Souled Out 1999

Souled
Out 1999
Date:
January 17, 1999
Location: Charleston Civic Center, Charleston,
West Virginia
Attendance: 10,833
Commentators: Tony Schiavone,
Mike Tenay, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s
three weeks after Starrcade and a lot has changed in that short span
of time. However, as much as things have changed, it feels more like
we went back in time two years instead of reaching a new place in
WCW. The main events tonight are Ric and David Flair vs. Curt
Hennig/Barry Windham in David’s in ring debut and Goldberg vs. Scott
Hall in a tazer on a pole (it’s hanging above the ring but same idea)
match as Goldberg is out for revenge on the people that cost him the
World Title. Let’s get to it.

We
open with a President Flair press conference, saying they’ll stay the
course against the NWO. Nothing to see here other than flashbulbs
and media applause.
As
we go to the arena, we see that the NWO logo now has a big red X over
it anywhere the logo appears. Why Flair didn’t just make it a
regular WCW logo is probably some legal issue that WWE thinks we
would care about.
Tony
says it’s a night of revenge for WCW. The announcers talk for a bit
as they always did to open a show.
Call
the Hotline! I actually did that once and it took forever to get to
anything and the trivia game, the one thing I wanted to do, wasn’t
available.
We
cut to the back and Goldberg is down holding his knee. He’s
conscious though and throws the cameraman out of the room.
Mike
Enos vs. Chris Benoit
After
main eventing Thunder for two weeks in a row, this is the best Benoit
can get? Feeling out process to start with Benoit taking him up
against the ropes and chopping away before getting taken down by a
running clothesline. The muscular Enos hammers away but gets chopped
and clotheslined by the Canadian to take over. Enos gets whipped
down into the corner and dragon screw leg whipped for good measure.
More
chops have Enos reeling but he counters the Crossface into a
tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for a very delayed two. A powerslam gets a
much more timely two and we hit the bearhug on Benoit. Off to the
chinlock on Benoit which is quickly switched over to another bearhug.
Benoit elbows out of it but gets kneed in the ribs to put him down
again. Benoit counters a suplex into a cross body for two. The
Rolling Germans have Mike in trouble and there’s the Swan Dive but
Benoit can’t cover. Back up and Benoit slaps on the Crossface for
the submission.
Rating:
C. The match was fine but I’m
not sure this should have opened a PPV. Benoit looked good, though
it’s against Mike Enos so how much does it really mean? This was a
good sign that WCW didn’t know what to do with Benoit at the moment,
but at least he got a nice win.
Clips
of Hall costing Goldberg the title and the announcement of the tazer
match.
Norman
Smiley vs. Chavo Guerrero Jr.
Norman
comes out carrying a small urn with the remains of Pepe. He taunts
Chavo with the remains to start before running outside for the
opening bell. Back in and a
single clothesline sends Smiley out to the floor. Another
clothesline sends him outside again and a big dive takes Norman down.
A springboard bulldog has
Norman in even more trouble and a spinning top rope cross body does
the same.
Norman
sends him into the buckle and hits the spinning slam followed by the
Big Wiggle. Off to a figure four neck lock on Chavo but Guerrero
fights up, only to have his moonsault hit knees. Norman
drapes
him over the top rope as Tenay and Heenan get into an argument over
Mrs. Guerrero’s chili. Smiley
hooks a modified surfboard followed by a bodyscissors as this is a
nice display of submissions.
Back
up and a swinging neckbreaker gets two on Chavo before he gets caught
in a kind of ankle lock. Chavo
counters into a leg hold of his own but Norman easily rolls out and
elbows Chavo in the face. Back to the mat with a seated Norman
putting his feet on Chavo’s shoulders and pulling on his arms. The
fans think this is boring because they don’t understand technical
wrestling. A top rope superplex to Chavo appeases them a bit and the
Big Wiggle makes
them even happier.
Norman
starts getting more physical with a back elbow to the jaw getting
two. Off to a kind of seated abdominal stretch before Chavo fights
up with a belly to back suplex. Smiley
fights back up again and puts on a Gory Special for some humiliation.
Chavo escapes and tries a rollup but Norman blocks it and spanks
Guerrero a bit to the biggest reaction of the night. Chavo spins out
of the Norman’s Conquest but can’t hook the tornado DDT. Smiley
throws the sawdust in Chavo’s face, setting up the Conquest for the
win.
