I haven't been writing much at all lately. I've become sucked in Biography -
so much so that I've been ignoring wrestling more than ever! Maybe the
wrestling decline isn't so bad, as I'm getting the kind of history lesson I
slept through in high school. Today I learned about Al Capone and The
Untouchables. Very interesting stuff.
However, I can't get wrestling out of my blood. So let's draw a show at random, and go with it.
FREE FOR ALL
We're live in the Alamo Dome! Todd Pettengill warms up the crowd, and dear god he's freshly shorn and sporting a goatee. Quick, go to Dok Hendrix!
Doc is out back, and he wants to show some footage of all the fans wanting to get into the event. However, if you can't be at the event yourself, you can always order it on PPV!
Vince McMahon, Jim Ross, and Jerry Lawler are behind the announce table. McMahon asks for Lawler's pick to win, and his money is on...himself! He's a last minute entrant apparently.
MINI VADER and MINI MANKIND vs. LA PARKITA and MAX MINI
I can't make out what they're calling Max Mini on this show, so I'll just call him Max, thanks.
La Parkita and Vader start off. They roll around on the mat for awhile, and Vader goes into his Who's The Man? Test of strength, and they go through another series of reversals, leading to a couple of armdrags by Vader. Parkita off the ropes, and catches Vader with an armdrag. Max comes in and Vader tags in Mankind. Headscissors takeover, followed by 2 armdrags, and 2 dropkicks. Mankind gets out of there in a hurry. Vader is tagged in and promptly kicks Max in the face. He's knocked out of the ring, but Parkita was tagged in prior to Max flying out. Vader takes control and gets Mankind in. Dropkick from Mankind - whip into the ropes - double forearm shot takes Parkita down. In comes Vader, and he charges Parkita in the corner - Parkita moves and Vader dropkicks the turnbuckle. Max is sent in and Vader yells at the crowd for awhile. Parkita comes back in after Max does nothing, and here's Todd Pettengill talking to fans in the back. In the ring Mankind misses a dropkick and goes flying through the ropes to the floor. Max and Vader are paired off. Max gets powerslammed, then hit with an elbow. Vader heads up...VADERBOMB! Max rolls out of the way and grabs Vader with La Majistral to score the win!
At the Survivor Series, Sid Vicious attacked Jose Lothario and won the WWF World Heavyweight Title from Shawn Michaels. Michaels was told the following day the Royal Rumble would be held in his hometown of San Antonio, so he challenged Sid.
Todd Pettengill stands with Shawn Michaels in the back. Michaels is going for the Johnny Fever style 5 o'clock shadown. Michaels admits he has the flu. He has Lothario on his mind and the great fans of San Antonio.
The announcers speculate towards the World Title match. JR thinks Michaels is going to pull out it giving an all out effort. Lawler on the other hand says the mailman of the WWF won't be stopped by rain, night, etc. but the flu sure will! McMahon agrees with Lawler about that. Also, the Royal Rumble winner goes on to Wrestlemania as the #1 contender.
Here's a look back at the 1995 Royal Rumble where Shawn Michaels skinned the cat and came back to eliminate The British Bulldog to win.
Dok Hendrix wants to talk about some of the entrants. Well, he doesn't really talk about any of them, rather listing guys off. I'd rather not try to keep up as we'll see them later on anyway.
Sunny's in the house! How did things go so bad so fast? She sends Dok to the back to go get himself a cold drink. She's ready to rumble - what about San Antonio? She's going to have her eyes on the Royal Rumble all night. Will Steve Austin win? (Booo) I have to quote her here: "Or maybe someone I want to sink my claws into, Bret "The Hitman" Hart. If Bret Hart wins the Royal Rumble, who wants to see me in his corner at Wrestlemania?" You're a naughty girl Sunny. Sunny heads to the back to work the superstar line.
If you have money to burn, call the superstar line! 1-900-737-4WWF, only $1.49 a minute.
Todd Pettengill is back in the ring again, reminding us the WWF is broadcast all over the world in 3 languages. Here's the Spanish announce team of Hugo Savinovich, Carlos Cabrera, and Arturo Rivera. On the French team, Ray Rougeau and Jacques Rougeau Sr. In English...well, I've already taken care of that part. Pettengill tries to start a Burger King chant at Lawler. Dok calls to Todd from way up in the cheap seats. They're ready to rumble royally up there.
Sid's music starts up. For a company that was getting their asses handed to them in the ratings, that building's pretty damn full! Sid comes out to extend his apologies to the family of Shawn Michaels, and the family of Jose Lothario. He will NOT be responsible for what he does tonight against Shawn Michaels.
Todd asks the crowd who it's going to be, Sid or Michaels? Gee, I wonder who they answered with.
The Royal Rumble is next!
ROYAL RUMBLE 1997
Light the pyro, and play the country music! And listen to the Spanish announcers? Whoops - hey Brooks I think you ordered the wrong version! No, it appears to be a worldwide problem. Luckily it quickly corrects itself.
GOLDUST (with Marlena) vs. HUNTER HEARST HELMSLEY (with Curtis Hughes) (for the WWF Intercontinental Title)
This feud was started by HHH trying to add Marlena to his group of women. Is he using Goldust to distract Goldust, or is Goldust playing mind games with Helmsley?
They meet on the ramp and Goldust pounds on HHH. Goldust gets Helmsley in the ring and punches him in the corner. HHH is sent out to the floor, and dropped chest first across the guard rail. HHH is back in the ring and Goldust tries the 10 punch count along, but HHH comes off with an atomic drop. Boot the midsection, early Pedigree attempt is blocked - and he's catapulted to the floor. Goldust grabs the steps and slams them over the back of HHH. The referee tries to get it back into the ring. Goldust slams HHH face first into the steps, and rolls back in. HHH gets on the apron, and Goldust comes over - so HHH hits him with a jawbreaker. HHH chops at Goldust in the corner. Whip into the opposite corner - Helmsley charges and Goldust gets a boot up. Clothesline, and a cover scores the first 2 count. HHH goes to the low blow, and Goldust falls out to the floor. HHH heads to the top turnbuckle, and connects with the double axehandle to the floor! Whip - Goldust goes shoulder first into the ring post. Goldust is set up on the corner of the railing. He winds up and charges, but meets the steel knee first as Goldust rolls away. Goldust grabs the steps and nails HHH again, before rolling in the ring and waiting. He gets tired of that and goes to get Helmsley himself. Goldust starts to work over the knee with kneedrops of his own. HHH goes to the ropes, so Goldust yanks him off towards the middle of the ring. He drops a knee on Helmsley's knee again, and works a knee submission. Helmsley manages to kick his way out of that, but it doesn't last long as Goldust promptly slaps on a figure four! HHH is almost counted down a number of times as he rolls trying to get his hands on anything. Goldust uses the ropes for leverage so he's forced to break the hold. Helmsley rolls out to the floor, and Goldust follows him out and clips him at the knee. "Come on you piece of shit!" Tsk tsk Dustin. Goldust rolls back in and feels himself up - and gives a slap to HHH. He heads back out - grabs Helmsley - and drops him knee first on the steps. HHH rolls in and begs off, but Goldust isn't going anywhere. HHH gets a kick to Goldust's midsection out of nowhere. Whip - Goldust tries a crossbody - Helmsley ducks and Goldust flies out to the floor. He follows Goldust out and whips him into the guard rail. Goldust stumbles and HHH drives him face first into the steps. HHH grabs a crappy wooden chair, and the referee grabs it away. HHH slams Goldust into the guardrail and quickly rolls him back into the ring. Goldust lays in the middle of the ring - HHH comes forward and drops a knee! He covers and Goldust gets a shoulder up at 2. Goldust stands - whips HHH into the ropes - and comes forward with a clothesline. Another whip, back body drop! Goldust heads upstairs, and HHH shoves the referee into the ropes and Goldust gets crotched up top. HHH heads up top to try the superplex, but Goldust hits a headbutt! Goldust with a senton, but HHH moves. Hughes rolls the belt into the ring. HHH grabs the belt and kisses Marlena! Goldust turns, grabs the belt and waffles HHH! Hughes manages to pull HHH out of the ring at the 2 count. Goldust takes the cigar from Marlena and jams it in the face of Hughes. HHH meanwhile has run around the ring, and rushes Goldust from behind with a big clothesline. He picks him up and hits the Pedigree! 1, 2, 3!
