It might be hard to believe, but it’s almost that time already. Time to start compiling your lists, rolling up your sleeves and getting ready to fight on the internet about what was the Match of the Year in 2017. It’s been a banner year for pro wrestling both inside and outside of WWE. The first-ever six-star matches were awarded over in New Japan, Keith Lee and Matt Riddle blew people’s minds in pretty much every country in the world. Sami Callihan had one billion matches.
Even in WWE, it’s not like wrestlers were twiddling their thumbs. New Day and the Usos stole the show every time they went out there. John Cena won his 16th world championship. AJ Styles made miracles happen any time he was in the ring. Undertaker had his last match. People … Bray Wyatt was WWE Champion this year. Not for nearly as long as Jinder Mahal was. But still!
As they have done for the past couple of years, WWE Network has put together its own list of 2017 Matches of the Year (at least, up through October), and has released said matches as part of a new collection over on the Network, available beginning on Monday (The collections, for those who haven’t taken advantage, just put one match up after another in one handy binge-watch playlist. It’s very convenient!)
Here’s the list of matches in the collection, with links to With Spandex’s write-ups of the corresponding shows (where available).
1. WWE Championship Match: AJ Styles (c) vs. John Cena – Royal Rumble
2. Fatal 5-Way Elimination Match: TJP vs. Cedric Alexander vs. Jack Gallagher vs. Mustafa Ali vs. Noam Dar – 205 Live, 2/7/17
3. Luke Harper vs. Randy Orton – Elimination Chamber
4. Raw Women’s Championship Match: Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Bayley – Raw, 2/13/17
5. NXT Tag Team Championship Triple Threat Match: Authors of Pain (c) vs. The Revival vs. #DIY – NXT TakeOver: Orlando
6. WWE Universal Championship Match: Goldberg (c) vs. Brock Lesnar – WrestleMania 33
7. Finn Bálor vs. The Miz vs. Seth Rollins – Raw, 5/1/17
8. WWE United Kingdom Championship Match: Tyler Bate (c) vs. Pete Dunne – NXT TakeOver: Chicago
9. NXT Tag Team Championship Ladder Match: Authors of Pain (c) vs. #DIY – NXT TakeOver: Chicago
10. WWE Championship Match: Randy Orton (c) vs. Jinder Mahal – Backlash
11. Extreme Rules Fatal 5-Way Match: Bray Wyatt vs. Seth Rollins vs. Samoa Joe vs. Roman Reigns vs. Finn Bálor – Extreme Rules
12. Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe – Raw, 6/19/17
13. Gauntlet Match: Bayley vs. Nia Jax vs. Mickie James vs. Dana Brooke vs. Emma vs. Sasha Banks – Raw, 6/26/17
14. Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Charlotte Flair vs. Becky Lynch vs. Carmella vs. Tamina vs. Natalya – Smackdown, 6/27/17
15. NXT Women’s Championship Last Woman Standing Match: Asuka (c) vs. Nikki Cross – NXT 6/28/17
16. AJ Styles vs. Chad Gable – Smackdown, 7/4/17
17. Shinsuke Nakamura vs. John Cena – Smackdown, 8/1/17
18. Johnny Gargano vs. Andrade “Cien” Almas – NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn III
19. Smackdown Tag Team Championship Match: The New Day vs. The Usos (c) – SummerSlam
20. WWE Universal Championship Fatal 4-Way Match: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman vs. Samoa Joe – SummerSlam
21. Steel Cage Match: Braun Strowman vs. Big Show – Raw, 9/4/17
22. Mae Young Classic Semifinal Match: Toni Storm vs. Kairi Sane – Mae Young Classic episode 8
23. Raw Tag Team Championship Match: The Bar (c) vs. Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins – No Mercy
24. Falls Count Anywhere Hell in a Cell Match: Shane McMahon vs. Kevin Owens – Hell in a Cell
25. Cruiserweight Championship Lumberjack Match: Enzo Amore (c) vs. Kalisto – Raw, 10/9/17
When you see this stuff all laid out, it serves to remind even the most cynical of us that oh yeah, there was a whole lot of awesome-ass pro wrestling this year. AGAIN.
Was there anything they whiffed on? It seems like there hasn’t been a consensus best WWE match this year like there has been in years past, but I could be wrong. (It’s probably Bate vs. Dunne.) Let us know what YOUR WWE Match of the Year is in the comments below.