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Most Underrated Wrestlers Of All Time


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#21 Microstatistics

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 12:38 AM

Most Underrated

 

Mariko Yoshida - Her 1999-01 run as good as anyone's in history. 

Azumi Hyuga - Great ace, versatile, excellent seller, great matches during Joshi's dead period. 

Megumi Kudo - Along with Foley and Onita, the best ever at working the hardcore style. 

Clive Myers - Best British guy outside the usual suspects. Great technician + personality. 

Yoji Anjoh - Same argument as Myers but for shoot style. 

 

 

 

Most "most underrated" actually become "overrated" with time and pendulum & "underrated" accumulation effect. If I hear yet another time that Brad Armstrong or Hulk Hogan are underrated, I might throw up.

 

On the other hand, I'd say that, for instance, Hulk Hogan was a better worker than Ric Flair at some point in their career (WCW 1999 is what I'm thinking about). Or that Brad Armstrong, as solid as he was, never put it together like Tito Santana did in the same kind of very basic 80's babyface work, which is why Tito had quite a bit of terrific matches and Armstrong a whole lot of solid yet unengaging stuff.

 

 

 

 

 

I think this is spot on. And since we are on that subject

 

Most Overrated

 

Ron Garvin

Blue Panther - I've done a 180 on Panther. Used to think he was one of the Lucha greats but looking back I have found a lot of his matches disappointing. 

CM Punk - Good worker, charismatic but no where near as good as his peers. Lack of high end stuff outside of the Joe Series and the Brock match. 

Stan Hansen 

Tamon Honda - A weird pick since he works the kind of style I usually like but think he is underwhelming more often than not and the praise is hyperbolic. 

Ted DiBiase - Pretty versatile and dependable but more a solid hand than a great worker. 

Keiji Mutoh - Wildly inconsistent

Andre the Giant - I can understand the appeal since he was something unique but in terms of actual good/great matches, he has very little going on. 

Harley Race - Mind numbingly boring

Hulk Hogan - I won't deny the energy and charisma during his prime but as a worker, he was not very good. Best matches were against Bockwinkel, Fujinami, Tenryu and one guess who was doing the heavy lifting in those matches. Alluding to the point El-P was making, just because someone is "incorrectly" labelled as terrible, doesn't suddenly make them good or great when you try and rectify that perception. The pendulum effect describes it perfectly. 

Steve Williams - Misawa got a great match out of him in 94 but I find him pretty dull in most other settings. Worst Kobashi opponent ever by a huge margin. 

John Cena - Still like him quite a lot, great ace. But his big match formula + many matches do not age well at all, inconsistent, lack of high end stuff. 

Dustin Rhodes - Really liked him in 91-94 but he has gaping holes in his career + inconsistencies + lack of high end stuff. 



#22 Jetlag

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 05:10 AM

It's Masayoshi Motegi, ya heathens.



#23 Victator

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 05:38 AM

My wrestling goal for 2018 is to get people on board with my very specific points about John Studd.

Matthew if you will remember, I was praising Studd to you at least five years ago. 

I think Eddie Gilbert is very underrated. Now I know Eddie is fairly well regarded by fans who know him. But I think he was great as a heel or a good guy. He could play an underdog but was credible enough to win. His time in the NWA late 88 to early 89 was a great run. 

The Gilbert/Steamboat vs Flair/Windham match is rarely seen in full, but Eddie put in a fantastic face in peril performance. Actually going back to what footage is available, the Ricky Morton/Gilbert team was very good. 

As a booker I don't think he properly gets recognition for actually drawing. Watching 88 Alabama and Continental was in poor shape when Eddie started. Boutwell was mostly empty at the beginning. By the time he was fired, things had improved greatly.

He booked one of the better post 80's Memphis runs and is short changed on laying the foundation for ECW.


Kamala was very good at utilizing a very limited arsenal and character. 

One Man Gang was a fantastic big man. He could get heat while bumping and selling for smaller guys without it looking out of place. He is very near the top of my list for best big men. I would put him over Bigelow and equal to Bossman and Tenta. 

Hercules Hernandez is someone I don't think gets the credit he deserves. Think he is great as a heel but is miscast as a good guy. 

Honky Tonk Man is my WWF MVP of 1987 and in wrestling overall that year. He was so good he convinced people he actually was bad. 



#24 Boss Rock

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 08:36 AM

Ultimo Dragon. I won't make a case for him as the greatest cruiser/junior of all-time and he certainly was inconsistent at times, but his peaks are really, really high. Very exciting high-flying/technical hybrid. 



#25 Yo-Yo's Roomie

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 08:36 AM

Primo Colon. He's been with the biggest wrestling company in the world for more than 10 years, and no-one ever talks about him. He came about in the wrong era. People don't really appreciate what he brings to the table. His flashy stuff isn't flashy enough to catch people's attention, and his real strengths, like his old school approach to babyface selling, or his throwback heel tactics, don't seem to appeal to most people anymore.

 

He couldn't even get on the ballot for the GWWE, when people like Hornswoggle and fucking Kelly Kelly are on the ballot.



#26 Magnum Milano

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 09:18 AM

Ultimo Dragon. I won't make a case for him as the greatest cruiser/junior of all-time and he certainly was inconsistent at times, but his peaks are really, really high. Very exciting high-flying/technical hybrid. 

 

Observer Hall of Fame, two time IWGP Jr Heavyweight champion, WCW Cruiserweight champion (before that title was devalued), J Crown winner, numerous title reigns all over Mexico and Japan.  How on earth is Ultimo Dragon underrated and by whom?

 

Hardly underrated by people on here, but I'll throw in Steve Grey and Jon Cortez.
 



#27 Mad Dog

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 09:48 AM


Ultimo Dragon. I won't make a case for him as the greatest cruiser/junior of all-time and he certainly was inconsistent at times, but his peaks are really, really high. Very exciting high-flying/technical hybrid. 

 
Observer Hall of Fame, two time IWGP Jr Heavyweight champion, WCW Cruiserweight champion (before that title was devalued), J Crown winner, numerous title reigns all over Mexico and Japan.  How on earth is Ultimo Dragon underrated and by whom?
 
Hardly underrated by people on here, but I'll throw in Steve Grey and Jon Cortez.
 

He also held the TV Title in WCW.

#28 fxnj

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 09:52 AM

Tamon Honda - A weird pick since he works the kind of style I usually like but think he is underwhelming more often than not and the praise is hyperbolic. 

What matches have you been watching? Seeing him as a fired up rookie selling his ass off has been one of my favorite things about the recent explosion in AJPW footage. The Kawada match especially is some great stuff.

 



#29 Boss Rock

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 10:04 AM

 

Ultimo Dragon. I won't make a case for him as the greatest cruiser/junior of all-time and he certainly was inconsistent at times, but his peaks are really, really high. Very exciting high-flying/technical hybrid. 

 

Observer Hall of Fame, two time IWGP Jr Heavyweight champion, WCW Cruiserweight champion (before that title was devalued), J Crown winner, numerous title reigns all over Mexico and Japan.  How on earth is Ultimo Dragon underrated and by whom?

 

Hardly underrated by people on here, but I'll throw in Steve Grey and Jon Cortez.
 

 

 

I should clarify. I've seen a lot of folks on this site and elsewhere who think his stuff has aged badly and that he was all flash and no substance. Part of which I can understand as guys like Liger, Mysterio, and Samurai were more consistent. But I think his peak matches are pretty dang high and are proof that he brought more to the table than just flashy moves.

 

I guess that goes back to the problem of how we define "underrated" and by whom?



#30 dawho5

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 10:26 AM

 

 

Ultimo Dragon. I won't make a case for him as the greatest cruiser/junior of all-time and he certainly was inconsistent at times, but his peaks are really, really high. Very exciting high-flying/technical hybrid. 

 

Observer Hall of Fame, two time IWGP Jr Heavyweight champion, WCW Cruiserweight champion (before that title was devalued), J Crown winner, numerous title reigns all over Mexico and Japan.  How on earth is Ultimo Dragon underrated and by whom?

 

Hardly underrated by people on here, but I'll throw in Steve Grey and Jon Cortez.
 

 

 

I should clarify. I've seen a lot of folks on this site and elsewhere who think his stuff has aged badly and that he was all flash and no substance. Part of which I can understand as guys like Liger, Mysterio, and Samurai were more consistent. But I think his peak matches are pretty dang high and are proof that he brought more to the table than just flashy moves.

 

I guess that goes back to the problem of how we define "underrated" and by whom?

