WWF 1996: King Hunter

June 23, 1996: King Of The Ring. Steve Austin beats Jake Roberts in the finals. He gives his famous "Austin 3:16" speech and his career really takes off.

In a dark match, Hunter Hearst Helmsley pins Aldo Montoya in a Dark Match. The future Triple H is being punished for his participation in the Madison Square Garden Incident aka The Kliq Curtain Call a month earlier. Helmsley and Shawn Michaels broke kayfabe to have a group hug with Razor Ramon (Scott Hall) and Diesel (Kevin Nash) who were leaving WWF for WCW. Michaels went largely unpunished because of his main event status, but Helmsley was largely de-pushed until the formation of D-X. Helmsley was allegedly booked to win KotR '96 but thanks to the Curtain Call plans were changed and Austin won instead.

What if Helmsley had still won King Of The Ring in 1996? Would HHH have been as successful or would his push have come too early? What about Austin?

And if Helmsley goes unpunished he probably didn't participate in the Curtain Call. Maybe it was just a missed flight or a bad cold. Or maybe he didn't want to risk the very punishment he would end up receiving? Would such a decision have sat well with Shawn Michaels or would it have damaged their real life friendship?

First card King Of The Ring PPV on June 23, 1996.
Weekly Shows Monday Night RAW (1 hours - alternates weeks between live and taped)
Superstars (1 hour - taped/syndicated)
Pre-PPV Show Free For All is a 30 minute countdown show before each PPV which usually includes one match.
Monthly PPVs Royal Rumble (Jan), Wrestlemania (March/April), King Of The Ring (June), Summerslam (Aug), Survivor Series (Nov).
All other months have a In Your House PPV.

Champions As Of June 22, 1996
WWF Title Shawn Michaels
WWF Intercontinental Title Goldust
WWF Tag Team Titles The Smokin' Gunns

King Of The Ring '96 PPV Lineup:
The Bodydonnas vs The New Rockers
Ultimate Warrior vs Jerry Lawler
Title Match: Goldust vs Ahmed Johnson
Title Match: The Smokin Gunns vs The Godwinns
Title Match: Shawn Michaels (w/ Jose Lothario) vs The British Bulldog (w/ Jim Cornette & Diana Smith). Special Referee: Mr. Perfect
KotR tournament semi-finals & finals*

* King Of The Ring must be won by Hunter Hearst Helmsley. If Helmsley was booked to win instead of Austin, the brackets may have been arranged differently. As a result, the 3 wrestlers besides HHH in your semi-finals may be any of the following: Steve Austin, Vader, Jake Roberts, Marc Mero, Owen Hart, Savio Vega, Justin Bradshaw.

WWF Roster As of June 22, 1996

Ahmed Johnson
Aldo Montoya (Justin Credible under a really stupid mask)
Alex Porteau
Bob "Spark Plugg" Holly
Bob Backlund
Bret Hart
Brian Pillman
Duke "The Dumpster" Droese
Goldust (w/ Marlena)
Hunter Hearst Helmsley (w/ Chyna)
Jake Roberts
Jerry Lawler
Justin "Hawk" Bradshaw (w/ Uncle Zebekiah)
Owen Hart
Savio Vega
Shawn Michaels (w/ Jose Lothario)
Steve Austin
T.L. Hopper
The 1-2-3 Kid (Sean Waltman)
The British Bulldog (Davey Boy Smith)
The Ultimate Warrior
The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer)
Vader (w/ Jim Cornette)
"Wildman" Marc Mero (w/ Sable)
Yokozuna (w/ Mr. Fuji)

Owen Hart & The British Bulldog
The Godwinns (Henry & Phineas) w/ Hillbilly Jim
The Bodydonnas - Skip (Chris Candido) & Zip (Tom Pritchard) w/ Cloudy
The Bushwackers (Luke Williams & Butch Miller)
The New Rockers - Leif Cassidy (Al Snow) & Marty Jannetty
The Smokin' Gunns (Billy Gunn & Bart Gunn) w/ Sunny
Tekno Team 2000 - Troy (Erik Watts) & Travis (Chad Fortune)
Camp Cornette (Vader, Owen Hart, The British Bulldog) w/ Jim Cornette
The Brooklyn Brawler
Barry Horowitz
Freddie Joe Floyd (Tracy Smothers)
Salvatore Sincere (Tom Brandi)
Sycho Sid (returning from injury in July)
Faarooq Asaad (debuting in July)
Mr. Perfect (non-wrestling roles until September)

Commentators: Vince McMahon & Jerry Lawler
President: Gorilla Monsoon
Ring Announcer: Howard Finkel
Misc Non-Wrestling Talent: Todd Pettengill & Dok Hendrix

Real Life WWF Signings: July 1996 - December 1996
July Who (Jim Neidhart)
August The Stalker (Barry Windham)
Mark Henry
The Grimm Twins - Jacob & Jared (The Harris Brothers)
Jesse James ("The Real Double J")
September The Executioner (Terry Gordy)
November Doug Furnas & Phil LaFon
Flash Funk (2 Cold Scorpio)
PG-13 - J.C. Ice and Wolfie
The Headbangers - Mosh & Trash
Rocky Maivia

The fall of 1996 saw the debuts of Fake Razor Ramon (Rick Bognar) & Fake Diesel (Glenn Jacobs) as part of an angle with Jim Ross. Whether you wish to use them in this manner is up to you.

The Legion Of Doom - Animal & Hawk - had left WCW earlier in the year and were wrestling in Japan and indys. Though in real life they did not return to WWF until Febuary 1997, there is no reason you need to wait to sign them, especially given the deplorable state of WWF's tag division at this point.

Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy were occasionally used as jobbers by WWF during this time period and paid by appearance. Though in real life they were not signed to contracts until 1997, there is no reason you need to wait to sign them.