20/20 reporter John Stossel gets smacked to the ground when he asks WWF wrestler “Dr. D (death)” David Schultz if wrestling is fake.
On December 28, 1984, Schults’ encounter with Stossel happened while Stossel was backstage at Madison Square Garden doing a story about professional wrestling’s secrets. During an interview Stossel told Schults that he thought pro wrestling was fake and Schults’ response was to slap Stossel twice, knocking him to the floor each time. The attack, which attracted a large amount of media coverage, was later aired on national television (as well as currently appearing on websites such as YouTube and including ABC News which reported that the network had received more than 1,000 calls from viewers inquiring about Mr. Stossel’s health.

Marvin Kohn, a deputy commissioner at the New York State Athletic Commission, had been present at the arena during the incident and immediately suspended Schultz for his actions. Although called by Commissioner Jose Torres to come to a hearing before the Commission, Kohn later reported that Schultz had written letter to the commission admitting “that he had acted improperly and apologized both to the commission and to Mr. Stossel” and further stated “I intend the commission to know that I did not intend to hurt John Stossel. I apologize to the commission and to John Stossel.”

Stossel later claimed he was unaware of Schultz apology and would pursue his action in court although commented he would be “less likely to sue” if the aftereffects of his injury disappeared. [7] However, Stossel eventually filed a lawsuit against the World Wrestling Federation, and settled out of court for $425,000.[8]

Although he has consistently maintained that World Wrestling Federation officials told him to hit Stossel, Schultz was fired. Many industry insiders believe, it was not because of his actions against Stossel, rather, Schults was fired for challenging Mr. T to a fight backstage at a WWF show at Madison Square Garden.



  1. Wrestling isn’t fake it’s scripted, just like all other sports. I’m not a wrestling fan but at least you know what you’re watching. Unlike the nfl that disguises itself as genuine but classifies itself as entertainment to the government just like wrestling.

  2. That news reporter got up off his ass and tore out.. I heard he was diagnosed with a busted eardrum at the hospital, but I guarantee he could hear the sounds of that money machine counting them 100’s, after he won the lawsuit.. Ching – Ching 💰💰💰💰💰💰

  3. The point was wrestlers take and give legitimate physical punishment in the ring wether its coregraphed or not. Stoussel wasn't making his claims of illegitimacy clear… Would he also claim that boxing isnt really a fight because it has rules for the said fight to proceed under… Understand wrestling is much more choreographed than pure competitive sports… yet it is still a sport with the inherent physical risks to injury and wear and tear on the body that all sports have… Stossel was trying counter those things in the public eye

  4. That smack made the industry stronger and made more fans of us all.. Respect grew and so forth.. go back into time and stop it from happening.. I bet every thing you know and love will end or not exist….

  5. Stossel got what he deserved. Who is the dumb ass? Stossel wants to ask a question then he makes a statement that got him slapped down. Stossel is an insulting metro male who couldn't pound snot with a wooden hammer. Discretion is the better part of valor. Obviously, Stossel's mama didn't teach him that.

  6. Tough guy david schultz. No physical threat made to him by a guy sent by ABC to do his job and the wrestlers knew he was coming and the questions to be asked. Little david schultz, sucker punches a guy half his size and hits women to show how tough he is. Blondie with a fag perm is insecure evidently. Big steroids, big body=micro penis most likely. That's probably what he's mad about. Fuck him, the sooner he croaks the better the world is without him. That would get your head blown off in some parts of the country. Too bad it wasn't that part. Too bad Stossel didn't have a 357 on him ! Now that really would have been hilarious ! Get all these wankers in the comment section thinking they're bad asses siding with the big guy because they got micro-penises too. 99% of you motherfuckers just wish you were big and bad ! You most likely beat off dreaming about it. Y'all are the type that if you saw a big punk like that schultz character beating up some woman y'all wouldn't do shit or say shit about it ! Just a bunch of johnny come lately, jump on the bandwagon, politically correct, cultural marxist, pop culture vodka gimlet geeks ! Sit on that and spin and let it go all the way in, yeah that's right, let it go all the way in ! LMAO !

  7. Wrestling is fake. And the other wrestlers nearby when this happened should have stepped in and knocked that bitch Schultz out immediately when he assaulted a much smaller man. Who was completely caught off guard to boot. Schultz was a punk wrestler and a coward as a person. More immature boy then man. Some big bitch pulls a sucker punch on me, he'll be immediately acquiring at least 3 big new 357 holes in his body. 2 in his head and 1 thru his heart. He's lucky he only lost a half a million in the lawsuit. At least he still has his fucking worthless life.

  8. To understand what led to that slap, you have to have been a wrestling fan back then to know that no one admitted it was fake, and everyone went out of their way to make sure the fans felt it was real. And most fans did think it was real, especially ones that were in the south, watching the gritty, bloody shit they did down there. Only when the WWE got cartoony, created larger than life characters, and started marketing themselves as 'family entertainment' did the in ring performances become more over the top, and less for suspending disbelief. When this video was shot, though, protecting the business was pretty serious. And Stossel was acting like a jackass.


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