The 15 Best WWE Hell In a Cell Matches Of All Time
In WWE, we have seen the creation of several new and innovative matches. However, one match has stood out and has become a staple in WWE.
So much so, that the match has been done over 20 times, 22 to be exact. And, WWE has made it into a PPV, having three matches at the very least be Hell in a Cell.
These matches take a toll on a man's body, and it can be considered one of the most dangerous matches ever devised.
Some people have even refused to be in them. The most memorable matches for HIAC have involved people being thrown off the high, over 30 foot cage.
And not to mention, people have been thrown into the cage and through it. You can see the danger here and why some refuse to be apart of it. But moving on....
A few facts to get you started about Hell in a Cell, some of which you may know or may not.
Despite being in the inaugural match and being in the most Hell in a Cell matches of all time, (10 so far and 11 this weekend) The Undertaker actually lost the first ever Hell in a Cell match to Mr. Innovation himself, Shawn Michaels.
Triple H has been in 8 HIAC matches, the second most ever, but has 6 wins, the most of all in the WWE. The Undertaker, despite making more appearances, only has 5 wins.
Taker was in the first 3 HIAC matches
The most memorable HIAC match, which involved The Undertaker defeating Mick Foley at King Of The Ring in 1998, only lasted 16 minutes, which is one of the shortest HIAC matches ever.
But now, to the top 15. These will be based on my opinion and that alone. Please make sure to give your top 15 in the comments and tell me how close I was to your list
#15 Randy Orton Vs John Cena, Hell In a Cell 2009
This match pitted the two top names in WWE currently in John Cena and Randy Orton against one another. This was WWE's biggest rivalry of 2009, and they had a ton of great matches. The one that really started to end it was the HIAC match.
John Cena came in as WWE Champion and was built as a man on a mission to cut off the head of the Viper, in order to get rid of him forever.
Cena went his classic self on us and took a ton of punishment like he usually does. Orton however took just as much and weapons were used some during this match as well.
Although this was a match done in the PG era and didn't involve a ton of blood like most of the others, it was a great match and deserves mentioning as one of the top 15 of all time.
Orton did a ton of his classic moves and really took it to Cena. Orton won the Championship on that night with a punt to the head.
#14 Brock Lesnar Vs The Undertaker, No Mercy 2002
At No Mercy in 2002, Brock Lesnar took on The Undertaker inside the Hell in a Cell. This match is rarely remembered, simply because it wasn't nearly the best HIAC match ever.
But, it had a ton of great spots in it of which made it highly interesting to watch.
Going in, The Undertaker had a cast on his arm, which was caused by Lesnar. Lesnar worked on the injured arm throughout the match.
However, channeling his inner Bob Orton, Taker used the cast quite a lot, and busted open Lesnar in just a few minutes of the match with it.
Paul Heyman was still managing Lesnar and screaming outside the ring throughout, which got very annoying. But luckily Taker took care of him after the first 10 minutes.
However, sadly Heyman did get back up and started talking again. He was bloodied up bad, though.
I don't care what anyone says, Lesnar could really sell and take a ton of damage. Lesnar really took a lot of hits against the cage and steel steps, which it was nice to see.
Taker really showed some great stuff as well, and most think this could have been the last great looking Taker we've seen.
This was during his biker gimmick era, which wasn't a bad era for him. But in any case, this was an excellent contest, which saw both men give a lot.
The two never left the cage however, which was sad to see, but it is still one of the better ones of all time.
Lesnar, who came in as WWE Champion, retained by hitting his signature move, the F-5.
#13 Batista Vs Triple H, Vengeance 2005
This has to be one of my personal favorites simply because it was one of the hottest feuds of that year, and it involved a still fit and great Triple H against Batista in his prime, before all the countless injuries.
Batista had really just left Evolution and won the World Heavyweight Championship from Triple H, and obviously The Game was upset and wanted his title back.
So, he threw out a match that he knew as well as any other, the Hell in a Cell match.
This match was epic and could be considered one of the best matches of that year. As I mentioned, it involved two men, probably still in their prime and both took each other to the limit.
