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WrestleMania XI Retrospective – Marc's Two Cents
Feb 102002
 

Ok, well here I am with my WrestleMania XI recap, for those who haven’t seen this show…and for those of you who have, this should be a fun read for ya. Well, on to the WrestleMania XI recap.

This one’s live, on tape from the Hartford Civic Center in Hartford, Connecticut on April 2, 1995. Your hosts are Vince McMahon & Jerry “The King” Lawler. Your celebrity guests for this WrestleMania are: Pamela Anderson, Jonathon Taylor Thomas from Home Improvement, Jennifer McCarthy from MTV, Nicholas Turturro from NYPD Blue, with musical guests Salt n Pepa. Also on hand tonite is Lawrence Taylor & his All-Pro Team. Geez, this is starting to sound like an episode of SNL with all the introductions in the beginning!

On to the first match, the curtain jerkers this year are involved in a tag match between the Allied Powers (The British Bulldog & Lex Luger) and The Blu Brothers (Jacob & Eli Blu — or Heavy D & Big Ron Harris from Creative Control in WCW) w/Uncle Zebekiah from the Mountains of Appalachia. Match begins with the corner to corner Irish whip collision followed by stereo powerslams from the Allied Powers. Long delayed vertical suplex from the Bulldog. McMahon mentions that the Blus are undefeated here in the World Wrestling Federation. Big Ron tags in Heavy D. Small package by the Bulldog while the ref is distracted gets 2. Heavy D is clotheslined out of the ring & it’s time for switcheroo #1. Big Ron in & he starts to work on the Bulldog. There’s a lot of talk between McMahon & King about the Normandy Invasion in some strange way to try to get the Bulldog & Luger over. It is also noted by King that the Bulldog only has one loss at WrestleMania thus far. Hot tag to Luger & he takes control. Loaded forearm gets 2. Uncle Zebekiah tries to get in the ring to distract the ref & we get switcheroo #2. Heavy D in, tries for a powerbomb on Luger, Bulldog to the top rope for a sunset flip & he gets the 3. Vince talking about the Allied Powers: “This won’t be the last time you see these two team up, I would suggest they’ll be a team for a long, long time.” And to close out the match, JR interviews a disgruntled Uncle Zebakiah in the entranceway on their way out.

Vince & King start to sell the Bam Bam Bigelow/Lawrence Taylor main event. Lawler says he doesn’t think these fans in Hartford even know what football even is & starts explaining, comparing the NFL to the post office.

Intercontinental Title Match time as “Double J” Jeff Jarrett w/the Roadie (Road Dogg Jesse James) defends against former IC Champ, “The Bad Guy” Razor Ramon w/the 1-2-3 Kid (Xpac). Just before their entrance, Razor & the Kid are interviewed by Vince at ringside, the only one who talks is Kid as Razor seems to be in the zone for the match. Kid is wearing some Japanese kimono or something. Ramon in, clothesline, quick cover gets 1, clothesline, quick cover gets 1 again. Double J to the outside, he needs some water from the Roadie & Scott Hall actually looks sober for this one. Double J back in, Razor goes for the edge & JJ gets pulled to the outside by the Roadie & they both head for the aisle to leave, but get stopped by the martial arts expert, the 1-2-3 Kid. Back in & we get some good back & forth action. Roadie gets in a cheapshot while Ramon’s on the ropes. Ramon back up & he catches an attempted kick, spins JJ & gets into a reverse chinlock. Fans help Ramon back up, backslide gets 2, roll up gets 2, Irish whip, & JJ gets the sleeper. Lawler: “That was an unbelievable move, usually your hand would slip right off the greasy hair of Ramon!” Sleeper takes Razor down, but he manages to get back up & side suplexes JJ to get out. Both stay down till the 7 count. JJ then whips Razor & both collide & stay down for 8, back up & both punch, back down. Ramon barely starts to move at 9½ & covers JJ for 2¾ (as highlighted on by McMahon). Punch by JJ blocked, punch, blocked, fallaway slam. JJ gets whipped to the buckle, roundhouse right out of the corner & Hall goes for the Steiner Neckbreaking Bulldog of Doom & sells the injured knee from the Royal Rumble which cost him the IC title. Jarrett works the knee & then applies his finisher, the figure 4, but Hall won’t submit. A few counts for Hall’s shoulders being down each get 2. Roadie helps out from the outside, giving JJ extra leverage. Hall turns it over & tries for some extra leverage of his own, with help from the Kid, but they’re caught by the referee & JJ gets out. Hall sets JJ up on the top rope, back suplex from the middle rope, but Hall can’t cover, his knee hurts too much. Hall up & THAT’S IT, he calls for the Razor’s Edge. JJ up in the Edge & Roadie runs in & clips Razor’s knee for the first screwjob DQ ending of the night. Kid then cleans house for awhile until he’s double teamed by JJ & Roadie. The refs then run in to break the whole thing up.

