After September 16, WWE will have held 40 different Hell in a Cell matches in the last 21 years. Over these past couple decades, the Cell has become one of WWE’s true signature matches, even if the preordained spot on the calendar for the spin-off pay-per-view does dampen the effectiveness of employing the gimmick.
Hell in a Cell matches have developed quite a history, from iconic wars (Undertaker vs. Mankind, Undertaker vs. Lesnar, Triple H vs. Cactus) to memorable moments (Kane’s debut, Mankind’s many falls, the End of and Era walkout). With the exception of Royal Rumble matches, no signature bout on WWE’s menu has amassed the sort of heritage of Hell in a Cell.
There’s a lot to learn about the history of the match itself, from its origins, to the matches that have been fought within its chain-link walls. We here at Cultaholic pride ourselves on doling out the facts and figures, and when it comes to Hell in a Cell matches, our zealousness is just as strong. So here now, a look at the numbers, notes, and names that comprise Hell in a Cell’s rich past. Here are 10 facts about WWE’s patented colossal cage match that you may not have known.
10. Spawned From Sadistic Roots
Cage matches have existed in various shapes, sizes, and forms over the years, with part of the cell’s uniqueness being that it fences in the ringside area as well. But it wasn’t the *first* wrestling cage of that kind of construct. In fact, Hell in a Cell borrowed liberally from a legendary match that had taken place 14 years earlier.
Both Shawn Michaels and Jim Cornette have noted that the inspiration for the cell was the cage used for the “Last Battle of Atlanta” match between “Wildfire” Tommy Rich and Buzz Sawyer in October 1983. The match in question was the culmination of a two-year rivalry, and ended with a blood-soaked Rich eking out the win over his longtime nemesis. WWE Network actually uploaded the match footage (which was thought to have been lost) in September 2016, in the Hidden Gems section.