Aaron Wood
This Week In WWE Vintage Collection History: The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Gabriel, The Rated-R Broski Star, Macho Man Sheamus Savage And Andre The Cena
By Aaron Wood
Dec 11, 2011 - 2:45 PM

Mean Gene opened the show fully explaining the concept of the Inspiration series even though we're now three weeks in, noting that we didn't want to pmiss the final one, but he first threw it to the master of the 450 splash, Justin Gabriel. Gabriel's pick was Shawn Michaels, although his explanation was as short and sweet to the point where Gabriel's reasoning amounted to nothing more then "He was the best at everything he did".

This sent us to an episode of Prime Time Wrestling that on October 5th 1992, although taped on September 22nd, in Brandon Manitoba, as HBK was set to take on The Birdman, Koko B. Ware. Te announcers for this match were Gorilla Monsoon and Reverend Slick. He joined things in progress as Shawn ducked a Ware dive out of the corner, before whipping him off the ropes and hitting a back elbow for a 2 count. A dropkick followed. Shawn worked him in the corner before putting on a chinlock.

Koko got out of it and scored a small package for a 2 count, but it didn't keep Shawn down and Michaels came right back with a backbreaker. He went up top and hit a fist drop for a 2 count. Ware blocked a charge and began a comeback. However, he missed a charge to the corner and HBK hit the "reverse thrust kick" (Sweet Chin Music, albeit a more rudimentary version) for the win.

Our next person up for a selection was Zack Ryder as he inevitably chose Edge. He wasn't the biggest guy, but he always gave 100%, had the best matches on the card and was funny and charismatic. It was Gene who noted that Edge used to lead Ryder as we sent it to a rare pre-2011 reunion for Edge & Christian as we went to the WWE RAW of March 21st 2005, as Edge & Christian teamed up to take on Chris Jericho and Shelton Benjamin.

Our next man was the Great White, Sheamus. Gene, in his "Up Next" spiel before the break, not only dropped a "fella" on us, but also, when calling Sheamus the Celtic Warrior, he pronounced Celtic in the way that us Scottish people do, saying it as "Sell-tic" not "Kel-tic". Which was nice.

Anyway, after the break, Gene, in the studio, set up Sheamus's pick, noting that since his debut, Sheamus had wowed with his power and underestimated agility, as well as being one of the most recognisable Superstars ever, thanks to his white body and red hair. Anyway, Sheamus said that growing up in Ireland, the man who stood out most was Macho Man Randy Savage. He picked up his athleticism and was the best talker he'd ever seen.

This sent us to Prime Time Wrestling once again, and indeed 1992 once again as Randy Savage going up against "Terrific" Terry Taylor in a match that aired on December 14th and taped on November 23th. The match also appeared on the "Wrestlefest 93" VHS release, which is where this video comes from.

In hinting at the final selector , rather than seeing clips oft them, we saw the opening signature to WWE's programming, just so the person wasn't given away. Back from the break, Gene said he had enjoyed hearing about the inspirations, but the final Superstar he'd hear form is the one and only John Cena. But just who would he pick. As it goes, it was Andre The Giant. If you had asked the 9-year old Dr. Thuggypants, he'd have told you Hulk Hogan, but Because he's in TNA and on our shitlist so you aren't getting him on TV ever after being in the business for so long now and learning how impactful he was, Cena thinks he was the best of all time, and would have liked to have a match with him.

We took it to Madison Square Garden on July 25th 1988 as Andre faced off with Hacksaw Jim Duggan in a lumberjack match.

Gene said Andre picked up a hard-fought victory there before himself pondering a Cena vs. Andre match, wondering if Cena would actually be able to hit the Attitude Adjustment on the Giant. Gene noted this was the end of the Inspiration series, although he didn't suggest a theme for next week in signing off.

On the commentary for the match we saw, Gorilla & Slick agreed it was only a matter of time before there was gold around HBK's waist. It would come sooner than they probably even though, as 6 days after the match aired on TV, Shawn won the IC Title from British Bulldog at a SNME taping, a match that aired on November 14th. He faced Bret Hart for the WWE Title at the 1992 Survivor Series, but lost. He'd also soon lose Sherri as his manager and start a feud with the returning Marty Jannetty in the coming months after.

Koko B. Ware, who was part of High Energy with Owen Hart would make their only PPV appearance at that same Survivor Series, losing to the Headshrinkers in the opener. The team soon disbanded thanks to an Owen knee injury, with Koko floating around as a jobber until he was released in 1994.

The 2005 match from RAW came only a week or so form the first ever Money In The Bank ladder match at Wrestlemania 21, in which all four men here took part. Edge, of course, won that match. While Edge would wait until the following February to cash his briefcase in, in the meantime he started the storyline that would end up propelling his career to that of tippy-top main eventer, when Edge was paired up with Lita thanks to their off-screen affair becoming public knowledge and Matt Hardy's return.

After MITB, Christian started a mini-feud with John Cena when Cena was drafted to RAW as the first pick in the lottery, thanks to some segments done earlier in the year. He got a title shot, being part of a Triple Threat match with Chris Jericho at Vengeance, although Cena retained the title. The following Smackdown, Christian found himself drafted over to Smackdown, debuting as a surprise participant in the new "Smackdown" Title match they had that night, although he lost to JBL (although that was rendered moot when Smackdown drafted World Champion Batista).

As for Jericho, he continued to feud with Cena beyond Vengeance. However, Jericho decided to leave the WWE and so after losing again to Cena at Summerslam, the next night on RAW, they had a "You're Fired" match with the loser getting pink-slipped, a match Jericho (of course) lost.

Shelton was the unluckiest of the bunch. The IC Champion would hold the title until June when Carlito was drafted to RAW and beat Benjamin in his first match on that brand (meaning Carlito had won titles in his debuts on RAW & Smackdown). Shelton would then not do much of note until the winter when he started the angle that saw his "Mother" brought in.

This match with Terry Taylor would be one of Savage's final matches as he became an announcer shortly afterwards when Monday Night RAW made it's debut in January 1993. He would, of course, still wrestle on occasion, even entering the 1993 Royal Rumble, but his WWE in-ring career was winding down.

Having returned to the WWE in September 1992 from WCW, TNA's own John Lauranaitis came in billed as "Terrific" Terry Taylor in an effort to move away from any memory of the Red Rooster gimmick that crippled his last spell with the company. However, he never got past being an enhancement talent this time either before spending a short time as an interviewer before leaving for WCW, once again, in 1993.

Andre was feuding with Duggan at this time thanks to Duggan knocking Andre out (with the 2x4) at a TV taping. However, in thier matches (mostly at house shows), such as here, Andre was the man who came out on top the vast majority of the time. Concurrent to this "every day" feud with Duggan, Andre & Ted DiBiase, as the Mega Bucks, were feuding with Hogan & Savage as the Mega Powers, with the four facing off in a tag match that main event that year's Summerslam.

As was seeming to start here, once Duggan's matches with Andre were over, Duggan became the US Patriot we all know and love, starting feuds with various folks, starting with Dino Bravo. They would end up on opposing teams at Survivor Series that year, with Duggan getting himself DQ'ed for using the 2x4 on Bravo.

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