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The Greatest Worker of All Time

  • 16-04-2016 4:50am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 16,500 ✭✭✭✭


    For me it has to be Shawn Michaels. I've been re watching his matches on the Network recently and the guy was just unbelievable in the ring. He could drag a decent out of anybody (average workers like Taker etc), and he did it on a consistent basis for years.

    I know he never drew like the people who came after him in the Attitude Era but in my eyes he was the absolute master of the ring. He would have been Hall of Fame material in 98, even if hadn't come back for another run.


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Comments

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 22,561 Mod ✭✭✭✭Bounty Hunter


    For some reason when I see the thread title here Arn Anderson pops into my head.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,956 ✭✭✭✭Omackeral


    Since I start watching it's Benoit, Michaels and Angle in my top 3. Angle and Benoit could work a junior style when needed but were also legit looking killers (poor choice of words there!) in the ring without hurting their opponents. Shawn was the consummate showman in my opinion and was so much more exciting than Bret. Daniel Bryan and Eddie Guerrero,when he was motivated, were super workers too.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,301 ✭✭✭✭gerrybbadd


    Shawn and Bret. To have these 2 guys come along more or less at the same time, was something special

    I think, in time to come, Sami Zayn will be known as one of the best workers ever as well. While on the indies, he was known as the guy that had the best match of the night, every night.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 16,096 ✭✭✭✭the groutch


    as much as people hate his gimmick, or the fact that he goes over too often, John Cena.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,491 ✭✭✭thebostoncrab


    For just wrestling skills, it's between Misawa, Benoit, Daniel Bryan, Dynamite Kid and Angle.

    For personality and charisma, it's Rock, Hogan, Austin and Hayes.

    For the complete package, it's HBK, Flair and Angle. So I guess with that in mind, I'd go with Kurt Angle.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,166 ✭✭✭Stereomaniac


    Bret Hart. He was able to make anyone he worked with look good. He had a great ability to make things look good, both in his execution (pardon the pun) and his selling of manoeuvres. He was not as flashy in his repertoire as the likes of Shawn Michaels or Dynamite Kid, but his style was a lot more realistic and as a result made wrestling look like a lot more legitimate sport. Everything that he did in the ring I believed in him every step.


  • Registered Users Posts: 45,524 ✭✭✭✭Mr.Nice Guy


    I haven't watched any of his matches since the tragedy but I don't recall ever seeing Benoit have a bad match.

    I remember one match from one of the lesser shows like Heat where Benoit took on Tyson Tomko. I never thought much of Tomko as a perormer but Benoit made this guy look like a million dollars, and it was a damn good match. He had the skills to do make anybody look good.

    'It is better to walk alone in the right direction than follow the herd walking in the wrong direction.'



  • Registered Users Posts: 75 ✭✭Brindor


    Krispen Wah


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,166 ✭✭✭Stereomaniac


    Chris Benoit is undoubtedly one of the greatest ever. It's such a shame it won't be recognised.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,500 ✭✭✭✭DEFTLEFTHAND


    I haven't watched any of his matches since the tragedy but I don't recall ever seeing Benoit have a bad match.

    I remember one match from one of the lesser shows like Heat where Benoit took on Tyson Tomko. I never thought much of Tomko as a perormer but Benoit made this guy look like a million dollars, and it was a damn good match. He had the skills to do make anybody look good.

    I've been making my way through WCW PPVs from 96 and 97 and Benoit's match is nearly always the stand out match on the card.

    For eg himself and Dean Malenko put on a 30 minute clinic at Hogwild 96. It's a match I'd recommend.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 39,251 ✭✭✭✭Itssoeasy


    Chris Benoit is undoubtedly one of the greatest ever. It's such a shame it won't be recognised.

    A shame ? Chris sealed his own faith with what he did to his son and wife. I mean I can't watch the wm XX main event because of mr Benoit. So while he might have been a talented wrestler he clearly was an utter **** of a human being.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,767 ✭✭✭ShagNastii


    "The greatest worker of all time?".

    I remember watching a Dustin Runnels shoot interview and at the end he was asked how would he like to be remembered? He quite simplely put it that he would like to be remembered as one of the greatest workers that ever was. He was being deadly serious.

