We all know The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels is Mr. Wrestlemania. He says it all the time and quite frankly he always backed it up. You’ve heard how he had a “five star match with a ladder” at Wrestlemania 10. He also dragged Diesel to one of the best performances of his career at Wrestlemania 11.
Then on his second run it was classic after classic. Hell he gave Vince McMahon the best match of his career at Wrestlemania 22. Shawn Michaels always entertained and brought it on the grandest stage of them all and deserves the title of Mr. Wrestlemania.
But the question has to be asked: If Shawn Michaels is Mr. Wrestlemania, who is Vice Mr. Wrestlemania? It is a question that deserves to be looked at. And there are a handful of candidates that can make the case. Lets dive into this topic and come up with an answer!
‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin
You would almost think Stone Cold and The Rock would go hand in hand when it comes to this. But there are reasons Austin only gets an honorable mention compared to The Rock. And this is even despite Stone Cold being involved in the best Wrestlemania match of all time. Austin had a complete stinker of a match at Wrestlemania X-8 with Scott Hall that drags him down a bit. And even with facing HBK at Wrestlemania 14, that match wasn’t one of HBK’s strongest. But there is no denying Austin from getting a mention thanks to his trilogy with The Rock and his all time classic with Bret Hart.
The WWE would leave you to believe that Triple H is an all time great performer when it comes to Wrestlemania matches. I tend to think his matches are overrated a bit, but not overrated enough that he shouldn’t get a mention here. His two Taker matches are good stories and spotfests. His first one with Taker at Wrestlemania X-7 might be the best of the three. He played his part as the dastardly heel at Wrestlemania 20 well. And his match with Daniel Bryan at Wrestlemania 30 is one of the best openers in Mania history. I don’t know if any of his matches fall in the Top 10 of Mania history but a handful fall in the Top 25, so he gets a mention.
THE TOP 3
3. The Rock
Sometimes you have to look back and remember that The Rock was involved in a good handful of memorable Wrestlemania matches. He had two of the most memorable matches in Wrestlemania history with Stone Cold at Wrestlemania X-7 and Hulk Hogan at Wrestlemania X-8. Then he finished off the trilogy with Austin at Wrestlemania 19 where he finally got a win over him.
The Rock gets a spot over Austin for one main reason. Despite Austin being involved in one of the best Mania matches of all time, Rock was involved in more memorable ones that were also good. He had his two back to back matches with John Cena that were both very good. And the 3-on-2 match with Evolution at Wrestlemania 20 was an entertaining spectacle where he helped elevate a couple of new stars as well. The Rock delivered in big time matches at Mania so he earns a spot in the Top 3.
2. Bret Hart
Bret probably has two of the top five matches in Wrestlemania history but still ends up at number two on this list. I have to admit, I was never much of a Bret Hart guy growing up. But he’s somebody over the last few years (thanks to the WWE Network) that I have grown to like and respect. His work even with lesser competition was excellent. Must be why they called him the Excellence of Execution, huh?
So why is Bret number two? Lets starts with the great. He helped make Steve Austin and his brother Owen stars in their respective Mania matches. His loss to Owen made Owen credible and helped set up their entire feud in 1994. And we all know what his match with Austin did for Austin’s career. I’m also a big fan of his Wrestlemania 8 match against Roddy Piper. That may have been the best match of Piper’s career from an in ring perspective.
But what keeps Bret a from toping the list? Well his appearance before Wrestlemania 8 left a lot to be desired. Yes I know they were mostly tag matches and battle royals, but they weren’t anything too great. And his matches in between his top 3 were very bland. Two were due to his opponent (Yokozuna). His match with Bob Backlund at Wrestlemania 11 was not good. You could partially blame the opponent on that one too. And his Wrestlemania 12 Iron Match with Mr. Wrestlemania is not looked back on as the classic it was at the time. All of that just keeps Bret from getting to the top.
1. Macho Man Randy Savage
Here is the man that in my opinion falls right behind Shawn Michaels in the Mr. Wrestlemania discussion. Randy Savage is one of the best workers in the history of pro wrestling. I would have love to have seen him in his prime in today’s era wrestling guys like Daniel Bryan, Kevin Owens and Seth Rollins. They would be great.
Randy Savage gets this spot because he was consistently the best performer in the first handful of Wrestlemanias that he was in. At Wrestlemania 3 he had a classic with Ricky Steamboat. At Wrestlemania 4, he carried the WWF title tournament. And while the mixed tag at Wrestlemania 6 wasn’t the best match on the show, Savage made it entertaining.
But the real reason Savage gets to this spot on this list is because of his performances at Wrestlemanias 5, 7, and 8. Wrestlemania 5 saw the Mega Powers explode when Savage fought Hulk Hogan. I’d argue he got the best match ever out of Hulk Hogan in his WWF/E run. My thoughts on Savage’s Wrestlemania 7 match are well known. I thought it was the greatest Wrestlemania story ever told. And once again, Savage got the best match ever out of the Ultimate Warrior. And he did it with his story telling. Then at Wrestlemania 8, another great story lead to great heat in his match with Ric Flair. Similar to Hogan at WM5, I think this was Ric Flair’s best WWF/E match ever (yes better than his retirement match).
Savage consistently got the best out of all of his opponents while also giving his best every time he stepped in the ring. He even made his weird match with Crush work at Wrestlemania 10. Savage is one of the best performers ever and he always brought it on the big stage like Wrestlemania.
I officially dub Macho Man Randy Savage as Vice Mr. Wrestlemania.