Wrestlemania: Top-10 Main Events In WWE History
Take a look back at some of the greatest Wrestlemania main events ahead of WM34.
Wrestlemania is the Super Bowl for professional wrestlers. It has been dubbed “The Grandest Stage of Them All,”[tooltip id=”4500c2f113202943ff1ae30d00c9d4ac”] [/tooltip]“The Showcase of the Immortals,”[tooltip id=”4500c2f113202943ff1ae30d00c9d4ac”] [/tooltip]“The Show of Shows,” etc. etc.
Getting on the card at WWE’s annual showcase in April is an honor in its own right. Headlining the biggest PPV of the year and taking part in the Main Event of Wrestlemania is a whole different level.
Over the years (34 after tonight’s Wrestlemania in New Orleans), Wrestlemania main events have featured a who’s who of the WWE’s most legendary performers including Hulk Hogan, The Ultimate Warrior, Shawn Michaels, The Undertaker and Stone Cold Steve Austin. With another Wrestlemania kicking off tonight (pre-show will start at 4:30pm ET), it’s only right that we remember some of those iconic performances from years gone by.
Scroll down for 10 of the most iconic Wrestlemania main event matches (in no particular order) in WWE history.
Hulk Hogan vs Andre The Giant
Hulk Hogan defending the WWF World Heavyweight Championship against Andre The Giant at the Pontiac Silverdome in front of 93,000 fans was dubbed the “biggest main event in sports entertainment.”
Andre, who hadn’t lost in his WWE career, entered the match fresh off a heel turn against his former friend The Hulkster, who had held the title for three years at that point.
The iconic bout was one of the most significant matches in WWE history, let alone Wrestlemania history.
Bret Hart vs Shawn Michaels
In the main event of WM12, Bret “The Hitman” Hart defended his WWF World Heavyweight Championship against “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels in an Iron Man Match, which meant the winner was determined by whoever had the most falls after 60 minutes.
That’s an extremely long match, and it certainly wasn’t all action packed, but the final 30-35 minutes of this bout was enough to cement this iconic match in Wrestlemania history.
As it turns out,[tooltip id=”4500c2f113202943ff1ae30d00c9d4ac”] [/tooltip]60 minutes wasn’t even enough to declare a winner in this epic Wrestlemania Main Event and the match went into a sudden death overtime before someone was finally pinned.
The Rock vs Stone Cold
Wrestlemania 17, aka Wrestlemania X7, is widely regarded as one of the best all around Wrestlemanias of all-time, and the main event featuring The Rock vs Stone Cold Steve Austin is among the greatest bouts in Mania history.
At the time, both The Rock and Stone Cold were at the peaks of their careers and they had plenty of history with one another when they stepped into the ring in Austin’s home state of Texas. Just before both men were introduced it was announced that the match, which was for The Rock’s WWF World Heavyweight Championship, would be a no disqualification match.
This wasn’t the first time The Rock and Stone Cold squared off at Wrestlemania, and it wouldn’t be the last, but the shocking finish in this one separates it from their other memorable matches.
Randy Orton vs Batista vs Daniel Bryan
The Main Event at Wrestlemania 30 was all about the beloved underdog Daniel Bryan, who earned his way into the championship match by defeating Triple H in the first bout of the night.
Bryan went on to defeat Batista and the defending champ Randy Orton in an incredible triple threat match to become the new WWE World Heavyweight champion. The show concluded with Bryan’s memorable celebrations, including fireworks, confetti and a resounding “Yes!” chant from the sold out crowd at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.
Edge vs Undertaker
In the Main Event of Wrestlemania 24 at the Florida Citrus Bowl, Edge put his World Heavyweight Championship on the line against the Undertaker who, up until that point, was still undefeated at Wrestlemania.
The match featured a number of memorable moments, including The Undertaker’s jaw-dropping dive over the top rope, Edge countering the Deadman’s signature moves, and some outside interference.
In the end, Taker submitted Edge to win the World Heavyweight Championship and improve to 16-0 all time at WrestleMania.
John Cena vs The Rock
Billed as a “Once In A Lifetime” match, the Wrestlemania 28 main event between John Cena and The Rock had been advertised for a full year before the two men stepped in the ring at Sun Life Stadium in Miami. And the 73,000+ fans could not have been more electric for this epic showdown.
Both wrestlers turned actors held their own in the ring, kicking out of each others’ finishers time and again, but the crowd’s intensity really kicked this match up a notch and it’s the reason the Wrestlemania 28 main event is so fondly remembered by wrestling fans.
It is one of the few times that a title wasn’t on the line for a Wrestlemania main event but when you have star power like Cena and The People’s Champ, the match sells itself.
Hulk Hogan vs Ultimate Warrior
The Champion vs Champion main event at Wrestlemania 6 between WWF Heavyweight champ Hulk Hogan and WWF Intercontinental champ Ultimate Warrior is just one of those matches that wrestling fans think of when they hear the word “Wrestlemania.”
Both men put on one of the best performances of their respective careers in “The Ultimate Challenge,” and the 67,000 fans at the Skydome in Toronto were treated to a legendary match complete with brilliant in-ring storytelling and an epic test of strength.
Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns
WWE champion Brock Lesnar beat the breaks off Roman Reigns for much of this main event, taking Reigns to Suplex City time and again. However, The Big Dog kicked out of several of Lesnar’s F-5’s and ultimately took the upper hand via a series of “Superman Punches.”
The two heavyweights were already trending toward a memorable match but then Seth Rollins’ music hit. The crowd went berserk and the main event went to another level. In one of the greatest moments in Wrestlemania history, Rollins sprinted to the ring with his “Money In The Bank” briefcase and successfully cashed in to steal the tile.
Triple H vs Shawn Michaels vs Chris Benoit
The Wrestlemania 20 main event is tainted, for obvious reasons, but the in-ring action between Chris Benoit, World Heavyweight Champion Triple H and Shawn Michaels remains one of the greatest Wrestlemania performances in the history of the WWE.
The match had everything you hope to see in a Mania main event including high spots, technical offense, multiple finishers, broken tables, great in-ring storytelling and of course, lots of blood.
The tremendous triple threat, which Benoit won by getting Triple H to tap out to the “Crippler Crossface,” was later named “Match of the Year” for 2004.
Undertaker vs Shawn Michaels
The Undertaker and HBK followed up their match at Wrestlemania 25 with an iconic “Streak vs. Career” bout at Wrestlemania 26 that featured plenty of dramatic spots, including several Tombstones and Shawn Michaels’ moonsault off the top rope and onto the Spanish announce table.
It was the first Wrestlemania since Wrestlemania 11 with a non-title match as the main event but the stakes couldn’t have been higher as The Undertaker’s undefeated Wrestlemania streak was on the line against Michaels’ career.
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