3. The 2004 Royal Rumble Match
A good Rumble, that WWE have committed themselves to erasing from history, which is always super glaring because it’s a rumble that deeply entrenched in their rumble stats.
Chris Benoit starts the Rumble at Number One and wins the whole thing, which is something that’s only happened three times, WWE will tell you, when Shawn Michaels did it, when Edge did it … what’s the third time, you ask?
Haha says, WWE, Royal Rumbles are just fun to watch.
To be honest, you could put all of Chris Benoit’s matches on the list, the WrestleMania XX main event, the SummerSlam 2004 main event, all stripped from WWE’s guided tour of its own past with completely understandable reasons.
However, trying to delete the Rumble 2004 from a format history that constantly celebrates its many winners over and over again, that’s the biggest pain in WWE’s ass, which again, is a real shame, because, as a Rumble, it’s fairly brilliant.
2. Jeff Jarrett & Debra vs. Val Venis & Nicole Bass – Over The Edge 1999
Oh man. Ok, if we didn’t tell you which event this match took place at, you’d be quite right to furrow your brow and say, ‘I don’t even slightly remember that match even taking place’, but it did.
It took place at Over The Edge 1999, and this match has the very unfortunate distinction of being the first match to take place after the tragic accident that took Owen Hart’s life.
For those who don’t know, Owen was supposed to be lowered to the ring in his blue blazer gimmick, the harness gave way and he fell to the ring below, sustaining injuries that cost him his life.
WWE then made the completely wrong decision to continue on with the show, with this tag team match.
While that is terrible enough, it makes it much worse that WWE sent Owen’s real-life best friend Jeff Jarrett to the ring to wrestle right after the accident, including cutting a live backstage promo (which has since been removed from the network, along with any other footage of JR breaking the news of Owens passing) where Jeff looks down the camera, white as a sheet and says ‘Owen Hart, I’m praying for you buddy’ before having to talk about Debra’s breasts.
Jarrett was then sent through the curtain as Owen was wheeled past him on a stretcher, and this entire match is a ghoulish example of WWE ignoring obvious trauma in the name of an attitude that has plagued wrestling throughout the years of ‘the show has to go on.’ It really, really doesn’t.
1. Droz vs. D’Lo Brown – SmackDown (October 5, 1999)
Yeah. I mean, any anti-wwe rhetoric and the sensationalist title of this video to one side, this match will never be shown, and should never be shown.
And it’s not WWE’s fault, it’s no one’s fault, sometimes terrible accidents happen, and on October 5, 1999, a terrible accident happened, when Droz wrestled D’Lo Brown for a smackdown taping.
D’Lo couldn’t get purchase on Droz’s shirt, a powerbomb was botched, which resulted in Droz being paralysed.
Darren Drozdov has regained some use of his arms and upper body in the 20 years since the accident, and has publicly stated he holds no ill will towards D’Lo, but yeah, in amongst all the outrage and opinions and sarcasm and comment sections, this is a brutal industry, where the wrong thing can happen at any given moment and you occasionally have to take a moment to put some power on that.
The match itself was taped, will never air, with the only glimpse of it ever being broadcast being a shot in a don’t try this at home vignette, showing officials lifting the stretcher with Droz on it off the canvas, accompanied by the chilling words, careers ended in an instant.