Every day from March 1 until WWE Wrestlemania 33 on April 2, Fightful will be bringing you the Countdown To WWE Wrestlemania 33. Each day, you will be getting a top 10 list or an event preview or statistics/figures from past ‘Mania events and everything in between.
In today’s column, we will be taking a look at the Top 10 Hulk Hogan Matches In ‘Mania History. In the early days of Wrestlemania, there was one superhero who dominated the show -- The Hulkster. We've weighted these by quality, importance and weight on the industry.
#10: Hulk Hogan vs. Andre The Giant ('Mania 4)
Although their first meeting is one of the most remembered matches in “Mania history, the rematch didn’t fare as well. The match kicked off the second round of the WWE Heavyweight Title Tournament and it would last a grand total of six minutes. The match ended by double DQ after a chair shot from Hogan to Andre, plus interference from Ted Dibiase and Virgil. Hogan and Andre would appear later in the event, as Hogan would help Randy Savage defeat Dibiase in the finals of the tournament to become the champion.
#9: Hulk Hogan & Brutus Beefcake vs. Money Inc. (Ted Dibiase & IRS) (‘Mania 9)
Hogan would actually win the WWE Title in an impromptu match later in the show by defeating Yokozuna, but that match lasted all of a minute. Hulk competed for the WWE Tag Team Titles by teaming with Brutus Beefcake against Money Inc. This was another Hogan match to end via D,Q and it wasn’t much to write home about, but it was the only time Hogan challenged for the those titles at a ‘Mania. Incredibly enough, only one of the four men who competed in the match would be around a year later -- IRS.
#8: Hulk Hogan vs. King Kong Bundy (‘Mania 2)
Not only was this the first WWE Title Match in ‘Mania history, but it was also the first Steel Cage Match in ‘Mania history. This was also the first and only ‘Mania is history to be held in three different states (New York, California & Illinois). The match was actually not too bad, which Hogan won after toppling the big man and escaping the cage. Bundy would wrestle against a team of little people a year later, while Hogan would fight in what may be the biggest ‘Mania main event of all time.
#7: Hulk Hogan vs. Sgt. Slaughter (‘Mania 7)
Sgt. Slaughter was an American hero turned Iraqi sympathizer and the culmination of his turn was a battle against Hogan at ‘Mania 7. The match was received so poorly that the show was moved from the Los Angeles Coliseum to the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena due to low ticket sales. Hogan walked away the winner and the new WWE Champion after he nailed Slaughter with his patented leg drop to get the pin. Hogan had two more ‘Mania appearances ahead of him before taking an extended break, while Slaughter would return to his patriotic self
#6: Hulk Hogan vs. Vince McMahon (“Mania 19)
Two of the world's most important wrestling figures would finally clash at ‘Mania 19 in a match that was far better than it had any right to be. The fact that it was a Street Fight and the plunder was aplenty, plus a surprise appearance by Roddy Piper made it all an amazing spectacle. Hogan would eventually defeat McMahon by using his patented leg drop, it would be the final time Hogan competed at ‘Mania. Hogan would return one more time to confront Muhammad Hassan at WWE Wrestlemania 21, but his final match at ‘Mania is one to remember.
#5: Hulk Hogan & Mr. T vs. Roddy Piper & Paul Orndorff (‘Mania 1)
Not only was this match the first ever main event for a Wrestlemania, it was also the first match to feature a celebrity wrestling at a ‘Mania. Mr. T was the star of the A-Team, a wildly popular show that Hulk Hogan had guest starred on prior to the event. Mr. T more than held up his end of the bargain in the match, even taking quite the beating from Piper and Orndorff. Hogan and Mr. T would win the match, an iconic moment in wrestling history. Mr. T would appear a year later at ‘Mania 2, but that appearance was an utter disaster. Hogan’s star power would continue to grow and would reach it’s peak a few years later at WWE Wrestlemania 3.
#4: Hulk Hogan vs. Randy Savage (‘Mania 5)
Hogan helped Savage win the WWE Title a year earlier a ‘Mania 4 and their one year storyline would culminate at ‘Mania 5. A major story of the match was that Miss Elizabeth, who had managed both Hogan and savage at times, had to choose whom she would support… which she didn’t make, because she was taken backstage just as the match got underway. Hogan would win the match and the title, which was the second straight ‘Mania to be held in Atlantic City. Hogan would go onto headline three more ‘Mania events, while Savage would never headline one again.
#3: Hulk Hogan vs. The Rock (‘Mania 18)
This would be the first time Hogan competed at a ‘Mania event since ‘Mania 9 and much like the aforementioned Hogan/Vince match, this one was a lot better than it should have been. The match was built around the greatest of the generations, with Hogan representing the old generation and The Rock representing the new generation. The Rock would walk away victorious after nailing Hogan with a Rock Bottom and People’s Elbow, but it was what would happen after the match that many would remember. Hogan would help The Rock fend off an attacking New World Order and then world do the old school pose down to give fans the return of the classic Hogan.
#2: Hulk Hogan vs. Ultimate Warrior (‘Mania 6)
This was the first time a champion versus champion match and a match featuring two babyfaces would headline a ‘Mania. The match also headlined the first ‘Mania to be held internationally, as it was held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Warrior would walk away with the win and the two titles after catching Hogan with a press slam followed by a splash. Jesse Ventura, the heel commentator who always mocked Hogan, would credit longtime foe Hogan a few seconds after the match to say that “Hulkamania Will Live Forever.”
#1: Hulk Hogan vs. Andre The Giant (‘Mania 3)
While the rematch would be the #10 ranked match on our list, the initial meeting between Hogan and Andre at ‘Mania would top the list. This match headlined a ‘Mania that was attended by over an alleged 93,000 people, which was the attendance record for ‘Mania for years. Hogan would leave fans in attendance and watching at home with the iconic image of him slamming the giant. Hogan would also give Andre his first loss in years when he nailed him with the leg drop to get the three count.