Following his appearance on the Arsenio Hall show and the revelation about Dr. Zahorian, Hogan disappeared from the WWF until March 1993. His return, while brief, was also notable in that he looked a great deal smaller and less muscular than before. He once again disappeared off the roster during the summer for another extended period away.
The next year, Hogan agreed to testify for the federal government about the performance enhancers distribution case in exchange for immunity. He then revealed that he had been taking them regularly since the 1970s. He also torpedoed the case against Vince McMahon by saying McMahon had never pressured him to take enhancers or provided him with them.
Trying to Find the Time
Since he was busy with acting, Hogan decided to slow down on the amount of actual wrestling he was doing. He dropped the WWF Championship to the Ultimate Warrior at WrestleMania VI in April 1990, and after that moved into what was essentially a part-time role with the company during 1991 and 1992.
Despite that fact, he held the WWF Championship twice over that period and also headlined WrestleMania VII and VIII. Hey, you don't need to work full time to do the best job. But, if the quality of his movies were any indication, Hogan should have stayed in the ring.
A Black Mark on His Record
For a while, Hogan was a big, strong, untouchable man but that all changed in 1992. A performance enhancers scandal had sprung up around Dr. George Zahorian, a Pennsylvania doctor who had, apparently, been supplying these enhancers to the WWF for a long time. Since Hogan was such a big part of the organization, there was an immediate spotlight on him.
He decided to be proactive and get ahead of any potential rumors and made the decision to appear on Arsenio Hall's talk show, claiming that he'd only used these substances once, to help recover from an injury. However, the appearance was panned and derided widely, seen as disingenuous at best.
Hogan wasn't just trying to protect McMahon because he was Hogan's boss – the two were also neighbors. One version of the story says that Hogan and McMahon lived in the same neighborhood (Stamford, Connecticut) while another says that they were even next-door neighbors. Hogan would tell Vince Jr. everything he knew about wrestling while they lifted weights and rode motorcycles together.
Despite the problems that would come between them, Hogan cemented himself as a good neighbor by helping to keep McMahon out of prison. Hard to top that, even if you are kind of a jerk (as Hogan was seen to be by many).
A New Company
In 1994, wrestling was vastly different from when Hogan had started wrestling. After testifying against McMahon, Hogan signed with the WWF's biggest competitor, World Championship Wrestling (WCW). Hogan was immediately the company's biggest star. Hogan's contract was not only huge financially, but it came with something that wrestlers would have killed to get: creative control.
Hogan not only had control over his own storylines but over sections of the company as a whole. One of the things he did with the control was to bring in young stars he thought would be successful, such as Steve Austin, Mick Foley, and Triple H.