Thunder – January 26, 2000

Date: January 26, 2000
Location: MGM Grand
Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada
Attendance: 6,323
Tony Schiavone, Scott Hudson, Mike Tenay
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We have a new World
Champion in Sid Vicious but something tells me we’re in for some
shenanigans. In other news tonight, Terry Funk has promised to bring
in reinforcements against Kevin Nash. I’m sure this has nothing to
do with Arn Anderson talking to some guy named Champ who needed to be
told to put on his pants. Let’s get to it.

In case you were
wondering, of the 6,323 in attendance, 2,510 were paid.
Quick recap of Nitro’s
World Title situation.
Gene calls out Sid for
a chat to start. Sid must be on top of the world and talks about
standing up for WCW on Monday. Well no one did for almost all of the
NWO civil war (including Schiavone) so better late than never I
guess. The NWO tried to block the powerbomb and he was still able to
win anyway because it wasn’t meant for the NWO to win every single
match. That kind of thinking would get you fired back in 1997.
Cue Nash and the NWO
with the boss saying this is one of the things he hates about being
commissioner. As commissioner, he has to abide by the stipulations
and the one from Monday was that Sid had to beat Ron Harris. He
shows us a clip of Sid using the powerbomb, which hadn’t been banned
at that point in the show, and pinning the wrong Harris brother. Now
we get to the stupid part: the clip continues to show Sid being
counted out of the ring because the match against Ron never actually
ended because Sid didn’t pin him. Therefore, Sid didn’t win.
So on Monday, the
referee counted Sid out and had the decision announced, and THE SAME
some things have to be done differently in wrestling and you have to
suspend some disbelief, but this goes into “there is no way someone
could possibly be this stupid” territory. Anyway, since Sid didn’t
win on Monday, the World Champion is…..Kevin Nash.
However, tonight Sid
will have a chance to get the title back inside Caged Heat against
Ron Harris and Nash himself. However, the powerbomb is still banned
and Sid has to pin Nash. Why Nash would do that isn’t clear, but
then again this is two title changes, Hell in a Cell and another
World Title match in two days so I really shouldn’t be surprised.
Gene reminds Maestro
that he has never performed here at the MGM Grand. Maestro is
offended and Symphony actually says “how rude”. Ok then.
The NWO has slot
machines delivered to their locker room.
Maestro vs. Norman
Maestro comes out with
his usual piano…..and Norman brings out a team of Las Vegas
showgirls. The girls dance to the ring with Norman, who of course is
wearing a white tuxedo and top hat because he’s awesome like that,
and do the spanking dance. Maestro jumps him from behind because
he’s a cultural swine. Smiley gets in a chair shot and it’s already
time for a ladder, which fits so well here for some reason.
The whip is reversed
though and Maestro sends Norman face first into the ladder and it’s
time to go backstage. I’m going on a limb and assuming this is
hardcore. Just thinking out loud of course. Norman is whipped into
a bunch of things and then through a table as they find a
sarcophagus. Well of course they do. Inside is…..the Kiss Demon,
because demons live in coffins right? Norman is terrified and passes
out so the Maestro covers him for the pin. It’s not long enough to
rate, but that may have been the most insane match I’ve seen this
year and it didn’t even run two minutes. That says a lot.
The NWO gambles a lot.
Liz and Luger have
Sting memorabilia
Cruiserweight Title
Tournament First Round: The Artist Formerly Known As Prince Iaukea
vs. Kid Romeo
Just like on Nitro,
Romeo starts fast and hits a quick Thesz press and sends Prince over
the corner and out to the floor for a meeting with Paisley. They
slug it out on the floor as Standards and Practices, in street
clothes this week, are here with Ms. Hancock, who certainly isn’t in
street clothes. Well maybe on certain streets but not the most
common ones.
Back inside and they
slug it out as Hancock sits on the announcers’ table. Romeo hits a
spinwheel kick followed by an enziguri and a missile dropkick for two
with Paisley offering a distraction. Romeo goes after her and gets
nailed in the back, setting up a reverse suplex to send Prince to the
second round. Can we see a bracket to this thing?
Jeff Jarrett hits on 18
and gets a 3 for 21.
Terry Funk vs. Kiss
Yes, this is a thing
that is happening. They slug it out to start (did you expect
anything less?) and Funk takes over with some very lame headbutts.