Earlier today, Bret Hart cuts a promo about the Royal Rumble. He claims to be a marked man. However, he says he's always been a marked man and he'll be the one standing at the end.
Mankind is alone in his boiler room. Most people see the Royal Rumble as a chance to get a shot at the WWF Title. He sees it as a chance to hurt a lot of people that he doesn't like, and even some people he does like. It's going to be a nice day.
FAAROOQ (with PG-13 rapping to the ring, Crush, Clarence Mason, and a bunch of groupies in tuxedoes and dresses) vs. AHMED JOHNSON
Think Ron has enough guys with him? Pre-match package goes over a highlight package with Ahmed's quick rise to fame. Christ, who says you have to talk to be a big star? Things like "You gone don!" (You're going down) seemed to be more than enough. He's being dubbed the people's champion here. I'll be honest, Ahmed does have a certain street appeal that wrestling hasn't been able to recapture (and lord knows they've TRIED!) and I can see why he was such a big star. He's a tough talking black Goldberg.
Ahmed charges the ring as the NOD clear. Ahmed is all over Ron like a rabid dog. In the corner, lots of right hands! He stomps on Faarooq until he rolls out to the floor. Ahmed follows and posts him forehead first. Back in - 2 kicks to the midsection. Ahmed pulls the coat off Faarooq, but Ron comes back with a rake to the face, then some punches in Ahmed's kidney area. (This was right after Ahmed "almost lost his life" due to internal injuries, so working over the kidneys is life threatening here.) Ahmed comes off the ropes as Ron gets a belt out, and hits a clothesline. We take a long shot of the crowd as something is happening in the ring. Ahh, it's Ahmed whipping Ron like "a government Mule (tm JR)" and Faarooq has to roll out to the floor. Again Ahmed follows and throws Faarooq into two sets of stairs. Faarooq throws a groupie at Ahmed, then charges with a clothesline! Faarooq gets a chair - kidney punch - and drops him kidney first on the chair! Faarooq grabs the chair and pounds over the back of Ahmed. Ahmed gets rolled into the ring. Faarooq in - kick right to the kidney. Another one! Faarooq to Crush: "How about that?" Crush nods. Faarooq sets Ahmed on the turnbuckle in a prone position - and kicks him in the kidney. Johnson lies down in pain while Faarooq barks with the referee. Faarooq with more kidney punches - and he slaps on a camel clutch. Ahmed starts to power out...and Faarooq leaps on his back and promptly slaps back on the camel clutch. Faarooq lets go to yell at the crowd, and Ahmed stands up with Faarooq right over him! Faarooq on his shoulders, and Ahmed falls right back! Both men crash hard! Faarooq up first, and he heads up top! Off the top, and Ahmed catches him with a powerslam!!! He doesn't cover, rather whipping Faarooq off the ropes - and gets caught with a spinebuster. Ahmed stands up while Faarooq jaws with the crowd. Faarooq turns - irish whip - and a spinebuster of his own! Crush runs in, then groupies and Clarence Mason. That's a DQ if I ever saw one!
Other than the general sloppiness, I really don't get why the internet crowd rags on Ahmed so hard. He has charisma up the wall and comes off as a beast. Maybe it's the Goldberg syndrome in "we don't like anything new".
The NOD continues to attack, but Ahmed fights them off. A groupie is in a position for the Pearl River Plunge, and he's sent right through the French announce table!
Terry Funk cuts a promo in the back. He's Texas bred, and he was born to rumble. That's about the jist of it.
The Nation stands in the back. Clarence Mason promises the war is coming. Faarooq orders a groupie to fight next time they're out there. Faarooq says he's gonna get Ahmed in the Royal Rumble.
VADER vs. THE UNDERTAKER
JR says it's unusual that the Undertaker gives up 130 pounds in a match. Considering the lugs he was fighting from his inception until that point, I'd agree. He usually gives up at LEAST 200!
