Wrestler of the Day – August 3: Vince McMahon

There’s no chance this isn’t good: Vince McMahon.

We’ll start with the match that broke Nitro’s winning streak. From Raw on April 13, 1998, for the first time ever.

WWF World Title: Vince McMahon vs. Steve Austin

This should have headlined Mania 15. Vince slaps Austin while the Stooges and Slaughter are there for backup. Vince grabs the mic and mentions the one arm tied behind your back line that Austin said earlier. He insists it’s the right arm, the Stunner arm. After a ton of stalling, heeeeeeeeeeeere’s Dude!

Dude Love comes out and says he doesn’t feel much love here tonight. He says he has to protect Vince because Vince signs the checks. Vince shoves Dude after he talks nice about Foley so Dude loads up the Claw. Austin comes over out of boredom. Love is the new big bad from Vince and is the opponent at Unforgiven. Again, Foley is used to make the new megastar look good.

Since this is Vince, we’ll have a lot of jumping to do. From Raw on Febraury 13, 1999.

Steve Austin vs. The Corporation

It’s a gauntlet match and Shamrock is up first. Slugout to start of course with Shamrock taking him down. The fans tell Vince that he screwed Bret. Austin escapes the ankle lock and hits the Stunner, but here’s Test for the DQ. He’s the next man as well and is Stunned in less than a minute, but Kane runs in for the seconds DQ. Kane chokes away in the corner but gets caught by the Thesz Press.

Austin pounds away but Kane gets a boot up to stop Austin. There’s the chokeslam but Austin kicks out at two. The Tombstone is countered into a Stunner but Chyna comes in for the DQ. I think the match only ends in a pinfall which is why they keep running in. Chyna comes in and takes a Stunner so here’s Boss Man. Austin hooks a sleeper but Boss Man escapes and gets the nightstick for the DQ. Austin is dead so Vince comes in and pins him.

Rating: D. You can barely call this a match as it was really just a way for Vince to get one up on Austin. The longest of the falls lasted about 80 seconds, so what are you expecting this to be? Nothing to see here but Vince’s charisma is incredible when he’s out there with Austin which makes up for some of the flaws. Also it’s less than seven minutes long so how annoyed can I get?

The main event from In Your House XXVII, the only time this happened on PPV.

Vince McMahon vs. Steve Austin

This had to headline a pay per view at some point. Austin gets in the cage first so Vince makes him wait a bit longer. Steve gets tired of waiting and chases Vince around the cage but the boss gets inside to hide. The bell hasn’t rung yet. Austin tries to climb up the cage but Vince punches from his high ground. Steve slips off the side of the cage and seems to have twisted his knee. Like an idiot, Vince comes out to check on it and gets clotheslined by a healthy Austin.

McMahon is sent into the side of the cage and choked with a cord. They fight into the crowd with Austin in complete control. Austin hits him in the head with the bell, making it ring the hard way. The match still hasn’t actually started yet. Back to ringside with Vince being sent into the steps and running into the crowd to try to get away. The beating continues until Austin knocks Vince back to ringside. Vince tries to climb into the cage where there’s less to cause him pain.

Austin won’t let that happen though and rams Vince face first into the cage over and over. Vince tries to climb again but this time Austin follows him up and slams Vince’s head into the top of the cage, sending him flying off the cage and onto the Spanish announce table. McMahon’s head bounces off a monitor, knocking him out cold for a bit in a scary landing. Everything stops as Vince is taken away by medics and Austin chills in the cage.

The Fink is about to announce Austin as the winner but Austin isn’t cool with that. He guaranteed to take Vince apart tonight, and since the bell never rang that’s not good enough for him. Austin asks the doctor if Vince is still breathing, because if he is the fight isn’t done yet. Vince is pulled off the stretcher and hit in the back with a backboard before finally being thrown into the cage for the opening bell.

Austin hits a quick clothesline and a middle rope elbow before going to leave, but Vince makes the eternal mistake of flipping Austin off. Steve climbs back inside and stomps a mudhole in the corner. Somehow Vince fights out with a low blow to get himself a breather before climbing up the cage. Austin pulls Vince down off the cage and leaves him in a heap. The boss is busted open and Lawler is losing his mind.

Steve can’t help but smile and climb the cage but Vince looks up at him and flips him off AGAIN, bringing Austin back to the ring. Austin stomps on him even more, leaving Vince crumpled down in the corner. There’s the Stunner but as Austin talks trash, a monster called Paul Wight breaks through the ring and throws Austin into the cage before helping Vince to his feet. Wight throws Austin against the cage but the wall breaks, allowing Austin to drop down for the win.

Rating: C. This is a hard one to grade because it was again a story rather than a match. The ending was very smart though as Wight got to debut but also look strong with Austin winning due to Wight’s strength. Austin got to give Vince the beating he needed to and win a the same time, but Vince gets to continue the feud with his new monster. In case you didn’t recognize the name, Wight would soon be called The Big Show Paul Wight.

Vince and Shane would join forces to fight Austin at King of the Ring 1999.

Vince McMahon/Shane McMahon vs. Steve Austin

Oh of course Shane is in it. This is a ladder match for control of the company, which is of course logical: the future of a billion dollar company and its ownership is being decided by a ladder match. Shane is announced as the replacement…for himself…making the whole thing earlier tonight about Shane being too hurt and a replacement being needed, you guessed it, COMPLETELY POINTLESS.

That should be Russo’s middle name: Vince Completely Pointless Russo. The problem with Shane being the partner is that it’s exactly what it was supposed to be in the first place, so the whole idea of having a replacement and the whole idea of having him not compete gets the crowd into it. Then that night it’s announced that it’s still him, which makes perfect sense. The partner is actually announced as Steve Blackman but GTV pops up to show that Shane is ok.

Shane and the Posse try to get out of the arena but Shawn stops him and says go to the ring. We’ll ignore the fact that Shane has 25% of the company and could just fire Shawn and appoint one of the Posse to his spot and let Blackman do his thing but whatever. Shawn brings Shane to the ring and says it’s the original match, again living up to Russo’s name.

The set is really cool as it’s a bunch of ladders holding up a canopy of ladders. It really is awesome looking. Austin’s music sets off a freaking eruption. I don’t care what anyone says: Hogan was never this hot, period. Austin would be gone for neck surgery in about six months, taking a year off to FINALLY get fixed after Owen hurt him. The Corporation is barred from ringside in case you’re wondering.

Lawler brings up the obvious point that Austin is going to dominate every one on one match here so the McMahons need to double team him. I know it’s basic, but that’s what an analyst is supposed to do. This has been all Austin to the shock of no one. Shane has a McMahon 6:32 jersey on which is kind of clever. Shane hits a clothesline to finally change things a bit. We get a Home Improvement reference to really date the show a bit. We’re up at the entrance now and Shane climbs up into the display of ladders and Austin, ever the genius, follows him.

After knocking Shane back to the floor, he stops to throw up two fingers for the crowd. See what he did right there? He took about three seconds and got the crowd into it all over again. Any wrestling crowd will love nothing more than to be acknowledged. That is one of the few universal truths in wrestling. Look at guys like Rock, Austin, Hogan and Flair.

They’re four of the biggest names ever and every one of them gets the crowd involved in their promos and matches. Flair shouts at fans and says he’ll make women out of people’s mothers, Hogan does the hand to the ear, Austin flips them off, and Rock gets them chanting his name. They directly talk to the crowd rather than saying something about the crowd like mentioning a team, which isn’t directly at them.

See what I’m getting at here? The big stars are the ones that interact with the fans and it always works as it always will. Austin puts Vince through two of the ladders holding up the set which doesn’t fall, completely defying the laws of physics. In other words, the top of a ladder which is maybe two feet by six inches is holding up a ladder display that’s about 12 feet long.

They knock it out and the whole thing crashes down on Vince and Shane. That’s a great looking spot. Since they own the company though, they’re fine and catch Austin as he’s setting up the ladder. Who cares that they should be dead or severely injured? Austin goes airborne and puts Shane through the Spanish announce table which is one of the few classic bumps that will never die in my mind.

Vince knocks Austin onto the English table which doesn’t break at all. That has to be some kind of a joke. King’s microphone is broken. Ah he’s back. Austin now has a bad leg and stops Vince with a low blow. Austin is just beating the tar out of them now. Shane starts tapping out which is funny to me for some reason, which apparently means it’s good that he’s wearing black pants as Ross continues to just be freaking stupid.

Vince stops Austin from getting the case and the heat is great. The ladder is broken so they try to boost Shane up. Of course it doesn’t work and Austin is up. The look on his face more or less says chick are you crazy? Both guys get stunned. Ross says it’s in the book and you can see it coming.

Austin goes up and the briefcase goes up higher. This was another thing that went absolutely nowhere as the person that controlled it was never revealed. Vince gets his hands on it as Austin goes after everyone. Shane shoves both guys down and Shane goes up for the briefcase.

Austin, knowing he might get screwed, would announced tomorrow night that while still CEO he had booked a title shot the next night on Raw against Taker, which is still to this day the highest rated wrestling match in cable history, drawing an insane quarter hour of something like an 8.4.

Rating: C-. It’s ok, but that’s all. The screwjob ending was about as much of a given as you could ask for, yet somehow this might have been the best match all night since the tag match got less than five minutes. This was just a way to make you watch Raw the next night, which is what it’s designed to do I guess. They really should have had HHH in there acting for Vince and had the McMahons interfere instead so that the match would have been more solid. This just wasn’t that interesting as it was about 80% Austin which is exactly what was expected.

HHH would become the Big Bad of the WWF and Vince would get a WWF Title shot on Smackdown, September 16, 1999.

HHH vs. Vince McMahon

Say it with me: Shane is guest referee. Vince jumps HHH to start and the fight is on. McMahon is in a suit here and gets stomped down by the world champion himself. HHH easily punches Vince down and this is pure domination so far. Shane taunts his father but Vince comes back with a low blow. It’s not enough to stop HHH though and Vince gets stomped down even more.

With McMahon on the floor, the champion chokes away with a camera cord. Vince is beaten onto the announce table and Shane is begging with HHH to not beat on his father anymore. HHH drops an elbow off the barricade through Vince through the announce table. Back in and HHH grabs a chair, but Shane takes it away from him. That works for about two seconds as HHH shoves Shane down and hits Vince with the chair, busting him open.

Shane goes after HHH but Chyna makes it 2-1 and Shane is beaten down as well. A chair shot to his back keeps Shane down and here come Linda, Patterson and Brisco. The old men get beaten up and Chyna holds Linda while HHH punches Vince even more. HHH loads up the Pedigree but Austin comes in through the crowd to beat up the Game (HHH’s nickname). HHH and Chyna both get Stunners and Austin puts Vince on top of HHH for the pin and the title, blowing the roof off the crowd.

Rating: D. This was barely a match but it was entertaining enough. Having Vince as champion obviously wasn’t going to last but to call it a fun moment is an understatement. That being said, it really wasn’t all that smart of a moment as HHH had only won the title about three weeks earlier. That doesn’t exactly make a questionable champion look all that strong.

And another match at Armageddon 1999.

