In this article you will know about the Hall of Famers’
Often dubbed “The Franchise of WCW,” the man called Sting is one of the most recognizable and unique faces in sports-entertainment history. It was that distinction that made him the backbone of the Atlanta-based organization throughout the late 1980s until the end of WCW in 2001.
Beginning with his NWA debut in 1987, Sting brought an enormous amount of charisma to the ring with his bleach-blond hair, colorful face paint and neon ring gear. However, at the inaugural Clash of the Champions, a 45-minute time limit draw against NWA World Champion Ric Flair proved The Stinger was on his way to becoming one of sports-entertainment’s elite. Eventually, Sting defeated Flair for the NWA Title, and would later add six WCW World Titles, three WCW Tag Team Championships, two WCW International World Titles and two United States Championships to his resume throughout his career.
While the charismatic competitor was wildly popular with WCW fans, it was a shocking transformation in 1996 that made Sting even more memorable. With The New World Order imposing their will over WCW, The Stinger adopted a darker personality with white and black face paint and attire. He became a silent warrior who lurked in the rafters of arenas all over the country, ready to strike The nWo at a moment’s notice. For more than a year, Sting never spoke or competed in the ring, captivating audiences until finally he squared off and defeated WCW Champion and nWo leader, “Hollywood” Hulk Hogan.
It would be Triple H’s protege, Seth Rollins, who would next face off against the face-painted legend at Night of Champions. The two would battle for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship with Rollins squeaking by with a roll up on The Stinger.
Though The Stinger often likes to say “the only thing sure about Sting is that nothing is for sure,” there is one thing nobody can deny – that Sting has had a Hall of Fame-worthy career. That will be confirmed on the eve of WrestleMania 32, when he joins the WWE Hall of Fame as a member of the Class of 2016.
2. Big Boss Man:
Only one Superstar has ever been entrusted with enforcing law, order and justice in WWE: Big Boss Man. The towering cop spent time on both sides of the badge during his career, but he always made sure that anyone who dared step up to him served hard time.
A former corrections officer in Cobb County, Ga., Big Boss Man was brought to WWE in 1988 by the nefarious Slick after the big man dominated his competition. The 300-plus pounder muscled around his foes like he would an unruly prisoner, before handcuffing them to the ropes and introducing them to the business end of his trusty nightstick. By 1989, The Slickster saw dollar signs in his eyes when he paired up his crooked cop with Akeem, The African Dream. The gargantuan pair known as The Twin Towers never captured the World Tag Team Titles, but they helped destroy one of the most dominant duos in WWE history: The Mega Powers, Hulk Hogan and “Macho Man” Randy Savage.
Though he brutalized his cuffed competition, Big Boss Man did have morals. When The Million Dollar Man attempted to buy his services, he let the aristocrat know that he didn’t come with a price tag. The policeman’s defiance immediately endeared him to the WWE Universe, making him one of the most popular Superstars of the era.
The Boss Man made sure all the evildoers of the day paid for their misdeeds, including The Mountie, who tried to usurp the lawman’s authority in WWE. In a Jailhouse Match at SummerSlam 1991, he sent the crooked Canadian copper off to one of New York City’s roughest correctional facilities, ensuring he’d know what life was like behind bars.
Though he was on the straight and narrow, his past came to haunt him in the form of Nailz, a former convict who claimed The Big Boss Man had brutalized him behind bars. The officer was viciously assaulted by the prisoner, putting him out of action for several weeks. When he recovered, cop and convict squared off in a Nightstick Match, where the convict was vanquished.
Big Boss Man returned to WWE in 1998, eschewing his policeman’s blues for riot squad black as he took on the role of bodyguard of Mr. McMahon in his heated rivalry with “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. This time, the former corrections officer showed he had no morals whatsoever, stooping to new lows with each passing week during WWE’s Attitude Era. He brought the gigantic Big Show to tears when he dragged the giant’s late father’s casket away from his funeral behind a car. Even worse, while embroiled in a bitter rivalry with Al Snow, Big Boss Man kidnapped his foe’s beloved Chihuahua, Pepper. When it seemed like the two had reached a truce over a nice dinner, the sadistic cop revealed that he had prepared a special meal for Snow using the remains of his pet. Though it seemed to take on a new meaning, he was still forcing his foes to go through “hard times.”
