RIP: Chyna

At the age of 45, groundbreaking professional wrestler Joanie Laurer, who performed professionally as “Chyna”, was found dead in her home in California.  It has been speculated that she died from a drug overdose and was already dead for nearly two days when her body was found.

When she entered the WWF in the late 90’s as the bodyguard of Hunter Hearst Helmsley, the wrestling world had never seen anything like her.  Chyna did not look like any other woman who had previously been associated with the industry and she was a physical match for many of the men, so much so, that she began to wrestle against them.

In the process of becoming the first female (and only) Intercontinental Champion, Chyna embarked on facial reconstruction and breast augmentation surgery and became a sex symbol.  Arguably, at one point she was amongst the top five in popularity in the WWE.  She was not able to come up with a contract agreeable with the WWE in 2001 and she would part ways with the organization, though the story had been put out that she felt forced out following her former boyfriend’s (Triple H) tryst and eventual marriage with the owner’s daughter, Stephanie McMahon.

Chyna’s career would spiral downward including a stint in pornographic films, which as per a podcast with Steve Austin, indicated that this is what would keep her out of the WWE Hall of Fame, though he did refer to her as a Hall of Famer following her death.  Chyna has been lobbying hard in the past year to get into the Hall.

We here at Notinhalloffame.com offer our condolences to the friends and family of Joanie Lauer at this time.



This is interesting.

Today TMZ asked Stephanie McMahon whether the recently deceased Joanie Laurer (Chyna) would ever get into the WWE Hall of Fame.  Her answer alluded to a strong possibility that the “9th Wonder of the World” will enter the Hall:

“I’m SURE that we will see Chyna in the Hall of Fame at some point in the future. I’m not sure exactly what year that will be, but there’s no denying her contributions to WWE.”

As known by most of you, the history between Stephanie and Laurer is a personal one as Stephanie’s husband, Jean Levesque (Triple H), was formally with Chyna and left the latter for the former.  Shortly after this occurred, the contract of Laurer was not renewed, and many have argued that it was a downward spiral for her ever since.

A year ago on Steve Austin’s Podcast, Triple H was asked directly if he felt that Chyna should be in the WWE Hall of Fame, and his answer reflected her career in pornography and essentially that a publically traded company would have a hard time inducting her into the Hall.  That being said, many of her peers (including Austin) have stated that Chyna should be in the Hall and prior to her death she was campaigning for a future induction.

As the WWE has been enshrining a female every year, a posthumous induction for Chyna could be possible, especially considering the clamoring for it to happen.

Based on how they handled Randy Savage’s death (and eventual induction) we suspect that she will not get in next year, but perhaps in the year after. 

Either way, we know it will be fascinating!



The Hall of Fame season continues as the WWE Hall of Fame has announced that the collective group of D-Generation X will be inducted at this year’s ceremony.  This includes Shawn Michaels, Triple H, X-Pac, The Road Dogg, Billy Gunn and Chyna.

For Shawn Michaels, this is his second induction joining “Nature Boy” Ric Flair as the WWE Hall of Fame.  Shortly after DX was formed Michaels formed the group with Triple H and Chyna and he would win the WWF World Heavyweight Championship at the controversial 1997 Survivor Series.  Michaels and Triple H reformed DX in the late 2000’s.

The formation of DX vaulted Triple H to the main event and following Michaels’ sabbatical for four years due to injury he would take over the group.  Currently the COO, it is likely that Triple H might feel a little uncomfortable going in as a solo act but he is multi-time WWE Champion and Wrestlemania main eventer and he certainly belongs regardless of his position in the WWE.  He was ranked #4 on our latest list.

The New Age Outlaws formed in 1997 and would join D-Generation X after Wrestlemania XIV and would be multi-time tag team champions.  They provided necessary depth to the group and were the most over tag team in the late 1990’s. Currently, The Road Dogg works as a producer for the WWE and Gunn is with AEW as an agent.  We had them ranked as a pair at #48.  

X-Pac also joined DX the night after Wrestlemania XIV.  Previously wrestling in the WWF as the 123 Kid, Sean Waltman competed as Syxx in WCW but was fired from the company primarily due to injuries.  It would prove to be a bad move by WCW as X-Pac would have the best run of his career as a member of DX.  He was ranked #75 on our latest list.

Garnering most of the attention of this announcement is the induction of Chyna. It was well known that she was pining for an induction before her death and in previous interviews Triple H stated that she was not inducted due to her history in porn.  By putting her in with the group it does take a little of the luster off if it but this is a deserving candidate regardless of how you look at it.  She was ranked #64 on our list.

This group will remove five people off our Notinhalloffame.com list, which will be updated after Wrestlemania.

We here at Notinhalloffame.com would like to congratulate the newest members of the WWE Hall of Fame.

Chyna

She may be a famous train wreck now, but there was a time when Chyna was among the top five over wrestlers in the WWE.  She was different than the other women of wrestling, and fans responded positively.  As her popularity grew, fans did not bat an eye when she was booked to defeat talented male wrestlers.  They believed in her, and she changed the way that women could be used in a ring.  There may never be another like her again, and had she not left the WWE on such bad terms it has to be wondered what she could have eventually accomplished there.  Seriously, there was probably a lot more life left in that character.