In 2004, former APA acolyte Bradshaw was given his first main event push
on SmackDown as John ‘Bradshaw’ Layfield. Fortuitously capitalizing on
the lack of main event calibre superstars in the SmackDown locker room
after WrestleMania XX, Bradshaw took on a J.R Ewing inspired Wall Street
mogul gimmick. Driving to the ring in a long white limousine fronted by
Texas longhorns, the right-winged millionaire became one of the most
hated heels of his era, and that's drastically underselling it.
The crowd heat on him was nuclear, which was to be expected when his highlights included hunting for illegal immigrants on the Texas-Mexico border and giving Eddie Guerrero’s mother a kayfabe heart attack. Don’t expect those moments to appear in his Hall of Fame video package.
It really makes us wonder how Vince McMahon originally thought JBL would work as a face.
After winning the WWE Championship from Guerrero at the 2004 Great American Bash PPV, 'The Wrestling God' embarked on a 280 day reign that many consider from an in-ring perspective, as one of the worst of all-time.
JBL would gladly throw his weight around in a WrestleMania Gimmick Battle Royal and fans would welcome his addition, just as long as he doesn’t win.