WWE Jukebox: November 2004 (part 1)

Apparently repenting for the Undertaker Jukebox I had to suffer through during October, the WWE came through and delivered the best of Shawn Michaels! 8 hours of nip ups, cat skins, superkicks, and big elbows came crashing through my computer screen, and is now being delivered to you in typically late fashion. My apologies!

This is going to be seperated into 2 parts, because it’s by FAR the longest piece I’ve ever done, and far too much for one article.

June 18, 1988

WWE Preview: By now, all WWE fans know of the legendary Shawn Michaels. But in June of 1988, the man known today as the Heartbreak Kid was a young man just trying to make a name in this business. Check out his first WWE match ever, as he and Marty Jannetty team up to take on the masked Intruder and veteran Iron Mike Sharpe.

The Rockers get a surprisingly large pop upon their entrance, but then I suppose having spent time in the AWA they had some previous exposure. Sharpe and Michaels start. They go into a criss-cross, and Jannetty blind tags himself in. We cut away briefly to hear a promo from the Rockers, and essentially they let us know that they’re gunning for Demolition. Jannetty can’t take down Sharpe with shoulderblocks, but a dropkick works. The Intruder enters and walks into an armdrag. Michaels dives in with a slingshot splash, and Jannetty hits a neckbreaker. Michaels tags in while Ventura laughs at the idea of these two small guys going after Demolition. Jannetty nails Intruder with a snap suplex, and Michaels comes off the top with a kneedrop. He then hiptosses Jannetty on to Intruder, and Jannetty scores the pin at 3:09! * Just an exhibition match, as most non-SNME or PPV events were in the 80’s.

April 2, 1989

WWE Preview: Shawn Michaels’ WrestleMania career began in Trump Plaza at WrestleMania V. Watch as he and Marty Jannetty take on two mammoth Superstars – Akeem and the Big Boss Man.

We open in the back where the Rockers stand with MEAN GENE. Michaels promises to show the Twin Towers something they’ve never seen before, and Jannetty says that while a good showing would be nice, they expect to win this one. And with that, they bounce off to the ring.

The big men start by chasing the smaller two around the ring – but can’t keep up, and Bossman takes an elbow, courtesy of Michaels. Bossman retaliated by putting Michaels on the top rope – but Michaels bitchslaps him, and dropkicks him in the head. They run around the ring, and Michaels gets in a forearm on both Akeem and Bossman. Akeem decides to tag in, so the Rockers work over him with armwringers back and forth, and follow each one with an axehandle off the top. Michaels tries to work an armwringer in the middle of the ring, but Akeem escapes. A blind charge sees Akeem hit the corner when Michaels moves, and Jannetty comes in for another armwringer. Bossman blind tags himself in – and Jannetty completely misses the whole thing, jumping right into his arms, and getting squashed by Akeem. Bossman straddle in the ropes is followed by a splash against the ropes – and Jannetty’s in a bad place now. Bossman delivers an avalanche, and Akeem is right behind him to do the same. Bossman works over Jannetty with a series of shots to the back, and Akeem comes in. Bossman holds Jannetty hostage while Akeem charges – but Jannetty sidesteps and they nail eachother! Michaels gets the hot tag, dropkicks Akeem on his way in, mounts the corner, and pounds away. The Rockers start whipping Akeem into the buckle, over and over, and when he falls Michaels gets 2. Akeem gets out, and clotheslines the shit out of Michaels – getting some LOUD heat! Bossman heads up, tries a big splash off the top…but misses, and Michaels scoots on top for a 2!!! Jannetty trips up Bossman, and Michaels falls on top for 2! They each dropkick Akeem, then go off the top with a missile dropkick at the same time on Bossman, getting another 2! Michaels tries to go off the top once again, but he’s caught and given a spinebuster! Akeem tags in, and Air Africa finishes Michaels off quickly at 8:06. **1/4 The early proof that Michaels was destined to work well with slugs…

SHAWN MICHAELS vs. THE BRITISH BULLDOG (for the WWF intercontinental title)
October 27, 1992

WWE Preview: In the early 90s, Saturday Night’s Main Event was one of the most anticipated events. Check out this match, as HBK challenges the British Bulldog for the Intercontinental Championship.

This was shortly after SummerSlam at Wembley Stadium that saw Davey pin Bret Hart in front of 60,000 hometown fans for his first major singles title. Bulldog shoves Michaels to his ass a couple of times to start and calls to the crowd for support. They happily provide it. Michaels comes back with a poke to the eye, hiptoss, and short arm scissors. Bulldog powers out of it, and picks Shawn up with one arm while Michaels clings onto the hold!!! This results in a single arm backdrop, and is followed by a gorilla press slam! The fans are absolutely rabid as Michaels is clotheslined to the outside! Back in, Bulldog delivers a rana, and follows with a hiptoss. Michaels rakes the eyes to regain some control and delivers a series of elbows. Bulldog recovers and charges – but Michaels has the wherewithal to sidestep and send him to the floor. While the referee count Bulldog, Michaels undoes the turnbuckle. And with that, we take a commercial!

