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WRESTLING COLUMNS

The Turn of HBK
July 9, 2005 by Adam Heap


Greetings, wrestling fans. This is my first article, so I hope you enjoy.Please forgive me if there are any errors, I try as best as I can.

On the July 4, 2005 edition of RAW, the main event was a killer " Kurt Angle and Carlito, two of the RAW draft picks, pitted against The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels and The Immortal Hulk Hogan, who have now paired together three times " once at Backlash, once on the June 27, 2005 edition of RAW\ together with John Cena, and once tonight. HBK, after being pounded by Carlito and Angle, finally made the tag to Hogan, who put his usual punch/big boot/leg drop routine onto Carlito and won the match. HBK and Hogan went through the poses, but when Hogan turned around, he was looking directly into Shawn Michaels boot. Hogan fell to the floor after Sweet Chin Music was delivered, and HBK looked at him, not saying a word. HBK had made a very complete (and much needed) heel turn, and he received the loudest boos of the night.

As soon as I saw it, my worst fear had come to life " my all-time favourite wrestler had gone heel. HBK has been a much loved member of the WWE for quite some time " his last stint as heel was in July 2003, when he told the Canadian fans to get over Bret Hart. It was one of the most shocking heel turns I can remember, save Stone Cold at WM X7. Anyway, I stood in shock for at least five minutes, and I then ran to my PC to write this. I’m just going to do a Pros and Cons list of this huge switch.

Pros:

1. Shawn Michaels needed a good storyline. He’s been cheered loudly, but he needs this turn so much. This way, he has many people to feud with at Summerslam. It could be Hogan; it could be Angle (which would make the tiebreaker and possibly a face turn for Angle). I’m assuming we’ll know more after next week’s RAW, however.

2. This is an opportunity for HBK to have another title reign. Michaels is obviously Main Event material, and HBK hasn’t won a title since 2002 at Summerslam. It also makes for another angle " HBK vs. Cena. That way (and in no way am I dissing Cena, who is also one of my favourite wrestlers) the WWE can finally take the title off him, and lead to a great feud between two largely recognized superstars.

Cons:

1. Sweet Chin Music. I know this is a relatively small issue, but when he tunes up the band, you don’t want people booing inconsistently. It ruins the whole thing (IMHO).

2. It’s now unlikely that HBK will get a third shot at Angle, unless Angle makes a face turn as huge as Michaels. Plus Angle gets the best chant of anyone in WWE, and saying “you rule” just doesn’t work. Angle and Michaelseasily put on the best pure wrestling match at WM21, and it was a viable storyline " they’ve both had amazing careers. And Vengeance was no different " aside from the Hell In A Cell match, the only stipulation match of the night, Michaels and Angle put on another great technical display. To miss the tiebreaker would be a real annoyance.

Well, that about covers it all. If you see anything wrong with this, feel free to post an opinion, as it is my first article. Thanks for reading!

by Adam Heap--- [View Adam Heap's Column Index]....


Matt Carey wrote:
Nice article. I admit, I am a huge HBK mark, but in your article, the pros definitely outweigh the cons. HBK has defintely feuded with everyone there is to feud with as a face, and the draft didn't really give him anything new to work with as a face. Now, as a heel, we have a dream match probably set for Summerslam(HBK/Hogan), plus a setup for two great mic workers to have a Title feud with an HBK/Cena match. He can also feud with possibly a face turned Angle or, dare I say it, a face turned Triple H. There is one con that you didn't mention though, and that is the lack of top faces on Raw. You now have Cena-face, Hogan(part-time)-face, HBK-heel, HHH-heel, Angle- heel, Edge-heel. Right now, the top 3 full-time faces on Raw not named John Cena are Kane, Big Show and Shelton Benjamin, who is coming off two IC Title jobs to Carlito. This means either Angle or HHH HAS to turn face, which could set up an interesting situation either way. I would love to see a HBK-HHH feud with them playing opposite roles.

BTW, I hate to be nit-picky, but HBK won the World Title at Survivor Series 2002, in Elimination Chamber 1. Summerslam was the Non-Sanctioned Match with Triple H (which by the way is my favorite match ever).
Taylor Lewis wrote:
Great first article! 1 comment: Remember earlier in the year, JBL and Angle had that brief feud, which was a bright spot on a struggling Smackdown... Well it was pretty darn cool IMO, my point being that if ANYONE can pull off a heel vs heel feud, it's Angle. Same goes for HBK. I think a heel/heel feud will add some moxie to the tiebreaker, as it were. And of course we'll see it sometime soon, at least at or before WM 22. Swell column, keep it up.
michael nader wrote:
Adam man, i know exactly how you feel right now. I'm a huge chris jericho fan and once i heard jericho call shelton benjamin a little bitch i knew it meant trouble. But lets look on the bright side. When some guys turn heel, they happen to be funnier that way. Hell some are even more likeable as heels, i.e. Edge, Undertaker, the Rock, Booker T....

I've got to admit i was shocked because it didn't look to me like they were ever going to do a heel turn for him. It also made me realize if someone like hbk could turn heel, then someone like rvd or 619 could turn heel too.

Personally I feel HBK has been a face waaaaay too long. HBK got on my nerves a lot as a face and now he won't have to try and beg the canadians for forgiveness for awhile.
Mathew Gunn wrote:
It's about time isn't it. Finally, HBK has turned heel! I honestly cannot say I am surprised at this(I have been waiting for it to happen for a while).

This is my first reply to anything on this awesome site and I am hoping to write a column soon. Anyway, cut to the chase.If Michaels is to fight Hogan at Summerslam I would love it to be a non-sanction match like the one against Triple H.If it was to happen maybe Shawn could come out and do a promo then be interupted by Hogan(aswell as it being a good match, the cheers for Hogan when they here his music would be crazy!).If he was to fight Kurt Angle it would be great to see the tiebreaker be a ladder match.I am praying for a non-sanction match between Hogan and Michaels.Thank you if you took the time to read this reply.
Erkka Järvinen wrote:
I like simple columns so this one was good for me. However i have couple of things to say. It seems like your pros are more valid than cons but Shawn won his last title at 2002 Survivor Series not Summerslam. You are right, that sweet chin music is a small issue, actuall its not an issue. Shawn did deliver sweet chin music to many opponents while being heel before and it was no problem and third shot of angle would be getting stale unless they work out some new storyline or a gimmick match into it. In my opinion, this heel turn is good but on the other hand i always like when a person turns into heel.
kerrance wrote:
Nice article Adam but you had a few errors.

1. He's always considered a Heel in Canada so his last time as a heel (when he was an active wrestler) was during his time with DX. especially after the Montreal thing. He was also a heel 2 years when he joined the corporation after hitting X-Pac with a chair costing him the WWE Title. (against the Rock) HBK was the "Commis" of the WWE at the time.

2. HBK didnt win the title at Summerslam 2002. He faced and defeated Triple H. He actually won the title at the 2002 Survivor Series Elimination Chamber match.
John Asplund wrote:
Very good column. Still I need to correct one thing: HBK didn't win any titles at Summer slam 2002. He had a street fight match with HHH o that PPV. I'm sure you mean't Survivor Series 2002, when he won the Elimination Chamber and held the World Heavyweight title before it was dropped back to the so called "Game".
chris peacock wrote:
Umm, Your artical was alright. Alot of the things you said were pretty on the dot and I enjoyed reading it. But, there are a couple things I would like to point out real quick. First is that a heel turn for Michaels is exactly what he needs. You said one of the cons was that the Sweet Chin Music looses its effect with everyone booing. I don't think that is turn. For over half of his career people were booing him when he was putting the boot on and it still worked. Because all the people who are booing get that pit in there stomach like they know Michaels is gonna will and that makes them boo twice as hard and makes for great crowd reaction. The other thing I have to point out and I am not trying to be meen but calling the match between Angle and Michaels the best pure wrestling match ever degrades alot of other matches that have happened. The only thing I would like the point out is the string of matchs between Angle and Beniot. Those too put together amazing chain wrestling matches and you could also tell that in the story line they did a really good job of making everyone think they hated eachother. Anyway I am just saying that is a pretty bold statement to make and there are alot of match with Angle in them that stand above his match with Michaels.
Kevin Roberts wrote:
Speaking of turns, I've got one for you. It doesnt have anything to with HBK, but I feel like I just have to say it. KERWIN WHITE SUCKS. I think this will be Chavo's undoing. Heck, I liked him better when he "lost his mind" in WCW and had 'Pepe' his little stick horsey. That was actually pretty funny watching him gallop around the ring. But somebody needs a stunner for thinking up Kerwin White. I hope they know what they're doing.
Jacob Kuhn wrote:
Adam, first off, be proud of your article. Write with confidence that you are doing an awesome job, and that's what you need.

Now, I have to say I was very happy with the heel turn. Then again, I am generally more drawn to heels than I am to faces. HBK has never made a good face in my opinion. I think WWE ruined him in the 90's when he was the hottest heel in the promotion and then turned him into a terribley boring face. Being cheered is awesome, but being booed can be exhilirating too.

