WWE has a rich history of extraordinary performers. The WWE "All Stars" video game was marketed as a challenge between yesterdays stars, and WWE's current roster. This concept had me thinking about what stars could "make it" in today's wrestling climate. I made the following list of classic superstars that I think could stand a legitimate chance in 2011's WWE.
The WWE has always been high on big men. Yokozuna was one of the biggest. He had a fearsome snarl and an awe-inspiring presence. Yokozuna was a two time WWF and Tag Team Champion. I believe that Yokozuna could make it in any era. Rivalries with guys like Ezekiel Jackson, John Cena, and Kane could provide for exciting stories.
Whenever I hear the Bulldog mentioned, I can't help but picture his phenomenal physique. According to his peers, Davey Boy was one of the strongest individuals to ever grace the squared circle. Honored with many respectable titles from the WWE, Bulldog would no doubt succeed in today's WWE. Everyone remembers those memorable matches with Brett Hart. Those matches truly told a story, and proved the Bulldog could stand toe to toe with the best in the business.
This slide might catch people off-guard. I don't think that Backlund would hold a title for five years in the modern age. However, I think that Backlund would succeed today as a form of comic relief (similar to that of Santino.) If the WWE could first establish Backlund as a legitimate in-ring talent, he could play the part of a shoot wrestler that takes himself to seriously. This of course would lead to losing to superstars like Santino and Hornswoggle. The WWE Universe would love to see the uptight Backlund come short of his goals.
Jesse is well regarded as one of the most flamboyant personalities of all time. His microphone skills are that of legend. This was proven when he made the transition from the ring to the announce table. Ventura proved he could rise to the top when he was in title contention against Hulk Hogan. With Ventura's big mouth, over-the-top personality, and great physique, he could have classic rivalries with just about any face in the WWE today.
Ricky proved he still had it when he faced off in a series of matches with Chris Jericho in recent years. If Ricky were in his prime in 2011, he could walk right into the WWE. Steamboat was one of the best in-ring workers of his day. He could also work a crowd as a good as anyone in the 80s/90s. Steamboat's fast paced style inspired a new generation of superstars. He could have put on fantastic matches with WWE superstars like Cody Rhodes, Rey Mysterio, C.M. Punk, Tyson Kidd, and other fast-paced talents.
The Rocket was just plain fun to watch. His outrageous promos and exciting in ring work made Owen a hit in the mid 1990's. His matches with his brother Brett were legendary. Owen was truly before his time. He possessed a risky move-set and a silver tongue on the microphone. Whether he was a face or a heel, Owen had everyone's attention. Owen would be a great addition to today's roster. He could be a part of important angles and would definitely be able to put over new talent.
OOOOOOOOOOHHHHH YEEEEEEAAAAH! This slide needs no explanation. It goes without saying that Randy could make it in this era. The charismatic high-flyer could make it in any era of pro wrestling.
Hennig had it all, charisma, good looks, and unmatched in-ring ability. According to his pears, Hennig truly was perfect. From his early vignettes to his Intercontinental Title run Hennig was bred for success. Hennig's ability would transfer to the modern age very well.
"Ric Flair, you once called me a woman. Well, what I want to know is, how does it feel to get beat by a woman?"
Roddy Piper can spout off great quotes like this all day long. In the '80s and '90s, Piper was unmatched on the microphone. A lot of people consider him to be the very best promo man of all time. Roddy could draw heat in any generation. I believe Piper would be WWE's top heel even today.
We have seen Piper's interactions with today's stars in his sporadic appearances on Raw. We all know Piper could go in the ring. The only thing slowing him down is his age. Roddy Piper in his prime could sell out arenas. It did not matter what year it was.