Rating:
B-. Good match but the ending
brought it down a bit. This is a good example of the difference
between someone like Chavo and Iaukea from Thunder. Iaukea was
repeating moves late in the match whereas Chavo has a far more
entertaining and interesting match that ran five minutes longer. WCW
would be smart to listen to those reactions Smiley is getting.
Konnan
wants revenge for the NWO turning on him.
Fit
Finlay vs. Van Hammer
This
is the third straight unannounced match. Van
Hammer is a hippie here in a gimmick which never went anywhere. They
stall a lot to get going until Van Hammer clotheslines him down. A
slam off the ropes gets two on Finlay but he rips at Hammer’s face to
take over again. An elbow
drop gives Finlay a near fall of his own and a jawbreaker (called a
clothesline by Tony) has Hammer in trouble.
They
trade some forearms with Hammer getting the better of it until he
misses an elbow drop. Finlay rips at the face some more but gets
punched in the ribs to put him back down. Hammer cranks on the leg
and the fans are just dead for this. Back up and Hammer slams him
down and we head outside. That goes nowhere so Finlay punches him in
the face and kicks him throat first into the ropes. Hammer escapes a
sleeper but charges into a boot in the corner. A powerslam gets two
on Finlay but he comes back with the rolling fireman’s carry into the
tombstone for the pin.
Rating:
D. Unlike the opening match
which was watchable but shouldn’t have been on PPV, this was really
boring and shouldn’t have been on PPV. Finlay is a talented guy but
I have no idea why he’s the go to guy when you need a spot filled in
on a pay per view. Why not throw Booker T. out there to keep up his
hot streak? Probably because this is WCW and they don’t think in
that much detail.
We
look at the Flairs vs. Hennig/Windham.
Bam
Bam Bigelow vs. Wrath
This
was set up over a few brawls they’ve had over the last few weeks.
They shove each other to start until Wrath gets poked in the eyes.
He’s still able to nail a big boot though and Bigelow is knocked to
the floor. Back in and
Bigelow misses a headbutt before getting hammered in the back. A
HARD chop in the corner has Bigelow in trouble before it’s off to a
wristlock.
Wrath
hits a nice middle rope clothesline for two as the fans are only
slightly more interested than they were in the previous match.
Bigelow comes back with a
shoulder and chinlock followed by some choking. Back
to the chinlock as Tony promises to give us the results of the coin
toss before the four way Cruiserweight Title match tonight. AND
THEY’LL TELL US BEFORE THE MATCH! They actually treat this like a
big deal.
The
hold stays on WAY too long so Heenan starts with tattoo jokes. Back
up and Bigelow shrugs off some knees to the ribs so Wrath nails a
dropkick to take Bam Bam down. A
powerslam puts Wrath down but he’s quickly back up for a double
clothesline to drop both guys. Wrath
misses a charge and hits the post, setting up Greetings From Asbury
Park to kill Wrath’s push once and for all. Tony
says that’s just one blemish on his record as he can’t remember
something that happened about six weeks ago.
Rating:
D. That chinlock killed
whatever this match might have had but the fans were already done by
the time it went on. Wrath had a nice little run for a few months
but at the end of the day he was a guy that had potential to be
something interesting and was getting over so the old guard had to
beat him in his two biggest matches. We wouldn’t want someone new
getting over would we?
Konnan
vs. Lex Luger
Konnan
has lost that new shirt with the NWO logo on it. Before
the match Konnan babbles about dressings and tossing salads. This is
fallout from Luger turning on Konnan and throwing him out of the
Wolfpack. Luger says Konnan
just couldn’t make the A team and offers him a change to leave.
Konnan nails him in the jaw and we’re ready to go as the fans are
FINALLY awake and actually going nuts for this. Imagine
that: you have a match with an interesting story behind it and the
fans care.
Luger
is easily knocked to the floor to start and things settle down a bit.
Konnan brings him back in and stomps away but Luger holds the ropes
to avoid a dropkick. Even Luger’s stomps to the back are getting
booed here. Luger starts
working on the back with knees and forearms to the spine. Konnan
comes back by ramming him face first into the buckle until Luger
stomps him down again. Off
to a bearhug followed by some elbows to the back. Konnan
rolls outside as the match slows down again.
