August 29, 1994
From the United Center in Chicago, IL
Your hosts are Vince McMahon and Jerry “The King” Lawler
Savage comes out to welcome the crowd and promises the most fun and electric show of our lives before handing it off to Vince & Lawler. We are alerted that Shawn Michaels & Diesel defeated The Headshrinkers last night in Indianapolis (at a house show) for the Tag Team Titles. Lawler also tells us that Davey Boy Smith is here and was Bret Hart’s opponent two years ago at SummerSlam.
Bam Bam Bigelow & IRS w/ Ted DiBiase vs. The Headshrinkers w/ Afa & Capt. Lou Albano
Vince expects The Headshrinkers will be angry tonight while Lawler predicts another loss. Bigelow runs over Fatu a few times but misses a charge in the corner then eats a thrust kick. Fatu covers for a two count then tries a slam and has Bigelow fall on top for a two count. Bigelow heads up top after an enziguiri but misses a flying headbutt. Fatu clotheslines Bigelow then tags out as The Headshrinkers land a double thrust kick for a two count. Bigelow tags out after a back elbow smash but Samu tosses around IRS for a bit. IRS ducks a crossbody but whiffs on an attempt of his own and crashes to the outside. Back inside, Samu gets a two count with a headbutt before tagging out. However, soon after that, Fatu dumps outside after Bigelow pulled down the ropes. Fatu nearly fell on top of Bigelow during that sequence. Bigelow tags and collides with Fatu while both were attempting crossbodies. The crowd gets behind Fatu as he manages to tag out. Samu runs wild and hits IRS with a falling headbutt for two as Bigelow broke up the pin attempt. Bigelow gets knocked outside and The Headshrinkers beat on IRS with Fatu hitting a top rope splash but DiBiase distracted the ref. Bigelow then attacks Fatu and knocks Albano off of the apron and Afa now runs in to attack Bigelow and gets his team disqualified (7:20) **1/4. The Headhrinkers clean house and stand tall at the end as DiBiase stranded his team and ran back to the dressing room as the others brawl up the aisle.
Thoughts: The match was fine and they tried to get some heat at the end with the DQ and brawl to the back. It also appeared these teams would be feuding going forward but that was not the case. Without the belts on the line and any sort of feud going in or even leaving the show it was a bit of a waste. Also once again we see just how shallow the depth is in the tag team division.
We go backstage to see Leslie Nielsen trying to solve the case of The Undertaker. He thinks he sees The Undertaker but it turns out to be George Kennedy, who is also on the case. Both men then head in opposite directions with a sign pointing both ways towards the Undertaker trail. According to Bruce Prichard in his “Something to Wrestle With” podcast, Nielsen was the one who suggested they use Kennedy and even offered to pay him out of pocket but at the end Vince ended up bringing Kennedy in for a pay day. Both Nielsen & Kennedy were game but the material here was flimsy.
Gorilla Monsoon is shown near Davey Boy Smith as part of the SummerSlam Hotline. Its clear that Davey will be here for good based on hard he’s been pushed so far on the show. According to Sean Waltman in the “1994 WWE Timeline” for Kayfabe Commentaries, Bret was not fond of Davey returning and thought it would take away some of his momentum. Waltman also said he drove Davey to this show and how he was “juiced to the gills” and after seeing Davey here I concur with that statement.
WWF Women’s Title Match: Bull Nakano w/ Luna Vachon vs. Alundra Blayze (c)
Both women are presented a bouquet of flowers and Luna uses Nakano’s to hit Blayze from behind. Nakano kicks Blayze after a handshake attempt. Blayze fights back with a dropkick but whiffs on a second attempt. Nakano tosses Blayze around by the hair a few times then starts stomping away. Leg drop gets two then she puts Blayze in a chin lock. Blayze finally reaches the ropes then Nakano roughs her up some more. We hear a mild “USA” chant then Blayze nearly puts Nakano away with a hurricarana. Blayze connects with a spin kick but Nakano ducks a second attempt and hits a choke bomb before applying a Boston Crab. The crowd gets behind Blayze and she is able to crawl over and reach the ropes. Nakano hammers away then puts on the Bull’s Angelito until the referee yells at her to stop while Vince puts over Blayze’s courage for not giving up. Luna attacks Blayze behind the ref’s back then Blayze nearly puts Nakano away with a rollup. Nakano uses an arm scissors and continues to work the arm on the mat. Blayze fights back and take Nakano down a few times but tries for a piledriver and fails. Nakano gets two with a slam as Blayze bridges out but Nakano hits a lariat. Blayze gets two with a backslide then Nakano blocks a hurricarana with a powerbomb. Nakano heads up top after a slam but misses a leg drop. Blazye then boots Luna off of the apron then hits a bridging German suplex for the win (8:20) ***.
