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View Poll Results: Who will be the second induction into the Summer 2013 Wrestlezone Hall of Fame?
Verne Gagne 20 66.67%
Buddy Rogers 7 23.33%
Gorgeous George 3 10.00%
Voters: 30. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 09-09-2013, 11:21 AM
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Default Wrestlezone Hall Of Fame: Summer 2013, Group 2

Welcome to the second installment of the Summer 2013 Hall Of Fame inductions! Here, you'll get the chance to choose one of wrestling's biggest stars for inclusion into the WZ HOF, where he'll join the likes of Hulk Hogan, Andre The Giant, Lou Thesz, Shawn Michaels, and the recently voted in Bret Hart! Today, I offer you three "old-school" wrestling names to choose from, where you have the opportunity to vote for the one most worthy of induction. As with the last, the polls here will once again be open for one week.

Verne Gagne


Verne Gagne is one of the most accomplished wrestling figures of all time. Gagne's achievements as a wrestler, trainer, and promoter are unrivaled by few, as he's officially recognized as a 16-time World Champion, including a ten time AWA World Heavyweight Champion, the most prestigious title of his time. Growing up in Minnesota, Gagne was both an accomplished wrestler and football player, winning two National Championships at the University of Minnesota, and despite being drafted by the Chicago Bears of the NFL, Gagne chose wrestling over football. As a member of the WWE, WCW, Pro Wrestling and Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame, Gagne looks to add Wrestlezone Hall of Famer to his resume.

After picking wrestling over football, Gagne joined the NWA, where he established himself as one of the greatest mat wrestlers of his time. Gagne won every single's title the NWA had to offer, until a dispute over the NWA Heavyweight Championship caused him to leave the NWA and form his own promotion, the American Wrestling Association, in 1960.

Upon forming the AWA, Gagne became one of the most well-respected and famous promoters of all-time. Gagne's AWA was in business for 30 years, where he served as trainer, promoter, and the company's top face. Gagne won the AWA World Championship 10 times during the inception of the company, and was one of the top faces of his time. As the company's first champion, he left an indelible mark on the business, as he won his 10th championship 20 years later, defeating Nick Bockwinkel. Other top feuds Gagne engaged in during his time as wrestler were against Gene Kiniski, Bill Miller, The Crusher, Fritz Von Erich, Mad Dog Vachon, Dick the Bruiser, and Dr. X. Gagne eventually retired as a wrestler in 1981 as AWA World Champion, defeating Nick Bockwinkel once again.

While Gagne left his stamp on the business as a wrestler, perhaps his most important role was as a trainer. Ric Flair, Ricky Steamboat, Curt Hennig, Ken Patera, The Iron Sheik and Bob Backlund were all groomed by Gagne, and Gagne was influential in the development of Jesse Ventura, "Mean"Gene Okerlund, and Hulk Hogan as well.

Wrestler, trainer, promoter. Few have worn so many hats so prominently the way Verne Gagne did. Will he add Wrestlezone Hall of Famer to his resume?

Buddy Rogers


Colorful, charasmatic, and rugged, the original 'Nature Boy', Buddy Rogers is widely known as the first WWWF Champion. Rogers left an indelible mark on the wrestling industry as a wrestler, character, and manager, Rogers was considered the be the first wrestler to be the total package of technique, looks, physique, and charisma. Now, the first wrestler to hold the WWWF and NWA Championships, and a posthumous member of the WWF and Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame, Buddy Rogers looks to join the Wrestlezone Hall of Fame as well!

Rogers was born in New Jersey, and was an outstanding athlete, excelling in wrestling, football, track and boxing all. However, it was wrestling that was his first love, and he debuted professionally at age 18, and just six years later, at age 24, Rogers captured the NWA Heavyweight Title at age 24.

Rogers became one of the most influential wrestlers of all-time, both in character development and moveset. It's Rogers "Nature Boy" persona that Ric Flair took on, the cocky, strutting, arrogant persona, adopting his figure four grapevine lock as well. Rogers is well-known as one of the first true "villians" in professional wrestling history, as his arrogant, villanous persona that is commonplace in wrestling today was invented by Rogers. Along with that came Rogers becoming one of the first great "promos" in wrestling, bragging and boasting about his own greatness, all-the-while cutting scathing promos on his opponents and their weaknesses.

Rogers found great success in both the NWA and the WWWF, where he feuded most famously with Lou Thesz and Bruno Sammartino. He found great success not only as a single's wrestler, but was also a well-renowned tag team wrestler as well. Moves previously used sparingly during his time such as body slams, dropkicks and piledivers were commonplace in Rogers repertoire, and he truly was influential in ushering in a new age of wrestling. His colorful character, promo-style and wrestling maneuvers have had a heavy influence on some of the greatest wrestlers of all-time, including the aforementioned Ric Flair, who borrowed heavily from Rogers in establishing his persona. After retiring, Rogers then furthered his legacy when he returned to the NWA and became a manager for such wrestlers as Ken Patera, Jimmy Snuka, and Big John Studd.

