This is our latest wrestling list as we consider the best Hell In A Cell PPV matches to date. Now, WWE Hell In A Cell 2021 is just around the corner. And so we’re looking back on the most memorable matches at HIAC since 2009. So, let’s take a look at our choices for the best Hell In A Cell PPV matches so far!
Best Hell In A Cell PPV Matches
10. Bayley vs. Sasha Banks, WWE Hell In A Cell 2020
To begin with, we have an entry from last year’s PPV. To me, this is a feud that would suffer greatly without proper fans in attendance. After all, WWE would extend their partnership specifically to try and have their split occur in front of a crowd. But with no end to the Covid-19 pandemic in sight in September 2020, WWE would pull the trigger. And therefore Bayley would turn heel on Sasha to finally kick-start their first true main roster rivalry.
Banks would rebound, of course, and that would bring us to Hell In A Cell 2020. There, the two females would provide the best of the three HIAC bouts that night. And it would also have a historic impact with Banks submitting Bayley to a chair-assisted Bank Statement. That’s because Sasha would officially end Bayley’s record-breaking stint as SmackDown Women’s Champion. However, I hope WWE revisits this in the future, because fans deserve to see these two mix it up again in person.
9. Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins, WWE Hell In A Cell 2014
It’s crazy to think that, in 2014, it was a big deal for these two to headline a PPV. After all, Ambrose’s star would rise in WWE, with him becoming an even bigger name as Jon Moxley in AEW. Meanwhile, Rollins would establish himself as one of the top five WWE stars of the current era. Yet at this stage, they would still be in the process of attempting to break through the glass ceiling as singles acts. However, their fantastic 2014 feud following the split of The Shield would help greatly in that regard. And so WWE would put their HIAC battle on last. That’s right: these two would headline over longtime WWE icons John Cena and Randy Orton.
Channelling the legendary Undertaker-Mankind bout at King Of The Ring 1998, this one would start on top of the cage. And both would take Shawn Michaels-style bumps off the side and through announcer’s tables at ringside. Back in the ring, the two men would trade the advantage, before Ambrose would seize control. But before he could truly punish Rollins for his sins, we would have … a hologram? Yes, a hologram, which would lead to Bray Wyatt returning and nailing Ambrose with Sister Abigail. And the three-count would be academic for Rollins from there.
8. Charlotte Flair vs. Becky Lynch, WWE Hell In A Cell 2018
Back at SummerSlam 2018, Charlotte Flair would beat Carmella and Becky Lynch to become SmackDown Women’s Championship. And after the match, The Lass Kicker would turn heel on the then-babyface Queen. But there was one problem: fan resentment towards Charlotte had now reached a high level. And their support for Becky could not shatter due to a simple on-screen act of treachery. Consequently, the fans would be 100% behind Becky, and 100% behind Charlotte, as their latest feud would progress.
Though the fan reactions wouldn’t please WWE, their in-ring efforts certainly would, with this match providing clear evidence. Indeed, both women would perform brilliantly here to deliver an awesome match. And of course, fans would get the ending they wanted as Becky would defeat Charlotte to finally regain the SmackDown Women’s Title. Little did we know at this point just how huge this saga would become on the road to WrestleMania 35.
7. Batista & Rey Mysterio vs. JeriShow, WWE Hell In A Cell 2009
The first Hell In A Cell PPV in 2009 would feature three HIAC contests. But none could even come close to equalling the brutal and bloody Cell contests of prior years. No doubt, this was due to the PG Era bringing about limitations on what the wrestlers could do. But nonetheless, the upshot was that all three bouts would be disappointing, perhaps being adequate to the more generous. And that’s why some believe that the HIAC concept would essentially die on that very night.
However, the PPV itself was still exciting. And a big reason for that is this WWE Unified Tag Team Title match. So, Chris Jericho and Big Show’s reign as champs would elevate the belts to new heights. And therefore it would take a big-name team to stop them. Therefore, Batista and Rey Mysterio could certainly measure up as challengers in terms of stature. And the match itself is balls-to-the-wall fun from bell to bell. Sadly for Rey, Show’s enormous size advantage would make the difference in keeping the belts around the heel’s waists. And even worse for Rey, this defeat would be a step towards Batista turning heel on him weeks later.
6. John Cena vs. Wade Barrett, WWE Hell In A Cell 2010
Not many people would pick this out amongst the best Hell In A Cell matches on PPV. But I liked the Nexus-John Cena shenanigans in autumn-winter 2010. So, Nexus would infamously lose to a Cena-led Team WWE at SummerSlam. Yet Wade Barrett and the gang weren’t finished with Cena, leading to this one-on-one match. Now, if Cena could win, then the Nexus would no longer be part of WWE. But if Barrett could defeat Cena, then John would have to join the faction. On paper, it would be a mismatch due to Wade’s inexperience, and because Cena joining Nexus couldn’t really happen … right?
After a typical PG Era Cena effort, the match would descend into chaos with Nexus attempting to interfere. Fortunately for John, several members of the main roster would head to ringside to chase off the group. But unfortunately for Cena, there would still be interference from Husky Harris, an NXT season 2 competitor. And a strike with what Gorilla Monsoon would call a “foreign object” would allow Barrett to stunningly pin Cena. Afterwards, we would see Cena mope his way through his Nexus stint before finally destroying Barrett at TLC.
5. Randy Orton vs. Jeff Hardy, WWE Hell In A Cell 2018
At Hell In A Cell 2018, Randy Orton and Jeff Hardy would conclude an underrated feud. Hardy’s victory over Orton at Backlash 2018 would lead to Randy taking a break. And when he returned at Extreme Rules, he turned heel on Hardy and became as vicious as ever. Of note, he would use his finger to twist and turn Hardy’s pierced left earlobe in gruesome fashion. But all of their run-ins would simply set the stage for a clash inside Hell In A Cell. And few would forget their battle inside the newly-red cage.
