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10 Best Jeff Jarrett Matches Of All Time

Ain't this collection of WWE and TNA Slobberknockers great?!

Let's immediately address the elephant in the room. Jeff Jarrett has, for much of his career, been a partial figure of fun for wrestling fans.

This could stem from a number of things - his self-aggrandising heel persona, his acrimonious departure from WWE, or (most likely) his lengthy spells atop the WCW and TNA mountains.

Often seen as a midcarder who rose too far, it can be easy to forget that Double J was a very capable wrestler in his heyday. Although hardly the most eye-popping worker, his matches were often underpinned by old school, Southern rasslin' technique. Add to this his remarkable consistency and natural ability to garner heel heat, and it makes sense that Jarrett would have a number of highlights to choose from over the course of his career.

Of course, there's no getting away from the fact that Jarrett's run of dominance - particularly in TNA - often eclipsed younger, more deserving talent. But as you'll see from this list, when he did put somebody over, it was often at just the right time.

It's time to take a look at the ten best matches of Jeff Jarrett's career. His WWE Hall of Fame call-up may have been unexpected, but after reading this, you'll hopefully agree that it's more than deserved.

10. Jeff Jarrett Vs. AJ Styles - TNA Hard Justice 2005


Impact Wrestling


When a match starts with chants of 'drop the title', you know that the heel has probably done a good job of getting heat.

Yes, these chants were more than likely a result of Jarrett's lengthy and various NWA World Heavyweight Championship reigns in the early days of TNA, but at least he did the right thing here - and for the right opponent.

AJ Styles wasn't the complete package we know and love today, but he was still a prodigious young talent, and already one of the best high-flyers in the world. Jarrett obviously couldn't match the youngster in terms of athleticism but provided a solid counterbalance in terms of cynical heel work.

The match wasn't a classic, but in terms of storytelling it hit the nail on the head. Heel Monty Brown hit the ring in an attempt to help the champ, only to miss and nail Jarrett by accident. Jeff then unwisely got on the wrong side of special guest referee and UFC star Tito Ortiz, who knocked him to the canvas, allowing Styles to nail the Spiral Tap and win the title.


9. Lethal Lockdown - TNA Lockdown 2007


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Jarrett's long TNA run saw him partake in many multi-man bouts, from his signature King of the Mountain match to more than a few convoluted, overbooked main events. However, we've opted for the slightly more traditional Lethal Lockdown match - a stipulation clearly inspired by the beloved WarGames matches of NWA and WCW shows gone by.

Generally considered one of the better Lethal Lockdown contests, the 2007 edition saw Jarrett as a member of the babyface Team Angle - also featuring Samoa Joe, Rhino, Sting, and (of course) Kurt Angle. They took on Christian Cage and his team of AJ Styles, Scott Steiner, Abyss, and Tomko.

The match was a frantic, all-action affair, featuring big spots, thumbtacks, and even a crazy dive from the roof of the cage to a gaggle of wrestlers on the outside (taken by Styles, naturally). Jarrett's role, however, was more storyline-driven.

In the build-up to the match, all of Jarrett's teammates (bar team captain Angle) distrusted him. It's easy to see why given Double J's history of swerves and betrayals. However, in the match itself, we were treated to the seldom-seen fake-swerve. Abyss handed Jarrett a thumbtack-loaded guitar and instructed him to blast Sting with it, only for Jarrett to stay true to his team and nail Abyss instead. He even allowed Sting to make the winning pinfall - with a shot at the NWA World Heavyweight Championship awarded to the man who did so, no less!

8. Jeff Jarrett Vs. X-Pac - WWF SummerSlam 1998


WWE


We may have just seen an example of Jarrett playing an effective babyface, but there's no denying the fact that he was most effective as a heel - and if there's one thing we love seeing heels do, it's lose in humiliating fashion.

Jarrett's match with X-Pac at SummerSlam 1998 may have only been a shade over 10 minutes long, but it was a very satisfying bout indeed. With a hair vs. hair stipulation in place, the pair worked a relentless, desperate pace for most of the contest.

Jarrett was even able to kick out of X-Pac's finisher, only for one of his 'Southern Justice' henchmen to attempt to hit Waltman with a guitar - unwittingly giving him the perfect weapon in the process. Before long, it was Jarrett ironically taking his signature guitar shot to the head, making the result of the match - and the victim of the head-shaving - a dead cert.

A very simple storyline, but one told very well indeed.

7. Jeff Jarrett Vs. Nick Bockwinkel - CWA 1987


WWE


WWE Hall of Famer Nick Bockwinkel is often regarded as one of the greatest technicians in the history of wrestling, and its quite shocking to see a young Jarrett comprehensively wrenched around and tied in knots by the older, larger man.

This match told the story of a cocky, superior champion having to dig deep in order to see off a determined younger challenger - and for once, Jarrett was actually in the latter role. Not only that, but he played it very well indeed, standing up to Bockwinkel with great babyface fire and selling appropriately throughout.

The finish looks very weird in hindsight but would have been completely acceptable at the time. Jarrett, getting overexcited towards the end of the match, headed up top to deliver a Missile Dropkick (or something similar), only for the champion to sidestep neatly out of the way. Jeff crashed and burned, allowing Bockwinkel to steal a dastardly win. Lovely old school stuff.


6. Jeff Jarrett Vs. AJ Styles - NWA-TNA 2004


Impact Wrestling


Another of Jeff Jarrett's best matches, and another in which he dropped the NWA World Heavyweight Championship to AJ Styles - this time one-year prior in a steel cage.

