10 Babyface Champions WWE Fans Just Wouldn’t Accept

9. Shawn Michaels (1996)

Shawn Michaels Wrestlemania 12

Tired, feeling the strain, and struggling to become the heroic champion he so desperately wanted to portray, a nervy Shawn Michaels felt every bit of the pressure that came with being WWF Heavyweight Champion in 1996.

A brave Michaels admitted in one his autobiographies that he failed to live up to his own expectations during that initial run with the gold. It can't have been easy for Shawn to look inwardly and realise that he couldn't carry the burden of being the WWF's top guy after WrestleMania XII, even though he truly wanted to be the best yet.

Watching that Iron Man victory at 'Mania XII today shows a clear disparity between the "boyhood dream coming true" and fan respect for Bret Hart.

Boos that weren't so noticeable at the time have become more audible in retrospect, and there was similar apathy towards Michaels as babyface champion dotted throughout his run; watch how Shawn was booed by the New York crowd at Survivor Series 1996, and how that same audience cheered wildly when Sycho Sid bagged the belt.

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Freelance journalist, podcasting loony, lifelong wrestling fan and musician (drums are people too), who has a vague resemblance to a loudmouth announcer in Defiant Wrestling. Also a huge, HUGE fan of Halloween and Lucky Charms. Huge.