Survivor Series ’95

No Disqualification
WWF Championship
Diesel (c) vs. Bret Hart
Diesel has been WWF champion for a year. His only interesting feuds came against Bret, earlier in the run, and Shawn around ‘Mania. Bret is pissed off because Diesel never beat him. Diesel is pissed off because Bret is running around reminding people he’s the uncrowned champion. Diesel’s tactic is to overpower Bret, destroy him and finish quickly. Bret aims to buy himself time and distance himself but Diesel is relentless and aggressive in the early going. The no DQ stipulation allows Diesel to gleefully ignore the rules, especially outside the ring. Diesel using a chair is a receipt for the chair shot that Bret snuck into their last title match. It’s a demolition and Bret can barely defend himself. He has to grab the ropes at every opportunity to stop power moves and avoid the Jackknife. Bret’s comeback involves booting the knee, biting and choking. He’s survived Diesel’s abuse and now Bret, who’s better conditioned, can pick his spots. Bret was beginning to get a reputation for taking apart the leg in matches. He’d take a body part and work on it and work on it and work on it. Some people might find that dull, but at least it makes sense. Bret again takes a slightly dirty approach and ties Diesel’s leg to the ring post. Diesel discovers when he stands up that he can’t dodge anything. He takes a nasty looking bump while tethered too. They screw up the block as Bret comes at Diesel with a chair. That cable certainly limits Diesel as a worker. Bret’s chair attack on the leg draws heat from the crowd who think he’s probably gone too far. In years gone by it’d be a heel turn. If Bret stuck to the basics, he’d be home free. But he tries to come off the top with the chair and that allows Diesel time to throw him off and then space to untie his leg. Diesel’s lack of mobility shows his dedication to selling. He tries for a Snake Eyes onto the exposed buckle, which is a clever combination of trademark moves and the environment. I approve. Bret counters it. Bret gets a diving bulldog with Diesel showing Ahmed Johnson exactly where he’s supposed to be standing for that spot. Shame he has to glance over his shoulder twice in the process. Peripherals, man! Use your peripherals. Despite being crippled, Diesel still manages to sidestep a pescado. The match makes Diesel look like a much smarter worker than he was a year ago, which goes to show he’s learned during his title run. We have a famous debut spot in this match. Bret, on the apron, takes a bump through the Spanish announce table. And that was the first of many, many Spanish announce tables to get annihilated on PPV. It being the first one, it’s special. Bret sells it as such. They don’t go moving monitors or any shit like that either. It’s a vicious and perfectly set up spot. Bret pretty much broke the table with his head. Diesel looks a bit weirded out by the whole thing and looks like he has mercy. Bret can barely stand and collapses as Diesel calls for the Jacknife. JR points out Diesel should just pin him. He tries for the Jacknife again, but Bret catches him with an inside cradle for the belt. Diesel starts laying out referees, which is wonderful stuff and then he starts unloading with Jacknife powerbombs. Mixed reaction for Big Daddy Cool as he stands over the fallen Hitman. He’d operate as a tweener for a few months before going full heel on Shawn Michaels after ‘Mania. And there are the shades of grey! The match is a bit slow-paced but it never deviates from a solid logical plan and the ending is tremendous. These little intangibles make the match marginally better than the Royal Rumble one.
Final Rating: ****¼

 

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