The complete history of WrestleMania
The best of the worst moments in Wrestlemania history
- Bart Gunn versus Butterbean (Wrestlemania 15)
- (a) The company couldn’t promote it as a shoot (legitimate fight) because that would be pointing out that everything else WWF did was pre-determined.
- (b) Nobody could follow the wacky scoring system: Whichever wrestler connected with the most punches per round earned five points. A ‘clean’ takedown was worth five points and a knockdown was worth 10 (although ex-UFC star Dan Severn quit the competition because of his confusion over how matches were scored). The judge for each match: that famed Brazilian jiu jitsu expert Gorilla Monsoon.
- (c) The fans crapped all over the concept. In the first week, the audience was chanting: “We want wrestling!”
- (d) Injuries piled up: Steve Blackman and Road Warrior Hawk were laid out and needed time off. Savio Vega aggravated an arm injury and was released later that year.
- (e) Careers were killed dead . . .
- Triple H channels the spirit of Conan the Barbarian (Wrestlemania 22)
- Picture Triple H, moments before he entered the ring, looking in a mirror and talking with the boys backstage.
- Triple H: “I look ridiculous, don’t I? You can tell me. I won’t be mad.”
- Rey Mysterio: “No way, man. You can pull it off.”
- Rob Van Dam: “It’s bad ass.”
- Triple H: “Really? Ya think? I don’t know . . . ”
- Chris Jericho: “Confidence, baby. You’re Triple F***ing H! Of course you can do it.”
- Triple H (visibly perking up): “Thanks, guys. You’re the best.”
- Papa Shango blowing the finish of the main event (Wrestlemania 8)
- It was the biggest moment in the career of Charles Wright: as Papa Shango, he was booked to break up the pin by Hulk Hogan against Sid Vicious in the main event of the biggest wrestling show of the year. Too bad Shango was late getting to the ring.In front of more than 60,000 fans, Hogan made his comeback against Sid. He Hulked up. He delivered his patented leg drop. The ref counted 1 . . . 2 . . . and Shango was no where to be found. Sid had to improvise, kicking out of the move (not breaking script, as urban legend would have it) and brawling with Hogan until Shango finally got down to the ring. (The flub was soon forgotten, thanks to the stunning return seconds later of The Ultimate Warrior, which sent the fans into pandemonium.
- Big Show versus Akebono in a sumo match (Wrestlemania 21)
- Hulk Hogan’s promo (Wrestlemania 4)
- This is a direct quote from his pre-match interview with Mene Gene Okerlund, backstage at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City: “As Andre the Giant falls into the ocean, as my next two opponents fall to the ocean floor and I pin them, so will Donald Trump and all my Hulkamaniacs. But as Donald Trump hangs on to the top of Trump Plaza, with his family under his other arm, as they sink to the bottom of the sea, thank God Donald Trump’s a Hulkamaniac. He’ll know enough to let go of his materialistic possessions, hang on to the wife and kids, dog paddle with his life, all the way to safety.”
- Vince wanting to book the Los Angeles Coliseum (Wrestlemania 7)
- Today, Wrestlemania can fill a stadium on its name alone. But in 1991, the business was in a downturn, which all except Vince McMahon seemed to recognize. Everyone thought he was crazy when he announced WM 7 — headlined by Hulk Hogan versus Iraqi sympathizer Sgt. Slaughter — would be held in the 100,000-seat L.A. Coliseum. Everyone was right. Tickets sales were slower than Jessica Simpson in calculus class. From a saving-face perspective, it was a lucky break that a bomb threat (cough BS cough) resulted in WWF shifting the event to the 16,000-seat Los Angeles Sports Arena. The only bombing that would have gone on that day was WM 7 itself.
- ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper (Wrestlemania 6)
- Pro wrestling has never been the most politically correct form of entertainment — at one point or another, it’s offended every sex, race and religion — but very little was as jaw-droppingly stupid as when Piper entered the ring for his match against Bad News Brown with half his body pained black. The assumption is that he was attempting to make a statement on racial unity. To anyone watching, it appeared he was performing in ‘blackface.’
- Most of Wrestlemania 9
- (a) The announce team wore togas. (They’re lots of fun at college parties, but togas should stay there.)
- (b) It was outdoors at Caesar’s Palace. (This was an unenthusiastic crowd to begin with. But the outdoor set-up killed what was left of any atmosphere.)
- (c) Giant Gonzalez versus The Undertaker (One of the 10 worst matches in WM history, ending when Gonzalez Giant smothers Undertaker with a chloroform-soaked rag. This match made me wish he had done the same to me.)
- (d) Hulk Hogan’s main event comeback. After Bret Hart was cheated out of the title by Yokozuna, the ultimate babyface Hulk Hogan comes out to protest the injustice by insisting the referee overturn the decision and award the match to Hart, just like Tito Santana did at Wrestlemania 1 when Junkyard Dog met villain Greg ‘The Hammer’ Valentine
- Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts-Rick ‘The Model’ Martel blindfold match (Wrestlemania 7)
- Just as Wrestlemania 9 is unquestionably the worst WM of all-time, the blindfold match between Roberts and Martel remains the unparalleled champion of match suckitude. After The Model “blinded” Roberts with cologne, a match was put together to even the odds: both would cover their heads with a giant mask so “neither could see the other.” The end result is both guys staggering around the ring like Frankenstein for 10 minutes. You can count on two hands the number of times Martel and Roberts actually make contact in the, ahem, match. The debacle finally ended when Jake caught Martel with a DDT and pinned him. Too bad fans didn’t get masks so they wouldn’t have to have been subjected to this.
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DVD & Video releases
|I (1985) • II (1986) • III (1987) • IV (1988) • V (1989) • VI (1990) • VII (1991) • VIII (1992) • IX (1993) • X (1994) • XI (1995) • XII (1996) • XIII (1997) • XIV (1998) • XV (1999) • XVI (2000) • XVII (2001) • XVIII (2002) • XIX (2003) • XX (2004) • XXI (2005) • XXII (2006) • XXIII (2007) • XXIV (2008) • XXV (2009) • XXVI (2010) • XXVII (2011) • XXVIII (2012) • XXIX (2013) • XXX (2014) • XXXI (2015) • 32 (2016) • 33 (2017) • 34 (2018) • 35 (2019) • 36 (2020)|