On April 2nd - the day after April Fool's Day, so you know they mean it - WWE will hold their annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Among those to be inducted will be the original members of WCW's New World Order (nWo) faction - "Hollywood" Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and Sean "Syxx/X-Pac" Waltman. While there's no word on who will induct the group, my money is on Eric Bischoff (who Hall feels should be inducted with them).
Those with even the slightest memory or knowledge of the group remember that the nWo consisted of a total of, cumulatively over the year, a grand total of... hang on, let me get my abacus... 832 members.
OK, actually, over the incarnations in WCW, WWE, and New Japan Pro Wrestling, from 1997 to 2002, there were 62 members. But, that's still a lot of room for members that kind of get lost in history. Whether it's because they were in the group for hardly any time at all or because it's just hard to believe they were actually in there to begin with (whatever the reason), we all hear their name and think "Oh, yeah. They were in there, weren't they?"
So, out of all those members, here's five wrestlers that you probably forgot were actually in thr group.
But, first, an honorable mention....
Honorable mention: Louie Spicolli
I hate to start the list off on a bummer, but we couldn't begin without remembering one Louie Spicolli. A talented performer in the ring, Spicoli (real name Louis Mucciolo, Jr.), began to make a name for himself in both Mexico and Japan in the early 90s, as well as Jim Cornette's Smoky Mountain Wrestling, most notably in AAA as - no joke - "Madonna's Boyfriend" - part of "Los Gringos Locos" along with Art Barr and Eddie Guererro.
After a stint in ECW - that didn't end well - he joined WCW in 1997 as a toadie of the nWo's Scott Hall. During that time, he mocked his former employer, ECW, as well as impressed upper brass with his skills on commentary (other than an ill-advised joke about the Oklahoma City Bombing). He and Hall even began a small feud with WCW commentator and future WWE Hall of Famer Larry Zybyszko.
Sadly, Spicolli had serious issues with depression and substance abuse, and passed away in 1998 at the age of 27. The cause of death was ruled as asphyxiation on vomit following an overdose of wine and the drug Soma.
A troubled individual, Spicolli was still a very talented performer, and he deserves a mention on this list.
#5. Michael V.K. Wallstreet (aka I.R.S.)
Mike Rotunda has a deep connection with WWE. Not only did he hold the then-WWF tag team titles with Barry Windham as the team The 'U.S. Express" in the 80s, he portrayed the evil tax collector Irwin R. Shyster (aka I.R.S.) in the early to mid 90s, He's also the father of current WWE Universal Champion Bray Wyatt - oh, and Bo Dallas, too.
In between his first and second WWF runs, however, he ran with the gimmick of Michael Wallstreet - which was basically a rip-off of Ted Dibiase's "Million Dollar Man" persona (ironic, considering the two would team up in Vince McMahon's company eventually).
Rotunda, as the kayfabe story went, inherited a lot of money and invested it into the stock market. As he didn't want to give up being a pro wrestler, he used his newfound wealth to hire Alexandria York - the future Terri Runnells - to use her computer expertise to help him analyze his opponents (with computers) and come up with the proper strategy to defeat them.
Well... that didn't really work out.
After finishing his run as IRS in the WWF, he rejoined WCW as his old persona (with the added "V.K." to his name, as a hilarious reference to Vincent Kennedy McMahon), and eventually joined the nWo. The story eventually forced his character to leave the faction, and he continued on as an anti-WCW wrestler, but nobody really cared.
Rotunda has a Hall of Fame worthy career in the wrestling industry. His nWo run is not a factor in that.
#4. Horace Hogan
It's not so much you forgot about Horace Hogan as much as you wanted to forget about Horace Hogan. For his sake as well as your own.
OK, look, before we begin, we're not here to make fun of the man born Michael Bollea - nephew of Terry Bollea, aka Hulk Hogan. Being the nephew of arguably the biggest wrestling star of the 1980s and early 1990s could not have been easy. He also had an extremely traumatic early life, with both his parents passing away in ways you never want to see anybody go through (and ways we won't go into here out of respect to Michael and his parents. You can look up his Wikipedia page if you want that.)
Horace Boulder (as he was originally known) moved from a career in Japan to World Championship Wrestling and became a member of Raven's Flock in the promotion (as simply "Horace".) When that faction dissolved, he found his way into his uncle's nWo faction when he helped Hulk win his Halloween Havok '98 match against The Ultimate Warrior - after Hogan spent weeks beating his nephew senseless to teach him "tough love".
