Wrestling By The Numbers: James ‘The Ultimate’ Warrior
The professional wrestling world has been morning the unexpected death of 2014 WWE Hall Of Fame inductee James ‘The Ultimate’ Warrior. The 54-year-old Crawfordsville Indiana native, who was born James Brian Hellwig, passed away back on April 8th after appearing on WWE Raw for the first time in over 17-years on the night prior. Warrior reportedly collapsed suffering a massive heart attack while walking with his his wife Dana to his car outside of a hotel in Scottsdale Arizona. He was immediately rushed to a nearby hospital but was unable to be revived. Warrior was one of the most recognizable figures in the professional wrestling industry during late 1980’s and was a former 1-Time WWE Champion and 2-Time WWE Intercontinental Champion. He was inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame alongside Jake Roberts, Lita, Paul Bearer, Carlos Colon, Mr. T. and Razor Ramon 3-days prior to his passing.
James B. Warrior had a successful 13-year in-ring career which started in 1985 after having been trained by Red Bastien, Rick Bassman and Bill Anderson. After a successful body building career which saw him become the 1984 NPC Mr. Georgia Champion, he transitioned to professional wrestling debuting as apart of Powerteam USA as Jim ‘Justice’ Hellwig. He quickly formed a tag-team with fellow legend Steve ‘Sting’ Borden as was known first as The Freedom Fighters and later became The Blade Runners Justice and Flash. From 1985-1986 the tag-team competed in promotions including the Continental Wrestling Association and Mid-South Wrestling. The duo broke up in 1986 when Hellwig joined World Class Championship Wrestling spending a year with the organization as The Dingo Warrior.
World Wrestling Entertainment signed Warrior in June of 1987 and he spent the next 5-years with the company as one of it’s biggest stars. He became a highly successful WWE Intercontinental Champion with a memorable feud for the belt with the late Rick Rude and also had a series of matches with Andre the Giant in 1989. His career peaked at Wrestlemania VI in 1990 when he defeated Hulk Hogan for the championship in Toronto. After being defeated for the WWE Title by Sergeant Slaughter after a 10-month reign, he went on to have outstanding feuds with Randy Savage and Jake Roberts before having a falling out with Vince McMahon over finances and being suspended by the promotion. He returned for a short stint with the WWE at Wrestlemania VIII before being released 8-months later after failing a drug test for steroids.
From 1992-1996 James B. Warrior remained semi-retired from the industry and was involved in numerous professional projects. During this time he ran a short-lived wrestling training school called Warrior University, played the role of ‘The Swordsman’ in the action movie ‘Firepower’ and also wrestled one match as The Dingo Warrior against Hercules Hernandez for Killer Kowalski’s International Wrestling Federation. Warrior returned to the WWE for a short 3-month stint in 1996 defeating Hunter Hearst Helmsley at Wrestlemania XII. He was released after no-showing several WWE House Shows later that summer and claimed he didn’t attended the shows due to a breach of contract by Vince McMahon over merchandise royalties.
World Championship Wrestling signed Warrior in 1998 and he continued his feud with his old rival Hollywood Hogan and the nWo. Warrior only competed in 4-matches with the organization with his last appearance being on the November 9th 1998 broadcast of WCW Monday Nitro. After his release from the company Warrior retired from the industry at the end of 1998. He would return for one final match 10-years later in 2008 when he defeated Orlando Jordan for the NU-Wrestling Evolution Championship. After retiring from the industry Warrior’s colorful and sometimes controversial personality found him success working as a conservative speaker and commentator and he also ran his popular website Warrior’s Machette. His involvement at this month’s Wrestlemania XXX festivities was his return to the business after his final match 6-years prior.
Below we look at the televised professional wrestling career of James B. Warrior, formerly James Hellwig, The Ultimate Warrior by the numbers…
World Wrestling Entertainment:
* 18 Matches on WWE Pay-Per-View.
* 6 Main Event Matches on WWE Pay-Per-View.
* 3 Matches on WWE Raw.
* 1 Main Event Match on WWE Raw.
* 9 Matches ( 5th Most All-Time ) on WWE Saturday Night’s Main Event. (First Match: November 26th 1988 Vs Super Ninja # 1 Last Match: November 14th 1992 With Randy Savage Vs Ted DiBiase & Irwin R. Schyster)
* 37 Matches on WWE Superstars.
* 5 Main Event Matches on WWE Superstars.
* 35 Matches on WWE Prime Time Wrestling.
* 7 Main Event Matches on WWE Prime Time Wrestling.
* 2 Matches ( 3rd Most All-Time ) on WWE The Main Event. (First Match: February 23rd 1990 Vs Dino Bravo Last Match: November 23rd 1990 Vs Ted DiBiase)
* 1 Main Event Match ( 7th Most All-Time ) on WWE The Main Event (Main Event: February 23rd 1990 Vs Dino Bravo)
* 26 Matches on WWE Wrestling Challenge.
* 4 Main Event Matches on WWE Wrestling Challenge.
* 18 Matches on WWE On MSG Network.
* 7 Main Event Matches on WWE On MSG Network.
* 7 Matches on WWE On PRISM Network.
* 1 Main Event Match on WWE On PRISM Network.
* 8 Matches on WWE On NESN.
* 2 Main Event Matches on WWE On NESN.
* 4 Matches on WWE On Z Channel.
* 1 Main Event Match on WWE On Z Channel.
* 1 Match on WWE On Tele+2.
* 1 Match on WWE Survivor Series Showdown.
* 1 Match on WWE / AJPW Wrestling Summit.
World Championship Wrestling:
* 2 Matches on WCW Pay-Per-View.
* 1 Main Event Match on WCW Pay-Per-View.
* 1 Match on WCW Monday Nitro.
* 1 Main Event Match on WCW Monday Nitro.
All Japan Pro Wrestling:
* 1 Match on AJPW / WWE Wrestling Summit.
Super World Sports:
* 1 Match on SWS Wrestlefest In Tokyo Dome.