The first WWWF Champion. The first prototypical villian with his cocky, arrogant persona. An innovator in the ring, and an influence on some of the greatest wrestlers of all-time. Legendary feuds with greats such as Lou Thesz and Bruno Sammartino. Rogers seemingly did it all during his long career. Can he add Wrestlezone Hall of Famer to his credits?

Gorgeous George


'Gorgeous' George Wagner was one of the biggest stars in wrestling during the 1940's and 50's. He is widely known and credited as the first wrestler to create an ultra-flamboyant, gender-bending persona, which influenced both professional wrestling and pop culture alike. But not just a persona, George was a great in-ring performer as well, winning the AWA Championship several times, and moreso, the respect of his peers, even those who showed normal disdain for gimmick wrestling, such as Lou Thesz, whom George famously feuded with.

Gorgeous George perhaps tapped into and understood the pulse of the audience he was in front of more then anyone else before him. His theatrical displays inside the ring, his outlandish outfits, and his fake golden hair truly established him as a larger-then-life wrestler, arguably the first and thus, greatest. George was wrestling's truly first cowardly villian, a cheater who lived by the credo: "Win if you can, lose if you must, but always cheat!" As George wrestled during the early days of television deals, George, a heel, was the most famous wrestler of his time.

But George's influence extended beyond the wrestling ring as well. Both Mohammed Ali and James Brown have noted George's influence upon them, and their adoption of their cocky persona's are a credit to Gorgeous George. Bob Dylan credits George with changing his life just through words of encouragement he spoke to him. George's influence and flamboyance extended far beyond the wrestling ring to pop culture, and he's one of the reasons flamboyant characters and television deals themselves exist in pro wrestling today.

George's life was shortened by liver disease, and he passed away at the young age of 48. Yet, he remains one of the most influential and successful wrestlers of all-time. He was a pioneer and responsible for bringing wrestling into mainstream culture. A charter member of the Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame and member of both the Wrestling Observer and WWE Hall of Fame's, George looks to add Wrestlezone Hall of Famer to his credit as well!
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Verne Gagne. Buddy Rogers. Gorgeous George. All pioneers whose significant influence on the business reach to this day. All three men are deserving and have legitimate cases for induction, but only one will get in? Who will it be?
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  #2  
Old 09-09-2013, 12:49 PM
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Three legends in the wrestling world, three superstars who ALL deserve induction, and yet there can only be one answer as to who deserves to be the one out of these three to be inducted into the Wrestlezone Hall of Fame. My answer as to who should be the man out of these three to enter the Hall of Fame is none other than Buddy Rogers.
Buddy Rogers has done it ALL in the wrestling business. From being a face to an established heel Buddy was consistently a top draw in the wrestling world. He is credited with approximately 15 years of being considered a Top Draw and oddly enough is the first man inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame from this group. Also not to mention that he is the entire inspiration for already inducted Wrestlezone Hall of Famer Ric Flair. Whether it being title reigns, innovation, or general contributions to general wrestling Buddy Rogers has always been at the top of every list and quite frankly edges out the other two potential candidates by small margins.

To quote the esteemed Wrestlezone favorite, Lou Thesz this is what is said about Buddy Rogers “Lou Thesz,: “Rogers is remembered by fans and performers alike as one of the top all-time stars in the business…” We’re talking about another person in the Wrestlezone Hall of Fame giving his approval of Lou Thesz.

Now looking specifically at his contributions to wrestling as a whole, in general he is credited with popularizing flying moves. He was the motivation behind the moving from mat based wrestling to more quick paced moves including “the drop kick, the piledriver, bodyslams. In addition is somewhat sporadic nature of delivering promos was also rather innovative and new at the times. Now in comparison both the other superstars he faces off against have their legacy and usefulness to wrestling as well. Gorgeous George may be the greatest heel of all time and Gagne producing the AWA which ultimately created several superstars and established stars of the future. However, between the popularizations of “flying wrestling maneuvers as well as his innovations towards different promo styles couple with the fact that he did this consistently for a better portion of 15 years he surely deserves the nod over the other two candidates.

Now let me reiterate ALL of the candidates deserve a Hall of Fame nod this isn’t a matter of why but a matter of when. If you look at specific accomplishments between the three there really isn’t too much of a difference between there list. Looking at the sheer numbers it would appear that the accomplishment category would probably be a two way race between Gagne and Rogers however considering that George was a large heel who people paid to see get beat up the title reign/accomplishment category is relatively irrelevant However seeing that it is a category that is widely debated when deciding Hall of Fame members I think it is fair to say that this is pretty equal.
Now when we are discussing the popularity and quality of the matches between the three this is very subjective. Gagne and George were both VERY good for their era and time period’s style of wrestling however in my own OPINION I’d much rather watch a Rogers match. I’m a fan of the quicker, bigger move match style and seeing as how the other two primarily focused on the mat based attack Rogers appeals more towards me in general. However once again all of these wrestlers were at some point some of the biggest draws in the wrestling world. Ergo: people paid to see their matches, and people liked how they wrestled. Without the mat based offense wrestling would be very different however I’d argue that without the “flying” moves wrestling would have not taken off the way that it did. Therefore it is in my best judgment that this category goes to Buddy Rogers by the slimmest of margins just based on his matches as well as the innovation and change he made to wrestling matches. However once again I’m grading him subjectively and there is no factual way of grading match quality except a conglomeration of opinions and how these opinions receive a general match. I’m sure there will be arguments saying someone else is better in the ring to which I don’t think I or anyone can factually argue against or for seeing as how it’s a subjective category when dealing with some of the greatest wrestlers and different styles of wrestling. (Old School)

Now finally we get to a category where I believe we have a definitive winner. Who gives the best promos? My response to that inquiry is very simple and I think everyone will agree on this that answer is Gorgeous George. He is a heel, who had very quality promos and MADE you hate him. But guess what that is all that Gorgeous George is. A heel who you love to hate. I think in general most people would also agree that Rogers should be considered the number two speaker of the list. Not only does he have the catchphrases, the general ability to be sporadic and loud, but also he uses them for a purpose and that is to enhance his feuds. I think Verne Gagne takes the last nod on the list simply because he’s not terribly known for any particular promos that I’m aware of and his significance to wrestling as a whole is more the creation of the AWA. There’s nothing too promotastic (yes I made that word up) about that particular attribute.
Basically in summation title reigns is probably a tie between Gagne and Rogers, matches I gave the edge to Rogers, promos I gave the edge to George, however most importantly impact to overall wrestling I have to Rogers which put him over the top for me. Until Vince gets inducted I can’t allow Gagne to make it in. This in turn causes the matchup to look like George vs Rogers and in that match up it’s extremely close. All three should become Hall of Famers but right now we must decide who gets in first and I say Rogers.

I’m sorry Verne and George “it couldn’t have happened to a nicer man.”
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Old 09-09-2013, 12:56 PM
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I'm going for Verne in this for a few reasons.

First off he's hands down the greatest wrestling trainer of all time. He knew how to train guys, he knew how to get the most out of guys, and he really knew how to help develop someones character. Some of the biggest names of all time owe their career to Verne's training plain and simple. Without the likes of Verne you don't have the likes of Ric Flair, Ricky Steamboat and Superstar Billy Graham.

Secondly, he was a tremendous wrestler and a tremendous draw. He often sold out big arena's and stadiums and was the biggest star the AWA had during the 60's-70's. He was one of the few wrestlers who would be seen outside of wrestling whether it was on talk shows or in commercials as his popularity often took him into other facets of entertainment.He was a 10 time AWA champion, the top wrestler in his region for over 20 years (which had a lot more to do with his charisma and drawing than the fact he owned the AWA) and IMO he's one of the 10 greatest wrestlers of all time and is one of the most influential as well.

Lastly his skills as a promoter. Being the guy who ran the AWA throughout its run he often did big business against plenty of opponents such as Billy Robinson, Mad Dog Vachon and of course his greatest rival Nick Bockwinkel. That guy made nothing but money for a long period of time and it took the biggest star of all time in Hulk Hogan to take him down for good. Although his reluctance of changing with the times ultimately defeated him that shouldn't discredit all the great business he did before then.

Ultimately Verne is the greatest trainer of all time, on of the greatest wrestlers of all time and one of the greatest promoters of all time. Buddy Rogers was a great heel and great draw, Gorgeous George was an incredibly influential wrestler with a flamboyant personality and amazing charisma but across the board I think Verne has them beat. He may not be as flamboyant as George but Verne did have amazing charisma, he may not have been a great heel like Rogers but he was certainly as good as a draw and a superior wrestler. George and Buddy are great wrestlers, but they aren't great trainers, they aren't great promoters and as influential as George was with a lot of his mannerisms, I would argue Verne is just as influential, just in a different way.
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Old 09-09-2013, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Buddy was consistently a top draw in the wrestling world
WRONG!

