Wrestling History

December 15th – On This Day In Wrestling History

TJR Wrestling

Our full On This Day In Wrestling History section can be found here.

1963 – Rikidōzan, one of the most famous stars in the history of Japanese wrestling, died at the age of 38 following an infection brought about from a stabbing by a Yakuza gang member a week earlier.

1977 – In the finals of the first All Japan Pro Wrestling Real World Tag League tournament, Dory and Terry Funk defeated The Sheik and Abdullah The Butcher in what is considered one of the greatest matches to take place in Tokyo, Japan.

1987 – The second ever Slammy Awards took place in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Rather than the awards themselves, the event is best remembered for for Vince McMahon’s cringe-some performance of ‘Stand Back’ live on stage.

1995 – At the Calgary Corral, the home base of Stampede Wrestling, an all-star card paying tribute to the late Stu Hart, patriarch of Stampede, took place. The main event saw WWF Champion Bret Hart face fellow Calgary alumni The British Bulldog.

1996 – ‘In Your House: It’s Time’ took place at the West Palm Beach Auditorium in West Palm Beach, Florida. No titles changed hands. In the main event, WWF Champion Sycho Sid defeated Bret Hart.

1997 – In Charlotte, North Carolina, Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart made his first appearance on WCW Television since signing for the company the previous month. His appearance on Nitro was to announce Hart as the special guest referee for the Starrcade match between Larry Zbyszko and Eric Bischoff later that month.

1997 – Vince McMahon cut a pre-taped promo on Monday Night Raw that announced WWE will be changing creative direction away from clear cut ‘good guys and bad guys’ and will be showing more attitude. Or more accurately, more Attitude. This show also saw the debut of the iconic new ‘scratch’ logo.

2000 – ECW taped the final ever episode of Hardcore TV from Elks Lodge in Queens, New York. The Dudley Boyz and Tazz, WWE contracted talent at the time, returned to the promotion for one night only to mark the occasion.

2001 – Russ Haas, brother and tag team partner of former WWE superstar Charlie Haas, was found dead at his home aged just 27.

2002 – WWE ‘Armageddon’ took place at the Home Depot Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Both of WWE’s major titles changed hands for the second PPV in a row. The WWE Championship was won by Kurt Angle after he defeated The Big Show. In the main event, Triple H won back the World Heavyweight Championship he lost to Shawn Michaels a month earlier at the Survivor Series.

The match was a Three Stages Of Hell match with Triple H winning the first fall (A street fight) and the third and final fall (a ladder match). In between those, Shawn Michaels won the second fall in a cage match. Also on the show, Booker T and Goldust won the World Tag Team Championship match in a four-way elimination match against Lance Storm & William Regal, The Dudley Boyz and Chris Jericho & Christian.

2013 – WWE unified their top two titles for the first time since 2002 when World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton defeated WWE Champion John Cena in the main event of the ‘TLC: Tables, Ladders And Chairs’ PPV. The match itself was a TLC match.

2019 – WWE presented ‘TLC: Tables, Ladders And Chairs’ from the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In the main event, The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane) successfully defended the Women’s Tag Team Championship against Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair in a TLC match. In another TLC match, Roman Reigns took on King (Happy) Corbin.

2021 – On an episode of IMPACT Wrestling, new AEW World Champion Kenny Omega attacked Rich Swann, and IMPACT Executive Don Callis signed the match for Hard To Kill in January where ‘The Cleaner’ would face IMPACT World Champion Swann. Also, more ‘paid for advertisements’ featuring Tony Khan and Tony Schiavone aired.

Notable Wrestling Birthdays: