Thursday, January 2, 2020

WWE Hall of Fame suggestions through 2031

The new year means a few things: new year's resolutions.  Award shows.  The Super Bowl.

For wrestling fans it also means a few things: the Royal Rumble, the road to Wrestlemania and ... Hall of Fame inductions.

One of the best nights of the year has become the night of the Hall of Fame ceremony.  Colorful speeches, fun road stories and seeing wrestlers of yesteryear are all part of the night that kicks off Wrestlemania weekend.

Here are a few of my ideal Hall of Fame classes

The years aren't exact, but a rough timeline of what I think would work out well

2020 (in Tampa):
The Rock (headlining, obviously)
Christian (he's from Tampa)
Jushin Thunder Liger (he's retiring this month)
Molly Holly

The Undertaker
Rob Van Dam
The British Bulldog
Jim Cornette

The Big Show
The Steiner Brothers
Cyndi Lauper (Celebrity Wing)
Eric Bischoff
Luna Vachon

Rob Van Dam
Paul Heyman (I assume he'll have wrapped up most of his on-camera work for WWE by that point)
Brian Pillman
Dean Malenko
Lilian Garcia

Shaquille O'Neal (Celebrity Wing)
Al Snow
Miss Elizabeth
Great Muta

John Cena
Paige (unless she still has a regular on-camera role with WWE)
Sycho Sid
Lance Storm
Vickie Guerrero

The Hardy Boyz
Owen Hart (hopefully this can happen by then)

William Regal
Regis Philbin (Celebrity Wing)
Rick Martel
Bull Nakano
Earl Hebner

Chris Jericho (I assume he'll be wrapped with AEW by that point)
The n.W.o.
Santino Marella
The Nasty Boys
Marc Mero

Brock Lesnar
The New Age Outlaws
Bam Bam Bigelow

Rey Mysterio Jr (I assume he'll be retired by then)
Ivan Koloff
Mickie James (I assume she'll be retired by then)

CM Punk (hopefully WWE will mend this relationship)
AJ Lee (husband and wife being inducted on the same night would be pretty cool)
Chavo Guerrero Jr.
Chris Candido
Último Dragón
Joey Styles

Ronda Rousey
Tommy Dreamer
Michael Cole
The Brooklyn Brawler
Chyna (solo induction)

Randy Orton
Edge and Christian
Michelle McCool
Hardcore Holly
Hornswoggle (though it pains me to type that)

It's ambitious for WWE to patch up a few relationships (CM Punk, AJ Lee, Owen Hart's family, Demolition, Miss Elizabeth's family), but after WWE repaired relationships with Billy Graham, Warrior and Bruno Sammartino, I have faith it can be done.

You've got a headliner each year.  There's a mix of wrestlers and managers (and even a referee and ring announcer).

In some cases you've got two or three big names. CM Punk and AJ Lee together should sell some tickets together.  Lesnar, Sable and the New Age Outlaws are pretty big names.  Jericho, the nWo and Santino would work.

Cena and Paige is a strong combo, but Sid, Lance and Vickie definitely add to that.

The Hardyz may need another big name if they are going to headline, but I think they probably could headline a Hall of Fame.  Regis gives them a little bit of celebrity.  Regal is the guy for the hardcore wrestling fans and wrestling purists.  Bull Nakano should make a lot of women's wrestling fans and Japanese fans happy.

There's not a tag team included every year, but I don't think there needs to be.  There aren't enough Hall of Fame-worthy tag teams in my opinion.

If you start inducting one woman every year, one tag team every year, one faction every year, etc., etc., then you box yourself into a corner.

There aren't enough women, tag teams or factions to go in for the next 20 years.  So, yes, give us some variety.

Their biggest goals should be: inducting the glaring omissions as soon as they can and inducting legends while they are still alive.

2033 and beyond:

WWE has several current superstars who could end up in the Hall of Fame when their careers are over.  Daniel BryanBecky LynchCharlotteSasha BanksBayleyKofi KingstonThe New Day (as a group), The UsosAsukaNatalyaRonda RouseyA.J. StylesThe MizThe Bella TwinsDolph ZigglerR-Truth, Charles Robinson and Michael Cole have all pretty much had Hall of Fame careers already.

They all qualify in enough ways to get in.

Heck, Jonathan Coachman may even be a good inductee ... maybe.

Kevin OwensLio RushNaomiRenee YoungRusevEmber MoonSamoa JoeAlexa BlissFinn BalorSeth Rollins and Roman Reigns could all go into the Hall of Fame by 2050 if they keep going and play their cards right.

So WWE doesn't have to worry about future inductees ... at least for a while.

As long as they keep making stars and giving them individual accomplishments (Asuka's undefeated streak, for example), they'll continue making legends in front of our very eyes.

Final note: Chris Benoit should NEVER be inducted into the Hall of Fame.  I understand that the Hall of Fame is about in-ring contributions and not personal lives, but the line has to be drawn somewhere and a double murder-suicide is a very clear line to be drawn.