Wrestling with the Devil: The True Story of a World Champion Professional Wrestler--His Reign, Ruin, and Redemption
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Lex Luger, wrestling megasensation and three-time world heavyweight champion, ruled the ring for years as “The Total Package.” Whether he was making a dramatic entrance from a helicopter, defeating champ Hulk Hogan, or sculpting a near-perfect physique, Lex was on top of his game. Yet backstage, he was wrestling with addictions to sex, drugs, and alcohol―things he clung to even when his mistress died suddenly of a drug overdose and Lex went to jail. There, Lex faced the truth: he was losing the fight for his life. And still awaiting him was his most brutal opponent yet, when the wrestling champ found himself helplessly paralyzed from the neck down. In Wrestling with the Devil, Lex Luger reveals never-before-told stories from his career, his struggle with personal demons, and how, through unexpected faith, grace, and redemption, he overcame all odds to fight the only battle that really matters.
tests. It became a game to outwit our professors, who were always trying to catch us. But we had devised elaborate and creative systems of cheating that utilized the help of the Hurricane Honeys —female students who showed visiting recruits around campus —as well as other coconspirators. Our deception worked, but I have often thought that if we had spent half as much time studying as we did preparing ways to cheat, we’d have all gotten As. Of course, we made time for a social life, too. On
daily, I didn’t have the luxury of continuous workouts combined with the nonstop feasting that I had enjoyed at the Miami athletes’ training table. And the hot weather made it even harder to keep weight on. I had always had a fast metabolism and was often kidded by family and friends about how much food I could put away. In my senior year of high school, my voracious appetite earned me the title of the class’s “biggest eater,” along with my female counterpart, a petite figure skater. We were
powerlifter and the 1979 winner of the World’s Strongest Man competition. We had met when I was in high school, and I considered him a mentor. I enjoyed pumping iron with him in his garage as I waited for the calls from the pros. The Green Bay Packers were the first team to fly me in for a workout in late January 1982. I didn’t know what to expect. I was weighed, measured, and tested on various skills such as vertical jump, standing broad jump, shuttle run, and the forty-yard dash. I got the
missed signals in the ring. He went one way, and I went the other. Suddenly, there was a pop, like a gun had gone off in the ring. It was so loud that the referee said, “What was that?” None of us knew. When the match was over, I knew that something wasn’t right about my left biceps, even though it looked normal. Nothing hurt, but I knew my body well enough to realize that something was definitely wrong. When I got home to Atlanta, I consulted various local doctors, but no one had an answer.
pulled her down.” (Sadie was Elizabeth’s German shepherd.) After talking about the situation, Elizabeth’s friend and I both believed that drugs and alcohol were the more likely culprits. As I reflected on it, I knew she wasn’t fine. She was coming to the gym less and less often, saying she didn’t feel well. That wasn’t like her. She’s not taking care of herself, I thought. Although I thought she was being a busybody, I told Elizabeth’s friend that I would talk to her about it. And I did. When