Randy Savage was best known for his time in WWF and WCW, and his energetic personality is still celebrated to this day. That led to some unpredictable moments in his life, and that includes his action in the ring. It turns out that even referees were not immune to Savage’s unpredictable nature.

In the spring of 1999, referee Charles Robinson was involved in a storyline with Ric Flair and Randy Savage. Dubbed “Lil’ Naitch,” Robinson joined forces with Flair to face Savage and Madusa on the May 17th episode of WCW Monday Nitro. During the bout, Charles was on the receiving end of Savage’s flying elbow drop. 

On the “Out of Character” podcast, Charles Robinson recalled that Randy Savage had actually broken his sternum with that elbow drop. As a result, Robinson spent two weeks in the hospital.

“I was the sacrificial lamb, which of course put me in the hospital for two weeks.”


Following the match, Ric Flair’s bodyguard, Asya, checked on Robinson. The referee had a difficult time breathing and after calling Jimmy Hart, EMTs arrived and took Robinson to the hospital.

“I’m a pretty good seller but not that good. I had a cracked sternum, and collapsed lung and some broken vertebrae – cracked vertebrae – and unfortunately, the hospital there [Cedar Rapids] sent me home the next day back to Charlotte on an airplane, which I don’t think you’re supposed to fly with a collapsed lung.”

Charles Robinson was then shelved for three months, which halted WCW’s scheduled plans. It turns out that if plans went the original direction for Robinson, his long-term career as a referee might not have happened.

“From what I was told, I was supposed to team with Ric for the whole summer, so could you imagine that? But you know, it’s sort of a blessing because how do you come back and be a referee after that?” 

Charles Robinson never blamed Randy Savage and admired Macho Man’s overflowing kindness. In fact, Savage visited the referee in the hospital after the in-ring accident.

“He called me almost every day that I was in the hospital to check on me. That was a good feeling he would do that.”

Widely regarded as one of the greatest pro wrestlers who ever lived, Savage won six world championships during his 32-year career. As WWF Champion, he enjoyed similar drawing power as Hulk Hogan. Savage headlined many pay-per-view events throughout his career, including multiple WrestleMania shows. In 2015, Macho Man was posthumously inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame. Obviously, there are several stories about Savage’s career, and there are likely many more left to be told.

What’s your take on the story? Sound off in the comments!

Saptarshi Sinha

Saptarshi Sinha is a pro-wrestling enthusiast and journalist. He has been covering the industry for over five years, providing in-depth analysis and coverage of the latest events and storylines. In addition to his passion for wrestling, Saptarshi also enjoys perfumery, photography, optometry, and gaming in his free time. He is dedicated to bringing his readers the most accurate and engaging content in the world of professional wrestling.

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