It wasn't just the happenstance of WWE being a short drive away from Mick Foley's Long Island locale that the 'Hardcore Legend' was trotted out onto the post-Money In The Bank Albany, New York-based edition of Monday Night Raw.
Nor was it the fact that, as an all-year-round Santa Claus type, he suits the sack-over-the-shoulder look while decked in festive red. It wasn't even because he's one of the few company legends that can occasionally be trusted to disguise sh*tty news - because, subjectively, this was extremely sh*tty news.
Mick Foley was given the thankless task of introducing a title to make losers like like lame winners, because of the gimmick that gifted the green strap its name. The "24/7" rule was initiated for the long-dead WWE Hardcore Championship in the 2000 during one of the many celebrated reigns of Crash Holly. Original titleholder Foley was given the banged-up belt by Vince McMahon as a condescending gift, but by the time Holly was avoiding wrestlers in soft plays, the joke contradicted long-held received wrestling wisdom by being both funny and money.
It was yet another victory for a mid- and lowercard well serviced by Vince Russo in 1999 and succinctly storyboarded by Chris Kreski the following. It reflected everything the company was once capable of, and almost surely can't replicate 20 years later. But celebrate these absurd reigns now - WWE are almost certain to smash every existing record before this brand new belt is eventually confined to the bin.
Square eyes on a square head, trained almost exclusively to Pro Wrestling, Sunderland AFC & Paul Rudd films. Responsible for 'Shocking Plans You Won't Believe Actually Happened', some of the words in our amazing Wrestling bookazines (both available at shop.whatculture.com), and probably every website list you read that praised Kevin Nash.