Top Ten Wrestlemania Matches of All Time
On March 31, 1985 the Superbowl of professional wrestling was born. There were many prior wrestling events that showcased the best in the business. However Vince McMahon's vision reached far beyond arm bars, single leg take downs and abdominal stretches. The hype, the pagentry, promos, colaborations (MTV, Rock-n-Wrestling Connection), and celebrities made this a must see event. It was much larger than just putting on another stellar wrestling card. Vince successfully weaved wrestling with most major entertainment brands. The glam and glitter of Liberace' was matched by the wild unbridled energy of Rock-n-Roll's Cindy Lauper. Baseball's most controversial character (Billy Martin) agreed to play a part while boxing's most enigmatic figure aimed to play the enforcer in the chaotic main event. This make or break attitude has permeated through the legends who have competed on this grand stage. While some legends were born during this event, others proved they were not up to the challenge thus throwing their career into the abyss of forgotteness.
With all of this said, here are my top ten Wrestlemania matches of all time. With 28 years of material to choose from, the task of narrowing down my list became arduous. However I feel confident that the chosen matches will stand the test of time. There are always up and coming WWE superstars waiting in the back room for his/her opportunity to take their place in the wrestling annals. They must seize the moment like their legendary forefathers.
10) Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock (Wrestlemania 18) – I challenge you to find a match with better crowd reaction. It was as if time stood still as Hogan and the Rock stared at each other in the center of the ring. What was even better, the crowd started to cheer the heel (Hogan) and boo the face (The Rock). Surprisingly Rocky worked well with a much more experienced wrestler. Click on the link below to watch this classic.
The Rock vs. Hollywood Hulk Hogan
- WrestleMania 18 - The Rock vs Hollywood Hulk Hogan Full Match - YouTube
WrestleMania 18 - The Rock vs Hollywood Hulk Hogan Full Match
9) [I Quit Match] Brett the “Hitman” Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin( Wrestlemania 13) – This match gave birth to Austin’s image as one of the toughest guys in the business. He was so stubborn he did not tap out to Hart while in the Sharpshooter; he passed out from the pain. Austin showed he could put on a show on the big stage.
8) The Undertaker vs. Triple H (Wrestlemania 27) - This is the second match in the Undertaker-Triple H Wrestlemania Trilogy. The “End of An Era” Hell in a Cell Match (Third and Final match) could have made this list also. But, this “No Hold’s Barred” match was so brutal and took a toll on the Undertaker that he was carted out on a stretcher. I thought I would never see the day that would happen, especially on wrestling’s biggest stage. The match ended with Triple H’s feeble attempt to tap out while in “Hell’s Gate.” This wasn’t a sign of quitting, but rather a sign that he gave everything he had leaving his tank empty. This match was also important because it set the stage for probably the second most brutal “Hell in a Cell” match in WWE history.
7) [Triple Threat TLC] Hardys vs. Dudleys vs Edge and Christian (Wrestlemania 2000) – This was the pre-cursor to the now famous Tables, Ladders, and Chairs (TLC) matches and Pay-Per-View. This match set the standard for today’s wrestlers in the WWE. You must be willing to put your body on the line. You must be willing to try something that will make the crowd go “Wow….. did you just see that” and you must be able to crawl in the ring the next night to perform again to keep the momentum going after participating in a near career ending match.
6) Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior (Wrestlemania VI) – Up until this time Hulk Hogan had never been beaten for the WWE Title fair and square. The way the Warrior performed that night you would have thought he was invincible and his reign would last forever. Unfortunately drugs would soon defeat him.
The Ultimate Warrior vs. Hulk Hogan
5) [Ladder Match]Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon (Wrestlemania 10) – The birth of the “Show Stopper was born on this night as Michaels and Ramon put on one of the greatest ladder matches of all time. The Inter-Continental Title was at stake that night, however that match could rival any World Heavyweight Title Match.
4) [Career vs. The Streak] The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michael (Wrestlemania 26) – There is no bigger stage to have one of the biggest matches in history. Either the “Taker’s” Wrestlemania win streak get’s snapped or The “Show Stopper” has his last show forever. The millions of Shawn Michaels fans would be heartbroken as the Undertaker puts an end to one of the most storied careers in wrestling history.
3) [Iron Man match] Brett the “Hitman” Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (Wrestlemania XII). Michaels proved himself to be the show stopper once again as he puts on one of the greatest matches in history with Hart. After over an hour of battling, the “Heart Break Kid” reached legendary status by beating the man who was “The best there was, the best there is, and the best there ever will be for the World Heavyweight Title.
2) “Macho Man” Randy Savage vs. Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat (Wrestlemania III).From a pure wrestling standpoint, this is one of the greatest matches of all time. This match almost stole the thunder from the main event of Hogan vs. Andre the Giant. Savage and Macho Man helped keep the Intercontinental Title elevated as one of the most prestigious titles in the business.
1) Andre the Giant vs. Hulk Hogan (Wrestlemania III) – This match has so much significance. This match pitted Hulk Hogan (the champion) against the man who had never been pinned before in his career. This still holds as one of the greatest matches ever. After a lack-luster Wrestlemania 2, the flagship event for the WWF was saved due to great performances coupled with a main event that lived up to the hype. In the match Hogan did the unthinkable; he body slams Andre (a feat which severly injured his back according to his memoir “My Life Outside The Ring).”