5 WWE Upsets That Led To Great Careers (& 5 That Went Nowhere)

upset WWE It’s always exciting to watch, delivers results that no one expected, and surprises fans. This can often lead fans to endorse the wrestler as the main underdog, giving WWE an opportunity to capitalize on it and push it to new levels.

RELATED: 10 Greatest Underdogs in WWE History

Over the years, many wrestlers have been able to reap big profits from winning upset matches, and have built great careers because of it. Because upsets are sometimes done as his one-off situations to pop a crowd or embarrass an opponent instead of having no long-term payoff.

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10/10 Great Career: 1-2-3 Kid Beats Razor Ramon

When wrestling fans think of surprise wins in the business, the 1-2-3 Kid defeating Razor Ramon on Monday Night Raw often comes to mind. This was arguably the greatest example of a result that no one expected, and fans were immediately interested in the next wrestler.

That interest didn’t go away when the 1-2-3 Kid transformed into an X-Pac and went on to have a successful career in business. Considering the fact that he’s now a two-time WWE Hall of Famer, it’s hard to argue about his impact on the wrestling industry.

9/10 Went Nowhere: Fandango beats Chris Jericho


When WWE debuted Fandango on their main roster, fans weren’t sure what to expect as the dance gimmick was so different from everything else on the roster.pit him against Chris Jericho wrestlemania 29 Jericho won the match that everyone thought was a one-way street.

RELATED: 10 Weirdest Chris Jericho WWE Moments We Completely Forgot

However, it ended up being a huge upset as Fandango defeated the WWE legend on the Grandest Stage Of Them All. It opened up a huge opportunity for him and led to his songs becoming hugely popular, but the same cannot be said for his career.

8/10 Great Career: Shelton Benjamin Defeats Triple H

Shelton Benjamin vs Triple H

By the time Shelton Benjamin beat Triple H for running in the tag team division, we all knew what Shelton Benjamin could bring to the table, but when he walked away from Charlie Haas, he didn’t know what to expect. had to start over. WWE sought to establish him instantly by defeating The Game at his main event on Raw.

Benjamin was unable to sustain the main event push as his talent deserved, but he was able to have a great career throughout his time in the business, which continues to this day.

7/10 Went Nowhere: Maven Defeats Undertaker

Maven and Undertaker

Maven was someone that WWE wanted to succeed due to the fact that he got Tough Enough, and he became the Undertaker for all those who tried to get past him. It started with Deadman being eliminated by his Maven at the 2002 Royal Rumble, which was a huge shock.

But things took a turn for the worse when Maven defeated the ‘Taker for the Hardcore Championship. These particular moments are well-remembered, but they didn’t make Maven a hugely successful and long-term career.

6/10 Great Career: Santino Marella Beats Morning

Santino Marella debut

Santino Marella made his debut on Monday Night Raw after being plucked from the crowd as a “fan” to face Umaga at the Intercontinental Championship. This quickly put him in the underdog category. Because no one expected to see him win the title against someone so dominant.

RELATED: The 10 Best Matches of Umaga’s Career

But with the help of Bobby Lashley, he was able to do just that. Marella eventually became an Intercontinental Champion and a comedic character, but his career has been great.

5/10 Went Nowhere: James Ellsworth Defeats AJ Styles

James Ellsworth beats AJ Styles

James Ellsworth shocked the world by defeating AJ Styles, but no one expected it as a former job seeker brought in to be crushed by Braun Strowman. His involvement in Styles’ WWE Championship storyline took him to another level.

He had an upset win over Styles, but it did nothing to boost him as a wrestler. He enjoyed working with Carmella, but his career is one most people forget about.

4/10 Great Career: Sheamus Defeats John Cena

Seamus v John Cena TLC 2009 Trimming

Sheamus arrived on WWE’s main roster as someone who clearly looked like a physically imposing star after a brief stint with ECW, but it wasn’t until people expected the push he would get. It didn’t mean it was. The Celtic Warrior quickly became the WWE Champion as he defeated John Cena for the WWE Championship in a table match.

Whenever Talent goes up against Senna, most people assumed it was done to beat him, but this wasn’t the case. He has had an amazing career in business and never looks back.

3/10 Went Nowhere: Leon Raff Defeats Johnny Gargano

Leon Ruff Wins North American Championship

Leon Raff was pushed hard in NXT as an underdog wrestler, and he unexpectedly became the North American Champion when he defeated Johnny Gargano. He got an assist from Damian Priest to reach this goal, and it was a big moment that led to the support of many fans.

But even with the audience behind him, the company wasn’t. rice field.

2/10 Great Career: Paige Beats AJ Lee

page debut cropped

Paige is another wrestler who shocked the world with an upset victory as her main roster debut on Raw made her the Divas Champion. The British woman showed her talent in WWE, but that didn’t mean people thought she would beat AJ Lee in her first match.

But that’s exactly what Paige was able to achieve, and she’s never looked back since. Continuing that by debuting on .

1/10 Went Nowhere: Rico Beats Ric Flair

rich constantine

Because of the star power Nature Boy brought to the table, anyone who could pull off a win against someone as talented as Ric Flair was always seen as a major upset. Flair was technically on the ropes, but Rico’s winning that early in his career was certainly an example.

It was a win that could lead to great things for Rico, and he continued to be heavily used on TV after that, but his career has since been forgotten, so who gets pushed in a big way as a single star? Not at most.

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