Triple H, October 2011:

“When I grew up, I hated Hogan. I thought he was terrible and didn’t like to watch him. I was like Punk in a way. I liked the Steamboats and Flairs and the ones that could go. Would I be right in saying that Hogan was the wrong guy to go with, and they should’ve changed directions and gone with Steamboat because he was the better wrestler? Ludicrous.” - Triple H. October, 2011.

Summer Slam 1993

Saturday, January 21, 2006

IX is here.

Summerslam -1993 Detroit
They yanked JR here for Vince, that won't happen obviously - and Bobby's left the Counterfactual - meaning that this is the debut of the new permanent WWF announce team, JR, who began at IX, and on color -- Jim Cornette. It's a significant upgrade.

(Dark – Diesel d. Backlund)

1. Smoking Gunns d. Money Inc.
Billy! Bart! The Smoking Gunns!

2. Undertaker d. Jerry Lawler.
Chokeslam. Tombstone. Multiple Tombstones. Undertaker is more dominant than ever! Nearly 3 full years after entering – the Undertaker not only is still unbeaten, he’s never been challenged. The “Un-Der-Take-Er” chants go up across the arena – and the announce calls him the most dominant wrestler…perhaps ever.

3. Bam Bam Bigelow d. Ludwig Borga
Just, you know, ‘cause. That’s it for Borga. Back to Helsinki

4. The Total Package Lex Luger d. Marty Jannetty
-Lex Luger is the Total Package!

5. IC #1 Contender: The Lightning Kid Sean Waltman d. Owen Hart (w/Savage)
Whoa. In the back, we see the Clique watching the ring intro. of Waltman – Diesel asks Razor if they should go punk him out before or after the match – Razor convinces them to leave him alone. Waltman with the huge upset – he’s beaten Razor and Owen and will face the Michaels/Hennig winner tomorrow night on RAW for the IC. A terrific match, Owen breaking out some of the old high flying spots. Waltman beats him clean. Owen and Waltman shake hands after the match, Savage pulls Owen away, telling him he’s lost – he can’t just accept it like that. Savage knocks Waltman down with a right hand – drawing some heel heat – Savage tells Owen that’s how you have to do it – Owen asks Savage to leave the kid alone – Savage knocks Owen down with a right hand. Owen hops up – doesn’t retaliate – tells Savage to calm down and they should leave the ring – Savage knocks Owen down again – then knocks Waltman down again and starts putting the boots to Waltman.

(Recall, Owen and Savage have been training partners most of the year, also recall, Bret and Savage have had a longstanding relationship, read earlier years for the backstory)

Now’s where it gets confusing. Enter Ramon (Razor's been beating Waltman up since Waltman upset him on RAW - but now Razor's developing respect for him) Razor fights Savage off of Waltman – making a face save (even though Savage is a face and Razor is a heel, got it?) as he goes after Savage – Savage is protected – by Owen – who is also making a face save – he beats down Razor ('cause even though Savage just popped Owen, Owen knows it's just Randy being Randy) save by Michaels and Diesel (heels, coming in to save Razor) in comes Bret and Hennig – and a full on brawl breaks out (faces, obviously - except recall Hennig and Savage have a longstanding war that continued even at the Number One Contender's Battle Royal) with the fans somewhat unclear whom is the right side to root for.

In the midst – Michaels superkicks Waltman – who was fighting on the side of the Clique even though he’s a face. Razor gets in Shawn’s face – and Diesel works quickly to get between them and walk them both back to the locker room, calming them down. Hennig gets between Savage and Owen, calming them down, until Savage attacks Hennig, and it's Owen who has to play peacemaker.

Bret, standing outside all of this now, surveys the entire post brawl scene and shakes his head, as if in comment on the ridiculousness of the entire spectacle, working his way back to the locker room.

Later, we see Savage convince Owen that they have to leave the arena - Owen wants to stay for Bret's match, Owen wants to stay for Hennig's match -- but Savage says Owen has to look out for himself now, if he's ever gonna take the next step, he needs to think about himself.

Owen reluctantly leaves.

6. Tags: Steiners d. Headshrinkers (w/Yoko)
Ted’s got the briefcase, recall the angle is that he'll give a hundred grand to whomever can take the straps from the Steiners. But they don't, so DiBiase snaps the case shut and leave.

7. IC: Shawn Michaels (w/Diesel and Razor) d. Curt Hennig
Michaels cleanly and definitively. Kicks out of the perfectplex. Elbowdrop. Elbowdrop. Goes for the fall – and then pulls Hennig up he doesn’t want to pin him yet– Michaels refuses the pinfall until he can hit a third elbowdrop – 1,2,3. Diesel enters, jackknife. Razor enters. Edge. And that’s it for Curt.

