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Greatest Wrestler Ever: THE LIST!


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#81 Grimmas

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 02:10 PM

20 - Tatsumi Fujinami

 

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2006 Ranking: 58

 
Points: 9429
#1 Votes: 0
#2 Votes: 1
#3 Votes: 1
Top 10 Votes: 26
 
# of Ballots: 124
Average Vote: 25.94
 
High Vote: 2 (Kris Zellner)
Low Vote: 88

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"1. Fujinami was very likely the best junior heavyweight in the world in the last 70s/early 80s, and then quickly transitioning into being one of the top heavyweights in the world as soon as he "moved up." 

2. He was an excellent tag team worker, both in straight tags and elimination tags which required a different sort of psychology.

3. Really a great mat worker, but also underrated highspots, great bleeder, good selling, snug worker, et.  Mechanically few were better, and it's notable that he could work really fluid exchanges, or more rugged, grisly segments at very high levels.

4. Good-to-great matches against a wide variety of opponents spanning five different decades. " Dylan Waco

 

Recommended Matches: 

Tatsumi Fujinami vs Dynamite Kid (NJPW, 2/5/1980)

Tatsumi Fujinami vs Riki Choshu (NJPW, 4/3/1983)

Tatsumi Fujinami vs Akira Maeda (NJPW, 6/12/1986)



#82 Grimmas

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 04:44 PM

19 - "The Enforcer" Arn Anderson

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 34

 
Points: 9443
#1 Votes: 0
#2 Votes: 0
#3 Votes: 0
Top 10 Votes: 4
 
# of Ballots: 144
Average Vote: 35.49
 
High Vote: 5 (Lisa Lewis)
Low Vote: 89

 

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Arn elevated everything he was in, and his volume of good stuff is huge. Great tag worker, excellent TV singles worker, added all kinds of nifty touches to multi-man matches. Could swing from comedy to deadly seriousness as smoothly as anyone. He's a guy you'd want in your wrestling company and the perfect representative of the MattD school of what makes a wrestler good (or at least my interpretation of that)." Childs

 

"Arn is one of my five favorite wrestlers ever, but I also think he is an easy pick for this project on merit.  If you want to argue that he lacks that one definitively great singles match I suppose that's possible, but hes been in some tremendously great tags and multi-man matches where he's been a stand out performer.  More importantly I would argue that Arn was one of the single most consistent wrestlers I've ever seen.  He broke in as a big player in 85 and was effectively done by early 96 IIRC, and I really don't think he lost much of anything at any point, as he always had good matches against anyone he was asked to work with during that stretch.  Even in 95 WCW which was the absolute shits in many ways, Arn had a good year, to the point where I think he was the best guy in WCW and arguably even the entire U.S. that year.  He also gets extra points for me for having two of my all time favorite offensive spots - the Arn spinebuster and the Arn DDT.  That is to say nothing of his stooging and the multiple roles he could play even within the context of a single bout.  He's obviously not a tip top tier guy, and I'm thinking he'll be middle of the pack on my ballot, but if someone argued him up around the 25 mark I wouldn't think it was odd." Dylan Waco

 

Recommended Matches: 

Arn Anderson vs Great Muta (WCW, 1/20/1990)

The Enforcers vs Ricky Steamboat & Dustin Rhodes (WCW Clash of the Champions, 11/19/1991)

Arn Anderson vs Steven Regal (WCW SuperBrawl, 2/20/1994)



#83 Grimmas

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 04:58 PM

18 - "Macho Man" Randy Savage

 

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2006 Ranking: 44

 
Points: 10548
#1 Votes: 4
#2 Votes: 5
#3 Votes: 2
Top 10 Votes: 24
 
# of Ballots: 138
Average Vote: 26.46
 
High Vote: 1 (Goodear, Chris Powell, Scott Bernard, & Kelly Nelson)
Low Vote: 99

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Savage is as close to a complete package as any I've ever seen, next to maybe only Flair. He could end up anywhere in my top 5. In the weird mix of storytelling, sport, violence for kids, childishness for adults, blood, sex, fun, aggression, nostalgia and all around awesomeness that is wrestling, Randy Savage is the true total package. The man was pure art! Johnny Sorrow said it best: He's the fucking Macho Man! Oh yeah!" Danish Dynamite

 

Recommended Matches: 

Randy Savage vs Jerry Lawler (Memphis, 6/3/1985)

Randy Savage vs Ultimate Warrior (WWF WrestleMania, 3/24/1991)

Randy Savage vs Diamond Dallas Page (WCW Spring Stampede, 4/17/1997)



#84 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 06:16 AM

17 - Bret "Hitman" Hart

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 9

 
Points: 10757
#1 Votes: 9
#2 Votes: 6
#3 Votes: 3
Top 10 Votes: 21
 
# of Ballots: 138
Average Vote: 26.14
 
High Vote: 1 (Andrew Lacelle, NotJayTabb, Scarlet-Left, Beast, BAMptb, Hasan Mulla, jpchicago23, The Chief, & ???)
Low Vote: 89

 

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Greatest Canadian pro wrestler ever (when it comes to his career overall). He was one of the top workers in North America for several years."  stunning_grover

 

"His range of work is at an elite level. Great work against a wide variety of opponents. Diesel, Owen, Yoko, Lawler, etc. He had the most dynamic heel/babyface run in 97 ive ever seen. Hes my personal favorite which also helps."  jpchicago23

 

"A WWE ace who could be responsible for having kept them in business. I think his late-WCW run is underrated, as is his final WWF match against Michaels before they did the screwjob finish."  Dave Musgrave

 

"Slumming it on house shows? Ok, if anyone can show me 100+ matches from a single wrestler from a single year where that person is never, ever taking a night off and always giving 4*+ performances then I'll consider that a valid argument. I'll go controversial: Bret suffers from anti-WWF-bias. If he'd been completely the same guy, but had been in the NWA/WCW 85-97, he'd be in most people's top 10. Who cares that the company had a ton of crap in that period? Bret was brilliant!."  Danish Dynamite

 

"Hart carried U.S. wrestling on his shoulders during the dark days of the mid '90s with some of the greatest performances in wrestling history,"  Moonsault Marvin

 

Recommended Matches: 

Bret Hart vs Owen Hart (WWF WrestleMania, 3/20/1994)

Bret Hart vs Diesel (No Holds Barred, WWF Survivor Series, 11/19/1995)

Bret Hart vs Steve Austin (Submission, WWF WresetleMania, 3/23/1997)



#85 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 06:28 AM

16 - Nick Bockwinkel

 

