Thought of the Day: This Is The Main Event

As inspired by a line from Jesse Ventura at Wrestlemania V.The idea is very simple: a show is usually better when there is one match that is the definitive main event and the big draw of the show.  Look at some of the Wrestlemanias with a clear main event:

#1 – Hogan/Mr. T. vs. Roddy Piper/Paul Orndorff

#3 – Hogan vs. Andre

#6 – Hogan vs. Warrior

#14 – Austin vs. Michaels

#17 – Austin vs. Rock II

#20 – HHH vs. HBK vs. Benoit

#26 – Michaels vs. Undertaker II

#28 – Rock vs. Cena

There are other shows with a definitive main event, but how much bigger do most of those shows feel as a result?  For the opposite, look at some of the Wrestlemanias where there was a double main event or a show where the main event wasn’t built as THE reason to see the show.

#2 – Hogan vs. Bundy

#4 – Tournament

#8 – Hogan vs. Sid/Savage vs. Flair

#9 – Hart vs. Yokozuna/Mega Maniacs vs. Money Inc.

#11 – Diesel vs HBK/Lawrence Taylor vs. Bam Bam Bigelow

#13 – Bret vs. Austin/Undertaker vs. Sid

#21 – Batista vs. HHH/JBL vs. Cena

#23 – Cena vs. HBK/Lashley vs. Umaga

#24 – Undertaker vs. Edge/Orton vs. HHH vs. Cena


While these shows were good, they didn’t have the big match feel and it holds them back.  That’s what holds me back on Wrestlemania 19: there were four matches that you could call the real main event of the show.  The idea of a double main event may sound good, but it doesn’t hold up most of the time when you look back at them.


  1. M.R. says:

    I’d argue Wrestlemania 26 was a true double main event with Taker/Shawn and Cena/Batista for the World Title.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    It was, but Shawn vs. Undertaker was THE main event.

  2. Vega says:

    5, 12, 16, 22, 25 and 29 also had pretty clear main events I’d say. As said, 26 belongs to the second section, and at 4 the tournament is the only relevant thing, making it the main draw. 9 and 23 could also be switched.

    17 isn’t the greatest show because of Rock/Austin (it would still be an A without the ME), but because every match had some kind of drama, meaning and good action. 26 is another great example.

    I don’t think this really holds up. However, wrestling is about making people care, which is done by build and execution. The more build a match gets, the bigger it becomes, which increases its potential to be great. Typically, when there is a clear main event, one match gets a lot of build, giving it a lot of potential.
    Often, multi-ME cards lack build-up, resulting in nothing standing out and THEREFORE being regarded as multi-ME. However, it’s totally possible to give a lot of matches a nice build and consequently create a potentially great card. Building one match is hard work, building two matches is harder work.
    Something could also be said about creative limitation and just so many potential stories existing at a time, having companies stretching out interest and in turn income for that reason.

    Yeah, one-match shows are typically better. But in reality, I think that’s not because one well built match is better than two well built matches, but because one well built match is better than no well built matches.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Yeah but those shows sucked for the most part.

    I know X7 is as good as it gets, but nothing was as big as Austin vs. Rock. It was the MAIN event.

    I’d much rather have two than zero, but I’d rather have one than two.

    Vega Reply:

    Yeah, but just listing the good ones on one side doesn’t prove general superiority.

    The relevant question is: what made X7 THAT great? Would the show be worse if Taker/HHH got more hype?

    Rather one than two? You’d have preferred that Austin-Rock III never existed just so that Lesnar-Angle seems bigger on a relative scale? Or do you mean that the match should have been moved to another card to have more impact? One great match already pockets most buys, moving the second to another card secures the buys for a later time. Which probably is why most cards just have one big match.

    Of course, with limited creative (interesting stories) and hype (TV time) resources, you try to allocate them as effectively as possible. I get the logic if the hype of one match is to the detriment of the hype of another, but that rarely seems to be the case. WM30 will most probably be a multi-ME card, and I don’t think this will take away from it.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    No, but it keeps a list from being too long and from having to respond to people who say “yeah but Wrestlemania 5 etc sucked”.

    I’m not saying the main event is the biggest part, but it’s a piece of it. As for what made X7 great, it was a big combination of things.

    As for WM 19, I’d have rather Hogan vs. Vince or Rock vs. Austin went on last and that the card was put together in a way that doesn’t exhaust the audience.