 

 

I will actually put myself up as one of these.  And I think it's due to that pendulum deal mentioned earlier.  Younger me LOVED Ultimo Dragon, one of my favorite WCW guys.  But the more I watched, the more it just disappointed me seeing him whenever it came up.  I started seeing things that soured me on him and did almost a complete 180.  I won't say he's a superb junior heavyweight, but he's not actively bad....usually..



#31 Victator

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 03:00 AM

Primo Colon. He's been with the biggest wrestling company in the world for more than 10 years, and no-one ever talks about him. He came about in the wrong era. People don't really appreciate what he brings to the table. His flashy stuff isn't flashy enough to catch people's attention, and his real strengths, like his old school approach to babyface selling, or his throwback heel tactics, don't seem to appeal to most people anymore.

 

He couldn't even get on the ballot for the GWWE, when people like Hornswoggle and fucking Kelly Kelly are on the ballot.

I like Primo a lot. I think he was great as a traditional baby face and pretty good as a heel. Him and Carlito were a very good and underrated tag team. With Carlito being a very good hot tag. Him and Epico were miscast as heels and unfortunately the bull fighters never caught on.  



#32 Laz

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 06:57 AM

Tommy Dreamer is underrated here. I see people drag his name out when they want to talk about lousy babyfaces, and to me that's ignoring that he was the undeniable heart of an entire promotion. I won't say he's a great promo (average) or even worker (again, average), but the meta-story he took part in is what made me LOVE pro wrestling so I'll admit I'm impartial.

He took beatings with such sympathy and, looking back, that's something missing from so many talents today. Most guys want to look like world beaters and ultimate badasses, leading to stuff like little Lio Rush going shot for shot with guys twice his size, but Tommy always felt like he was fighting on pure heart. A bloodied Rudy, if you will.

#33 JazeUSA

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 08:22 PM

Norman Smiley and El Dandy are the first that come to mind. Good wrestlers whose greatest exposure came as C-show workers.

El Dandy is one of my personal all time favorites, I really got hooked on him after the 80s Lucha set stuff



#34 JazeUSA

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 08:28 PM

My wrestling goal for 2018 is to get people on board with my very specific points about John Studd.

I am game to watch anything you suggest, I remember as a kid being scared to death of him

 

Here's a few- 

 

Earthquake- For a big guy he moved well, was light on his feet and had a great presence

Kane- ditto

Big Show- ditto

Matt Bourne- great run in Mid South, even dressed like a clown he was still scary and mischeivious and underhanded as fuck

Art Barr- brought the personality to that tag team

Bruiser Brody- seriously where does all the hate for him come from? do you guys really expect a 6'7" 300 pound guy who looks like an axe murder in the early 80s to fight from underneath like he's Terry Funk or sell like he's Steamboat or pinball around like Flair? No he was perfect at what he did. 

Shane Douglas- maybe my favorite heel of the 90s, like Bourne biggest exposure was with a corny gimmick in the wwf

Earthquake for me I loved, I am probably the minority, but I loved his team with Typhoon (Natural Disasters)

Matt Bourne also has great run in WCCW, I agree 100% on him



#35 JazeUSA

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 08:35 PM

Most Underrated

 

Mariko Yoshida - Her 1999-01 run as good as anyone's in history. 

Azumi Hyuga - Great ace, versatile, excellent seller, great matches during Joshi's dead period. 

Megumi Kudo - Along with Foley and Onita, the best ever at working the hardcore style. 

Clive Myers - Best British guy outside the usual suspects. Great technician + personality. 

Yoji Anjoh - Same argument as Myers but for shoot style. 

 

 

 

Most "most underrated" actually become "overrated" with time and pendulum & "underrated" accumulation effect. If I hear yet another time that Brad Armstrong or Hulk Hogan are underrated, I might throw up.

 

On the other hand, I'd say that, for instance, Hulk Hogan was a better worker than Ric Flair at some point in their career (WCW 1999 is what I'm thinking about). Or that Brad Armstrong, as solid as he was, never put it together like Tito Santana did in the same kind of very basic 80's babyface work, which is why Tito had quite a bit of terrific matches and Armstrong a whole lot of solid yet unengaging stuff.

