Best Wrestlers of All Time

This is a list of the best greco-roman/freestyle wrestlers of all time.

The Top Ten

1 Hamid Sourian

Are you guys kidding me? The guy has 6 world championships 2 Asian championships, and is the reigning Olympic champion and he is 5th on your list? Over a bunch of guys that have one or maybe 2 gold medals in total on the world stage?

He won 7 gold medal (6 World Championships and 1 Olympic) from 8 World Championships competitions that he participated and just lost 1 competition.
He is the best world Champion from Iran.

He is the Best and he is going to get another gold medal from Rio.

A real champion

V 48 Comments
2 Alexander Karelin

I love Dan Gable best coach ever hands down but, around 7 best wrestler all time. Cael Sanderson is around 8 or 9 best all time best college wrestler of all time though. I love the USA! The sad part is though Alexander Karelin best wrestler of all time hands down. He should have had four Olympic gold titles but screwed by a bad decision by a referee. Before you dis me I have watched the match he lost to the American and I think he got screwed.

My Top 10 is:
1.Alexander Karelin
2.Buvaisar Saitiev
3.Saori Yoshida
4.Aleksandr Medved
5.Hamid Sourian
6 John Smith
7 Dan Gable
8 Cael Sanderson
9 Valentin Yordanov
10 Arsen Fadzaev

Now some of this could be flipped but Russia is just really good in Wrestling.

Who is #2, #3...#10 is the question? Please people...the #1 spot is already taken...Karelin hands down. Facts are the facts and the truth is the truth...and it sometimes hurts. by the way, I'm from the USA and would love to say the greatest came from the USA...REALITY IS THAT #1 CAME FROM MEAN OLD Russia/USSR. I'm absolutely shocked this is even being discussed...I thought most everyone knew this to be the case.

Went 13 years undefeated in international competition and six years without giving up a point, 3 Olympic Gold Medals and a controversial silver, 9-time world champion, 12-time European champion, 14-time Russian/USSR champion, and a record of 887-2.


V 45 Comments
3 John Smith

Just look at the hardware. Certainly not an American that can compete. Maybe #2 on this list at worst. Take out the heavies and he's hands down the #1.

The best I Have Ever Seen. Saw John In Person In The Early 90s In Spokane Washington USA Vs. Cuba

Anyone voting ahead of Smith is simply wrong.

Low single for days

V 7 Comments
4 Cael Sanderson

Sanderson brought wrestling to an entirely new level. Everyone on this list, I think, would concede that he's the best. Brock Lesnar isn't anywhere close to Sanderson, Gable, Smith, Kurt Angle, etc. He's not even in the top 20 best wrestlers of all time, less number one.

Undefeated in his NCAA career in the US, probably the world's best wrestling country aside from Russia, and an Olympic gold medal. Maybe not number one but definitely top 2.

If he weren't a coach at Penn State, I'd say he's better than #1, #0 or perhaps even #-1, but being at Penn State, I think #3 is more than fair.

159-0 enough said

V 16 Comments
5 Valentin Yordanov

7 time World Champion, 7 time European Champion and an Olympic Champion.
Only wrestler to win 10 medals at World Championships.
Also has an Olympic bronze medal.

Is this guy Russian?

He is best of the bestt


V 1 Comment
6 Dan Gable

All "top" lists, even made with objectivity (if possible), still include personal opinion, varying "top" traits, age (watching video isn't same and there's more on younger guys), etc... You could argue for anyone on the list for many reasons. Still comes down to personal favorite. So, I went with mine. I went to his wrestling camp and he's a big idol. Are there better? Maybe, possibly probably, but not to me.

The Soviet Union, a country with unbelievable wrestling heritage, knew Gable was coming and spent FOUR YEARS searching the country for a hand-picked person to groom and train; with a sole mission to defeat Gable. He, like all other competitors, could not even score A POINT on Gable. Not a single point. His comrades were not happy, and Gable beat a cold-war USSR and the world!

The man was a beast. Lost one match his entire high school and college career combine. No point given up at the Olympics. Very successful coaching career. May not be the most highly decorated olympic wrestler, but the greatest of all time

Should be #1!

V 29 Comments
7 Buvaisar Saitiev

I'm actually surprised Saitiev isn't ranked higher. I'm an American but I cannot see how he's ranked below Gable and Sanderson. The man won 9 world-level gold medals and is universally considered the greatest freestyle wrestler of all time. Saitiev is the man. Hands down.

6 European championships, 6 World championships, 3 Olympics gold medals. All in a extremely difficult weight class, not to mention he had to defeat his own countrymen who also were some of the best in the world.

3 gold medal olympics and a lots of world gold medals best wrestler of all time.

He is widely considered to be the greatest wrestler of all time. Not even a debate.

V 10 Comments
8 Sergei Beloglazov

Best technical wrestler ever, did not have the same accolades as Alexander but was in a tough weight that he completely dominated for nearly a decade

Cannot be overlooked has to be put on the international scale in the top five. Not taking anything away from the 84 olympic champions. He could have been a 3 time olympic champion. Look at his accopishments. Probably considered to be one of the most technical wrestlers.

Sergei is the best wrestler in the world

The most talented wrestler of all time

9 Arsen Fadzaev

Only lost twice while winning 6 world titles and 2 Olympic titles. Won the 1992 Olympic final by a superiority score.

He did not lose a single battle in seven years. The best athlete of USSR 1991.

