When it was active, WCW was known for throwing many ideas to the wall, just to see what stuck. At their greatest heights, many of them worked, and near the end of the promotion's tenure, they fell flat. Many of these concepts and ideas revolved around stables, which can be defined as a group of three or more wrestlers. These were often used as a way to get multiple mid-carders over at the same time, or as a source for new angles when the well of creativity was running dry.
Needless to say, WCW used these a lot during the 1990s, and the results were certainly a mixed bag. Eventually, they were used almost in desperation, but when utilized effectively, they were often very memorable, and prompted some quality matches. Many of these (if not most of these) were very much a product of their time in the wrestling world, so for anyone looking for a swift kick of nostalgia, you've come to the right place. These stables represented one of the most distinctive times in the industry, for better or worse.
Ranked below are the top 15 most forgotten WCW stables.
29 The Jung Dragons
A stable that was constructed to push some young up-and-comers in the promotion, the Jung Dragons wrestled in an exciting, high-flying style that definitely suited the time, but WCW was in such dire straits at that point, it mattered little in the grand scheme of things. Comprised of Kaz Hayashi, Jamie Noble (then called "Jamie-San") and Yang, the trio was a nice change of pace from the barrage of heavyweights that permeated the mainstream wrestling landscape. They were pay-per-view staples during the year 2000, and were notable up until the company's end, which came the following year. All the members continued to wrestle, with Noble and Yang going to WWE shortly after WCWs demise, and Hayashi becoming a staple for AJPW a short time later as well. Overall, a talented trio that was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. They would all find greater success in their post-WCW days.
27 3 Count
Coming along in WCW around the same 2000-time period, when the company was in the doldrums, 3 Count was created to coincide and feud with The Jung Dragons, and featured rising stars in Shannon Moore, Evan Karagias and Shane Helms. The group used a period-correct "boy band" gimmick, given the unfortunate popularity of musical monstrosities NSYNC and Backstreet Boys during that era. The talent in this stable was good in the ring however, and were again involved in a company that didn't have a clue at the time. The group was shuffled around quite a bit during their short time on the roster, even having Tank Abbot acting as a manager and enforcer for the stable. Helms and Moore eventually went over to WWE following the demise of WCW and carved out some fairly successful careers for themselves in a limited capacity, particularly Helms with his "Hurricane" gimmick.
25 Misfits In Action
Yet another stable that was cobbled together to put a new face on the dying days of the company. Misfits In Action had some decent talent as well, though they are considered today as one of the representations of the worst days in WCW history. It was really a mixed bunch in this stable; including names such as Van Hammer, Lash LeRoux, Chavo Guerrero Jr., and Hugh Morris. There was little cohesion to the personalities or wrestling styles, and it really seemed like the creative team for the company was just throwing anything to the wall to see what stuck at this point. In all, it was a clear attempt to put the same angle on a whole group of talent that was effectively stuck in the mid-card of the time. It's certainly not the worst that 2000-era WCW had to offer, but ultimately there was little rhyme or reason to this stable. The individual talent was pretty good, but as a group it didn't make much sense.
23 Natural Born Thrillers
And the stables formed during the year 2000 keep on coming. For this one, the personnel was completely comprised of wrestlers who had just completed training at the WCW Power Plant facility. This group included the likes of Chuck Palumbo, Mark Jindrak, Shawn Stasiak, Johnny The Bull, Sean O'Haire and Mike Sanders. Clearly, WCW creative didn't quite know what to do with them back then, just like WWE didn't know how to use most of them just several years later. This was mid-card personnel through and through. Though most of them were outright detriments in the ring, they just didn't offer much new or exciting that would warrant a big push. Granted, they were kind of thrown into a hectic, unorganized situation in their WCW debuts, but given the chance with a more stable management situation in WWE, most of them still fell short. Definitely a product of its time, and another addition to the carousel of WCW stables.
