Warrior Warrior
Professional wrestler; bodybuilder; motivational speaker
Warrior Warrior
Warrior is a retired American professional wrestler who has notably wrestled under the ring names The Ultimate Warrior and Warrior. He is best known for his appearances in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) from 1987 to 1991 and again in 1992 and 1996, and in World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1998. He won the WWF World Championship when he pinned Hulk Hogan in the main event of WrestleMania VI.
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  • 2009
    Age 49
    On September 18, 2009, Warrior's lawsuit in Arizona was dismissed.
    More Details Hide Details Warrior formally retired from wrestling in 1999 and had a short-lived career as a conservative speaker and commentator, partnering with conservative spokesman Daniel Pinheiro, denouncing left-wing politics. In one instance, he mentioned that "queering doesn't make the world work" during a speech at the University of Connecticut. Warrior explained those comments on his website as meaning that the human race would die out if everyone were a homosexual. In May 1996, Warrior began publishing a comic book, titled Warrior, featuring himself as the main character. The series was co-written with Jim Callahan and illustrated by the Sharp Brothers. The title sold well for the first two months, before sales slowed down. The comic was canceled in early 1997. Warrior maintains a blog on his personal website titled "Warrior's Machete", where he discusses his personal life, his personal views on politics, sexuality, patriotism, and his legacy as a wrestler, amongst other topics. There have been numerous instances where Warrior has used his blog to address his viewpoint on members of his wrestling past (Vince McMahon, Road Warrior Animal, The British Bulldog, Owen Hart, Hulk Hogan, Lex Luger); historical (Martin Luther King, George Washington) or religious figures (Jesus). Warrior depicts celebrities who were newsworthy at the time of his blog (Heath Ledger and Paris Hilton). Warrior occasionally references his respect for the Founding Fathers of the United States, and also enjoys books like Homer's "Odyssey" and James Allen "As A Man Thinketh".
  • 2006
    Age 46
    In January 2006, Warrior filed another lawsuit against WWE in an Arizona court over the depiction of his wrestling career in The Self-Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior DVD.
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  • 2005
    Age 45
    On September 27, 2005, WWE released a DVD documentary focusing on Warrior's retrospective wrestling career, titled The Self-Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior.
    More Details Hide Details The DVD featured clips of his more notable feuds and matches along with commentary from WWE stars past and present (most of which are unflattering), with Triple H (by this point one of WWE's top main eventers and the husband of Vince McMahon's daughter Stephanie McMahon) adding that his WrestleMania debut loss against Warrior at WrestleMania XII left him with mixed emotions, saying that Warrior "ruined the experience" for him and was "one of the most unprofessional guys" he's ever fought. The DVD has provoked some controversy due to Warrior's own allegations of libel by WWE against him. Originally, Warrior was asked to help with the production of the DVD, but as he refused to work with WWE (citing he did not want to be associated with their promotion), there has been some resulting animosity between Warrior and WWE over the Warrior claiming bias on the part of WWE.
  • 2000
    Age 40
    Warrior married for the second time in 2000 to Dana.
    More Details Hide Details Together they have two daughters: Indiana Marin "Indy" Warrior (born 2000) and Mattigan Twain Warrior (born December 16, 2002) In 1993, Hellwig legally changed his name to Warrior. This one-word name appears on all legal documents pertaining to Warrior, and his children carry the Warrior name as their legal surname.
  • 1998
    Age 38
    Warrior's last appearance in WCW was on the November 9, 1998 edition of Nitro, when he came to the rescue of The Disciple who was being attacked by members of nWo.
