There have been a number of overrated and underrated professional wrestlers throughout history. Some of these competitors enjoyed a level of success and admiration that didn't seem to match their skills in the ring, while others who possessed excellent technique never achieved the level of success and fame that some believe they deserved.
With some of the highly overrated wrestlers, that undeserved success followed them throughout their careers allowing them to defeat otherwise skilled athletes that they should have not otherwise been able to defeat.
On the other hand, there have been a boatload of very talented wrestlers, who were underrated and therefore remained low level participants and were never recognized for their talent. These unfortunate individuals never progressed to the next level. This failure is either due to the lack of recognition from "the powers that be" or perhaps a lack of enthusiasm from the fans worldwide.
In this article, we will be looking at 20 wrestlers, 10 of them being overrated and 10 being underrated. Many of these wrestlers have been fan favorites, but this article is not meant to take anything away from them. It's worth mentioning that all of the guys on this list were hard-working talented athletes.
I do have to hand it to these guys on the overrated list because somehow they were able to play "the game" better, regardless of their skill level. All of the wrestlers on this list were great talents, and many of these underrated wrestlers deserve the same respect that their more successful counterparts received throughout their wrestling days.
Here are the 10 most overrated and 10 most underrated wrestlers of all time.
16 Overrated: Lex Luger
Lex Luger's physique was the main reason he achieved the success he did during his wrestling career. His work on the mic and in the ring came off as uninspired. The other reason for his success other than his looks was the focus the promoters put on his career, which was totally undeserved based on his performance. The promoters truly believed there was hope for Luger and with their help he won the World Heavyweight Championship twice, and the United States Championship multiple times.
Goldust may have painted himself into a corner with his signature gimmick. Without it, it's possible he may have been taken more seriously in the wrestling world. Although many people remember Goldust and his painted face, this may have prevented him from ever becoming "the guy." Throughout Goldust's long career in the industry, his matches have always been strong. He is a tough wrestler who deserves to be competing against the top guys in professional wrestling. Dustin has a great talent for getting deep into his characters and he is much more than just a big guy. He demonstrates good skills in and out of the ring.
Kevin Nash has somehow reached the level of wrestling icon, but does he deserve all of the admiration he received? When you stop to think about it, there just aren't as many great Kevin Nash moments in wrestling history as people would like to believe. After joining the WWE, Nash befriended wrestling legend Shawn Michaels, who is rumored to have asked Vince McMahon to push Diesel, as Nash was known at that time. Nash just wasn't as entertaining as other wrestlers we had become accustomed to seeing, probably because of his mediocre mic skills and limited and stiff moves inside the ring.
15 Underrated: Ultimo Dragon
Ultimo Dragon was one of the biggest wrestling stars in the world, but promotions such as WWE and WCW never thought of him as being a top guy. Mainly booked for mid-card matches which were always very entertaining for fans, the Ultimo Dragon delivered some incredible performances, as he pulled off some seriously incredible moves over the course of his career. It's a shame that overrated guys such as Lex Luger got promoted more than the Ultimo Dragon, who really did deserve to be a main-eventer. Paving the way for wrestling legends such as Rey Mysterio, Ultimo Dragon was definitely one of the more talented wrestlers to ever step into the ring.
14 Overrated: Jeff Jarrett
Jeff Jarrett was always one of those wrestlers that did a lot of things well, but didn't reall excel at one particular trait. He wrestled decent matches, his promos were decent and he had somewhat of a presence, but decent doesn't mean you're main event caliber, which is a spot Jarrett has held much of his career. WWE seemed to evaluate Jarrett well, as he was mainly used in the midcard and tag divisions, but Jarrett has regularly main evented in NWA, WCW and TNA. Part of this has been Jarrett's pull backstage but it just doesn't seem right that Jarrett main evented so many shows while far more talented guys were lost in the shuffle.
13 Underrated: William Regal
William Regal deserves to be remembered as one of the greatest wrestlers of all time, but sadly, only a small number of wrestling fans will ever understand the talent that William Regal possessed during his wrestling days. Winning an impressive 16 singles championships throughout WCW and WWE, he was even named King of the Ring in 2008. The list of accomplishments Regal won during his wrestling career looks as though he would have been a wrestling superstar, but he never went mainstream as he is still more unknown than he should be.
12 Overrated: The Rock
The Rock is one of the most recognizable figures in America today, being one of the most successful actors around. Before his acting career took off, The Rock achieved some success in the wrestling world, but don't let that success distract you; he was totally overrated as a wrestler.
When Rock is in the ring, you can tell he's really an actor/entertainer at heart. His mic skills are that of an all-time great and he has the charisma of a star. But his talent did not carry him during matches as The Rock's actual wrestling skills are limited to say the least. His People's Elbow finisher is one of the worst closers ever, and he stole the whole sharpshooter bit from Bret Hart as well.
The Rock just didn't have a huge range of moves in the ring, but he is still widely believed to be one of the best wrestlers of all time. The Rock winning the belt in 2013 felt like a joke, with him being a part-timer who only comes around every few months. And yet he somehow managed to bury actual full-time wrestlers.