Vader charges, but Taker sidesteps and slams Vader headfirst into the turnbuckle. Taker hits a series of rights, but Vader blocks and hits his own. Taker blocks him, and comes back with his punches again, then whips Vader off the ropes. Taker sets for a back bodydrop - but Vader's ready and pounds Taker in the back. Taker stands right up, and pounds Vader in the corner! Taker chokes Vader - and breaks at 4. Taker charges in the corner again, but Vader gets an elbow up. Vader with a clothesline - and a zombie situp! Vader with an Irish whip off the ropes - and a bodyblock to send Taker down. Taker again sits up zombie style! Vader with a whip again, and using the bodyblock a second time, and Taker zombie sits up a THIRD time! Vader goes out to the floor and the ref tells him to get in the ring. Taker goes to the apron while they argue, and he leaps with a double axehandle blow to the back of Vader's head. Uppercut, and Vader is down! A few more shots from Taker, and he rolls back in. Vader gets on the apron, and pokes Taker in the eyes. Lousy neckbreaker. Vader comes in and whips Taker off the ropes. He sets for the back bodydrop but Taker is ready and connects with a Rocker Dropper!! That was cool! Scoop and a slam! Taker off the ropes, big leg drop. 1, 2, kickout. Taker kicks Vader in the chest, and goes Old School for us! Well, sorta, see Vader was waiting for it and he crotches him on the ropes. One of the few times you'll see that happening. Taker is up first though, and he comes forward - only to get caught with the uppernut! Down he goes again. Hey, this match mustn't be important because Todd Pettengill is talking with a fan. This chick saved her money to come to the Royal Rumble because she follows Shawn Michaels wherever he goes. See, I save MY money to watch PPV myself, and I'm not really a fan of creepy stalker types. (I hope you read that line Trista!!) Vader is absolutely laying in the shots to the Undertaker, and poses to the crowd! That was an awesome quick sequence that was overshadowed by Todd. Vader whips Taker across the ring, and hits an avalanche! Taker stumbles out of the corner and takes a clothesline. Vader poses again to the crowd and a series of boos. Vader heads up to the middle turnbuckle and hits a flying clothesline. He covers, 1, 2, kickout. That was a fast count, and even Vince picked up on it. Vader puts on a...shoulderhold? What the hell is he doing? He's literally got 2 hands on Taker's shoulder. Taker punches his way out with a series of fast shots. Vader tries to get on a headlock, but Taker falls back with a belly to back suplex! Both men are down. Taker is the first one to his feet. Off the ropes - and he misses an elbow drop. Vader was playing possum, and promptly drops an elbow on Taker. Vader again heads up to the second turnbuckle, but he takes too long and gets caught with a super powerslam! Taker gets a knee to Vader's midsection - and whips him off the ropes. He sets - but Vader grabs him and hits a fast Vaderbomb! He covers, 1, 2, TAKER KICKS OUT! He's alive and hammering away at the face of Vader. Whip, reversal, and Taker hits a leaping clothesline! He goes Old School a second time, and this time it works! The crowd looks at the entrance way, as Paul Bearer strolls down to ringside. Taker hits a chokeslam on the big man and declares it over. He turns and see Paul. Quickly he clotheslines Vader to the outside, then crosses the ring and attacks Paul on the other side! Bearer is rolled into the ring, and he begs for mercy. Taker grabs Paul Bearer in a chokeslam position, but Vader's in. Taker kicks him, and clotheslines Vader out again, coming with him this time. He slams Vader into the apron. They go back towards the French announce table, and they look none to pleased to see wrestlers there again. Taker sets up the steps. He charges at Vader who's set by the guardrail - but Bearer pulls Vader away, and Taker goes sternum first into the railing. As Taker gets to his feet Bearer charges with the urn and cracks him on the head. Taker crawls into the ring slowly, and Vader helps him in. He goes up - Vaderbomb from the second rope, and that's it!!!
Awesome match! Vader and Paul Bearer go off together. Well DUH! We did see Mini Vader and Mini Mankind team up earlier on. Taker asks the official why he didn't disqualify Vader. No answer. So the referee takes a chokeslam. Taker goes over and yells at Vince before leaving.
Backstage the Honky Tonk Man is on the AOL chat room. JR says he loves being online. I noticed.