HHH vs. Vince McMahon

There are over 35 minutes to go when the music starts. That’s just not a good sign at all. Stephanie comes out first in a leather jacket and a pink top. She was ridiculously hot with straight hair. Sweet goodness that’s an awesome song. This is of course under hardcore rules. This is about the best HHH has ever been as a heel as he was having great matches and was as evil as you could ask him to be.

You really felt like he was the horrible man he was built up to be. That’s always a great sign. Wow it’s weird hearing that he’s 28 here. HHH runs at him with the hammer but Vince has powder. So what if it completely missed his face? Vince just throws punches, all of which sound painful as all goodness.

We get a joke from Ross saying they’re from Idaho. In case you don’t get that, the term for hitting someone harder than you should or legit is called potatoing them. I love how they just left the Spanish announce table in pieces like that. We’re in the crowd now and it’s all Vince.

They’re in the area just outside the arena and you can’t see anything. We’re back at ringside now and it’s basic stuff so far. And here’s Mankind with a shopping cart full of weapons. Ok then. The weapons of choice are a garbage can and lid. HHH gets knocked into the audience and wouldn’t you know it he lands in front of Stephanie. What a coincidence! She can’t act. That’s all there is to it.

Vince goes into the cart of weapons as someone is shouting in Spanish. I think it translates to GET US A NEW FREAKING TABLE! We’re up by the set now which is a military theme. HHH hits him in the head with a sandbag. Yeah it’s that kind of a match. SICK shopping cart shot to the head. I had a flashback to Supermarket Sweep there so this show rocks now. And yet Vince’s hair is still perfect. That’s very impressive. Vince gets slammed into a helicopter.

In a SICK spot, a machine gun on a pivot is swung around to slam into his head. Freaking OW. I can’t really criticize the lack of wrestling here as there’s only one wrestler in it. We’re in the back now with HHH dominating. Vince can’t find HHH. That sounds like a really boring game.

We’re outside now and Vince is just walking around looking for him. HHH tries to pull a Rikishi and run him over. For some reason the announcers sound surprised that HHH was driving. They fight on the car for a bit as Ross is of course freaking out. We fight on a limo now and Vince gets slammed on it.

Back in the arena and HHH climbs up a scaffold. This isn’t going to end well is it? Vince falls and while it’s ok it’s not great. Holy chant comes out of course. Finally we get some blood. My goodness we’re near the ring! HHH gets a mic and talks to Stephanie. This is rather amusing actually. Vince comes back like a Night of the Living Dead zombie.

WE GO BACK INTO THE RING!!! HHH raises a pipe over Vince’s head but stops to use a hammer. Good. I’m glad the hammer didn’t have to feel left out. That wouldn’t have been nice. HHH does Suck It to Stephanie. Nice imagery. A low blow saves Vince. Vince gets the hammer and has HHH in the corner and here’s Stephanie saying she wants to hit him.

Naturally Vince winds up getting it as Stephanie still can’t act. She’s still face here until they hug. Oh HHH got the pin. This was the start of the McMahon-Helmsley Era which dominated the storylines until the end of 2000. Crowd reacts to the hug. I have no clue how they’re reacting but they’re reacting. Seriously why is JR surprised about this? They’re the freaking McMahons. Dang she looks great here.

Rating: B-. All things considered, this was good. When I say that, you have to remember that Vince isn’t a wrestler so this more or less had to be a massive freaking brawl the entire time. Now when I say time, keep in mind this went HALF AN HOUR. This needed about ten minutes cut out to really be good as it just got repetitive at the end. Still though, this was solid brawling throughout and entertaining so I’ll give it that. Too long though.

King of the Ring 2000 would see a six man tag for the WWF Title.

WWF Title: HHH/Vince McMahon/Shane McMahon vs. Rock/Kane/Undertaker

Yeah those sides are fair. Like mentioned earlier, if HHH or either McMahon is pinned, HHH loses the title to whoever gets the pin. If HHH’s team wins, HHH fights Angle. There’s no explanation of how this came about but HHH was feuding with Rock and Taker showed up to get at Vince and Shane was with Vince and Kane was just there for the sake of being there. All of the faces get their own entrances. Shane is a pussy apparently.

The pussy starts with Kane. And that’s more or less the high point. This match goes on nearly TWENTY MINUTES and I stopped caring after about two. It’s just filling in the time the whole way rather than anything actually of note going on. The faces keep fighting amongst themselves while the heels keep getting in a few shots here and there. One major problem here is that they never actually explain why Take hates Vince.

Now if you followed wrestling well enough around this time, it’s not that hard to figure out, but dang man, give us something at least. The match just goes on and on and it’s boring as any and all goodness. We get that the faces don’t get along. You don’t need to remind us a dozen times per minute. Everyone beats on everyone as we’re in the orgy mode here. Nothing of note happens as it’s all just one big mess as everyone beats on everyone with no particular rhyme or reason.

FINALLY we get to the point as most everyone goes outside and given the amount of time left we know that someone is going to get a pinfalll soon and end this. Since Vince is alone in the ring, I’m willing to bet that it’s him. And yep, there’s a Rock Bottom and a new champion to celebrate. And yep that’s all there is.

Rating: D-. Oy thank goodness this is over. No one cared about the thing but since we had seen Rock vs. HHH a half dozen times they needed to shift things, and since there’s some law against Kane getting a title shot on PPV, this is what we got instead. It was a weird idea and seriously, did anyone thing there wouldn’t be a new champion? I’m just glad this is over.

Vince would hook up with Trish Stratus because….well look at her. Here’s one of the resulting matches from Raw on February 26, 2001.