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2006 Ranking: 56

 
Points: 10799
#1 Votes: 2
#2 Votes: 3
#3 Votes: 8
Top 10 Votes: 33
 
# of Ballots: 132
Average Vote: 21.41
 
High Vote: 1 (Matt D & Lee Casebolt)
Low Vote: 96

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"If he had more footage/had I watched more, he could have been No. 1. Incredible in every respect. "  MoS 

 

"Imagine if the only footage we had of Ric Flair was post-1995, plus some highlights of Flair/Steamboat and maybe his '70s match with Chris Taylor. Just eliminate his prime entirely. That's basically what we have of Bockwinkel, and he's still an obviously elite talent on the level of a Flair, Funk, Hansen, etc. It doesn't take too much imagination to fill in the blanks and come up with the best wrestler ever."  Lee Casebolt

 

"There are so many things that Nick Bockwinkel did so well that it's hard to even know where to start. What I'd like to do, to begin, is list out his range, a number of roles that he was effective in playing, and that he was able to wrestle good to great matches (some all-timers) while achieving. This is in no order:

 

1. Bumping, stooging heel for aging legend (Vs Verne, Mad Dog, Crusher, Baron)

2. Bumping, stooging vulnerable champion for up and and coming Ace babyface (Vs Hogan)

3. Reluctantly cheered champion holding the line vs a foreign threat (Vs Al-Kassie)

4. Comedy kingpin with a bunch of goons vs Super-babyfaces (with Heenan family Vs. Andre and Hogan)

5. Heel champion Ace vs technical up and coming babyfaces (vs Rheingans)

6. Tag role of the same (With Stevens vs High Flyers)

7. Southern tag heel (w/Saito vs Gagnes or Hennigs, or High-flyers)

8. Confident heel champ vs established technical opponent (vs Martel)

9. Same as a heel challenger establishing said new babyface champ.

10. Vulnerable but dangerous heel champion against deadly brawler (vs Wahoo)

11. Travelling champ who underestimates local hero (vs Chavo)

12. Snobby outsider champ who DOESN'T underestimate local hero but has to have a number of varied matches with him without losing the title (vs Lawler)

13. Fiery babyface wanting revenge (crazy sprint vs Zbyszko)

14. John Wayne (vs Hansen)

15. Super technical in front of a Japanese audience (vs Funk and vs Robinson)

16. Aging, cagey veteran trying to survive against a young babyface slowly surpassing him (vs Hennig)

17. US Supermatch that has to end in a draw (vs. Flair)

18. Travelling heel champ stooging big for the local hero while staying credible (vs JYD)

19. Desperate heel up against monsters (the clips we have vs Andre or Ladd)

20. Very strong shorter match TV worker during the Showboat era (vs. Debeers)

 

And that's what we have from maybe 76-86, when he around 40 to just over 50. He spent decades of his career as a babyface. And there are more. I just picked twenty different in-ring functions that he had to do and had to do well, many of them calling upon different skills and talents, that involve someone actively wrestling differently. I could have given more examples of matches for almost every category too, with almost all of them being very good to great. That, to me is amazing. The only other people who would come close to this are #1 contenders, and almost all of those benefit from us having much more of their physical prime on tape or from working more broadly in multiple territories (though Bock, of course did. We just don't have a ton of that on tape; most of what we do is great).

 

He was able to accomplish this through deeply and thoroughly understanding pro wrestling and storytelling, through engaging the crowd, through knowing when to give and when to take, knowing how to maximize moments and momentum, to fully committing to his role at all times. He was incredible at portraying emotion in matches, jubilant when causing punishment and terrified when getting overwhelmed. He refused to let the crowd dictate what he was doing, but instead forced them into line with what was best for them and the match, adapting but never surrendering ("You're boring them Martel!" being my favorite single wrestling moment I've seen in the last five years, maybe?). 

 

Everything had purpose. There are wrestlers, great wrestlers, who can string more-or-less unrelated chapters together so that their matches are better than the sum of their parts, so that they make a symbolic, thematic, more or less satisfying whole, but Bockwinkel was able to relate the chapters to one another so that he never had to do that. There wasn't that need for symbolism because the text stood on its own. It was finding the perfect moment to turn the babyface's offensive rush into a King of the Mountain heat segment, or how to start countering one bit of bodypart work with the opposite equivalent, and so on. There's no sixty minute match I've ever seen which tells so involved a story as Hennig vs Bockwinkel. I've never been satisfied with the idea that wrestling isn't a good medium for storytelling, because I've seen it. That match shows that it's possible, and not just over ten minutes but over sixty, and that it can be the most compelling thing in the world. He created stories that mattered to people, that resonated, that moved them, and he made it seem so flawless and so natural. There was so much variation, too. I can barely wrap my head around how he managed it.

 

And of course the fundamentals were there. He bumps around the ring like a pinball for Verne Gagne. His long-term limb selling is exceptional, and he had a way of selling fatigue from a long match in the finishing stretch like almost no one else. I believe that selling is the key to creating meaning in wrestling and it's hard not to watch his performances and think that he'd been through a war and that maybe, just maybe, he was going to lose that title (and if he did, the babyface would have EARNED it). His matwork was wonderful, holds and counters, perfect timing, great facial expressions and trash talk, and screaming in pain when he was on the wrong end of it. His strikes were snug. His offense was varied. He moved in and out of holds so well in the opening segment of a match; there was such flow to it. He cheated extremely well (and man was he a great southern tag heel), and as a babyface, he could both garner sympathy and swallow the heel alive with righteous fury. That's the thing. he's not just a smart worker. He's a total package. At age 45, he could still outFunk prime Funk, outFlair prime Flair and even, at times, outHansen prime Hansen. But, almost always, he only goes to that level when it makes sense to go there, when the value is there, when the needs of the match calls for it.