The closing stages of the match (although slightly sloppy in parts) perfectly encapsulated the in-ring personas of both men. Styles climbed to the top of the cage, determined to leap off with a death-defying high-risk manoeuvre. Jarrett used his heel wiles in response, shoving the referee into the cage wall, causing AJ to lose his balance and fall halfway to the outside. Jeff helped him all the way down with a shoulder-charge into the cage wall, sending his opponent crashing to the floor. There were, thankfully, no escape rules in play - so this all made sense.

Moments later, having retrieved his trusty guitar from ringside, Jarrett prepared to blast Styles with it - only for the challenger to demolish it in mid-air with a spinning kick. Jeff was dumbstruck, but still the fresher man. Styles, however, shocked the more experienced man by rolling him immediately into a pinning predicament - capping one of the biggest title changes in the early years of TNA.

5. Jeff Jarrett Vs. Razor Ramon - WWF Royal Rumble 1995


WWE


You may have noticed that, aside from the team-based Lethal Lockdown match, Jarrett lost every match on this list so far. Let's instead take a look at maybe the biggest upset victory of his career - a 20-minute barnburner against Razor Ramon for the WWF Intercontinental Championship.

This match opened Royal Rumble 1995 and did so in style. The more nimble, technical Jarrett looked to grind down the larger man with holds and evasive tactics, frustrating both Ramon and the crowd (in a good, heelish way).

Razor tweaked leg while taking a spill to the outside, an injury compounded by Jarrett's sidekick ('The Roadie', an early incarnation of Road Dogg). The referee actually counted him out, but Jeff urged the official to restart the match - titles obviously not changing hands on a count-out.

From the restart, Double J viciously attacked the leg, but the champ somehow endured - even surviving a Figure Four Leglock. The damage was done, however, as in a nice example of ring psychology, Razor's leg gave out as he was attempting the Razor's Edge. Quick as a whippet, Jarrett rolled him up for three and became the new Intercontinental Champion.

4. Jeff Jarrett Vs. Kurt Angle - TNA Lockdown 2011


Impact Wrestling


A strong case could be made to suggest that Jarrett's best matches actually came towards the end of his career - specifically those against Kurt Angle. Nobody brought out the best in Jeff like the Olympic gold medalist, and their two out of three falls match at Lockdown 2011 is a prime example.

The bout took place in a steel cage and told a logical story throughout. The first fall (submissions only) was easily won by Kurt in five minutes or so, a fitting outcome given his style and level of expertise. Jarrett won the second fall (pinfalls) with a roll-up and a handful of tights, a move perfectly befitting his wily veteran ways.

The third fall (escape the cage) admittedly got a little convoluted, as Karen Jarrett - the former wife of Kurt, no less - helped her new husband win by smashing the door into Angle's face. Thankfully, the rest of the match was more than good enough to make up for the screwy finish, particularly Kurt's mammoth Moonsault from the top of the cage.


3. Jeff Jarrett Vs. Kurt Angle - TNA Bound For Glory 2008


Impact Wrestling


Another of Jeff's best matches, again facing Kurt Angle, and again robbed of a higher place on this list thanks to a screwy finish. Bound for Glory 2008 saw the pair face off in Jarrett's return match after an absence of over a year, with Jeff as the newly-humble babyface, and Angle as the merciless heel.

The story of the match saw Jarrett outclassed by the better Angle, but resilient enough to prevent Kurt from putting him away. A frustrated Angle blasted special guest enforcer Mick Foley with a steel chair (following a slightly predictable ref bump), causing Foley to involve himself on Jarrett's behalf to the delight of the crowd.

A Mandible Claw and guitar shot later, and Jarrett had surprisingly defeated the Olympian. In the wider context of TNA, this was a particularly important match, as it caused Angle to snap and form the Main Event Mafia alongside Sting, Booker T, Kevin Nash, and Scott Steiner.

2. Jeff Jarrett Vs. Shawn Michaels - WWF In Your House 2: The Lumberjacks


WWE


Many consider this Jeff Jarrett's best match, and it's easy to see why. Of course, it's easy to have a career-defining bout when you're opponent is maybe the greatest of all time, but Jarrett still played a huge part here.

The pair meshed very well here, with Jeff raising his fundamentally-sound game to compete with Shawn's more frantic pinballing. The spot that best encapsulated this came in the form of a massive dropkick from Jarrett, leaping level with Michaels' head and blasting him right in the face.

Jeff was the Intercontinental Champion going into this match and used a few heel tricks to attempt to keep the title - including the help of The Roadie. Ironically, it was his friend who inadvertently cost Double J the match, accidentally tripping Jarrett after a reversed Irish whip. Sweet Chin Music was soon to follow.

1. Jeff Jarrett Vs. Kurt Angle - TNA Genesis 2009


Impact Wrestling


We've seen two Jarrett vs. Angle matches on the list so far, both being somewhat hindered by messy, interference-heavy finishes. The pinnacle of their rivalry was thankfully free of such shenanigans and came at Genesis 2009 under a No DQ stipulation.

Having lost to Jarrett at Bound for Glory the previous year, Angle was desperate for a rematch - and when he finally got it, he set about attempting to hurt Jeff rather than beat him. There were bucketloads of blood here, as well as several crazy spots - including an Angle Slam off the stage through a table!

If there's any argument to be made against this match, it could be that Jarrett survived a lot of punishment and still managed to kick out. He also withstood several Ankle Locks, although the damage dealt played into the finish. Double J waffled Kurt with a chair but was unable to make a quick cover due to his ankle. When he eventually crawled across into the pinfall attempt, Angle reversed it into one of his own.

This was, for my money, the best match in Jarrett's career - and it's well worth watching if you haven't seen it already. However, if you can't stand big main event-style matches full of kickouts and set-piece moments, check out Jeff's match with HBK for something a little more pure.

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Jack G. King

Written by Jack G. King

Head of News at Cultaholic.com | [email protected]