And won silver at the world's when he wrestled up a weight class.

How 'bout John Smith he's amazing and I'm commenting on this one because Jordan burroughs needs to stay somewhere on this list.

10 Jordan Burroughs

Jordan Burroughs is still young, but he will be the best U.S. wrestler in history. Just watching him wrestle, you can see that his athletic ability trumps even the best technicians. When you watch some people wrestle, you think wow that looks hard af. But when you watch Burroughs wrestle, you think hey I could prolly do that...he makes it look easy. That's how I know he's the best.

Jordan Burroughs will without a doubt be the greatest of all time when it is all said and done. Simply makes things look far too easy.

He was an underdog but yet brought the us home the gold

The G.O.A.T.

V 14 Comments

The Contenders

11 Saori Yoshida

You would have a hard time combing two men to beat her Gold medals. She is the winningest and most dominant international wrestler of all time. With that being said, she is the best, but I hope Helen Maroulis beats her in Rio!

13 World Golds
3 Olympic golds

Only 2 senior losses since 1998. A decade undefeated. These numbers are better than Karelin. She's the best ever. If you don't agree, you are sexist.

12 Gogi Koguashvili

5x World champion

the best

13 Brock Lesnar Brock Lesnar Brock Edward Lesnar is an American professional wrestler and former amateur wrestler, professional American football player, and mixed martial artist who is currently signed to WWE.

Its kind of embarrassing that Brock Lesnar even made this list. A great athlete no doubt, but his achievements look like child's play compared to anyone else on this list. By the way, WWE is fake... That means it doesn't count.

Wow so much hate. None of you could've beaten him on the mat during his collegiate years. The only thing embarrassing here are the number of keyboard warriors talking trash from their mommies house.

I'm a big pro wrestling fan but that stuff has a planned ending. MMA, Wrestling Record, Collegiate Wrestling Titles, and Olympic Awards should go int hat order in my opinion. Brock has no gold, silver, or bronze medals. One Division 1 championship. Good wrestler but number 13 all time? Not even close.


V 13 Comments
14 Kurt Angle Kurt Angle

"Maybe as a fake wrestler"...How many gold medals do you have? Yeah, that's what I thought, loser.

Kurt Angle hands down is the greatest. The fact that Bret Hart and Brock lesnar is ahead of him on this list is a tragedy in it self.

he won a gold medal in the 1996 Olympics with a broken neck! - AP1090

A gold medal is a gold medal need I say more!

V 2 Comments
15 Aleksandr Medved

This list must be based on something silly as this guy is at #15 right now. He won three gold medals. No American has ever done that.

In 1972 I saw Medved winning the gold Medal, outstanding wrestler. I met him in 1985 in Colorado springs, where he was referee. It was Espier World Championship. Very pleasant person. I am surprised to see him at number 10. He won 3 Gold Medals in Olympics.

The man killed a bear with a club how is he this far down?

How is Medved at #15? You guys are crazy if you think someone like Burroughs should be above him, even Smith and Sanderson haven't come close to Medved's success in international wrestling. College wrestling is good, but the competition in college wrestling comes no where near international freestyle and greco.

Medved should be at 2/3. Alongside Saitiev.

16 Mark Shultz

It's Schultz not Shultz. Greatest pure athlete ever to step on a mat. Northern California All Around Gymnastics champion. Winner in UFC 9 under no holds bar rules.

Tougher than anyone!

Yes he is

17 Bruce Baumgartner

The most decorated super heavyweight wrestler in American history. Bruce achieved three golds at the Pan American Games, 17 American titles and eight World Cup wins. An NCAA National Championship, 2, NCAA Runner-Up finishes, 2 AAU National Titles and a Junior National title. All of this is on top of the 3 world titles and 2 olympic gold medals he won. Bruce Baumgartner won 4 olympic medals and 9 world championship medals in his career. That is more than any Super heavyweight freestyle wrestler. In his prime I would pick him to beat any freestyle wrestler in history. Kurt angle beat a 300lb roided Brock lesnar in a freestyle wrestling match and Angle wasn't even in his prime. Angle also had neck problems as well and he still beat Brock. Bruce is a super heavyweight Angle is a heavyweight. Bruce is more accomplished than Angle by miles. So imagine what a prime Bruce would do to Brock in a wrestling match. I don't even know why Lesnar is number 1 he has never evewn been to the olympics ...more

V 1 Comment
18 Daniel Bryan Daniel Bryan Bryan Lloyd Danielson is an American retired professional wrestler best known for his tenure in WWE under the ring name Daniel Bryan. V 1 Comment
19 Pat Smith

Crazy that this guy is so far down!

V 1 Comment
20 Tom Brands

Tom along with his brother terry are amazing. Coaches for Iowa, they are very good!

PSearch List

Recommended Lists

Related Lists

Greatest WWE Wrestlers of All Time Top Ten Greatest Pro Wrestlers of All Time Greatest WWE Wrestlers of All Time Who Don't Give Up Easily Top 10 TNA Wrestlers of All Time Fastest WWE Wrestlers of All Time

List Stats

1,000 votes
46 listings
9 years, 270 days old

Top Remixes (4)

1. Arsen Fadzaev
2. Buvaisar Saitiev
3. John Smith
1. Hamid Sourian
2. Valentin Yordanov
3. Alexander Karelin

View All 4


Add Post

Error Reporting

See a factual error in these listings? Report it here.