10 WWE Matches That Completely Exceeded Expectations

Your friendly reminder that this wrestling malarkey isn't so bad after all...

Jinder Mahal The Great Khali Battleground

After a year in WWE that's seen the random return of the Great Khali, as he helped Jinder Mahal to beat Randy Orton – inside a Punjabi Prison, no less – as well as world title match at WrestleMania 33 that featured projections of bugs sprawled across the mat, it can be easy to be pessimistic at times.

That also means that it can be easy to forget that the company does, on occasion, over-deliver and give us matches that end up being far better than they ever had any right be.

Whether that’s due to a low bar being set ahead of the show, an unexpected resurgence from those involved in the match or, as has often been the case, a combination of the two, we’ve seen more than a fair few matches over the years that have completely exceeded expectations.

From WrestleMania clashes to throwaway Raws, as well as a pre-show match to end all pre-shows, this article takes a look on the bright side of life with ten WWE bouts that went above and beyond what fans might have initially expected.

10. Sheamus Vs. Cesaro (Night Of Champions 2014)

Jinder Mahal The Great Khali Battleground

Heading into Night of Champions 2014, fans had little reason to be invested in the United States Championship feud between Sheamus and Cesaro.

Cesaro had been named the No. 1 contender after beating Rob Van Dam on the 25 August showing of Raw, and from there on in it was your usual, pedestrian pre-PPV build. There was the occasional multi-man tag match here and there, as well as the odd distraction at ringside as the rivalry plodded through the motions to pad out the intervening weeks.

On top of that, you could argue they’d been cast the wrong way around, with the superhuman Cesaro playing the heel and a rather bland Sheamus playing the babyface.

Come the PPV itself though, Sheamus and Cesaro put on a hard-hitting slugfest that was anything but pedestrian.

A technical opening soon evolved into something of an ode to strong style, especially by WWE standards, with stiff strikes and uppercuts aplenty, as the two delivered the match of the night on a card that featured John Cena vs. Brock Lesnar in the evening’s main event.

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