Upon return, Michaels is making sure the turnbuckle is covered so nobody sees it – and yanks Davey Boy back into the ring. Shawn applies an abdominal stretch in the middle of the ring, and uses the tights for leverage. Bulldog manages to hiptoss his way out of it, but misses a follow up senton splash – and Shawn throws a series of closed fists at Bulldog’s back. Michaels moves right back to the abdominal stretch, and Davey’s fading fast. Bulldog again powers his way out, and drops an elbow. Heenan announces that Michaels is still winning this match on points. Bulldog clotheslines Shawn, and catapults him face first to the corner! Another clothesline seemingly kills Michaels, and gets a 2 count. A vertical suplex leads to Vince telling us “1,2,hegotitnohedidn’t!” A whip to the corner sends Bulldog to the exposed corner, and Davey Boy nails the bolt with force! They wind up fighting to the top rope with Bulldog still selling the back, and a botched superplex sees Shawn fall on top – which is enough to score the win and title at 10:27!! *** Shawn manages to dizzily strap on his newly won belt, and stagger to the back while Heenan whistles “Sexy Boy”.

SHAWN MICHAELS (with Diesel) vs. MARTY JANNETTY (for the WWF intercontinental title)
July 19, 1993

WWE Preview: With the mighty Diesel by his side, Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels went one-on-one with his former Rocker partner Marty Jannetty. Can Jannetty capture the gold? Or does HBK turn back on his former partner? Watch this match to find out.

No, this isn’t THAT match. This is actually the third in the series, with each man sporting a win apiece. Michaels attacks Jannetty while he’s talking to the referee. A backslide fails, and Jannetty clotheslines Michaels for 2. A rollup gets 2. Jannetty dumps Michaels to the outside, and poses to the fans. Back in, Michaels slaps on a headlock. He releases and goes for Sweet Chin Music, but Jannetty ducks out of the way. He tries to choke Jannetty out on the ropes, and follows with a blind charge to the corner – but Jannetty moves and Michaels runs face first to the buckle. Jannetty follows that with a hiptoss for 2. Michaels comes back with an elbow, but does another blind charge and runs into the boot of Jannetty. Jannetty heads to the top rope, but Michaels moves from whatever the move is…only Jannetty lands on his feet, delivers a DDT, and scores the pinfall!! Jannetty celebrates his win, but Diesel is quick to point out Michaels had a foot on the ropes. We take a commercial break…

Upon return, Jannetty is STILL bouncing around the ring, and Diesel’s still screaming at the referee. BOBBY HEENAN leaves the commentary booth to run over and inform the referee that the foot was on the rope, and even shows him the replay footage. EARL HEBNER discusses it with HOWARD FINKLE, and they decide to continue. Heenan’s sporting a smile that would put the Cheshire Cat to shame. We take another break.

Jannetty and Michaels are brawling on the floor. Quickly they re-enter, and a snap suplex from Jannetty gets 2. A backbreaker gets 2. They move into a sleeperhold, and Michaels fades fast. Shawn somehow finds the strength to backdrop out of it. Michaels is quick to dump Jannetty to the outside, near Diesel. The referee keeps an eye on them, and nothing happens. Back in, they bounce into a double collision, and Michaels seems to purposely fall outside in hopes of a countout. Diesel tries to help Shawn to his feet, but the referee wants NO aid from outside sources…and we again step aside for commercial. Yeesh.

Lucky Jukebox subscribers get dark footage taken DURING the commercial break! Michaels is in the midst delivering a bodyslam on Jannetty for 2. The best part is they don’t actually turn off the microphones for the announcers, so we can hear them going on about whatever… The highlight is this bizarre exchange:

Vince: “Oh, I’ve seen him throw up before. Not tonight.”

Savage: “Ratings.”

Jannetty and Michaels hit double dropkicks. The fans are solidly behind Jannetty here. The live feed kicks back in with Michaels nailing a double axehandle off the top for 2! Shawn drives a knee to Jannetty’s midsection, and holds him down on the mat with a front facelock. He even uses the ropes for leverage, and Diesel smartly shakes them on the otherside of the ring so that Hebner doesn’t think twice about the vibrations. Jannetty fights to his feet, and lifts Michaels to the top rope…and then crotches him! A back elbow drops Shawn, and Jannetty gets 2! Michaels tries a powerbomb, but Jannetty rolls through into a package for 2! Jannetty blind charges, and hits the corner face first. Michaels runs to the top, nails a cross body, but Marty rolls through and gets 2! The Rocker Dropper connects!!!! Shawn gets caught in the ropes, so Jannetty charges, but Michaels drops down out of the way and Jannetty crashes hard to the floor. Diesel immediately rolls Marty back in where Shawn drapes an arm over and retains the title at 18:20!!! ****1/4 Absolutely awesome match from both guys, and pretty much Jannetty’s last hurrah before fading out into drug induced mediocrity.

SHAWN MICHAELS (with Diesel) vs. RAZOR RAMON (in a ladder match for the WWF intercontinental title)
March 20, 1994

WWE Preview: The WrestleMania X Ladder Match is widely recognized as one of the most revolutionary matches in WrestleMania history. Never before had pay-per-view audiences witnessed a match of this caliber. Both HBK and Razor Ramon took it to the limit in a match that has to be seen to be believed.

