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2006: The Worst Year In WWE History

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Kondor View Drop Down
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    Posted: 14/January/2013 at 09:08
I am going to prove that 2006 was the worst year in the entire history of the W/WWF/E; including 1995 or any other year often cited as the worst ever.  

Rey Mysterio's Royal Rumble Win and Title Reign

Surely, the WWE was right to pay tribute to Eddie Guerrero after he sudenly passed away in November of 2005. I also think Eddie was worthy of getting inducted to the WWE Hall Of Fame that year. But pushing the Eddie memorial as long as they did, basically having a near year long funeral, was unnecessary. After entering #2 in the Rumble, Rey predictably went on to win, upset two better wrestlers in Kurt Angle and Randy Orton at Wrestlemania, and went on to be one of the weakest World Champions ever. With being a lower to mid carder since he came into WWE in 2002, Mysterio just wasn't dominant in the ring. It was obvious to any fan he got the Title soley as a tribute to Eddie. Appropriately enough, while Champion Mysterio would feud with another previous weak Champion, JBL.  

Shawn Michaels Wasted

The story of the 1997 Survivor Series screw job remained a hot story for years afterwards, and a Bret Hart return had been teased for parts of 2005 during Shawn's feud with Hulk Hogan. In early 2006, verbal in ring confrontations about the events of the 1997 Survivor Series took place between Shawn and Vince McMahon; which lead to Michaels fighting Vince McMahon in a Street Fight at WrestleMania 22. Out of aaaaaalll the people Shawn Michaels could have been facing, this was the biggest waste of the enormous wrestling abilities of "Mr. WrestleMania." 

Shawn later joined his old freind Triple H a reunion of DX, which I'll get into later, and would be even further wasted in a boring feud for much of that summer with DX dominating the Spirit Squad, including at SummerSlam. 

The Just Not The Same Reunion of DX

Now, don't get me wrong, even as a big Hart Foundation fan I'll admit the original DeGeneration X of Shawn Michaels, "Triple H" Hunter Hearst Helmsley, Chyna, and Ravishing Rick Rude was awesome. With all their risque promos, sexual innuendoes, and games like in ring strip poker the original DX pushed boundaries like never before and was a major player in ushering in the attitude era. The later DX of Trips, The Outlaws, X Pac, and Chyna was great, too. But after 2000 DX split up and Hunter Hearst Helmsley went off on his own and later lead Evolution. 

By the time Shawn and Hunter reunited in 2006 to reform DX things just weren't the same. While the PG rating wouldn't officially be implimented for another two years, but viewers could tell early on this version of DX was much more clean and kid friendly. I do not mean at all to mock Christianity, but with Michaels by that time being a "born again Christian" he wouldn't do a lot of the antics DX used to. Dumping fake shit on the Spirit Squad just wasn't the same; and their skits with the McMahons "Vince likes cocks" just seemed dumb. To make matters worse, a reunited DX wouldn't even get the Tag Team Titles until 2009. 


Kurt Angle Leaving

Now, I was one of the people who did not think it was all that bad an idea to move Kurt Angle to ECW. Despite amateur origins, Angle could get down and dirty and work a roughouse match with the best of them; so it matched. However, Kurt was unhappy with the move. That, combined with Angle's long banged up body, lead to Angle's WWE departue.There are conflicting reports as to just why Angle left. Some reports stated that the WWE released Kurt because they saw his physical condition as a potential liability. Angle himself has stated he asked for time off. Either way, Angle and WWE parted ways; and World Wrestling Entertainment lost of of their greatest performers ever. To add to that, before the years' end Angle would join TNA, engage in an epic feud with Samoa Joe, and do wonders to build TNA.  

Rob Van Dam's Reign and Momentum Cut Short

"The Whole Fucking Show" Rob Van Dam remained loyal to ECW throughout the 90's, being their longest reigning TV Champion. The moment ECW ended in 2001, Rob Van Dam was seen as the sport's hottest free agent. After he showed up in the WWF as part of the invasion storyline in mid 2001, many saw Van Dam as a future World Champion. 

In 2006, it looked like Rob Van Dam would finally get to the top as he won the Money In The Bank Ladder Match at WrestleMania 22 and announced he would cash in his Title shot at ECW's One Night Stand against WWE Champ John Cena. The match itself is perhaps one of the most one sided crowds ever next to Cena vs CM Punk at the 2011 Money In The Bank. RVD had finally won a World Title and was awarded the ECW Title also. As like one of his signature moves, RVD was on a roll like thunder. However, later that summer Van Dam and his friend Sabu were busted for drugs. WWE punished him by having him lose the WWE Title to Edge and the ECW Title to Big Show, and then subsequently suspended him. His reign could have been so much more. I know that some here do not like Van Dam in TNA today; claiming he packs it in and virtually sleepwalks through his matches; but there is no doubt Van Dam was a lot more on top of his game in '06. Perhaps this was his turning point. 

The Spirit Squad

No, I am not trying to pick on Dolph Ziggler, as in retrospect Nicky was probably the most talented member of the Spirit Squad. But the faction was dull, their act was just stupid, their skits were boring, most of them were mediocre in the ring, and their Tag Team Title reign was way too long (even though DX plowed through them.) The whole thing was just fail. 

All in all 2006 was the worst year in WWE history. 


Edited by Kondor - 14/January/2013 at 11:29

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Collywog3:16 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 11:45
Maybe 2006 was not a great year for the WWE if you look back on the events you just mentioned, and you do bring up some good points and the article is definitely well thought out and I appreciate the time you took out to write it...But...with that being said, I have to overall disagree.

2006 being the worst year in WWE History is a bit of stretch, I mean there has been alot more worse things happen to the company in a year long span then just a luck-luster title reign and  a reunion gone wrong.

If I I had to pick the worst year in WWE History, I'd say around 1997.

Now, I know they had the infamous Montreal Screw Job at Survivor Series, and the beginning of the Attitude Era, but that came in later few couple of months, the actual year itself in a whole was terrible in terms of a quality.

Lets look at the facts...

-The Monday Night Wars: 
Through out the entire year the then World Wrestling Federation was getting their asses almost handed to them on sliver plater by WCW Nitro's in the ratings, which almost caused the WWF to go under completely! When you look at the last time the Raw won the ratings was June 10, 1996 and the next time they would win would not be until On April 13, 1998!

That means they lost every single Raw of 1997 to Nitro...and rightfully so, as the WCW had probably had a better talent roster at the time, and not to mention the nWo angle dominating the scene! 

So that along could be a very good argument as to why 1997 was the worst year in WWE History! Anyway, there's more...

-Stone Cold Steve Austin's Neck Injury: 
Now, I know this turned out to be a blessing in disguise as far as the eventual rise in popularity The Texas Rattle Snake received after the Pile-Driver Incident at Summer Slam, but it could've ended so, so much worse!! 

There next big top star could've been out of action permanently! And thats the bottom line!

-Shawn Michaels losing his smile: 
After his victory at Royal Rumble, The Heart Break Kid was set to defend the Championship in a re-match againest Psycho Sid at In Your House. 

But, as luck would have it, The Boy-Toy was both mentally and physically broken during this point time. He had been the back bone of the company for almost of the entire 1996 and the pressure had caught up to him, plus the numerous injuries that have piled up during his career, he just couldn't handle it all at once...

He then surrendered the WWF Title of special of Thursday Raw Thursday, forcing him out of the ring until around June of that year..that means he missed out on WrestleMania 13, which made us had to sit through a horrible main-event between The Undertaker and Sid...


So with thoughs points, I believe 1997 could be a candidate for the Worst Year in WWE History! 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Raven Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 11:54
2006 was pretty shit, but it had bright spots.

The rise of Umaga.
Wrestlemania 22 (which was a great Wrestlemania with a solid card all the way through, horribly underrated).
(Just for Kon) Khali's title reign.
Half of Kane and Big Show's awesome Tag Title reign.
The rise of Edge.
A brilliant Elimination Chamber match.
The rise of Mickie James.

