10 Incredible Links Between Wrestlers You'd Never Expect

Vince McMahon and Antonio Inoki are opposites. Most of the time, anyway...

CM Punk Ultimate Warrior

As much a thought exercise as earnest analysis, the following list focuses on the bizarre ways in which certain wrestlers are connected.

And you'd think, particularly now, that such links are impossible. Wrestling is an industry premised on conflict, and in 2023, the real conflict behind the curtain is more absorbing than the onscreen product. The very real CM Punk Vs. Elite feud has overshadowed the fictional universe in AEW for almost eight months, where in WWE, the boardroom saga and the Vince McMahon Vs. Triple H power struggle has supplanted the Bloodline saga as the main topic of conversation.

And the tribalism, Christ almighty, the tribalism. Fans and wrestlers aren't even connected by the same kind of wrestling if it happens to be promoted by a company with a different set of initials. GUNTHER's work in WWE is ignored by AEW fans who love the physicality of Tomohiro Ishii's cameo apperances, where WWE fans who adore Rey Mysterio but cannot sanction El Hijo del Vikingo. It's vile out there. The division is toxic. And still, connections persist.

Is everybody connected in some indirect or even spiritual way?

Or are wrestlers just a massive bunch of lying hypocrites?

10. Vince McMahon, Antonio Inoki & Luke Gallows

CM Punk Ultimate Warrior

Luke Gallows has the too sweetest deal in all of wrestling; like a self-aware and intentionally funny Brutus 'The Barber' Beefcake, he knows he can secure steady work through his history with the Bullet Club.

He is doing precisely that in WWE at present - a couple of years removed from tagging with Kenny Omega and grabbing some ****1/2 match ratings in the process - through another onscreen association with AJ Styles. Except, with Styles out of action, Gallows is getting money for doing actually nothing in 2023.

This isn't strictly true - he has worked dark matches at TV tapings and spent a decent chunk of the year on the road - but he's yet to work in April, and it's hardly as if he's been wizzorking a sweat in Trenton, New Jersey.

Both Vince McMahon and Antonio Inoki, two promoters antithetical to one another, have each blasted Gallows for working the worst matches they have ever seen.

Think about that: Inoki, who valued legitimacy above all else, and McMahon, who outed wrestling as a sham in the public sphere just to save a few quid in 1987, are united by Gallows. NJPW still instructs its workers to keep kayfabe!

While Vince once forced Rhyno and Tajiri to stop working a house show match he found so boring that he couldn't bear to watch, Dax Harwood recently revealed that a Revival Vs. Good Brothers match was in fact the "worst match" Vince had ever seen.

Inoki meanwhile was so disgusted with Gallows' match with Sylvester Terkay for the Inoki Genome Federation in February 2011 - as sloppy and as slow a match as you will ever see - that he stormed the ring and called it off, screaming "Bullsh*t!" in fury.


Michael Sidgwick is an editor, writer and podcaster for WhatCulture Wrestling. With over seven years of experience in wrestling analysis, Michael was published in the influential institution that was Power Slam magazine, and specialises in providing insights into All Elite Wrestling - so much so that he wrote a book about the subject. You can order Becoming All Elite: The Rise Of AEW on Amazon. Possessing a deep knowledge also of WWE, WCW, ECW and New Japan Pro Wrestling, Michael’s work has been publicly praised by former AEW World Champions Kenny Omega and MJF, and current Undisputed WWE Champion Cody Rhodes. When he isn’t putting your finger on why things are the way they are in the endlessly fascinating world of professional wrestling, Michael wraps his own around a hand grinder to explore the world of specialty coffee. Follow Michael on X (formerly known as Twitter) @MSidgwick for more!