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WWE's Montreal Screwjob II: Did Wrestling Get Real Sunday Night?

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 15:  The Undertaker (L) pushes Bam Neely into the corner during WWE Smackdown at Acer Arena on June 15, 2008 in Sydney, Australia.  (Photo by Gaye Gerard/Getty Images)
Tobias FunkeContributor INovember 21, 2016

When the WWE heads to Montreal, you can bet that Canada, known to be one of the most peaceful countries in the world, is about to go bad for at least one night.

On Sunday night, WWE Breaking Point went down in the Great White North. Plenty of story lines got played out, but none quite as interesting or as noteworthy as the match between CM Punk and the Undertaker.

The Undertaker seemed to have won the match as he put the Hell's Gate choke on Punk, but in a shocking move, Theodore Long came out and brought to light that the move, also known as the Triangle Choke, was no longer a legal move, and the match had to be restarted.

Of course, CM Punk ended up coming back to win by breaking out his Anaconda Vice. That's where the controversy really starts brewing. The referee called the match, even though it wasn't apparent that the Undertaker tapped out.

Wrestling fans will remember that something almost identical happened another time the WWE came to Canada in 1998, when Vince McMahon secretly changed the outcome of a predetermined match between Shawn Michaels and Brett Hart. While Hart was in a choke, the referee said that Hart tapped out, which enraged Hart, who thought that he was supposed to win the match.

The incident became known as the Montreal Screwjob, and fans were left Sunday night wondering if the same thing had occurred in the same place.

Here's what I'm wondering. The fact that match outcomes are often, if not always, predetermined, is what people point to in arguing that wrestling is not a sport. But when things get switched around so that a wrestler doesn't know what is eventually going to happen, does that make things real?

Did the Undertaker get screwed last night? Did he not tap out or have any intention of tapping out? Will events like this help to bring some wrestling skeptics around? Because no matter how fake something may seem, when something staged changes without the wrestler's knowledge, things don't get much more real than that.

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