Ladies and gentlemen… his name is Paul Heyman. And he is the first member of the 2024 class of the WWE Hall of Fame.

On Monday morning, WWE posted a tweet confirming the AP reports that Heyman will be the first of this year’s inductees at the ceremony to be held on April 5th following Smackdown, the night before WrestleMania Night One.

Fittingly, the ceremony will be taking place in Philadelphia, which was the home base for ECW, the company with which Heyman will be forever linked. It was his ownership and creative direction that took the territorial Eastern Championship Wrestling and turned it into the bold, brash, and controversial Extreme Championship Wrestling – that is credited as the inspiration for WWE’s Attitude Era.

As owner of ECW, Heyman cultivated a relationship with WWE, which used ECW as a place to develop wrestlers and from which other wrestlers could be used to bolster WWE’s roster.

After ECW folded, Heyman joined WWE as a commentator and played an on-screen role as part of the WCW-ECW Alliance storyline, before transitioning into a backstage role as the lead writer for Smackdown. During the original brand split, Heyman’s focus on in-ring action which shone a spotlight on stars like Edge, Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, Kurt Angle, and Rey Mysterio, led to the blue brand rivaling RAW for “A-Show” status both critically and ratings-wise.

Heyman would return to an on-screen managerial role – like he’d held in WCW prior to his ECW run as the leader of the Dangerous Alliance faction – acting as the mouthpiece for Brock Lesnar during his rookie year. Heyman then led a resurrection of the ECW brand after the success of WWE’s One Night Stand PPVs, but disputes with WWE management – in particular, Vince and Stephanie McMahon – about the creative direction of the revamped ECW brand – which ended with the debacle called the December to Dismember PPV – led to his departure from the company in 2006.

Returning in 2012, Heyman returned to WWE, once again taking on a role by Brock Lesnar’s side, and also became a manager of sorts to other members of the roster to various degrees of success, including CM Punk, Curtis Axel, Cesaro, and Ryback.  He resumed his partnership with Brock Lesnar, and was in Lesnar’s corner when he broke the Undertaker’s undefeated streak at Wrestlemania XXX in 2014.

In 2019, Heyman was installed as the Executive Director of RAW, with reports suggesting this was to be the head of Creative for the brand. He was removed from the position a year later, and has since focused primarily on his on-screen role.

Since 2020, Heyman has been a central figure in the Bloodline storyline, as the Special Counsel and “Wiseman” for Roman Reigns, and for many, has been a highlight of the show with his passionate promos and his interactions with Reigns, Reigns’ opponents, and stablemates.

Ticket information for the Hall of Fame ceremony can be found here.



Paul Heyman story archive