Arbitrary Numbers: Top # Matches That Could Have Been, part 2

Welcome back everyone!  Part 1 was just a week ago, so let's get going with a whole bunch more ...

The Top  Next 25 6 Matches that Could Have, But Didn’t Happen

Chris Jericho v. Owen Hart - 1999

Michael:  From word of Jericho himself, one of the main reasons he signed for the WWF was the chance to finally wrestle Owen Hart. Owen himself was looking forward to it. And about a week after Jericho signed his contract, Owen died in that tragic, stupid accident that should have never happened. This is a life missed opportunity, as it was going to happen if Owen had lived.

R.I.P. Owen

Sid Vicious v. Hulk Hogan II - Spring Stampede 2000

Jessel:  Sid Vicious, formerly Sycho Sid, formerly Sid Justice, became the face of the WCW for awhile.  Did you know that?

You know, with this face, it makes sense.

He was the biggest champ.  He was the top dog, the big babyface.  It was a big deal!  Evil Kevin Nash did everything he could to strip the unstoppable Sid Vicious of the title, but with the fans chanting and supporting him and his own natural speed, strength, and pure power, against every odd, Sid was able to retain over and over, win the title again.  the corrupt and in charge Kevin Nash forced him to jump through hoops, he still beat Nash.  Nash stripped him of the title, and Sid just beat him again.  Put him in a triple threat, he still remained victorious!

He eventually needed some help as Nash kept piling up the odds against him, though, and that help came in the form of a freshly good guy Hulk Hogan who returned at Uncensored 2000!  The next night on Nitro, the fans happily chanted for their champ, and chanted even more and more for their returning nostalgic hero … and through some really great acting, you could see it slowly get to Sid, until Sid turned on the Hulkster, ending a tag match in a no-contest, chokeslamming him and yelling for the ref to count the pin even though there was no match, just like Sid did back in his Millennial Man days when he was trying to destroy Goldberg.  All this was building to Spring Stampede, a rematch of Sid and Hogan’s Wrestlemania VIII match.  Hogan loved doing nostalgic rematches, and even though the one with the Warrior didn't work so well, this one had the makings of working perfectly, as Hogan was fresh and Sid was a bigger deal now than ever!

What happened?  Vince Russo.  Vince Russo happened.  Let's look at the timeline.  Sid turned heel on Hogan on March 20th.  On April 10th, three weeks later, every single storyline was scrapped and every championship was vacated as part of the New Blood storyline.  The New Blood was where Russo and Bischoff supposedly started everything over with a whole bunch of young heels trying to take down the old guard they felt were "holding them back." Spring Stampede was six days later, completely revamped, and Sid was nowhere on the card and Hogan had turned heel again.  Yeah.  Let all that sink in.  WCW got awful real quick.  Ugh.

Rhino v. Rob Van Dam - 2001

Michael:  What prevented this match happening was Paul Heyman's utter untrustworthiness with financial matters. The main storyline of ECW in 2001 was going to be Rob Van Dam's build towards the ECW title, which he had never held.  The title was in the hands of Rhino, the unstoppable force. The big PPV event for ECW in 2001 would have been the monster Rhino finally being defeated by the fans uncrowned champion. It would have been the defining moment of three years worth of storyline, and the plug got pulled on ECW right before it could happen. Annoying!

Diamond Dallas Page v. The Rock - The Invasion 2001

Jessel:  So WWF bought out their only competition, WCW, on March 23rd, 2001.  Lots of things lead up to it, and it doesn’t really matter.  The interesting thing is that originally, WWF did not want to kill the WCW brand.  They wanted to continue Monday Nitro and the ratings grabbing Monday Night wars.  They just couldn’t find a time slot and marketing arrangement that worked out for them.  So time for Plan B, the Invasion.

The Invasion storyline had a whole bunch of ups and downs, with lots of weird problems, but the important one I want to talk about is a huge missed opportunity.  You see, lots of WCW wrestlers' contracts were passed on because of costing too much.  So almost every big name did not come across in the Invasion, making it a pretty lame invasion, honestly.  Goldberg, Sting, Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, all the big draws sat at home while the ~big~ names of Kanyon, Buff Bagwell, and Booker T were the headliners.  Well, them and one other: Diamond Dallas Page. 


