Could These Individuals Have Been Pro Wrestlers?
The wrestling world is never satiated when it comes to new talent. Fans love the rise and fall of professional wrestlers and always welcome new ones, especially if they are already famous outside the ring. That being said, what celebrities would have made great wrestlers in their prime?
Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, better known as Thor, is an Icelandic giant that has won the World’s Strongest Man contest and currently holds the record for the heaviest deadlift of all time at 1,105 pounds. Thor first became famous for his role as Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane in Game of Thrones.
Standing at 6’8 and 344lbs (450lbs at his heaviest), Thor is a monstrous figure that would bring an energy to the ring that could only be matched by wrestlers like Kane, The Undertaker or The Big Show. He also has acting experience, meaning he knows how to deliver a line and follow a script. Of course, it is his strength that would be most useful as he could do some incredible moves against fellow wrestlers. This seems like an easy crossover, and we would be excited by the possibility in the future.
There are countless talented collegiate wrestlers that have the strength and athleticism needed to be a professional wrestler. That being said, the only thing keeping them back is perhaps their desire to become one. Back in 1982, wrestling fans in New York were captivated by Ronnie LaBeef. At 125lbs, he wrestled like a heavyweight casually tossing his opponents around the mat. That year, he won 1st place at the 20th Annual NYSPHSAA Intersectional Wrestling Championships. Wrestling may be geared towards hulking figures, but there is definitely still room for smaller, scrappy guys.
Ronnie LaBeef has a great personality, and a great ring name to go along with it. This Fulton Wrestling Hall of Fame athlete represents a lot of American college athletes with a passion for wrestling and he could have been a great addition in the 1980s. Hopefully we see more varied body types in the future instead of the overly muscular wrestlers we are used to.
Chuck Liddell is one athlete we definitely should have seen in the WWE. On paper he seems like the perfect fit. Back in the early 2000s, Liddell was an icon and was doing commercials and films outside of his UFC duties. Liddell stands at 6′ 2″, 205lbs, making him a perfect midsized wrestler.
Chuck Liddell had a captivating background story as well. As a former navy seal, he has the tough guy persona built in, especially with his trademark mohawk. “The Iceman” was a striking ring name as well. Liddell could have easily worked the American hero persona and been another Kurt Angle. Apparently, Liddell has been showing interest in the WWE recently, but at 51 years old, his body certainly isn’t what it used to be.
This is an easy one so we won’t spend too much time on it. Schwarzenegger could have easily been a professional wrestler if he wanted to. He has the face, the charisma, acting chops, and especially the figure from his Mr. Olympia days. That said, he was making millions in his acting career and it likely never made sense to risk his health crossing over to wrestling for anything but a quick promo.
With tight end Gronkowski soon returning to the WWE, it makes us wonder what other NFL players could have made a run in pro wrestling. Ndamukong Suh is a mean, nasty, and physically intimidating 6’3” defenseman, everything that would have made a perfect heel. He certainly has the attitude and aggression, with the athleticism needed to be a great wrestler.
Bruce Willis back when Die Hard premiered would have been a great addition to the WWE, (then WWF). Apparently he wrestled in high school so he knows the sport to a degree and he has all the macho charisma you could want. However, his trademark bald head is really what would have sold it. Willis facing off against Steve Austin in a good twin-evil twin storyline would have been one for the ages.