Top 10 Masked Wrestlers Of All Time – The Ultimate Guide!

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Top 10 Masked Wrestlers

Masked wrestlers in pro wrestling nowadays are trendy, with the mask being used by vast vary of pro wrestlers, despite their size and wrestling style.

So in this post, we dig into the world of the luchadores enmascarados and come up with a list of the top 10 masked wrestlers of all time, attending our preferences, of course.

To better understand the reasons and traditions behind the mask, we provide you with a short explanation before jumping on the top 10 masked wrestlers list.

Introducing The Mask

Although there isn’t any decisive prove where the mask was introduced in professional wrestling, there’s strong evidence to attribute that honor to Theobaud Bauer, in Paris, France, in the mid-1860s under the name of “The Masked Wrestler.”

Later in 1915, by Mort Henderson’s hands, the mask had finally made his debut in North America; Henderson fought mainly in the New York area under the name of “Masked Marvel.”

In Mexico, the mask was introduced later, in 1934, to be more precise, and unlike many believe it has nothing to do with the Mayas, Incas, or Aztecs traditions.

Actually, the mask was introduced in Mexico by an American wrestler named Corbin James Massey, under the name of “La Maravilla Enmascarada” (or “The Masked Marvel” in English).

The Meaning Of The Mask

Nowadays, the mask has a more global meaning (thanks to globalization!), but it wasn’t always that way.

If in Mexico with the time, the mask becomes something significant, even sacred, with the mask’s loss, meaning the death of a gimmick in most cases, the case was different in North America.

To start, many states didn’t allow the use of the mask in matches, and then unlike in the south of the border, in the US and Canada, wrestlers had a hard time getting over with the fans using the mask.

In Japan, the mask was introduced in the 1960s, but it took around one decade for the mask to become something popular in the land of the rising sun.

Often masked wrestlers chose to wrestle without masks, so as you can see, the Japanese are more liberal in the matter than our Mexican amigos.

Now that we know where and when the mask appeared in professional wrestling and the meaning of the same mask in different parts of the globe, it’s time to jump on our top 10 masked wrestlers, but before, here’s a list with some honorable mentions.

Honorable Mentions

Top 10 Masked Wrestlers Of All Time - The Ultimate Guide! 1

# Kendo Nagasaki

Peter Thornley, aka Kendo Nagasaki, was a British pro wrestler that made a name for himself in the early 1970s, mainly due to the British television show “World Of Wrestling” (WOS).

Kendo Nagasaki was quite an enigmatic character. With a mysterious past and supernatural healing and hypnotic powers, Nagasaki became incredibly popular not only in the UK but across North America and Japan.

He decided to unmask himself in one episode of WOS in December 1977, shortly after deciding to hang up the boots.

During the 1980s, he made a couple of returns, putting a decisive end to his long and illustrious career in 1993.

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# La Parka

The first thing that you need to understand is that the legendary skull mask from La Parka was held not by one but by two different wrestlers.

The first wrestler to use the gimmick was Adolfo Tapia Ibarra. Though Ibarra made his debut as a pro wrestler in 1982, with only 16 years old, the La Parka gimmick was only given to him in 1993 by Antonio Peña, the founder of the new promotion Triple-A.

Due to his popularity, La Parka became a huge hit not only in Mexico but also in Japan and the US. That popularity led Ibarra to a long spell wrestling abroad.

That prompted the promotion’s owner (who had the rights over the gimmick) to put the mask in another wrestler, Jesus Escoboza. Escoboza was widely known among the fans as the La Parka II.

After some legal battles between Antonio Peña and Adolfo Ibarra over the gimmick, Ibarra went back to Triple-A, where he faced and defeated La Parka II, becoming once again the one and only La Parka.

That didn’t last long, but despite the man behind the skeleton masks, La Parka is one of the most recognized masked gimmicks of all time.

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# Kane

Glenn Jacobs debuted Kane, the young half-brother of The Undertaker, in WWE (WWF at the time) in 1997. After two previously botched gimmicks in the company as Dr. Isaac Yankem DDS and as the Fake Diesel, the third time was really a charm to Glenn Jacobs.

