31. Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant (WrestleMania 3 – March 29, 1987)
WWE Championship Match
Winner: Hulk Hogan
Best moment: Hogan body-slamming Andre the Giant.
This match was monumental in every sense of the word. The hype for this matchup was glorious, thanks to the legendary mic work by Andre's manager Bobby "The Brain" Heenan. This match was actually quite terrible, but it wasn't about technical prowess. It was about Andre the Giant, whose health was slowly deteriorating, passing the torch to Hulk Hogan as WWE's top star. It was about Hulk Hogan body-slamming Andre in the first of many WrestleMania moments. It was about elevating Hulk Hogan to legendary status in a time when pro-wrestling was still considered "real." For all those reasons, this match worked and it's still one of the most memorable matches of all time.
30. Bret "The Hitman" Hart vs. Rowdy Roddy Piper (WrestleMania 8 – April 5, 1992)
WWE Intercontinental Championship Match
Winner: Bret "The Hitman" Hart
Best moment: Piper putting on the title on Hart and helping him out after the match.
At WrestleMania 8, we saw Rowdy Roddy Piper, known for his "brawler" style of wrestling, against Bret Hart, a wrestler known for his technical skill. At the time, Piper, the Intercontinental Champion, was near the end of his career peak. Hart, on the other hand, was an up-and-coming wrestler, going solo after being part of the Hart Foundation tag team for years. It was the young buck going up against the veteran. They told an interesting story, where we saw Piper transform from an antagonist to a protagonist. We also got a glimpse of Hart's in-ring intelligence, outsmarting Piper by turning his sleeper hold into a winning pin. Piper passed on the torch to Hart, putting him in the eyes of everyone as the next big WWE superstar.
29. Hulk Hogan vs. "Macho Man" Randy Savage (WrestleMania 5 – April 2, 1989)
WWE Championship Match
Winner: Hulk Hogan
Best moment: Hogan "hulking up" after Savage dropped the elbow from the top rope.
After Hogan helped Savage win the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 4, the two formed a tag team aptly named "The Mega Powers." The two would dominated the tag team scene for some time. Miss Elizabeth, Savage's real-life wife and manager, would accompany them to the ring and cheer them on as they took out villain after villain. But then, things got a little complicated. When Miss Elizabeth got accidentally injured during a match, Hogan picked her up and carried her to the back to seek medical attention. This infuriated Savage to no end, saying that he saw "lust in his eyes." The two would brawl backstage, which marked the end of "The Mega Powers" and Savage's return to villainy. This would lead to a match at WrestleMania 5 for Savage's WWE Championship.
The match was exciting to watch, specifically for Savage's ability to get the crowd riled up. He used perfect heel tactics, like cowardly escaping the ring when he was in trouble. He also grew increasingly brash and rude toward Miss Elizabeth, who hadn't done anything to warrant such a treatment. She was eventually told to leave the ring. Savage made Hogan look great, and it would be Hogan who would "hulk up," connect the big boot, drop the leg, and pick up the win, becoming WWE Champion for the second time.
It was a great night, and an excellent conclusion to the bitter feud between the two.
28. Edge vs. Mick Foley (WrestleMania 22 – April 2, 2006)
27. Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior (WrestleMania 6 – April 1, 1990)
26. Eddie Guerrero vs. Kurt Angle (WrestleMania 20 – March 14, 2004)
25. Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. Edge and Christian (WrestleMania 2000 – April 2, 2000)
24. CM Punk vs. John Morrison vs. Chris Jericho vs. Mr. Kennedy vs. Carlito vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. MVP (WrestleMania 24 – March 30, 2008)
23. "Stone Cold" Steve Austin vs. The Rock (WrestleMania 19 – March 30, 2003)
Winner: The Rock
Best moments: The Rock performing three Rock Bottoms on Austin before winning via pinfall; Austin's farewell from in-ring competition.
Storyline wise, this match was built on the Rock's desire to defeat Austin at WrestleMania. The two had met in the main event at WrestleMania 15 and 17, and the Rock failed to defeat the Texas Rattlesnake both times. Fresh off a brief stint in Hollywood, the Rock returned to WWE, as a bad guy, and faced off against Austin for a third time at WrestleMania 19 in order to prove to the world that he can actually defeat him.
In reality, this would be Austin's final match. After a series of injuries, a deteriorating neck, and a scary trip to the ER one day prior to the match, Austin knew this would be his last go-around. It was never announced that this was Austin's final match. But after the Rock left Austin alone in the ring after picking up the victory, everyone in the arena and at home knew this was the last time we'd see Austin in his black trunks and black boots. It was a bittersweet moment that marked the end of the Attitude Era, the most successful period in the company's history.
22. Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle (WrestleMania 17 – April 1, 2001)
21. The Undertaker vs. Triple H (WrestleMania 27 – April 03, 2011)
20. Razor Ramon vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 10 – March 20, 1994)
19. Daniel Bryan vs. Triple H (WrestleMania 30 – April 6, 2014)
18. Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle (WrestleMania 21 – April 3, 2005)
17. The Undertaker vs. Triple H (WrestleMania 28 – April 1, 2012)
16. Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho vs. Kane vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. Edge vs. Christian (WrestleMania 21 – April 03, 2005)
15. Chris Jericho vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 19 – March 30, 2003)
Winner: Shawn Michaels
Best moment: Jericho performing the Sweet Chin Music on Michaels.
There once was time where Jericho wanted to be a wrestler, just so he could be like Shawn Michaels. He emulated Michael's look and style, and was often referred to as the next Shawn Michaels. In essence, Jericho considered Michaels a man he idolized and looked up to. But there came a time where Jericho wanted to be his own man. He wanted to shed the idea of "The Next Shawn Michaels" and be instead "The First Chris Jericho." And so, he made it his mission to destroy and end Michaels' career at WrestleMania.
The match was great for a number of reasons. Jericho proved just how much of a charismatic villain he could be. He also proved that he could go toe to toe with a wrestling legend like Shawn Michaels. The match had an ebb and flow that worked real well, thanks to the fact that their wrestling styles were almost identical. The match had a perfect build, leading to Michael's defeating Jericho with a beautiful roll-up pin.
After the match, a tearful Jericho hugged Michaels in a heartwarming display of sportsmanship, only to kick him in the balls, like a genuine heel. This was only the beginning of a long feud between these two.
14. Shawn Michaels vs. Ric Flair (WrestleMania 24 – March 30, 2008)
13. The Undertaker vs. CM Punk (WrestleMania 29 – April 7, 2013)
12. Kurt Angle vs. Brock Lesnar (WrestleMania 19 – March 30, 2003)
WWE Championship Match
Winner: Brock Lesnar
Best/Worst moment: Lesnar failing to execute the Shooting Star Press.
Lesnar and Angle tested their limits in the main event at WrestleMania X8. Angle worked this match with a real-life neck injury and still put on one of the greatest matches ever. Lesnar's physical endurance and stamina is something to behold given his monster size. The two put their careers on the line and it was magical. It was rare to see Lesnar play the good guy but it worked. Angle played the villain brilliantly, using cowardly heel tactics like continuously attacking Lesnar's injured ribs.
And then, there was the greatest botch in WrestleMania history. Lesnar attempted to do a Shooting Star Press off the top rope, but he missed his mark and landed square on his head. A collective shriek was heard in the arena followed by moments of genuine concern. This move could've paralyzed Lesnar, but he instead soldiered on through a concussion and finished the match with an F-5.
Lesnar tried to create the greatest WrestleMania moment ever, and failed. But he gained the respect and admiration of fans that night for at least trying such an incredible feat. And that botch by no means take away from the gloriousness of this match.
11. Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 26 – March 28, 2010)
10. Bret "The Hitman" Hart vs. Owen Hart (WrestleMania 10 – March 20, 1992)
9. The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. Edge and Christian (WrestleMania 17 –April 1, 2001)
8. Randy "Macho Man" Savage vs. Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat (WrestleMania 3 – March 29, 1987)
WWE Intercontinental Championship Match
Winner: Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat
Best moments: All the near pinfalls.
