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Charles (Loss)

[1991-11-27-WWF-Survivor Series] Hulk Hogan vs The Undertaker

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Last few minutes. Undertaker is getting some cheers. Hogan gets the advantage and Ric Flair walks to the ring in a haste. Hogan throws a punch at Flair. Flair ends up throwing a chair into the ring that Undertaker uses to tombstone Hogan, and Undertaker wins the title in what was a big shock to me at the time.

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WWF PPVs were well represented on this yearbook until this show. Watched this whole show recently and it was pretty bad. After many years of doing the leg drop, Hulk runs into the wrong side of the ropes and gets his foot grabbed by Bearer. Flair is there and tosses a chair in the ring. Undertaker hits a very weak Tombstone on it with Hogan’s head a good six inches away from the chair. Big cheer from crowd on the three count. Hogan had that coming as he attacked Flair for no reason and Ric got him back.

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A true "holy shit" moment, in what we'd soon learn was another Hail Mary pass to sell us on another PPV six days later. I recall the full match being pretty awful but the closing stretch is okay, even if the timing of Flair's interference is off.

 

Heenan goes off on one of his best rants ever. The WWF feels like a promotion that's completely plunged into darkness and chaos, to a degree unseen in a major promotion and wouldn't be seen again until the rise of the NWO.

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Hogan makes the absurd claim in his book that the 2nd tombstone injured his neck. I've heard the story that a distraught Taker was backstage thinking he had hurt Hogan for real until Flair smartened him up, any truth to that?

 

 

This match has nostalgia for me. I attended the first ever Hogan-Taker match at the Worcester MA Centrum in July and was the ONLY kid pulling for Taker as I loved classic horror movies and he seemed like a wrestler right out of them. The next week at school (well Monday at least) I was in my glory laughing about how Hulk Hogan was finished.

 

And the irony was...he sort of was. I would argue this match and the rematch are the first obvious signs that Vince was truly ready to move on from Hogan. Anyone else see it that way or am I nuts?

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I've had two versions of the story: One is that Flair or someone else dragged him to the monitor that night, the other is that he happened to first see it on tape years later. But it absolutely happened.

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I've heard the story that a distraught Taker was backstage thinking he had hurt Hogan for real until Flair smartened him up, any truth to that?

I've never bought that story just because it seems to stretch logic too much. Other than Hogan's head not coming anywhere near the chair, he's up in 30 seconds and just looks like he's selling. You'd also think if Taker botched the tombstone he'd have felt Hogan's head hit the chair. Plus Hogan did a promo later in the evening to hype Tuesday in Texas IIRC. Then there's the fact that he's showing no ill effects in the rematch 4 days later.

 

It wasn't until years and years later that Hogan decided to add the Taker thing to his list of kayfabe injuries.

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FWIW, Meltzer reported a legit injury at the time--not from the chair, but from UT's knee banging Hogan in the head and/or shoulder.

 

I haven't seen the full show since renting the Coliseum Video at the time, but the same Observer states that Sean Mooney had to cut Hogan's Tuesday in Texas promo for him and that there was fear that Hogan wouldn't be able to make the show.

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This match has nostalgia for me. I attended the first ever Hogan-Taker match at the Worcester MA Centrum in July and was the ONLY kid pulling for Taker as I loved classic horror movies and he seemed like a wrestler right out of them. The next week at school (well Monday at least) I was in my glory laughing about how Hulk Hogan was finished.

Did you see a fan knock Taker's hat off at the entrance way, as he was coming down the aisle?

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It was more of an attempted theft IIRC and Taker got it back in light speed time which was fairly amusing.

 

The other highlight of the taping was Bobby Heenan announcing Ric Flair's arrival. Boy did I have stuff to talk about with my friends after that night.

 

This match has nostalgia for me. I attended the first ever Hogan-Taker match at the Worcester MA Centrum in July and was the ONLY kid pulling for Taker as I loved classic horror movies and he seemed like a wrestler right out of them. The next week at school (well Monday at least) I was in my glory laughing about how Hulk Hogan was finished.

Did you see a fan knock Taker's hat off at the entrance way, as he was coming down the aisle?

 

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I've never bought that story just because it seems to stretch logic too much.

In late 2009 Lance Storm recalled in one of the F4W podcasts that he heard this story from two of the people involved. He was sat with Flair and Undertaker once when they were discussing the Tuesday in Texas match.

 

Apparently Hogan went into spasm in the ring and sought attention for his injury, and Undertaker was distraught at what he'd caused to happen. Flair backstage consoled him and told him that he needed to look on the monitor. All became clear when Undertaker saw the repeat; Hogan's head was eight inches clear of the canvas. Undertaker was doubly upset that Hogan caused him to think he'd injured him, when he was really BS-ing to protect his spot at the top of the card (since that newcomer "couldn't work" and injured a main-event guy).

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Big time cheers when Taker hits his flying clothesline. Finish I thought was pretty great from Bearers reaction to the hulk up to the interference and the shocking result. Two crazy title changes on WWF ppv in 1991.

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What a bullshit move by Hogan, trying to bury Taker (no pun intended) and end his WWF career before it really got started. I wasn't really paying attention to how Hogan's head hit or didn't hit the canvas or the chair, but it definitely seemed that something was legitimately wrong in the ring after the match. Hogan didn't really look like he was just selling the tombstone; he seemed like he'd really been knocked out at least briefly, and a knee to the head from a guy as big as Taker would definitely do it.

 

I wonder what the plan would have been if Hogan hadn't been able to go at Tuesday in Texas. You just can't cancel a pay-per-view out of nowhere, so who would Taker have wrestled, and how would they have worked the title holdup? I honestly don't know who else the fans would have bought, except maybe Savage working twice, since Taker had brained him with the urn at SummerSlam. Even that would have been a stretch, though.

 

At any rate, this really did feel like the beginning of the end for Hulkamania, and also the first time when Hogan's Superman act flopped. I'm not just talking about getting up from the first tombstone, but going outside and after Flair. Usually, it's over for those who try to interfere once Hogan hits them, but here Flair not only recovered, but one-upped Hogan by slipping Taker the chair for the second tombstone. Heenan was absolutely right here: Flair hadn't interfered yet when Hogan struck him, and though being hit doesn't excuse Flair's actions, it does remove Gino's right to be outraged by them. Did Hogan honestly think that the man who was bold enough to brand him a fake and call himself the real World champion right to Hogan's face would take getting attacked from behind lying down? He's smarter than that, or at least he was.

 

I don't care what Gino says; Taker had to be sweating his ass off in that all-black and purple getup. He deserves a lot of credit for continuing to remember the character and no-sell not only pain and shock from Hogan's blows, but also weariness. Even wiping sweat off of his brow could kill the illusion for some, and that's almost a reflex in the middle of intense competition.

 

I didn't especially notice loud cheers for Taker, but given his athleticism it makes sense that people would pop for moves like the flying clothesline, That's why some old-timers say that heels should limit their offense to obvious rulebreaking tactics like gouging, hair-pulling, and choking. To them, showing even basic wrestling ability is counterproductive. For what it's worth, I strongly disagree; I happen to think heels like Flair, DiBiase, and Hennig who are obviously superb wrestlers yet choose to break the rules are more contemptible and thus worthy of boos than someone like Honky, who (at least in character) didn't know a headlock from a headboard.

 

Mentioning Mike Utley, the Lions football player who was paralyzed ten days earlier, seems a bit cheap when trying to compare and contrast Hogan's worked injuries to his. Hogan visiting him in the hospital was a superb gesture, but they should have picked another moment to mention it. Heenan's crack about moving another bed into Utley's room for Hogan was funny, if a tad on the sick side,

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Not a bad finish to the match. Hogan faking an injury to kill Taker's career is such a low move if it happened. I was pretty surprised things happened the way they did for a lot of the reasons garretta mentioned. None of it particularly fits with how things have gone before. If it is a total departure from the norm I am all for it.

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