Rivalries: The Sequel

More rivalries from yesterday’s “Defining moment of a feud” post: 1. Rock vs. HHH 2. Undertaker vs. Kane 3. Undertaker vs. Foley 4. Sting vs. Flair 5. Edge/Christian vs. Hardys vs. Dudleys 6. RVD vs. Lynn 7. WCW vs. NWO

I would first like to rescind my Sting-Hogan answer and also go with Uncensored 97, because that was awesome. 1.  Backlash 2000, where they finally gave us the REAL finish. 2.  Uhhh…which one? 3.  Duh. 4.  Halloween Havoc 95, Flair turns on Sting. 5.  Summerslam 2000. 6.  Not a real “feud”. 7.  The 82 weeks Nitro won the ratings.

Complete Listing For Top 25 Rivalries DVD

Source 

Is there anything missing?

 Here is the complete listing for the WWE’s Top 25 Rivalries In History DVD & Blu-ray set…

Disc 1

Chemistry

#25 – Triple H vs. Mick Foley

#24 – Tazz vs. Sabu

#23 – Rey Mysterio vs. Eddie Guerrero

#22 – Bruiser Brody vs. Abdullah the Butcher

#21 – Hulk Hogan vs. Roddy Piper

Radioactive

#20 – CM Punk vs. John Cena

#19 – Kurt Angle vs. Brock Lesnar

#18 – Randy Orton vs. Triple H

#17 – Verne Gagne vs. Nick Bockwinkel

#16 – Mankind vs. The Undertaker

Underground Laboratory

#15 – Tommy Dreamer vs. Raven

#14 – Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker

#13 – Triple H vs. The Rock

#12 – John Cena vs. Edge

#11 – Hulk Hogan vs. Randy Savage

Combustible

#10 – Tully Blanchard vs. Magnum T.A.

#9 – The Undertaker vs. Kane

#8 – Edge & Christian vs. Hardy Boyz vs. Dudley Boyz

#7 – Dusty Rhodes vs. Ric Flair

#6 – Von Erichs vs. The Fabulous Freebirds

Quintessential Elements

#5 – Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. The Rock

#4 – Andre the Giant vs. Hulk Hogan

#3 – Ric Flair vs. Ricky Steamboat

#2 – Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart

Nucleus

#1 – Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Mr. McMahon

Interaction and Reaction

Disc 2
WWE Championship Match
Hulk Hogan vs. “Rowdy” Roddy Piper
The War to Settle the Score • February 18, 1985

“I Quit” Steel Cage Match for the NWA United States Championship
Tully Blanchard vs. Magnum T.A.
Starrcade • November 28, 1985

Bruiser Brody vs. Abdullah the Butcher
World Class Championship Wrestling • July, 1987

Badstreet Rules Match
Kevin & Kerry Von Erich vs. Terry Gordy & Buddy Roberts
World Class Championship Wrestling • February, 1988

Hulk Hogan & “Macho Man” Randy Savage vs. “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase & Andre the Giant
SummerSlam • August 29, 1988

The Undertaker vs. Mankind
King of the Ring • June 23, 1996

Disc 3
Grudge Match

Tazz vs. Sabu
ECW Barely Legal • April 13, 1997

The Final Battle

Tommy Dreamer vs. Raven
ECW WrestlePalooza • June 6, 1997

“Winner Take All” Handicap Ladder Match
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Mr. McMahon & Shane McMahon
King of the Ring • June 27, 1999

WWE Championship Match
Triple H vs. The Rock
Backlash • April 30, 2000

WWE Championship Match
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. The Rock
Rebellion • November 3, 2001

WWE Championship Match
Kurt Angle vs. Brock Lesnar
SummerSlam • August 24, 2003

Steel Cage Match for the WWE Championship
John Cena vs. Edge
Raw • October 2, 2006

Blu-ray Exclusives
Shawn Michaels’ Tribute to The Undertaker
SmackDown • March 27, 2009

Six-Man Tag Team Match for the WWE Championship
Triple H, Batista & Shane McMahon vs. Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase
Backlash • April 26, 2009

WWE Championship Match
CM Punk vs. John Cena
Night of Champions • September 16, 2012

LoW Roundtable: Greatest Rivalries

Wow I haven’t done a rant in forever. Time to jump back on that horse so here we go.

Greatest Rivalries

The panel is Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, Michael Hayes, Mick Foley and Eric Bischoff

Right away Ross goes to Mick for his favorite rivalries and Mick lists a few like Dynamite Kid-Tiger Mask and Jerry Lawler-Terry Funk but his favorite is the 1983 rivalry between Jimmy Snuka and Don Muraco. He says it was the rivalry that made him want to be a wrestler. Hayes asks him why and Foley says when he saw Snuka do a hands free plancha on Muraco for the first time (and I would assume that was pretty groundbreaking shit for American television in 1983) and it made him want to buy tickets to a wrestling match. Foley said the feud hooked him and the promos that Snuka cut hooked him more.

(They show a Snuka promo with McMahon and I must admit it’s pretty damn good and Snuka losing control at the end was great. A great promo can stand the test of time.)

Foley continues on and talks about his infamous trip to MSG to watch the Snuka-Muraco steel cage match. The story he tells of hitchhiking from Courtland, N.Y. is always a good tale.

(They show clips from the steel cage match. I only remember seeing the full version of the match on a Coliseum video. It wasn’t very long but it was intense and the ending was terrific with Muraco tumbling through the door. And Monsoon’s call of the leap from the top of the cage is special.)

Foley talked about being talked into the building by the intense promos between Muraco and Snuka. They go into Snuka’s ECW ran and Mick tells a story about refereeing a Snuka match and they talk about Snuka’s prolific past without going into any details (*cough* murder *cough*). Bischoff talks about his experiences with Snuka and Muraco during their short stint in the AWA. Mick tells a funny story about Snuka relayed from the Rock (involving impressions and cocaine).

Wow a third of the show on Jimmy Snuka. Not what I was expecting. You know who his daught..nah I’m not going there.

We get into tag teams and Michael Hayes talks about how the great great tag teams could actually overshadow the top singles. He mentions the Rock & Roll Express vs. Midnight Express as his favorite rivalry. Oddly they only focus on the Condrey/Eaton pairing of the Midnights. And I guess that makes sense because when Lane came in both teams weren’t feuding as viciously.

JR talks about how Jerry Jarrett got hosed by Bill Watts on a trade and let Cornette, Eaton and Condrey go to Mid-South. Ross says the rivalry even overshadowed anything Junkyard Dog did in Mid-South, which is a heck of an accomplishment.

Hayes says Robert Gibson is one of the reasons he got in the business (He breaks kayfabe for a second and calls him Reuben). There’s some drug usage innuendo in there. Hayes explains how Robert Gibson wanted to get in the business following his brother Ricky Gibson, who was an early high flyer. Robert Gibson was a decent mid-carder in Memphis and Morton, the son of referee Paul Morton, was floundering. Hayes gives credit to Jimmy Hart for putting them together but Lawler quickly disagrees and takes credit himself.

Lawler says Hart has nothing to do with it but Hayes and Bischoff says Hart always takes credit for it. (I’m not giving due to how funny this little bit was). But Lawler talks about how he and Jarrett would take turns making the card and they would switch off each six months. Lawler says Jarrett, using the same formula of taking floundering mid-carders and pairing them, created the Fabulous Ones (Steve Keirn and Stan Lane) and paired them with Jackie Fargo.

Lawler said during his six-month booking stretch he wanted to one-up Jarrett and says he brought Morton and Gibson in. He bought a ton of bandanas from Wal-Mart and made their uniforms and both guys thought Lawler was fucking with them but it became gold and in many ways kicked off the tag team era.

Hayes says the Midnight Express were created much the same way as Bobby Eaton was widely known as a solid performer that lacked verbal skills and Condrey was floundering as a mid-carder. JR says that’s where Cornette came in and his in-ring persona was much like his real life persona as he was easy to dislike. Hayes, however, gives Cornette credit for absorbing everything he learned in his early career and using it as a manager. Hayes says it was a bad trade for Memphis but Lawler disagrees and says in reality Memphis had so much talent it was counter productive to have the Fabs and the R&R Express on the same card. They also crack on Jimmy Hart some more (a running gag with this panel).

