Top 100 WWE Wrestlers Of All-Time: 20-11
So many wrestlers have graced a WWE ring. Some, we barely remember. Others, we think about every single day.
If you could break every WWE wrestler down and put them in a top 100, who would you list and how would you rank them?
I will try to attempt this over the next month, taking a page out of NFL Network's book.
Recently, the NFL Network had a series of shows highlighting the top 100 NFL players of all time, listing just 10 players a week until they got to the final 10.
Once a week, I will post a slideshow of 10 wrestlers, starting at 100.
I want to be clear that I am only considering time with CWC (Capitol Wrestling Corp.), WWWF, WWF and WWE. Time spent with other organizations, even if they were an affiliate of WWE, is not being considered on my list.
Wrestlers will be ranked on championships won, charisma, skills, popularity and their overall impact on the WWE landscape.
I know I will take a lot of heat for some of my picks and maybe a lot of respect for some of my picks. This is an opinion article, and I am entitled to who I think belongs where. I am looking forward to all of your comments and where you would rank these wrestlers.
Also, if I miss out on anybody, let me hear about it.
100. Hillbilly Jim
99. Big Boss Man
97. Killer Kowalski
96. Pat Patterson
95. "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan
94. Bubba Ray Dudley
93. William Regal
92. Big John Studd
91. CM Punk
90. Ken Patera
89. Kerry Von Erich
88. Trish Stratus
86. "Big Daddy Cool" Diesel
84. Tito Santana
83. "The Model" Rick Martel
81. Booker T
80. Barry Darsow "Smash"
79. Junkyard Dog
78. King Kong Bundy
77. Big Show
76. Jesse "The Body" Ventura
74. Brock Lesnar
73. Rob Van Dam
72. Nikolai Volkoff
70. Billy Gunn
69. Wendi Richter
67. Bobo Brazil
66. Iron Sheik
65. Lex Luger
64. Jake "The Snake" Roberts
63. Ernie Ladd
62. Matt Hardy
61. Jeff Hardy
60. Stan Stasiak
58. Greg "The Hammer" Valentine
57. Ravishing Rick Rude
56. Fabulous Moolah
55. Adrian Adonis
54. Gorilla Monsoon
53. Rocky Johnson
52. Stan Hansen
51. Professor Toru Tanaka
50. Sycho Sid
49. George "The Animal" Steele
48. Larry Zbyszko
47. Honky Tonk Man
46. Paul Orndorff
45. The Shiek
44. Spiros Arion
43. Ted DiBiase
42. Dusty Rhodes
41. Cowboy Bob Orton
40. Rey Mysterio Jr.
38. Chief Jay Strongbow
37. British Bulldog Davey Boy Smith
36. Dynamite Kid
35. Mr. Perfect
33. Chris Benoit
32. Sgt. Slaughter
31. Pedro Morales
30. Razor Ramon
29. Jimmy Snuka
28. Don Muraco
27. Ivan Koloff
26. Mick Foley
25. "Classy" Freddie Blassie
24. Owen Hart
23. Ricky Steamboat
22. Superstar Billy Graham
Now, let's continue the countdown with No. 20 on the list...
20. Buddy Rogers
The late Buddy Rogers made it into the WWE Hall Of Fame in 1994, which was the first HOF class after Andre The Giant kicked things off in 1993.
Rogers is well known for being the first man to ever hold the WWE Championship, then called the WWWF Championship, an esteemed honor.
However, the WWWF was leaving the NWA at the time and a lot of things are a bit skewed. The tournament in Brazil, in which Rogers won the title, well, that never took place.
In the record books, he is still the first champion but immediately dropped the belt to Bruno Sammartino a few weeks later.
He was believed to drop the title so quickly because of his health, a heart attack to be more precise, which Sammartino didn't believe and publicly criticized him for not wanting to lose the belt.
Rogers didn't give up after his title defeat to Sammartino. He stayed on top in anticipation of a rematch.
He went on to defeat Hans "The Great" Mortier in less than a minute with the Figure Four leg lock in Madison Square Garden and teamed with Johnny Barend to take two out of three falls via pin from Sammartino and Bobo Brazil, with Rogers pinning Sammartino for the final fall.
Rogers never got his rematch and retired in 1963.
19. Randy Orton
"The Viper" Randy Orton rips into the Top 20 on my countdown at No. 19.
Orton, the son of "Cowboy" Bob Orton, is a seven-time major Champion in the WWE (six WWE Championships, one World Championship).
At the age of 24, while with Evolution, Orton defeated Chris Benoit for the World Heavyweight Championship at Summerslam 2004, becoming the youngest World Champion in WWE history.
Orton's accomplishments also include a seven-month Intercontinental Championship reign in 2004, which was the longest reign since The Rock's in 1997.
Orton also won the 2009 Royal Rumble, only to lose to Triple H at WrestleMania 25 for the WWE Championship.
Still, at such a young age today (30), Orton has accomplished so much and can only get better from here.
With his snake-like moves in the ring, you never know when and how he is going to strike his opponents.
18. John Cena
John Cena. Some dislike him, and to others he's a fan favorite.
I don't think any of us knew that when Cena accepted Kurt Angle's open challenge in 2002 on an episode of Smackdown, his career would come to what it has today.
Nearly 11 years later, Cena is a nine-time World Champion (seven-time WWE Champion, two-time World Heavyweight Champion) and is a household name across the world.
Rather you like him or not, the facts are there, this kid from West Newbury, Mass. is for real.
I don't expect Cena's career to slow down anytime soon. At age 33, there are still a few great years left.