As Kane, Jacobs had a lengthy and successful career for over two decades; he won pretty much every title as a solo and as a tag team competitor, entering in memorable feuds with Mankind, Steve Austin, Triple H, and of course with the already mentioned above, The Undertaker.

Throughout his career, Kane was already unmasked. After losing a match to Triple H in June 2003, Kane finally showed his face to the world. From that period until December 2011, Kane performed as an unmasked wrestler.

From that period onwards, Kane went back to his gimmick roots and once again became the masked Big Red Monster.

Although his age and his political career, Jacobs still do a couple of shows per year in WWE, making him a living legend from the industry.

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# Mankind

Mick Foley is arguably the most notable and beloved hardcore legend of all time. Throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, Mick Foley made a name for himself in the entire globe, wrestling for all the existent major promotions and holding gold on multiple occasions, with all of that obtained as an unmasked wrestler.

That changed in 1996 when he joined WWE (WWF at the time). Foley debuted as Mankind, a heel masked wrestler with psychological issues who enjoy pain, speaks with rats, and squeal during the matches.

From this dark persona, Mankind developed into a more goofy and funny character, eventually turning face in the process and becoming one of the most recognizable pro wrestlers from the Attitude Era.

During his spell with WWE, Foley debuted two more other gimmicks, Dude Love and Cactus Jack. Though both were well-received by the fans, it was in the role of Mankind that Foley achieved more gold.

A three-time WWE World Champion and multiple secondary titles, and it was as Mankind that Foley created some of the most iconic and unforgettable moments in professional wrestling.

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# Mr. Wrestling II

John Francis Walker made his debut in pro wrestling in the mid-1950s and retired in the mid-1960s, but made it come back shortly afterward.

By the early 1970s, already in his 40s, Walker started wrestling with a mask to uncover the effects of father time, under the name “Masked Grappler.”

With his best years as a pro wrestler behind, Walker’s career took a turn, turning him into one of the most recognizable and beloved American wrestlers of all time.

How ironic and unexpected that sounds, right? But it was what happened when Walker was invited once again to work as a masked luchador under Mr. Wrestling II’s name.

Under the gimmick, Walker became an instant sensation, having inclusively in the former US President and Georgian fellow, Jimmy Carter, a huge, high-profile fan.

The late 1980s saw the final hang-up of the mask from Mr. Wrestling II, having in his 10 title reigns as Georgia Heavyweight Champion, one of his most significant professional achievements.

Top 10 Masked Wrestlers Of All Time

Now it’s time to the top 10 masked wrestlers of all time. Are you ready? Perfect! Let’s start to unmask the list.

The Great Sasuke

#10 The Great Sasuke

Born on July 18, 1969, Masanori Murakawa made his professional debut on March 1, 1990, in a Japanese promotion called Universal Lucha Libre (ULL), after allegedly failing in his attempt to Join New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW).

In his first years, Masanori Murakawa wrestled unmasked, under the name Masa Michinoku.

It wasn’t until a tour in Mexico a couple of years after for Universal Wrestling Association (UWA) that Murakawa wrestled for the first time masked, and inspired by the legendary samurai Sarutobi Sasuke, he adopted the in-ring name Ninja Sasuke at the time.

Back in Japan, Murakawa founded a wrestling promotion named Michinoku Pro Wrestling (MPW), which was the particularity of being the first Japanese wrestling promotion not based in Tokyo.

Eventually, the in-ring name The Great Sasuke and the iconic red, black, and white mask were adopted. In 1994 he entered the first-ever Super J Cup, a prestigious tournament organized since then by NJPW.

He arrived at the finals after getting the W in matches against Jushin Tiger Liger and El Samurai’s likes, being defeated by Wild Pegassus.

By this time, The Great Sasuke started to excel and build his reputation as someone not only very resourceful as a wrestler but incredibly resistant to pain as well, mostly by the fact he has cracked his skull not once but twice throughout his career.

The Great Sasuke had a run in WWE (WWF at the time) in 1997, which ended up abruptly. He entered a tournament to crown the first-ever WWF Light Heavyweight Champion, and apparently, Sasuke was booked to win it and be crown the new WWF Lightweight Champion.

But allegedly due to some derogatory comments from Sasuke itself to the Japanese press, concerning the referred tournament and the possibility of being the new champion, WWE cut ties immediately and permanently with him.

Although The Great Sasuke still runs the very own promotion he created (MPW), in 2003, The Great Sasuke tried his luck in politics, and guess what? He won the Iwate Prefectural Assembly’s election, becoming the first masked legislator in history!

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#9 Dos Caras

José Luis Rodríguez Arellano (February 21, 1951) is better known as Dos Caras (Two Faces in English, which by any means has anything to do with the DC villain from Batman’s universe) made his career debut in 1970 at the age of 18 years old.

Being the younger brother from the legendary Mil Máscaras and Sicodélico (with whom he often teamed up in his early career for experience purposes) was decisive for starting to work regularly with the formerly known Empresa Mexicana de la Lucha Libre (EMLL).

Working later to the now extinct, Universal Wrestling Alliance (UWA), Dos Caras’s career took off, and the creator of the “Dos Caras Clutch” went to win (among other secondary titles) for three times the UWA World Heavyweight Championship.

Throughout his career, Dos Caras developed physically into a heavyweight, becoming a more mat-based wrestler. That made him being coined as “the greatest heavyweight ever to come out of Mexico.”

Aside from being the brother of the above-mentioned Mil Máscaras and Sicodélico, the iconic recipient of the legendary two head eagle masks, Dos Caras has two sons and several nephews professional wrestlers too.

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#8 The Destroyer 

Born shortly after the beginning of the Great Depression, Richard John Beyer did it all throughout his academic path.

He was a member of the wrestling and football teams (playing inclusively in 1953 the Orange Bowl), graduated with a Master’s Degree in education, it was a fraternity’s member, and scout (achieved the highest rank, Eagle Scout), as said before, Beyer did it all.

Beyer made his debut under his real name in the mid-1950s as an unmasked babyface, but in the early 1960s, following the advice of Freddie Blassie, he adopted the iconic white mask, and it was a huge success.

After a couple of highly anticipated matches in the US against Giant Baba, Beyer went to Japan. His first bout against Rikidōzan was seen on the small screen by over 70 million!

Beyer won gold in multiple promotions, most notably in the American Wrestling Association (AWA) and Worldwide Wrestling Associates (WWA). During a period between 1966 and 1972, Beyer wrestled in the AWA as well under another masked gimmick, DR. X.

Says the legend that Beyer wrestled in such a distinct way with both gimmicks, only a few people within the biz knew that Beyer was both masked wrestlers.

After that, Beyer went back to Japan, where he wrestled for years, was one of the pioneers to open the doors to other foreigns, and broke barriers between the US and Japan, not only in but also outside professional wrestling.

The Destroyer had unforgettable matches against the likes of the above-mentioned Rikidōzan (who had his last singles loss precisely against The Destroyer), and his close friend Mil Máscaras, with whom The Destroyer had arguably the best matches of his career, and vice versa.

In 2017, it was announced by the Japanese government that The Destroyer was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun for “a lifetime spent promoting goodwill and bi-cultural exchanges between Japan and the United States.”

On March 7, 2019, the legend of The Destroyer left us at the age of 88, leaving behind an unparalleled legacy.

Último Dragón

#7 Último Dragón

Born on December 12, 1966, Yoshihiro Asai made his professional debut in the late 1980s in the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW).

From the early beginning, Asai struggled to climb in the promotion ranks; therefore, he decided to take his chance elsewhere.

After moving to Mexico and being introduced to Lucha Libre, he started to train the Mexican style and worked for a Universal Wrestling Association (UWA) promotion, where he won the UWA Welterweight Championship.

He displayed his craft in Universal Lucha Libre (ULL) and Universal Wrestling Federation (UWF) from there and back in Japan.

