty – Then
Okay, so you might know this guy by a few different names. There’s Scotty 2 Hotty, Scott Taylor – and his birth name, Scott Ronald Garland. This WWE wrestler has been wrestling since 1991 and has so far won numerous competitions and titles. Yep, this guy has won the WWF Tag Team Championship, the WWE Tag Team Championship, and the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship. So you could say that Scotty 2 Hotty was kind of a big deal.
Scotty 2 Hotty – Now
During the mid-’00s, Scotty 2 Hotty took a break from competitive wrestling and decided to spend a little more time on himself and his craft. So, he spent a few years making sporadic appearances in WWE and the independent circuit and even started his training to become a fully fledged firefighter in Florida. Because why not, ey? But don’t worry, he hasn’t left his wrestling days behind him. In 2016, Scott Garland returned as a trainer to the WWE.
The Honky Tonky Man – Then
When you have a nickname like the Honky Tonk Man, no one is going to remember that your real name is Wayne Farris. Farris wrestled under his memorable stage name for the WWF as well as WCW. He is well known for holding the WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship title for an amazing 64 weeks. It eventually was lost to The Ultimate Warrior, but it made his name for him in the industry.
The Honky Tonky Man – Now
The Honky Tonk Man left WWE slowly, making appearances once in a while, from his departure in 2009 all the way until 2013. He is now on the independent circuit. Did you know that he has a famous cousin, no other than Jerry Lawler himself? He is also happily married to Tammy Farris, and the couple have two children together. They live happily in Gilbert, Arizona.
Rey Mysterio – Then
Let’s be honest, it’s pretty hard to forget the King of Mysteries’ iconic masks. Born Oscar Gutierrez, this wrestler was known as the elusive Rey Mysterio – with an epic Lucha Libre style that put him at that top of his game during the ‘90s and ‘00s. Over the curse of his decade-long wrestling career, Rey Mysterio managed to win the World Heavyweight Championship, WWE Cruiserweight Championship, the WWE Championship and more. So you could say he was kind of a big deal…
Rey Mysterio– Now
Thankfully, Rey Mysterio is still going strong today – and weirdly, looks almost the same as he did a decade ago! The King Mystery is still fighting in the ring nowadays (with even more iconic masks in tow) with Lucha Underground, and has even taken his wrestling talents to the independent circuit. Yep, Mysterio has appeared on numerous independent wrestling shows, including House of Glory, Black Destiny Wrestling, and QPW. With no plans to retire anytime soon, this guy is here to stay.
The Miz – Then
Even if you didn’t know what this guy looked like, you definitely knew his name. Under the stage name of The Miz, Michael Gregory Mizanin first made a name for himself when he appeared on the popular MTV show, The Real World: Back to New York. Since 2001, his fame has skyrocketed into the realm of legends as has competed and hosted in the likes of WWE Diva Search, Big Show, Wrestlemania and other huge competitions within the wrestling circuit.
The Miz – Now
Nowadays, The Miz is still one of the biggest names in the world of wrestling and is currently signed to WWE. However, between 2012 and 2017 The Miz took a break from the big leagues and entered the Intercontinental Championships instead – but he’s now back with a bang on the main stage with his ‘Miztourage’ which includes Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas. At the moment, he is drafted up with the Raw brand and is continuing to dominate the ring.
Steve Austin – Then
Let’s be honest, we all know to stay well away from Steve Austin – otherwise, he might leave us ‘Stone Cold’ on the floor. Over the course of his career, Austin has been recognized as one of the best wrestlers in history, after an incredible debut into the wrestling world in 1991. He started his journey in World Championship Wrestling, before trying his hand at Extreme Championship Wrestling (ouch). Then, he found his groove within the WWE and has been dominating ever since.
Steve Austin – Now
Over the course of his wrestling career, Steve Austin has held a whopping 19 championship titles, and has won the WWF an incredible 6 times! However, Steve partially retired from professional wrestling in 2005. Although he still continues to wrestle every now and then in the likes of anniversary specials and Raw episodes, Stone Cold Steve Austin is now focusing most of his time on his TV and acting career – with a new haircut to go with his new career.
The Ultimate Warrior – Then
The Ultimate Warrior was born James Brian Hellwig, but The Warrior, (or just Warrior to his friends) is what he’s better known as. He wrestled with the World Wrestling Foundation and enjoyed a long and happy career with a lot of success. In fact, he was the only wrestler in the Heavyweight community to win both the Intercontinental championship and the World Championship, holding both titles at the same time.