 

I don't think it's a big spoiler. He's my #1. There are amazing wrestlers on my list in the #2-9 spots, some of the most talented, skilled, brilliant, sound, varied people imaginable, with hundreds of great matches to prove their worth. I just can't imagine any of them in that #1 slot instead of Bockwinkel." Matt D

 

 

Recommended Matches: 

Nick Bockwinkel vs Billy Robinson (AWA, 12/11/1980)

Nick Bockwinkel vs Wahoo McDaniel (AWA, 8/28/1983)

Nick Bockwinkel vs Curt Hennig (AWA, 11/21/1986)



#86 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 07:14 AM

15 - Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 13

 
Points: 11050
#1 Votes: 0
#2 Votes: 1
#3 Votes: 0
Top 10 Votes: 16
 
# of Ballots: 144
Average Vote: 24.64
 
High Vote: 2 (Derek C)
Low Vote: 86

 

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Best babyface ever and the architect of some of the best feuds and matches in wrestling history. Bonus points for his real name being RICHARD BLOOD."  Jon Burr

 

"The best babyface seller I can think of. As mentioned in Flair's section, his 1989 series with Flair has actually improved with time."  Dave Musgrave

 

"Ever since I watched Wrestlemania 3 the first time, Steamboat stood out as a favorite of mine. Fast forward to watching the Clash 6 match against Flair, the Clash 17 match against the Enforcers and I was just astonished at what the man could do. He is simply one of the best babyfaces that has ever been in pro wrestling. " mprice

 

"I've always been a fan. I've always been a fan of his storytelling in the ring. To me he's the ultimate babyface worker. He's had great matches or feuds with a variety of wrestlers. You have Flair, Savage, Rude, Roberts, Austin, Blanchard, Anderson, Pillman, Muraco, Windham, Slater, Slaughter, Kernodle and a host of others.He had great single matches. He was one of the great tag workersin the likes of Anderson,Eaton, and that ilk. Young talent that worked with him usually learned from him and evolved into better wrestlers. Some of these guys are like Luger, Austin, Pillman, and Dustin Rhodes." Shoe

 

Recommended Matches: 

Ricky Steamboat vs Randy Savage (WWF WrestleMania, 3/29/1987)

Ricky Steamboat vs Ric Flair (2/3 Falls, NWA Clash of the Champions, 4/2/1989)

Ricky Steamboat vs Rick Rude (Iron Man, WCW Beach Blash, 6/20/1992)



#87 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 07:33 AM

14 - Vader

 

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2006 Ranking: 17

 
Points: 11140
#1 Votes: 0
#2 Votes: 1
#3 Votes: 1
Top 10 Votes: 16
 
# of Ballots: 148
Average Vote: 26.24
 
High Vote: 2
Low Vote: 83

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Hopefully I'm not the high vote on him. Probably could have talked myself into making him #1. Surely my favorite guy to watch. Stiffness, violence, match construction. "  djhaigh

 

"Versatility is an odd choice of word since he's basically just Vader wherever he goes, but I think it is a credit to him that he is so universal that he can turn up anywhere - WCW, WWF, AWA, NJPW, AJPW, UWFI, etc. - and get over and have good matches just by Being Vader. He's one of those wrestling skeleton keys - opens any lock.

 

I think it was shoot-style Vader that really sold me on him more than anything else. Having a big fat American in a mask come in and throw powerbombs and shit in a shoot-style environment sounds so wacky and counter-productive on the surface, but he does exactly that and it's fucking awesome. Vader is great in UWFI because he's able to portray both being a legitimately dangerous mountain of a man, AND being a shooting novice who is totally out of his element. He has no real defense for grappling or leg kicks or anything else MMAish, but he could also swipe your whole head off your shoulders if you aren't careful. I love the dynamic.

 

That's the key to Vader everywhere really, like Brock he's big and powerful enough, and has enough of a badass aura that he can take the nutty bumps he does, get knocked down as often as he does, and sell as much as he does without losing any of his credibility. And his agility goes both ways too - he will bump all over the place, but he can also come off the top with a dive in a way that dudes his size just can't, which turns it back into something that makes him dangerous.

 

The Sting series in amazing and some of my favourite ever 90s matches. I really love his UWFI run - vs Takada, Tamura, Yamazaki, etc. Hansen matches. Flair match. Final Four. Lots of great stuff, and I haven't really seen anything from NJ." Jimmy Redman

 

Recommended Matches: 

Vader vs Shinya Hashimoto (NJPW, 4/24/1989)

Vader vs Sting (WCW The Great American Bash, 7/12/1992)

Vader vs Nobuhiko Takada (UWFI, 8/18/1994)

 

NOTE: Highest ranked wrestler without a number 1 vote.

NOTE: Tied, with two others, for most amount of votes.



#88 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 08:10 AM

13 - Genichiro Tenryu

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 21

 
Points: 11318
#1 Votes: 5
#2 Votes: 3
#3 Votes: 9
Top 10 Votes: 39
 
# of Ballots: 131
Average Vote: 17.51
 
High Vote: 1 (Tanner Teat, Dean Rasmussen, djhaigh, Microstatistics, & ???)
Low Vote: 81

 

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Grumpy, lumpy, and indefatigable. A wandering sumo ronin of mythic proportions. You couldn't make up Tenryu if you tried."  Jon Burr

 

"Never boring, never had a down period, great for over 20 years, incomparable presence." djhaigh

 

"Next to Jumbo, the best Japanese wrestler I can think of. His post 2000 run really adds to his portfolio."  Dave Musgrave

 

"6-9 are to respect the Japanese wrestling community, and to not throw off the voting average by not including them high enough, despite not having as deep a knowledge of their careers. Seeing their names on the list, this high, I would not question."  Steven White

 

"He faced a who's who of the best wrestlers from the U.S. and Japan accumulating high quality matches throughout his career."  Moonsault Marvin

 

"enryu is definitely a wrestler where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. His execution is sometimes flat out horrible, but it almost doesn't matter at all. He usually wrestles like he's in the Tokyo Dome, even when he's working a smaller venue. He's in the Choshu-Hashimoto-Onita group of guys who are so great at projecting themselves as larger than life through body language and facial expressions. I still need to wade through most of his 80s resume outside of the super classics, but I know his rep there is that it took him some time to find his voice. Definite top tier pick for me." Loss

 

Recommended Matches: 

Genichiro Tenryu & Jumbo Tsuruta vs Riki Choshu & Yoshiaki Yatsu (AJPW, 1/28/1986)

Genichiro Tenryu & Stan Hansen vs Giant Baba & Rusher Kimura (AJPW, 11/29/1989)

Genichiro Tenryu vs Satoshi Kojima (AJPW, 7/17/2002)



#89 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 09:00 AM

12 - Eddie Guerrero

 

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2006 Ranking: 6

 
Points: 11369
#1 Votes: 1
#2 Votes: 2
#3 Votes: 2
Top 10 Votes: 24
 
# of Ballots: 146
Average Vote: 24.16
 
High Vote: 1 (Gus_Mcrea)
Low Vote: 88

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"The last thing I did before starting to compose this was watch almost everything of Guerrero on the tape. In my opinion, probably the most versatile wrestler in history. Excellent in every role."  MoS 

 

"Had moments in his career where his work was the most crisp, effortless looking in the business. Great, great heel and very versatile."  Jon Burr

 

"One of the most complete and charismatic performers in all of wrestling. Could be the most sympathetic face or the most dastardly heel on earth, could do crazy character work, promos, matches, could be serious or comedic, he could do it all. "  Jimmy Redman

