Modern professional wrestling history can be whittled down to 50 matches. Fifty moments that combine to tell quite an entertaining story.
Sure, not all of these matches are five-star classics, but each one has a place on the road to professional wrestling's present, a road that is paved with booms, busts, fantastic highs and epic lows.
Along the way, there were matches that served to create an entire era, while others were instrumental in beginning a steady decline toward irrelevancy.
Then there were those that were influential in popularizing a certain style of wrestling or a particular match type.
Without any of these 50, history would be altered, and certain memories, moments and careers would cease to exist. Heck, professional wrestling could very well have died off altogether years ago without some of these matches taking place.
The question I asked myself when deciding if a match was worthy of this list was, "if this match had never taken place, how would that have affected wrestling's narrative; would anything be dramatically different?" Some matches may be all-time greats, and we may be thankful that they occurred and that we witnessed them, but if they never happened, not much would be different in the grand scheme of wrestling history. That was the deciding factor.
With that said, here are the 50 most important matches in wrestling history, aptly given in chronological order: