March 20, 1994
New York, New York
Madison Square Garden
Announcers: Vince McMahon & Jerry "The King" Lawler
There's a lot of background to this event so we'll start at the top. I'll explain things more in depth before each particular match if necessary. Lex Luger and Bret Hart were declared co-winners of the 1994 Royal Rumble Match when they both spilled over the top rope to the floor at the same time. As a result, WWF President Jack Tunney decided it was only fair that both be rewarded with a shot at Yokozuna's WWF Title at Wrestlemania. A coin toss was held on Monday Night Raw to determine who would get their Title shot first. Lex Luger won it which meant that he'd be the first to get a crack at Yoko. Whoever walked out of that match as Champion would defend the Title later in the night against Bret Hart. As compensation, Bret would have to face his brother Owen Hart earlier in the night to level the playing field (since Luger or Yoko would have already wrestled once prior to wrestling Bret).
Other feuds that were hyped prior to the show included Razor Ramon and Shawn Michaels, Randy Savage and Crush, and Bam Bam Bigelow and Doink.
Vince McMahon does his in-ring introdcution a la Wrestlemania III. He welcomes Little Richard (and a large choir surrounding the ring) to sing a long version of America The Beautiful. It should be mentioned that this whole show has a very historic feel to it. It's dubbed as "Ten years in the making" and it's a matinee in the Garden just like the very first Wrestlemania in 1985. The famous short MSG aisle is dressed up a bit as a door like structure replaces a standard curtain, a trademark that WWF PPV's would keep for years before moving to even more elaborate sets like the current ones. The sliding doors have a big "X" across them to signify Wrestlemania X.
After Little Richard is finished, Vince stands at ringside and introduces us to a returning Jerry "The King" Lawler, his color commentator for the evening. Vince hypes the card and says that in the final match Bret Hart will get his shot at the WWF Champion, but Bret will also be competing in the very first match as well. Whoa! This announcement was somewhat of a shocker to me and my friends watching this live. We didn't expect such a high profile opener. Vince segues into a history package recapping the relationship between Bret and Owen Hart.
During a Survivor Series elimination match at Survivor Series 1993, Owen accidentally bumped into Bret on the ring apron and was pinned by Shawn Michaels. The rest of his brothers went on to survive the match, and Owen was upset at Bret, blaming him for his own elimination. Bret tried to calm him down but to no avail. Several weeks later, Owen went on WWF Superstars and challenged Bret to a match to find out who the better brother was. The next week, Bret responded and said he would never fight his own flesh and blood. He insisted that "under no circumstances will I ever, absolutely not positively ever face my own brother". Over the holiday season it seemed that Owen and Bret had reunited. They had a talk over Christmas and patched things up. Owen decided that instead of wrestling his brother, he wanted to team up with him, and his new dream was to win the WWF Tag Team Titles with his brother at the Royal Rumble against The Quebecers. But during that match Bret injured his knee and in a last ditch effort to win it, instead of tagging Owen he tried to apply the Sharpshooter on one of the Quebecers. His own knee collapsed from the pressure, and the referee stopped the match due to Bret's severe injury. The chance for Owen to win the Tag Titles with Bret was gone, and Owen snapped at what he perceived to be Bret's selfish actions. Owen screamed at Bret as he struggled to get to his feet, and then, instead of helping him up, Owen kicked his injured knee right back out from under him, leaving Bret helpless in the ring. Owen went on to whine about Bret's selfishness, and in the weeks leading to Wrestlemania cut some excellent promos about how just because Bret was older than him didn't mean he was better than him. Owen accused Bret of holding him down for years and wants to prove something to his brother and the world at Wrestlemania X. This will be the first time two brothers have ever wrestled against each other in WWF history.
Bill Dunn is the ring announcer for the opening match in place of Howard Finkel, who returns in time for the next one. He announces, "This opening contest is scheduled for one fall. About to come down the aisle, from Calgary… Alberta, Canada…" The crowd goes nuts in anticipation of Bret, but Owen's music starts to play and it's him that enters first to a chorus of boos. Bret, the most over wrestler in the company, enters second, and Wrestlemania X is set to get underway.
Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. "The Rocket" Owen Hart
The bell rings and Bret and Owen look at each other and lock up. They break, and Owen interprets this as a small victory for himself so he woos and raises his arms in celebration. The crowd isn't impressed. Neither is Bret. They lock up again and Owen takes Bret over with a fireman's carry, which Bret counters into a headscissors. Owen escapes and is proud of himself, celebrating again. Bret goes to a go behind takedown and Owen gets to the ropes, frustrated. Owen now hooks the waistlock on Bret and Bret does his trademark counter by running towards the ropes and using his leverage to flip Owen off him and onto the floor. That really gets Owen bent out of shape, so when he comes back in he shoves his older brother. Bret shoves him right back and the second he does, Owen slaps him right in the face. As soon as he does, however, Owen realizes he might have made a mistake, as Bret now gets mad for the first time all match and looks as if he's about to stop taking it easy on his little brother. Bret backs Owen into the corner and Earl Hebner separates them. They lock up again and Bret reverses a hammerlock to one of his own. Owen counters that with a drop toehold and moves into a side headlock, but Bret escapes that by going back to the hammerlock, then applying an armringer. Owen yanks Bret's hair to reverse it, but Bret kips up and reverses that. A whip results in a Bret rollup for two. Bret armdrags him. Owen elbows out and runs the ropes but gets caught with a monkeyflip and is clotheslined out to the floor to a big pop. Owen starts to walk back down the aisle, but Bret pulls him back in the ring. They have another shoving match, but this time it's Bret that slaps Owen, then gets a quick rollup for two. The crowd has been going nuts for these first five minutes and it's only about to get better.
Bret goes to the armbar, gets sent off the ropes and tries a crucifix for two. He goes back to the armbar, and Owen throws him off the ropes again, but this time catches him with a roundhouse kick. Owen stomps away on Bret and kicks him out of the ring to the floor. Outside, he rams Bret back-first into the steel post then tosses him back in the ring. Owen whips Bret to the corner, hits a backbreaker and goes to a camel clutch in the middle of the ring. Bret makes it to his feet and elbows out of the hold. He goes off the ropes but gets caught with a perfect Owen belly to belly suplex for a two count. Bret reverses a whip to the corner, so Owen uses the momentum to hop up to the second turnbuckle, jump off and turn around in midair for a high crossbody. Bret rolls through for two. Owen regains control and sends Bret to the outside again. He tries to suplex him in, but Bret floats over into a waistlock. Owen is able to reverse that to a german suplex for two. An Owen Hart legdrop gets another two count. Owen headbutts him and goes for a suplex, but Bret reverses into a small package for two. Owen retaliates with uppercuts. Bret gutwrenches him, but Owen reverses that into a tombstone piledriver and hits it. Owen climbs up top to attempt a flying headbutt, but Bret moves out of the way at the last second.
Now Bret unleashes a string of offensive moves, first with an inverted atomic drop, then a clothesline for another near fall. His russian leg sweep gets two, as do his backbreaker and elbow drop off the second rope. Bret questions Hebner about that last two count, and Owen climbs to his feet. He tries to kick Bret, but the Hitman catches his foot. Owen is left standing on one leg, so he brings his other foot around and the devastating Enziguri connects with the back of Bret's head. Owen tries to hook his version of the Sharpshooter but Bret wiggles away and tries to hook his Sharpshooter instead. Owen squirms away with the help of the ropes and eye gouges Bret. He uses the leg rollup to sunset over and get a two count. Owen bails to the floor. Bret follows with a pescado over the top, but comes up clutching his knee. Owen is still a bit disoriented, but when Bret limps back in the ring, Owen notices the injury and capatilizes on it. He mocks Bret's limp, then uses a single leg takedown to segue into a spinning toehold. He does it again, then hooks on a Figure Four leglock. Bret is clearly in trouble.
Bret somehow manages to roll over to reverse the hold, then they roll over again into the ropes to break it. They get to their feet and Bret continues to limp. Now Owen is no longer mocking Bret and has a mild limp of his own from the time he spent in the Figure Four. Owen again goes for a single leg takedown to target Bret's knee, but Bret maintains his vertical base, suckers Owen into holding his leg, and hits his brother's own Enziguri. Bret whips Owen into the corner where Owen does Bret's trademark chest-first bump. Bret drops his good leg for two, then hits a bulldog. A piledriver gets two more for Bret Hart. He lifts Owen up onto the top rope in the corner and superplexes him. Both men take a hard hit after that one, but Bret manages to cover Owen. All he can get is another two count. All these counts are so close. The crowd has been going nuts the whole match, and with Bret in control it's only getting louder. They trade punches and Bret puts Owen in a sleeperhold. Owen makes it to the ropes, then lowblows Bret as he releases the hold. He goes for the Sharpshooter and this time he gets it on him for real. Bret struggles to find a way out and eventually reaches back and grabs one of Owen's feet, takes him down, then pulls himself up and right into a Sharpshooter of his own. Owen makes it to the ropes and Bert is forced to let go. Bret tries to send Owen to the bukcle, but Owen reverses and charges. Bret gets his feet up and Owen eats boot. Owen remains stunned in the corner, with his back to the turnbuckles, as Bret hops up and goes to the top rope. Bret climbs onto Owen's shoulders and tries to take him over with a victory roll, but in mid-roll Owen stops the momentum, slams him down and traps him in a pinning combination, pinning Bret's shoulders to the mat for a clear three count to end the match at 20:21.
Owen's music starts to play and a hush falls over the Garden crowd. Owen has his hand raised, lets Bret know that he beat him fair and square and walks back down the aisle. Bret is left in the ring on the ground a defeated man. He sits up and applauds Owen's effort before limping out of the ring. At the time this was a shocking upset. Owen was an awesome talent, but he had never been pushed even as a decent midcarder prior to this. He was looked at by many as one of the lowest on the card for all of 1993, then started to do alright for himself in early '94, but he'd never been in the ring with the caliber of someone like Bret, a former WWF Tag Team, Intercontinental, and Heavyweight Champion, before. With this one win Owen Hart leapt out of the shadow that Bret had cast upon him and made a name for himself.
For further background on this, it had been rumored that Vince was actually considering releasing Owen in 1993 before Bret agreed to do this whole angle. After this match Owen won Vince and everyone else over, and Bret was happy to be a part of it. They hadn't known just how good Owen was until this match, but Bret vouched that Owen had always been this good. Sadly, in the later years of his career, it seems like everyone would forget just how good he was again, but for this one moment on March 20, 1994, Owen Hart was king. He shocked the world in the first match of the biggest show of all time.
The match itself is a classic, an easy *****. Those involved have said that Bret and Owen were planning to do a match similar to Savage/Steamboat at Wrestlemania III with all the pinfall reversal sequences, but they tried it out at house shows prior to this and the crowds didn't react the way they'd hoped. So they went to their father, Stu Hart, and Stu helped them put this match together just hours before they went out there. The psychology of the match is brilliant, as it tied into the storyline perfectly. Every aspect of this match was phenomonal. There are no holes anywhere, and the fact that this match was overlooked coming into the event because of Bret's much more highly anticipated WWF Title shot later in the night (a microcosm of the whole theme of the Bret/Owen feud in the first place), the surprise impact this match had made it that much better.
Todd Pettingill interviews Owen Hart behind the curtain. Owen says that after what he did to Bret, and more specifically Bret's knee, he won't be able to win any World Title Match later on. Owen just proved that he is the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be.
Since this Wrestlemania is "ten years in the making", throughout the night there are breif highlights of every other previous Wrestlemania shown. There was a Wrestlemania I montage shown to open the show, and now it's time for a special moment from Wrestlemania 2: Andre The Giant winning the WWF/NFL Battle Royal at the Rosemont Horizon in Chicago. Who did he eliminate last? Bret "The Hitman" Hart of course.
Ring announcer Bill Dunn introduces one of today's guest celebrities, Sy Sperling, President of Hair Club For Men. Sy introduces his latest client, Howard Finkel. Howard Finkel with hair? Oh, I've seen it all now. The Fink plays to the crowd, who seems to like his new hair, and resumes his role as a ring announcer for the next match.
Mixed Tag Team Match: Doink & Dink vs. Bam Bam Bigelow & Luna Vachon
This is obviously during Doink's face run as he has his vertically challenged (as Lawler would say) little buddy with him. Doink and Bam Bam mix it up for a few minutes, then Dink and Luna do their thing. As you might have been able to guess, that part makes things into a comedy match. Dink misses whatever off the top rope and Luna bodyslams him before coming off the top and missing whatever she was going for. Doink gets tagged in, but Bam Bam sends him to the floor. Dink taunts Bigelow and Luna but before they can do anything Doink gets back up and sunsets in on Bam Bam. Bigelow sits down on him, but Doink comes back with a big DDT moments later. He goes for the Whoopie Cushion but misses. Bam Bam knocks Dink off the apron and flattens Doink. A flying headbutt off the top rope finishes at 6:10. ** After the match the heels go after Dink, but miss splashes and Dink is able to avoid danger.
Hail To The Chief plays and a Bill Clinton impersonator is shown in attendance. Jack Tunney is sitting next to him, and IRS is behind him.
Wrestlemania Moment: The famous Hulk Hogan/Andre The Giant staredown at Wrestlemania III.
Falls Count Anywhere Match: "Macho Man" Randy Savage vs. Crush
This is the first Falls Count Anywhere Match in the WWF, so it was a very new and intriguing concept to me at the time. In this match, falls count anywhere in the building but after a pinfall, the losing participant has sixty seconds to get back in the ring. If he does, the match continues. If he doesn't, he loses and his opponent is the victor. Savage enters first, then jumps Crush in the aisle during his entrance. Crush fights back, presses Savage, and drops his throat across the guardrail, something which he did in an attack on Savage on Monday Night Raw leading up to this. Crush covers and scores a fall less than a minute into the match. Savage has sixty seconds to make it back into the ring. He does so, but not before Mr. Fuji tries to take him out with a flagshot. Savage is still hurt, and Crush dominates. He tries to toss salt in Macho's eyes, but Randy blocks it and somehow it backfires into Crush's eyes. Savage comes back with a double axehandle off the top rope. Savage slams him, heads upstairs and connects with the Flying Elbow. Savage gets the three count and rolls Crush to the floor so that the sixty second count can begin. Fuji revives Crush by pouring a pitcher of water on his face. Crush struggles back into the ring with two seconds to spare. Savage charges, but Crush dips his shoulder and Savage takes the big backdrop bump to the floor. Crush follows to the floor, where Savage introduces his head to the steel post and steps. They brawl into the crowd, where Crush hits a big crescent kick. Savage reverses a piledriver attempt and backdrops Crush on the floor. Savage rams Crush's head through a door as they find themselves in some backstage room on the floor level of the Garden near the MSG auxilary entrance. Savage pins Crush and ties him upside down in some sort of contraption in the room. Savage heads back to the ring, and since Crush is all tied up, he can't make it back to beat the count. Savage takes the win at 9:46 in what would prove to be his final Wrestlemania appearance. **1/2 Pretty innovative match with solid action and psychology.
Todd interviews "President Clinton" as well as IRS, who is seated in the same section.
Highlights of WWF Fanfest are shown. This was the precursor to what is known as Axxess today. Todd does the voiceover, and what do you know, at the Fanfest there's a WPLJ banner. Good to see that Todd found a way to plug the radio station he worked for (and still does to this day).
Randy Savage celebrates with the fans in the Paramount Theater next to the Garden.
Wrestlemania IV: Randy Savage wins four matches in a 14 Man Single Elimination Tournament en route to winning the WWF Championship.
Women's Title: Alundra Blayze (Champion) vs. Lelani Kai
Kai entered Wrestlemania I as the WWF Women's Champion, so the tease here is that she's trying to win the Title back at the Garden nine years after losing it. The match doesn't get much time, so they trade some back and forth stuff before Alundra takes it with the german suplex at 3:25 to retain. Pretty good women's match. *3/4
"Classie" Freddie Blassie, "Captain" Lou Albano, Nikolai Volkoff, Fabulous Moolah, and Mae Young are shown in the crowd. Volkoff was being shown on television to segue him into an angle with Ted DiBiase in the coming months. Mae isn't mentioned by name here because that wouldn't have meant anything to WWF fans whereas the others were WWF legends. Who would have thought that six years later in that very arena at the 2000 Royal Rumble, Mae would, uh, well… you know, strip? Ugh. And don't forget about the time she gave birth to a hand a month later in the same building.
