Is there any end in sight to the dysfunctional Hulk Hogan family saga?
It's one nasty turn after another, and barely a day seems to go by without one of the family members spewing venom in the media.
One might have hoped that the 2007 car accident involving son Nick, which left friend John Graziano in a permanent vegetative state and the now 18-year-old with an eight-month prison term, would have had a sobering, humbling effect on the Hogan family. Perhaps some good could have come out of such tragedy. Valuable lessons could have been learned.
Life is fragile. Fences can be mended. Families should stick together.
If anything, though, the War of the Hogans has only intensified.
And now 21-year-old daughter Brooke Hogan, whose second season of "Brooke Knows Best" premieres today on VH1, seems to be in the line of fire as her parents' acrimonious divorce battle plays out before the public, on TV and in the tabloids.
The latest coming out of the Hogan camp is from the Hulkster in response to his estranged wife's charges that their daughter's behavior doesn't match the All-American girl image Hogan has tried to create.
Linda Hogan (Bollea) claimed that Hulk (Terry Bollea) was rolling and smoking joints with Brooke's boyfriend, rapper Staxx, at her recording sessions. Hogan vehemently denied the allegations, and said that Linda was "lost" and "needs help."
"Brooke is a clean-cut girl. She's very open and honest," Hulk proclaimed in the current issue of Life & Style magazine. "Brooke can't have a relationship with her mother like this."
Hogan, 55, also refuted Linda's allegations of drug use, and said it's his 49-year-old, soon-to-be-ex-wife who is engaging in illegal drugs with her 20-year-old "boy toy" Charlie Hill. He even offered to take a legally supervised drug test if Linda would do the same.
"If Linda says she'll take a drug test, I say bring it, brother. It needs to be done, and she'll fail it."
Linda answered the challenge by voluntarily taking tests that came out negative.
"Linda Hogan is clean, clean, clean," publicist Gary Smith reported last week. He said she took a full medical exam and tested negative for everything including marijuana, cocaine, speed, amphetamines and opiates.
"Linda does not do drugs and never accused her daughter of doing drugs either," said Smith. "Now the truth is in black and white; all Linda wants is an apology from both of them."
Brooke told US magazine last week that she tried calling her mother, but to no avail.
"I actually dialed her phone ... but she didn't answer. I love her no matter what. I'll forgive her and I'll pray for her, but I don't think I can be around her anymore. Ever. She may as well have disowned me. She did in my heart."
Brooke also said on Howard Stern's Sirius satellite radio show Wednesday that she can't say for sure that her mom has done drugs, but that something isn't right.
"Do I have a gut feeling that she has something to come clean about? Yes," she said. "But that's just my gut."
Smith issued a release claiming Brooke "continues to spew lies on behalf of her father's lame attempt to distance himself from the reality that he is no different from the homicidal O.J. Simpson." If Brooke continues, the rep added in an unintentionally humorous statement, "Charlie (Linda's boyfriend) will be forced to put aside his paramedic/firefighting career path and release an album called Redemption which will easily surpass any of Brooke's records sales."
Smith, in the letter to celebrity blogger Perez Hilton, also accused Brooke of fabricating claims or misrepresenting the facts about her breast augmentations, her relationship with Staxx and comments about Hill.
"She only judges Charlie because of his long hair and age. Linda doesn't judge ... Brooke is Hulk's only remaining mouthpiece and a pawn in his game of control," said Smith.
"Brooke Hogan has spoken out in support of her father only because of her mother's repeated fabricated attacks on him," replied a Hogan attorney. "She is in the unique position of knowing both parties in this litigation and she has only spoken as to what she knows to be the truth based upon her personal experience with each."
Hogan added that he believes his daughter is more of an adult than her mother.
"I hope one day Linda will grow up and be an adult like Brooke is," he said. "Linda has to reach to her level. One day, maybe."
Hogan's attorney says a mother-daughter relationship appears unlikely at this time because Linda "continues to attempt to throw her family under the bus to gain publicity."
Linda filed for divorce just a month after the last episode of their popular reality show aired. Hogan later said he was surprised that his wife wanted to end their 24-year marriage, even though the two had visited a marriage counselor on their VHI show.
Hogan told People magazine last year that the couple had experienced marital difficulties for nearly a decade, and that "the reality show just amplified the problems."
- The highly anticipated Jim Cornette book is out, and it's a must for any serious wrestling fan's collection.
Don't expect a behind-the-scenes look at Cornette's life. "The Midnight Express 25th Anniversary Scrapbook" is not an autobiography, nor is it advertised as such, but it is a fascinating look at one of the greatest managers and tag teams in wrestling history, as told by one of the smartest and funniest guys in the business.
The full-color book is detailed and accurate, with results, clippings, photos and even payoff receipts, along with insightful recollections from Cornette.
The book is available at www.jimcornette.com.
- Ric Flair may be 60 years old. He may be officially retired. Yet he still found himself in a familiar position last week - the main event of Monday Night Raw. And he more than held his own in a street fight with Randy Orton.
Flair got the better of Orton during a show-finishing brawl that started in the parking lot, moved to the backstage area and ended up inside a cage in the ring. Orton got last-minute help from cronies Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes, however, and ended up knocking out the Nature Boy with his trademark stiff kick to the cranium.
