Age is only a number in many avenues of life, and professional wrestling happens to be one of them. World Wrestling Entertainment is, as is pointed out in the company’s name, a form of entertainment and not a legitimate sports competition, and thus performers who are no longer in their physical “primes” are still able to not only survive but thrive within the organization. Wrestlers in their 40s and, in some cases, even their 50s have been able to headline shows and have been put over as the best in the industry and as champions. Some of these instances have resulted in younger wrestlers complaining about being held back by veterans, but that is another story for another day.
Reddit user SpacemasterTon put together a list of WWE personnel that was sorted by the age of each of those personalities in July of 2015. It should come as no surprise to those who follow the wrestling business that WWE Chairman Vince McMahon, who turned 70 years old in August of this year, is atop the list. McMahon fortunately no longer works as an active in-ring performer, though, and thus he cannot be considered as one of the oldest wrestlers in the WWE right now. The same can be said for Jerry “The King” Lawler, who is now only on announcing duties for the company.
It is a pair of part-time workers who are atop the list of the oldest wrestlers in the WWE as of September 2015. Both of those individuals are legends of the business, but their careers went down much different paths over the years. One has been a mainstay of the company for decades, and he has portrayed what may be the greatest character in the history of the WWE. The other, meanwhile, carried the flag for two different wrestling organizations until he made his debut in the WWE, and he is now in the middle of what will likely be the last run of his impressive career.
10. Big Show: 43
In the time it takes you to read this sentence, Big Show could have turned babyface or heel, whichever he is not playing on WWE programming at the time you arrive to this post. The veteran has been a main feature of national promotions for two decades minus the occasional absences from WWE, and Big Show deserves credit for keeping himself in (relatively) good shape at this point of his life and career. While the larger-than-life athlete is no longer a special occasion as it pertains to a WWE performer, he still has the goods to work entertaining storylines with fellow midcard wrestlers.
9. R-Truth: 43
If any wrestling fan has any real doubt about the WWE being able to make just about anybody a star, they need only remember that the company once put R-Truth into a feud with John Cena. Fans took to the heel R-Truth, so much so that some wanted to see him go over the leader of the CeNation. The days of R-Truth working with Cena and The Rock at pay-per-view/special event shows are gone, but he continues to make appearances on Raw and SmackDown as a midcard performer. Maybe a tag team made up of R-Truth and Bo Dallas could work out; if the WWE Bo-lieves, that is.
8. Mark Henry: 44
Remember that awesome fake retirement angle involving Mark Henry attacking John Cena that occurred on Raw a couple of years ago? WWE fans could be treated to the real thing in 2016 if Henry truly is considering retiring for good at some point over the next 16 months. Henry evolved from somewhat of a forgettable character to a monster heel who deserved to hold the world championship, and he would, in a fair world, have an opportunity for one last run at or near the top of WWE main events. He may be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame next year.
7. Chris Jericho: 44
Chris Jericho has quite the enviable work schedule. He can pick up projects that interest him whenever he wants. He shows up on WWE television on his terms, and he leaves the company for a time the same way. While he should not be a weekly WWE character at this stage of his career, there remain several “dream matches” that Y2J can have in the company. Jericho versus Finn Balor and Jericho versus Kevin Owens are just two examples of programs that could help newer characters get over with fans and that could also produce solid matches.
6. Triple H: 46
Those who have been following WWE programming throughout the summer of 2015 have probably noticed that the seeds are being planted for a future feud involving current WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins and Triple H. Triple H has done it all in the business, to the point that he is on his way to running the show behind the scenes once Vince McMahon is no longer in charge. The man who has been “The Game” and “The Kings of Kings” will have at least one more match in him, and he could probably keep going as a part-time wrestler for several years after he and Rollins step inside of a ring.
5. Goldust: 46
It would be understandable if you had forgotten that Goldust is still technically on the WWE main roster. Goldust has been nursing a shoulder injury that required surgery throughout the middle part of 2015, while his brother’s Stardust character has move on and morphed into a villain out of comic books and the old Batman television show. He has quietly been a solid part of WWE programming over the past several years, but what the WWE would do with Goldust were he to return to the company is somewhat of a question mark. He could always feud with Stardust, because, well, why not?
4. William Regal: 47
The man who currently serves as the storyline authority figure of the NXT brand could, if certain rumors are accurate, have one more match left in him, potentially at an NXT show that will occur in London in December 2015. It has, on WWE Network programming, been hinted that Regal could work a program with heel Kevin Owens, although that storyline has seemingly been put on the shelf with Owens now being on the active WWE roster. Cross your fingers and hope that Daniel Bryan can get the OK to work at least once this year, WWE fans, because Bryan would be an ideal opponent for Regal’s retirement match.
3. Kane: 48
Glenn Jacobs has had some interesting characters since first appearing on WWE television. He was Dr. Isaac Yankem, an evil dentist and friend of Jerry Lawler. He was the fake Diesel. Even the Kane character has gone through multiple changes since he was first the half-brother of the Undertaker. Kane has flipped from heel to babyface and back many times, his mask has appeared and disappeared, and he has been “Corporate Kane” as a member of heel group The Authority. It has long been rumored that the masked Kane will have one final run before Jacobs retires as an active worker. We shall see.
2. Undertaker: 50
While it has to be said that something was lost forever when Undertaker‘s undefeated WrestleMania streak ended, it should be pointed out that fans in arenas still leap to their feet whenever they hear the beginning of his iconic theme song. Undertaker is arguably the biggest legend of the business still working in the WWE, and he has, because of all that he has given to the company, earned the right to be involved in just about any storyline that he desires. There are rumors that Undertaker could choose to hang his wrestling boots up for good in 2016. His doing so would leave a hole that the WWE would not be able to fill.
1. Sting: 56
You can call him the icon. You can call him a vigilante. We all will one day be able to call him a member of the WWE Hall of Fame. The WWE has seemingly not known exactly what to do with the man who worked for World Championship Wrestling up through the final day of that company’s existence and who helped Total Nonstop Action Wrestling stay afloat for years, and this has upset some fans who loved the Stinger of old. Enjoy watching him while you can, and remember that you can always use the WWE Network to remember the Sting character from his days in WCW if that is how you want to view the wrestler.