Greg Gagne Recalls Bringing Hulk Hogan To AWA, What Led To The Company’s Downfall

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Pro wrestling legend Greg Gagne recently appeared on an episode of Busted Open Radio, where he talked about a number of topics including initially discovering WWE Hall of Famer Hulk Hogan.

Gagne said, “[I] wrestled on a card up in New York. Hogan wrestled that night and had a horrible match. And he came in, and I said, ‘You know, you need some help. Why don’t you come to the AWA?’ Because he was looking for help. And so I went back and I told my dad, ‘You gotta get this guy up here, Hulk Hogan. He’s got the potential being something really special. But he can’t work [and] he doesn’t do a very good interview.”

On making Hogan a babyface:

“They gave him Johnny Valiant as his manager to talk through the interviews… and the people didn’t really react the way we thought they were going to. They started cheering Hogan. And I went back and I said, ‘Geez, you can’t make him a heel, he’s a babyface, man. The people like him.”

On the downfall of the AWA:

“It’s hard to sit and talk about it because it was so frustrating. I knew all these promoters and I knew the people he trusted and the people who trusted him. They worked on a handshake. Eddie Graham was as honest as the day is long. Bill Watts, who Verne trained … wanted to do things his own way but he always came to Verne and bounced things off of him. Bill, eventually, his ego got in the way. Crockett’s ego got in the way. Jerry Jarrett, same thing… Verne worked with The McMahons for years and gave them talent all the time. And Vince sent Verne talent. But everybody had their own egos and let their egos get in the way.”

You can check out the complete podcast below.