Wrestlemania V: Rowdy Roddy Piper extinguishes Morton Downey Jr.
Todd interviews "celebrity" guest Rhonda Shear. Shawn Michaels interrupts, trying to get some, but a real celebrity guest (barely), Burt Reynolds, verbally punks him out and ridicules his chest hair.
Tag Team Titles: Men On A Mission vs. The Quebecers (Champions)
Oscar says "Oh yeah" a lot in between many made up words as he "raps" Men On A Mission to the ring. The Quebecers' manager, Johnny Polo, is far superior of course. Hey, Vladimir is in attendance with a big "F" on his shirt. His two buddies on his right are "W" and "W". The Quebecers control Mo with a lot of their cool double team stuff to get several two counts. He makes the not so hot tag to Mabel and the Quebecers provide a highlight by double suplexing the massive rapper. They hit their cannonball finisher, but it only gets a two count. Mabel comes back with an avalanche on Jacques in the corner, then an avalanche against the post on Pierre on the floor. Johhny Polo, thinking man extraordinaire, sees that Pierre is in no condition to make it back in the ring, and Jacques is reeling, and drags a lifeless Jacques out of the ring. MOM wins the match via countout at 7:44 but fail to win the Titles. ** They celebrate with the Titles despite that, much to the chagrin of Polo. Strangely, on a tour of England shortly after this, MOM did win the Titles accidentally when Mabel fell on Pierre midmatch, and the fallen Quebecer was unable to kick out. The Quebecers regained the Titles two days later on the next show.
Wrestlemania VI: The Ultimate Challenge, Title for Title, Hogan vs. Warrior
A recap video of Lex Luger is shown. On July 4, 1993 he turned face by showing up on the U.S.S. Intrepid to do what no one else could: bodyslam Yokozuna. At Summerslam in August he got a shot at Yoko's WWF Title, but won the match via countout and didn't come away with the Title. Jim Cornette, Yoko's spokesperson had written a clause into the Summerslam contract that stated that Summerslam would be Luger's only Title shot against Yoko. Now Luger was screwed and unable to earn a rematch even though he held a bodyslam and a victory over the WWF Champion. His alternative was to enter the Royal Rumble, the winner of which automatically earns a WWF Title shot at Wrestlemania against whomever the WWF Champion is. Luger, along with Bret Hart, was a co-winner of the Rumble and after a coin toss on Monday Night Raw, it was determined that Luger would be first to challenge Yokozuna here at Wrestlemania X.
WWF Title: Lex Luger vs. Yokozuna (Champion)
Rhonda Shear is the guest timekeeper and Donnie Walberg is the guest ring announcer. New Kids On The Block had a bunch of hits, you know. Each WWF Title Match tonight is to have a special guest referee, and we find out who the first one is here: it's Mr. Perfect, out to a tremendous pop. Note: Before Wrestlemania I called this as well as the other special guest ref. Seriously. I was hitting my wrestling groove at this point in time. Before the match starts, there's a backstory that needs to be addressed. The night before this, Luger went to a New York bar and apparently had a few too many. In his drunken state, he gave away the finish to his big Wrestlemania match and told several people that he was going to win the WWF Title the next day. One of those that heard the news: A writer for the New York Post. Ouch. Needless to say, the spilled beans were written about in the Post the morning of Wrestlemania and the finish to half of the main event was exposed (I'm glad I didn't read the Post that morning). Vince was furious and changed the finish so that Yoko would reatin the Title and wrestle Bret in the final match instead of Luger. Now that I've ruined the finish for those unaware of it, let's get to the match:
Luger starts out on fire with a flying crossbody off the top rope(!) and a big elbow drop but soon Yoko's size starts to dictate the pace, as a Luger bodyslam attempt ends with Yoko collapsing on him. Yoko goes to a two minute long nerve hold to kill time, then goes back to it. Yawn. He keeps putting it back on Luger, and seven minutes after the hold was first applied, Luger hulks up and starts to make his comeback… then gets caught with a big belly to belly suplex. *coughchokecough* Sorry, I must be coming down with something. Luger mounts an offense for real now and slams him. He pulls down his forearm band and nails Yoko with his illegal forearm. Cornette hops up on the apron and Fuji sneaks in the ring. Luger nails both of them, then covers an unconcious Yokozuna. Perfect doesn't want to count. He instead tends to both managers. Luger shoves Perfect to get his attention, so Perfect calls for a disqualification at 14:41 and walks away. 1/2* Lex Luger has choked once again. The fans start a loud "bullshit" chant.
Todd talks to Mr. Perfect behind the curtain. Perfect explains that Luger was DQ'ed because he touched the official and the managers. Luger rushes the scene and claims "That's bogus!" Hey, Luger's a dumbass. He agreed to let Perfect be the ref (both parties had to agree on the referees) after he cheapshotted him with the forearm the year earlier at Wrestlemania. He's got no one to blame but himself for that bonehead move.
Luger was a major babyface and 95% of the crowd was pissed at this booking, but I, and a lot of my friends, loved it. I never liked Luger and never fell for all the USA bullshit hype that was shoved down our throats in Vince's attempt to make another Hogan-esque All American hero. I was a Bret fan, and after watching Luger involved in the Title situation from July '93 until March '94 while a much more over, much more deserving, and generally much better Bret Hart wasted away in the midcard (though he then planted the seeds for his epic feud with Owen which was all good as far as I'm concerned) I was absolutely thrilled to see Luger LOSE. After all the hype, many were sure that he would win, but he LOST, and that was enough to make watching this match worthwhile.
I think the plan was to have Luger and Perfect feud after this, and they may have even wrestled a few times on the "Wrestlemania Revenge Tour" right after this show. But Perfect's back soon acted up again and he had to stop wrestling again. That would explain why Luger didn't have much to do the next few months.
Wrestlemania VII: Jake "The Snake" Roberts and "The Model" Rick Martel wrestle in a Blindfold Match.
Earthquake vs. Adam Bomb
Howard Finkel introduces Harvey Wippleman so Harvey can introduce his protégé, just as in all matches featuring Harvey's guys. The disdain in Howard's voice is even more prevelant than usual on this particular night, and Harvey notices it. He berates the Fink and rips his suit, so Howard shoves him to a big pop. Adam Bomb runs out without his music even playing to make the save for his manager. Earthquake, Bomb's babyface opponent, follows and takes care of Bomb with a belly to belly suplex, powerslam, and the Earthquake for three at 0:35. DUD. Bill Dunn announces the winner. This would lead to a series of Tuxedo Matches between Finkel and Wippleman.
Todd is in the "locker room" with Yokozuna, Fuji, and Cornette. Corny rants at length in typical James E. fashion.
Wrestlemania VIII: The Undertaker walks down the long Hooiserdome aisle. The fans cheer.
In September 1993 Shawn Michaels was enjoying a successful run as Intercontinental Champion, but due to a contract dispute he was "suspended" on-screen from the WWF. The IC Title was vacated and a battle royale was held on Monday Night Raw to crown a new Intercontinental Champion. Razor Ramon and Rick Martel were the last two particiapnts remaining, and the next week they had a match to determine the new Champ. Razor won with the Razor's Edge, and was the new Intercontinental Champion. In November, Shawn returned to WWF TV carrying an IC Title of his own around with him. Shawn claimed that since he never lost the Title in the ring he was still the Intercontinental Champion. Shawn continued to carry around the "bogus belt" while Razor was recognized as the real Champion. A Ladder Match was made for Wrestlemania to settle the dispute. Both IC Titles would be placed on a hook hanging fifteen feet above the ring, and the first man to climb the ladder and grab both belts would become the undisputed Intercontinental Champion. This was the first mainstream Ladder Match in WWF history. Bret Hart actually brought the idea to Vince McMahon from Stampede Wrestling, and wrestled in the first WWF Ladder Match with Shawn Michaels in 1992 for a WWF Coliseum Video tape. Bret begged Vince not to give the gimmick to Shawn, since it was Bret's contribution to the WWF, but Vince did so anyway, and this Ladder Match with Razor ended up getting over as an instant classic. Since the first Ladder Match was seen by barely anyone, this was the first Ladder Match most fans ever saw. From then on, Shawn's name was always associated with the Ladder Match instead of Bret's.