Batista did more spots in this match than I think we've ever seen him do before, which was great to see.
Some think this could be considered one of the better HIAC matches ever, and is better than the 14 slot in the countdown. But, I can't really pick any over others who don't go outside of the cage sadly. This match involved weapons, and I was hurting just watching it.
Some of the sickest weapons ever thought of were in it. A chain of sorts was used with both men, steel steps, I believe a cane, sledgehammer, and a steel chair wrapped in barbed wire. It was completely diabolical and has to be one of the best you could ever see.
Batista came in as World Champion and left just that, and trust me, he was never the same after this one.
#12 Triple H Vs Kevin Nash, Bad Blood 2003
If you want one of the more fun HIAC matches to watch that had things you just didn't expect, you need to watch Triple H vs Kevin Nash from Bad Blood 2003.
This match was for the World Heavyweight Championship and could be considered one of Kevin Nash's best matches ever.
Nash probably was in his best during this match and made me really want to be his fan big time.
Going into the match, Triple H had screwed over Nash in many ways during their matches to retain the World Heavyweight Title.
He hit refs, did low blows, etc. Nash didn't care for it, and powerbombed him through a table, which looked epic.
After Triple H was an ass to everyone and the GMs in Eric Bischoff and Stone Cold Steve Austin saw what he did in the past matches, they decided to make sure he couldn't do the same again.
However, no ref wanted to referee the match because of Triple H's actions against the refs in the past.
So, Stone Cold decided to find the only man crazy enough to referee the contest, Mick Foley.
Triple H was irate and wanted to make sure Foley wouldn't be there. Triple H gave The hardcore legend an ultimatum.
You either say you won't come to Bad Blood, or I'll beat the "want to be there" out of you. Foley said he'd rather take the beating and then come to Bad Blood.
The Cell came down and we saw a mini-HIAC and a ton of spots were done with Foley. Triple H got out the ring, then Foley got back up as if to say, "thank you sir, may I have another."
Trips came back in and then pedigreed Foley onto a steel chair, then Nash finally showed up to help out Foley. Nice timing by him.
RAW ended on that night and that Sunday we saw Foley there as special guest ref and Nash and Trips went at it.
Nash did a ton of cage throws to HHH, and hit him with the steel chair a few times, to get redemption from the past issues.
Triple H came back a lot during the match, and at one point he was literally beating Nash to a bloody pulp in the corner of the cage.
Then he raked Nash's face across the cage in a sick way, just opening Big Sexy up more.
Nash then found a 2 by 4 and was just laying into The Game. Nash then laid the then blooded, wooden instrument of pain on the turnbuckle and dropped Triple H right on it.
Triple H then grabbed a wooden crate from the outside and as Nash was trying to pick Helmsley up from inside the ring, the King of Kings hit him with the crate, breaking the bottom of it.
Not happy with how things were going, Helmsley hit Foley with a steel chair, knocking him out and opening him up at the same time.
Triple H then went back on the offense against Nash and had him on the ground, pummeling him with lefts and rights. He finally got up, just to see Foley's crazy self with Mr. Socko stuffing it down his throat.
After struggling to get out, he finally saw and opening and kicked Foley in the balls. Then just based on tiredness alone, just hit the mat.
He finally got back up and was then going to take out Foley completely, but Nash got up already and grabbed the ring steps, setting The Game up.
He then attacked Triple H hitting him in the skull, but accidentally also hitting Foley as well.
Nash then went over to try and get Foley up and he finally did. Foley was on the outside of the ring, still on the ring itself trying to get his bearings.
Triple H then ran into Nash and that hit Foley off the ring and into the cage in an epic hit.
Somehow Nash came back and threw The Game into the turnbuckle once again, as he was out of it,
Nash grabbed him and hit the Jackknife powerbomb on him. In what was thought to be impossible, Foley climbed into the ring for the count. But Triple H kicked out at 2.
Both men then just laid there, and Foley did also. Nash got up first and went over to grab Helmsley.
