The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Wrestlers of all time. This list of famous Wrestlers is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Wrestlers.
With an HPI of 64.91, Hulk Hogan is the most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 53 different languages on wikipedia.
Terry Eugene Bollea (; born August 11, 1953), better known by his ring name Hulk Hogan, is an American retired professional wrestler. He is widely regarded as the most recognized wrestling star worldwide and the most popular wrestler of the 1980s.Hogan began his professional wrestling career in 1977, but gained worldwide recognition after signing for World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) in 1983. There, his persona as a heroic all-American helped usher in the 1980s professional wrestling boom, where he headlined eight of the first nine editions of WWF's flagship annual event, WrestleMania. During his initial run, he won the WWF Championship five times, with his first reign being the second-longest in the championship's history. He is the first wrestler to win consecutive Royal Rumble matches, winning in 1990 and 1991. His match with Andre the Giant on WWF The Main Event on February 5, 1988, still holds American television viewership records for wrestling with a 15.2 Nielsen rating and 33 million viewers.In 1993, Hogan departed the WWF to sign for rival promotion World Championship Wrestling (WCW). He won the WCW World Heavyweight Championship six times, and holds the record for the longest reign. In 1996, he underwent a career renaissance upon adopting the villainous persona of "Hollywood" Hulk Hogan, leading the popular New World Order (nWo) stable. As a result, he became a major figure during the "Monday Night Wars", another boom of mainstream professional wrestling. He headlined WCW's annual flagship event Starrcade three times, including the most profitable WCW pay-per-view ever, Starrcade 1997.Hogan returned to the WWF in 2002 following its acquisition of WCW the prior year, winning the Undisputed WWF Championship for a record equaling (for the year) sixth time before departing in 2003. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2005, and inducted a second time in 2020 as a member of the nWo.Hogan also performed for the American Wrestling Association (AWA), New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) – where he won the original IWGP Heavyweight Championship – and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA – now known as Impact Wrestling).During and after wrestling, Hogan had an extensive acting career, beginning with his 1982 cameo role in Rocky III. He has starred in several films (including No Holds Barred, Suburban Commando and Mr. Nanny) and three television shows (Hogan Knows Best, Thunder in Paradise, and China, IL), as well as in Right Guard commercials and the video game, Hulk Hogan's Main Event. He was the frontman for The Wrestling Boot Band, whose sole record, Hulk Rules, reached No. 12 on the Billboard Top Kid Audio chart in 1995.
With an HPI of 61.05, John Cena is the 2nd most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 76 different languages.
John Felix Anthony Cena ( SEE-nə; born April 23, 1977) is an American professional wrestler, actor, and former rapper, currently signed to WWE. Widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time, he is tied with Ric Flair for the most world championship reigns in professional wrestling history.Born in West Newbury, Massachusetts, Cena moved to California in 1998 to pursue a career as a bodybuilder. He switched to professional wrestling in 1999 when he debuted for Ultimate Pro Wrestling. He signed with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) in 2001, where he was assigned to Ohio Valley Wrestling. After moving to WWE's SmackDown roster in 2002, Cena gained fame and success after adopting the persona of a trash-talking rapper. He won his first singles title, the United States Championship, in 2004. The next year, he won the WWE Championship, and his character changed into a clean-cut hero. He led the company as its franchise player and public face for the next decade. A joint-record 16-time world champion, Cena has won the WWE Championship 13 times, a record for the title. He is also a five-time US Champion, a four-time world tag team champion, a two-time Royal Rumble match winner, a one-time Money in the Bank match winner, and has headlined multiple major WWE pay-per-view events, including its flagship event, WrestleMania, five times. His professional wrestling career has been met with mixed critical and audience reception, with praise for his character work and promotional skills, but criticism for his perceived over-representation and on-screen placement relative to other wrestlers. Cena first starred in The Marine (2006), and gained praise for his performances in Trainwreck (2015), Ferdinand (2017), Blockers, and Bumblebee (both 2018). He starred in F9 and portrayed Peacemaker in The Suicide Squad (both 2021) and the eponymous television series. His debut studio album, You Can't See Me (2005), was certified platinum. Outside his work in entertainment, Cena is known for his involvement in numerous charitable causes, namely with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, where he has granted the most wishes at over 650.
