Today marks 35 years since WWE Hall of Famers Hulk Hogan and The Iron Sheik battled for the WWE Title at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The match would result in the first WWE Title win for The Hulkster.
Above is new video of Hogan talking to WWE about the thirty-five-year milestone. Hogan called it the night that changed his life.
“The night that changed my life, 35 years ago on January 23, 1984,” Hogan said. “The crowd was magic that night. It was the first time that I wrestled when everybody stood up. Everybody was screaming and yelling the whole time. It set a precedent because from that day forward, every single time I climbed in the ring, it didn’t matter if it was against John Studd, or King Kong Bundy, or Andre, or Macho, or Piper, the crowd was that intense.”
Hogan also talked about how he wasn’t sure how he would be received, coming back to work for Vince McMahon after working for his father as a a heel.
“Vince McMahon was taking over the company from his dad, Vince Sr. I had left the WWWF when Vince Sr. was in charge, and I was a bad guy,” Hogan recalled. “So, coming back, I wasn’t sure how I would be received. Coming through the tunnel, I was thinking, this is gonna be the greatest day of my life, or it’s not going to go well. But it was the greatest day of my life, that day changed my life forever.”
Hogan also recalled the post-match celebration with WWE Hall of Famers Andre the Giant and “Mean” Gene Okerlund, noting that he never knew how bad champagne could burn your eyes. Hogan said he and Vince tried to change the business forever, and they did. He said his wild ride has been a great one.
“Vince McMahon and I dug in really hard and wanted to change this business forever,” Hogan said. “Making it an international phenom, a juggernaut as Vince would say. We did that. And as I think of all the Superstars like the John Cenas that were Hulkamaniacs, Seth Rollins was a Hulkamaniac, me throwing my headband out at The Garden and The Rock catching my headband when he was 10 years old, it really hits home to realize how many people we touched, how many people we influenced, how many athletes we made something switch in their heads and make them want to get into the business. When I think back about the ride, it’s been a wild one, been a great one.”
As seen below, Hogan also tweeted on the milestone, wishing Happy Birthday to Hulkamania. He wrote, “Happy 35th Birthday Hulkamania! January 23rd 1984, The day Hulkamania was born when the Hulkster beat The Iron Sheik at Madison Square Garden to win his first WWE(F) Championship.”
Happy 35th Birthday Hulkamania! January 23rd 1984, The day Hulkamania was born when the Hulkster beat The Iron Sheik at Madison Square Garden to win his first WWE(F) Championship. pic.twitter.com/qvLDk4DV4M
— Hulk Hogan (@HulkHogan) January 23, 2019