Ranking Every WWE Star Over the Age of 40 on the Active Roster

Graham GSM Matthews@@WrestleRantFeatured ColumnistApril 29, 2022

Ranking Every WWE Star Over the Age of 40 on the Active Roster

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    Edge and Randy Orton have been wrestling for decades yet remain at the top of their game.
    Edge and Randy Orton have been wrestling for decades yet remain at the top of their game.Credit: WWE.com

    At a time when WWE appears to be focused on the future and ushering in a youth movement via NXT 2.0, there is still an ample amount of seasoned veterans left on the main roster, all contributing in a variety of ways.

    It would be foolish for the promotion to completely phase out everyone who helped make Raw and SmackDown what they've been for the last decade. In addition to helping elevate the talent of tomorrow, they all bring a wealth of experience to everything they're involved in.

    Even with the countless departures in the past two years, WWE still boasts an incredibly talented roster across its main roster. A majority of the Superstars are aged between 20 and 39, but there are quite a few over the age of 40 who wrestle like they're 10 years younger than they are.

    WWE is lucky to have so many former world champions and proven commodities under contract along with the other established athletes who have been around for ages. Regardless of how close they are to in-ring retirement, all of them have their respective strengths and are essential in creating new stars.

    This list will look at everyone aged 40 and over on the active roster and attempt to rank them based on their recent body of work and star power. Having not been seen since WrestleMania 38 and with no return on the horizon, Brock Lesnar has not been included.  

16. Tamina (44); 15. R-Truth (50); 14. Shelton Benjamin (46)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Next to Natalya, Tamina is one of the longest-tenured women on the WWE roster, having debuted on Raw in May 2010. That's in spite of her winning only two titles throughout her time with the company: the 24/7 title and the WWE Women's Tag Team Championship.

    To her credit, the second-generation star has marginally improved in recent years, earning her a regular role on Raw as of late along with R-Truth. Speaking of Truth, he hasn't wrestled regularly on the red brand in years, but he pops up every now and again to interject himself into the 24/7 title picture.

    Truth is the oldest active Superstar of anyone on the roster at 50, which is almost impossible to believe seeing as how he's looked youthful for nearly 20 years.

    Similarly, Shelton Benjamin is largely utilized as an undercard competitor on Raw. He's much more active on Main Event than he is on Monday nights, but his in-ring skills haven't faltered whatsoever in recent years.

    The 46-year-old will likely never escape enhancement status, but the things he can do inside the squared circle in the twilight of his career are incredibly impressive. 

13. Robert Roode (45); 12. Shayna Baszler (41); 11. Rey Mysterio (47)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Amazingly, Robert Roode is 45 years old, even though he's only been on the main roster for five years. Granted, he had a lengthy career outside of the company prior to that point, but he can still very much go in the ring after all these years.

    The only issue is that WWE doesn't see him as anything more than a tag team specialist, hence why he's been paired off with Chad Gable and Dolph Ziggler for the past four years. He holds his own any time he's in action, but the days of him being used as a singles star are likely over.

    Shayna Baszler, on the other hand, is a much fresher face on the main roster only having debuted two years ago, but WWE has done little with her in that time.

    Granted, the 41-year-old reigned as one-half of the WWE women's tag team champions alongside Nia Jax on and off from August 2020 though May 2021, but it was a total waste of what she can do.

    These days, Baszler remains entrenched in the tag team ranks, this time with Natalya as her partner.

    Rey Mysterio is, of course, a far bigger star than Roode and Baszler combined, but his body is starting to catch up to him at 47.

    Some of the matches he's had with son Dominik in tag team action have been a blast, but it's clear his in-ring days are numbered and he can't move around as quickly as he once did.

10. Kofi Kingston (40); 9. The Miz (41); 8. Dolph Ziggler (41)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Kofi Kingston, The Miz and Dolph Ziggler all fall under the same category of Superstars who came up in the exact same era and are around the same age. All three are also former WWE world champions and in similar spots on the card at the moment.

