The Undertaker throwing Mick Foley from the top of Hell In A Cell is one of the most iconic moments in WWE history. But perhaps one of the more bizarre played out in the lead up to the match where Foley tried to convince Vince McMahon that not only was the bump a good idea, it was perfectly safe.
June 28th, 1998 is a date etched in the minds of wrestling fans around the world, and the action at King of the Ring that night meant that Mick Foley and The Undertaker will never be forgotten. Not only did Foley fall from the top of Hell In A Cell through the announce table, he later fell through the cell itself. Incredibly, the match continued and a semi-conscious Foley who was missing teeth, losing blood and had a dislocated shoulder among other injuries, battled on, taking a Chokeslam onto a pile of thumbtacks before finally being defeated.
While it’s been well documented that Vince McMahon was less than impressed after the match at the bumps that Foley had taken, the former World Champion has now revealed how he tried to convince the chairman that he’d be safe.
Speaking on Foley is Pod, the WWE Hall of Famer laid out how the big spot was originally meant to be a Chokeslam onto of the cell and then a controlled fall into the ring later. However, by the day of the show, he started to wonder whether he could get thrown from the top. Naturally, McMahon was uncertain, so Foley compared it to hitting an Elbow Drop.
“The big bump was supposed to be the chokeslam. I had not talked about being thrown off the top of it. The visual I was looking for, now you see that when Undertaker chokeslammed me, I’ll remember this sound, and the next thing I know, I’m waking up, I realize I’ve got a couple of teeth missing, and there’s a pair of shoes in the ring, and I had no idea how they got there.
I didn’t realize that, in an attempt to buy me time, because that was one of the great ironies, to me, of wrestling, was everyone picks on it, not everyone, but the non-fans, for being phony and show business and fake. But it’s like, hey man, does to it sport continue when one of the participants is no longer conscious? Because mine does. At least it did in ‘98. Luckily that’s not the case now because we’ve learned a lot.
So the idea was, this was the big visual I was looking for, Undertaker’s gonna chokeslam me, and a corner of that cell, of that panel is going to give way, and he’s eventually gonna stuff me down head-first, so the visual I thought is, I’m gonna be upside down, flailing my arms around, and eventually he’ll let go of my knees, where he’d be kind of holding me, and I would just have to take my own bump into the ring, just doing a semi-turn, and it’d be a big height, but I thought I could do that.
It was only during the course of the day that I said, hey, how about you throw me off the top of that thing? Going back to what Terry Funk said. I just said it so casually to Taker and Vince that I tried to downplay it as being a big deal. Vince was like, ‘I don’t know if I like that, Mick.’ I said, ‘If I told you I was gonna drop an elbow and Taker was going to move, you’d let me do that, right?’
So I’m going with a positive, I don’t know if positive reinforcement’s the right term for it, but I’m laying it out as if it’s not a big deal when it clearly was. He was like, ‘I guess so.’ I said it’d be the same bump, which it absolutely was not. So I kind of threw that into the mix, at least, this is my recollection of it, the day of. Up until then, the visual I was looking for was that tearing of the panel of the cell,”
The Undertaker Recalls Knowing When He Had To Retire
Both Mick Foley and The Undertaker spent the latter part of their careers trying to find the perfect ending. While such a thing mostly eluded Foley, ‘Taker bowed out with a WrestleMania win over AJ Styles in a match that was universally praised across the board.
However, it wasn’t until they were filming the Boneyard Match in the early hours of the morning that The Deadman fully realised it was time to hang up his boots.
H/t to Fightful