5 wrestlers who have influenced WWE's in-ring action the mostLast updated on Oct 14, 2018, 01:57 pm
Wrestling has evolved a lot from what it was during its early days, with the way matches unfold and how they are executed, transforming through various ages.
From the days of Bruno Sammartino to the present day of Roman Reigns, the style of wrestling has been shaped by the icons.
Here are the five wrestlers who have influenced in-ring performances the most.
Hulk Hogan changed the look and style of in-ring performance
Before Hogan made wrestling a national phenomenon, wrestling shows were usually attended by ethnic working class communities.
This reflected in the popularity of wrestlers like the Italian-American Bruno Sammartino, but Hogan changed it all with his rise in popularity.
With him, the matches took on a storytelling approach, where numerous ups and downs throughout the match would lead on to the finish.
Shawn Michaels had a lot to contribute as well
Nobody in history has been able to sell a move by the opponent as Shawn Michaels, and he became a pioneer in this regard.
Moreover, the athletic finesse that Michaels brought into the business has also influenced wrestling.
Before Shawn Michaels, high-flying wrestlers were usually considered unworthy of main event status, but he changed it and became one of the greatest ever.
Mick Foley was another influential performer
Mick Foley brought with him the extreme format of wrestling in WWE, which was unlike anything else the company had seen before.
Foley introduced the brutal format of wrestling in the matches opposite Vader and Sting and even matches using thumbtacks and barbed wires which were earlier not a part of WWE's style.
Falls from top of cages were also made famous by him.
John Cena modernized the Hulk Hogan approach to wrestling
John Cena, among the all-time babyfaces of WWE, took on the classical approach of Hogan.
After being overpowered to a large extent by the opponent, Cena staged a comeback worthy of a mythical hero.
Even though his style was appreciated by children, he became boring after a while to more mature audiences.
His style has been overused by most wrestlers who came after him.
CM Punk deserves a spot in this league
CM Punk was the complete package of talent and personality that WWE could not make the full use of.
Punk is one of the most technically gifted wrestlers ever, and his numerous counters to John Cena during their matches showed how sound Punk was in the ring.
Along with Daniel Bryan, Punk also introduced a host of submission maneuvers which were unseen earlier.