To the op: because he was an amazing in ring performer. And I liked his persona back then, but I can understand why others wouldn't.
Originally Posted by Queen of Kings
in my opinion HBK > Bret and Benoit in the ring, in terms of being an overall performer. Shawn could high-fly, technical wrestle, and put on some of the most dramatic and epic matches in the history of the WWE. I credit Bret and Benoit as only being great technical wrestler.(That's not slight against them, because I am a fan of both, but just saying.)
Well that would be inaccurate. You're underselling them by saying that they're just great technical wrestlers.
Both could also put on "dramatic and epic matches" as well as many other qualities.
I believe that each have their own strengths, and don't really need to be compared in a derisive manner, either way.
Shawn was one of the absolute greatest showmen ever, with tons of charisma in the ring, and an effortless high flying ability (the effortless aspect gets undersold..the man makes it look like he could do athletic moves in his sleep).
Bret was one of the greatest storytellers and psychologists ever, in addition to being one of the most sound & fluid technicians ever, and who possessed an innate ability to carry anyone to a great match. As well as an ability to elevate good people to classic matches.
Benoit was one of the crispest technicians I've ever seen, with almost unparallelled intensity, and a ton of explosiveness for a little guy.
They all have their strengths, and no need to inaccurately knock down one guy to prop up another one.
Now if you're saying you prefer one over the other for the qualities that they bring, that totally makes sense to bring up to compare. But boiling someone down to just one thing is disingenuous. It'd be like saying that Shawn is just a high flyer. That's not true.