Upon his second spell in Mexico in the early 1990s, working for Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL), Asai adopted the famous Dragon Mask and presented himself as the last student of Bruce Lee, which was later dropped, but not the mask.

After wrestling for a few more promotions in Japan, he won the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship on two occasions, and in Mexico, where he had some title runs too, Último Dragón tried his luck in the US. When in 1996 he debuted in WCW, a legend was about to be born.

He was considered by many one if not the driving force behind the massive success of the Cruiserwheight Division in WCW. With a very solid mat style and a diverse set of high-risk maneuvers such as the Asai Moonsault, the Dragon took off.

In this period, Último Dragón entered and won the J-Crown, a tournament in Japan, becoming the recipient end of 8 titles!

He then went to win the WCW Cruiserweight and the NWA World Middleweight Championships, making a total of 10 titles held at once, which he kept all for over a year, making the record of more titles held at the same time.

Just when it was at the top of his game, Último Dragón had a botched operation to the arm in the late 1990s, which made him retire. He started a career as a trainer but eventually made his comeback after a second successful operation.

He had a spell with WWE (WWF at the time), but it was lackluster, to say the least. Nevertheless, he achieved the two goals he had, wrestling in the Madison Square Garden and wrestling in the grand stage of them all, Wrestlemania.

Último Dragón still does some appearances, mainly in the Japanese promotion founded by him and now named Dragon Gate.

Blue Demon

#6 Blue Demon 

Alejandro Muñoz Moreno (April 24, 1922 – December 16, 2000) is widely recognized by many as one of the biggest masked legends of all time, for some only behind El Santo at the top of the list.

Moreno made his debut as Blue Demon in 1948, often as part of a tag team formed with The Black Shadow, named Los Hermanos Shadow.

But when his partner lost a mask vs. mask match against El Santo, Blue Demon turned face and engaged with El Santo in one of the most mythical feuds in lucha libre history.

After some unsuccessful attempts in 1953, Blue Demon finally beat El Santo and won the NWA World Welterweight Championship, which he held until 1958.

And it wasn’t only in the ring that Blue demon was defeating El Santo.

If the mainstream that El Santo achieved, it’s something unreplicable, so it started to become the payments demanded by the silver masked.

That opened a window of opportunity for other luchadores to begin to shine outside the square circle. Blue Demon was the one that most capitalized on the given chances.

From the early 1960s, throughout over 15 years, Blue Demon starred in over 25 Si-Fi/ horror movies genre, in which El Santo co-starred with him in over a third of those movies.

Blue Demon won gold multiple times throughout his career as a single and tag team competitor, and he never lost a Lucha de Apuestas (I.e., mask vs. masks, or mask vs. hair match).

His last match was in 1988, against one of his biggest rivals, the legendary Rayo de Jalisco, in a mask vs. mask match, in which Blue demon ended up winning, therefore unmasking Rayo de Jalisco.

In the late 2000s, the legend left us at the age of 78 years of age. Blue Demon was buried wearing the legendary blue and silver masks, taking with him the holder’s secret identity.

Tiger Mask

#5 Tiger Mask

Born on November 27, 1957, Satoru Sayama is regarded by many as the original Tiger Mask and one of the best professional wrestlers that ever graced the square circle.

Since his early days in New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), Satoru Sayama always showed how good a competitor he was; the problem was his weight at the time (160 pounds).

Therefore he didn’t have so many opportunities in NJPW, which made the promotion send him to wrestle abroad, more precisely to the UK, and Mexico, where he wrestled as Sammy Lee and under his real name, respectively.

During his period in Mexico, Sayama grow considerably in his physic and improved his already refined skills as a performer. As a result, he won the NWA World Middleweight Title while working for CMLL.

And it was upon his return to Japan that Sayama would eventually debut the iconic tiger mask.

However, the gimmick was received with skepticism by everyone (mostly the more traditional fans) since it was a direct rip-off from a popular comic book created by Ikki Kajiwara.

The fact is that after a memorable debut performance from Sayama against Dynamite Kid, which saw Sayama getting the W, the gimmick got incredibly over with the fans.

