With WWE Wrestlemania 38 approaching, I decided to create a list of my favorite Wrestlemania matches from over the years. The rankings have been determined from my own personal opinions but I took various factors into consideration including match quality, storyline, and overall impact. Click here for part two and here is part three…
18. Edge and Christian vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. The Hardy Boyz (Wrestlemania 17)
The Wrestlemania 16 ladder match with these three teams was incredible and the trio somehow topped that match with their TLC match at Wrestlemania 17. There were so many memorable moments in this encounter with Edge’s spear to Jeff Hardy becoming an all-time iconic Wrestlemania moment.
17. Hulk Hogan vs. Mr. McMahon (Wrestlemania 19)
Hogan vs. McMahon almost felt surreal as it was a match you didn’t think would ever happen during the heyday of Hulkamania or even during the peak of the Monday Night War. The two wrestling icons had a match better than you might expect and Roddy Piper making a surprise appearance was a nice touch.
16. Seth Rollins vs. Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns (Wrestlemania 31)
The match started as Royal Rumble winner Reigns challenging Lesnar for the WWE Title. The match quality was good despite fans having a negative attitude about the match leading up to it. Rollins cashing in Money in the Bank and winning the title was one of the biggest pops I ever experienced in person at a wrestling event. In my book, it was one of the most epic endings to a Wrestlemania event.
15. Stone Cold Steve Austin vs Shawn Michaels (Wrestlemania 14)
Michaels was in rough shape going into this match and while it wasn’t his best performance, this was one of the most significant Wrestlemania matches from a historical standpoint. With Mike Tyson as the referee, Michaels passed the torch to Austin and a new era of prosperity would begin for WWE with the The Texas Rattlesnake on top.
14. The Ultimate Warrior vs. Randy Savage (Wrestlemania 7)
While the Warrior winning the WWE Title from Hogan was his biggest moment, I would say Warrior’s best match was against Savage. “Careers” were on the line and Savage did everything he could to try and beat the Warrior but was unsuccessful. Afterwards, Sensational Sherri turned against Savage and we got the emotional reunion between Savage and Miss Elizabeth.
13. Daniel Bryan vs. Batista vs. Randy Orton (Wrestlemania 30)
Bryan’s journey to the WWE Title at Wrestlemania 30 was one of the best underdog stories that the company produced. Unfortunately, the crowd was a bit burned out but this match still delivered the ending that fans were hoping for. Bryan, despite all the obstacles thrown in his way, saw the ultimate fulfillment of the “Yes Movement” with his victory to close the show.
12. Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. The Rock (Wrestlemania 19)
Austin was arguably the biggest star in WWE history and Wrestlemania 19 would turn out to be his final match until retirement. In the third match of their trilogy, The Rock was FINALLY able to defeat his long-time rival in another classic encounter between the two.
11. Daniel Bryan vs. Triple H (Wrestlemania 30)
In order to win a WWE Title opportunity in the main event, Bryan had to defeat Triple H to open the Wrestlemania 30 PPV. This was an absolutely fantastic match and I always felt it was a strong contender for the best opening match in the history of the event. Even if it felt like Bryan was going to win, you just didn’t know for sure.
10. Owen Hart defeated Bret Hart (Wrestlemania 10)
The feud between the Hart Brothers was probably the strongest storyline in WWE during the New Generation era. I give this match the slight edge over Bryan vs. Triple H for best opening match in Wrestlemania history just because of how much it elevated Owen. It was technically as good as it gets. Owen beating Bret and then having to watch his brother win the WWE Title at the end of the show was top-tier storytelling.
9. Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant (Wrestlemania 3)
Was this technically a good match? Absolutely not. However, it was one of the most important matches in the history of the business and has that iconic moment with Hogan slamming Andre. It was the two biggest larger-than-life personalities clashing that drew the massive crowd to the Pontiac Silverdome. Hulkamania was in serious jeopardy and that is what made the match dramatic to watch.
Click here for part four.