NXT – August 29, 2012

August 29, 2012
Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Byron Saxton, William Regal
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
time for the title match tonight and I’m actually somewhat excited.
This change officially turns NXT into its own regular promotion which
is what it needed for the last year and a half or so. It’s Jinder
Mahal vs. Seth Rollins for the inaugural title, which is a matchup I
didn’t think I’d like. Mahal is growing on me as a basic foreign
heel and Rollins….well he’s energetic. Let’s get to it.

Jordan/Mike Dalton vs. Hunico/Camacho
won the first match between these teams. Regal calls the fans the
NXT Universe now. Great. Now we’re hearing the same stupid lines
from NXT that we hear on Raw and Smackdown. Jordan and Camacho start
us off with Jordan getting in some basic offense before walking into
a pretty good spinebuster. Camacho pounds on Jordan’s face and
suplexes him down to bring in Hunico.
to Camacho after nothing of note and the bigger guy throws Jordan
around with a nice butterfly suplex. A legdrop gets two but Jordan
escapes a suplex and tags in Dalton. Dalton hits a spinwheel kick
and a charge in the corner, followed by a hurricanrana for two. A
missile dropkick gets two on Hunico and everything breaks down. As
Jordan is being put back on the apron, Camacho hits Dalton from
behing, allowing Hunico to hit his version of an Angle Slam for the
pin at 4:00.
C. This was your run of the
mill tag match between four guys who aren’t that interesting but they
made it work well enough. Hunico and Camacho are fine for a low
level tag team and giving the unknowns a win over them in the first
match was a good way to give Dalton and Jordan some exposure. As is
the case with almost everyone on NXT though, they need ring time.
are the Usos with something to say. They call out the Ascension and
as the lights go out for Ascension’s entrance, Ascension runs in from
behind and jumps the Usos, laying them out with relative ease.
ReBound is about Punk vs. Lawler. I’m still curious as to when Cena
forgot hot to climb a cage.
E. Langston vs. Chase Donovan
clothesline and that falling slam thing gets the pin at 40 seconds.
He really needs to change finishers. A powerslam would be fine.
locker room comes out to watch the title match.
says nothing.
Finkel is doing the announcing for the main event.
comes out and JR is now on commentary.
Championship: Jinder Mahal vs. Seth Rollins
have a ton of time for this. Fink may be fat and older now (he’s
only 62 so he’s hardly ancient), but that voice is still perfect.
Mahal won’t shake Dusty’s hand before the match. Rollins tries to
take him to the mat to start but Mahal gets back up quickly. A
dropkick puts Mahal down again and Rollins hits a hard chop. Mahal
gets sent to the floor but he avoids a dive and sends Rollins face
first into the apron. A suplex onto the ramp has Rollins in trouble
and we head back in.
take a break and come back with Rollins in even more trouble. Mahal
stomps him down and hits a backbreaker to start setting up the camel
clutch. Rollins gets choked against the ropes and the fans are
behind Rollins now. He tries a comeback but gets kneed in the face
by Mahal to take him back down. The camel clutch is escaped so Mahal
pounds him in the back again. An enziguri out of nowhere puts Mahal
down and Rollins punches Jinder down.
goes up for another knee but Rollins knocks him off the top and out
to the floor. Rollins hits a HUGE dive to the floor and both guys
are down. Back in and Seth goes up again, only to get crotched and
superplexed from the top. We take another break and come back with
the two of them slugging it out. Mahal might have a bad knee but he
pulls off a sitout slam for two. A full nelson slam is countered and
Rollins goes to the apron.
hits an enziguri to the head and a running knee for two. The near
falls are getting closer and closer here. A running forearm in the
corner staggers Mahal but he manages to drop Rollins face first into
the buckle. The low superkick (I think he calls it Avada Kadavra,
making Rollins awesome) gets two. Phoenix Splash (moonsault into a
450) misses and Mahal hits the full nelson slam for two. Rollins
gets to the rope before the clutch can go on and Rollins rolls him up
for two. Rollins comes back with the buckle bomb and the Blackout
out of nowhere for the pin and the title at 14:24 shown of 21:24.
B. I’m still not wild on
Rollins’ in ring work but the fans are into him and he’s not dull.
He also needs a new finisher as the Blackout looks pretty forced to
put it mildly. As for the match though, they did a great job of
building both guys up as unbeatable and then having them go at it.
The match was very good as far as making you wonder who was going to
win and it turned into a good back and forth fight at the end. Not a
masterpiece or anything, but for the first NXT Championship, this was
more than acceptable.
giving Rollins the NEEEEEEEEEEEEEW treatment makes the announcement
much better. The roster puts Rollins on their shoulders to end the
B. This was all about
the main event so I’m not going to really bother thinking about the
rest of it. Rollins is a good choice for a first champion as he can
defend the title for a few months and then have a big time heel beat
him to take the title. This felt like a big show and I wanted to see
it, which is the right idea here. I’m very pleased with this and it
worked quite well.
b. Jason Jordan/Mike Dalton – Reverse fireman’s carry slam to
E. Langston b. Chase Donovan – Over the shoulder mat slam
Rollins b. Jinder Mahal – Blackout
Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com

