In just more than one week, Brock Lesnar and Big Show are scheduled to collide at the 2014 Royal Rumble. Eleven years ago, these two men went one-on-one at the same event.
In 2003, the Royal Rumble took place at the Fleet Center in Boston. That night, Lesnar had to defeat Big Show just to take part in the 30-man Royal Rumble match.
At the 2002 Survivor Series, Big Show handed Lesnar his first pinfall loss in WWE, taking the WWE title in the process when Paul Heyman turned on Lesnar.
Big Show then sided with Heyman, becoming one of his clients. Heyman claimed Lesnar would never get another shot at Big Show and the title. Big Show didn't hold the title long, though, losing it to Kurt Angle the very next month at WWE Armageddon, thanks to interference by Lesnar.
Angle surprisingly revealed that he had also aligned with Heyman. Both promised Lesnar he would not get a shot at the title.
2003 Royal Rumble
The only way Lesnar could get a shot at the title was to win the Royal Rumble. The only thing that stood in his way was the 500-pound Big Show.
In a rare scene, "let's go Lesnar" chants rang out through the Boston crowd as the two men locked up.
To start, Lesnar pushed the massive Big Show into the corner, using his shoulder as a weapon that he drove into the giant's midsection. Lesnar then delivered two belly-to-belly suplexes.
Lesnar tried to go for a third, but Big Show fought it off and launched Lesnar over the top rope to the arena floor.
Big Show went on the offensive, getting Lesnar back into the ring and punishing him by stomping his chest and pulling him up for a big slap across the chest.
Big Show missed with a running attack in the corner, and Lesnar countered with a German suplex. A pinfall attempt garnered a count of two.
Heyman decided to get involved, and the momentary distraction allowed Big Show to catch Lesnar with a big kick to the face.
Lesnar thwarted an attempt at a chokeslam before dragging Heyman into the ring. Lesnar got Heyman on his shoulders, but Big Show recovered and slapped a right hand on Lesnar's throat, delivering a thunderous chokeslam.
Shockingly, Lesnar got his shoulder off the mat prior to a three-count being registered.
Big Show went for the chokeslam again, but Lesnar slipped free and pushed Big Show toward Heyman. As Heyman fell off the ring apron, Big Show turned around. Lesnar muscled him up onto his shoulders for the F-5 and the victory.
Officially, the match lasted just six minutes, 19 seconds.
2014 Royal Rumble
Eleven years later, WWE has decided to run with this match again. This time, the roles are reversed.
Lesnar once again has Heyman in his corner, managing his every move. After a brutal attack on Mark Henry on the January 6 edition of Monday Night Raw, Lesnar was confronted by his old nemesis, Big Show.
Though the match has been done before, WWE is just looking for a viable opponent to battle Lesnar. Though times in WWE were completely different in 2003 than they are now, this match should follow the same type of pattern.
Eleven years ago, Big Show was used as a way to make Lesnar look strong heading into WrestleMania 19, where he won the WWE title from Angle.
It can be looked at the same way now, despite the fact that Lesnar won't get any positive chants from the crowd in Pittsburgh.
Big Show is in the spot to make Lesnar look strong, just as he was in 2003. Lesnar will be involved in one of the marquee matches at WrestleMania 30, so he needs a nice, solid victory before heading to New Orleans.
Big Show provides WWE with the right opponent to send Lesnar into the biggest event of the year looking strong—even if it is more than a decade later.