With an HPI of 59.55, Dave Bautista is the 3rd most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 59 different languages.
David Michael Bautista Jr. (born January 18, 1969) is an American actor and retired professional wrestler. He participated in WWE events from 2002 to 2010, in 2014, and one final run from 2018 to 2019. In his acting career, he is most widely known for his portrayal of Drax the Destroyer in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Bautista began his wrestling career in 1999, and in 2000 signed with the then-World Wrestling Federation (WWF, renamed WWE in 2002). From 2002 to 2010, he gained fame under the ring name Batista and became a six-time world champion by winning the World Heavyweight Championship four times and the WWE Championship twice. His first reign with the World Heavyweight Championship is the longest reign for that title at 282 days. He has also held the World Tag Team Championship three times (twice with Ric Flair and once with John Cena) and the WWE Tag Team Championship once (with Rey Mysterio). He was the winner of the 2005 Royal Rumble match and went on to headline WrestleMania 21, one of the top five highest-grossing pay-per-view events in professional wrestling history. After leaving WWE in 2010, he re-signed in December 2013, making his first appearance back in January 2014 and won that year's Royal Rumble match. He headlined WrestleMania XXX before again departing that June. In October 2018, Bautista made his second return to WWE and faced Triple H at WrestleMania 35 in April 2019, before retiring from wrestling. Bautista began acting in 2006 and has starred in The Man with the Iron Fists (2012), Riddick (2013), the James Bond film Spectre (2015), Blade Runner 2049 (2017), Army of the Dead (2021), and Dune (2021). In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he has played the role of Drax the Destroyer in the films Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019), and Thor: Love and Thunder (2022). He has also appeared in several direct-to-video films since 2009. In August 2012, Bautista signed a contract with Classic Entertainment & Sports to fight in mixed martial arts (MMA). He won his lone MMA fight on October 6, 2012, defeating Vince Lucero via technical knockout in the first round.
With an HPI of 58.98, Chyna is the 4th most famous Wrestler. Her biography has been translated into 36 different languages.
Chyna (born Joan Marie Laurer; December 27, 1969 – April 17, 2016) was an American professional wrestler, bodybuilder and television personality. She first rose to prominence in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) in 1997, where she was billed as "The Ninth Wonder of the World" (André the Giant was already billed as the eighth). A founding member of the stable D-Generation X as the promotion's first female enforcer, she held the WWF Intercontinental Championship (the only female performer to do so) twice and the WWF Women's Championship once. She was also the first woman to participate in the Royal Rumble match and King of the Ring tournament, in addition to becoming number one contender to the WWF Championship. With singles victories over several prominent male wrestlers – including multiple-time world champions Triple H, Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho and Jeff Jarrett – she left what WWE called "a lasting legacy as the most dominant female competitor of all time". After leaving the WWF in 2001, she wrestled sporadically, with New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) in 2002 and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) in 2011. The latter was her final appearance in the ring. Outside of wrestling, Chyna appeared in Playboy magazine twice, plus numerous television shows and films. She was considered a sex symbol. In 2005, she was a cast member on VH1's The Surreal Life, which led to several other celebrity reality appearances on the network, including The Surreal Life: Fame Games in 2007 and Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew in 2008. Chyna was also known for her tumultuous relationship with fellow wrestler Sean Waltman, with whom she made a sex tape released commercially in 2004 as 1 Night in China, which won a 2006 AVN Award for Best-Selling Title. She starred in a further five pornographic titles, including AVN's 2012 Best Celebrity Sex Tape, Backdoor to Chyna. In 2019, Chyna was posthumously entered into the WWE Hall of Fame as a member of D-Generation X, making her the first woman to be inducted as a part of a group or team.
With an HPI of 56.59, The Undertaker is the 5th most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 57 different languages.
Mark William Calaway (born March 24, 1965), better known by the ring name The Undertaker, is an American retired professional wrestler. Widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time, Calaway spent the vast majority of his career wrestling for WWF/E, and is best known for his critically acclaimed "Deadman" Undertaker gimmick, for which he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2022. Calaway remains employed for WWE through a 15-year contract signed in 2019.Calaway began his career in 1987, working under various gimmicks for World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) and other affiliate promotions. He became USWA Unified World Heavyweight Champion and WCWA Texas Heavyweight Champion during this time. After signing with World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1989, he had a brief stint in the mid-card as "Mean" Mark Callous, before joining the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, turned WWE) in 1990. Calaway was rebranded as "The Undertaker" once joining the WWF. As one of WWE's most popular and enduring characters, The Undertaker was known for his undead, funereal, macabre persona, which gained significant mainstream popularity and won him the Wrestling Observer Newsletter award for Best Gimmick a record-setting 5 years in a row. The longest-tenured wrestler in company history at 30 years, The Undertaker is one of the most prominent figures of the Attitude Era–a high ratings, envelope-pushing generation of the WWF/E in the latter 1990s. Calaway expanded on The Undertaker gimmick by assuming a biker identity, dubbed "American Badass", in 2000. Calaway resurrected The Deadman Undertaker in 2004, with residual elements of American Badass Undertaker remaining. For the better part of his career, The Undertaker was observed as a focal point of WWE's flagship annual event, WrestleMania, where he became esteemed for The Streak—a series of 21 straight victories. He is also known for pairing with his in-storyline half-brother Kane, with whom he had alternatively feuded and teamed off and on with as The Brothers of Destruction from 1997 through 2020. During his active career under The Undertaker gimmick, Calaway won the WWF/E Championship four times, the World Heavyweight Championship three times, the Hardcore Championship once and the World Tag Team Championship six times. He also won the Royal Rumble match in 2007. He is one of WWE's most prolific pay-per-view performers, headlining several pay-per-view events, including WrestleMania on five occasions.The Undertaker retired from professional wrestling in 2020 and made a farewell appearance at that year's Survivor Series, 30 years to the day from his on-screen debut for the company at the same pay-per-view brand. The Undertaker was later inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as the headline inductee for the Class of 2022.
With an HPI of 55.87, Ric Flair is the 6th most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 37 different languages.
Richard Morgan Fliehr (born February 25, 1949), known professionally as Ric Flair, is an American retired professional wrestler. Regarded by multiple peers and journalists as the greatest professional wrestler of all time, Flair had a career that spanned 50 years. He is noted for his tenures with Jim Crockett Promotions (JCP), World Championship Wrestling (WCW), the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, later WWE) and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA). Much of his career was spent in JCP and WCW, where he won numerous titles. Since the mid-1970s, he has used the moniker "The Nature Boy". A major pay-per-view attraction throughout his career, Flair headlined the premier annual NWA/WCW event, Starrcade, on ten occasions, while also co-headlining its WWF counterpart, WrestleMania, in 1992, after winning that year's Royal Rumble. PWI awarded him their Wrestler of the Year award a record six times, while Wrestling Observer Newsletter named him the Wrestler of the Year (an award named after him and Lou Thesz) a record eight times. The first two-time WWE Hall of Fame inductee, first inducted with the class of 2008 for his individual career and again with the class of 2012 as a member of The Four Horsemen, he is also a member of the NWA Hall of Fame, and the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame. Flair is officially recognized by WWE as a 16-time world champion (8-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion, 6-time WCW World Heavyweight Champion, and two-time WWF Champion), although the number of his world championship reigns varies by source, ranging from 16 to 25. He has claimed to be a 21-time champion. He was the first holder of the WCW World Heavyweight Championship and the WCW International World Heavyweight Championship (which he also held last). As the inaugural WCW World Heavyweight Champion, he became the first person to complete WCW's Triple Crown, having already held the United States Heavyweight and World Tag Team Championships. He then completed WWE's version of the Triple Crown when he won the Intercontinental Championship, after already holding the WWF Championship and the World Tag Team Championship.
With an HPI of 54.37, Eddie Guerrero is the 7th most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 35 different languages.