Both Intercontinental titles hang above the ring. Basically Shawn had been suspended at the end of 1993 while he was the champion, and in his absence the fed crowned a new champion in Razor Ramon. When Michaels returned he was not impressed, and kept referring to himself as champ – so this match was born to settle the score. Razor decides to walk under the ladder on his way to the ring, throwing all caution and superstition to the wind. Michaels tries an early hiptoss, but can’t move the big man and winds up taking a chokeslam. Michaels comes back with a swinging neckbreaker and dumps Razor outside. Diesel sees an opportunity and runs over Razor with a clothesline. EARL HEBNER‘s not putting up with any of Nash’s shit tonight though, and tosses Diesel out of the building. Back in, Razor whips Shawn around and dumps him outside. Razor starts ripping apart the padded area outside the ring, but can’t do anything before Michaels rakes the eyes. They head back in where Ramon goes for the Razor’s Edge, but Michaels backdrops out of the move, sending Razor crashing to the exposed concrete! With him down and out, Michaels grabs the ladder. Razor recovers, and decks Shawn. He starts to bring the ladder into the ring, but Michaels delivers a baseball slide dropkick to the ladder, and more importantly drives it into Razor. They head in where Michaels uses the ladder like a battering ram! With Razor down, Shawn starts tenderizing him, with repeated shots to make sure he stays down. Finally, Michaels starts his climb, but Razor’s got enough strength to pull down Michaels’ pants and give us all a full moon! Gratuitous ass shots long before the attitude era… This match IS innovative! Michaels shoves him off, then sets the ladder in the corner so he can deliver a splash off the top! Michaels heads up again, but Razor is able to push the ladder over, and that sends Shawn crashing into the ropes. Both guys are slow to recover, but when they do – they find the ladder in the corner. Michaels tries to whip Ramon into the ladder, but Razor reverses and Shawn hits it back first! They head out to the floor, because Razor now wants to brutalize Michaels, and catapults him into the ladder! Back in, Razor delivers the knockout blow to Michaels with the ladder that sends him flying to the outside and Ramon sees his opportunity. Razor climbs, but Michaels comes back off the top rope – diving to knock Razor off, and knocks himself down at the same time. Both guys recover at the same time, and climb the ladder on separate sides. Upon meeting at the top – Razor uses his size and strength to suplex Shawn over, and falls off himself! He’s alright though, and quickly goes back up the ladder – but Michaels has had time to get up, and dropkicks Razor off the ladder! Michaels then dumps the ladder on Razor, and nails Sweet Chin Music! Ramon would appear to be out cold, and Shawn just piles it on with a spike piledriver!!! That’s followed with Michaels standing on the top turnbuckle, and falling with the ladder onto Ramon, and then setting up the ladder over Razor’s dead body to climb to victory…only Razor’s not going to die today – and shoves the ladder over!!! Michaels falls into the ropes, and his leg winds up tied up. Shawn pulls and squirms for his life, but by the time he escapes Ramon is already on top of the ladder, and grabs both title belts for the win at 18:48!!! ***** Razor just collapses in the ring while the fans go apeshit for what they’ve just seen.

SHAWN MICHAELS vs. BRET HART (for the WWF world heavyweight title)
November 25, 1992

WWE Preview: After breaking away from the Rockers, Shawn Michaels made a meteoric rise to the top of the singles circuit in WWE. In fact, he was even a part of the main event of one of the biggest pay-per-views of the year, Survivor Series, when he challenged Bret “Hit Man” Hart for the WWE Championship.

We start with a promo from Shawn, letting us know he’s got nothing to lose and everything to gain, since his IC title isn’t going to be on the line. Meanwhile, Bret gives thanks for being the WWF champion. He lets Shawn know that he’s got nothing but respect for his flashy moves, and that he’s a great IC champion – but as far as the World Title goes…we’ll see.