Thoughts: Good match but with Blayze winning clean here there isn’t much justification for a rematch or this feud to even continue. Nakano did not even get an opprtunity to have some heat back after the match ended. However, with no one else yet established in the Women’s Division there is nothing else to run.
Todd Pettengill is backstage with Shawn Michaels & Diesel. Shawn says they got to thinking that the Heartbreak Hotel needed some more gold and they went out and delivered by getting the Tag Team Titles. Shawn also gets in a great line about how they overlook everybody. Diesel then tell Razor Ramon he will not get his gold and what makes Razor think he will finally win tonight as Shawn says Razor & “Sweetness” “will leave with a bitter taste. Shawn was just tremendous in this segmet and came off like a star.
WWF Intercontinental Title Match: Diesel (c) w/ Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon w/ Walter Payton
Payton gets a great reaction, as expected, and comes out wearing a Razor t-shirt. Razor tosses his toothpick at Diesel then fires away. Diesel bails as Razor pumps up the crowd then Shawn gives Diesel a pep talk. Diesel heads back inside and hammers away. Diesel cuts off Razor’s comeback with a clothesline and that triggers a reversal sequence ending with Diesel dropping Razor with a big boot. Diesel chokes out Razor with his foot in the corner then uses a mat slam to block a back drop. Diesel points at Payton then catches Razor with a sleeper. Razor breaks that up with a Saito suplex as both men are down. Diesel sidesteps a charge and shoves Razor outside as Payton checks on him. Shawn takes off a turnbuckle pad while the ref was distracted then goes over towards Razor until Payton backs him away. The ref intervenes then Shawn sneaks away to hit Razor with a running forearm off of the steps then he poses on the top rope and counts along with the referee. Razor just beats the ten count but Diesel starts elbowing him in the corner. The ref now stands in the corner after seeing the pad removed but Shawn distracts him and Diesel whips Razor into the exposed steel in the corner then hits a side slam for a nearfall. Diesel uses a snake eyes and keeps running interference together with Shawn to maintain control. Diesel drops an elbow to Razor’s back for a two count then uses a rear chin lock. Razor gets to his feet and fires away but runs into a big boot. Diesel covers for two then uses an abdominal stretch while occasionally holding onto the ropes for leverage. Payton points out Diesel holding the ropes to the ref then Razor escapes and catches Diesel in an abdominal stretch but Diesel breaks that up with a hip toss. Diesel tries another snake eyes this time into the exposed steel but Razor slips away and shoves Diesel into the corner then rolls him up for two. Razor fires away then slides outside and crotches Diesel against the turnbuckle. Razor comes off of the top with an attack for two as the crowd bought that as the finish. Scoop slam gets two. Shawn jumps up on the apron and gets punched off then Razor sets up for a super back suplex but that gets broken up with an elbow smash. Diesel signals for the Jackknife but Razor breaks that up with a back drop. Razor now sets up for the Razor’s Edge but Shawn creates a distraction and that allows Diesel to attack. Diesel hits a clothesline then Shawn grabs the belt but Payton pulls it away. The ref yell at Payton as Diesel holds up Razor and Shawn runs in for the super kick but accidentally nails Diesel. Shawn is freaking out then gets chased around by Payton. Shawn tries to enter the ring but Payton drags him out and the ref runs in to see Razor’s arm draped over Diesel and counts to three as Razor is the new Intercontinental Champion (15:02) ***1/4. The crowd goes nuts and gives Razor & Payton a standing ovation as we see Shawn head up the aisle a Diesel is yelling at him. Razor is now celebrating with both Payton and Payton’s son Jarrett.
