Top 5 Greatest No Mercy Show Stealers
Since the 2nd No Mercy in October of 1999 the event has always housed some great matches. I was not a fan of the very first No Mercy, which took place in May of 1999. I found myself struggling to narrow down great matches to a top 5, so I decided to change the article all together and make it Top 5 Show Stealers of No Mercy instead of simply top 5 matches. The criteria is simply this match could not have been for a World or WWE Championship. That eliminated a lot of great matches for me instantly, but I still had a hard time narrowing down the list. No Mercy has always put on great matches. No Mercy has been better than a “Big 4” PPV on many occasions. Without further ado let us begin with Number 5 of the Top 5 Greatest Show Stealers in the History of No Mercy.
5. Chris Benoit vs William Regal No Mercy ‘06
This match is the very epitome of a Show Stealer. There was absolutely no advertising of this match. This was just a bonus for the fans. Chris Benoit was coming back from some time off and William Regal just happened to be standing in the ring when he returned. There was no backstory. The match was not built up whatsoever. It just was. The match didn’t need a reason or a gimmick. The match was just wrestling. It was the hard hitting, technical style of a match that both the competitors thrived in. I believe William Regal to be one of the most underrated talents in the history of professional wrestling. A lot of people say that is Dean Malenko, but respectfully I argue the former. If you ask anyone about Dean Malenko they will tell you how great he is. Everyone knows. His name is synonymous with technically great. A lot of current wrestlers even cite Malenko as an inspiration. I feel like Regal does not get the credit he deserves. This is definitely a hidden gem and a great match for fans of pure wrestling , high impact, and ground based matches.
4. Kurt Angle vs John Cena No Mercy ‘03
This match is particularly memorable because it was John Cena’s first great match. He had debuted (against Angle) on Smackdown in 2002 and took everyone by surprise as he used Ruthless Aggression to nearly upset the Olympic Gold Medalist, Kurt Angle. A year later John Cena was quickly becoming a well-rounded Superstar. Kurt Angle really helped elevate John Cena to the permanent status of a main eventer. This was before Cena was the face that ran the place. This was when John Cena was cool and his Attitude Adjustment was known as the “FU.” John Cena was the furthest from PG and he put a his first great match of his career. The lead up to the match was great too. We got to see John Cena rap battle Kurt Angle… which we saw revisited during his Hall of Fame speech. This match did have its flaws, but when you consider how early it was in career of John Cena I think it can be excused.
3. Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy vs Christian & Edge Tag Team Ladder No Mercy ’99
This was the second No Mercy of 1999. The first one took place in the UK in May of 1999. To be honest the first one was terrible, but the WWE decided to stick with it and put the PPV on again stateside the same year. This match stole the show. The biggest reason was that the while we see the names and know that they all four have a place in the WWE HOF (Edge is obviously already there) they were relatively unknown in 1999. This match was billed as the New Brood vs the Old Brood, but the Hardy Boyz would just simply become the Hardy Boyz the next night on RAW. This was early on in the rivalry of two of the greatest tag teams in the history of the WWE. They put their bodies on the line with high risk, spectacularly devastating offense. This match was for the covenant… rights to have Terri Runnels as a manager.. That’s right they nearly destroyed each other and themselves to win the First Annual (and only) Terri Invitational Tournament. Despite the horrible gimmick of the New Brood and the horrible gimmick of the tournament they took advantage of the match and made a name for themselves. They would continue to rival each other, with the eventual addition of the Dudley Boys, and put on classic ladder matches and TLC matches that may never be rivaled again in the WWE.
2. Dolph Ziggler vs The Miz Title Vs. Career WWE Intercontinental Championship No Mercy ‘16
We cannot truly have a Show Stealer list without the Show Stealer himself Dolph Ziggler. This is the most recent No Mercy Show Stealer coming just last year. Dolph Ziggler was in a rough patch. (Seem Familiar?) He couldn’t beat Dean Ambrose for the WWE Title, so he challenged the Miz for the IC title. Well, he couldn’t beat the Miz either. So he desperately put his career on the line. Now I am not one for putting spoilers on my lists. I think that it would be great to go back and watch these matches without knowing who will win, but based on the fact that Dolph Ziggler is still employed by the WWE I will say that SPOILER ALERT Dolph Ziggler won this match. It was a great match. It could have easily been a main event. The Miz doesn’t get enough credit, but he can go in the ring and he is one of the best we currently have on the mic. The style of these two clicked and they put on a classic. If this match took place in NJPW instead of the WWE I guarantee that they would have got a 5.5 Star Match from Dave Meltzer. It stole the show so much that I cannot even remember what the main event was. I looked it up and the match was followed by two matches: Naomi vs Alexa Bliss and Bray Wyatt vs Randy Orton. This was no doubt a very difficult match the follow. Even with the spirit squad interfering and the funny finish it was still a great match.
HONORABLE MENTION TIME
Here are the 2 honorable mentions that were very close to making the list… Chris Benoit vs Triple H and Edge vs Christian in a ladder match. Both were great matches, but ultimately couldn’t push out the random match of Benoit vs Regal.
1. Chris Benoit & Kurt Angle vs Edge & Rey Mysterio WWE Tag Team Championship No Mercy ‘02
I have always felt like this is the greatest tag team match in WWE history. Unfortunately because of Chris Benoit’s involvement and the way his life ended we will never hear about this match from the WWE. I am not here to debate about what he did or about the WWE “ignoring or erasing” Chris Benoit from their history. I am here to put a list together of the greatest Show Stealers in the History of No Mercy, and this one easily stole the show. This match stole the show so much that the infamous Hell in a Cell match between Undertaker and Lesnar was the main event of this show. While that was a great match in its own right it had a hard time following such a great match. Not only is this match the greatest show stealer, but I would say this is easily the greatest match in No Mercy history. The participants of this match are all great wresters. They can all go. They can go in the air. They can go on the mat. They can go in the right. They are four of the most all around great superstars in the history of the professional wrestling. They put on an absolute clinic technical counters and near falls. I doubt there will ever be a tag team match that will surpass this match’s greatness. Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit were rivals up to this match and afterwards, but they worked together in this match like they had been a team for years. These four superstars would lead Smackdown to the greatest years of its existence. This match has withstood the test of time and is as great today as it was then. I highly recommend that everyone watches this match to see the very definition of Great Tag Team Wrestling.
Well, you have read my selection of show stealers… Do you guys think that I missed any matches? What are your No Mercy Show Stealers? Thanks for reading.