The history of great managers to work in WCW featured a hit list of legendary names. Managers had their strongest run in wrestling during the 80s and 90s. Vince McMahon essentially put a stop to that once WWE won the Monday Night Wars by making managers a secondary priority. The return of managers in recent years have made fans think back to the days of managers improving the act of wrestlers they worked with.
A manager’s greatest skill is adding to the presentation of a wrestler to make them a bigger star. Many of the all-time great managers had strong runs in WCW. There were even some underrated talents that only managed for a short time but still managed to find success. We will look at just which performers stood out over others we rank the top ten managers in WCW history.
10 Teddy Long
The WCW chapter of Teddy Long’s career is often overlooked, but he spent over a decade there during the transition from Jim Crockett Promotions to WCW. Long worked as a referee and manager at different times with the managerial run having more success.
Some of the wrestlers managed by Long in WCW include Johnny B. Badd, One Man Gang and the tag team Doom. At one point, Chris Jericho became associated with Long during a strange feud with referee Nick Patrick. Long found more success joining WWE and eventually having a run as the General Manager of Smackdown.
9 Kimberly Page
Diamond Dallas Page’s wife Kimberly Page joined the company as a manager during his feud with Johnny B. Badd. The career of Kimberly started to take off when WCW formed the Nitro Girls dance team where she represented them as the leader of the group.
DDP’s feud with Randy Savage would see Kimberly return as his manager to help combat Miss Elizabeth at Savage’s side. Kimberly had a strong run as DDP’s manager and helped add more to his character. The run made her one of the most beloved women in WCW history and a successful manager.
8 James Vandenberg
Most fans will remember this legendary manager for his time as Father James Mitchell in TNA or Sinister Minister in ECW, but the WCW run came under the name of James Vandenberg. WCW added the charismatic and mysterious personality to manage Mortis.
The debut of Wrath would see him join Vandenberg’s group as well. Vandenberg did his best managing the two wrestlers, but WCW never gave them much consideration for a stronger run. The decision to join ECW helped add more value to his name as a manager.
7 Miss Elizabeth
The legendary Miss Elizabeth had a stronger stint in WWE when joining her real-life husband Randy Savage as his manager. Their relationship had many ups and down outside of the ring, but they continued working together in WCW.
Savage would have Elizabeth once again manage him on a few occasions in WCW. Elizabeth also managed Ric Flair, Lex Luger and a couple of other wrestlers during this chapter of her career. The work of Elizabeth was not as impressive as WWE, but it was good enough to add value to WCW.
6 Jimmy Hart
Hulk Hogan made sure a few of his friends joined WCW when he made the big jump there in the mid-90s. Jimmy Hart joined the company as his manager for a short time before turning heel to align with Kevin Sullivan, The Giant and the entire Dungeon of Doom faction.
Once the group ended, the Faces of Fear tag team of Meng and Barbarian were the main clients of Hart. Brian Knobbs returned for a singles run towards the end of WCW with Hart managing him as a hardcore wrestler. Hart also had a backstage job helping come up with the musical entrance themes for the talent.
5 Torrie Wilson
Torrie Wilson was one of the talents to join WCW late into the game and only spent the final few years in the company. The look of Wilson won over booker Kevin Nash enough to bring her into the wrestling business as a valet and personality.
Billy Kidman and the rest of the Filthy Animals faction found success with Torrie as their manager. Other wrestlers like Shane Douglas and David Flair worked with Wilson as she helped add another layer to their characters. Torrie found even more success when joining WWE after they purchased WCW.
4 James J. Dillon
The career of James J. Dillon featured him having various roles from wrestler to manager to authority figure to broadcaster. Fans most remember Dillon for his success as a manager. The legendary Four Horsemen faction added Dillon as a fifth member to manage them all.
Dillon remained in the group for a few different incarnations that included Ric Flair, Arn Anderson, Tully Blanchard, Ole Anderson, Barry Windham and Lex Luger. The charisma of Dillon was enough to help the wrestlers, but he never took away from them by outshining them like some managers struggle with.
3 Sherri Martel
The legendary run of “Sensational” Sherri Martel helped her become one of the top managers in wrestling history. WWE inducted her into the Hall of Fame due to her entire body of work, but the managing tenure is what made her legacy.
WCW would see Sherri help out a few wrestlers during her time there. Ric Flair gained more momentum as a top heel with Sherri at his side often getting physically involved in matches to help him. Booker T and Stevie Ray became bigger stars as Harlem Heat with Martel also at their side for great success.
2 Jim Cornette
The late 80s work of Jim Cornette would feature him leading the Midnight Express to tremendous success. Bobby Eaton and Dennis Condrey achieved great success together partially due to the superb managerial skills of Cornette.
The personality of Cornette would never see him short of words. Cornette often riled up the fans with impressive heel promos that wanted them to see him get beat as much as the wrestlers. There’s no doubt Cornette became a legendary manager
1 Paul Heyman
Paul Heyman has an argument for being the greatest manager in wrestling history. Newer fans will cite his work with Brock Lesnar and CM Punk as his best bet, but Heyman had most impressive run as a manager during the WCW chapter of his career.
The Dangerous Alliance faction featured incredible names like Steve Austin, Rick Rude, Arn Anderson, Madusa and others following Heyman’s leadership. Backstage issues between Heyman and management led to him leaving to start ECW, but the work as a manager there was as good as you’ll ever witness in wrestling.