Top 100 WWE Wrestlers Of All-Time: 40-31
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
Now, let's continue the countdown, with No. 40 on the list...
40. Rey Mysterio Jr.
Most WWE fans are taller then the next wrestler on my Top 100; coming in at 40 is Rey Mysterio Jr.
The underdog Mysterio came to the WWE in 2002, and won the Royal Rumble four years later.
He has held the World Heavyweight Championship twice, as well as the Intercontinental Championship twice.
Mysterio has also had some tag team success inside the WWE, winning the tag team gold on four separate occasions with four different partners: Batista, Edge, Rob Van Dam, and the late Eddie Guerrero.
Getting a late start in the wrestling business, Batista made it to the big leagues in the WWE at the age of 33.
However, Batista didn't disappoint, winning the World Heavyweight Championship four times, and the WWE Championship twice.
Batista's stock really took a rise when he joined Evolution, with members Triple H, Ric Flair, and Randy Orton. In my opinion, it is still one of the greatest stables of all-time, just wish it lasted longer.
Batista's first big win came at WrestleMania 21, when he defeated Triple H for the title. On that same night, another wrestler that came up around the same time as him, John Cena, won the WWE Championship, defeating JBL.
Batista left WWE in early 2010 with no plans to return, but he has left a nice legacy behind and is Hall Of Fame-bound if he doesn't burn any bridges; just ask Bruno Sammartino about that.
38. Chief Jay Strongbow
WWE Legend Chief Jay Strongbow was inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame in 1994.
Strongbow was a four-time Tag Team Champion, but never won any singles titles within the company.
He came close on a few occasions of winning the big one, but wasn't successful. However, he wrestled in many main events and always put on a great show.
Strongbow had many memorable rivalries within the company, with the likes of Spiros Arion, Jimmy Valiant and Superstar Billy Graham.
37. British Bulldog (Davey Boy Smith)
The late British Bulldog Davey Boy Smith comes in at number 37 on the Top 100.
Along with his partner, Dynamite Kid, they would win the Tag Team Championships in 1986, defeating The Dream Team at WrestleMania 2.
His WWE Intercontinental Championship Match with Bret Hart at Summerslam 1992 at Wembley Stadium, in which he defeated Bret Hart for the title, is one of the greatest matches in WWE history.
In his return to WWE in 1994, he would never reach the level he was at earlier in his career.
36. Dynamite Kid
Dynamite Kid will be remembered for his Tag Team Championship victory with Davey Boy Smith at WrestleMania 2 against The Dream Team.
However, I will always think of Dynamite Kid as one of the most underrated/misused wrestlers in WWE history.
His toughness and willingness to stay on his feet during a match was amazing to witness.
Chris Benoit was close to a splitting image of Dynamite Kid in the ring, and it looks as if Benoit built his entire in-ring career of that of Kid.
35. Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig
The next wrestler on the list is nearly perfect, and is perfect if you asked him.
Mr. Perfect, Curt Hennig, was undefeated in the WWE for nearly a year on WWE television, with his first loss eventually coming to Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake at WrestleMania VI.
Hennig nearly won the 1990 Royal Rumble, and was part of the final two wrestlers in the ring, only to have the great Hulk Hogan eliminate him.
Despite being a two-time Intercontinental Champion and his induction into the WWE Hall Of Fame in 2007, Hennig could never quite get out of the mid-card status that he was held inside of in his WWE career.
He was just a victim of WWE letting only a few guys have the spotlight during those years, and everyone else was hung out to dry.
I will be the first person to admit that I never thought Glenn Jacobs' Kane character would last this long.
After the horrible Issac Yankem DDS, and Fake Diesel gimmicks, you would figure all was lost for Jacobs in WWE.
However, in 1997, the big guy became The Undertaker's long lost half-brother and when you get paired with a name like The Undertaker, things can happen for you, fast.
Fast forward to 2010, Kane's character is still going strong and just recently dropped the World Heavyweight Championship to Edge after a long feud with the Rated R Superstar.
Kane's WWE accomplishments are a long list of achievements, from the World Heavyweight Championship, WWE Championship, Intercontinental Championship, ECW Championship, and a five-time Tag Team Champion.
These accomplishments have him officially listed as only the third Grand Slam Champion in WWE history, which consists of only 10 wrestlers.
Kane was also the winner of the first ever Smackdown Brand Money In The Bank match at the first Money In The Bank pay-per-view in July 2010.
33. Chris Benoit
Chris Benoit will forever be linked to the tragedy outside of the squared circle and will never be in the WWE Hall Of Fame, nor mentioned on WWE televison again.
I would like to look past that, out of respect of his wrestling career and what happened outside the ring, shouldn't factor into it.
Benoit won several championships in WWE, including the Tag Team Championship with Kurt Angle.
Benoit was also a four-time WWE Intercontinental Champion, as well as the winner of the 2004 WWE Royal Rumble.
It was that victory at the Royal Rumble that took him to the main event at WrestleMania XX, where he shocked the world and defeated Triple H and Shawn Michaels in a Triple Threat Match, and was embraced by long time friend Eddie Guerrero after the match, who retained the WWE Championship a few matches prior against Kurt Angle.
That moment, as eerie as it seems now, is one of, if not, the greatest moment in WWE history.
Well scripted, but felt so real at the same time, since both men worked so hard to get to the top, and Guerrero had just won the WWE Championship prior to WrestleMania at No Way Out, allowing both men to reach the spotlight and the top of the mountain at the same time.
32. Sgt. Slaughter
The drill Sgt. Slaughter comes in next on the Top 100 at 32.
Slaughter only won the WWE Championship once, defeating The Ultimate Warrior at the 1991 Royal Rumble.
However, his memorable feud with Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania VII, during a time when the US was fresh off of the Gulf War against Iraq, ranks among the top feuds of all-time.
Slaughter, of course, lost the WWE Championship to Hulk Hogan, did you expect any different?
Slaughter was one of the greatest heels of all-time, but now is a beloved legend among the WWE Universe.
He was inducted to the WWE Hall Of Fame in 2004.
31. Pedro Morales
WWE Hall Of Famer Pedro Morales is one of the greatest Intercontinental Champions of all-time.
Morales was the third person to ever win the IC belt, by defeating Ken Patera at a house show in 1980.
He would hold the belt for half a year, before dropping the title to Don Muraco.
Muraco and Morales would exchange the belts one more time, this time, Morales would keep the belt for over a year, before losing it a final time to Muraco in 1983.
However, before all of that occurred, Morales would also be only the fourth wrestler to win the WWE Championship, defeating Ivan Koloff in 1971.
He would keep the belt for nearly three years before dropping it to Stan Stasiak, which was used as a buffer between him and Bruno Sammartino, as Sammartino would just win it nine days after Stasiak won it.
It was obvious Morales didn't want to drop the belt to Sammartino.
Morales' WWE Championship reign of 1,027 days ranks fourth all-time, behind Bruno Sammartino (2803, 1237), and Hulk Hogan (1474).