One spot stands out in particular, and that is Orton taking the ear-pull spot to another level. Supposedly due to a suggestion from Vic Joseph, Orton would twist Hardy’s earlobe with a damn SCREWDRIVER! This was shocking at the time, and it remains uncomfortable viewing nowadays. Despite this and other bumps, Hardy would rally, eventually laying Orton on a table as he held onto the HIAC ceiling. But a crash and burn would backfire, as Hardy dropped through the wood in bruising fashion. Cue a win for Orton in a fantastic fight. Hardy had always wanted to appear inside Hell In A Cell, and here he got his wish.
4. Dolph Ziggler & Drew McIntyre vs. Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose, WWE Hell In A Cell 2018
On the same night, four singles stars would come together to deliver an explosive tag team battle. Now, Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre would hardly top people’s lists of all-time great tag teams. But Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose, as two-thirds of The Shield, could certainly have awesome bouts in doubles form. And when WWE put them together in a traditional tag match, fans would be in for a treat.
This is one of those matches where it’s best to simply watch it rather than rely on spoilers from me. In some ways, it’s basic yet logical action, and soften that’s enough of a recipe for success. Well, it also helps that the execution is spot-on, and that the crowd is well into the carnage on display. Though a Shield title win would have elicited a huge fan reaction, it wasn’t to be as the heels retained their Raw Tag Team Championships. Still, if you’re looking for a five-star tag team clash from main roster performers, this is one to check out.
3. The New Day vs. The Usos, WWE Hell In A Cell 2017
At Hell In A Cell 2017, the best main roster tag team rivalry of the past 20 years would largely conclude. After months of high-quality clashes between The New Day and The Usos, their feud would ultimately lead to HIAC. And they would make history with the first ever Tag Team Championship clash inside the demonic structure. (By the way, isn’t it funny how nobody brings this up when they say that Vince McMahon hates tag team wrestling?) By this point, fans believed they had seen it all from the two squads. However, they hadn’t considered what could happen when you throw these duos inside of a 20-foot cage.
And the end result was one of the best Hell In A Cell matches on PPV in years. Indeed, this was gripping to watch, and it would even manage to incorporate comedy into an otherwise violent environment. Speaking of violence, the unique spot of a mini-prison in the form of kendo sticks in a Cell corner was novel. That’s the sort of thing that you simply could not see in a regular match. And moments like that are what make HIAC stand out, even after all these years. Now, The Usos had beaten New Day for the titles on the SummerSlam Kick-Off Show. And they would do so again here to regain the blue-and-silver belts. Though these teams would meet again in the future, this was the blow-off to their main feud. And what a war it was.
2. Becky Lynch vs. Sasha Banks, WWE Hell In A Cell 2019
So, the night after SummerSlam 2019, Sasha Banks would make a surprise return to target Becky Lynch. And while their Clash Of Champions battle was exciting, it couldn’t provide a true winner in a traditional sense. So, with The Boss pushing for another opportunity, The Man would accept a rematch, albeit inside Hell In A Cell. Now, when you think of Hell In A Cell 2019, you’re more likely to recall Seth Rollins vs. The Fiend. And not for positive reasons, because that match would be a booking disaster for the ages. And some still say that Rollins vs. Fiend would kill any remaining appeal that HIAC has. But this isn’t entirely true, especially considering the quality of the opener that night.
Indeed, Becky vs. Sasha would live up to expectations, as both women would deliver an awesome HIAC match. What’s more, there was a real chance that Bnaks would cap off her comeback by capturing the Raw Women’s Title. But The Man would provide just enough resistance to withstand the challenge of The Boss, ultimately managing to submit her. As far as these two are concerned, I always think primarily of their incredible clash at NXT TakeOver: Unstoppable in 2015. But as far as their more recent history goes, this is very entertaining. And I would personally enjoy seeing this rivalry resume in late 2021 or 2022.
1. The Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar, WWE Hell In A Cell 2015
Topping this list of the best Hell In A Cell matches on PPV is this showdown from 2015. So, The Undertaker and Brock Lesnar would seek to conclude a feud stemming back to Lesnar ending Taker’s WrestleMania Streak in 2014. And a powerful yet inconclusive SummerSlam clash would pave the way for this contest. But more intriguing than the top-drawer combatants was the potential for this one to turn violent. Because back in 2002 at No Mercy, these two would bludgeon one another in an extremely bloody and barbaric HIAC match. Yet the PG rating would remove any chance of these two being able to create such a brutal fight in the modern era … right?
Wrong. Well, partially. Because both Taker and particularly Lesnar would shed blood in this one, more than in most PG era bouts in WWE. Furthermore, there would be some gnarly spots as well, such as Taker driving a steel chair straight into Brock’s throat. And the action was compelling from start to finish as well, making this an unforgettable scrap between future Hall Of Famers. Oh, and the match would end with a WWE first (but not necessarily a wrestling first). Brock would rip the ring mats off the canvas to expose the wooden beams supporting the squared circle, and he drilled Taker with an F5 onto the wood for the pinfall win. This is a must-see match, and a fitting end to one of the more memorable rivalries of the 2010s in WWE. Okay, so their No Mercy showdown is better. But for modern Hell In A Cell on PPV, this is as good as it gets.
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So, those are our thoughts on the best Hell In A Cell PPV matches to date! But what do you think? Let us know by leaving a comment below!