    I'd certainly echo all suggestions people have made but there are a few wrestlers (I'd nearly argue like Dustin) that are in for a shout but will go a million miles under the radar. The Rhodes brothers would be greatly underrated in terms of "workers" IMHO.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 21,296 ✭✭✭✭gimmick


    Itssoeasy wrote: »
    A shame ? Chris sealed his own faith with what he did to his son and wife. I mean I can't watch the wm XX main event because of mr Benoit. So while he might have been a talented wrestler he clearly was an utter **** of a human being.

    He was seriously mentally ill. This was shown later in Nowinskis tests.

    That said I cannot watch any of his matches anymore knowing what he did and knowing how much I loved him ptior to that.

    Regarding the question of the thread - Chis Jericho deserves a mention. He has jerked many a curtain and lit up plenty main events. Very over face or heel and stood the test of time.

    Best ever? No. But one of? Absolutely.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,166 ✭✭✭Stereomaniac


    Itssoeasy wrote: »
    A shame ? Chris sealed his own faith with what he did to his son and wife. I mean I can't watch the wm XX main event because of mr Benoit. So while he might have been a talented wrestler he clearly was an utter **** of a human being.
    Yeah. I think we've had this discussion on here many times over the years. He committed a horrific act which can never be taken back. But what can't be taken away is that he was one of the greatest workers of all time, as we're discussing in this thread. That will not be commemorated by the WWE. Just saying!


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,500 ✭✭✭✭DEFTLEFTHAND


    Jericho is right up there for sure, and still doing it at 45 years of age.

    One of the great promo men also. Full of charisma and so funny at times.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,166 ✭✭✭Stereomaniac


    Is there anyone from the WWWF era that could be mentioned in the conversation, do ye think? Probably beyond most of our area of expertise but I feel there has to be someone worthy.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 21,296 ✭✭✭✭gimmick


    Obviously. All time etc. Piper could easily be included. As could Steamboat. As could Dusty etc etc etc. But most are long before all our time.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,216 ✭✭✭Ageyev


    Is there anyone from the WWWF era that could be mentioned in the conversation, do ye think? Probably beyond most of our area of expertise but I feel there has to be someone worthy.

    You'd be talking very early 80s and before. I can't think of anyone that would rate in terms of workrate - WWWF's style was pretty slow and boring. Look at some of the videos on the Network, of which there are few, from the mind to late 70s and early 80s.

    If the Funks wrestled for Vince Sr. then you'd have to say them. Likewise with the Briscos but I'm not sure any of them appeared. Pat Patterson and RaynStevens were supposedly excellent - Ric Flair used to say Ray Stevens was the greatest wrestler he ever saw but he mostly worked in California afaik.

    Bruno Sammartino is worth a mention obvs.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,382 ✭✭✭d22ontour


    A worker for me is someone who could put anyone over, the Rock could put a referee over if the situation took it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 838 ✭✭✭A Rogue Hobo


    Shawn Michaels. He was revolutionising what the main event scene was like in the mid 90's, arguably one of the main people who pushed the envelope in terms of content encouraging Vince to create the attitude era and was widely considered one of the best in the world at the time. And that's not even mentioning his natural charisma. Then after a 5 year hiatus comes back and becomes even better than he was before. Will never see any one that is a more "complete" wrestler than he was ever again in my mind.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,469 ✭✭✭LeeJM


    Judging by the people put forward Im guessing ye are just looking at the best in North America and not including Kobashi, Misawa etc from Japan. Greatest workers in North American history for me are Ric Flair, Jerry Lawler, Randy Savage, John Cena and Bryan Danielson/Daniel Bryan. Not necessarily in that order but they are defo my top 5.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,929 ✭✭✭✭chopperbyrne


    LeeJM wrote: »
    Judging by the people put forward Im guessing ye are just looking at the best in North America and not including Kobashi, Misawa etc from Japan. Greatest workers in North American history for me are Ric Flair, Jerry Lawler, Randy Savage, John Cena and Bryan Danielson/Daniel Bryan. Not necessarily in that order but they are defo my top 5.

    Obviously entitled to your opinion, but to leave out Bret and Shawn in a discussion of greatest (NA) workers is mental.

    Eddie deserves a mention, as does Lesnar.

