Has to be The Heartbreak Kid, Shawn Michaels. In his prime, he had the total package of looks, workrate, and mic skills - plus a finisher that looked like it would truly knock someone out (the Superkick).
And he's *still* CUTE !
Of the wrestlers who are currently active, I'll take the Rock, as he has the same qualities as Shawn had in his prime (plus the benefit of comprehensive media exposure).
I'm going twenty-four hours a day...I can't seem to stop - "Turn Up The Radio", Autograph
My all-time favorite would be Davey Boy Smith. I LOVED the British Bulldogs from way back, and still mark out watching the DBS/Bret Hart IC Title match from SummerSlam '92 (my personal all-time favorite match.)
Current favorite is, easily, Chris Benoit.
Q: If you could have interviewed Marvin Gaye, where would you have proposed to meet and what would you have asked him?
A: I would have met anywhere as long as it was before his father shot him. I would have asked him, "Hey, don't you think there's some chance that your father might shoot you? To death, I mean?"
Well I already said who my favorite is, Ted Dibiase. Some other honorable mentions are Hennig, HBK, Bret Hart, Undertaker, and even some current people like Raven, Kanyon, Lance, and Benoit. But another favorite of mine might not be a popular choice and that is....
I know when we last saw Scott Hall he wasn't all that great. But back in his WWF days he started off as a great heel, before finally turning face and at one time was the probably the number 2 face behind Bret Hart. He had a good feud with Goldust who hasn't really had many other feuds. And had a good feud with 1-2-3 Kid an unknown at the time. And had some great matches including the most famous of his matches, the two ladder matches against HBK.
THen there was WCW and the nWo. He was the first nWo member to appear on WCW, I remember flipping through the channels and marking out when I saw Razor Ramon talking smack to the WCW commentators. That was when I first started watching WCW every week. Whether you liked the nWo or not, or don't want it to come back, you have to admit, it was a hugely successful storyline, and Hall I thought had a lot do with that. While Nash was pretty much a stiff, Hall could make the Outsiders matches pretty good. And while Nash was "Big Daddy Cool" I always thought Scott Hall was the "cooler" one. The toothpick flicking, the "hey yo!", the survey time, and the classic Giant impersonation.
Sure when Scott Hall makes his return to the WWF it might not be a good thing, but from his Razor Ramon days to the first year in the WCW I thought Scott Hall was great.
For me it's a tie between Stan Hansen and Bruiser Brody. They had it all...great brawling skills, they could wrestle when they felt like it, great interviews [in the case of Brody, in between HUSSes] And I never even saw their best work.
There are various people right now I enjoy watching, but I have no solid favorite, and no one that I enjoy as much as I did Hansen and Brody during my early days as a fan. RIP Bruiser.
As far as the question about promotions, I'm a total mark for mid-Eighties Mid-South/UWF. I still have some of those tapes made from back then. I've got a DiBiase/Flair match on tape that is still one of the bloodiest things I've ever seen. It's the one where DiBiase gets smacked around by Dick Murdoch before and after the match, bleeds all over the place, nearly wins the NWA title, and goes from heel to face, all in one match.
"Worship the Hardys, but you know--eat a salad once in a while."--Stevie Richards.
Easily Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat. He was so mysterious because he rarely talked. When he did he did so with emotion and fire. I cried when Savage hit him with the Bell, I thought he was dead. Hey I was in second grade, give me a break!
Now that I am older and can watch his matches from a smark point of view, I really appreciate them. Every match made sense, it had logical psychology, incredible timing, insane pacing, and not one blown spot. Ricky is one those few wrestlers that actually made those around him better. Thats a trait that you rarely see these days.
From a pure promo point, it has to be Jake the Snake. He scared the hell out of me when I was kid. Now when I go back and watch his promos I am blown away. Even now that he is a crack head he can still captivate the crowd. I honestly think he thought he was Jake The Snake. Vince put it best in "Beyond the Mat" when he said:
"You never knew if you were talking to Jake Roberts the person or Jake Roberts the performer."
Now thats living the gimmick.
At first I thought, if I were Superman, a perfect secret identity would be "Clark Kent, Dentist," because you could save money on tooth X-rays. But then I thought, if a patient said, "How's my back tooth?" and you just looked at it with your X-ray vision and said, "Oh it's okay," then the patient would probably say, "Aren't you going to take an X-ray, stupid?" and you'd say, "Aw f*** you, get outta here," and then he probably wouldn't even pay his bill.
Those who are more familiar with my posting know about my GOON infatuation. Being a hockey fan all my life, it's only natural I'd love THE GOON!
