Standing room only: A look at Last Man Standing


Standing Room Only: Looking at Last Man Standing

Sept. 21, 2007

Despite all the danger, viciousness and brutality involved in a Last Man Standing Match (which is No. 3 in's list of Most Extreme Matches on List This!), the rules are elegantly simple -- beat down your opponent so severely that he can not rise to answer the referee's 10-count.

Last Man Standing Matches usually are reserved as one way to put an end to the most hate-filled grudges, or to settle scores with WWE's top championships on the line.

With WWE Champion John Cena and Randy Orton looking to find out who will be the last man standing in their deeply-personal rivalry at No Mercy, looks at some of the most brutal Last Man Standing Matches in history.

Mankind vs. The Rock for the WWE Championship
St. Valentine's Day Massacre -- Feb. 14, 1999

In a chair-filled controversial "I Quit" Match at the Royal Rumble a month earlier, The Rock won the WWE Championship from Mankind. But Mankind was able to regain the title a week later at Halftime Heat in an Empty Arena Match, pinning Rock under a pallet of beer kegs with a forklift.

No holds were barred between Rock and Mankind, so they took their war to a Last Man Standing Match at St. Valentine's Day Massacre. However, the personal grudge between the two didn't get resolved that night.

The end of the match came when the two traded chair blows, hitting each other at the same time and knocking each other out. The referee counted both men out, as neither could answer the 10-count. Mankind retained the WWE Championship due to the draw.

Shane McMahon vs. The Big Show
Backlash -- April 29, 2001


In the history of Last Man Standing Matches, no one has fallen higher … well, from higher places, anyway … than Shane McMahon.

Shane's father, Mr. McMahon, enlisted Big Show's help to teach his son a lesson after Shane O'Mac humiliated the Chairman at WrestleMania X-Seven. Shane and Show clashed at Backlash, but Mr. McMahon wanted to make sure his son was not the last man standing. The outcome seemed certain when the Chairman hit his son with a steel chair on behalf of the giant (seen above).

Test came to ringside in an attempt to aid Shane and even the odds. As the fight moved toward the entrance set, Test held down the colossus as Shane climbed the rigging to the top of the large video screens. Shane O'Mac then stunned our fans when he dropped an elbow from 40 feet in the air onto the chest of Big Show, crashing through the wooden announcers' platform.

With both men unconscious, a quick-thinking Test scooped up Shane and draped him over a camera boom, which technically had him on his feet as the referee counted to 10. The referee called for the bell and declared the Chairman's son the winner. 

Kane vs. Shane McMahon
Unforgiven -- Sept. 21, 2003

Shane O'Mac's Last Man Standing legend continued at Unforgiven in Hershey, Pa.

With Kane down and prone on the announcers' platform near the entrance set, the Chairman's only son (at the time) climbed the rigging of the set and dropped an elbow from 40 feet -- trying to repeat the magic of his match with Big Show two years earlier. However, unfortunately for Shane, Kane moved at the last second.

The fruit of the Chairman's loins went crashing through the wooden platform as crowd at the Giant Center gasped. The referee counted Shane out, giving the Big Red Machine the win. But no one doubted the courage of Shane McMahon.

Shawn Michaels vs. Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship
Royal Rumble -- Jan.. 25, 2004

Triple H had held the World Heavyweight Title for most of 2003, defeating a long string of top Superstars, including four former WCW Champions.

But the battle to defend his championship became personal at the 2004 Royal Rumble as he faced his former friend and D-Generation X co-founder Shawn Michaels in a Last Man Standing Match for the title.

Now as the head of Evolution, Triple H took it to his former partner. After delivering the Pedigree to Michaels, a weakened and battered Michaels found a way to get to one knee by the count of 10. Referee Earl Hebner let the match continue.

As Triple H rushed in to finish HBK, he was met with Sweet Chin Music -- a last-gasp, desperation kick by Michaels. Hebner counted both men out. The match was declared a draw, and the championship stayed in the hands of The Game.

Undertaker vs. The Great Khali
SmackDown -- Aug, 18, 2006

The Deadman and the Punjabi nightmare were supposed to wait until SummerSlam to face each other in a Last Man Standing Match, but SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long decided the two couldn't wait any longer. Their rivalry was so heated, he worried that the two wouldn't make it to the summer spectacular.

Khali had defeated Undertaker at Judgment Day, and The Phenom looked to put the grudge to rest … in peace. He used steel chairs, the ring steps, and anything else he could get his undead hands on to put down the Indian colossus.

Khali threw Undertaker off the SmackDown stage onto a row of tables, but The Phenom was able to rise before the 10-count. Undertaker responded with a flurry of chair blows to Khali's head, and then chokeslammed the giant to put him down for the count.

John Cena vs. Umaga for the WWE Championship
Royal Rumble -- Jan. 28, 2007

The Champ had held the WWE Championship for most of the past year, but he faced a giant threat in the shape of the Samoan Bulldozer with his manager, Armando Estrada, in San Antonio at the Royal Rumble.

Umaga barely managed to answer the count after he missed a splash on the ECW announcers table. In a sign of desperation, Estrada broke the top turnbuckle free and gave it to the beast, urging him to attack Cena with the metal bolt.

As the Samoan Bulldozer charged at Cena, The Champ lowered his shoulder and raised Umaga into the FU. But that didn't keep him down. Cena used the detached ring rope on Umaga until he passed out and could not answer the 10-count.

Batista vs. Undertaker for the World Heavyweight Championship
Backlash -- April 29, 2007

Undertaker had taken the World Heavyweight Title from Batista a month earlier at WrestleMania 23, keeping his 15-0 undefeated streak alive at the event. The Animal challenged The Deadman to face him for the title at Backlash under Last Man Standing rules.

Batista threw everything at Undertaker. He hit him with two vicious spinebusters and a Batista Bomb, but The Phenom was still able to rise before the 10-count. The battle moved up the aisle to the stage, where The Animal speared Undertaker off the stage into audio equipment.

The impact left both men unconscious and buried underneath steel, with sparks flying from electrical wires. The referee counted both men out, declaring the match a draw as he waved for medical personnel to attend to both men. Nothing settled between two of our fans' heroes.


Photo Gallery: Last Man Standing moments

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