    More Details Hide Details Warrior announced his retirement the following year. During an April 19, 2008 Nu-Wrestling Evolution (NWE) event in Madrid, Spain, Warrior was presented with an award celebrating his professional wrestling career in front of over 15,000 attendees. During the presentation, NWE Heavyweight Champion Orlando Jordan mocked a fan of Warrior's, resulting in a heated argument between Warrior and Jordan. As a result of the exchange, a match between Warrior and Jordan was scheduled for June 25, 2008 in the Palau Municipal d'Esports de Badalona in Barcelona, marking Warrior's first match in nearly 10 years. After much hype, On June 25, he finally made his much anticipated return to pro wrestling when he faced Jordan for the NWE Heavyweight Championship. Warrior promoted the show on his website and trained with Rob Van Dam during the summer. Notably, the match lasted over 12 minutes - the Warrior did a top rope flying body press and a top rope superplex and defeated Jordan with his clothesline/shoulder tackle finish, but was visibly winded throughout the match. After winning the match and the NWE Championship, Warrior spoke to the crowd for a moment and immediately vacated the title.
    WCW signed Warrior in 1998 and gave him a degree of creative control over his matches, He created a storyline where he formed a stable opposing Hogan's (now going under his heelish "Hollywood" gimmick) New World Order: the "One Warrior Nation."
    More Details Hide Details The acronym oWn (One Warrior Nation) was a play on the name nWo. Highlights of the storyline included Warrior kidnapping and "converting" The Disciple and frequent instances of "magic smoke" knocking out all of the nWo members except for Hollywood Hogan (and covering Warrior's movement through a trapdoor in the ring). Warrior only participated in three matches in WCW. The first was the War Games match at Fall Brawl, where he competed as a member of Team WCW, competing against 8 other wrestlers for a shot at Goldberg's WCW World Heavyweight Championship at Halloween Havoc. Diamond Dallas Page won the match by pinning Stevie Ray. On WCW Monday Nitro, he teamed with Sting to defeat Hogan and Bret Hart by disqualification, a match in which he had little participation; he was tagged in for a short exchange with Hart, then singlehandedly chased several nWo members down the entry way, whipping them with Hogan's belt. The third was his loss to Hogan at Halloween Havoc, in what is considered by Eric Bischoff to be one of the worst main event pay-per-view wrestling matches ever. In the Halloween Havoc match, the timing of the maneuvers and hits was poor; an arm injury that Warrior received at WarGames further slowed the action. An attempt to "blind" Warrior with a fireball backfired when Hogan faced complications igniting a piece of flash paper, causing the fire to go up in Hogan's face instead.
  • 1996
    Age 36
    Warrior and the WWF engaged in a series of lawsuits and legal actions in 1996 and 1998, where both parties sought a declaration that they owned the characters, Warrior and Ultimate Warrior, under both contract and copyright law.
    More Details Hide Details The court ruled that Warrior was legally entitled to use the gimmick, costuming, face paint designs, and mannerisms of the "Warrior" character.
    After three and a half years spent mostly outside the wrestling limelight, Warrior returned to the WWF in March 1996, squashing Hunter Hearst Helmsley at WrestleMania XII.
    More Details Hide Details He made his first appearance on Monday Night Raw on April 8, where he gave an in-ring interview and credited the "voices" of the "warriors" (his name for members of the WWF audience) for his return; he was then interrupted by Goldust. Warrior challenged for Goldust's WWF Intercontinental Championship at In Your House 7; Warrior won the match by countout, but did not win the title. The following night on Monday Night Raw, Warrior defeated Isaac Yankem. A rematch with Intercontinental Champion Goldust, on the May 27 edition of the show, ended in a double countout. Warrior defeated Jerry Lawler at the King of the Ring, and defeated Owen Hart by disqualification on the July 8 edition of Monday Night Raw. Warrior was scheduled to team with Shawn Michaels and Ahmed Johnson to face Owen Hart, Davey Boy Smith, and Vader at In Your House 9 later that month, but the WWF terminated Warrior's contract when he took time off allegedly to grieve the death of his father. WWF owner Vince McMahon claimed that Warrior had not seen his father in ten years and did not care much for him; therefore, he did not take Warrior's excuse for missing bookings at face value. Warrior disputes McMahon's explanation, claiming that the real reason why he no showed those events was a breach of contract by McMahon, in which WWF sold Warrior's merchandise without giving him a percentage.