Big Brother 14 Dan Gheesling

Hey Scott,
I remember a few years back on the blog you were praising Dan Gheesling for his performance on Big Brother 10.  Just curious if you're still watching the show, as he has returned to play in Big Brother 14…. and last night may have been one of the biggest strategic moves in the history of the show.  Everything about that move was pure genius and amazing.  Did you catch it and what were your thoughts?

Man, everything from the double elimination show last week has been AWESOME.  I'm still cheering for Frank to win it all this year, but if Dan wins it for a second time I won't be sad either.  Really, the guy in the best position right now is Joe, because either Frank or Dan is probably going to take him to the final two so they can win.  Ian's a dark horse but he's burning bridges now, whereas Dan is a pure social player (as evidenced by the FUNERAL FOR DAN last night).  Long as idiot Shane doesn't coast to the finale, we'll get a good winner this year.  But yeah, it's been like a slow building ***** match this season, especially once Boogie got booted.  

The Heenan Position

Hi Scott,
Long-time something something. I'm watching Summerslam '92 and Heenan mentions that Bret is on the floor right by him. It started me wondering when the commentators moved – full-time, unless for some kind of special circumstances – to sitting ring-side instead of watching from the heavens as I seem to remember Heenan & Gorilla doing at least some times. I don't have every pre '92 PPV to check but I'm sure I'm thinking of PPVs, not Prime Time.
So, yeah, do you know when the announcers finally moved down to ring-side permanently? In WWF specifically.

Wrestlemania VII was the first time I can recall them being down there on the floor.  Not that it mattered because Vince is all about watching the monitor and not the ring anyway.  


Not sure if it's too early to mailbag this one, but do you have any favorites for MOTY so far? Sure we have 4 months to go, but 2012 has provided some of the best matches of this recent era. Richards/Elgin was untoppable, but Omega/Ibushi from last week came close and was pretty goddamn awesome. Combinations of Tanahashi/Naito/Okada have been pretty memorable as well. Mania had it's moments. And Cena/Lesnar was, if nothing else, a lot of fun to watch back. Any favorites so far?

Well, I've already given out two ***** ratings this year, although I don't see anything topping Richards-Elgin.  Roode-Aries gave it a good try.  Undertaker-HHH was a special case and I don't feel personally comfortable saying it's the best match of the year because it basically existed in a vacuum.  With a better finish, Brock-Cena would run away with the award, and it might even win as it is.  And I'd probably have no problem with that, really.  

Most hated

On fact has arisen in the last couple of years, there are a decent amount of wrestlers who are well liked.  Harley Race and Terry Funk are pretty much bulet-roof, Bruno and Bob Backlund are usually very respected even some who get ons of criticism from former coworkers like Hogan and Dusty get a decent amount of love from some of their detrators.  Flair has been losing a lot of his luster recently but his haters are almost always outnumbered, even Kevin Sullivan gets a good amount of love.  So my question to you would be, Who is the most hated in your book?  Who would get no friend requests on their facebook status?  From all indications it seems to be either Tom Zenk and the worldwide leader ahead of him by a mile seems to be Ole Anderson.  With the exception of a few very minute positive things, I never hear one good thing about either of these guys.  Thoughts

I suppose Kevin Sullivan might have garnered more sympathy in the past few years for obvious reasons, but I wouldn't say he was exactly a popular guy or anything.
Ole Anderson by far is the winner.  Tom Zenk burned all his bridges in spectacular fashion, but I don't think anyone really HATES the guy.  Ole once told Vince to go fuck himself and called Linda a very bad name, so it's doubtful his legacy in wrestling will continue to exist once he's gone.  Bill Watts is not exactly a popular guy either, given that he's a giant asshole much of the time and the people who REALLY hate him (ie, Shawn and Hunter) are the ones who in control of the business now.  

