And I don't consider GT canon at all because it doesn't make sense in the slightest in terms of how Dragonball was written and Akira Toriyama wasn't part of the development.
Why would Vegeta have been the hero of the series? That isn't logical at all. He was a villian for quite some time and didn't show any form of self-righteousness until the series was practically over. Honestly, his development is in mirror image of Piccolo Daimao, except that Vegeta was more arrogant to the point of where he didn't think straight and usually paid for it in the form of a severe beatdown and or caused more problems for the other Z Senshi. It just took longer for him to "turn a new leaf". There is a consistent theme of karma usually biting him in the ass, which is probably why he never passes Son Goku in skill.