• Tue. May 28th, 2024

Every WWE King And Queen Of The Ring, Since 1985

The King of the Ring is a wrestling event dating back to 1985 where a winner is decided by a single-elimination tournament. While it may not happen every single year, it’s still a major part of WWE history. Thankfully, the tournament isn’t just for the men every year. In 2022, Zelina Vega became the first Queen of the Ring. In 2024, the event has its own PLE once again, retitled The King and Queen of the Ring.

Sometimes, winning the King of the Ring can change a character’s gimmick for an entire year, like the Macho King, King Mabel, The King of Harts (Owen Hart), King Corbin, or Queen Zelina. Harley Race was the first wrestler to dawn this gimmick after winning the tournament, coming to the ring with a cloak and crown after winning the tournament. However, for some wrestlers, being named King or Queen of the Ring is a title or accomplishment they can hang on their mantle, knowing they worked their way through a tournament and came out on top. It can even be a moment that defines a career–and even an era in the industry–like when Steve Austin won and coined the phrase, “Austin 3:16 says, ‘I just whooped your ass.'” That’s the Attitude Era boiled down to a single moment.

Many fans see this tournament as a way to shine the spotlight on WWE wrestlers that should get that big push, strapping a rocket to their back to the main event. However, that’s not always the case.

The interesting thing about the history of the original King of the Ring is that between 1985-1991, this was an annual event only held at house shows. It wasn’t a PPV. It wasn’t televised. It was a way to boost house show attendance.

This year’s King and Queen of the Ring PLE will take place on Saturday, May 25 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia at the Jeddah Super Dome. So before we get to the upcoming PLE, let’s take a look at the winner of every single King and Queen of the Ring winner throughout the history of the tournament.

For more on the history of WWE, check out every WWE Hall of Fame inductee and every Wrestlemania main event.

1. Don Muraco

Date: July 8, 1985

Defeated: The Iron Sheik

Muraco was the inaugural King of the Ring.

2. Harley Race

Date: July 14, 1986

Defeated: Pedro Morales

3. Randy Savage

Date: September 4, 1987

Defeated: King Kong Bundy

4. Ted DiBiase

Date: October 16, 1988

Defeated: Randy Savage

5. Tito Santana

Date: October 14, 1989

Defeated: Rick Martel

6. Bret Hart

Date: September 7, 1991

Defeated: Irwin R. Schyster

7. Bret Hart

Date: June 13, 1993

Defeated: Bam Bam Bigelow

8. Owen Hart

Date: June 19, 1994

Defeated: Razor Ramon

9. Mabel

Date: June 25, 1995

Defeated: Savio Vega

10. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin

Date: June 23, 1996

Defeated: Jake Roberts

11. Hunter Hearst Helmsley

Date: June 8, 1997

Defeated: Mankind

12. Ken Shamrock

Date: June 28, 1998

Defeated: The Rock

13. Billy Gunn

Date: June 27, 1999

Defeated: X-Pac

14. Kurt Angle

Date: June 25, 2000

Defeated: Rikishi

15. Edge

Date: June 24, 2001

Defeated: Kurt Angle

16. Brock Lesnar

Date: June 23, 2002

Defeated: Rob Van Dam

17. Booker T

Date: May 21, 2006

Defeated: Bobby Lashley

18. William Regal

Date: April 21, 2008

Defeated: CM Punk

19. Sheamus

Date: November 29, 2010

Defeated: John Morrison

20. Bad News Barrett

Date: April 28, 2015

Defeated: Neville

21. Baron Corbin

Date: September 16, 2019

Defeated: Chad Gable

22. Xavier Woods

Date: October 21, 2021

Defeated: Finn Bálor

23. Zelina Vega

Date: October 21, 2021

Defeated: Doudrop

Vega was the inaugural Queen of the Ring.