Despite having a fraction of the population of the United States, some of the worlds best wrestlers have been Canadian. Despite being a smaller country than others, a huge amount of historical and current wrestling stars have come out of Canada and changed the wrestling landscape.
Canada has produced some of the worlds finest professional wrestlers, and continues to, as is shown by the up and coming stars in WWE and AEW. The likes of Kevin Owens, Kenny Omega, Christian Cage and Edge perform weekly on WWE and AEW TV and showcase their stills as the best Canadian wrestlers today.
There are some controversial stars on this list (I’m sure you know exactly who I mean), but in this list I will judge not the person, but the wrestler. The person in the ring, and the character they portray. While some people may struggle to separate the performer from the human being who committed those heinous acts, I feel it would be disingenuous to ignore their contribution to wrestling history.
This list will look at all aspects of the best Canadian wrestlers to ever wrestle. It will look at their in-ring talent, mic skills, longevity and contribution to the business in general. What they achieved in the ring will also be counted, such as Hall of Fame rings or World Championship victories.
Here are a list of the top 10 best Canadian wrestlers of all time. If we missed out any of your favourites out then let us know in the comments and tell us why you believe they deserve to be part of this list.
Best Canadian Wrestlers of all time
10. Chris Benoit
The first man to be included on the list of best Canadian wrestlers is the controversial choice we mentioned earlier – Chris Benoit.
The infamous wrestler from Montreal, Canada was one of the best in ring talents of all time. His intensity and technical ability set him apart from his peers, and even won him a World Heavyweight Championship at Wrestlemania XX.
He was also a former WCW Champion, winning the title just before leaving the company for the WWF. In both companies he managed to showcase his talents, as well as in Japan as Pegasus Kid/Wild Pegasus, as one of the best technical wrestlers of all time.
Benoit would tragically murder his wife, son and then himself in 2007. Due to this horrific act, he has not been mentioned on WWE since, and his legacy has all been erased from the record books.
Whilst he was one of the best in ring technicians of all time, he did has some parts of his game lacking.
His promo’s were lacklustre, and his World Heavyweight Title run was rather disappointing at the time. The highlight was losing the belt to Randy Orton. It is one of Chris Benoit’s and Randy Orton’s best matches.
9. Owen Hart
The King of Harts was one of the finest in ring workers of his day. Being trained by his father Stu in the legendary Hart Dungeon, he grew up around wrestler, and loved working in the ring. His match with brother Bret at Wrestlemania X is one of the best matches in WWE and Wrestlemania history
Owen was known not just for his supreme in ring ability, but also his attitude backstage. He was said to be extremely happy, with a penchant for pulling pranks, or “ribs” on his co-workers frequently.
Owen Hart sadly fell to his death at the Over the limit 1999, after a harness he was attached to broke. He died that night, and tributes from various wrestlers dominated the headlines. His widow, Dr Martha Hart, has recently signed a deal for Owen Hart’s image to be used in AEW. This includes merchandise and an appearance for Owen Hart in the AEW Video Game.
If he had been afforded the opportunity to extend his career like many others on this list, I’m sure he would higher up on the list. Sadly, due to his passing we never got to see what Owen Hart could really do, which was a huge shame. Had he not perished on that fateful day, who knows just how high on the list of best Canadian wrestlers he could go.
8. Trish Stratus
Trish Stratus is the only woman on this list, beating out Natalya as the greatest woman Canadian wrestler of all time.
She became one of the most popular woman in wrestling during the attitude era, although not always for the best reasons.
Trish Stratus infamously was the on screen girlfriend of the evil Mr McMahon. She was with Vince whilst he drugged his wife Linda to a comatose state.
Trish famously was subjected to being made to bark like a dog by Vince, in one of the most disturbing moments from the Attitude Era.
7. Christian Cage
Known as both Christian and Christian Cage, the former TNA World champion is seventh on the list of best Canadian wrestlers.
Cage has been wrestling for close to 25 years, in WWE, TNA and AEW. Cage first gained fame as the tag team partner of Edge, where they won multiple tag team championships. The pair also won the first ever TLC match, one of the greatest WWE matches of all time.
He would leave WWE in 2005, to go to TNA. Cage won world championship gold for the first time in his career in TNA. He became the NWA Heavyweight Champion twice, and later in 2021 would win the Impact World Championship
6. Kevin Owens
Known as Kevin Steen on the independent scene, Kevin Owens has quickly become one of WWE’s biggest stars in recent years.
He was famous for his time in Ring of Honor, and his battles with El Generico (Sami Zayn) in PWG. He was known for his great character work and in ring ability. Steen just had it.