 

"For me Eddie’s appeal is not necessarily stretches of top-notch wrestling or his number of great matches, but it is how he seemed to approach wrestling after 1996 and what made him stand out. I think Eddie’s strongest trait is that he always seemed to out perform the spot, the gimmick, the match, or whatever that was given to him. Eddie always seemed to make a story bigger than it was. The cruiserweights in many ways felt like just the flippy, athletic and often workrate portion of the show with few exceptions. Especially juxtaposed to the “story” heavy WCW product of the time, the cruisers didn’t have narratives that jumped off the page. Jericho and Eddie stood out in this regard and even though I kind of loved Jericho’s stuff, Eddie’s heel turn and feud with Rey made me sit up and take notice. It felt like a serious feud that had gotten personal in the best way possible. I was rewatching some of that a few weeks ago and it was framed so horribly too. It wasn’t paced out and given time to breath very well, to capture the moments where the audience is supposed to take in the seriousness of the situation. That is such a credit to Eddie (and Rey, but I think to a lesser extent) that he got a lot of the emotion and the urgency of the story through despite what was around him.

 

Eddie was also great at making his lesser opponents better and more legit than they were in other contexts. It wasn’t just about getting a good match about them. He worked with them in a way that accentuated their character and made them more interesting. Bradshaw and RVD stand out to me as guys that I am not real fond of, but love their work with Guerrero. Another case is Malenko. Regardless of what you think about the Guerrero/Malenko matches from ECW (and I have sort of mixed feelings about them) I am not sure Malenko was ever more interesting than he seemed in those matches and I actually credit the way Eddie worked with him over time more than anything else. He worked with a sense of urgency that I think a lot of the cruisers in WCW tried to mimic with Dean. It highlighted Dean’s strengths and hid his weaknesses, but more to the point it turned his dull in ring persona into a caricature. Being ice cold was something we were told was part of his gimmick before, but it wasn’t till Eddie that I think that really came out in the ring and Malenko’s movements and nonverbal became legible as part of a broader story.   The he paused, let Malenko stalk, and sold his submission work just brought a lot of Malenko I think.

 

And that is Eddie’s best in-ring quality, his ability to work in multiple stories and characters in a way that brings a lot of layers of meaning to a match. It is what makes him stand out and excel.  He brings his own character, his opponents character, the storyline, the endgame, and anyone who might involved outside the match into the ring work itself. I have talked elsewhere about how much I value the character being accented and forwarded in the work itself as a way of holding stories and matches together, something I think the greats do well.  It gives something for everyone and makes the match itself so much more interesting. His indy work during his road to redemption was sort of example of this. Some of that stuff was terrible, but Eddie’s work in, even his attempts to save some of the worst matches (the Doug Williams match comes to mind) always seemed to help his opponent shine not just as a good worker but as a character. A lot of that  just came in matching pace selling to their strengths.

 

I think the Bradshaw feud is the perfect example of this too.  I give his blood bath at Judgement day five stars. I know that is higher than most,  I just think the way he worked that match from the second he came on the screen to the second he was off it was more or less flawless and he brought out an excellent performance from JBL. He works in the race and class politics in a way that makes Bradshaw look like a legitimate super villain (or at least compared to how he might have looked to the average fan months before that).  Bradshaw was more or less a wrestling verison of King Pin (deceptively strong and smart billionaire who uses all of those things to get what he wants). Guerrero was the perfect opponent to highlight those things with his facial expressions, his selling, and the way they went back and forth. The whole feud is the only reason Bradshaw felt remotely legitimate as a champion and gained any momentum during that run, in my opinion.  The face DQ was an amazing end to that because he “won” the fight by losing the match, highlighting how difficult it will be to top Bradshaw with all his resources and tricks on top of his physical skills. Looking back on those promos and matches, Guerrero was putting masterful performances that got everything (even the political tones) over in a way that made the whole thing hang together and gave the company multiple things to work with after.

 

All of this is on top of his obvious athleticism and precision. I think he sold pretty well, but nothing super special. He had incredible attention to detail most of the time when it came to working and selling body parts, but his selling itself doesn’t stand out as something that adds to the drama often. He had his off nights of course, but for the most part I walk away from matches always satisfied or outright impressed with how crisp and tight he kept matches, especially considering I think he was one of the best at meshing lots of different styles in general. He kept lots of offense that was not really part of the American psychology really legit looking for the most part. By the time he hit the main event (or even the E) that wasn't odd, but he continued to evolve and stood at as a crisp and believable wrestler.

 

Those are the things that I think make Eddie really good. They are skills that he brought to matches on superstars and heat as well as matches on PPV. He certainly has his weaknesses, but  I think Eddie will be near the top for me. I am going to go back and (re)watch some of his lesser-acclaimed matches/runs and see how this manifests itself (or not)." CapitalTTruth

 

Recommended Matches: 

Eddy Guerrero & Love Machine vs El Hijo del Santo & Octagon (AAA, 11/6/1994)

Eddie Guerrero vs Too Cold Scorpio (ECW, 4/8/1995)

Eddie Guerrero vs Brock Lesnar (WWE No Way Out, 2/15/2004)



#90 Grimmas

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Posted 27 April 2016 - 10:16 AM

11 - Jumbo Tsuruta

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 1

 
Points: 11538
#1 Votes: 5
#2 Votes: 10
#3 Votes: 6
Top 10 Votes: 42
 
# of Ballots: 135
Average Vote: 19.29
 
High Vote: 1 (El-P, Brass Ring Club, Yo-Yo's Roomie, Dave Musgrave, & Dylan Harris)
Low Vote: 82

 

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Had his career consisted of just his late 80s, early 90s stuff, he would have been No. 1. But it wasn't, and there are quite a few periods of his career which I do not like as much."  MoS 

 

"Has one of the coolest later periods of any wrestling career. Involved in some of the greatest feuds, both in singles and in tags, ever. Surly Jumbo is best Jumbo!"  Jon Burr

 

"I know there was a lot of discussion about him, but he literally checked off every category I look for for "The greatest wrestler ever." He had some of the best matches ever. He had a near 20 year run as an elite wrestler. In my opinion the best match of the 70s. And the 80s. And the Misawa match might have only been near the best of the 90s but it was my favorite. He excelled in every different situation he was in including tag teams with various partners. I love Jumbo and he is the epitome of a great wrestler for me."  Dylan Harris

 

"He was an in-ring master who had some of my favorite matches. His peak was arguably 1989-1991 which occurred after what many would consider a HOF career. He managed to transform himself as well and did as great a job of preparing the next generation as anyone I can think of. " Dave Musgrave

 