 

 

 

 

 

I think this is spot on. And since we are on that subject

 

Most Overrated

 

Ron Garvin

Blue Panther - I've done a 180 on Panther. Used to think he was one of the Lucha greats but looking back I have found a lot of his matches disappointing. 

CM Punk - Good worker, charismatic but no where near as good as his peers. Lack of high end stuff outside of the Joe Series and the Brock match. 

Stan Hansen 

Tamon Honda - A weird pick since he works the kind of style I usually like but think he is underwhelming more often than not and the praise is hyperbolic. 

Ted DiBiase - Pretty versatile and dependable but more a solid hand than a great worker. 

Keiji Mutoh - Wildly inconsistent

Andre the Giant - I can understand the appeal since he was something unique but in terms of actual good/great matches, he has very little going on. 

Harley Race - Mind numbingly boring

Hulk Hogan - I won't deny the energy and charisma during his prime but as a worker, he was not very good. Best matches were against Bockwinkel, Fujinami, Tenryu and one guess who was doing the heavy lifting in those matches. Alluding to the point El-P was making, just because someone is "incorrectly" labelled as terrible, doesn't suddenly make them good or great when you try and rectify that perception. The pendulum effect describes it perfectly. 

Steve Williams - Misawa got a great match out of him in 94 but I find him pretty dull in most other settings. Worst Kobashi opponent ever by a huge margin. 

John Cena - Still like him quite a lot, great ace. But his big match formula + many matches do not age well at all, inconsistent, lack of high end stuff. 

Dustin Rhodes - Really liked him in 91-94 but he has gaping holes in his career + inconsistencies + lack of high end stuff. 

Ron Garvin has had some pretty great matches against AA, Flair, Blanchard & Valentine 

 

Stan Hansen was my number 3 in the greatest wrestler top 100 list

 

CM Punk IMO is one of the top 50 greatest workers of all time

 

Ted Dibiase is one of my top 20 wrestlers of all time, his Mid South & Georgia stuff showed how great he was

 

John Cena is the modern era Hulk Hogan, IMO a bigger star than Hogan was in his prime (just my opinion)



#36 Victator

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 10:19 PM

Hulk Hogan - I won't deny the energy and charisma during his prime but as a worker, he was not very good. Best matches were against Bockwinkel, Fujinami, Tenryu and one guess who was doing the heavy lifting in those matches. 

 

These are not the best Hogan matches by a long shot. 



#37 Mad Dog

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Posted 23 December 2017 - 08:46 PM

How about Josh Barnett? Again, not an all time great or anything but the level he works at for the relatively few pro wrestling matches he's actually had is kind of crazy to me.



#38 ohtani's jacket

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 01:59 AM

I think Blue Panther suffers from the burden of expectation. Every time you watch him you expect something awesome but more often than not you get something average. He's not like Santo who has enough signature stuff to look good in the most average of trios matches. He needs the right conditions to create his blend of mat wizardry. I went through a phase of finding him overrated but I've been enjoying his 2000 run of late. 

 

Most of picks would be under the radar so I'll go ahead and choose some well-known workers:

 

Lou Thesz -- most people recognize Thesz' historical importance and are aware of his reputation but I don't think many people consider him an all-time great worker. 

Antonio Inoki -- not everyone's cup of tea but if you have an appreciation for strong style then he has a number of classics in the genre. 

Dory Funk Jr. -- shout out to Parv. I like watching Dory work the mat. Not so keen on his Funk Brothers stuff but I will watch his mat classics any day. 



#39 Loss

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 05:53 AM

Each time I see the overrated/underrated question raised, I remember 2002 I think it was when PWI did their annual polling issue, and both the #2 most overrated and #2 most underrated wrestler was Chris Jericho. There's an interesting question. Which wrestlers are both? In other words, which wrestlers do you find that a significant number of people both praise too highly and criticize too harshly?



#40 gordi

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Posted 24 December 2017 - 06:13 AM

Bruiser Brody has got to be one of the top "both over and under- rated" wrestlers. The WO Best Brawler award is named after him, but there are a ton of people whose opinions I otherwise respect (e.g. JDW) who consider Brody to be utter garbage.

Sayama, too. I have a few Japanese drinking friends in their 50s who consider him the greatest ever... but I have a few internet friends who completely write him off as the guy who pioneered the "MOVEZ" style of pro wrestling.

People on both sides of the debate about both of those guys can be really passionate about it, too.




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