Intercontinental Title/Ladder Match: Razor Ramon (Champion) vs. Shawn Michaels
They start with a quick wrestling sequence which ends with Razor on the floor. Diesel, Shawn's bodyguard, takes him out, so referee Earl Hebner removes Diesel from ringside to make it a fair one-on-one fight. Razor clotheslines Shawn to the floor. He tears the mats up to reveal the concrete floor, but Shawn seeks refuge in the ring before he can take advantage of the situation. Razor follows him back in and charges him, but Shawn backdrops him out right onto the concrete floor that Razor himself exposed. Oh well, it's his own fault. Shawn approaches the ladder, which is positioned in the middle of the aisle. Razor beats him to it and tries to slide it into the ring under the bottom rope, but Shawn climbs in, runs off the ropes, and baseball slides the ladder right into Razor's chest and ribs. Shawn beats on him with the ladder, then tries to climb for the belts, but Razor yanks him down by the tights, giving the ladies the obligitory ass-shot of Shawn. Shawn pulls his trunks back up and sets the ladder up in the corner. He climbs it and splashes Razor off the top, in a famous spot. Shawn tries to climb to the belts again, but Razor knocks the ladder over and Shawn hits the top rope. Shawn sets up the ladder in the corner and tries to whip Razor into it, but Ramon reverses. On the floor, Razor rams the ladder into Shawn twice, then props it up against the apron and slingshots him into it. Back in the ring, Razor swings the ladder and knocks Shawn clear over the top rope with it. Razor starts to climb, but Shawn goes to the top rope, jumps off and nails Razor off of it. Both men are down as the ladder teeters, then falls on Shawn. They both set up the ladder and climb up opposite sides. They have a slugfest on the top of the ladder. Razor finally slams Shawn off, but falls off himself in the process. By now the ladder is all mangled and twisted. Razor starts to go up again, but Shawn dropkicks the ladder to knock him off, then drops the ladder on top of him as well. Shawn whips Razor into the ropes and catches him with the yet to be named Superkick. Shawn gives the signal for the Razor's Edge, Ramon's own pattened finishing maneuver. Instead of Edging him, Shawn piledrives him. He goes to the top rope and rides the ladder down, driving it into Razor's injured ribs. Shawn sets the ladder up with Razor under it and starts the long climb. Razor shakes him off, and Shawn falls crotch first onto the top rope. His leg gets caught between the ropes. He fights to grab the ladder, but Razor pulls it away and climbs towards the belts. He grabs both of them as Shawn wildly struggles free seconds too late. Razor Ramon is declared the undisputed WWF Intercontinental Champion at 18:44. I remember going nuts throughout this whole match watching it live. Awesome innovative stuff. *****
The heel team in the upcoming ten man tag match squabbles about who should be the captain and Vince tells us that due to their argument the match has been scrapped. In reality, time was getting short. Damn, I wanted to see that match! Jeff Jarrett, IRS, Rick Martel & The Headshrinkers vs. The 1-2-3 Kid, Bob Holly, Tatanka & The Smoking Gunns? That could've been a good match. And for the record, Jarrett obviously should have been the captain.
Todd once again joins "Clinton" to get his take on the festivities thus far. Ted DiBiase is now in the box with him, probably trying to get in his ear about something or other.
Wrestlemania IX: Yokozuna steals the WWF Title by cheating to beat Bret Hart. It's all starting to come together now, isn't it?…
A Bret Hart video package is shown. Conclusion: Bret rules.
A Yokozuna video package is shown. Conclusion: Yoko does not. He is, however, very very large. Very.
I should note that Bill Dunn is doing the ring announcing again after Howard Finkel's earlier involvement with Harvey Wippleman. So, just as he introduced Bret in the first match of the night, he prepares to do so in the last match of the night…
The celebrity timekeeper is Jennie Garth and the celebrity ring announcer is Burt Reynolds. Aw, dammit, that's right, Burt will be the one to announce Bret, not Bill Dunn. Oh well, you still saw my point, right?
The special guest referee for the second WWF Title Match of the night is announced and it's none other than the legendary Rowdy Roddy Piper, who hadn't been seen in the WWF in nearly two years. And yes, I called that too. I swear it! Lawler starts to stir things up by talking about Piper's past with Bret and their match at Wrestlemania VIII. Even though they left on good terms, Lawler bets that Piper still remembers how Bret took the Intercontinental Title from him just two years ago. Will we see another screwy ref-job like in the first Title match?