Some boot choking in the corner leads to Funk being thrown outside
but he whips Demon into the barricade, because Terry Funk is the
second biggest face in this company after Sid Vicious. Back in and
Funk gets annoyed that his neckbreaker only gets two, so he takes a
swing at the yellow bellied varmint Nick Patrick. Again, your hero
in this match.
A low blow and
butterfly suplex get two for Demon, because when you think of a
demon, you think of butterflies and suplexes. Funk ducks a right
hand and busts out the Tumbleweed, which you may know as Kiwi Roll.
Basically it’s a rolling sunset flip with Funk literally rolling him
around in a circle before stopping for the pin.
Terry Funk, the second biggest face in this company, just had a match
with the Kiss Demon. I want to hate this idea, but at least he’s
interacting with the younger guys. For some reason I can’t imagine
Nash actually knowing that the Demon wrestles for this company or
that he’s a character that actually exists. Points to Funk for that
at least. And I do mean least.
Kidman vs. Vampiro
Rematch from Nitro
where Kidman won a good match. Vampiro starts fast with a headlock
and shoulder, followed by a pair of suplexes. This would seem to be
your fast paced wrestling match of the night. I’m as shocked as you
are that Kidman is in this role yet again. Kidman’s right hands in
the corner don’t work that well and Vampiro sends him outside and
then into the barricade. So Vampiro is a face but acting heelish
here. Got it.
Back in and Vampiro’s
top rope spinwheel kick (a face move) gets two, followed by Kidman’s
hurricanrana for the same. More kicks from Vampiro look to set up an
electric chair but Kidman victory rolls him for not a victory. YOU
CAN’T POWERBOMB KIDMAN but he can bulldog you, only to have Vampiro
crotch him on top for a super Nail in the Coffin for the pin.
This has been another show where Kidman has the match of the night
and I’m sure it’s going to continue to get him nowhere. Well other
than with Torrie but that’s a different story. He’s still fun to
watch but you can add him to the list of people in WCW whose talents
are being wasted while we get more Sid vs. Nash.
Some cops investigate
gambling allegations against the NWO and there’s a Wayne Newton look
a like. This goes nowhere.
Total Package vs.
Buff Bagwell
My levels of apathy
towards Bagwell continue to reach new bounds. Buff takes over with a
slam to start and we’re already on the posing. I’m surprised they
even bothered with a move to start. Luger knees him in the ribs but
eats right hands in the corner, only to come back with an atomic
Two Lex clotheslines
lead to more posing and it’s time to choke a lot. An elbow gets two
and an elbow gets two and then Luger charges into an elbow. I’ve
heard of someone being all elbows but a match being one? A low blow
stops Buff’s comeback but Buff is up first and does his usual generic
offense. The Blockbuster connects but Liz comes in with the ball bat
for the DQ.
Good grief fire both of them. Luger somehow has even less of an
offense than when he wasn’t trying and Bagwell is getting even less
entertaining than he already was. I guess it’s time for Luger to
start breaking everyone’s arm in an attempt to make him an
interesting killer but for some reason I don’t see it working. These
two fought WAY too many times over the years.
Post match Luger gets
in more bat shots and goes to Pillmanize the arm but referees make
the save.
3 Count had an
autograph signing at the Nitro Grill when the Mamalukes came up and
started a fight. Music haters.
3 Count vs.
Mamalukes/Disco Inferno
We start with a
performance but the band has to dropkick the Mamalukes off the apron.
Some big dives take the Italians out again and Shane covers Vito for
two to start. Shane hammers away in the corner but gets powerbombed
out and kicked in the face for his efforts. Off to Johnny for
several lifts on a military press, followed by Disco coming in to
stomp away in the corner.
The middle rope elbow
misses though and it’s off to Evan. I’m not sure what to think about
four dancers being in the same match. Fandango must have been
watching this show. Evan speeds things up and cleans the bottom half
of the house before it’s off to Shannon as everything breaks down.
The double hiptoss into a powerbomb plants Moore though, setting up
the Last Dance from Disco for the pin.
Nothing to see here and it’s nice to see the champions get another
win, even if it’s at the expense of 3 Count. Yes they’re stupid but
they were so goofily entertaining that I can’t help but like them.
Disco is starting to find his groove as the manager/occasional
partner too, which is good for him as he deserves a little something.
