Ahmed Johnson vs. Vader & Triple-H vs. Jake (and other KOTR Qualifying Matches!)

Austin 3:16- The Most Iconic Promo Ever Happened 25 Years Ago Today

Beating a bunch of midcarders and you change the business forever. Wrestling is weird.

WWF KING OF THE RING QUALIFYING MATCHES (1996):
* You might have heard of this tournament before. So by this point, the tourney was kind of up in the air after Mabel’s failed Main Event push. It could have even poisoned the “King” title, in fact. Hopefully THIS year’s winner makes more of a go of it.

So the backstory here was that the crown was meant to go to the “Next Big Midcarder”, more or less- mid-tier heel Hunter Hearts-Helmsley was expected to win it. But instead, he was one of the few guys the WWF could punish for doing the infamous “Curtain Call” (the Kliq members all coming out for a group hug in the ring, “exposing the business” by confusing fans at an MSG house show). And so he had his big push taken away and they threw it on some other guy. Thus giving HHH a lifelong persecution complex and an obsessive need to look smarter and better than everyone else, covering his own ass at every opportunity. But who knows what effect THAT had on the business?

This review is comparatively massive, because I decided to put the trio of Quarterfinals in the same review instead of splitting them up. Easier to look at the tourney as a whole that way! Hopefully it’s not too long, haha.

HENRY O. GODWINN (w/ Hillbilly Jim) vs. JUSTIN “HAWK” BRADHSAW (w/ Uncle Zebekiah):
(WWF Superstars)
* Weirdness abounds as tag wrestler Godwinn is out there with absolutely ZERO chance, taking on rising midcard guy Bradshaw, then a super-green Stan Hansen wannabe in red trunks and a ponytail managed by Zebekiah. At this point, the future JBL was nowhere near as protected as he would be even as part of the Acolytes, but he was protected enough.

Read more

Sid vs. The Nightstalker (and other Dream Matches!)

Worst in the World: Sid Vicious vs The Nightstalker-Clash of the Champions XIII

Welcome back to another Dream Matches column! Here, we get one of the most famous bad matches in wrestling history, as WCW sends out terrible rookies Sid Vicious & Bryan Clark on a major national television show! Who can lead the match? NOBODY, as it turns out! And then they bring out a BIG AXE!!

Then we get the bizarre SmackDown! match where Triple-H has to take on Kai En Tai & the Brooklyn Brawler to earn a match against Chris Jericho on the next RAW- it’s semi-famous for the ending, which is kind of a one-time-only thing. Then “The Best of Roadblock” continues as he takes on Diamond Dallas Page in a throwaway match, and we visit PCO during his SECOND run in WCW as he fights Big Vito. And we finalize everything with the FIRST EVER match between the Undertaker and Kane!!! Except it’s in WCW with a green-ass rookie “Unabom” Glen Jacobs an an invading WWF purple-gloved Taker. But it still counts!

Read more

Mike Reviews: WWE No Mercy 2007

Hello You!

The reason for this one is that it’s a show I’ve never seen in full, owing to the fact that when it happened way back in 2007 I was in the middle of moving house and thus didn’t have the disposable income to burn on a WWE pay per view. It’s quite an interesting show however due to what happens in regards to the WWE Title. And hey, now I have WWE Network it’s never been easier to catch up on the shows I missed back in the day and we’re still in October so it kind of fits.

The original main event of the show coming in was supposed to be John Cena defending the WWE Title to Randy Orton, but Cena then suffered a severe injury in a nothing Raw match with Ken Anderson which took him out of this show and meant he’d likely have to miss WrestleMania as well.

Thus WWE had to scramble to find a way to crown a new Champion and also rescue the pay per view card that had now been left without its main event. Did they manage it? Let’s take a look and find out.

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 07/03/00 Review

The WWF in 2000 reviews are back. I took the month of July off from writing these reviews because I needed a bit of a break. I figured if I stopped at the midway point it would be a good time for it. Here is the synopsis for this episode on WWE Network:

“Shane McMahon goes one-on-one with The Rock for the WWE Championship in the main event. While Triple H’s quest for the WWE Championship is put on hold, he is given an opportunity at Rikishi’s Intercontinental Championship. But when Chris Jericho makes presence felt at The Game’s expense, Y2J finds himself in a Handicap Match. Kurt Angle in action.”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 06/26/00 Review (The Rock vs. Kurt Angle vs. Triple H)

The King of the Ring 2000 PPV saw The Rock become the new WWF Champion and Kurt Angle won the King of the Ring tournament. Edge and Christian also won back the WWF Tag Team Titles. This Raw signified a change in direction for WWE. The heel McMahon-Helmsley group had dominated TV for months, but that was about to change. I’m excited to go through the second half of 2000 again. I remember a lot of good things happening.

