Iconic WWE performer Hulk Hogan has been one of the most controversial figures in the pro wrestling industry. Despite retiring in 2012, his appearances on interviews and podcasts are the major reason why he’s been able to remain relevant among the audience.
In the 1980s, Hogan was arguably the biggest draw in the Stamford-based promotion. But, just like his craze among fans, he was also into controversies even in those years. In potentially the biggest controversy of his career, Hulk was sued for $5 million after he choked Richard Belzer. His attempt to prove WWE was not fake left the TV host unconscious.
This incident took place nearly four decades ago, when Hollywood Hogan and Mr. T appeared as guests on the Hot Properties show on March 27, 1985. The interview was going smoothly, but then the host of the show, the late Richard Balzar, asked the WWE star to perform some wrestling moves.
At first, both The Hulkster and Mr.T denied this request because the floor was hard and it could have caused serious damage. However, Belzer still requested Hulk to try some moves on him, to which Hollywood Hogan eventually obliged.
The Hulkster applied a front chin lock to Richard, and the host passed out within a few seconds, thus collapsing on the floor. Thankfully, he regained consciousness within a few minutes, but this incident became highly talked about. On next week’s episode, Richard returned to television, and it was later revealed that he had sued WWE’s icon for personal injury.
Did Vince McMahon and the WWE pay Richard Belzer after he got choked out by Hulk Hogan?
As Hollywood Hogan choked Richard during his appearance on the Hot Properties show, he was sued for a massive amount of $5 million. The TV host had to take eight stitches to close the head wound that was caused by Hulk’s front chin lock, and probably that was the reason Belzer decided to take this step.
The comedian not only sued Hogan but also filed the names of Vince McMahon and Mr. T in the lawsuit filed by him. This case was heard at the New York Supreme Court, and it was disclosed that both parties reached an out-of-court settlement. Hogan’s issues with the comedian were settled only after WWE’s icon paid $4 million in the settlement.
Even though Vince was listed in the lawsuit, there wasn’t any confirmation if he or the WWE paid Richard after he was choked out by Hulk. Later, it was also revealed that the TV show host bought a farmhouse in France with that money and, interestingly, named it Chez Hogan.
Richard Belzer cause of death: How did the Law and Order star die?
A few years after the Hulk Hogan incident, Richard Belzer went on to grab the role of John Munch in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Homicide, and it gave him a lot of recognition. However, the Law and Order star passed away earlier this year, at the age of 78.
The American stand-up icon died on February 19, 2023, at his home in southern France. No specific cause of death was shared, but it was revealed that he was dealing with circulatory and respiratory issues for a long time.
The confirmation of Richard’s death was made by none other than his longtime friend Bill Scheft, who who had been working on Belzer’s documentary. This documentary was set to reveal an unknown aspect of the stand-up legend’s life, but the Almighty had other plans, and he died unexpectedly.