Vince notes that Bret’s been a busy WWF champion, defending the belt at a record setting pace since having won it just weeks earlier. Bret and Shawn lockup, and wind up struggling back to the corner. Michaels comes in with a waistlock takedown, and they trade holds on the mat until Michaels gets to the ropes. A shoving match breaks out, but goes nowhere. Bret hammers away at the shoulder of Michaels, and works a hammerlock on the mat. After about 90 seconds in the hold, Michaels is able to reverse it – only to see Bret run Michaels to the side of the ring, and toss him out. Bret yanks him back in, and puts on an armbar. Bret hits a crossbody for 2. A sunset flip gets 2. All this energy needs another hold, so we move back to the armbar. Shawn tries an armdrag, but Bret hangs on and drags the other side, and holds the armbar. A hiptoss is blocked by Shawn, but a right hand isn’t, and Bret gets 2. Heenan summarizes my feelings thus far with “Can you get me a wakeup call? We’re gonna be here for awhile.” Of course, that may have more to do with the fact it’s currently 6:00am here. Michaels gets in a stun gun out of nowhere, dropping Bret right on his throat across the ropes. Bret tries to come back, and dives at Shawn, but HBK sidesteps and Bret hits the ringpost shoulder first! Michaels punches at Bret, leading to another classic Heenan line. “Don’t bother hitting him in the head, he’s a Hart!” Michaels whips Bret to the buckle, and gets 2. We move to a headlock on the mat. Shawn milks the hold for several minutes. Bret finally escapes, only to be hit with a dropkick getting 2 for Michaels. A backbreaker gets 2. We go back to the mat, and Michaels works a chinlock – but Bret isn’t in the mood and gets out. A swinging neckbreaker from Bret turns the tide, but Shawn’s up first and punches Bret in the throat. A front facelock is applied, and Michaels works it on the mat. Bret refuses to fade out that easily though, and drives Michaels back to the corner. The running bulldog is good, but the elbow off the second rope misses – and Shawn covers for 2. Michaels hits a back elbow for 2, and goes back to the front facelock. Heenan feels this is good enough, and wants to ring the bell now…setting a Survivor Series tone some 5 years early! The arm is checked, but Bret hangs on during the third attempt, and with the momentum he sneaks in a small package for 2. Shawn is blind with rage now, and winds up walking into a belly to back suplex. A catapult sends Michaels flying to the corner, and that serves to knock him down. Bret’s up first now, and works over the midsection of Shawn. He gets thrown on the top rope, and Bret kicks away at the midsection of Michaels, before delivering the ultimate of crotchings. Russian legsweep gets 2. A backbreaker leaves Shawn prone for the double axehandle, which gets another 2. Bret puts Michaels on the top rope, hits the superplex, and gets 2. Bret tries a sleeper, but Michaels runs him back to the corner where the referee gets sandwiched. He’s okay though, showing a great deal of strength by referee standards. Michaels sends Bret out to the floor, and follows close behind – driving Bret face first to the ringpost, and then slams him on the mat. They head back in, and Michaels scores a 2. Shawn hits a backdrop for 2. Michaels isn’t so sure about that 2 count, and screams at the referee, only to get rolled up for 2. Sweet Chin Music connects…but Shawn takes forever to get back to Bret and gets his eyes raked. Shawn comes back with a belly to back for 2. Shawn can’t believe his poor fortune – and freaks out. That gives Bret ample opportunity to deck Shawn, tying him up in the ropes. However, he sidesteps before Bret’s splash works, and Bret bounces off. Shawn heads up, tries a dropkick, but is caught in the middle of the ring in the Sharpshooter, and Michaels finally gives at 26:41. ***1/2 As it is with most work involving Bret as a babyface, excellent match, but boring as sin. SANTA CLAUS enters the ring during the celebration, and it starts snowing in the arena. No, Santa doesn’t turn heel and reveal himself to be someone in disguise, it’s simply a celebration, and a very poor one at that.

SHAWN MICHAELS (with Sid and Jenny McArthy) vs. DIESEL (with Pamela Anderson) (for the WWF world heavyweight title)
April 2, 1995

WWE Preview: For the first time in Shawn Michaels’ career, he was on the biggest stage of them all, competing for the biggest prize in sports-entertainment – the WWE Championship. Watch as he challenges his former bodyguard Diesel.

Alright, TODD PETTENGILL is in the house! If you’ve ever wondered what old Todd is up to these days, clicky here! Warning: It may shock you. Anyway, Diesel yaks on about retaining the title against Shawn Michaels – and we send things down to ringside.

Our guest time-keeper is introduced as JONATHAN TAYLOR THOMAS. NICHOLAS TURTURRO is the guest ring announcer tonight, because we’re just rolling out the A-list celebrities tonight. During ring-intros, Diesel escorts his diva of the evening Pamela Anderson to ringside, while Jenny McArthy bring her diva Shawn Michaels to the ring.

After Diesel’s half-hour long intro, we’re off. Diesel gets the first blow of the match in the form of a right hand. Sid tries to be the voice of reason, but that’s a battle he lost a long time ago. Diesel backdrops Shawn, and then dumps him over the top rope. A camera man gets in Shawn’s way, so Shawn drags him down the aisle, far away from the ring. Back in, Diesel clotheslines Shawn. Michaels tries to attack, but eats an elbow. He manages to get away from a gorilla press slam, but can’t suplex the big man. Diesel has NO trouble suplexing Shawn though, and then clotheslines him to the outside. Michaels is feeling woozy, so Sid makes sweet verbal love to Shawn’s ear. That gives Michaels the motivation he needs to poke Diesel in the eyes. Diesel comes right back by dropping Shawn crotch first over the top rope – but is unable to follow up with a big boot. Shawn does the Cactus clothesline over the top, but then skins the cat to stay in, and comes off the top with a plancha!!! He hammers Diesel on the floor, gets back in, then comes over with a baseball slide dropkick! Diesel throws himself at Michaels – but Shawn sidesteps and Diesel hits the ringpost with his ribs. Michaels follows with a big splash off the apron to make things worse. Diesel gets back in, and Shawn starts to punch at the ribs. Big Kev falls, allowing Shawn to jump on his midsection. Michaels heads up, and hits a bulldog off the top for 2! The fans try to rally for Diesel, but Michaels hits a springboard elbow for 2. Now some fans start chanting “LET’S GO SHAWN!” while Michaels pounds at the back of Diesel. Shawn heads up once again, and hits the big elbow, getting another 2! Michaels tries to go for a DDT, but Diesel winds up backdropping him. He goes for a running powerslam, but Michaels slips off the back, and shoves Diesel rib first to the buckle. Shawn jumps on the back of Diesel, and works a sleeper. The champion starts to fade, and the referee starts to check the arm. Diesel fades twice, but stays alive on the third try! Our hero hulks up, and runs Shawn back to the turnbuckle to force him to break. Diesel hits the elbows in the corner, then connects on a series of running corner clotheslines! Snake eyes is good! The running Bossman straddle doesn’t miss, and Diesel sends Michaels out to the floor. Shawn rolls back in, and Diesel’s right behind. It’s a one man slugfest! Shawn rolls out to the floor again, and Diesel follows closely behind. The referee sees Sid approaching – an quickly jumps down to stop anything from happening, but twists his ankle in the process! The two brawl back into the ring, and Michaels connects with Sweet Chin Music!!! No ref. Sid physically throws him back in, but it’s far too late and Diesel kicks out at 2. Sid undoes the turnbuckle, and orders Shawn to send Diesel into it. He can’t though, because Diesel’s busy backdropping Michaels. Still, it took everything out of Diesel, and it’s Shawn who rolls over first, and gets 2! They both struggle to get up – and once on their feet Diesel hits a side slam. Both guys are down once again. Diesel recovers first, and catapults the challenger face first into the exposed turnbuckle. That’ll do it. Diesel runs through the usual, hitting a big boot, a powerbomb, and Diesel retains the belt at 20:36. *** Decent, but bland.