Eduardo Gory Guerrero Llanes (October 9, 1967 – November 13, 2005) was an American professional wrestler. He was a prominent member of the Guerrero wrestling family, being the son of first-generation wrestler Gory Guerrero. Guerrero performed in Mexico and Japan for several major professional wrestling promotions, and in the United States performed for Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), World Championship Wrestling (WCW), and most notably World Wrestling Federation/Entertainment (WWF/WWE). Guerrero's gimmick was that of "Latino Heat", a crafty, resourceful wrestler who would do anything to win a match. His catchphrase became "I Lie! I Cheat! I Steal!" and was used in one of his entrance themes; he partly used this phrase in the title of his 2005 autobiography, Cheating Death, Stealing Life. Despite being a heel for most of his career, he was popular in and out of the ring and was at the peak of his career as a face during 2003–2005, becoming the top wrestler on the SmackDown brand in 2004. He experienced various substance abuse problems, including alcoholism and an addiction to painkillers; these real-life issues were sometimes incorporated into his storylines. Guerrero spent his early career wrestling in Mexican promotions and forming a popular tag team with Art Barr. After the death of Barr, Guerrero received his first mainstream exposure in the United States in 1995 by joining ECW and winning the ECW World Television Championship. Later that year, Guerrero moved to WCW, where he became WCW United States Champion and WCW Cruiserweight Champion and also led the Latino World Order. He left WCW in 2000 after the company failed to elevate him to a main event spot. He moved to WWF with his WCW colleagues Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko and Perry Saturn, who formed a group called The Radicalz. Guerrero went on to win the WWF European Championship and WWF Intercontinental Championship before he was released in 2001 due to addiction issues. After being rehired in 2002, he formed Los Guerreros with his nephew Chavo, winning the WWE Tag Team Championship, and established himself on the SmackDown brand. He climbed to main event status and won the WWE Championship, his sole world championship at No Way Out 2004. He lost the title later that year but remained a popular main eventer until his death on November 13, 2005. He was posthumously inducted into the WWE, AAA, Wrestling Observer Newsletter and Hardcore halls of fame.
With an HPI of 53.33, Stone Cold Steve Austin is the 8th most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 45 different languages.
Steve Austin (born Steven James Anderson; December 18, 1964), better known by his ring name "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, is an American media personality, actor, producer, and retired professional wrestler. Widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential professional wrestlers of all time, he was integral to the development and success of the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now known as WWE) during the Attitude Era, an industry boom period in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Austin began his professional wrestling career in 1989, after playing college football at the University of North Texas. He signed with World Championship Wrestling (WCW) in 1991 and adopted the persona of "Stunning" Steve Austin, a villainous in-ring technician, and he won the WCW World Television Championship and the WCW United States Heavyweight Championship twice each, alongside the WCW World Tag Team Championship and NWA World Tag Team Championship once each with Brian Pillman (as the Hollywood Blondes). After a brief stint in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), Austin signed with World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) in 1995. In the WWF, Austin was repackaged as a short-tempered, brash, anti-establishment antihero named "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, becoming the most popular wrestler of the Attitude Era off the back of his feud with company chairman Mr. McMahon. He won the WWF Championship six times, the WWF Intercontinental Championship twice, the Million Dollar Championship once, and the WWF Tag Team Championship four times, making him the fifth WWF Triple Crown Champion. He is also a record three-time Royal Rumble winner, won the 1996 King of the Ring, and headlined multiple WWF pay-per-view events, including WrestleMania (its flagship event) four times. He was forced to retire from in-ring competition in 2003 after multiple knee injuries and a serious neck injury at the 1997 SummerSlam event, and portrayed an authority figure later that year. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2009 and, 19 years after retiring, returned to in-ring competition to defeat Kevin Owens in an impromptu one-off match at WrestleMania 38 in 2022. Austin hosts the podcast The Steve Austin Show (2013–present) and the WWE video podcast Broken Skull Sessions (2019–present). He collaborates with El Segundo Brewing on Broken Skull IPA, an india pale ale beer. He also hosted the reality competition series Steve Austin's Broken Skull Challenge (2014–2017) and Straight Up Steve Austin (2019–present).
With an HPI of 53.31, Triple H is the 9th most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 53 different languages.
