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I can't think of an instance where I've heard Nick mentioned among those considered legends in the industry.

He has always been known as one of the most solid workers and word for word promo guys.

I'd go as far to call him a more effective heel than Flair. Why?

Flair was cool, people wanted to emulate him because he had a swagger.

Nothing was cool about Nick, he wore plain clothes, talked down to people and just came off as a pretenious ass.
 

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Who?

Just kidding, Nick is great, but I don't think a guy nobody really knows about can be considered a legend, is he an underrated wrestler/heel? Yeah, but he's not a forgotten legend.
 

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The AWA guys all get glossed over, because people in the coastal areas (where most of the population is) rarely got to see them. AWA was big time in the midwest, sold out big buildings, and had some of the best guys. Curt Hennig, Rick Martel, Zbysko, Bockwinkel, etc were great. When wrestling went national, WWF and NWA/WCW blew up, but AWA lost out, and never caught on. But in their time, they were just as good and had some great legendary guys
 

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He played the tough guy role as well as anyone in the history of the business. I think it's his lack of swagger that causes people to forget him. He wasn't flashy or glamorous in any way. He basically told people he was gonna kick thier asses, and then went out there and did it.

He's one of the greats to me, but I was growing up with that era, and became a fan of wrestling back then, so my view can be a bit biased. It just seems there aren't that many of us older AWA fans left that follow wrestling today, as least not in the mainstream, so a lot of the people talking wrestling today may not even be familiar with Bickwinkel and the other performers of that time.

edit: Incidentally, for those that haven't watched AWA, last I knew, ESPN Classic still runs the old AWA telecasts from time to time. It's worth checking out if you never got a chance to watch. Muttgeiger's post reminded me that not everyone had access to ESPN, and the AWA broadcasts back then, and those that didn't, really missed out on some great performers in thier prime.
 

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Dr. Mantis Toboggan
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He is probably as close to Flair as anyone during that time, he was a solid worker and a great heel for AWA. I just haven't been around that long to consider or not consider him a legend.
 

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For me from his era Nick Bockwinkel would only be behind Ric Flair and Randy Savage as an all round in ring performer but what i don't understand is how he is officially regarded as a multi time World champion due to him winning the AWA World title but yet Curt Hennig isn't by everyone despite beating Nick Bockwinkel for that title in 1987 when AWA was thriving still. I've always found that people overestimate how big or great a wrestler is or was on whether they wrestled in WWE or NWA/WCW as there are people down in ROH who are great much like how there were people down in AWA and in Japan who are among the best ever and Nick Bockwinkel was a great for sure.
 

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I grew up during the era, but I was more of a WWF, NWA, World Class guy.

AWA television was scarce to me, but for sure Bockwinkel's a legend, along w/ Von Raschke, Martel, DeBeers, Hennig, Big Scott Hall, etc from AWA.
 

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OP, that near enough answers your question.

I grew up during the era, but I was more of a WWF, NWA, World Class guy.

AWA television was scarce to me, but for sure Bockwinkel's a legend, along w/ Von Raschke, Martel, DeBeers, Hennig, Big Scott Hall, etc from AWA.
DeBeers! He never gets any love. How can you not boo a man who didn't want to be in a match with a black referee?
 

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The AWA guys all get glossed over, because people in the coastal areas (where most of the population is) rarely got to see them. AWA was big time in the midwest, sold out big buildings, and had some of the best guys. Curt Hennig, Rick Martel, Zbysko, Bockwinkel, etc were great. When wrestling went national, WWF and NWA/WCW blew up, but AWA lost out, and never caught on. But in their time, they were just as good and had some great legendary guys
Being knowledgeable about the AWA, I assume that you know all about the Wrestlerock Rumble!!!

 

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King James
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Nick Bockwinkel is one of the greatest technical wrestlers I have ever seen. He's a true all-time great in the ring. Bockwinkel is also of the classiest and most credible World Heavyweight Champions in the history of wrestling. He was a damn good promo too.

Everyone should watch his classics with Curt Hennig, Jerry Lawler, and Ric Flair.
 

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Nick Bockwinkel is one of the greatest technical wrestlers I have ever seen. He's a true all-time great in the ring. Bockwinkel is also of the most classiest and credible World Heavyweight Champions in the history of wrestling. He was a damn good promo too.

Everyone should watch his classics with Curt Hennig, Jerry Lawler, and Ric Flair.
Exactly. Nothing sadden and angers me more than realizing people don't educate themselves on the history of the business. You don't have to go back to the begining but there is no excuse for not knowing this guy. He is what a real wrestling legend is.
 
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