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Solie's Tuesday Morning Report: EXTRA!

WWF Royal Rumble

The Hart Foundation vs. The Andersons

A "What If..?" scenerio by Ervin Griffin Jr.

Volume 3, Issue 265 - January 18, 1998

The Hart Foundation vs. The Andersons

by Ervin Griffin Jr.

DEEP DOWN SOUTH

After another defense of their NWA National Tag Team Championship, Ole & Arn Anderson courted a group of reporters for a post-bout interview. It went:

REPORTER: Ole, Arn. You have been dominant NWA National Champs for months now. Are you planning to go after the NWA World Tag Team Championship?

OLE: One thing at a time, my boy. You see, me and Arn would love nothing better than to take those NWA straps from those "commies" Ivan & Nikita Koloff. I mean, if those two scrawny, pretty boys Morton and Gibson can beat them, then what do you think a couple of real men like Arn and me would do to them!!!

ARN: (chuckling at Ole's comments) Ole and me would love to go after the 'heavy metal' gold in the NWA but there are two things holding us back. One, there are a lot of teams that think that they can take these (Arn holds up is National Tag Belt) away but they haven't got the job done yet. Two, the NWA brass doesn't seem too thrilled at the prospect of me and "The Rock" holding their NWA World Tag Team Belts because they know that years ago, when Ole & Gene held those same titles, no one could beat them so they had to come up with a stupid-a** excuse to strip them of the titles!!! So, yeah, we would love to go for the top prize in tag team wrestling but you'll have to ask the "suits" when the hell that will be?!!!

REPORTER: Ole, you have been involved in tag team wrestling for a number of years now. What is your impression of the tag teams of today?

OLE: Well, I have to say that with the exception of Arn and myself, the tag teams of today aren't nothing to shout about. First, you have those two pretty boys, The Rock n Roll Express. Sure, Morton and Gibson have a lot of flashy moves but what happens when Arn and I take a body part and disable it?!!! No dropkicks, no flying headscissors, no of that arieal sh*t!!! Then you have The Midnight Express, who are far better than Morton & Gibson but can't win without that wimpy manager Jim Cornette. Say what you want about Arn and myself but we never relyed on a manager to win matches.

ARN: That's right. Now, two teams that I don't personally like but are quality teams are those Road Warriors and The Steiner Bros. As I said, I don't like them but they are two of the few quality teams out there that could actually give us a match!!! We would win anyway, but at least we would break a sweat!!!

REPORTER: Okay. Let me name a team and you tell me the first thing that comes to mind.

OLE: Fine.

ARN: Shoot.

REPORTER: The Hart Foundation

Both Ole and Arn break out laughing at this point.

REPORTER: Guys?!! What's so funny? The Harts are WWF Tag Team Champions and are a dominant team in the WWF.

OLE: That's just it!!! It's the WWF!!! The World Wrestling Federation should be called The "Circus" Wrestling Federation!!! Most of their atheletes are a joke and their tag teams are even worse!!! In fact, the men that the Harts 'beat'--and I use that term loosely-- are the only decent tag team in that fed, The British Bulldogs. As for the Harts, first of all, if the Harts were so great, then why did they have to pay off a referee to beat The British Bulldogs, who were already one man short anyway?!!!

ARN: Yeah!! And while your at it, answer me this, when was the last time that a tag team title was defended two against one?!!! Now, I am not siding with the Bulldogs because they should've had the common sense not to agree with that stipulation. Still, they didn't beat the Bulldogs because Dynamite Kid was never involved in the match anyway!!! The Harts have a tainted title in my eyes!!!

REPORTER: Well, some might say the same for your National Tag straps you hold.

ARN: Hey!!! At least, we beat two men for them!!! You can print this Mr. Reporter, if we ever met the Harts in the ring, they would get streched like they never got streched in "The Dungeon!!!" End Of Interview!!!

THE REBUTTAL

The next day, the story was printed in PRO WRESTLING ILLUSTRATED. While wrestling in Tampa, FL, Jim "The Anvil" Neihart got a copy of the interview and showed it to his camp. Both Bret "HitMan" Hart and Jimmy Hart laughed it off. Later, after a tag team title defense, the Harts were being interviewed. What started off as a typical wrestling interview ended as a spark to light the flame.

BRET: One other thing, recently "The Anvil" showed me this paper featuring an interview with some jokers from Minnesota who wrestle for some little league promotion down south called the National Wrestling Alliance. I have a little message for those guys. Anytime you want to come from the minor leagues to the big leauges, just step up to the plate!!!

