Once in a generation an athlete will come along in sports that is clearly miles ahead of everyone else in every aspect of their respective game. Athletes like LeBron James, Wayne Gretzky, Babe Ruth, Ronda Rousey, etc. have all been larger than their respective sports at times. Wrestling is no different and that is where Brock Lesnar comes in.
Brock was a star right out of college as he went 106-5 in four years of amateur wrestling at Bismarck State College and the University of Minnesota. Upon graduating, he went to OVW (WWE's former developmental system) and made his WWE debut in 2002. From there he won the WWE Championship 3 times in his first WWE stint, including becoming the youngest WWE Champion in history (at the time) just four months into his career.
After The Beast Incarnate failed at getting into the NFL (which may have played out differently had he not been seriously injured in a bad motorcycle accident), he went to NJPW from 2005-2007 and won the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. He went to the K-1 Hero's MMA promotion in 2007 to try his hand at MMA and won his first fight in 1:09.
Lesnar signed with UFC in 2007 and won his debut on February 9, 2008. He defeated Randy Couture to become the Heavyweight Champion on November 15, 2008, just 9 months after his debut. After a successful defense against Frank Mir, Brock came down with mononucleosis at the same time that a chronic case of diverticulitis became severe. He made a comeback after a year and successfully defended against Shane Carwin. He lost his title a few months later to Cain Velasquez. Brock fought one last time in a losing effort against Alistair Overeem in December of 2011.
Ever since returning to the WWE, Lesnar has been thriving by working a limited schedule and being far and away the company's best box office draw. He has time and again put on epic bouts over the past few years, and he has not been pinned since Triple H beat him at Wrestlemania 29 in 2013. Brock's success in the both the wrestling and MMA fields over the course of his career is absolutely unprecedented.
Here are the top 15 matches of Brock Lesnar's WWE Career:
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15 Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker - Wrestlemania 30
Until this match actually ended it had the feel of any other Undertaker Wrestlemania match to that point. Logic stated that Brock would come within an inch of victory only for Taker to overcome the odds and beat The Beast. Taker suffered a serious concussion very early in the match which severely damaged the match quality and is the reason this match is not higher up on this list. However, even with the low quality match, the finish was the most stunning in the history of wrestling. Brock ended the streak clean to the shock of everyone watching (including Paul Heyman) and established himself as the most dominant force in sports-entertainment.
14 Brock Lesnar & Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle & Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin - No Way Out 2003
In 2003, Brock Lesnar entered and won his first ever Royal Rumble match from the number 29 spot. This earned him a date with Kurt Angle in the main event of Wrestlemania 19, but there was one PPV in between the two big shows. No Way Out 2003 was set to feature a 6-man tag with Lesnar, Chris Benoit, and Edge taking on The World's Greatest Tag Team. Moments before the match was to begin, Edge was found beaten up backstage and was unable to compete. Lesnar and Benoit chose to fight anyway and came out on top in an incredibly entertaining match.
13 Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker - Summerslam 2015
16 months after Lesnar ended the Undertaker's Wrestlemania streak, the long-awaited rematch took place at Summerslam. It was a contest that was definitely steps ahead of their Wrestlemania match and proved that Undertaker can still work at the highest level. This match had some great back and forth action, a hot crowd, and even some humor. However, the match will be remembered mostly for its screwy finish. After Brock made the Deadman tap the timekeeper rang the bell even though the ref didn't see it. The match was restarted and Taker was able to pull out the victory after making a defiant Lesnar pass out in Hell's Gate.
12 Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Chris Benoit - WWE Championship - Smackdown 12/4/03
Smackdown was thriving in 2003 with Lesnar as the WWE Champion, and on December 4 Lesnar defended the championship against Chris Benoit. Brock was a fighting champion and vowed to make someone tap out that night. Benoit first had to beat John Cena earlier in the night in a match that instituted the use of instant replay to change the ending. In a true David vs. Goliath matchup, Benoit threw everything he had at Lesnar and had the champ on the ropes at times. Goliath came out victorious in this edition, however, as Lesnar made Benoit pass out in a wicked leg lock.
11 Brock Lesnar (c) vs. The Undertaker - WWE Championship - Hell in a Cell - No Mercy 2002
The younger fans out there may not know this, but the recent Lesnar/Undertaker Hell In A Cell match was actually the second time they've met inside the structure. The WWE Championship was on the line at No Mercy 2002 in the 9th Hell In A Cell match in history. In a match that was far from suitable for the WWE's current PG programming, Brock and the Deadman went to war for 27 minutes. Both men and Paul Heyman were busted open. A major story throughout the match was the state of Undertaker's hand which Lesnar had broken in the weeks prior. Brock was able to win this war to continue his tear of success that began in his debut 6 months prior.
10 Brock Lesnar vs. The Rock (c) - WWE Championship - Summerslam 2002
When he debuted on RAW in 2002, Brock Lesnar was billed as the "Next Big Thing". There really wasn't much of an argument against that claim as Brock made minced meat of everything he touched. Just four months after his debut he found himself in the WWE Championship main event of the second biggest show of the year against one of the greatest ever in The Rock. While it did take some continuous interference from Paul Heyman (which ended up backfiring on Lesnar at one point), Lesnar was able to hit The Rock with an F-5 and become the youngest ever WWE Champion at that point (25 years and 44 days, Orton broke the record in 2004 by winning the WHC at 24 years and 136 days).
