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Thread: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

  1. #141
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    #61

    WWE Championship - Ironman Match: Kurt Angle (c) vs. Brock Lesnar – WWE SmackDown, 18th September 2003

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    Why I rated it #61

    Ironman matches can be quite contentious things. A lot of people aren’t keen on them because they feel like knowing how long a match goes hurts the drama of it. To that I disagree, because you wouldn’t consider a football game to lack drama because it has a set timer (unless you are like me and happen to be a Ravens fan this weekend ...). It’s a great way of creating drama in the last few minutes and creating interesting stories in the meantime.

    Lesnar is, to me, the most complete in-ring wrestler ever. And I don’t just mean that in the sense that he’s fast, strong, etc, but every facet of being a wrestler he excels. He’s a monster but his selling is amazing. He’s big but he’s a fantastic bumper. He has a presence that few in history can match. He is a great base for little guys and brilliant at wrestling from beneath against bigger guys. If he had a longer career, he'd probably be very high in the conversation of best wrestler ever. This match is all about showing every single positive that Brock has as a worker. He walks a fine line between being a monster and being a cheating prick very well, which is not an easy thing to do.

    They take the Steamboat/Rude route of having Lesnar intentionally disqualify himself to give himself an advantage in the long run. Brock outsmarts Angle in the first 15 minutes to get the advantage and get himself up 3-1. The next 15 minutes are almost all Lesnar, with Angle just trying to survive and not fall even further behind.

    Angle is pretty good here. I praised him in the review of the Unforgiven 2001 match with Austin as a natural babyface wrestler and I stand by that here. His offence is explosive, and oftentimes desperate. When Angle starts to get momentum Lesnar works out how to get around him: Angle starts using suplexes, so Lesnar works out that’s Angle’s strategy and works around it; Angle uses some high risk moves, so Lesnar lets him crash and burn off a moonsault.

    Despite them going 60 minutes they never let the match slow down at all, and they never hold back on their offence. It all looks fantastic, they bump like madmen for one another. Their selling (especially Lesnar’s) never slips to the ridiculous, and one moment I loved was in the final stretch when Lesnar hits another F5 on one leg – that leg attack by Angle was enough to give Angle enough time to kick out.

    I think one thing that doesn’t get stated enough is that they were extremely clever with the ankle lock. It’s Angle’s killer move – the move he knows can beat Lesnar, but he just can’t get an opening to lock it in until right at the end. He’s two falls down, and uses the ankle lock to pull one fall closer, but it isn’t enough. Lesnar’s big defeat in 2003 came at Summerslam because of the ankle lock and he goes out of his way to avoid it. I think the final ten minutes here are incredible and well paced. Angle wrestles at a menacing, desperate pace, whereas Lesnar sticks to very high impact moves that gives him time and space. The use of suplexes is fantastic because it eats up the clock so even when Angle is hitting some of his own, he’s losing precious time which adds to the drama.

    If you are going to watch this, I definitely recommend watching the full version (ie. the version that shows what happened during commercials too). You get a much more complete match, and it makes it much more enjoyable.


    What is the legacy of this match?

    Back in the day this was considered one of the best matches to not be readily available in high quality. It took them forever to finally release this match on DVD, so before that all we had was some shitty dailymotion quality videos and torrents. Now in the Network era this match is very easy to access of course, but that wasn’t always the case. I think this match got its reputation increased by not being available so easily.

    At the time this match was very highly regarded. For some it’s one of the best WWE matches of 2003, and more incredible work from the SmackDown main event scene during the Lesnar era of SmackDown. It’s the first Ironman match to be given away on free TV, so it was a huge deal at the time – unheard of from WWE to dedicate an entire hour solely to wrestling. It’s been done since with Benoit vs HHH, or the Roman and Bryan gauntlet among others, but this feels like the pinnacle of SmackDown’s push of “real wrestling”. The Lesnar era would continue for a few more months but by this time next year, the idea of two collegiate wrestlers (and being pushed as such) main eventing WWE programming was absurd.


    If you liked this match, you might like:


    The Rock vs. Triple H – WWF Judgment Day 2000
    Brock Lesnar vs. Kurt Angle – WWE Summerslam 2003
    Chris Benoit vs. Triple H – WWE Raw, 26th July 2004


    #60 Teaser:

    One of my favourite Raw matches ever from 2000.

  2. #142
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    One of my favourite all-time matches and feuds. I saw the Brock heel turn a month before live.