A top draw is, by definition, one who appears at the top of the card. Rogers failed to be a consistent card topper (at relevant organisations) for the majority of his career, and even when holding the NWA championship (the most prestigious title in the world at the time) he was still frequently doing second billing to Antonino Rocca. The WWE themselves acknowledge this fact in Rocca's hall of fame article, or at least they did five years ago. I'm not going back to check.

Quote:
He is credited with approximately 15 years of being considered a Top Draw
WRONG!

Rogers was only a "top draw" for a total of three and a half years. During the years of 1940-1959 Buddy Rogers cracked the top five draws a grand total of zero times. To put his status as a "top draw" during that period into some kind of perspective, we'll compare him to each decade's actual top draw.

Number of gates over 10,000 drawn
1940-49: Bill Longston: 73 Buddy Rogers: 15
1950-59: Lou Thesz: 81 Buddy Rogers: 27

It was only once 1960 rolled around that Rogers established himself as a legitimate top name in professional wrestling, and that period of dominance lasted for a grand total of three years before he stopped drawing money, pretended to have a heard attack and resigned in disgrace.

Quote:
Whether it being title reigns, innovation, or general contributions to general wrestling Buddy Rogers has always been at the top of every list and quite frankly edges out the other two potential candidates by small margins.
WRONG!

Relevant Title Reigns

Buddy Rogers
NWA Heavyweight Champion - 414 days
WWWF (WWE) Champion - 22 days (one quarter the length of Alberto Del Rio0

Verne Gagne
AWA Heavyweight Champion - 4,677 days

General Contribution to Wrestling

Verne Gagne ran the second most successful wrestling promotion in American history, innovated and popularized the contemporary technical technical style and trained more high profile performers than any other man in history.

Buddy Rogers did nothing outside the ring beyond serving as a not particularly noteworthy manager in an era full of managers and trying to force Fabulous Moolah to sleep with him. His biggest contribution to the development of the wrestling business was Ric Flair taking his moniker.

Explain to me please how Rogers edges out Gagne in any of the areas you listed.

Quote:
To quote the esteemed Wrestlezone favorite, Lou Thesz this is what is said about Buddy Rogers “Lou Thesz,: “Rogers is remembered by fans and performers alike as one of the top all-time stars in the business…” We’re talking about another person in the Wrestlezone Hall of Fame giving his approval of Lou Thesz.
WRONG!

Aside from the fact that this sentence makes very little grammatical sense, it's also massively misleading. Lou Thesz hated Buddy Rogers on account of Rogers being a cunt (we'll come back to this later). No end of Thesz quotes describe Rogers as unpleasant, disrespectful, a cheat, lazy and not a wrestler. Trying to confirm Rogers' significance off the back of a Thesz quotation is laughable.

Buddy Rogers was one of the only men in the industry who Lou Thesz actually refused to put over. They had more than fifty matches, and a memory serves Thesz never let him take a single one. This dates back to Rogers' colossal disrespect of Ed Lewis - Thesz's mentor and the single most important person to the development of professional wrestling not names McMahon.

Quote:
Now looking specifically at his contributions to wrestling as a whole, in general he is credited with popularizing flying moves.
WRONG!

Also, what the fuck are you talking about?

a) Rogers didn't use flying moves
b) Flying moves such as the headscizor takedown or top rope splash had already been popularized by guys like Rocca or DLJ before Rogers came to prominence
c) Every wrestler on the planet used the occasional dropkick, it was one of the most ubiquitous maneuvers there was.

This area more than any other shows the extent to which you do not know what you are talking about. Rogers is the only man on the list who can't be credited with changing the direction of professional wrestling. Verne Gagne is the reason we have technical wrestlers today instead of wall to wall beefcakes. Those who credit Wagner with transforming the spectacle of wrestling are wrong, but this are least have a valid argument. Your assertion that Rogers (a man notorious for being lazy between the ropes) popularized, innovated or in fact in any way contributed to the development of contemporary wrestling holds no merit whatsoever.

Quote:
He was the motivation behind the moving from mat based wrestling to more quick paced moves
WRONG!

That had already happened - it was called the east coast and the transformation concluded four years before Buddy Rogers won anything of note.

Quote:
In addition is somewhat sporadic nature of delivering promos was also rather innovative and new at the times.
WRONG!

I think you should look up sporadic, because I'm not convinced that it means what you think it means.

Quote:
Now finally we get to a category where I believe we have a definitive winner. Who gives the best promos? My response to that inquiry is very simple and I think everyone will agree on this that answer is Gorgeous George. He is a heel, who had very quality promos and MADE you hate him.
WRONG!

You've never heard a Gorgeous George promo, and the reason for that is that he seldom ever cut them. Promos weren't a significant part of the industry during his career.

Quote:
All three should become Hall of Famers but right now we must decide who gets in first and I say Rogers.
WRONG!
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