SummerSlam, the “Biggest Party of the Summer,” is one of professional wrestling’s most anticipated events. This annual WWE pay-per-view has offered countless classic moments that have left an indelible impact on the hearts of wrestling fans worldwide since its beginning in 1988. SummerSlam has constantly provided remarkable memories that stand the test of time, from spectacular matches to unexpected twists. In this piece, we will go back in time and examine some of the best SummerSlam moments in WWE history.
Mega Powers Explode (SummerSlam, 1988)
SummerSlam’s first installment set a high standard with a spectacular match between two wrestling titans, “Macho Man” Randy Savage and Hulk Hogan. As jealousy and ego took the stage, the Mega Powers, a potent alliance between Hogan and Savage, began to dissolve. Savage challenged Hogan for the WWE Championship in the main event of SummerSlam ’88. Despite their enmity, their natural chemistry in the ring made it a memorable match. In the end, Hogan triumphed, but the authentic takeaway was the collapse of The Mega Powers, which resulted in a gripping storyline that gripped fans for months.
SummerSlam 1994: The Ultimate Ladder Match
The first-ever ladder match between Razor Ramon (Scott Hall) and Shawn Michaels (then known as the Heartbreak Kid) was one of SummerSlam’s most imaginative and exhilarating moments. The two Superstars faced off for the undisputed Intercontinental Championship in a bout that included high-flying maneuvers and jaw-dropping ladder moments. Ramon and Michaels performed remarkable performances, turning this encounter into an instant classic and establishing the bar for future WWE ladder matches.
TLC II (SummerSlam 2000).
Three great tag teams – The Hardy Boyz, Edge, and Christian, and The Dudley Boyz – battled in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs (TLC) match for the WWE Tag Team Championships at SummerSlam 2000. The action was nonstop, with tables smashed, ladders soaring, and bodies plummeting from perilous heights. This chaotic and brutal competition demonstrated these teams’ daring attitude and readiness to put their bodies on the line for entertainment. TLC II is considered one of the best tag team matches in WWE history.
The Beast’s Return (SummerSlam, 2012)
The long-awaited return of Brock Lesnar, the “Beast Incarnate,” to the WWE heralded SummerSlam 2012. Lesnar made an explosive return after an eight-year sabbatical by fighting none other than Triple H in a grueling and intense match. The match devolved into a melee that spilled outside the ring, injuring Triple H’s arm. Despite Triple H’s best efforts, Lesnar triumphed, cementing his reign and leaving fans hungry for more of the Beast’s destructive rampage.
The Undertaker’s Streak Comes to an End (SummerSlam, 2015)
Brock Lesner interrupted The Undertaker’s WrestleMania streak at WrestleMania 30. However, his Summer Slam streak lasted until 2015. In an unexpected change of events, The Deadman met Brock Lesner again, wanting vengeance. However, it was not to be, as The Undertaker tapped out to Lesner’s submission hold while the referee was oblivious. This historic event ended The Undertaker’s unbeaten record at the Summer Slam and fueled the heated animosity between the two ferocious opponents.
SummerSlam 2014: The Beast’s Suplex City
Brock Lesnar’s power knows no limitations, as evidenced by his WWE World Heavyweight Championship bout against John Cena at SummerSlam 2014. The match was one-sided, with Lesnar hitting Cena with a record-breaking 16 German suplexes. Cena was bloodied and injured as a result of The Beast Incarnate’s savage performance, and he was crowned the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion. This battle became synonymous with “Suplex City,” a term that grew to represent Lesnar’s devastating in-ring approach.
Reunion of The Hardy Boyz (SummerSlam, 2017)
The Hardy Boys, Matt and Jeff Hardy, have a legendary WWE career, and their surprise comeback at WrestleMania 33 sent shockwaves throughout the wrestling world. The frenzy peaked when they surprisingly appeared at the Summer Slam 2017 to compete in the RAW Tag Team Championships. The Hardy Boys triumphed in a fatal four-way match, recovering the belts and cementing their spot as one of WWE’s most beloved tag teams.
The Beast Slayer Returns (SummerSlam, 2019)
Seth Rollins faced an arduous task when he challenged Brock Lesnar for the WWE Universal Championship at SummerSlam 2019. Despite the odds against him, Rollins put on an incredible performance, slamming Lesnar with curb stomps to secure a surprise victory. The surprise victory established Rollins as “The Beast Slayer” and demonstrated his ability to defeat even the most challenging opponents.
The Outstanding Debut (SummerSlam, 2016)
AJ Styles, one of the most well-known wrestlers outside of WWE, made his much-anticipated debut at the Royal Rumble earlier this year. Nonetheless, his SummerSlam debut versus John Cena cemented his place as a significant WWE Superstar. Styles and Cena delivered a show-stealing encounter that showcased their in-ring prowess while telling a captivating story about the seasoned Cena versus the brash youngster. Styles won the match with his finishing move, the Styles Clash, kicking off his incredible WWE career.
The Evolution of Women (SummerSlam, 2018)
WWE has invested in recent years in elevating its women’s division, and that effort was on full display at Summer Slam 2018. Former UFC champion Ronda Rousey debuted her ring, teaming up with Ember Moon to battle Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross. Rousey’s move to the squared circle was easy and delivered an excellent performance. It was a big step forward for women’s wrestling in WWE, establishing Rousey’s position as the company’s leading power.
Summer Slam has provided many unforgettable moments for wrestling fans over the years. Summer Slam has consistently offered high-quality entertainment, from surprising returns and historic debuts to fierce clashes and breathtaking achievements. Summer Slam’s history will grow as WWE grows, with fans anxiously anticipating each year’s edition of the “Biggest Party of the Summer.”