It takes a special kind of athlete to be named to any sport’s Hall of Fame. Professional wrestling is similar, but requires different criteria than someone who is playing football or basketball. Wrestling requires being a technician who puts together memorable matches in front of various crowds. There are a few Hall of Fame locations for pro wrestling, including the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum located in Wichita Falls, Texas.
But it takes more than just in-ring talent to be inducted into World Wrestling Entertainment’s Hall of Fame. In order to be considered a legend in WWE, a wrestler has to break out as a superstar in more ways than just through the action in the ring. These WWE superstars must have charisma that can entertain and excite the crowds as a face. Or, if you’re a villainous heel, they must be able to get the fans riled up and have the fans booing them.
The WWE Hall of Fame was designed to highlight the best of WWE’s superstars. The unfortunate thing is that there are plenty of names who deserve the recognition and are snubbed each year. This leads to looking at some of the most recent superstars since the beginning of the new millennium.
There are several world heavyweight champions who stand out, but that was during a time when being the world champion didn’t mean as much as before (two brands mean two world champions in WWE).
The following are the top 15 wrestlers since 2000 who likely won’t be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
The WWE Hall of Fame features a number of goofy and unique gimmicks. Koko B. Ware is a perfect example of someone who was on the mid-card and still got a spot in the WWE Hall of Fame. Among the numerous mid-card talents since 2000, Viscera is someone who will likely be left out of any voting ballot. It is a shame because he was certainly an above average big man in the ring.
14 Wade Barrett
There can be a separate argument that claims Wade Barrett should have been a World Heavyweight Champion in the WWE. He had the look for a main event superstar. He also showed early on through the first season of NXT how good he was on the microphone. Barrett was even given a great debut storyline on the main roster in 2010 as the leader of the Nexus. That wasn’t the problem for Barrett.
Lisa Marie Varon had some success when she competed as Victoria in the WWE from 2000 to 2009. She was a two-time WWE Women’s Champion during an era that featured some of the best women’s wrestling in the last 30 years. Her opponents included names like Trish Stratus, Lita and Mickie James. Victoria was at her best when she was slightly unstable as a heel.
12 Michelle McCool
Michelle McCool will be known not only for being a two-time WWE Women’s Champion, but also the first to be known as the WWE Divas Champion. The latter title is mostly associated with a terrible era in women’s wrestling in recent years that was ended with the Divas Revolution. McCool was someone who was better suited to be a managing valet in the WWE. Her in-ring abilities left a lot to be desired.
11 Chavo Guerrero
While Eddie Guerrero was able to leave his mark on the WWE in a positive way before his death, not all Guerreros left the WWE in the best light. Chavo Guerrero is the type of wrestler who flourished within the Cruiserweight Division, but beyond the Cruiserweight Championship and his tag team with uncle Eddie, he was mostly a joke in the WWE. Obviously, the officials never viewed him that highly.
10 Bobby Lashley
Bobby Lashley is a great athlete who brought his abilities from amateur wrestling into the world of WWE. While he was never able to win a legitimate world championship during his time with the WWE (once again, the “WWECW” Championship doesn’t count), he was also a successful United States Champion early in his WWE career. Unfortunately, he didn’t really have a lot of big moments as a WWE superstar.
9 Shelton Benjamin
There’s no denying that Shelton Benjamin was one of the greatest pure athletes to ever walk into the WWE Universe. The potential was there when he came into WWE’s developmental program around the same time as college teammate Brock Lesnar. Benjamin was a much different wrestler than Lesnar. He was an agile athlete who was able to wow crowds with his in-ring performance.
Similar to a number of great talents who never reached their full potential, Carltio was someone who became his own worst enemy. While having all of the talent to be a main event superstar in the WWE, he only hurt himself when he refused to attend a rehabilitation center after a violation of the WWE Talent Wellness Program in 2010. Carltio also seems to be just fine focusing on his career in Puerto Rico.
7 Billy Gunn
There’s a lot of responsibility in being a trainer for the new generation of WWE superstars. Billy Gunn learned that when he was fired from his position at the WWE Performance Center after he failed a drug test at an external bodybuilding competition. It’s just not the sort of thing the WWE would want possibly leaving a negative impression on young superstars. Sadly, his termination may have left a big blow to his WWE Hall of Fame chances.
Montel Vontavious Porter is someone who was considered a likely candidate to return to the WWE as part of the recent brand extension. It made a lot of sense. As a former two-time United States Champion, MVP is a ring veteran who could have been a big part of helping put over the newer generation of WWE superstars. He also would have provided much needed depth for a brand like SmackDown Live.
5 Alberto Del Rio
Whenever professional wrestling superstars leave the WWE under bad terms, many people feel they are blacklisted. The funny thing about Alberto Del Rio is that he left the WWE in not-so-positive terms on two separate occasions. The first departure came in 2014 when Del Rio reportedly slapped a WWE employee backstage for making a racist joke. While many felt he was justified, employers don’t usually like their employees slapping each other outside of the ring.
Sheamus is someone who might have the look of becoming a WWE main event superstar, but he just didn’t have the proper charisma to pull off the rest of his character. Other than being a big Irish guy who’s as pale as a ghost, there isn’t really much to the Sheamus character that makes him very memorable. Even the recent makeover that gave him the Mohawk and put jewelry in his beard failed to help him very much. Yet Sheamus has the distinction of being a four-time world champion.
3 Matt Hardy
While he might be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of the Hardy Boys tag team, Matt Hardy has a tougher case to get in by himself. While his brother Jeff was able to win three world championships in WWE to go along with winning every championship possible since the Attitude Era, Matt hasn’t truly had the same level of success as a singles superstar in the WWE. His best feud was with Edge back based on the love triangle with Lita.
This has less to do with whether Batista was worthy of the success he had in the WWE. He held six world championships during his time with the WWE, including four separate runs with WWE tag team gold. Part of the argument for not putting Batista in the WWE Hall of Fame is going back to the note about how the brand split had more championship opportunities. The titles were also bounced around often, which diminished the prestige of a title run during the 2000s.
1 CM Punk
This one comes straight from the “No S*** Sherlock” category. CM Punk is likely the company's blacklist, so he'll likely never be considered for a return to the WWE. There are obviously a lot of reasons why CM Punk wouldn’t be welcomed back into the WWE. Despite the fact that he was one of the most decorated champions in WWE, including the longest reigning WWE Champion (434 days) in the modern era, his exit left bad feelings among WWE officials.
He felt he was disrespected and that the WWE brass were not giving the right superstars the big push. He let it all out in an interview with Colt Cabana on the Art of Wrestling podcast. Punk not only trashed the WWE, but he also questioned the expertise of the WWE medical staff. Punk is facing lawsuits from Dr. Chris Amann specifically. WWE seems to be supportive of their doctor.
Leave A Comment
Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheSportster?Get Your Free Access Now!