The Career-Defining Moments of The 2020 WWE Hall of Fame Class
7. John “Bradshaw” Layfield
John “Bradshaw” Layfield vs. Finlay – Belfast Brawl: WWE WrestleMania XXIV
Here is an excellent example of why JBL is considered the hard-hitting wrestler to have a long career in WWE. When Bradshaw transformed into the “billionaire cowboy” who was hated for consistently retaining his WWE Championship, many people forget what a brawler Bradshaw was. His matches with Undertaker, Eddie Guerrero, and John Cena during 2004-2005 were some of the most hard-hitting contests in Smackdown history. Here we see two wrestling veterans in Finlay and JBL beating the ever-living crap out of each other in the grandest stage of them all. On paper, people may think “Why is this match even happening at Wrestlemania?” However, having this match kickoff Wrestlemania was a perfect reminder as to why these two performers are the best to do it. It is a great match to rewatch in an underrated contest to remind yourself why JBL belongs in the WWE Hall of Fame.
6. “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith
The British Bulldog vs. Bret Hart – WWF Intercontinental Championship Match: WWF Summerslam 1992
Who could forget the historic Summerslam 1992? 80,000+ witnessing The British Bulldog capturing the WWF Intercontinental Championship inside Wembley Stadium. This crowd was hot and on their feet for every moment. Davey Boy Smith was one of the best technical and powerhouse wrestlers, making him a great performer. It is great to see Smith get the recognition he deserves. He was a missing piece to the WWE Hall of Fame.
5. Jushin “Thunder” Liger
Jushin “Thunder” Liger vs. Brian Pillman – WCW Light Heavyweight Championship Match: WCW SuperBrawl II
Throughout the ’90s, Jushin “Thunder” Liger made a name for himself as one of the most outstanding junior heavyweights in the world. His vibrant attire was unforgettable and a must-watch. He would make sporadic appearances in WCW, where a whole new set of eyes caught a glimpse of the international superstar. Liger’s career would span almost 40 years, where he wrestled the best of the best in many major promotions. This classic looks at how he was first exposed in the United States and a great understanding of why Liger was the international superstar he would become.
4. Celebrity Inductee: William Shatner
WWE Monday Night RAW: February 10, 2010
William Shatner did not have an iconic wrestling career as a celebrity, but his few WWE appearances were quite memorable. One that sticks out is the 2010 episode of Raw where he hosted. The celebrity guest host era of WWE can be challenging to watch, but since Captain James T. Kirk is heading to the celebrity wing, this is a great episode. Also, watching Shatner sing the best WWE themes is a funny moment to look back on.
3. The Bella Twins: Brie Bella and Nikki Bella
The Bella Twins (Brie Bella & Nikki Bella) vs. AJ Lee & Paige – WWE Wrestlemania 31
The Bella Twins deserve to be in the WWE Hall of Fame. Whether it is too early for them to be inducted is another story, however, the name and brand they built reached heights which no one could have imagined. These women were in some of the most challenging times of women wrestling in WWE, but they managed to adapt and became the bridge of the Diva era and the current Women’s Revolution we see today. This tag team match is considered an end of an era. These four women took advantage of every minute of wrestling they were given. It was a quick match in a big show, but with what they were given, these four women delivered. The following year, women’s wrestling changed. It is fun to see how The Bella Twins were able to adapt throughout the remainder of their time in WWE.
2. Warrior Award Recipient: Titus O’Neil
The Prime Time Players (Titus O’Neil & Darren Young) vs. The New Day (Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods): WWE Tag Team Championship Match – WWE Money In The Bank 2015
Titus O’Neil has been the backbone of WWE’s Public Relations department for years and does not get the recognition he deserves. At Money in the Bank 2015, he and Darren Young reached the pinnacle of tag team wrestling, finally capturing the WWE Tag Team Championships. Although it was for a short period, seeing the Prime Time Players get their recognition was a feel-good moment.
1. New World Order (Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall & Sean Waltman)
The Entire NWO Souled Out 1997 PPV
There are too many moments and matches to choose from for this iconic group. However, NWO Souled Out shows how popular and influential the group had become. Not one group in wrestling history can claim they had an entire pay-per-view just for them. The four members being inducted are perfectly spotlighted in this event. The Outsiders, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall, now considered an iconic duo, face-off against one of the greatest tag teams in The Steiner Brothers in a match for the WCW World Tag Team Championship. Syxx shows off how great of a cruiserweight he is when he and Eddie Guerrero pulled out a classic ladder match for the WCW United States Championship. In the main event, the leader of the NWO, “Hollywood” Hogan, would challenge The Giant. This event is a great example of the NWO’s peak, and it is great to remind how great they were.