    Hogan too. He was better than everyone else in the world at doing the right thing at the right time to keep a crowd hot.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,868 ✭✭✭Andersonisgod


    Depends on what you mean by worker. In terms of pure ring work rate and match quality Hogan doesn't deserve a mention given that even when he was on top in WWF and WCW his matches were rarely the best on the card. However he was the big draw for practically all of that time.

    Because the thread title says worker and not wrestler I'm going to stick to bell to bell output. I'm not sure if this is North America only because, if not then I'm pretty sceptical of some glaring omissions.

    In North American terms I'd have, in no particular order: Lou Thesz, Dory Funk Jr, Terry Funk, Ric Flair, Ricky Steamboat, Randy Savage, Stan Hansen, Bruiser Brody, Dynamite Kid, Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, Rey Mysterio, Kurt Angle, Bryan Danielson, AJ Styles.

    If you opened up the parameters a bit the list would look quite different, especially if you were to include different regions (Japan, UK and Mexico), tag teams and criteria outside of ring work.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,767 ✭✭✭ShagNastii


    Jericho is right up there for sure, and still doing it at 45 years of age.

    One of the great promo men also. Full of charisma and so funny at times.

    I'd agree. As was commented on an episode of OSW when he did the 1004 holds list shtick. He is a guy that just "gets" pro wrestling one million percent. Can go in the ring with the best of them.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,469 ✭✭✭LeeJM


    Obviously entitled to your opinion, but to leave out Bret and Shawn in a discussion of greatest (NA) workers is mental.

    Eddie deserves a mention, as does Lesnar.

    Hogan too. He was better than everyone else in the world at doing the right thing at the right time to keep a crowd hot.

    I didnt leave them out just that they wouldnt be in my top 5 all time workers. Shawn would be top 10 and Bret somewhere in top 20. Eddie most certainly would be in my top 10 as would Rey Mysterio.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,166 ✭✭✭Stereomaniac


    Ageyev wrote: »
    You'd be talking very early 80s and before. I can't think of anyone that would rate in terms of workrate - WWWF's style was pretty slow and boring. Look at some of the videos on the Network, of which there are few, from the mind to late 70s and early 80s.

    If the Funks wrestled for Vince Sr. then you'd have to say them. Likewise with the Briscos but I'm not sure any of them appeared. Pat Patterson and RaynStevens were supposedly excellent - Ric Flair used to say Ray Stevens was the greatest wrestler he ever saw but he mostly worked in California afaik.

    Bruno Sammartino is worth a mention obvs.
    Bruno Sammartino is always on the table when discussing the greatest of all time but not here I think because we're talking about actual in-ring skills for this.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,824 ✭✭✭happyoutscan


    Randy Savage.


  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 12,013 Mod ✭✭✭✭jaykhunter


    Greatest worker IMO, for pure wrestling I'd say Kurt Angle, but the best all-rounder (working the crowd, getting emotion etc) is Shawn Michaels. Kurt is so smooth, fast, crisp and precise, it's a work of art; but he doesn't work the crowd nearly enough, he's generally focused on his opponent. Shawn is incredible as the babyface in peril and the comeback' eliciting deep emotion. Hero!


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,611 ✭✭✭✭ERG89


    Hbk, Angle, Benoit, Bret Hart & Guerrero for my top 5. Haven't watched enough Japanese stuff to discuss the Misawa's or Kobashi's


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  • Registered Users Posts: 16,180 ✭✭✭✭Clegg


    I don't know about the all time best because I'm not old enough to remember anything pre 2000.But since I've been watching wrestling the the most consistently excellent in ring performer I've watched is Hiroshi Tanahashi.

    His body of work is simply incredible. His series against Okada since 2012 is up there with any of the all time great feuds from an in ring perspective. The bigger the occasion the better the match. He absolutely made Okada's main event career.

    He gets derided for being the Japanese Cena because he almost always goes over, but his in ring mannerisms are a million miles off from the super baby face. He's an arrogant sod in the ring and pulls off all the cheap tricks against up and coming baby faces trying to take his spot. There aren't many faces as popular as Tanahashi who can still get the crowd to turn on him simply by heeling it up effectively. He's what Roman Reigns is trying to turn himself into except he's so much better in the ring.


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