JIMMY: Hahahahahahahahaha!!!!! You know something, maybe their too stupid to come up from there!!!! They talk good game but I don't see any game coming from them!!! Andersons or whatever your name is, come on up and face the music!!!! Hahahahahahahaha!!!!

This same day, Ole and Arn were headed to Miami, FL for an NWA card when they saw the tape of what was said. When they heard what was said, the sinister mind of Ole Anderson went to work as he asked for a WWF schedule for cards. There was a WWF being held the next day after the NWA card in Orlando, FL.

"What do say we pay these boys a visit," asked Ole. Arn just smiled.

THE ATTACK

Orlando, FL. The Hart Foundation had successfully defended their WWF Tag Team Titles against The Killer Bees. Neihart is outside the ring while Bret mounts the corner to taunt the crowd with Jimmy Hart, who is also outside the ring, laughing!!! Suddenly, two fans jump over the ring barrier to attack "The Anvil" and Jimmy. It is Ole & Arn Anderson!!! Arn spins the scrawny manager around and gives him his DDT on the floor!!!

By this time, Bret has come out to help his partner and manager!!! He reaches though the ropes and gets a shot on Ole, who is pounding the "Anvil", but gets clocked in the back of the head with a steel chair by Arn!!! Bret falls back into the ring holding his head!!! Meanwhile, Ole hammerlocks Neihart's left arm and rams it into the steel post!!! He follows it up with a "hammerlock" slam on the floor!!! While this is going on, Arn is stomping a mudhole in Bret Hart!!! Ole, seeing that Neihart is down, joins Arn in the ring and brings the steel chair used earlier with him. Arn holds up Bret in a front-facelock while Ole smashes the chair into Bret's back!!! Then, Arn whips Bret into the ropes!!!

As this is going on, Ole lays the steel chair flat in the middle of the ring. Arn crotches low and executes his "spinebuster" slam onto the steel chair!!! Bret is laying in agony at this point as The Andersons continue to stomp his back!! "The Anvil" makes his way into the ring with his injured left arm and shoulder. The Andersons quickly attack!!! Arn takes him down and streches out his left arm for Ole to jam the steel chair into bicep and shoulder area!!! To make matters worse, Arn picks up Neihart and, while Ole lays down the chair again, puts him in a "hammerlock" slam onto the steel chair!!! Finally, Ole goes to the top-rope and, while Arn streches out "The Anvil's" arm, drives his knee into the shoulder of Neihart (I call this move "The Wrecking Ball")!!!

Seeing both members of The Harts laid out, Ole & Arn raise their hands in victory and get a surprisingly mixed reaction!!! Some fans booing, more fans cheering!!! Ole and Arn leave with a number of security personel escorting them out for legal reprecussions. Meanwhile, medical personel are attending too The Harts. All three men had to be taken to the hospital for medical attention. Later, the NWA severly fined The Andersons for their actions and stripped them of their National Tag Team belts.

REVENGE

Two weeks later, during a taping for WTBS' World Championship Wrestling, Tony Schiavone conducted an interview with The Andersons about their recent actions. Here was their response:

ARN: Tony, let me ask something. What the hell is the NWA so mad about?!!! If you ask me and the "Rock", we did them a favor by beating up the Harts!!! We just proved that tag teams in the WWF are punks that can't even hold up to a little punishment!!! We proved that the NWA has the toughest tag teams, not the WWF!!! And....

At this point, Doug Dillenger interupts the interview to usher Arn to the back. Arn runs back to find Ole in laid out in a pool of his own blood!!! "Get some help back here!!! Damnit, get a doctor back here!!!, screams Arn. Ric Flair is also back there and he helps with Ole as well. Ole is rushed to the nearest hospital for treatment of his cuts to the head. Before leaving, however, Arn finds a cut-out of a broken pink heart in Ole's locker. Arn knew what this ment.

Later in the show, Arn was wrestling a singles match but those looking on could tell that he was distracted. After Arn won this "squash," he was leaving the ring when The Hart Foundation hit the ring!!! They jumped Arn before he could leave and was beating him down with a "storm" of kicks and punches!!! Then, Bret picks up Arn and executes a piledriver on Arn. By this time, Ric Flair arrives but is met with Bret's flying clothesline while coming into the ring!!! "The HitMan" and "The Anvil" are now ganging up on Flair, beating him senseless!!! "Jim, take care of Mr. Anderson while I show "The Nature Bozo" a real figure four!!!", says Bret. Bret drags Flair over to the corner and rams him groin-first into the ringpost!!! Bret then slaps on the "Hart-Breaker" (my nickname for his ring-post figure four) on Flair!!! Flair is screaming to the heavens at this point!! Meanwhile, Neihart takes a steel chair, lays it out in the ring and executes his patened powerslam on Arn on the chair!!! "The Anvil", seeing Arn incapacitated, goes over to Flair and clocks him in the face with the steel weapon!!! Neihart then stretches out Flair by the arms to create more pressure in the "Hart-Breaker"!!!! Satisfied that they have done enough damage, Bret and Jim leave to a smattering of boos in Turner studios.

MAKE THE MATCH

The next day, WWF Head Vince McMahon contacted the NWA to discuss what to do. It was decided since these two teams wanted each other so badly, that they would sign the match (not to mention citing the success they had in joint-venturing the awesome Magnum TA/"Stone Cold" Steve Austin match). It was also decided that the WWF World Tag Team Titles would be at stake in a no-disqualification, no-countout, no-time limit bout and that both Ric Flair and manager Jimmy Hart would be barred from ringside!!! The card would be held in Dallas, TX at the old Texas Stadium. World Class Championship Wrestling would also let stars to participate in the card as well.

THE UNDERCARD

Ron "Hands Of Stone" Garvin VS. "Gentleman" Chris Adams

About 15 minutes into this bout, the referee is accidently knocked down by Adams when Garvin threw him into the ropes. When Adams turns around, he is met by Garvin's "knockout punch." Garvin goes for the pin but there is no ref. Seeing opportunity, Gino Hernandez comes down and nails Garvin with a sockful of quarters in the head. The ref, however, saw this and DQ'ed Adams. Ron Garvin gets the duke via disqualification.

Tully Blanchard VS. Shawn Michaels

The battle of native San Antonians!!! Twenty minutes into this grueling encounter, Baby Doll slips a roll of quarters into Tully's hands. Chyna runs down from the back and nails B.D. with a running dropkick!!! She then powerbombs B.D. on the turf!!! Meanwhile, Blanchard had the coins and takes a swing at Michaels!!! He misses and Michaels responds with some "Sweet Chin Music" that catches Blanchard's "loaded" hand!!! Causing him to hit himself with the roll of coins!!! Michaels takes the pin and the win!!!

The British Bulldogs & Tito Santana VS. The Fabulous Freebirds (BadStreet Match/Texas Tornado style)

In this no-DQ, no-countout, no-time limit match saw a brutal 10 minute bout. Wild from the beginning, it saw all hell break loose in this fashion. Tito captured Buddy Roberts in his figure four leglock!!! Meanwhile, Davey Boy Smith has Terry Gordy in the corner pounding him while Dynamite executes his patened "snap" suplex on Michael Hayes on the outside!!! Gordy, seeing Roberts in trouble, delievers a low-blow to Davey Boy and goes over and kicks Santana in the head repeatedly to break the hold!!! From behind him, Dynamite springboards off the top rope and catches Gordy in the back of the head with a headbutt!!! This causes Gordy to go into the arms of Davey Boy Smith as Smith lifted the near 300 pound Gordy into his powerslam. Davey goes for the pin but before the ref can get to three, Michael Hayes comes off the top rope with a cowboy boot to the head of Davey Boy!!! Gordy then picks up Davey and puts his "Asiatic Spike" on him but is caught by a Tito Santana flying forearm!!! From there, all six men began brawling up the runway!!! The ref is given no choice but to rule the match no contest!!!

Kevin & Kerry Von Eric VS. The Road Warriors

Twenty minutes into this affair, Kerry Von Eric gets the "iron claw" on Animal. Animal goes down to one knee. Kerry is anticipating victory but Hawk's running clothesline puts an end to that!!! Kevin comes in and now all four men are fighting!!! While Kevin is fighting with Hawk, Animal takes Kerry outside and delievers the piledriver on the floor!!! Kevin whips Hawk into the ropes but gets it reversed!!! When Kevin comes off the ropes, Hawk catches him and drops him across the top rope. Hawk goes for the pin when, out of nowhere, The Freebirds come out to attack Kevin and Kerry!!! The ref calls for a DQ in favor of the Von Erics. The Warriors are so incensed that they help Kevin and Kerry fight the 'Birds!!! The Bulldogs & Santana have also come back down!!! The Birds head for higher ground as they are badly outnumbered!!! Surprisingly, the usually vulgar and violent Warriors shake the hands of the Von Erics and salute them by raising their hands in victory. But, over the mic, they also vow to return to Texas for a rematch. Kerry responds, "Hey, man. Anytime you want." Hawk and Animal nod in acknowledgment and leave.

"Stone Cold" Steve Austin VS. Nikita Koloff (NWA United States Title Match)

Fresh off of his brutal US title win against Magnum TA in Charolette, SCSA brought the belt back home to Texas to take on "The Russian Nightmare." Fifteen minutes into it, Nikita actually hits the "Russian Sickle" but Austin kicks out!!! Nikita is livid at the ref!!! Ivan Koloff, Nikita's uncle, manages to get his attention back on Austin. About 10 minutes later, the ref goes down from a collision with Austin. Ivan gets in the ring and holds Austin for another "Sickle" attempt but Austin moves and Nikita gets Ivan. Stunned, Nikita turns around slowly, giving Austin time to run out of the opposite corner and hit a running version of his "Stone Cold Stunner!!" Another ref has come out by this time and Austin gets the 3 count!! Afterwards, Austin grabs the mic and says, "Better luck next time commie!!!" He holds up the "bird" as he says this as well. Austin leaves to a standing ovation by his fellow texans!!!

Magnum TA VS. Diamond Dallas Page Twenty minutes into the bout, Magnum goes for a bodyslam but DDP slides behind him and hooks the Diamond Cutter and covers!!! Magnum, however, has his foot under the bottom rope so the pin didn't count. DDP, undaunted, continues his attack by "pancaking" (face-first piledriver) Magnum. He then goes for his airplane spin version of the "DC" but as he releases Magnum for that move, Magnum slides in front of DDP and gets his belly to belly suplex on DDP for the three count. Disappointed but gracious (a trait rarely shown by DDP), DDP shakes the hand of Magnum and both leave to a tremendous ovation from the Texas Stadium crowd.

THE MATCH

Ring Announcer is Gary Cappetta:

"Wrestling fans, the following contest is a no-countout, no-disqualification bout for the World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship!!!"

With that, The Andersons make their way down to the ring.

"Introducing the challengers, total combine weight 505lbs. "The Minnesota Wrecking Crew" Ole & Arn....."

That's as far as Cappetta gets because The Hart decided not to wait for further announcements!!! They jump the Andersons before they even make it into the ring!!! Using their championship belts, the Harts pummel the Andersons from behind, driving them to the ring!!! Once at ringside, Jim Neihart continues to battle Ole on the outside while Bret battles Arn in the ring!!! The Andersons are being overwelmed!!! Bret flings Arn into the ropes and catches him with a gut shot. From there, he applies his patened "Russian Legsweep" on Arn!!! By this time, Ole is still on the floor while "The Anvil" has made his way to a corner. Meanwhile, Bret drops two standing elbows on Arn. He picks Arn up and brings him over to his corner. He makes the tag to "The Anvil". Neihart comes in and gives Arn a smashing forearm to the chest!! Neihart tries an Irish whip but Arn reverses it (by this time Ole has made his way to a corner as well). Arn tries a clothesline but Neihart ducks it and does a standing dropkick on "The Enforcer"!! Ole comes in and is met with a flying tackle from the former football star!!!

Neihart quickly turns his attention back to Arn and makes another tag to Bret. Bret whips Arn into the ropes and catches him in a inverted atomic drop!!! Arn is standing motionless and can't move! Bret quickly takes advantage and applies "The Sharpshooter" (I know that he didn't use that move back then but I am letting everyone use their moves in my stories). Ole does his version of the basketball "head-fake" by pretending to come into the ring. The prompts Neihart to actually come in. Naturally, he is cut off by the referee. This allows Ole to get a kick in to break up the "Sharpshooter."

Seeing the ref still tied up with Neihart, Ole takes Bret by the "seat of his pants" and by his singlet and throws him shoulder first into the ringpost!!! Bret is screaming in pain!!! Arn crawls over to Ole to make the first legal exchange for the Andersons. Ole quickly goes over to Bret who is still hanging around the cornerpost. Ole takes Bret's left arm and jumps off of the apron with it, ramming it into the post again!!! Ole then re-enters the ring and begins to stomp on the arm. Ole quickly tags back in Arn. Arn comes in and gives Bret a shoulderbreaker. Arn covers for the first pin attempt of the contest. It is a two count. Arn picks up Bret and executes the trademark "hammerlock" slam on Bret!!! Arn follows up with a knee to the shoulder area. Arn now takes the arm and twists it in an unnatural way!!! He now takes it and puts it in a top wristlock but Bret is bridging up!!! Ole illegally comes in but, with the no-DQ rule, the ref really can't stop them. Anyway, Ole grabs Bret's right arm in a top wristlock as well. "The HitMan" performs one of his better moves as he flips over and somehow manages to use leverage to flip over both of the Andersons!!!

