Monday Nitro – October 4, 1999

Monday Nitro #208
Date: October 4, 1999
Location:
Kemper Arena, Kansas City, Missouri
Attendance: 6,942
Commentators: Tony
Schiavone, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re getting closer to
Halloween Havoc but tonight we take a detour into something that is
actually special. Less than five months earlier, Owen Hart passed
away in this same arena. His brother Bret wanted to do something
special for him, and that’s what we’re getting on this show. Let’s
get to it.

The announcers hype up
the main events, because those promises have held up so much
recently.
Rey Mysterio Jr. vs.
Dean Malenko
This
starts after a way too early break. Malenko quickly flips Mysterio
to the floor and grabs a legbar back inside. Rey pops to his feet
and speeds things WAY up for a nice counter sequence, capped off with
Malenko throwing him into the air but eating a dropkick on the way
back down. A hot shot is countered but Rey bounces backwards into a
hurricanrana for two. That was AWESOME and even Malenko has to give
Mysterio credit.
To change the subject a
bit, Tony casually mentions that Psychosis beat Lenny Lane for the
Cruiserweight Title over the weekend. That’s code for “it turns
out Turner Broadcasting didn’t like having a shock value gimmick like
over the top incestuous brothers on a show with falling ratings”.
The title match never happened of course but Psychosis does get to
defend tonight against Disco Inferno. Of course since this title
means nothing, it’s throw in as a sidebar in this match. You know,
the match that COULD BE FOR THE TITLE instead of just being part of
the Revolution vs. Filthy Animals feud over absolutely nothing.
Back
to the match, Malenko gets two off a German suplex and cranks on the
leg. That goes nowhere so Dean is thrown to the floor for a big dive
from Rey. They head inside again and Rey loads up the yet to be
named West Coast Pop, only to have Malenko catch him in a kind of
powerbomb to set up the Cloverleaf.
Ropes are grabs and
Mysterio counters tilt-a-whirl slam into a kind of cross body. They
get back up and hit a double clothesline but Mysterio sells it more
like a Boss Man Slam for an odd looking crash. Cue Shane Douglas
with a chain but Saturn runs down and steals it from him. Saturn
stares Douglas down with the chain but hits Mysterio instead,
allowing Dean, who didn’t seem to see what happened, to put on the
Cloverleaf for the win.
Rating:
C+.
Really good start to the match here until we had to get Shane Douglas
involved. It looks like the Revolution is starting to splinter,
which makes good enough sense given that they have nothing else going
for them. They have yet to recover from that disaster at Fall Brawl
so why not just turn them heel from the inside?
Dean sees the replay on
the screen and isn’t happy with Saturn.
Tony tells us about the
New Year’s Evil pay per view on December 27, which wasn’t on New
Year’s, wasn’t on New Year’s Eve, wasn’t evil and never wound up
happening.
Video on Bret, talking
about Owen and his death.
Cruiserweight Title:
Disco Inferno vs. Psychosis
Tony
brings up the hiring of Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara, who will be
chatting on WCW.com later this week. And so it begins. By it I mean
the bizarre choices, such as allowing fans to talk to writers. Why
would fans care about something like that? Picture this back in
1988: “Yes fans this coming Wednesday, you can call in and talk to
the booker!”
Psychosis
is defending after being awarded the title in a phantom title change
over the weekend. The new champ starts fast and knocks Disco out to
the floor with a baseball slide, setting up a big dive over the top.
Back in and Disco gets a boot up in the corner, followed by a
swinging neckbreaker for two.
You
know Disco isn’t smart enough to make that last though and charges
into an elbow from Psychosis. Well at least they’re consistent. A
top rope hurricanrana gets two for Psychosis but Disco pops back up,
only to dive into a spinwheel kick. The guillotine legdrop misses
and Disco hits the Chartbuster to win the title out of nowhere.
Rating:
D+.
I’ll spare you the obvious question of why they even bothered with
Psychosis in the first place and get to the better question of why
Disco. He’s still a glorified comedy character whose best matches
usually get a response of “you know, he doesn’t suck as much as I
thought.” You have Kidman, Guerrera, Mysterio, Malenko and even
Psychosis to put the belt on but instead we get someone like Disco.
