10 Matches That Deserved To Main Event WrestleMania

3/25/2024 3:27 PM

By using this website, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information. 🍪

10 Matches That Deserved To Main Event WrestleMania

10 Matches That Deserved To Main Event WrestleMania

March 25, 2024 3:27 PM
10 Matches That Deserved To Main Event WrestleMania

Not every match gets a main event showcase.

10: The Rock vs. Hulk Hogan (WrestleMania 18)

WrestleMania 18 was main evented by 2002 Royal Rumble winner, Triple H vs. Chris Jericho. Whilst this was indeed a suitable World Title match for WrestleMania, it was ultimately overshadowed by a dream match between The Rock and Hulk Hogan. The dream match exceeded all expectations, and numerous wrestlers including Jericho himself have stated that the match should have been in the main event slot, as Jericho and The Game had an impossible task.

The Rock vs. Hogan also deserved the main event slot because The Rock’s work during the invasion storyline was superb, and he was still arguably the most over wrestler in the entire company.

Nevertheless, whilst it remains disappointing that the dream match didn’t headline the biggest show of the year, it doesn’t hinder the magic that was the inaugural Rock vs. Hogan matchup.

9: Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker (WrestleMania 25)

Greatness was achieved at WrestleMania 25 when Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker stole the show. Both men put on a clinic, and some fans class the match as the single greatest match in the history of WrestleMania.

Due to how outstanding the matchup was, there was not a single match on the face of the earth that could successfully follow it, and this meant that the main event matchup of Randy Orton vs. Triple H was met with a lukewarm response.

In WWE’s defence, at the time, Orton vs. Triple H headlining the show was the right call. The feud was red-hot, and fans were expecting a war between the two foes on the grandest stage. Unfortunately, the match fell flat, as both men wrestled as if they weren’t in an epic blood feud.

Appearing on Out of Character, Orton spoke about the pressure of main eventing following the HBK vs. Undertaker match, and this is what the former WWE Champion had to say:

"I remember being in the locker-room with Triple H, And they had a little monitor back there, and we're watching Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels, and he's just sitting there. I saw what is happening, but he was being vocal about it like 'ugh, goddamnit'. And I'm watching, I'm like 'Oh they are having a great match, what's the problem?'. Well, we're gonna have to follow that kid. Chokeslam - kick(out), Superkick - kick(out), Tombstone - kickout, 1..2... Oh! The whole crowd is gonna be tired."

8: John Cena vs. The Undertaker (WrestleMania 34)

It’s well documented just how much of a failure the main event of WrestleMania 34 ended up being. The show was main evented by Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns for the Universal Title, and the match was atrocious in every aspect, and it featured a crowd that wanted no part in seeing the match in the main event slot.

In terms of what match should have main evented, WWE had numerous options. Firstly, they had the dream match between John Cena and The Undertaker. If WWE extended the match to a main event level length (something The Undertaker was pushing for), then the match would have fully deserved the main event spotlight.

Other matches that could have easily headlined include the show-stealing Ronda Rousey and Kurt Angle vs. Triple H & Stephanie McMahon mixed tag, and potentially, AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura, that’s if WWE committed to giving the two talents free rein in delivering a match for the ages.

7: Triple H vs. The Undertaker (WrestleMania 27)

It’s incredibly likely that WrestleMania 27 was only main evented by John Cena vs. The Miz because of The Rock’s implied involvement. If The Rock wasn’t involved as the host of WrestleMania, then another match would likely have been in the main event slot, and that match would have been the Triple H vs. Undertaker showdown.

WrestleMania 27 is often regarded as one of the worst WrestleMania events of all time, and for good reason, yet The Game vs. The Deadman was a truly epic encounter that saved the show from being a complete trainwreck. If the show was main evented by these two legends, then the show as a whole may be looked back on more fondly in the eyes of the WWE fanbase.

6: Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage (WrestleMania 8)

It came as a huge surprise when Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage for the WWE Title didn’t headline WrestleMania 8. As well as having a truly personal rivalry heading into the match, the actual match was an utter masterpiece. The match highlighted just how tremendous Flair and Savage were, and the match if it was placed in the main event slot would have been labelled as one of the best main events of the 1990s.

