With a truly-historic 2022 coming to an end, the wrestling world is looking ahead to 2023, and what will happen over the next 12 months.
With January approaching, WrestleMania season is drawing near, and with WrestleMania comes the Hall of Fame.
Many of wrestling’s biggest stars have already received the nod, but not everyone and these are some of the huge names yet to go in.
5: The Great Muta
Right now, the Great Muta is on his retirement tour, after a truly iconic career in wrestling.
Considered by many to be one of, if not the greatest Japanese wrestler of all time, Muta has held gold with AJPW, NJPW, WCW, and Pro Wrestling NOAH, among others.
Away from titles, Muta has been an inspiration for so many wrestlers, yet a WWE Hall of Fame induction continues to allude the legend.
On January 1, Muta will compete against WWE’s Shinsuke Nakamura, in a rare example of WWE allowing one of their stars to compete elsewhere.
Could a Hall of Fame induction have been part of the deal for Nakamura? Perhaps, but whether that happens or not, Muta is worthy of the induction.
4: Owen Hart
It’s nothing short of a crime that for many wrestling fans (and non-fans alike) Owen Hart will be best known for his final moments.
Hart’s tragic passing at the Over the Edge 1999 event has forever cast a shadow on a career certainly worthy of the Hall of Fame.
In this instance, it is Owen’s widow, Martha Hart, who has rejected calls from WWE (and fans) to induct her husband, holding the company responsible for his death.
While Martha has been more open to wrestling this year, even appearing for AEW at their Double or Nothing Pay-Per-View, a relationship with WWE remains non-existent, so don’t expect to see the Rocket receive the nod next year.
When Batista broke into the wrestling business, it came at a time of his life when many would be considering winding up their careers.
Undeterred, the Animal not only became a wrestler but a six-time WWE World Champion, along with a handful of Tag title reigns.
Unlike many on this list, we know that Batista will be inducted, as he was announced in 2020, but pulled out due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
It’s understandable, the Animal was worthy of headlining the ceremony, and the 2020/2021 dual induction would not have been right.
With The Undertaker headlining this year’s Hall of Fame, expect Batista to receive the long-awaited honors next year.
2: The Rock
The Bramha Bull. The People’s Champion. The Great One. The Most Electrifying Man in Sports Entertainment.
Whatever you call him, Dwayne Johnson should be called a WWE Hall of Famer.
Frankly, it’s baffling he’s not already been given the nod, and we can only imagine one reason for why either he’s said no, or WWE has refused to put him in.
Either Rock, WWE, or both, believe he’s not done in the ring.
It’s hardly a secret that WWE wants the Great One back, with many predicting the long-awaited match with Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 39.
Will that match happen? At this time it’s difficult to say, but one thing we know for sure is that Dwayne Johnson is Hall of Fame bound.
1: Vince McMahon
When fans think of the biggest star in wrestling, they may conjure names like Hulk Hogan, ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin, John Cena or even Roman Reigns.
Well none of these names would have reached the heights they soared to without Vince McMahon.
Of course, a McMahon induction is problematic, thanks in part to his controversial exit from WWE in July over allegations of misconduct.
As wrestling fans have made clear, they don’t forget. Just ask Hulk Hogan and the chilly reception he received at WrestleMania 37 in his home state of Florida.
There is perhaps no bigger name in wrestling who is more deserving than any induction than Vince McMahon, but whether it will ever happen is another matter entirely.