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Wrestlers criticised as overrated to such an extent that they became underrated


Maikeru
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Hogan is soooo odd as a worker to figure out. Japan Hulk if you wanna use that (Terry would abbreviate it) is basically the same but minus the histrionics but a bit more aggressive. It's really good. I still don't understand people that think he sucked all the time. He absolutely knew what to do and like the best, when Hogan didn't dog it he's a great study. 

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Anyone that thinks Hogan wasn't a great wrestler needs to take a long, hard look at themselves. Did he always have a good night? No. Could he always have a great night if he wanted to? Absolutely he could. 

Shitty human being, but that's not really the question here. The likes of Lex and Hogan only get a bad rap for their in ring because certain wrestling media didn't enjoy their stuff. I think most people on here are well aware of that, but you'll still hear these incorrect opinions trotted out regularly elsewhere. 

There is a reason Lex Luger is in a featured match on pretty much every episode of Nitro from his debut, through 1997. It's because, even then, he was one of the best workers they had that was over at a high level. 

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It makes sense to me why wwe are going back to big lads with basic moves .it’s what has drawn in all their boom periods. They tried the niche small workers market and numbers drop. Mainstream needs eye catching to attach to. Hogan & lex are both great examples of that 

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On 9/10/2021 at 11:58 PM, Bret Hart's Buddy said:

Kevin Nash. 

Great shout. Nash gets heat from some wrestlers and office management for being a low drawing champion. But that was during a recession and I think it's unfair to put all the blame on him.

He was always over with me as Diesel. He was massively over with me as Kevin Nash in Dubiya Cee Dubiya, and he's my number 1 shoot interview go-to guy post retirement. 

Edited by IronSheik
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The best answer I can think of might be the most controversial, and it’s Bret Hart.

If you take an average of his “rating” across the fandom it’s obviously still going to be very high, but there’s no dispute that there’s a very vocal group (especially on Twitter) that deride him even bell-to-bell as average or at worst boring, especially compared to his rival and closest parallel Shawn Michaels, and think that he was rubbish or uninteresting in interviews or lacked charisma. These people wouldn’t have Bret in the top 10 or even rate him as anything special.

In my opinion, it might be a matter of timing, but I grew up with Bret as the everyman who was just going out there being the hero and winning by being a better, smarter wrestler than his opponents who were frequently bigger and stronger or arrogant twats and a different flavour entirely to Hogan and Warrior who seemed invincible so was an easy guy to want to “support.” He had his own kind of charisma and usually delivered a well thought out and clever interview or promo but most of his character came out in his matches where he was the courageous underdog.
 

I can see where people raised on Nitro who equated MOVEZ!! to bring the best wrestler might not have rated the Hitman as he didn’t have the repertoire of Dean, Eddy, Rey or Benoit. However being a great wrestler and having the best matches isn’t about how much shit you get in but what you do, why and when, and telling the story. The greatest fallacy is that all Brets matches are the same when there are several shows between 93 and 95 where he does completely different matches on the same PPV. People accuse him of selling for his opponent then doing “five moves of Doom” and going home, but that’s simply bollocks, he had loads of flash pin roll up finishes and you never knew when the match was going to end. Bret won seven singles titles in the WWF but only won two of them with the Sharpshooter, he was versatile as anyone. It’s shocking how few matches he won in PPV with his actual finisher, especially from 1993 onwards. In terms of match quality, I genuinely don’t know what to say to anyone who watches his PPV matches from 1991 to 1997 and doesn’t think he was brilliant.

Short version - you’re underrating Bret if you don’t consider him one of the best of all time, and you’re very very wrong. In my opinion.

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I think Bret just happens to fall between a lot of different factors really. Like you say, he's neither the flashiest technician nor the most charismatic superstar. He got this reputation as a Meltzer guy but unlike some of the others I don't think anybody could argue that he was underpushed. He's between the stars of the Hogan era and the Attitude era. Etc. 

Doesn't help that after the 'E his career (brief as it was) was all down hill. If he'd have had the big career comeback that Shawn had it'd probably have helped, but even if he was well and agreed to work with the Entertainment that probably wouldn't have happened. 

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Hogan's early WWF stuff when he was a heel showed his range of moves, moves don't make a good wrestler but these matches squash any 'Hogan can't wrestle' arguments for me.

Warrior is the one for me, The WWE machine spent years telling us he was useless but when you go back and rewatch you realize there was something there, he may not have been a great technical wrestler but he certainly understood how to work a match and get himself over.

I second the Nikki Bella comment, I always thought she was the drizzling but on reflection she was a decent athlete who could comfortably hang with the best of them

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I can't agree with the Warrior one at all. The only examples given of him having a good match are the ones with people famous for being able to carry people, i.e. Hogan and Savage. 

It's not to say he had absolutely nothing at all; he had presence, charisma, and a shit-ton of (albeit chemically-fuelled) energy. But outside squash matches where he didn't have to do very much, he had stinkers - his second run and his run in WCW demonstrated that. He knew how to get over with character, but he certainly couldn't work a match without an experienced hand, and even then it wasn't always guaranteed. That WCW match with Hogan might have even made him look ridiculous.

Presumably this all hinges on how criticised or overrated he was. If it's those saying he had nothing at all, they're absolutely wrong - but I don't think there are actually that many saying that; it's quite clear he accomplished a lot with what he had. If it's those saying he wasn't really very good, then I'd say they're bang-on. His career taken as a whole, it's fairly evident he was a one-trick pony who held on a bit too long, enough for that trick to be exposed.

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Warrior appears to have been perhaps Meltzer's most hated wrestler of all time: 

Notwithstanding his WCW stuff in 1998, a few of these are just simply ludicrous. There's no way he was the worst actual wrestler in a major promotion in '88, or worst on interviews from '89 to '92. His promos weren't everyone's cup of tea but they suited his gimmick and added to his mystique. As for his in-ring work, yes it was very limited for a top guy (and speaks volumes about his strengths in other areas that they were able to keep that relatively unexposed for so long) but he could perform that limited arsenal reasonably well. The way he's been portrayed by Meltzer and others over the years would have you think he shouldn't have been anywhere near a ring. 

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