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Spring Stampede 1999

Spring Stampede
1999
Date: April 11, 1999
Location: Tacoma Dome,
Tacoma, Washington
Attendance: 17,690
Commentators: Bobby
Heenan, Mike Tenay, Tony Schiavone
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
This is a show that
hasn’t had the chance to build up that well as they made the two main
events on Monday. The midcard stuff is decent enough but there’s
some stuff in the main event that makes me shake my head. There are
some matches on this show that pique my interest though which is more
than I can say about most WCW shows. Let’s get to it.

We open with a generic
video of the main event. That doesn’t really fire me up for the
show.
The
set has a simple entrance but the usual props on the side, such as
wagons and hay. I miss that kind of themed stuff.
The announcers intro
the show and don’t have much to say.
Juventud Guerrera
vs. Blitzkrieg
The
ring is now sponsored by Little Cesars. The winner gets a
Cruiserweight Title shot tomorrow night. We actually get a handshake
to start as the announcers continue their recent bickering over which
pair is better. Juvy cranks on the arm before taking Blitzkrieg down
into a sunset flip for two. They stay on the mat for a bit and
Blitzkrieg complains of a mask pull. That goes nowhere so he grabs a
headlock instead. A tilt-a-whirl backbreaker gets two on Juvy and
Blitzkrieg follows up with a handspring elbow in the corner. The
spots are actually hitting for a change.
Guerrera is able to
send Blitzkrieg face first into the buckle ten straight times as
we’re waiting on the dives to begin. Juvy goes first with a
springboard missile dropkick and Blitzkrieg bails to the floor. He
stands there way too long though, allowing Juvy to nail a huge dive
over the top to take him down again. Back in and Juvy puts on a
surfboard but Blitzkrieg rolls to the side to break it up.
A running dropkick in
the corner sends Juvy outside but he walks away before Blitzkrieg can
use the big dive. Instead Blitzkrieg goes around the ring and tries
again, only to dive into a dropkick for a nice counter. Back in and
Juvy tries a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker of his own but Blitzkrieg rolls
out, sending Juvy back to the floor. Blitzkrieg hits a springboard
spinning moonsault to take Guerrera down again.
Juvy tries the Juvy
Driver but Blitzkrieg flips out and they trade reverse DDT attempts
until Juvy takes him down for two. To continue the joke that is
Schiavone’s commentary career, after the reverse DDT gets two, Tony
says, and I quote, “frustration is setting in for Juvy. He hasn’t
tried the Juvy Driver yet. If Blitzkrieg can counter that,
frustration will really set in.” This is TEN SECONDS after Tony
called Blitzkrieg countering the Juvy Driver. TEN SECONDS!
Anyway Juvy gets
slammed off the top but avoids a Phoenix Splash. Juvy still can’t
hit the Driver and Blitzkrieg tries something like a top rope victory
roll for two. Blitzkrieg tries the same thing again but Juvy
counters into a super Juvy Driver for the pin and the title shot.
That was a great looking finish.
Rating:
B.
If this was the Blitzkrieg that I had seen in his WCW run, I would
totally understand the love this guy gets. This was an excellent
match with both guys nailing everything and having almost no down
time in between. Granted I’d assume having Juventud Guerrera for an
opponent instead of Super Calo helped him a lot. Great match.
Video on Hak vs. Bam
Bam Bigelow. Let’s get this over with.
Hardcore Hak vs. Bam
Bam Bigelow
Bigelow
brings out a cart full of weapons and drives it into Hak’s ribs to
start as the announcers oggle Chastity. They’re already fighting by
the set and Hak has a table hidden under the stagecoach. He goes up
top on the stagecoach for a swanton through Bigelow through the table
for a very good opening spot. Bigelow is up first and nails Hak in
the head with part of the board and they head to the ring. Luckily
for them, Chastity has a bunch of weapons waiting for them.
