WWE Hall of Fame: Edge and 9 Active Wrestlers Who Will Be Inducted Before Long

Graham GSM Matthews@@WrestleRantFeatured ColumnistMarch 25, 2011

WWE Hall of Fame: Edge and 9 Active Wrestlers Who Will Be Inducted Before Long

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    World Heavyweight Champion Edge
    World Heavyweight Champion Edge

    On the night before the historical WrestleMania event, a class of professional wrestling icons, along with celebrities, take their rightful place among the immortals. Their illustrious careers can speak for themselves, however, a speaker is chosen to induct the now "legend" into the WWE Hall of Fame.

    This annual tradition, originating back to 1993, continues its legacy this year, being led by none other than "The Heartbreak Kid" Shawn Michaels. The event takes place on Saturday, April 2, however, it won't be broadcast on the USA Network until the night after 'Mania.

    At this time one year ago, much speculation was being discussed on whether Michaels' career would meet its fateful end coming WrestleMania 26, but we all knew surely in our minds that if the Showstopper did indeed retire, he would eventually be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. Maybe not this early, but eventually.

    Seeing Shawn Michaels finally take his place in the Hall of Fame has me wondering: Which other top stars could retire tomorrow and land a spot in the prestigious Hall of Fame someday?

    Remember, let your opinions be heard if I fail to mention a current Superstar you believe has a guaranteed spot in the WWE Hall of Fame.

    Visit my website at Next Era Wrestling for more of GSM's writings, along with WWE/TNA news, recaps, and more. 

Edge

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    Judging by the slideshow cover picture, you can obviously tell my first inductee is the current reigning World Heavyweight Champion, Edge. With rumors rapidly spreading regarding Edge's imminent retirement from professional wrestling, one can only be certain of Edge's legend potential.

    The Rated-R Superstar has made more history the last five years of his career than some legends combined. After winning a well-deserved WWE Championship back in 2005, Edge would go on to win 10 more World Championships, and he will be the defending World Champion at this year's WrestleMania.

    Being the first and only man to ever win the Money in the Bank, King of the Ring, Elimination Chamber, and Royal Rumble Match, along with holding almost every championship the WWE has to offer, consider the master of the TLC Match set in stone as an eventual WWE Legend following his retirement.

    Obviously, I'd choose none other than Christian to induct his former "brother" in the HOF.

Triple H

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    Triple H
    Triple H

    Besides his illustrious career, Triple H currently is a head official in WWE headquarters, so don't think his Hall of Fame potential will go unnoticed by management. As the eventual head of WWE, there is no doubt HHH will find his place into the Hall of Fame someday.

    But don't think it went unearned. In the span of 16 years, the King of Kings has successfully lived up to his moniker, winning 13 World Championships in his lengthy career. As a former King of the Ring and Royal Rumble winner, Triple H has headlined more WrestleManias than most Superstars in the last decade.

    His leadership in numerous factions has also made him a multi-time tag team champion, as a stable member of legendary teams such as D-Generation X and Evolution.

    As the head honcho, Triple H would be the top heel of WWE in the entire post-war era, before putting over talents such as Randy Orton, Batista, Sheamus, John Cena and many more.

    Similar to Edge, the Cerebral Assassin has noted recently that his in-ring career may be coming to an end soon as he looks to focus more on his business aspects.

    If he does, I expect none other than close friend Shawn Michaels to induct him to legendary status.  

John Cena

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    Since 2005, John Cena has literally taken WWE as his own, basically becoming the poster boy and symbol of the entire company.

    However, as we enter the PG Era, the Chain Gang Commander faces criticism day in, day out, from the WWE Universe for his family-friendly tactics.

    Don't get me wrong, I dislike John Cena as much as the next guy, but I don't hate him enough to bash him in this article unlike fellow Cena-haters.

    No matter how much you may dislike Cena, you have to respect the guy for all he has done for the company and the fans over the years.

    As a nine-time WWE Champion, John Cena broke the record for longest WWE Championship reign for the first time in over a decade, holding the title for over a year at one point.

    Also a former Royal Rumble winner and having an impressive 6-1 record at WrestleMania, John Cena has proven time in and time out how he has become this era's Hulk Hogan with his Superman tactics.

    Although his mic and wrestling skills may not be to everyone's liking, his tremendous matches with Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Randy Orton and Edge in the past have been nothing short of epic.

    Consider his place in the Hall of Fame a lock, but I'm not too certain who would induct him, as Cena has not had many strong allies in the past. 

The Undertaker

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    Was there any ever doubt he would make the list?

