Three weeks ago fans of pro wrestling, especially those who are long time fans of the WWE product, saw a few things that many of us honestly didn’t believe we would live long enough to see occur. The WWE Hall of Fame was something that the deep rooted fans would watch but not too many others because it wasn’t seen as a completely legit honor. (WIKIPEDIA) In recent years though it’s morphed and they’ve started using the ceremony to truly honor the history of the business, from the Four Horsemen and Ric Flair, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and last year landing the biggest missing link from the past in Bruno Sammartino. (WWE) This induction made history as it was something nobody expected would ever happen, with such a huge accomplishment last year the eyes turned to the 30th anniversary of the grandest spectacle in the history of the business, WrestleMania, and the question of how you top such a momentous induction. Never wanting to disappoint WWE decided to take things a step further by adding in three men that fans didn’t expect to ever see make it to that stage, two because they were headed down a dark path, one because he was so far on the outs with Vince McMahon and so many in the WWE. (WRESTLINGNEWSWORLD)
Jake Roberts, Scott Hall, and The Ultimate Warrior were the headliners of this years class. A couple years ago people had pegged both Hall and Roberts as dead men walking because of the things they did outside of the ring, seeing them inducted was a great moment for those of us who’ve been watching their recoveries, who were such great fans of theirs in younger days. (WWENEWS) Warrior was a different situation, he had seemingly burned every bridge he had leading back to the WWE and didn’t seem to be worried about it, even stating he wasn’t worried about being in the Hall of Fame. (DIGITALSPY) When he was included, fans were elated, as an in ring performer he deserved the honor, regardless of what you thought of his personal and political standing. His speech and the response from the other workers that night showed that he was back on board and had buried the hatchet with all those who had issues with him in the past. (CBS) When the news broke three days after his induction that Warrior had died, the shock was so great, nobody expected it, especially so soon after such a bright moment. Very few men left as big a mark on the business of pro wrestling as Warrior, history can’t be erased, but it can be rectified and this seems to have occurred before the passing of Warrior. While the hole left in the collective heart of wrestling fans will never be filled after the loss of such a legend, at least solace can be taken in the fact that he went out on a positive note.