This Day in Rasslin’ History: The Death of Hulkamania

On June 13, 1993, WWE hosted its first ever King of the Ring pay-per-view.  It was not the first installment of the classic tournament, but it was the first to be given its own dedicated, televised event.  At the show, the WWE Championship was decided in a match that saw reigning Champion Hulk Hogan take on a massive challenger in the form of Yokozuna.  Hogan connected with his trademark big boot on a number of occasions and even landed his Leg Drop finisher but was unable to pin Yoko.  In the closing moments of the match, a planted photographer jumped onto the ring apron, and his camera exploded into the face of Hogan, stunning the Champion.  As a result, Yokozuna was able knock the Hulkster to the mat and connect with a leg drop, securing the pinfall victory.  This marked Hogan’s last appearance in the WWE for almost nine years as he would depart for WCW following the ’93 King of the Ring and not return again until 2002.  Yokozuna & Mr. Fuji had succeeded where many had failed before in effectively killing Hulkamania.

The rest of the show obviously revolved around the actual King of the Ring tournament.  Bret Hart, who won the tournament two years earlier, fought his way to the finals with wins over Razor Ramon and Mr. Perfect earlier in the night.  Meanwhile, his opponent, Bam Bam Bigelow, entered the finals by defeating Jim Duggan in the first round and receiving a buy in the second round after Tatanka and Lex Lugar wrestled to a time limit draw.  Despite his opponent’s extra rest, Bret Hart emerged victorious in the show’s main event, becoming the only man to ever win two King of the Ring tournaments.

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