    Of all the men listed, the Undertaker is the most deserving man who will enter the Hall of Fame, and probably be inducted before any of the others.

    Although his career has been impressive with seven World Championship reigns and being the only man left who appeared on the first episode of Monday Night RAW, the main highlight of his career that will never be forgotten is the infamous streak at WrestleMania.

    With 18 wins on the Grandest Stage of Them All, the Undertaker looks to extend his winning ways come April 3 against Triple H. We can for the most part predict the Game will not reach success, but we are in for a true classic.

    The Deadman's history with his storyline brother, Kane, has told me that he will be the honored one to induct the Undertaker into the WWE Hall of Fame.

Randy Orton

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    Ironic, isn't it? How a Legend Killer can quickly evolve into a Legend himself?

    Despite a questionable theoretical attitude backstage toward rising stars, you can't deny the fact Randy Orton was certainly a successful outcome of the youth movement.

    Although his singles push began in 2005, his real time came in 2007, where he won his second (and third) WWE Championship, solidifying his place as a top heel in the WWE.

    Orton would go on to steal the hearts of many WWE fans with his brilliant heel tactics during the Age of Orton from late 2007 to early 2010.

    During his time, Orton headlined two WrestleManias, led The Legacy, won the 2009 Royal Rumble, took out each member of the McMahon family, and held the WWE Championship on six different occasions.

    Although his character isn't as hot as it once was, he still manages to blow the roof off buildings when he makes his entrances or attempts his deadly finishing maneuver (as compared to Cena's half-and-half reaction).

    His permanent main-event status the last few years has him nearly guaranteed a spot in the WWE Hall of Fame someday.

    Who better to induct the Viper than Rated-RKO partner Edge? Or how about long-time friend and manager Ric Flair? 

Big Show

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    As I was running down the list of current WWE Superstars, I noticed a shortage of wrestlers who are actually worthy of becoming a Hall of Fame member. Big Show has had a memorable career, but it just barely scratches the surface compared to the others listed.

    Big Show isn't exactly the typical main event star in WWE, but as a veteran, he gets his advantages in matches with top stars over the years, including putting over stars such as The Miz, John Cena, Bobby Lashley, among others.

    As the "largest athlete in the world," I wouldn't be generally surprised if Show managed his way into the Hall of Fame someday, especially since he is heavily over the fans after (sadly) dominating so many worthy wrestlers over the past year.

    Historically, Big Show will be known as the only man to win the WWE Championship, ECW Championship, and WCW Championship.

    With his DVD being released soon, there is a slight chance we might see Big Show as a WWE Legend someday alongside his counterpart Andre the Giant.

    As for his inductor, I'd choose his long-time friend, Chris Jericho. 

Rey Mysterio

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    As a Mexican icon, Rey Mysterio has done it all in professional wrestling, and will no doubt take his place alongside Eddie Guerrero following his nearing retirement.

    Although we can take shots at Mysterio for becoming the face of the PG Era much like John Cena and a possible backstage attitude, he should be respected for all he's done for the company over the years.

    From his high popularity to his exciting lucha libre style, the Master of the 619 will never be replaced.

    Mysterio helped define the cruiserweight division and continued to do so after coming to WWE following the closure of WCW.

    His push hadn't effectively kicked in until Eddie Guerrero's tragic death in late 2005, where Mysterio would go on to win the 2006 Royal Rumble and the World Heavyweight Championship in the main event of WrestleMania 22 in honor of his lost friend.

    Fluke or not, you must agree that Mysterio has been successful in entertaining us over the years with his stellar matches with CM Punk, Chris Jericho and Alberto Del Rio. His inspiration of having people accomplish their dreams will remain a staple in WWE history.

    In my opinion, Rey Mysterio's second closest friend next to Eddie would have to be Batista, who would make a perfect inductor for the Ultimate Underdog.

Kane

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    Much like Big Show, this induction is debatable. Sure, Kane has made a major impact on WWE history, but is it enough to have it be honored? Let's look at the facts.

    Although Kane may not be known for holding multiple world championships, the Big Red Monster was the first and only man to ever hold the WWE, ECW, and World Heavyweight Championships in WWE history.

    He also holds multiple records in the Royal Rumble Match, including most consecutive appearances, quickest elimination, and most eliminations in one match.

    It's disappoint to read off these accomplishments knowing he was never able to win the Royal Rumble Match itself.

    Kane has always put others first in his career, putting over Superstars such as Rey Mysterio, CM Punk, The Great Khali and many more, effectively earning the name "The Big Red Jobber."

    All the heckling came to a halt last summer, when he once again made history by cashing in his newly-won Money in the Bank briefcase faster than any other Superstar, winning his first World Title in over a decade in the process.