Thoughts: Not a technical classic and maybe I’m overrating this a tad but I thought it was a blast and had a lot of heat. And the finish was good but would have been better had Diesel been covered quicker instead of laying on the mat for what seemed like about five minutes after getting hit with a super kick. The goal for that seemed not just to create tension between the friends and current Tag Team Champions but also put over the super kick as a devastating finish. Payton was great addition to the match as the crowd loved him and Payton was totally into his role. Waltman also said in the 1994 WWE Timeline that Payton himself was a fan. Also, on the “Something to Wrestle With” podcast, Prichard told a story of Pat Patterson going over the match with everyone involved and when they asked questions, Payton would actually fill the guys in on the spots as he apparently remembered the entire layout of the match.
Savage congratulates Razor for winning the Intercontinental Title and puts over the show before cutting back to Vince for a play-by-play of the IC Title match finish.
Pettengill is now backstage with both Lex Luger and Tatanka. We get the results of the SummerSlam Hotline poll as to whether or not Luger sold out to DiBiase. 54% of fans believe he did sell out then Tatanka cuts off Luger to remind us of all the times Luger sold out and we see clips, including DiBiase coming into Luger’s room today with a red bag. Tatanka then says he is waiting in the ring. Luger said they can show all of the footage and how its a free country but he did not sell out and never considered doing so and vows to win this match on his own.
Tatanka vs. Lex Luger
Tatanka yells at Luger about selling out while Luger says he is innocent then both men get in each others faces until the referee intervenes. They fight over a lockup then Luger runs Tatanka over. Both men are tentative still then fight over an arm wringer with Tatanka winning battle. Vince says these two were acquaintances at one point then we see them trade pinfalls before slugging it out. Vince now says these two were partners with some success as we see Luger hit a suplex for a two count. Luger misses an elbow drop then Tatanka chops away as the crowd remains silent. Tatanka gets two with a powerslam then dances around and gets some boos. Tomahawk chop gets two then Tatanka heads up top after a suplex for another chop but that only gets two. He goes back up top but misses an attack as Luger moved away. Luger hits a few clotheslines as we see DiBiase come out holding a bag of money. Luger now sees DiBiase with a handful of cash then yells at him but Tatanka rolls him up from behind and gets the win (6:02) *1/2. Luger now yells at DiBiase, who is acting shocked, then we see Luger flipping out and trying to tell Tatanka what happened. DiBiase is now in the ring with the bag and handful of cash but Luger kicks the bag. However, Tatanka attacks Luger from behind as Vince says this was a set up. Tatanka hits Luger with the Papoose to Go then hammers away as a few referees try to break this up. Vince yells that is was Tatanka who sold out while DiBiase looks shocked then hugs Tatanka. DiBiase brags how he fooled everyone then Tatanka lands in a few more cheap shots as Vince talks about Tatanka selling out and being proud as Luger left lying on the mat. Tatanka then looks into the camera to say he fooled us and DiBiase wants him to give more punishment to Luger to Tatanka runs back in and hammers away then locks on the Million Dollar Dream. This ends with Luger getting a dollar bill shoved in his mouth then DiBiase & Tatanka finally leave together.
Thoughts: The match itself was short and forgettable. Tatanka turning might have surprised some, maybe more if that poll was to be believed, but man did it make Luger look like a moron. He got duped by Tatanka & DiBiase with fans not even believing his claims of innocence. And man did he get the crap kicked out of him afterwards. Now, the feud will continue with Luger out for revenge after getting duped by a former acquaintance.
Gorilla is back in the Hotline area waiting for DiBiase & Tatanka and calls Tatanka a disgrace to all Native Americans.
