TNA Wrestling has announced that veteran referee Earl Hebner will be inducted into the TNA Hall of Fame during the Bound For Glory weekend on Saturday, October 3. Smashing Pumpkins front man and TNA Senior Producer, Billy Corgan, will induct Hebner, with TNA Ring Announcer and Hebner’s dear friend, Jeremy Borash, emceeing. The induction will take place during the BFG tour live event in Salem, Virginia.
“Earl Hebner is not only one of the most recognizable personalities in professional wrestling, his passion for the sport, in-ring management skills, and ability to entertain audiences has set the standard by which all professional wrestling referees are measured,” said TNA President Dixie Carter. “ It is an honor to have Earl as part of the TNA family and as the newest member of the illustrious TNA Hall of Fame.”
Hebner has been refereeing since 1977 and was shot into stardom when he was unveiled as the “evil” Hebner twin, who was bribed by the Million Dollar Man to count the pin on Hulk Hogan and declare Andre The Giant as the new WWF champion during an episode of NBC’s The Main Event.
He was also part of the Montreal screw job as one of the few people who was in on the act to strip Bret Hart off his title. Hart often said that while he was sure something was going to happen, Hebner – who was one of his friends – always had his back and trusted him completely. It was Hebner who signaled for the bell that night and shot straight out of the arena to a waiting car outside.
“When I received the call from John Gaburick and he told me I am being inducted into the TNA Hall of Fame, I was stunned and my eyes welled up with tears,” said Hebner. “I’ve been working for 37 years for this incredible honor. It is rare for a referee in any sport to be recognized in this way, and I am proud TNA is recognizing me as the first referee to ever be inducted into a professional wrestling Hall of Fame.”
Hebner will be the sixth inductee into the TNA Hall of Fame, joining Sting, Kurt Angle, Bully Ray, Devon and Jeff Jarrett. He has been working for TNA since 2006 and his son Brian is also a referee for the company.