While all the hype leading to WrestleMania 3 was based around the Hogan–Andre the Giant match, it was the Intercontinental Championship match that stole the show. In the land of WWE giants, Savage and Steamboat proved that smaller guys could put on a show. The fast pacing, the storytelling, the high-flying maneuvers, and the overall technical display between the two gave us one of the most memorable matches, from beginning to end. It would also elevate the Macho Man to main event status.
7. Bret "The Hitman" Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 12 – March 31, 1996)
6. The Rock vs. "Stone Cold" Steve Austin (WrestleMania 17 – April 1, 2001)
5. Chris Benoit vs. Shawn Michaels vs. Triple H (WrestleMania 20 – March 14, 2004)
Triple Threat Match for the World Heavyweight Championship
Winner: Chris Benoit
Best moment: Triple H tapping to the Crippler Crossface.
When Benoit won the 2004 Royal Rumble, he was given the option to challenge either SmackDown's WWE Champion Brock Lesnar or Raw's World Heavyweight Champion Triple H at WrestleMania. He chose Triple H, who at the time was involved in a heated feud with Shawn Michaels. Michaels wanted to challenge Triple H for the title at WrestleMania, so he pleaded with Benoit to change his mind. Benoit refused and so Michaels began feuding with Benoit as well. It was eventually decided that the match at WrestleMania 20 would be a Triple Threat Match for the World Heavyweight Championship.
This match was highly physical and bloody. It was total nonstop action the second the bell rang, and all three competitors pulled out every move in their arsenal. Benoit was the clear underdog in this match — a newcomer who had to battle two WWE veterans. But because of this, the crowd at Madison Square Garden got firmly behind Benoit. When Triple H and Michaels suplexed Benoit through a table, many thought it was over for the Rabid Wolverine. But instead, he willed himself from the wreckage, and picked up the win after making Triple H submit to the Crippler Crossface.
WrestleMania 20 saw Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero win the World Heavyweight Championship and the WWE Championship, respectively. They embraced each other at the end of the night in the middle of the ring, as confetti dropped from the ceiling.
Sadly, both wrestlers would be dead within four years.
4. The Rock vs. Hulk Hogan (WrestleMania 18 – March 17, 2002)
3. Randy "Macho Man" Savage vs. The Ultimate Warrior (WrestleMania 7 – March 24, 1991)
Winner: The Ultimate Warrior
Best moment: Randy Savage and Miss Elizabeth reunite.
Reminder: While athleticism and skill is extremely important in pro wrestling, without a good story, it's all kaput.
When Savage won the 1989 King of the Ring, he became an asshole. He rechristened himself as Macho King, threw his beloved wife Miss Elizabeth under the bus, opting instead for the evil Sherrie Martel. A new villainous reign commenced for Randy Savage, who liked to use a scepter to beat up his opponents. When WWE Champion Ultimate Warrior refused Savage a shot at the title, Savage interfered in Warrior's match at the Royal Rumble, costing him the title.
The two faced off at WrestleMania 7 in a "career-ending" match. Before the match began, we saw Miss Elizabeth sitting in the crowd, to the surprise of many. The match itself was a work of a beauty, as Savage worked the match in a way that made Warrior look great. The action flowed beautifully, with Sherrie getting in a few cheap shots on Warrior. In the end, Warrior won the match after delivering four powerful body tackles to Savage.
After the match, Sherrie blew up at Savage for losing and kicked him repeatedly while he laid injured on the ground. That's when Miss Elizabeth sprang into action, running down the aisle to defend her man. She grabbed Sherrie by the hair and threw her out of the ring. When Savage came to his senses, he stared at Miss Elizabeth, the woman he split with back in 1989. They looked at each other for a long time before finally embracing in a loving hug, all set to Savage's theme song "Pomp and Circumstance." Grown men and women were crying out of joy in the crowd.
WrestleMania 7 was the culmination of the greatest love story that WWE has ever told.