The Amateur Hour continues it’s rundown of the top 25 wrestlers of all time. It’s Michael Chapman’s turn to give us his personal list of wrestlers in the 20-16 positions.
20. Mick Foley
Cactus Jack, Mankind, Dude Love or Mrs. Foley’s Baby Boy. Call him what you like, just make sure you call him a great entertainer. Mick is not the best technical wrestler, he certainly doesn’t have ‘the look’, he’s also limited athletically and yet he’s adored by millions. He is also part of arguably the greatest spectacle in wrestling history, HIAC from KOTR ’98.
19. Stan Hansen
The baddest gaijin to ever wrestle in Japan, The Lariat is a favorite of mine. His stumble down to ring, swinging the cowbell and rope wildly, tobacco juice dripping out of his mouth. Smacking young Japanese fans along the way. Arguably the only American born wrestler as “popular” for his ‘strong style’ is Vader.
18. Harley Race
An 8 time NWA World Heavyweight Champion ‘Handsome’ Harley Race was part of some fantastic rivalries with legends like both Dory and Terry Funk, Jack Briscoe and ‘Natureboy’ Ric Flair.
He was the first to ever hold the Mid-Atlantic U.S. Championship, which is now the WWE U.S. Championship. Race also held many regional titles in territories like Stampede, Georgia, Central States and Missouri.
17. The Undertaker
His gimmick is one of the longest lasting and most over in all of professional wrestling. He has been wildly successful as both a heel and a face. The only man deemed worthy enough by Vince McMahon to have never been booked to lose at Wrestlemania. He is also the other half to arguably the greatest spectacle in wrestling history, as he tossed Mick Foley off of the top of a 14 foot high steel cage. For me ‘Taker is an odd wrestler in the ring.
16. Ultimo Dragon
Yoshihiro Asai, better known as Ultimo Dragon, opened the eyes of many young American wrestling fans when he made his US debut for WCW in 1996. Asai had already wrestled prominently in Japan and Mexico developing a hybrid puro-lucha style that most Americans had not seen. A unique wrestler who was both technically sound and a gifted ariel performer he won over fans of the cruiserweight division. He went on to wrestle in WWE as well. His legacy goes on as the organization he founded, Toryumon, has continued and flourished as Dragon Gate. Oh, and if you are wondering, yes, the Asai Moonsault is named after him.
You can follow Michael on Twitter @NUFC_monkey as he discusses Wrestling, Football and the importance of growing a beard.
Look out for our continued coverage of the 25 top wrestlers of all time in the upcoming weeks.