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Opening Matches on Major Cards


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As already mentioned, I really liked DDP vs. Mero at Fall Brawl 95... although I'm not sure if you'd call Fall Brawl a major card.

 

Also, Bryan Danielson vs. Jay Briscoe was a really good opener at Final Battle '03 in what was a major card for an independent show (Great Muta coming over to the states). 

 

Also, once again not sure if this is really major but Foley vs HHH at Canadian Stampede I recall being REALLY GOOD.

 

If it's a PPV or a show that a promotion has been building towards, then it counts. And I enjoyed Danielson-Briscoe tremendously myself.

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I'm surprised no one has mentioned Tge Money in the Bank matches, which were Mania highlights for a few years.

Also, did that Finlay v. JBL match open a Mania? That was fun.

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I'm surprised no one has mentioned Tge Money in the Bank matches, which were Mania highlights for a few years.

Also, did that Finlay v. JBL match open a Mania? That was fun.

That opened WM 24, although it was a fine little WWF Hardcore match, I was hoping for a bit more stiff fisticuffing and clubbering, and fewer garbage cans. I do love Finlay always busting out the Belfast Bruiser/Brawler WCW jacket for WM though.

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Midnights vs Southern Boys wasn't the opener of GAB '90, it just opened the VHS edit of it.

 

 

Damn, you're right. If I'm not mistaken, Harley Race wrestled on the card that wasn't shown on the Turner release.

 

So on that note, was Sting/Koloff vs The Horsemen from GAB '88 the opening on that show, or was that a Turner edit as well?

 

 

Harley beat Tommy Rich.

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It probably popped into my head just because I watched it a few days ago, but I was shocked at how good Dean Malenko vs Scotty 2 Hotty for the light-heavyweight title was at Backlash '00. The crowd was ridiculously into Scotty, hated Dean and just went nuts for everything that happened during the match.  And the finish was an awesome mega-death finish too.  That had to have been the best match of Scotty's career.

 

And given that Dean's name has popped up a few times, is he a contender for King of the Opening Match?

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Bret Hart vs. Owen Hart at WrestleMania X is the best of them all, a classic.

 

Two other opening matches: Ultimo Dragon vs. Dean Malenko at Starrcade 1996 and Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio at Halloween Havoc 1997.

 

Good on Rippa mentioning Bray Wyatt vs. Daniel Bryan at this year's Royal Rumble. That's a match still fresh in my mind.

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Two other opening matches: Ultimo Dragon vs. Dean Malenko at Starrcade 1996 and Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio at Halloween Havoc 1997.

 

Good on Rippa mentioning Bray Wyatt vs. Daniel Bryan at this year's Royal Rumble. That's a match still fresh in my mind.

The Eddy/Rey match was the third match on the card, I think the first match on that card was Ultimo Dragon v. Yuji Nagata.

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Two other opening matches: Ultimo Dragon vs. Dean Malenko at Starrcade 1996 and Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio at Halloween Havoc 1997.

 

Good on Rippa mentioning Bray Wyatt vs. Daniel Bryan at this year's Royal Rumble. That's a match still fresh in my mind.

The Eddy/Rey match was the third match on the card, I think the first match on that card was Ultimo Dragon v. Yuji Nagata.

 

 

Ah. Thanks.

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1998 WCW was famous for some really strong openers. A couple of which involved "He Who Must Not Be Named."

 

Starrcade had the Kidman/Juvi/Rey match that led to Kidman/Eddie. I would count that all as one segment and thus an "opener" to another major card that WCW decided to bogey.

 

Superbrawl had the back to back Booker vs. Martel and Booker vs. Saturn matches that I absolutely enjoyed.

 

Great American Bash concluded the Booker/Benoit best of 7.

 

I think Slamboree had a good Finlay/Benoit match as well.

 

This is all going off of years old memories.

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Worst opening match has to be that PN News/Eaton vs. Taylor/Austin scaffold match (which ended up being a capture the flag match) at Bash 92.

 

Bash 1991. And OH MY GOD did that whole fucking card suck! And to your point of that opening match, first of all why would you even have a scaffold if no one's gonna take the bump off of it? And second, Eaton and Austin could've been a good match just by itself, or if they had to have Taylor (who wasn't a bad worker, just not on the level of Austin or Eaton) and Fat Ass Yo Baby Yo in the match, Eaton and Austin and maybe Taylor could've carried it and worked 85% of the match.