  • 1995
    Age 35
    In July 1995, he returned to the ring for the National Wrestling Conference (NWC) promotion in Las Vegas, defeating The Honky Tonk Man.
    More Details Hide Details He had also wrestled a tour of Europe for Otto Wanz's Catch Wrestling Association (CWA) promotion.
  • 1992
    Age 32
    The WWF refused to accept the letter since Warrior was under contract until September of 1992.
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    In December 1992, he wrestled as the Dingo Warrior against Hercules Hernandez in Billerica, Massachusetts, for Killer Kowalski's International Wrestling Federation. In 1993, Hellwig played the role of "the swordsman" in the action movie Firepower. In March 1995, World Championship Wrestling (WCW) introduced The Renegade as Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage's "ultimate weapon", using ring attire and mannerisms that closely resembled Warrior's and many people believe The Renegade either was the Warrior or that WCW pretended he was, neither of which is true.
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    Between November 1992 and July 1995, Warrior was semi-retired.
    More Details Hide Details During his time away from the WWF, Warrior opened the short-lived "Warrior University", a professional wrestling school based in Scottsdale, Arizona.
    In November 1992 Warrior was scheduled to be the tag team partner of Savage, to be known as the Ultimate Maniacs to face Ric Flair and Razor Ramon at Survivor Series. However, weeks before the event, Warrior was released for disputed reasons. This also quashed a planned WWF Championship match with then-champion Bret Hart at the following pay-per-view event, the 1993 Royal Rumble.
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    The Warrior was booked for a WWF Championship match against then-champion, "Macho Man" Randy Savage at SummerSlam in August 1992.
    More Details Hide Details The Warrior would win the match by count-out but not the title.
    With Hulk Hogan about to leave WWF in mid-1992, McMahon contacted Warrior about returning.
    More Details Hide Details He made his comeback at WrestleMania VIII (to rescue Hulk Hogan from a beat down at the hands of Sid Justice and Papa Shango). When he made his return, he looked smaller and his hair was shorter, leading to a rumor that Hellwig had died and it was a different person. Upon his return, he received a degree of creative control over his bookings. One storyline involved Papa Shango, a "witch doctor," casting a spell over Warrior, causing him to convulse and vomit in very odd colors, though Warrior says he hated that story and had no control over it.
  • 1991
    Age 31
    Upon receiving the latter, Warrior refused the suspension and left the WWF. Warrior formally sent a letter of resignation to the WWF in October of 1991.
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    Following WWF's annual Summerslam event, Warrior was handed a letter dated August 26, 1991 from Vince McMahon stating that Warrior would be suspended effective immediately.
    More Details Hide Details Among other things, Vince stated, "you threatened to "stay at home" thereby not even appearing at Titan's major summer pay-per-view event Summerslam. I had no choice but to accede to your exorbitant demands. This was a serious mistake on your part." Vince later testified that the only reason the company agreed to the contract was to "acquiesce to his demands temporarily" to ensure Warrior would perform at the Summerslam event.
    The WWF responded on July 13, 1991 and stated that he would be paid $550,000 for Wrestlemania VII, he would receive a higher royalty rate and no other WWF performer would be paid more than him on WWF pay per views.
    More Details Hide Details Vince McMahon personally ended the letter by saying, "I would like to express my deepest appreciation and admiration for you as a performer, as a member of the WWF family, as a man, and as my friend."
    On July 10, 1991, Warrior sent a letter to Vince McMahon requesting what was to be included in Warrior's new WWF contract.
    More Details Hide Details Warrior requested $550,000 for performing at Wrestlemania VII as well as a guaranteed number of working days, travel accommodations, and a higher percentage of merchandise sales. In particular, Warrior remarked that the $550,000 figure "was not fair," and that "(Warrior) meant as much or more to the show than Hulk." Warrior ended his letter by stating, "Whatever your decision, I can and will live with it. Till then I remain home with one who cares."