"A whole show dedicated to it: http://placetobenati...-wrestler-ever/" Jerryvonkramer

 

Recommended Matches: 

Jumbo Tsuruta vs Terry Funk (AJPW, 6/11/1976)

Jumbo Tsuruta vs Kerry Von Erich (AJPW, 5/22/1984)

Jumbo Tsuruta vs Mitsuharu Misawa (AJPW, 9/1/1990)



#91 Grimmas

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 10:46 AM

10 - Jerry "The King" Lawler

 

King-Jerry-Lawler.jpg

 

 

2006 Ranking: 41

 
Points: 11603
#1 Votes: 6
#2 Votes: 5
#3 Votes: 4
Top 10 Votes: 38
 
# of Ballots: 136
Average Vote: 18.76
 
High Vote: 1 (goc, Tim Livingston, Phil Schneider, benj, Polish_Hammer, & goodhelmet)
Low Vote: 94

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"Best punch in wrestling history and a top 10 heel AND face in wrestling history. On top of a territory from jump street and kept it alive longer than anyone could have dreamt."  Jon Burr

 

"The King got arguably the most out of the least of anyone in the history of wrestling. My God this was the epitome of the man who "got it". So many great matches including vs. perennials such as Snowman & The Miz. If that isn't top 5 worthy man I don't know."  Dylan Harris

 

"My favorite wrestling character in an angle driven environment. Lawler has a great emotional range. He can be fun, funny, competitive, serious, hateful, violent, brave, or cowardly. He can work big and he can work small. I love him as a tough brawling babyface and I love him as the cowardly heel, hiding weapons and doing whatever he can to win."  A Stock

 

"Lawler is my #1 and it would take a hell of an argument to push someone else into that spot. I guess in the "minimalist vs. maximist" debate I would firmly put myself in the minimalist camp and Lawler really is "The King" there. He could get a good match out of just about anyone, and most of the time he did. Also one of the best, if not the best, promo guy of all time. Was involved in some all time classic feuds & angles, some of which he booked himself. So factoring in the whole package, including being the anchor of the only territory that survived the territory era, I can't see anyone beating him out for #1 if I were to really do a list." goc

 

goodhelmet's great post

 

Recommended Matches: 

Jerry Lawler vs Terry Funk (Memphis, 3/23/1981)

Jerry Lalwer vs Dutch Mantell (Barbed Wire, Memphis, 3/29/1982)

Jerry Lawler vs The Miz (WWE, 2/20/2011)



#92 Grimmas

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 11:45 AM

9 - Toshiaki Kawada

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 2

 
Points: 11784
#1 Votes: 5
#2 Votes: 3
#3 Votes: 8
Top 10 Votes: 50
 
# of Ballots: 129
Average Vote: 13.19
 
High Vote: 1 (ChuckScumm, anarchistxx, AstroBoy, AndyLFC , & ???)
Low Vote: 78

 

 

toshiaki.jpg

 

Discussion Thread

 

"I do not see the arguments about him dogging it in matches. Almost every match I have seen has him on song, and that is a fuckload of matches."  MoS 

 

"The most thoughtful, nuanced, and intriguing worker during a most legendary period for All Japan. He put kickpads on damned near every indie worker worldwide with his influence. He may not have the sheer number of starry matches as his cohorts, but his role and work during those heady days was the most thrilling and, for me, important." Jon Burr

 

"Out of the four pillars, he had the best pre-1990 run in my opinion. He was an awesome badass and top opponent to Misawa during the 90's but the 1988 RWTL final is one of my favorite matches of all time."  Dave Musgrave

 

"Kawada's peak performances are some of the best in history, with top notch selling in both singles and tag matches."  Moonsault Marvin

 

"I love Kawada. Such a smart worker. While the Albright match in '95 is far from his best match, I think it's the best example of Kawada's greatness because he's doing something out of the norm that other top guys in All Japan either wouldn't have thought to do or cared enough to do. He's not a guy that lets many opportunities to do interesting things slide." Loss

 

Recommended Matches: 

Toshiaki Kawada vs Mitsuharu Misawa (AJPW, 6/3/1994)

Toshiaki Kawada & Akira Taue vs Mitsuharu Misawa & Kenta Kobashi (AJPW, 6/9/1995)

Toshiaki Kawada vs Kensuke Sasaki (NJPW, 10/9/2000)



#93 Grimmas

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 12:23 PM

8 - Kenta Kobashi

 

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2006 Ranking: 5

 
Points: 11898
#1 Votes: 6
#2 Votes: 8
#3 Votes: 6
Top 10 Votes: 49
 
# of Ballots: 135
Average Vote: 16.62
 
High Vote: 1 (???, ???, Alan Counihan, Lauren McKell, Marty Sleeze, & WingedEagle)
Low Vote: 88

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"I am not as high on him as I am on Misawa and Kawada, but I do feel that the criticism he gets for no-selling and having poor psychology is a bit unfair. "  MoS 

 

"A superdeformed Ricky Steamboat, with an arsenal that seemingly never ends. It's his fire that sets him apart from his former mentor and, thusly, just about every other wrestler ever."  Jon Burr

 

"Rated the highest of the 4 Pillars for me based nearly entirely on his high end stuff. in fact likely my #1 on purely high end. The wheels came off at the end but nowhere near enough to knock him out of the top 5."   Dylan Harris

 

"I have been watching Japanese wrestling for about 3 years now and Kobashi stands out as one of the most interesting guys to watch because it's not just about chops and kicks but how he makes them into a watchable match." mprice

 

"Kenta Kobashi is the ultimate strong style competitor. He hits hard, suplexes you on top of your head and is fun to watch. Every time I watch a Kenta Kobashi match I'm intrigued." Danny Kuchler

 

"I love him up through 1993. Even at certain points in 1993 I hate him. After 1993 I hate him and find his style impossible to watch. But its Kenta Kobashi I don't feel Iike I can put him any lower. "  Elliott

 

"We're not going to find a more talented pro wrestler on this list than Kenta Kobashi. Great facial expressions and selling, and probably better heavyweight offense and execution than anyone ever. I could see myself putting Kobashi as high as number two, so I'm not down on him at all. If he's hurt by anything, it's that his matches sometimes felt too much like The Kobashi Show, where he was showing off how great he was as much as or more than giving a performance for the sake of the match. It's a hard thing to really describe in a way that makes sense, but I expect that people who have watched a lot of Kobashi will get that. There's nothing understated about the guy, but the constant theatrical approach can sometimes be a lot to bear. As much as people love the 6/9/95 tag, I do too, but Kobashi's performance was so over the top there that the match lost something for me. For that reason, it's never been a match I've been as gaga over as most people." Loss

 

Recommended Matches: 

Kenta Kobashi vs Stan Hansen (AJPW, 7/29/1993)

Kenta Kobashi vs Mitsuharu Misawa (AJPW, 1/20/1997)

Kenta Kobashi vs Tamon Honda (NOAH, 4/13/2003)



#94 Grimmas

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 02:58 PM

7 - Rey Mysterio Jr.

