WWE Vintage Collection Report: January 29th 2012
By Shaun Best-Rajah.com Reporter
Hosted by: Mean Gene Okerlund
Welcome aboard. To get us in the mood for the Royal Rumble, this week we take a look back at memorable Battle Royals.
WWE SmackDown!: March 31st 2005
Cruiserweight Title Battle Royal
(Chavo Guerrero, Funaki, Nunzio, Akio, Spike Dudley, Paul London, Billy Kidman, Scotty 2 Hotty)
Three days away from WrestleMania 21. Everyone gangs up to dump titleholder Chavo as soon as he enters. We’re now guaranteed a new champion. Chavo cries foul as he tries and fails to take the title back with him.
Funaki gives Spike an enziguiri, then grabs a waistlock on Nunzio, but the plucky Italian lunges into the ropes, sending Funaki over and out. Kidman hoists Nunzio out. Crowd favourite Scotty gives Akio a superkick then Spike the W-O-R-M. A second superkick, this time to Spike sends “the Boss” to the showers.
Kidman backdrops Scotty onto the apron. Scotty clotheslines Kidman, but falls prey to a thrust kick from Akio off the top rope. See ya later Scotty! London mounts Kidman before catching Akio with a standing moonsault. London survives a double team and several elimination attempts to duck under a clothesline and land a double dropsault.
London reverses Akio into the waiting Kidman, who backdrops him onto the apron. Akio shoves Kidman. London dropkicks Kidman into Akio who goes flying into the barricade and out. Kidman throws London over the top rope, but London hangs on, catching his former partner in a headscissors and hooking him out. Kidman tries to grab London from the floor, but London kicks him away, skins the cat back into the ring and celebrates his victory. Winner: PAUL LONDON.
The unlucky London was originally due to face Chavo for the title at WrestleMania, but the match was scratched when Chavo fractured a bone close to his eye, hence the reason for this Battle Royal and Chavo’s swift exit. It’s a shame that London’s WWE career fell under the political bus. The man has some serious skills. Conspicuous by his absence here was Shannon Moore for reasons unknown.
WCW World War III: November 24th 1996
60 Man Battle Royal
The winner has been promised a future World title match. Three split cameras showcase the comings and goings from three rings. 60 men start in the three rings. When it comes down to the last 30, everyone moves to a central ring. We pick things up with one ring being featured, but still in three split screens, making it hard to catch all the action. The nWo are standing back in the corner and directing traffic while stars such as Booker T, Disco Inferno, Ultimo Dragon, Rick Steiner, Alex Wright, Ice Train and Chris Jericho are ousted. Confusion reigns over Eddie Guerrero’s participation as he was allegedly thrown out earlier, but still remains. We go to one camera as we reach the the final ten and we get a WCW/nWo standoff. Lex Luger, Steven Regal, Eddie Guerrero, Jeff Jarrett and Rey Mysterio stare down Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, Syxx and the Giant, with loner DDP standing somewhere inbetween.
WCW quickly abandon their strategy and fight amongst themselves. Regal elevates Guerrero out, while Giant catches Rey with one arm and press slams him on top of his future hombre. Regal saves Jarrett from a Razor’s Edge, but is quickly clotheslined out by Nash. Regal pulls down the ropes to send an onrushing DDP packing. The nWo combine to dump Regal, leaving Luger all alone. Luger goes clothesline crazy, avoids a Giant splash and racks him after he gets caught on the ropes. Hall comes to Giant’s rescue, clipping Luger’s knee. Luger counters a Razor’s Edge by backdropping Hall out, and quickly press slamming Syxx on top. Luger gets Nash in the torture rack, but Giant runs into them, sending both over the top rope. Giant wins, which completely deflates the crowd, who were firmly behind Luger. Pyro goes off as Hall and Syxx come back in to celebrate Giant’s victory. Winner: THE GIANT. Giant would be thrown out of the nWo after asking for a title shot against group leader Hulk Hogan. His title match at Souled Out 1997 ended in a no-contest. Typical WCW booking. Designed as WCW’s answer to the Royal Rumble, this concept was horrible and only lasted four years.
