The '80s WWE was all about larger than life characters, and almost none of them needed to know how to wrestle. Hulk Hogan was the biggest star in the company and WWE usually just built up monsters to throw at him. However, in Macho Man Randy Savage, WWE found a wrestler that was both larger-than-life and one of the best wrestlers in the world at the time.
Macho Man came in with Miss Elizabeth and immediately became the most hated man in the company. However, the Macho Man story was one with many twists and turns. He became a babyface, teamed with Hulk Hogan, went heel and feuded with Hogan. He feuded with Ultimate Warrior and then turned face after he lost a retirement match and then went to WCW where he finished his main career. Along the way, here are 10 of the best matches of Randy Savage's career.
10 VS. TITO SANTANA
While the match was not an all-time classic, but the match between Intercontinental Champion Tito Santana and Macho Man Randy Savage was the match that helped put Savage on the map. The match was on an episode of WWE Prime Time Wrestling, which was the old WWE show that included pre-taped matches and interviews.
The match saw Randy Savage prove to be the smartest heel in the company. Santana had Savage on the ropes, ready to bring him back into the ring, when Savage pulled something out of his tights and smashed it into Santana's head, getting him the three count and his first WWE title.
9 VS. RICKY STEAMBOAT (WRESTLEMANIA III)
For many years, when asked what the best match in WWE history was when it came to actual in-ring wrestling, most fans pointed to the match at WrestleMania III between Macho Man Randy Savage and Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat. In an era where wrestlers usually went into the ring and called the moves as they went, this was different.
According to Steamboat in later years, Macho Man demanded they rehearse and practice to get everything perfect and what resulted was masterful storytelling. Hulk and Andre filled the stadium but Steamboat beating Savage is the match that fans still talk about to this day.
8 VS. BRET HART (SATURDAY NIGHT'S MAIN EVENT)
Not all great matches took place on WrestleMania cards. When it comes to Macho Man Randy Savage, he was able to put on a great match no matter where he wrestled. Today, Bret "The Hitman" Hart is considered one of the best wrestlers of all-time. In 1986, he was part of the Hart Foundation but was on his way to his eventual singles career.
This match was when Macho Man Randy Savage was a freshly turned babyface. This match was one month after the Hart Foundation and Honky Tonk Man attacked him and the Mega Powers formed. That made this a grudge match between Savage and Hart and the two put on a great show, with Savage winning a solid 12-minute match.
7 VS. MILLION DOLLAR MAN (WRESTLEMANIA IV)
Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant's feud didn't end at WrestleMania III when Hogan slammed and pinned the big man. It continued, and Andre eventually won the world title from Hogan only to sell it to The Million Dollar Man. WWE wouldn't allow it and vacated the title, setting up a one-night tournament at WrestleMania IV.
The finals saw The Million Dollar Man and Macho Man Randy Savage battling for the vacant world title. Ted DiBiase had Andre the Giant at ringside with him, but he and Savage put on a great match. The ending was cheap with Hulk Hogan hitting DiBiase with a chair to help Savage win, but this was Macho Man's first world title victory.
6 VS. HULK HOGAN (WRESTLEMANIA V)
The biggest storyline in the '80s WWE was the Mega Powers formation and then their implosion. The Hart Foundation and Honky Tonk Man were beating down Randy Savage when Miss Elizabeth went and got Hulk Hogan to help her man. The result was the Mega Powers.
However, jealousy got in the way, and Randy Savage only saw Hogan as someone who was trying to take Miss Elizabeth away from him. They finally split up, and their big match came at WrestleMania V where Hulk Hogan won back the world title, beating Savage in the main event.
5 VS. ULTIMATE WARRIOR (WRESTLEMANIA VII)
The most memorable moment of Macho Man Randy Savage's career came at WrestleMania VII — and it only partially came due to the match. Savage wanted a title shot against WWE world champion Ultimate Warrior, but the champ refused to fight him. As a result, Savage and his manager Sensational Sherri helped Sgt. Slaughter beat Warrior for the title.
For revenge, Warrior now wanted revenge, and the two battled in a retirement match. Savage gave Warrior the best match of the big man's career and then took the loss. However, the big moment came after the match when Sherri attacked Macho, and Miss Elizabeth made her return and saved him. The reunion left everyone in tears.
4 VS. JAKE ROBERTS (SATURDAY NIGHT'S MAIN EVENT)
Following his reunion with Miss Elizabeth, Macho Man Randy Savage retired and set up his wedding to his former manager. The two tied the knot at SummerSlam that year. However, at their wedding reception, Jake "The Snake" Roberts and Undertaker struck and Roberts had his snake pop out when she opened a wedding present.
This led to Macho Man demanding his reinstatement to get revenge. WWE President Jack Tunney finally agreed to reinstate him, and he got his first match at Tuesday in Texas, which Savage won. However, the best match between the two came on Saturday Night's Main Event, which Savage also won.
3 VS. RIC FLAIR (WRESTLEMANIA VIII)
Up next for Randy Savage was a feud with Nature Boy Ric Flair. For months, Bobby "The Brain" Heenan was touting that the real world champion was coming and that was Flair, carrying his NWA world title. Then, at the Royal Rumble, Flair won the WWE world title. The plan was to set up Flair vs. Hogan, but that never happened.
Instead, it was Macho Man Randy Savage who got the match with Flair for the world title at WrestleMania VIII. Flair had used doctored footage of him with Miss Elizabeth to torture Savage and the Macho Man came in and won his second WWE world title.
2 VS. ULTIMATE WARRIOR (SUMMERSLAM 1992)
Ultimate Warrior didn't have a lot of good matches, as he was limited in the ring and was best in small quantities. However, when he faced someone like Macho Man Randy Savage, his opponent was great enough to pull a fantastic match out of him. One year after his retirement match, Savage was back in WWE and was the world champion again.
The Warrior had left WWE and then returned and ended up facing him at SummerSlam that year with Savage's world title on the line. This time around, Savage lost by count-out and retained his title. It was another excellent match and ended with the Ultimate Maniacs tag team forming.
1 VS. DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE (GREAT AMERICAN BASH 1997)
Macho Man Randy Savage did not want to retire, but WWE did not want him to wrestle anymore, preferring to focus on young stars instead. Even when Savage pitched an angle where he would feud with, and put over Shawn Michaels, WWE said no. As a result, Savage left WWE for WCW.
In WCW, he did what he offered to do in WWE. Instead of putting over Shawn Michaels, he turned his attention to a beloved fan favorite in Diamond Dallas Page. He put Page over like no one else and made DDP one of the biggest stars in WCW. Their best match was this No DQ fight at the Great American Bash.