    KofiMania ran wild three years ago when Kingston won the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 35. He went on to have a fairly successful title run that consisted of quality matches against Kevin Owens, Samoa Joe, Randy Orton and Ziggler.

    The 40-year-old has never been known for being the best worker in the company, but he's always been very talented in the ring. The same can be said for Miz, who has had his fair share of memorable matches in his career and consistently excels on the mic.

    Neither The A-Lister nor Kingston have had much going on lately aside from random tag team feuds, whereas Ziggler received his biggest push in years prior to WrestleMania 38 as the NXT champion.

    His run didn't go on for long, but it was enjoyable while it lasted. He had well-wrestled matches with Bron Breakker, Tommaso Ciampa and LA Knight that reminded fans of his above-average in-ring abilities.

    Any one of these guys sticking around for another decade shouldn't surprise anyone.

7. Shinsuke Nakamura (42)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    While he hasn't reached the heights most fans likely thought he would when he signed six years ago, Shinsuke Nakamura's run with WWE has had its highlights and can't be considered anything but a success all things considered.

    The King of Strong Style has two Intercontinental Championships, one United States belt and one tag team title to his credit. His popularity with the WWE Universe has also been through the roof this past year with Rick Boogs by his side.

    One of his biggest reasons for coming to WWE in the first place was that the style would be a lot kinder to his body in the long haul. He hasn't gone above and beyond in attempting to steal the show as he once would, but his matches have been entertaining enough and he's been perfect in a midcard role.

    The only thing missing from the Nakamura act is a sustained singles push. Despite Boogs being out injured at the moment, officials appear to be hesitant to have him do anything beyond the midcard, hence why he's been lost in the shuffle as of late.

    At only 42, he can have several more good years left in WWE at the rate he's going.

6. Sheamus (44)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Sheamus started on WWE's main roster a little later than most but didn't waste any time establishing himself as a star on the rise. Nearly 13 years later, he's one of the most decorated competitors on Raw and SmackDown.

    At this stage of his career, The Celtic Warrior has won just about everything there is to win with the exception of the intercontinental and universal titles. Those are the only two belts that have alluded him thus far, and he will be wishing for nothing more than to add them to his trophy case.

    For as long of a list of accolades as the 44-year-old has, fans tend to sleep on what he can do in the ring. During the pandemic period alone, he became WWE's most consistent performer and had fantastic matches with everyone unfortunate enough to stand across the ring from him.

    The Irishman would probably be higher up this list if he wasn't stuck in SmackDown's midcard doing a whole lot of nothing right now. He's been doing his best to elevate Ridge Holland and Butch this year, but both men lose far more often than they should and Sheamus can't build any momentum as a result.

    Again, though, he is in a league of his own when it comes to the matches he's had since 2020, and he's shown no signs of slowing down.

5. Finn Balor (40)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    With his phenomenal physique, Finn Balor doesn't look a day over 30, yet he's actually been wrestling for over two decades.

    The Irishman turned 40 last summer but hasn't had the best of luck since returning to the main roster in July 2021. In addition to being left off the cards for SummerSlam and WrestleMania 38, he failed to win the Universal Championship twice, lost his first match as The Demon and came up short in the finals of the 2022 King of the Ring tournament.

    It hasn't been all bad for Balor, though. He's had some fun matches in recent months with the likes of Theory, Damian Priest and Seth Rollins along with winning the United States Championship in early March.

    An argument can be made for The Prince never having meant less in WWE than he does at the moment, but there's no doubt he's beloved by every crowd he competes in front of. He's also still capable of greatness between the ropes and is quite possibly one of the most underrated wrestlers in the company.

    Just because Balor hasn't been booked to look important on Raw recently doesn't mean he can't be a valuable asset to WWE. Turning him heel could be the fresh coat of paint he needs to rejuvenate his career, but in the meantime, don't underestimate what he brings to the table.

4. Edge (48)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Although he hasn't competed in a match on Raw or SmackDown since September, Edge is still very much an active member of the roster. He's been appearing on WWE TV in some form almost every week for the past year and has taken his work to the next level at the age of 48.