Tiger Mask went in a series of incredible matches against Dynamite Kid, and in 1983, one of their matches was awarded 5 Stars by Dave Meltzer, which was the first time a pro wrestling match received such distinction.

Tiger Mask would have his chance to shine on US soil, which didn’t disappoint. He went to win both WWF Junior Heavyweight Championship and the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship, becoming the only man to hold both titles simultaneously… and he did it twice!

Shortly after returning to NJPW, Sayama shocked the world when he retired at the top of his game, apparently due to his deception with backstage politics.

Besides professional wrestling, Sayama trained sambo, kickboxing, and he’s the founder of Shooto, Seikendo, and Real Japan Pro Wrestling. He opened his gym (Tiger Gym) and became a trainer to martial arts fighters.

Despite his deception, Sayama would eventually make his comeback. Initially, he started to wrestle with the Universal Wrestling Federation (UWF) under The Tiger’s gimmick (as NJPW as the rights of the Tiger Mask gimmick), but then he went to use his real name or the Tiger King gimmick.

Satoru Sayama still makes some sporadic appearances for some promotions, mostly under the Tiger Mask gimmick.

Although others already took the gimmick under their fangs, in my book Sayama was, is, and always will be “THE” Tiger Mask.

Rey Mysterio Jr.

#4 Rey Mysterio Jr.

This might be the most recognizable pick from the list to the young lads, mostly because it is the only luchador from the top 10 that is still wrestling.

Born as Óscar Gutiérrez on December 11, 1974, Rey Mysterio Jr. saw it all and did it all in the realm of professional wrestling.

Being trained by his uncle, Rey Mysterio Sr, he excelled from a young age (made his debut at only 14 years old) and developed a high-flying lucha libre style that has been his trademark throughout his entire career.

Gutiérrez’s career as Rey Mysterio Jr. started in 1992 wrestling with the Mexican promotion, Triple-A. In the mid-1990s, Mysterio joined for a short but impressive spell the ranks of ECW, since one year after, WCW picked him up.

In WCW, Rey Mysterio Jr. had memorable matches with Eddie Guerrero, Dean Malenko, Chris Jericho, and Psicosis, to name a few.

He was one of the driving forces behind the WCW Cruiserweight Division’s success, eventually holding the WCW Cruiserweight Championship on multiple occasions.

In the late 1990s, Mysterio was unmasked after losing a “Hair vs. Mask match” against Scott Hall and Kevin Nash while teaming with Konnan. The match didn’t do any good for Mysterio, that was very disappointed with the booking.

And even if later he was coined as “The Giant Killer,” following some wins over Kevin Nash, Bam Bam Bigelow, and Scott Norton, Mysterio’s career in WCW never fully recovered from that blow.

After leaving WCW, Mysterio worked in Mexico (CMLL), Puerto Rico (WWC), and in the US independent circuit before joining WWE in 2002. Since Mysterio had lost his masks, he was working unmasked due to his respect for Mexican traditions.

Still, after WWE’s insistence, Mysterio got permission from a lucha libre commission, which allowed him to use a mask again.

That didn’t wend well with more traditional fans, and even Mysterio itself wasn’t sure if it was a good idea.

Still, after the initial backlash, things got easier to the masked enigma, and since long ago, the acceptance from the fans and everyone involved in the biz, it’s full and thoroughly deserved!

Rey Mysterio (WWE made him drop the Jr.) went to win everything reachable in WWE, meaning every single and tag team title in the promotion.

It’s a 3x World Champion, and we even won the 2006 Royal Rumble after being over 62 minutes in the match (a Royal Rumble record).

After he departed from WWE in 2014, Rey Mysterio returned to Mexico (mainly wrestling to Triple-A), and he went back again to the independent circuit.

In late 2015 he signed with Lucha Underground, wherein Mysterio’s words were one of the most exciting and pleasant periods of his career.

In 2018 Mysterio made his return to WWE, and since he already went to win the US Championship and had high profile feuds with the likes of Brock Lesnar and Seth Rollings.

Despite his age, there’s no sign of slowing down from the masked enigma.

