Vince McMahon's Most Memorable Matches, Moments in WrestleMania History
WrestleMania, which will take place for the 34th time April 8 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, wouldn't be possible without Vince McMahon.
The WWE chairman has done everything in his power over the past three-plus decades to make sure the company's biggest event is a success. On several occasions, that included involving himself in storylines to generate additional interest in The Showcase of the Immortals.
Although the boisterous Mr. McMahon character sports an 0-4 record at 'Mania, his presence always added to card, and he was never afraid to sacrifice his body for a pop. That holds true to this day, as he showed recently at Raw 25, when he took a stunner from "Stone Cold" Steve Austin.
Let's take a look back at Vinnie Mac's WrestleMania matches, as well as some of his most memorable moments at The Show of Shows.
Vince Battles Shane McMahon in a Street Fight (2001)
McMahon's first WrestleMania match against son Shane McMahon was the culmination of a complex storyline the likes of which WWE hasn't seen in a long time.
Vince was angling toward a storyline divorce from wife Linda and started dating female Superstar Trish Stratus. The decision led to Shane's return. He attacked his father for his treatment of his mother and then kayfabe purchased competitor WCW to further the feud.
It led to an all-out brawl at WrestleMania X-Seven, with hardcore legend Mick Foley serving as the special guest referee.
Linda, who had been reduced to a catatonic state after a nervous breakdown during the storyline, came to her senses during the match to deliver a low blow to Vince. That, along with some help from Foley, allowed Shane to deliver his patented coast-to-coast dropkick with a garbage can for the victory.
Not only was it an entertaining battle, but the entire feud was far more in depth than most of the generic writing fans have become accustomed to in recent years.
Vince Shakes Hands with 'Stone Cold to Close WrestleMania X-Seven (2001)
Speaking of great feuds, the longstanding rivalry between McMahon and Austin is probably the best in WWE history.
The beloved Austin and the egomaniacal Mr. McMahon were perfect counterparts who both knew how to take the audience along for the ride every time they cut a promo. It made for some of the best television in the Attitude Era, and the magic remained during their aforementioned Raw 25 segment.
That's also why McMahon's decision to help Austin beat The Rock in the WrestleMania X-Seven main event was a perfect booking maneuver.
Seeing the show end with the chairman and the Texas Rattlesnake shaking hands and chugging beers together is a sight that should end up on every 'Mania highlight reel.
The partnership didn't last forever—they are far better rivals than allies—but for one night, they provided a moment to remember as allies.
Vince Takes on Hulk Hogan in a Street Fight (2003)
McMahon returned to the ring at WrestleMania XIX to take on wrestling Mount Rushmore member Hulk Hogan.
The storyline surrounded Vince's belief Hulkamania was over while also harboring resentment for the longtime star's decision to leave for WCW in the 1990s. So he made the Hulkster put his career on the line in their clash at 'Mania.
While the match was far from a technical masterpiece, there were a couple marquee moments to help it stand out, including "Rowdy" Roddy Piper's interference to help McMahon.
It wasn't enough, though. Hogan took control before closing out the win with his famous big boot and three straight leg drops to save his career.
Vince Loses to Shawn Michaels in a No Holds Barred Match (2006)
Although Vince and Shawn Michaels were set to face off at WrestleMania 22, Shane did much of the heavy lifting throughout the feud.
He eliminated HBK at the Royal Rumble to start the storyline in earnest. He also helped the Spirit Squad beat Michaels in a cage match and was locked in a battle with him on Saturday Night's Main Event when Vince emulated the Montrael Screwjob to give his son the win.
Michaels got payback at 'Mania, though. He dominated the mostly one-sided match and delivered his Sweet Chin Music finisher to pick up one of the wins that helped him earn his Mr. WrestleMania moniker.
Nevertheless, it was another match wherein McMahon put his body on the line to help push a member of the roster.
Vince Gets Head Shaved by Donald Trump (2007)
A decade before his successful run to become the President of the United States, Donald Trump made several WWE appearances leading up to WrestleMania 23 as part of his Battle of the Billionaires with McMahon.
The result was a match between Bobby Lashley, representing Trump, and Umaga, representing McMahon, with Austin as the special guest referee. The losing billionaire's hair would be shaved off.
As you would expect, there were plenty of gimmicky moments throughout the match, including Austin getting knocked out of the match and Shane-O-Mac taking over as referee for a while. But Stone Cold returned, taking out Shane and helping Lashley get the win.
Trump got the pleasure of shaving McMahon's head, but he also ended up taking a stunner from Austin, much to the delight of the crowd.
Bret Hart Exacts Montreal Screwjob Revenge on Vince (2010)
It's impossible to complete count Vince out of future competition, but his tussle at WrestleMania XXVI could well go down as his final 'Mania match—a loss to Bret Hart.
The Hitman returned to WWE for a chance to feud with McMahon after his controversial decision that saw Michaels defeat Hart at Survivor Series in 1997 before the latter left for WCW.
While Hart had done some behind-the-scenes work with the company between 1997 and 2010 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2006, the storyline was special because the lines were blurred between work and shoot.
The Hart family ended up getting involved on Bret's behalf, taking out more than a decade of frustration on the chairman before Bret locked in the sharpshooter for the victory.
Although he's 72, McMahon still looked in strong physical shape when he appeared at Raw 25. So while it's unlikely he will wrestle again, don't rule it out if the right situation presents itself over the next couple of years.