The 50 Greatest WrestleMania Matches Ever

27 Submitted by on Fri, 05 April 2013, 14:36

With my look at the 28 previous WrestleManias up and posted on my personal blog, I decided to post, for Our Loyal Crappers, my list of the fifty greatest WrestleMania matches ever. Even if I don’t always agree with your arguments, I do love to see the debate you guys create, and I imagine there will be some from this listing here. This covers nearly three decades of epics and time-tested battles.

50. Chris Jericho vs. Edge (XXVI)

This sometimes-forgotten World Heavyweight Title match had a putrid build (Edge suddenly yelling SPEEEEEAR like Sebastian Bach with Tourettes), and the crowd was a little dead following Bret’s 2-hour pummeling of Vince, but it was a good match, won by champion Jericho.

 

50
 49. Undertaker vs. Ric Flair (X8)

I like my brawls hate-filled, and this one was fueled by The Dead Man attacking Arn Anderson and Ric’s son David as a means of goading Naitch into a fight. The Tombstone ended Flair’s valiant effort, and Taker went to 10-0.

 49
 48. Money in the Bank (XXVI)

The last MITB match at the big dance to-date saw Jack Swagger win over the likes of Christian, Dolph Ziggler, Matt Hardy, and Kane. In a cruel bit of foreshadowing, Swagger needed an extended period to undo the briefcase off its hook.

 48
 47. Randy Orton vs. CM Punk (XXVII)

One of the few bright spots of the Atlanta event was this issue between the Viper and Punk. Weeks after Orton annihilated all of Punk’s Nexus flunkies, the protagonist had his knee taken out, but Punk undid himself by flying right into an RKO.

 47
 46. Vince McMahon vs. Shane McMahon (X7)

The battle between the WWE and “WCW” owners was chaotic and a tad silly, but never not fun. The pop a supposedly-comatose Linda got when she rose out of her chair was legitimately awesome. Shane won minutes later with the Van Terminator.

 46
 45. Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho vs. Kurt Angle (2000)

Jericho’s pretty “meh” on this match in his second book, but to me, it’s a quality blend of science and timing in front of a notoriously dead Anaheim crowd. The match was a two-fall contest for both the Intercontinental and European titles, and Angle lost both without being pinned.

 45
 44. Shawn Michaels vs. Vince McMahon (XXII)

Sure, it was a one-sided beating, but it may have been the most entertaining one-sided beating in wrestling history. Shawn beat Vince into oblivion, and was rebuked by Vince’s unconscious middle finger gesture from the stretcher.

 44
 43. John Cena vs. Triple H (XXII)

Both men put aside their goofy entrances (Hunter as Conan, Cena as Al Capone) to wrestle a mostly clinical contest, designed to prove that Cena can, indeed, wrestle. The Chicago fans called for his head the entire match, but what can ya do?

 43
 42. The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (XV)

Austin had been hunting down his World Title for six months, running the Corporation gauntlet before getting Rock in the WrestleMania mainer. 3 referees were taken out, but Mick Foley counted Austin’s pin after the Stunner.

 42
 41. Undertaker vs. Triple H (XXVIII)

Overrated as a classic, right at home as a “really good match”, Undertaker slowly polished off The Game and improved to 20-0 inside the Cell to supposedly “end an era” that has both men wrestling at WrestleMania one year later. WWE and their wacky taglines.

 41
40. Diesel vs. Shawn Michaels (XI)

One of the saving graces of WrestleMania on “The Grandest Stage of The Mall” was Michaels bouncing like a superball for Diesel’s Hulk V2 act. Being the underdog only swung fan sentiment behind Shawn, who’d turn face shortly after.

 40
 39. The Rock vs. John Cena (XXVIII)

A throwback to the larger-than-life hero vs. hero WrestleMania main events of yonder, Rock delivered a great performance with Cena, paying off the year-long build. Whether the sequel lives up is to be determined.

 39
 38. Undertaker vs. Triple H (X7)

Get past the ref bump where an elbow drop felled the official for approximately three hours, and you’re left with a widespread pier-sixer seated in hatred. Taker’s Last Ride, after he survived a sledgehammer shot, improved his mark to 9-0 in this one.