WWF Title: Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. Yokozuna (Champion)
Bret still sells the knee injury, as he limps down the aisle and into the ring. It's all boiled down to a rematch from last year's Wrestlemania when Yokozuna cheated Bret out of the Championship. Will this be Bret's sweet revenge? Yoko has his way to start with punches and bodyslams. Bret manages a dropkick, but misses a second. Piper admonishes Yokozuna and Cornette. Yoko misses a splash on Bret. Bret hits a headbutt and Yoko goes down, but Bret is shaken up by the blow too. Bret hammers Yoko down to the mat and covers him. Corny pulls Piper away from the fall at two, so Hot Rod punches him in the face and knocks him out cold with one shot. Yoko comes back with the big leg drop on Bret. The pace slows significantly since Yoko has wrestled for about twenty minutes tonight. Not an easy feat for someone that weighs 568 lbs. Yoko throws Bret to the floor and Piper starts to count him out of the ring. Bret makes it back in and dodges a Yoko avalanche in the corner. Bret scores with a second rope bulldog for the closest two count you'll ever see. Bret's second rope elbow drop gets 2 and 99/100 again. A big Hart clothesline gets another near fall. Cornette starts to come to his senses. Bret jumps off the second rope but Yoko catches him with a huge belly to belly suplex. He drags him to the corner with hopes of finishing him off with the Banzai Drop. Yoko, completely fatigued, falls off the second rope, Bret moves, and hooks the leg. Piper counts three and awards Bret the WWF Title at 10:33. *3/4 but the caliber of the match itself doesn't matter one bit. The whole match the rabid Garden crowd was anticipating a Bret miracle, and he pulled it off. Bret Hart is the WWF Champion once again, something that he arguably should have been without interruption since October 1992. Yoko and Cornette chase Piper to the back, and Bret is left alone in the ring with his music playing, flat on his back, the WWF Championship Belt laying on his stomach. He makes it to his feet, raises the Title for all to see, and fireworks go off. Vince declares a new era in the World Wrestling Federation.
Lex Luger makes his way back to the ring and does the staredown with Bret before offering a handshake that Bret accepts. Piper runs back out to ringside, and all the babyfaces in the locker room follow, a kind gesture that Bret was not told about in advance if I remember correctly. Tatanka, Razor Ramon, the 1-2-3 Kid, and Bob Holly all congratulate Bret, as does Burt Reynolds. Randy Savage, the veteran, comes down and gives him a big hug. Gorilla Monsoon joins the party and Vince McMahon takes off his headset and gets in the ring to congratulate Bret as well. Everyone lifts Bret onto their shoulders and Savage climbs the turnbuckles and salutes him in a moment that could give anyone goosebumps. The crowd is going insane the whole time. Owen Hart suddenly appears in the aisle, staring at Bret. Savage invites him into the ring, but Owen stays put and stares a hole through Bret. He watches Bret with all his friends, and more importantly, the WWF Title. On the same day that Bret became the WWF Champion, Owen had defeated him, pinned him cleanly in the center of the ring. Everyone honors Bret while he stands alone despite the fact that he had proved he was better than Bret just hours before. The viewer can see all the jealousy and tension and hatred come right back to Owen right then and there. He had erased his shadow just two hours ago, but now Bret was the Champion, and all the attention was on him once again instead of on Owen. If Bret won the Title, this must be his best day, which means that Owen Hart beat Bret Hart on his best day. But nobody cares. All the accolades are going to Bret. Wrestlemania X began with Bret and Owen Hart, and it ends with Bret and Owen as well. This was perhaps the defining moment of the legendary Bret/Owen storyline.
To see Bret with the WWF Title again after enduring a year of mistreatment and underappreciation is a very special moment. It's one of the greatest and most validating moments in the history of wrestling. After one long year, Bret "Hitman" Hart is back on top where he belongs. Once again, all is right with the world.
Wrestlemania X Key Stats
Total Wrestling: 91:59
Average Match: 10:13
Average Match Rating: **1/4
Top Moments: Every moment involving Bret or Owen Hart, Savage's last hurrah in the WWF, surprise appearances from Perfect and Piper, Howard Finkel standing up for himself, and the classic Ladder Match
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