I’ve been thinking about this for a while, where do the best wrestlers in the world actually come from?
A variety of criteria could be used to determine this. Number of wrestlers to come out of a particular place, number of titles held, popularity, it could literally be a million things. I think the most important is the quality of the wrestlers that are produced by a trainer. You can have one hundred wrestlers come out of a training facility but if they’re all garbage, it doesn’t matter.
If I may be so bold, the best wrestlers in the world come from Calgary, Alberta.
I also want to make it very clear that I am not trying to discredit any trainers/wrestlers/promotions in any way, this is just my opinion.
When I talk about Calgary, I am speaking about Stu Hart’s Dungeon training facility. This humble space became the home of some of the greatest wrestlers in the world. Stu gave his students the bare bones aspects of what wrestling is. There was nothing fancy pants about the dungeon or what was taught in it. The people who walked through that door and down those stairs were taught skill, that’s what made them the best. Men were molded when they were there, not just taught a few moves and shipped out the door. I feel like for Stu it wasn’t about producing stars, it was about producing the best possible wrestlers that he could. Many individuals including Bret, Owen, Jericho, Benoit, Pillman, the British Bulldogs, and Bad News Brown have gotten their start or honed their skills in the basement of Hart House.
Calgary is a wrestling city, I one hundred percent believe that. Maybe it’s just met me but I can actually feel the energy when I’m there, wrestling is just coursing through the city.
The history of the sport is so rich there and it is just another factor that adds to the quality of wrestlers that came out of Calgary. I believe that the technical abilities of the guys trained in the dungeon are unmatched. Heading down those stairs must have been one of the most terrifying but gratifying experiences in a wrestler’s life. You weren’t just shown things there, you were taught and mentored at the Dungeon. Skill, knowledge, and respect were the things that Stu imparted on those who he worked with. In the Dungeon, there was no easy way, hard work and determination is what made a person.
That’s just my opinion…