    [07:31 PM] Stonewall Dakson
    : I have a good friend that lives near Seattle. He says I should come visit sometime but that is like the exact opposite side of the country from me.
    [07:31 PM] Jon Snow
    : theyve got planes for that
    [07:31 PM] Stonewall Dakson
    : And those cost lots of money
    [07:32 PM] Jim
    : send yourself in a box without any holes with the USPS. Best case scenario, you get cheap traveling, worst case, you're gone forever
    [10:00 PM] Kairi HoHo
    : Jerk it in my honor Dak bye.
    [06:18 PM]
    Stonewall Dakson
    : Guys, I am going to see President Trump tomorrow.
    [06:19 PM]
    Stonewall Dakson
    : He's holding a rally in the town I live in. Gonna skip outta work and go.
    [06:19 PM]
    Stonewall Dakson
    : Not the town I live in, the town I work in.
    [06:19 PM]
    RecyCocks
    : You should bring TGR with you
    [06:20 PM]
    Stonewall Dakson
    : If I was taking a long walk off a short pier I would gladly bring TGR with me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Creeping Death View Post
    Btw Jiggy said I was only a 4 on a scale of 1 to Jon for being annoying so that's my resolution covered.
    BS Mafia 4 Lyfe: Dakstang Dook Duke HoHo Punk Wolf CocksDynamite Creeping Death Swamps

  3. #143
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    #60

    Cactus Jack, Grandmaster Sexay, Rikishi, Scotty 2 Hotty & The Rock vs. Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, Perry Saturn, Triple H & X-Pac – WWF Raw, 14th February 2000

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-koj9Uwdr4


    Why I rated it #60

    I don’t quite know how to write why I rated this one number 60. It’s a match that’s pretty self explanatory and I can’t imagine anyone watching this and not thinking it was one of the most fun matches ever. This is just an incredible, incredible ten minutes of wrestling that fully encapsulates how great a fast pace and a mental crowd can be.

    Not only is the action fast and furious, but the match benefits from having a whole bunch of guys with bags of personality that the fans loved and cared about. There’s not a lot else to say: it progressed the storylines going forward, it was an exceptional sprint that never lost its steam. Just go watch it! It speaks for itself! (and don’t forget to watch the post-match too – basically this is about as good a twenty minutes of TV ever produced by WWE).


    What is the legacy of this match?

    It's a fondly remembered match to this day too, and remains one of the standout TV matches of the attitude era. For me this is the best TV match between 1998 and 2000 (by some distance) and one of my favourite Raw matches ever. It’s pretty before its time as well. I watch this match and all I think about is some of those Bryan vs Shield matches from 2013. Or one of those really fun ROH multi man openers where the crowd was red hot and the action was great.


    If you liked this match, you might like:


    Booker T, Bubba Ray Dudley, D-Von Dudley, Diamond Dallas Page & Rhyno vs. Chris Jericho, Kane, Kurt Angle, Steve Austin & The Undertaker – WWF Invasion 2001
    Batista, Randy Orton, Ric Flair & Triple H vs. Chris Benoit, Mick Foley, Shawn Michaels & Shelton Benjamin – WWE Raw, 12th April 2004
    Alberto Del Rio, Christian, Cody Rhodes, David Otunga, Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger vs. CM Punk, Evan Bourne, John Cena, Kofi Kingston, Mason Ryan & Sheamus – WWE Raw, 3rd October 2011


    #59 Teaser:

    Shawn Michaels pisses off the wrong man.

  4. #144
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    Quote Originally Posted by Shock
    Shawn Michaels pisses off the wrong man
    Me!

    Funny that you bring up a match within the Jack/HHH feud after I talked about this yesterday. This match is a really fun time killer, everyone got to do something, and it's just feels so chaotic. Feels really before it's time as well. God bless the Jack/HHH feud and WWE 2000.
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    [07:37 PM] Shake: I am obsessed with Nicky its true
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaiZ-R View Post
    What the fuck is happening to you guys? I once got a blowjob where she used her teeth a little bit too much and I ended up with a bloody dick, I still enjoyed the blowjob up to the point I started bleeding. I can honestly say that I have never had anything I would call a bad blowjob, that wasn't a great experience but up until I started gushing blood I was having a great time!

  5. #145
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    #59

    Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker – WWF In Your House: Ground Zero

    Daily Motion
    ERROR: If you can see this, then Dailymotion is down or you don't have Flash installed.



    Why I rated it #59

    Okay, confession time – I’ve cheated a bit with this match. I’m sorry all. See, from bell to bell this match is just good. But when you look at everything – the pre-match and the post-match, it’s really fantastic. Jim said it best in his recent review, it’s a great segment but not so much a great match, which I can agree with. But honestly, the pre-match feels like a match in itself, so I don’t care. Even before they start interacting with each other Shawn, in his coked up jackass 1997 typical style, gets mad at his pyro for not going off at the right time. I love dickhead Shawn

    For simplicity’s sake, whenever I say “the match” in this review I’m talking about everything from the entrances onwards.

    This match is basically the Hell in a Cell match from a month later but with no cell. And while that sounds redundant, it makes perfect sense because here we see Michaels running from Undertaker at every chance he gets while Undertaker chases after him and beats the shit out of him where he can. Michaels bounces around ringside like only he can, and some of it may come across as overselling but I honestly didn’t feel like it was hurting the match at all.

    Right from the get-go this match is awesome. Michaels hides behind the referee to create distance, and then throws the referee at Undertaker. And in a brilliant moment, Undertake basically says “okay, fuck this” and punches the referee. Undertaker had such a great 1997 (funny that when you pair him with Bret and Michaels rather than whatever shitty big man Vince wanted to push you get good results), but what I love most about him is his mannerisms. He just oozed badassery like he never had in his career before then. He wrestles this match exactly like a pissed off monster should, and you always got the impression that he just wanted to murder Michaels.

    Much like the Hell in a Cell match this is almost an extended squash match with Michaels having to use his resourcefulness to muster up any sort of offence at all. And he relies on a shit load of interference at the end to start to keep Undertaker down. As the match gets more and more chaotic it gets more and more fun. They even managed, despite the match being essentially a squash for the most part, to make Michaels look strong even after an almighty ass kicking simply because of his kickout after the brass knuckles shot. That one little spot reminds the fans that Michaels, while he might be a little bitch, is still a tough guy.


    What is the legacy of this match?

    There are very few matches in WWE history that have absolutely no finish and still be this quality. You’d be hard pressed to find a better example in WWE of a non-finish done right. And what this led to was the logical step towards Hell in a Cell.

    Like all things, when these two got in the ring with one another magic happens. This is probably their fourth best match and yet it’s still incredible and better than most wrestlers can muster in their career.


    If you liked this match, you might like:

    Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker – WWF Royal Rumble 1998
    Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker – WWE Unforgiven 2002
    CM Punk vs. The Undertaker – WWE Wrestlemania 29


    #58 Teaser:

    Another one of those matches where nobody will be happy with the placement. Hell in a cell coming.

  6. #146
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    Hmmm, a Hell In A Cell match where no one will like the placement. Either it's an okay one ranked high or one of the three rad ones (HBK/Taker, HHH/Foley seems like it would be higher, or Big Dave vs Trips)

    I'm gonna say you went Taker/Foley, although your love of WWF 2000 makes me think it's the six pack.
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    [07:37 PM] Shake: I am obsessed with Nicky its true
    -------
    Quote Originally Posted by RaiZ-R View Post
    What the fuck is happening to you guys? I once got a blowjob where she used her teeth a little bit too much and I ended up with a bloody dick, I still enjoyed the blowjob up to the point I started bleeding. I can honestly say that I have never had anything I would call a bad blowjob, that wasn't a great experience but up until I started gushing blood I was having a great time!

  7. #147
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    I hope it's HBK/Hunter just to see Nicky's rage.

  8. #148
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    I would only rage because I just bonded with Shock about how that match sucks and it would be hypocritical as shit
    -------
    [07:37 PM] Shake: I am obsessed with Nicky its true
    -------
    Quote Originally Posted by RaiZ-R View Post
    What the fuck is happening to you guys? I once got a blowjob where she used her teeth a little bit too much and I ended up with a bloody dick, I still enjoyed the blowjob up to the point I started bleeding. I can honestly say that I have never had anything I would call a bad blowjob, that wasn't a great experience but up until I started gushing blood I was having a great time!

  9. #149
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    #58

    Hell in a Cell - WWE Championship: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. The Undertaker – WWE No Mercy 2002
    Daily Motion
    ERROR: If you can see this, then Dailymotion is down or you don't have Flash installed.



    Why I rated it #58

    Maybe my teaser wasn’t so appropriate – after Nicky’s review of this very match a few days ago it seems like some people might agree with this placement after all. But to most people this is considered an undoubted classic. And I would agree to an extent. As a match designed to put Lesnar over and put him over the top, this is a success by every metric. He beat Undertaker dominantly, and while it wasn’t totally clean (breaking Undertaker’s hand giving Lesnar the edge), nobody beat Undertaker clean anyway so it was as close as you were going to get. It’s also another classic early into Lesnar’s career, proving that WWE’s faith in him wasn’t misplaced. And as an individual Lesnar performance this remains one of the better ones in his whole career.

