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This Day in Pro Wrestling History (June 23)

Austin 3:16 is born, SCUM dies, and win ALL the tournaments. Congratulations, you've been drafted to another round of This Day in Pro Wrestling History. Please leave your mask at the door as you enter.


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On this day 22 years ago, ECW crowned its first ever tag team champions at the Original Sports Bar in Philadelphia. The Super Destroyers defeated Jimmy Janetty and JT Smith in the semifinal match, then Glenn Osbourne and Max Thrasher in the final to win the Titles. The Flames (Mr. Anthony and Mr. Perez) were also in the tournament.


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20 years ago today, WCW held Clash of the Champions XXVII (WWE Network Link) from the McAllister Fieldhouse in Charleston, South Carolina. The event was highlighted by a title unification match between WCW world heavyweight champion Ric Flair and WCW international champion Sting and the first in-ring confrontation between Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair since Hogan joined WCW.

  • WCW World Tag Team Champions Cactus Jack and Kevin Sullivan (with Dave Sullivan) defeated The Nasty Boys (Brian Knobbs and Jerry Sags), when Cactus pinned Knobbs after a double-arm DDT, to retain the title.
  • The Guardian Angel pinned Tex Slazenger after a sidewalk slam.
  • Lord Steven Regal (with Sir William) pinned WCW World Television Champion Larry Zbyszko with a roll up out of a Boston Crab attempt, and holding the ropes, to win the title. This began Regal's second reign.
  • Johnny B. Badd defeated WCW United States Heavyweight Champion Steve Austin by disqualification. Austin originally won the match with an inside cradle after punching Badd with a foreign object, but referee Randy Anderson came out to dispute Nick Patrick's call. While this was going on, Badd rolled up Austin, Anderson counted three, and Badd celebrated with the title belt. The official ruling was that Badd won by reverse decision, with Austin retaining the title.
  • WCW World Heavyweight Champion Ric Flair pinned WCW International World Heavyweight Champion Sting with a roll-up to unify the titles. After the match, Sensuous Sherri, who was thought to be the new manager of Sting before the match, turned on him, and she and Flair attacked Sting. Hulk Hogan made the save and cleared the ring. Hogan said that would officially sign his WCW contract on the coming episode of WCW Saturday Night, and challenged Flair to a title match. (Trivia bonus: this match was actually the basis for the cover art for WWE's DVD release of The Best of WCW Clash of the Champions.)



18 years ago was the WWF's tenth King of the Ring (WWE Network link), but only the fourth on PPV from the Mecca Arena in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 8,762 were in attendance with the PPV getting a 0.65 buyrate. The event is highlighted by the birth of Austin 3:16 and the final WWF PPV appearance of the Ultimate Warrior until Wrestlemania XXX this past April.

  • In a dark match, Hunter Hearst Helmsley defeated Aldo Montoya.
  • In a Free-for-All match, The Bodydonnas (Skip and Zip (with Kloudy)) defeated The New Rockers (Leif Cassidy and Marty Jannetty), when Skip pinned Cassidy with a roll-up after Kloudy kissed Cassidy.
  • In a King of the Ring tournament semifinal match, Steve Austin pinned Marc Mero (with Sable) after the Stone Cold Stunner. During the match, a kick from Mero busted open Austin's lip. After the match, Austin went to a local hospital and received 16 stitches to close the wound.
  • In the other King of the Ring tournament semifinal, Jake Roberts defeated Vader (with Jim Cornette) by disqualification, when Vader grabbed the referee and pulled him into Roberts as Roberts hit the DDT. Vader attacked Roberts after the match, hitting him with several Vader Bombs.
  • WWF Tag Team Champions The Smoking Gunns (Billy and Bart (with Sunny)) defeated The Godwinns (Henry and Phineas (with Hillbilly Jim)), when Billy pinned Phineas after Bart hit Phineas with one of his boots, to retain the title.
  • The Ultimate Warrior pinned Jerry Lawler after a flying tackle, after no-selling Lawler's piledriver.
  • Mankind defeated The Undertaker (with Paul Bearer) by referee stoppage with the Mandible Claw, after Bearer accidentally hit Taker with the urn.
  • Ahmed Johnson pinned WWF Intercontinental Champion Goldust (with Marlena) with the Pearl River Plunge to win the title, ending Goldust's second reign.
  • Steve Austin pinned Jake Roberts after the Stone Cold Stunner to win the King of the Ring tournament. As Roberts was helped backstage, Austin was interviewed by Dok Hendrix. What happened next was magic.(transcript courtesy of

[Dok Hendrix:] The fourth prestigious King Of The Ring, Stone Cold Steve Austin, an incredible victory!

[Austin:] The first thing I want to be done, is to get that piece of crap out of my ring. Don't just get him out of the ring, get him out of the WWF because I've proved son, without a shadow of a doubt, you ain't got what it takes anymore! You sit there and you thump your Bible, and you say your prayers, and it didn't get you anywhere. Talk about your psalms, talk about John 3:16...

