Every wrestler aspires to compete in wrestling and an elite level of wrestlers wants to headline WrestleMania. The same can be said of summer festival which is one of the traditional “Big Four” premium live events that WWE has on its calendar. Some fighters are lucky to have headlined both summer festival and WrestleMania, and some have managed to do it in the same calendar year.
WWE hasn’t always gotten it right when it comes to the SummerSlam main event. Some of the staff who have starred in SummerSlam have not had the right to be in that privileged place.
Yokozuna headlined SummerSlam for the first time in 1993 and defended the WWE Championship against Lex Luger. The Total Package had a rocket strapped to his back, and he was the heavy favorite to finally get his hands on the WWE Championship.
Yokozuna is unarguably a huge draw because of the size and presence he brings to the ring, but his match with Luger was poor. Yokozuna was unable to return to the ring and was eliminated, which meant that he had retained the WWE Championship.
9 braun strowman
“The Monster Among Men” Braun Strowman defended the Universal Championship against “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt in the main event of summer festival 2020. It was Strowman’s second appearance in a SummerSlam main event and despite a crowd not in attendance due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the WWE Universe was not interested in Strowman.
Strowman and The Fiend’s matches together never clicked and it was one of the worst World Championship matches in WWE history. The Fiend managed to win back the Universal Championship, but then both men were attacked by a returning Roman Reigns.
8 alberto of the river
Kevin Nash launched a vicious assault on WWE Undisputed Champion CM Punk and Alberto Del Rio, who was Mr. Money in the Bank, took advantage and cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase at the expense of Second City Saint in summer festival 2011.
Punk was on a hot streak back in 2011 and when Del Rio successfully cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase to become WWE Champion for the first time in his career, fans weren’t impressed.
Zeus and Hulk Hogan were rivals in the movie No Holds Barred, and their rivalry continued on WWE programming through most of 1989. Zeus was teamed with “Macho Man” Randy Savage, and they faced Hogan and Brutus “The Barber’ Beefcake for Holder summer festival 1989.
Zeus was not the best of in-ring competitors and the fans wanted to see Hogan best Zeus. As expected, Hogan and Beefcake triumphed, but the rivalry between Hogan and Zeus did not end there.
6 Brutus meatloaf
Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake is close friends with Hulk Hogan, and Beefcake managed to meet in the main event of SummerSlam 1989. Beefcake is an average wrestler in the ring, but he got involved in the match.
This was one of the biggest matches in Beefcake’s career appearing in the main event of SummerSlam. Beefcake took Savage down with Hogan hitting Zeus with Sherri’s bag that had a brick and a Leg Drop to secure the win.
5 Skip Sheffield
Skip Sheffield was the powerhouse of the Nexus, but he wasn’t the best fighter in the group. He was involved in the seven-on-seven elimination match between Team Nexus and Team WWE at summer festival 2010.
Sheffield got off to a good start when they took out John Morrison and R-Truth with a lariat. However, Edge removed him from the match after Chris Jericho codebreaked and Edge followed up with a Spear.
4 king mabel
King Mabel headlined SummerSlam in only his second SummerSlam appearance, challenging Diesel for the WWE Championship in 1995. Mabel was not the best of in-ring workers and not safe to work with.
This was one of the worst main events in SummerSlam history, as the match was slow and methodical. King Mabel was boring, and it was a wise decision that he never held the WWE Championship with Diesel retaining the gold.
3 Michael Tarver
Michael Tarver was one of the less talented members of the Nexus and it’s easy to forget he was part of the group. He was involved in the seven-on-seven elimination match in his only SummerSlam appearance in 2010, which was the main event.
Tarver’s participation in the match lasted just under four minutes and he was eliminated by John Morrison, who executed Starship Pain. Tarver was shortly kicked out of the Nexus.
2 “The Undertaker”
The real Undertaker was sidelined for seven months after the 1994 Royal Rumble. Ted DiBiase introduced an impostor Undertaker which led to the two Undertakers going head to head in the main event of SummerSlam 1994. They only headlined the show due to the return of Undertaker into action, and the fake Undertaker was played by Brian Lee.
The fake Undertaker’s movement around the ring was languid. Nobody cared about the fake Undertaker as fans just wanted to see the real Undertaker back in action. In the end, a Tombstone Piledrivers hat-trick was enough for The Undertaker to finish off the fake Undertaker.
1 the triangle of terror
One of the worst main events in the history of summer festival It was in 1991. The Triangle of Terror was made up of General Adnan and former WWE Champion Colonel Mustafa, better known as The Iron Shiek and Sgt. Slaughter went toe to toe with WWE Champion Hulk Hogan and former WWE Champion The Ultimate Warrior in a handicap match with Sid Justice as special guest referee.
Adnan was in his 50s and Mustafa was not far behind. It was a slow-paced match, and there was a sense of inevitability with Hogan and Warrior defeating the Triangle of Terror.