He’s motionless for a minute or two as The Clique celebrates – and slowly, after they’re gone – leaves the ring while the video screen plays a highlight package of his career. We say goodbye to Mr. Perfect.

8. WWF Title: Bret Hart d. Razor Ramon (w/Diesel and Shawn)
Another terrific match, Bret keeps. Bret gets jackknifed, Bret gets superkicked – Razor hits the Edge – but Bret fights off the heels by himself, as Owen, Savage, and now Hennig are gone – and Bret gets the sharpshooter submission win.

An exhausted Bret, now a full year and a half as WWF Champion, raises the belt high as the show ends. Bret’s withstood the full onslaught of the Clique by himself and beaten Razor again.

The next month is the NWA PPV. The Nasty Boys debut, going over the young tag team Harlem Heat. Sid returns with a win. Davey Boy beats Orndorff again. Regal debuts going over Dustin. There’s a white hot tag title with Foley/Sting teaming up and taking from the Horsemen, Arn and Rude. 2 Cold regains the US Title (Funky! Funky!) over Steamboat. And in the big NWA Title match, Ric Flair once again wins the big strap, going over Vader – and the Horsemen stand on top of the mountain – the next night – Arn and Rude take on Austin and Pillman – and Arn turns on Rick – Arn, Austin, Pillman, and Flair take him out, Arn and Flair turning heel to join the dastardly Blonds, to form the new Four Horsemen.

Fall Brawl – 1993 Houston
NWA Title: Ric Flair d. Vader
US Title: 2 Cold Scorpio d. Ricky Steamboat
Tags: Sting/Jack d. AA/Rude
Steve Regal d. Dustin Rhodes

Davey Boy Smith d. Paul Orndorff
Mark Bagwell d. Paul Roma
Sid d. Ice Train
Nasty Boys d. Harlem Heat

Eastern Championship Wrestling out of Philadelphia debuts in ’93 and its biggest show to date comes next.  Mr. Hughes works. Taz beats the Anvil. Dreamer gets a win. The tag belts belong to Public Enemy. The Sandman wins the TV title – and Sabu keeps the ECW Title.  The parallel between the opening match and the opener of Mania I is intentional.

November To Remember – 1993 Philadelphia
ECW Title: Sabu d. Kevin Sullivan
TV Title: Sandman d. Tery Funk
Tags: Public Enemy d. Suicide Blondes
Tommy Dreamer d. Road Warrior Hawk

Taz d. Jim Neidhart
Mr. Hughes d. Johnny Gunn
Ian/Axl Rotten d. Orient Express
King Kong Bundy v. Sheri Martel

RAW after Summer Slam begins with Bret.

The storyline now is that Bret is besieged on all sides. Uneasy is the head who wears the crown. I’d like the fans to reflect that a little bit. Maybe some dislike Bret because of how he treated Davey Boy a couple of years ago when he came back and apologized and it took Bret so long to accept. Maybe some don’t like how his relationship with Owen is strained – remember his not coming to help him at the Summer Slam at Wembley, and Owen then leaving at Summer Slam – or how Bret's not really a part of the current Owen/Savage dynamic – or how Bret has left Hennig to be buried by the Clique twice.

Some people will like the Clique, of course. They’re cool. They mitigate against that by doing the Razor tension inside the group over Waltman, but some people will be wearing Clique t-shirts.

Some people will just be tired of Bret – he’s been on top along time.

And some people would like to see the Undertaker get a shot. Unbeaten for 3 years, squashing everyone in his path. I’m guessing.

And that fan dynamic should mirror the dynamic in the storyline, as Bret stands alone in the ring. Relevant clips play over this, intercutting with Bret. Proud, dominant, everpresent Bret Hart.

Bret: I’ve been coming out here, I’ve been coming out to this ring for ten years, and I’ve been telling you fans that I’m the Best there is, Best there was, Best there ever will be. And I’ve been telling you that because it’s the truth. I’ve been telling you that because I was one half of the Hart Foundation, I was tag team champion for a year and a half, longer than any other team in WWF history -- the British Bulldog and the Hit Man were the best tag team there ever was

I’ve been coming out here, I’ve been coming out to this ring for ten years, and I’ve been telling you fans that I’m the best there is, best there was, best there ever will be. And I’ve been telling you that because it’s the truth. I’ve been telling you that because I was the 2 time intercontinental champion, I was intercontinental champion for a year and a half straight, I was the longest running intercontinental champion of all time – I was the best intercontinental champion there ever will be.

