Number 1: “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels
On the very first Raw, the then Intercontinental Champion, Shawn Michaels, couldn’t have imagined that he would have had such a significant role on Raw. But without Michaels, there wouldn’t be a Monday Night Raw, or even a WWE.
At first, Michaels was just a guy hovering around the top, having gimmicks ranging from a charismatic boy toy, to a fan favorite baby face. It wasn’t until his run with Bret did Michaels really broke out, becoming a huge favorite, and having a Beatles like atmosphere. But gradually you could see Michaels break, and he had to leave because he “Lost his Smile”.
Michaels’ next big run came when he formed D-X with Triple H, and it allowed him to get rid of some of his frustration. This was complete with him making fun of wrestlers, and kind of thumbing his nose at the business in general. A lot of older heads in the company couldn’t stand it, but Michaels and his antics were doing great from TV. However, his back became a problem and he had to retire prematurely.
That is, until 2002. Michaels, who under went a spiritual awakening during his first retirement, came back as a different character. Instead of being a moody asshole, Michaels became a goofy father figure, being serious when need be. He was the anchor for the show again, regaining the role he had from the early run of Raw.
Most memorable Raw Moment:
The Cowboy has left the Building
As I’ve said, Raw was Shawn Michaels. Shawn’s final goodbye is the memorable moment in Raw history, because it was the old guard leaving his nest. Again ‘Taker is a Smackdown guy, so Shawn was the only person on Raw who ran the ship on day one. This was an emotional moment, which was needed in the world in professional wrestling.
And that is the Top Ten wrestlers in the Raw era for the first 1000 episodes. For 19 years, Raw has seen very important and interesting characters, and we can’t wait to see who makes the list in 19 years from now.