Steve Austin isn't talking to anyone until he throws 29 pieces of trash over the top and goes to Wrestlemania.
British Bulldog arrives and declares himself bizarre. And he'll win.
FUERZA GUERRERA, HEAVY METAL, and JERRY ESTRADA vs. PEDRO AGUAYO, CANEK, and HECTOR GARZA
Oh man this is gonna be brutal. I've only heard of ONE of these guys (Hector Garza) and that's only because he spent a little time in WCW before he got injured and shipped back to Mexico. By brutal, I mean the announcers had better do a damn solid job of letting me know who's who or my play by play is gonna be non-existent.
Vince doesn't know who's who, and since I don't either I really can't offer a play by play here. It doesn't really matter though - because as far as lucha goes, this is far from what WCW was offering at the time. It's pretty much all hiptosses, and basic wrestling moves with NO story being told with the wrestling. This is in fact some of the WORST Mexican wrestling I've seen to date. The crowd could care less. Why this is on PPV is beyond me. The masked guy on the team of Pedro Aguayo, Canek, and Hector Garza pins who I BELIEVE is Heavy Metal, but I never could quite figure that out thanks to the lousy announcing. This is where you REALLY need a Mike Tenay.
On the superstar line Kevin Kelly chats with Ahmed Johnson, while Faarooq and the NOD are on Sunny's line. Paul Bearer is on Sunny's cleavage. (No, I'm not making that up.)
Howard Finkle announces the attendance at 60,477. Jesus, I thought they were bullshitting about the huge crowd!! (I'm not a big "attendance" historian, so I honestly had no clue this show was so large.) (This show was blacked out from TV in the San Antonio area...and heavily papered. - CRZ)
THE ROYAL RUMBLE
Crush gets lucky #1! JR says that Crush has the longest odds of winning, since he draws #1 and only one guy has done it. Well, let's see, this is the tenth royal rumble, and one guy has already done it. Sounds like good odds to me! One thing that's always bugged me is why they deem #1 so horrible, and don't really pay as much attention to #2. #2 starts at the same damn time as #1. Sorry, I'm just being petty. Dig the dreads on Crush. #2 is...Ahmed Johnson! Whoa, shocker. Clarence Mason starts screaming about it. Crush attacks for awhile. Then Ahmed attacks for awhile. (Yeah, I dog it on Royal Rumbles for PBP. YOU try keeping up with the whole thing.) Crush, through evil tactics such as choking with a boot to the throat manages to regain control. Ahmed is teased on the ropes for about 15 seconds. Razor Ramon is #3. The crowd boos. He attacks Ahmed, and goes into his MEMEMEME! So Ahmed dumps him to a big pop right away. (For those who don't know, that wasn't Scott Hall. If you want to know who it was, go Ask The Rick. ;-)) Ahmed sees Faarooq on the ramp and eliminates himself chasing Faarooq to the back. That leaves Crush. #4 is Phineas. Hillbilly Jim comes with him. Phineas catches Crush on the ropes and teases elimination for awhile. Then they trade punches in the middle of the ring. #5 is Steve Austin. We don't have the countdown, and Vince attributes that to clock problems. It certainly takes some of the life out of the match doesn't it? Austin hits the ring and Phineas is all over him. A clothesline drops him in a hurry, but as he goes to follow up Crush is waiting. Crush holds Phineas for Austin, but Phineas moves and he clocks Crush. He then gets eliminated in short order, followed by Phineas. Austin's by himself and we have the countdown back. Bart Gunn is #6. He goes for a quick Rocker Dropper, but Austin throws him out just as fast. Austin does pushups and waits for his next opponent. He sits on the turnbuckle and sneers a whole lot. He also looks to his watch. How cute, they talked back then too! #7 is Jake The Snake! He has the snake with him. According to JR this is Jake's 6th rumble, the most of any superstar. Jake is also 42 years old here. Damn, I'd still bring him back today at age 47. The fans call for a DDT as Jake works a wristlock. The clock is up as Jake has Austin on the ground. It's The British Bulldog at #8. Austin looks to have eliminated Jake as we focus on Bulldog. No one really says anything about it though. Poor Jake. Bulldog stomps