The Ultimate Warrior – Now
Things changed for this illustrious wrestler once he retired from the ring in 1998. We did get to see him wrestle one last time, in Spain in 2008, but mostly he retired from that world altogether, and began a public speaking career! In April of 2014, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, before just three days later, the day after his first appearance on Raw in 18 years, he passed away of cardiovascular disease.
Ron Van Dam – Then
Before he was Ron Van Dam, he was Robert Szatkowski, a WWE fan who was in the audience watching the show hen he was randomly selected to come up to the stage and kiss DiBiase’s foot for $100. This little stunt actually ended up in the Before They Were Superstars DVD as a bonus feature, after Van Dam joined the WWE. Van Dam quickly became a legend, as he became the only wrestler in history to hold the WWE Championship, the ECW World Championship, and the TNA World Heavyweight Championship.
Ron Van Dam – Now
Nowadays, Van Dam is still wrestling professionally, though not with the WWE. Unfortunately for the wrestling legend, he has come into some hard times. His divorce from 19-year wife, Sonia, is currently still pending. He also ran into some trouble with drug and paraphernalia possession charges, when police found 18 grams of marijuana and 5 pills of Vicodin in his car when he was pulled over for speeding by a State Trooper.
Terry Funk – Then
Terry Funk has a professional wrestling career that spans 50 years, and he’s still not finished yet. He began his wrestling career with theNWA Western States Wrestling in 1965, where he worked with his father, professional wrestler Dory Funk, Sr., in Amarillo, Texas. Terry and his brother, Dory Funk, Jr., quickly became famous in both tag teams and individual matches. Terry then moved on to Japan, where he became a huge success in All Japan Pro Wrestling.
Terry Funk – Then
Terry funk doesn’t seem to want to quit wrestling anytime soon. Up until 2016, Funk continued being featured in matches with the WWE, APJW, and the ECW as an independent wrestler. He recently underwent a surgery inguinal hernia, and was supposed to be on bed rest for a number of weeks. However, he chose to instead carry on wrestling in a House of Hardcore show. Aside from wrestling, Terry had a very short-lived music career.
Great Khali – Then
There’s a reason why Great Khali is known as the Great Khali, and it’s not because of his ‘great’ personality. Standing at a whopping 7 foot 1 inch, he is one of the tallest professional wrestlers in the history of the sport. However, this guy didn’t always want to be a wrestler. In fact, Kahli, who was born Dalip Singh Rana, spent his time working in the Punjab State Police before making his debut. And what a debut it was.
Great Khali – Now
After having a ‘great’ career, Great Khali has now semi-retired from the world of professional wrestling. In fact, the wrestler formed his own wrestling school in 2015, called the Continental Wrestling Entertainment, which has continued to grow. Thankfully, he made a triumphant return to the world of WWE earlier in 2017 and took a trip to the Battleground to help out his pal, Jinder Mahal (more on him later). He is now also a prominent television personality in both India and America.
Jinder Mahal – Then
Yuvraj Singh Dhesi is probably a name you haven’t heard before, but what about Jinder Mahal? Of course, you’ve heard of him. Jinder is the perfect example of someone who started from the bottom now he’s here – as he started his career as a budding pro wrestler on the independent circuit. He then made his professional debut in 2010 and became a major player in the world of WWE the following year, before striking up an alliance with fellow wrestler, Great Khali.
Jinder Mahal – Now
Jinder Mahal is still a major player in the world of wrestling and is currently signed to the big boys of wrestling, the WWE. In fact, he’s the current champion! This incredible win was a huge moment for the world of wrestling, and for Jinder himself – because his win meant he was the first ever Indian wrestler to bag the prolific title. He is currently in an alliance with Rusev, and we can’t wait to see how their battles play out.
Bret Hart – Then
The Hart wrestling family is like wrestling royalty, and Bret is no exception. Throughout the 80’s and the 90’s he had a ton of success in the ring, but unfortunately stopped abruptly after a concussion in 1999. He officially retired a year later. He has held 32 championships in his career, spanning five decades, and is a seven time world champion wrestler, as well as holding more titles than we could find time to write about!