 

 

rey.jpg

 

2006 Ranking: 22

 
Points: 11910
#1 Votes: 3
#2 Votes: 0
#3 Votes: 6
Top 10 Votes: 34
 
# of Ballots: 146
Average Vote: 20.92
 
High Vote: 1 (El Dragon, Zero, & donsem43)
Low Vote: 95

 

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"His consistency is on another level entirely. Perhaps has the most 3 star matches in history. " MoS 

 

"He managed to be a successful wrestler in AAA, WCW and WWE. He was a strong in-ring performer over a time span of more than 20 years." stunning_grover

 

"The sheer number of good matches in Rey's career is staggering. Like Daniel Bryan, can get over anywhere through workrate alone. Seemingly defied physics early in his career, and defied the odds later, as his storytelling chops took him to unexpected heights. "  Jon Burr

 

"My favorite junior wrestler and probably the best of all time. In a Steamboat-free world I would probably call him the best babyface ever. "  Dave Musgrave

 

"How many years from 1996 to 2016 can you argue that Rey Mysterio Jr. was the best wrestler in the world, or at least top 5? The greatest babyface wrestler of all time, from wrestling Eddie back in the late 90's to the Low-Ki and LU stuff now. He could have many more years of being just a top flight guy too. "  El Dragon

 

"The greatest high flyer ever, and the greatest TV match worker ever. He combines crazy ass, spectacular moves with incredible selling and timing. He's timeless and can work with anyone. Probably has more good matches on tape than any other wrestler."  Jimmy Redman

 

" Probably the best t.v. match worker I've ever seen in the sense that if you ask him to have a three minute match with Jamie Noble it's going to be good and if you ask him to go fifteen with Shelton Benjamin it's going to be good and if you ask him to go nine minutes with Edge it's going to be good.  Was good in that role during the Nitro era, good in that role as a junior in WWE, good in that role as the vet in WWE.  I doubt anyone in history has more good televised matches than Rey, and he did it against a huge variety of opponents. 

 

Possible knock on him would be that he wasn't a good heel, but he never should have been a heel and is an all time great face.  The other big knock I could see is that he lacks true classics, but I don't think that's true at all. In fact I think things like the Punk and Jericho series are classic series, they just aren't thought of that way because the WWE is terrible at making special things seem special.  One of my all time favorite highspot guys AND one of my all time favorite sellers.  He will rate well on my ballot" Dylan Waco

 

Recommended Matches: 

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs Psicosis (WAR, 12/13/1995)

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs Ultimo Dragon (WCW World War III, 11/24/1996)

Rey Mysterio vs Kurt Angle (WWE SummerSlam, 8/25/2002)



#95 Grimmas

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 03:33 PM

6 - Jushin "Thunder" Liger

 

 

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2006 Ranking: 4

 
Points: 12291
#1 Votes: 1
#2 Votes: 3
#3 Votes: 3
Top 10 Votes: 46
 
# of Ballots: 145
Average Vote: 18.03
 
High Vote: 1 (BuryWindham/VicVenomBytes)
Low Vote: 84

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"My favourite junior ever. Loss keeps saying that he did not really work a juniors style, and that might be why. "  MoS 

 

"He was the top star and best worker of the New Japan junior heavyweight division for many years. Later in his career, he continued to have great matches. He even had great performances outside of Japan." stunning_grover

 

"Probably as responsible as anyone for the tape trading boom and a legend in almost every respect. Innovative and versatile, with incredible character work, despite being fully shrouded. Part lion, part tiger, all wrestler!" Jon Burr

 

"Liger won't be my number one, but I could see him anywhere from number two to any other spot in the top ten. His rep is that of a great high flyer, and while Liger was a great flyer, that has nothing to do with why he was great. Liger was so demonstrative. I always thought it was cool when you felt like you could see a smirk or anger just by looking at his face even though the expression never changed at all because of the mask. He was also a fantastic ace. Guys like Otani and Kanemoto just weren't the same against anyone else for the most part, not to mention El Samurai and Norio Honaga. The only thing keeping him out of the top spot for me is that he wrestled within a pretty narrow experience - juniors matches against a core group of guys. We saw so many sides to him just within that division, and he does have occasional highlights outside of it like the WCW matches with Pillman or the Budokan Hall main event with Hashimoto. But he's not quite as "tested", for lack of a better word, as the other top tier guys. It's hard to think of any real flaws outside of that." Loss

 

Recommended Matches: 

Jushin Liger vs Naoki Sano (NJPW, 1/31/1990)

Jushin Liger vs Great Sasuke (NJPW, 4/16/1994)

Jushin Liger & Wataru Inoue vs Tsuyoshi Kikuchi & Yoshinobu Kanemaru (NOAH, 2/17/2002)



#96 Grimmas

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 05:42 AM

5 - Daniel Bryan

 

Daniel-Bryan-Wallpaper-Angry-face.jpg

 

 

2006 Ranking: honourable mention (117)

 
Points: 12302
#1 Votes: 9
#2 Votes: 6
#3 Votes: 4
Top 10 Votes: 34
 
# of Ballots: 142
Average Vote: 17.63
 
High Vote: 1 (Danny Kuchler, @jamesie_2015, ???, ShittyLittleBoots, James Derbyshire, Venegas, Dan Rice, Quentin Skinner, & Mrzfn)
Low Vote: 81

 

 

daniel-bryan-3.jpg

 

Discussion Thread

 

"I am someone who does not like the huge indys boom of the mid-2000s. Something as vaunted and rarified as the Joe-Punk matches leave me underwhelmed. However, Daniel Bryan is the exception to the rule, not only because he managed to keep his matches from becoming too nudge nudge wink wink, but also because of the clever ways he would subvert few tropes without it becoming a masturbatory celebration. "  MoS 

 

"Best wrestler of his generation. Was good very young in to his career. His peak performances are some of the best matches I've ever seen. One of the top 3 major title reigns of all time from 2005/2006 in Ring Of Honor. Made the most out of every single person he worked with. Very versatile. He could work any role (smug heel, delusional heel, stoic babyface, fiery, underdog babyface, comedy) and any style of match (mat based, stiff strikes, high spots, epics with tons of near falls, tag matches, gimmick matches). Ability to carry a "lesser" opponents to something special. Longer list of great matches with multiple people than I could come up for with anyone else. Made the most out of what he could in every company he worked in no matter what his placement on the card was and had this unique ability to get over with his underrated level of charisma and crowd connection. He's a guy that on paper when you look at him he shouldn't be as good as he is, but he checks off every single box in what you could want in a professional wrestler."  Quentin Skinner

 

"The best wrestler in the world for damned near a decade and one of the smartest and most studious wrestlers ever. Five counts, small packages, silly chants? Could get over damned near anything he wanted to, when between the ropes. "  Jon Burr

 

"Daniel Bryan is probably my favorite wrestler of all time and certainly was consistently the best I saw live. I was there for the classic with Tyler Black in 1998 which really showcases how creative he was."  Dave Musgrave

 

"He's a recent candidate, but I feel he truly is a great wrestler. He had great matches over a long stretch against a variety of opponents, he added new elements and was consistently creative. He got over everywhere he went, largely on the merits of his work, not on his name." 

