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This Day in Wrestling History (April 3)

33 years ago today in Tokyo, Japan, Riki Choshu defeated Tatsumi Fujinami to win the WWF International Heavyweight Championship.

22 years ago today, Don Muraco defeated The Sandman to win the ECW Heavyweight Championship.

20 years ago today at a Monday Night RAW taping in Poughkeepsie, New York, Alundra Blayze defeated Bull Nakano to win the WWF Womens Championship. Post-match, a woman jumped the rail and broke Alundra's nose. That woman: Rhonda Singh, making her WWF debut as Bertha Faye.

16 years ago today, ECW presented Cyberslam '99 from the ECW Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

  • Jerry Lynn defeated Yoshihiro Tajiri.
  • Chris Chetti & Super Nova defeated Rod Price & Skull von Krush.
  • Super Crazy defeated Mosco de la Merced.
  • Taka Michinoku defeated Papi Chulo .
  • Rob Van Dam defeated Too Cold Scorpio to retain the ECW World Television Championship.
  • Taz defeated Chris Candido to retain the ECW World Heavyweight Championship.
  • Shane Douglas defeated Justin Credible.
  • Mr. Mustafa & The Dudley Boyz (Buh Buh Ray Dudley & D-Von Dudley) defeated Axl Rotten, Balls Mahoney & New Jack in an Ultimate Jeopardy steel cage match.

15 years ago today on RAW is WAR from Los Angeles, California, Eddie Guerrero defeated Chris Jericho to win the WWF European Championship. Near the end of the match, Chyna turned on Jericho. On the same show, Crash Holly defeated Hardcore Holly to win the WWF Hardcore Championship.  Of note, the show practically ran unopposed as Nitro that week ran a clip show. That would lead to a full-on reboot of storylines for WCW the following Monday.

14 years ago today at a Smackdown taping in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Triple H defeated Chris Jericho to win the WWF Intercontinental Championship.

11 years ago today in Wilmington, Delaware, Christopher Daniels defeated Austin Aries to win the East Coast Wrestling Association's annual Super 8 tournament. The win made Daniels the first two-time tournament winner. In the semifinal round, Daniels defeated John Walters to win the ECWA Heavyweight Championship. Other participants in the tournament were Shawn Davari, Ricky Reyes, Rocky Romero, John Walters, and Nicho el Milionario (aka Psicosis from his ECW and WCW days).

10 years ago today, WWE presented Wrestlemania 21: Wrestlemania Goes Hollywood (WWE Network link) from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. 20,193 were in attendance, with 980,000 homes watching on PPV. That's up from 885,000 for Wrestlemania XX. Tickets were sold out literally the same minute they went on sale, making it the fastest sellout not just in the history of Staples Center, but in WWE history.

Star ratings are from Wrestling Observer Newsletter's Dave Meltzer as recorded in the Internet Wrestling Database. All star ratings are out of five.

  • In a dark match, Booker T won a 30-man Interpromotional Battle Royal, last eliminating Chris Masters. Other participants were Paul London, Heidenreich, Spike Dudley, Nunzio, Funaki, Doug Basham, Danny Basham, Orlando Jordan, Mark Jindrak, Luther Reigns, Scotty 2 Hotty, Hardcore Holly, Charlie Haas, Billy Kidman, Akio, Simon Dean, William Regal, Tajiri, Rob Conway, Sylvain Grenier, Snitsky, The Hurricane, Rosey, Viscera, Rhyno, Val Venis, Tyson Tomko, and Maven.
  • Rey Mysterio defeated Eddie Guerrero. (3.25/5)
  • Edge defeated Chris Jericho, Shelton Benjamin, Christian, Chris Benoit and Kane in a Money In The Bank ladder match. The win granted him a world championship match at any time within the next year. (4.5)
  • The Undertaker defeated Randy Orton. (3.5)
  • Trish Stratus defeated Christy Hemme to retain the WWE Women's Championship. (0)
  • Kurt Angle defeated Shawn Michaels by submission. (4.75)
  • Akebono defeated the Big Show in just 62 seconds in a Sumo match. (0)
  • John Cena defeated John Bradshaw Layfield to win the WWE Championship. (1.25)
  • Batista defeated Triple H to win the World Heavyweight Championship. (2.75)

9 years ago today on RAW from Chicago, Illinois, The Spirit Squad (Kenny & Mikey) defeated The Big Show and Kane to win the World Tag Team Championship.