Bret Hart – Now
Bret won his last championship in 2010, and since then has made sporadic appearances in the ring and in the public spotlight. He has been married three times, and had four children and two grandchildren! His most recent marriage was to his current wife, Stephanie Hart in 2010, and the pair seem to be going strong. Post retirement, Bret served as the General Manager at Raw. He is probably one of the most famous wrestlers of all time.
Jacqueline – Then
You don’t forget the Pretty Mean Sisters in a hurry, and you’re looking at one third of the trio right now. Joined by Terri Runnels and Ryan Shamrock, Jacqueline DeLois Moore made up the group of wrestlers. Her own career alone was pretty hot too, with lots of success working for the WWE in the 90’s and 00’s. She also took part in WCW and TNA, making a name for herself as both a competitior and a manager.
Jacqueline – Now
Jacqueline holds some pretty great achievements to her name, including winning the WWE Cruiserweight Championship, only the third woman ever to do that. She was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2016. Did you know that she’s not just a professional wrestler, but also awesome at martial arts like tae kwon do, as well as both boxing and kickboxing. She might be the last woman in the world I would want to upset!
Rick Steiner – Then
Rick Steiner was the ring name of Robert Rechsteiner, who was a major player in the world of wrestling during the ‘80s, ‘90s, and ‘00s. This guy made a major impression during his career and won the Tag Team Championships a whopping eight times as part of The Steiner Brothers – the wrestling duo that also featured his brother, Scott. Throughout the course of his career, Rick Steiner competed in Extreme Championship Wrestling and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling.
Rick Steiner – Now
Since 2013, Rick Steiner has been semi-retired from the world of professional wrestling. Although he makes sporadic appearances every now and then and often fights in the independent circuit, Steiner has found new meaning in life – and has taken himself back to school. As well as working on the board for the Cherokee County School District, Steiner also owns his own real estate company and is doing pretty well in the world of business. He really is a man of many talents!
Kevin Nash – Then
Alongside fellow wrestler Scott Hall, Kevin Nash started New World Order, (nWo) once he joined the WCW. He has also worked for WWF and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, and started his career in WWE as Diesel as well. He gets around! Nash stayed with TNA for seven years, and then moved onto the Independent circuit for a year. He then made some part time appearances back with WWE. This photo shows him at the top of his game.
Kevin Nash – Now
Lots has changed for Kevin Nash over the years, and he even managed to score himself some acting experience! He played Super Shredder in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze! And for a totally different kind of role, he was also in Magic Mike XXL as an erotic dancer. As well as the big screen, you might have spotted Kevin Nash on television, in The Love Boat, and even Sabrina the Teenage Witch!
Mick Foley – Then
There probably isn’t a wrestling organization which Mick Foley hasn’t been involved in at one time or another! He has wrestled with The WWE, WCW, ECW and both NWA and TNA. You might recognise some more of his stage names, which include Cactus Jack, Dude Love and Mankind. His expertise is in tag team championships, winning 8 with the WWF, and 11 overall. This photo shows him in his winning moments, full of glory, and quite a bit of exhaustion we would think!
Mick Foley – Now
This year marks Mick Foley’s induction into the WWE Hall of Fame, as well as his last appearance at WrestleMania. But did you know that as well as a talented wrestler, Foley has a way with words? He has worked on New York Times Bestselling memoirs which prove that he is more than just a strong man. He has also appeared on TV in comedy show 30 rock as well as SNL, and in movies which include Big Money Hustlahs, and Dixieland. A jack of all trades, to be sure.
Yokozuna – Then
Rodney Agatupu Anoaʻi is the real name of American wrestler Yokozuna, who is famous for his time as a professional wrestler with WWF. Yokozuna is famous for being a two-time WWF World Heavyweight Champion, as well as winning the Tag-Team Championship twice as well alongside Owen Hart. He was the first wrestler of Samoan descent to hold the championship title, although he himself was born in Los Angeles, California.
Yokozuna – Now
Unfortunately, Yokozuna died in the year 2000 from pulmonary edema. An extremely heavy guy, at the time of his death his weight was found to be 580 lbs. He left behind two children, Justin and Keilani. His cousins include Roman Reigns and the Uso family, as they are all part of the Anoa’I wrestling family. In 2012, he was posthumously inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, a poignant and tragic moment for everyone there.
Randy Savage – Then
Did you know that Randy Savage was named by WWE as the greatest InterContinental champion of all time? He was even told that his amazing in-ring performances brought a higher level of credibility to the title overall. It’s no wonder that he was the 1987 King of the Ring, headlining many Wrestlemania events, and being one of the most popular wrestlers in the game. He won 29 titles during his 32 year long career.
