On this day in 1998, we had the most memorable moment in a Hell in a Cell match. This moment was so memorable, It made us forget about the crowning of the King of the Ring for that year and Kane winning the WWF Championship in a first blood match.
The finals of the King of the Ring gave us Ken Shamrock vs. The Rock. Shamrock defeated Jeff Jarrett via submission to make to the finals, while The Rock had to get past Dan Severn to make it to the finals. Rock and Shamrock by this time had great chemistry in the ring. After multiple tag matches against each other, battling for the Intercontinental title, and the chair shot heard around the world(the way the chair shot was delivered was Shamrock’s Idea.), the 2 would meet again to be crowned as the King of the Ring. After 14 minutes of a hard hitting, back and forth match, Shamrock was able to lock in his ankle lock for the victory. Shamrock would go on to have reigns as Intercontinental and Tag Team champion after winning this tournament.
The first blood match for the WWF title at the time between Stone Cold and Kane was full of drama. You have Stone Cold delivering a shot to Kane’s head with the WWF title before the match started. Both men were using any and everything they could get their hands on to win this match. At one point, the cell from the match before theirs, to be discussed next, was lowered and Kane used it to try to choke Stone Cold out. Like most pay per views in the 90’s, WWE had to end the show with some drama to keep you invested in the storylines and make you watch Monday Night Raw to see what happens next. The drama inserted in this match was having Mankind come out to try to help Kane defeat Austin. It was a miracle to see Mankind walking after what he went through, let alone having the ability to even be a factor in this match. This drew the Undertaker out to “even” the playing field, but he hit Austin with a steel chair causing Austin to bleed and lose his title. Prompting Stone Cold to come out and ask for a rematch the next night on Raw.
Last, but not least ,we get to the match that we all remember King of the Ring 98 for. The Hell in a Cell match between Mankind and Undertaker. This was the match before the main event, but this was the talk of the show after it was done. This was Undertakers second time in Hell in a Cell, previously facing Shawn Michaels, and this was Mankind’s first time in. It has been well documented now that prior to this match, Mankind was pushing to get pushed off the cell and Undertaker was against it at first. Mankind wanted to do this so that he can deliver a memorable moment to live up to the first Hell in a Cell match. Not on ly did he deliver on this, I think it is fair to say it is one of the most memorable moments in all WWE history. Before the match could even start, Mankind climbs to the top of the cell, calls Undertaker up to follow him, just to get pushed off of it. He is then carried out in a stretcher, hops off and comes back to the ring to continue the match. Of course, being the man that he is, Mankind doesn’t go into the ring to start a traditional match, he climbs back up to the top of the cell just to take a chokeslam through the roof of the cell!
After all of this and losing the match, he still has the strength to walk back down to the ring and interfere in the Austin and Kane match! I remember watching this PPV as a kid thinking Mankind was not right, but he earned my respect and I am sure he earned the respect of millions of fans around the world too. This man was willing to put his body and what he does for a living on the line just to entertain the fans. A moment that will always be etched in the minds of fans for years to come, a moment that launched a hall of fame career for Mick Foley.
This was King of the Ring 1998.