Inside WWEs infamous plane ride from hell – flashing, fights and drugs

A bunch of 400-pound wrestlers, an open bar and a transatlantic flight – what could possibly go wrong? Well, it turns out a lot.

The so-called 'plane ride from hell', which included wrestling heavyweights like Brock Lesnar, The Undertaker and even WWE boss Vince McMahon, was a journey which caused a huge PR stink for the company.

In the years since, stories from those on the May 2002 flight after the Insurrection pay-per-view in London range from the hilarious to the appalling.

Drunken antics, sexual harassment accusations and a fight which almost lead to the plane door bursting open have all been retold countless times. In short, it was a nightmare.

Multiple people were fired from the company as a result of the rambunctious ride from London back to Connecticut.

While not the only WWE tour to ever go pair-shaped, the sheer number of incidents that went down and the aftermath have put this one down as one of the most controversial days in the company's history.

Brock Lesnar fight

In terms of the order in which these shocking events occurred, it's hard to tell, but one of the more infamous moments is an altercation between former UFC champion Brock Lesnar and Curt Hennig, also known as Mr Perfect.

The story goes that Curt goaded Brock into a real wrestling fight on the plane (as any normal man would).

The two Minnesota boys started with a friendly grapple but things ended up getting heated.

With the pair embroiled in what was now a serious fight, the pair collided with the emergency exit door on the plane which naturally freaked everybody out.

After that scary moment, the two had to be separated by Triple H and Paul Heyman among others.

Scott Hall's antics

The late Scott Hall, who died earlier this year, was already walking on thin ice before the plane ride from hell occurred.

The former NWO member had been known to enjoy a beverage or two throughout his life and the journey to Connecticut was no different.

From those who retold the story, Hall was at one point so inebriated that some of his friends had to check his pulse to make sure he was still alive.

When they returned to America, Hall had to be put in a wheelchair and rolled through customs.

He was later accused of making sexually suggestive comments to some of the flight attendants.

Not that he was the only one accused of such things…

Ric Flair's sexual misconduct allegations

Ric Flair, regarded as one of the best wrestlers of all time by many, has had his fair share of controversy down the years.

The 73-year-old, who recently announced a return to the ring, was in hot water when flight attendants on the plane that day told of how Flair groped them on the flight.

Flair denied the allegations made by the two women — and WWE was forced to settle out of court during the aftermath of the flight.

A lawsuit filed by the two women stated that Flair asked them to touch his penis.

According to interviews with former wrestlers, the 'Nature Boy' was strutting around the plane and flashing people while wearing nothing but one of his shiny robes.

Michael P.S Hayes gets a haircut

Michael P.S. Hayes – a figure of backstage authority at the time – was another member of the flight who did not act very professionally on that fateful day.

And he landed himself in a lot of trouble for it.

Hayes kicked things off by punching current wrestler Bradshaw in the head while he was asleep, apparently reopening an old gash on his head.

Not exactly thrilled with having his face and clothes covered in claret, the big Texan woke up and proceeded to knock Hayes unconscious for his funny little prank.

But the antics certainly didn't stop there for 'Purely Sexy' Hayes.

According to multiple reports he very nearly urinated on WWE boss Vince McMahon's wife, Linda, in the first-class section of the plane.

Heavily intoxicated and in need of a lie-down, Hayes then passed out on the plane.'

Cue wrestler X-Pac who, sick of Hayes' shenanigans, decided that the head of talent relations needed a new look.

X-Pac cut off his ponytail and, as he mentioned in an interview, pinned it to a wall backstage at a Monday Night Raw taping next to a sign that read: "Auction. Proceeds benefit alcoholics anonymous."

Despite Hayes losing his rag when he awoke to find his ponytail missing, nobody ratted out the former 1-2-3 Kid.

To be fair, Hayes probably deserved it.

The aftermath

When Vince McMahon found out about everything that had gone down, heads began to role.

Curt Hennig was fired for his part in the fight with Lesnar. He was also supposedly going around and tagging wrestlers with shaving cream, but we're sure he wouldn't have been fired if it wasn't for him being responsible for the plane almost going down.

Scott Hall was also fired but not for any one specific moment.

His conduct leading up to the tour had been sketchy and, with a history of substance abuse problems, WWE viewed the plane ride from hell as the final straw.

Authority figures such as Arn Anderson, Gerald Brisco and, of course, Michael Hayes were all reprimanded because they were supposed to be keeping an eye on the inmates but, instead, let them run the asylum.

The flight led to changes in the rules and regulations surrounding WWE tours.

Current AEW commentator and WWE legend Jim Ross would later write about the plane ride from hell saying "alcohol would not be provided on future chartered flights."

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