In honor of WrestleMania 33, members of the PTBN Staff has gathered to create a series of 33 lists, all dedicated to the rich history of WWE’s grandest spectacle. Each contributor assigned a ranking of 1-10 and votes were tallied accordingly. We will be releasing one list per day, with the final list to be posted on April 1, 2017, the day prior to WrestleMania 33! Be sure to share your feedback with us on social media! You can view the complete series here!
Day Thirty Three: Best Overall WrestleMania
Others Getting Votes: WrestleMania XXIV (19), WrestleMania 31 (15), WrestleMania VI (15), WrestleMania 22 (12 Points), WrestleMania XIV (8), WrestleMania IV (8), WrestleMania 2 (5), WrestleMania XXVIII (5), WrestleMania XXV (4)
10. WrestleMania VIII (21 Points)
Highest Ranking: #4 (Tim Capel)
A sneaky addition but a show that features two great matches in Roddy Piper vs Bret Hart and Ric Flair vs Randy Savage and a memorable finish with the Ultimate Warrior surprise return. Add to that some other campy fun that feels very 1992 WWF and WrestleMania VIII is an easily digestible show and one of the most memorable of all time.
9. WrestleMania 23 (24 Points)
Highest Ranking: #2 (Glenn Butler)
Loaded with great action, important storylines and big time stars, WrestleMania 23 both ushered in the official “stadium era” while also serving as a tribute to the last time Mania was in Detroit 20 years earlier. The show featured an unlikely all time classic World Title Match between Undertaker and Batista, a key resume win for John Cena over Shawn Michaels and of course the infamous Battle of the Billionaires, that saw Donald Trump help shave Vince McMahon bald. In addition to be an exciting show to watch, it was also a box office smash, ranking near the top when it came to attendance, buy rates, gate and money pumped into the local economy. It set the template for what WrestleMania would be for years to come.
8. WrestleMania XX (26 Points)
Highest Ranking: #4 (Mike Eller)
Nineteen years after WrestleMania first came into existence, WWE returned to its home in Madison Square Garden to both honor the past while setting itself up for the future. While the card was bloated overall, the big stuff delivered and the night culminated in the crowning of two crowd favorites and long time friends embracing in the center of the ring. Tack on the return of the Hall of Fame, the Undertaker returning to his Deadman roots, the reuniting of the Rock ‘N’ Sock Connection and the heel turn of Trish Stratus, and this show had more than enough moments and match quality to propel it inside the top ten.
7. WrestleMania 21 (36 Points)
Highest Ranking: #4 (Neil Trama)
By 2005, WWE was clearly down the mountain when it came to popularity and overall success but its roster was as loaded with stars as ever and that was fully on display in Los Angeles. The show featured the debut of Money in the Bank, a legendary clash between Kurt Angle and Shawn Michaels, the return of Hulk Hogan to Mania and the coronation of Batista and John Cena at the top of the card. If those two World Title matches had been better, we are looking at perhaps a top three Mania of all time. As is, it still settles comfortably inside the top ten.
6. WrestleMania VII (41 Points)
Highest Ranking: #1 (Chris Jordan)
Often remembered for its all time classic Career Ending Match, WrestleMania VII has more depth than meets the eye. It has a flavor of nostalgia not matched by many other WWF/E shows, a snapshot into the tail end of the glory days for many of the stars 80s fans grew up with. From the opener through the main event, the crowd was red hot and locked in, never really wavering despite the length of the show. Even the celebrities were well utilized here, each playing a role without being overbearing at all. Plus, you know, it also happens to have a top three Mania match of all time to its credit.
5. WrestleMania X (44 Points)
Highest Ranking: #3 (Neil Trama & Steve Riddle)
The first WrestleMania in a post Hulk Hogan world was clearly an attempt to establish the burgeoning new generation of talent while also remembering where Mania all started nine years earlier. The company did a fine job of blending the past and present while the future was showcased above all thanks to two all time classic Mania bouts that ate up a majority of the in ring time. Everything built to one of the most heartfelt finishes of all time when new champion Bret Hart was paraded around the ring on the shoulders of his friends and peers.
4. WrestleMania XXX (56 Points)
Highest Ranking: #1 (Steven Ferrari)
Whether they backed into the storyline or not, WrestleMania XXX showed the WWE still was capable of delivering an emotional, memorable, reaffirming and fan serving angle and payoff. The show was built around Daniel Bryan’s quest to dethrone the Authority and win the WWE Championship and he did just that to the jubilation of a packed Superdome. The show also featured a legendary opening sequence that featured the biggest stars of all time as well as the biggest shock in Mania history when Brock Lesnar ended Undertaker’s streak.
3. WrestleMania III (62 Points)
Highest Ranking: #1 (Scott Criscuolo & Glenn Butler)
There was little doubt that WrestleMania III would check in near the very top of the list. It has everything you could ever want in a monster dome payoff show: an all time classic match, big babyface wins to blowoff angles, heels being established and one of the biggest moments in wrestling history. It also featured Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse Ventura on commentary, the soundtrack of a generation of fans and some memorable celebrity appearances as well. When you think of WrestleMania, WrestleMania III should be one of the first shows that floods your memory banks.
2. WrestleMania XIX (67 Points)
Highest Ranking: #1 (Tim Capel)
As the Attitude Era was now firmly in the rearview mirror, WWE was doing whatever it could to keep the spirt alive while also transitioning into a new era and overall presentation style, especially in the main event. For some the Attitude Era ended in Houston in 2001, but you could argue that was the peak and the true end came here in Seattle. It was the end of Steve Austin’s career. It was pretty much the end of The Rock’s career. It was the beginning of Brock Lesnar’s official ascension as the future and with it came a glimpse into the transition of there main event style from Attitude Era brawl to a more mat based, submission style of bout. Times were changing, but for one night, WWE was able to load up a show that arguably had four true main event level matches, all of which delivered beyond expectations.
1. WrestleMania X7 (82 Points)
Highest Rankings: #1 (Neil Trama, Mike Eller, Jason Greenhouse, Brian Bayless & Steve Riddle)
What more needs to be said? The peak of the Attitude Era. WWF at the absolute top of the mountain, all competition vanquished, all cylinders firing and one of the biggest cards of all time. It was a magical night loaded with awesome wrestling and moments up and down the card. A show yet to be surpassed.