The WWE Hall of Fame now has its Godfather.
Remembered most to WWE audiences as a fun-loving staple of the Attitude Era, The Godfather’s journey to the Hall of Fame was certainly one wild train ride.
In the late ‘90s he was most recognizable for being the muscle of The Nation of Domination, but as that group began to slowly disband, The Godfather seemingly began to have more and more women accompany him to ringside every week.
This trend continued after The Nation officially split and The Godfather quickly transitioned into one of the WWE Universe’s most beloved Superstars, both for his attractive supporting cast and for his enigmatic charisma and charm.
The Godfather would go on to capture both the Intercontinental Championship and the WWE Tag Team Championship. He also, for a brief period of time along the Right to Censor, would shun his upbeat, often raunchy persona to become The Good Father. This metamorphosis would not last for long, however, and The Godfather (and his train of ladies) would return in the 2002 Royal Rumble Match in spectacular fashion.
Even today, The Godfather and his never-ending supply of beautiful women still pop up on WWE television from time-to-time. It may be infrequent, but when it does happen, one thing is certain, the WWE Universe gleefully cheers, “All aboard!
Jacqueline was, perhaps, the toughest woman to ever step foot in the ring. Unafraid to stand up to women, or men for that matter, in the squared circle, the tenacious Diva had no problem breaking down both opponents and barriers.
After first honing her craft in the Memphis territory, Jacqueline made a big splash on the national scene in WCW in 1997. Those that expected the unimposing female to be the demure type were in for a shock when she teamed up with the devious Taskmaster, Kevin Sullivan. The pairing was perfect as Sullivan tossed his hapless foes to the arena floor where Jacqueline scooped them up and viciously slammed them down.
Despite the displays of her wrestling know-how, Jacqueline was still targeted by a few of WCW’s male competitors who thought picking on her was a no-lose situation. The beauty was more than happy to prove the likes of Disco Inferno wrong with a hard punch to the jaw and her DDT.
Jacqueline jumped to WWE in summer 1998, joining forces with Marc Mero in his quest to steal the spotlight back from his former valet, Sable. Jacqueline proved to be a tall task for the blond bombshell. She defeated Sable to win the returning WWE Women’s Title. Adding insult to injury, she later chopped off her foe’s platinum tresses and wore it in her hair, flaunting her spoils.
Jacqueline would go on to hold the Women’s Title on another occasion, defeating Harvey Wippleman (not a typo) on SmackDown in 2000. Even while remaining a full-time competitor, Jacqueline took on other jobs in WWE. She donned the stripes and became an official, calling the shots in both men’s and women’s matches. In addition, she took an active role as a trainer on the first season of “Tough Enough,” helping potential Superstars and Divas learn the ropes.
Eventually, Jacqueline decided to put all her focus towards her in-ring career and regaining the Women’s Title. While she didn’t capture that championship, she did find surprising success in another division. Answering an open challenge from Chavo Guerrero, Jacqueline brushed off the third-generation Superstar’s put-downs and defeated him to win the WWE Cruiserweight Title. Although she left WWE in June 2004 after losing the title back to Chavo, Jacqueline’s impact on the Divas division would be felt for years. For her contributions to women’s wrestling, Jacqueline is more than worthy of induction into the WWE Hall of Fame as a member of the Class of 2016.
5. Fabulous Freebirds:
Big hair, flashy attire and rock ‘n’ roll epitomized the 1980s, and no competitors lived the lifestyle better than Badstreet, USA’s own Fabulous Freebirds.
Formed in 1979, Michael “P.S.” Hayes, Terry “Bam Bam” Gordy and Buddy “Jack” Roberts ushered in a new era in sports-entertainment. Never before had three competitors formed a tag team, thus when they won the NWA National Tag Team Titles in Georgia Championship Wrestling, “The Freebird Rule” was established. Under this stipulation, any two man combination of the group’s members could defend the tag team championships, not just the duo that won them.
After a string of successes in Georgia, The Freebirds moonwalkedtheir way into the Texas-based World Class Championship Wrestling and embarked on a legendary rivalry with the revered Von Erich family. During this time, the group’s leader, Michael Hayes, recorded a song entitled “Badstreet, U.S.A.” that The Freebirds used as an entrance theme. Although they originally entered the ring to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s aptly titled “Freebird,” Hayes’ new track would pioneer the use of individual and original entrance themes for competitors.