Ross talks about both teams coming to Crockett and making magic.

(Clips of the Midnight Express winning the NWA tag titles from the Rock & Roll Express thanks to evil heels shenanigans. Classic stuff.)

Ross talks about why there aren’t any great tag teams and he says because there is a lack of quality depth. Bischoff attributes that to a lack of territories and the demand to produce television around the few talented guys.

Foley said the top tags also knew they weren’t going to get broken up three months later to do something for television. Oooo great point. Now Mick says every good tag is made of megastars that are already branded and forced together just to break up. He says that being in a tag team in the WWE is considered a put down and guys aren’t looking at the upside of being successful in a tag role.

Moving on Ross’ favorite rivalry is Dusty and Flair. Ross says the rivalry was natural and Hayes mentions the ego was the connection. Ross says they had rivalries in who had the nicer mink coat and the bigger car. Rhodes loved the Boston Celtics and Flair loved the Lakers. Ross said the best part of their rivalry were the Saturday night promos where they could just talk people in the building.

(And the show the clip of the infamous “Hard Times” promo which is widely considered the best promo piece ever and a must see for any fan of wrestling nostalgia. And his perm is just amazing.)

Bischoff said that when he got to WCW he didn’t know much of the history of the Dusty-Flair feud. He made the mistake of trying to get the two to come together through drinks at an Atlanta hotel but he said the competitive nature of the two was so far beyond wrestling. Bischoff said the secret with the two was channeling that emotion and providing a microphone and even now both men could give you one or two promos during a time period that were memorable. Ross mentions Flair’s promo to Carlito about his lack of passion as one of those cases.

Mick spends more time talking about Flair and his own experiences with Flair. Lawler says no one has been better at talking fans in the arena than Flair and Rhodes. Hayes talks about Dusty absorbing the information and teachings he received in Florida and he brought it to the Carolinas. Naturally they go so far off track to the point of where Hayes talks about he and the Freebirds ruining Jim Crockett’s bachelor party and almost getting their ass kicked by Wahoo McDaniel and Harley Race. Mick then tells a Buddy Roberts story.

Back to Dusty-Flair and their egos. Lawler says an ego is important in the business but those two had it and then some. Bischoff said both were tremendous backstage politicians. The competition for them went to the being in control of the locker room and it was intense. Hayes said that despite the animosity and competition for Crockett’s attention, Flair and Dusty could still make it happen from bell to bell. And that wraps it up.

The Bottom Line: Well this was one of the earlier shows and you can tell because they were horribly off topic most of the time. Things would get better with the focus of the panel but the discussion is always fun.

Greatest Rivalries II

From the Masked Man dude who used to write for deadspin.  Pretty thorough piece.  I was just wondering your take on it.  Thanks.  Enjoy the blog.  -Cory
http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7176623/one-wwe-greatest-rivalries

An e-mail I got soon after yours sums up my feelings, actually:

I assume you’ve read the Grantland article on the Bret / Shawn DVD?
The slant is… interesting.  The writer’s still stuck in that insane
"reality era" theory of his, and at this point he’s basically a high
school essay writer who can’t accept that he went in the wrong
direction ten pages ago and that starting over would be the best bet.

Yeah, I wasn’t feeling the whole “It was never real to Shawn” stuff.  I think he was an ass at the time and now he legitimately feels bad for his role and wants to make amends. 

Greatest Rivalries II

From the Masked Man dude who used to write for deadspin.  Pretty thorough piece.  I was just wondering your take on it.  Thanks.  Enjoy the blog.  -Cory
http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7176623/one-wwe-greatest-rivalries

An e-mail I got soon after yours sums up my feelings, actually:

I assume you’ve read the Grantland article on the Bret / Shawn DVD?
The slant is… interesting.  The writer’s still stuck in that insane
"reality era" theory of his, and at this point he’s basically a high
school essay writer who can’t accept that he went in the wrong
direction ten pages ago and that starting over would be the best bet.

