So far, we know of three people being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame this year. The Ultimate, Jake Roberts, Lita and Paul Bearer have been announced. Bearer is going to be inducted; his video was cut off from the Raw but will be announced next week. Scott Hall teased being inducted on twitter announcing his account has been verified (The same thing happened with the first three inductees).
Before we do so, let’s address the snapping into a Slim Jim elephant in the room. Will Randy Savage be on this list? Well, since it seems like it will never happen in real life unless Triple H uses the same magical powers that he used on Bruno. Will he be inducted? I say yes, but not this year unless it’s the big induction this year. I think he’ll be the headlining inductee next year but I’m sure I’ve said that since 2004. Whether it will be with the blessing of Lanny Poffo or not, I think it may involve Lanny just to get him to stop talking.
- The Big Boss Man
The man who carries a big stick is deserving of a Hall of Fame induction, and I believe his contributions to wrestling in general have been undervalued. When he came onto the scene in the NWA as Big Bubba Rogers, he was placed in a feud with Dusty Rhodes and they drew some great numbers together. The duo headlined the NWA’s debut at the Boston Garden and drew 11,000 in a cage and sold out the Pittsburgh Civic Center in another cage match. While those in charge of the NWA made numerous mistakes, one of the more glaring mistakes had to be letting him leave the NWA. Brought into the WWE as our favorite corrupt prison guard, Boss Man was built up as a threat to Hogan. The initial bouts drew some great numbers on the house show circuit in 1988 including a sellout of Madison Square Garden. Yet, it was their series of matches in 1989 that drew some of Hogan’s best house show numbers since the Paul Orndorff feud. Among the numbers there was a three day cage match run in St. Louis, Chicago and Minnesota that drew the following in each state: 18,000, 19,000, and 10,000. Plus there was another sell out of the Garden in a cage and high numbers in Boston and Philadelphia. The most impressive had to be the debut card in Charlotte drawing 13,500. Why is it so impressive? The previous year the WWE ran their first card in Greensboro that only drew 3600 or so fans. The main event of that card you’re asking? Hogan vs Andre, which had never been seen on a house show. After that, Boss Man enjoyed a good run in the mid card, went back to WCW, and then came back as quite possibly the most evil man alive. Overall, the Boss Man should definitely be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Dusty Rhodes or Jim Cornette would be perfect to induct him.
– Ravishing Rick Rude
A man who got the fans to hate him even before he took his robe off, Rude was probably one of the best heels during the Hulkamania era. While Rude never rose above the Intercontinental Title, there is no doubt that Rude is deserving of a spot in the Hall of Fame. With great feuds against The Ultimate Warrior and Roddy Piper, Rude was also the first major WWF player to jump to WCW. Rude continued to have great bouts with Sting, Dustin Rhodes, Barry Windham Ricky Steamboat, Ric Flair and Cactus Jack. He was also a part of the Dangerous Alliance and what is still probably my favorite match of all time against Sting’s Squadron at WrestleWar 92. Rude hit his stride in WCW as the top heel, holding the WCW International World Heavyweight Championship (Trying saying that five times) twice. Right before it seemed like Rude was set to feud with Vader, a career ending back injury occurred. It’s a shame considering that Rude was probably in line to feud with Hogan and the feud I booked countless times with my Hasbro figures: Randy Savage. After a short run in ECW, Rude went back to the WWE to only jump back to WCW in the aftermath of the Montreal Screwjob. It was pretty humiliating for the WWE considering Raw was taped that week and Rude appeared on a live Nitro. It seemed like this soured Vince of Rude, but it’s been about seventeen years since that whole incident. His son had a tryout at the Performance Center, so it might be a sign. I think Ricky Steamboat, considering their incredible bouts in WCW would be a good choice to induct Rude. If not, Curtis Axel based on the Rude/Henning connection would be a good choice.
Is this cheating inducting a tag team as one entity? Yes, but it’s my blog so I can do whatever I want. Yes, they might have been a Road Warriors rip-off but they were pretty good Road Warrior rip-offs. If they were bad Road Warrior rip-offs, then we wouldn’t be talking about this. They were two veteran wrestlers who had been a part of tag teams so they knew the roles they had to play. Unlike most tag teams in that team period, they could get the fans on their side or against them. Unfortunately, Demolition pretty much became punching bags for The Road Warriors when they arrived. Not even after a month after the LOD arrived, they were beating them in six mans and regular tags. In-fact, the Demos never beat The Road Warriors in 1990 according to The History of The WWE site. Sadly, the feud with the Legion of Doom was a sign that the Demos were on the downturn. Ax was pushed aside in favor of Crush and the team was never the same. While I’m sure that Vince and Bill Eadie might not see eye to eye, Demolition is more than deserving of a Hall of Fame spot. I’d say Road Warrior Animal should induct them mostly to play up the whole Demolition/Road Warriors feud, plus he knew Smash.
- Davey Boy Smith
I actually debated putting the Bulldogs in together, but I don’t know about Dynamite’s standing in the WWE. He really wasn’t mentioned at all in the Stampede DVD from what I remember, plus he suffered a stroke recently. Therefore, I decided to put Smith himself into the Hall of Fame. Now, I grew up watching Smith after the Bulldogs run and this is a bit impartial since he was one of my favorites growing up. Unfortunately, I think injuries hindered him in the same way that it hindered Kerry Von Erich in that it took away a lot of his mobility. Smith had some great bouts against Bret, Owen, Michaels and Austin. In a fun fact that I only care about, he also headlined the last Raw that would beat Nitro until 1998. Also, that match against The Undertaker and it was a pretty good match overall. Plus, his run with The British Bulldogs is more than enough to get him inducted. Bret Hart inducts him because of some of his great bouts with Smith, Harry or Diana accepts.
- George Scott
There wouldn’t be a WWE without George Scott, the man who kept the company together in its wild first few years. He also booked Jim Crockett Promotions, bringing in some of the best talent around and booking some of the best wrestling ever. After arriving in the company in 1983, Scott was not only the booker but negotiator, recruiter and even had to consult on what went into the magazine. Scott also oversaw the sales of Georgia Championship Wrestling ushering in Black Saturday and the sale of Stampede Wrestling that brought talent like The Hart Foundation and The British Bulldogs into the fold. Scott’s run in the company simply went from booking Miami cards to overseeing the debuts of WrestleMania and Saturday Night’s Main Event. While Scott may have clashed with people like Dick Ebersol, Hogan and even Vince himself over the product, his legacy should not be forgotten. Vince has honored him in the past for putting together the first WrestleMania, time to put him in the Hall of Fame.