Pro wrestling is a performance art like no other and WWE has been at the pinnacle of it for years. Over the decades, WWE Superstars and fans have created a close bond with each other, with fans often driving the popularity of a Superstar.
But, there is a small majority of fans who spew hatred, be it on social media or at shows and events. In the days before pro wrestling was known to be staged, there were many incidents of fans attacking wrestlers, especially heels.
That has reduced quite a bit as fans are much more educated on pro wrestling, while security is strict in WWE and other pro wrestling events.
But, some fans even breach this tight security and come face-to-face with Superstars, and even attack them. Here we look at eight times fans attacked WWE Superstars and what happened afterwards:
#8 Eddie Guerrero
The match was the main event of the May 27, 2002 episode of WWE RAW, lasting 20 minutes, and some decent action between the two. Rob Van Dam won the match to capture the title for the second time, following which he won it four more times.
The Intercontinental title match was marred by the intrusion of a fan, who entered the ring, and pushed Eddie Guerrero off the ladder that he had climbed. Guerrero, thankfully, landed safely on his feet, while the fan was being dragged down by the referee. Guerrero landed a sharp right-hand punch to the fan's face, who went down like a heap, before security came into the ring to assist the referee in taking the fan outside the ring.
#7 Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho has had two physical altercations with WWE fans over the years, one which happened in the arena, and one outside of it. The first one happened sometime in the early 2000s on RAW, when Jericho was on the outside, waiting for The Undertaker was to make his arrival to the ring.
While he was waiting on the outside, a fan rushed to him to land a punch on Jericho. Jericho retaliated with a punch of his own, before WWE security pushed the fan away from the then WWE Superstar.
Another incident happened in Victoria, Canada, when some very eager fans tried to get a picture with Jericho and hounded him. He didn't seem to be keen on engaging with the fans, and asked the help of security.
Jericho shoved a female fan out of the way, which enraged the mob even more, who hurled abuse at him. The mob got out of control and security had to help disperse them. One of the fans who was involved in this incident was reportedly arrested by police.
Some WWE fans are unruly and take matters into their own hands when in the arena. One Superstar who bore the brunt of a rowdy fan is Kalisto, who had a water bottle thrown at him in 2007.
The water bottle hit Kalisto in the face during the taping of a WWE 205 Live episode and resulted in an injury to the luchador. The incident, which happened in New Jersey, resulted in Kalisto needing an MRI and needed stitches. The fan who threw the water bottle on Kalisto was apprehended.
#5 Seth Rollins
In 2016, a fan tried to go face-to-face with Seth Rollins on an episode of WWE RAW, which took place in Corpus Christi, Texas. The fan, wearing a helmet, rushed to the ring when Rollins was cutting a promo, and was just a few feet away from him.
Rollins continued his promo, pushed the fan back, before security apprehended this deranged fan. Rollins, being the great heel, even used this situation to mock Finn Balor, his opponent, asking rhetorically if he was the "demon king".
The rogue fan even bit a security person, and he was eventually arrested by law enforcement.
#4 Randy Orton
Randy Orton may be one of the best heels in the world, and one fan took a page out of the Legend Killer's playbook at a WWE live event. In 2013, at a live event in Cape Town, South Africa, Randy Orton faced Big E in a singles match, which he won.
Following the match, Orton was celebrating with his trademark pose on the turnbuckle, when unbeknownst to him, a fan entered the ring and low-blowed him. The fan was dragged away by the referee and security. Even Big E, Orton's opponent, who was on the outside, was incensed and was held back by security from attacking this fan.
WWE released a statement following the attack by the fan on Randy Orton:
"WWE.com has learned that Randy Orton was violently attacked by an audience member during a SmackDown World Tour Live Event in Cape Town, South Africa, this evening. Footage of the attack was captured by a WWE fan and posted to YouTube, and shows the perpetrator striking Orton from behind. The matter is currently under investigation by the local authorities, and the South African fan is being held in jail pending criminal charges. The extent of Orton’s injuries are unknown at this time."
The fan was later identified as "Jozi, the wrestling machine" who said that he had planned the attack on Orton and wanted to face him in the ring.
#3 CM Punk
CM Punk had an intense rivalry with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon in 2012, and the two had a street fight on the October 8, 2012 episode of WWE RAW. Punk had inflicted a lot of damage to McMahon, but Ryback came to the rescue of McMahon, and Punk chose to escape.
CM Punk eventually went through the crowd and escaped from McMahon and Ryback. When he was standing with the fans, Punk was being pushed around by these rowdy fans, who clearly hated him. An annoyed Punk retaliated and hit a fan in the face, but he was an innocent fan, who hadn't been involved in the abuse hurled by the fans towards Punk.
CM Punk apologized after the incident in an interview with WWE.com:
“I think the whole situation sucks. It’s an unfortunate and isolated incident. I was up in the stands, surrounded. Somebody said, ‘let’s push him down the stairs.’ I got hit in the ribs three times. I was getting shoved and I was getting punched…Then I started getting tagged in the back of the head. Unfortunately, I lashed out in the heat of the moment and I apologize. I’m really just glad nobody was hurt."
Thankfully for Punk, the fan whom he hit, Charles Schmidt, did not press charges.
#2 Triple H
WWE fans attacking pro wrestlers seems like a stupid decision to take, considering the size and athletic ability of these WWE Superstars. Back in April 1998, WWE were touring Europe, and at one of their shows in Berlin, Germany, a fan entered the ring following a match between Stone Cold Steve Austin and Triple H.
Austin landed a Stunner on Triple H and got the win, and following that, a fan rushed into the ring. Triple H, who was on the floor, quickly realized that this could be a dangerous situation, and suplexed the fan, before he and referee, Mike Chioda, landed kicks and punches.
Austin narrated this incident on his podcast a few years ago:
“Triple H [is] a stand-up cat. He picked that dude up, slammed him and started punching his lights out. And he’s yelling to the security guard, ‘Get your ass in here!’ And the security guard didn’t know whether to sh*t or wind his watch. He was confused, you know? It happened so fast. I couldn’t do anything, I couldn’t help beat the guy up, I’m the babyface. But Triple H was watching my back, and he beat the snot out of that guy.”
#1 Bret Hart
At the 2019 WWE Hall of Fame, Bret Hart was inducted for the second time, this time as part of The Hart Foundation. But, the event was marred by a fan intruding into the ring when Hart and his niece and WWE Superstar Natalya, were giving their speech.
The fan, Zachary Madsen, rushed to the ring and dragged Hart and Natalya to the floor. Several WWE Superstars who were ringside ran into the ring and dragged the deranged fan away from Hart and Natalya, and also landed some punches and kicks on him.
Here's what Hart said about the incident:
"I didn't see the guy until it was too late. I could tell something was happening but I thought it was a fight in the crowd. You never take anything for granted. I consider myself lucky that it was as insignificant of an incident as it was. Everyone thought I got punched and hurt and manhandled by that guy but it was more the other way around, I think."
The fan was arrested by police and presented to court, who ordered him to pay a $1500 bond for assaulting and trespassing.