Jeff Jarrett vs. Mabel w/ Oscar
The battle of country music vs. rap. Vince remind us that Nielsen and Kennedy are still trying to solve the case of The Undertaker. Jarrett taunts Oscar before entering the ring. Mabel shoves Jarrett into the corner but swings and misses as Jarrett struts around. Jarrett tries to work the arm and gets tossed then keeps messing around and gets clotheslined over the top rope. Jarrett shoves Oscar into the steps then trips Mabel up from the outside. Jarrett uses a few flying attacks but eventually gets caught. Jarrett breaks free and fires away but Mabel shrugs them off. Jarrett jumps on Mabel’s back for a sleeper and gets backed into the corner then jumps backs on and brings Mabel to one knee. Jarrett gets backed into the corner again then Mabel hits a spinning heel kick for a two count. Abe Knuckleball Schwartz is shown in the stands as Mabel hits a front falling slam for two. Jarrett rakes the eyes then goes out to bully Oscar but is stopped by Mabel. Oscar then slaps Jarrett and Mabel follows with a running attack. Mabel then brings Jarrett inside but misses a splash as both men are down. Jarrett then covers for two but Mabel powers out then Jarrett avoids a sit-down splash and quickly rolls up Mabel for the win (5:56) 1/2*. After the match, Mabel chases Jarrett backstage.
Thoughts: Bad match. I couldnt tell if it was due to poor conditioning or the fact he was jobbing and did not put in any effort but Mabel looked horrible. This finish was also a shock consider Jarrett was due his comeuppance for what he did to Oscar on Superstars. Kind of strange he won this match clean. According to Mabel in his shoot interview with “Pro Wrestling Diaries,” Jarrett was in fact supposed to face Doink but that got switched a week before it was going to be announced.
We hear Vince across the PA telling us the super sleuths are around trying to solve the mystery of The Undertaker. The lights are off and the spotlight shines on them. We see The Undertaker standing in the entrance way but it goes up and they miss out.
Video package hyping the Bret/Owen feud.
The announcers are now at ringside with Stu & Helen Hart. Helen never thought it would come to this steel cage match while Stu says the best wrestler will come out with his hand raised or come out of the ring. Lawler then blames them for keeping Owen down his whole life then talks to Davey and how he went against Bret two years ago. Davey says Bret is in the best condition of his life and this feud will end tonight. We see Neidhart sitting behind Bruce as he says we will see tonight that Owen is the best Hart of them all as Bruce disagrees. Neidhart also blames the parents for not supporting Owen. Bruce promises to stop Neidhart if he tries to interfere.
Pettengill is now backstage with Bret. We learn that Bret is recovering from strep throat. Bret says his title will not go anywhere and that he never hated Owen but the problem is that Owen is jealous and it breaks his heart to see it end inside of the cage. And despite not being proud of this match it has to end tonight and this is the only way for that to happen.
WWF World Heavyweight Title Steel Cage Match: “King of Harts” Owen Hart vs. Bret “The Hitman” Hart (c)
Owen attacks Bret to start then hammers away in the corner while yelling “he’s nothing to me.” Bret fights back then clotheslines Owen as Lawler demands reaction shots from Stu & Helen Hart. Bret stops himself from getting sent into the cage then hits a DDT as we go split-screen to see the reactions from Stu & Helen, with Lawler joking that Stu needs to put on his glasses while accusing Helen of favoring Bret. Vince puts over Bret suffering from strep throat as Owen knocks Bret down then climbs the cage but Bret pulls him down then takes him off of the top rope with a back suplex. Bret goes near the door but Owen pulls him back and kicks out his leg. Owen fires away but Bret fights back and hits a bulldog. Bret keeps going back to the door but gets stopped then Owen gets halfway out until Bret makes the save. Bret drags Owen back into the ring after using a fishhook and pulling the hair then he tries to climb the cage and gets pulled down in the process. Owen climbs up the cage and Bret follows. Owen makes it over but Bret drags him back in by the hair and they slug it out on the top rope until Bret gets knocked off. Owen then flies off with a missile dropkick and kips up before jumping on the cage. Owen is halfway over again but Bret pulls him back inside and they fight on the top rope. They go back down to the mat as we once again see a concerned shot of Helen. Bret uses a back drop then drags Owen away from the door and starts hammering away. Bret climbs up but Owen grabs his legs then pulls Bret by his tights but Bret kicks him off. Owen then yanks