The synopsis for this episode on WWE Network is: “Shawn Michaels returns to introduce the new Commissioner of WWE. Plus, Triple H, Kurt Angle, Chris Jericho, and many more in action!”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 06/22/00 Review

This was the last edition of Smackdown before King of the Ring 2000. On the previous Raw, we found out that King of the Ring’s main event was going to be WWF Champion Triple H, Shane McMahon and Vince McMahon vs. The Rock, The Undertaker and Kane and if Triple H’s team lost, then Triple H would lose the WWF Championship in the tag team match.

Here’s the synopsis from WWE Network: “Mr. McMahon causes more tension within the McMahon-Helmsley Faction by making a unique Six-Man Tag Team main event.”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 06/19/00 Review

This was the go-home edition of Raw heading into the King of the Ring PPV on Sunday, June 25, 2000. Due to that, they had six King of the Ring second round matches on this show.

The synopsis for this episode on WWE Network is: “As the King of the Ring tournament continues, CEO Linda McMahon makes an announcement regarding Triple H’s WWE Championship at Judgment Day.” They screwed up the synopsis. It should say “King of the Ring” at the end, not Judgment Day.

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 06/08/00 Review

The road to King of the Ring 2000 continued with The Rock, The Undertaker and Kane all having a common enemy as they tried to get a title shot against the WWF Champion, Triple H.

Here’s the synopsis from WWE Network: “As the McMahon-Helmsley Faction celebrates their success, The Rock interrupts the festivities leading to a Six-Man Tag Team main event.”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 06/01/00 Review (Triple H vs. Kane)

The return of Kane was the big news from Raw on May 29. He saved The Rock and The Undertaker from a group attack from the McMahon-Helmsley Regime, so that meant that Kane, Rock and Undertaker all had their eyes on the WWF Title held by Triple H. The next PPV was King of the Ring on June 25.

Here’s the synopsis from WWE Network: “While The Rock and The Undertaker compete in matches for a shot at the WWE Title, Kane seizes his own golden opportunity. All this and more!”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 05/22/00 Review

This edition of Raw was the follow up to the Judgment Day 2000 PPV. The big news coming out of that show was that Triple H beat The Rock to regain the WWF Championship in a 60-Minute Iron Man Match that had a controversial finish. Plus, The Undertaker returned after missing about eight months of action. He was out for that long due to a groin injury and a torn pectoral muscle that required surgery. It was a different look for The Undertaker too.

The synopsis for this episode on WWE Network is: “After losing the WWE Title to Triple H at Judgment Day, The Rock looks for payback on the McMahon-Helmsley Faction. Plus, much more!”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Judgment Day 2000 Review

It’s time for WWE Judgment Day featuring a WWF Title match that saw The Rock defending the gold against Triple H in a 60-Minute Iron Man Match with Shawn Michaels as the referee. There was also a huge surprise return in the main event of this show as well.

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 05/18/00 Review (Last SD Before Judgment Day)

This was the go-home edition of Smackdown heading into Judgment Day 2000. Here’s the synopsis from WWE Network: “The McMahon-Helmsley Faction place The Rock in a special Lumberjack Tables Match against The Dudley Boyz. Plus, Kurt Angle, Val Venis, and more!”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 05/15/00 Review (Shawn Michaels Returns)

This was the go-home episode of Raw heading into Judgment Day 2000.  The main event of Judgment Day 2000 was The Rock defending the WWF Title against Triple H in a 60-Minute Iron Man Match.

The synopsis for this episode on WWE Network is: “Commissioner Shawn Michaels drops a bombshell about his career and the upcoming Iron Man match between The Rock and Triple H.”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 05/11/00 Review

The road to Judgment Day 2000 continued as the McMahon-Helmsley Regime did everything they could to make life miserable for the babyfaces. The Rock missed Raw due to filming a movie (The Mummy Returns) and he missed this episode of Smackdown too.

Here’s the synopsis from WWE Network: “Rikishi and Too Cool battle DX in a Six-Man Tag Team Elimination main event. Triple H issues a challenge to The Rock for the WWE Title.”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Raw Deal 05/08/00 Review

The WWF was rolling in May 2000 with an entertaining product on the road to Judgment Day on May 21. This was a unique episode of Raw because the WWF Champion, some guy named The Rock, was not at Raw or Smackdown this week. Instead, he was in England filming scenes for The Mummy Returns, which was his first movie role. Since The Rock was the top face on the show, that meant it was time for some other guys to step up.

The synopsis for this episode on WWE Network is: “Triple H challenges The Rock to an Iron Man Match for the WWE Title at Judgment Day. The McMahon-Helmsley Regime targets Chris Jericho.”

Read more

TJR Retro: WWF Smackdown 05/04/00 Review

This was the first episode of Smackdown following Backlash with the next PPV, Judgment Day, on the horizon in less than three weeks. The Rock was the WWF Champion that had to deal with the McMahon Family trying to stack the deck against him all the time. In this episode, that meant defending the WWF Title in a handicap match.

Here’s the synopsis from WWE Network: “Referee Earl Hebner is forced to team with The Rock as The Great One defends the WWE Title against DX in a Handicap Tag Team Match.”

Read more