So, when he came to NXT, fans were expectant. And he delivered on his first night, powerbombing new NXT Champion Sami Zayn, rekindling their rivalry. Owens would beat Zayn for the NXT Championship soon after, but it would be the main roster where he would truly shine.
He made his debut answering John Cena’s US Title open challenge. He then beat him at WWE Elimination Chamber 2016, a clean victory which shocked the wrestling world to it’s core.
Kevin Owens went on to become a Universal Champion, Intercontinental Champion and United States champion, and has had many great feuds against the likes of Sami Zayn, Shane McMahon and Roman Reigns.
5. Kenny Omega
Despite hailing from Winnipeg, Kenny Omega made his big impact in wrestling in Japan.
As a gaijan in New Japan Pro Wrestling, he become one of the top stars on the roster, and won numerous accolades in New Japan.
His biggest achievements in NJPW were winning the G1 Climax and winning the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. However, his biggest moments were certainly in his series of matches against Kazuchika Okada.
Now, Kenny Omega is the AEW Champion. He helped found All Elite Wrestling in 2019, serving as one of the executive vice-presidents of the company.
He is the longest running AEW Champion in history, and is also the only man to hold both the AEW World and AEW Tag Team Championships.
In ring, he is one of the best Canadian wrestler of all time. He may be the best of all time, depending on who you ask.
He is a great promo, and perfect as both a face and a heel. In a few years, he may go higher in this list once nostalgia sets in and we realise just exactly the genius we are watching in Kenny Omega.
Edge is one of the greatest wrestlers of all time, let alone greatest Canadians. He has won the most championships in WWE history, and upon his first retirement, was the youngest every member of the WWE hall of fame.
Edge started out in a tag team with Christian, but soon went out on his own in WWE. He was the first man ever to win the Money in the Bank, cashing in his title shot at John Cena at New Years Revolution 2006. This was his first of his 11 World Championships, which include a record 7 World Heavyweight Championship wins.
Edge retired in 2011 after neck injuries threatened to paralyse him. However, he made a miraculous return in 2020 in the Royal Rumble, before winning the Rumble match the following year. He main evented Wrestlemania 10 years after his retirement, in one of the biggest feel good stories in WWE history.
Edge will go down as one of Canada’s greatest wrestlers, due to his longevity and excellent work as a heel. On his day, nobody could get the crowd to hate anyone as much as Edge did.
Well, maybe apart from the next man on the list…
3. Roddy Piper
Don’t let the kilt and bagpipes fool you. The “Hot Rod” is one of the best Canadian Wrestlers of all time. He is also one of the greatest wrestlers never to win the World Heavyweight Championship.
Piper, despite coming out in a kilt to bagpipe music, was not even slightly Scottish. He was a proud Canadian who also prided himself on being one of the best heels in wrestling history.
Piper had a way with words. He was one of the best promo’s of all time, with some of the most quotable lines in wrestling history. The most notable being his immortal line “When they think they have the answers, I change the questions.”
Piper also has the distinction of holding a victory over Hulk Hogan without being defeated. The reason he never won the WWF Championship was because he refused to lose to Hogan, knowing how much his stock (and paycheck) would drop if that happened.
As well as being the third greatest Canadian wrestler of all time, Piper also branched out into acting. His role as the unnamed protagonist in the cult classic “They Live” was a career-defining role. He also had a guest role as “Da Maniac” in “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”, playing a comedic take on a former wrestler.
2. Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho’s runs in WWE and AEW have made him one of the greatest wrestlers of all time.
His longevity and ability to reinvent himself has how he managed to keep himself relevant in the main event scene for over 20 years.
He has wrestled all over the world, from Canada to Japan to Mexico and the United States, but to name a few countries.
Jericho won title belts wherever he went, most recently being the inaugural AEW Champion and the IWGP Intercontinental Champion.
He is a multi-time world champion, even beating Steve Austin and The Rock in the same night for the WWE Undisputed Championship.
1. Bret Hart
Who else could be the top of the best Canadian wrestlers of all time? You don’t get called “The best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be” for nothing.
Nobody has ever made wrestling look as real as the Hitman did in the ring. Many wrestlers, such as FTR in AEW or CM Punk, have called him the best wrestler of all time, and it’s hard to disagree.
His matches against the like of Shawn Michaels and Steve Austin are among some of the best in WWE history.
His Wrestlemania 13 clash against Steve Austin was rated five stars by the Wrestling Observer.
It has been named as one of the best double turns in wrestling history, and that is partially down to the way Bret Hart performed in the ring. He is the best Canadian wrestlers of all time, and maybe the greatest in ring talent of all time.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.