 38
 37. Money in the Bank (XXIV)

CM Punk took his first steps toward true main event acceptance by winning this seven man battle. Highlights saw John Morrison neuter himself, Matt Hardy return to take out MVP, and Shelton Benjamin nearly kill himself.

 37
 36. Shawn Michaels vs. Ric Flair (XXIV)

This was Flair’s theoretical swan-song before financial hardships forced him back into the ring. As a match, Flair showed his age in the later stages, but it’s still enjoyable for its dramatic, and bittersweet, qualities. The match takes on a new meaning in 2013, with Flair embracing his now-deceased son Reid.

 36
 35. Batista vs. John Cena (XXVI)

Batista’s pretty good as an easily-led worker. Put him with a proven main eventer, and you get a great match. Their Summerslam 2008 match is a forgotten classic and this one, though abbreviated, was a worthwhile hard-hitting epic. Batista’s face when Cena kicks out of his powerbomb is priceless.

 35
 34. Batista vs. Undertaker (XXIII)

Undertaker and Batista’s 2007 feud was one of few bright spots in a dismal year, and their WrestleMania war opened a lot of eyes to their remarkable chemistry. Taker went to 15-0, and won his first World Heavyweight Championship.

 34
 33. The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (XIX)

It was one last round for the ravaged Austin, and put Rock over clean as a sheet for the first time in a singles encounter. The fans didn’t seem to understand the significance or reality of Austin’s curtain call, but Rock’s post match antics made it clear that the end had arrived.

 33
 32. Money in the Bank (XXIII)

A fairly star-studded cast included Edge, Randy Orton, Booker T, and the Hardyz, but it was Mr. Kennedy who stood tall in the end, even if he’d never get to cash in his briefcase. Such luck was the case for Kennedy during his WWE run.

 32
 31. Shawn Michaels vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (XIV)

Michaels gutted through the second half of this match with a back injury akin to being dunked slowly into acid, but he managed to complete the title switch to Austin. With that, the Attitude Era took off, with Stone Cold as face of the movement.

 31
 30. Edge vs. Mick Foley (XXII)

Edge’s consolation prize after being temporary taken out of the World Title scene was this hellacious, blood-filled battle with Foley, which employed barbed wire and thumbtacks. It ended with the horrifying scene to right: a spear through a flaming table.

 30
 29. Edge/Christian vs. Hardy Boyz vs. Dudley Boyz (2000)

The template for wild ladder matches would change in the near future, and this was a more deliberately-paced rendition of later mayhem. Still, it’s a classic, and gave the Reak-of-Awesomeness Brothers their first reign as Tag Team Champions.

 29
 28. Edge vs. Undertaker (XXIV)

The Dead Man advanced to 16-0, having a great match with Edge in spite of hindrances (dying crowd, Coachman on commentary). As a footnote, company punching bag Zack Ryder ended up getting involved in the main event, so good on Zack.

 28
 27. Rock n Sock Connection vs. Evolution (XX)

This one’s more noted for its fun nature, as opposed to any science or pure wrestling. Flair and Rock’s antics were hilarious, while Foley and Orton’s personal score was waged, with Orton scoring the biggest win of his career via RKO.

 27
 26. CM Punk vs. Chris Jericho (XXVIII)

The build up was lame, with Jericho exposing Punk’s poison-laden family, but it made for a highly intense battle, with Punk refusing to lose in the name of vengeance. The end with Punk insisting upon his Anaconda Vise just to make Jericho suffer was apropos.

 26
 25. Undertaker vs. Triple H (XXVII)

After Brock Lesnar and Sting couldn’t be landed as Taker’s opponent, the COO was hastily inserted, but a great match was had. Undertaker was worn down, Hunter went for the kill, but succumbed to Hell’s Gate, even though Taker needed a stretcher job afterward.

 25
 24. Rowdy Roddy Piper vs. Bret Hart (VIII)

The two crowd-favorites put together a classic for the Intercontinental Title, one which Bret discreetly broke the company’s no-blood policy for. Hart regained the title after a genius sleeperhold reversal, and the two embraced in respect.