11 Underrated: Bam Bam Bigelow
Bam Bam Bigelow had a lot more going for him than just his big body; he was one of the most skilled wrestlers of all-time. He had all the tools needed when it came to professional wrestling and he deserves more recognition for his incredible talent in the ring. With a cool gimmick and an awesome head tattoo, what's not to like about Bam Bam Bigelow? First off, the name Bam Bam Bigelow is a great wrestling name and his skills in the ring were just as good. Bigelow was very agile for his body type, and could pull off moves a lot better than his stiff opponents. After his very successful career in ECW, it's a shame that WWE didn't push him harder and he never was able to win a title.
10 Overrated: The Ultimate Warrior
9 Underrated: Lance Storm
Lance Storm was a great technician in the ring and all of his matches were entertaining. Winning several titles in WCW and WWE, there were some flashes of what could have been, but Storm just didn't take off like he should have. He deserved much more recognition than he received, and Storm doesn't get the credit his skill so much deserved. Never found on many top wrestlers lists, Lance Storm is completely underrated. His heel gimmick wasn't too much, but was entertaining enough to give him some serious value as a wrestling character. Storm was a solid wrestler who just never blew up as a wrestling superstar.
8 Overrated: Scott Steiner
Scott Steiner had the potential to be amazingly successful, but his lack of intuition and skill as a wrestler is what cost him having a higher regarded career. Following his bodily transformation, Scott Steiner became very boring in the ring, and he also had a reputation of being hard to work with. Another issue with Steiner was being clumsy in the ring, which occasionally led to him injuring some of his opponents. He somehow achieved much success in WCW, winning a bunch of titles even though he was stiff as a board in the ring, and that often led to some seriously underwhelming matches.
On the mic, Steiner rambled on and verbally fantasized about his body, which just highlighted his lack of charisma.
7 Underrated: Dean Malenko
Dean Malenko was incredibly talented in the ring. Dean knew the sport of wrestling inside and out even earning the nickname "The Man of 1,000 Holds." He put on some great demonstrations of athleticism in WCW's cruiserweight division, but never really advanced farther than that. What seems to have held Malenko back most of all was his inability to entertain outside of the ring. A professional wrestler not only needs to keep people interested in the ring but out of the ring as well. A wrestler's out of ring performances are extremely important in gaining fans.
6 Overrated: Batista
Batista's gimmick is lackluster to say the least. He is known for being a musclebound hot head. With a minuscule arsenal of moves from which to choose, many of Batista's matches aren't very entertaining for most people to watch. Batista was fortunate to compete against some of the top guys in the WWE such as The Undertaker and Edge, but in these matches, Batista just couldn't hold his own and it was noticeable. Winning the World Heavyweight Championship four times and the WWE Championship twice, Batista has a long list of accolades despite his overrated talents.
5 Underrated: Brian Pillman
Brian Pillman was an excellent wrestler but never made a name for himself as a huge superstar. Pillman was an extraordinary talent for WCW as Flyin' Brian and every match he competed in at this level turned out to be awesome. It really was hard to take your eyes off of Pillman. Sadly, a substance abuse problem and some health issues hindered Pillman's chances of being a superstar wrestler. Things just were never meant to be for Pillmam even though he had all the wrestling tools and charisma in the world and could have been "the guy."
4 Overrated: John Cena
John Cena has been "the guy" for just way too long. He's dominated the wrestling world for a very long time despite much of the WWE fan-base not being fans of Cena. This is why he is on this list and why I consider him to be totally overrated. While he is known for his generosity and his charity work, and his love for the WWE is admirable, his spot as being the top guy for this long is just not appropriate considering he hasn't been the most talented guy on the roster for years now, and probably never was. I'm just not sure what Vince has seen in Cena all of these years.
3 Overrated: Hulk Hogan
Almost every person in America knows the name Hulk Hogan, but why? Hulk Hogan's career was not all that it was cracked up to be. My opinion is that HH is actually a very overrated wrestler and that opinion is likely shared by many wrestling pundits. He's like the John Cena of the past. The only thing Hulk Hogan had going for him was his gung-ho patriotism, which was entertaining for a time but only for so long. It is very confusing to me to think that so many people rate Hogan as wrestling's biggest star when he really only had two moves, a body-slam and a leg-drop.
2 Underrated: Rick Rude
It's a bit of a head-scratcher as to why Ravishing Rick Rude never won a WWE or WCW World Championship belt. Rick Rude was a great wrestler and his mustache and tights gave him an original look that hit on all cylinders. His work as a heel in WWE was very entertaining and Rude pulled it off perfectly, relying heavily on his great charisma. His solid matches with Ultimate Warrior, Sting, and other well known wrestlers were some of Rude's best moments.
1 Underrated: The British Bulldog
Davey Boy Smith was one of the most talented WWE Superstars during the 1990s. His character, The British Bulldog, was one of the best of the era. While he was definitely great as a tag-team partner with the Dynamite Kid, he was even better when he split from his partner. After going solo, he was booked for some great matches in the upper mid-card right from the start. His feuds with Bret Hart and fellow underrated wrestler Bam Bam Bigelow were very entertaining. One of The British Bulldog's best moments was in England at SummerSlam in 1992 with Hart, where the Bulldog bested Hart to win the Intercontinental Championship to the crowd's very loud delight.
This match was most likely the highlight of the British Bulldog's career, which is a shame. Davey Boy had the looks and the talent to have had many more great moments. The British Bulldog never achieved the amount of success he could have. Bulldog could have been a household name. He was definitely one of the most underrated wrestlers of all time.
Leave A Comment
Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheSportster?Get Your Free Access Now!