Superstar Collection: Shawn Michaels

Shawn Michaels

October 23, 2012

MATCH #1: Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho, Judgment Day, 5.18.08

Jericho is the Intercontinental Champion, but the title is not on the line here. This has been the best feud in WWE in so many years. They start off with some chain wrestling, since Jericho hadn’t quite gone super heel yet. They both go for the legs, and Michaels puts on his weird version of the figure-four Leglock in the opening minutes. Michaels lands the first personal shot, a slap to the face, and it’s getting hot in there now. He is acting like a prick and Jericho is getting frustrated. Michaels now goes to work on Jericho’s left arm. Jericho makes a comeback and is able to knock Michaels off the top rope and tries a superplex. Michaels drops Jericho face-first instead, but then hits nothing but knees when he tries the flying elbow. Jericho now gets aggressive with Michaels. He tries the running bulldog but Michaels shoves him into the ropes and Jericho lands awkwardly. He soon recovers through and puts the Walls of Jericho on. Michaels reaches the ropes. They fight out to the apron and Michaels hits an awesome Sweet Chin Music to send Jericho to the floor. That’s a killer spot. Michaels doesn’t want to win that way, so he pulls Jericho into the ring and covers him for a two-count. Michaels hits the flying elbow but hurts himself in the process. He starts tuning up the band, but every time Jericho gets to his feet he falls back down again, and when he finally gets up he avoids the Superkick and lands the Codebreaker. That gets two, and moments later Michaels is able to put the Crossface on. Jericho reaches the ropes. He then tries the Lionsault, and Michaels tries to block but Jericho grabs his legs and goes for the Walls of Jericho, but Michaels rolls him up to get the pin at 15:53. These guys are so ridiculously good at this point it’s sick. The IC Champion looks very sad about the loss, while Michaels looks like he’s horribly balding on top. Jericho offers his hand, and they share a tenuous handshake.
Rating: ****

MATCH #2: D-Generation X vs. Legacy, SummerSlam, 8.23.09

Triple H and Ted DiBiase start the match. Just guess how that goes. DiBiase catches HHH with a boot and makes the tag to Cody Rhodes, who immediately gets hit with a “vintage knee.” Rhodes goes over to the DX corner and slaps Shawn Michaels in the face, demanding to face HBK. HHH complies with that request, and Michaels steps into the ring for the first time since losing to the Undertaker at WrestleMania XXV. Rhodes catches Michaels with another slap to the face to embarrass the legend. Michaels fires up but Rhodes is ready for him and unleashes some punches. The resilient HBK fights back with a Thesz Press. Michaels slaps Rhodes and goes for Sweet Chin Music, but Rhodes wisely avoids it. Back in the ring Legacy takes control and starts wearing Michaels down. Once again Michaels is able to fight back but DiBiase cuts him off. Legacy is looking good in the opening minutes of the match. Finally Michaels is able to make a tag and HHH is a house afire. HHH hits Rhodes with a spinebuster and then lets DiBiase have one as well. He goes for the Pedigree on DiBiase and Rhodes breaks it up, so Michaels clotheslines Rhodes to the floor. HHH then backdrops Michaels onto Rhodes. DiBiase blatantly kicks HHH in the nuts while the referee’s back is turned. Legacy now wears HHH down for a good long while and they keep Michaels at bay. After several minutes HHH is able to sidestep a charging DiBiase and dump him to the floor. Rhodes throws DiBiase back in the ring so he can get the tag, but HHH makes the tag too! Michaels is all over Rhodes but DiBiase sneaks in and drills Michaels with a Northern Lariat. HHH then initiates a brawl with DiBiase on the floor and hurls him into the crowd. Back in the ring Rhodes goes up top but misses a big elbow drop. Now Michaels goes up top but Rhodes knocks him down on his crotch. Michaels knocks Rhodes back down and tries the elbow drop but Rhodes gets his knees up! Rhodes covers for two. He goes for a tag but DiBiase is nowhere to be found. Instead Rhodes goes for the Cross Rhodes but Michaels counters to his Figure-Four Leglock. DiBiase makes it back in to break that up. HHH tries the Pedigree on DiBiase but Rhodes breaks it up. Michaels goes for Sweet Chin Music but Rhodes catches it and hits the Cross Rhodes. HHH breaks up that cover and finally hits the Pedigree on Rhodes. DiBiase grabs Michaels and this Dream Street. HHH and DiBiase take it to the floor and brawl over the announce table. Back in the ring Michaels and Rhodes struggle to their feet and Michaels hits a Sweet Chin Music from out of nowhere to get the pin at 20:02! That was tremendous tag team formula and veteran versus up-and-comer stuff with great crowd heat. In this case I actually think it was right to give DX the win, as the feud was going to continue and this gives Legacy reason to want a rematch, as they dominated a good part of the match. Legacy legitimately looked great and with this kind of performance against DX I’m surprised they have amounted to a whole lot of not much since then (especially DiBiase).
Rating: ***¾