 24
 23. Kurt Angle vs. Chris Benoit (X7)

Though it was only signed six days before WrestleMania, the two went out and gave the show a wrestling clinic, exchanging holds, counters, and submissions as only men of their caliber could. Angle won via cheating, but it would lead to a classic on/off again feud for the next couple years.

 23
 22. The Rock vs. Hulk Hogan (X8)

Though I blame this match for giving Vince McMahon carte blanche to bring in part-timers and old-timers whenever, you forget your age momentarily during it. Watching Hogan “come to life” once more is awe-inspiring, and the match itself is just epic.

 22
 21. Kurt Angle vs. Brock Lesnar (XIX)

How Angle dragged his frayed body through this one is anyone’s guess, but he seamlessly helped Lesnar weave a classic. The ending saw Brock nearly die on a botched shooting star press, providing a very tense moment in the event’s finale.

 21
 20. Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho (XIX)

Jericho can’t stop gushing in his book about this one; understandable, given that he wasn’t Stephanie’s dog-walker for this angle. Michaels and Jericho played can-you-top-this in a seesaw battle, with Michaels narrowly getting the win. An incensed Jericho kicked Shawn in the crotch after.

 20
 19. Ric Flair vs. Macho Man Randy Savage (VIII)

This highly-personal World Title match saw Flair claim to have romanced Elizabeth before Savage did, and Macho attempted to beat him to death in response. Savage got the gold, but Flair kissed Liz after, and the new champ exploded once more.

 19
 18. Money in the Bank (XXI)

Can’t beat the original. Edge made the first briefcase claim by surviving a war that included Shelton Benjamin running up a sloped ladder and Kane destroy Chris Benoit’s arm. Edge would cash in 9 months later to win his first WWE Title.

 18
 17. Macho Man Randy Savage vs. Hulk Hogan (V)

The best heel turn in wrestling history, wherein Savage’s paranoia at Hogan drove him into a blind rage, led to this showdown, where Hogan withstood Savage’s return to cheap-shotting, and survived a Flying Elbow to win his second WWE Title.

 17
 16. Eddie Guerrero vs. Kurt Angle (XX)

What you’d expect from these two: a cat-and-mouse scientific classic, with a driven Angle working Guerrero’s ankle. But the wily WWE Champion loosened his boot, allowing him to escape the ankle lock and cradle Angle to retain his gold.

 16
 15. Hulk Hogan vs. Ultimate Warrior (VI)

The title for title “Ultimate Challenge” showcased Hogan’s ability to realistically carry a match, and he and Warrior enthralled a divided SkyDome. Warrior won in the end, and the Hulkster passed the torch to him, but it wouldn’t last, sadly.

 15
 14. John Cena vs. Shawn Michaels (XXIII)

The apex of Cena’s yearlong reign as WWE Champion was this half-hour battle with “Mr. WrestleMania.” Cena survived being piledriven on the ring steps (cutting the back of his head open), and made Michaels tap out to the STF.

 14
 13. Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (XII)

It can be a little hard to sit through 62 minutes of wrestling, with most of it being armbars and restholds, but Michaels and Hart delivered a great old school struggle, with Michaels winning in overtime to capture his first World Title.

 13
 12. Ultimate Warrior vs. Macho King Randy Savage (VII)

It was a retirement match meant to send Savage off into the sunset, and he had one last epic with Warrior en route there. But the aftermath, where a returning Elizabeth attacked Sherri (who assaulted a downed Savage) led to their reunion, and Savage coming back as a hero reborn.

 12
 11. Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant (III)

Consider this a token spot for a match not great for the wrestling, but for its magnitude. Hogan’s greatest challenge ever came in the form of wrestling’s most fearsome giant. But the WWE Champion of three years slammed the goliath to a mighty roar, and Leg Dropped him to stand victorious.

 11
 10. Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels (XXVI)

Michaels’ final match saw him attempt to end Undertaker’s unbreakable streak. Knowing his end was nigh, Michaels struck Undertaker, insisting that he finish him off like a man. One leaping Tombstone later, and Mr. Wrestlemania was no more.

 10
 9. Dudley Boyz vs. Edge/Christian vs. Hardy Boyz (X7)

After perfecting the spotfest formula at Summerslam 2000, the six man squared off once more in this high-drama stunt show. Rhyno, Spike Dudley, and Lita all got involved in the insanity, but Edge and Christian would reign once more in the end.

 9
 8. Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle (XXI)

Wrestling’s greatest performer and wrestling’s greatest athlete set out to determine who was the better man, with each star emptying their till. Michaels couldn’t survive one last ankle lock, and HBK tapped out after hanging on for as long as he could.

 8
 7. The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (X7)

Austin insisted he “needed” to win this match, but few understood what was behind his words. With the battle deadlocked, Vince McMahon got involved, and aided Austin in beating Rock senseless. Stone Cold won, but his alliance with Vinnie Mac proved more memorable in wrestling’s annals.

 7
 6. Bret Hart vs. Owen Hart (X)

After Owen’s heel turn, Bret finally agreed to fight his brother, and the result was Owen matching his more renowned brother move for move. Owen scored what was considered a major upset by reversing a victory roll into a drop-down to win. Owen’s joy was short-lived; Bret would be WWE Champion by night’s end.

 6
 5. Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels (XXV)

The match that virtually saved WrestleMania XXV did so in grand fashion. For thirty minutes, the two icons exchanged near falls, and Undertaker was nearly wiped out on a floor dive gone awry. It took 2 Tombstones, but Undertaker advanced to 17-0. Both men weren’t seen again for over 4 months.

 5
 4. Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Benoit (XX)

Although WWE’s wiped this from most of its histories, it’s still a great story of triumph against the odds. With Michaels taken out, Benoit made HHH tap out to the Crippler Crossface, and celebrating his title victory with WWE Champion Eddie Guerrero in a now-heartbreaking memory.

 4
 3. Macho Man Randy Savage vs. Ricky Steamboat (III)

Steamboat wanted blood more than the Intercontinental Title after Savage injured his throat. For a blood feud, it was actually a beautiful match, WWE’s best of the 1980s, and a template for future matches to follow. Steamboat ended Savage’s 14-month reign in a glorious coda to the conflict.

 3
 2. Razor Ramon vs. Shawn Michaels (X)

The first ladder match on PPV, to determine the “undisputed” Intercontinental Champion, set templates of its own, interspersing drama between dangerous spots never before seen in wrestling. Michaels may have lost, but he came out the bigger star, thanks to his daring antics and dives throughout.

 2
 1. Bret Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (XIII)

As far as I’m concerned, the greatest match of all time, at any event, period. The submission match was fought over pride, and Austin showed his when he, caked in blood, refused to surrender to the Sharpshooter. Stone Cold turned face in the aftermath, as his gutsy performance set the stage for his no-stops run to the top of the business.

 1

 

Disagree with anything? Think something was omitted? Wanna call the author a jerk anyway? Send feedback to Justin, either commenting here, or on Twitter, and he’ll generally respond.

Written by

Justin Henry is WrestleCrap's inquiring newsman, thirsting for knowledge always. He enjoys the art of satire, as you'll find in many of his works here at WrestleCrap. Drop him a line on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/notoriousjrh) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/jrhwriting)
27 Responses to "The 50 Greatest WrestleMania Matches Ever"
  1. TMS says:

    I was with you up until the top 3.

    I think the ladder match between HBK and Ramon should be #3, the submission match between Stone Cold and the Hitman should be #2, and the IC title match between Savage and Steamboat should be #1. Other than that, great list and some truly great WrestleMania matches, proving that every now and then the WWE gets it right and puts on a truly spectacular match.

  2. Scott "The Man" Matias says:

    Great list. However, I was shocked that Mickie Vs Trish wasn’t mentioned. It was a great women’s match and should at least get a nod.

    • Brad Holtman says:

      The Mickie/Trish match was decent, and was helped a lot by the crowd being hot rooting for Mickie, but Trish botched the finish so badly I think it actually hurt the match a little. I could nitpick over the order, but in general I thought this was a very accurate list.

      • Scott "The Man" Matias says:

        Agreed. I was thinking along the lines of top 50 by proxy, since there are little to no Wrestlemania women’s matches

    • Forest George says:

      It’s a different era for me now. I loved that match in 2006, but I loved it for all the wrong reasons. It is not a match I would want to watch now, even the edited DVD version.

  3. brandon. says:

    TLC II is great but I think it loses points based on the fact that it has quite possibly the most anticlimactic finish in wrestling history.

  4. Charles belles says:

    What do you think was the best wrestlemania match that a celebrity wrestled sir?

  5. John says:

    I could sub in Bulldogs-Dream Team over Vince and Shane. For the importance of the company Hogan & T vs Piper & Orndorff could bump out Warrior & Savage on the list. Flair-Taker, Flair-HBK & Savage-Steamboat are my 3 favorites.

  6. Dangerous Dave says:

    Call me prejudiced,but I refuse to accept one, let alone two, Ultimate Warrior matches in any sort of “greatest” list, aside from a list of greatest reasons not to bother watching WWE anymore.

    • Rory says:

      Dear Prejudiced,

      The Warrior/Savage match was a great match carried by one of the greatest wrestlers ever. The Hogan/Warrior match just had a ton of heat and was above average.

      Warrior has had exactly two good matches, luckily, they were both at exactly the right time.

  7. Lyle says:

    Interesting note: Of your top 10 matches, only 3 were the Main Event. Only 1 was for the WWE Championship and only 1 was for the World Heavyweight. It just goes to show that often the highlight is not what is the most pushed.

  8. Brandon says:

    How come Chris Jericho vs Christian (XX), Chris Benoit vs. MVP (XXIII), and Big Show vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr. (XXIV) didn’t make the list?

    • "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

      Um, because I’m guessing they weren’t worthy enough to make the list in his opinion…

    • Justin Henry says:

      to be totally fair, Christian/Jericho was on my list prior to 28, when I did this for my old blog. 3 matches were bumped off to make room for HHH/Taker, Rock/Cena, and Punk/Jericho. Along with Christian/Jericho were Eddie/Rey from 21 and Outlaws/Cactus and Funk from 14.

      Benoit/MVP was good, but would’ve been somewhere between 55-70 if I extended the list. Show/Mayweather I hated.

      • Rory says:

        It’s still the second best match with a celebrity as an active participant. But, I can’t complain because you haven’t put the best one on the list.

  9. THESLIMJAMES says:

    I’m glad to see Bret/Owen and Warrior/Savage make the list, as sometimes it feels like they get overlooked when talking about WM classics. Personal opinion, Eddie/Angle a bit too high (it didn’t feel “epic” to me), but a good match and worthy of being on the list.

  10. Boourns says:

    Personally I thought that Taker vs HHH from Wrestlemania 28 was better than 27. Much better storytelling as opposed to “finisher, cover, kickout, finisher, cover, kickout” which is what we seemed to get at 27.

  11. ReReallyrPeteGasWopie says:

    very good list, you should do a top (add number here) wrestlemania performers. if shelton benjamin isn’t in the top 3 i will be highly upset (how many WM’s has that guy saved?).

  12. Iron Smark Tyson says:

    A Justin Henry column and DB isn’t mentioned anywhere???? I’m shocked..SHOCKED I’D TELL YOU.

  13. Forest George says:

    I wish that list had a DVD set. I’ll have to see if there is a Wrestlemania collection with just those matches on it.

    I’m going to list my favorite Wrestlemania Hogan matches:

    12. Hulk Hogan vs. Yokozuna (Wrestlemania 9): I used to love this match, back in 1993. Sadly, its egomania at its finest. And this match makes you forget about . . .

    11. Hulk Hogan/Brutus Beefcake vs. Money Inc. (Wresltemania 9): Anybody even remembers this one?

    10. Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant (Wrestlemania 4): It’s not that horrible, but it’s not that good either. It’s probably got one of the best spots in a match – the suplex spot that might have legitimately injured Mike Jones (Virgil) because Hogan wouldn’t go down on the concrete with him. Sadly, it’s a cool spot. It’s also almost a better flowing match than from the year before, but maybe it was due more to Andre’s selling and because Hogan had Virgil and Dibise to work off of too. The ending is horrible, as Hogan clearly should have been DQ-ed after the chair shot. I don’t know how big Hogan’s ego was in 1988, but you’d think if he could take a count-out loss at Survivor Series, he could have lost here. Maybe the bookers didn’t want to bore the audience with Andre relinquishing his match with Dibise. In retrospect, this should have been a double count-out.