Bret’s leg and pulls him off the top rope and Bret lands on the ropes, hurting his leg in the process. Neidhart is shown laughing then we see Owen head towards the door but Bret is able to grab his ankle. Bret drags Owen into the middle of the ring then slowly crawls around in pain. Bret heads to the top rope but misses an elbow drop then Owen climbs up and that triggers a sequence which each man tries to climb out and that ends with Owen using a Samoan Drop. We see a split-screen of Bruce cheering on Bret while looking back to yell at Neidhart. Bret almost climbs out but Owen pulls Bret back in by the hair and hits a suplex. Owen follows with a piledriver then finally musters up the strength to climb the cage. Bert gets up as Owen is almost halfway over and stops his brother. They slug it out on the top rope again and both end up falling off. Bret now tries to go out the door and is nearly out but Bret gotr him back inside. Bret fires away then leaps to the door and gets his hands on the floor but his feet are what needs to touch and he is dragged back inside. Owen now tries to get through the door but is pulled in and gets sling-shotted into the cage as the crowd goes nuts. Bret now crawls over to the door as Vince talks about the exhaustion factor but Owen leaps to stop his brother from going through the door. Owen then whips Bret into the corner then floats over on a suplex but Bret runs him into the cage. Owen is out while Bret clutches his knee on the mat. Bret is almost 3/4 over the cage but Owen is able to pull him back inside then hits a spinning heel kick. Owen now gathers himself and tries to climb the cage and actually gets some cheers from a vocal minority near ringside. Owen slowly climbs up then gets halfway over but Bret pulls him back by the hair and slams his head against the cage. Owen fights back and hammers away but Bret kicks him off. Bret now climbs and almost gets halfway over but is pulled back into the ring. Owen knocks Bret down with a European uppercut then Bret fights back and both men are down on the mat. Owen is up first then Bret meets him and hits a superplex from the top of the cage. The crowd goes nuts as the camera pans towards the Hart Family. Bret rolls around the ring then crawls towards the door but Owen is able to grab his foot. Owen drags Bret back into the middle of the ring and turns him over for the Sharpshooter. Owen screams about being the best but Bret ends up reversing the hold. Bret now breaks the hold and climbs the cage but Owen leaps up and pulls Bret by the hair. Owen climbs up to meet Bret and fires away but Bret pulls him off the top at the same time and they both crash to the mat. Owen now climbs the cage and Bret joins him and they are both on the outside now. Owen tries to ram Bret’s head off of the cage but that gets blocked and Owen eats steel then has his feet caught up in the cage as Bret leaps off for the win (32:22) ****3/4. After the match, Neidhart heads into the aisle and clotheslines Davey from behind, taking both Davey and his wife over the guardrail. Neidhart then beats on Bret and has a chain to lock him inside of the cage with Owen beating on Bret. Owen beats on Bret with the belt as the Hart Brothers try to climb ib but get knocked off. Davey even gets knocked off a few times until he finally makes it in and beats on Owen. We then see Owen & Neidhart climb out and run away with the other Hart Brothers and Davey all inside of the cage.
Thoughts: This was one hell of a match. Just two dudes doing everything they can to escape the cage. It was not a lot of waiting to set up spots but more one guy gets in some offense and tries to escape with the other doing everything they can to prevent it from happening. I think it was maybe slightly too repetitive in using the falling from the top rope spots but the story told was still great, although just a notch below WrestleMania. And, according to Bruce Prichard in his podcast, this match and post-match angle ran 20 minutes long. Waltman also confirmed in his 1994 WWE Timeline that they went long and even went as far as saying Bret himself told him he would be going long. For my money the best cage match in WWE History but shaving several minutes off definitely would not have hurt the match.
Pettengill is backstage running after Owen & Neidhart for an interview but just gets yelled at and threatened. Owen then calls out his family for never supporting him and how he should have won the match. Owen also warns Davey to stay out of his business then Neidhart promises to lay out Bret if he stands in his way. Both men leave as Owen says its time to celebrate his victory. Owen was great as a delusional heel in acting that he did in fact win. And Neidhart’s promo sets him up to face Bret, which he did around the house show circuit.
