Welcome back to CM’s Fave Four. It’s a long overdue welcome back as I haven’t written one of these in about a year. It is WrestleMania season so I’d like to be more active writing here on TJR. I figured bringing back this column would be a quick and fun way to do that. Basically, I pick a topic and countdown my four favorite matches/moments/whatever from that given topic.
For the return of CM’s Fave Four I’ll be looking at a man that just returned to WWE, Shane McMahon. Shane, who was once looked at as the heir apparent to the WWE Throne returned to the company a couple of weeks ago and was slotted into a Hell in a Cell Match vs. The Undertaker at WrestleMania. While Shane is not a trained wrestler he has had more than his share of memorable performances in the ring. Shane McMahon was known for being an insane daredevil inside the ring to give the fans their money’s worth. Now, a father of three and 46 years old it’s hard to imagine Shane doing something balls out insane at WrestleMania but I’m sure he has something up his sleeve.
Shane was back on Raw this week so let’s take a look at my four favorite Shane O’Mac matches.
- Street Fight- Shane McMahon defeats Shawn Michaels via Submission (Saturday Night’s Main Event 3/18/06) (**3/4) (13:52)
There are a couple of reasons why this match ranks so high for me among Shane’s bouts. First, it features a man who is in my top four favorite wrestlers of all time (a column for another day) in Shawn Michaels. Secondly, this is the main event of the first Saturday Night’s Main Event in nearly 14 years. I’ve always loved the feel and concept of the original SNME back in the day so I was so excited when WWE brought it back. NBC pulled the plug on the revival after only a few episodes but I hope someday it makes it’s way back on the WWE Network. Lastly, it features one of my favorite “Holy Sh!t” moments of all time. HBK had a ladder setup in the ring with two tables setup on the outside. He then superplexed Shane off the ladder through the tables. When you’ve seen as much wrestling as I’ve had it’s hard for there to be a spot that genuinely makes your jaw hit the floor and this one did.
This match took place two weeks before WrestleMania 22 where Shawn Michaels was slated to face Vince McMahon. Vince was at ringside for this match and repeatedly got involved. Shawn thought he had the match won after hitting Sweet Chin Music but Vince pulled the referee out of the ring. With Shawn’s attention now focused on Vince, Shane hit a low blow on HBK and then locked in the Sharpshooter. Vince demanded the bell be rung and Shawn lost in what we’ll call “The Reverse Montreal”.
- Hell in a Cell Match- Shawn Michaels and Triple H beat Vince McMahon, Shane McMahon and The Big Show (Unforgiven 2006) (***) (25:07)
WrestleMania 32 won’t be Shane McMahon’s first trip inside “The Devil’s Playground” as he had this bout in 2006. This was the culmination of the feud that started with Shawn Michaels and Vince McMahon heading into WrestleMania 22. Shawn Michaels needed an ally in battling the McMahon men and he found one in an old pal and the original Degenerates of WWE reunited after eight years apart. The two duos battled through the spring and summer of 2006. The feud featured some great moments (the D-X parody of Vince and Shane) and some awful moments (pretty much anything with the Spirit Squad). D-X defeated the McMahons in a tag team match at SummerSlam but Vince and Shane weren’t done with the degenerate duo. They decided they wanted one more crack at D-X. This time it would be in a Hell in a Cell Match and with The Big Show as their partner.
I feel this match could have been a lot better if they chopped off about seven minutes. It certainly dragged at times which hurt the overall rating but there’s still a lot to like about this match. This match is exactly what Hell in a Cell was intended to be: a bloody blow-off to a long standing personal rivalry like the recent Undertaker/Brock Lesnar match or the one HBK and HHH had in 2004. Too often nowadays WWE just throws two guys in a HIAC match because they have a PPV to promote. This match makes you appreciate what HIAC is supposed to be.
Even with the numbers disadvantage, D-X still managed to bust open Shane and Vince in the first two minutes of the match after taking out Show with numerous nut shots. It didn’t take much longer for HBK and HHH wear the old crimson mask as Show was able to recover and use the Cell as a weapon to open up HBK. There was blood everywhere in this match. The story heading in was that HHH had an inner ear injury so he was sporting a bleeding ear on top of one of the best crimson masks you’ll see. Shane was taken out of the match after HHH put his neck in a chair and Michaels nailed him with a top rope elbow causing Shane to be spitting up blood as well as bleeding from the head.