But a sledgehammer was conveniently laying there and Triple H grabbed it, and hit Nash in the face, then grabbed him to put him in the pedigree. Triple H hit it to win the match and once again retain his World Heavyweight Championship.
#11 Undertaker Vs Randy Orton, Armageddon 2005
This probably was one of the smarter rivalries the WWE did. Randy Orton was coming into his own and was sorta becoming forgotten.
He was the youngest World Champion ever when he won the World Heavyweight Championship from Chris Benoit at Summerslam the year before.
He left Evolution, then went on a face run that was in many ways, short lived. He took out The Undertaker, and went from mid-card hell to the main event scene.....or so he thought.
Undertaker had one of his more memorable returns of his career that year, as he came back at Survivor Series when Orton helped SmackDown win the traditional elimination match. A casket was brought out and, then hit with lightning.
The casket was then on fire and Undertaker kicked out of the flaming casket. It was very creepy and cool at the same time, especially for Taker fans like myself. He then went in and attacked Orton.
It was then announced the two would go at it, inside a Hell in a Cell. Orton of course wanted no part of it, while Taker rejoiced.
This was the time in which Taker looked as good as he ever did, and had a full beard. Which looked like he really came back from the dead.
Undertaker did his trademark Cell shut when he walked in, which was creepy to say the least. Fans were sort of peeing in their pants after seeing it. And kayfabingly, Orton probably was as well.
Orton actually did quite well in this match. Taker did dominate a good bit, but Orton came back again and again. Orton also sold quite well and took a beating, more so than I've ever seen him take as a heel.
He was thrown into the cage a good bit and hit with a chair more than anyone usually does in a HIAC match. Taker busted him open early with the chair.
Orton did come back on the offensive after, but Orton's father, "Cowboy" Bob Orton got involved. Taker didn't care for this, so, he let Orton Sr. know.
He pulled his arm into the cage through a small hole and pulled him into it, forcing Cowboy Bob to hit against the cage. Taker then brought him in where he had to stay against the cage, and hit the big boot.
Randy then came trying to catch Taker off guard, but the Deadman moved out of the way and he ran into his father, busting his old man open in the process.
Orton did come back, and did a scoop slam into the cage, which looked pretty cool.
Taker took back over and did a ton of damage. The problem was that he did one too many moves and Taker missed a running kick into the turnbuckle.
Orton capitalized and attacked one of Taker's legs, knocking him down and hurting the Phenom enough to Orton to get a table out.
Orton set up the table and put Taker on it, who was still hurt from the leg hit and other moves the Legend Killer did to him.
Orton did a splash onto the table, almost missing it at the same time. He still hit it though, and was taking it to Taker.
Orton then got caught by the Deadman and was put into Chokeslam position, but Orton hit an amazing RKO out of the chokeslam.
Taker somehow came back and hit The Last Ride powerbomb on Orton.
As he went for the pin, Cowboy Bob made his way up and into the cage. He drug out the ref and knocked him out. Taker saw this and went on the attack against the man of the 20-year cast.
Taker managed to get rid of him once again and made his way into the ring. He put Randy into tombstone position, but Orton turned it around and hit a tombstone of his own.
He actually screwed the move up and Taker actually hit his head. I thought while watching this that Taker's neck may have been broken.
Somehow the ref came back in, and just in time too, as Orton went for the pin. Taker kicked out at two and did his classic sit up.
Orton then hopped over and started attacking the Deadman. He punched and punched the man, and Orton thought he accomplished something big, only to have Taker's hand pop up on his throat.
Bob Orton once again came back as Taker was ready to hit the chokeslam. But Taker took him out. Randy waited until Taker turned around and went for the RKO, but the Phenom blocked it.
Making sure he didn't have to deal with him anymore, Taker hit a tombstone on Orton Sr. He then hit it on Orton Jr. and got the one....two....three.
Overall, this match was really good and one you'd wanna watch more than once.
#10 DX Vs Vince And Shane McMahon and The Big Show, Unforgiven 2006
When the WWE brought DX back for the first time, fans were excited. And rightfully so, as they were up to their old antics like they used to be. I for one, loved this match because of how sick and twisted it was.
Talk about a match you'll never forget, the Hell in a Cell match with DX (Triple H and Shawn Michaels) vs Shane and Vince McMahon, along with The Big Show from Unforgiven 2006 had everything you could ever ask for from a Hell in a Cell match, minus being on the top of it.
DX had to men who had plenty of Hell in a Cell experience, going in, Triple H had made six appearances and Shawn Michaels had made 2. So obviously the two knew what they were getting into, while the McMahons had no earthly clue.
This is why they brought The Big Show into the match with them. They needed a guy who could take on the two pretty much on his own, and allow them to pick up the pieces.
Show pretty much did just that, for about 5 seconds of the match. Michaels and Triple H went over and hit a low blow to start the match on Show.
They then went after Vince and Shane-O'Mac
They threw them into the cage, punched them mercilessly, and blooded the pair up worse than I've ever seen. Big Show came back into play and attacked the two, the McMahons got too cocky and paid for it later on.
They had the match won numerous times, but killed the count right before three to show their dominance. The more memorable parts of this match was when DX came back and took out Big Show, they then took out Shane McMahon by wrapping a chair around his head and having HBK hit an elbow drop on it, causing Shane to bleed internally and be out for the rest of the match.
DX then knocked out Show once he got level, and stuffed Vinny Mac's head up Big Show's butt.
Michaels then hit sweet chin music on McMahon and Triple H ended it with a sledgehammer to the back.
It was complete carnage, and that's an understatement.
#9 Undertaker Vs Edge, Summerslam 2008
People may be thinking, why did this moron put this one in the top 10. Well, you'd be moronic not to think it doesn't belong.
This match had everything and more you could ask for, outside of someone going through a the top of the cage.
At Summerslam in 2008, Undertaker took on Edge.
Taker beat Edge at Wrestlemania, and The Rated R Superstar didn't take kindly to it. So, he got Vickie Guerrero to make the stipulation for their TLC match to be that if Undertaker loses, he is banned from WWE.
He couldn't even go to RAW, he had to leave the WWE forever. Undertaker lost due to La Familia getting involved and thus, the Phenom was banned from WWE.
Edge made Vickie very angry when he cheated on her with their wedding planner, Alicia Fox. Triple H was nice enough to show us a little video package about that.
Vickie got so angry, she reinstated The Undertaker and said that Edge would go one on one with The Undertaker in Hell in a Cell at Summerslam.
Edge was distraught, shocked he would have to actually work for once at something.
He said he needed help, so, he called upon the then commentator Mick Foley. Foley said that the Edge before him would be eaten alive inside HIAC against Taker.
He needed to see the Edge that made him say that he was the best superstar in WWE. He needed the Edge that took him out in a hardcore match, the Edge that put him through a flaming table.
The Rated R Superstar realized this and attacked Foley. He hit him with a chair and put him through a table. The crazy Edge that would do anything to win was back!
So, going into the HIAC, Edge was ready. He took it to The Deadman the entire match. This match saw Edge use tables, ladders, and chairs on Taker.
He put him through a table the same way he did Foley, then as Taker was on the outside, he ran into him and knocked the cage wall down.
Taker then hit Edge with things on the announce table and while Edge was down, Taker made the announce table ready for Edge to go through.
But Edge stopped Taker and got on the other announce table. He then hit the spear and slammed the Deadman through the table.
He then tried to do a conchairto on Taker, but Taker grabbed Edge by the throat the through him out of the ring, Edge went through a table then on the outside.
Taker brought Edge back in and hit a conchairto on him, then a tombstone piledriver for the win.
Undertaker walked out of the ring and up to the ramp. He then turned around and looked at Edge, remembering all he put him through.
He put him a few ladders and grabbed Edge. He took him up with him and chokeslammed him off of the top of the ladder, putting him through the ring and sending him straight to hell.
#8 Batista Vs Undertaker, Survivor Series 2007
Some may think that Edge vs Undertaker's HIAC match was better than Undertaker vs Batista's, and I really couldn't make a great argument in saying one was better.
I ranked them this way for one reason alone, they are both even in my eyes but Batista actually looked good in a match for once.
Because he looked so good, and did so well in this match, I had to put it over Edge/Taker.
But lets not forget, Edge also made an appearance in this match as well.
Batista got opened up real well in this match, and it was probably the last HIAC match with blood in WWE history. As the WWE went PG really right after this match.
Batista put Taker through a table, hit him with a chair, caught him from the top rope into a spinebuster, and his a powerbomb.
However, Taker pretty much dominated. He put a chair underneath Batista's neck and threw him to the ground, making the chair hit hard into Taker's throat.
Batista then began coughing up blood. Taker then used hell's gate to weaken him more.
He hit the Tombstone on the Animal, but Batista somehow kicked out. Taker got tired of that, so he put the steel steps in the ring and hit the tombstone on them.
Taker had the match won, but Edge, dressed as a cameraman came into the ring and took the ref out.
He then hit Taker in the head with a camera, knocking him out cold. He then put Taker on the steps and hit him with a chair for good measure
He put Batista's arm over the Deadman and the ref counted to three. After the match was over, he hit the Deadman with a chair again.
#7 Triple H vs. Chris Jericho, Judgment Day 2002
When you talk of carnage, you can't forget this match. Triple H by all accounts was the favorite going in, and rightfully so, as he had been in a few HIAC matches before this one. He didn't let us down, as he did win the match, but it was very close indeed.
Chris Jericho was on a hot streak going into this match, he was Undisputed Champion before all of this, and was just now becoming a big time player in the WWE. Jericholics were glad to see him doing well.
Jericho took a ton of damage during this match and it could be one we see on his DVD out right now, Breaking the Code.
Y2J really did well, but HHH really killed it if you ask me. I remember seeing this match LIVE and thinking, Dear Lord, these two are going to kill each other.
I'd love to talk more about it, but it's really hard to explain this match. Which is why I'm going to share a link for you to see the carnage that took place.
#6 Undertaker and Steve Austin Vs Mankind and Kane, RAW Is War 1998
A match that had plenty of high spots and blood and was on free TV, could you ask for more? Well, probably more time.
This match with Undertaker, Steve Austin, Kane, and Mankind really had some nice stuff. The issue is that I cannot locate this match on YouTube to share it with you.
Basically, you had 4 guys who didn't really care for one another. Mankind and Kane seemed to hate Undertaker enough to team up to take on he and another man they hated, Stone Cold Steve Austin.
Steve Austin and Undertaker weren't fans of each other either, but like their opponents, they hated the two men across the ring. The teams went at it and really made this a fun match. The thing was though, there was no winner.
The match ended in a no contest, which really sucked because it was looking pretty good.
Of course, this was a match on free TV. So, you didn't expect it to be more than a 10- to 15-minute match. Either way, it was really well done, especially for being on free TV.
#5 Shawn Michaels Vs The Undertaker, Bad Blood 1997
I know, you're all in an uproar right now. This was a top 5 for me, there was no way not for it to be. But it wasn't the best of all time in my opinion.
Obviously this match set the standard and made every person in a Hell in a Cell match after, work way harder.
Whenever you have Shawn Michaels in a match, you know it'll be good. But adding The Undertaker just made it better. You had two men in the prime of their careers, both pretty much never with an injury and could do as good as John Cena and Randy Orton can today.
Michaels being so athletic makes this match as good as it was. Even though this match is more so a match that The Undertaker is first thought of for, he didn't win the match.
Shawn Michaels won it because of an appearance by Undertaker's brother, Kane.
This is the first time we were introduced to the Big Red Machine.
The match is so hard to explain because it is so good, which means like some before, I won't even try to explain it. So, enjoy the highlight package and tell me how much you liked this match.
#4 Triple H Vs Cactus Jack, No Way Out 2000
Some have called this the best HIAC match of all time, but for me, it makes the #4 slot. This match was freakin' awesome to say the least. I could watch it over and over.
Cactus Jack (Mick Foley) vs Triple H at No Way Out 2000 had to be the match of the year. These two had some epic battles before, such as the Street Fight at the Royal Rumble. You talk about one of the better rivalries of all time, you need to consider Cactus Jack and Triple H.
This match was for the WWF Title and if Foley lost, he'd have to retire.
There were a few memorable spots in this match, which involve the two on the top of the cage.
Foley had a flaming 2x4 and he hit The Game with it. Then, Triple H back body dropped Foley through the cage where he went through the ring.
Triple H then went down and pedigreed Foley to win the match and retire Foley. I'd go over it more, but just watch the highlight package to see the greatness.
#3 Mankind Vs The Undertaker, King Of The Ring 1998
This could be the most memorable HIAC match of all time, but for me it's not the best. Mankind went into this match having little HIAC experience where as Taker had been in the last two HIAC matches ever. This was only the third HIAC match in WWE History.
This could be the most memorable because of Foley's spots that he did.
He went off the cage and into the announce table, which was really cool but all planned to happen. Then, the crazy SOB went to the top again then got chokeslammed, where the cage gave way and Foley went through it to hit the ring below.
The thing was, that chokeslam wasn't supposed to put Foley through the cage.
He was supposed to land on the cage, then kick out of a pin that Taker did on him.
Taker said in an interview later than he went over to Foley and told him just to stay down, that they could just end it here and it would be fine. Foley refused and continued on for another few minutes to finish the match as planned.
The man has to be nuts, but this match put him on the map big time....and gave him enormous back pain. I could never describe what this match was like, so, here is the highlight package.
#2 Kurt Angle, HHH, Undertaker, Steve Austin, Rikishi, The Rock, Armageddon 2000
For me, it was hard not to put this one as #1. And it's for two reasons. It was one heck of an epic contest and it took place in my hometown of Birmingham, Ala.
So, you can imagine it was tough to not put this one at No. 1. But, I didn't, even though many would have.
The most memorable spot in this match was when Undertaker threw Rikishi off the top of the HIAC cage onto a flatbed truck, and it was epic.
The match came about when Mick Foley realized that as Commissioner, you can make matches that not everyone will agree with.
He wanted six certain men to go through the hell he went through when Triple H retired him earlier in the year.
So, he put those men into a Hell in a Cell match and all experienced its hell.
Somehow, the WWF Champion Kurt Angle retained his title that night, but this was an epic match that you'd have to see to believe.
#1 Shawn Michaels Vs Triple H, Bad Blood 2004
This has to be one of the best matches I ever witnessed, and when you have two great workers in Shawn Michaels and Triple H involved, you can't lose really.
Both men, who have been friends for years, became bitter enemies over Triple H's jealousy.
Michaels seemed to get all of the love when Triple H accomplished more. This made Triple H irate which was why he went after the Heart Break Kid.
He knew the only way to end it was to end Michaels. He tried and tried and couldn't seem to do it. So, he reduced to attacking him and costing him matches, especially for titles.
So, Eric Bischoff told them that enough was enough, and that this rivalry would end at Bad Blood in a HIAC match.
Going into this match, Triple H has been in a few HIAC matches and never lost, well, never took the pinfall.
Michaels had been in the first HIAC match ever and won it. So, two men, both undefeated in this match, were about to go at it. And go at it did they ever.
This was the longest HIAC match on record at 47 minutes. So, the entire match was very well done because so much was done.
I'm going to give you the highlight package, but I implore you to buy the HIAC DVD to watch this whole match or find it online. It is simply awesome and had some great spots that the two pulled off well.
Closing Thoughts From Joe Burgett
I hope you liked the slide show on the top 15 HIAC matches of all time. Maybe you agree with my list, or maybe you don't.
It's all up for debate over which is the best. This took me a few days to do, so, I hope you all enjoyed it.
Please make sure to go back and watch the matches I mentioned, cause you'll be in for a treat if you do. And don't forget about WWE's Hell in a Cell tomorrow night. It is shaping up to be a great show.
Make sure to tell me which was your favorite and/or top 15.
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