Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena vs. Seth Rollins- Royal Rumble 2015
When you mention the 2015 Royal Rumble PPV, the horrendous Royal Rumble match and the top worldwide Twitter trend of #CancelWWENetwork both sadly come into mind. If you look past that, you will remember the outstanding WWE title match that was also on the card for the night. This is hands down my candidate for Match of the Year so far, and probably the best Triple Threat match since the HHH/Michaels/Benoit match at Wrestlemania XX. All three performers did an amazing job, but I think Seth Rollins was the one that shined in this Royal Rumble classic. Putting Lesnar through a table with a diving elbow and hitting Cena with a Phoenix Splash really made him stand out.
Daniel Bryan vs. Roman Reigns- Fastlane 2015
This match was definitely made to legitimize Roman Reigns as the person to face Lesnar at Wrestlemania. Although Reigns won the Rumble, fans were not behind him at all. This match sort of helped ease the tension between the fans and WWE. Daniel Bryan and Roman Reigns put on an excellent match; which surprised me because I’m not a big fan of Roman Reigns. They both gave it their all with more of a brawl-type match which featured a LOT of Bryan kicks and Reigns punches.
Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins- Wrestlemania 31
There seemed to be two possible outcomes for wrestling fans in this match: 1) Lesnar wins, keeps belt, waits till SummerSlam to defend it because of his part-time contract which kind of sucks or 2) Reigns wins the belt, which sucks. The build up for this match you could say was sort of lackluster, but in the end did the build up matter? This match was pretty phenomenal! It told a story! The unbeatable monster demolishes the guy who has been climbing to the top, then when you think he’s done for he starts to knock down the monster which takes a toll on him, and then a young buck comes in and capitalizes on the destruction in the ring and steals a victory. Seth Rollins winning the match by cashing in his MITB briefcase was the best ending anyone could’ve picked for this match. Rollins’s career can only go up from here.
John Cena vs. Kevin Owens I- Elimination Chamber 2015
This is probably my runner-up for Match of the Year. It showcased both wrestlers perfectly; bringing out the best in both men. I don’t know if it’s because Cena isn’t in the WWE World Heavyweight title picture, or if it’s because he’s working with Owens, but there is something wrestling-technique wise that is different about him. He seems to be wanting to put out those 4 or 5 star matches rather than act like it’s a 6-man Tag RAW Main Event 2 star match. Owens also showed in this match he can be a big-time player. He’s not a flash-in-the-pan NXT guy that comes up and doesn’t do well on the main roster. Great ending choice with Owens coming up with the win.
John Cena vs. Kevin Owens II- Money in the Bank 2015
It’s very rare that you can duplicate the success of one match onto the next PPV, but these two did it. I don’t know if this match was as good as their first, but it was damn close! I love the addition of Owens using the Five-Knuckle Shuffle and the shoulder blocks made famous by Cena. Their rivalry keeps growing, the story telling just keeps getting better, and this match was a great addition to that. I cannot wait to see what they do at Battleground!