JR interviews JJ & Roadie in the aisle (geez, JR must have a permanent seat in the aisle this PPV) & JR says Double J should be ashamed of himself.

Nicholas Turturro is back in the heel locker room where he’s interviewing the members of the Million Dollar team, but Shawn Michaels & Sid step in, and so does Jenny McCarthy. Sid & Michaels talk about Diesel & Pamela Anderson. Back to ringside, where Undertaker is about to take on King Kong Bundy.

King Kong Bundy w/Ted DiBiase & the urn vs. The Undertaker w/Paul Bearer

Pettengill interviews Neil Anderson, former Chicago Bear as the lights go out for the Taker’s entrance, accompanied by thunder & lightning. DiBiase stole the urn & Taker wants it back as the Undertaker raises the lights & DiBiase drops the urn. See the story of this whole feud is that DiBiase stole the urn & Undertaker wants it back. Compelling story, eh? So, Taker (now sporting the black & purple in his pre-ministry, pre-biker days) gets this thing started with a few kicks & uppercuts. It should be noted (because the WWF noted it too) that this match is being officiated by former American League Umpire, Larry Young. This was during the MLB strike, remember? So on with the match, and the Taker walks the ropes early in this one & hits it too. 3 clotheslines & Bundy finally goes down. Bundy back up & he clotheslines Taker over the top, naturally the Taker lands on his feet. Outside, DiBiase hits the Undertaker in the back with the urn & Taker grabs it back & gives it to Bearer, the one who lost it in the first place. So DiBiase then goes to the aisle to call out Kama & while the Undertaker’s back in the ring with Bundy, Kama steals the urn back from Bearer. JR interviews Kama on his way back to the dressing room in….you guessed it, the aisle. Kama: “This urn is mine now, & what I’m gonna do with this urn is I’m gonna melt it down & put it on a chain & put it around my neck cause this urn is mine!” JR: “It doesn’t belong to you!” Back to the match & Bundy starts taking advantage of the urn-less, weak Undertaker. Taker starts fighting back, scoop slam from Bundy gets 2. Bundy applies the dreaded chin lock. Bearer then starts calling on the creatures of the night (the fans) to empower the Undertaker to get up. Taker up & Bundy splashes him in the corner, but Taker no-sells it & comes walking out. Scoop slam to Bundy, Taker with the flying clothesline, & the cross-arms pin gets 3.

Now we take you back to Nicholas Turturro, outside of Pamela Anderson’s dressing room, it appears she’s nowhere to be found. Word is that she & Michaels had a big disagreement & she split. So he asks a member of Lawrence Taylor’s All-Pro Team, Steve “Mongo” McMichael about the whereabouts of Pam Anderson. Mongo gives him a typical dumbass response saying he’s sure Nick can find her on his own, but he’s looking for Kama because he called him a cream puff. So now the rest of the All-Pro team step in & have words for their counterparts on the Million Dollar team. Now Nick walks into an unmarked room to find Jonathan Taylor Thomas playing chess with Mr. Bob Backlund. So Nick asks Backlund where Pamela Anderson is & he has no clue who Pamela Anderson even is. Meanwhile, Jonathan calls checkmate, so this triggers Backlund to go off on a tangent about how the youth of America don’t respect their elders & they’re dumb too. So he continues to quiz Jonathan on presidents & capitals….to each question, Jonathan has the correct answer, so a pissed off Backlund leaves.