21 Team Canada
This idea, while having been presented before in different variations, wasn't actually too bad. Lance Storm was a great worker in the ring, and had enough supplementary pieces like Carl Oulette to form a quality heel stable at the time. Other members such as Mike Awesome and Jim Duggan were present. This was another 2000-era stable, but this idea actually had some degree of longevity, considering the idea was rehashed in TNA just a few years later, with Petey Williams leading the charge, and a host of better quality talent. Probably the only reason it faltered in WCW was because the company was a mess at the time, and Storm wasn't really able work with much quality talent. Maybe it wasn't terribly memorable, but on the list of cringeworthy things during this era of WCW, this falls near the end of it. A good idea that wasn't just implemented into the right situation to be successful.
19 Jersey Triad
Featuring the combination of Diamond Dallas Page, Bam Bam Bigelow and Chris Kanyon, the Jersey Triad had potential, but was just brought along at the wrong time. Collectively the group held the WCW Tag Titles on two occasions, and featured better talent than was typically seen in stables during the time period. Page was a confirmed singles star, Kanyon was a solid mid-carder and Bigelow was an established veteran who could be used in a variety of situations. The talent was there, but this stable was only around for about half a year in 1999. Perhaps not the highlight of any one of the member's individual careers, but it was far better than a lot of angles going on in WCW at the time. Page and Kanyon would later team together in WWE, winning the tag titles there as well. Overall, not one of WCWs failures.
17 Filthy Animals
Of course, this is the stable that featured Rey Mysterio without his mask, which has met much criticism over the years. Still, the talent here for a cruiserweight stable was pretty much top-notch. Featuring names like Mysterio, Billy Kidman, Juventud Guerrera, Eddie Guerrero and Konnan, it was actually probably one of the better in-ring stables that was able to be seen anywhere in the wrestling world during the time period. Granted, without the presence of a heavyweight that was a world title contender, there were always limitations for this group in the eyes of WCW management. They made the most of it however, and it's one of the few successes that the company could lay claim to during the dying days. Of course, Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero would go on to great success with WWE, while the group was probably the career highlight for the other members, but for about a two-year period, this stable was a positive on WCW television.
15 No Limit Soldiers
Just prior to the formation of The Filthy Animals, Mysterio was in this stable, which was headed by none other than Master P. The stable was essentially invented to feud with The West Texas Rednecks, and also featured Konnan, alongside no-name guys like Swoll and BA. It was pretty much the definition of a short shelf life, considering it was thought up just for a single feud. While the idea of having Master P involved on WCW television may have seemed like a relevant, good idea at the time, it hasn't aged particularly well, and is pretty much identifiable as a certified WCW move. This kind of thing seemed to be happening all over during this era, including rappers, actors and celebrities into TV angles far too much. It's not really surprising, because WCW creative was running out of steam, but it definitely is a hallmark of this era of wrestling, and thankfully, has mostly been left in the past.
13 West Texas Rednecks
The stable that No Limit Soldiers feuded with was actually pretty good, even if it was just a ripoff of classic, Stan Hansen-type characters and gimmicks from the 1970s and 80s. Sure, the whole country music angle was pretty cringeworthy, but looking at the talent on paper it wasn't so bad. Featuring the likes of Curt Hennig, Bobby Duncum Jr., Barry and Kendall Windham, there was some real talent in the ring here. Of course, WCW didn't utilize this properly, and made them feud with a stable with limited talent. This was another short-lived group, though one that probably had more potential than many of the other names on this list. They disbanded in 1999, which was the same year that they formed, in another example of WCW being unable to establish any kind of continuity with their ideas. It was par for the course during that time period, just another tally in the long line of strikeouts for the company. Sadly, Duncum passed away in 2000.
11 Varsity Club
Technically this was a stable in the Jim Crockett Promotions during the late 1980s, but this territory would essentially turn into WCW just a short time later, so it's going to count. There was some nice talent in this stable; names like Rick Steiner, Steve Williams, and Mike Rotunda were all present. The only downside was that it did include Kevin Sullivan, but this wasn't at his height for cringeworthy antics and gimmicks (though for him that's not saying much). They had some notable feuds with the top tag teams of the day, including the Road Warriors. It was a little cobbled together, but there was enough talent here to not have it be a a detriment, and probably would have worked well in the early days of WCW. They did make a brief return during 1999 in WCW, with Steiner and Rotunda, but mainly just get a quick pop. There were no long terms plans involved.
