One of the aspects about growing up as a fan of professional wrestling, it allows you this world of escape that you are free to enter into at any time to allow the fantasy to take place of your reality. Growing up we have seen our heroes of the ring transcend into legends of the squared circle. Where men/women that we admired, became that gods that we will never forget. Among the characters that the WWE have provided over the years, we have experienced our fair shares of Soldiers, Warlords, Barbarians and even Giants. But there is one that no matter the time and no matter the era, will always be deeply rooted into our hearts as… a Warrior. The Warrior is now officially Immortal.
To be inducted by: Linda McMahon
Yes, The Ultimate Warrior. The one that every young boy in the late 80s early 90s, would at one point tie tassels around their arms, and use the left over Halloween make up to paint their face, just to run around the house shirtless, screaming like a maniac. Such actions was almost a rites of passage for every young boy who would watch WWF Superstars on Saturday morning. But it was a rites of passage that was well rooted in all of us as we smile now on those fond memories.
When the news broke out about The Ultimate Warrior being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, it was one of those rare occurrences where not only was it the avid wrestling fans that were in glee, but it was every soul that was familiar with pro wrestling that were able to share in that same excitement. Not necessarily because the casual fan said to themselves “Well deserved, because of what he contributed to the business.”
No. More so because said casual fan instantly reminisced to themselves that inner child in them to bring them back to that moment of admiring this amazing wild man.
Personally as a fan of this emotional sport, as the WWE Hall of Fame is going on, I will be thinking beyond those heartfelt moments, but I will reflect on his career in the ring. Sure, title wise, his resume is not the longest, but just as Rudyard Kipling said in the poem “If”, “If you can fill the unforgiving minute with 60 seconds of distance run…” And if you are able to analyze that statement, you will see how it is germane to the Warriors career. It’s all about what you do with the time you are in the spotlight.
Immediately what comes to mind is my all-time favorite match of the Warriors and that was at WrestleMania 7 against Macho King Randy Savage in a “Retirement Match”. Although Savage completely carried the match, the Warrior was made to look simply marvelous as both of the men told one of the most emotional stories ever told in the ring. The part of the match where for the first time ever, The Warrior looks as if he is questioning himself, was able to make the turn around and found his will to win when Queen Sheri reminded him of the trash that he needed to rid the WWF of. And after three successful shoulder blocks, The Warrior would pin Savage with one foot on his chest, symbolic of the last 1 left standing alive. Brilliant.
This Saturday evening as The Warrior takes his rightful place in the WWE Hall of Fame, let us not necessarily pontificate over the DVD that was released in 2004, or the lack of ring psychology he may’ve possessed, or that infamous WCW run. But rather those reasons and moments that made us admire him in the first place. Whether it be that larger than life image of his, the insanely energized promos he would give, or the intensity that he would show going to the ring. Whatever it is, just smile knowing that it’s not just Jim Hellwig that is going into the Hall of Fame, it’s our beloved childhood that