Flair, who suffered a head laceration, also badly cut his hand during the backstage segment and had to get 12 stitches.
Flair, bloodied and bruised, was pleased with the performance.
"It was great," he said the next day. "But I'm sore as hell."
- Maverick (Dakota) Darsow was among several developmental performers released by WWE last week.
Darsow is the son of former pro star Barry Darsow (Krusher Khruschev, Demolition Smash, Repo Man).
- Former WWE announcer Tazz should be appearing in TNA rings soon.
"The prison sentence is almost done ... Can't wait!" Tazz recently posted on his Facebook page, referring to his 90-day, no-compete clause. His WWE contract expired in late March.
Tazz is expected to serve as a mentor to Samoa Joe when he arrives in TNA.
- Sting's days with TNA are expected to come to an end when his contract expires at the end of October. His last match with the company most likely will be at the Bound For Glory pay-per-view.
Sting's oldest son, Garrett Borden, is a sophomore fullback on the Azusa Pacific University football team. Azusa Pacific is a private, inter-denominational, evangelical Christian university located near Los Angeles.
- Sean Waltman, the former 1-2-3 Kid, X-Pac and Syxx, recently told a radio show that he's well on the road to recovery one year after completing a WWE-sponsored rehab program.
"Some people may know that I hit a rough spot a year ago," Waltman said on the Monday Night Mayhem show. "Courtesy of Vince McMahon ... I gotta thank him. I'm doing great now."
Waltman, who now lives in Mexico where he is headlining for the AAA promotion, said the intervention probably saved his life, but he doesn't foresee wrestling for WWE and reforming DX anytime in the near future.
"For the time being it (WWE) is really not the place for me," Waltman said. "This is the place for me right now. I'm making good money, I'm featured and I'm healthy. That's the bottom line ... I'm healthy."
Waltman also noted that he would have to prove himself to WWE officials if he ever came back.
"They're very wary of me, they love me to death, I love them to death, but I have a lot to prove just to be honest with you."
- Bobby Lashley remains unsigned by TNA, and isn't expected to sign until after his June 27 MMA match with Bob Sapp.
Sapp recently told an online site that Lashley, 3-0 thus far, wasn't prepared to handle his striking and power offense.
"I don't think he's ready for what I can bring," Sapp told wrestle-network.com. "We'll just check it out and see what he can do. Sometimes they can answer the bell and bring something out of their hat."
- Jeff Hardy remains on the fence regarding his WWE contract. He's still unsigned, and it's a good chance that he'll take time off and return at a later date.
- You might have to cut the President some slack for calling "WWE" the "WWF" in a recent statement to NBC's Brian Williams.
Barack Obama told Williams that he doesn't watch the political talk shows on cable because they remind him of "WWF wrestling." He said the various talking heads all play specific roles and he doesn't feel like he learns anything from their conversations.
"I've used this analogy before, it feels like WWF wrestling. Everybody's got their role to play. I know a lot of these guys. And if Pat Buchanan is having a conversation with Chris Matthews or talking to Keith Olbermann, everybody's got their set pieces and, so, I don't feel as if I'm learning anything from the debate."
- Shaver Hansen, son of pro wrestling great Stan "The Lariat" Hansen, has completed a very successful year on the baseball diamond for the Baylor Bears. Baylor's season came to an end last Sunday with a 15-12 loss to Minnesota in an NCAA tournament elimination game.
The power-hitting shortstop was the Big 12's home run leader on the nationally ranked Bears squad, and set a school record for homers with 17 and hit over .350 for the season.
His father played linebacker at West Texas State in the early 1970s before launching a career in the pro wrestling ranks.
Younger brother Sam plays baseball at Waco Midway.
- According to a recent article in the Miami Herald, Cryme Tyme's Shad Gaspard once served as a bodyguard for several rappers, actors and athletes including Puff Daddy, Cuba Gooding Jr. and Mike Tyson.
The 28-year-old Gaspard, who qualified for the finals of WWE Tough Enough 2 in 2002 but was disqualified and replaced after failing a physical, broke into the wrestling business in 2003 in Ohio Valley Wrestling.
Gaspard told the Herald that a turning point in his career came when Jim Cornette had Booker T sit down with him and talk to him for two hours.
"That was one of the best experiences of my life. To this day, me and Booker T are friends," said Gaspard.
- Old School Championship Wrestling returns with a show today at Weekend's Pub, 428 Red Bank Road, Goose Creek. The card will feature former WWE performer Gangrel. Bell time is 6 p.m. Adult admission is $10; kids 12 and under $5. For more information, visit www.oscwonline.com or call 743-4800.
- George's Sports Bar, 1300 Savannah Highway, will air WWE's Extreme Rules pay-per-view at 8 p.m. today. Cover charge is $5.
Mike Mooneyham can be reached by phone at (843) 937-5517 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. For wrestling updates during the week, call The Post and Courier Info Line at 937-6000, ext. 3090.
Hulk Hogan with daughter Brooke.×
Jim Cornette's new book is a great read for fans of the Midnight Express era.×
NASCAR driver Joey Logano (left) receives a hug from Ric Flair after Logano was voted the fan favorite slot for the Sprint All-Star Race at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte on May 16. Flair served as honorary race director.×
Former WWE announcer Tazz is bound for TNA.×
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., the 28-year-old Shad Gaspard is Haitian and Curacaon.×
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