    Fans weren't sure what to expect from him when he returned to the ring two years ago at the Royal Rumble, but he's only gotten better in every respect since then. His feud with Seth Rollins in particular was terrific, and he's remained unbeaten for the past seven months.

    His ongoing feud with AJ Styles has yet to light the world on fire, but there was never any doubt they'd rip it up at WrestleMania 38, and that's exactly what they did on Night 2. Not only is Edge continuing to deliver in the ring (though his age does show from time to time), his mic game is stronger than almost anyone else's in the entire company.

    No one was clamoring for The Rated-R Superstar to turn heel when he did, but he's thrived in the role thus far. Giving him a faction of his own has also been cool to see, especially if the idea is to add more members as time goes on.

    No matter how much time he has left on his current deal, fans should enjoy and appreciate Edge for as long as he's around. This latest run of his has been a true treat.

3. Bobby Lashley (45)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Bobby Lashley is another case of a Superstar not looking their age, despite being in WWE on and off since 2005.

    It isn't often the company takes a chance on someone already well into their 40s, but The All Mighty was a worthy exception. Upon realizing it had a main event player on its hands, the company began pushing him mid-pandemic and kept him strong before booking him to capture the WWE Championship in March 2021.

    Lashley wasn't a one-hit wonder, either. He ran rampant over the Raw roster for over six months and continued to wreak havoc even after losing title, leading to a second reign at the onset of 2022.

    A shoulder injury seemed to halt his momentum coming out of Elimination Chamber, yet he still managed to make it back in time for WrestleMania 38, where he beat Omos. Since then, he's been slotted as the second biggest babyface on Raw behind Cody Rhodes and has shown he no longer needs MVP as his mouthpiece.

    With two WWE title wins under his belt from the last year and many other accolades, there's no telling what more Lashley can accomplish in his new role and how much more dominant he can become.

2. AJ Styles (44)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Even at the age of 44, AJ Styles remains one of the best wrestlers in the world today.

    The Phenomenal One arrived in WWE with plenty of fanfare in 2016 and immediately lived up to the hype surrounding his signing. That year alone, he had some of his best matches ever with Roman Reigns and John Cena, beating the latter on two occasions.

    His run has been a resounding success, and he's still going strong today. Although he hasn't held a singles title in nearly three years, he can always be counted on for a quality performance.

    He currently finds himself in a prominent program with Edge, with whom he had a top-notch contest on Night 2 of WrestleMania 38. They'll have another chance to steal the show once more at WrestleMania Backlash on May 8.

    As one of WWE's biggest in-ring workhorses, Styles is an integral part of the weekly product, and the roster would be much worse off without him on it. With fresh faces always joining Raw and SmackDown, there are many more matches for him to have before he calls it a career.

    Styles can continue to contribute to WWE in a multitude of ways once he hangs up the boots for good, but for the sake of the fans, here's hoping he isn't eyeing retirement any time soon.

1. Randy Orton (42)

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    Credit: WWE.com

    As exceptional as AJ Styles in the ring, he—or anyone else for that matter—can come close to the remarkable roll Randy Orton currently finds himself on.

    The Viper recently celebrated the 20-year anniversary of his main roster debut, meaning he joined the SmackDown roster in 2002 at the age of just 22. It was only two years later that he became the youngest World Heavyweight champion in the history of the company.

    Orton's heel work in the years that followed was unmatched, yet he's been on fire as a face since forging a friendship with Riddle in 2021. Upon winning the Raw Tag Team Championships at SummerSlam, the unlikely duo embarked on an entertaining reign and brought the best out of their opponents as much as they did each other.

    It's no secret that Orton is having the most fun of his entire career right now, which, of course, covers a lot of ground. It comes across whenever he's on screen, particularly during his matches and promos.

    If The Viper doesn't have any plans to wind down in the near future, we may yet see the very best of what this legend is capable of.


    Graham Mirmina, aka Graham "GSM" Matthews, has specialized in sports and entertainment writing since 2010. Visit his website, WrestleRant, and subscribe to his YouTube channel for more wrestling-related content.