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What is the worst WrestleMania of all time?

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It’s that time of year, WrestleMania season is officially here. It’s the culmination of a year of storytelling and character development that comes to a head in the biggest showcase of professional wrestling. This year’s card might be amongst the most anticipated of all time…

WrestleMania is synonymous with loaded cards, packed to the brim with talent new and old. We generally see a variety of match stipulations, celebrity involvement and in-ring action. As a result, we sometimes forget WrestleMania is a wrestling event first, rather than what can feel like a pop culture one. Despite the spectacle, star power and scope that WrestleMania strives to live up to, it hasn’t been without its hiccups in recent years.

Whether it’s because of its pacing, booking and sometimes unfortunate circumstances, The Showcase of the Immortals hasn’t always lived up to the monumental hype the WWE machine places behind it. Today we take a look at some of WrestleMania’s lesser events. Ones that for several reasons, made us regret purchasing the show, failed to live up to its potential, or worse, had little to remember.

WrestleMania 27

This is by no means the worst show on this list. But, WrestleMania 27 saves itself from being lower thanks to four standout matches. Let’s not forget the great opening segment with The Rock appearing on The Grandest Stage of Them All for the first time since 2004. Cody Rhodes and Rey Mysterio put on a fun little grudge match. Randy Orton and CM Punk displayed their chemistry, and Edge faced Alberto Del Rio in a lively opener. However, it was The Undertaker battling it out with Triple H that truly dragged this show out of the mud. They battled it out in a brutal 30-minute No Holds Barred contest.

Outside of that, WrestleMania 27 is one of the biggest letdowns WWE has ever put on. A show marred by bad booking, pacing and underwhelming use of its overall roster. Which is a bummer because the eyes on the show were the highest they’ve been in years. Fans sat through the likes of Snooki participating in her only wrestling match. They also saw The Miz retain his WWE Championship against John Cena in a ridiculously overbooked affair.

Worst of all, a nearly 15-minute match, along with post-match shenanigans between commentators Jerry Lawler and Michael Cole. It’s widely regarded as the worst match in WrestleMania history… Unfortunately, it was a night of bad booking and rushed matches that could have used far more time.

WrestleMania 2

You’ve got to give it to Vince McMahon’s ambitious nature in the early days of WrestleMania. Only he would think hosting a show across three venues would be an idea you could execute well. Nassau Coliseum, Rosemont Horizon, and Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena all played host to this monster of an event.

But what was most strange, was that once fans in attendance had their slotted matches out of the way, they sat watching the remainder of the show from the alternate venues. This setup ruined much of the flow and any momentum this show built up. The card itself was a one-match event in terms of quality, as Hulk Hogan and King Kong Bundy’s Steel Cage main event saved the show from being a complete travesty. It may not be an all-timer, but it’s an overlooked contest that is better than many will give it credit for.

Other matches such as Roddy Piper vs. Mr. T completely failed. Randy Savage’s taking of George Steel for the Intercontinental Title did nothing to elevate anyone involved. The British Bulldogs capturing the World Tag Team Titles remains one of the few highlights outside the headliner. This card was proof that sometimes bigger, isn’t always better.

WrestleMania 32

If there was a show plagued more by an injury bug, it would be this one. It was billed as the biggest WrestleMania of all time. Seth Rollins, John Cena, Cesaro, Randy Orton, Bray Wyatt, Sting, Luke Harper and others were names driven off the card due to injuries. As a result, WWE scrambled together to put on a show that had potential on paper. But it ended up being the victim of its ambitions…

A nearly 7-hour event including pre-show matches, WrestleMania 32 is the most bloated in company history. AJ Styles made his debut and Shane McMahon returned for the first time in 7 years. Even with Brock Lesnar vs. Dean Ambrose, nothing quite stuck the landing. Nothing on this card stood out aside from Sasha Banks, Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch putting on a clinic in their match. One that stands amongst the best women’s matches in the show’s history.

Considering this was a night that needed to uplift fans over 7-hours, the booking of almost every match deflated over 85,000 of them. Putting aside The Undertaker’s victory over Shane, you could make an argument for every other match having the wrong outcome. It doesn’t help that the creative team chose to book the supposed main event Blood Match between Triple H and Roman Reigns as a 30-minute technical match. It was an unfortunate night that nobody will be rewatching voluntarily.

WrestleMania 11

1995 is widely regarded as the low point in the company’s history. The product was dragged down both due to a creative direction that was feeling increasingly outdated, and financial troubles resulting in the loss of many key stars. To fill in the gaps in its existing roster, the company made the questionable decision to have veteran Bam Bam Bigelow face NFL Linebacker Lawrence Taylor, in the main event.

The match exceeded expectations, yet felt anticlimactic considering the memorable performances that came from WWF Champion Diesel and Shawn Michaels in the co-main event. Sadly, the rest of the card did little to elevate things beyond a World Championship match.

Bret Hart and Bob Backlund’s I Quit Match was clunky and awkward considering the talent involved, as was Undertaker’s collision with King Kong Bundy. Owen Hart and Yokozuna captured the WWF Tag Team Titles in a feel-good moment that almost made you forget their match against The Smoking Gunns had next to nothing going for it. The show did open with a serviceable contest that saw Razor Ramon face Jeff Jarrett, one that ended in a disqualification, on the biggest show of the year. A perfect symbol for everything wrong with the company in 1995.

WrestleMania 9

As objective as we all are when putting lists together on anything wrestling-related, everyone unanimously agrees that WrestleMania 9 was a flop. This show managed to make every wrong decision you’d think they wouldn’t voluntarily make. Wrestling always manages to find a bright spot, even at its darkest periods. However, this show stooped to levels it never dug out of.

One thing this show did have going for it, was its aesthetic and setting. The Roman Coliseum backdrop gave the show something that encapsulated that quirky, cartoon-ish charm of the mid-90s product. But, that disappears once the bell rings. Considering this is the WWE’s annual payoff, the decision-making feels like a parody. Worst of all, the twist that came in the form of the main event… Hulk Hogan stepping over Bret Hart to capture the WWF Title from Yokozuna was a shameless, selfish act.

The rest of the show was littered with DQ finishes and unnecessarily overbooked, horrendous wrestling from the likes of Giant Gonzalez. Wrestling fans are generally divided, and argumentative. But, WrestleMania 9 is one of the few shows that unites them into labelling it one of the worst things ever produced.

Which WrestleMania do you think was the worst? Let us know in the comments.

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