The enshrinement of Gorgeous George to the WWE Hall of Fame made us think it was time to look at the man who inducted him. The Destroyer was not just another masked wrestler; he may very well be the most important masked wrestler in American Professional Wrestling history.
In the United States, the technically sound Destroyer captured multiple championships. His biggest win in the States was under a different mask (as Dr. X) defeating Verne Gagne for the strap. You can forget the championships that The Destroyer won. As impressive as that was, his greatest claim to fame was becoming the first American wrestler to get over in Japan. His legendary matches with the Japanese legend, Rikidozan, made him a star in the Orient and earned the respect of the wrestling fans there. By doing so, the Destroyer paved the way for many Americans and Europeans to ply their trade in Asia and have another place to work. Many wrestlers owe a great debt to what Dick Beyer was able to accomplish there.
The Bullet Points:
Dick Beyer (Real Name)
Key Championships Held:
WWA World Heavyweight
NWA Pacific North West Tag Team (3) w/Art Michalik
NWA Pacific North West Heavyweight (2)
WWA World Tag Team (2) w/Hard Boiled Haggerty
AWA World Tag Team (San Francisco) w/Billy Red Lyons
AWA World Heavyweight
All Japan All Asia Tag Team w/Billy Red Lyons
NWA North American Heavyweight (Hawaii)
All Japan United States Heavyweight (4)
Why He Will Get In:
His role in wrestling history on both sides of the Pacific is undeniable and if he can be featured inducting a wrestler, why can’t he be inducted himself?
Why He Won’t Get In:
His many accomplishments did not take place in the WWE.
Five Greatest Matches/Moments: (In Chronological Order)
1. Wrestled Giant Baba to a series of sell outs in Los Angeles (1963)
2. Wrestles Rikidozan in front of a massive television crowd in Japan
3. Defeates Dick the Bruiser for the WWA World Heavyweight Title
4. As Dr. X, defeats Verne Gagne for the AWA World Heavyweight Title
5. Wins his first singles title in Japan defeating Abdullah the Butcher