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This Day in Wrestling History (June 5): Eric Bischoff Wins The WCW Hardcore Title


37 years ago today in Tokyo, Japan, Antonio Inoki defeated Stan Hansen via disqualification in the final to win the MSG League for a third straight year.

In the history of the annual round robin tournament, known today as the G1 Climax, this is the only time the final match was won via disqualification.

17 years ago today on Nitro from Atlanta, Georgia (WWE Network link), Eric Bischoff defeated Terry Funk to win the WCW Hardcore Championship. It would be the only championship win in Bischoff's career.

It also didn't last long; he forfeited it the next night at the Thunder taping to Big Vito and Johnny "The Bull" Stamboli (they helped Bischoff win the title, and this was their reward).

Also on the undercard, Goldberg made his in-ring return to WCW with a quick victory over Tank Abbott. It was Goldberg’s first match since nearly losing his arm when he punched a window of a limousine in late December.

16 years ago today at a Smackdown taping in Grand Forks, North Dakota (WWE Network link), Jeff Hardy defeated Jerry Lynn to win the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship.

13 years ago today in Osaka, Japan, The World Class Tag Team (Gedo & Jado) defeated American Dragon & Curry Man (Bryan Danielson & Christopher Daniels) to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship.

The duo became the first team to hold the championship three times (they would add a fourth in 2006).

11 years ago today, Terry Taylor was named head of talent relations for TNA.

Taylor had previously worked as a producer, road agent, and interviewer for the company. He was fired from TNA in May 2011.

11 years ago today, WWE announces they have acquired the World Class Championship Wrestling and Stampede Wrestling libraries. This makes the world's largest wrestling video library even larger, giving WWE an estimated 100,000 total hours of content.

However, it turned out WWE doesn't quite own all of the Stampede video library; Bret Hart owns the video rights to his matches in Stampede, leading WWE to pull all Stampede Wrestling video from WWE Network just days after it was uploaded to the streaming service in December 2015.

10 years ago today, Scott Steiner undergoes successful trachea surgery in Puerto Rico after he suffered an injury while wrestling two days earlier.

In an interview on TNA Today a month later, Steiner revealed some details of the night of the injury and the days that followed:

  • He was coughing up blood post match and his lungs filled up with blood. Doctors told him he had about five hours to live.
  • After surgery which involved getting a tube installed to drain the blood, Steiner was in a coma for two days, followed by being on a respirator for several more days.
  • He would spend a total of two weeks in a Puerto Rican hospital, an experience Steiner called "brutal... like the 1950s." He also had to be wheeled in 100-degree heat to get a CAT scan.
  • He wanted to fly back home, but doctors told him not to for fear his lung could collapse and he could die. He had to return to the States via cruise ship. The trip took a week.

Needless to say, the surgery causes Steiner to miss his scheduled Slammiversary match between The Steiner Brothers and Team 3D.

10 years ago today, Digital Music Group, a company specializing in distributing independently owned music, announces via press release that they have acquired 100 hours of wrestling footage to be released under the name "Wrestling Titans".

The footage, including wrestling from the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, features matches from (among others) Gorgeous George, Classy Freddie Blassie, Andre the Giant, Lex Luger, Junkyard Dog, and Ric Flair. To date, none of the footage acquired from DMG has ever been released.

9 years ago today, WWE announces they have re-signed Accie Connor, aka D-Lo Brown.

Brown, a four-time WWE European Champion and Intercontinental Champion in the late 1990s and early 2000s, wrestles primarily in dark matches during his brief comeback. He made just one notable TV appearance in his return, defeating Santino Marella on RAW in his return bout in July. He's released due to budget cuts in January 2009.

It’s a happy 33rd birthday to Alexandra Ryan, best known as Madison Eagles.

Beginning her professional wrestling career at just age 17 in her native Australia, she would win the International Wrestling Association's Womens Championship four times. In 2003, she left for the United States and trained alongside wrestlers such as Elijah Burke, Jillian Hall, Christopher Daniels, and Claudio Castignoli (known as Cesaro today in WWE).

She began wrestling for Shimmer Women Athletes in October 2008. In April 2010, she defeated MsChif to win the Shimmer Championship and would hold it for the next 18 months (despite the length, it's only the third longest in the history of the championship, behind Cheerleader Melissa's 19-month reign spanning 2013-14 and MsChif's two year run from April 2008-April 2010).

Despite suffering a career-threatening knee injury shortly after losing the Shimmer Championship, she was named ranked #1 in the Womens PWI 50 in 2011, the first woman not contracted by WWE or TNA to hold the top spot.

She returned in 2013 after recovery and giving birth to her third child... and she got right back to winning. She became the first Pacific Pro Wrestling women's champion in March 2013, defeating Nikki Storm in a tournament final.

In October 2015, Eagles defeated Nicole Matthews and joined Cheerleader Melissa as the only two-time Shimmer champions in company history. She held the title until last June when she was defeated by the returning Mercedes Martinez.

Today, she still wrestles for Shimmer and its cousin promotion Shine. She is married to wrestler Ryan Eagles (real name Doug Ryan) and has a brother-in-law in the wrestling business.

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