An ad for SummerSlam airs. It takes place on Thanksgiving Eve. The ad knocks the NFL by saying how there are no penalties or illegal use of the hands. And this was due to the Fox Network getting NFL rights, including a pre-game show, which knocked off the WWF syndicated shows from their noon timeslots and into worse spots. And it was a huge blow to the syndicated shows as we will learn about later on in this timeline.
A video package on the events leading to the Undertaker vs. Undertaker match.
Ted DiBiase introduces his Undertaker to the ring. Now, we hear Howard Finkle introduce The Undertaker. We hear the gong and then Paul Bearer comes out and motions towards the side as we see druids wheel out The Undertaker. The top of the casket reads “Rest in Peace” as Vince believes inside will be the same Undertaker we saw at the Royal Rumble. The casket is now in front of the ring and we see the druids lift it up and smoke pours out. Bearer then raises a giant urn and heads into the ring. Lawler laughs about Bearer not having anything as Vince seems like he does not give a shit about this angle at all. We then see a light come from the urn (obviously a flashlight inside) and hear thunder with Bearer making some sort of crazed face. We now go towards the entrance and see The Undertaker.
The Undertaker w/ Ted DiBiase vs. The Undertaker w/ Paul Bearer
Lawler says they are identical but Vince says he doesn’t think so and that we are about to find out who is the true Undertaker. We get a staredown then see Bearer’s Undertaker make the throat slash signal before hammering away. DiBiase’s Undertaker lands a few shots but eats a big boot then gets knocked outside. Bearer’s Undertaker suplexes DiBiase’s Undertaker in from the apron but we see Undertaker sit right up. DiBiase’s Undertaker is taken outside again and rammed into the steps as the crowd is completely dead. DiBiase’s Undertaker uses a neck snap then hammers away as Vince is basically shitting on the mat, calling it strange and burying DiBiase’s Undertaker. Bearer’s Undertaker fights back then uses the ropewalk attack as even Lawler is starting to acknowledge him as the real Undertaker. DiBiase’s Undertaker comes back with a stun gun then fires away. Bearer’s Undertaker gets knocked outside again as Vince says the crowd is silenced due to the fact they are stunned. DiBiase’s Undertaker now hammers away in the corner then hits a chokeslam but neglects to cover and instead hits a tombstone while Lawler says no one does that but The Undertaker. However, Bearer’s Undertaker sits up then blocks a second tombstone attempt and hits one of his own then hits a second tombstone and finally a third to get the win as he makes sure to throw his hair back so we can all see his face (9:10) DUD. After the match, we hear the thunder and see the lightning.
Thoughts: This was garbage. First off, when Bearer brought out the actual Undertaker, it was painfully obvious he was the original and would win the match. This killed the crowd heat and the heat for this feud was ice cold heading in and the way the match was announced, with Pettengill acting confused as to how two Undertakers would wrestle each other who admitted on his podcast that he put this feud together, claimed that the cage match going long ruined the story they were going to tell in this match and they had to rush things. However, that does not excuse the fact what happened in the ring looked like shit, mostly due to DiBiase’s Undertaker (Brian Lee.) He looked completely lost. I agree with Meltzer’s assessment that having two guys doing the ultra slwo-motion style killed the match flow. Even Vince treated this whole thing like a failure. It was reported that Lee was going to return as a biker character in a couple of months but that never happened. Lee himself also said there were talks of him teaming with Undertaker as his brother but that never happened. I know Waltman said in the Timeline that Lee was “fucked up” most of the time so maybe that’s why he was not around after this match. It did seem like a burial of sorts. Prichard said on his podcast claimed that Lee was never meant to do anything past this show.
Savage puts over the show and that he’ll see us next time. We then see Nielsen & Kennedy solve the mystery of The Undertaker by finding a closed briefcase. Man, Nielsen & Kennedy really had some shit material to work with tonight.
Final Thoughts: The cage match was tremendous and everyone should check that out ASAP. The Intercontinental Title match was also a lot of fun. The other major angles were a mixed bag but overall I thought it was a fun show despite the main event being a pile of shit.