Instead of the WWE Title match main eventing the show, and the show going off the air with a Savage WWE Title win, WWE opted to have Hulk Hogan vs. Sid main event the show. This main event match was a dull affair and was only in the main event slot as it featured Hogan, as well as the return of The Ultimate Warrior.

5: Kurt Angle vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Randy Orton (WrestleMania 22)

It was previously an expectation that if a wrestler won the annual Royal Rumble, then they would main event WrestleMania. However, in 2006, Royal Rumble winner, Rey Mysterio didn’t main event the show, and instead, he was given a 9-minute World Title matchup against Kurt Angle and Randy Orton.

Whilst the time limit did impact the matchup, it was nine minutes of non-stop action, and if the match was placed in the main event position of the show, fans would have no doubt witnessed a classic.

This isn’t to say the main event of WrestleMania 22 was bad, as John Cena vs. Triple H for the WWE Title was a great matchup, yet the visual of WrestleMania going off the air with Mysterio as World Champion would have been truly incredible.

4: Diesel vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 11)

WWE’s business wasn’t in the best place in 1995, so they decided to latch onto any mainstream attention they could. For WrestleMania 11, instead of having a WWE Title match main event the show, WWE decided to have Lawrence Taylor vs. Bam Bam Bigelow main event.

This was a controversial move, as WWE needed to create new stars, and booking a celebrity in the main event of WrestleMania, and booking that celebrity to win the matchup was the opposite of what they should have been doing.

The rightful main event was easily Diesel vs. Shawn Michaels for the WWE Title, as the match had a strong story, and the quality of the match was worthy of a WrestleMania main event.

3: Bret Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (WrestleMania 13)

Although the WWE product was seeing a surge of popularity by WrestleMania 13, the main event of the show wasn’t reflective of the product to come. The Undertaker and Sid engaged in a lacklustre main event that had little build and didn’t warrant such an elite position on the card.

It’s a common consensus that the main event of the show should have been the undisputed classic between Bret Hart and Stone Cold. The two icons faced off in a submission match, and the match wasn’t just known for its quality, it also saw the unofficial start of the Attitude Era, as Stone Cold emerged as one of the hottest acts in pro wrestling.

2: Charlotte Flair vs. Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch (WrestleMania 32)

Roman Reigns’ character was being met with disdain by the time he main evented WrestleMania 32. WrestleMania 32 was main evented by Triple H vs. Roman Reigns, and the match was heavily panned, as the fans loathed Reigns at the time, and they had zero interest in seeing the matchup unfold.

WWE had the perfect opportunity to deliver something new and fresh for the main event of the aforementioned WrestleMania, and this would have been to have the women’s division take centre stage.

The match of the show was ultimately the triple threat match for the Women’s Title between Charlotte, Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch, and seeing the three women in the main event position would have been a major deal.  If this had occurred, WWE may have liked to have changed the finish, as Banks, who was immensely popular at the time, winning the matchup, and the title would have been an incredibly positive way to bring WrestleMania to a close.

1: The Undertaker vs. CM Punk (WrestleMania 29)

CM Punk had an incredible year leading up to WrestleMania 29, and he without question should have headlined the show. Whether Punk main evented the show vs. The Undertaker or he was inserted into the John Cena vs. The Rock rematch, it didn’t matter to the fans, and it didn’t matter to Punk, who was hurt that he wasn’t main evening the show.

The match Punk had with The Undertaker on the show was widely acclaimed, and Punk clearly went into the match with a chip on his shoulder. The actual main event of the show, that being Cena vs. The Rock II paled in comparison to their WrestleMania 28 encounter, and WWE were quite rightly heavily criticised for delivering a ‘once in a lifetime’ matchup a second time.

Thankfully, all hope isn’t lost when it comes to Punk main eventing a WrestleMania event, as now he is back in WWE, it’s likely that if he is fit and healthy, he will be in a main event slot come WrestleMania 41 in 2025.