JIM ROSS quickly interviews the champion, and Sid screams that this is not over. Back in the ring, Diesel invites both Pamela Anderson and Jenny McCarthy into the ring. Nicholas Turturro and Jonathan Taylor Thomas get in as well, and it’s a great big Nash Lovefest! Not unlike my website on a regular basis.

SHAWN MICHAELS vs. RAZOR RAMON (in a ladder match for the WWF intercontinental title)
August 27, 1995

WWE Preview: Then-WWE President Gorilla Monsoon called for the biggest rematch to date – a Ladder Match between Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon. Were HBK and the Bad Guy able to recreate the magic from their first epic Ladder Match? Find out in this SummerSlam classic.

Here we go again… This is the ONLY bright spot on SummerSlam 1995, but I couldn’t even justify picking it up even with this here. We open with Razor being interviewed by DOK HENDRIX, and he mentions that history has a way of repeating itself. BRET HART angrily runs by while Razor speaks. “Shawn Michaels, your pain brings me pleasure.”

We fast forward to the start of the match, after the referee suspends the belt above the ring. Razor and Shawn are both faces by this point, and engage in an even slugfest. Michaels goes for Sweet Chin Music immediately, but Razor hooks the ropes and avoids the kick. Razor tries Razor’s Edge seconds later, and also fails as Shawn squirms away. Punches are traded, and when that goes nowhere Razor whips Shawn to the buckle, and Michaels flies over the top to the floor. Razor sees a chance to grab the ladder, but Shawn stops him in the aisle and fights him back to the ring. Michaels attempts to get Razor back in via vertical suplex, but Ramon is FAR too big and the move is reversed. Shawn winds up flying over the top with the suplex and hitting the guardrail! They head back in where Razor again tries Razor’s Edge, but Shawn slips off the back door. Razor ducks a Sweet Chin Music, and they both throw clotheslines knocking each other out. They recover, and Razor throws Shawn on the top rope. He boots at Michaels’ midsection, then follows with a super fallaway slam! That gives him ample opportunity to go retrieve the ladder from the entryway, which he does.

A camera finds SYCHO SID watching on from the back.

