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This Day in Wrestling History (May 29)

15 years ago today on Nitro from Salt Lake City, Utah, Kevin Nash forfeited the WCW World Heavyweight Championship and gave it to Ric Flair. He stated that he shouldn't have been stripped a week prior and he's the rightful champion. Flair then loses the championship later that night to Jeff Jarrett for the second Monday in a row. At less than two hours, it's the shortest world title reign of Flair's career.

If you're scoring at home, that's a total of eleven WCW world title changes from the reboot on April 10 to this date... or the exact number of world title changes the WWF had from December 1, 1998 to Vince McMahon's title vacancy on September 20, 1999, or the last nine months of Vince Russo's tenure. (See a pattern?) That also equals the number of times the WWE Championship changed hands in the last two and a half years (vacancies included).

15 years ago today on RAW is WAR from Vancouver, British Columbia, Too Cool (Grandmaster Sexay & Scotty 2 Hotty) defeated Edge & Christian to win the WWF Tag Team Championship. The show also featured a live performance by Kid Rock. Oh, this awesome return happened too.

7 years ago today, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and his wife Dany Garcia-Johnson announce in a joint statement they have divorced. The couple, who had been married for ten years, had one daughter together, Simone. The divorce was actually finalized back on May 19. Per terms of the divorce settlement, Johnson has to pay about $22,500 a month in child support and both make monthly contributions to a trust fund. Also, per the agreement, both Dwayne and Dani waived their rights to any alimony. The couple are very much friends to this day, with Dani managing Dwayne's business affairs.

7 years ago today in Atlanta, Georgia, a federal grand jury hands down a 175-count indictment against Dr. Phil Astin, the personal physician of Chris Benoit for allegedly illegally writing thousands of prescriptions to seventeen patients over a five-year period. The indictment comes ten months after he's indicted on seven counts of over-prescribing painkillers and other drugs in July 2007, just weeks after Benoit's suicide. Facing over 300 years in prison and fines of up to $175 million, Astin pled guilty to all charges in January 2009. In May of that year, he was sentenced to ten years in prison.

6 years ago today at an ROH on HDNet taping in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Ric Flair announces he is leaving the company. Flair claimed it was due to his working relationship with WWE, but it more likely stemmed from the company deciding not to sign Ric's son Reid after he was arrested on drug charges. Then-ROH owner Cary Silkin would later sue for money not refunded for Flair's appearances.

6 years ago today, Ken Anderson, aka Mr. Kennedy, was released by WWE less than a week after he returned to television. His release came after complaints from Randy Orton and John Cena about Anderson's recklessness in the ring. After a brief run on the independent circuit, Anderson joined TNA in January 2010, where he remains to this day.

3 years ago today, Patrick Martin, best known to wrestling fans as Alex Shelley, leaves TNA after an eight-year run with the company, mostly as one half of the Motor City Machine Guns with Chris Sabin. Shelley returned to New Japan Pro Wrestling later that year. Shelley is one half of the Time Splitters with KUSHIDA.

2 years ago today, WWE announces they were coproducing with Warner Brothers a Flintstones animated feature. The movie, The Flintstones and WWE: Stone Age Smackdown, is released in March 2015 just before Wrestlemania 31.

1 year ago today, WWE presented NXT Takeover from Full Sail University in Orlando, Florida.

  • In a preshow dark match, Bayley defeated Sasha Banks.
  • Adam Rose defeated Camacho.
  • The Ascension (Konnor and Viktor) defeated Elocal and Kalisto to retain the NXT Tag Team Championship.
  • Tyler Breeze defeated Sami Zayn to become the #1 contender for the NXT Championship.
  • Charlotte defeated Natalya in a tournament final to win the vacant NXT Womens Championship. The championship was vacated a month earlier by then-NXT general manager John Bradshaw Layfield after he determined Paige, who was also WWE Divas Champion, could not handle the demanding schedule of defending both championships at once. A tournament was then commissioned to crown a new champion.
  • Adrian Neville defeated Tyson Kidd to retain the NXT Championship.

BONUS! In one of the funnier segments in Smackdown history, the May 29, 2003 episode featured Mr. McMahon continuing his fruitless effort to prove that Hulk Hogan and Mr. America were one and the same. Via a lie detector test.

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