Back
in and Konnan hits a quick cross body followed by the rolling
clothesline to start his comeback. There’s
the low dropkick but here comes Liz, clearly fresh off some surgical
enhancements, to break up the Tequila Sunrise with hairspray to the
face. The referee sees Liz leave and doesn’t question why Konnan let
go of the hold and is now holding his eyes. Either way, the Torture
Rack gets the easy win.
Rating:
D+. This was better than I was
expecting with the crowd actually carrying it to a better result than
expected. They really liked Konnan here which again should be
grounds for a push for the guy. He couldn’t back it up in the ring
or anything like that, so WCW should put him in a team with some more
skilled guys, which I believe is what they did.
Chris
Jericho vs. Perry Saturn
Loser
wears a dress. Heenan:
“I’d like to see Ralphus in a dress.” Scott Dickinson, the
crooked referee, is in charge of this match because Ric Flair or
whoever makes these decisions isn’t all that smart. Saturn
quickly shoves Jericho to the floor before Jericho hides in the
corner a lot to continue the stalling.
Jericho
grabs a headlock but gets slammed down for a quick escape. Saturn
hammers away in the corner as Ralphus takes the leopard print dress
out of a bag to taunt Perry a bit. Jericho
takes over with a hot shot and the springboard dropkick to send him
into the barricade. A nice plancha takes Saturn down again and a big
boot of all things gets two for Jericho.
We
hit the chinlock for a bit before Saturn comes back with some right
hands. The Lionsault hits knees and Saturn nails a t-bone suplex.
Chris comes back with a modified butterfly powerbomb but Saturn
blocks a dropkick and catapults him to the floor. A
baseball slide knocks Jericho down again and a top rope splash gets
two for Saturn.
They
trade a sloppy looking pinfall reversal sequence until Saturn avoids
a charge in the corner to crotch Jericho on the ropes. The Death
Valley Driver and Liontamer are both countered and Saturn grabs a
small package, but Dickinson blatanly shoves it over and makes the
fast count to give Jericho the pin.
Rating:
C-. The match wasn’t all that
great but the ending made it even worse. As stupid as it is, the
result makes even less sense when you consider there are two face
authority figures. There’s no one watching this in the back that
could come out here and say hang on a second? The match wasn’t as
good as you would expect from these two.
Jericho
smacks Dickinson and tells him to make Saturn put the dress on.
Saturn does it anyway and Dickinson zips him up. The interesting
thing here is news had leaked out that Jericho was leaving when his
contract was up in the fall, so this should have been an obvious
result. However, why go with what makes sense when you can humiliate
Saturn even more?
David
Flair says he isn’t a wrestler but he’ll be in the ring anyway out of
respect to his father. Since this is WCW, you can start the
countdown until he turns on his dad.
Cruiserweight
Title: Psychosis vs. Billy Kidman vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Juventud
Guerrera
TONY
LIED TO US ABOUT THE STARTERS! How can I ever survive by having to
last a full hour without knowing what’s going to happen? How do I
know if I should stay tuned if I don’t know if this will be one of
the biggest nights in the history of our sport??? This is one fall
to a finish, Kidman is defending and will be starting with Juvy.
Psychosis is a substitute for Eddie Guerrero after Eddie had a
horrible car wreck at the beginning of the year. Tony
apologizes for giving us wrong information then says it doesn’t
matter anyway.
Kidman
and Mysterio get things going but all four are in within fifteen
seconds. Things settle down before they get more interesting and we
get the starters alone in the ring. Rey
shakes Kidman’s hand before taking him down with a headscissors but
Kidman hooks one of his own. Both
guys try cross bodies at the same time and everyone is down. Both
other guys come in without tags before Kidman and Rey tag them in a
few seconds later.
They
trade cradles in a nice sequence but the fans still don’t seem to
care. A sloppy looking sequence results in some standing switches as
the silence here is very strange. The fans usually love these
cruiserweight matches. Everything breaks down and the fans pick up a
bit as Rey throws Kidman into the BK Bomb for no cover. Rey
sidesteps Psychosis so Kidman can hit the top rope cross body for
two. Juvy trips up Kidman
(Psychosis: “THANK YOU JUVY!”) so Psychosis can hit a nice front
suplex to put the champion down.