Vince McMahon/Trish Stratus vs. William Regal/Stephanie McMahon

Vince brings out that bucket of sewage. Apparently Stephanie shoved Trish into manure on Smackdown. Trish kisses Vince to start and the girls go at it first. All Trish to start as I guess Stephanie and Regal are the faces here. Steph gets a suplex for two. They had the best match you could ever imagine they would have the previous night. DDT gets two for Stephanie.

They botch….something as Stephanie goes down. It looked like a clothesline I think but I’m not sure. Vince comes in and Steph has no idea of it. Regal backs off to huge boos. Vince gets a mic and Regal brings in the bucket. He says that what Vince wants, Vince gets. He tells Trish to get in here and tells the referee that this match is over.

Stephanie and Vince are apparently all cool and Regal takes Trish down with a neckbreaker. With Vince’s direction, Stephanie covers her with the mop in the sewage and shoves her face in the bucket. Vince says that there’s one Daddy’s Little Girl and Trish was just a toy, a toy Vince is tired of playing with. Trish would be back with Vince like next week. This was barely a match so no rating.

Another Vince vs. Shane match from Wrestlemania X7.

Vince McMahon vs. Shane McMahon

This is a street fight of course with Mick Foley as guest referee. Shane has some WCW “stars” in a private box. You can see Shawn Stasiak, Stacy Keibler and I think Bobby Eaton up there. Stephanie is here with Vince but Trish and Linda are being saved for later. Vince slaps Shane and we’re ready to go in a hurry. Shane gets pounded down in the corner but comes back with a spear and a bunch of elbow drops.

Stephanie gets in the ring and slaps Shane in the face, causing a chase sequence. Shane stops to hit Vince in the head with a sign before beating him over an over in the back. A clothesline off the barricade puts Vince down again before Shane whips him into the barricade. Shane blasts him in the back with a kendo stick over and over before peppering him with left jabs and a big right cross. Other than the brief flurry to start this is all Shane.

A monitor shot to Vince’s head knocks him out so Shane can put him on the announce table. For the big spot of the match, Shane loads up the top rope elbow through the table but Stephanie pulls Vince away, sending Shane crashing through the table. Here come Trish and Linda with Linda completely sedated. Vince wakes up and sees them there so Trish helps him to his feet, with an AMAZING cleavage shot.

Trish surprises everyone by slapping Vince, turning face in the process. Stephanie goes after Trish, triggering a catfight in the ring. Mick pulls Stephanie off of Trish, only to get slapped in the face for his efforts. Stephanie runs from Trish and does the worst looking fall in the history of bad looking falls to let Trish catch up before leaving the arena. Back at ringside Vince wakes up and calls his wife a very bad name but Foley stops any potential domestic violence. Vince is fine with that and blasts Mick in the back with a chair.

The oldest McMahon puts Linda into the ring as Shane is still out cold. Linda is sat in the corner of the ring in a chair as Vince throws Shane back into the ring. Now it’s time for four garbage cans to be thrown in as well so Shane can get beaten up yet again. Vince picks up the third can but as he takes too long, Linda stands up to an ERUPTION from the crowd. She kicks Vince between the legs to stun him, allowing Foley to come in and beat the tar out of the owner of the company. Mick knocks Vince down in the corner and Shane hits the Coast to Coast dropkick, sending a garbage can into Vince’s face for the academic pin.

Rating: B. All things considered, this was excellent. This is what you call intricate storytelling with at least five feuds/stories (Vince vs. Shane, Vince vs. Mick, Vince vs. Linda, Stephanie vs. Linda, Trish’s turn) being blown off in one single match. On top of that, the match wasn’t that bad with some decent bumps considering that they’re both non-wrestlers. The drama was the key here though and it worked REALLY well.

We’ll jump ahead to Royal Rumble 2002 for another street fight.

Ric Flair vs. Vince McMahon

Remember this is a street fight. Vince shoves him down to start and struts, so Flair punches him down and struts as well. Flair wins a chop battle in the corner (duh) so Vince goes to the eyes to escape. There’s the Flair Flop followed by a Flair Flip in the corner as Vince is in full control. We head to the floor and get our first weapon shot, with Vince pounding on Ric with a metal Keep Off sign.

There’s a trashcan shot to the head and Flair is busted open. How thin must the skin on his forehead be? Anyway, Vince steals a camera from someone to take a picture of Flair’s cut before we head back inside. Since he’s a jerk, Vince starts working over the knee in (less skilled) Flair fashion. The leg is wrapped around the post and Vince puts on a Figure Four that Dusty Rhodes would be jealous of.

Flair turns the hold over and Vince IMMEDIATELY lets go of the hold. So not only is he better at it than some wrestlers, he’s also smart. Never let it be said that Vince doesn’t know what he’s doing. Vince bails to the floor and grabs a lead pipe that he used to bust Flair open in the build up to the match. Flair catches him coming in with a low blow and pounds away on the floor.

Vince takes a monitor shot to the head and in a weird spot, we see a replay on the monitor on the table as the live match goes on. Vince is busted open now and we head back inside. Scratch that as we go back outside immediately where Flair’s family takes pictures of Vince’s cut. Set it up earlier, pay it off later. Good move. Back in and Flair kicks him low again just because he can, cracks him in the head with the pipe and ends it with the Figure Four.

Rating: C+. At the end of the day, this match makes as much sense as almost anything you’ll see. Vince controlled at the beginning, but at the end of the day he’s a boss and Flair is a veteran wrestler and athlete. It makes sense for him to be able to shrug that off and destroy Vince with relative ease once he got the upper hand. On top of that we got some good blood and Vince getting hit in the balls so how can this not be entertaining?