Monday Nitro – April 7, 1997

Nitro #82
Date: April 7, 1997
Location: Von Braun
Center, Huntsville, Alabama
Commentators: Mike
Tenay, Bobby Heenan, Tony Schiavone, Larry Zbyszko
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
Back to Nitro and it’s
the first night after Spring Stampede. Almost nothing has changed as
that was one of the least important shows in recent memory. We’re
now on the way towards Slamboree which will set the bar even lower as
Hogan’s spring/summer vacation continues. Hopefully this is a more
interesting show than last week. Let’s get to it.

Tony and Larry suggest
there’s turmoil in the NWO. This would be the first of about 87
times this was potentially happening. We get a lot of stills from
the main event last night with Nash power bombing Nick Patrick after
the pin was counted for Page.
Konnan/Hugh Morrus
vs. Psychosis/Alex Wright
Wright and Morrus start
us off and the fans seem rowdy tonight. Alex uses the Daniel Bryan
moonsault out of the corner and works on the arm of Morrus. Off to
Psychosis as the announcers talk about having an opening to beat the
NWO now. Konnan comes in illegally but walks into a superkick that
didn’t appear to connect from Psychosis. A better looking top rope
spinwheel kick puts Konnan down and Psychosis takes Morrus down on
the floor as well.
Morrus comes in and
with nothing better to do, we go split screen to show Page arriving
earlier today and looking hurt. A powerslam gets no cover on the
masked man and a middle rope elbow misses for Morrus. Double tag
brings in Wright and Konnan and Alex cleans house. A top rope cross
body gets one on Hugh but Konnan hits him with a neckbreaker and No
Laughing Matter (moonsault) gets the pin on Wright.
Rating: D+.
Not much here but it wasn’t bad. The Dungeon of Doom was about a
year and a half past their expiration date and they would never mean
anything again. For that matter you could say the same for Wright
and Psychosis as well, but they had some moderate success. Not a lot
to say here.
Rey Mysterio Jr. vs.
Steven Regal
No entrances for either
guy but at least we got that nifty set of stills from Madusa vs.
Hokuto. Regal takes over to start and sends Rey out to the floor and
into the barricade. Back inside and we’re told the NWO has arrived.
Naturally we look at this instead of the match. I know they’re a
bigger deal but this gets on my nerves. You could EASILY show this
between the matches and nothing would be any worse. Hogan and
Bischoff talk about problems in the family and it’s only the two of
them plus DiBiase and Vincent.
Back in the ring,
Mysterio sends Regal to the apron but misses a charge. Regal goes up
top but takes too long, allowing Rey to hit a springboard
headscissors for two. West Coast Pop doesn’t connect properly and
only gets two. Regal takes him down and puts on the Regal Stretch
but Rey makes the rope. For some reason during part of that hold
referee Randy Anderson had his hand on the back of Rey’s head. Regal
won’t break the hold and it’s a DQ.
Rating: D+.
Not much to see here again but at least we could see most of the
match instead of having most of the time being spent on the NWO
buying a newspaper or whatever they’re doing this week. Regal was
snapping at this point but I don’t remember anything coming out of
it, which is a shame as he was good at being psycho.
Prince Iaukea comes out
for the save but Regal beats him down and puts him in the Stretch
too. The totally calm look on Regal’s face as he tortures Iaukea and
punches him in the face is borderline chilling.
The rest of the NWO
arrives. Savage is on crutches.
We recap last night’s
bizarre one on one match for the tag titles which was basically Rick
Steiner being squashed by Kevin Nash. This led to Ted DiBiase
getting upset by the amount of punishment Steiner received.
Ice Train vs. Chris
Woman is continuing to
look good here so at least the squash won’t be a total loss. Benoit
pounds away to start but walks into a press slam from Train. Benoit
starts chopping away but Ice Train yells at him and clotheslines
Benoit down. Train puts on a chinlock as we go split screen to see
Hogan throwing the belt down and the NWO gets in an argument.
Savage seems to be the