Paul Michael Levesque (born July 27, 1969), better known by the ring name Triple H, is an American business executive, actor, and retired professional wrestler serving as the executive vice president for Talent Relations and head of creative for WWE. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time.Born and raised in Nashua, New Hampshire, Triple H began his professional wrestling training from 1990 to 1991 and his career from 1992 to 1993 with the International Wrestling Federation (IWF) under the ring name Terra Ryzing. He joined World Championship Wrestling (WCW) from 1994 to 1995 and was repackaged as a French-Canadian aristocrat named Jean-Paul Lévesque and was repackaged in 1995 when he signed with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) where he became Hunter Hearst Helmsley, and later, Triple H.In WWF, Triple H gained industry fame after co-founding the influential D-Generation X stable, which became a major element of the "Attitude Era" in the 1990s. After winning his first WWF Championship in 1999, he became a fixture of the company's main event scene, and was widely regarded as one of the best wrestlers in North America by the turn of the millennium. Triple H has headlined several major WWE pay-per-view events, closing the company's flagship annual event, WrestleMania, on seven occasions.Triple H won a number of championships in his career, being a five-time Intercontinental Champion, a three-time world tag team champion (two World Tag Team Championship reigns, and one Unified WWE Tag Team Championship reign), a two-time European Champion, and a fourteen-time world champion, making him the company's seventh Triple Crown Champion and second Grand Slam Champion. He is also a two-time Royal Rumble match winner, and a King of the Ring tournament winner. Later in his career, Triple H gained notability for his behind-the-scenes work at WWE, creating the developmental branch NXT, and gaining praise for his business acumen in professional wrestling.Outside of wrestling, Triple H has been a figure of substantial media attention due to his marriage to Stephanie McMahon, daughter of Vince McMahon and the CEO of WWE. In 2019, he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of the D-Generation X group.
With an HPI of 53.22, The Miz is the 10th most famous Wrestler. His biography has been translated into 41 different languages.
Michael Gregory Mizanin (born October 8, 1980) is an American professional wrestler, actor, and television personality. He is currently signed to WWE, where he performs on the Raw brand under the ring name The Miz. Mizanin first gained fame as a reality television participant, appearing on The Real World: Back to New York in 2001 and its spin-off, Real World/Road Rules Challenge, from 2002 to 2005. He won Battle of the Seasons and The Inferno II. He reached the final of Battle of the Network Reality Stars, and won a Reality Stars-themed episode of Fear Factor in 2006. After finishing as runner-up in the fourth season of Tough Enough and subsequently launching his wrestling career, Mizanin appeared on Diva Search, Total Divas, Tough Enough, and hosted several seasons of The Challenge. He also stars in the reality television series Miz & Mrs. alongside his wife, Maryse Ouellet, and has starred in films produced by WWE Studios, namely The Marine franchise, Christmas Bounty (2013), and Santa's Little Helper (2015). Mizanin signed with WWE in 2004, and debuted on the main roster in 2006. He has won the WWE Championship twice, the Intercontinental Championship eight times, the United States Championship twice, as well as a total of eight tag team championships, giving him 20 overall championships in WWE. As a result, he became WWE's 25th Triple Crown Champion and 14th Grand Slam Champion, as well as the only wrestler to accomplish the latter twice under the revised 2015 format. He also won the 2010 Money in the Bank ladder match. Mizanin is also the only WWE Triple Crown and Grand Slam champion to have won the Deep South Wrestling Heavyweight Championship, doing so while the promotion was WWE's developmental territory. Among WWE's most prolific pay-per-view event performers, Mizanin headlined WrestleMania XXVII in 2011, and was ranked No. 1 on Pro Wrestling Illustrated's annual PWI 500 list that same year.
Pantheon has 282 people classified as wrestlers born between 1916 and 2000. Of these 282, 245 (86.88%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living wrestlers include Hulk Hogan, John Cena, and Dave Bautista. The most famous deceased wrestlers include Chyna, Eddie Guerrero, and Randy Savage. As of April 2022, 33 new wrestlers have been added to Pantheon including Stan Hansen, Mark Schultz, and Road Warrior Hawk.
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Which Wrestlers were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 25 most globally memorable Wrestlers since 1700.