Post match Vito sings
some Sinatra as the other two dance. This brings out David Flair,
Crowbar and Daffney to clean house, allowing Crowbar to play air
guitar as the others……dance?
Funk and Anderson are
looking for Sid. I really hope this isn’t revenge for London back in
This Week in WCW
Nash gives the roster a
pep talk. Quote: “Let’s go out there and put the old guys over!”
Booker T. vs. Jerry
has to be able to win this right? Like, he has to. Jerry jumps him
from behind to start and knocks Booker over the barricade. Please
don’t make Booker a hardcore guy. Jerry fires off a bunch of kicks
inside but misses another one in the corner. Booker hits his
signature kicks and the forearm, followed by the 110th
Street Slam (whipping spinebuster) for the quick pin. Thank
Anderson and Funk have
a meeting with Sid.
Ernest Miller reminds
us that he’s here and talks about loving Vegas to get the fans on his
side….but then says he hates the people here. After some old
school calling out a fat boy fan, it’s time to dance. Disco, 3
Count, Ernest Miller. The money in this company is a dance team
Kimberly says she’s
still friends with Buff even though she counted him down last week.
Nash has a meeting with
the Harris Brothers in the back.
Finlay and Knobbs hug
for some reason, allowing Knobbs to steal a wrench from Finlay’s
pocket. You would think Finlay would notice it missing.
Bam Bam Bigelow vs.
Fit Finlay
Winner gets a shot at
Knobbs for the Hardcore Title, which shows Knobbs to be a coward by
stealing the wrench. My goodness why does the Hardcore Title have a
better story than the US Title? Finlay grabs a headlock to start but
his shoulder block has no effect. Back up and Bigelow splashes him
in the corner as we see Knobbs watching from the back. Finlay gets
tired of selling and rolls outside to set up a table.
An attempt at a suplex
over the ropes and through the table is easily countered, allowing
Bigelow to go up, only to miss the headbutt. It should be wrench
times but Knobbs is a thief (maybe he can get a job in the criminal
field once the wrestling thing stops working for him), Bigelow hits
Greetings From Asbury Park (pretend Finlay’s head hit the mat) for
the pin.
The cage is lowered.
WCW World Title: Sid
Vicious vs. Ron Harris vs. Kevin Nash
Inside Caged Heat,
meaning the Cell and anyone can win but Sid must beat Nash. Also the
powerbomb is banned. Nash is defending and Ron is in a suit. We
again see the clip from Nitro which no one bothered to reference
because WCW announcers are off having ham sandwiches and finger
painting during commercials. The cage is chained shut as Harris and
Nash double team Sid like you would expect them to do.
They head to the floor
with Sid being knocked around the ring and Nash driving him into the
cage wall. It works so well that Nash does it again twice in a row
as this is total domination, as you would expect. For no apparent
reason, Nash and Harris go inside for a few seconds before coming
back outside to choke with a TV cable. They go inside again and, as
in every triple threat ever, the two in control argue over who gets
to cover.
Sid fights back for a
bit until Nash gets in a shot to the ribs to take over. They head
outside again with Sid going into the cage for I think the fifth
time. We get some blood from the arm but Sid finally blocks a ram
into the steel and takes over again. Harris is thrown inside for a
chokeslam (with Ron landing on his arm) and Sid pulls Nash down into
a Crossface of all things for the win and his second World Title in
three days and the seventh World Title change in nine days.
I don’t know if that’s meant as a knock on Benoit or just WCW trying
to be cute, but I can’t help but shake the idea that Nash would have
never tapped to Benoit in a million years. This was just a step
ahead of Kidman vs. the Wall inside the Cell, though it still ranks
as probably the second worst Cell match of all time. There was no
need for this to be in the cage, especially not two days after the
first match. Also, odds on the submission not counting because Nash
said Sid had to pin him?
Ric Flair of all people
comes out to applaud Sid, which is called a passing of the torch.
This company has gone from slow as molasses one week to WOULD YOU
PLEASE SLOW DOWN the next week. Things are going way too fast in the
World Title scene and it’s getting harder and harder to keep up
and/or care at this point. Flair is a welcome sight as you know
he’ll be at least solid if not very good. There’s good stuff on the
show but the gap between the main event and midcard isn’t going
anywhere. Welcome back to 1998.
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