The sight of Ric Flair covered in blood, the stark contrast against his white blond hair is an image wrestling fans became accustomed to for a number of decades. Not that it always went down well with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon.
Speaking to Inside The Ropes’ own Keith Elliott Greenberg for Issue 8 of Inside The Ropes Magazine, Lanny Poffo recalled an incident where Flair got “legitimate heat” from McMahon for blading during a match.
Heading into WrestleMania VIII Ric Flair was the WWF Champion after famously winning the title in the 1992 Royal Rumble Match. Over the course of the next few months Flair entered a rivalry with Randy Savage. As tensions boiled over, in storyline Flair claimed to have had a prior relationship with Savage’s wife Miss Elizabeth. This led to a showdown between the pair at WrestleMania for the WWF’s top prize.
At the event, Savage emerged victorious, claiming his 2nd WWF Championship. However, despite the company have a ‘no blood’ policy at the time, Flair was caught on camera blading.
Reflecting on the match, Poffo said that Flair knew he was breaking the rules, but did it anyway. This incurred the wrath of Vince McMahon and led to Flair being fined.
“Ric caught some legitimate heat from Vince McMahon for blading during the match and was fined… Things had changed since I did that blade job for Andre the Giant. The company didn’t want the boys blading at that point. But Ric knew how fans reacted to seeing blood staining his blond hair and did it anyway. Vince was mad, but the fans loved it.”
During the conversation, Poffo recalled his aforementioned blade-job in the lead-up to WrestleMania III. Poffo revealed that while plenty of people told him to bleed during the segment, not so many were there to say “thank you” when he later got backstage.