Wrestling in the Summer of 1998
by, 06-16-2011 at 05:56 PM (4013 Views)
Wrestling in the Summer of 1998.
I was 11 years old and heading into 5th grade during the summer of 1998. Pro wrestling was at it's all time high and there wasn't a better time like then to be a kid with no worries at all except making sure you had enough money every Monday to buy a blank VHS to record WCW Nitro and WWF Raw. Wrestling in the summer of 98 for me was the most enjoyable and fun time to be a fan. Stone Cold was on top of the WWF, the Wolfpac and Goldberg were riding high in WCW and ECW was putting on some of their best shows in their existence. Also I was eleven and it was the summer, you just can't beat that feeling.
Here are my top ten memorable moments of the summer of 1998.
10. Stone Cold wins back the WWF Championship
24 hours after being defeated by Kane at the King of the Ring in a first blood match for the WWF title Stone Cold received a rematch against Kane and defeated him in one of the most exciting main events in RAW history. Kane winning the title was a huge shock to me as a kid but Stone Cold winning it back the very next night was a bigger surprise.
Like Goldberg in WCW, Taz was dominating all competition in ECW and had solified him as a contender to the ECW title and as one of the hottest tickets in the wrestling business. During the summer is when Taz introduced and began defending the FTW title, a belt he created himself. Taz had a great feud with Bam Bam Bigelow over the summer and had a very entertaining match at Heatwave in August.
8. Kaientai and Val Venis
I was speechless when I saw this. For sure one of the weirdest angles WWF done however it is a very memorable and something I would never forget. For those who forget what happened at the end of episode of RAW Val Venis was seen tied up in the locker room by Kaientai and one of the members slashing a sword to make you believe he just chopped off Vals money maker as the scene faded to end the show. I was shocked, disgusted and laughing at the same time. Never seen anything like that since, just a bizarre but memorable moment.
7. The Rock vs Triple H
The Rock and Triple H let the world know that their time at the top of the WWF was coming sooner then later. From their brawl at Fully Loaded to the ladder match at Summerslam and the week in and week out feud between DX and the Nation every Monday on RAW, The Rock vs Triple H was the hottest feud of the summer. At the time Triple H was the leader of the fan favorite DX and The Rock was the hated leader of the Nation of Domination. Every Monday these two factions would go back in forth with title changes to impersonations. I just knew when watching their matches that these two would both be future WWF champions and it would be no more then a year until that happened.
6. The Warrior Returns
Now when I look back at this I realise how bad it was done and who cared about the Warrior anymore, but I was eleven when it happened and I just couldn't be anymore excited then to see the Ultimate Warrior return and confront Hollywood Hogan. I remember hearing rumors all summer that he was going to WCW and it finally happened on a August edition of Nitro. However even at eleven I was bored of the Warrior by Fall Brawl in September, but still to see the Warrior debut in WCW was exciting when I was twelve and makes the list.
5. Fully Loaded bikini contest
Over the summer Sable, who was the hottest thing besides Stone Cold in the WWF at the time, was feuding with Marc Mero and his new valet Jacqueline. This lead to what I still say is the best bikini contest in WWF history even to this day. Sable removed her top to reveal only painted on hand prints on her breast and at eleven years old that moment made my entire summer.
4. Highway to Hell
In the beginning of the summer Stone Cold and the Undertaker were teaming together to battle Kane and Mankind but by the end of the summer these two men were on a Highway to Hell to Summerslam in a match for Austin's WWF title. The build to this match was great and it began the first heel turn for the Undertake since he first came into the WWF. The best part however was the video packages that aired to hype the match which included the AC/DC song Highway to Hell. If that song don't get you hyped for a match then I don't what song will.
3. Undertaker vs Mankind's Hell in a Cell match at King of the Ring
I remember watching this as a kid and thinking the Undertaker just killed Mankind when he throw him off the cell onto the announce table. It was easily the most shocking thing I've seen in wrestling at that time and it wasn't more then 10 minutes later that I witnessed the second most shocking thing I've seen in pro wrestling. Mankind decides to continue the match and somehow climbs to the top of the cell to meet the Undertaker only to be choked slam through the top of the cell down to the ring. Any normal human would not be able to continue this match but Mick Foley did and also received a back drop onto hundred of thumb tacks. This wasn't much of a wrestling match but it was the most jaw dropping entertaining spot fest ever.
2. Goldberg defeats Hollywood Hogan for WCW Title.......on Nitro?
Even though this moment most likely would be at the top of the countdown if it would of been on a ppv and had more build instead of four days but still this match still makes the top 10. Goldberg had been undefeated and destroyed all competition in the few short months he was in WCW. He was reigning US champion and his shot at the WCW title was coming and the whole world was waiting for it to happen. Like I said earlier this match had no build. It was made on Thursday night Thunder and happened the very next Monday on Nitro inside the Georgia Dome. If this match would of been saved for a ppv and had proper build it could of been one of the most anticipated matches of all time, but still one of the most memorable moments of WCW.
1. Wolfpack in Da House
The nwo Wolfpack was the coolest thing in wrestling at it's time. They were getting the loudest reactions from the crowd and everyone wanted to get their hands on a black and red nwo shirt. I remember my friend and I walking to K-Mart everyday for about a week until they finally got them in. At eleven years old I felt like the coolest person in town walking around with a wolfpack shirt on and getting responses from so many different types of people. I've wore many wrestling shirts by that time but none had ever received as much feedback then my Wolfpack shirt, even my Austin 3:16 didn't get this much attention. Anyways the summer began on a high note for the Wolfpack with the introduction of Lex Luger and my favorite wrestler at that time, Sting. However by the end of the summer the Wolfpack was fading and just like that the coolest thing in wrestling wasn't as cool anymore. I blame the reason this happened is because of all the celebrity appearances and matches that happened during the summer. WCW should of put a main focus on the battle between the nwo white and red during the summer instead they took the back burner to Karl Malone and Jay Leno so they could feud with Hogan and the nwo. No member of the Wolfpack had a match booked at the Bash at the Beach ppv until Konnan vs Disco Inferno was added at the last minute cause WCW knew how dumb it would be not to have them on the card, they still received the loudest pop of the night. I think the Wolfpack could of been bigger then they were and for a longer period of time if WCW put more focus on them and gave them better feuds. Still the Wolfpack was the coolest thing happening during the summer and sits at the top of my countdown.
Thanks for reading my first blog and hope you enjoyed. Feedback would be much appreciated. More blogs on wrestling will come shortly