For my next old school review, I shall be bringing you an event which was at the height of the attitude era but also one event which has arguably one of the most famous matches in WWE history, The Undertaker vs Mankind inside Hell in a Cell. I haven’t watched this event through before, I have seen bits and pieces so I am really looking forward to watching it. So, here I go with my Old School Review of King of the Ring 1998…
A nice little opening package which is depicting the two big matches on the show, but it also gives an insight into the history between The Undertaker and Mankind which is great and something which today’s product is missing a little bit, the consistency and using history to your advantage. We are at ringside with Jerry Lawler and Jim Ross who are really hyping the event, specifically the main event. Anyhow, we are now off to our first match.
The Headbangers and Taka Michinoku vs. Kaientai
A last minute match added to the event, as outlined by JR but as Kaientai comes out, I notice how much heat they have generated amongst them which is really cool considering they are literally lower undercard wrestlers…they have a purpose, not like the superstars of today. The match starts off really quickly and the fans seem quite into this, which is also really refreshing. Really cool match to start off, with a great pace and chemistry with The Headbangers and Taka Michinoku picking up the win…actually quite impressed by this match, I really am.
Match Rating: 2.5 out of 3.0 Stars
We are now joined by Sable, who gets a really great reaction from the fans and Jerry Lawler who brings out Mr. McMahon with the stooges Patterson and Brisco. who ends up slapping Patterson after he gets a bit touchy feely with her. Anyhow, Vince now cuts a promo hyping the main event and the stipulations which are in place for the match but then cuts a promo on the audience about blaming parents for everything and how they’re failures, but also prepping them for Kane becoming the new WWE Champion.
King of the Ring Semi-final – Jeff Jarrett vs. Ken Shamrock
Jarrett comes out first to really weird country music but apt with the link to Tennessee, Jarrett in my opinion was always great upper mid card talent who could now be used in the role of ring general, something missed. Anyhow, he is going up against Shamrock and I’m not really what to expect here, because my recollection of Shamrock is pretty vague but it immediately comes across that he is very much a power moves person without the technical ability behind it. Shamrock picks up the win to advance to the final after making Jarrett submit to the ankle lock in a short and average match.
Match Rating: 1.5 out of 5.0 Stars
King of the Ring Semi-final – The Rock vs. Dan Severn
The Rock comes out first, to a tremendous amount of heat due to his role within the Nation, and is followed by Dan Severn who comes out to pretty much a silent reaction. JR seems intent on putting both men over, talking about their various accomplishments but the match begins quite slowly with a lot of technical wrestling. However, The Rock soon gets around this and starts using his natural charisma to direct the tone of the match, which is really solid but also very back and forth. Soon, outcomes The Nation which allows D’Lo Brown to attack Severn with the Lo Down allowing The Rock to advance to the finals in a satisfactory match.
Match Rating: 2.0 out of 5.0 Stars