The next inductee to the WWE Hall of Fame 2020 class is rumored to be the British Bulldog, Davey Boy Smith.
In December 2019, WWE announced the two other inductees for this year. So far, it will be Batista and the nWo, with Hollywood Hulk Hogan, Sean Waltman(X-Pac), Kevin Nash and Scott Hall representing the group.
According to Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer, British Bulldog is next in the lineup.
“So obviously, they’ve announced Batista and the nWo,” Meltzer said. “I don’t know if this is the rest of the Hall Of Fame, but these are confirmed, the Bella Twins, people know about it, that was out last week along with Jushin Liger. The other one is Davey Boy Smith, so Davey Boy Smith will be going into the Hall Of Fame. The family has pushed that one for years and years and this is the year he’s going in.”
Davey Boy Smith Is An Icon For British Wrestlers
Without a doubt, anyone who grew up watching wrestling in the 90s like myself knows who the David Smith is. If I was asked today to name off the top of my head two English wrestlers, I would for sure answer British Bulldog and William Regal. It would probably be in that order as well.
It was hard not to be intrigued by Smith and not to like him. He was this massive muscular man who would be very intimidating to see on the street. However, he always had a warmth, kindness and charisma which seemed to seep through the TV. Even when he was being a heel, it was hard to not like the British Bulldog.
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The British Bulldogs And The Early Years
British Bulldog began his wrestling training in the legendary Hart Dungeon training with Stu Hart. Eventually, he married Stu’s daughter and became an official member of the legendary Hart family.
In the 1980s British Bulldog, who went by Davey Boy Smith, along with Dynamite Kid formed the British Bulldogs tag team. The tag team wrestled in WWE from 1984-88 and eventually left to wrestle in All Japan Pro Wrestling and Stampede Wrestling.
However, after a falling out with Dynamite Kid, Smith began wrestling as a singles wrestler and wrestled in the WWE, ECW, WCW, All Japan and All Star Wrestling over the next few years building a name for himself as a singles competitor.
British Bulldog’s Time To Shine And His Downfall
In 1994 when British Bulldog returned to the WWE was when he began to shine and come into his own. He was a member of the Hart Foundation and the first and longest reigning European Champion of all time. The infamous wrestler was inching his way closer and closer to a possible WWE World Championship reign. However, then a little thing called The Montreal Screwjob happened and ended that dream. British Bulldog along with Bret Hart and Jim Neidhart left for WCW.
While wrestling in WCW British Bulldog took a bump on a metal trapdoor beneath the mat. The wrestlers were not made aware of the trapdoor before the event and only became aware when they landed on it. However, British Bulldog took a big bump on it and it resulted in a spinal infection which almost paralyzed him. British Bulldog was sidelined for six months recovering from his injury and while out he received his WCW termination papers and became addicted to pain pills.
British Bulldog returned to WWE, but it was clear this was not the same man we had known. He was darker, meaner and was lacking the charisma he once had. Vince McMahon fired him from WWE and paid for his drug rehab program. A short two years later British Bulldog suffered a fatal heart attack.
A True Legend And A Deserving Hall Of Famer
It is hard to think of what the 90s wrestling would be like without British Bulldog. It is also interesting to wonder what would have become of him if he was given the time to grow and step out of the shadow of Bret and Owen Hart. He was a true legend and I am happy to see him being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
What did you think of the British Bulldog? Do you think he deserves to be inducted? Who else would you like to see inducted this year?
Sources: WWE, ProWrestling, Wrestling Observer