This match was certainly not for the week at heart especially if you are one of Triple H’s daughters. There was a point in the match where their father (Triple H) was stabbing a screwdriver into their grandfather’s (Vince McMahon) face. That’s probably one home video they won’t be showing at Christmas.
The end of the match came after HBK hit Sweet Chin Music on Show and Show was knocked out hanging over the top rope so HHH did what a lot of guys wish they could do and that’s shove their father-in-law’s head up a giant’s bare ass. That was the insult and the injury came after Michaels connected with Sweet Chin Music on Vince, Triple H broke a sledgehammer over Vince’s back and pinned him to end the carnage.
- Love Her or Leave Her Greenwich Street Fight- Test pinned Shane McMahon (SummerSlam 1999) (**1/4) (12:14)
While this match is far from the best Street Fight you’ll ever see it’s a match and feud that I can easily relate to. The story going in was that Test and Stephanie McMahon had begun dating and Big Brother Shane wasn’t on board with that and he interfered in their relationship which led to this “Love Her or Leave Her” match. The stipulation was if Shane won then Test and Stephanie had to break up but if Test won then Shane couldn’t interfere in their relationship anymore.
I said that I could relate to this because I am the older brother to a sister and you do have a very protective watch over her especially in regards to them men she dates. Sometimes it’s irrational and sometimes it’s not. Sometimes you got to crack a few skulls and sometimes he earns your respect. It’s the way life goes.
The match was a lot better than it should’ve been given that Test wasn’t really good in the ring and Shane had only a couple of matches at this point in his career. Shane’s boys, The Mean Street Posse were seated at ringside in a couch drinking champagne which was hilarious to see. Test broke that up when he tossed Shane onto the Posse. The big spot in the match was when Shane dove off the top rope and nailed Test with an elbow through the Spanish announce table. The Posse kept interfering in the match until The Stooges, Pat Patterson and Gerald Brisco took out the Posse allowing Test to hit a top rope elbow of his own on Shane to pick up the win.
Given Test’s size and look Vince was probably very high on him. Why else would he have him in a storyline dating his daughter and beating his son? Test could never breakthrough as a top guy and sadly passed away in 2009.
- Kurt Angle defeated Shane McMahon (King of the Ring 2001) (****1/2) (26:00)
The 2001 King of the Ring emanated from the Meadowlands in New Jersey and occurred a few days after I graduated High School so I was given tickets as a graduation gift and what a gift it was. 15 years later this match is just as amazing as it was when I was sitting in the arena in awe over what these two men were doing.
The rivalry started after Shane McMahon interrupted Kurt Angle’s reenactment of his Olympic Gold Medal Ceremony. If that didn’t anger Angle enough, Shane cost Angle the King of the Ring Final earlier in the evening. This was Angle’s third match of the night.
Shane McMahon might not be a trained WWE Superstar but he always knew how to bring it in a big spot and when he’s in there with a machine like Kurt Angle, you get magic. There were so many incredible spots in this match and one that always stands out to me is when Shane went for a Shooting Star Press and got nothing but garbage can.
As amazing as this match was it made me cringe a few times. The most cringe inducing moment came when Angle tried to suplex Shane through the glass on the King of the Ring set and the damn glass didn’t break. I thought Shane broke his neck a couple of times with how hard he landed on the concrete. The thud of his skull hitting the floor could be heard throughout the arena. Angle finally did suplex him through the glass but now he had to get Shane back on the other side of the set so Angle tried to suplex him through the glass again but guess what? The glass didn’t break! Instead of trying to kill Shane with another suplex he just threw Shane through the glass. Angle had to get Shane back to the ring so he was put on an anvil cart and wheeled him back, as Paul Heyman said on commentary that was Angle’s third I, intelligence. Shane even made a comeback when they made it back to the ring but Kurt finished him off after he used a wooden plank to form a platform on the top rope and then Angle Slammed Shane off of it for the win after a 26 minute war. I tip my Yankees Cap to both men. It was an incredible, incredible match and one you should be searching on the WWE Network right now if you haven’t seen it already.
Why didn’t the glass break? Because they put plexiglass instead of sugar glass like it was supposed to be.
Those are my four favorite Shane McMahon matches. As you can see he was booked in a lot of gimmick matches to hide his limitations in the ring but as I said he sure knew how to deliver on a big stage which makes me believe he’ll have a memorable performance against The Undertaker at WrestleMania this year.
Be sure to comment and let me know what your favorite Shane McMahon matches are.
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