August 9, 2016 marked the 17th anniversary of Chris Jericho’s WWE debut.
Since making his debut in 1999 from the millennium countdown to interrupting The Rock and cutting a promo on him Chris Jericho has definitely seen it all, done it all. Y2J is one of the best heels the company has ever seen and the man is also one of the most popular baby-faces as well.
Jericho is the first ever Undisputed Champion in WWE history. He is a 6 time World Champion, 9 time Intercontinental Champion, and has also won the Tag Titles, Hardcore Title and European Title as well and has given us some of the most memorable matches during his 17 year run. So, on his 17th anniversary let us take a look at Y2J’s top 5 WWE matches so far.
No.5: Chris Jericho vs The Rock (WCW Championship) – No Mercy 2001
“The Greatest of All Time” against “The Great One”.
A fast paced, technical bout between Jericho and Rock took place at No Mercy 2001. This match was one of the underrated and finest from WWE’s attitude era.
Jericho and Rock had great in ring chemistry. Y2J locked in “The Walls of Jericho” on Rock but failed to make him tap out, Jericho even hit The Rock with “The Rock Bottom” but Rock still managed to find a way to kick out, with Jericho also managing to survive Rock’s “Sharpshooter” and “Rock Bottom” as well. Soon Stephanie McMahon interfered in the match with a steel chair in hand, which distracted both men and as the referee was busy dealing with Stephanie, Jericho took advantage and hit a full nelson facebuster on the steel chair to Rock and got the victory to win the WCW Title.
No.4: Chris Jericho vs CM Punk (WWE Championship) – Wrestlemania 28
“The Best in the World at what he does” against “The Best in the World”.
WM 28 had a stacked card, Triple H vs Undertaker in a hell in a cell, Rock vs John Cena which was the main event of the night, and Chris Jericho facing WWE Champion CM Punk for the WWE Title. In a very fast paced match between the two men with ‘back and forth’ action, once again Jericho put Punk in ‘the walls’ but every time Punk managed to escape the 3 count. Jericho even caught Punk twice with “The Codebreaker” once in mid air, but Punk still managed to stay in the battle, Jericho attempted one last “Walls of Jericho” before Punk reversed the submission and put Y2J into “The Anaconda Vice” and made him tap out to retain his title. Definitely a WM main event worthy.
No.3: Chris Jericho vs Chris Benoit (Intercontinental Championship) – Royal Rumble 2001
“The Ayatollah of Rock ‘n’ Rolla” vs “The Crippler”.
Two of the best technicians this sport has ever seen. Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit put up a classic at Royal Rumble 2001 for the prestigious IC Title. Fast paced action with some good hardcore spots as well, the two Canadians put up a show with Jericho pushing Benoit off the ladder to unhook the IC Title.
No.2: Chris Jericho & Chris Benoit vs Edge & Christian vs The Dudley Boyz vs The Hardy Boyz- Smackdown 2001
Fans have witnessed two classic TLC bouts between The Hardyz, The Dudleyz and E&C and these two matches are still being talked around but sadly what some WWE fans don’t remember or didn’t get to see in some cases is the 3rd TLC classic that also involved the team of Jericho and Benoit.
The two Canadians teamed up to take on 3 of the best teams in the company for the Tag Titles in a ladder match. With Benoit taking a bump through a table early on in the match and being stretchered out, Jericho had to wrestle on his own for some time, the match itself is a treat to the fans with The Dudleyz’s hardcore style, Hardyz and E&C’s high flying and of course we saw Edge once again hitting a spear in mid air. Benoit soon made a return to the match to join Jericho and right after Edge had speared Hardy in mid air, the two men got rid of “The Rated-R Superstar” and Benoit climbed the ladder to unhook the belts to give both the Chris’ the win. Sadly WWE won’t mention it again but it truly remains as a classic.
No.1: Chris Jericho vs Shawn Michaels- Wrestlemania 19
“The G.O.A.T” vs “The Showstopper”
Early in his career Jericho looked up to Michaels as his idol, and soon at WM 19 the two got to face off against each other which remains as Jericho’s best WM and WWE match till date. Michaels made a return to the ring after suffering a back injury and Jericho targeted HBK’s back, Y2J even hit the “Sweet Chin Music” on Shawn and came close to get the win but Michaels kicked out of it, HBK himself hit Y2J with two Superkicks but Chris also managed to beat the pitfall.
Michaels got the victory after a leverage pinfall and picked up his first WM victory in seven years, the two men then shook hands and hugged it out in the middle of the ring only for Jericho to low-blow Michaels and once again proving why he is one of the best heels’ in the business. Jericho may not have picked up the win but this match remains as his best WWE match so far and he definitely is going to entertain his fans for coming years just like he has done for past 17 years.