Memories From The Park: When Lance Storm Was Born

It was on this day 39 years ago that the leader of the Storm Troopers was born. Here’s to you Lance!

I always enjoyed Lance’s work (partially because he hailed from Calgary…Alberta…Canada) and couldn’t help but feel a little sad for him when he retired from World Wrestling Entertainment without fully realizing his potential. Now don’t get me wrong, Storm had a tremendous career in ECW and WCW but his final run in WWE left a pretty bad taste in my mouth. Obviously that is more the creative team’s fault but, I dunno, some of the storylines they had him participate in (see: “boring” and erection storyline) were just downright bizarre. It’s almost like someone had it in for him. Hmmm.

But this is a day for celebration, so in honor of Lance’s birthday I thought I would share a pretty spectacular video which stars the birthday boy as well as Chris Jericho. It’s a “Thrillseekers” music video and while I am not sure of the exact date when this ran on Smokey Mountain Wrestling I am guessing it was around fifteen years ago. Jericho even talks about it in his book. Needless to say, I would much rather remember Storm in this light.

Memories From The Park: When WCW Officially Took The Plunge

We all heard the news that Vince McMahon purchased WCW one fateful Friday in March of 2001 but it was on this date seven years ago that it was all set it stone. The final episode of WCW Nitro aired on TNT and when the telecast opened with Mr. McMahon announcing that he “held the fate of WCW in his hands” the wrestling world officially turned upside down.

March 26, 2001 will probably go down as the most memorable night in wrestling history if only because it was (and probably will ever be) the only time two shows were simulcast on two different networks. Of course, we all remember Shane McMahon announcing he was taking over WCdubya at the end of Nitro and while it all sounded like a great idea at first, sadly, things didn’t really materialize as hoped.

It was a strange night in Panama City in which some wrestlers knew this would be their last moment in the sun while others would move on to bigger and better. And, wouldn’t you know it, Ric Flair delivered a most memorable promo before what was thought to be his final match ever. Of course, we’re now four days away from his latest retirement match and the Nature Boy is still chugging along.

Memories From The Park: When The Hammer Knocked Out Goes From His Knees

It was on this date seven years ago that Mark Coleman defeated Allan Goes via TKO at PRIDE 13. The win was Coleman’s sixth in a row but it kicked off a rough four fight stretch in which he lost three of his next four bouts. Although consider the fact that those defeats came at the hands of Fedor, Big Nog and Mirko and then it doesn’t sound as bad.

Coleman ended Goes in quite the original fashion in this one – from his knees but the highlight had to have been how Goes had no idea the fight was over and kept on chugging away long after the ref called for the bell.

Of course, for our MMA newbies out there, you can see Mark Coleman V. 2.0 (or is it 3.0?) this August when he faces Brock Lesnar at UFC 87. Can’t wait for that one…

And, by the way, the above photo is not from the Goes fight but rather from 10/21/06 when Coleman lost again to that Fedor character. Seeing his daughters react to the sight of their beaten father was one of the strangest/scariest/touching moments I have ever seen in combat sports.

Memories From The Park: When The Pacman Attacked Early And Often

In case you haven’t been paying attention, this weekend will mark the fifth-straight Saturday in which a highly-anticipated boxing match(es) will be contested. First came, Pavlik-Taylor II on 2/16, then Klitschko-Ibragimov on 2/23, followed by Marquez-Vazquez III on 3/1 and, finally, Haye-Maccarinelli/Maskaev-Peter on 3/8. We can also throw in Carlos Quintana’s shocking victory over Paul Williams on 2/9 which would then make this Saturday’s Manny Pacquaio vs. Juan Manuel Marquez fight the sixth entry in a most memorable 42 day span.

Nowadays, it isn’t common to see two fighters have a rematch several years after meeting for the first time but that will be the scenario when these two Super Featherweights clash four years after their infamous draw.

Today’s Memory takes us back to May 8, 2004 and, more specifically, the first round of Pacquaio-Marquez I. Watching this frenetic round, it’s a wonder how this even ended up a draw but you know how that goes.

Memories From The Park: When Muhammad Met Gorilla

Let’s forget about everything that happened on the RAW following No Way Out up until last night, ok? None of it occurred, it was all just a dream.

Last night’s Mayweather-Show segment – while not as good as the one that started it all – got me excited all over again for Wrestlemania. By now you know the gist: They pulled the double-turn, they gave Show some backup, Mayweather “injured” his arm and Shane’O Mac fell (which has to be a work simply because Leonard Ellerbe was the man who pushed him. Sure, he could have eased up a bit I have no doubt that it was part of the plan).

Every single person – from the huge guy wearing a cut-off t-shirt in PBF’s posse to Trevor Murdoch – did a tremendous job except for maybe Floyd. Once again, his delivery seemed a little too scripted but, at this point, I’m expecting nothing less so it doesn’t bother me anymore.

On that note, today’s inaugural edition of Memories From The Park takes us back to June 2, 1976, when the former Cassius Clay got physical with Gorilla Monsoon in Philly. It’s certainly interesting to watch the similarities between the way this angle was planned compared to Show-Mayweather. To the footage we go…