THEY WERE IRON MEN


Debate is constant among wrestling fans. Best match, best finishing move, five-star ratings, best this, best that.

But there are a few constants. Like, Ric Flair is the G.O.A.T.

And the Road Warriors are the most bad-ass tag team ever.

Joe Laurinaitis, a/k/a Road Warrior Animal, has passed away. His partner, Mike Hegstrand (Road Warrior Hawk) died in 2003. It feels like the end of an era, even more so because the Road Warriors were presented as indestructible.

Their rise to stardom was stunning. They originally hit the ring to the power chords of Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man,” and they were, indeed, iron men.

The Road Warriors’ squash matches seemed to end before their entrance music did. Their makeup and ring gear made them larger than life, perhaps just as much as their size and musculature. They did everything with power. They made you believe.

Fans went insane, especially in the ‘80s and early ‘90s. The Road Warriors were OVER.

They were at their best in the American Wrestling Association and Jim Crockett Promotions/World Championship Wrestling. WWE got them, changed their name to the “Legion of Doom” and partly diluted them by injecting comedy into the act.(WWE rarely allows acts it didn't invent to outshine those it did.)

Nothing was supposed to be funny about the Road Warriors. They snacked on danger, and dined on death. (That said, their promos occasionally provoked a chuckle. When manager Paul Ellering was present, he was a good talker and valuable component.)

They were good guys, too. Very respected away from the ring.

Joe Laurinaitis, RIP. Mike Hegstrand, RIP. Road Warriors, RIP.

Everybody complains about the weather. But nobody ever does anything about it.

Thumbnail via Getty Images.