WWF Superstars: February 25th 1995
20 Man Over The Top Rope Battle Royal
(Shawn Michaels, British Bulldog, 1-2-3 Kid, Kwang, Mo, Mabel, Jimmy Del Rey, Tom Prichard, Mantaur, Eli Blu, Jacob Blu, Sionne, Fatu, Jerry Lawler, Bob Holly, Henry Godwinn, King Kong Bundy, Aldo Montoya, Duke Droese, Adam Bomb)
Hot on the heels of his recent Royal Rumble victory, Michaels struts out as the last man, but eliminates himself at the nine second mark after everyone goes after him. Michaels reminds a vengeful looking Bulldog that he “won the one that counts.” Lots of punch/kick offence takes up several minutes. Lawler eliminates Mo after Mabel accidentally splashes his partner in the corner. Whoops there it is! Jacob Blu ousts Sionne, before Fatu avenges his partner by superkicking Jacob out.
We skip ahead and only seven remain – Bulldog, Holly, Kid, Lawler, Eli, Kwang and Mantaur. Lawler and Eli combine to get rid of Holly. Bulldog and Kid eliminate Lawler…or do they? Lawler takes a page out of Michaels’s book as only one of his feet hits the ground. Lawler hops around the ring, while urging the crowd to keep quiet. Bret Hart comes out to stand on Lawler’s foot, forcing the King to put both feet down. Hart leaves Lawler laying for good measure. Back inside, Bulldog telegraphs a Kwang spin kick and clotheslines out the masked ninja. Eli hiptosses Kid out and Bulldog eliminates Mantaur with a leg hook/backdrop combo. Bulldog plants Eli with a running powerslam and has him up again, when Michaels re-enters to attack him. Michaels heads to the back, watching on the video wall as Bulldog avoids an Eli charge and sends the Blu brother packing. Michaels doesn’t look too bothered and disappears to the back as Bulldog celebrates his consolation victory. Winner: BRITISH BULLDOG. Talk about a real lack of star power. As soon as Michaels went out, it was pretty clear who was winning this.
WWE Judgment Day: May 18th 2003
Intercontinental Title Invitational Battle Royal
(Kane, Val Venis, Chris Jericho, Booker T, Goldust, Christian, Test, Rob Van Dam, Lance Storm)
Co-GM Stone Cold Steve Austin has made this match to bring the IC title out of retirement, after Triple H unified it with the World title the previous October in a match with Kane. All participants are former IC champions, except for Booker, whom Austin has made an exception for.
Everyone makes a beeline for Kane, who overpowers the field and sends everyone staggering backwards. Storm is the sacrificial lamb to get tossed by the Big Red Machine. RVD takes out Kane’s knee with a dropkick. Venis spikes RVD with a DDT. Everyone bar RVD combines to push Kane out at the second time of asking. Kane slides back in and lays waste to Test, Venis and RVD with chokeslams. Booker tosses Test, while Goldust gets rid of Venis. Christian sends RVD onto the apron and Jericho eliminates him with a springboard dropkick. Bookdust and C2 go at it. Goldust hits the Shattered Dreams to both Christian and Jericho. Booker busts out a Spinaroonie. Goldust goes to double cross his former partner, but Booker turns the tables and it’s goodnight Goldie.
Jericho is busted open from the nose. Booker is in trouble as Christian drills him with a reverse DDT. Jericho goes for the lionsault, but gets shoved out by Christian. Jericho is in shock and tears a strip off the barricade on his way to the back. Booker hits a spin kick and flapjack, but Christian yanks him down by the dreadlocks. Christian misses a low dropkick, taking out the referee on the outside. Both the Unprettier and a scissors kick are countered. Booker sends Christian onto the apron and superkicks him out. Booker’s music starts to play, but the referee is still out. Christian gets into a tug of war with Pat Patterson over the IC title, before decking him, wiping out Booker with a belt shot and quickly disposing of the smoking gun. The referee comes to and sees Christian feigning struggle and fatigue as he eliminates Booker. Christian wins! This was good while it lasted. Winner: CHRISTIAN. Booker would gain his revenge and finally beat Christian for the title two months later on Raw.
This was a good appetiser for the Royal Rumble, but as much as I love Battle Royals, anything more than a one week feature would be overkill. Next week, we look at WCW Superbrawl. Enjoy the Rumble. See you next weekend.
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