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.
Royal Rumble -1995
Sunday, January 29, 2006
Survivor Series is here.
Royal Rumble 1995 Tampa
We squeeze out one more Gorilla/Cornette. JR's coming back, although still sitting on the sidelines in the actual universe, he'll be front and center here.
(Dark – Hakushi d. Matt Hardy)
Show opens with a shot of the Triple Crown in the ring. We see the list of engraved names:
Bret’s music. Bret enters. Boos. Says tonight, the Real Hart Foundation will beat the hell out of the British Bulldog and Bob Backlund – but before that, he has a job to do – he does’t want to do it – it disgusts him that the Triple Crown – the most prestigious honor in all of sports – is now being passed from him to Shawn Michaels…
Bret shakes his head.
Particularly when Shawn Michaels is a guy who can’t beat me.
Clips of Bret/Shawn from WM VI and from Survivor Series 1990 – the last singles meeting for Bret and Shawn – 4 1/2 years ago – incidentally, in Hartford, CT – home of WM XI…
So, if I have to give away this trophy – give away the Triple Crown to Shawn Michaels – let’s get it out of the way now…
Michaels enters. Face pop.
Shawn to the ring. Asks Bret how’s the family? How’s the tag division? Enjoying working third from the top? Who’s working the Main Event here at the Rumble tonight…oh yeah, that would be _me. The Heart Break Kid, Shawn Michaels.
Bret says he likes having the tag team belts – in fact, looking at the triple crown – he wouldn’t mind being the only man in the history of wrestling to hold all the belts at the same time. The Tag belts – the IC belt – and as soon as Shawn has the guts to face him – the WWF Championship belt.
Shawn says Hit Man, I don’t know when it’s gonna happen – it might be tonight, it might be tomorrow – and it’s gonna come sooner than later – but you and me, Hit Man…you and me are gonna go….
They do a nose to nose. Crowd enjoys that type of thing.
The tag teams for match one now enter – but before the match…
Ted enters, says that the winners of this match will be named the Number One contenders – and go onto face the Tag Champs at Wrestlemania XI!!! There's now a special graphic, music, before the tag matches
The Million Dollar Man Presents....WWF Tag Team Action!
1. Smoking Gunns d. Jarrett/Road Dogg
Ted joins Cornette and Gorilla on the announce. Billy! Bart! Going to Wrestlemania!! Road Dogg gets pinned, obviously, Jarrett is crazy pissed and starts slapping the Dogg around – Road Dogg fights back, their tension from the winter mixed partner tag tournament boiling over, – ta, da – and we have another match for XI. Ted is clearly upset at the announce – this was not the way he wanted it to turn out – and as the Gunns make the sign for the belts – Ted fumes. Ted doesn't like the Gunns. Not a complicated program.
2. Undertaker d. Dick Murdoch
-Another legends win for the Dead Man. A few weeks from now, at a RAW on the road to XI, the WWF will present an honorary championship belt to…Lawrence Taylor.
Come on, it’s WM XI. You know the rules.
LT, obviously all coked up – says he’s honored…but you know, not really. He’s Lawrence Taylor, he’s got 2 Super Bowl rings – he’s going to the Hall of Fame – and he’s supposed to care about some fake piece of shit wrestling belt?
LT tosses the belt down.
Fuck that. LT is shooting, daddy.
It is fucking stupid that I should have to stand here and pretend that I care about this. They even made me watch that last Pay Per View…what do you call that..the Royal Rumble? I saw some guy there named the Undertaker..
Yeah, some big ass guy, and they called him a legend.
A legend? There ain’t no legends in wrestling. You want to see a legend? Hey WWF – you want to see a legend – the only legend that has ever been in any wrestling ring is standing in one right now – so enjoy it – ‘cause this is the last you’ll ever see of Lawrence Taylor.
Undertaker. Duh. And we have another Wrestlemania match.
Yup, they're turning LT heel for a show in Hartford. Fuckin’ A.
3. Lex Luger d. Bam Bam Bigelow
They fight before the match, during, and then after – fighting all the way back to the back. They’re gonna fight on RAW all the way to XI to the point where they’ll meet at XI in a Loser Leaves Town.
4. Alabama Bob Holly d. PJ Walker
New guys! Alabama Bob is a legit pain in the ass – and that's his gimmick, he's just sort of pissed off and mean --- But he’s a face nonetheless – he and PJ both young faces, really here just for some semblance of workrate.