Bigelow
nails Hak with a crutch followed by something made of metal. Hak
bridges a table between the ring and the barricade but takes his
sweet time, allowing Bigelow to nail him in the head with a trashcan.
There’s a broom to the back but Bigelow can’t suplex him.
Unfortunately Hak can’t suplex Bigelow either and his knee buckles.
Thankfully he’s ok enough to bring in a ladder as the ring is way too
full of weapons.
Something
resembling a dropkick sends the ladder into Bigelow. Another swanton
onto the ladder onto Bigelow has both guys in trouble as the
announcers aren’t sure what to make of this stuff. Here’s yet
another table and a piece of barricade to go with it as Bigelow is
still down in the corner. There’s also some barbed wire wrapped
around another corner. Chastity resets the table between the ring
and barricade and Hak goes up, only so Bigelow can throw him throug
the table. That was one of the most telegraphed spots I’ve ever
seen.
Bigelow
sets up a barricade in one corner and a ladder in the other. Hak is
sent into the ladder but pops back up, only to crotch himself on the
barricade. Bigelow is about to drop the barricade on Hak but has to
spray Chastity with a fire extinguisher. The White Russian legsweep
has almost no effect on Bigelow, likely because it’s a Russian
legsweep. Bigelow takes him up for what was supposed to be a
Greetings From Asbury Park (looked more like a Death Valley Driver)
through the table for the pin. Isn’t that basically the same
finisher from the opener?
Rating:
C+.
The match was more entertaining for the amount of stuff they used and
only one really badly telegraphed spot, but I still don’t care to see
any more of this. I really don’t need to see ECW in WCW but that’s
what they’re obsessed with at this point. The announcers buried the
whole thing and I can’t say I blame them. It was fairly entertaining
though.
Scotty Riggs vs.
Mikey Whipwreck
I
have no idea why this match is happening and I’ll spare you the long
list of people that should be on this show more than these two.
Riggs is now a narcissist who carries a mirror. Slow start with
Scotty offering an armdrag and stopping to talk to the camera. Mikey
speeds things up a bit with left hands in the corner and a dropkick.
They head outside with Riggs being sent into the barricade before
going back inside so Mikey can headscissors him back to the floor.
Back
in and Mikey gets knocked off the apron and into the barricade in a
painful looking spot. Riggs nails a top rope ax handle but stops for
some Rude hip swiveling. We hit the chinlock from Riggs as the fans
want Goldberg. Mikey scores with a middle rope dropkick and a
hurricanrana for two. They run the ropes and Scotty hits a running
forearm for the pin.
Rating:
D-.
This could have been on any given Thunder and I have no idea why they
decided to air it here. Yeah it’s filler but there weren’t two more
interesting guys to put out there instead of these guys? Nothing
match here and Riggs is still his boring self despite a new gimmick.
One thing I’ll give this show so far: the first three matches have
all been a different style so there’s a nice variety.
Quick video on Disco
vs. Konnan. Disco mocked Konnan’s annoying music video and there’s a
match as a result.
Disco Inferno vs.
Konnan
Konnan
calls him a strawberry (whatever that means) and gets stomped down
for his efforts. The fans are all over Disco as he stomps Konnan
down and starts to dance even more. Konnan comes back with a
dropkick and a bunch of right hands of his own. A Sin Cara style
armdrag out of the corner has Disco in trouble but he comes back with
a running elbow to the face. We hit the chinlock on Konnan for a few
moments, followed by a middle rope elbow for two. This has been one
sided so far.
Back
to the chinlock for a bit before Konnan hiptosses him down, only to
miss a charge and fall out to the floor. Disco is sent into the post
but kicks the rope as they come back in. For some reason this stuns
Konnan and a shaky elbow gets two. We get another chinlock as the
announcers are stunned at Disco’s offense. Disco goes up but misses
an elbow drop, allowing Konnan to hit the 187 for two. A swinging
neckbreaker gets two for Inferno but Konnan uses Disco’s own Last
Dance for the pin.