Hey look: a street fight. From Wrestlemania XIX.

Hulk Hogan vs. Vince McMahon

This is a street fight because that’s how Vince rolls and if Hogan loses he has to retire. Hogan pounds away to start before pounding away on the mat. Vince is knocked down into the corner and stomped down for good measure but he gets in a thumb to the eye to give himself a breather. A clothesline takes Hogan down and Vince Pounds away in the corner. He drops some knees into Hogan’s shoulder as we actually get an attempt at psychology here. Seriously, why?

Vince wraps the arm around the post before hooking a test of strength grip with Hulk in trouble. Hogan tries to fight up but gets kicked right back down. That works so well that they do it again before Vince throws Hogan out to the floor. With Hogan in trouble Vince picks up a chair but the swing only hits post. Hogan pounds him down and hits a chair shot to Vince’s head for good measure, busting Vince open.

They head back in, only for Hogan to punch him out to the floor. Another chair shot to the back puts Vince down as does a third. Hogan swings again but knocks out the Spanish announcer by mistake. Vince hits Hogan in his Real American testicles as the slow brawling continues. A chair shot puts Hogan down and Vince pulls out a ladder, making me think this ends badly.

Hulk is busted open too as Vince lays him onto the announce table. In the big spot of the match, Vince climbs the ladder and drops a “leg” through Hogan and through the table. Hogan is thrown back in as Vince gets a lead pipe. He looks up from under the ring apron and has a hilariously evil grin on his face. Vince loads up a pipe shot but Hogan hits him low. Cue RODDY PIPER of all people to blast Hogan in the head with the pipe. This surprises Cole and Tazz because….they’re not that bright. Seriously, Piper and Hogan HATED each other and they’re surprised he attacked Hogan? Why?

Piper leaves and Vince gets two off the pipe shot. This match needs to end like NOW as it’s well past the point of entertaining and is reaching stupid. Vince goes for the pipe but is stopped by the referee, causing the referee to go flying out to the floor. The EVIL French referee from earlier today comes out as Hulk is hit with another pipe shot and a Vince legdrop for two. It’s Hulk Up time though and he lays out both Vince and the crooked referee before hitting the big boot and THREE legdrops to kill Vince dead for the pin.

Rating: D+. This wasn’t the worst match in the world but going twenty minutes completely misses the idea of something like this. Again I’m not sure what this accomplishes other than setting up Hogan vs. Piper in a feud that didn’t exactly light the world on fire in 2013. Fun but pretty awful match here.

We’ll stay in 2003 with this match from Vengeance.

Vince McMahon vs. Zach Gowen

For the life of me I have never gotten the point of this angle at all. At least Gowen had a good Seether song for his theme music. Vince dominates early on to the shock of no one. Gowen busted out an Asai Moonsault. His character and angle was annoying as all goodness but to say it’s impressive is an understatement. One of the interesting things here is that Zach is like 150lbs so it’s like wrestling a woman as far as the weight goes.

Vince beats the tar out of him for a long time including a Boston Crab. Again, I don’t get the point to this but it’s Vince in the ring so what do you expect? Gowen makes his comeback and very few people care. Zach goes up top and hits a bulldog. When I say hit I mean miss and when I say bulldog I mean his arm almost touches the back of Vince’s head.

This just isn’t as impressive as it could be, but we get it: he can wrestle on one leg. He doesn’t need 15 minutes to prove it. We get a chair and Vince gets beaten with it and bleeds. Oh dang he’s bleeding a lot. Gowen misses a moonsault and Vince pins him. Yeah seriously that’s the ending. Gowen stands in the ring and gets cheered. Mostly at least but there’s a good deal of booing in there.

Rating: C-. The problem here became evident very quickly: yes, we know he can wrestle on one leg, but after that the appeal goes away and it gets stupid. It’s cool to see, but it gets old fast. If this is cut in half time wise, it’s FAR better and one of the coolest matches ever. It’s still cool and impressive as all goodness, but this went on too long. Decent match though but the ending sucked.

And another from No Mercy 2003.

Vince McMahon vs. Stephanie McMahon

I Quit match and Stephanie can win by pin as well. It’s also no holds barred and no one can interfere on her behalf. Linda is here too to make sure this match is acted even worse. Sable is with Vince. Vince jumps Stephanie to start. He’s evil you know. Stephanie jumps on his back and screams a lot. She kicks him into the corner so he runs her over. Vince throws her around and Cole is up to about 20 “THAT’S HIS DAUGHTER” lines a minute.

Sable slaps Stephanie so Linda chases her around. Vince hooks a half crab and Stephanie screams a lot. Off to a bow and arrow and Stephanie can’t even sell her face properly. Sable slides in a pipe but Linda stops her. Vince grabs Linda so she slaps him and Steph hits Vince low with the pipe for two. She pulls the pipe back and hits him in the ribs and the back and in the face but Vince doesn’t go down. A shot from the middle rope to the top of the head gets two.

This match has been going on about four minutes and I already hate it. Sable gets in a fight with Stephanie so Stephanie rams Vince into her and bulldogs him for two. She gets the pipe again but Vince grabs her by the throat and shoves her down. Now Vince has the pipe and hits her in the ribs. He chokes her with the pipe and Linda shouts to quit because it’s not worth it. Linda throws in the towel because Stephanie can’t give up. You know, to protect her reputation and all that.

Rating: F. This got more of a build than the world title match, the US Title match and the Angle vs. Cena match. You figure out why this was a failure.

And one more from this year at Survivor Series 2003.