Austin in the corner. Austin hangs on to the bottom rope for dear life. Bulldog manages to pull him off the ropes as we have #9 in the form of Pierroth. WHO? He's another guy from Mexico who I've never heard of. Bulldog throws him around. Then Austin joins in on beating the hell out of this guy. I've never seen such blatant racism. The Sultan (AKA Rikishi) is #10. He's nowhere near as fat as he was the last time we saw him. Sultan and Pierroth pair off while Bulldog and Austin work on the other side. Bulldog appears to have Austin out, but Austin's hanging on to the bottom rope and rolls back in without touching the ground. Mil Mascaras steals Max Mini's music and enters the ring at #11. The Iron Sheik is cheering on The Sultan outside. Pierroth is on the ropes with Austin as well in a huge tangled up mess while Bulldog tries to toss 'em all. Mascaras has Sultan on the ropes on the other end. #12 is Hunter Hearst Helmsley! 3 of the guys in the ring right now would be part of the main event at last year's Armageddon. He goes after the Bulldog, and with help from The Sultan gets him teetering on the edge. If only they'd run him over with a car first. Bulldog gets Sultan up and over! Austin tosses HHH, but HHH hangs on and he's safe. Slammy Award Winner Owen Hart is #13. He goes right after Austin. Mascaras almost has Pierroth, but Pierroth hangs on to the apron and stays alive. Bulldog throws Austin, and Owen comes over to help. However, Owen's help causes Bulldog to go over and Austin holds on to the ropes with everything he has. Bulldog is NOT happy. Goldust is in at #14. (14 guys and the time is 18:44...I'm not saying anything, just pointing that out.) Owen is on the apron and fights with Mascaras. Luckily he leaps over and is still in it. Mascaras again has Owen teetering up top, but Owen again hangs on. Everyone for some reason teams up on Goldust, but that doesn't last. #15 is Cybernetico, ANOTHER Mexican I've never heard of. This must have been Vince's way of pushing a lightheavyweight division? He's the youngest guy in the ring according to Vince. Goldust and HHH resume their feud and it leads to HHH taking a clothesline and winding up left for dead. Pierroth tries to dump HHH, but turns his back when he thinks he has him and HHH stays in. Goldust appears to have dumped HHH, but he hangs on and again stays in. There goes Cybernetico, and Mascaras dumps Pierroth. Then Mascaras goes up top and eliminates himself with a top rope bodyblock. He rolls back in and the officials tell him he can't do that. Marc Mero is #16. Goldust takes care of HHH, so we're down to 4 right now. The Latin Lover (oh Christ, give it up...) is in at #17. He apparently lost his mask and now he's better for it. I've heard THAT before. He beats up on Owen, before Goldust takes him down with one punch. Goldust throws Owen, but Owen skins the cat. He comes back in and eliminates Goldust. Faarooq runs to the ring ala Warrior as #18. Latin Lover charges Faarooq but gets tossed. Austin and Faarooq start a fightin', before Ahmed rushes in with a big board of wood (which JR calls a 2 by 4, but it certainly looks a little big for that!) and Faarooq is gone. The NOD takes him to the back. Owen Hart and Marc Mero are both tossed thanks to Austin (which we miss) which means Austin again is in there alone. #19 is...his nemesis. The man who can claim victory over him like none other. Of course I'm talking about Savio Vega! Savio catapults Austin into the turnbuckle, then hits a spinning heel kick. Savio charges, but Austin sidesteps and Savio goes throat first into the ropes. As Savio is stunned he gets clotheslined over the ropes and the crowd cheers! Jesse James (AKA The Road Dogg) is #20. He punches at Austin, then delivers a Ho Train. Austin kicks him in the ribs, then tosses him, but JJ hangs on. So Austin delivers an elbow and there he goes. Austin asks for more. The fans are getting behind him. Bret Hart's music hits which means he's #21 and Austin does not like it! The two trade punches and Bret gets the advantage. JR uses a line he hasn't even begun to wear out at this point by saying "It's hellfire and brimstone when these two get together". Bret runs him over with a clothesline. Austin's trunks are