Oh and just after he
wins the title, we IMMEDIATELY cut to an ad for Mayhem.
Sid is on the phone. I
smell shenanigans.
The
Outsiders come down the stands with drinks in hand. This would be
Nash’s first appearance since August and Hall’s first since…..I
think March? Heenan asks where they’ve been and Hall says they’ve
been at the party down there. Nash is retired, which Hall describes
as “working a requirement angle”. They’ll be back and put the
band back together once the locker room is fun again. This comes off
as more of Russo’s “WE’RE SHOOTING” stuff that is interesting for
about five minutes and then turns into a big mess with the fans
asking “can’t we just watch wrestling?”
Sid
Vicious vs. Brian Adams
Adams
is out of the KISS gimmick but still has the Demon pants on. He
hammers Sid from behind to start and scores with a suplex. Naturally
Sid isn’t going to sell that so Adams clotheslines him over the top
and out to the floor. Back in and Sid ducks his head, allowing Adams
to hit a quick jumping piledriver. Of course Robinson can’t count
because Rick Steiner runs out and helps with the beating. Adams
fights Sid off and tilt-a-whirl slams Steiner, only to have Sid come
back in for a double powerbomb and a fast count. That makes Sid
120-0, though Adams got in WAY more offense than most people do
against Sid.
Jerry Flynn vs.
Goldberg
During
the entrances, we go split screen so Sid can rant about his car.
Flynn rakes the eyes to start and is promptly kicked right in the
face. A pumphandle slam drops Jerry again as the rest of the First
Family comes out for a distraction. Goldberg is knocked outside to
get beaten on for a bit (why isn’t this just a three on one handicap
match to make this move faster? Oh right: because WCW is stupid
enough to put Morrus and Knobbs in the Tag Team Title hunt instead of
ANYONE ELSE), including a whip into the steps.
Morrus adds an elbow
from the apron and even the referee can’t be bothered to care about
these two schmucks. The referee sends them to the back, allowing
Goldberg to counter a cross armbreaker and hit the two moves for the
win. You know, people remember these two fighting a lot but it
really didn’t happen all that often. They only fought four times on
Nitro in nearly two years, with a year and a half in between two of
them. Goldberg and Morrus had at least three matches so it’s not a
huge stretch.
Goldberg promises to
destroy Sid.
Brad Armstrong tells
Berlyn to speak English, end of scene.
Here’s
Harlem Heat for a chat about their upcoming title defense against
Brian Knobbs and Hugh Morrus. There’s so much wrong with that idea
that I don’t even know where to start. The match is going to be on
like a pot of neckbone, but Booker has to stop for a Wolfpack chant.
He tells the Outsiders that they’re not getting the belts but the
First Family comes out for a brawl. Knobbs hits Booker in the head
with a chair and Morrus gets Stevie down for No Laughing Matter. The
First Family leaves with the belts. As usual, decent story,
completely wrong cast.
Nitro Girls search
time. Baltimore can’t get here soon enough.
Goldberg gets in his
car and leaves. I’m sure this won’t go badly for Sid whatsoever.
Benoit says he misses
Owen and brings up getting his start in Stampede Wrestling. They’re
really making this feel special tonight.
Brad Armstrong vs.
Curt Hennig
Hennig
chops away in the corner but gets hiptossed and dropkicked out to the
floor. Back in and Hennig chops the skin off Brad’s chest but walks
into a pair of atomic drops. The Rednecks come in but eat right
hands, only to have the Germans come out for a distraction. The
bodyguard nails Brad in the back of the head, sending him right into
the HennigPlex for the pin. It really took FIVE PEOPLE to beat Brad
Armstrong? That’s seriously what we’re going with here?
The Germans beat
Armstrong up again post match.
Mysterio goes into the
showers to get Kidman for his match. Kidman comes out and Torrie
Wilson follows him. Rey looks impressed.
Sid gives the attendant
his car keys. Why the same attendant works in two different cities
isn’t explained.