And so on. A lot of good shit that year, and one of their better years for making stars, even though many of them didn't pan out long term (Umaga, RVD etc.)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kondor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 12:02
Thank you for the response, Collywog. However, I can't see how a year that built up directly to the peak of the attitude era as being "the worst." 

The wrestling itself in the WWF in 1997 was outstanding regardless of the ratings. The Bret Hart vs Steve Austin feud was in full effect and they had a great series of matches (including the overlooked In Your House in April of that year), Austin was well on his way to the top, barring the injury Austin also had a great feud with Owen, The Undertaker had a good reign as Champion, The Undertaker had awesome feud with Shawn Michaels (including the first and one of the best Hell In The Cell matches ever), 1997 had one of the best Royal Rumbles ever, Mick Foley became a lot more interesting as Cactus Jack, as I said in my initial post DX was formed, The Bulldog and Owen were an underrated tag team, The Legion Of Doom returned and had a good run, The New Age Outlaws were formed, the product got edgier and better (and I wouldn't just say that happened towards the end of the year, the first half of '97 was more edgier than '96.) 

You do bring up valid points about negative things that took place in 1997. Shawn Michaels loosing his smile was dumb; and it is true that Austin was never the same after his injury. But as far as what I enjoy when I actually watch wrestling or other events in the WWF from that year, 1997 is great while I cringe at 2006. In my opinion the positives of 1997 far outweigh the negatives. 


Edited by Kondor - 14/January/2013 at 12:09

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Collywog3:16 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 12:18
No argument that 1997 definitely had its string points (Rise of DX, First Ever Hell in a Cell, Mick Foley's 3 Faces of Foley, Austin vs. Bret Hart...)

Actually, yeah, the positives do out way the negatives , haha! Smile  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ihatethatmonkee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 13:28
Originally posted by Kondor Kondor wrote:

I am going to prove that 2006 was the worst year in the entire history of the W/WWF/E; including 1995 or any other year often cited as the worst ever.  

Rey Mysterio's Royal Rumble Win and Title Reign

Surely, the WWE was right to pay tribute to Eddie Guerrero after he sudenly passed away in November of 2005. I also think Eddie was worthy of getting inducted to the WWE Hall Of Fame that year. But pushing the Eddie memorial as long as they did, basically having a near year long funeral, was unnecessary. After entering #2 in the Rumble, Rey predictably went on to win, upset two better wrestlers in Kurt Angle and Randy Orton at Wrestlemania, and went on to be one of the weakest World Champions ever. With being a lower to mid carder since he came into WWE in 2002, Mysterio just wasn't dominant in the ring. It was obvious to any fan he got the Title soley as a tribute to Eddie. Appropriately enough, while Champion Mysterio would feud with another previous weak Champion, JBL.  
 
i agree to an extent, i was more pissed that WWE didn't seem to want to pull the trigger on this, with Rey losing his Mania title shoot at one point. the whole "Eddie's in hell" stuff was deeply revulsive. i don't think it's fair to say that it was a near year long funeral, as Rey has still on occassion pointed up to the heavens for Eddie, moreso when involved in feuds with Chavo, or anyone involved with Vicki during her initial run. besides, the options for this storyline were limited; it was either Rey or Chavo, and it's a sign of how little support Chavo had even then that a non-relative was chosen, when a few weeks of building Chavo, and him being the main player to dedicate a win in the Rumble to Eddie could have achieved the same kind of fan support.
Originally posted by Kondor Kondor wrote:

Shawn Michaels Wasted

The story of the 1997 Survivor Series screw job remained a hot story for years afterwards, and a Bret Hart return had been teased for parts of 2005 during Shawn's feud with Hulk Hogan. In early 2006, verbal in ring confrontations about the events of the 1997 Survivor Series took place between Shawn and Vince McMahon; which lead to Michaels fighting Vince McMahon in a Street Fight at WrestleMania 22. Out of aaaaaalll the people Shawn Michaels could have been facing, this was the biggest waste of the enormous wrestling abilities of "Mr. WrestleMania." 


