Throughout the course of WWE history, many have had the chance to latch onto the most coveted prize in sports entertainment: the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
Many former champions have been memorable. Others have been downright Miz-erable. Unfortunately, some of the most talented and entertaining superstars in the history of the company never had the chance to obtain the sport’s prized possession. Here are five of the most talented superstars to never hold the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
5. William Regal
Regal holds the dubious distinction of being the first inductee into the much-respected “Kiss My Ass Club.” If only that honor were as distinguished as holding the WWE Championship…
Despite never holding the top prize, Regal was no stranger to gold in the WWE, having been a champion on 15 different occasions although he is, in my opinion, criminally underrated.
With all of the skills necessary to have a run as the face of the company, Regal’s situation is likely similar to that of Jake “The Snake” Roberts or Scott Hall, where the wrestler’s personal problems prevented the company from being able to fully commit.
4. Owen Hart
Bret Hart called himself “The Best There Is, The Best There Was, and The Best There Ever Will Be.” One man who could always match him step-for-step in the ring, however, was his little brother Owen.
The so-called “Black Hart,” Owen was one of the best in-ring technicians of his generation, was great on the microphone, and was surprisingly hilarious when guesting as a color commentator (e.g., 1996 King of the Ring).
As we all know, his life was tragically cut short before ever reaching the pinnacle of sports entertainment, but I think most will agree he would have carried the strap well had he been granted the opportunity.
3. Roddy Piper
“The Hot Rod” revolutionized the role of the heel during the 1980s. I mean, who else had the balls to break a coconut over Jimmy Snuka’s head?
His uncouth tactics and lack of respect for those around him would be an inspiration for those who followed, including Steve Austin and CM Punk.
As one of the most recognizable superstars of his era, it seems hard to believe that Piper never got a run as champ, but he was at a disadvantage by wrestling in an era where faces almost always came out on top.