Yeah, I wasn’t feeling the whole “It was never real to Shawn” stuff.  I think he was an ass at the time and now he legitimately feels bad for his role and wants to make amends. 

Greatest Rivalries II

From the Masked Man dude who used to write for deadspin.  Pretty thorough piece.  I was just wondering your take on it.  Thanks.  Enjoy the blog.  -Cory
http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7176623/one-wwe-greatest-rivalries

An e-mail I got soon after yours sums up my feelings, actually:

I assume you’ve read the Grantland article on the Bret / Shawn DVD?
The slant is… interesting.  The writer’s still stuck in that insane
"reality era" theory of his, and at this point he’s basically a high
school essay writer who can’t accept that he went in the wrong
direction ten pages ago and that starting over would be the best bet.

Yeah, I wasn’t feeling the whole “It was never real to Shawn” stuff.  I think he was an ass at the time and now he legitimately feels bad for his role and wants to make amends. 

Rivalries

Hi Scott Just watched the Bret-Shawn Greatest Rivalries interview, and they make a few mentions of how they replaced the ‘dinosaurs’ of the 80s (notably Hogan). Having recently witnessed the spectacle of Hogan wrestling Sting in late 2011, with a still-active Ric Flair interfering, it struck me as odd that those guys – the very top guys in Hogan and Flair – of the 80s are still wrestling when several generations of replacements such as Bret and Shawn have been and gone since. Do you think any guys approaching the level of Hogan/Flair from the New Generation, Attitude, PG eras etc will still be wrestling at that age? Bret, Shawn, Austin, Rock are all done at reasonable ages – though I suppose with the exception of Bret they could come back. Seems unlikely though – and somehow I don’t see Cena or Orton or whoever lasting that long either. I can imagine HHH maybe, as he’ll be around anyway in some capacity, and Nash at 52 is having a good stab at it – but Hogan and Flair seem exceptional cases compared to the top names that have followed them. Is it because they were such major names that they can get away with it (to the extent that they do), or is it just their individual personalities and situations? Or am I just extrapolating too much from a very small and incomplete sample size? Will you be watching/ranting about the Greatest Rivalries dvd, by the way?

MONTREAL WAS NOT A WORK!  Sorry, reflex macro there. Last thing that Entertainment One sent me to review was TLC 2010, so a full review doesn’t seem likely given how pressed for time I generally am these days and how little I want to put more money in WWE’s pocket in the first place.   Unless I just download the documentary portion, which is possible. Anyway, guys from the last decade or so have tended to work a much harder style than a Hogan or Flair did.  Not saying it was a cakewalk to do their schedule in the 80s, but Flair’s broomstick formula was much easier to do night after night than someone like Edge having to one-up himself with ladder matches and cage matches and endless chairshots.  Also, guys like Rock and Austin were much smarter about their giant paydays than the “blow it all on coke and hookers” 80s stars were, and thus can afford to leave the business on their own terms.  Although according to that Scott Hall piece everyone today is a saint who plays videogames and is as straight edge as CM Punk, so clearly we no longer have anything to worry about.  Whew.

Rivalries

Hi Scott Just watched the Bret-Shawn Greatest Rivalries interview, and they make a few mentions of how they replaced the ‘dinosaurs’ of the 80s (notably Hogan). Having recently witnessed the spectacle of Hogan wrestling Sting in late 2011, with a still-active Ric Flair interfering, it struck me as odd that those guys – the very top guys in Hogan and Flair – of the 80s are still wrestling when several generations of replacements such as Bret and Shawn have been and gone since. Do you think any guys approaching the level of Hogan/Flair from the New Generation, Attitude, PG eras etc will still be wrestling at that age? Bret, Shawn, Austin, Rock are all done at reasonable ages – though I suppose with the exception of Bret they could come back. Seems unlikely though – and somehow I don’t see Cena or Orton or whoever lasting that long either. I can imagine HHH maybe, as he’ll be around anyway in some capacity, and Nash at 52 is having a good stab at it – but Hogan and Flair seem exceptional cases compared to the top names that have followed them. Is it because they were such major names that they can get away with it (to the extent that they do), or is it just their individual personalities and situations? Or am I just extrapolating too much from a very small and incomplete sample size? Will you be watching/ranting about the Greatest Rivalries dvd, by the way?

