18. Starrcade 1995
WCW’s oldest event name would sometimes be put to use with gimmicked events, like 1989’s “Night of the Iron Men”, or 1991’s Battlebowl tournament. For 1995, a best-of-seven series was instituted between WCW and New Japan Pro Wrestling, putting on display some unique in-ring performances that surprised many fans that were more geared toward mainstream American-style rasslin’.
Among the best matches of the night were Chris Benoit vs. Jushin Liger, Alex Wright vs. Koji Kanemoto, and Eddie Guerrero vs. Shinjiro Ohtani, the latter of which made one of Guerrero’s DVD releases. The best-of-seven was followed by a two-match angle around the World title that saw Ric Flair regain his belt from Randy Savage. On the whole, it’s kind of an oddly-structured show, but the purists out there that want fine in-ring performances would love what’s here.
17. Great American Bash 1996
Even with shows that are chock full of enjoyable wrestling, sometimes it’s an angle that gets remembered most. In this case, the 1996 GAB was close to three hours of quality in-ring action, but all everybody seems to remember is Scott Hall and Kevin Nash assaulting Eric Bischoff, with Nash Powerbombing Bischoff off the entrance ramp through a table. The not-yet-named nWo was proving to be bigger than anything else in the biz.
The other memorable action was just as lawless – a wild Falls Count Anywhere match in which Chris Benoit and Kevin Sullivan beat the bejesus out of one another, including an unforgettable sequence in the male bathroom (Commentator Dusty Rhodes: “THERE’S A LADY IN THE MEN’S ROOM!”). Rey Misterio Jr’s unsuccessful Cruiserweight title bid against Dean Malenko was the match that showed a nationwide audience (not just ECW fans) what the dynamic high flyer was capable of.