The impact of ECW provided a huge boost to the wrestling industry in the 90s. Paul Heyman’s vision showcased an edgier product that connect with society during the time. WWE’s Attitude Era was partially inspired from the success ECW found with their cutting-edge product. The roster was full of talented names that couldn’t find success in WWE or WCW. Heyman used the fresh slate of a new star to repackage them with more authenticity.
Some of the ECW legends have been honored by WWE in the Hall of Fame such as the recent induction of the Dudley Boyz. However, mostly former WWE stars are inducted each class despite the company claiming it’s a Hall of Fame for all accomplishments in the industry. Quite a few ECW names deserve an induction that has yet to come. We will look at the ten strongest instances of ECW wrestlers that have been snubbed from the WWE Hall of Fame.
10 Shane Douglas
Shane Douglas is one of the least likely wrestlers to get inducted into the Hall of Fame, but he deserves it for his accomplishments in ECW. The gimmick of “The Franchise” allowed him to play the top heel with promos calling out everyone from ECW stars to fans to wrestlers in other promotions.
Douglas ripped apart WWE and many important people that work there to limit his chances of returning in any capacity. However, there was no one more associated with the ECW Championship as he had four reigns lasting 874 days total. That’s twice as long as the next most common champion.
9 Chris Candido
One of the most underrated wrestlers of the 90s was the talented Chris Candido. WWE fans will remember him for his time as Skip in the Bodydonnas tag team. Candido showcased his full potential in ECW with a reputation as one of the best workers in the industry.
The pair of Candido and Tammy Sytch found success together in ECW and beyond. Candido was a great part of the Triple Threat faction that helped ECW continue to grow. The legacy of Candido is that he was tremendous in the ring and influenced future stars. A Hall of Fame induction is deserved for his contributions to the business.
The incredible success of Raven featured him working for ECW, WWE, WCW, TNA and ROH all throughout his career. ECW was obviously the place where he delivered his best work. Raven’s cult like leader character would see a grunge influence to add more layers to his work.
The ECW Championship reigns of Raven were the first points when the company started to take the next step forward. If WCW had not signed him away from ECW, he may have had a longer reign and ECW would have had more success. Raven is one wrestler that must be in the Hall of Fame one day.
Tajiri was one of the most successful Japanese wrestlers in WWE history which should help his case for an eventual Hall of Fame induction. The ECW portion of his career is what most fans will point to when making a case for his career having such a legacy.
Incredible matches against Steve Corino, Jerry Lynn, Super Crazy and many others made Tajiri a credible star for ECW. The move to WWE would give him a bigger stage where he had a perfect mix of great in-ring work along with solid comedic moments as a character while dating Torrie Wilson.
6 Lance Storm
WWE will often induct a wrestler into the Hall of Fame for contributing in different elements of the business. Lance Storm’s wrestling career should already give him an outside shot at getting inducted into the Hall of Fame following successful runs in ECW, WCW, and WWE.
ECW used Storm the best where he showcased that he was one of the top technical wrestlers in the world. Storm and Justin Credible had one of the most underrated tag teams of all time as the Impact Players. The training portion of Storm’s career should put him over the top with a reputation as one of the top trainers in wrestling history.
5 Rob Van Dam
The most likely ECW legend on the list to get inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame is Rob Van Dam. ECW was where Van Dam developed a reputation for being one of the top performers in the industry. Fans treated RVD like the king of the company.
WWE would add Van Dam after ECW went out of business and he continued to thrive there. RVD won the WWE Championship, Intercontinental Championship, Tag Team Championship, and European Championship to become a grand slam winner. There’s no doubt Van Dam deserves a spot in the Hall of Fame.
4 Paul Heyman
Paul Heyman is one of the most important non-wrestling personalities in the history of the business. The role running ECW allowed his vision to make the promotion something special that fans and wrestlers loved being a part of. Heyman found a group of ragtag wrestlers and utilized them to the best of their abilities.
The WWE chapter of Heyman’s career should make him a lock to enter the Hall of Fame at some point. Heyman’s work as a manager for Brock Lesnar and others put him over the top as a legend for the company. Vince McMahon even trusts him to run the Raw brand behind the scenes today.
No one represented the ECW spirit more than Sabu during the company’s best years. Sabu was consistently a main event player with his in-ring style featuring many innovative moves and ideas. Fans loved Sabu for the unique nature of his matches and his desire to leave it all in the ring.
Sabu had two ECW Championship reigns and was one of the faces of the company during its most important years. The feud between Sabu and Taz helped put ECW on the map with a bigger platform. Sabu is someone that deserves a WWE Hall of Fame induction despite not doing much in WWE.
2 Bam Bam Bigelow
The overall success of Bam Bam Bigelow in every promotion he worked for should land the late wrestler a spot in the WWE Hall of Fame at some point. Bigelow was a tremendous mid-card performer for WWE and even main evented WrestleMania 11 when facing NFL star Lawrence Taylor.
The big man found even more success in ECW when joining as a member of the Triple Threat. Bigelow would win the ECW Championship to add a huge accolade for his career as a top singles star. Feuds with Taz, Shane Douglas and many others show just how incredible Bigelow was for ECW.
The most beloved face in ECW during its growing years was Taz. Fans loved to witness Taz intensely walk down to the ring with the black towel covering his face. Once Taz removed the towel, his opponent was in for a world of pain. Taz typically delivered many vicious suplexes before choking his opponent out within minutes.
WWE would find success with Taz as well after signing him away in 2000. Taz did not have a strong wrestling career in WWE, but he became one of the top commentators. There were rumors of Taz potentially getting inducted in his hometown of Brooklyn in 2018. It never happened, but Taz deserves the honor at some point in the future.