Class of 2012
WWF Champion, 2nd Generation Anoi’i Family, Best Non Asian Japanese Wrestler
Hall of Fame Rating
6 out of 10
Yokozuna was the biggest and most agile of big men wrestlers in WWE’s history. He also has the record for the heavyist World Champion in the history of the organization. Ligitamatlly he weighed over 600 pounds for most of his tenure. That’s all of man. Other wrestlers his size were never able to really anything. While Haystacks Calhoun was great at standing and leaning, Yoko gave leg drops. 200 pound leg leg-drops. No move in the 90s looked like it hurt more than the Bonzai Drop.
That’s alot of meat squishing you.
Yokozuna’s career was a burst in 1993 and 1994 which generally fizzled out quickly. His time in the E was six years long, most of which was accomplished in the first two years. Then he got fat. Real fat. Too fat to really stand. So fat, that he was not allowed by certain State Athletic Commissions to perform in that state.
But the most important question is whether Yokozuna is a deserving Hall of Famer. Simply, every world champion before 2000 is deserving. Yokozuna won as a heel and held onto the belt for 280 days. That’s the same length of time as JBL and almost as long at the Ultimate Warrior. Its a big deal. From June 1993 till March 1994, Yokozuna was pushed and worked his ass off. All that equals Hall of Fame.
The problem with any performer pushed to the heights quickly is that there is nothing to do with him afterwards. Yokozuna was a victim of the death of the territory system. His career may have been longer and better if he took on the attraction mantle of big men of previous generations.
WWE likes to do one deceased wrestler a year. Those tend to fit into one of two categories. Either historical legends in the business (Eddie Graham or Gorgeous George) or WWE mainstays like Mr Perfect or in 2012, Yokozuna.
Backstage Yoko was great friends with Undertaker, well liked and well respected. 2012 was a great Hall of Fame class. Every person and element was deserving. That hasn’t been able to be said since 2005. When Yokozuna is the “least deserving” Hall of Famer, you know its a good class.
Opens Door For?
Perhaps More Samoans. Umaga, Rikishi, Haku and others. Mostly affirms if you held the big belt, the Hall of Fame is in the future. Go Jack Swagger!
Reasons this shouldn’t have happened.
Bad feelings from when Yoko ate everyone’s lunch!
(Wish I could find the video of Todd Pettengill singing at the 1996 Slammys about Yokozuna to the theme of Married With Children, lyrics as I remember them below)
“Yokozuna, Yokozuna, He’s the federation’s big kahuna.
Never missed a dinner! He’s a Nathan’s Hot Dog eating…winner.”