Former wrestling champion and recently awarded recipient of over $145 million Hulk Hogan has spilled the beans on what it was like in court during his lengthy lawsuit against Gawker, the news outlet that posted a sex tape featuring Hogan without his permission in 2012.
“He scared the hell out of me,” Hogan told The New York Post about Gawker founder Nick Denton, who was ordered to pay an extra $10 million personally to Hogan on top of the original lawsuit in punitive damages. “Denton and I had a stare-down. He scared me staring at me, man. He just sat there staring. It was right after his cross-examination. He stood up and stared. It was like he was going to call me out at ‘Wrestlemania.’ Yikes!”
“They think that just because you have Facebook or Twitter, you crossed the line between normal person to celebrity status,” he said. “So that means anyone who has anything to do with social media is fair game… I started having, like Oprah has, these ‘aha’ moments… ‘Everybody’s a celebrity,’ I thought. ‘Oh, my God, they’re gunning for everybody. Everybody is fair game. And then 4-year-olds, too?’” said Hogan in reference to the child porn remarks made by former Gawker editor A.J. Daulerio under oath during his deposition.
“I don’t know if [Daulerio] really understands how wrong he is,” Hogan said. “I think some type of experience, if this trial didn’t humble him, then maybe picking up trash on the side of the road might.’’
Hogan also claimed the sex tape to be the most embarrassing and “roughest” thing he has ever had to go through.
“After Gawker had posted the video, it was almost like when I lived in Minnesota and the sun went away and it was like seven months of being real cloudy when I lived in the Twin Cities’,’ said the former world heavyweight champion. “I would run into kids who would say, ‘I’d downloaded the Hulk Hogan Wrestlemania video, and Hulk Hogan sex tape came up’… I dealt with so many horrible things, people in public asking me about the tape. I felt like I had, all of a sudden I had a heat lamp on me at all times.’’
Upon being asked about the questions he faced in court surrounding his penis size and other intimate details, Hogan said, “I tried to keep it in context, what I was dealing with. [The defendants] said it was newsworthy — I felt like I was in the middle of a joke, that they were trying to make something that’s a joke in a locker room with men getting dressed. Then to have to talk about it or be exposed to it was just ridiculous, very embarrassing. It’s hard to talk about this stuff especially when you’re trying to be serious or under oath.’’
Hogan proclaimed that he was offered a substantial amount of money to settle the lawsuit, but added that he wanted to just follow through with the trial and “follow my heart”.
“For me, the message is America is tired of this type of behavior, and it’s unacceptable, and it’s illegal,” expressed Hogan. “I hope [the defendants] learned what the trial was about: that we were actually protecting the First Amendment and carving out that little piece of privacy.”
”I just want to make sure financially my wife and my kids don’t have to worry,’’ concluded Hogan. “Everybody has a different journey and a different threshold of how much of a beat-down they want to take, and I’m done, I’m tapped out.”
Charlie Nash is a frequent contributor to Breitbart Tech and former editor of the Squid Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter @MrNashington.