We take you to ringside now, where Todd Pettengill interviews NFL Legend & former New York Giant, George Martin. On to the Tag Team Titles match, The Smoking Gunns defend against Owen Hart & a mystery partner who turns out to be the mighty Yokozuna with his manager, Mr. Fugi, accompanied by their American spokesperson, James E. Cornette. Billy & Bart Gunn are backstage & Billy’s even gayer (if that’s a word) than he is right now, teaming with Chuck Palumbo. A nice reference King about Owen making his debut 6 years prior at WrestleMania as the Blue Blazer. Owen & Billy to start things off. Collar & elbow tie-up, but broken when Owen is backed into the ropes. Whip off the ropes but Billy stops & slaps Owen & tags in Bart. Yokozuna is tagged in & he does half a Peoples’ Elbow which misses & tags in Owen. Owen works on the shoulder until Bart gets him down long enough to tag in Billy. Double side-Russian-legsweep & clothesline to Yokozuna clears the ring. Owen takes a beating from both Billy & Bart. Vince starts talking about Men on a Mission’s heel turn on Oscar, their rapper extraordinaire. Small package by Billy to Owen gets 2 after the ref is distracted. Yokozuna tagged in, whip to the ropes, drop toe hold by Owen followed by a monstrous leg drop by Yokozuna. Owen slams Billy into the corner & he takes a beating from Yokozuna. Nerve hold gets 2 while King bashes Stu & Bret Hart. King: “Bret still thinks Old Yeller is a movie about Stu’s tooth!” Go behind by Yokozuna, Owen to the top & he misses a dropkick & hits Yokozuna. Cornette’s pounding of the mat gets a U-S-A chant. Hot tag to Bart & he gorilla-press-slams Owen. Onto Yokozuna, off the ropes, reversal & he pulls Yokozuna down to the mat with a handful of hair. Cris-crossing Gunns run rope-to-rope & Owen pulls down the top rope, flipping Bart outside as Yokozuna belly-to-belly suplexes Billy. Then he drags Billy’s lifeless body over to the corner for for the Bonsai Drop. Bart gets in the ring, but is thrown to the outside by Yokozuna & Owen is tagged back in. Owen pulls Billy towards the center of the ring & then motions to put on the sharpshooter but just decided to cover & gets the 3. Owen then jumps for joy as he is awarded the Tag Team gold.

Pettengil interviews Bam Bam Bigelow backstage & recaps the Royal Rumble & the shove he gave to Lawrence Taylor. Bam Bam says how he’s ready to roll, he’s in great shape (s’yeah!) & he’s gonna take him down. Bam Bam: “Bam Bam Bigelow is not gonna be known as the man who lost to Lawrence Taylor at WrestleMania XI. This is my world, Lawrence Taylor, not yours. I’m gonna teach him a lesson!” S’yeah, again!

On to the “I Quit” Submission Match between Bret Hart & Bob Backlund with special guest referee, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. Great technical match from both, nice wear-down holds w/Piper continually asking “Whaddaya say?” King: “You think there’s still some animosity between Hart & Piper from WrestleMania VIII?” Hart takes a beating for awhile then scoop slams Backlund & starts the 5 moves of doom. King: “What is Piper doing? He gave Backlund a knee drop in the stomach!” Hart misses a shoulder block in the corner & nails the ringpost. Backlund applies the Cross-face-chickenwing, but before he can lock it in, Bret reverses & gets him down. Some ridiculous screaming passes for “I Quit” & Bret takes the victory.

JR interviews Backlund (where?…u guessed it) in the aisle & all Backlund says is that he saw the light. Now back to Nick Turturro who says Pamela Anderson is gone. It’s World Title time & Todd Pettengil interviews the current champ, Diesel. He says he wants to keep the belt. Celebrity time keeper, Jonathon Taylor Thomas is introduced along with guest ring announcer, Nicholas Turturro. Shawn Michaels enters first with Sid & Jennifer McCarthy & then Diesel enters with Pamela Anderson. Diesel clears the ring & brings Pam Anderson in to strut her stuff.