Randy Savage – Now
Yet another name on our list who sadly had to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame posthumously. Randy Savage died in 2011 after a sudden heart attack. This happened while he was driving his Jeep, on the road, so he lost control of the vehicle and collided with a tree. While the first reports were that the crash had killed him, he and his wife had been wearing seat belts and had just minor injuries. The underlying heart condition which caused his death he may never have known about.
Big Show – Then
Big Show’s real name is Paul Donald Wight II and he was born in 1972. He signed to the WWE in 1995, where he was originally cast as Andre the Giant’s son, the giant (although this was later abandoned and he became Big Show). He is a 7 time world champion, an 11 time tag team champion, the 24th Triple Crown winner, and the 12th Grand Slam winner. He has also headlined multiple events since the start of his wrestling career.
Big Show – Now
Although Big Show is still signed with the WWE, he is currently inactive due to a knee injury that happened during his time wrestling. Like many other professional wrestlers, Big Show has acted in several movies and television series such as Jingle All The Way, The Waterboy, Star Trek: Enterprise, Royal Pains, Psych, and Burn Notice. He had his first leading role in 2010 in the WWE Studios produced film, Knuckleheads.
Sid – Then
Call him Sid Vicious, call him Sid Justice, or even call him Sycho Sid, but this guy means business. He is famous for wrestling with both WWF and World Championship Wrestling, and has had a great career which has lasted well over three decades. He is a world champion six times over, winning three championships two times each. These are the USWA Unified World Heavyweight Championship, the WCW World Heavyweight Championship, and the WWF Championship.
Sid – Now
An injury can put a great player out of the game for good, and that’s what happened here with Sid. In the year 2000, he fractured his leg and his game was put on hold, for good. (He did reappear in 2012 to win a game against Heath Slater though!) We’ve seen him perform a handful of times since then, including wrestling Paul Rosenberg to defeat earlier in 2017. Sid is married to Sabrina Paige, and the pair have two sons, Frank and Gunnar.
Roddy Piper – Then
There are a few iconic things which everyone remembers about Roddy ‘Rowdy’ Piper. One of them was his hot temper, which helped him claim the nickname Hot Rod, and another was his famous kilts! He wore this Scottish dress and would play bagpipe music too, because he has some Scottish ancestry, even though he is actually personally from Canada! Roddy Piper played in both the WWF as well as the World Championship Wrestling.
Roddy Piper – Now
Once he gave up that kilt, Roddy looked better than ever. After he left the ring, despite never actually winning a world championship he was still one of the worlds most recognised wrestlers, and even managed to turn his fame into a new career in acting! You might remember him starring in episodes of the hit comedy show, t’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia. Unfortunately, aged just 61, Roddy Piper died in 2015.
Ric Flair – Then
Not many wrestlers can boast a career which spans more than forty years. But Ric Flair is one of those. For more than four decades he has been a household name in wrestling, working for the WWE, as well as the National Wrestling Alliance and Total Nonstop Wrestling. He has been named wrestler of the year six times! Sometimes known as Nature Boy, this is a true legend you see before you.
Ric Flair – Now
While he might look older and wiser, Ric is still heavily involved in the wrestling world today. His daughter Ashley is none other than Charlotte Flair, a prominent wrestler in her own right. One claim to fame which Ric has, is that he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame not once, but twice! Once was for himself, and once as a member of The Four Horsemen. He was also the very first wrestler to ever win the WCW World Heavyweight Championship.
Andre the Giant – Then
You only need to take one look at this photo to see why our friend Andre Rene Roussimoff was known as Andrew the Giant. Born in France, he began training as a teenager, and wrestled independently around the globe from a young age. In 1973, he began wrestling with the WWF, and became immediately well known for beating Buddy Wolfe in his very first match. His streak was undefeated from 1973 to 1987.
Andre the Giant – Now
One of Andre’s most famous wrestling high points was when he performed in WrestleMania 2 in 1986. Both professional wrestlers and NFL stars were taking part, and Andre beat over 20 other men to win! After he finished his wrestling career, he acted in the movie The Princess Bride in 1987, a role which is he well remembered for. Tragically, he died from heart complications in 1993, but passed away quietly in his sleep.