It all stems from the first time I saw him on WWF TV - I don't think I'll ever have a reaction quite like the one I had when I first saw....THE GOON! I heard the "doot doot doot doot DOOT doot doot doot" music, heard the announcer say "The GOON!" and saw this guy in FULL HOCKEY GEAR coming down the aisle, with a hockey stick, and his boot were even done up as hockey skates. I have never (ever!) laughed harder, ever. I pumped my first, and yelled "YEAH! THE GOON!" and sat back to enjoy the Goon Experience. I don't think The Goon ever won a match (which is BLASPHEMY IN ITS PUREST FORM), but if you ask me, it's because THE GOON was simply too lethal to his opponents. He only last three months because everybody was afraid of him. And they STILL ARE! Everyone must FEAR...THE GOON!
Favorite wrestler of all time.. I'm going to be forced to go with Mr. Perfect.. Yes, I know he's really Curt Henning, and while without the Mr. Perfect gimmick, he still has _all_ the tools a wrestler needs.. but that is exactly why I love him as Mr. Perfect. He goes out there, with the look, the skills, the charisma.. when the music starts, you know the next match is.. going to be Perfect. (I couldn't resist)
I want to also echo the Scott Hall sentiments.. I'm pretty excited by the prospect of him showing up on Monday..
But onto someone I haven't heard mentioned (which is a shame) I want to bring up the man who is, in my opinion, the greatest cruiserweight to wrestle and have me see it, the Ultimo Dragon. (Yoshihiro Asai was his name, correct?) The man put together the greatest combination of high flying and mat work that I have _ever_ seen.. it was like putting together Billy Kidman and Dean Malenko in the ring to make one uber-cruiserweight.. and damn if I didn't mark out like mad for him.. (and play him in every WCW wrestling video game that THQ made)
I was always an Ultimate Warrior fan. (OK TOOLS~!, let the mocking begin.) Mostly because he cleanly beat Hogan for the title in the center of the ring. I remember watching it with 19 Hogan marks, and I was jumping all over the room when he pinned him. Did about every victory dance there was, and they couldn't say anything about it. Of course, that was before the oWn and other incomprehensible mumblings, trap doors in the ring and whatever bullcrap he could come up with.
As for promotions, I grew up with the AWA. You have to love a promotion whose world champion makes his entrance to POLKA MUSIC! (Otto Wanz) It is where my current fave started out, Mr. Perfect! Loved 'em all. Jerry Blackwell, Da Crusher, Bockwinkle, Brunzell, Baron Von Raschke, (i think it was more like: ".....andDATISALLDAPEOPLENEEDTOKNOW!!!") the Midnight Rockers, and yes, even Hogan and the Gagne's.
"-He's Touching Me. Batman is touching me. I'm dead, aren't I?-"
Hmmm, you did kick my ass with Ultimo more than a few times in Revenge... Anyway, Flair/Sting got me into wrestling the first time, Flair jumping to the WWF got me into wrestling the second time. So I pretty much mark out like a 7 year old for The Nature Boy. Others..hmm...Bret was awesome, it's a shame all the shit came down... Of active wrestler guys, I'd probably go with Jericho.
My favorite wrestler of all time is Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat. His matches with Ric Flair are absolutely wonderful. He made simple rest holds important elements in the match. His match with Randy Savage at WMIII is easily my favorite Wrestlemania match as well as one of my favorites of all time.
Just had to respond. I don't think you can say "Yeah, it's Benoit" and leave it at that. The landscape changes.
In the early 70s there's no doubt it was Bruiser and Crusher. They DESTROYED people. Murdered them. Then went out and drank like fishes.
The early and Mid-80s belonged to guys like Hogan & Savage in the north and Flair & Rhodes in the south. I watched both of them every chance I got because they were interesting. I remember how anxious and ready I was to see that 1st Wrestlemania at the Star Theatre on CCTV. That was so cool. But would it happen today? Nah.
The 90s were full of the NWO and Bret Hart and Sting for me.
Today - I guess my favorite is HHH. He knows how to work the crowd. Austin's a close 2nd. Workers? Anybody can slap on a hold. (See: Brian Blair & Barry Horwitz and many others who could wrestle, but not talk. Jury's still out on Benoit there.)
Someone mentioned Mike Sharp. Yes! Loved him. The Steve Lombardi of an earlier era. I can't eaven remember any of the jobbers from when I was growing up. I remember the stars: Cholak, Bruiser, Crusher, Gagne, Von Raske, Brody, - but not the jobbers...)
Shawn Michaels and Rick Steiner were jobbers during the mid-80s. I saw Steiner [wrestling as Rob Rechsteiner] in what was probably one of his very first matches, opening a house show in 1985. And I recall Michaels taking a very nasty bump from a Jon Nord clothesline. I remember Steiner jobbing on AWA broadcasts around that same time.
"Worship the Hardys, but you know--eat a salad once in a while."--Stevie Richards.
Or downloads, which are available for free about an hour after the show finishes. That way everyone wins except the company who were too stupid to advertise the one match that would have encouraged even the smarkiest of smarks to buy a Smackdown PPV.