Greetings and salutations, boys and girls, and welcome to the first Rajah main page installment of the most prestigious countdown list of the year, the Rajah Forums Countdown of WWE’s Best Matches of 2014!
Now, many of you have never visited the forums that are connected to this wonderful haven of news and features before, and so you might be unfamiliar with this countdown. The idea is that at the end of the year, dozens of Rajah forum members submitted lists of the WWE matches that they thought were the best. After an exhaustive process of averaging and general mathiness, a top 25 list was composed and over the course of the next few weeks, it will be revealed one match at a time.
If you agree or disagree with the matches on this list, or just wish to give your thoughts on them in a rad place full of skateboarding dinosaurs and charming secret agents, then hop on down to the Rajah Forums, make yourself an account and join the party.
Now let’s get on with the next installment of the countdown…
John Cena vs. Cesaro
Monday Night Raw 2/17
It was the Raw before the Elimination Chamber and Cesaro was about to challenge for the WWE Championship for the first time. I think I’m right in saying that his qualifying for that match came as a bit of a surprise. He’d been getting over as one half of the Real Americans but hadn’t had much recent singles success. After qualifying for the Chamber against Dolph Ziggler though, he picked up a huge win over Randy Orton on Smackdown. With some real buzz around him, the announcers described this match with Cena as the biggest of his career.
Cesaro wrestles like it’s exactly that. He throws everything at Cena (including what I believe is the first use of the big vertical suplex from the apron?) Cena tries to fight back again and again but Cesaro seems to have a counter for everything, which impresses both the crowd and the announcers. When Cena mounts his trademark comeback and sets Cesaro up for the Five Knuckle Shuffle, Cole says “now Cena has him where he wants him!” but JBL interjects: “does he?” Sure enough, 10 seconds later Cesaro is hitting Cena with the huge uppercut for another near fall.
Cena deserves a lot of praise for his performance here too. Cesaro is on offense for most of the match and Brock Lesnar aside, I can’t think of the last time John got chucked around like he does here. Anyone questioning Cena’s selling ability or willingness to bump should watch this match. From another Cesaro uppercut, Cena takes a big bump from the turnbuckle to the floor. He also breaks out a few of his “special match” moves to emphasize how up against it he is: the traditional hurricanrana and a terrific DDT counter to the Cesaro Swing. The finish is similarly unique. Cena cuts Cesaro off with a super stiff Kobashi-esque lariat before rolling Cesaro up into what turns into a fireman’s carry and Attitude Adjustment. It’s a great display of strength in a match all about Cesaro’s superhuman strength. Cena gives him a lot here and despite ultimately losing, Cesaro came out looking like a genuine threat in the upcoming Chamber match. These few weeks were a bit of a breakout period for Cesaro and it’s this match where he looks the strongest.
Highest Rank: #3(McBain)
12 lists total