    9. Hulk Hogan/Mr. T vs/ Paul “Mr. Wonderful” Orndorff/”Rowdy” Roddy Piper (Wrestlemania): Gloried Madison Square Garden Main Event, that happened to have guest celebrities. It’s a fun match, and it’s the first main event of Wrestlemania.

    8. Hulk Hogan vs. “Sycho” Sid Justice (Wrestlemania 8): This was kind of like Hogan’s swan song due to scandals and other stuff going on. It was kind of a shock at the time, because one moment you think you’re going to get Hogan/Flair and it’s 1991 all over again – but no. Hogan rides out to the sunset, and sadly Sid gets fired shortly after this and we have a very different WWF after April 1992. The match itself isn’t great in terms of wrestling, but Sid knew how to act and Sid giving promos mid-match to have a bad match actually is entertaining – even today. Sid debuts the “Sycho” Sid name here via Monsoon and Heenan, and was probably going to get some kind of push before getting fired. Warrior coming back was kind of cool, back then – but he was gone within six months after having one dream re-match with Savage.

    7. Hulk Hogan vs. Sgt. Slaughter (Wrestlemania 7): This actually is a well booked match, given the storyline. It was supposed to be the mirror image of 1984, when Hogan destroyed The Iron Sheik, but I guess for some reason both guys actually put on their working boots for the match. Whenever Hulk Hogan decides to go to the top rope to do a body slam spot, you know he’s seriously working. It was only, however, the start of their feud – which I think we could have done without. It’s sad to admit it, but Hulkamania had dried up by this point. I actually was cheering for Taker to beat him for the title by Survivor Series.

  14. Forest George says:

    6. Hulk Hogan vs. King Kong Bundy (Wrestlemania 2): People dog this match a lot, but I love it. I just loved Jesse Ventura as the lead announcer on this one too. Casandra Peters isn’t too annoying in this, but I liked listening to annoying females when I was nine years old. Maybe it wasn’t worthy of what we now call wrestlemania – but Hogan vs. Bundy in the cage was good for the time.

    5. Hulk Hogan vs. Vince McMahon (Wresltemania 19): This was a good match on paper, because of the real heat these two had. It was a decent match in execution, but my dad didn’t like it because he felt in real life Hogan would destroy Vince in a manner of seconds. To him, Hogan was a real wrestler. Vince was an announcer. Years after my dad’s death, I watched this on my own – and its decent. I think some of his other mania matches might be better, but this was another one of those “dream matches,” that kind of made sense at the time. [I would have liked it better if Hogan had won, and then sat out for the next year and came back for Wrestlemania 20. Instead, Mr. America shows up until Hogan gets sick of working and Hogan and Vince fall out for about two years, until the Hall of Fame. Then Hogan and Vince fell out again for good in about 2007, but who\'s counting?]

    4. Hulk Hogan vs. Andre, the Giant (Wresltemania 3): It’s hard to place this one up so high, but the more I watch this match – I struggle with enjoying it. Andre was in so much pain here, it wasn’t funny. As a 11 year old kid, watching the massive giant against Hogan – this was the match. It’s not as bad as some would rate it, but it’s a He-Man cartoon battle over the much better Randy Savage vs. Ricky Steamboat match. That being said, this match still is awesome to watch. The big spot is the slam. Can Hogan slam the Giant? The three count at the beginning set up the next year of storylines, which had a twist when Million Dollar Man came on the scene. I liked the twist of Hogan hitting the lariat clothesline on Andre, and Hulking up into the body slam. [Which kind of defuses Hogan\'s story of Andre screaming \"SLAM,\" or Hogan ripping out his back and biceps and whatever.]

    3. Hulk Hogan vs. “Macho Man” Randy Savage (Wrestlemania 5): I think Hogan and Savage wrestled some better matches prior to this in 1985-86, but you knew eventually this match had to happen. Another match where Hogan actually springs out some technical wrestling moves, and Savage takes an insane bump for WWF standards in 1989. Some might have hoped Savage would retain here, but it was a different time and Hogan was still really the man in 1989 for the company. He was still the man, for all intents and purposes, until about 1991 when guys like Undertaker had cooler gimmicks.