A
running clothesline puts
Kidman on the floor with Juvy throwing Rey onto the champion.
Psychosis and Juvy get in an
argument over who is going to do an Asai Moonsault so Rey and Kidman
powerbomb them off the apron to the floor. Back
in and a springboard Doomsday Device with Rey playing Hawk gets two
on Guerrera. Rey and
Psychosis fight on the apron with Mysterio monkey flipping Psychosis
over the post and onto the floor in a nice spot.
Kidman
hits a nice cannonball off the top onto Psychosis but might have hurt
his own shoulder. A great looking Air Juvy takes both guys down and
Rey follows him out but only hits Kidman. Juvy
clotheslines Psychosis by mistake so he heads back inside for a
springboard seated senton from Mysterio. A Juvy Driver gets two on
Rey with Psychosis making the save with a springboard missile
dropkick. Psychosis hooks a
mostly botched middle rope victory roll for two on Guerrera before
Kidman counters a powerbomb for two.
Mysterio
spins into a bulldog on the champion for another near fall and
everyone is sent outside save for Psychosis. Juvy lays the two good
guys on the floor next to each other and Psychosis hits a BIG suicide
dive to land on both of them. A second attempt hits floor instead of
Mysterio but Kidman counters the Juvy driver into a reverse DDT. Rey
sees that Kidman is loading up the Shooting Star but hits a
springboard hurricanrana on Psychosis anyway. The Shooting Star is
good for the pin on Guerrera to retain the title.
Rating:
B-. Good but not great match
here with some awesome high spots. Unfortunately there wasn’t much
besides though and it really brought the match down a few notches.
Guerrero would have been better in there but thankfully the division
was deep enough that you could just throw in another name like
Psychosis to fill in the spot. This would have been better if they
cut out about three minutes to tighten things up a little bit.
Booker
T. talks about the dress match when Jericho comes in and challenges
him to a match on Nitro. That should be awesome.
Barry
Windham/Curt Hennig vs. Ric Flair/David Flair
Windham
turned on Flair during the Bischoff feud and Hennig cost Flair the
Bischoff match. Ric wanted a handicap match but his son offered to
have his dad’s back, despite not having any in ring experience. Ric
grabs a chair and calls the villains Horsemen rejects. Curt promises
to beat up the father and then the son before ordering Anderson to go
to the back. The boss (Ric)
threatens to send Hennig to the WWF if he doesn’t get in here to
fight. We’re still not done
talking as Barry wants to start with David.
We
finally get going and David drives him against the ropes but gets
taken down by a right hand. A headscissors puts Barry down and all
four get in the ring for a few seconds. Things
settle down with Barry kicking him in the ribs but getting chopped
down with ease. Former NWA World Champion Barry Windham of course
begs off from a 19 year old guy who looks to weigh 175 soaking wet
because he can hit a few chops.
Barry
slams him down but misses an elbow drop, allowing for a tag off to
Ric. More chops set up a
quickly broken chinlock and it’s off to Hennig to slap the boss and
talk some trash. They trade
more chops and there’s the Hennig neck snap before he knocks David
off the apron. The Flair
Flip puts Ric on the floor but the evil ones don’t follow up. Ric
goes up top and deserves that slam off the top for trying it so many
times. Barry’s superplex
gets two with no reference to it being his finisher. Windham
hammers away in the corner but gets caught in an atomic drop to put
both guys down.
More
chops give Flair a breather but he swings so hard that he falls back
to the mat. Hennig comes
back in for a spinning toehold followed by the Figure Four. Barry
comes in to try a Figure Four of his own but Ric small packages him
for two. The elder Flair is scared to tag so Windham hammers away
even more. Ric fires off chops but the double teaming is too much
for him to fight off.
Anderson
pulls Hennig to the floor and Ric is able to slap the Figure Four on
Barry. Curt hits Arn in the
bad neck and sends him into the barricade as everything breaks down.
Ric falls down from
exhaustion as David stays on the apron. David finally comes in with
a low blow to Curt to break up a double suplex but Hennig nails him
with a right hand. Anderson comes in with a tire iron to break up
the PerfectPlex and Curt very clearly pulls David on top of him for
the pin.
Rating:
D+.
Refresh my memory. Aren’t there three other Horsemen that Flair
could have picked or that Arn could have suggested? I really don’t
get why David was in there when all those other guys were available.