MONTREAL WAS NOT A WORK!  Sorry, reflex macro there. Last thing that Entertainment One sent me to review was TLC 2010, so a full review doesn’t seem likely given how pressed for time I generally am these days and how little I want to put more money in WWE’s pocket in the first place.   Unless I just download the documentary portion, which is possible. Anyway, guys from the last decade or so have tended to work a much harder style than a Hogan or Flair did.  Not saying it was a cakewalk to do their schedule in the 80s, but Flair’s broomstick formula was much easier to do night after night than someone like Edge having to one-up himself with ladder matches and cage matches and endless chairshots.  Also, guys like Rock and Austin were much smarter about their giant paydays than the “blow it all on coke and hookers” 80s stars were, and thus can afford to leave the business on their own terms.  Although according to that Scott Hall piece everyone today is a saint who plays videogames and is as straight edge as CM Punk, so clearly we no longer have anything to worry about.  Whew.

Great Rivalries

I’m starting to get overlapping mailbag questions so I should probably start clearing them out.

Saw a preview for the new WWE Greatest Rivalries DVD: Hart/Michaels.  It looks really good, and I’ll probably check it out, but it got me thinking of future Greatest Rivalry DVDs.  If they were to continue with these titles, what Rivalries would you like to see?  Some come to my mind, but I don’t know if there’d be enough material for a 3-disc set.
Angle/Lesnar
Edge and Christian/Hardys
Guerrero/Mysterio
HHH/Foley
Rock/Austin seems like a no-brainer.
Thoughts?

Hey Scott– So the Bret v. Shawn dvd is out in a couple of weeks, and all the early reviews indicate that it’s going to be the best wrestling dvd released this year. However, I’m wondering if the ‘E can really go any further with this concept, especially given the truly unique nature of what went down between Bret and Shawn. Can you think of any rivalry they could do this kind of dvd with in the future, or is this a "one and done?"

I know they want to do more in the future.  Rock/Austin is a natural and would probably sell like gangbusters.  Austin/Vince, although that would be 99% promos and only a few matches.   I’d also say Rock/HHH, which gives you a BAZILLION good-great matches to choose from and some real history between them.  Plus we’d hopefully finally get the Iron Man match on DVD.  I’d also pick Hogan v. Savage, but that’s obviously never happening for a million reasons I don’t need to get into here I’m sure.  Flair v. Sting is again another one mired in political bullshit so it wouldn’t ever happen.  But it would quite the set. 

Great Rivalries

I’m starting to get overlapping mailbag questions so I should probably start clearing them out.

Saw a preview for the new WWE Greatest Rivalries DVD: Hart/Michaels.  It looks really good, and I’ll probably check it out, but it got me thinking of future Greatest Rivalry DVDs.  If they were to continue with these titles, what Rivalries would you like to see?  Some come to my mind, but I don’t know if there’d be enough material for a 3-disc set.
Angle/Lesnar
Edge and Christian/Hardys
Guerrero/Mysterio
HHH/Foley
Rock/Austin seems like a no-brainer.
Thoughts?

Hey Scott– So the Bret v. Shawn dvd is out in a couple of weeks, and all the early reviews indicate that it’s going to be the best wrestling dvd released this year. However, I’m wondering if the ‘E can really go any further with this concept, especially given the truly unique nature of what went down between Bret and Shawn. Can you think of any rivalry they could do this kind of dvd with in the future, or is this a "one and done?"

I know they want to do more in the future.  Rock/Austin is a natural and would probably sell like gangbusters.  Austin/Vince, although that would be 99% promos and only a few matches.   I’d also say Rock/HHH, which gives you a BAZILLION good-great matches to choose from and some real history between them.  Plus we’d hopefully finally get the Iron Man match on DVD.  I’d also pick Hogan v. Savage, but that’s obviously never happening for a million reasons I don’t need to get into here I’m sure.  Flair v. Sting is again another one mired in political bullshit so it wouldn’t ever happen.  But it would quite the set.