67 years ago today, NWA World Junior Heavyweight Champion Leroy McGuirk was involved in a car accident in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Bob Clay, a trainee of McGuirk, was driving to a restaurant with McGuirk the passenger. Trying to keep from hitting another vehicle, Clay slammed on the breaks, causing McGuirk to hit the windshield, shattering his glasses. One of the shards gets in McGuirk's good eye (McGuirk previously lost sight in one eye when he was young), causing him to lose sight.
McGuirk's wrestling career effectively ends with that accident, and the title soon vacated. Another McGuirk trainee, Danny Hodge, would go on to great success, holding the NWA Junior Heavyweight Championship eight times from 1960 to 1976.
54 years ago today in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Lou Thesz defeated Buddy Rogers 2-1 in a best of three falls match to retain the NWA World Heavyweight Championship.
Two weeks earlier, the two fought in Toronto, with Thesz winning a one fall match. The disputed results led directly to the creation of the World Wide Wrestling Federation (WWWF), known today as World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).
30 years ago today in Fort Worth, Texas, Chris Adams and Terry Taylor defeat Rick Steiner & Sting to win the UWF World Tag Team Championship.
The titles were vacated when Jim Duggan lost a loser-leaves-town match to the One Man Gang back on January 23. Duggan then left for the WWF and debuted just in time for Wrestlemania III.
28 years ago today in St. Paul, Minnesota, Larry Zbyszko last eliminated Tom Zenk in a battle royal to win the AWA World Heavyweight Championship.
The title was vacated when AWA's relationship with Memphis-based Continental Wrestling Association ended their working relationship. Jerry Lawler at the time was the AWA world champion and he was stripped of the title.
Zbyzsko would hold the championship for all but about two months in the final two years of AWA's existence.
25 years ago today in Denver, Colorado, Money Inc. (Ted DiBiase & Irwin R. Schyster) defeated The Legion of Doom (Hawk & Animal) to win the WWF Tag Team Championship.
17 years ago today on Nitro from Tulsa, Oklahoma (WWE Network link), Bam Bam Bigelow defeated Brian Knobbs to win the WCW Hardcore Championship.
The same episode featured this infamous shoot promo from Scott Steiner where he goes in on Ric Flair and WCW as a whole. In part:
"When you walked down that aisle last week, I know I wasn't alone, because the people at home, all they did was grab their remote, change the channel to the WWF and watch Stone Cold (Steve Austin), a person you and your old friends got fired from here because you're a jealous, old bastard. So Ric Flair, remember this, in this wrestling business, there's never been a bigger ass-kissing, butt-******* bastard in this business. But also in life, you're the biggest ass kissing, back-stabbing, butt-******* bastard and you belong where you're at, in WCW, because WCW sucks!"
Most any wrestling company probably would have harshly reprimanded Steiner, even fired him outright. Not WCW. Steiner was suspended two weeks—with pay.
Not surprisingly, RAW is WAR more than doubles Nitro in the ratings that night, winning 6.5 to 2.7. It's one of the largest margins of victory by either side in the history of the Monday Night Wars.
13 years ago today in Clarksville, Indiana, Chris Hero defeated CM Punk 2-1 in a best of three falls match to win the IWA Mid-South Heavyweight Championship.
The match had a 90-minute time limit, and it still wasn't enough to decide it. Hero and Punk had a double pin with less than a minute to go in the match, then Hero scored the deciding fall in sudden death. Total match time: 92 minutes, 15 seconds.
9 years ago today, WWE issues a press release stating that Smackdown would leave the CW Network at the end of the season after both sides decided to end their working relationship.
The show had been on broadcast television since 1999, first on UPN, then on the CW in 2006. The show would land on SyFy in October 2008 and remained there for over seven years before it was moved again last year to USA Network.
The move from the CW to Syfy marked the last time a wrestling series had a slot on a network primetime schedule.
9 years ago today, WWE severs ties with Louisville-based Ohio Valley Wrestling effective immediately.
Founded in 1997 by former WWF referee Danny Davis, the promotion became the WWF's developmental territory in 2000. The move was done to consolidate WWE's developmental talent into one central location, which would be Florida Championship Wrestling. The move was expected for some time as the number of contracted talent working for OVW had been greatly reduced over the previous year.
As for OVW, the promotion eventually became the developmental territory for TNA, but they would split after just two years.
8 years ago today, Chris Jericho got into a verbal altercation with a pair of fans in Victoria, British Columbia after a WWE house show. According to witness accounts, the altercation became physical after a few minutes. The official statement from WWE:
"After leaving a live event in Victoria, British Columbia on Saturday evening, Chris Jericho's car was attacked by a mob when he was stopped at a stop sign. Unable to proceed, Chris Jericho exited his car to ask the crowd to clear a path so he could continue through the intersection. A man and a woman physically and verbally assaulted Mr. Jericho. Arena and WWE security arrived to establish enough order to allow Mr. Jericho to re-enter his vehicle and depart. The local police arrived minutes later. Mr. Jericho was unharmed in the incident. The WWE is working with local authorities who are investigating the incident to identify the man and woman who fled the scene."
The video of the incident goes viral. Police do not file charges against anyone involved in the incident since they could not determine who provoked whom.
7 years ago today, former WCW world champion Ron Simmons wrestles his retirement match for Cedartown, Georgia-based Purks International Championship Wrestling.
5 years ago today, Chris Spradlin signs with WWE and reports to WWE developmental in Orlando. Spradlin, best known on the independent circuit as Chris Hero, spends about a year and a half there as Kassius Ohno before being released.
After spending the last three years on the independent circuit, Spradlin returned to WWE last month once again as Kassius Ohno. Spradlin finished his independent commitments last month at Evolve 77 with a defeat to Zack Sabre, Jr.
The best of cSs on this day:
2016: WWE recently blocked Daniel Bryan from giving notice (Wrestling Observer Newsletter's Dave Meltzer says Daniel Bryan's frozen contract prevents him from leaving WWE despite having multiple doctors clearing him to wrestle)
2015: Vince Russo criticises Triple H for bullying Chyna on the WWE Network (Russo claims Triple H bullied Chyna while promoting his own exclusive interview with her)
2014: Hi, My Name is: Bobby Heenan (Cagesiders weigh in on the legendary manager)
2013: WrestleMania 29: What will Undertaker's possible absence mean for CM Punk? (Wrestling Observer Newsletter says Undertaker has not committed to being in Wrestlemania 29)
2012: The Miz has backstage heat for failing to protect R-Truth on WWE Raw (Figure Four Weekly says The Miz is in hot water with WWE officials for not catching R-Truth on a somersault plancha)
2011: Cageside Quote: Chael Sonnen Comments on Anderson Silva's Win Over Vitor Belfort at UFC 126 (Chael Sonnen says he's found a weakness in Anderson Silva during his fight with Vitor Belfort at UFC 126)
2010: Wrestling's biggest Super Bowl related moment: Halftime Heat (David Bixenspan looks back at the empty arena match that provided the halftime entertainment for wrestling fans in 1999; video's no longer on the page, but you can see the match here)