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Top 20 Worst Wrestling Matches of the '90s

No other decade in wrestling history shifted the business as much as the 1990s did. In 1990, WCW was still under the NWA banner and a seemingly done Ric Flair was ceding the spotlight to Sting. In WWF, Hulk Hogan seemed to likewise give way to the Ultimate Warrior. The AWA was on its last legs while territories abounded in Memphis, Texas, Portland and Florida. There were mostly cartoonish characters around, no prime time programming and you could count on one hand the number of PPVs each year from each company.

By the end of the decade, the only major ones standing were WWE, WCW and ECW, the latter two already in their prolonged death throes. PPVs dominated every month with prime time programming and the action had gotten more serious. It’s remarkable to look at how much changed so majorly from the material to the fans’ tastes and pushing the envelope a lot more. There was a lot of good in this decade, a lot to remember and cherish from technical classics to wild brawls. But there was also a lot of bad as well, matches that were complete messes and horrible to watch.

Now, there were probably a lot of terrible ones at house shows and various indies that are forgotten but these are the bigger ones, that played out on major stages, even main events of PPVs and somehow were pushed hard. It’s notable how many came from 1995, considered one of the worst creative years ever for both WWE and WCW and indeed WCW seemed to have the edge in horrible stuff although WWF put their own up too. Here are 20 of the worst bouts of the 1990s and why that decade isn’t exactly remembered well, except for the latter years.

20 Kevin Sullivan vs. Dave Sullivan - SuperBrawl V

via youtube.com

19 Sting vs. Antonio Inoki - NJPW 7

via worldofwrestling.it

18 War Games - Fall Brawl '98

via youtube.com

17 Undertaker vs. Undertaker - SummerSlam ‘94

via wwe.comc

You had Bret vs Owen Hart in a cage match and yet this was the main event. After months of build, the Undertaker returned with Paul Bearer to take on the fake Undertaker from Ted DiBiase who everyone had known from day one was a fake. After a stare down, they “fought” which was just a lot of poor and sloppy moves, copying each other’s moveset with Taker doing Old School and more but really a poor excuse for a fight. To no shock, the real Taker hit a Tombstone to win but you could feel the crowd dying as it went on and one of the worst main events in WWE history.

16 Mabel vs. Diesel - SummerSlam ‘95

via ecwfrenchtribute.com

15 Sid vs. El Gigante, SuperBrawl I

via wwe.com

14 Bushwhackers vs. Nikolai Volkoff and the Iron Sheik - Heroes of Wrestling

via youtube.com

13 Rick Rude vs. Masa Chono - Halloween Havoc ‘92

via wwe.com

12 Jake Roberts vs. Rick Martel - WreslteMania VII

via michandal.com

11 Triple H vs. Sgt. Slaughter - In Your House: D-Generation X

via wwe.com

10 Chamber of Horrors - Halloween Havoc ‘91

via tumblr.com

On a segment of the online show “Are You Serious,” Road Dogg stated that “logic dictates if you put eight of WCW’s biggest stars in a cage, you get something good.” Josh Matthews retorted “You’re counting on WCW using logic, there’s your first mistake.” With Sting, Vader, the Steiners, Scott Hall as the Diamond Studd and others, this should have been a fantastic brawl, but leave it to WCW to add a needless stipulation.

9 Team Doink vs. Team Lawler - Survivor Series '94

via wwe.com

Recipe for disaster: Doink, comic relief character the fans loathed, meeting Jerry Lawler at the height of his arrogant heel reign. This led to Lawler challenging Doink to a match at Survivor Series, getting a crew of little guys called Sleazy, Squeasy and Cheesey taking on Doink, Dink, Wink and Pink. God help us. It was just Doink and Lawler doing one move, then letting the minis run in for goofy antics and making faces and just so damn annoying to see this getting serious PPV time.

8 Hayabusa vs Mr. Gannosuke - October 29th, 1999

via fmwrestling.us

7 Al Snow vs. Big Bossman, Kennel From Hell - Unforgiven '99

via sportskings.com

6 Chaz Taylor vs. Steve Dane, Global Wrestling

via youtube.com

5 Hulk Hogan vs. The Ultimate Warrior, Halloween Havoc ‘98

via lisimg.com

Fans had waited eight years for the rematch of these two and it was obvious how Pat Patterson had been so badly needed planning the first one. To his credit, Hogan has actually taken the blame for a lot of the bad stuff leading up to it and how he and Warrior never got to practice as much as they should have. Still, it was a horrible mess, the timing totally off on every move, juvenile tactics like rolling to your opponent and the bit of Hogan blowing a fireball that even Hogan has to laugh at being a joke.

4 Dustin Rhodes vs. Blacktop Bully - Uncensored ‘95

via youtube.com

3 Mabel vs. Yokozuna - In Your House IV

via pwpnation.com

2 Jake Roberts & Yokozuna vs. Jim Neidhart & King Kong Bundy - Heroes of Wrestling

via sbnation.com

1 Hulk Hogan & Randy Savage vs. Alliance to End Hulkamania - Uncensored ‘96

via wwe.com

If you ever want a key example of Hulk Hogan’s ego run amok in WCW, this is it. Hogan and Savage set against the “Alliance” which was Ric Flair, Arn Anderson, Z Gagnsta, the Ultimate Solution, Kevin Sullivan, Lex Luger, Meng and the Barbarian. It took place in a three-story cage with the idea of working your way down from one level to another but even the announcers had no clue what the rules were supposed to be. Oh and the cages had stuff like frying pans hanging around to use.

It’s far, far worse than it sounds, a total and complete mess with ugly brawling, the cages designed so you could barely see anything that was going on but what was seen was horrible. Not only that, there was no tension, Hogan & Savage clearly crushing their opponents despite being outnumbered four to one and just a lot of messy fighting with powder thrown on top of all else before Ed Leslie showed up to give the faces pans to use and then Luger turned sides to use a loaded glove and help them escape. One of the utterly worst PPV main events of all time and why fans loathe the early Hogan period of WCW so badly.

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Top 20 Worst Wrestling Matches of the '90s