    First of all, I’ll do this review slightly differently and start off with the negative, because it is a big fat glaring elephant in the room. Undertaker’s selling of the hand is maybe some of the worst selling you’re likely to see. The entire match is built around the injured hand, from the cast being used as a weapon, to the focus of Lesnar’s offence. If you build your entire match around it, you don’t disregard that just to hit your spots because you’re too inept/lazy/forgetful to change it up according to the situation. Once the cast comes off, Undertaker still uses his hand to hit picture perfect chokeslams, punches, everything, with barely so much as a flinch. It forces the commentators to look like complete idiots while they scramble to come up with excuses as to why Undertaker is able to use the right hand so flawlessly. I’m not exaggerating when I say that this match, had the selling down the stretch not been so bad, this match probably would be fighting for a top 10 place on this entire list. As I said in Nicky’s excellent thread, it’s the most frustratingly good match ever.

    Onto the good, and quite simply it’s absolutely everything else. I was never super high on this match beforehand, but I watched it again in preparation for this list and I thought I’d be doing it a disservice to omit it from the list. I’d have just been a contrarian for the sake of it to leave it off completely.

    Lesnar is fucking amazing in this match. I’m struggling to think of many better Lesnar performances. Maybe the Reigns match, maybe the Cena Extreme Rules match, maybe the Eddie match. But his performance in this match is flawless. They tell an amazing story, almost a coming-of-age sort of story where Lesnar gets dominated in the early going and bumps around like a madman for Undertaker. He bleeds heavily afterwards. As Lesnar gets destroyed, he has to man up and match Undertaker blow for blow. He uses the injured hand as an out to get control of the match, and the work on the hand looks brutal and is incredibly engaging. The stuff involving the hand is great because it makes the early parts of the match unique, and allows for focused offence from both. Lesnar smashing the cast to pieces using the chair is brilliant.

    Undertaker is good for the first half of the match. He sells well when he needs to and his offence looked good. Obviously Lesnar’s bouncing around like a pinball helps. In the later point of the match he gets busted open and it’s a really sick blade job that adds so much to the match. I think visually this is the most impressive Hell in a Cell ever and that's because of the blade job and the work with the cask. A lot of classic Undertaker matches, particularly later in his career, are all built on a phenomenal finishing sequence with lots of finisher kickouts. This match is a contrast to that as they don't rely on heavy kickouts, so it's a nice change of pace to your usual revered Undertaker match too.

    The other man that deserves praise is Paul Heyman who is just sensational in this match. From his screaming on the outside to the bumps he takes, and the slight assists he’s able to give Lesnar. Great stuff from Heyman even from outside the cell.

    What else I liked about this match is its the first cell match that feels like it’s exactly how the cell was designed to be. Just two guys in the cage tearing the living piss out of one another and not able to get out. Every cell match before this had them escaping the cage. Sometimes that worked well, other times (Jericho vs HHH for example) it felt like they had to force it because they felt obligated to leave the cell.


    What is the legacy of this match?

    A lot of people consider this to be one of the best Hell in a Cell matches ever and to be honest its easy to see why. While there’s still a couple of cell matches that will place higher on this list, I know that many people would have this much higher. It’s a big match in Lesnar’s career as it’s another example of him having a great main event match so early into his career, and defeating a legend pretty comprehensively. They went all-in on the Lesnar push and it worked wonders.

    Of all the Lesnar vs Undertaker matches, they had a fair few good ones but this is their best. Fans of this one should check out the 2015 HIAC if they haven’t already. It might be a lot of smoke and mirrors but it’s a pretty terrific effort especially from a very-old and broken Undertaker.


    If you liked this match, you might like:

    Batista vs. Triple H – WWE Vengeance 2005
    Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena – WWE Extreme Rules 2012
    Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker – WWE Hell in a Cell 2015


    #57 Teaser:

    Yet more SmackDown action as two men nearly kill themselves for our entertainment.

  10. #150
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    Re: The 100 Greatest WWE Matches (1996-2005)

    "The most frustratingly good match ever" is such an ace dscription of this match. I don't have a problem with the placement.

    Heyman with one of the best Cell performances of all time.
    -------
    [07:37 PM] Shake: I am obsessed with Nicky its true
    -------
    Quote Originally Posted by RaiZ-R View Post
    What the fuck is happening to you guys? I once got a blowjob where she used her teeth a little bit too much and I ended up with a bloody dick, I still enjoyed the blowjob up to the point I started bleeding. I can honestly say that I have never had anything I would call a bad blowjob, that wasn't a great experience but up until I started gushing blood I was having a great time!

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