    In January 1991, Warrior faced Sgt.
    More Details Hide Details Slaughter at the Royal Rumble. Slaughter's gimmick at the time was a traitor who had betrayed America by aligning himself with an (kayfabe) Iraqi military general, General Adnan. In the context of the Gulf War, this made Slaughter one of the most hated heels at the time. After rejecting an earlier request to grant a title shot to Savage, Sensational Sherri interjected herself in the Warrior's championship match to distract him. Her interference eventually led to a Savage sneak attack where he struck Warrior over the head with a metal scepter, and Slaughter pinned Warrior to win the WWF World Championship. Warrior would go on to feud with Savage, and the rivalry culminated in a 'Career Ending' match at WrestleMania VII with the Warrior victorious, forcing Savage to retire. The next chapter of Warrior's career was an encounter with The Undertaker, after Undertaker and his manager, Paul Bearer, locked Warrior in a coffin on the set of Bearer's Funeral Parlor. WWF officials worked feverishly to break the casket open, finally revealing Warrior's seemingly lifeless body, and the torn fabric inside of the coffin indicating Warrior's desperate struggle to get out. Warrior was finally revived by the officials performing CPR. This led to Jake "The Snake" Roberts offering to give Warrior "the knowledge of the dark side" in order to prepare Warrior to take his revenge on the Undertaker. This involved Roberts giving Warrior three "tests" shown on WWF TV in consecutive weeks.
  • 1990
    Age 30
    Following a few confrontations with Hogan, most notably at the 1990 Royal Rumble, the Warrior was written in as Hogan's opponent in the main event for WrestleMania VI at the SkyDome in Toronto, Ontario.
    More Details Hide Details The match was billed as "The Ultimate Challenge", as both Hogan's WWF World Championship and Warrior's WWF Intercontinental Championship were on the line. Warrior pinned Hogan after a Warrior Splash to become the first wrestler to hold the WWF World Championship and WWF Intercontinental Championship simultaneously. Warrior vacated the Intercontinental title, as WWF rules prohibited a wrestler from holding both singles titles. After WrestleMania VI, Warrior continued to build his popularity with successful defenses against the likes of Haku, Mr. Perfect, Rick Rude and Ted DiBiase. "Macho King" Randy Savage was also introduced as a potential rival after interfering in a Saturday Night's Main Event title match at the behest of DiBiase.
  • 1989
    Age 29
    Warrior enjoyed two stints as WWF Intercontinental Champion, defeating The Honky Tonk Man (in 13 seconds at the first ever SummerSlam in 1988) and Rick Rude at SummerSlam 1989.
    More Details Hide Details The Warrior was heralded as the wrestler to become the biggest star of the 1990s, and the successor to Hulk Hogan, who had remained wrestling's biggest star throughout the 1980s.
  • 1987
    Age 27
    The title was held up in April 1987 after Warrior left the WCCW.
    More Details Hide Details He was reinstated as champion upon returning, but vacated it once more upon resigning from WCCW to join the World Wrestling Federation, where he adopted the ring name Ultimate Warrior. Warrior began appearing on house shows in June and was initially billed as The Dingo Warrior in house card promos by Gene Okerlund, but soon had his name modified. There is dispute over who created the Ultimate Warrior name. Bruce Prichard stated that Vince McMahon did not know what a "Dingo" Warrior would be, but because there was the "Modern Day Warrior" Kerry von Erich and the Road Warriors there should not be one more simple warrior, but The Ultimate Warrior. However, Warrior claims after one of his first matches, McMahon had him do a pretaped promo. It was there Vince said we want you to do Warrior, but we don't want Dingo. The Warrior then proceeded to cut the promo and stated that he was not this warrior or that warrior, he was The Ultimate Warrior.
    In 1987, Warrior began competing for the WCWA Texas Heavyweight Championship, losing to Bob Bradley in a tournament final on January 12.
    More Details Hide Details He won the title from Bradley on February 2 of that year.