9 New Blood
The New Blood was one of the biggest angles of 2000-era WCW, and probably the last ditch effort to save the company. It was the featured angle of the Eric Bischoff return to the company, in combination with Vince Russo. All it really was, was a mass assortment of all the young wrestler in the company at the time, feuding with all the older stars (called the Millionaire's Club, which we'll get to in a second). It reeked of desperation, and there was little rhyme or reason to the whole thing. The company was truly in the dumps by this point, and whenever anyone talks about failures that WCW had over their tenure in the wrestling world, chances are that it came from this year. The New Blood angle was overblown, directionless, and pretty much was the nail in the coffin for the company. One of the lowest points in the history of the industry actually. Just awful stuff all around.
7 Millionaire's Club
The coinciding Millionaire's Club wasn't much better, and was just an annoying rehash of previous ideas. In reality, this whole angle didn't last terribly long, just a few months, and ended on the infamous Bash At The Beach pay-per-view where Hogan was essentially fired on-screen by Vince Russo. Everything about the booking at this time in WCW was just historically bad. The Millionaire's Club was essentially just all the established stars of the time; Kevin Nash, Hogan, Ric Flair, Sting, etc. It wasn't terribly original, and most of the names included must have been wondering what the end result was going to be for an angle like this. To most fans, WCW died on the aforementioned Bash At The Beach pay-per-view in 2000, with the drama and incompetence that was present backstage becoming pronounced front and center for the viewing audience. WCW never recovered from it, and died a short time later.
5 Latino World Order (LWO)
Given that the NWO was all the rage in the wrestling world during the latter half of the 1990s, it was only to be expected that a parody group would arise to mock it. This occurred in the form of the LWO, which featured most of the Latino wrestlers on the WCW roster at the time. As far as parodies go, this was pretty entertaining, though NWO didn't have quite as much leverage on the wrestling market in 1998 as it did several years prior. It was still relevant though, and the LWO provided a solid, filler storyline. The talent that made up the stable was stellar as well, featuring Eddie Guerrero, Juventud Guerrera, Psychosis, and other quality cruiserweight talent. No, it never really had the potential for a long shelf life, but in the interim it was an interesting idea. Still kind of reeks of late-1990s WCW booking, but at least the personnel involved in the angle was able to make up for it.
3 The Revolution
This was one of WCWs last attempts to come up with a stable that could compete with the upper-card. The personnel was there; featuring Dean Malenko, Shane Douglas, Chris Benoit and Perry Saturn. Had they formed it a year or two earlier, it could have been one of the best stables in wrestling history. Unfortunately, it was formed in 1999, just as the booking for the company began to sink to unprecedented levels. All four members of the group were unhappy with the direction that WCW was going in, and soon after the formation, they would all be appearing in WWE, under the "Radicalz" moniker. Still, the initial idea to have wrestlers of this capability all within the same stable was a good idea from WCW creative, but ultimately was never going to last very long. Chalk this one up to a good idea, that was just implemented at the wrong time. Goes hand-in-hand with WCWs luck at the time.
1 Dungeon Of Doom
In terms of cringeworthy WCW stables, this is the one that takes the cake. It came about in the mid-1990s when the company needed a new feud for Hogan, who was pretty much the perennial WCW champion at the time. Spearheaded by one of Kevin Sullivan's worst gimmicks, The Taskmaster, the group included other such names like The Shark (John Tenta), Kamala and The Zodiac (Brutus Beefcake). It was just horrible, and probably the most relevant distillation of how WCW operated in the mid-1990s. The gimmicks were awful, and there wasn't a good in-ring performer to be found anywhere within the stable. None of the personnel belonged anywhere near the main event on any given card, yet that is the opportunity they were afforded. For those unfamiliar, go ahead and look it up, but do so at your own risk; WCW booking and creative never got worse than the Dungeon Of Doom. A true "wrestlecrap" phenomenon from the mid-1990s.
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