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This Day in Wrestling History (June 24): Edge Is King

22 years ago today, ECW presented Hostile City Showdown from the ECW Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

  • Tommy Dreamer defeated Hack Myers.
  • The Tazmaniac defeated Pitbull #1 in a dog collar match.
  • The Bruise Brothers (Don Harris & Ron Harris) defeated Mr. Hughes & Shane Douglas.
  • Tommy Cairo defeated The Sandman by disqualification in a Singapore cane on a pole match.
  • The Public Enemy (Johnny Grunge & Rocco Rock) and Dory Funk Jr. & Terry Funk fought to a no contest.
  • Mikey Whipwreck defeated Rockin' Rebel by disqualification to retain the ECW World Television Championship.
  • Sabu defeated Cactus Jack.

21 years ago today in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the second WWE Hall of Fame class is inducted. The 1995 class included The Fabulous Moolah, The Grand Wizard, Ernie Ladd, Pedro Morales, Ivan Putski, Antonio Rocca, and George "The Animal" Steele.

20 years ago today on Nitro (WWE Network link) from Charlotte, North Carolina, Harlem Heat defeated Lex Luger & Sting and The Steiner Brothers in a three-team match to win the WCW World Tag Team Championship.

15 years ago today, WWF presented King of the Ring (WWE Network link) from the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, New Jersey. 17,777 were in attendance, with 445,000 homes watching on PPV. That's down from 475,000 homes for the 2000 edition.

The show was noted for two things: the beginning of the WCW Invasion with Booker T making his debut in the main event (and injuring Stone Cold Steve Austin) and Diamond Dallas Page making his PPV debut confronting The Undertaker after revealing a few days earlier he stalked his wife Sara.

  • In a Sunday Night Heat preshow match, Matt Hardy defeated Justin Credible to retain the WWF European Championship.

King of the Ring Semifinals:

  • Kurt Angle defeated Christian.
  • Edge defeated Rhyno.

King of the Ring Final:

  • Edge defeated Kurt Angle to win the King of the Ring tournament.

Non-tournament matches in order of occurrence:

  • The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D-Von) defeated Kane & Spike Dudley to retain the WWF Tag Team Championship.
  • Jeff Hardy defeated X-Pac to retain the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship.
  • Kurt Angle defeated Shane McMahon in a street fight.
  • Stone Cold Steve Austin defeated Chris Jericho & Chris Benoit in a triple threat match to retain the WWF Championship.
14 years ago today, Bret Hart suffers a stroke when a blood clot reaches his brain around the same time he fell off a bicycle. At the time, Hart was not wearing a helmet. He would lose feeling in the left side of his body. He would have to relearn how to walk and talk, and amazingly, he even returns to the ring, albeit in a limited capacity in 2010.

12 years ago today in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, "American Dragon" Bryan Danielson defeated Austin Aries, Colt Cabana, Homicide, Mark Briscoe, and Samoa Joe in a six-man elimination match to win the ROH Survival of the Fittest tournament. Other participants were Alex Shelley, Trent Acid, Jay Briscoe, Jack Evans, and Matt Stryker.

10 years ago today in San Francisco, California, Cheerleader Melissa defeated Jazz in a falls count anywhere match to win the All Pro Wrestling Chickfight V tournament. Other participants were Tanny Mouse, Yoshiko Tamura, Allison Danger, MsChif, Sumie Sakai, and Simply Luscious.

9 years ago today, WWE presented Vengeance: Night of Champions (WWE Network link) from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. About 15,000 were in attendance, with 247,000 homes watching on PPV.

The event is noted for Chris Benoit no-showing the event for "personal reasons". The personal reasons would become clear by the next morning: over the weekend, Benoit killed his wife Nancy, his son Daniel, then himself. Their bodies were discovered the next day.

As for the show itself, the show's hook was that all the WWE's championships were defended, or in the case of the ECW Championship, a new champion would be crowned.