Shawn later joined his old freind Triple H a reunion of DX, which I'll get into later, and would be even further wasted in a boring feud for much of that summer with DX dominating the Spirit Squad, including at SummerSlam.
 
 
The Just Not The Same Reunion of DX

Now, don't get me wrong, even as a big Hart Foundation fan I'll admit the original DeGeneration X of Shawn Michaels, "Triple H" Hunter Hearst Helmsley, Chyna, and Ravishing Rick Rude was awesome. With all their risque promos, sexual innuendoes, and games like in ring strip poker the original DX pushed boundaries like never before and was a major player in ushering in the attitude era. The later DX of Trips, The Outlaws, X Pac, and Chyna was great, too. But after 2000 DX split up and Hunter Hearst Helmsley went off on his own and later lead Evolution. 

By the time Shawn and Hunter reunited in 2006 to reform DX things just weren't the same. While the PG rating wouldn't officially be implimented for another two years, but viewers could tell early on this version of DX was much more clean and kid friendly. I do not mean at all to mock Christianity, but with Michaels by that time being a "born again Christian" he wouldn't do a lot of the antics DX used to. Dumping fake shit on the Spirit Squad just wasn't the same; and their skits with the McMahons "Vince likes cocks" just seemed dumb. To make matters worse, a reunited DX wouldn't even get the Tag Team Titles until 2009. 
 
the only part of the whole HBK thing that felt weird to me was him agreeing to part-take in the backlash match against Vince and Shane, with his tag partner to be God. everything else, i didn't mind. the new DX at least got some mileage out of Jonathan Coachman, and both Shawn and Hunter looked to be enjoying themselves when they were out there.
to be honest, i still prefer this DX over the one that refused to put over Rhodes and DiBiase Jr a couple of years later.

Originally posted by Kondor Kondor wrote:

Kurt Angle Leaving

Now, I was one of the people who did not think it was all that bad an idea to move Kurt Angle to ECW. Despite amateur origins, Angle could get down and dirty and work a roughouse match with the best of them; so it matched. However, Kurt was unhappy with the move. That, combined with Angle's long banged up body, lead to Angle's WWE departue.There are conflicting reports as to just why Angle left. Some reports stated that the WWE released Kurt because they saw his physical condition as a potential liability. Angle himself has stated he asked for time off. Either way, Angle and WWE parted ways; and World Wrestling Entertainment lost of of their greatest performers ever. To add to that, before the years' end Angle would join TNA, engage in an epic feud with Samoa Joe, and do wonders to build TNA.  
 
personally, i still believe that WWE wanted Angle to have the time off, and it was Kurt who then, as now, could not step away, even for the betterment of his own health and wellbeing. he has admitted as much in interviews that he was addicted and dependant on painkillers and other drugs to even be able to get up everyday. i believe that putting him on ECW was a compromise by WWE management, to give him time to rest what injuries he had while they tried to get him into a rehab program.
 
thankfully, the 3 months he had to take off due to the no-compete clause, probably helped him be able to have those matches with Joe, and his signing and revealing on TNA Impact were certainly one of the highlights of the year, so for that reason, i cannot see why this is included as a reason for 2006 as the worst year in wrestling.

Originally posted by Kondor Kondor wrote:

Rob Van Dam's Reign and Momentum Cut Short

"The Whole Fucking Show" Rob Van Dam remained loyal to ECW throughout the 90's, being their longest reigning TV Champion. The moment ECW ended in 2001, Rob Van Dam was seen as the sport's hottest free agent. After he showed up in the WWF as part of the invasion storyline in mid 2001, many saw Van Dam as a future World Champion. 