4 years ago today, WWE presented Wrestlemania XXVII (WWE Network link) from the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia. 71,617 were in attendance, with 1,059,000 homes watching on PPV. That's up from 885,000 for Wrestlemania XXVI.  With a $6.6 million gate, it's the second highest grossing event in company history. It's the final event promoted under the name World Wrestling Entertainment, as the company would shorten it to WWE officially less than a week later.

Star ratings are from Wrestling Observer Newsletter's Dave Meltzer as recorded in the Internet Wrestling Database. All star ratings are out of five.

  • In a preshow dark match, Sheamus and Daniel Bryan fought to a no contest in a lumberjack match for the WWE United States Championship when all the lumberjacks rushed the ring.
  • In a preshow dark match, The Great Khali won a 23-man battle royal. Other participants were Chavo Guerrero, Chris Masters, Curt Hawkins, Daniel Bryan, David Hart Smith, Drew McIntyre, Evan Bourne, Jey Uso, Jimmy Uso, Johnny Curtis, JTG, Mark Henry, Primo, R-Truth, Sheamus, Ted DiBiase, The Great Khali, Trent Barreta, Tyler Reks, William Regal, Yoshi Tatsu, and Zack Ryder.
  • Edge defeated Alberto Del Rio to retain the World Heavyweight Championship. It turned out to be Edge's final match, as post-match diagnoses revealed he had spinal stenosis and would be forced to retire. (3.5/5)
  • Cody Rhodes defeated Rey Mysterio. (2.5)
  • Santino Marella, Kofi Kingston, Big Show and Kane defeated The Corre (Wade Barrett, Justin Gabriel, Heath Slater and Ezekiel Jackson) in just 95 seconds.(0.5)
  • Randy Orton defeated CM Punk. (3)
  • Michael Cole defeated Jerry Lawler by disqualification. Stone Cold Steve Austin was the special referee. Lawler had initially defeated Cole by submission, but the Anonymous RAW general manager reversed the decision. (1)
  • The Undertaker defeated Triple H in a No Holds Barred match. (4.5)
  • Trish Stratus, John Morrison & Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi defeated Dolph Ziggler & Team Lay-Cool (Michelle McCool & Layla). (1)
  • The Miz defeated John Cena to retain the WWE Championship. The two fought to a double countout, but the match was restarted by The Rock. (1.25)

3 years ago today, WWE announces that Randy Orton would not be in the third installment of The Marine film series. The movie, The Marine: Homefront, was set to film in a couple of months in Vancouver, but after complaints from fellow Marines (some from his former unit) about Orton's military history (he was dishonorably discharged after going AWOL) Orton was dropped from the movie. The Miz  replaced Orton in the movie. From a WWE representative talking to about the decision:

"WWE demonstrated poor judgment in signing Randy Orton for the 3rd installment of the film. Despite Randy's popularity, the fact that he was dishonorably discharged from the USMC made it inappropriate for him to be cast in this film."

It's a happy 46th birthday for Lance Evers, aka Wrestling's Most Serious Man, Lance Storm. Storm is a seven-time tag team champion (three in ECW, four in WWE), and once held three of the four singles championships at the same time (Cruiserweight, Hardcore, and United States). Storm was voted Wrestling Observer Newsletter's Most Underrated Wrestler of 2001. Storm left WWE in 2005 to open his own wrestling school in Calgary. Alberta, Canada, but he has been in and out of retirement since, last wrestling in 2013. He is an occasional guest on the Bryan and Vinny Show and writes a monthly column for Fighting Spirit magazine.

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