Undertaker vs. Vince McMahon

Taz actually has keys to victory. First: be mentally stable. Second: be confident. Third: AVOID THE HOLE! Did Taz just make me laugh? I don’t know how to handle this. Oh good we have the bell so I don’t have to deal with it. Remember that in this you have to put the other guy in the grave and cover him with dirt to bury him alive. Apparently it’s thirteen years to the day since Taker debuted. Vince kneels in prayer before the match starts.

Taker punches him in the face, drawing blood off a SINGLE PUNCH. He pounds away on Vince as McMahon is just trying to get back up. Vince gets crotched against the post and Taker wraps the leg around the post for fun. The same thing happens on the opposite post and Vince is sent into the announce table. There is blood EVERYWHERE. Taker hits him and says this is for my wife. Yeah this was around the time when Vince said he was going to have someone rape Taker’s wife. You know, because there’s nothing wrong with that.

The beating continues for awhile and Vince hasn’t had a single bit of offense in yet. Vince gets punched up against the barricade and we head back inside. Taker heads to the grave site and gets a shovel which is CRACKED off Vince’s head. This is quite a beating. Taker crushes Vince’s ankle just like he did in 1998. There are PILES of blood on the floor. Taker carries him to the grave but Vince gets in a low blow to FINALLY slow Taker down.

Vince hits him with a shovel and taker falls into the grave. Taker shrugs it off and pulls McMahon down into the hole, but as he goes for the machine to lower the dirt, an explosion goes off. Kane is in the cab and helps Vince out of the grave. Taker is knocked into the grave and Vince lowers the dirt onto Taker to get the shocking win.

Rating: D. This was REALLY boring although that first shovel shot was great. Other than that though, there wasn’t enough here to make this match matter. This would be the last time Biker Taker was seen as he would return as the Dead Man at Wrestlemania to, say it with me, feud with Kane. The blood alone prevents this from being a failure.

I have to do this one. From Raw on February 23, 2004.

Eric Bischoff vs. Vince McMahon

Austin is guest referee. They stare each other down to start and Bischoff offers a handshake, only to get kneed in the ribs. Bischoff comes back with some strikes but Austin breaks it up. Vince makes the mistake of going after Austin and gets decked for old times’ sake. Bischoff gets chased around the ring and choked on the floor as JR drops the bowling shoe line. Brock Lesnar sneaks into the ring and lays out Austin as the match is thrown out. No rating and much more of an historical curiosity than anything else.

We’ll jump ahead to Wrestlemania XXII.

Vince McMahon vs. Shawn Michaels

Oh wait actually this is no holds barred rather than a street fight because they’re such different things. Before the match Vince unveils a poster version of his cover of Muscle and Fitness magazine, which is indeed pretty impressive. Shawn will have none of this though and goes after the boss, pounding away at him and throwing him over the announce table for good measure. Vince gets choked out with a cable as the commentators lose their equipment.

Shawn cracks Vince over the head with his poster and here’s the Spirit Squad to try to save Vince. They’re five cheerleaders (one of them being Dolph Ziggler) who beat up Shawn with their five man lifting slam, but Kenny misses a guillotine legdrop. Shawn gets their megaphone and beats all of them up while Vince is getting a breather. The breather allows Vince to get in a clothesline and take over for a bit.

McMahon rips off his own belt to whip and choke Shawn but his attempt at Sweet Chin Music is easily blocked. The forearm puts Vince down and there’s a whipping for Vince. There’s the top rope elbow but as Shawn tunes up the band, here’s Shane to blast him with a kendo stick. Shane pulls out handcuffs but before they tie Shawn up, Vince takes down his pants. Yeah they’re doing this at Wrestlemania. Shane tries to send Shawn’s face in but Michaels reverses and we get a very disturbing father/son bonding moment.

Shawn hits Vince low and handcuffs Shane to the ropes. After throwing the key into the crowd and doing Shane’s dance, Shawn pounds him with the kendo stick and pulls out a chair. A BIG chair shot cracks Vince’s head open even more than it already was. Instead of kicking Vince’s head off though, Shawn pulls out a ladder. After ramming that into Vince’s head too, Shawn pulls out some trashcans to beat on Vince with as well.

There’s a table thrown in too and this can’t end well. Vince is placed on the table but Shawn isn’t pleased with the ladder he’s got. Instead he gets the jumbo ladder and puts the trashcan over Vince’s head. Shawn climbs the jumbo ladder and drops the BIGGEST ELBOW EVER through Vince through the table. The Sweet Chin Music is the icing on the carnage and it’s finally over.

Rating: C+. This is a hard one to grade as it’s really closer to a long segment than a match. Shawn DESTROYED Vince here and that’s what the whole thing was supposed to be. Unfortunately this feud would keep going for about six more months with DX reuniting to fight Vince and all his cronies. Still though, it was certainly entertaining and that’s all it was supposed to be.

And the rematch at Backlash 2006.

Shawn Michaels/God vs. Vince McMahon/Shane McMahon

Vince introduces God and we get a spotlight. His tron video is clouds and he comes out to harp and piano music. Vince stops and criticizes God before challenging him to a dance contest. I kid you not, this is really happening. The spotlights gets in the ring and Vince tells the referee to check him out. Vince makes the match no holds barred because the idea of Vince wrestling an actual match isn’t pleasing. Sexy Boy finally hits to end this stupidity.

Vince starts to run his mouth some more and Shawn finally drills him to get going. The daddy goes to the floor while Shawn beats up Shane. Shawn dives on Vince before clotheslining Shane to the floor and hitting a flip dive to take him out. Michaels chops Shane up the ramp but Shane comes back with knees to the stomach. Shane tries to piledrive Shawn off the stage but gets backdropped instead.

