To celebrate this Sunday’s upcoming Extreme Rules PPV Liam Hoofe takes a look at the best matches in the event’s history…
Gimmick based PPVs are often criticised by fans, myself included. The shows often tend to shoehorn in a gimmick to a storyline purely to sell a PPV, often delivering stupid, badly booked PPVs in the process. The one exception to this is Extreme Rules.
Since its inaugural event in 2009, the show has become a staple of the WWE calendar, often delivering thrilling matches and great storyline progression. Outside of the big four (five if you count Money in the Bank) pay per views, Extreme Rules is often the one I look forward to the most.
While usually, I keep these lists down to five, Extreme Rules had such an array of great matches to choose from that I felt like it would have been criminal not to give some of them a mention. So, with that in mind, here are the top ten matches in the history of Extreme Rules.
Brock Lesnar Vs Triple H – Cage Match – Extreme Rules 2013
Brock Lesnar and Triple H finished an eight-month long rivalry at Extreme Rules in 2012 inside a steel cage. The two men had both traded victories at SummerSlam and WrestleMania, and this was to be the match that finally settled the score between the two men.
Lesnar and Trips went at it hammer and tongs for the duration of the 20-minute match, with both men coming very close to picking up the illustrious victory. The finish came when Heyman interfered on Lesnar’s behalf, allowing him to hit Hunter with the sledgehammer and finish him with an F5.
This match was just two legends trying to destroy each other inside a steel cage – what’s not to love about that?
CM Punk Vs Jericho – Chicago Street Fight – 2012
CM Punk and Chris Jericho had given us a fairly solid match up at WrestleMania 28, but the following month at Extreme Rules both men went all out in Punk’s hometown of Chicago.
Their feud had taken a dark turn following Mania, with Jericho attacking Punk about his father’s alcoholism, and even smashing a bottle of whiskey over Punk’s head on an episode of Raw.
Both men added to the fight here by turning up in ‘street’ attire and went at it from bell to bell, Punk’s sister even showed up, giving Jericho a slap for good measure. The match finished when Punk hit the GTS to claim the victory, back in the days where wrestlers didn’t have to lose in their hometowns.
Roman Reigns Vs AJ Styles – Extreme Rules Match – 2016
Roman Reigns is often accused of not being able to deliver in the ring – this match says differently.
Having had a stinker of a main event at WrestleMania with Triple H, Reigns redeemed himself here with a cracker of a match against the always phenomenal AJ Styles.
Styles and Reigns delivered a thrill ride of a match that featured some awesome moments and some nail-biting near falls. While it seemed obvious going into the event that AJ was not going to walk away with the belt, the match, on several occasions, tricked us into thinking otherwise.
Even the inclusions of The Usos and The Club in the match’s closing statements didn’t take away from the encounter – if anything, in fact, they just added to the fun.
Randy Orton Vs CM Punk – Last Man Standing – 2011
An often forgotten match-up – CM Punk Vs Randy Orton at Extreme Rules 2011 was a great encounter that deserves a lot more recognition than it gets.
The early part of 2011 was not particularly memorable for either man – Orton had no real sense of direction as a character, and Punk was leading the ill-fated New Nexus on a road to nowhere. The two men put on a great match at WrestleMania, but their rematch at Extreme Rules topped it and then some. The men are the two of the company’s most consistent performers and their match here was one of the best last man standing matches in the event’s history.
Orton would end up picking up the big win here, but 2011 was always going to be Punk’s year as the Summer of Punk started only a short while after this event.
The Miz Vs Cesaro Vs Sami Zayn Vs Kevin Owens – Fatal 4 Way – 2016
Last year’s Extreme Rules PPV was slightly hit or miss, it did, however, feature a brilliant fatal 4 way for the Intercontinental Title.
The Miz was only a month into his Intercontinental title reign at this point and was really starting to rebuild his arrogant heel character that would go on to define his 2016. Everyone involved in this match delivered on the night, with Zayn and Owens beating 10 bells out of each other while Cesaro was constantly being screwed out of the belt by The Miz during the match-up.
The match featured a bunch of awesome finishing moves, and the ending was great as well. Zayn hit Cesaro with a helluva kick and just as it looked as though Zayn was going to win the gold – Owens dragged him out of the ring, allowing The Miz to sneak in and pick up the victory.
Click below to continue on for the top five…