one with the most issues here. Nash walks away and Norton says get
it together. Back in the ring Woman takes Teddy Long down and a
Benoit DDT gets the pin. It was barely long enough to rate in the
first place and since we missed a good piece of it for an NWO
argument I’ll pass on a rating. It was exactly what you would expect
We get a video on the
premiere of Double Team, which is Dennis Rodman’s new movie. This is
shown because the NWO was there, which brings up a question: the NWO
is supposed to be a totally different organization from WCW in
storyline terms right? So why would WCW show this stuff? There’s no
disclaimer saying that the NWO paid for this and Tony intros it, so
why would they show it?
Hector Guerrero vs.
Kevin Sullivan
Hector is a dead ringer
for Eddie and may actually be more talented in the ring than Eddie
was. Sullivan pounds Hector down to start and knocks him to the
floor so Jackie can slam him which is supposed to be impressive for
some reason. Back in the ring and Sullivan keeps up the assault and
then throws him out to Jackie for more of her punches and another
slam. The Tree of Woe and double stomp end this quick, and by that I
mean the guy that got in all the offense so far, as in Sullivan,
wins, in case that was too complicated for you.
Here’s the NWO with
something to say. DiBiase says there are clearly problems here and
we need to fix them now. Hogan says that Nash has a problem with
this and throws the belt down again, saying it means nothing. Nash
says that he has no problem with Rodman as he used to be a ball
player too. But he spent Easter Sunday in a hotel room with Syxx
which was a big problem for some reason.
Hogan says next Easter
they’ll go on an NWO Easter Hunt, but for now he wants to know where
Hall is. Nash says Hall is NWO for life but Hogan wants to fight
right now. Nash talks about Hogan joining Hall and Nash and about
how they’re NWO for life. That apparently buries the hatchet but
Savage is mad. The fans want Sting. Hogan says he doesn’t want to
fight Savage so get it together. Savage says ok but he and Bishoff
are on probation with each other. That settles things apparently.
Hour #2 begins and we
recap the first half of the show.
Gene brings out Flair
for a chat. Flair rants a bit about the NWO and how he’s going to
take them out. Here’s Piper who says he’s out of the asylum and
rants a bit as well. Flair says Kevin Greene wants to join up with
them and I think we’ve got a six man coming. Piper on the NWO: “They
smell like six dead otters in a drainpipe.” Greene comes out and
praises both guys before going insane as well. This would be the
main event of the PPV.
US Title: Dean
Malenko vs. Chris Jericho
This should be awesome.
Things start off fast and Jericho hits a pair of kicks to take
Malenko down. They head to the floor for some more kicks before a
missile dropkick gets two back in the ring. A backslide gets the
same but Jericho ducks his head and gets powerbombed. There’s the
Cloverleaf but Jericho grabs the rope. Dean goes up but gets
superplexed down. This is the first slow down they’ve had so far.
As Jericho gets up, Dean hits a standing version of Orton’s Punt for
the pin.
Rating: B.
For a three minute match, this was AWESOME. Dean going all evil and
kicking Jericho in the face was a good change of pace for him and it
would lead to a decent heel run for him. Jericho was starting to get
pushed and it would turn into a title run in a few months in a big
win over an NWO member.
Public Enemy vs.
High Voltage
High Voltage jumps the
Public Enemy to start but gets slugged down almost immediately. A
double flapjack sets up a double suplex on Rage for no cover. The
fans like the arm waving thing the Public Enemy does. Rock and Kaos
officially get us going before Rock is sent to the floor for a
beating from Rage. Back in and Rock hits a neckbreaker on Kaos for
two. Tag to Grunge who cleans house. They head to the floor and
Kaos is put on the table. The elbow through said table misses while
back in the ring, Rage hits a northern lights suplex for the pin.
Short but energetic again.
Public Enemy says
sometimes the table works for you and sometimes it works against you
but it’s all good. Rock challenges High Voltage to a Philadelphia
street fight next week. They say they’ll get extreme next week.
Prince Iaukea is
getting his ribs taped up.
Harlem Heat vs.
Steve McMichael/Jeff Jarrett
And there’s no Mongo.
Booker gets things going in a match that would be for the world title
in about three years. Booker runs him over to start but Jarrett
comes back with some hip tosses. Jarrett goes to the corner but gets
pounded down as the Heat takes over again. Stevie comes in and
catches Jarrett in what we would call the World’s Strongest Slam.
Jeff dropkicks both guys to the floor and things slow down a bit.
Stevie slams him down
again and it’s back to Booker. The numbers game is catching up with
Jeff as Booker side kicks him down for two. Debra has left ringside
as the announcers are trying to figure out if Mongo was here earlier
or not. The ax kick hits but Booker tags out instead of covering.
Jarrett grabs a small package out of nowhere for two and a sunset
flip out of the corner gets the same on Booker. A double suplex puts
Jeff down for two and Debra is back again. Jeff misses a dropkick
and Stevie guillotines him on the top rope.
Even Sherri is getting
in some attacks on Jeff, hitting him in the chest and choking him a
bit. A quick backslide gets two for Jarrett and he avoids the Harlem
Side Kick, crotching Booker in the process. Stevie hits a
brainbuster and here’s Mongo who looks fine. Stevie misses something
off the top and Mongo is on the apron. There’s the tag and Mongo
cleans house. Jarrett is spent so Mongo tags him back in. Mongo
shoves him into the side kick and Booker gets the pin.
Rating: D+.
This was a long angle advancement which is a good thing, but it’s an
angle that wasn’t interesting for the most part. At the end of the
day, they’re fighting about Debra who is just annoying beyond belief.
Mongo wasn’t any good in the ring and Jarrett was awful as a face at
this point. It wouldn’t be until be became a male sexist pig in the
WWF that he really came into his own.
Jarrett and Mongo
bicker post match. Mongo says he wants more pain but never would say
where he was.
TV Title: Ultimo
Dragon vs. Prince Iaukea
Iaukea is injured from
the attack by Regal earlier in the night. He tries to speed things
up to start but a slam fails. Iaukea rolls him up for two and a
backslide gets the same. Dragon uses his first opening and kicks the
Prince in the ribs to take over. Iaukea gets the feet up to take out
a diving Dragon but Dragon kicks him in the ribs a few times and pins
him quickly for the title. This was basically a squash.
Another package of
stills from last night. I’ll give WCW one thing: other than the
title matches which are obvious, they haven’t said who won any of
these matches. That’s one thing that annoys me about WWE doing this:
they’ll tell you to buy the replay but they’ll explain every single
thing that happened. Here at least they’re just showing pictures of
it but no endings.
Giant vs. Scott
Main event here, but
Konnan and Hugh Morrus jump Scott on the way to the ring. Giant
makes the save. Scott didn’t wrestle last night either so maybe he
was injured. No match.
Here’s DDP to close the
show. He talks about last night and how no one would have believed
that could have happened a few years ago. Page says he’s an anomaly
and if he had gotten his hands on Savage last night when Savage was
hurting Kimberly, he would have killed the Macho Man. Cue Savage on
crutches but Hogan follows him out and stops him.
Hogan says this one is
on him and the rest of the NWO appears on stage. Hogan rips his
shirt off and here’s Sting on a zip line and repelling from the
ceiling. He stands in the aisle in front of the NWO and holds the
bat out at Hogan. Sting hands Page the bat but pulls out another one
to point at Hogan again. The NWO cowers to end the show.
Overall Rating: B-.
This show worked MUCH better than the previous week’s did and that’s
because the big stars were here. Last week and at Spring Stampede,
no one showed up and it felt like an unimportant show. This show
came off like it mattered and even though the PPV would mean nothing
again, this was a good start on the six week build to Slamboree.
Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com

