The crowd is the biggest life support for any industry when it comes to entertainment. Whether it’s the WWE, the pinnacle of entertainment or any dampened music show, till the time there is crowd, there is life and blood and when the crowd is happy, they throw countless pops. If unhappy, the jeers and catcalls come raining too but with that being said, when the pops start raining, nothing beats the WWE Universe.
Recently two returns drove the WWE Universe crazy and it had to be for when we talk about those superstars, nothing beats them, no one beats them and they have defined an era of legends, of icons, of a legacy like never before. Here are the 15 biggest pops in WWE industry.
#1 Hulk Hogan bodyslams Andre the Giant in Wrestlemania III
Hulk Hogan has always been a big name in terms of wrestling and of course WWE. But when it comes to lifting Andre the Giant, you will need more than big names. When Hogan lifted Andre and slammed him into the center of the ring at Wrestlemania III, well the crowd went all berserk.
#2 Ultimate Warrior rattles Honky Tonk Man at the first Summerslam
The Ultimate Warrior has always been unstoppable and the energy he brings is just sensational. When he slammed Honky Tonk Man with all the infectious energy, the entire crowd was in a frenzy.
#3 British Bulldog defeats Bret Hitman Hart at SummerSlam 92
You don’t beat the Hitman. He is rarely defeated and yet British Bulldog, Davey Boy went onto a win a crazy battle against the big face of the industry and the crowd couldn’t hold themselves back. They were ecstatic and they were elated and the pops, my word!
#4 The Hart Foundation blows the roof off at the 1997 Canadian Stampede
Not always do you see heels getting cheered but when Stone Cold Steve Austin and team crossed the border at Canada and they were up against the Hart Foundation, a ten-man tag team match ensued. The participants for SCSA’s team were SCSA himself, Goldust, Ken Shamrock and the Road Warriors. While for Bret Hart, he led the foundation and was supported by the likes of Owen Hart, Brian Pillman, Jim Neidhart and the British Bulldog. The match drove the crowd crazy and the cheer still rings loudest through the world.
#5 Stone Cold Steve Austin helps Mankind win his first WWF championship
Mankind has always been a name that has not been fiddled with before this and everyone who walked into the ring with him had suffered an agonizing fate. In one of the finest and biggest rivalries of 1999, Foley and Rock came face to face while there was chaos outside the ring. Amidst the battle of the Corporation and D-Generation X, SCSA ran out as the conqueror and eventually saved the day for Mankind helping him trump over Rocky.
#6 Chris Jericho pulls off the unthinkable against the Brahma Bull
Y2J has always been one of the finest characters to have fought in the WWE and his heel runs have been simply sublime. But then with that being said, Jericho’s debut produced one of the loudest pops of all time because he intercepted the Rock.
#7 Stone Cold Steve Austin saves the day again and this time for the Rock
The Vince-Triple H era was truly one of the greatest heel runs of all time. In Wrestlemania 2000 when Hunter won the WWF championship with the help of Vince, the fans knew that the only one who could save the day was the Rock. But then with Vince being the guest referee at Backlash 2000, the championship was once again certain for Helmsley and then came out dashing to signature music, SCSA. Coming out to wrestle after a year almost, Austin sent the crowd in an explosion of frenzy.
#8 Stone Cold Steve Austin joins WWF to destroy the Alliance
Stone Cold has always been an iconic name in WWE and when WCW and ECW joined hands to put WWF to bed, SCSA came out again to join Vince McMahon and what followed suit was War.
#9 John Cena makes his return at the Royal Rumble 2008
You don’t put Cena out of action ever. The man whose name has been the synonym for WWE championship for an eternity, John Cena, had a major pectoral tear on October 1st 2007. An injury that needs a year or more to heal had no impact on Cena as he turned up in Royal Rumble in 2008.
#10 The Rock returned and was announced as the host of Wrestlemania XXVII
The Rock has always been an electric personality and when he returns, well, let’s just say, it is always going to be fun. When he returned and was handed over the onus of being the host in WM XXVII, the crowd loved every bit of it.
#11 CM Punk gets an ovation from Chicago in the 2011 Money In the Bank
The straight edge saint have always sent the crowds into a frenzy like never before and every time he is close to Chicago, the world loves it. Well, back in 2011 when the MITB happened in Chicago, the audience loved every bit of it.
#12 Daniel Bryan won the WWE championship at Wrestlemania XXX
One of the finest and one of the most explosive characters in the WWE ring, going from team Hell No to creating the Yes movement, Bryan left the crowd stunned and in utter admiration of him. When WM XXX happened, he had to fight two matches in the same day. First, he had to brave Triple H to qualify for the championship match-up against Batista and Randy Orton. He went onto win the title beating Triple H first and then the two later in the night in the main event of the PPV.
#13 AJ Styles making his appearance at the 2016 Royal Rumble
As an AJ Styles fan from his TNA days, this moment was surreal. The crowd pop was insane for his WWE debut. pic.twitter.com/UDoxlL8t4G
— Wrestling Pics & Clips (@WrestleClips) January 27, 2023Advertisement
Styles has been a star whenever it comes to pro-wrestling. The way TNA made him up, well, the crowd loved everything he did. Whether he was a face or a heel, whether he was pulling off low blows or pulling off forks from his socks, when Styles came for the first time in WWE, well, you know they say the rest is history.
#14 Edge returns at 2020 Royal Rumble
Besides last night… Edge 2020 Royal Rumble return. I totally marked out pic.twitter.com/kHReFLEOShAdvertisement
— Juan (@JROD1618) November 27, 2023
This is one particular moment that the Rated R Superstar will never ever forget. When Edge became the entrant in the Royal Rumble, the entire stadium was going crazy with his theme and every one loved all of it. Edge’s Metalingus hit the titantron and no matter wherever you were in America, well you know.
#15 CM Punk returns to WWE after a decade in 2023
If the audience weren’t loving the entire segment of Randy Orton pulling off RKO’s on Dom and Damian at the same time, as soon as the match got over, the iconic and infamous “Look in my eyes” went up blaring loud and boom! We were singing. We were singing so loud.
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— WWE (@WWE) November 28, 2023
Honorable Mention – Randy Orton making his return at WWE Survivor Series: Wargames 2023
RANDY ORTON RETURNS TO WWE AT SURVIVOR SERIES!!! 😱 pic.twitter.com/FPUHyqjtR0Advertisement
— JakeTv72 (@jake_cage) November 26, 2023
Well the match couldn’t be started until the Viper made his way into the mix and the crowd somewhat felt that he was never coming back. With that being said just when it saw that Damian Priest would cash in, well, sorry boys, you know what happened next. There were voices in everyone’s head and boom!