5 Greatest Wrestling Stables
My list of wrestling's top stables.
Five Greatest Wrestling Stables
5) D-Generation X 1998 Version
Members: Triple H, Road Dogg, Billy Gunn, X-Pac, Chyna.
Back in 1998, Steve Austin was bringing the WWF into the attitude era. But right behind him was the stable D-Generation X. After Shawn Michaels left due to injuries; Triple H recruited X-Pac, Road Dogg, and Billy Gunn to revitalize the stable. Their devil may care attitude won them the respect of the fans; and they feuded with Owen Hart, The Rock, and Vince McMahon and his stable the corporation. Their top moment was when they made attacks on the World Wrestling Federation's top rivals WCW. While the stable broke up at the start of 1999, they would come back together months later, but with less success than before. Still, the way they helped the attitude era is what people remember them for.
4) The Fabulous Freebirds
Members: Michael Hayes, Terry Gordy, Buddy Roberts.
The Fabulous Freebirds were created by Michael Hayes, Terry Gordy, and Buddy Roberts back in 1979. The three of them acted as a tag team with two men wrestling and the other acting as backup. The trio invented what is known as the freebird rule, which states that any two people of the stable can defend the tag titles. They wrestled in many promotions and won numerous titles. Their tops feuds were against the Road Warriors and the Von Erich family. Another one of their best moments was Michael Hayes' Bad Street USA song, which would later become their theme. That song would also help redefine the entrance theme.
3) The Heenan Family WWF version
Members: Bobby Heenan, King Kong Bundy, Mr. Perfect, Ravishing Rick Rude, Ric Flair, Haku, Big John Studd, Arn Anderson, Tully Blanchard, Harley Race, and others.
Sometimes it takes a good manager to help promote a good wrestling; and one of the best managers was Bobby "the Brain" Heenan. Bobby Heenan started off his WWF career managing Jesse Ventura; but would later move on to Big John Studd after Ventura retired from in-ring performances. Big John Studd started off feuding with Andre the Giant in a body-slam challenge that went all the way to Wrestlemania I. Then his next target was the WWF champion Hulk Hogan. Heenan Family member King Kong Bundy fought Hogan in a steel cage at Wrestlemania II. Then he would recruit Andre the Giant to fight Hogan at Wrestlemania III. The Heenan Family would later go on to include WWF tag team champions The Brain Busters (Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard,) and Intercontinental champions "Ravishing" Rick Rude and Mr. Perfect. The last member of the Heenan Family would be Ric Flair, who would go on to win the WWF title two times. The stable ended in 1993 when Bobby Heenan left the company. While many other manager led stables would come, none of them had the same effect as the Heenan Family.
2) New World Order (NWO) Original
Members: Hollywood Hogan, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, The Giant, Ted DiBiase, Syxx, Eric Bischoff, Fake Sting, Randy Savage, Buff Bagwell, Scott Norton, and others
Considered one of the greatest angles of all time. It started when Scott Hall left the WWF and made a surprise appearance on WCW. He was soon joined by Kevin Nash and the two of them announced that they are taking over WCW. Nash and Hall made a challenge at Bash at the Beach for them and a mystery partner to take on WCW's best wrestlers. Sting lead the brigade against Nash and Hall, who would go on to be called the Outsiders. The duo dominated Sting's team at Bash at the Beach '96. Hulk Hogan would later come out; and reveal himself to be the their mystery partner. Hogan made a surprise heel turn and the NWO was born. The trio attacked anybody associated with WCW, whether he was a face or a heel, leaving odd promo videos during WCW Nitro, and spray painting NWO on the WCW title. This led WCW fan favourites Sting and Lex Luger to team up with their oldest enemies, Ric Flair and Arn Anderson, to take them out. Soon, Ted DiBiase revealed himself to be the NWO's businessman and The Giant and Sean "Syxx" Waltman would join them. It wasn't long before a fake Sting joined, creating chaos among the WCW team. After feeling betrayed by his friends, Sting donned a "crow" gimmick and started to hang out in the rafters, taking out any NWO members who were causing trouble. Soon Eric Bischoff would join and announce that an open membership for anybody who wanted to join; anybody who didn't was considered an enemy. The stable would dominate WCW for a the next year and a half until WCW champion Hollywood Hogan would face WCW's top face Sting at Starcade '97. The match between the two didn't equal up due to a poor ending saying that Hogan won by a fast count that didn't look like a fast count. Sadly, the politics by the members would be the company's undoing as fans started to get tired of seeing the NWO dominate everybody; and started to enjoy the Attitude Era of the WWF. Even though it would cost a lot of viewers, the NWO were the ones that brought the viewers there in the first place and in my books, the good outweighs the bad.
1) The Four Horseman
Members: Ric Flair, Arn Anderson, Ole Anderson, Tully Blanchard, J.J. Dillon, Lex Luger, Barry Windham, Kendall Windham, Sid Vicious, Hiro Matsuda, Paul Roma, Brian Pillman, Chris Benoit, Steve McMichael, Dean Malenko
One of the first wrestling stables ever; the Four Horsemen were first formed when NWA World Champion Ric Flair, NWA Tag Team Champions Ole and Arn Anderson, and US Champion Tully Blanchard, along with Tully's manager J.J. Dillon, did promo's together. The four of them feuded with guys like the Road Warriors, Magnum T.A., Nikita Koloff, and their biggest rival Dusty Rhodes. Ole would leave the group due to some problems with the bookers, and Lex Luger would go on to take his place. They continued their feud with Dusty and the others; and it even lead to the first ever War Games match when Dusty, Nikita, the Road Warriors, and their manager Paul Ellering took on the Horsemen and J.J. Dillon. After a year, Lex Luger would leave the Horsemen and they would find a replacement in Barry Windham. During that time, Flair and Windham would dominate the singles division, while Arn and Tully became a dominate tag team. The trend continued until 1989 when Arn and Tully left for the WWF due to money problems. The NWA promotion tried to add replacement members like Kendall Windham and Sid Vicious, but neither of them could cut the mustard. Soon J.J. Dillon left and was replaced with Hiro Matsuda. Unfortunately, Hiro just wasn't Dillon, and the horsemen were starting to die. The final nail in the coffin was when Ric Flair went to the WWF in 1991 due to some problems backstage. In 1993, Ric Flair returned to the NWA, now called WCW, and a big Horsemen reunion was announced. But rather then having the original Four Horsemen like they promised, Flair, Arn, and Ole were joined by a random jobber named Paul Roma. A few years later, Ric and Arn tried to reform the Horsemen with Brian Pillman and Chris Benoit. Their new enemies were Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, and Sting. Then Pillman would leave the company and was soon replaced by Steve "Mongo" McMichael. Then the Horsemen took a new turn when the NWO entered the picture, forcing them to aid their old enemy Sting. A year later, Arn Anderson retired from wrestling and Curt Henning was brought in to replace him, but Curt would betray them for the NWO. Flair left for a while after a fight with Eric Bischoff, putting the stable on hold. Then in 1998, Arn Anderson would return with final team of Horsemen; Ric Flair, Steve McMichael, Chris Benoit, and Dean Malenko. This group would continue until 1999 when Mongo left the wrestling business; and Benoit and Malenko would leave a power-hungry Flair and join up with Perry Saturn and Shane Douglas to form the Revolution. But you can't deny that their influence helped introduce the wrestling world to the faction.
Notes: Information from websites Wikipedia and Online World of Wrestling, and the book "The Death of WCW" by Bryan Alvarez and R.D. Reynolds
Pictures from Online World of Wrestling