  • In a preshow dark match, Super Crazy defeated Carlito.
  • Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch defeated The Hardy Boyz (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy) to retain the World Tag Team Championship.
  • Chavo Guerrero defeated Jimmy Wang Yang to retain the WWE Cruiserweight Championship.
  • Johnny Nitro defeated CM Punk to win the vacant ECW Championship. The championship was vacated when Bobby Lashley was drafted to RAW earlier in the month.
  • Santino Marella defeated Umaga by disqualification to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship.
  • Montel Vontavious Porter defeated Ric Flair to retain the WWE United States Championship.
  • Deuce 'n Domino defeated Sgt. Slaughter and Jimmy Snuka to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship.
  • Edge defeated Batista by countout to retain the World Heavyweight Championship. Batista had originally won the match by disqualification, but Smackdown GM Teddy Long restarted the match. With the loss, Batista could not challenge for the title again as long as Edge was champion.
  • Candice Michelle defeated Melina to win the WWE Womens Championship. The win made Candice the first Diva Search contestant to win a championship.
  • John Cena defeated Mick Foley, Bobby Lashley, Randy Orton, and King Booker in a "Champion's Challenge" to retain the WWE Championship.

8 years ago today at a TNA Impact taping in Orlando, Florida, Taylor Wilde defeated Awesome Kong to win $25,000 and the TNA Knockouts Championship

4 years ago today, Ring of Honor presented Best in the World 2012: Hostage Crisis from the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City.

  • The Briscoes defeated The Guardians of Truth.
  • Homicide defeated Eddie Edwards.
  • Adam Cole defeated Kyle O'Reilly in a hybrid fighting rules match.
  • Michael Elgin defeated Finlay.
  • Mike Mondo defeated Mike Bennett.
  • Roderick Strong defeated Tomasso Ciampa and Jay Lethal in a three-way dance to retain the ROH World Television Championship.
  • The All Night Express defeated Wrestling's Greatest Tag Team to win the ROH World Tag Team Championship.
  • Kevin Steen defeated Davey Richards in a no disqualification match to retain the ROH World Championship.

3 years ago today, Rob Van Dam opens up publicly for the first time about why he left TNA to return to WWE. His brief response on Twitter:

"Contract expired. So did professionalism, courtesy and respect."

1 year ago today, Jeff Jarrett returns to the promotion he founded, TNA Wrestling.

During the live Impact, he promotes his new venture, Global Force Wrestling (which still has no TV deal as of this writing), and said he wanted to leave TNA on his own terms (despite pretty much doing just that four years prior). He also said he would compete in the match he created, the King of the Mountain match.

Also returning to TNA during the taping were Matt Morgan (last seen with the company in 2013), Shawn Hernandez (who was released in May 2014, though TNA never notified him of said release), and Vader, who made three appearances for TNA back in 2003.

It's a happy 38th birthday today for Adam Pearce.

Pearce is among the most successful independent wrestlers of the 21st century, winning the NWA British Commonwealth Heavyweight Championship, the Pro Wrestling Guerrilla World Championship, and the NWA World Heavyweight Championship five times (only Jeff Jarrett, Harley Race, and Ric Flair have more).

Pearce is actually retired from in-ring competition, calling it a career in December 2014 after facing longtime rival Colt Cabana. In February 2015, Pearce was inducted into the NWA Hall of Fame. Today, Pearce serves a trainer for WWE's NXT developmental program. He served as a producer for the highly-acclaimed NXT Takeover: R Evolution.

And a happy 58th birthday to Thomas "Tiny" Lister, Jr.

The actor, best known for his roles as neighborhood bully Deebo in the Friday trilogy and President Lindberg in The Fifth Element, actually dabbled a bit in wrestling in the late 1980s and mid-1990s.

He appears as Zeus in the 1989 movie No Holds Barred starring Hulk Hogan, a character that would carry over to WWE programming for a brief period of time. He also had a briefer run in WCW in 1996 as Z-Gangsta as part of The Alliance to End Hulkamania.

In November 2012, Lister pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mortgage that resulted in nearly $4 million in losses. He faces up to five years in federal prison.

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