In the ring, Razor is setting up the ladder and starts his climb. Michaels manages to recover during this timeframe though, and knocks the ladder over. With Razor down, Shawn sets it up and starts to climb…but Razor hooks the tights, and pulls them down. Once again, we can’t avoid Shawn’s ass. Michaels kicks him off, but Razor comes back, catching Shawn’s leg IN the ladder, and Michaels falls to the ground HEAD first! That didn’t look good… Razor’s no fool, and quickly stomps Shawn’s leg between the ladder, attempting to shatter it! After that ceases being fun, Razor starts slamming Shawn’s leg on top of the ladder over and over! A leg first scoop slam to the ladder does not help Michaels’ cause, and Razor sets up the ladder in the corner. Razor drops a series of elbows to Shawn’s leg, but Michaels kicks him off – sending Razor crashing rib first to the ladder in the corner. Razor retaliates by picking Shawn up in a single leg atomic drop position, and then dropping him leg first on the ladder. Michaels uses whatever strength he’s got left to nudge Razor over the ropes and to the floor, but that just gives him a whole new place to play with Shawn’s leg. Razor slams it to the ring apron several times, then on the outside he wraps it around the ringpost. Back in, Razor hits a drop toe hold and continues to work over the leg. For shits and giggles, Razor drops the ladder on Shawn’s leg, and Michaels rolls to the corner for mercy. Razor now takes his chance to set up the ladder and start his climb, but Shawn slowly limps to the top rope, and dives off towards the ladder to knock Razor off. Michaels shoves Razor into the ladder, but it’s weak and Razor’s up first. He starts his climb, but Michaels is right on his tail – hitting a belly to back suplex off the middle of the ladder! Michaels puts the ladder in the corner, and whips Razor into it. To ensure maximum effect, he does it again and stomps on Razor’s head. A scoop slam hits, and Michaels starts to climb the ladder from the corner…and delivers a moonsault from near the top! With Razor back down, he goes up again and off the TOP of the ladder he tries a splash…but it misses, and Shawn’s hurt!!! Razor uses the opportunity to set the ladder back up, and both guys start their climb on either side. They meet at the top and start throwing punches. After a series of punches and headbutts the ladder collapses, and while Shawn crotches himself on the top rope, Razor falls to the floor! They each recover at a slow pace, and Michaels grabs the ladder. Michaels charges, but Razor ducks, and Michaels flies with the ladder to the outside! Everyone’s moving slowly now, and Ramon starts digging around under the ring for something. He comes up with another ladder while Shawn sets the original one back up! Michaels doesn’t even see him coming, and during his climb towards the belt, Razor sneaks in and hits a Razor’s Edge!!!! Michaels starts to stir while Ramon sets up his new ladder, and then starts climbing the original! With Razor an arm away from winning, Michaels throws a Sweet Chin Music from his ladder to Razor’s face, and Razor falls! Shawn then leaps towards the belt…and comes crashing down empty handed. That was supposed to be the finish, but they quickly cover by Razor trying an Edge, and Michaels backdrops him to the floor! Michaels scurries up the ladder, grabs for the belt…and again drops down empty handed because it’s tied so tight. Botched Finish #2!! Shawn throws a mid-ring tantrum, throwing the ladders around, before putting on his head long enough to climb and finally retain the belt at 25:06! ****1/2 The psychology was FAR better this time around, but it involved so much lying around over the last 10 minutes I can’t go the full monty. Still, a very, very, very good match – and Scott Hall’s last GREAT match.

SHAWN MICHAELS (with Luna Vachon) vs. TATANKA (for the WWF intercontinental title)
April 4, 1993

WWE Preview: The Heartbreak Kid, alongside Luna, defends his Intercontinental Championship against Tatanka outside at WrestleMania X. This battle was not without controversy, as Sensational Sherri made her presence felt.

SHERRI MARTELL comes down to ringside before the match starts, just to observe. Tatanka’s still undefeated at this point. Shawn gets in a couple of single leg takedowns to start, but Tatanka kicks him away. They fight with a test of strength, and Tatanka wins by shoving Michaels away. Shawn works a headlock, and uses a springboard for a snapmare, holding on for 2. He tries another springboard snapmare, but Tatanka backdrops Shawn this time. Michaels tries to come off the top, but takes an armdrag instead. A whip to the buckle followed by a chop sends Michaels to the floor! Michaels tries to get back in a couple of times, but Tatanka keeps chopping Michaels down and off the apron. Shawn finally gets a clue and gives Tatanka a thumb to the eye. From the top – super sunset flip…and Shawn gets 2! Tatanka comes back with an inverted atomic drop, and follows with a DDT. Tatanka legdrops Shawn’s arm, and applies a nerve hold. Savage starts rambling incoherently on commentary here. Tatanka yanks at Shawn’s arm, and keeps working the nerve hold. Michaels comes back with a couple of elbows to the head – but blind charges the challenger and winds up hitting the ringpost with his shoulder! Back to the nerve hold. It’s released, and Tatanka hits a shoulder breaker, followed by an elbow drop to the shoulder! Tatanka goes up, and hits a tomahawk chop on the shoulder! He goes up a second time, but this time Michaels is ready with a crescent kick!!! Shawn dumps Tatanka to the outside, and Luna approaches her prey. Sherri chases off Luna though, and Luna can’t do anything. Michaels slams Tatanka’s face to the ring apron, and follows with a clothesline off the apron! Tatanka tries to stand, but Michaels stomps on him. Eventually Tatanka gets back into the ring, and Michaels hits him with a swinging neckbreaker for 2! A standing dropkick gets 2. Michaels moves to a chinlock, because this match isn’t moving slowly enough… Tatanka fights out of it, but Michaels peppers him with shots in the corner. A victory roll gets 2 for Michaels! Michaels tries it again, but this time Tatanka just falls back with the electric chair drop, getting 2! Michaels comes back with a double axehandle, but Tatanka starts calling on The Reserve. He starts his war dance around the ring, and blocks the Sweet Chin Music! Here come the chops! Michaels falls with every chop that hits. Tatanka goes up, hits the crossbody, and gets a 2! Michaels tries a dropkick, but Tatanka catches him, catapults him to the corner, then rolls him up for 2! Michaels comes back with a schoolboy for 2. Shawn goes to the top rope once again, but gets caught with a powerslam coming off the top, and Tatanka gets another 2! Michaels dumps Tatanka outside and headbutts him. Michaels tries to fly, but Tatanka sidesteps and Michaels cracks his head on the apron! For some reason, upon standing, Michaels drags the referee outside. He heads back in, and walks right into a Samoan drop from Tatanka…and the referee rings the bell at 18:16, disqualifying Michaels. * Shitty match, shitty finish, and I don’t even know why they bothered putting this on the Jukebox. Post-match, Luna beats the piss out of Sherri.

SHAWN MICHAELS (with Jose Lothario) vs. VADER (with James E. Cornette) (for the WWF world heavyweight title)
August 18, 1996

WWE Preview: Watch Shawn Michaels defend his WWE Championship against the man they call Vader in the main event of SummerSlam. Vader, a former WCW Champion, had James E. Cornette in his corner. Find out if the mouthy manager made a difference.

Vader starts with his “WHO’S THE MAN???” routine to put early heat on himself. They lockup, and Vader pounds away with his huge fists. A clothesline levels Shawn, but a big boot is actually blocked, and Michaels hits a legsweep! With Vader on his ass, Michaels kicks away at Vader’s face, and throws a series of punches. Vader tries a slam, but Michaels slips off the back way and dumps Vader to the floor. A baseball slide dropkick sends Vader crashing to the concrete, and that’s followed by a tope suicida! Cornette tries to get involved, but Shawn gets rid of him – and they head back in. Michaels hits a clothesline off the top rope, and follows with a rana! A second rana over the top sends Vader back to the outside, and Michaels skins the cat to get back in! He gets cocky, tries a third one…and Vader finally has enough, powerbombing Shawn on the floor!!! Vader slams Michaels back into the ring, and starts throwing some huge forearms in the corner. Vader quickly throws a vertical suplex, and continues to hammer away at Michaels in the corner. A whip sees Shawn bounce to the floor, and Vader stays put – opting to pose for the fans. Michaels re-enters, and immediately takes a backdrop from the challenger. A belly to back is temporarily blocked by Shawn, but Vader pulls at the hair and tries again. This time, Michaels falls on his feet. Vader tries a blind charge to catch him, but Michaels sidesteps and Vader avalanches nothing. One right hand later though, and Michaels is back on the mat! A vertical suplex sees Shawn find the strength to land on his feet – but Vader quickly sends him over the top rope. Michaels tries to skin the cat, but Vader catches him, and slams him in the middle of the ring for 2! Time for resting, as Vader works the Tender Loving Hug. Michaels isn’t a fan, and gets away. Clotheslines fail to drop Vader, and when Michaels tries to slip through Vader’s legs, he winds up getting caught. Vader goes to drop all his weight on Michaels…but Shawn gets his legs up, and crotches Vader! At this point, Shawn heads up to do something – but Vader’s not where he’s supposed to be, and Michaels throws a temper tantrum. I’m talking a full fledged screaming fit in the middle of a PPV match. He quickly seems to realize where he is though, and refocuses. A crossbody against the ropes see both guys tumble outside. Vader gains control quickly, and drops Shawn throat first across the steel guardrail. Michaels is out, and Vader wins by countout at 13:49! Jim Cornette jumps on the microphone immediately, and says he’s here for the belt – and refuses the victory. Michaels stupidly agrees to go along with it, against the wishes of the referees and Jose Lothario – and Vader immediately pummels Shawn on the floor. Cornette sneaks in a shot with the tennis racket, and Vader hits a belly to belly in the middle of the ring for 2. Vader calls for the Vaderbomb, but Michaels winds up on Vader’s shoulders and pounds away! Vader falls, and Michaels rushes to the top rope to hit a flying elbow! Shawn warms up the band, but Cornette cuts him off. Michaels grabs the tennis racket away, and starts to pound on Vader, causing a DQ at 17:47. Cornette takes a couple of shots, and Vader grabs a chair. Cornette jumps on the microphone and refuses the victory again. “You’re a gutless no good coward!!!” GORILLA MONSOON is also in the ring with all the officials, and agrees the match can continue. Shawn tries a sunset flip, but fails. A forearm shot does drop Vader, and he follows with the flying elbow off the top! Michaels quickly warms up the band, hits Sweet Chin Music…for only 2!!! Michaels can’t quite believe that, and during the argument, gets bumped into the referee, knocking him out! Vader hits a Vaderbomb, and another referee hits the ring…counting 2! They head over to the corner, and Vader decides to hit his variation of the Vaderbomb off the ropes. Cornette stops him before hitting the move, and demands a Vadersault instead! Vader agrees, but the extra time gives Michaels recovery time, and he rolls away! With Vader down, Michaels nails a moonsault out of the corner, and gets the surprise pin at 22:21!!! ***1/4

SHAWN MICHAELS (with Jose Lothario) vs. MANKIND (with Paul Bearer) (for the WWF world heavyweight title)
September 22, 1996

WWE Preview: WWE Champion Shawn Michaels defends his gold against the deranged Mankind in this In Your House main event.