In 2006, it looked like Rob Van Dam would finally get to the top as he won the Money In The Bank Ladder Match at WrestleMania 22 and announced he would cash in his Title shot at ECW's One Night Stand against WWE Champ John Cena. The match itself is perhaps one of the most one sided crowds ever next to Cena vs CM Punk at the 2011 Money In The Bank. RVD had finally won a World Title and was awarded the ECW Title also. As like one of his signature moves, RVD was on a roll like thunder. However, later that summer Van Dam and his friend Sabu were busted for drugs. WWE punished him by having him lose the WWE Title to Edge and the ECW Title to Big Show, and then subsequently suspended him. His reign could have been so much more. I know that some here do not like Van Dam in TNA today; claiming he packs it in and virtually sleepwalks through his matches; but there is no doubt Van Dam was a lot more on top of his game in '06. Perhaps this was his turning point. 
 
he only had himself to blame. he was massively over, but knew that Vince and co would be looking for any reason to halt his push. i saw it as no great loss, since the ECW faithful got to see what they wanted to, it pushed Edge further up and made him look, even if momentarily, more than a caretaker title holder.
 
fact is, even if WWE won't name him as such, he is the first guy to have named the date he would cash in his MITB briefcase, and did it when he said. i'm sure i can't be the only one who, when Cole was pushing Cena's naming of a date, saying it's never happened before, was growling at the screen, "yes it has, dickhead", and then wondering why exactly they weren't naming who else had done it before, just saying it had happened just once before.
 
i'm one of those people you mention about feeling the way i do about RVD today, but i will doth my cap to him for that year, no matter how much he let himself down, and others, by the end of it.

Originally posted by Kondor Kondor wrote:

The Spirit Squad

No, I am not trying to pick on Dolph Ziggler, as in retrospect Nicky was probably the most talented member of the Spirit Squad. But the faction was dull, their act was just stupid, their skits were boring, most of them were mediocre in the ring, and their Tag Team Title reign was way too long (even though DX plowed through them.) The whole thing was just fail. 

All in all 2006 was the worst year in WWE history. 
 
they were a dig at George W Bush, weren't they?
 
all in all, cannot disagree with you on any of the points about TSS, but there have been worse factions in WWE since that at least started out with masses of potential, so again, i don't think this one stable in 2006 means that year is the worst for wrestling.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote John The Baptist Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 15:48
I guess you guys forgot about 2004, where Brock Lesnar vs Hardcore Holly was considered an acceptable PPV main event and people like Mark Jindrak & Luther Reigns were pushed.

Plus you had some of the most dull title reigns in history, with Eddie, Benoit, Orton & HHH having pathetic runs. The PPV's were Sunday Night Heat standard too, look at how horrible Great American Bash 2004 looks on paper.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Raven Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14/January/2013 at 15:56
Mark Jindrak is the man though.

But yeah, 2004 was rubbish, and I would argue, as a fan of entertainment, that any year before about 1985 was a worse year than 2006.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Willy1225 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15/January/2013 at 01:00
Dont make me laugh, 2006 was far from the worst year for wwe. Hell I think 2007 was worse than 2006 and even 2007 is not a year Id term as the worst year of all time.
 
In 2006, I enjoyed the return of DX and I enjoyed them absolutely dismantling the Spirit Squad. I enjoyed the new ECW as that was the only year wwECW was really like ECW of old. Punk's rise in ECW that first year was fantastic. And we had Edge reach the main event and have stellar match after stellar match with everyone ranging from Mick Foley to Tommy Dreamer to RVD to Cena. Plus you had Rated RKO in all its awesomeness. Smackdown had Taker vs Kennedy which was alot of fun as well as London and Kendrick being great even in their weird masks. Oh and the Punjambi Prision match was so bad it was good. 2006 was not the worst year of wwe, not by a long shot.
 
Oh and Raven Khali's reign that only Kondor likes was in 2007. In 2006 all he did was own Taker every timme they wrestled
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote bigfloridapimp Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15/January/2013 at 02:40
Holly vs Lesnar for the WWE title was a very good match, as a Holly fan I was very pleased with the whole thing. It was well booked.
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