August Leftovers–WCW New Blood Rising 2000

The SK Rant for WCW New Blood Rising 2000 (Oh Christ, THIS show.)  – Live from Vancouver, BC – Your hosts are Tony, Mark and Scott. Opening match: Three Count v. The Jung Dragons. WCW always does this — they know they have at least one hot match, so they put it first and thus guarantee it gets forgotten by the fourth or fifth match. I’ve never understand that reasoning. Tank Abbott has a shirt with nipple-holes cut out, for those of you who are into that sort of thing. (Yes, that used to be a thing in WCW – Tank Abbott mentoring Three Count.)  Three Count bolts for the ladders right away and bring one in. Shane (Future star Hurricane Helms)gets backdropped into the ladder by Yang, who then gets crotched on it. Shane hits a lame splash on Jamiesan (Future star Jamie Noble / James Gibson), and then the Dragons get piled on a ladder and splashed. Nice spot as we get stereo Doomsday Devices. Yang climbs and gets pushed off. Jamiesan hits a bodypress off the ladder, onto Three Count on the floor. Cool. More spots follow, too many to note here. Dragons hit spinkicks on Three Count, but Evan powerslams Kaz on the ladder. Nasty spot as Shane catapults the ladder into the Dragons via the top rope. Dragons hit double splashes on Shane from the ladders, and Jamiesan grabs the gold record…which is then taken by Tank. I guess that counts as Three Count getting the first part? Dragons sandwich Shane in the ladder and Jamie legdrops him from the top. Ouch. Tony vainly tries to explain the logic of the potential finish, but it’s a lost cause. Kaz & Shannon race up the ladders, but Tank pushes both of them over (?), and Evan climbs up and gets the recording contract for the win at 11:32. I don’t quite get the logic of having that finish, but retarded booking and blown spots aside, there was more than enough high energy and suicidal stuff to entertain me here as they die for my pleasure. ***1/2  (These poor guys were stuck in such a holding pattern for the last few months of WCW’s life.  If I gave a crap about any of them at the time it would have been sad.)  – The Cat puts the Filthy Animals into the tag title mess as special referees. Because THAT’S what it needs to make it better — more participants. – The Great Muta v. The Cat. Kick, kick, kick. Tigress wanders out. More kicking. Outside, more kicking. Muta spits mist, but Tigress hits Muta with a chair and Cat gets two. More kicking. Nice to see both guys showing off their moveset. A big kick from the Cat finishes at 6:48. Thrilling. DUD  (Although Ernest Miller nearly saved his career with the Commissioner gig at the end, he was still awful in the ring.)  – Judy Bagwell on a Pole: Positively Kanyon v. Buff Bagwell. (Yes, when we joke about the Judy Bagwell on a Pole match, it’s a REAL THING and not just a running joke.  Kanyon was doing his impression of DDP as a motivational speaker at this point, and amazingly did not catapult himself to the main event as a result.  Remember, Vince Russo LOVES people doing imitations of other people.)  Judy’s actually on a forklift. (I now think of the special Judy-Buff relationship whenever I watch Hoyt and his mom on True Blood.)  Brawl to start. Back in, Buff does some punching. Kanyon hits a russian legsweep off the second rope for two. He snips off a turnbuckle for some reason. A whiplash powerbomb gets two. Kanyon uses a cobra clutch for some inexplicable reason to waste some time as Buff sells it like a resthold and gives Russo another excuse to work in the sleeper arm-test spot. Buff escapes and comes back with a hotshot for two. Kanyon Kutter gets two…and David Arquette makes his triumphant return. Good god. Buff comes back…and Arquette of course turns on him, because it IS Russo booking this show. Buff takes both guys out with a Blockbuster and gets the pin at 6:46. (Vince Russo booking:  This guy’s gonna run in, but people would expect him to screw his enemy over, so we’ll swerve them and have him turn on his friend instead, but then people would expect THAT to end the match, so we’ll SWERVE THEM AGAIN and have the guy who got screwed over win anyway!) One or two Kanyon spots saves it from DUD, but not by much. 1/2* – WCW World tag title match: Kronic v. O’Haire & Jindrak v. Perfect Event v. MIA. Disco Inferno is the in-ring ref and the other Animals are lurking around ringside. He slow counts everyone throughout the match. Epic Palumbo v. Adams match to start. Hey, shouldn’t Brian Adams be a massive babyface here? (I recall that one going completely over everyone’s head at the time for some reason.)  Hugh Morrus plays bad-pun-in-peril for a while. A long while, in fact, as the crowd completely goes bored out of their mind with yet another sleeper spot and some horribly mistimed stuff from everyone involved. There’s just nothing happening. Finally, Kronik gets in and the match breaks down six ways from Sunday, as they try High Times on Palumbo, but now Vampiro and Muta add ANOTHER team to the match and run in. (Why was Muta getting such a huge push at this point?)  Kronik still pounds Palumbo, but Disco won’t count. So now Chavo Jr. adds ANOTHER run-in to the match and steals the ref shirt, counting the pin for Kronik himself (and thus screwing over his own team) at 12:23. I think Kronik has actually gotten WORSE since getting this big push. You’d think that WCW would have looked at the horrible clusterfuck that was Thunder and realized that this was gonna blow goats, but I guess that’s why I’m not in charge. DUD  (Vince Russo actually booking matches was such an unmitigated disaster that I’m frankly shocked most days that they didn’t just shut down the promotion and call it a day in July.)  – Strap match: Shane Douglas v. Kidman. This is standard pinfall rules, thus negating the entire point of having a stipulation. (WCW, ladies and gentlemen!)  Brawling outside to start. Back in, Kidman does some whipping, as does Shane. Kidman gets a rana and a pair of dropkicks. Rydien bomb gets two. More strappin’. Bulldog gets two. Torrie takes a swing at Kidman with her shoe, but hits Shane instead (what a shock) and Kidman gets two. Shane hotshots Kidman for two. Pittsburgh Plunge gets two. Kidman hits his version of the Tomikaze for the pin at 8:22. I hope Tommy Rogers is getting royalties for all the versions of that move floating around. (I think Christian pretty much has that one all to himself now.)  Match was your typical Nitro mess with a couple more minutes added on. *1/2 Douglas tries to hang Kidman after the loss, Vito makes the save, and Reno attacks Vito. Man, we don’t get that Reno-Vito blowoff tonight? Bummer. (Is anyone else losing their mind just READING about all the bullshit packed into this show?  Just me?)  – Meanwhile, Jarrett does a good job of punking Booker out as he leaves his car. – ROTC match: Major Gunns v. Miss Hancock. Catfight starts, then they go into a HORRIBLE wrestling match, and Hancock rips off Gunn’s shirt for two. I don’t know which is stupider — Pinfalls in a stripping match or ripping off someone’s shirt and getting a near fall. Gunns gets an X-Factor and tears off Hancock’s shorts for two. Gunns gets a sunset flip for two. I apologize if my using actual wrestling move names to describe the “action” is misleading you into thinking that what they were doing is resembling wrestling, but it’s the closest equivalent I could think of on short notice. Please, ladies, head to the mud now because this isn’t working. Brawl outside, and Gunns is left in her bikini bottoms. Into the mudpit, where Hancock suffers “stomach pains” and gets pinned by Gunns at 6:43. Um, wasn’t the point to strip your opponent? Whatever. Hancock keeps clutching her stomach, and I get a sinking feeling where this angle is going (ie, Terri Runnels and D-Lo 1999) and I don’t like it one bit. –*** (I guess that’s what you call an aborted angle.)  Notice how all the worst matches we’ve seen in decades are coming under Russo’s tenure? Just saying. To insult us even more, as Hancock gets carted off in an ambulance (still covered in mud), Tony has the gall to “break character” and insinuate that this is indeed a shoot. Right, SURE it is. (Here comes a historic line on my part!) I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The entire crux of the Russo mentality is that “The entire show you are watching is a work, but what you are watching RIGHT NOW is a shoot” and that is repeated for every match. (Thumbs up, cheap pop!)  How can anyone older than 12 actually be expected to believe that Stacy was really pregnant and “had a miscarriage” over a few worked shots to the mid-section? – The Demon v. Sting. (Don’t forget this was a special main event!)  Faster than I can type this sentence, Sting finishes with the usual at 0:53. DUD Vamp and Muta attack, and Kronik saves, and they want a tag title match TONIGHT. I don’t wanna see either Kronik or Muta wrestle twice in one night at this point, does my vote count? – Canadian title match: Lance Storm v. Mike Awesome. Storm has the Goldberg security escort. He appoints a special guest referee (crowd: “Bret! Bret! Bret!”)…Jacques Rougeau (crowd: [silence]). Real smart there, guys. (Didn’t ANYONE slap Russo around and tell him that it’s fucking stupid to tease Bret Hart as the guest referee and then deliver the Mountie instead?  This shit is making me angry all over again and it’s 12 years later!)  