 

"Bryan personifies everything a wrestler should be, from the attitude to the in ring work. I feel as if placed in any era, Bryan would be one of the best no matter what. "   Danny Kuchler

 

"This is primarily based on his WWE run only as I didn't get around to watching a ton of indy wrestling. I tend to not like a lot of modern wrestling so he could either shoot up my list or fall down based on how I feel about the 04-on indy run when I watch it in bulk for 2026."  Elliott

 

"Kept me involved in wrestling when my interest was fading in 2005/2006. I followed and was invested in his entire career. A truly great worker. "  TheU_2001

 

Recommended Matches: 

Bryan Danielson vs Nigel McGuinness (ROH, 8/12/2006)

Bryan Danielson vs Takeshi Morishima (ROH, 8/25/2007)

Daniel Bryan vs John Cena (WWE SummerSlam, 8/18/2013)



#97 Grimmas

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 09:30 AM

4 - Mitsuharu Misawa

 

 

mitsuharu_misawa2.jpg

 

2006 Ranking: 7

 
Points: 13216
#1 Votes: 11
#2 Votes: 12
#3 Votes: 8
Top 10 Votes: 63
 
# of Ballots: 137
Average Vote: 10.23
 
High Vote: 1 (Tim Cooke, ???, ???, Ismael Retana, ???, Chad Campbell, Dustin Hales, Rob AnimalGlue, The Thread Killer, stunning_grover, & Andrew79)
Low Vote: 86

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"I think he has become a bit underrated, actually, with people focusing on the in-your-face charisma of Kobashi and the hard-hitting of Kawada. His stoic, multi-layered selling and character work was brilliant."  MoS 

 

"He was the top guy in All Japan during the period it produced the most amount of great matches."  stunning_grover

 

"Literally gave his life for his style and business. Amazing performer, with a laconic character that aged quite well. Also had one of the more tumultuous and interesting journeys in puroresu history."  Jon Burr

 

"His greatness is undeniable, but after more than a few lackluster performances it becomes clear his greatest wrestler ever candidacy comes up shorter than expected. I know I'm not the only one who feels this way and as such suffers a fall from the top 20. That doesn't mean he wasn't amazing though."  Dylan Harris

 

"The best ace ever. Convincing an audience that you are the "best wrestler" while also maintaining the illusion that your opponent is a real threat is no easy task and Misawa at his peak does it better than anybody. His long career also features compelling post-peak performances built around his crumbling body using his trademark nuanced selling. "  A Stock

 

"Misawa is one of the lower Four Pillars because he just seemed to fade into the background when it came to some of his matches, even if they were singles. When he was on, he was second to few but there were other times when he just seemed to display an uncaring personality. " mprice

 

"I love Misawa as he was the perfect complement to my number three, Kenta Kobashi. I could of honestly flipped the two and be happy but this is how I feel analyzing the details at this point."  Danny Kuchler

 

"Misawa had the best offensive arsenal including wrestling's most devastating finisher, the Tiger Driver '91."  Moonsault Marvin

 

"The greatest ace of all time. His August 1992 to July 1994 title reign was not only booked fantastically but also featured a boatload of great matches, both in singles and tags and six man tags."  Tim Cooke

 

Recommended Matches: 

Mitsuharu Misawa vs Jumbo Tsuruta (AJPW, 6/8/1990)

Mitsuharu Misawa vs Toshiaki Kawada (AJPW, 6/3/1994)

Mitsuharu Misawa vs Kenta Kobashi (AJPW, 1/20/1997)



#98 Grimmas

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 10:13 AM

3 - Stan Hansen

 

inbacy.jpg

 

 

2006 Ranking: 10

 

Points: 13813
#1 Votes: 11
#2 Votes: 21
#3 Votes: 10
Top 10 Votes: 59
 
# of Ballots: 143
Average Vote: 11.06
 
High Vote: 1 (Bill Thompson, Coffey, InYourCase, Childs, Devon Hales, overbooked, Stiva, KB8, Phil Rippa, ???, & MoS)
Low Vote: 83

 

 

hansen.jpg

 

Discussion Thread

 

"At the very top, when almost all things are equal, ultimately, you have to give in to your subjective urges and indulgences and trust them. And, simple fact of the matter is that no one gets my blood running and my veins pumping the way Hansen does. Every little thing he does mesmerises me."  MoS 

 

"He was a great worker for a long time and he gave great performances in several different promotions. Especially his work in Japan was of high quality."  stunning_grover

 

"Sheer terror, wherever he went. Bruiser Brody's myth is Stan Hansen's reality, and without all the sundry bullshit that followed Frank Goodish around. Hansen's largesse, literally and figuratively, is matched only by his stellar matches."  Jon Burr

 

"One of the most physical wrestlers ever, especially at that level."  Dave Musgrave

 

"To ignore his longevity and consistency would be a huge mistake, even if I haven't seen a ton of his catalogue."  Steven White

 

"Possibly the most fearsome brawler in wrestling history whose work is often so compelling that it's hard to not get immersed in almost every performance, usually because his incomparable physicality. It's not just that his matches are hard hitting, they are also wrestled at a quick pace, utilize the entire ringside area, and create an incredibly chaotic atmosphere. Yes, he's surprisingly good at working from underneath in the rare matched where he is called to do so, and he has a few feuds that are more sporting (vs Inoki, Baba, and Misawa) but it's that spectacular brawling and character work that lands him in this spot."  A Stock

 

 

Recommended Matches: 

Stan Hansen vs Andre the Giant (NJPW, 9/23/1981)

Stan Hansen vs Terry Funk (AJPW, 8/23/1985)

Stan Hansen vs Kenta Kobashi (AJPW, 7/29/1993)