5. Lightning Kid Sean Waltman d. Rick Martel
The Kid embarrasses the vet. It’s a good match but Waltman shows no respect at all – he debuts the Clique crotch chop – and spends much of his match shoving his groin at Martel – which much of the crowd enjoys. Waltman wins with the X Factor – stands above Martel and tells him to suck right on it, Strike Force. Oooh, that Kid. He burns me up. Waltman makes the Clique hand sign as he exits.
6. Tags: British Empire d. Hart Foundation
Anvil submits to the cross face chicken wing. Davey Boy gets his second tag title, with two different partners – as does Backlund, who picks up his first strap since 1983. Big face pop for the mismatched tag champs. “The great Benjamin Disraeli appointed the viceroys in India! Tonight, I am MR. VICEROY BOB BACKLUND! Archduke Bulldog – Archduke Bulldog – the sun will never set on the British Empire!!! I am a Real American! Fight for the Rights of Every Man! I am a Real American! Fight for what’s Right – Fight for your life, Tojos! I will fight for your life! Semper FIIIIIIIIII”
I enjoy me some Backlund.
7. IC: Owen Hart d. Razor Ramon
Owen’s second IC title. Terrific match. It’s face v. face, both guys getting the pops – but it’s Hart v. Clique so they don’t like each other. And Razor once sidekicked Owen into the lockers. Razor gets frustrated during the match, Owen’s very talented – and Razor pulls out the heel stuff, the punching – taking it outside – the steel steps – Razor pulls up the mat outside and tries to hit his chokeslam – Owen counters with a DDT to the concrete that leaves Razor bloody. Owen wins with the pinfall after an enziguiri that shocks the crowd and switches the belt.
After the match – Razor snaps – heel turn - the weight of playing face for over a year now gets to him…Edge to Owen…Edge to Owen…Razor goes for the third….
Davey Boy enters. Davey Boy fights Razor off – getting the face pop…
Waltman runs in. Waltman fights Davey Boy off. Heel pop.
Backlund. Backlund joins his partner, fighting off Waltman. Face pop.
Michaels and Diesel. Who, of course, are meeting next for the title. Which is sort of an odd dynamic. Michaels and Diesel enter – they stand with Razor and Waltman, fighting off the Harts, 'cause Clique v. Harts transcends Face v. Heel - transcends everything. It’s faces and heels mixed together…Diesel and Michaels, who are scheduled next, scheduled next for the WWF Champiosnhip, now on the same side as they brawl against the Harts and Backlund...
And here comes Bret. Bret slowly makes his way to the ring. Bret pausing as he sees the entire scene ------
…..And Bret starts fighting on the side of the Harts! Bret gets shots in at everyone, then goes after Michaels – the two of them brawling heavily -- Davey Boy and Diesel brawl, Razor and Owen, Waltman and Backlund – finally, the officials break it up – everyone’s ejected except for Michaels and Diesel, who go right into their No DQ match when Diesel brings a chair into the ring and lays Shawn out and goes for a flash pin….
8. WWF Title: No DQ: Shawn Michaels d. Diesel
…but doesn’t get it. We’re gonna do the off the chart brawl they had at Good Friends, Better Enemies a year and a half after this. If they could get Mad Dog Vachon to come, we’ll have Diesel pull off his wooden leg and beat Michaels with it. Michaels goes through a table. Michaels comes off a ladder. Michaels hits Diesel with a TV monitor. Michaels with the superkick. Elbowdrop. Pinfall. Crazyhot match. Terrific brawl. Michaels will keep the belt and go to Mania as the champion.
NWA…Earthquake and Hacksaw work as a tag team. Boss Man works. Dustin does a farewell job. The big undercard event is Savage/Hogan – Randy as the face, with the fork, of course, Hogan as Hollywood. They had no feud at all in the WWF – so it’s a far different dynamic – Randy goes over. Harlem Heat keep. As does Arn. Sting retakes over Vader. And that’s the end of Vader’s NWA run.
Superbrawl – 1995 Baltimore
NWA Title: Sting d. Vader
US Title: Arn Anderson d. Marc Mero
Tags: Harlem Heat d. Nastys
Alex Wright d. Paul Orndorff
Mark Bagwell d. Dustin Rhodes
Randy Savage d. Hulk Hogan
The Patriot d. Bubba Rogers
Sullivans d. Earthquake/Hacksaw
On the way to XI….Ted says he hates the Gunns, they don’t make the tag division any money – so before they get their title shot at XI against British Empire, they’ll have to beat, earlier that night, Ron and Don Harris!
Yeah, I know.
We’ve got UT/LT in the legends match.
We’ve got the loser leaves town, Bigelow/Lex.
We’ve got Jarrett/Road Dogg. Jarrett still unbeaten as a single.