    Surprisingly enough, his dominant reign as World Champion proved to be a success, holding the title for five months and even getting the better of the feud with the Undertaker.

    With this cherry on top of a historical career, I hope we someday do see Kane be recognized as the true WWE Legend he is, being inducted by his own father, Paul Bearer, no less.

CM Punk

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    Let me make one thing clear, IWC: When deciding on who earned this slide more between WWE Champion The Miz and CM Punk, I tempted myself to go with the Straightedge Savior for a variety of reasons.

    Before you begin ranting on me for not going with The Miz as a potential Hall of Famer, I enjoy Punk as much as I do Miz, so it's nothing personal.

    For one thing, Punk has had much experience in the main event spotlight, becoming the first-ever Straightedge World Heavyweight Champion, for three reigns no less!

    The Miz has the potential to become a top heel in the WWE, and some may argue he already is, but I think it's silly to presume he will one day become a Legend for his amazing work recently.

    Don't get me wrong, Punk isn't really considered a lock as a future Legend either. He has had his historic moments, such as winning the Money in the Bank Ladder Match twice and technically being the first man to make the Undertaker submit (Breaking Point 2009).

    Despite his recent success, I feel that Punk has yet to have a career-defining moment, and I believe it will come on his time on RAW. It's a long shot for either man to be inducted as of now, but I'd choose William Regal, his former trainer, as his inductor. 

Chris Jericho

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    Technically, I still count Chris Jericho as an active performer since he has stated multiple times that he will return to WWE when the time is right.

    Being the self-proclaimed "best in the world at what he does," Chris Jericho has already solidified himself as a WWE Legend, although it has yet to be official.

    Y2J has proven time and time again why he is one of the IWC's favorite entertainers and wrestlers in this time of wrestling, if not ever. His change in character since 2008 worked out the best, providing with some of the best matches and promos of his career.

    His biggest accomplishment arrived when he became WWE's first-ever Undisputed Champion in 2001, and since then has maintained his position as the company's top performers, not to mention his record-breaking nine Intercontinental Championship reigns.

    His memorable matches with Rey Mysterio, Edge, John Morrison, CM Punk, John Cena, Jeff Hardy and Shawn Michaels always left us coming back for more.

    His mainstream popularity also plays a big part in his induction, leading the hit rock band Fozzy, a New York Times Best Seller author, and most recently competing on Dancing with the Stars.

    Face or heel, Jericho will never be forgotten in the world of pro wrestling, much less as a future Hall of Fame inductee.

    Y2J has had numerous alliances of the years, so I'll let you decide who should induct Jericho.

Honorable Mentions

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    Here are a few who are storied veterans, with some chance of making it into the WWE Hall of Fame someday:

    William Regal: One of the longest-running veterans today, still wrestling on Monday Night RAW and Superstars. His accomplishments as Intercontinental Champion, RAW General Manager, and 2008 King of the Ring will not be overlooked.

    Goldust: A very different kind of Superstar, Goldust still continues to entertain and impress in the ring with his skills and his gimmick. Being the son of Dusty Rhodes, I wouldn't count him out.

    Mark Henry: Becoming a staple on RAW as of late, Henry has emerged into the type of talent who can still put on decent matches and entertain us at the same time. His gimmick as the World's Strongest Man may earn him a spot among the Immortals.

    Finlay: Much like Regal, Finlay is a foreign veteran who may be retired from the ring, but continues to help talent behind the scenes. A former United States Champion, Finlay helped pave the way for fellow Irishman Sheamus.

    Christian: A former ECW, Intercontinental, and tag team champion, Christian still favors much of the IWC. The only thing missing is a World Heavyweight Championship.

    The Hardy Boyz: This one is debatable. Seeing that they are TNA, Vince may have lost interest in them, especially leaving the company in a forceful way and basically backstabbing the company. Nonetheless, they have made an impact in the industry certainly.

Conclusion

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    WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony
    WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony

    With these top 10 picks, who do you believe should be included on the list that I haven't included already? Is there anyone that shouldn't be on this list?

    With the Hall of Fame 2011 ceremony quickly approaching, imagine anyone of these men standing there on their night of glory following retirement. Does the future look bright for these potential WWE Hall of Famers?

    Thanks for reading, Bleachers! Don't forget to comment to leave your thoughts and feedback. GSM out.

    GSM is currently looking for more talent to write on his site, where your articles can help contribute to our mainstream. If you're interested, leave a comment below or inbox me.Visit my website at Next Era Wrestling for more of GSM's writings, along with WWE/TNA news, recaps, and more.