Juventud Guerrera
vs. Kidman
Here’s
another match that could be for the Cruiserweight Title. They trade
forearms to start until Kidman suplexes him down for two. A Stunner
on the top rope drops Kidman as the announcers talk about Kidman and
Torrie in the shower. Kidman suplexes Juvy to the floor and adds a
dropkick as he gets back inside. Juvy comes back with a DDT out of a
fireman’s carry and drops a People’s Elbow. I had forgotten about
the Juvy Rock phase. Juvy says he knows our role as we take a break.

Back with Kidman
charging into an elbow but snapping off a powerslam (very common move
no matter what size people are) for two. Juvy waves Psychosis down
but misses a plancha and takes Psychosis down instead of Kidman.
That’s fine with Kidman, who runs to the top and dives onto both
guys. This isn’t as good as it sounds though as they’re just doing
spots without the energy that made their old matches so good.
Back in again and
Kidman dropkicks him out of the air but Juvy counters a powerbomb
(double gimmick infringement!) into a Juvy Driver attempt, which is
countered into a suplex, which is countered into a bulldog from
Guerrera. The 450 misses and Kidman hits a Sky High but has to go
after Psychosis again. Cue Mysterio to argue with Psychosis, but the
distraction lets Juvy hit the Driver off the top for the pin.
Rating:
C+.
This was more about advancing the feud between the Animals and the
loose stable of luchadors, which isn’t really going anywhere as
Psychosis isn’t quite the same level as the other three. Granted he
might have gotten closer to that spot had they just let him stay
Cruiserweight Champion but that might make too much sense.
Juvy and Psychosis get
beaten down post match.
Sid has his assistant
park his car in Goldberg’s parking space.
Bret Hart vs. Chris
Benoit
Both are faces here and
Benoit’s TV Title isn’t on the line. Harley Race does the intros to
make this really special. Bret grabs a headlock to start before they
fight over a top wristlock. Hart holds the ropes to avoid a monkey
flip but Benoit nips up before Bret can do anything. Very technical
so far. Chris bridges out of a test of strength and wraps Bret’s
arms across his own throat to get a breather.
A hammerlock has Bret
on the mat and the fans chant for Owen. Off to a double arm crank on
Hart but Bret reverses into one of his own. Thankfully Bret is
actually holding Chris’ wrists unlike Scott Hall who would be
keeping himself in the hold whenever that was reversed. Benoit flips
out with a dropkick to the chest but gets caught in a Russian
legsweep to put him down again.
We hit the chinlock
from Hart followed by a hard knee to the ribs to drop Chris one more
time. A DDT sets up the middle rope elbow for two for Hart but Benoit
grabs a rollup for two. He doesn’t let go of the legs though and
turns it into a Boston crab. Bret is quickly in the ropes but gets
caught in a backbreaker for two as we take a break.
Back with Benoit
getting two off something we didn’t see but Bret comes back with
the headbutt to the lower abdomen. A snap suplex sets up a chinlock
by the Hitman as things settle down a bit. Another backbreaker puts
Benoit on the mat and Bret rams him into the apron. Back in and
Benoit spins out of another backbreaker and hits a jumping tombstone
for two. A northern lights suplex gets another two for Chris and he
fires off the headbutts.
Benoit stomps away in
the corner but Bret holds the ropes to avoid a dropkick and a few
elbows get two. Bret charges but his cross body hits the ropes to
send him outside. Chris hits a big dive through the ropes to put both
guys down and we take our second break. Back again with both guys
rolling each other up for two followed by Bret stomping away in the
corner. They trade rollups for two each again until Bret nails a
swinging neckbreaker.
A superplex puts Benoit
down but he counters the Sharpshooter into the Crossface but Bret is
right next to the ropes. Chris rolls some vertical suplexes and calls
for the Swan Dive. He goes to the furthest corner and nails the
headbutt for a slightly delayed two. The fans chant for Bret and he
comes back with an elbow to the jaw. A piledriver gets two on Benoit
as he puts his foot on the ropes.
Benoit gets to do
Bret’s chest first bump into the corner but comes out with some
hard chops. Bret tries a clothesline but gets caught in the Rolling
Germans. The Crossface is blocked and they go to the mat with Bret
maneuvering his legs so that he stands up in the Sharpshooter. The
fans freak out over that awesome trap by Bret and Benoit has to give
up.
