10 Wrestlers Who Foreshadowed Everything

CM Punk, Cody Rhodes and Becky Lynch stay ahead of the curve and change the game.

CM Punk WWE 2K

It pays to be prescient in pro wrestling.

Various sources close to Vince McMahon have revealed over the years that his general philosophy is to be ever so slightly behind top trends in order to capitalise most effectively on the way his broadest audience relates to things, and while one only need to look to the bulk of his television output to see this to be true, he was at least once a man who understand the importance of looking long into the future.

The inaugural WrestleMania has been presented as the biggest gamble The Chairman ever took, and he did so banking on an ardent belief that wrestling really could be for the wider audience if packaged for them. An MTV relationship was inspired, the choice of Hulk Hogan as his top guy immaculately-timed and the taking over of New York City as crucial to the aesthetic as anything happening inside Madison Square Garden.

McMahon's finger wasn't held quite as tightly on the pulse for his second boom in 1998, but luckily he had the wrestlers on his roster to ensure it happened at all...

10. Stone Cold Steve Austin

CM Punk WWE 2K
"As the King Of The Ring, I'm serving notice to every one of the WWF Superstars. They're all on the list, and that's Stone Cold's list, and I'm fixin' to start running through all of 'em."

Not the most famous takeaway line from Stone Cold Steve Austin's 1996 King Of The Ring crowning, but just prophetic as everything else he said and did that night, the concept of his time coming and an ascension to the top tier were being talked into existence by Austin himself before the company fully committed.

It's a common in-house line that a slew of Austin 3:16 signs the very next night dictated where the organisation had to go, but a simple glide through the Network slides from the time exposes that as nonsense. 'The Rattlesnake' really was ready to be everything he promised by mid-1996, but it took the shrewd observations of a returning icon to give him the match, feud and outcome that actually made it happen...

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