It all could culminate full circle if Cena gets to eventually have a match with The Rock, a battle of WWE era's, just like The Rock facing Hulk Hogan.
I'll admit, I have never been a big fan of John Cena, but I respect him. Also, that theme is kinda catchy.
17. Rowdy Roddy Piper
"I'm so quick, I could spit in the wind, duck, and let it hit the old lady behind me!" - Roddy Piper
Piper was one of the toughest men to ever step foot inside of a WWE ring but was also one of the most snubbed wrestlers of all-time.
Piper never won the WWE Championship, and it still stings a lot of fans to this day. He did win the Intercontinental Championship by defeating The Mountie at the 1992 Royal Rumble.
Piper also held the WWE Tag Team Championships on one occasion, with partner Ric Flair.
One of Piper's most famous moments came when he smashed a coconut over the head of Jimmy Snuka on the set of his show Pipers Pit.
Being an actor at the prime of his wrestling career has a lot to do with him not getting the WWE Championship, and a lot of people need to realize that.
However, it doesn't take away from how legendary Piper is, and he deserves this spot on my Top 100.
16. Ultimate Warrior
What can you say about the Ultimate Warrior? The man was crazy and still is.
In 1988, Warrior defeated the Honky Tonk Man for the WWE Intercontinental Championship at the inaugural Summerslam event.
Before Warrior's win, Honky Tonk Man held the Intercontinental Championship longer then anyone else, at 454 days, which still stands today.
Warrior would drop the title to Rick Rude at WrestleMania V but pick it back up at Summerslam 1989.
Warrior's biggest moment came at WrestleMania VI, when it was his Intercontinental Championship versus Hulk Hogan's WWE Championship, title for title.
The match was billed as "The Ultimate Challenge."
In a rare occasion of Hogan "Hulking Up," it didn't phase the Warrior and all of his "Warrior Powers," and he would defeat Hogan using his Warrior Splash finisher.
This would be Warrior's only major championship win, and he would drop the title to Sgt. Slaughter at the 1991 Royal Rumble.
Warrior is yet to be inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame.
15. Eddie Guerrero
Eddie Guerrero could have been so much more and was taken from us too soon.
However, when you look back on his accomplishments, you have to admire everything he did.
Eddie's finest moment came at the 2004 No Way Out event, when he defeated Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship.
Guerrero would only hold the title until June of that year, losing it to JBL in a Texas Bullrope match at the Great American Bash.
Sometimes when you talk about Eddie Guerrero's wrestling career, you have to look past the achievements and look at his charm and charisma in the ring.
Guerrero is going to go down as one of the most memorable wrestlers of all-time, and that isn't because of his sudden, tragic death, but because of his style and persona.
There will never be another one like Eddie Guerrero.
Eddie was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2006.
14. Andre The Giant
The first man to ever be inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame was a big one.
Standing at 7' 4'', weighing 500 pounds, Andre was truly what his name claimed, a giant.
After Hulk Hogan held the WWE Championship for four years, Andre defeated him for the belt.
Andre also won WrestleMania's 2 Battle Royal, as well as the Tag Team Championships with Haku.
Andre wrestled in the WWE for nearly twenty years, a true testament to his endurance and strength based on his size.
We have seen a lot of big men come and go in the WWE, but never one like this, and there never will be one like him again.
13. Kurt Angle
The 1996 Olympic Gold Medalist spent eight years in the WWE before jumping ship to TNA.
However, Angle accomplished a lot in those eight years inside a WWE ring.
Angle was a six-time major Champion in the WWE (4-time WWE Champion, 2-time World Heavyweight Champion).
Angle was also crowned King Of The Ring in 2000, as well as winning all of the following titles on one occasion: Tag Team Championship, US Championship, European Championship, Intercontinental Championship and Hardcore Championship.
In my opinion, Angle's biggest match was at WrestleMania 21 against Shawn Michaels in a non-title match. This match, hands down, stole that show, and is nearly a Top 10 WrestleMania match of all-time.
At age 42, there is a slight chance that Angle could return to the WWE and squash the sour grapes that he left behind, something that will have to be done if he ever wants to see the WWE Hall Of Fame.
12. Ric Flair
The Nature Boy, Ric Flair, comes in at No. 12 on my Top 100 WWE Wrestlers of All-Time.
When you are talking about wrestling as a whole, Flair is one of the greatest of all-time, but when you are talking about his time just in the WWE, I have him nestled here, just outside of the Top 10.
Flair's unique Royal Rumble victory in 1992 didn't earn him a shot at the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, it gave him the title on that same night, due to the belt's vacant status at the time.
Flair would drop the belt to Macho Man Randy Savage at WrestleMania VIII, but would pick it up again before losing it to Bret Hart.
I was lucky enough to be at WrestleMania XXIV when Flair faced Shawn Michaels in his final WWE match, and he was inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame the night before his career-ending loss to Michaels.
11. Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho exploded onto the WWE scene in 1999 as the Millennium Clock reached zero with The Rock was in the ring.
Up until The Rock's 2011 WWE Return, Jericho's pop he got from the crowd that night was the loudest I have ever heard on an episode of Raw.
Jericho's biggest moment came at Vengeance in 2001, when he defeated The Rock for the WCW Championship and Stone Cold Steve Austin for the WWE championship on the same night to become the first-ever Undisputed WWE Champion.
Jericho is also a nine-time Intercontinental Champion, as well as a four-time Tag Team Champion.
His nine reigns are a WWE record for most Intercontinental Championship reigns.
Jericho can still add to some of these numbers as he hasn't hung up his boots for good yet and could return to the WWE before WrestleMania 27.