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This Day in Wrestling History (June 6): John Cena is RAW


38 years ago today in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Verne Gagne & Mad Dog Vachon defeated Pat Patterson & Ray Stevens to win the AWA World Tag Team Championship.

32 years ago today, Ken Patera and Masa Saito are found guilty of battery on a police officer, causing criminal damage to property, and obstruction of justice.

This stems from an April 1984 incident where Patera threw a rock through the window of a McDonald's in Waukesha, Wisconsin after they were refused service after hours, then the two men assaulted the arresting officers when they were found at a hotel.

Patera was convicted on two counts of battery and one count of criminal damage, while Saito was convicted on three counts of battery and one count of obstruction of justice. Both men were sentenced to two years in prison. Saito and Patera were also fined as they were not in the courtroom when the verdict was read.

Saito returned to his native Japan after his early release from prison and would feud with Antonio Inoki; his most notable bout with him went more than two hours all over Ganryujima Island. Saito would be the next-to-last AWA World Heavyweight Champion, winning the title in February 1990. Saito retired in February 1999 and worked with Diamond Ring, a Japanese independent, from 2006 until its close in 2014.

Patera joined the WWF following his release in 1987 and feuded with his former manager Bobby Heenan (the two were together in the AWA in the early 1980s) and his Heenan Family. Ken returned to the AWA in 1989 and would briefly hold the AWA world tag team title with Brad Rhenigans. Ken wrestled most recently in August 2011 in a loss to Bob Backlund for Juggalo Championship Wrestling.

24 years ago today in Albany, New York, Shawn Michaels defeated Marty Jannetty to win the WWF Intercontinental Championship.

Of note, Kevin Nash made his WWF debut as Shawn Michaels' unnamed bodyguard. He eventually would be christened as Diesel, a play on Detroit’s nickname, “The Motor City” (Nash is from Detroit).

How did Nash end up in the WWF? He pulled a few strings: seeing as the WWF had interest and his WCW career was at a dead end, he came up with a story that his wife was threatening to leave him if he didn’t quit wrestling. To gain sympathy, he told a few wrestlers who had an ear with management. WCW management was sympathetic to his case, and he got his outright release.

Upon getting said release, he faxed a copy to JJ Dillion, who was in charge of talent relations at the time for the WWF. Just three days after wrestling what would be his final bout for WCW (in his first stint), a loss with Big Sky to the Cole Twins, he made his WWF debut. By the time the bout airs, Nash had already joined the WWF.

Nash as Diesel would go on to a pretty modest career in the WWF, winning the WWF triple crown (world, Intercontinental, and tag team titles) in 1994 and hold the WWF Championship for a full year, the longest reign of the 1990s.

20 years ago today, ECW presented Wrestlepalooza '97 from the ECW Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Highlights of the event played on the June 14, June 21, and June 28 episodes of ECW Hardcore TV (WWE Network links)

  • Shane Douglas defeated Chris Chetti to retain the ECW World Television Championship.
  • The Pit Bulls (Pitbull #1 & Pitbull #2) defeated The Full Blooded Italians (Little Guido & Tracey Smothers).
  • The Dudley Boyz (D-Von Dudley & Buh Buh Ray Dudley) defeated The Sandman & Balls Mahoney.
  • Terry Funk defeated Chris Candido to retain the ECW World Heavyweight Championship.
  • Tommy Dreamer defeated Raven in a loser leaves town match. As a result, Raven was forced to leave ECW. This was obviously a write-off for Raven as he was WCW-bound. This was also the first time Dreamer defeated Raven in a one-on-one match in fourteen tries, dating back to April 1995. Dreamer had little time to enjoy the fruits of his victory, as he was attacked post-match by Jerry Lawler, Rob Van Dam, and Sabu.
  • Sabu defeated Taz.
  • Taz defeated Shane Douglas via submission to win the ECW World Television Championship. Had Taz not been able to submit Douglas in three minutes, he would have left ECW for 90 days. Taz submitted Douglas with ten seconds to spare.
  • The Eliminators (John Kronus and Perry Saturn) defeated The Dudley Boyz (D-Von Dudley and Buh Buh Ray Dudley).

17 years ago today at a Thunder taping in Knoxville, Tennessee, Chavo "Lt. Loco" Guerrero defeated Daffney and Disco Inferno in a three-way match to win the WCW Cruiserweight Championship. Despite being in WCW since May 1996, this is Chavo's first championship with the company.

On the same show, Eric Bischoff awards the WCW Hardcore Championship to Big Vito and Johnny the Bull. Bischoff allowed the duo to defend the championship as a team since they helped with his win over Terry Funk a night earlier.

12 years ago today, Joey Styles signs a deal with WWE to announce ECW One Night Stand and additional ECW material on WWE Classics on Demand.

The deal eventually led to Styles becoming—albeit briefly—the lead announcer for RAW before being moved to the revived ECW brand a year later.

In 2008, he was named Director of Digital Media Content; he would later be promoted to Vice-President in the same division. Styles was released in August 2016.

