60. The Rock (c) vs CM Punk (WWE Championship Match, Elimination Chamber 2013)

To my knowledge, this is the last time CM Punk fought for a World title before his match against Adam Page for the AEW World Championship last Sunday. It’s a rematch from Royal Rumble 2013, where The Rock defeated Punk for the former’s first title win in nearly a decade. That was a fabulous bout…this one isn’t nearly as fabulous.

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59. CM Punk (c) vs The Rock (WWE Championship Match, Royal Rumble 2013)

Yesterday, CM Punk fought Adam ‘Hangman’ Page for the AEW World Championship. If he won (I haven’t watched it yet!), It would be his first title win for nearly a decade. His last match as World Champion was in the WWE, at Royal Rumble 2013. His opponent? The Rock! And he managed to drag a pretty good match out of the ring rusty ‘People’s Champion.’

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21. Edge (c) vs HHH vs Jeff Hardy vs The Big Show vs The Undertaker vs Vladimir Kozlov (Elimination Chamber match for the WWE Championship, No Way Out 2009)

Before Elimination Chamber was a yearly Premium Event/PPV, No Way Out was the traditional PPV before WrestleMania. And in 2009 it featured not one, but two Elimination Chamber matches for World titles! I remember this particular match more for the over-arching story line (which continues into the second Chamber match) than the bout itself. And since I’m following the WWE Championship storylines from late 2008 to early 2009, I thought I’d watch it again!

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20. Jeff Hardy (c) vs Edge (No DQ Match for the WWE Championship, Royal Rumble 2009)

In late 2008/early 2009, the WWE Championship swapped hands between the trio of HHH, Edge and Jeff Hardy. All three were at the top of their game, producing some very good/great bouts. But when I think of a singles match between Jeff and Edge, I think of their awesome Ladder match at Extreme Rules 2009 (for the WWE Championship). I’d forgotten about this No DQ match, because, well, it is rather forgettable…

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Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches: #68 AJ Styles (c) vs. John Cena (WWE Championship Match, Royal Rumble 2017)

AJ Styles vs John Cena from the Royal Rumble 2017 is the most recent match on the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List. It’s strange that there’s nothing from 2016…the year that had the mind-blowing match between Sami Zayn and Shinsuke Nakamura! However, out of the three matches between Styles and Cena, I’m not sure whether I’d put their second bout on this list instead of this bout. Their first “dream” match as a letdown, their second match was brilliant. But the third match relied on Cena’s attempt to match Ric Flair’s record of holding sixteen World heavyweight championship titles. There’s no denying it was a great match. But I do prefer their second bout… Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #9 John Cena vs. CM Punk (WWE Championship, WWE Money in the Bank 2011)

(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31359911/?contentId=&contextType=wwe-show&contextId=money_in_the_bank )

John Cena vs CM Punk from Money in the Bank 2011 fully deserves to be in the top 10 of the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List. It has all the components of a great match: an incredible build, a blistering crowd, an unbelievable match and John Cena. Of course, I jest about the latter. But I can’t deny he’s been in some great matches. This is probably his best (and Punk’s WWE best). Cena has always tried to outdo his “indie” opponents, and this trend started with CM Punk in this match. We’ve seen them fight before on The List, at #64 (click here for my review), but that was an exchange of big moves. This match is a lesson in psychology, pacing, storytelling and high states. Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #12 The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (WWE Title, No Disqualification. WWE Wrestlemania X-7)

(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31599441?contextType=wwe-show&contextId=wrestlemania&contentId=69745716&watchlistAltButtonContext=series )

Is this the best WrestleMania main event ever? The WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List would have you believe it’s Bret Hart vs Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XII in an Iron Man match (placed at #10. Click here for my review!). I’m here to tell you that the Iron Man match is a borefest (if I remember correctly). The Rock vs Stone Cold Steve Austin at WrestleMania X-7 is surely the best ‘Mania main event ever at the top of one of the best Manias ever. Austin vs The Rock had everything, from a good build, a clash of two top stars, drama, blood and a delicious twist. It represented everything great about the Attitude Era whilst signalling the end of said era. Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die: #33 Edge vs. John Cena (WWE Title, TLC Match. WWE Unforgiven 2006)

(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31303851/?contentId=&contextType=wwe-show&contextId=unforgiven )

Is this really the best singles TLC match in WWE (before the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List was published, obviously!)? Of course, the heavy hitters are further up the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List, but they are tag team TLC matches. I’m not dismissing this TLC match pitting John Cena vs Edge at all. It’s a good bout, probably one of the best that the two had during their memorable feud. But it’s dragged down by being little more than a spotfest and Cena’s underselling. Edge is also guilty of underselling, which undermines the great effort put into this bout. I just don’t think the match deserves to be on the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List. Continue reading

Does Bray Wyatt Really Deserve A World Title?

bray-wyatt-titleChants of “You Deserve it!” are commonplace among the WWE crowds of modern times. AJ Styles, Sasha Banks, Kevin Owens and Finn Balor are among the notable wrestlers to receive this chant after winning their first World title (or in Banks’ case, the Women’s title). On this week’s edition of Smackdown, Bray Wyatt was the most recent recipient of this chant. But just because a crowd chant it, does it make it valid? Did Bray Wyatt deserve to win the WWE Championship at Elimination Chamber 2017? I can’t fault his character in anyway. While his mumbling, enigmatic but empty promos lost their attraction after his feud with John Cena, for the past few months they’ve regained their power. However, character is not everything in WWE. Wins and losses and feuds matter as well. In those areas, Wyatt is severely lacking. So does he really deserve it?  Continue reading

Review: WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches: #42 Kurt Angle vs. Brock Lesnar (WWE Title, WWE Wrestlemania XIX)

(Here’s the link for the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v31348385/?contentId=31348385&contextType=wwe-show&contextId=survivor_series)

Would you expect anything less than a classic from Brock Lesnar (in his first WWE run) and Kurt Angle? At that point in Lesnar’s career, he was starting to have great matches. He finally began to understand how to work a match. And what else can you say about Kurt Angle, the man who could fight a blow up doll and have a great match? Angle vs Lesnar was a dream match that had to happen at some point. However, Angle had a serious neck injury heading into the bout. His presence at ‘Mania XIX was in doubt for weeks before the show. Watch the documentary ‘The Mania of WrestleMania’ for a deeper look into his troubles. For the entire match, I cringed and closed my eyes as Angle was suplexed hard and dropped on his neck a few times. It was a tough watch, knowing that Angle could be paralysed with one wrong move. But afterwards, I knew I had watched one of the great (and underappreciated) WrestleMania main events. Continue reading