    2. Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior (Wrestlemania 6): This might still be one of the greatest matches Hulk Hogan ever wrestled. It’s a match even today, still holds up like you are still there. Both of these guys at that moment were mega-stars and it was a Dream Match. Some might rate it higher than Hogan and Rock, because Hogan actually carries Warrior to a decent match – in a match nobody should have been carrying anybody. It’s one of those matches where both guys could have just done their moves (like the 98 rematch) and called it a night, but these guys were on fire – and worked a well worked story, where both guys gave all they had. When Hogan lost, and he held that title in his hands with tears in his eyes and he give it to the warrior – that was class. Probably why as a match it still stands up.

    1. Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock (Wrestlemania 18): This was kind of like the swan song for Hogan, even though his last WWE match was a victory over Randy Orton some four years later. I’m kind of depressed of the 2002 Hogan comeback tour, because the guy had his blow-off jobbing match before he even had a build-up. Hindsight being 20/20, however, its Hulk Hogan – so did you really need a build up? I guess my problem was it felt like he agreed to job to so many people, hoping Vince would give him a big push later. Surprise, surprise. [Although I guess in a way Hogan got what he wanted in the end. His bad blood with Vince happened off camera, after Hogan had already beaten Shawn Michaels and Randy Orton.]

    Rock vs. Hogan was the matches of all mega-matches in wrestling. Cena vs. Rock might be cool, but these guys wrestled in the era I cared about. This was a dream match of all dream matches. Forget Hogan vs. Austin, or Hogan vs. Vader, or Hogan vs. Flair — this was the match of all matches. Hogan was a shot worker at this point, but even he brought his A-game. Rocky was still on his A-game, and it really was a solid match. Hogan had to pull out a Rock Bottom, and the hulk up in Canada was beautiful. The only thing missing here was “Real American” to be cued up after the loss posedown. [I still think Hogan should have won here, especially in retrospect - because it would have given him heat to go up against Triple H and then Hogan could have lost there, instead of holding the title that last time. I still am baffled by the booking during this time for Hogan.]

  15. Thomas Moffatt says:

    Surprised the British Bulldogs v the Dream Team from WM2 didn’t make the list – it was cut from the WM2 induction BTW…

  16. patricko says:

    Lots of comments, good and bad, about Warrior / Hogan at WM6.

    I recall hearing / reading that they spent some time ahead of time, working out a whole lot of it.
    Both of them worked their asses off (for them…).

    But most importantly… the context.
    At the time, there were not two more over wrestlers… alive.
    WWE built to the match properly, in an age where most of their programming was still mid-carders going over canvas backs on saturday morning.

    my housemates and I had over 20 people over to watch this Mania. It was a big enough deal to bring the casual fans to the table. I believe virtually all of us wanted to see Warrior get the duke, and were happy with it.

    20+ years later, I still remember spots from it, like Hogan limping around the ring, going on and on about how his knee was blown, only to have it heal miraculously a couple minutes later….
    Or how they made sure to keep things so even for the first part of the match. One suplex for you… one suplex for you….

    It was a HUGE match, in other words, back when WM still had a mystique about it, back before there were monthly PPV’s….

  17. Lee W says:

    The funny thing nowadays is Vince McMahon is better known as being a punching bag rather than acutally creating the event.

  18. Will says:

    There are too many Cena and Batista matches on here. Jericho and Anlge and bret hart vs HBK should all be much higher, angle vs lesnar should be higher. Kane vs The Undertaker should be on here, they are both huge and put on a great match, plus had the most unique build up for match ever. Think Austin vs Rock should be higher given that the attitude era is widely considered the greatest era and this was the best match from that era. It was the Ali vs Foreman of Wrestling, just watching the promo, without being huge Austin or Rock fans, I feel completly hooked. Face vs Face and no one knew what to expect. Also anyone complaining at TLC2 is mad, the spear, the swanton bomb, the gore, spike and lita’s parts, and then the two crashing from the top of a ladder to the outside through stacks of tables, what more could you ask for!

  19. Buried by Vince says:

    Bret Hart vs Shawn Michaels is WAY too low, should be in the top 5 instead of Benoit, HBK, and HHH. Other then that, the list is pretty legit.

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