9 Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Kurt Angle - WWE Championship - Summerslam 2003
The Smackdown brand in 2003 was defined by the epic on-and-off rivalry between Brock Lesnar and Kurt Angle over the WWE Championship. This bout was yet another chapter in their great rivalry that was comparable in quality to when Brock took the title from Kurt in the Wrestlemania main event. Kurt made Brock tap to the Ankle Lock in this one. The Beast showed another reason why he is one of the best ever as he sold a leg injury over the course of this contest like nobody else could. He even went as far as to deliver an F-5 on the Olympic Gold Medalist on ONE LEG. Seriously, the guy is a different breed.
8 Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena - Extreme Rules - Extreme Rules 2012
The night after Wrestlemania 28, Brock Lesnar made his shocking return to RAW and targeted John Cena right off the bat. This led to an Extreme Rules Match between the two at the Extreme Rules PPV. For the better part of the match, Lesnar proved that he had suffered no ring rust whatsoever in the 5 years he spent away from the squared circle. He put a serious hurting on John Cena using his pure strength in addition to any weapon he could get his hands on. Brock's cockiness got the best of him in the end as Cena was able to use a steel chain to help pin The Beast Incarnate.
7 Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker - Hell in a Cell - Hell in a Cell 2015
The final match of the storied Lesnar/Undertaker rivalry was nothing short of an absolute war. This clash was booked as the final contest of their trilogy that began at Wrestlemania 30, and it was arguably the first or second best HIAC match of the PG era (see Undertaker/Edge Summerslam 2008). At the end of an 18 minute contest that involved chairs, stairs, a doctor getting shoved, and blood, Lesnar was able to plant Undertaker with an F-5 onto the exposed wooden boards that make up the ring. It was a brutal contest and a fitting way to end one of the most storied rivalries in WWE history.
6 Brock Lesnar vs. Kurt Angle (c) - WWE Championship - Wrestlemania 19
The main event of Wrestlemania 19 featured two superstars with incredible amateur and professional wrestling backgrounds. Brock and Kurt Angle had been feuding since Lesnar won the Royal Rumble a few months prior, and things finally came to a head at Safeco Field in Seattle. What followed was a technical display by the two men who were arguably the best in the business at the time. In Lesnar's first Wrestlemania match and first Wrestlemania main event, he was able to regain his WWE Championship. This match also contained one of the most famous pro wrestling botches of all time where Lesnar came up short on a Shooting Star Press and landed on his head. Thankfully, he avoided major injury.
5 Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena (c) - WWE World Heavyweight Championship - Summerslam 2014
This was Brock Lesnar's first match after ending the streak and for the first time in 10 years he was in a WWE Championship match. John Cena had just won the title a month before in a special Money in the Bank match (the vacant WWE title was on the line due to a Daniel Bryan injury). There was a lot of intrigue surrounding this massive main event since Brock was on top of the world and Cena had beaten him in their last contest only two years earlier. From the second the bell rang, Brock absolutely dismantled Cena in unprecedented fashion. The Beast hit 16(!!) German Suplexes and two F-5s with relative ease to capture his first major championship since he lost to Eddie Guerrero at No Way Out 2004.
4 Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Roman Reigns (vs. Seth Rollins) - WWE World Heavyweight Championship - Wrestlemania 31
While the TV buildup was lackluster, this match had so many real-life storylines backing it up that it was still a very highly anticipated contest. Would Brock ever lose the title now that he chose WWE over UFC? Was WWE ready to push Roman Reigns to the next level? Was it time for Seth Rollins to become a megastar? This match had a lot to live up to, and it was truly a classic. After Reigns and Brock had given each other everything they had, Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase to turn the match into a triple threat. Rollins pinned Reigns in shocking fashion to walk out of Wrestlemania with his first WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
3 Brock Lesnar vs. Kurt Angle (c) - WWE Championship - 60 Minute Ironman Match - Smackdown 9/18/03
This match is something that would never happen in today's WWE. Two superstars who had been feuding for the better part of a year blew off their storyline in a 60 Minute Ironman Match on Smackdown. In what may have been the best match in Smackdown history, Lesnar used a chair on Angle repeatedly and lost the first fall by DQ. Soon after, Lesnar had a 5-2 advantage on the incumbent champ. Kurt put together an incredible comeback by scoring two falls in the last 10 minutes. Angle put Lesnar in an Ankle Lock with 17 seconds left, but Lesnar held on until the bell to reclaim the title in a 5-4 victory.
2 Brock Lesnar vs. CM Punk - No Disqualification - Summerslam 2013
If you were a fan who watched the product in 2012-13 you knew that this epic meeting was inevitable. Eventually, Paul Heyman would have to side with one of these two men and he chose Brock Lesnar. In the Money in the Bank match a month earlier Heyman hit Punk multiple times with a ladder to cost him the briefcase. Punk was on a mission from there and he had his sights set on The Beast. In Lesnar's first match since his lackluster program with Triple H, Punk and Lesnar put on a brutal classic. This 25-minute bout was another display of why Brock is one of the most dominant superstars in history. In the end, CM Punk succumbed to an F-5 onto a steel chair.
1 Brock Lesnar (c) vs. John Cena vs. Seth Rollins - WWE World Heavyweight Championship - Royal Rumble 2015
After ending Undertaker's streak and destroying John Cena to claim the WWE Title at Summerslam 2014, Cena and Lesnar were set to do battle once more at the 2015 Royal Rumble due to Cena beating Orton for the #1 contendership in HIAC. Enter Seth Rollins. Triple H rewarded Seth Rollins for his loyalty to The Authority by making the match a triple threat. What followed was an instant classic and quite possibly the best 3-man match to ever take place. Lesnar was able to further establish why he is the best in the business and Rollins put on a performance that many point to as his breakout match. Even though Rollins cracked two of Brock's ribs with a wicked elbow drop on the announce table, Lesnar was able to pick up the victory. This match is an absolute must-watch and to date is the best match of Brock's career.
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