 

Someone mentioned Ultimo and Nagata opening Halloween Havoc 1997, that was a solid match as well, and I think it would've been better had they been given more time.

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Worst opening match has to be that PN News/Eaton vs. Taylor/Austin scaffold match (which ended up being a capture the flag match) at Bash 92.

 

Bash 1991. And OH MY GOD did that whole fucking card suck! And to your point of that opening match, first of all why would you even have a scaffold if no one's gonna take the bump off of it? And second, Eaton and Austin could've been a good match just by itself, or if they had to have Taylor (who wasn't a bad worker, just not on the level of Austin or Eaton) and Fat Ass Yo Baby Yo in the match, Eaton and Austin and maybe Taylor could've carried it and worked 85% of the match.

 

Someone mentioned Ultimo and Nagata opening Halloween Havoc 1997, that was a solid match as well, and I think it would've been better had they been given more time.

 

 

Yeah it was Bash 91. Got my timeline mixed up. I think there was supposed to be a bump but they brought the wrong kind of scaffold. It was too high or too unstable or something equally as WCWish like that. Austin mentioned it in his podcast but I can't recall which show or the exact details.

 

Another crappy opener was the Bossman/Bull Buchanon vs. Godfather/D-Lo match at Mania 2000. Why would you open with that? People would pop for the ho's and the catchphrase but nothing else.

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I am amused that everyone has already forgotten about Bray Wyatt vs. Daniel Bryan

 

This is true. When I read the question, I immediately set my brain to 5 years plus in the past. I do suspect this match will stand the test of time.

 

It probably popped into my head just because I watched it a few days ago, but I was shocked at how good Dean Malenko vs Scotty 2 Hotty for the light-heavyweight title was at Backlash '00. The crowd was ridiculously into Scotty, hated Dean and just went nuts for everything that happened during the match.  And the finish was an awesome mega-death finish too.  That had to have been the best match of Scotty's career.

 

And given that Dean's name has popped up a few times, is he a contender for King of the Opening Match?

 

Nitpick, but Dean/Scotty didn't go on first. Road Dogg and X-Pac vs. E&C opened Backlash 2000 (a great ppv btw).

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I am amused that everyone has already forgotten about Bray Wyatt vs. Daniel Bryan

 

This is true. When I read the question, I immediately set my brain to 5 years plus in the past. I do suspect this match will stand the test of time.

 

It probably popped into my head just because I watched it a few days ago, but I was shocked at how good Dean Malenko vs Scotty 2 Hotty for the light-heavyweight title was at Backlash '00. The crowd was ridiculously into Scotty, hated Dean and just went nuts for everything that happened during the match.  And the finish was an awesome mega-death finish too.  That had to have been the best match of Scotty's career.

 

And given that Dean's name has popped up a few times, is he a contender for King of the Opening Match?

 

Nitpick, but Dean/Scotty didn't go on first. Road Dogg and X-Pac vs. E&C opened Backlash 2000 (a great ppv btw).

 

 

Judgement Day the following month also has a fun opener with Too Cool/Rikishi vs. E&C/Angle was a fun opener. Not sure I'd call it great, but a good opener to a great card.

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1998 WCW was famous for some really strong openers. A couple of which involved "He Who Must Not Be Named."

Starrcade had the Kidman/Juvi/Rey match that led to Kidman/Eddie. I would count that all as one segment and thus an "opener" to another major card that WCW decided to bogey.

Superbrawl had the back to back Booker vs. Martel and Booker vs. Saturn matches that I absolutely enjoyed.

Great American Bash concluded the Booker/Benoit best of 7.

I think Slamboree had a good Finlay/Benoit match as well.

This is all going off of years old memories.

You can name Dean Malenko dude, it's cool.

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Hardys vs MNM from the 2007 Rumble is an awesome southern tag match given a lot of time. Also from the Rumble, Christian vs. Ezekial Jackson is great and, in retrospect, proof positive of how incredibly consistent Christian's ECW run really was.

 

I bet there's a ton of good openers post-2009 in WWE but the problem is that I don't think anyone can really remember anything about what they were putting out in those years since it was so unremarkable or bad.

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