Wrestling Legend Says Vince McMahon Wanted Him To Use A New Name & Finisher

When he joined WWE in early 1993, Lex Luger was already a household name thanks to a lengthy run in WCW that saw him become the longest reigning WCW United States Champion in history, as well as a former WCW World Heavyweight Champion. And yet, if Vince McMahon had ultimately had his way, Luger would've never gone by his famous persona at all during his WWE tenure.

On the latest episode of "Lex Express," Luger discussed how McMahon was against Luger coming in as Lex Luger, leading to him being named Narcissus, then later The Narcissist. Luger believes the difficulty came from him owning the "Lex Luger" name, as well as McMahon wanting to avoid referencing Luger's WCW past, which also led to Luger having to drop his popular finisher, the Torture Rack.

"I trademarked 'The Total Package' Lex Luger with a really good attorney," Luger said. "I wouldn't have thought of it when I first started wrestling down in Florida. So they had to utilize that, borrow that from me while I was there, my trademark. He wanted to completely rename me. I get it. But we ended up coming to an agreement to use 'Lex the Narcissist,' or 'Lex Luger the Narcissist.'

"As far as finish, I think, once again, it crept in that the Torture Rack was my finisher as the WCW wrestler. So he didn't really want me to use that finish. I wanted to use it, but he didn't want to. So I think it morphed eventually, as a heel, as 'The Narcissist,' 'Hey, let's do a program, a storyline, with that steel plate...in your arm. And let's use that as a heel.'"

Lex Luger Preferred Working As A Heel

Luger's run as a heel only lasted for the first few months of 1993, and he would later transition into one of the top babyfaces in WWE, challenging Yokuzuna for the WWE Championship while riding across America in the Lex Express. But even though Luger achieved great notoriety for the babyface run, and enjoyed it, he admits he took more joy out of the heel run.

"I wish I had a way longer run as a heel before doing the Lex Express because we had some good stuff going with that I thought," Luger said. "I really enjoyed working as a heel, probably more than a babyface in my career, if you had to ask me the question.

"It's much easier to get people to hate you emotionally than it is to earn their respect, their admiration, and their trust. Wrestling fans are really special that way. So I guess it was easier to be a heel, and can be a lot more fun sometimes in that regard."

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit "Lex Express" and provide a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription