Summerslam is WWE’s second-biggest show of the year behind WrestleMania. Since 1988, the event had hosted some of the top matches and feuds, as well as plenty of memorable moments. Here are the top 10 most memorable Summerslam moments.
10. The Nexus Gets Destroyed – Summerslam 2010
The Nexus were a heel faction made up of members of the old-style NXT show, which saw rookie Superstars compete in a series of challenges, rather than the third brand we know it to be today. The group was fronted by Wade Barrett, and also included other Superstars such as Heath Slater, Ryback, and Darren Young. At Summerslam 2010, The Nexus faced off against Team WWE, which consisted of John Cena, John Morrison, R-Truth, Bret Hart, Edge, Chris Jericho and Daniel Bryan. With the WWE trying to build a new dominant faction, it would be fair to assume they would win this match. In reality, John Cena took out the final two members of The Nexus with little effort to win the match for his team. The Nexus didn’t really go anywhere as a faction and it is a shame.
9. The Ultimate Betrayal – Summerslam 1996
Apart from the first few months of his career, The Undertaker had always been managed by Paul Bearer up until Summerslam 1996. At the event, The Undertaker faced Mankind in a Boiler Room Brawl, a very physical match and an interesting dynamic compared to traditional matches. The conclusion of the match saw the two back in the ring, with Paul Bearer turning on The Undertaker to align himself with Mankind in a move no-one saw coming. Undertaker and Paul Bearer would feud on and off over the next couple of years, most notably when Bearer introduced the WWE to Kane, The Undertaker’s half brother.
8. A Hero’s Welcome – Summerslam 1992
Summerslam 1992 was held in Wembley Arena, with the main event being Bret Hart defending his Intercontinental Championship against The British Bulldog. With Bulldog being British, he received a hero’s welcome by the London crowd, as well as a lot of media coverage in the UK in the lead up to the event. Bulldog would go on to win the match and capture the title, despite being high on drugs and needing The Hitman to guide him through the match.
7. Refusing To Do The Job – Summerslam 2005
Hulk Hogan vs Shawn Michaels was a dream match that many fans wanted to see. At Summerslam 2005 that dream finally became a reality, but the match didn’t turn out to be the blockbuster we had all hoped for. It will certainly be remembered, but for all the wrong reasons. The rumor is that the feud was meant to be a three-part series, with the pair facing off at Summerslam, followed by two more matches at future events. Assuming the rumors are true, HBK was set to win the first match, followed by two wins by Hogan to end the feud. But, for whatever reason, Hogan decided he wanted it to be a one and done deal, therefore would be winning the match. HBK didn’t like the new plan, so instead sabotaged the match by overselling for the Hulkster, making every hit seem like he’d be hit by a truck. While the match was hilarious when two icons face-off we want to see two legends giving it their all.
6. The First-Ever TLC Match – Summerslam 2000
The Attitude Era saw many new match types introduced, as Superstars were constantly trying to one-up each other to stand out from the crowd. At Summerslam 2000 the teams of Edge and Christian, The Hardy Boyz, and The Dudley Boyz combined their trademark weapons into one match to create the Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match. While TLC 2 at WrestleMania X-Seven was the better match, this was the first time that we’d seen the match. The match became so popular that for over a decade the WWE has held an annual TLC PPV.
5. The Undertaker vs The Undertaker – Summerslam 1994
In a strange encounter at Summerslam 1994, The Undertaker faced off against The Undertaker. Following a Casket match at Royal Rumble 1994, The Undertaker disappeared for seven months. Ted DiBiase claimed to of brought The Undertaker back, but it turned out to be an imposter, with Brian Lee portraying The Deadman. Eventually, the original Undertaker returned and the two faced off at Summerslam in a rather odd match, wrestling is weird.
4. Shawn Michaels Returns – Summerslam 2002
After suffering an injury at Royal Rumble 1998, Shawn Michaels retired following WrestleMania 14. No-one knew if they’d ever see HBK in the ring again, but at Summerslam 2002 he finally made his return in what was meant to be a one-off match against Triple H. The match proved to be such a huge success that HBK returned to the ring full time, competing until 2010.
3. The Youngest WWE Champion Is Crowned – Summerslam 2002
At Summerslam 2002, “The Next Big Thing” Brock Lesnar faced off against The Rock for the WWE Championship, just four months after his WWE debut. Lesnar ended up defeating The Rock to capture the title and become the youngest WWE Champion in history, a record that he still holds today.
2. Owen Hart Breaks Austin’s Neck – Summerslam 1997
Stone Cold Steve Austin’s career was almost derailed after he broke his neck at Summerslam 1997. During an Intercontinental Championship match against Owen Hart, he suffered a neck injury after Hart performed a sit-down Tombstone Piledriver, something Austin wasn’t keen on doing. Thankfully he only missed three months of action and recovered from his injury, but it did end up shortening his career, with the Rattlesnake retiring in 2003.
1. The Wedding – Summerslam 1991
Summerslam 1991 saw Macho Man Randy Savage marry Miss Elizabeth at the event, in reality, they’d been married since 1984. The two were wrestling royalty and it was one of the biggest storylines up until that point. The ceremony was used to set up future angles, with Jake Roberts and The Undertaker attacking Randy Savage.