Hulk Hogan began his professional wrestling career in 1977, but gained worldwide recognition after signing for World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) in 1983. There, his persona as a heroic all-American helped usher in the 1980s professional wrestling boom, where he headlined the first nine editions of WWF's flagship annual event, WrestleMania.
During his initial run, Hogan also won the WWF Championship five times, with his first reign holding the record for the second-longest in company history. Additionally, he is the first wrestler to win consecutive Royal Rumble matches, winning in 1990 and 1991.
In 1994, he departed the WWF to sign for rival promotion World Championship Wrestling (WCW). Hogan subsequently won the WCW World Heavyweight Championship six times, and also holds the record for the longest reign in company history.
In 1996, he adopted the villainous persona of "Hollywood" Hulk Hogan, leading the popular New World Order (NWO) stable. As a result, he became a major figure during the "Monday Night Wars", another boom of mainstream professional wrestling.
Hogan also headlined WCW's annual flagship event Starrcade three times, including the most profitable WCW pay-per-view ever at the event's 1997 edition. In a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, Hogan talked about his appearance on The Goldbergs: “This episode is a prime example of what Hulk Hogan has meant to four generations of people.
There is something there that connects us. The only way I can explain it is by mentioning that I just bought a 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner. It’s the same exact car I had in high school—Omaha orange, a vinyl top, bucket seats, a skinny little steering wheel, it’s a bad ass car.
So I’m driving down the road with the window down, and the biggest smile came on my face when the memory of how I used to feel in that car returned. That’s Hulkamania. It’s a nostalgic, old-school feeling that continues to connect us”.