Ric wanting his son in there makes sense for a story, but from a
creative perspective this was the worst idea they possibly could have
gone with. The story was
acceptable enough and the match could have been worse, but you have
Benoit and Malenko available but we get a glorified handicap match
instead.
Post
match we’ve immediately got almost all of the NWO to attack the
Flairs. Benoit comes out to help but there are like twelve NWO
members out there. Ric is
handcuffed to the ropes and the big beating is on. David is
surrounded as the fans chant for Goldberg to come make a save.
After
being tripped to the mat, David actually lunges at Hogan so it’s time
for a beating with the weightlifting belt. There’s the EZ E spray
painted on David’s back as this just keeps going.
A Sting chant has no effect either. The NWO finally leaves after
like seven minutes of beating up David. Now
we get another two minutes of Hogan talking trash to Ric and the
father holding his son and saying he’s sorry.
Long,
slow motion, black and white video on Luger turning on Goldberg after
the Fingerpoke of Doom.
Scott
Hall vs. Goldberg
The
tazer is hung above the ring and ladders are provided to pull it
down. You have to shock the other guy to win so there are no pins or
submissions. Hall talks
about taking away the Streak and the title to kill some time before
the match. He takes credit for Goldberg’s knee injury because
Goldberg slipped in fear. Tony immediately refutes it but here’s
Goldberg. Buffer actually apologizes for the “false announcement”.
Goldberg’s knee is in a big
brace to compensate for earlier but
he’s still badly limping.
Hall
is knocked to the mat to start but Goldberg isn’t following up due to
the injury. They circle
each other for a bit until Goldberg finally knocks him down again.
Hall gets taken down a third time as we’re somehow five minutes into
this. A powerslam drops Hall again but the knee gives out. Hall
wraps the knee around the post and goes to get the ladder but
Goldberg continues the age old tradition of not letting anyone else
bring in the ladder despite it meaning nothing at all.
Goldberg
tries to bring the ladder into the ring but Hall baseball slides it
into his face to draw some
blood. The fans are dead
again. Hall goes up but
drops a bad looking elbow for no apparent reason. Scott climbs again
but gets suplexed down with ease. Goldberg’s climb is quickly
stopped with a ladder to the leg and the match stays slow. This
time Hall is shoved off the ladder and goes throat first onto the top
rope. Tony: “That may have been a break for Goldberg.”
A
clothesline puts Hall down and Goldberg whips him into the ladder,
sending the ladder falling down onto Scott. Goldberg’s
slow climb is countered with a dropkick before Goldberg shoves Hall
off the ladder. I’m not skipping anything between most of these
saves as there’s no transition between them at all.
Disco
Inferno runs out for a save and shoves the ladder over to stop
Goldberg and Hall pulls down the tazer. Hall misses his shots though
and gets superkicked to knock the tazer outside. Goldberg rolls
outside and gets it, shocks Disco, tosses the tazer into the air so
he can spear and Jackhammer Hall before the shock gives Goldberg the
win.
Rating:
D-. They made A LADDER MATCH
BORING. Do you have any idea how hard that is to do? The match was
really dull and slow because they decided to have Goldberg be injured
and take away all of the stuff that got him over in the first place.
It didn’t help that you had two power guys out there and no one who
could do high spots, leaving us with seventeen minutes of shoving the
other guy off the ladder. Goldberg
getting a win to stand tall to end the show is the right move, but I
don’t see why we needed to have a long and dull match before we got
there.
Post
match Bam Bam Bigelow runs in to beat up Goldberg. Hall is up thirty
seconds after being shocked (and sixty seconds after being speared
and Jackhammered) to zap both guys to end the show. Remember at
Starrcade when Goldberg got shocked and stayed down for about the
last five minutes of the show, including falling out of the ring at
one point? Apparently neither does Scott Hall.
Overall
Rating:
D. The worst part about
this show is they were trying at some points. That makes it harder
to criticize because it looks like the guys on top are the ones
making it such a horrible show. The
opening part of this show is good stuff (albeit not the most
interesting) before the main event and the long NWO beatdown after an
acceptable (all things considered) match really hurt things. The
show wasn’t good, but it did have good parts which is more than I can
say about a lot of WCW PPVs around this time.
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