The Freebirds became a force to be reckoned with in WCCW. They were brutal in their tactics and also in their attitudes toward their opponents. It was those attitudes that helped them win the Six-Man Tag Team Titles six times and the NWA American Tag Team Titles. Roberts also became WCCW Television Champion and Gordy held the NWA American Heavyweight Title. And it was during this time that The Freebirds added a fourth member, Jimmy “Jam” Garvin who would become Hayes’ frequent tag team partner.
Upon leaving WCCW, The Freebirds briefly joined WWE as part of Cyndi Lauper’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling Connection. Their tenure was short-lived and they competed in the AWA, followed by UWF (rechristened Mid-South Wrestling), where their tag team success continued, twice capturing the titles. While competing in UWF, however, The Freebirds once again enjoyed singles success when Buddy Roberts became UWF Television Champion and Terry Gordy won the UWF Heavyweight Championship.
The Freebirds eventually returned to WCCW before Hayes and Gordy made their way to NWA/WCW. It was during their time in WCW that Hayes and Garvin’s popularity as The Freebirds rose to new heights. The flashy duo twice captured the WCW World Tag Team Championships, United States Tag Team Championships, and the short-lived WCW Six-Man Tag Team Titles along with a masked partner named “Badstreet.”
Eventually, The Freebirds disbanded, but their impact on sports-entertainment is extraordinary. Not only did they revolutionize “The Freebird Rule,” later implemented by groups like Demolition, The nWo Wolfpac and The Spirit Squad and The New Day but they were also the innovators of using entrance music. To this day, few tag teams or trios can match the flash and innovation of The Fabulous Freebirds, which makes them a perfect fit for the WWE Hall of Fame.
6. Stan Hansen:
He had a scowl on his face, a bullrope in his hand and tobacco dripping from his lip, but Stan Hansen was no ordinary cowboy. The Bad Man from Borger, Texas, was a wild bucking bronco who became one of professional wrestling’s most revered international competitors during a career that spanned three decades from WWE to The Land of the Rising Sun and earned Hansen a spot in the WWE Hall of Fame
A collegiate football standout, Hansen attended the fabled West Texas State University, an institution that produced no fewer than a dozen ring greats. It was there that the big Texan met lifelong friend Bruiser Brody, with whom Hansen would travel the world competing in the squared circle. Soon after going pro, The Bad Man from Borger joined WWE in 1976.
Two months after his debut, Hansen made his first appearance in Madison Square Garden when he challenged Bruno Sammartino for the WWE Championship. And he made the most of it. The vicious cowboy unleashed a brutal clothesline that broke the champion’s neck — a move that quickly defined him as The Lariat. That summer, Bruno returned to the ring to battle his rival in the main event of a supershow at New York City’s Shea Stadium in front of 32,000 fans.
Following his tenure in the northeast, the unapologetically sloppy brawler arrived in Japan. Hansen quickly became one of the nation’s most notorious gaijins by becoming the first foreigner to defeat both Antonio Inoki and Giant Baba. Although he was nearly blind, the six-foot-four, 320-pounder ran roughshod over the country’s two major organizations — New Japan Pro Wrestling and All Japan Pro Wrestling — both solo and as a part of formidable tag teams with Bruiser Brody, Terry Gordy and Genichiro Tenryu, and famously brawled with the great Andre the Giant.
Now solidified as a major international star, Hansen returned to the States and defeated Rick Martel for the AWA Championship at the Meadowlands in New Jersey. But upon being forced to defend the title against WWE Hall of Famer Nick Bockwinkel, Hansen took the title hostage back across the Pacific, and began defending it there. The champ was informed that he had been stripped of the AWA Championship and mailed the title back, but not before running it over with his truck. It arrived badly bent, complete with mud tracks.
By the 1990s, The Lariat was a veteran renowned for his savage and merciless brawling style. In the early part of the decade, Hansen popped out Big Van Vader’s eyeball, defeated Lex Luger for the United States Championship and engaged in a bitter rivalry with Japanese legend Mitsuharu Misawa. At the turn of the millennium, Hansen hung up the cowbell and 10-gallon hat for good, but few competitors made an impact across the globe quite like The Bad Man from Borger, Texas. That’s why Hansen has been honored as a 2016 WWE Hall of Fame inductee.