Hardcore Holly is a legend in the WWE, if you use that term to refer to anybody who used to wrestle there (as WWE seem to).
He wrestled for the company for a decade and a half, under a variety of gimmicks and names. Whether he was Hardcore Holly, Bob Holly or Sparky Plugg, the former tag team champion had a reputation for being hard as nails in the ring.
However, despite this, title gold seemed to evade him. Only won a handful of title belts in his 15 year run, including a phantom Intercontinental Championship reign that never happened.
Hardcore Holly was released from the WWE in 2009, but what happened to him after he left the company he spent so long wrestling for?
What Happened To Hardcore Holly?
Hardcore Holly was released by the WWE on January 16th, 2009 after a 15-year run with the company.
He wrestled his last match at Night of Champions 2008, and upon his release went to work on the independent scene.
He wrestled against a wide variety of wrestlers, from independent veterans, up-and-coming stars and former WWE wrestlers doing the same as him.
He had matches against former WWE Superstars like Billy Gunn, Keith Lee and Rhino, as well as younger, more inexperienced stars on the indies, like Grado.
He continued to wrestle until 2019 before seemingly hanging up his boots with little fanfare.
Hardcore Holly wrestled his last independent match on June 2nd 2019 in a Triple Threat match with Cody Hall (son of Scott Hall) and Luke Hawx. Hawx won the match and ended the long and storied career of Holly.
Hardcore Holly Had His Neck Broken By Brock Lesnar
Hardcore Holly suffered a horrific neck break during a match against Brock Lesnar.
Lesnar was the WWE Champion at the time (having beaten The Rock at Summerslam that year) so it was a huge opportunity for Holly to impress Vince McMahon by working in the main event.
However, during a routine powerbomb by Lesnar on Holly, something went wrong. Some say Brock Lesnar was sick and failed to lift him.
Other claim Hardcore Holly sandbagged Lesnar in an attempt to make the champion look bad. Either way, the result ended up with Holly being powerbomb head first onto the mat, breaking his neck in the process.
The injury was horrible and left the former Hardcore Champion on the shelf for an astonishing 13 months.
His Last WWE Match Was A Bizarre Championship Match
Hardcore Holly’s last WWE match saw him losing the tag team championships to his own partner.
Sounds bizarre, right? It is!
At WWE Night of Champions 2008, Cody Rhodes and Hardcore Holly were set to defend their World Tag Team Championships against Ted DiBiase Jr and his mystery partner.
This mystery wrestler was kept secret until the day of the show. In fact, it was a secret until the bell rang, with DiBiase making it clear to the referee that his partner would be here.
However, what happened to Hardcore Holly next with insane. He was attacked by Cody Rhodes, his partner and co-tag team champion.
He turned on Hardcore Holly and joined the opposite team, helping his new partner win and be crowned the new World Tag Team Champions.
As far as I know, in this match Cody Rhodes became the first man to defeat himself (and Holly) to become a champion – a bizarre feat that most people would not want to copy.
Did you know what happened to Hardcore Holly after leaving WWE? Tell us down in the comments, or click below to read about how Hardcore Holly wanted to be WWE Champion and “Beat Everyone!”
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.