Rating:
C.
Not a bad little match here but Konnan hit about three moves all
match. Disco continues to be a guy that can work hard when given the
chance and that’s what we got here. I like Konnan using a Stunner
far more than the Tequila Sunrise which is just a fancy half crab.
This was better than I was expecting.
Cruiserweight Title:
Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Kidman
Mysterio
is defending and they’re the Tag Team Champions. Rey grabs a test of
strength grip and they flip around for a few two counts each. A
headscissors puts Kidman down but Kidman comes back with one of his
own in a nice sequence. Kidman backdrops the champion out to the
floor and hits a bit dive to take him down again. There’s a legdrop
on the floor for two back inside as the fans are oddly quiet for this
one.
A
chinlock doesn’t get Kidman anywhere so they head to the floor with
Rey countering a moonsault and headscissoring Kidman into the
barricade. Back inside and Rey hits the springboard seated senton
(not a Thesz Press Tony!) followed by a Lionsault for two each.
Kidman comes back with something like a standing Boss Man Slam for
two. The BK Bomb gets the same and Rey is dropkicked to the floor.
There’s
the Shooting Star off the apron but they head back inside where Rey
dropkicks Kidman out of the air. The fans are still not all that
interested. A top rope bulldog (the move that won Rey the title)
wakes them up a bit and gets another near fall on Kidman. Rey
charges into a powerslam and it’s back to the chinlock. Back up and
Rey clotheslines him to the floor, setting up a big flip dive to take
him down again.
They
get back in and we hit another chinlock for a bit before Kidman’s
powerbomb is countered into a hurricanrana for two. Now it’s Rey
holding a chinlock as the fans are clearly bored. Kidman fights up
again and hits a sitout Pedigree followed by a sunset bomb for two.
Another top rope bulldog gets something resembling a reaction and a
two count to go with it. Kidman comes back with Stratusfaction for
two but Rey hits a standing moonsault for a two count so fast I
thought we had a crooked referee. Kidman counters a powerbomb into a
faceplant but Rey crotches him into a top rope hurricanrana to
retain.
Rating:
C+.
This was good but the match had to follow their first match as well
as tonight’s opener. They were trying to top what they did a few
weeks back and the match collapsed under the weight. It also needed
to be about five minutes shorter as the chinlocks really stopped
things cold. The match was entertaining but I can see why the fans
weren’t that impressed.
We look at Saturn
reuniting with Raven and beating the Horsemen a few weeks back.
Raven and Saturn then cost the Horsemen the Tag Team Titles, making
this match non-title.
Chris
Benoit/Dean Malenko vs. Raven/Saturn
Raven
and Saturn bring a table with them. Benoit and Saturn get things
going and they stall for over a minute. Saturn is sent out to the
floor where he sends the Horsemen into each other to take over. It’s
off to Raven for a clothesline for two followed by a suplex to set up
a top rope splash from Saturn. Benoit sends Raven out to the floor
for a double stomping from Malenko and Anderson.
Back
in and a double spinebuster lets the Horsemen make a wish with
Raven’s legs. Dean nails a dropkick and it’s back to Benoit who is
immediately caught in a small package. Referee Charles Robinson is
busy doing anything else to count the pin so Benoit is able to beat
Raven down again for two. Raven finally gets a boot up in the corner
and the hot tag brings in Saturn. The Horsemen’s house is cleaned
and a Doomsday Device with Saturn hitting a cross body for two.
Benoit
saves Dean from a Death Valley Driver and puts Saturn in the rolling
Germans but Raven makes the save. Dean breaks up the Even Flow and
puts Saturn in the Cloverleaf. Saturn makes a rope and plants Dean
with the DVD, only to have Benoit break it up with a Swan Dive to
give Dean two. AWESOME sequence. Dean suplexes Saturn again and the
fans are all over him for showing the Horsemen sign. There’s a
sleeper on Saturn but Raven makes a quick save.
