In an event that no one considered a shameless publicity stunt for either party involved, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford beat wrestling superstar Hulk Hogan in an arm wrestling match.
The two heavyweights went toe-to-toe in a battle of arm strength (and willingness to discount reality) on Friday in a collegial, backslapping affair that is bound to make Ford's mayoral highlight reel.
"I own this town," Ford shouted moments before pinning Hogan's hand, in a battle that lasted about 30 seconds.
Ford meant, "I was democratically elected to conscientiously lead this town!" But in the heat of battle, we can forgive his excitement.
— Mayor Rob Ford (@TOMayorFord) August 23, 2013
The event began with Hogan, dressed in jeans and a red T-shirt, entering an Ambassador Hotel conference room filled with fans and journalists to chants of “Hogan, Hogan.”
Moments later, Ford entered to the tune of “Eye of the Tiger,” charged onto the stage, ripped off his jacket and tie and un-tucked his blue dress shirt.
As Ford grinned and the crowd cheered, Hogan came to a realization. “I’m the bad guy,” he said, apparently having no prior awareness of how the day's event would proceed.
It surely came a surprise, then, when his powerful arm — complete with a famously 24-inch bicep muscle — was later pushed to the table by the younger Ford.
“Big man, that's all you've got?” Hogan was jeering moments before his defeat. “I’m going to take your job. Call me Mayor Hogan.”
Hogan got the war of words going early, telling CTV Toronto before the match that he would rip the mayor’s arm off and adding that he was a “Chevrolet man.” But it was Ford who won the day.
As an aside, beating Hogan in arm wrestling is rumoured to have been on Ford's bucket list, which also includes:
- Beating this guy at a slam poetry competition
- Sharing an emotional handshake with Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi
- Having more Twitter followers than Margaret Atwood.
Hogan is set to appear at an "intimate" appearance at Fan Expo Canada, held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre Friday evening. The event, titled "Hogan Uncensored," will feature stories from behind the scenes as a wrestling superstar and actor.
While the event was a little bit of fun to help kick of Toronto’s Fan Expo Canada event, many online were shaking their heads over the whole affair.
The Hulk Hogan arm wrestle would have been more fun if Rob Ford showed up in a King Kong Bundy leotard. — Mike Mancuso (@emergepost) August 23, 2013
— Heather R. (@sweetkeet) August 23, 2013
Rob Ford is a worthy challenger to Jake Roberts for the title of “best crackhead wrestler” — Dick Bucket, M.D. (@doctor_ass) August 23, 2013
Thanks, Hulk Hogan, for allowing the mayor to continue living in Make Believe Land.
— Denise Balkissoon (@balkissoon) August 23, 2013
So apparently Rob Ford beat Hulk Hogan in arm-wrestling match. Who says pro-wrestling is fixed?! — NOW Magazine (@nowtoronto) August 23, 2013
Rob Ford beat Hulk Hogan at arm wrestling so I guess we can stop worrying about Toronto now
— Jennifer Stevens (@designizen) August 23, 2013