'WWE Vintage Collection’ TV Report #264 – June 21st, 2013
Shown on THE SCORE in Canada.
By Stephen Lyon.
Quick Note: For reasons that are not yet known, this show didn't air on Sky Sports in the U.K. For the first time since the show started nearly 5 years ago, the scheduled 'first run' episode didn't air in the U.K., and was instead replaced by a repeat of the previously aired May 26th, 2013 episode. The scheduled episode did air on The Score Network in Canada, and presumably in other places around the world. Why this happened is not yet known; if I had to speculate, maybe Sky objected to airing the Zack Gowen match, but that's just pure conjecture on my part.
This week's theme: Week 1 of the cruiserweights focused on 'Underdog matches'. Main event of today's show was The Undertaker vs Jeff Hardy in a ladder match for the WWE Unified World title, from WWE Raw, July 2002. Other matches on today's show saw Triple H vs Taka Michinoku (WWF RAW, April 2000); The Rock vs The Hurricane (WWE RAW, March 2003); Rey Mysterio vs Big Show (WWE Backlash ppv, April 2003); and Zack Gowen vs Matt Hardy (WWE No Mercy ppv, October 2003).
Show was hosted by Gene Okerlund alone this week. Renee Young was said to be 'on assignment'.
1) Zack Gowen defeated Matt Hardy (w/Shannon Moore in his corner). This match took place at the 'WWE No Mercy 2003' pay-per-view event, held in Baltimore, Maryland on October 19th, 2003. Announcers for this match were Michael Cole & Tazz. Zack Gowen famously had a short run in WWE in 2003 as a one-legged wrestler. Looking back, it rarely was astounding what he could do in the ring, given his disability. The story behind Gowen's match here was that Hardy had been tormenting him for several months, interfering in his matches. Hardy dominated Gowen in this match, with Moore at ringside interfering, tripping Gowen as he ran the ropes. Hardy gave Gowen snake eyes in the corner, a vertical suplex, a bodyslam, but missed with a moonsault. Gowen dropkicked Hardy, then connected with a moonsault for the pinfall win. Gowen's victory was played up as a big upset.
A segment from the WWE Raw on March 10th, 2003 aired, with heel Rock backstage, playing the guitar and singing songs that mocked the city of Cleveland. Hurricane entered the room, and Rock & Hurricane exchanged insults. Rock extended his hand to wish Hurricane good luck ahead of their match together, but when Hurricane shook it, Rock suckerpunched him.
2) The Hurricane defeated The Rock in a No D.Q. match. This match aired on the March 10th, 2003 live edition of 'WWE Raw', taped in Cleveland, Ohio. Announcers for this match were Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler. This was surprisingly evenly-fought match. The prevailing belief was that Rock would win with ease, and on several occasions did treat Hurricane as a joke, putting on Hurricane's cape to mock him. But Hurricane had several hope spots and nearfalls, connecting with a Shining Wizard and a crossbody off the top for a nearfall, as a well as using a blockbuster off the ropes too. Finish of the bout saw Rock give Hurricane a spinebuster, and was about to deliver the Peoples Elbow when Stone Cold Steve Austin's music played. Austin came out, providing a distraction, which allowed Hurricane to roll up Rock for the pinfall win, then immediately run to the back. The whole time this happened, Austin's music continued to play, as a shocked Rock sold disbelief in the ring.
3) Big Show defeated Rey Mysterio. This match took place at the 'WWE Backlash 2003' pay-per-view event, held in Worcester, Massachusetts on April 27th, 2003. Announcers for this match were Michael Cole & Tazz. This match is more memorable for the post match angle. Rey scored several nearfalls on Show, using a flying senton off the ropes and connecting with three 619s (an 1857?), before Show chokeslammed Mysterio for the pinfall win. Mysterio was 'injured' and EMTs brought a stretcher board out, which they strapped Mysterio too. Suddenly Big Show returned to ringside, snatched the stretcher board with Mysterio attached with one hand, before swinging it like a baseball bat against the ring post. This was an amazing visual, as good as Mysterio's famous head-first 'lawn dart' bump into the side of a production truck courtesy of Kevin Nash in WCW back in 1996.
4) WWF Champion, Triple H (w/Stephanie McMahon in his corner) defeated Taka Michinoku (w/Funaki in his corner). This match aired on the April 10th, 2000 live edition of 'WWF Raw Is War', taped in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Announcers for this match were Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler. Michinoku had hired the APA for this match, to stand guard at the bottom of the entrance ramp to prevent any interference. At one point, Funaki in Michinoku's corner baseball-slid into Triple H outside the ring, knocking him flying into the APA. Faarooq & Bradshaw then beat up Triple H, before tossing him back into the ring. The crowd were getting excited and bought that Michinoku had a chance of scoring an upset win. Taka nailed Triple H with a top rope moonsault for a nearfall. Vince and Shane McMahon came out, and eased their way past the APA. Big Bossman & Bull Buchanan ran out and attacked the APA. Meanwhile in the ring, Triple H powerbombed Michinoku to score the pinfall win, and also pedigreed Funaki for good measure after the match.
5) WWE Unified World Champion, The Undertaker defeated Jeff Hardy. This match aired on the July 1st, 2002 live edition of 'WWE Raw', taped in Manchester, New Hampshire. Announcers for this match were Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler. Undertaker was doing his heel biker gimmick here. Undertaker dominated Hardy, with Hardy taking significant punishment. Taker placed Hardy inside a ladder and legdropped it. Hardy recovered to deliver a corkscrew moonsault on to Taker, but Taker nailed Hardy with a big boot shortly thereafter. Taker went to the outside, and in a spectacular spot, Hardy did a running somersault senton off the ladder and on to Taker. Back in the ring, Taker tried to powerbomb Hardy on to a chair, but Hardy fought back, nailing Taker with chairshots to the head. Hardy tried to climb the ladder, but was pulled down by Taker. Hardy again tried and this time both men fought at the top of the ladder. Hardy had one hand on the belt, before Taker chokeslammed him off the ladder, then grabbed the belt to win the match. After the match, with Taker at the top of the ramp, Hardy grabbed the mic, and yelled that he was still standing, and that Taker hadn't broken him. Taker came back to the ring and teased attacking him further, but instead, raised Hardy's arm, acknowledging that Hardy had earned his respect. This was the Undertaker's babyface turn.
Closing thoughts: Entertaining show. The Taker vs Hardy match was the best on the show.
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1) Zack Gowen defeated Matt Hardy (w/Shannon Moore in his corner) ('WWE No Mercy 2003' pay-per-view event - Baltimore, Maryland: 19/10/03).
2) The Hurricane defeated The Rock ('WWE Raw' - Cleveland, Ohio: 10/03/03).
3) Big Show defeated Rey Mysterio ('WWE Backlash 2003' pay-per-view event - Worcester, Massachusetts: 27/04/03).
4) WWF Champion, Triple H (w/Stephanie McMahon in his corner) defeated Taka Michinoku (w/Funaki in his corner) ('WWF Raw Is War' - Fort Lauderdale, Florida: 10/04/00).
5) WWE Unified World Champion, The Undertaker defeated Jeff Hardy ('WWE Raw', - Manchester, New Hampshire: 01/07/02).
Please note: I DO NOT sell DVDs or tapes of any of these shows. Sorry!
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Until next week, have a good week.
St Helens, England, U.K.