He was a huge star for the WCW, working at every spot on the card, holding almost every major title, starring in the WCW movie Ready to Rumble, being part of the some of the biggest feuds, and most importantly, the WCW People’s Champion, crowned that as the unsung hero of the fans.  This is important, because the WWf had their own People’s Champ in the Rock.  The schtick of the Invasion was matching people up with their counterparts, or at least trying to.  Or you would think.  And this was the PERFECT headline: People's Champion versus People's Champion!  But … it never happened.  In fact, they never even came in contact with each other in the ring.  How did they pass up this incredible storyline?

Well, ya see, the WWF had another story going, with this crazy stalker story happening with the Undertaker, who was currently a lame biker instead of the immortal Deadman.  So DDP was called in and told “hey, we have this spot, and we want to have you wrestle the Undertaker.”  And DDP agreed.  Even though he hated it.  He’s said in interviews since then that the biggest mistake he made was not saying “no” to this terrible angle.  He wanted to be on TV, he wanted to be wrestling for his fans again.  And wrestling with ‘Taker is a big deal.  But there was better money to be had.  

Except the Invasion was never about pitting equal to equal.  It was about showing WWE was better.  And in the end, two of the greatest workers in their respective companies with the greatest report with their audiences never got to face each other.

Diamond Dallas Page v. The nWo - The nWo Returns 2002

Lenny:  Don’t get me wrong, I’d still love to see him vs The Rock, too. Diamond Dallas Page was near flawless on the microphone and was a storyteller in the ring that few could keep up with (and plenty have criticized). But ... a baby face DDP feuding with the meanest group in wrestling history but now in the WWF? That’s quality television. 

Page had great segments, week in and week out, against members of the nWo, followed by matches that he could actually win (even with their non-stop interference). When the nWo brought their “lethal dose of poison” to the WWF and DDP was just sitting on the roster, the WWE was wasting a perfect opportunity. It was The Rock & Austin that stepped up to the plate to try and take down the trio of black & white, but it would’ve made sense AND been hugely entertaining to have had DDP approach them and offer help on how to take them down. Having DDP in the corner of the two BIGGEST names in the WWF would’ve immediately made DDP a respectable character to his new audience and a household name in 2002--exactly what he deserved. DDP & Austin vs. The Outsiders at WrestleMania 18 (help take the load off Nash) would’ve been a great match.

Raven v. Al Snow - 2001

Michael:  This one still bamboozles me, in a way that many find bizarre. Because, you know, its low-key. But in 2000, Raven was in a Hardcore match with Al Snow. The match ended with Raven smashing Al over the head with a cinderblock, and Snow was down. Only he didn’t get back up again.  This was when Snow got up from everything, having decided selling wasn’t the thing that got him over with the fans! And then he was gone from TV.  Commisioner Mick Foley even reacted to the event as though his best friend had been retired, forcing Raven into punishment matches. Including one Hardcore match against The Undertaker, which went about as well for Raven as you could imagine!

 Not daunted, Raven then beat the unbeatable Steve Blackman – via well timed sneak attack – to win the Hardcore title. Then at the 2001 Rumble, Al Snow, the man whom Raven had tried to basically murder on live TV, returned to get the champ. They feuded on TV for a few more weeks... then the WWF dropped it entirely and never spoke of it again.

In fact, it was even on preliminary WrestleMania X7 cards on websites until late in the build.  Call me crazy, but if you start an angle which begins with attempted murder, you ought to finish it off. Otherwise, it just looks like someone has been widely forgiven! Hell, Raven turned face a few weeks after all this. Then Raven turned mega face, and had a feud and title match set up against Eddie Guerrero. Which also got entirely dropped at the last minute.

Man, Raven really got fecked over in early 2001!


And that's all for now.  Stay tuned, because next week we get even more nWo, lots more Lenny, and I'm pretty sure I don't say a single thing.  Except for gif comments.

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