According to the Internet record at World Wrestling Entertainment’s auction website, the chair with which Shawn Michaels struck the late Lance Cade more than a dozen times in a 2008 episode of Monday Night Raw on the USA cable network was sold at auction two weeks later for $315.
The page for the closed auction item, entitled “Shawn Michaels signed EVENT USED folding chair from 10/6/08,” can be viewed at http://auction.wwe.com/cgi-bin/ncommerce3/ProductDisplay?prrfnbr=98779421&prmenbr=37460399&aunbr=99126131&cid=wwe_auction_HBKChair.
(If the web page gets taken down, my screen capture of it can be viewed at http://muchnick.net/cadechair.pdf.)
Here is the product description: “In a No Disqualification Match, Shawn Michaels attacked Lance Cade, with a steel chair and taking revenge on his former student for ruining his chances for the World Heavyweight Title. Now own the chair used in this match.”
Bidding for the item opened for $100 on October 12, 2008. There were 38 bids leading to the eventual selling price of $315 on October 22.
As I have been reporting, there is cause to speculate that Cade (real name Lance McNaught) – who died two weeks ago at age 29 of reported heart failure after battling an addiction to prescription painkillers – was sent into a permanent downward spiral by this brutal skit on live television. The video is at YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7SxW_Jz0D8. By my count, Cade took one chair shot on the head and an additional 18 on his body.
In the obituary of Cade in the current issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer writes:
It was a weird chain of events. Cade scored a clean pinfall on Michaels in a handicap match, but had a bad match. Michaels got mad at him after one of those shows, saying Cade left the building before thanking him.
On the following Raw, he had a no disqualification match against Michaels and was beaten down with one brutal chair shot after another and being left for dead, in what looked like and it turns out was punishment, at the time some figured it for having the messed up spot the week before. On the September 29, 2008, Raw, he was blamed for being out of position when Michaels threw a superkick, and Michaels missed the kick badly, but since it wasn’t supposed to be a miss, Cade sold it anyway. It was actually over Michaels being unhappy with him for not thanking him, apparently the week Michaels put him over in the tag, since Michaels was always careful of who he would put over and would not be happy if he was asked to do so for a guy he didn’t believe deserved it. But after the punishment match on the October 6, 2008, Raw, the singles loss to Michaels, he worked house shows the following weekend, beating D-Lo Brown. So at least as of a week after the punishment match with his winning, his departure was likely not decided upon. He wasn’t used at Raw on October 13, 2008, nor was he talked about, and was released the next day, shocking most on the roster.
The story that came out was that he had a seizure on a plane flight home. Ring announcer Lilian Garcia, who was on the flight, made sure he was rushed by an ambulance to the hospital where they had several tests done and found nothing wrong with him. The belief was that he had taken too many pain pills and the company made the decision to release him.
At the time, Cade said he didn’t want to talk about his firing, saying he knows what he did, but he felt things could have been handled better on both sides. But in later interviews, he said that he understood why the company made the decision it did and that he only had himself to blame. However, others noted that part of the reason for his release was unrelated to the problems on the airplane. At the time, those in creative noted that Vince McMahon was very angry, and short and blunt when discussing Cade no longer being with the company. The creative team was frustrated since they had penciled in Cade to be a major star in 2009.