Benoit
sends Saturn into the corner but Dean has to break up a sunset flip.
Back to Dean for a chinlock to slow things down until Saturn suplexes
his way out. Raven gets the hot tag and cleans house, including
clotheslining Dean to the floor. Someone throws a chair inside and
there’s the drop toehold for Benoit. Meanwhile, Saturn misses a dive
through the table to knock himself silly. Dean nails Raven in the
face with the chair but Raven shrugs it off and plants Malenko with
the Even Flow. Raven covers but Anderson puts the chair on Raven’s
head for the Swan Dive from Benoit to knock Raven silly and give
Malenko the pin.
Rating:
B+.
That might be a bit high but I was loving this one. This is exactly
what a good tag match is supposed to be: two teams that work great
together and some sequences that make you believe it’s over but
you’re so happy that you get more. The ending sequence had the fans
totally into it and the whole match was great. This was actually
better than the opener.
We recap the US Title
tournament that wraps up tonight.
US Title: Booker T.
vs. Scott Steiner
This
is a rematch from Uncensored where Booker beat Steiner for the TV
Title. Steiner stalls by insulting fans at ringside before the
match. After about three minutes of walking around and yelling,
Scott is ready to go. Booker takes him to the mat with a nice
amateur move but Steiner is far more talented on the mat. A dropkick
and armdrag send Steiner to the floor but he comes back in with some
hard elbows to the face in the corner.
Booker
nails him with a hard forearm and a hook kick to the jaw before
throwing Booker back to the floor. Steiner charges into a boot in
the corner and Booker hammers away at the nutjob’s head. Steiner
counters some more right hands in the corner by crotching Booker on
the top and momentum quickly changes. Booker is sent ribs first into
the barricade and Scott drops an elbow on the ribs back inside.
Now
it’s Scott’s turn to hammer away in the corner and the fans chant
steroids. A backbreaker gets two for Scott and the chants are
getting on his nerves. Scott gets in the referee’s face before
putting a bearhug on Mr. T. Booker starts powering out so Steiner
suplexes him down. Back up and Booker scores with a DDT followed by
some side kicks before Steiner pulls the referee in front of a Booker
clothesline. The fans are all looking at the entrance for the run-in
as Booker hits the ax kick for no count.
The
referee is back up so Steiner nails him from behind. Booker’s 110th
Street Slam looks to set up the missile dropkick but Scott crotches
him to break it up. Scott’s top rope hurricanrana is only good for
two so he pulls out a foreign object and knocks Booker out on a
suplex attempt. Another referee helps out the original referee and
Steiner wins the title.
Rating:
C.
This was better than I was expecting with Booker looking like a
warrior out there. He’s so ready to move up the card and thankfully
he’s still the TV Champion out of all this. Actually it’s better
that he hasn’t moved up the card as WCW would manage to screw him up
so badly it would ruin him.
Mysterio has a chat on
WCW.com.
We recap Goldberg vs.
Kevin Nash. Simple story: Goldberg is almost unbeatable but Nash is
the only man to beat him. Nash challenged him on Nitro.
Goldberg vs. Kevin
Nash
Luger
and Liz are with Big Kev. Nash does his catchphrase after the bell
for some reason. Goldberg takes him into the corner but gets kneed
in the ribs for his efforts. There’s the boot choke and Liz gets on
the apron so Kevin can kick him low. All Nash so far. The side slam
gets two but Nash misses the big boot and Goldberg shoulders him
down.
A
single underhook suplex sends Nash flying before he misses another
big boot. Goldberg nails a superkick but Nash leapfrogs over the
referee (not a bad one either!) and the spear hits the referee.
Luger nails Goldberg with his cast and Nash loads up the Jackknife.
Goldberg uses a testicular claw (Tony: “JACK THIS!”) to escape
before kicking Luger in the face. The spear and Jackhammer end Nash.