(Bret gets angrier, he's a man constantly fighting, constantly fighting to keep his spot, and now we see the wear)

I’ve been coming out here, I’ve been coming out to this ring for ten years, and I’ve been telling you fans that I’m the best there is, best there was, best there ever will be. And I’ve been telling you that because it’s the truth, I’ve been telling you that because I am the WWF Heavyweight Champion of the World – I have been the WWf heavyweight champion of the world for a year and a half – when I go to Survivor Series in Boston and defend my championship – I will tie Mr. Perfect as the longest running WWF champion since we started Pay per View – and when I win at Survivor Series, I will break his record as the longest running WWF Champion – and then I am going to go to Madison Square Garden, to Wrestlemania X, the the greatest sporting event of all time – and I will go there the WWF Champion for 2 years, and prove to every one of you fans that I am exactly what I have always said I am: I am the best there is, the best there was, the best there ever will be.

What else is going on….Shawn defends that night in the main against Waltman, who won the tournament. Waltman wins by DQ when he’s about the get the fall – but Diesel interferes. Diesel’s going to jackknife – but he’s stopped by Razor. Razor just likes the little guy is all – Razor and Diesel have words – and Michaels breaks it up.

Marty cuts his first promo in years. Does a "remember me?" take. 3 time tag champ? Anyone? While Shawn Michaels gets to dance and strut out here very week - I'm stuck at the bottom of the card. I beat Shawn Michaels at Wrestlemania! Where's my title shot! What about me? What about Marty!

Razor enters, cuts a withering promo on Marty - says he can get a shot - if he can beat the Bad Guy at Survivor Series.

Because of the screwjob, they'll do a Waltman/Michaels for the IC at Survivor Series in Boston.

Randy/Owen do more taped pieces. The story is Randy is trying to toughen him up – Owen knows how to wrestle, but is he ruthless enough to be Champion? This largely involves Randy trying to get Owen to cheat, to fight, to do anything to win. No respect, no sportsmanship, just winning. We can be split here, some fans thinking this is good, we like Randy, Randy’s been world champion – Randy’s helping Owen the way Bret should be – but Bret only thinks about keeping his title – which, hey, wait a minute, is who Randy’s teaching Owen to be like. Crazy world. Randy shows a tape of Summer Slam 92 to Owen – he sees Bret with Davey Boy in the sharpshooter, he sees that Bret could release the hold to prevent Michaels from sending him through the Spanish announce table – he sees that Bret doesn’t do it.

Is Randy right – or is Randy you know, not hooked up right – Randy’s acting like a heel, saying it’s for Owen’s own good. Looking for a split crowd here. At some point – Owen will lose a match – say to Razor – when he’s distracted by a shot on the video wall of Michaels and Diesel punking Bret out. Randy enters and slaps Owen around and says the only way he can teach him a lesson – is to take him to Macho Man Survivor Series. Oooh, yeah…

Ted makes a deal with Jim Cornette to bring in teams from Smoky Mountain, the Heavenly Bodies and the veterans, the Rock and Roll Express, to try to take out the Steiners. The two teams meet – and it’s Morton and Gibson who go over – and Ted will manage them in their attempt to win the straps – and the hundred grand – at SSeries.

After being jumped by the Clique, and finding himself without aid, since Hennig is gone and Savage and Owen are locked in their thing – Bret gets reinforcements – he’s attacked during RAW by Diesel the week before Survivor Series – and he’s saved by..Bruce and Keith! The other Hart brothers show up in the WWF – the two of them are able to knock Diesel down and drive him back.

Your number one contender – the Total Package. Luger beats all the monsters – Bigelow, Crush, Yoko, Borga – and is named the opponent for Bret at Survivor Series. Besides Lex being Lex – who we’ll sell here is Sting. Lex and Sting are buddies, Sting invented the Scorpion Death Lock and Bret stole it and calls it the Sharpshooter. Bret says he’s the best – but the real best is Lex and his best friend Sting. Sting’s not coming, obviously, so there’s some risk here – but it’s more interesting than anything else they can do with Lex.

It's Survivor Series '93 - Bret defends against Lex, Shawn against Waltman, the Steiners meet the Rock and Roll Express, Owen Hart v. Randy Savage, Razor Ramon v. Marty Jannetty, Diesel takes on Keith and Bruce in a handicap - call your cable company!!

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