Earlier this week, we spent a few hundred words talking about Chris Benoit’s death and the impact felt throughout all of sports. I’m not going to spend nearly as long to talk about the match that changed wrestling forever. Back in 1998, Mick Foley and the Undertaker had a hellacious match that blurred the line between scripted and reality when Taker threw his opponent off the top of a 16-foot steel cage onto a damn table.
That was supposed to happen.
Mankind, though, was never supposed to fall through the top of the cage onto the mat with a table hurling itself towards his face, causing a tooth to go through his nose. Then there were thumbtacks. And enough holy sh*t moments to last the rest of your days.
The Hell in a Cell match that occurred on June 28th, 1998 is still one of the most iconic moments in wrestling, but it probably set the bar on violence too high as wrestlers tried to compete by putting their bodies through too much damage. But for one night, ‘Taker and Foley took violence to new levels. Even your most ardent “this is fake” guy has to tip his cap to the insanity they went through that night.
Here’s the match in full. They don’t do stuff like this anymore…and it’s probably for the best.