|King of the Ring|
|Promotion||World Wrestling Federation|
|Date||June 25, 1995|
|Tagline(s)||"Guts & Glory"|
|King of the Ring chronology|
The 1995 King of the Ring was the third annual King of the Ring professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE). It took place on June 25, 1995, at the CoreStates Spectrum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The main event was a tag team match in which WWF World Heavyweight Champion Diesel and Bam Bam Bigelow faced Tatanka and Sycho Sid. Diesel won the match by pinning Tatanka. The main matches on the undercard were Bret Hart versus Jerry Lawler in a "Kiss My Foot" match and the King of the Ring Final as Mabel faced Savio Vega.
This pay-per-view is somewhat notorious among WWE fans as it is considered one of the worst ever pay-per-views produced by the company.
In a departure from regular protocol, the Savio Vega vs IRS match originally on Sunday Night Slam where the winner was added to the 8 man tournament, is included on the WWE Network feed of this show.
The main storyline going into the pay-per-view was the King of the Ring tournament itself. The first qualifying match took place at In Your House 1 where Mabel squashed Adam Bomb in the first round. The next First Round match took place on the May 15 edition of Raw, where Bob Holly defeated Mantaur to proceed to the Quarter-Finals. Razor Ramon proceeded to the Quarter-Finals on the May 20 edition of Superstars of Wrestling defeating Jacob Blu. Shawn Michaels was the next wrestler through to the Quarter-Finals, as he defeated King Kong Bundy on the May 22 edition of Raw. The next First-Round match took place on Superstars of Wrestling on May 27, where Kama defeated Duke Droese via Pinfall. At the beginning of the May 29 edition of Raw, WWF Intercontinental Champion Jeff Jarrett, along with The Roadie, cut a promo with Jarrett stating that he would defeat The Undertaker and advance to the Quarter-Finals of the King of the Ring tournament. Jarrett, however, was defeated by The Undertaker later in the night, with The Undertaker winning following a Tombstone Piledriver. Unlike Jarrett, The Roadie managed to advance to the Quarter-Finals, defeating Doink the Clown on the June 3 edition of Superstars of Wrestling because of a distraction from Jarrett at ringside. Owen Hart faced Davey Boy Smith on the June 5 edition of Raw (taped May 14, 1995 at In Your House 1) in the final First-Round match. The match, however, went to a fifteen-minute time-limit draw. Because of this, neither man proceeded to the next round, and a match between Yokozuna and Lex Luger took place on the June 12 edition of Raw. Yokozuna won the match via countout after performing a legdrop on the arena floor. Even though all of the places for the Quarter-Finals were now filled, Razor Ramon suffered a legitimate rib injury suffered at a House show on June 9 in a ladder match against Jeff Jarrett meaning he could no longer compete in the tournament. As a result, the final Quarter-Final place was decided moments before the pay-per-view aired.
As well as the annual King of the Ring tournament heading into the event, there were two other major feuds heading into the PPV. The main feud was between WWF Champion Diesel, Bam Bam Bigelow, Tatanka and Sycho Sid. The feud began after WrestleMania XI, and carried on into In Your House 1, where Diesel faced Sid for the WWF Championship. Diesel was set to retain the title after performing a Powerbomb on Sid, but Tatanka interfered and kayfabe attacked Diesel. This resulted in Diesel retaining the championship via disqualification. The following night, on the May 15 edition of Raw, Ted DiBiase (Sid's and the Million Dollar Corporation's manager) proposed that Diesel, along with Bigelow should face DiBiase's team of Sid and Tatanka. In the main event, Bigelow was set to face Irwin R. Schyster – accompanied by DiBiase – when Bigelow announced that Diesel would be ringside in his corner for the matchup. Diesel chased DiBiase in the early stages of the matchup, which Bigelow won via pinfall. DiBiase returned to the ring after the match with his enforcers Sid and Tatanka. On the May 22 edition of Raw, Shawn Michaels returned from a legitimate injury received from Sid on the April 3 edition of Raw. Michaels defeated King Kong Bundy, who had DiBiase in his corner throughout the contest. After the contest, Bigelow and Diesel came out to congratulate Michaels on the victory. During this feud, Diesel suffered a legitimate elbow injury, but was able to compete at King of the Ring. To explain the injury, footage was shown on the May 29 edition of Raw of Sid performing a Chokeslam and Powerbomb onto Diesel at In Your House 1. Because of Diesel's injury, this storyline never got any further buildup until the actual pay-per-view.
The other main feud heading into King of the Ring was between Jerry Lawler and Bret Hart, which began two years earlier at the 1993 King of the Ring. At the previous pay-per-view, In Your House 1, Lawler defeated Hart after outside interference from Hakushi and his manager Shinja. On the May 22 edition of Raw, Hart confronted Lawler at the announce table and demanded a rematch. Lawler accepted and added in a stipulation that the loser must kiss the winner's feet. To prepare for this, Lawler spent the next few weeks walking around stables barefoot in horse manure and not washing his feet at all until after he beats Hart. On the June 10 edition of Superstars, Lawler defeated Aldo Montoya and then forced him to kiss his foot.
Following his victory, Mabel was given a major push as a main eventer, culminating in a match with Diesel at SummerSlam for the WWF Championship, which Mabel lost. Mabel would continue to feud with Diesel after this event, as well as continue his feuds stemming from the KOTR tournament (such as The Undertaker). He also briefly feuded with Yokozuna, with whom he had allied over the course of his feud with Diesel.
After being humiliated by Bret Hart, Jerry Lawler decided to recruit some help in the form of his personal dentist, Isaac Yankem, D.D.S., who would lose to Hart by disqualification at SummerSlam. The feud would finally end when Hart defeated Yankem in a steel cage match on the October 16 edition of Raw, in which Lawler was placed in a shark cage above the ring for trying to interfere.
Because the event was held in Philadelphia, many familiar faces from the ECW Arena were present. During the "King of the Ring" final between Mabel and Savio Vega, these fans began chanting "ECW, ECW" in protest at what they were watching unfold in the ring. This public support of ECW gained the attention of Vince McMahon, and he later booked small invasion-type angles involving the ECW promotion in 1996 and 1997 with the cooperation of Paul Heyman.
|1S||Savio Vega (with Razor Ramon) defeated Irwin R. Schyster (with Ted DiBiase)||King of the Ring qualifying match||5:01|
|2||Savio Vega (with Razor Ramon) defeated Yokozuna (with Jim Cornette and Mr. Fuji) by countout||King of the Ring quarter-final||8:24|
|3||The Roadie (with Jeff Jarrett) defeated Bob Holly||King of the Ring quarter-final||7:11|
|4||Kama (with Ted DiBiase) vs. Shawn Michaels ended in a time-limit draw||King of the Ring quarter-final||15:00|
|5||Mabel (with Mo) defeated The Undertaker (with Paul Bearer)||King of the Ring quarter-final||10:44|
|6||Savio Vega (with Razor Ramon) defeated The Roadie (with Jeff Jarrett)||King of the Ring semi-final||6:36|
|7||Bret Hart defeated Jerry Lawler by submission||Kiss my Foot match||9:20|
|8||Mabel (with Mo) defeated Savio Vega||King of the Ring final||8:32|
|9||Bam Bam Bigelow and Diesel defeated Sycho Sid and Tatanka (with Ted DiBiase)||Tag team match||17:35|
The tournament took place between May 14 and June 25, 1995. The tournament brackets were:
|King Kong Bundy||Pin|
|Doink the Clown||Pin|
1. ^ Owen Hart and Davey Boy Smith wrestled to a 15:00 Time Limit Draw on WWF Monday Night Raw on June 5, 1995 in a King of the Ring Qualifying Match. Yokozuna would defeat Luger the next week on Raw for the final slot in the King of the Ring Tournament.
2. ^ Savio Vega defeated Irwin R. Schyster in a match prior to the pay-per-view, to fill the vacancy left due to Razor Ramon's rib injury suffered on June 9 in Uniondale, New York in a ladder match against Jeff Jarrett. Ramon had qualified on May 16 in Danbury, Connecticut over Jacob Blu.
Other on-screen personnel
- Cawthon, Graham. "WWF 1995 Results". The History of WWE. Retrieved 2007-10-25.
- Keller, Wade (1995-06-25). "WWE King of The Ring Flashback – 15 yrs. ago (06–25–95): Mabel wins KOTR, Kiss My Foot, Diesel & Bigelow, Who's in WWE & TNA in 2010?". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 2010-12-04.
- King of the Ring 1995: Like Savio Vega? Here, have FOUR matches of his in one night!
- Gutschmidt, Adam (2004-09-01). "In Your House #1 Re-Revued". OnlineOnslaught.com. Archived from the original on 2008-12-05. Retrieved 2007-10-26.
- Podsiadlik, Kevin. "Monday Night Raw: May 15, 1995". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on May 30, 2003. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- Podsiadlik, Kevin. "Monday Night Raw: May 22, 1995". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on June 10, 2003. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- Podsiadlik, Kevin. "Monday Night Raw: May 29, 1995". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on May 30, 2003. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- Podsiadlik, Kevin. "Monday Night Raw: June 12, 1995". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on May 30, 2003. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- Podsiadlik, Kevin. "Monday Night Raw: April 3, 1995". The Other Arena. Archived from the original on January 22, 2008. Retrieved 2007-11-25.