#99 Grimmas

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Posted 30 April 2016 - 03:29 PM

2 - Terry Funk

 

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2006 Ranking: 11

 

Points: 14452
#1 Votes: 25
#2 Votes: 15
#3 Votes: 10
Top 10 Votes: 49
 
# of Ballots: 148
Average Vote: 11.36
 
High Vote: 1 (Joe G, ???, TravJ1979, Elliott, Laney, Grimmas, The Russian Daydream, PeteF3, Josh Ritter, Trent Williams, Kris Zellner, topropepodcast, ShipCanal, Jimbo Tsuruta, simen oem, John Steffy, Dr Ackermann, Jon Burr, Parties, victory, benjaminkicks, JAEDMC, The Man in Blak, El Boricua, & Dylan Waco)
Low Vote: 77

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"There's literally no facet of that jewel we call wrestling that hasn't shown Terry Funk's reflection. One may not find each said facet to his taste, of course, but his work, character, and influence is nigh incalculable across the globe."  Jon Burr

 

"He was great in so many different roles. The best combination of versatile and great you could see. Based on his book and comments by Dave Meltzer he seems to have the best mind for wrestling out of any major star." Dave Musgrave

 

"I've said this before but without the Flair v. Funk feud from 89 I would never have become a hardcore/life long fan.  It was that feud that took me from the level of being a fan, to being obsessed.  It was that feud that pushed me into a collectors mentality, and even started me down the early road to tape trading.  It was that feud that revealed to me the best about pro wrestling's dramatic storytelling elements and arguably it's worst as well (I got into more than one fight at school over that feud).  

 

One thing I've never really talked about in regards to the feud is that it provided a wonderful distraction, and a great escape for me as a child during a period of great devastation.  While the feud kickstarted at the GAB 89 in July, it reached a fever pitch to me at Clash VIII in mid-Sept. in Columbia, SC when Funk came out of the crowd and tied a bag over Flair's head.  I witnessed this live and remember the fallout from it, but what probably isn't remembered for those outside of the area is that less than two weeks later the South Carolina lowcountry was devastated by Hurricane Hugo.  We were without water or power for two months.  With no school, I spent most of my days walking around my neighborhood which had been completely destroyed (our house was actually the only house on the block that did not have a tree go straight through it) and fantasy booking the Flair v. Funk feud.  My dad would hook the t.v. up to the car battery and we would watch two blocks of television a week - wrestling on Saturday morning and TGIF (hey, I was eight!).  But there was no TBS, and that killed me.  I remember watching a scrambled version of Halloween Havoc at a friends house who lived 4 blocks away, but we didn't have any power until early Nov., and no cable until  11/14/89.  I remember this date well because the very next day I got to watch the Funk v. Flair I Quit Match live.  It was the first wrestling show I'd watched inside my home in close to two months.  I have always been partial to their match from GAB, but in many respects the New York Knockout match is the most important match to me as a fan because it was the anticipation of it, the build that I was largely creating in my own mind for it, and the circumstances surrounding it, that made me a fan forever.  

 

People know that Terry Funk is my favorite wrestler ever.  There are many reasons for that, some familial (he was and is my dad's favorite as well and I was reared on him), and some more personal (he's maybe the only wrestler I can think of who has never disappointed me in a wrestling performance).  But Flair is also one of my five favorite wrestlers ever.  As a Carolina kid he was pro wrestling in many respects to me, and I probably saw him live as much as anyone who rated in this poll.  While Terry Funk was my families wrestler, Ric Flair was my regions wrestler.  In 1989 both my family and my region suffered great loss, and it was Funk and Flair's feud that helped me through it as much as anything else." Dylan Waco

 

Recommended Matches: 

Terry Funk vs Jerry Lawler (No DQ, Memphis, 3/23/1981)

Terry Funk vs Stan Hansen (AJPW, 8/23/1985)

Terry Funk vs Ric Flair (NWA Great American Bash, 7/23/1989)



#100 Grimmas

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Posted 30 April 2016 - 04:14 PM

1 - "Nature Boy" Ric Flair

 

ric-flair-blood.gif

 

2006 Ranking: 8

 

Points: 15261
#1 Votes: 30
#2 Votes: 23
#3 Votes: 17
Top 10 Votes: 46
 
# of Ballots: 148
Average Vote: 7.95
 
High Vote: 1 (TheU_2001, Loss, Derek C, Moonsault Marvin, Tim Evans, Jerryvonkramer, BackToBionic, ???, ???, Paul Cooke, Woof, supremebve, anchor, mprice, Justin Webb, Cross Face Chicken Wing, Timothy Buechner, Steven White, Paul Völsch, Danish Dynamite, Shoe, Conker8, Fishbaugh, Ricky Whittenburg, Brad, Floyd, JazeUSA, MikeF , Badlittlekitten, & peachchaos)
Low Vote: 67

 

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Discussion Thread

 

"He dropped own in the last week. I respect everything he has done in wrestling, but the simple fact of the matter is, most of his matches leave me underwhelmed. No matter how much people try to explain the brilliant psychology behind them, I do not get as excited as I should. Also, I find his shtick and his performances really grating. Only so many times I can hear "fat boy" being yelled before I start shouting at my screen."  MoS 

 

"Great stamina. Participated in many legendary matches. One of the most entertaining performers in the United States during the 1980s and early 1990s."  stunning_grover

 

"Only Funk's adaptability and outrageous status in Japan kept 'Naitch out the top spot. The best in and out of the ring whose love for the business is evident in nearly every performance. He's given his all and then some." Jon Burr

 

"It's really hard for me to rate him number two as it is neck-and-neck with Jumbo and Funk. The greatest defending champion I can think of. I recently watched his 1989 matches with Steamboat and they seem to have gotten better with time." Dave Musgrave

 

"He epitomizes the standard to which the 'world champion' should be judged; and in the world of wrestling, no one is better than the champion of the world."  Steven White

 

"Every wrestler has his flaws and Flair is no exception, however the question is if his flaws are enough weighed against other workers. In my opinion, the answer is no. A great wrestling character that is probably the greatest wrestler alive when it comes to killing time in an entertaining fashion. 20 minutes fly by like 5 and it expands along with the length of the match."  Goodear

 

"Five-part podcast mini-series outlining the case: http://placetobenati...-a-mini-series/" jerryvonkramer

 

Recommended Matches: 

Ric Flair vs Ricky Steamboat (2/3 Falls, NWA Clash of the Champions, 4/2/1989)

Terry Funk vs Ric Flair (NWA Great American Bash, 7/23/1989)

Royal Rumble (WWF Royal Rumble, 1/19/1992)






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