(by PHIL RIPPA)
Some of these aren’t “great” matches. Some aren’t even really matches. Basically everything here is just a vessel for the entertaining/memorable/stupid angle that goes with it.
726) BRUNO SAMMARTINO vs. LARRY ZBYSZKO – WWF CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING (01/22/80 (Taped), (02/02/80) Aired)
A teacher vs. student “exhibition” match where Zbyszko turns on Bruno that kicked off their feud that raged until the Steel Cage match at Shea Stadium.
727) DUSTY RHODES/OLE ANDERSON vs. ASSASSINS – GEORGIA CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING (07/20/80 – NWA Georgia Tag Team Title Steel Cage Match)
“Dusty Rhodes Makes a Deal With The Devil”. Dusty Rhodes – so desperate to take out the Assassins – asks long time hated rival Ole Anderson to be his tag partner. A “match” (it is like 30 seconds) shows that it was actually an elaborate ruse by Ole to beat the shit out of Dusty.
728) RANDY SAVAGE vs. HONKY TONK MAN – WWF SATURDAY NIGHT MAIN EVENT (09/23/87 (Taped), 10/03/87 (Aired) – WWF Intercontinental Title)
729) MEGAPOWERS (RANDY SAVAGE/HULK HOGAN) vs. TWIN TOWERS (BIG BOSSMAN/AKEEM) – WWF “THE MAIN EVENT II” (02/03/89)
The Alpha and the Omega of the MegaPowers. Clearly it was all Hulk Hogan’s fault.
730) STAN LANE vs. THE MENACE – NWA (11/05/88)
The start of the Midnight Express vs. Midnight Express feud. Jim Cornette receives a phone call and the next thing you know his white suit jacket is red.
731) THE OUTSIDERS (KEVIN NASH/SCOTT HALL) vs. STING/LEX LUGER/RANDY SAVAGE – WCW BASH AT THE BEACH ’96 (07/07/96)
Hulk Hogan’s heel turn that kicked off the NWO. Mid-90s WCW – for good and for bad – in a nutshell.
732) TOMMY DREAMER vs. RAVEN – ECW ‘WRESTLEPALOOZA ’97” (06/07/97 – Loser Leaves Town Match)
I know I say this a lot but if you needed a single match to explain ECW, you really can’t do better than this one. Tommy Dreamer finally beating Raven in a Loser Leaves Town Match would have been enough to qualify this match. However, what cements the deal is ALL the post match where Jerry Lawler, Sabu and Rob Van Damn (representing the WWF) show up and destroy the entire ECW locker room until Taz finally meanders out and cuts a SHOOTY SHOOT SHOOT promo. Nothing amused me more than the part where they play the Gangstas music to announce their arrival and Sabu and RVD say fuck it and just fling chairs into New Jack and Mustaf’s faces. So many unprotected chair shots.
733) BRAZO DE PLATA/EMILIO CHARLES JR/NEGRO CASAS vs. LOS GUAPOS (SCORPIO JR/SHOCKER/ZUMBIDO) – CMLL (06/09/00 (Taped), 06/10/00 (Aired))
AAA invades CMLL to setup the first ever AAA/CMLL card. (And boy it is fun to read the behind the scenes chaos of that show.) I always love a good lucha riot.
734) H/”HAYABUSA” vs. KODO FUYUKI/GOEMON – FMW (06/16/00)
Hoo Boy – trying to go down the rabbit hole that is explaining FMW when it became weird and disappointing. Okay – all I am gonna say is that Tenryu shows up as “Hayabusa” and H (the actual Hayabusa) bleeds and bleeds and bleeds.
735) CHRIS JERICHO/KANE vs. MIKE AWESOME/LANCE STORM – WWF RAW (07/09/01)
A mile marker the WWF Invasion angle. ECW randomly reboots for a few weeks so they can then get swallowed up by WCW to then get swallowed up by the WWF. The clip is really only just the angle but that is really all you need to see.
736) PERRO AGUAYO JR vs. FELINO – CMLL (07/30/04 – Leyenda de Plata Finals)
The match is above. The angle is below. Perro Jr wins the 04 Leyenda de Plata. El Hijo del Santo comes out to present him with the award/trophy. Perro then cuts an amazing promo about how the Santo family is shit and then destroys the award/trophy. El Hijo del Santo is less than pleased.
737) BRISCOES (JAY & MARK) vs. KEVIN STEEN/EL GENERICO – RING OF HONOR (09/15/07 – Ladder War, World Tag Team Championship)
Match above. Angle Below. As you can see from the video above – the Briscoes/Steenerico rivalry went on for a LONG time. This one is memorable for the post match where the Age of the Fall debut, complete with hanging a bloody Jay Briscoe from the rafters while Jimmy Jacobs cuts a promo.
738) JOHN CENA vs. CM PUNK – WWE RAW (06/07/10)
The Nexus invasion angle. Shocker the WWE didn’t know how to book it properly.
739) JEFF HARDY vs. BULLY RAY – TNA LOCKDOWN ’13 (03/10/13 – TNA World Heavyweight Championship)
Bully Ray is revealed as the secret leader of Aces & Eights because of course he is. You can also go back an watch all the videos they put out that tried to retcon the entire angle so it made sense.
740) KENNY OMEGA vs. JAY WHITE – NEW JAPAN “NEW BEGINNING DAY 2” (01/28/18 – IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship)
Fine match but what everyone is still talking about is the Bullet Club finally imploding and the reunion of the Golden Lovers.