At Angle's last face (and I think only face) turn, everyone still chanted 'you suck' as he music played. There has been talk of his turning face again, so it would coincide with the HBK turn and set up a rubber match in their feud. And when Michaels 'tunes up the band' I have always found it annoying, so perhaps as a heel it can have some added interest. Ever heard of a 'telegraphed move?' That's Michaels each time he goes for the superkick. In the old days, the superkick was a setup for the slingshot suplex or the piledriver (which people seem to forget were Michaels two finishers before 1995) and usually it came out of nowhere. A move like that is better utilized when it's not expected.
WillisPSC wrote:
I agree with pretty much everything you said. Insert comment about HBK's last title reign :). And I agree HBK has been face for far too long. However on the other side I can't remember a time when Angle was ever face (btw please correct me if this is rubbish) and it would be great to see him become face as HBK becomes heel. As he says he has beaten everyone so he really does need a change to continue on because he has no one left to fight. I also think that a Heel vs Heel tiebreaker would really add a new dimension to an already incredible series of matches. However I don't agree with your comment about Sweet Chin Music it is a superkick to the jaw and so is vicious enough to do as a heel finisher. Also the WWE would find it almost impossible to replace HBK's finisher without a major incident. The only time I know of this happening was with Mankind and that was because he changed 'personality' (reminded of this by Sweet Shin Music). All in all this really opens up HBK's future in terms of matches as he has already wrestled every heel in the book and some face people (Shelton Benjamin in the gold rush tournament was an awesome match).
Luke ONeil wrote:
Hi my name is Luke O'Neil. I am only 16 so if i sound different bare with me. Awesome article. HBK severly needed this heel turn bad. His Charactor was becoming very boring. I would love to see HBK v.s Cena ( At Unforgiven, hopefully) because it is a DREAM Match. I agree with everysone that HHH or Angle should turn face. I want HHH to turn face with a fued against HBK. But It could be Angle turning face ( you never know who with the WWE) lol. Before HBK fueds with either Cena, Angle, or Triple H, HBK should face Hogan at Summerslam. It is perfect because Summerslam is being held in our nations captial. Everyone love to see this match ( especially me). I hopefully with see this match because I am going to get tickets to Summerslam because I live near Washington D.C. I agreed with all your pros and cons.
Eduver3 wrote:
nice article adam. everytime i am asked who's your fave wrestler its always a tie between HBK and triple h. HBK turning heel was one of the greatest moments i seen in 05' so far, but unlike so many, im not really getting all drooly over a hogan/HBK match. yes, it is a dream match but...well, hogan is not young, but thats not all b/c benoit, guerrero, taker, micheals, hhh, angle, and even flair are not in their 20's, but man can they wrestle, but hogan can't. even when he was young he couldn't, he just went really, really over w/ the crowd, so for that i give him credit but when it comes to his skills he's no micheals. my fear is hogan beating micheals after three, four, or five moves like he did w/ andre, or how cena did with JBL. if HBK/hogan happens, then i hope HBK wins. BTW i dont got nothing against older people if thats what you got from reading my reply, and im 16, at least give me credit for liking a wrestlers skills more than their hype.
kingballajordan wrote:
you cant forget about stone cold. when he turned on the fans and joined the mcmahons
Kevin Luu wrote:
Some good points, Adam. I definately agree with the fact that it'll give HBK a chance at another title reign and also new fueds (The only problem being that RAW seems to have more heels at the moment). He wasn't really getting anywhere being a face since he lost the World Title to HHH in late '02. On the point of not seeing an HBK vs Angle decider, it doesn't necessarily have to be anytime soon. There was almost a year between Rock vs Hogan 1 and 2. It doesn't hurt to have a bit of time between rematches sometimes. I think it's worth waiting for anyways, as long as it happens.

I'd rather see Sweet Chin Music out of nowhere like the RKO but if he tuned up the band I don't think it's much of an issue, I just love seeing the connection! (on Christian, Survivor Series '03!) No matter face or heel HBK will always get a reaction because he has the ability to get the crowd emotionally involved. Love him or hate him.
Erik Coats wrote:
Hey nice responce to the heel turn. It wasn't really a surprise to me because when he made his return in 2002. I liked HBK''s image. But afer a while his charecter was burned out and he wasn't in anymore good story lines Since I began watching wrestling 15 years ago I grew up watching him as a heel. and rarely saw him as a face. I do agree with him getting another run with the title. However this is how I would see it. Let me know ur thoughts. We all know most likely Cena will retain the title at summerslam when he faces Y2J. So why not have angle be the next opponet for the title. Then have angel turn face because of the win. Then see HBK complain about angle as the champ. Start a nice rivalry with angle for the title and have HBK capture it. for another run as champ. This would be the perfect way to end the tie between the two only the roles between face and heel would be reversed. This is one of he best heel turns I have seen in years. This rebirth of HBK as I call it was just what both he and the company needed. and if this is his last run which many in the company feel it may be. This is the perfect way for the charecter of HBK to go out with a BANG!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Kevin Luu wrote:
Erik, you're right about how it could be HBK's final run at the title. Therefore out of respect for his character they should build it up right. For some reason, I can't see Angle turning face. He's just too good a heel. But I guess he could pull it off if they asked him to. How convincing was that whole angle (excuse the pun) with Sharmell?! If they give HBK a big push, he could be the next #1 contender ahead of Angle. Win or lose, I'd love to see HBK defend the title at 'Mania one more time... maybe against Angle. Btw I think that both of them being heels could work.

Yes, Cena is completely over with the fans but I'm sure all the Jerichoholics believe Y2J has a genuine chance of winning the title. Whether or not Y2J wins, I'm sure he'll put on a great show!

My opinions aside, I actually believe your predictions could become reality. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
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