On March 27, 1985, just days prior to the inaugural WrestleMania, Richard Belzer requested on his cable TV talk show Hot Properties that Hulk Hogan demonstrate one of his signature wrestling moves. After consistently refusing but being egged on by Belzer, Hogan put Belzer in a modified Guillotine choke, which caused Belzer to pass out. When Hogan released him, Belzer hit his head on the floor, sustaining a laceration to the scalp that required a brief hospitalization. Belzer sued Hogan for $5 million and later settled out of court; the settlement was rumored at $1.5 million. On October 20, 2006, on Bubba the Love Sponge, it was claimed (with Hogan in the studio) that the settlement totaled $5 million, half from Hogan and half from Vince McMahon. During his June 23, 2008 appearance on Sirius Satellite Radio's The Howard Stern Show, Belzer suggested that the real settlement amount was actually closer to $400,000.
On December 18, 1983, Bollea married Linda Claridge (born August 24, 1959). They have a daughter Brooke (born May 5, 1988) and a son Nick (born July 27, 1990). Bollea made his personal life the centerpiece of the television show Hogan Knows Best, which includes his wife and two children. Bollea's 17 year old son Nick was indicted as an adult on November 7, 2007 on four criminal charges. The charges stemmed from an August car accident that seriously injured the passenger in Nick's car, John Graziano. Nick pleaded no contest and was sentenced to eight months in prison on May 9, 2008.
According to an interview in The National Enquirer, Christiane Plante claimed that she had an affair with Hogan in 2007 while the Hogan family was shooting Hogan Knows Best. Plante was 33 years old at the time and had worked with Brooke Hogan on her 2006 album. On November 20, 2007, Linda filed for divorce in Pinellas County, Florida. Hulk told St. Petersburg Times that he was unaware of the filing when the paper called for a comment. The Graziano family's lawyer believed the divorce might have been an attempt to divide the family's assets from a planned civil suit against the Bolleas regarding their son, Nick. After filing for divorce, Linda (48 at the time) began dating Charlie Hill (19 at the time). Hill had been a student at Brooke and Nick's high school, one grade above Nick and one grade below Brooke. In November 2008, Linda claimed to the public that she made the decision to end her marriage after finding out about Hulk Hogan's affair. Hogan said that he had considered committing suicide, however, he moved on and married his current wife Jennifer McDaniel. In his 2009 autobiography, however, Hogan acknowledged that Linda on numerous occasions suspected he was having infidelities whenever he developed friendships with other women, but denied allegations that he ever cheated on Linda.
Bollea lived with his daughter, Brooke, who starred in the now-cancelled VH1 reality series, Brooke Knows Best. Bollea has suffered numerous health problems, particularly with his back since retiring as a wrestler following the years of heavyweight training and jolting as a wrestler. On October 27, 2009, St. Martin's Press released Bollea's autobiography, My Life Outside the Ring. Hogan credits Laila Ali, co-star on American Gladiators, with preventing him from committing suicide. Bollea has been in a relationship with Jennifer McDaniel since early 2008. The two were engaged in November 2009 and married on December 14, 2010, in Clearwater, Florida. Hogan became a distributor for multi-level marketing company ViSalus Sciences after looking for business opportunities outside of wrestling. Hogan supports the American Diabetes Association.
In April, 2012, a sex tape between Hogan and a woman who appears to be Heather Clem (the estranged wife of radio personality Bubba the Love Sponge) was released online. Hulk told Howard Stern on his satellite radio show that, "It was a bad choice and a very low point," "I was with some friends and made a wrong choice. It has devastated me, I have never been this hurt," and also claimed the video was from six years ago. On October 15, 2012, Hogan filed a lawsuit against Bubba the Love Sponge and Heather Clem for invading his privacy. On October 29, 2012, Hogan settled the lawsuit with Bubba the Love Sponge over the sex tape involving him and Heather Clem.
Read more about this topic: Hulk Hogan
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