While this was taking place, "The Anvil" came in and bounded off the ropes to greet the stunned Andersons with a flying double clothesline!!! Neihart quickly goes back to his corner and Bret quickly makes the tag to him!!! Neihart picks up Arn and flings him into the ropes. Arn reverses the whip and Ole (who is on the outside now) reaches in to trip up Neihart. Neihart sees him in time but Ole has done his job and that's to distract Neihart for Arn to get in a knee to his back!!! When "The Anvil" turns around, he is greeted with an Arn Anderson DDT!!! Arn covers but only gets a one count because Bret kicks him in the head to break up the count!!! Arn goes and makes another tag. As Arn leaves, Ole signals to Arn for something. That something is a steel chair!!! Bret comes in to protest but the ref holds him back and explains that because of the no-DQ rules, that would be legal!! As the argument continues, Ole lays the chair in the middle of the ring and "hammerlock" slams Neihart onto it!!! Neihart is in dire straits as Ole goes to the top for his knee to the shoulder to finish him off!! Bret goes over an pushes Ole off knee first into the steel chair (which is still laying in the ring)!!! Ole is holding his knee in pain!!! Neihart crawls over and makes the tag to Bret.

Bret comes in, drags Ole over to the corner and puts the Hart-Breaker on Ole!!! In this match, this hold is a legal maneuver!!! Arn, realizing this, quickly goes over and kicks Bret in the head and chest to break the hold!!! "The Anvil" goes over and he and Arn duke it out on the floor and back in the ring!!! Meanwhile, Ole is writhing in pain from the "Hart-Breaker" while Bret is just coming to his feet!! Arn has taken the advantage by kicking Neihart low!!! Arn signals for his "spinebuster" slam but as he whips "The Anvil" into the ropes, Neihart reverses it and catches him in the bearhug position for the "Hart-Attack." At the same time, Bret realizes what Neihart is up too and responds with his flying clothesline off of the ropes!!! As the move is being executed, it causes Arn's head to strike the steel chair that is still laying in the ring!!! Neihart covers and the ref, gladly, makes the three count with the Harts retaining their titles.

AFTERMATH

The Hart Foundation, in an effort to gain respect, challenged tag teams from around the world, regardless of their federation, for their titles. They had classic defenses with The Road Warriors, The Von Erics, The Midnight Express, The Rock n Roll Express, Ivan & Nikita Koloff, "Ravishing" Rick Rude & Manny "Ragin' Bull" Fernandez as well as rematches with the Bulldogs and the Andersons. The Harts would finally lose the titles in an upset against Strike Force in October of 1987 in Syracuse, NY.

Questions? Comments? Ideas for another story? I would like to hear what you think of this story. Please e-mail me at mailto:griffiev@hotmail.com

Ervin Griffin Jr. is Solie's resident historian and also contributes to the Ringside Insider on a regular basis. Many of his previous articles are available in the Articles section of the Solie's web site.


We open with "Free-Hype-For-All"

Sunny slinks to the ring in a pink chamise over a white bikini to pump up the crowd. We switch to an interview with Tito Santana - the first Royal Rumble winner. During the ensuing clips I am surprised to notice how much younger SCSA looked just a year ago - the time has not been good to him. Now Michael Cole is explaining the rules as Cactus Jack and Chainsaw Charlie (Terry Funk) who denies his real identity with a twinkle in his eye.

Jim Cornette is seen next with his NWA American Champ, Jeff Jarrett - he talks about unifying the NWA and "this outlaw organization" the WWF. Kevin Kelly is with NOD - he shows us clips of Mark Henry joining the thugs. Faarooq starts to rant and is interrupted by Maivia when he states that he will win the Rumble. Rocky talks about everybody knowing what their "roles" are - that sets them all off and we cut to hype for the WWF Title match - then to a Mick Foley T-shirt ad.

A Ken Shamrock promo then we cut to Doc Hendrix for some more crowd hype. He talks about the IC Title match then they cut to the Road Warrior's promo video (how many times have we watched them destroy that fancy new broadcast table..?). A short Mike Tyson clip then to Michael Cole who shows us again what happened "...the last time a major sports celebrity attended the Royal Rumble..." as they rehash the LT/Bigalow incident. More hype for the Michaels/Undertaker match follows with extensive clips from "Hell in the Cell" and the Undertaker/Kane saga (I'm still trying to figure out how Glenn Jacobs got to be Mark Calloway's brother..;-)

WWF Royal Rumble

Live from the San Jose Arena. One of the first things we see is a sign that reads "Tyson Killed Tupac". Jim Ross introduces the program with the statement that SCSA will be a marked man tonight. They introduce the foreign language commentators then show us Tyson in his box.

