King of the Ring ’97
Arnold Furious: I have a soft spot for this show because I always remember it as the card where Shawn Michaels wrestled Steve Austin when they were both healthy. With Austin’s neck injury happening soon after and Shawn’s back going in early ’98, this was the only time it happened. Take what you can, that’s my motto (or is that the pirates motto?). Anyway, the show has pleasant memories because of that one match so I immediately volunteered myself for it when Volume #4 had shows up for grabs. I immediately regretted the decision after running through the card. The Michaels-Austin match is the sole reason to get excited about this show. It has a decent background to it. Shawn kept saving Austin from the Hart Foundation based on his own hatred for Bret. Austin wasn’t happy with being helped out as he felt he didn’t need it. They ended up teaming to win the tag titles from Owen and Bulldog in a fantastic match in May, so this is tag team champion against tag team champion. Shawn himself had been out of action with a knee injury since forfeiting the WWF title in January until that tag title match. This is his first major card after returning, while Austin is on a push to the moon.
We’re in Providence, Rhode Island. Hosts are Vince McMahon and Jim Ross. Lawler is absent because he is in the King of the Ring tournament.