Shawn comes back but here’s Vince with a chair as they’re all on the stage now. Shawn blocks the shot and takes Shane down again before hitting a cross body on Vince off the stage. This looked like nothing live but it looked good on camera. Shawn climbs back up to the stage but gets hit in the face with the chair by Shane. Michaels is busted which I never noticed in the arena.

Shane and Shawn head back to the ring and Shawn goes into the post. Shawn gets sent into the barricade and then back into the ring as Shane is in complete control. The top rope elbow misses and both guys are down. Vince is on the apron now and apparently they have to tag. Shane DDTs Shawn down and it’s off to Vince. Vince takes his belt off and whips Shawn’s back because he’s that evil. Shane throws in a garbage can and Shawn gets his head caved in.

Vince wants a mic and taunts God a bit. God walks out and Vince says come back. Vince declares that God has left the building, but Shawn hasn’t. He stands Shawn up and tries a superkick but the kick gets caught. Shawn makes his comeback and hits the forearm and nip-up. Shane misses a chair shot and caves in Vince’s head by mistake. It’s a forearm for Shane followed by an atomic drop and some clotheslines. Shawn’s top rope elbow hits and both McMahons taste superkicks.

Shawn, ever the genius, doesn’t go for a cover but rather goes to the floor for a table. Make that two tables. My fellow Lexingtonians (yes that’s what they’re called) want ladders because much like other wrestling fans, they’re greedy people. Both McMahons are put on tables and here comes the ladder. It’s the jumbo sized ladder too. Shawn climbs up but has to dive on the invading Spirit Squad. That was incredible live but the camera didn’t get a great shot of it. The main problem was you didn’t see them until the dive so Shawn looked crazy.

The numbers catch up with Shawn and he gets beaten down by the five male cheerleaders who are currently tag team champions at this point. They throw Shawn back in and get the McMahons off the tables. The Squad takes Shawn into the ring and hit their finisher on him, which is them all picking him up at once and dropping him through a table. Vince gets the pin. JR calls this BS but the uncensored version.

Rating: D. The match was boring, but JR put it best during the match: this was uncomfortable. On top of that, the whole thing was stupid. This would set up a feud that ran for the whole year which didn’t work all that well either. It did lead to the reformation of DX which was pretty interesting, but dang this first part was torture to sit through. Not a horrible match but dang this was a chore to sit through.

And another rematch from Summerslam 2006.

D-Generation X vs. Vince McMahon/Shane McMahon

Vince and Shane head back to the entrance and send out the Spirit Squad as the first line of defense. Superkicks, backdrops and Pedigrees abound, getting rid of the Raw Tag Champions (the cheerleaders) in less than fifteen seconds. DX beat the Spirit Squad about five times in this whole thing but never won the tag titles. I never quite got why.

Next up are Kennedy, Finlay and Regal who do a bit better thanks to Finlay’s club but only last about 40 seconds. Now it’s Big Show to really challenge DX. Why all nine guys didn’t come out at once is never really addressed. The three midcarders take down HHH on the floor, leaving Shawn alone with Show. A cobra clutch backbreaker and the Log Roll knock Shawn silly as HHH is destroyed. Now the McMahons come to the ring and there’s the opening bell.

Vince slams Shawn down to start and it’s off to Shane for some dancing. He peppers Shawn with left jabs and hits a big right cross to puts him down. HHH is still down from a chokeslam through the announce table. Vince comes back in for something like a clothesline to the ribs and fires off elbows in the corner. A double back elbow puts Shawn down and HHH is finally remembering what planet he’s on. Shane of course slides to the floor to knock him down again, which is pretty smart.

Shane hits a backbreaker on Michaels and it’s back to Papa McMahon. There’s a double elbow but HHH is on his feet. Shane, again, wisely baseball slides him onto the other announce table. The McMahons bust out the Demolition Decapitation and the Hart Attack of all things, complete with signature Bret pose. They even hit a bad looking Doomsday Device but Shawn pops up at two and fires off right hands. Vince sneaks in with a shot to the back and down goes HBK again. Shawn scores with a double clothesline and everyone is down.

HHH is back up on the apron and actually takes the hot tag. Adrenaline kicks in and house is cleaned with a high knee and a neckbreaker to Shane. Clotheslines take both McMahons down and there’s a spinebuster for the young one. Shawn drops the elbow on Vince and hits a Cactus Clothesline to take Shane out.

Here’s Umaga to superkick Shawn and hit a quick Samoan Spike to HHH. This brings out Kane as the guy DX was talking to so he can fight Umaga to the back. Shane can only get two on the Game so Vince punches the referee. Shane loads up a Coast to Coast but Shawn superkicks him out of the air. A trashcan shot to Vince sets up Sweet Chin Music and the Pedigree for the pin.

Rating: B-. That’s about as high as they can get and there’s nothing wrong with that. The booking was as smart as you could get since there might not be two guys in the company that could be a legitimate threat to DX in a straight match so making it eleven on two to start was all they could do. The rest of the match is your usual tag team formula match and that’s all they could do here. The fans popped for the ending too so I can’t complain much.

Time for another feud, this time with fallout from Wrestlemania XXIII. From Backlash 2007.

ECW Title: Vince McMahon/Shane McMahon/Umaga vs. Bobby Lashley

Lashley is champion and whoever gets the fall is champion. Shane starts us out and is promptly destroyed. Lashley throws him around and suplexes him down before throwing him to the floor. Bobby wants Vince but Shane staggers back in instead. Off to Umaga who is sent into the corner but Lashley charges into a boot to the face. Well foot tape to the face but you get the idea.