TAFKA Goldust (w/Luna) vs. Vader - Dustin wears a pretty tame striped wrestling tight with orange boots and a day-glo green wig. Under the wig his hair is dyed Cornflower blue. He attacks his opponent as Vader enters the ring. Vader turns things around almost immediately. The fight goes out to the floor where Vader keeps up the pressure. He threatens to drop the ringsteps on Goldust but the referee gets between them. Back in the ring Vader is still on top of things until Luna grabs his foot. Thus distracted he is layed waste by his opponent. Back they go to the floor and this time Goldust holds the advantage. He distracts the ref while Luna drops on Vader and chokes him with her shoe. Back in the ring again, Goldust pounds his opponent in the corner then stops to carress himself and kiss Vader. That wakes Vader up and the match see-saws. Goldust tries to scoop Vader up but fails - he tries again and hands the advantage to his opponent. Vader readies himself for a Vader-bomb but takes too long. While Luna distracts the ref - Goldust slips in a low-blow. Vader is only temporarily slowed - he comes back and downs his opponent then squashes him. He's about to try the Vader-bomb again when Luna runs across the ring and jumps on his back. He ignores her and executes the bomb anyway with her on his back! Vader takes the pin.

Michael Cole welcomes Austin to the arena - Stone Cold says "park the truck and don't scratch it..." then splits. The Godwins show up looking for him. Cut to Sunny in the ring in a referee outfit.

Battallion/Tarantula/El Torito vs. Max Mini/Nova/Mosaic - Six-Man Mini Match with Sunny as the referee - as usual the latter team is much smaller then their opponents - and I expect they'll win. Nova makes mincemeat of Tarantula in the opening moments. Max Mini comes in against Battallion - who also takes it. Then El Torito (I wonder if his retaurant is one of the sponsors..:-) and Mosaic. Torito has the advantage but gives it up soon enough to the smaller man. This match is using Luche Libre rules - no tags needed if your team mate leaves the ring. Tyson is shown yucking it up in a split screen. The little-little guys continue to dominate the big-little guys. El Torito seems to have the most luck among the larger team. Sunny tries a leapfrog but blows it. She holds Max so he can kick off his opponents one by one. Moments later they all pile up on the outside (a typical six-man Luche Libre scenerio). Max Mini pins El Torito to get the win for his team.

NOD crash into Steve Austin's dressing room - Faarooq orders Mark Henry to go in and prove himself by "kicking Austin's" butt. Austin isn't there but his "Austin 3:16" foam finger (the middle one) is proped up on a chair. We see Tyson in his box with Vince and his son, Shane then cut to clips of Shamrock vs. NOD - he beats them one-by-one with his ankle lock until Henry double-crosses him.

Ken Shamrock vs. Rocky Maivia - Intercontinental Title match - Michael Cole interviews "the Rock" before the match - he rants about Shamrock getting his - this is the Rock's first Title defense on TV as far as I can remember (during this reign that is...) Rocky takes exception to the "Rocky Sucks" chant. Shamrock gets a pretty good pop as he enters. Shamrock seems to have his opponent's number as the match gets underway. He counters every move and knocks Rocky out of the ring. Back inside Maivia turns things around but only for a moment. Shamrock comes roaring back but then gets dropped onto the ring rope. A lot of this match resembles a boxing contest as these guys tend to slug it out. On the outside again - Shamrock tastes the ringsteps. Back inside Maivia puts on a DDT but can't get the pin. They slug it out some more then Maivia grabs a reverse chinlock. Shamrock fights to his feet - Maivia goes for another DDT but Shamrock turns it into a suplex. Another slugfest ensues with Shamrock holding the advantage. Rocky keeps going back to raking the face. It doesn't look good for Maivia when the NOD swarms the ring, Maivia uses a set of brass knuckles then slips them into Shamrock's tights... Shamrock kicks out and then gets another suplex and a too-easy pin. Shamrock is given the belt and is celebrating with the crowd as Rocky is complaining to the referee - saying he was hit with the weapon! Sure enough the ref asks Ken what he has in his tights and Shamrock fishes them out. The ref reverses the decision which costs him a suplex and an ankle lock submission hold. Three more refs come in to break it up. Cut to Mick Foley t-shirt commercial.