Rating:
D+.
Nothing special here but Goldberg is always a guaranteed way to wake
up the crowd. The retribution angle works well here and the match
was better because they kept things moving here instead of the slow
main event style they worked at Starrcade. Having Goldberg beat both
Nash and Luger was a nice touch and maybe his biggest win since
losing the title.
A
very quick video says who is in the main event and nothing more.
There isn’t much of a story here anyway. Hogan won a match to earn a
shot but Page and Sting just decided they were in the match as well.
WCW World Title:
Sting vs. Ric Flair vs. Hollywood Hogan vs. Diamond Dallas Page
One
fall to a finish. Flair is defending and Randy Savage is referee for
no apparent reason. If nothing else we get to look at Gorgeous
George. The four quickly pair off with Hogan and Flair falling out
to the floor. Sting is already trying the Scorpion on Page as Hogan
chops away on Ric. They fight up the aisle as Page gets two off a
swinging neckbreaker to Sting. Sting comes back with a top rope
clothesline followed by the Stinger Splash but Flair makes the save.
The
pairs trade spots with Sting and Page fighting to the floor. Hogan
backdrops Flair as Sting drives Page into the barricade. Hogan
starts putting the weightlifting belt back on but has to no sell some
Flair chops. He Hulks Up as Sting puts Page in the Scorpion in the
ring. Hogan drops the leg on Flair, forcing Sting to let go of the
hold to make a save. Flair hits Hogan in the knee and cannonballs
down on it as the other two guys are back on the floor.
The Figure Four goes on
Hogan and Sting splashes Page against the barricade. For some reason
Sting doesn’t make a save so Hogan has to turn it over. Page finally
comes in for the save before clotheslining Flair to the floor. We
get the figure four around the post to Hogan and Hollywood taps but
he’s in the ropes. Sting breaks up the hold and the trainer comes
out to take Hogan out. Even Bischoff comes out to check on him.
I’ve heard conflicting reports on whether the injury was legit or not
but Hogan wouldn’t wrestle for three months.
So
we’re down to a three way now with Page perfectly fine to let Sting
and Flair beat each other up. He finally breaks it up and sends
Flair to the floor before stomping on Sting. Savage hasn’t been a
factor yet. Flair gets back in and walks into a discus lariat for
two. Sting hits the splash in the corner on Page, followed by the
running faceplant. Ric is sent to the floor again but comes back in
to break up a cover after Page tombstones Sting.
Sting
superplexes the champ down but knocks himself silly at the same time.
We get the triple sleeper because someone has been watching ECW
tapes. Sting breaks it up with a double jawbreaker but gets double
teamed against the ropes. He just stares at both guys and takes them
down with a clothesline. The fans get WAY into Sting all of a
sudden…and then quiet right back down.
Sting
puts Flair in the Scorpion but Page makes a quick save. Page tries a
suplex on Sting but gets reversed into the Death Drop for a delayed
two. Flair knees Sting low and puts on the Figure Four with Page
down. Savage pulls them to the middle of the ring and drops the
elbow (called the Sky Elbow by Tony) on Ric. Page pops up, stomps
Sting and Diamond Cuts Flair for the pin and the title.
Rating:
C-.
The match was a mess with the injury and everything but Page winning
the title kind of works for me. I’ve seen people call it one of the
stupidest decisions WCW ever made, but it’s not like WCW was flying
on high before they gave him the belt. The match really didn’t need
Savage as he and Flair had about a thousand built in stories due to
past issues. Hogan leaving was odd and there’s always a chance he
was pulling something.
Overall
Rating:
B+.
This was one of the best shows WCW has put on in years. Even the
main event wasn’t bad! There are two really good matches on here
which make the show more than worth checking out and the only bad
match is about seven minutes long. Things are about to implode for
WCW and this might have been the last really good, bordering on
great, show that they had left.
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