Rating:
A. This was an excellent wrestling match. Bret worked over the back
to set up the Sharpshooter and Benoit tried everything he knew but at
the end of the day it was Bret winning with a counter to Benoit’s
best hold and a very smooth move into the Sharpshooter. That’s
exactly what it was supposed to be and it was more than an awesome
match. The crowd respected it too. This is the last great match that
WCW had and the last time Bret was actually motivated in a wrestling
ring. If you haven’t seen this one before, go check it out to see
what great wrestling can do.
Race gets in the ring
and everyone hugs and poses before walking out together.
Gene
calls out Flair and Hogan, who thankfully come out one at a time.
Hogan has to limp down because of the knee injury from last week.
They praise each other and my stomach is starting to churn. Hogan
says Flair is the best of all time and Flair wants to join
Hulkamania. Tonight, Hogan wants to see Flair style and profile.
It’s a bad sign when modern day TNA pays better attention to
character development and history than this company does.
Sid is in the empty
parking space. “I’ve got him now.”
Diamond Dallas Page
vs. Buff Bagwell
Bagwell
mocks Page’s catchphrases to start, saying he’s going to two time,
two time, two time beat Page down. Page charges right into a
clothesline to start and gets dropkicked out to the floor. Back in
and Page can’t hook a powerbomb but does kick Buff low to take over
again. A low elbow sets up a stomping in the corner and we hit the
chinlock. With his offense running low, Bagwell lands another
clothesline and his swinging neckbreaker. Page avoids the
Blockbuster though and floats over Bagwell into the Diamond Cutter
for the fast pin.
A
kid is looking at a window when a horse flies up. Dustin Rhodes is
dressed all in black and that’s it.
Hulk Hogan/Ric Flair
vs. Sting/Total Package
Tony
even has to acknowledge the fans cheering for Sting. Hogan has a big
brace on his knee but is fine from last week’s attack otherwise.
It’s a brawl to start with Sting and Hogan heading outside while the
others fight inside. Hogan is whipped into the barricade as Luger
and Flair fight outside.
Tony keeps calling
Total Package Luger because it’s such a stupid name change. I can’t
even say gimmick change because it’s literally the same guy with a
different name. Things settle down with Sting stomping on Flair in
the corner but missing a dropkick. As usual, there’s nothing about
Sting that would make you think he’s a heel. Sting slams him off the
top and it’s off to Luger for a powerslam.
Back to Sting for a
chinlock as the fans chant for Hogan. Notice how he keeps moving
around on the apron. This is something the bigger stars usually do
and you can see Cena do it today. You can do so much to keep a crowd
into things while standing on the apron. Pace up and down, reach for
tags, shout encouragement. Let the fans know that you CARE about
what’s going on at the moment.
Luger prevents a tag to
Hogan and Sting gorilla presses Flair down again. A running splash
hits knees though and it’s finally off to Hogan. We go old school
with right hands and a double noggin knocker, followed by a double
clothesline to put both villains down. Page runs in and gets sent
into Luger, who blindly Racks him. Hogan hits the big boot and
legdrop to pin Sting. Seeing him hug Flair is just wrong on so many
levels.
Rating:
D+.
Standard main event tag here with the champ getting pinned to add to
the pay per view match’s build. This is wrestling booking 101, but
it’s still really uninteresting stuff. Seeing these four guys
fighting while I could be watching the rise of HHH and Rock near or
at his peak and the tag teams tearing the house down really doesn’t
appeal to me and that seemed to be the opinion of the masses.
Sid goes to his parking
space and finds his car crushed into a metal block. If this is
supposed to make me watch the match, go back to Charles Robinson
needing counting lessons.
Overall
Rating:
B.
By far and away the best show they’ve had in a long time, though most
of that is due to the awesome Bret vs. Benoit match. The rest of the
show certainly isn’t bad though as a lot of the bad matches were kept
short. The Sid vs. Goldberg battle of the garage stuff is getting
REALLY old just two weeks in. I’m actually not sure how Sid’s plan
made sense and I assure you it wasn’t much clearer on screen. I
guess it was supposed to be Goldberg’s car but someone made a switch?
This shouldn’t be so complicated. Anyway, best show in months if
not years here, but it feels like a one off improvement.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
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