At their peak the most "over" wrestlers in history.
So in the history of wrestling who were the most "over guys" with the fans. I understand some of these guys were over multiple years but I am choosing to list the guy in their most important year.
Let me premise this as saying I have watched wrestling since the mid 70's so I am lost on history except what I have learned from study before then. So if there was a wrestler who was mega over before then....fill me in.
#1 Hulk Hogan 1985: Not sure any wrestler was as over world wide like Hogan in 85
#2 Sgt Slaughter 1984: Don't believe me watch any match Slaughter was in during this period, it was incredible. Here's an example for those who don't understand. This was really early in the feud..
#3 Ultimate Warrior 1989: The run that even overshadowed Hogan's popularity.
#4 Steve Austin 1998: One of the most incredible fandoms ever.
#5 Goldberg 1998: At the peak of the streak he was as hot as anyone.
#6 Dusty Rhodes 1975: The old school territory turn that had nationwide consequences.
#7 The Rock 2000: The start of his ascension to becoming the worlds most famous man
#8 Daniel Bryan 2011: A fan movement the likes that had not been seen in a decade
HM:The Road Warriors 1986, Jerry Lawler 1982, JYD 1983, Kerry Von Erich 1984
Do they have Krusty's Partially Gelatinated, Non-Dairy, Gum-Based Beverages?
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Re: At their peak the most "over"wrestlers in history.
Up North, here in Canada, Gene Kiniski, unofficially proclaimed “Canada’s Greatest Athlete” was wildly over on many parts of the country. A routine main eventer at both Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto and the Montreal Forum in the late 50s and early 60s, Kiniski was always wrestling in front of a packed house. The pinnacle of Kiniski’s sucess in that part of the country would come on July 17 1957 when Kiniski would win the Canadian Heavywright Championship from Killer Kowalski in front of 21,000 fans at Delormier stadium in Montreal.
Along with selling out stadiums, Kiniski could be seen on CBC Television, to great ratings, at a time when hockey dominated the air waves.
Kiniski’s greatest success would come in the mid to late 60s as he moved all the way across the country to work in the west coast of Canada for NWA All Star Wrestling from Vancouver. Their tv show, All Star Wrestling could be seen throughout BC into Alberta and into the US in Washington and Oregon.
Kiniski challenged for the NWA Heavyweight Title vs Buddy Rogers in front of 25,000 fans at Empire empire in Vancouver on July 30th 1962.
Kiniski main evented MSG vs Bruno on 2 occasions and later in 1966 he defeated Lou Thesz in front on 11,000 people at the famous Kiel Auditorium.
Kiniski held the championship for 3 years, before losing it to Dory Funk Jr in 1969 in Tampa a Florida. This was not the end of the line for Kiniski as he remained wildly over in Vancouver, Seattle and Portland throughout the 1970s.
As a kid I wanted to believe it was real but back then we had real fights in school and I went to sling this guy into a pole like wrestlers would do when they threw guys into the ropes and the kid didnít move and when I tried it again he punched me, I knew then that wrestlers were working together in the ring.