down just a little, and he looks like an Oreo cookie. Bret whips him into the ropes and then clotheslines him. Now the Sharpshooter is put on. Jerry Lawler's music hits, so he takes off his headset and joins the frey as #22. Bret catches him right away and sends him out with one punch. Bret hits the Russian legsweep, then the double axehandle. Headbutt to the groin. Backbreaker. #23 is Diesel. (Not Kevin Nash... but a better impression than Ramon. It's Kane in case you're wondering.) He drives his knee into Bret ala Diesel, then tries to eliminate Austin. Bret and Austin lockup as Diesel's eyes have been raked. Terry Funk is out at #24 and he wants in as he beats the buzzer. Terry locks up with Austin, while Diesel and Bret do their thing. Funk is nearly eliminated by Austin, but Bret saves him, only to have Funk turn on him! Rocky Maivia is #25. He works over Funk, then goes to Austin. I wonder how the fans would have reacted hearing that Austin and Rocky would go on to headline at least 2 Wrestlemania's back then. Rocky has Diesel in the corner and tries hard to eliminate him only to be stopped by Funk. Mankind joins us as the #26 competitor. The main eventers sure drew some nice slots. Rocky is on the apron, but he gets back in. Funk is hanging on the ropes as Mankind tries to kick him off and out but to no avail. Bret locks a sleeper on Austin, but he counters with a jawbreaker. Flash Funk is #27. He goes to Diesel and tries to throw him out. Bret nails a piledriver on Austin. Oh man, THAT would be a cool visual today! JR helpfully tells us Flash Funk is of no relation to Terry Funk, in case the viewers are visually impaired. It's Vader time! He's #28. The ring is getting cluttered. Terry Funk tries to toss Mankind but he hangs on. Flash Funk goes after the monster Vader. Great line from Lawler "Move Austin, let Vader get the Funk out of here". Bret gets Vader on the ropes, Flash works over Mankind... #29 is Henry Godwinn. He clotheslines Vader. Both Flash Funk and Diesel tease elimination. We've got one guy left. And it's The Undertaker at #30. Taker is in and immediately goes after Vader. Mankind is also a guy in his path. He grabs Austin and chokeslams him! Vader then takes a chokeslam! Flash Funk gets NAILED! Diesel and Flash have a meeting of the minds as Undertaker slams them together. Vader launches Flash with a fallaway slam and he's gone. Rocky has Bret teased and the crowd pops for that. Austin and Funk trade chops. Henry Godwinn gets tossed, but he hangs on BARELY to continue. Henry attacks Taker from behind for that. Diesel works Mankind. Vader and Bret get tied up on the corner. Taker chokeslams Henry Godwinn out for good! Bret tries to dump Austin and gets help from Undertaker, but he hangs on. Rocky gets caught with a Mandible Claw and that's it for his night as Mankind powers him over. Cactus clothesline on Terry Funk, and both guys hang on! Funk gets in first and tries to get rid of Mankind, but Mankind suplexes him over and out. Then the Undertaker shoves Mankind off the apron and he's gone. Mankind and Terry Funk start brawling. We still have 5 in the ring. Diesel, Vader, Bret, Austin, and Vader. Austin gets tossed by Bret to a LOUD pop! However, the refs are tied up with Mankind and Funk and miss it. Austin gets back in to take care of Undertaker and Vader on the ropes while Bret says goodbye to Diesel. Austin gets Bret from behind and is declared the winner!
Bret comes back in and throws a fit. He shoves the refs to the mat trying to get his point across. He is a madman and grabs McMahon at the table. He starts to scream about getting screwed and asks Vince to do something about it. He then leaves dropping "fucking shit" on camera. Bret! I'm shocked and appalled!
The legend Sugar Ray Leonard returns to the ring. Get it on PPV!
The announcers talk about the tainted win for Steve Austin. Lawler says "how many times have you watched a baseball or football game where you see something else than the ref did? The ref's call is final." I can't argue with that. (I was paraphrasing Lawler.)
Here's that interview from Shawn Michaels about having the flu.
Shawn Michaels wears a cowboy hat, and is joined by Jose Lothario in his long walk to the entrance way.
SHAWN MICHAELS (with Jose Lothario) vs. SID (for the WWF World Heavyweight Title)
Shawn kisses a woman at ringside, despite having the flu. How about that, a disease spreading babyface! Have I ever mentioned how cool Sid's music is? Well, it is! So's his pyro that spells SID. Quite an awesome display.
Michaels gets all up in Sid's area. He and DJ Ran could tour together! Sid shoves him off. Michaels gets right back up with a huge grin, so Sid shoves him again and proceeds to beat the crap out of him. Michaels ducks a clothesline - hits a crossbody - and slams Sid's head into the mat a bunch of times. Sid gets up and gets kicked to the outside. Michaels tries to head out, but Earl stopped him. So Michaels sidesteps him and goes out anyway. Sid whips Michaels into the ring apron, then goes for a gorilla press, but Michaels rakes the eyes and escapes. Michaels botches a crossbody off the top, and Sid gets a powerslam. Sid slaps on a camel clutch. He leaps on the back of Michaels, and this is very reminiscent of Faarooq vs. Ahmed Johnson. Sid puts the camel clutch back on. As Shawn starts to power out Sid again leaps on the back of Shawn. Sid pounds on the back of Shawn and puts on a third camel clutch. Sid is smiling, knowing this match is all but over. Shawn powers out, and Sid leaps again but Michaels sidesteps and Sid crashes hard to the mat. Sid rushes Michaels in the corner, but eats a boot! Irish whip, reversed, and Shawn Flair flips out to the floor! Lothario checks on Shawn, so Sid slaps him away. Sid scoops Shawn and rams him into the ringpost twice! Sid makes a cover, 1, 2, Shawn kicks out. Sid goes for a chinklock on Shawn in the middle of the ring, but Shawn fights his way out. He comes off the ropes, and Sid nails him with a clothesline. Sid covers, 1, 2, and Michaels kicks away. Shawn is sent into the turnbuckles on either side of the ring, then gets caught in a bearhug. Michaels pulls Sid's hair, so Sid pulls harder and Michaels starts to fade. Lawler: "Sure, Shawn has 60,000+ on his side, but you know what Sid has on his? That little flu bug. Hahahaha!" Shawn punches his way out of the bearhug, then the clap behind the ears lets Shawn escape temporarily. Sid puts the bearhug back on. Michaels gets an inverted atomic drop out of nowhere and quickly follows with a flying punch from the middle rope. He goes for a second one, but Sid catches him again in the bearhug. Pete Lothario in the front row cheers on Shawn. Sid goes for a cover, 1, 2, kickout. Sid hits the legdrop and covers again, 1, 2, no! Sid gets a chinlock back on Shawn. Shawn gets away, so Sid goes for a scoop, but Shawn slithers down his back, and slams Sid! Michaels off the ropes, crossbody connects! He goes up top - flying elbow! He stomps on the mat, and Sid catches the foot. Shawn gets away, chases Sid, and gets backdropped to the floor. Sid powerbombs Shawn on the floor!! Jose and Pete Lothario attack. Michaels gets up and Sid breaks his chokeslam holds on the Lothario's. They head back in and Michaels hammers Sid in the corner. Whip is reversed, and Michaels bumps the ref. Chokeslam, and a cover. The ref is down as Sid gets a million count. Another ref runs in and Shawn kicks out at 2! Sid punches Shawn in the corner, then throws the other referee out of the ring. The original ref is still dead. Lothario distracts Sid, and Shawn gets a TV camera. He nails Sid!!! He covers, and Earl wakes up. 1......2......SID KICKS OUT! The fans can't believe it. He loads the boot, and connects with Sweet Chin Music! 1......2.....3!!!! We have a NEW WWF World Heavyweight Champ!
Not a title classic, but the psychology was good stuff.
Lothario celebrates with the new champion, and son Pete cheers from the front row. Why didn't security beat his ass when he hopped the guardrail anyway? I don't remember what happened to Lothario, but I'm guessing he disappeared when Shawn's smile did as well.
Total Matches: 7
After the show the 2 Shawn Michaels fans who got thrown out scream about it.
Standard 1997 stuff. Lots of midcard crud with some strong performances from their main event crew. Give it a look, rumbles are always fun unless they're overbooked ala 1999.