12 years ago today on RAW from St. Louis, Missouri (WWE Network link), John Cena is the first man selected in the WWE Draft Lottery.

The Draft Lottery was formatted differently from the 2002 and 2004 editions, with the ten selections (five for RAW, five for Smackdown) spread out over a few weeks. Cena at the time was the WWE Champion.

With the World Heavyweight Champion Batista still on RAW, that would leave Smackdown without a world champion for a few weeks (that would be rectified when Batista, still World Heavyweight Champion, is announced as the final pick in the draft lottery for Smackdown).

9 years ago today at ROH Up for Grabs in Hartford, Connecticut, The Age of the Fall (Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black) defeated Kevin Steen and El Generico in the finals of a one-night tournament to win the ROH World Tag Team Championship.

Fans were not happy with Jacobs and Black winning; so much so, fans threw trash in the ring. One fan even threw a chair in.

7 years ago today, AAA presented TripleMania XVIII from Palacio de los Deportes (the Sports Palace) in Mexico City.

  • Octagoncito defeated Mini Abismo Negro, Mini Charly Manson, Mascarita Divina, Mascarita Sagrada, Mini Chessman, Mini Psicosis, and Mini Histeria in a TLC match to win the AAA Minis Championship.
  • Las Gringas Locas (Jennifer Blake, Rain, and Sexy Star) defeated Cinthia Moreno, Faby Apache, and Mary Apache. As a result of the loss, the Apaches and Moreno were forced to become slaves to Las Gringas Locas for a month.
  • Los Manicos (Silver King and Ultimo Gladiator) defeated La Hermanad Extrema (Nicho and Joe Lider), Beer Money (James Storm and Robert Roode), and Go Shiozaki and Atsushi Aoki in a four-team elimination match to win the AAA World Tag Team Championship.
  • Team Hijo de Tirantes (Alex Koslov, Chessman, and Hernandez) defeated Team Pierro (Heavy Metal, Octagon, and Pimpinela Escarlata) 3-2 in a steel cage Lucha de Apuesta match. As a result of the loss, Pierro's head was shaved.
  • Cibernetico and Abyss defeated Vampiro and El Zorro in an extreme rules match.
  • Jack Evans defeated Nosawa, Christopher Daniels, and Xtreme Tiger to win the AAA Cruiserweight Championship.
  • Dr. Wagner Jr. defeated Electroshock to win the AAA World Heavyweight Championship.
  • L.A. Park defeated La Parka to keep the "La Parka" name.

6 years ago today, Tommy Dreamer announces he was leaving TNA after the two sides failed to come to terms on a new contract. He would have his final appearance for the company five days later in Memphis.

Dreamer, real name Thomas Laughlin, was in the company for just a year, but he had a hand in putting together the ECW reunion show for TNA, Hardcore Justice. Laughlin returned to TNA as a road agent in 2014 (save for a couple appearances the year prior). He would be fired late in the year after an argument with producers after the company cancelled a planned tour of India.

6 years ago today, Andy Leavine is announced the winner of the Tough Enough reboot on RAW from Richmond, Virginia (WWE Network link).

Just two months after his win, he violates the WWE's Wellness Policy and is suspended for 30 days. He's released in April 2012, less than a year after his win. Today, he's competing for World Wrestling Council based out of Puerto Rico.

5 years ago today, Barbie Blank, aka Kelly Kelly, is granted time off by WWE.

On the road full-time since she was 19, Barbie was looking to spend time with her family and boyfriend and "recharge her batteries"... and possibly look for endorsements and other opportunities outside WWE.

Once reports of her looking for endorsements and other opportunities outside of WWE surfaced, the company attempted to sign her to a new deal, which she would turn down. The feeling among the locker room was she may not be back for a long time, if ever. She did come back in early August, but would be released less than two months later.

In a December 2012 interview with the Poughkeepsie Journal, Blank said she needed time off to recover from a neck injury and had plans to model. Outside of an appearance for North East Wrestling in December 2012, she has been away from wrestling ever since.

The best of cSs on this day:

2016: Brock Lesnar announces he'll face Mark Hunt at UFC 200 (Former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar returns to the Octagon for UFC’s milestone event)

2015: Cageside Countdown Nomination Thread: Most Disappointing Storylines (Cagesiders weigh in on the most disappointing storylines in wrestling history)

2014: Roman Reigns is the most adorable dad in the history of the world (Roman Reigns appears in a new PSA for the Ad Council with his daughter)

2013: Randy Orton says John Cena cuts babyface promos 'that make you want to kill yourself' (Randy Orton is not a fan of Cena’s babyface promos in an interview with SiriusXM’s Busted Open Radio)

2012: Pic: New WWE title belt design looks terrible ... if it's legitimate (Geno’s not a design of WWE’s new championship belt based on a leaked pic)

2011: Justin Buchholz vs. A Coconut (MMA fighter Justin Buchholz trains with a coconut for some reason)

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