Austin 3:16 says I just whipped your ass!

*crowd cheer*

[Hendrix:] Come on, that's not necessary

[Austin:] All he's gotta do is go buy him a cheap bottle of Thunderbird and try to dig back some of that courage he had in his prime.

As the King Of The Ring, I'm serving notice to every one of the WWF superstars. I don't give a damn what they are, they're all on the list, and that's Stone Cold's list, and I'm fixing to start running through all of 'em.

And as far as this championship match is considered son, I don't give a damn if it's Davey Boy Smith or Shawn Michaels, Steve Austin's time is come, and when I get that shot you're looking at the next WWF Champion.

And that's the bottom line, because Stone Cold said so.

  • WWF Champion Shawn Michaels (with José Lothario) pinned The British Bulldog (with Jim Cornette and Diana Smith) after Sweet Chin Music to retain the title. Mr. Perfect was the referee outside the ring.


12 years ago was the thirteenth King of  the Ring event (WWE Network link), but the tenth and last on PPV. About 14,000 were in attendance at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio, with 320,000 homes worldwide purchasing the event on PPV.

  • In a match airing on Sunday Night Heat, The Hardy Boyz (Jeff and Matt) defeated Raven and Steven Richards, when Jeff pinned Richards after the Swanton.
  • In a King of the Ring tournament semifinal match, WWE Intercontinental Champion Rob Van Dam pinned Chris Jericho after the Five-Star Frog Splash.
  • In the other King of the Ring tournament semifinal, Brock Lesnar (with Paul Heyman) pinned Test after the F5.
  • Jamie Noble (with Nidia) pinned WWE Cruiserweight Champion The Hurricane after a powerbomb to win the title, ending Hurricane's second reign.
  • Ric Flair pinned Eddie Guerrero after Bubba Ray Dudley interfered and hit Guerrero with a Bubba Bomb. Chris Benoit had also interfered earlier in the match on Eddie's behalf.
  • Molly Holly pinned WWE Women's Champion Trish Stratus after a belly-to-belly suplex and a handful of tights to win the title, to end Trish's second reign.
  • Kurt Angle defeated Hulk Hogan by submission with the ankle lock.
  • Brock Lesnar (with Paul Heyman) pinned WWE Intercontinental Champion Rob Van Dam after an F5 to win the King of the Ring tournament, and earn a WWE Undisputed Title match at SummerSlam on August 25.
  • WWE Undisputed Champion The Undertaker pinned Triple H with a roll-up and holding the tights to retain the title.


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11 years ago, the mask comes off on Monday Night RAW from Madison Square Garden in New York City. Following a loss in a mask vs. title match to Triple H, Kane was forced to unmask.


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6 years ago, WWE held its annual Brand Draft Lottery (link is to part 1, 8 parts total) from the AT&T Center in San Antonio, TX.

  • Triple H defeated Mark Henry
  • Finlay & Hornswoggle defeated Carlito & Santino Marella
  • Cody Rhodes & Hardcore Holly defeated Bam Neely & Chavo Guerrero
  • John Morrison & The Miz defeated The Hardys (Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy)
  • Melina & Mickie James vs. Natalya & Victoria ended in a double DQ
  • John Cena defeated Edge by Count Out
  • Montel Vontavious Porter defeated Tommy Dreamer (w/ Colin Delaney)
  • John Bradshaw Layfield defeated Kofi Kingston
  • Team SmackDown (Edge, Jeff Hardy, Montel Vontavious Porter, The Big Show & The Great Khali) defeated Team ECW (Chavo Guerrero, John Morrison, Matt Hardy, Shelton Benjamin & The Miz) and Team Raw (Batista, CM Punk, John Cena, Kane & Triple H) in a 15 Man Tag Team Three Way Battle Royal
  • In the television part of the draft, Rey Mysterio, CM Punk, Michael Cole, Batista, and Kane were drafted to RAW. Jeff Hardy, Jim Ross, Umaga, Mr. Kennedy, and Triple H were drafted to Smackdown. Matt Hardy was drafted to ECW. In a side note, Ross was not made aware that he would be drafted to Smackdown prior to the show and considered quitting WWE altogether.


2 years ago today was CZW's eleventh annual Tournament of Death (highlight video; not suitable for all ages) from the Markland Acre Farms in Townsend, Delaware (aka the Ultraviolent Underground). CZW champion Masada defeated Junior Heavyweight Champion Drake Younger in the final match to win the tournament in a no-ropes, barbed wire match with two sides of the ring exposed with barbed wire nets. Masada defeated Big Japan champion Abdullah Kobayashi in a Big Japan deathmatch and Scott Summers in a Panes of Glass match in earlier rounds.


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1 year ago today at the ROH TV tapings in Baltimore, BJ Whitmer, Jay Lethal, Kevin Steen, and Michael Elgin defeated SCUM (Cliff Compton, Jimmy Jacobs, Rhett Titus, and Rhino) in Steel Cage Warfare (pay link). As a result of the loss, SCUM had to disband.

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