We're not going to go into that match or its lead-up... I have a deadline and I could be here all day.
Horace is now retired and, according to reports, has two daughters and is doing well.
#3. Rick Rude
The late "Ravishing" Rick Rude has many accolades milestones in his Hall of Fame career. But, aside from multiple titles, legendary feuds and one of the greatest personas in wrestling history, there's one fascinating historical tidbit he can lay claim to. He's the first and, as far as I know of, only performer to appear on WWE Monday Night Raw and WCW Monday Nitro on the same night.
The episodes aired on November 17, 1997. During that particular era in the company's history, the WWF would tape episodes of Raw every other week as a cost-cutting measure. Rude appeared on the live episode of Nitro, ripping on both his former company as well as his former faction, Degeneration-X. An hour later, Rude showed up on the pre-taped Raw... along with DX.
Interestingly enough, he was also featured on an episode of ECW TV that aired in syndication that week - making him to only performer to have that accomplishment, as well.
While this was certainly a memorable moment in the history of the Monday Night Wars, Rude merely filled a managerial role in the faction, and only to back up his fellow Minnesota native, Curt Hennig. He was only in the company for less than two years, leaving in 1999 in order to train for a return to active in-ring performing.
Unfortunately, Rude would pass away that year from heart failure. He was 40 years old. He was, rightfully, inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame 18 years later.
#2. Dusty Rhodes
THE AMERICUHN DREEM, DADDEE! RIDING ON THE END OF A LIGHTNING BOLT AND GETTIN' FUNKEE LIKE AH MONKEE!
Seriously, how can you not think of Dusty Rhodes and not hear that voice in your head? You can't. It's not only impossible, I believe it's against the law in at least 38 states and six countries. I may also be incorrect on that last part. Let's move on.
At Souled Out in 1998, Rhodes was in the corner of WCW announcer Larry Zybszko, in his match against Scott Hall - who, himself, was accompanied by the aforementioned Louie Spicolli. After Zybszko won by DQ, Rhodes turned and hit him with a Bionic Elbow - revealing himself to be the newest member of the faction. Dream would continue on as a manager for Hall for the better part of the year before defecting back to WCW.
Probably because it was pretty evident that nobody cared - or even notices -that he was actually in the nWo in the first place.
Rhodes defection to the nWo was certainly a shock - it was the first time he had been a heel since the 1970s. Ultimately, though, it didn't last long and seemed more of an attempt to shock fans than actually add anything of substance to the angle. One of the biggest problems revolved around the fact that so many shock defections had happened by the point that they were starting to lose their impact.
On top of that, while Rhodes has certainly spent a few years in the WWF by that point, he was way more associated with the NWA and WCW - something that didn't really mesh with a group that was originally supposed to be made up of WWF "invaders" (although not officially because, you know, lawyers.)
Rhodes would continue to add more positive moments to his legacy following this run in WCW. Ultimately, his time as a member of the nWo isn't a stain on that legacy - just a part of it that really won't be remembered. I mean, other than now, because you're reading this.
#1. Disco Inferno
I'm going to come right out and admit it, and I don't care who knows it - I liked Disco Inferno. I thought the character was silly enough that it worked. I thought the man behind said character, Glenn Gilberti, was actually really talented in the ring. And, I thought some of the stuff he did in WCW in 2000 was actually entertaining - although this was WCW in 2000, so that may be damning of faint praise.
What I'm saying is, Disco Inferno gets a hard time from a lot of folks - but not from me. Which, is why I'm kind of bummed to put him on this list. After all, these are nWo members you totally forgot about, not me.
In 1998-9, Disco would ally himself with the nWo Wolfpac, helping Kevin Nash and Scott Hall end Goldberg's 173-match winning streak at the time and costing him the WCW World Championship. The association wouldn't last too long, as he would eventually join the Mamalukes, followed by the Filthy Animals, shortly thereafter. He did win the WCW Cruiserweight Championship around this time, however.
Disco Inferno - last on the list of nWo members you remember, but always first in our hearts. Well, my heart, anyway.
OK, maybe not first, but he's right up there. Like, maybe sixth, which is still good.