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Could have been a world champion...


RedRooster
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What undercard/mid card wrestlers  do you think could have been a world champion had they been given a different gimmick, been less of an awkward tit, or come along at a different time?

I’ve been inspired by one wrestler and one wrestler alone...

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I’ve been watching Raw from 98/99 on the network and I’d not really appreciated how good he actually was.

All these years later, the Val Venis gimmick is a tad uncomfortable to watch. However, his matches aren’t. He’s tremendous in ring!

His mic skills are pretty top notch too. Perhaps he was hurt by the influx of WCW wrestlers coming in, perhaps the porn star gimmick tainted him. I don’t know, but I do believe there’s more to Val than we got.

Who are your ‘could-have-beens’?

Edited by RedRooster
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The Big Valbowski today looking like the Robert Englund version of Freddy Krueger;

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I always thought he was decent though. And I loved his match with D’Lo Brown at SummerSlam 98. Not sure I’d ever have seen him as the world champ though but that might be more because I just can’t envision him as anything but Val Venis (or Freddy) now. 

Edited by wandshogun09
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1 minute ago, Michael_3165 said:

I really don't buy Venis as champion in any form no matter what gimmick. He was a solid worker but was never going to be a main event talent. Same as Dibiase, Hennig, Owen Hart and many others

Nonsense, if he hadn't passed away he was going to be a world champion later in 1999 and feud with Christopher Daniels, after he was revealed as The Undertaker's Higher Power. Sky Text told me so. 

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I guess it depends on the timing. If we’re going on the ‘came along at a different time’ line of thinking then I have no doubt the likes of Perfect, Owen, Dibiase, Arn Anderson, Davey Boy etc would’ve got a turn with a version of a world title at some point. But in the eras they were actually in though, it just wasn’t going to happen. Perfect and Dibiase were never getting a sniff of a title run in the Hogan, Savage, Warrior era. Arn wasn’t ever getting a look in when Flair was around. And there were always better options than Owen or Davey in both the New Generation and Attitude eras. Same with Shamrock. 

Val is probably a bit of a stretch (no porn pun intended) in any era. He was pretty good but he was likely midcard for life no matter what gimmick he got. 

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I could’ve seen Shamrock in that title mix on Smackdown around 2002/03 when it was switching between Lesnar and Angle. He’d have been a natural opponent for both of them and would’ve probably had some top matches with Benoit and Guerrero around that time. 

X-Pac was mega over for a period in 98-99, wasn’t he? Did he ever even get a run with the IC belt? 

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9 minutes ago, wandshogun09 said:

X-Pac was mega over for a period in 98-99, wasn’t he? Did he ever even get a run with the IC belt? 

No, he was playing around with the European belt with the Nation, then Shane. After that it was tag belts with kane before his heat got killed with the late 99 turn. 

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Scott Steiner. I know he had a run in WCW with the belt but I’m talking WWF now. 

Can’t remember if it was on here or I heard it on a podcast but someone recently was saying that Scotty should’ve got the Lex Express push in 1993 and got the belt at SummerSlam. I’m not sure Scott would’ve done any better than Lex, to be honest, I think Lex did the best he could considering they pretty much cut the bollocks off his push with the piss-weak finish at SummerSlam. But I’d have been all over Scott Steiner as a WWF main eventer in 1993. He was a physical specimen, athletic as fuck and wasn’t yet buggered by injuries. You’d think Vince would’ve been in love with him at that time as well. Him slamming Yoko on the USS Intrepid on July 4th would’ve been ace. 

I loved the Steiner Brothers as a tag team but I’d have happily lost that if it meant we got Scotty with the big belt. 

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1 hour ago, wandshogun09 said:

I guess it depends on the timing. If we’re going on the ‘came along at a different time’ line of thinking then I have no doubt the likes of Perfect, Owen, Dibiase, Arn Anderson, Davey Boy etc would’ve got a turn with a version of a world title at some point. But in the eras they were actually in though, it just wasn’t going to happen. Perfect and Dibiase were never getting a sniff of a title run in the Hogan, Savage, Warrior era. Arn wasn’t ever getting a look in when Flair was around. And there were always better options than Owen or Davey in both the New Generation and Attitude eras. Same with Shamrock. 

Val is probably a bit of a stretch (no porn pun intended) in any era. He was pretty good but he was likely midcard for life no matter what gimmick he got. 

I’m purposely picking someone at the lower end of the spectrum - that was my intention with the thread, although I probably wasn’t massively clear!

I would add William Regal to my list, although he was far closer to that big push than Venis ever was. 

After his KOTR win, Regal was as hot a heel as anyone had been in WWE for some time. Yes, he messed up his own push but had things in his personal life gone differently he easily could have held a title.

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1 hour ago, Yakashi said:

I can’t believe that an the era where even Kofi gets a run that Strowman has never been world champion in wwe of all places. 

Normally with this type of discussion we take someone from an era and move them forward in time. I'm going to pick Strowman and move him backwards and say that in that mid-late 00's period when big fella's, the likes of Big Show, Undertaker, Khali, Mark Henry, Batista, Umaga, etc were all around the top of the card, that Strowman would have been nailed on for at least one run with a big boy belt.

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No question in the 'You deserve it' era we are in pretty much everyone who was anyone on the WWF roster in the late 80s/early 90s would have been champion (Piper, Perfect, DiBiase, Rude, Jake, Earthquake, Bigelow, Razor, Bulldog, Owen etc) .

I reckon had Mr Kennedy not been as much of a tit he could, at one time, have been champion. 

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25 minutes ago, WeeAl said:

Normally with this type of discussion we take someone from an era and move them forward in time. I'm going to pick Strowman and move him backwards and say that in that mid-late 00's period when big fella's, the likes of Big Show, Undertaker, Khali, Mark Henry, Batista, Umaga, etc were all around the top of the card, that Strowman would have been nailed on for at least one run with a big boy belt.

I’m not so sure...he could just as easily have been relegated to a ‘monster-of-the-month’ role to face Taker/other top faces, much like Heidenreich, Snitsky and Big Daddy V. 

Could have gone either way for him - he’d have had more competition than he does at the moment in the big-man category.

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Does anyone else think Jerry Lawler could have been WWF champion? 

During the whole Harley Race getting a hernia and Bobby Heenan crowing a new king in 1989, it would have been the perfect time for Lawler to come to the WWF. He had just come off winning the AWA title from Hennig, was just 40 and could have had a good few years based off the Kauffman stuff, being known to wrestling fans etc making him a lot more known than some of the guys coming in to build themselves up. 

Him coming in during the mid 90s and mainly commentating and then feuding with Hart, he could have really made an impact a few years earlier having had experience working with Savage and Co down in Memphis. 

Really think there was space for him to win the title in 1989 from Hogan to add a little swerve before the Warrior v Hogan match in 1990.

Just 3 years earlier and during the golden age and I really think its possible. 

Edited by Shy Dad
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