2020 was a crazy year for everyone. For WWE things seemed so promising to start the year. Edge returned. Drew McIntyre won the royal rumble to one of the loudest pops of the last five years. But then the world came to a stop. The lack of fans certainly hurt the overall product but wrestling was still able to manage to be an entertaining escape from reality. And as much as one can criticize WWE’s product they too were able to turn out amazing matches in this new normal.
5. Seth Rollins vs Dominik Mysterio
This match may not be some 5* instant classic. But no matter what your expectations were coming in to the match, Seth and Dominic exceeded it. Rollins vs Mysterio was a story that played out all summer leading to Dominiks first ever match at Summerslam. Dominik showed he is ready to hang with the big boys and Rollins showed why he is one of the best in the world.
4. Undisputed Era vs Pat McAfee, Pete Dunne, Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch: WARGAMES
Whoa boy. Talk about exceeding expectations. I dont know what I expected when Adam Cole first flipped his lid on Pat McAfee’s show but it certainly was not the feud culminating in WARGAMES. McAfee held his own and the match itself was more story based than a hardcore love fest. The only knock on Wargames is that the UE are in it every year. On the flip side a big pro that makes this match so great is that the UE are in it every year.
3. Edge vs Randy Orton – Backlash
Ok ok ok hear me out. Maybe the “greatest match of all time” is not actually the greatest match of all time. Or the greatest match of 2020. Or the greatest match in the company this year. But it was still a great damn match. Edge really delivered and this can arguably be both wrestlers greatest match of their career. The only thing that knocks it down the list is the small reshoots that were done. But from bell to bell this match was entertaining and even looks to have inspired another top match from this year (cough cough bucks vs ftr ).
2. Daniel Bryan vs Aj Styles on Smackdown.
Sometimes you watch a match and you just know. You feel it that you are watching something special. And for me that was Daniel Bryan vs Aj Styles on a random Smackdown in front of developmental talent who were not allowed to sit down. If you were to ask for a match that feels the most like a New Japan classic that took place in WWE, this would be the one. It may have garnered a 4 3/4* rating in the Wrestling Observer but to me this match will always be a 5* classic.
- WALTER vs Ilja Draganov: NXT UK
Was there any question? This match was the definition of instant classic. No fans were in attendance. No fans deserved to be able to watch this in person. The empty arena only added to the aura that is WALTER. A grueling fight that was at times uncomfortable to watch due to its physical nature. WALTER and Draganov have a long standing rivalry that dates back to their indie wrestling days and it culminated on this night for the NXT UK Title. Of any WWE match that happened this year, this is the one that stands out. It was physical. It was grueling. Uncomfortable. Classic.