New Age Outlaws vs. Road Warriors - Tag Team Title match - we pause for yet another screening of the LOD video before the match gets underway - the Champs are introduced first - contrary to the usual practice - maybe that means they will lose - I guess we shall see. Michael Cole interviews the Warriors backstage - Hawk is sporting half a reverse mohawk - they plan to win... The champs attack from behind but to no avail. They both get tossed out of the ring and start to walk away but the challangers run out and drag them back. LOD continues to dominate the action back in the ring. Road Dog is bleeding from the mouth as they continue. Hawk picks Billy up by his hair and drives his face into the mat. Then Animal powerslams both opponents.The Hawk slaps an STF on Billy. Animal is slammed into the steps and is out on the floor as Hawk continues to dessimate the Champs. Road Dog gets a pair of handcuffs and uses them as a weapon on Hawk then chains him to a turnbuckle. Animal is back in the ring and is carrying on the attack. Billy comes off the top but Animal catches him (barely) and gets the powerslam. Before he can get the pin - the Dog creams him with a chair and gets DQ'd. They continue to hit him as the bell is ringing. Hawk suddenly jerks his arm and breaks the handcuffs then enters the ring and uses the chair on both opponents. Cut to promo for the next PPV.

They give the SCSA truck away to a Mildred Bowers - congratulations Millie!

More SCSA hype.

Time for the Royal Rumble - the first two competitors are Cactus Jack and Chainsaw Charlie - Jack brings two trash cans - Funk brings the chainsaw and enters the ring with it. Foley throws chairs and trashcans into the ring. They trade chair shots and end up fencing with them. Then Funk stands still and invites Jack to hit him. Foley returns the favor. Funk tries to lever Foley out. Meanwhile the clock counts down and Tom Brandi runs in, is doubleteamed and tossed out. Back to Funk vs. Foley. Foley sets up two chairs and suplexes Funk across them. Funny, I hadn't heard that this was a no-DQ match...

Next one in is Rocky Maivia. Funk and Foley are both out of it this time so Maivia dominates both of them. Jack creams him with a trash can then dumps it over his upper body. They take turns hitting him then knock him out of the ring - he goes through the ropes so he isn't out yet. Mosh is the next entrant - he pairs off with Funk while Maivia is back and fighting Jack. Funk tries a moonsault but misses Mosh. Here comes Phineous Godwin to join the frey. He and Maivia gang up on Mosh. On the other side of the ring Funk is chopping the Maivia as the crowd "Whooo's". 8-Ball enters as the seventh competitor. Moments later Cactus Jack is eliminated by his tag partner. The King tells us that Austin has been ambushed backstage.

Blackjack Bradshaw is the next one in. Maivia is trying to put Funk out but has no success as Terry twines himself in the ropes. Next in is Owen Hart but he gets blindsided by Jeff Jarrett and Jim Cornette before he can get to the ring. Officials drag them off but their work is done - it looks like Owen is out of it. Steve Blackman enters the ring next and goes after Funk. He dumps him over the ropes but Funk squirms back into the ring. D-Lo Brown is next. Funk hangs off the ropes while Bradshaw tries to knock him to the floor. Blackman is doing a pretty good job of staying in the ring for a rookie. Rocky and D-Lo start to get it on. Here comes Kurrgan the Interrogator - he saunters to the ring and steps inside. He eliminates Mosh soon afterward. Marc Mero comes down with Sable - she is dressed in sexy leather and he doesn't seem to mind for a change. Kurrgan eliminates Steve Blackman as Mero starts punching people.

Here comes Ken Shamrock. He goes right after Kurrgan and knocks him down with a kick. Several wrestlers eject the big guy from the ring. Mero and Shamrock are facing off. Next up is Thrasher. D-Lo and the Rock are fighting again. Mero is demonstrating his fancy footwork until 8-Ball hits him with a haymaker. Mankind is the next entrant!! He goes right after Funk and eliminates him. Sable is looking fetching at ringside. Goldust comes down next with his lady(?). He goes to it with Mankind. Shamrock and Maivia are back at it. Mero is being pretty cagey - dancing in and out of the action. Goldust eliminates Mankind. I'm sure Dude Love will come in soon.

Jeff Jarrett enters with Cornette and struts to the ring. He attacks Bradshaw but then Owen Hart shows up and goes to work on him. Jarrett knocks him over the top but he skins the cat to return then tosses Jarrett out with a flourish. Honky Tonk Man comes out next followed closely by HHH and Chynna. Maivia eliminates Shamrock. Then HHH uses his crutch to pull Owen out to the floor. Ahmed Johnson is the next one to enter. He faces off with PIG then headbutts him. We see a replay that shows Maivia getting in a low-blow before eliminating Shamrock. Mark Henry makes his entrance. He attacks Ahmed right out of the chute. Henry throws powder into Johnson's eyes as the buzzer sounds again but nobody appears. The King says it's Austin's slot. Ahmed then Phineous are eliminated. They fight back up the aisle. D-Lo Brown is working over Henry now.