Mil Máscaras

#3 Mil Máscaras

Aarón Rodríguez Arellano (July 15, 1942), most notably known in the world of professional wrestling as Mil Máscaras, made his debut in the early 1960s.

Shortly after (1966), he made his first appearance on the big screen as Mil Máscaras, which was a gimmick explicitly created to the effect.

It became such a big sensation that Arellano’s career as the man of one thousand masks took off in a way that not many could predict.

As an actor, Mil Máscaras starred in 20 movies throughout his lengthy career, had a comic book of his own, and even saw his face (or should I say mask?) in postage stamps.

Although his name was displayed in the several movies he did, his face was always kept secret by the few who knew his real identity.

Due to his size, Arellano was a natural heavyweight. Though in Mexico he was regarded as a mat-based wrestler, in the US and Japan, he is widely regarded for being one of the first wrestlers to expose foreign audiences to the high-flying style, with moves like the “plancha” or the “tope suicida,” while competing in the Heavyweight Division.

If during his spell in Japan, Mil Máscaras had great feuds, including with The Destroyer, in the US, he achieved the feat of being the very first masked wrestler to perform in the legendary Madison Square Garden, while wrestling to WWE (WWF at the time).

Throughout the 1980s and the 1990s, he wrestled in Puerto Rico (WWC) as well, and in the late 1980s, he wrestled to WCW too, having a memorable feud with the alter ego of someone that makes our honorable mentions list, Cactus Jack.

His last relevant reign as a champion was during 1991-1994, as WWA World Heavyweight Champion, in Mexico.

He went semi-retired from 1994 onwards, making some appearances here and there, like in the 1997 Royal Rumble match, in the WWE.

Although some of his peers’ criticism, for allegedly not always selling opponents’ moves or putting them over, Mil Máscaras is widely known as one of the best-masked wrestlers of all time.

Being the most successful of the three masked brothers (Mil Máscaras, Dos Caras, and Sicodélico), the two-time Hall of Famer (Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame, and WWE Hall of Fame), was one of the biggest influences for the appearance of non-Mexican masked wrestlers outside Mexico, especially in Japan.

As the original Tiger Mask stated one day, “if it weren’t for Mil Máscaras, there would be no Jushin Liger, no Último Dragón, or the Great Sasuke.”

Jushin Thunder Liger

#2 Jushin Thunder Liger

Born as Yamada Keiichi (November 30, 1964), Jushin Thunder Liger is one of the most beloved professional wrestlers on the entire planet and the receiving end of arguably the most recognizable mask of all time.

With a career that spans 35 years and having wrestled over 4,000 matches, Jushin Thunder Liger is the embodiment of professionalism, dedication, and respect in pro wrestling.

That naturally made him a two-time Hall of Famer (Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame in 1999; WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2020).

Yamada started his career in 1984 (at only 19 years old), wrestling unmasked, and under his real name in the at the time brand new promotion called New Japan Pro Wrestling.

After his debut, Yamada left Japan and had spells in the UK, wrestling for All-Stars Wrestling (ASW), and in Canada wrestling for Stampede Wrestling, and then in the late 1980s, Yamada’s luck was about to change.

Following the same formula used to create Tiger Mask, NJPW decided to develop another gimmick based on a fictional character.

This time, the chosen one was a very popular anime with a character named Jushin Liger as the main star.

Under his new gimmick, Yamada becomes one of the most popular wrestlers on the planet, not only by his unique look but also by his outstanding abilities, being praised by many as the father of the Shooting Star Press.

With fame eventually came titles and more titles. Liger is an 11 times IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion, with his second reign being the longest of all time, with an impressive 628 days as a champion.

He won numerous times Tag Team Championships too, and multiple tournaments.

Jushin Liger wrestled literally in the biggest and most important promotions globally, from Japan to the US, UK, Mexico, and Canada, to name a few.

He’s the longest-tenured member of the NJPW roster, wrestling for the promotion since their first day (1984) until his retirement in January 2020.

In NJPW, Liger had the privilege to wrestle the opening bout of the first January 4 Tokyo Dome Show in 1992. He had the same opportunity to wrestle the opening bout of the inaugural WCW Monday Nitro as well.

