First Hall of Fame 2016 Inductee Confirmed
It has recently being confirmed on WWE.com that former WCW, NWA and TNA World Heavyweight Champion, “The Icon” Sting will be the first inductee into the Hall of Fame 2016 Class. When I was informed the news late this afternoon by fellow editor, Lucas, I was absolutely delighted because I feel it is a long overdue achievement. Having only spent just over 14 months as a WWE employee, he has come a long way since he began his career as one of the Blade Runners in 1985.
Well it’s official – I have accepted the invitation to be inducted into the WWE HOF! HONORED!!!!
— Sting (@Sting) January 11, 2016
He first rose to prominence in March 1988 at the inaugural Clash of the Champions, when he fought the then NWA World Heavyweight Champion Ric Flair to a 45-minute draw. This would be the beginning of a feud that lasted nearly 25 years, until they met for the final time in September 2011 on TNA Impact. He won his first world championship from Ric Flair at The Great American Bash 1990, in what was a truly defining moment of his career and truly took him to the next level. He continued throughout the remainder of the early 1990s as a headline performer, notably holding the most number of appearances on a WCW Pay-Per-View – 99 times. As wrestling fans became wiser, the character of Sting changed and notably walked out on WCW (kayfabe) in September 1996. Gone from this point forward was the Surfer Gimmick we all knew, a much darker Sting was on the way.
When he returned, he was a dark mysterious character with a broken soul who loitered in the ceiling. He didn’t speak for nearly 18 months, but he didn’t need to because all he needed to do was an emotionless expression or drop down from the rafters. He eventually returned to the ring in December 1997, when he defeated Hollywood Hogan for the WCW Championship in what was arguably the most famous PPV in WCW history. He continued his reign throughout early 1998, despite some controversy courtesy of JJ Dillon. After losing the championship, he was one again repackaged as The Wolfpac Sting – gone were the silent expressions, a man with attitude was back and was a highlight of WCW throughout the summer of 1998.
Off-screen, Steve Borden the man behind Sting, found Jesus in August 1998 but was close to cracking under the pressure of WCW – he ultimately disappeared following Halloween Havoc 1998. When he returned, he was the emotionless man once again but throughout 1999, he held what would be his final WCW Championships when he defeated Diamond Dallas Page and Hulk Hogan. Throughout the remainder of his WCW career, he engaged in various different feuds including Lex Luger, Vampiro and Jeff Jarrett. After a brief hiatus at the end of 2000, he returned on the final episode of WCW Monday Nitro. In the closing segment of the show, he defeated his longtime rival Ric Flair in an emotionally charged match. Afterwards, he sat out the remainder of his contract with Time Warner and recuperated his injuries.
He made his triumphant return to wrestling in 2006 in TNA, in a run that lasted 8 years. During this time, he engaged in various different feuds with Jeff Jarrett, Kurt Angle, Samoa Joe and Abyss to name but a few. Throughout this time, he became NWA Champion once again, as well as TNA Champion and the inaugural inductee into the TNA Hall of Fame. This included an incredible match with Kurt Angle at Bound for Glory 2007. He departed TNA for the final time in January 2014 following a loss to Ethan Carter III, but he wasn’t gone for long…
He reemerged in April 2014 following the death of The Ultimate Warrior in a tribute on the WWE Network, his first non-archive WWE appearance. He later hit the headlines with the promo for WWE 2K15, and generated enormous interest in his character once again and got everyone talking. He made his long awaited WWE debut at Survivor Series 2014, when he cost The Authority the match and position of power. This later culminated in a thunderous match, his WWE debut match at WrestleMania 31 where he proved age was just a number and had an amazing match with Triple H.
In September 2015, he returned once again but this time as a challenger for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Night of Champions where he faced Seth Rollins in an amazing match, which was sadly cut short when he injured himself and collapsed in the ring. But before this, he once again proved age was just a number. He bounced around the ring like someone half his age and took every bump with style and conviction. His injury status has being relatively quite, until he gave a recent update to Ric Flair on the WOOO! Nation Podcast. But now, his legacy has being truly confirmed with his place in history with the WWE Hall of Fame 2016.
Since I became a wrestling fan, I have being a massive Sting fan and remain one to this day…it is indeed on my “Bucket List” to see him in person one day. But for you Sting, this is a honor you truly deserve and from myself and everyone at Wrestling’s Dirty Deeds, a massive congratulations for this long overdue achievement. And to quote the man himself, “The only thing that is for sure about Sting is nothings for sure”, we cannot wait to see what you get up to next!
What do you think of Sting’s Induction to the WWE Hall of Fame…what moments throughout his career stand out for you and who would you like him to face next…we’d love to know what you think!
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