Kama comes down and has a confrontation with the departing Ahmed on his way to the ring. Now he and D-Lo get it on! This guy is fighting all of his team mates! Mero is still taking it easy - showing off for his wife. The buzzer sounds and Austin's music plays. Everyone stops to watch him come in but he enters from the crowd! He eliminates Mero immediately then starts in on D-Lo. Next Henry Godwin runs to the ring and attacks Austin. Now Maivia and Kama are going at it. All four Borecuas run in (Savio is the real competitor here) and attack Austin. He throws two of them out of the ring. They leave him alone. Here comes Faarooq - he strides to the ring and goes right off on the Rock! The attacks D-Lo and Kama. Austin gets thrown out through the ropes and then is atttacked viciously by Maivia on the floor. Sure enough Dude Love is next up. He eliminates Bradshaw right off the bat. Austin is attacking people outside the ring. Then he comes back in and attacks Maivia. The 29th guy is Chainz. He attacks Mark Henry.

The last entrant is Vader. He takes his time coming to the ring. He goes right after Goldust then eliminates the Honky Tonk Man. Chainz is still working on Austin. The entire NOD is still in the match until Austin eliminates Kama then sends Savio flying out of the ring. Vader is eliminated next - Chainz tosses Goldust out. Then he rushes Austin and gets levered out. Now its Faarooq and Maivia vs. Austin and Dude Love. Faarooq eliminates Dude then attacks Austin while Maivia rests. The Rock jumps up and levers Faarooq out. Austin throws Maivia out but he slithers back in under the bottom rope. He tries to attack Austin but gets stunned and eliminated. SCSA is the two-time Royal Rumble winner!

The Undertaker vs. Shawn Micahels - WWF Title Casket match - again the Champ enters first with his entourage. Then the lights go out and the crowd goes wild - UT is without a doubt the most popular star in the WWF. Even Austin doesn't get this guy's pop. Michaels stands his ground and the Man from the Darkside approaches but then leaves the ring on his entrance. Tyson is seen giving the hand gesture - can't tell if it is in mockery or support. Michaels hits and runs but then stops to gloat and gets caught. UT goes for a chokeslam but Michaels boots him to the gut. Moments later UT presses the champ but then drops him before he can throw him into the casket. Michaels catapults out of the ring and strikes his back in the casket. The fight goes out to the floor and Michaels is knocked into the box but pops right back out. Back in the ring UT walks the top rope and drops onto Shawns shoulder. He flings Michaels into the corner - Shawn flips out to the floor and takes out a cameraman. Back inside Michaels comes back briefly but then goes down again. UT rolls Michaels into the casket but can't quite get the lid down. Michaels comes back with powder to the eyes and escapes.

Back in the ring Michaels gets a moonsault then knocks UT to the floor. The fight goes outside where the Undertaker uses HBK's head to destroy a broadcast table. Michaels comes back and slams UT knee first into the ringsteps then picks them up and bashes his opponent with them twice. Michaels sets up and executes a piledriver on the steps! Michaels abandons the fight while HHH beats UT with his crutch. This is no DQ so they can do anything they want. HBK is strutting and posing in the ring. UT rolls back in and Michaels beats him some more. He rolls UT into the casket but then UT comes back before the lid can be closed. Back in the ring Michaels re-asserts himself. He jumps onto UT's back and applies a sleeper. Undertaker is going down. Both competitors are prone on the mat. Then UT fights back to his knees - then to his feet. He suplexes the Champ. Ut is downed again and just lies there. HBK goes up and drops his elbow off the top. Then gets the super-kick. UT is down again and rolled to the casket. Instead of shutting the lid, HBK straddles the casket and gestures - UT reaches up and grabs him then punches him back into the ring. Back inside UT gets his boot into Shawn's face. UT flies across the ring and misses his target - he ends up in the casket. HBK drops an elbow off the top and then the lid closes them both inside. HBK tries to crawl out but UT drags him back and the lid shuts again. They struggle out and return to the ring where UT gets the chokeslam. He takes HBK to the apron and puts him into the Tombstone - then drops into the casket with him. He rolls back into the ring but now the Tag Champs and the Borecuas have joined the melee. Then Kane's music plays and he comes down and lays waste to the attackers. HHH and Chynna pull HBK out of the casket. In the ring Kane is attacking the Undertaker!! He takes him to the apron and drops him into the box - DX slam it shut. Paul Bearer is striding to the ring. He and Kane put padlocks on the lid then they wheel it away. At the top of the aisle Kane takes an ax and starts chopping on the box. He destroys the top of the box then pours what JR says smells like gasoline all over the casket. Bearer hands matches to Kane and he sets the box on fire!!! Fade to black...

That ending was outragious...

Anyway, that's the way I see it...

Earl Oliver,
editor Solie's Wrestling Newsletter


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