Bobby sends him into the corner again and hits some clotheslines including a big one to send him over the top rope and out to the floor. Down goes Shane so there’s only Vince left on the apron. Instead Shane gets back in and takes a delayed vertical suplex. Umaga tries a headbutt but it hits the Boy Wonder by mistake. Shane finally does something effective by pulling the top rope down to send Bobby out to the floor.

Umaga sends Lashley into the steps as we continue the filler until Vince comes in. Lashley is in trouble but Vince still doesn’t want the tag. Shane puts on a Fujiwara Armbar followed by a hammerlock with knees. Off to a cross armbreaker/triangle choke hybrid which Lashley can’t quite power out of. Scratch that as he hits a kind of powerbomb for two. Back to the Samoan for a headbutt followed by a bearhug.

Bobby escapes for a second but gets caught in a Samoan Drop to put him down again. Shane hooks a camel clutch for longer than should be humanly possible to survive. Lashley gets out of that too with pure power and hits a Torture Rack backbreaker (Shock Treatment ala Abyss) to Shane. Umaga gets speared and it’s a Dominator to Shane but Vince finally comes in for the save. In the confusion Shane gets a belt shot in for two from Vince. Vince is ticked off now and brings in Umaga for a top rope splash. That gets two for Vince as well so Umaga does the exact same thing again to give Vince the title.

Rating: C. This was fine I guess but it would start a huge ordeal with ECW fans saying that Vince was killing the legacy of ECW. You know, because it was SO healthy after guys like Big Show was champion and we got a single ECW Rules match a week if we were lucky and guys like Matt Striker and Elijah Burke and Mike Knox and Test were featured on the show every week. Lashley would get the title back in a month or so before the title fell into the midcard level it would stay at until it was axed.

A match that I still defend, from Wrestlemania XXVI.

Bret Hart vs. Vince McMahon

Vince says he’s bought a lot of lumberjacks: the Hart Family (including the Hart Dynasty), with the idea being that they all hate Bret just like Vince does. Also Bruce Hart, Bret’s brother, is guest referee. Bret asks his family if they all agreed to this and says they must have all gotten paid up front. If there’s one thing he’s learned from Montreal, it’s that there’s nothing sweeter than a good double cross. Tonight, the Harts are united because they came to Bret and agreed to sucker Vince in.

Bret pounds away to start and stomps away in the corner before sending Vince out to the lumberjacks for a beating. Natalya hits a HARD slap (Striker: “Best of luck in your future endeavors.”) and the beating is on. The Hart Dynasty hits a Hart Attack to the floor as Bret looks on approvingly. Back in and Bret goes after the leg which knocks Vince back to the floor. He finds a wrench or something from somewhere which sends the Harts away.

Back in and Bret knocks it away from McMahon before picking up the pipe. Seven shots with that look to set up the Sharpshooter but instead Bret hits him with the pipe a few more times. There’s a hard kick to the balls and a few more for good measure. Natalya: “MAKE EM BLEED!” A chair is sent in and Bret takes a seat. Vince slowly gets up so Bret hits him with the chair EIGHTEEN TIMES and it’s the Sharpshooter for the submission.

Rating: A+. I said that when I first did this and I say it here. Now while I shouldn’t have to explain this, I will anyway because a lot of people are slow. Am I saying it was a match on the level of say Shawn vs. Razor? Of course not. I’m saying it’s the perfect match for what it was supposed to be. This was Bret DESTROYING Vince for a long time and doing it as well as he could given his condition. If you thought it was going to be anything but that and Vince tapping to the Sharpshooter, you completely missed the point of this match.

We’ll wrap it up with Vince’s last match to date which shocked everyone. Raw, October 8, 2012 and it’s not really a match but it’s close enough.

Vince McMahon vs. CM Punk

Vince comes out for the match but Punk jumps him on the way to the ring and beats the tar out of him before the bell. Vince spears him down but Punk beats him in the head. The high kick puts Vince down and I don’t think the bell every rang. They head to the floor and Punk puts on a headset. “WHAT A MANUEVER!!!” I laughed out loud.

Vince sends Punk into the post after escaping the GTS. He sends Punk FLYING over the announce table and grabs a mic. Vince DIVES OVER THE TABLE and beats up Punk! He rams a chair into Punk’s crotch and we head back inside. Vince is bleeding from the eye but he grabs a kendo stick. I think Vince’s ear is bleeding also. Punk bails and tells Heyman to bring the title, but Vince stops him and lays out Heyman with a shot to the head. Vince gets the title and stands in the ring with it and the kendo stick, challenging Punk to come fight him.

Punk finds a kendo stick and gets in. They BEAT THE TAR OUT OF EACH OTHER with the sticks and Vince knocks the stick out of Punk’s hands, sending Punk to his knees to beg. Punk hits Vince low and beats on him with the sticks. He loads up the GTS but FEED ME MORE hits and the fans LOSE IT.

Punk runs but Cena comes out and sends Punk back in. Ryback kills Punk with the clothesline but Punk escapes Shell Shock. Punk bails and Vince gets the mic. He says it’s either Punk vs. Ryback or Punk vs. Cena in the Cell. If Punk doesn’t decide, Vince makes up his mind for him. Punk is TERRIFIED to end the show. This wasn’t a match but man it ROCKED.

He’s one of the best villains of all time and will still do whatever he needs to do on camera. His matches weren’t any good but it was all about the build instead of the matches anyway. To be fair, the matches weren’t the worst in the world and considering that it’s the boss out there, all can be forgiven. He’s hard not to like at least a bit despite being totally evil.

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and pick up my new book of on the History of ECW Pay Per Views at Amazon for just $3.99 at:

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