By Thomas Brunt
WWE Payback emanated from Chicago, Illinois Sunday, although technically officially in Rosemont the show was billed as such. If you are more than the casual fan, you may know Chicago for being a wrestling town, as it's been home of many iconic moments/matches.
With that being laid out, and with what on paper looked to be a pretty stacked Payback card, here are my top matches to take place in Chicago.
5. John Cena vs. Brock Lesnar: Extreme Rules 2012
It is an extremely rare occurrence for John Cena to be absolutely dominated by his opponent, but we got to witness it as Brock Lesnar took the pain to Cena in what was a brutal match. Barring an asinine finish which saw Cena AA Lesnar on the steel steps in the ring in his first match back in like eight years, this is an awesome match on an overall amazing PPV.
4. John Cena vs. Triple H: WrestleMania 22
John Cena's first career WrestleMania main event is memorable for a number of reasons. It featured his first cool Mania entrance which saw a younger CM Punk dressed as a gangster, however it was overshadowed by Hunter's Conan the Barbarian entrance. The crowd's negative reception to Cena also helps make this one memorable, although, at the same time though I think if this were in front of a different crowd it may have had more of the desired effect.
I feel like most the stuff, even before things really start to pick up served a purpose. Say what you want about Trips, but when he puts talent over like here he really goes all out, the end of this one saw him tap clean (for the second time in three Manias) to the STF. To me, the importance of this match is that whether you like it or not, it helped Cena's career earning a victory against the measuring stick of the company, Triple H.
#3 John Cena vs CM Punk: Money In The Bank 2011
What hasn't already been said about this epic match? I can write what happened word for word but that STILL does you no justice, especially if you haven't seen it yet. There are a few sort of sloppy parts to this match that to me and for the sake of this list take away, but really who am I kidding? That's merely nitpicking.
You can put on a five star worthy match but if there is no story, the match automatically loses interest. The story going into this match was one of the company's hottest angles in quite some time. It helps also, with the unpredictability of this match, and the possibilities there was no telling of how the night would end.
2. Bret Hart vs Owen Hart: SummerSlam 1994
The Bret Hart/Owen Hart rivalry was the hottest thing the WWF had going in 1994. After turning on his brother in their tag match at the Royal Rumble, the two would feud the rest of the year. This would produce one of the best opening bouts in WrestleMania history, which saw Bret lose cleanly to Owen of course only to win it back later that evening. SummerSlam 1994 was a memorable event, mostly because of this steel cage match.
Both men used the cage in the match, and they both looked determined to win the title. This match is also notable for featuring the return of the British Bulldog who appeared in the crowd as a fan, but ended up getting involved. Bret retained, and Dave Meltzer of the Pro Wrestling Observer awarded the bout a rare full five star rating.
1. Bret Hart vs Stone Cold Steve Austin: WrestleMania 13
Much like the previous one mentioned, this match did not go on last and definitely should have, seeing as to how lackluster the event was. The only saving grace of WrestleMania 13 was Bret Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin. Little did fans know the importance of the match, and just how big a mega star Austin would later become in the industry with the help of Hart in this phenomenal match. The image at the end of the match with a blood drenched Austin is not one fans will soon forget.
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