MATCH #3: No Disqualification Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Kane, Raw, 3.22.10

Kane strikes first with a big boot. He continues on the attack, hitting a basement dropkick to the face for a two-count. Michaels can’t get on track here, as Kane is dominating him. Perhaps Michaels is distracted by his impending WrestleMania mach with Kane’s half-brother. Kane hits a side suplex for two. He goes up top for the clothesline but Michaels catches it and locks in the Crossface. Kane reaches the ropes. Michaels puts on an Ankle Lock and once again Kane reaches the ropes to break the hold. HBK stays on the attack, unleashing chops. He hits the flying forearm and nips up. Michaels goes up top and hits Hail to the King. He tunes up the band and the lights go out and the gong strikes. The lights come back on and Undertaker is in the! Undertaker delivers a Chokeslam! The lights go out again and Undertaker is gone. Kane covers but only gets two! He goes for the Tombstone but Michaels slips out and hits Sweet Chin Music to score the pin at 5:28. That was almost all angle, but it was a huge match to set up so I’m fine with it. The match was okay anyway.
Rating: **

MATCH #4: Streak vs. Career Match – Shawn Michaels vs. Undertaker, WrestleMania XXVI, 3.28.10

Michaels makes the throat slashing gesture at Undertaker, which angers the big man and away we go. Undertaker hits Snake Eyes and a big boot right off the bat, as they’re setting a pretty torrid pace. He tries a Chokeslam but Michaels blocks it. Undertaker then tries a Tombstone but Michaels avoids that too. Michaels almost hits a Superkick but Undertaker is able to duck that. Now Michaels wisely goes after Undertaker’s knee, which seems to be the weak spot. Undertaker comes back and knocks Michaels to the floor. It looks like he’s going to go for the tope but Michaels catches him with a shoulder right to the knee. Undertaker fights back and targets Michaels’ back, which was actually injured in a match these two had together back at Royal Rumble 1998. He hits the leg drop on the apron. Back in the ring Michaels puts on the Figure-Four Leglock and Undertaker reverses the hold. Michaels hits the flying forearm but when he kips up Undertaker grabs him and hits the Chokeslam! That only gets two. What a great spot. Undertaker goes for the Tombstone but Michaels wriggles out and puts on the Ankle Lock but it gets broken. Michaels clotheslines Undertaker to the floor and then tries the springboard cross body block but Undertaker catches him and hits the Tombstone! That’s what beat Jake Roberts at WrestleMania VIII. A doctor tries to tend to Michaels but Undertaker shoves him away and throws Michaels back in the ring for a two-count. Undertaker goes for the Last Ride but Michaels counters with the X-Factor for two. Michaels goes up top and tries the elbow drop but Undertaker gets his knees up! Undertaker grabs Michaels in the Hell’s Gate but Michaels gets a jackknife pin for two. Michaels gets up and nails Sweet Chin Music! Undertaker kicks out at two. Michaels tunes up the band but Undertaker catches it and this time hits the Last Ride but Michaels kicks out! Undertaker pitches Michaels to the floor and follows him out. He gets the Spanish Announce Table ready for the Last Ride but Michaels slips out and this Sweet Chin Music! Undertaker is laid out on the table and Michaels goes to the top rope and breaks the table with a Moonsault! Michaels rolls Undertaker back in the ring and hits another Sweet Chin Music but Undertaker kicks out! This is amazing. Michaels tunes up the band again but Undertaker grabs him by the throat for another Chokeslam! Undertaker picks him up and hits the Tombstone but Michaels kicks out! The straps come down and Undertaker goes to make the throat slashing motion but he stops, looking at Michaels crumpled beneath him. Michaels pulls himself up, clawing at Undertaker’s chest, and he makes the throat slash, asking for Undertaker to put him away, slapping him across the face. Undertaker obliges, hitting a jumping Tombstone Piledriver to end the greatest career of all-time at 23:59. Technically this was just a shade under last year’s match, but with the added drama of it being Michaels’ last match, and the brilliant finish that literally gave me goose bumps, I can’t think of a reason not to rate this as high as I can.
Rating: *****

Advertisements

About Jake Ziegler

I've been in love with the movies for almost 20 years. I follow the Oscars obsessively, and try to see as many movies a year as I can. I'll watch anything good bad or otherwise, and my life long dream job has always been to be a bona fide film critic. View all posts by Jake Ziegler

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: