Hey hey! Appreciate the efforts as always, and how you really do seem to take the time to answer most questions whether they’re blog-worthy or not.
1) Reading the old Mania rants, it seems to be a trend that ‘The Rockers were fucked up from the night before for this one and disappointed’. I don’t get it: is it THAT hard to save your celebrating until after the biggest night in your field?
Actually I guess the answer is just yes. Don’t answer that.
2) I was a huge fan at the time, but I can’t really remember the build to XVIII. Essentially my question is, was the booking for Rock/Hogan clearly that of a dream match, was the crowd clearly super into it, etc., and should they CLEARLY have known it would get the reaction it did? I don’t mean in hindsight, I mean with foresight. Were they caught off guard by the live reaction, and should they have been?
3) Wasssup with Austin/Hall? They had *nothing* better for Austin than a midcard shite match and non-feud? Were there any other known plans that got scuttled?
1. TOO LATE. The answer is yes.
2. It was clearly a dream match, but Vince always had blinders to stardom from promotions that are his own, and probably didn’t think that Hogan would still be a huge star to a crowd of casual Canadian wrestling fans. It was a GIANT miscalculation and they should have known better, especially since it was the picture on the goddamn poster for the show and all. In a sense, you can argue that the World title match deserved to go last, but given the crappy build (literally) for the title match and the fact that Hogan-Rock was using crazy over-the-top angles like Hogan trying to kill him via truck and stuff, they should have known better.
3. Originally the Hogan match was pitched to Austin, but he turned it down because he thought it would be terrible. Then it was Austin-Nash, but Kevin developed a crippling knee injury that did not allow him for him work a 2 minute match and get pinned with a stunner. So finally it fell on Scott Hall to take the bullet for the nWo that night.