We’ve got the tag title, the British Empire v. either the Gunns or the Harris’s.
Now, additionally, they do some 6 man tags on RAW – Owen/Davey Boy/Backlund v. Diesel/Razor/Waltman. They use it to push the Razor/Owen rematch for the IC at XI. They use it to continue the Diesel/Davey Boy rivalry, which has been on hiatus since DBS went tag…since that match isn’t available to Diesel – he’s going to get…
King Kong Bundy.
Bundy returns for the first time since I – gets the nice reaction. Says he’s been gone from the WWF for 11 years – but there’s just something he has to get off his chest.
He shows the clip of Diesel’s first promo after his debut at IX – when Diesel talked about how he was better than the typical WWF fat guy.
Bundy challenges Diesel for XI.
Diesel enters, laughs. Says Bundy needs a remedial lesson in Booking 101 – the marks out there aren’t gonna turn over their grandma’s social security check to buy a PPV – unless they think there’s some possibility that Big Daddy Cool’s gonna get beaten up – and let’s be honest, Bundy – even if you were twice your size – Bundy v. Anyone isn’t on anyone’s t-shirt in 1995.
Bundy says, “twice my size?” You said even if I were twice my size?
“Hey Bundy, even if there were two of you the only thing you could beat me in would be a pie eating contest.”
Bundy says he’ll take Nash up on it. At Wrestlemania XI – Diesel will take on King Kong Bundy and….Yokozuna.
Yoko enters. Face pop. Handicap match at XI.
The RAW after the Rumble – opening promo by Razor and Diesel.
Mixed pop. Razor basically says he heard Diesel’s promo from after Survivor Series and was reminded that they were the Clique and they were bad guys. He also talked to his accountant and found out that merchandise sales were higher when Razor and Diesel were together. He and Nash then create the tweener – saying they’re inviting the fans – just some of the fans, the cool fans, the fans with disposable income or some smoke, or with sisters of questionable morals – to come along with them – ‘cause at Wrestlemania XI – they are gonna hurt some people.
There’s a feud between young Candido and Waltman, one that largely consists of Waltman salivating over fresh, young Tammy. Whenever he gets a chance – Waltman tries to put his hands on her (you're welcome, Sean, try not to get us sued) – which causes Candido to freak out.
The other element of Candido’s character is he’s the new babyface underdog – he doesn’t have the fancy pyro or much of a ring costume – and he works desperately hard – we constantly see him trying to do anything he can just to get on the WM card.
So, when the card is announced – and he isn’t on it – he’s depressed and he and Tammy might just give up the dream and go back home, gosh darn it.
The Clique has a proposition. An indecent proposal, if you will. On the RAW before XI – Candido will face…Razor Ramon.
Razor has the IC rematch with Owen. If Candido wins – he will get Razor’s shot. He will go to WM XI and wrestle Owen Hart for the IC title. Wow.
If he loses – then at WM – Tammy will become property of the Clique for one night – at Wrestlemania.
Young fresh Tammy.
Candido of course accepts – he doesn’t want to – but the girl encourages him – you know the drill here – Candido loses a spirited match to Razor – and the Clique openly salivates as they tell Tammy they’ll send a car to pick her up early on Sunday. Underwear optional.
This is no ordinary love. No ordinary love.
Candido tries to fight back – and they bury him. Jacknife…Edge. Pose.
The main event is Shawn defending against Bret. Shawn/Bret, strap WM XI. It’s the pinnacle of all Hart/Clique hatred – we see “shootlike” backstage interviews with all the Harts and all the Clique where they say they want their guy to win…so, even though Shawn’s the face and Bret’s the heel – Owen and Davey Boy say they’ll be rooting for Bret – and Razor/Diesel/Waltman say they’ll be rooting for Shawn.
We’d get clip packages going into XI recapping the entire Hart/Clique feud – it’s not ending at XI – it may never end – but this is seen as the high water mark – everything from the time that we first saw that Bret and Shawn didn’t like each other back six years ago, has been building to this moment…the ultimate Hart v. the leader of the Clique on wrestling’s biggest stage (and having Razor v. Owen as the IC just feeds right into that, having Diesel and Davey Boy continue their feud, albeit not at Mania feeds into that).
Wrestlemania XI, Chico. Shawn defends against Bret. Owen defends against Razor. Davey Boy and Backlund against the Harris/Gunns winner. Loser Leaves Town: Bigelow v. Lex. Diesel in the Handicap against Bundy/Yoko. Jarrett meets the Dogg. Legends Match: Taker against the heel turned Lawrence Taylor.
It ain't a bad show. I'm guessing you're gonna buy.