    He is best known for his appearances in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) from 1987 to 1991 and again in 1992 and 1996, and in World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1998.
    More Details Hide Details He won the WWF World Championship when he pinned Hulk Hogan in the main event of WrestleMania VI. Hellwig legally changed his name to Warrior in 1993. Warrior retired from professional wrestling in 1999 and embarked on a public speaking career. On June 25, 2008, he returned to wrestle Orlando Jordan in Barcelona, Spain defeating him in a match booked by the Italian Nu-Wrestling Evolution promotion. Warrior was described by World Wrestling Entertainment as having been "the ultimate archetype of strength and intensity", and "one of the most intense and physically impressive competitors to ever appear in the WWE". Warrior was born as James Brian Hellwig. He was the eldest of five children and was raised by his mother (along with, later, his stepfather) after his father left his family when young James was 12. He spent a year at Indiana State University. It was also during this time he began to compete in amateur bodybuilding.
  • 1986
    Age 26
    On November 17, 1986, Warrior and Von Erich defeated Master Gee (substituting for champion Buzz Sawyer) and Matt Borne to win the title.
    More Details Hide Details They held the Championship until December 1 of that year, when they lost to Al Madril and Brian Adias.
    In 1986, Warrior debuted in the Dallas, Texas-based World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) promotion, where he wrestled for $50 a night.
    More Details Hide Details He has stated that he adopted the ring name "Dingo Warrior" after a member of the WCCW locker room remarked that he looked like "a warrior". Warrior formed a tag team with Lance Von Erich, and the duo began competing for the WCWA World Tag Team Championship.
  • 1985
    Age 25
    In 1985, after spending six weeks in California training for a bodybuilding contest, he was invited to join a group of bodybuilders – Garland Donoho, Mark Miller, and Steve "Flash" Borden – who were attempting to make the transition into professional wrestlers.
    More Details Hide Details Warrior accepted the invitation and abandoned his bodybuilding career and his plans to become a chiropractor. Hellwig began his professional wrestling career as Jim "Justice" Hellwig of Powerteam USA, the group of bodybuilders trained by Red Bastien and Rick Bassman. Hellwig and Steve Borden, who would later go on to success as "Sting", formed a tag team known as the Blade Runners, with Hellwig changing his ring name to "Blade Runner Rock" and Borden changing his name to "Blade Runner Flash". Debuting in the Memphis, Tennessee-based Continental Wrestling Association (CWA) promotion, run by Jerry Jarrett, the team played baby faces at first, but fans were actually slow to take to the hulking duo in a territory that had featured sympathetic "good guy tag teams" like the Rock 'n' Roll Express and The Fabulous Ones. They were quickly turned heel as The Blade Runners. The Blade Runners went on to wrestle for the Mid-South Wrestling promotion, which became the Universal Wrestling Federation (UWF) in 1986. They were part of Eddie Gilbert's Hotstuff International group, before disbanding in 1986 when Hellwig left the UWF. Years later in a TNA interview when Steve Borden was asked about teaming with Hellwig, Borden referred to the relationship with Hellwig as being a "Tense year and when we parted ways it wasn't a friendly part".
    His last bodybuilding contest was 1985's Junior USA's, which was won by future IFBB Pro, Ron Love.
    More Details Hide Details Hellwig finished 5th.
  • 1983
    Age 23
    In 1983, he won the AAU Coastal USA, before taking the Mr. Georgia title the following year.
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  • 1982
    Age 22
    Warrior married Shari Lynn Tyree on October 2, 1982.
    More Details Hide Details The couple met in Dallas, Texas at the famous Million Dollar Saloon strip club where Shari was working at the time. They remained together for the majority of Warriors' WWF career before divorcing on March 22, 1991, two days before WrestleMania VII.
  • 1981
    Age 21
    Later, while he was attending Life University in Marietta, Georgia, he won the Junior Atlanta contest and placed 5th at the 1981 AAU Collegiate Mr. America.
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  • 1959
    Born on June 16, 1959.
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