Welcome to DWN’s Match of the Day! For my first daily match coverage, I wanted to share my all-time favorite match with you guys: Mick Foley vs. Randy Orton in a No Holds Barred Match for the Intercontinental Championship at Backlash 2004.
Foley and Orton had an amazing feud that was built on-and-off for nearly a year leading up to this match. In June 2003, Orton and Ric Flair attacked Foley after a lovely tribute where he was presented with the retired Hardcore Championship belt. Later in the year, when Foley was co-general manager of Raw, Foley was repeatedly prodded by Orton, who demanded he face him in a match. Foley acted the coward, backing out of the match. He returned in January 2004 in the Royal Rumble, eliminating himself and Randy Orton, leading to a handicap tag team match at WrestleMania XX, with himself and the Rock taking on Orton, Batista, and Flair in a losing effort.
The two continued their feud post-Mania, leading to this brutal hardcore match. It’s an amazing example of a young guy proving himself by hanging with one of the vets, having a match that worked on the level of both spectacle and story-telling.