Michaels with the early offense & Nash is like 10x faster than he was in the nWo. Diesel’s using his power & size nicely with Michaels in this match. Michaels uses his speed to gain some offense, not to mention distraction from Sid on the outside. Diesel misses a running big boot & gets hung up on the top rope. Michaels follows up with a big clothesline to the outside & skins the cat to get back in the ring. To the top rope for a high-cross-body & McMahon actually calls it right! I’m impressed, Vinnie Mac! Baseball slide hits, but the second attempt misses & Michaels goes to the outside with Diesel. Michaels dodges a back elbow, sending Diesel into the ringpost. Michaels takes advantage & splashes Diesel from the apron to the floor. Sid tries to sneak a shot in on Diesel but is cut off by referee Earl Hebner. Michaels with all the offense now & gets Diesel back into the ring & down to the canvas. Stomp to the face, followed by the Steiner Neckbreaking Bulldog of Doom for 2. Irish whip to the corner gets reversed by Diesel & Michaels comes out with a back elbow from the middle rope & gets 2. Michaels to the top rope for an elbow drop that gets 2. Michaels goes for 2 ddts but is backdropped each time. Diesel to the corner, Michaels follows in with a few forearms. Irish whip is reversed by Diesel & Michaels hops up to spring back & is caught. Snake eyes attempt is blocked, sending Diesel to the corner. Sleeper gets 2. Diesel up, still in the sleeper & backs Michaels into the corner. Back elbow, back elbow, Irish whip followed up by a clothesline x2 & the snake eyes. Michaels, Irish whipped to the corner does the Flair Flip to the apron & is knocked off the apron. Diesel follows to the outside & pounds Michaels. Michaels in, Diesel follows & Michaels begs for no more. As Michaels tries to crawl out, Diesel gets a handful of tights & we get our WrestleMania fill of Michaels’ ass again….gag me again! Michaels makes it to the outside after a few forearms & Diesel follows. Some brawling while the ref stops Sid from interfering & it knocked down by Sid. Back in & Michaels goes off the ropes, ducks the clothesline & hits the Sweet Chin Music thrust kick. Michaels covers, but the ref is knocked out on the outside. Sid throws the ref in & Michaels gets 2. Sid cuts the cover off the turnbuckle & Diesel manages a back suplex. Both down & we get to 8½. Michaels covers for 2. Michaels to the top rope & the Steiner bulldog is blocked & turned into a sidewalk slam. Both down & they both start to move by 7 or 8. Michaels up first & Diesel catches him & slingshots him into the 2nd turnbuckle, just under the exposed one. Diesel gets up, starts Diesel-ing up. Michaels up, big punch takes him down x2. Diesel sends Michaels off the ropes for the big boot. Continues Diesel-ing up & calls for the Jacknife Powerbomb. Horrible powerbomb & Diesel gets the 3. JR interviews Sid & Michaels on their way out & Diesel celebrates & invites the celebrities in. (This should have been the close to the show, but no….we get Bam Bam & LT!)

Pettengil interviews Michaels & Sid backstage. Michaels bitches about the ref being out for the Sweet Chin Music. Sid talks about the World Series & other crap…I guess that’s why they call him Sycho?

And now Salt -n- Pepa perform the WrestleMania mix. Go LT go LT go!

Lawler: “McMahon, I can’t believe how ridiculous you looked dancing!” McMahon introduces the Million Dollar Team: King Kong Bundy, Tatanka, Nikolai Volkoff, “The Supreme Fighting Machine” Kama, Irwin R Scheister & Ted DiBiase. And now, it’s Monday Night Football….no, it’s LT’s All-Pro Team: Ken Norton, Jr, Chris Spielman, Ricky Jackson, Carl Banks, Steve “Mongo” McMichael (making his wrestling debut — this would be the performance at WrestleMania that would later secure him a position as a WCW Nitro commentator & later on, a wrestler) & Reggie White. Pat Patterson is the fitting referee for this debacle of a WrestleMania Main Event. Bam Bam makes his entrance wearing a leather jacket, then takes it off to yell at Salt -n- Pepa, then puts it back on as he gets to the ring, just to take it off right when he gets in….what was the point of that? Was the jacket really needed? Anyway, LT then makes his entrance, billed from “The New York Football Giants”. This match is just a straight out brawl in which LT gets beat up & Bam Bam is tired from beating him up. 2 count for the top-rope headbutt (Bam Bam’s Finisher) & Bam Bam confers with the Million Dollar Team while LT recoups & is a house afire! LT from the 2nd rope with a punch to the head gets the 3. Your winner, Lawrence Taylor! (As if the outcome of this match was EVER in question)

LT celebrates with Salt -n- Pepa & it’s officially the worst close to a WrestleMania as McMahon talks about giving away a house at the first In Your House Pay Per View coming up on Mother’s Day.
Good night everybody!