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[1998-07-26-WWF-Fully Loaded] Owen Hart vs Ken Shamrock (Dungeon Match)


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  • 2 months later...

Holy shit! I could have watched this all day. This was an absolute barnburner, probably the best five-minute match of all time. There's the brutality and creativity of the spots, but this also has great psychology. Owen is the more resourceful one, which makes sense because he knows the room! I feel like I could write so, so much about this. They are laying in their shots knowing they are being filmed up close. A match this short has no business being this great. I want a longer match between these two. Looking forward to Summerslam. This blew me away.

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Length is the only thing that stops me from labeling this as a MOTY caliber match. It's really great though, and Owen is so awesome in this match. We talked about it on Twitter, and while I too love Owen as the goofy heel, he would have made such a great asskicker. Also, for my money this, along with this three or four month stretch, is what clearly shows Owen was an elite wrestler whereas someone like HBK really wasn't. Owen routinely went out there against either green or not so great workers like Edge and Shamrock and got great stuff out of them because he worked to their style and their strengths. He looked like gangbusters, but he made his opponents look like a million bucks too. Late in 1997 HBK essentially made Shamrock look like a joke in their match, then contrast that with this content where Owen comes across like an asskicker but Shamrock comes across tough as nails to boot.

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Said this on twitter already, but I feel like this was the one time where the Russo/McMahon vision of "action adventure TV" and my idea of good wrestling really came together and produced something amazing. It plays out like a well-choreographed movie fight. Both men can really wrestle, Shamrock can stick to his brawling style, while Owen brings some theatrical but logical highspots using the environment. Really an outstanding match, and one of the few Attitude Era WWF non-main event matches I go back and watch regularly.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Shouldn't have read this before before I watched! Didn't live up to the hype for me. A few too many headslams against the walls and thought a ref bump in a five minute dungeon match was a bit much. Should re-watch it soon, though. JR asking a typically horrible Lawler 'why are you laughing?' when Lawler laughed at men being thrown into walls was nice to hear.

 

In previous taped remote matches, would they still mic in the arena crowd? They didn't here and it was a little distracting.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Lawler was freaking awful during this. That said, I would have no trouble putting this as the best five minute match of all time. Stiff shots, using the unique environment to the advantage of the match and some good escapes and merging of shoot and pro wrestling style. The finish was somewhat cheap but a clever way for Owen to win his home match while keeping Shamrock strong. (***1/2)

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  • 3 weeks later...

I went back and watched after sleeping through this part of the disc the first time through. And boy was this cool. It could have been a real disaster but instead, they used the room absolutely perfectly. I loved the swinging kicks from the overhead pipe and the finishing spot where Owen put Shamrock's head through the ceiling. It was just over the top enough. And yes, Owen's ability to do this kind of match with Shamrock spoke to his immense talent.

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  • 2 weeks later...

A rather fun way to pass 5m. I'd be hesitant to rank this in a best match list as I think it was shot in multiple stages. They fought on a hard mat and there was plenty of ramming into the wall. It was very stiff, highly original and quite the spectacle. Incorporating a ref bump and screwjob finish was a bit much.

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  • 1 year later...

Owen Hart vs Ken Shamrock - WWF Fully Loaded 1998 Dungeon Match

 

Owen is in Zubaz shorts, automatic ***** from me! Incredible shoot-style match. I thought they did a great job incorporating pro wrestling moves in a realistic way. I loved all the throws, strikes and slams into a wall. Stiff as hell. That straight front kick by Shammy that sent Owen into the wall was sickkkkkk! Owen cheating like a muthafucka was great loved the low-blow and the use of the lead pipe. Throwing Shamrock head first into the pipe and then through the ceiling was bitchin. Shamrock had some great shit too and Owen did a great job selling his stuff. Loved the ref bump and dumbbell finish to put Owen over. It plays into Owen's self-congratulating character and protects Shamrock for the big Summerslam match. Off the top of my head, best 5 minute match I have ever seen. Legitimately great. ****

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  • 2 months later...

I don't know of this match having any kind of rep at all outside of this thread, but this was *awesome.* The hatred was there, the stiffness was there, there was some wrasslin' stuff that was well-incorporated...I can see complaints about the screwjob, but they went about it creatively and they *did* sort of book themselves into a corner. You can't book Owen to tap Shamrock legitimately and the Hart family probably wasn't going to let the WWF into their home just so Owen can do a job. This ostensibly sets up a Shamrock-Severn feud that I don't think ever really comes about due to Russo's ADHD. In any case, this was terrific. It was short, but the way these two were going it couldn't have realistically lasted much longer. Agreed on Lawler's horrible giggling commentary, though.

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  • 4 months later...

I don't think I've watched this since the actual PPV. This has tons of intensity. Owen getting slammed into the wall looked vicious! You hear stories about wrestlers working fixed fights in the back of bars back in the day. I wonder if any of them were ever this good? Lawler is laughing when Shamrock is getting his head bashed into a wall - not sure why.... looked awesome. The punches look great, and I guess they would have to in this setting to really get it over. I commend them both for wanting to make this as real and entertaining as possible. Owen is fantastic with his selling, and I think Shamrock may be one of the best guys you can put in a setting like this and make it successful. I loved this.

 

#454 - placetobenation.com/countdown-top-500-matches-of-the-90s-500-451/2/

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  • 4 months later...

A lovely match. The atmosphere of them fighting in such a tiny space really adds a lot, and the environment makes every move look more dangerous. A proper German Suplex looks cool enough in the ring but a thin mat that lets out a clear thud when you're thrown onto further enhances it. I don't really associate 1998 WWF with great mount punches, but we got them here, and bumps into the wall, the bar on the ceiling and the ceiling really got over the recklessness. The brief shooty sequences were well done, and I wasn't bothered by the finish, in fact I was shocked at how good they managed to make a ridiculous weapon shot look. ****

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  • 1 year later...

The Dungeon is a creepy place. Can you imagine what that room smells like?! This had a cool novelty flair with every punch and bump being felt more directly. It is to 1998 WWF matches what the fistfight from They Live! was to hollywood movie fights, in a way. Being WWF it all feels very pre-planned and crammed together, but the rams into the wooden wall looked genuinely brutal and the environmental usage/Dungeon is Owen's tag partner stuff was cool and well executed. Lawler awkwardly joking over what felt like very real violence compared to your average WWF match at the time worked. It's da attiduuuuude era so we gotta have a silly ref bump and finish. Who on earth buys Severn falling for that? Atleast the dumb bell shot looked sick and drew an audible reaction from the crowd.

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  • GSR changed the title to [1998-07-26-WWF-Fully Loaded] Owen Hart vs Ken Shamrock (Dungeon Match)
  • 1 year later...

What an awesome little five minutes (I thought it was closer to seven, which I guess is a compliment). They totally nail the ambiance here as Shamrock enters the legendary Hart Family Dungeon from upstairs and then they proceed to batter fuck out each other the entire time. It felt like a super gritty, nasty fight, and the close up camera work really let us hear the smack on every hit. Some of the bits where they're ramming each other into the wall were brutal and the part where Owen was smashing the back of Shamrock's head into it looked like a Scorsese murder scene. Owen swings from a pipe in the ceiling to apply a headscissors, then Shamrock does it and Owen reverses it into a powerbomb. Owen grew up in this dungeon, he knows how to use the environment to his advantage and Shamrock trying that shit is a fool's errand. He also gives Shamrock a German suplex and every flat back bump they take looks wild because there's no mat on the floor. Shamrock reversing the Sharpshooter into the ankle lock looked killer and Owen throwing him up so his head goes through the ceiling about had me on the floor. Every strike was snug and Owen clobbering Shamrock with a - gimmicked - dumbbell at the finish was amusing if nothing else. This ruled very much. 

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  • 1 year later...

This was better than it had any right to be. They worked this like a shoot-style match initially, before they started to smash each other into the hard Dungeon walls and using the overhead water pipe to bust out hurricanranas. The grappling is good, with Owen being able to keep up with Shamrock. We got a fun finish, with Owen knocking out Shamrock with a dumbell. ★★★½

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