After every title change in the WWE if the late great Gorilla Monsoon was calling the action he would annotate the change by declaring "History has just been made!" Back then it really was because title changes were few and far between. Now, not so much.
Here you find those times that I was there live for history in the making:
June 9, 1997 The FleetCenter, Boston, MA
WCW Monday Nitro
Jeff Jarrett defeated WCW United States Champion: Dean Malenko by submission with the figure four leg lock ending Malenko's 85 day reign. Eddie Guerrero made his return from injury hitting a frog splash on Malenko while his back was turned. Malenko has defeated Guerrero for the title and had been the one that injured him.
I was torn, excited because this was my first time seeing a title change in person in one of the big companies, pissed because I wasn't a Jarrett fan and I'm a big Dean Malenko fan, so to see Dean drop the belt wasn't fun, especially to Jarrett. On the other hand my buddy Jay, who I went with, was a HUGE Jarrett fan and was so excited!
March 29, 1998 The FleetCenter, Boston, MA
WWF WrestleMania XIV
"Stone Cold" Steve Austin defeated WWF World Heavyweight Champion: "The Heartbreak Kid" Shawn Michael to win the Championship. "Iron" Mike Tyson was the special guest enforcer and made the three count awarding Austin the championship.
This was special for many reasons. It was my first WrestleMania, my first PPV event, I was witnessing one of my favorites from back in his WCW days win the WWF World Heavyweight Championship. and I got to hear Howard Finkel say, in person, "and NEEEEEEEEEEWWW World Wrestling Federation Champion..." I truly felt like I was witnessing wrestling history in person this day because it was the dawn of the Austin Era.
May 1, 2005 Verizon Wireless Arena, Manchester, NH
Tag Team Turmoil: The Hurrican & Rosey defeated Tag Team Champions: William Regal & Tajiri, The Heart Throbs: Romeo & Antonio, La Resistance: Rob Conway & Sylvain Grenier, and Maven & Simon Dean to win the titles.
My second PPV and the only PPV to date in New Hampshire. Rood and I had sixth row on the floor next to the entrance ramp. I'm a Regal fan so I would have like to see him retain.
March 30, 2008 Citrus Bowl, Orlando, FL
WWE WrestleMania XXIV
Kane pinned ECW Champion: Chavo Guerrero Jr. with a chokeslam to win the title in 11 seconds
The Undertaker defeated World Heavyweight Champion: Edge via submission to win the championship.
Two title changes in one event! This event was amazing, this weekend was amazing! Even though I missed the Kane vs. Chavo match, I was dealing with a Coke vendor buying my least favorite soda, because I was that thirsty. I thought I'd have time during Kane's entrance, but he was hiding under the ring and the next this I know the friggin match was over!
Seeing an Undertaker WrestleMania entrance live was amazing! As this was an outside venue the presentation of the event was unbelievable and the size of the flames that shot up was intense! I could feel the heat from my seat. This was a great match and witnessing the Undertaker not only continue the streak but win the championship was cool.
November 23, 2008 TD Banknorth Garden, Boston, MA
WWE Survivor Series
NO DQ Triple Threat: Edge defeated WWE Champion: Triple H & Vladimir Kozlov pinning Triple H
John Cena pinned World Heavyweight Champion: Chris Jericho to win the championship
My second PPV in the same year that also featured two championship title changes. Incidentally 2008 was a great year in wrestling for me.
Edge replaced Jeff Hardy who was storyline injured and unable to compete, even though he did a run in at the end. Triple H & Kozlov wrestled a singles match for 12 minutes before Vickie Guerrero came out and announced it would be a triple threat then Edge made his return from an injury he suffered in July. The match ended about two minutes after Edge joined the action.
This was Cena's big homecoming, all the previous times I had seen Cena in Boston he was booed out of the building. This time though he was cheered feverishly by those in attendance. This was Cena's first time winning this version of the World Heavyweight Championship, he would go on to hold it three times before it was unified with the WWE Championship.
January 30, 2011 TD Garden, Boston, MA
WWE Royal Rumble
Fatal Four-Way: Eve defeated Michelle McCool, Layla, & Diva's Champion: Natalya pinning Layla after a moonsault to win the championship.
This biggest Royal Rumble of them all with 40 participants. I met Jim Duggan at a free signing before the show. I was surprised to see Eve get the win in this match. Also glad I got to see a Royal Rumble match live!
September 30, 2016 Memorial Auditorium, Lowell, MA
Ring of Honor: All Star Extravaganza VIII
Ladder Wars VI: IWGP Junior Tag Team Champions: The Young Bucks: Nick & Matt Jackson defeated ROH Tag Team Champions: The Addiction: Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian and The Motor City Machine Guns: Alex Shelly & Chris Sabin to win the championships
DAMN! This is the greatest match that I have ever seen live, hands down! We had front row, there was six of us that went down and it was amazing!
I've never seen a title change in Maine, in fact in the history of the WWE the only time a title has changed hands in Maine was at the last Monday Night Raw in Maine on December 8, 1997 when "Stone Cold" Steve Austin forfeited the Intercontinental Championship to The Rock. So it wasn't even an actual match.
I only included what I considered the major promotions on this list, I may do one later on independent promotion title changes I have seen live.
Also the FleetCenter, TD Banknorth Garden, and TD Garden are all the same venue.
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Wrestlemania 14 WOW! That was the first Wrestlemania I ever ordered on PPV and really feel like it was my “first” Wrestlemania as well. Looking back it may not have been the greatest show, but damn if I didn’t love it. You got to see Stone Cold win his first World title. I am so jealous.ReplyDelete
I would have loved to see Ladder Wars live. That match was great and I bet in person (in the front row nonetheless) would have been even better!
Yeah Ladder Wars was amazing. I'm hoping Best in the World PPV is just as awesome!ReplyDelete