John Cena – Then
With his frosted tips and big muscles, John Cena made a definite impression on the world of wrestling in 1999. He started his career on the Ultimate Pro Wrestling circuit and later became a major player in the world of WWE. As his fame and popularity grew, Cena meshed together his wrestling talents and his rapping skills to become a leading cast member of SmackDown! After this brief stint as a rapper, Cena morphed into the wrestler we know and love today.
John Cena – Now
Nowadays, John Cena is still one of the most celebrated wrestlers of all time. He is currently signed to the WWE but is not tied down to any brand or company – in fact; he divides his time between the SmackDown and Raw brands. However, John Cena has also made a name for himself outside of the world of wrestling, and has since become a TV host and actor, appearing in the likes of Daddy’s Home, Trainwreck, Sisters and Jimmy Kimmel Live!
AJ Lee – Then
AJ Lee was a relatively new addition to the WWE roster when she joined in 2007. Although she was pretty new to the game, she soon built up a major fan following – because of the drama this diva produced. Yep, AJ found herself in the midst of a major love square between CM Punk, Kane and Daniel Bryan, but this didn’t stop her from winning the Divas Championship three times, as well as the Slammy Award three times.
AJ Lee – Now
We were sad to see AJ Lee retire from the world of professional wrestling in 2015, especially as we discovered that she had left because of the WWE’s treatment of female wrestlers. Nevertheless, AJ has continued to rise into the ranks of fame since her retirement and is now focusing on new career ventures. Nowadays, she is recognized as an author and has released her popular memoir; Crazy Is My Superpower: How I Triumphed by Breaking Bones, Breaking Hearts and Breaking Rules.
Corey Graves – Then
Like many of the WWE wrestlers on this list, Corey Graves got his start in the independent circuit. Well, this guy did much more than that – he dominated the independent circuit. Before too long, his incredible talents were recognized by the WWE, and he was signed to the prestigious NXT division. He became hugely popular in the world of wrestling and was a fan favorite. Overall, he is noted for his mammoth match with the one and only Seth Rollins.
Corey Graves – Now
However, Corey Graves’ wrestling dreams came crashing down when the WWE decided he was no longer fit to compete. Like many wrestlers, Corey was prone to injury and would suffer concussion after concussion. It soon became too much for the WWE Wellness Program to ignore, so he was forced into retirement. Thankfully, he hasn’t left the wrestling world completely as he is now a color commentator for SmackDown Live and Raw. Maybe we’ll see him back in the ring one day?
Lance Storm – Then
There’s a high chance you remember Lance Storm because he was one of the most notorious and controversial wrestlers to ever step foot in the ring. Lance made his debut in the ‘90s and early ‘00s as part of the Un-American group. These dudes wandered around with an upside-down American flag and would show their allegiance to Canada (which didn’t always go down well). Although he never won any major championships, he won various matches over the course of his career.
Lance Storm – Now
After a few decades in the wrestling circuit, Lance Storm made the tough decision to retire from the world of WWE. Although he quit mainstream wrestling, he still continues to wrestle in the independent circuit – but only when he has time. Nowadays, Lance spends most of his day working at his own wrestling school. As well as owning the school, he also trains his students and even writes a wrestling column each month. Is he the coolest guy ever? We think so.
Shane McMahon – Then
Shane McMahon is one of the biggest names in the world of WWE – mostly because he is part of the McMahon family, who actually own WWE. It’s no surprise that Shane found his career in the world of wrestling, and started working for the brand at just 15-years-old as a warehouse worker. He soon became a wrestler himself and was a major on-air character and referee. Most notably, he negotiated terms with the likes of Mike Tyson and Steve Austin.
Shane McMahon – Now
After a few decades in the ring, Shane McMahon took a break from the world of wrestling in 2009 to focus on his business ventures as a shareholder in the WWE brand, and the owner of YOU on Demands Holding, Inc. Thankfully, he made a return to wrestling in 2016 when he appeared in a Raw episode. Since then, he has been the commissioner of SmackDown Live – although we’re not sure whether he’ll get back in the ring himself.
Molly Holly – Then
Let’s be honest; Molly Holly deserved way more credit than she got. In fact, we believe she’s one of the most underrated female wrestlers in history! Holly was a beast in the ring, and her wrestling talents earned her two Women’s Championship titles and the Hardcore Title. Throughout her wrestling career, she became known for her allegiance to Crash Holly and Bob Holly, and they soon formed the Holly Cousins. She later feuded with Spike Dudley in an almighty battle.
