Someone asked me about this the other day, and I remember all the controversy it caused outside the belt forums. I thought it would be cool to repost this, because many people are new, and weren’t around in the SlamFans days to discuss it. Also, there is still great confusion among fans about the belt and it’s origins. Hopefully this blog will help clear things up.
Although not 100% positive, I believe this belt started out as the NEW Winged Eagle that debuted at Wrestlemania 5. Randy Savage came out with his customized Winged Eagle, and it seemed as if they presented Hulk with a new belt after winning the match. This belt had customizations like “Hulk Hogan” on the logo plate instead of “Champion”, and reverted back to traditional strap style, unlike the smaller strap for Savage. I believe this belt was used from Wrestlemania until then end of October.
On October 31, 1989, at WWF Saturday Night’s Main Event XXIV, The Genius defeated WWF Champion Hulk Hogan by count out. Hogan was counted out after Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig hit Hogan in the back with the WWF title belt. After the match, Mr. Perfect stole Hulk’s WWF championship belt.
Later that night, Mr. Perfect came out with the belt, and proceeded to destroy the belt with a hammer to send a message to Hulk Hogan.
For years after that night, many people wondered what happened to that belt. Some believed it was simply thrown away, but the majority of fans believed the WWF Hardcore Title was made from the same belt destroyed that night in 1989.
After being destroyed, Hulk Hogan’s WWF belt, and as many of the pieces that could be found, were collected and eventually ended up in the private collection of then WWF referee/booker Mel Phillips. Mel maintained possession of the belt until I acquired it through one of his merchandise sales in 2007.
After confirming it’s authenticity with Dave Millican, I put the belt on eBay. The auction and news story made it on numerous sites including the Wrestling Observer newsletter, causing the auction to receive over 15,000 views.
The overwhelming response from fans, was that I was full of crap. They refused to believe that someone would keep a broken belt and a bag of pieces for over 15 years. I provided numerous amounts of proof on various websites, including video of the SNME before, after, and pics of my belt. I also posted comparison pictures of my belt and the Hardcore belt. The Hardcore belt was all gold, not dual plated like the SNME belt, and the Hardcore belt had breaks in different spots. After finally proving that, I just got flamed. Either people figured it was worthless and though the $10,000 BIN on eBay was crazy, or people though I was actually Mel Phillips, and I received a HUGE amount of email calling me a pedo, etc. (I am NOT Mel. Last I heard, he was working at a foot locker in Massachusetts)
I did not sell the belt on eBay, but I did sell it to a private collector for a respectable amount of money. The $10,000 BIN was not really meant to sell. It was more about advertising and trying to get a private sale.
I listed some other ring used belts on eBay at the same time trying to capitalize on the attention including the first TNA X-Title which did sell.
The Wikipedia page for the Hardcore Title was incorrect for years. Along with numerous other people, I tried to edit it. One of the Wiki moderators for the wrestling section is an egomaniac, who reverts every edit to numerous wrestling pages because it does not seem to fit his beliefs. The ending result, was many people getting banned from Wikipedia. I think he is still a mod over there, used to go by 3BulletProof16 or something like that. Someone told me he changed his name, after numerous people complained about him. There are users on the Kayfabe Memories board who have had problems with him over pages regarding the NWA and Big Gold belts too. After just checking, it seems that the Wiki page for the Hardcore Title is somewhat accurate now.
Just though some of you guys would find this as in interesting read.
Forum Members: Comment on this blog post!