I can’t even count the number of times I’ve seen this match. This once-forgotten classic has been overplayed to death over the past few years, with the release of DVD and VOD. Michaels tries a side headlock, but that wrestling stuff isn’t going to fly with Mankind, who takes him down with an elbow to the face. Mankind hits a backdrop, and takes Michaels to the floor with a cactus clothesline! Immediately, he takes to ripping apart the padded area around the ring, but Michaels sees an opening and dropkicks Mankind to the now exposed concrete. Mankind winds up underneath the padding, and Michaels jumps on him several times before heading up. He finds his way out, only to see Michaels gliding off the top rope with a plancha. They head back in, and Michaels nails a double axehandle off the top. Mid-ring slugfest is surprisingly won by Michaels, and Mankind is then leveled with a clothesline. Scoop slam is followed by the top rope elbow, and Michaels warms up the band already! Mankind sees it coming, and dives to the floor taking a harder bump than most guys would even after a move! Paul gives him the urn to calm him down a little. Back in, Michaels continues to hammer at Mankind, and takes him down with a front facelock where the punches can continue. Mankind comes back with a snapmare, and holds a chinlock in place while trying to apply the Mandible Claw! Michaels fights and fights to avoid it, and does escape. Mankind remains in control here, and sends Shawn to the floor. He pulls the Spanish announce table closer to the ring – but Michaels leapfrogs it onto Mankind! That’s followed by a snap suplex that sends Mankind leg first into the ringsteps…and a loud BANG goes off upon impact. Back in, Michaels takes Mankind down with a chop block. Mankind rolls on top of the casket he travels to and from the ring in, but Michaels follows and slams his knee into the top of it! Michaels jumps on the leg of Mankind in the ring, but Mankind throws a couple of rights to take him down. He hits a running knee strike to Shawn’s head, but Michaels retaliates with a leg drag, and slaps on a figure four!!! Mankind fights, and turns it over. The hold is released, and Michaels dropkicks Mankind in the injured knee! A kneedrop to the bad knee connects, and Michaels applies a half crab. Michaels gets in a rollup for 2. A blind charge is where things finally go wrong, because one stun gun later, and Michaels is out! On the outside of the ring, Mankind confesses to Paul how much his leg hurts, and grabs a pen. With the pen, he starts STABBING HIMSELF in the leg to regain the feeling! Good gawd! Mankind kicks Michaels in the face, and pounds away in the corner. He limps around, but decides he’s okay enough to do the running kneelift in the corner. Michaels is woozy, and his situation fails to improve when Mankind starts slamming Shawn’s face to the mat over and over and over. Michaels comes back with a backdrop suplex, but Mankind turns around and kicks Shawn in the stomach. Michaels is soon thereafter caught in a tree of woe, and Mankind drops an elbow on his face. And another! Mankind drops a leg, and then kicks Shawn out of the ring. Michaels props himself up with the ringstairs – but when Mankind charges, Shawn moves, and Mankind hits the stairs full force with his knees! If that’s not bad enough, he staggers into a drop toe hold that sends him face first to the stairs! They fight back up to the apron, where Mankind winds up diving at Michaels, and missing…taking the ringpost between the eyes! Back in the ring, Michaels slams Mankind for 2. A blind charge from Mankind quickly sees him get caught in a hangman’s noose on the ropes – but when Shawn goes to make it worse, Mankind reaches back and applies the Mandible Claw!!! Shawn’s only escape is to release the noose, and Mankind crashes to the outside. Michaels follows, but Mankind puts the Claw right back in. Michaels shoves it off, sending Mankind to the guardrail. When he stands, Michaels slams a chair over the head of Mankind, and then a couple of times into the hand he uses for the Mandible Claw!!!! They head back in, and Shawn now BITES the hand. Mankind falls, and Michaels stomps on the fingers, then tries to break them. Mankind rolls to the safety of the ring apron, but Michaels keeps stomping on the hand the whole way. Finally the ref breaks it up, long enough for Mankind to stand. Michaels charges, and takes a MANSIZED backdrop over the top and to the floor! Mankind follows with the running elbow off the apron to the floor! A swinging neckbreaker causes Shawn’s head to bounce off the concrete, and Mankind’s in full control now! As Michaels crawls back into the ring, Mankind drops a leg over Michaels, then follows with a double arm DDT…for 2! A spike piledriver gets 2! Mankind is furious that he can’t finish Michaels, and hooks the leg…getting another 2. He starts ripping hair from his head in frustration, and throws some chairs into the ring. He also opens up his casket and rolls Shawn in. Michaels fights before the door is closed though, and they head back in. Michaels hits the flying jalapeno and nips up! The scoop slam hits, of course, and Michaels heads up for a crossbody, which gets him 2! He heads up again, but this time he’s crotched by Mankind who falls into the ropes – and Mankind follows him up. Instead of superplexing him back in, Mankind BACKDROPS Shawn to the outside – and BOTH guys go flying through the Spanish announce table!!! Mankind grabs a chair while Paul Bearer distracts the referee and heads to the top rope – but Michaels jumps up and delivers Sweet Chin Music to the chair, and ultimately the face of Mankind! That gets 2!!! VADER hits the ring now, since Vince forgot to actually book a finish for this match, and it’s all thrown out at 26:24! ****3/4 With a finish, we go the full 5. Michaels disposes of Vader, but Bearer rushes in and cracks him over the head with the urn. SYCHO SID heads down to fight with Vader now. Mankind wakes up now, and applies the Mandible Claw to Michaels who’s out cold! Bearer goes to open the casket, but is a tad surprised to see THE UNDERTAKER inside, who was NOT there a minute ago!!! Mankind and Paul shit themselves, and rush to the back at breakneck speed while Michaels is declared the winner by disqualification. You want hardcore, you GOT hardcore!

Four matches have already ecliped the **** mark, and part two is on the way with another 4 great ones in the mix! Stay tuned!

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