5 WWE Superstars who surpassed their fathers’ popularity
Pro Wrestling’s storied history is chock-full of a string of 2nd and 3rd generation Superstars. Over the course of the past several decades, various Superstars have debuted in WWE, carrying the legacy that their fathers left behind. Many failed to achieve the kind of success their fathers had back in the day. Ted Dibiase was the greatest villain in WWE at one point in the 80s, but Ted Dibiase Jr. didn’t manage to build a career as illustrious as his father’s.
Then, there are Superstars like Cody Rhodes, who is on his way to becoming as big of a name as his father once was. Cody now holds the position of EVP in All Elite Wrestling, despite never managing to break out of the mid-card in WWE. Finally, we have a bunch who became bigger than their predecessors.
Let’s take a look at five of these Superstars who managed to outdo their old man.
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#5 Alberto Del Rio
Back in the 70s and 80s, Dos Caras was one of the most popular wrestlers in Mexico’s Universal Wrestling Alliance. He never wrestled for WWE but won the UWA World Heavyweight title on three separate occasions.
His son, on the other hand, went on to become a major star in WWE in the early 2010s. Alberto Del Rio came up to the main roster in 2010, defeating Rey Mysterio without breaking into a sweat. He then won the first-ever 40-man Royal Rumble Match but failed to win the world title at WrestleMania.
Del Rio later enjoyed several title runs in the company, including two WWE and two World title reigns. He was an integral part of the Summer of Punk storyline in 2011. In 2013, he successfully defended his World title at WrestleMania 29 against Jack Swagger. Additionally, he has won the United States title on two occasions.
#4 Curt Hennig
“The Axe” Larry Hennig was a mid-card mainstay in several promotions during the 60s and 70s. He won the Tag Team titles in various promotions, most notably American Wrestling Association.
Larry’s son, Curt Hennig, became one of the biggest heels in WWE during the 80s. Donning the character of “Mr Perfect”, Hennig was a two-time Intercontinental Champion and is widely regarded as one of the best wrestlers of all time.
He went on to compete in WCW, and was a part of the Four Horsemen, taking the spot of the retiring Arn Anderson. Unfortunately, Hennig passed away in 2003 at the age of 44, due to acute cocaine intoxication. Hennig was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2007.
Known for his technical in-ring ability, Henning was a delight to watch in the ring. He belonged to a generation of superstars who changed the phase of the wrestling industry.
Henning’s son Curtis Axel was a WWE midcard mainstay. Despite spending over a decade with the company, he failed to reach the heights of his father Curt Henning.
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#3 Bray Wyatt
Mike Rotunda, also known as IRS (Irwin R. Schyster), gained notoriety as a dastardly heel in WWE in the early 90s. He teamed up with Ted Dibiase and formed Money Inc. Later, he became a part of Dibiase’s Million Dollar Corporation. He won the WWE Tag Team titles on five different occasions.
Rotunda’s son, Bray Wyatt, debuted in WWE way back in 2013. Although he donned an intriguing gimmick, he soon fizzled out following several major losses, including three WrestleMania defeats. Wyatt returned to WWE recently, as The Fiend. The terrifying character is currently one of the most promising acts in WWE, and has the potential to become one of the biggest villains in WWE history.
IRS was a ‘yes man’ to Dibiase and was majorly involved with the faction. He did not have much of a singles record to boast of. Bray Wyatt, on the other hand, is a former WWE champion and is one of the company’s top athletes. Despite being repackaged multiple times, he has played each gimmick with merit.
Wyatt is certainly a future WWE Hall of Famer.