In January 2020, Jushin Thunder Liger had his last match, 35 years after his debut. For prosperity remains a career full of accolades and iconic moments.

And speaking of iconic moments, if you want to watch one of the funniest things in professional wrestling, with Liger involved, follow this link and have the best 10m of your life.

El Santo

#1 El Santo

So without surprises, making the #1 on our top 10 masked wrestlers of all-time list, the iconic silver masked, El Santo!

Rodolfo Guzmán Huerta (September 23, 1917 – February 5, 1984) had a career spanned for almost 50 years(!!).

Besides being one of the most influential luchadores of all time, he was a comic book hero, a movie star, and a national symbol of justice that always stood for the weakest.

After working under other gimmicks while he was seasoning his skills, Rodolfo Huerta made his debut as El Santo in the early 1940s, and his career took off as anything seen before.

El Santo mainly wrestled in Mexico, mostly working with the formerly known EMLL (current CMLL), where he won gold as a single and tag team wrestler.

He had successful runs outside Mexico (most notably in the US while working to NWA), where he captured gold on several occasions too.

As mentioned before in this post, El Santo had iconic matches in the early 1950s, against the likes of Blue Demon and Black Shadow, with the latter being unmasked in the ring while fighting aside Blue Demon (they were known as Los Hermanos Shadow).

That creates a moment that will have a considerable impact not only in Santo’s career but also in Blue Demon’s career, as it was that loss that made Blue Demon turn face.

As an actor, El Santo appeared in over 50 movies, starring most of them, and with a few co-starring him, and the likes of Blue Demon and/or Mil Máscaras.

Aside from that, the masked luchador was the hero of a fictional comic book and even went to have a cartoon-inspired on him.

That and many other accolades made El Santo one of the most respected athletes from Mexico of all time, a folk hero, and the embodiment of the fight for the righteous.

At an advanced age, El Santo finally revealed his true identity on a TV show in Mexico.

By the time of his death in 1984, an entire country stopped to accompany their biggest hero’s funeral marches. El Santo was buried using his iconic silver mask.

One of if not the most significant accomplishments of El Santo was craving and mapping the path for others (not only) masked wrestlers that followed, opening many doors and approaching industries that, until that point, were quite distant between them.

For this and many more that can’t be expressed by words, the silver masked luchador, El Santo, deserves without any shadow of a doubt the first place in our top 10 masked wrestlers, or any other reliable list, as the most prominent masked wrestler of all time.

Long live the legend of El Santo!

Rey Fénix (left) & Pentagon Jr. (right), two of the most gifted masked wrestlers of the present time.
Rey Fénix (left) & Pentagon Jr. (right), two of the most gifted masked wrestlers of the present time.

What The Future Holds To The mask?

So what the future holds for the mask? It’s a sure thing that times have changed, but fortunately, the mask’s traditions tend to resist father time, with the mask still representing the world to those who use it.

Some good examples of current masked wrestlers that keep on going with the traditions are Drago, Aero Star, Tiger Mask IV, Rey Fenix, and Pentagon Jr.

Although the world’s uncertain today, I like to believe the respect and love for the mask and his traditions will be preserved.

There you have it, our list of Top 10 masked wrestlers of all time!

It is not always easy to make a Top 10 list, especially when you have tens or hundreds of different candidates to such a restricted number.

And let’s not forget that, in the end, everything is resumed to opinions. And as we all know, opinions are like assholes, everyone as one and it stinks often! 🙂

Do you think I miss something? Do you want to add something or just give me your thoughts on the subject? Don’t hesitate to superkick me in the comment section below and I’ll gladly chop you back!

And just before you go, I want to THANK YOU for your time reading another of our posts and giving us your feedback to help us improve our work continuously!

If you like our content, please consider following us everywhere (except on the street, that’s weird:)) and I’ll catch you in our next post; until then, stay strong and keep loving pro wrestling! Amor Fati! : )

Pompeu Pedrosa,

Founder of Against the Ropes.

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