WrestleMania is the Grand Daddy of them all. For wrestling fans, it is bigger than the World Series, NBA Finals, Super Bowl, and Stanley Cup combined. For wrestlers, it is the day they earn their biggest paychecks. On the biggest stage in the WWE, history is made, legends are born, and often there are swerves. Recently, WrestleMania has been placed in football stadiums, guaranteeing that the company maximize their audience. If you watch every WrestleMania from start to finish you will see the evolution of it. Just like the Super Bowl it was once just another event and now it has become a spectacle.
For a professional, their ring entrance is their first impression. It is where the fans will get their first look at a Superstar who they may have never seen wrestle before. With WrestleMania being the mega-show that it is, often times there are new eyes on the product for that night only. People who normally do not watch wrestling or who may have decided to stop for one reason or another usually watch 'Mania.
As WrestleMania has evolved so has the ring entrances. With millions of eyes on the product, the WWE Superstars have found ways to get creative to create a memorable entrance. Every wrestler wants to give fans something to talk, text, or tweet about. Some entrances remind fan what’s at stake. By just looking at how the wrestler approached the ring, fans knew something was about to go down. Then there are some that just wow the audience with theatrics.
Here are the top 15 greatest WrestleMania entrances.
15 Diesel WrestleMania XI
At the 1995 Royal Rumble, the winner not only would get a shot at the WWE Champion, but Pamela Anderson would also escort them to the ring. Having Anderson on your arm as you go for the biggest prize in the company meant you already won before the match started. In 1995, clearly she was one of the hottest women on the planet.
14 Trish Stratus WrestleMania X8
13 Hulk Hogan WrestleMania VII
In 1991, WrestleMania VII was originally set to take place at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. WWE were expecting over 100,000 to attend the outdoor event. However since WWE Champion Sgt. Slaughter’s character became an Iraqi turncoat during the Gulf War, he began receiving death threats and they decided to take the event indoors.
12 Macho Man WrestleMania IX
11 Triple H WrestleMania 22
10 Hell in a Cell WrestleMania XXVIII
There are no other individuals whose names are linked with Hell in a Cell more so than The Undertaker and Triple H. At WrestleMania XXVII Triple H came within inches of ending The Undertaker’s undefeated streak at WrestleMania. Though he came up short, Triple H beat The Undertaker to the point he could not leave on his own will. Undertaker was not happy and wanted a rematch and would not budge until he got one. But a regular match was not good enough; this required Hell in a Cell.
9 John Cena WrestleMania XXV
8 Rhythm and Blues WrestleMania XI
7 Ultimate Warrior WrestleMania VII
6 John Cena WrestleMania 22
5 Shawn Michaels WrestleMania XII
4 Undertaker WrestleMania XIV
3 Shawn Michaels WrestleMania XXV
2 Triple H WrestleMania XXX
Going into WrestleMania XXX, Triple H was by far the biggest heel in the company. His opponent, Daniel Bryan had become the most popular Superstar the WWE had seen in ages. Bryan had won the WWE Championship from John Cena at SummerSlam with Triple H as special guest referee. After winning the title, Triple H Pedigreed Bryan and Randy Orton cashed in his Money in the Bank contract to snatch the title away from Bryan. Triple H refused to embrace the popularity of Bryan and repeatedly called him a B-plus player. In order for Bryan to get a title shot in the main event that night, he had to first beat The Game.
1 Triple H WrestleMania 31
For years, fans waited for one man to wrestle at WrestleMania, Sting. When he surprised everyone at the Survivor Series and took out Triple H, it would cause Triple H and his wife Stephanie to lose control of the company. Having regained it weeks later, Triple H wanted Sting in a fight. In a match that was themed WWE vs. WCW, a final showdown of the Monday Night War, Triple H entered WrestleMania 31 armed and ready.
With Arnold Schwarzenegger inducted in the WWE Hall of Fame the night before, Triple H paid homage to him. One can say it was not forced either given the theme. Here is Triple H, a WWE guy, who was there when WCW led by Sting were close to putting WWE out of business. Before his music hit, Sting stood in the ring and as he waited, a target with his name showed up on the screen. Robots stood on stage as Triple H rose from underneath dressed up like the terminator. To cap it off, Schwarzenegger appeared on screen and let everyone know it was "time to play the game." Everyone around the world knew from this moment, Triple H was coming to win. This is how you prepare to go to war with a guy who tried to take your livelihood.
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