Molly Holly – Now
Sadly, Molly Holly retired from the world of professional wrestling in 2005, after a successful eight years in the ring. Although she did not disclose the main reason why she left, it is believed that she did not agree with the way that women were treated in the WWE. Nowadays, Molly is still surrounding herself with the sport and other professionals as she works in The Academy School of Professional Wrestling in Minneapolis as a wrestling coach.
Triple H – Then
There has never been a wrestler with quite as many names as this guy! Born Paul Michael Levesque, he has wrestled firstly under the name Terra Ryzing, and then Jean-Paul Levesque once he joined the WCW. When he left to join WWE he decided to go by Triple H, which actually stands for Hunter Hearst Helmsley. It’s been a long journey, but the last name stuck, and now Triple H is one of the most recognized wrestler names of all time.
Triple H – Now
There’s no doubt that Triple H is pretty rock solid as one of the world’s greatest wrestlers, as he has won 25 world championships. Nine of these are WWE Champion titles, and he also has 5 Heavyweight titles, too. Not content to be rocking his career, Triple H also has a perfect home life, he has been married to Stephanie McMahon since 2003, and the couple have three daughters, Aurora, Vaughn, and Murphy.
Hulk Hogan – Then
Hulk Hogan has become a household name over the passed for decades; absolutely everyone knows him, even if they are not professional wrestling fans. Hogan is often regarded as the greatest professional wrestler in history, and according to IGN, he is “”the most recognized wrestling star worldwide and the most popular wrestler of the 1980s.” In 2005, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Hulk Hogan – Now
Aside from wrestling, Hogan has acted in a number of films, including Rocky III, No Holds Barred, Mr. Nanny, and Santa with Muscles. He also starred in his own reality TV show, Hogan Knows Best. Hogan even tried his hand at singing, releasing a CD, Hulk Rules, as Hulk Hogan and The Wrestling Boot Band. Hogan has even made several appearances in music videos, including Dolly Parton’s wrestling-themed love song “Headlock on my Heart.”
Chris Jericho – Then
Chris Jericho is a Canadaian-American professional wrestler who is most notably famous for his time with the WWE. Jericho did not wrestle under a contract, so aside from the WWE, he also wrestled with the WCW (World Championship Wrestling), the EWC (Extreme Championship Wrestling), and even competed in Japan with the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW). In 1999, he became the lead singer for the band, Fozzy.
Chris Jericho – Now
Nowadays, Chris hasn’t changed much. He is still wrestling with the WWE and the NJPW, and still performing music with his band. Jericho has also written a biography about his life, A Lion’s Tale: Around the World in Spandex. He has also made appearances in television shows and films, such as Albino Farm, MacGruber, and the wrestling documentary, Nine Legends.
Roman Reigns – Then
Roman Reigns, also known as Leati Joseph Anoaʻi (his birth name) was expected to have a career in football, as he played in college for Georgia Tech. He then had a few NFL short term contracts with the Minnesota Vikings and Jacksonville Jaguars. He also played for the Edmonton Eskimos in the CFL (Canadian Football League). After he retired from football in 2008, he began to pursue a career in professional wrestling, and was signed with WWE by 2010.
Roman Reigns – Now
Within the last 3 years, Roman Reigns has become the new face of the WWE. He often headlines major events such as multiple WrestleManias. Interestingly, although he is viewed as a “babyface” character (aka one of the good guys), he has been named things like “Most Hated Wrestler of the Year” and “Most Overrated.”
Shawn Michaels – Then
Ask anyone who was into wrestling in the 90’s or the 00’s who the best wrestler of that era was, and they’re likely to bring up the name of Shawn Michaels. He wrestled for WWF from 1988 until 1998, but his retirement didn’t suit him, and he came back to the game from 2002 until 2010. He is a four time world champion as well as a two time winner of the Royal Rumble. In 2011, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, much deserved.
Shawn Michaels – Now
While Shawn has retired for the last time, he still makes sporadic appearances on Raw as well as being a WWE ambassador and trainer. He is happily married to Rebecca Curci, who you might know better as former Nitro Girl, Whisper. They got married in Vegas with an Elvis impersonator as their only witness! The couple have two children, a son Cameron Kade, and a daughter Cheyenne. The pair are religious Christians.