Awesome gets a quick double underhook driver to start, and a legdrop gets two. Storm superkick and he tosses Awesome to the post, and gets some Canadian Violence in. Awesome dumps him and they brawl. Back in, Awesome slips on the top rope, but goes for an Awesomebomb, which is reversed to a backslide for two. Ligerbomb from Awesome gets the pin, but Rougeau overrules the ref on the grounds of Canadian Rules, which state a five-count is needed. Storm sunset flip is blocked for three. Awesome gets a Dragon Sleeper for the tap-out, but this is Canadian Rules, so submissions don’t count. Sure, let’s just job the champ two or three times in his home country, why don’t we? Can you imagine Russo having that conversation with Bret in 1997? “Okay, so Shawn’s gonna get a clean pinfall and submission over you in the first five minutes, but it’s Canadian Rules…” and I bet it’d go downhill from there. Storm gets a few four-counts but takes a German suplex and flying shoulderblock for four. Awesome frog splash gets five, but now Canadian Rules state that Texas Death rules are in effect and Storm has to beat a ten-count. I know that Russo is going for the Over the Edge 98 thing here with Dude Love against Steve Austin, but that was a real good match even without the silliness, and this isn’t. Besides, Storm is supposed to a BABYFACE here. Awesome brings a table in, but Storm chairshots him for four. They fight on top, both go through it. Rougeau declares first man up is the winner, then punks out Awesome just to make Storm look completely weak. Storm retains at 11:01, and I bet Meltzer’s gonna get a call from that Awesome mark tomorrow on the show. The match was somewhat less than all that and a bag of chips. Maybe just a bag of chips. **1/4 Bret Hart makes a surprise appearance (Hello dipshits — why not use HIM as the ref?) and we do the All-Canadian Hug. – WCW World tag title match: Kronic v. Vampiro & Muta. The inexplicable Vampiro push continues. Clarke overpowers Vamp for two. Powerbomb gets two. Adams slams Muta for two. He powerslams Vamp for two. Vamp reverses a powerbomb and Adams plays pothead-in-peril as the match completely dies. Hot tag Clarke, Meltdown follows, but he doesn’t take the pin. Ref bump as Kronik hits High Times on both guys, but the friggin’ HARRIS BROTHERS return as you can hear the crowd audibly groan, and punk out Clarke, putting Muta on top for the pin and the titles at 9:06. (Yes, more run-ins and screwjobs.  This ended up with Bret Hart, Jeff Jarrett and Harris Brothers as the nWo Silver, didn’t it?  And all the idiots on RSPW were like OMG THE BAND IS BACK TOGETHER for some reason.)  This is stupid on SO many levels, not the least of which is that we’re gonna have to see Harrissssessssess v. Kronik on the next PPV, and Muta wrestling more. 1/4*  (Oddly, Muta would go on to have a career renaissance in Japan and I’d become a big fan all over again.)  – Kevin Nash v. Scott Steiner v. Goldberg. (Oh fucking kill me now.  I can’t even READ this show review anymore and there’s still this bullshit to get through.)  Tony tries to sell that Goldberg was in a motorcycle accident and won’t be here, just to show how uncooperative he is. Nash gets a big boot on Steiner…and Goldberg runs in with taped ribs. Steiner drops an elbow on him for two. Are they shooting yet? I can’t tell. Steiner gets dumped and Nash & Goldberg go. Slugfest goes Goldberg’s way. Steiner suplexes Nash for two. Crowd gets into the “shoot” with a massive “boring” chant. I think I heard a few “Hogan” ones there, too. Goldberg pushes out of a Poochiebomb attempt and “walks out” on the match, meeting Russo in the aisle and “shooting” on him too, using naughty words. God, this is beyond idiotic. And now Tony is getting all upset, talking about how Nash and Steiner will have to “improvise” a new finish or some nonsense. As if Nash ever “improvised” anything not planned out for him move-by-move in his entire career. Steiner backbreaker gets two. Steiner’s chick comes out and hits some lowblows on Nash. It gets two for Steiner. Steiner tries a sleeper, but Nash breaks and finishes with the big boot and Poochiebomb at 10:49. Was that a shoot? * God help us all, it’s Nash getting ANOTHER title shot at Fall Brawl. I didn’t think it was possible to drop a buyrate much lower, but I guess that theory will be tested in one month.  (Oh, it was possible all right.)  – WCW World title match: Booker T v. Jeff Jarrett. Quick rollup for Booker gets two, and a leg lariat leads to a powerbomb for two. He dumps Jarrett. Brawl on the floor and in for a posting of Jarrett. Missile dropkick misses ugly, and Jarrett works the knee, smashing a chair into it. Boston Crab, which Booker escapes, and gets a rollup for two. Double KO spot. Spinebuster gets two, axe kick follows, but the ref is bumped on the breakdance spot. Oh, joy, a ref bump. Sidekick is blocked with the guitar to the leg, which is a nice spot. Jarrett hooks the figure-four, but Booker makes the ropes. I was actually thinking that they might switch the title for about 0.5 seconds until Tony started declaring that there was going to be a title change. I really wish wrestling announcers would get into the 21st century and realize that fans have picked up on that trick. Jarrett makes the run at Booker with the title belt, but hits the ref instead. Great, TWO ref bumps. He sets up a table, but irony shows her hand again and Jarrett goes through it in a weak bump. Into the ring, another ref comes in but gets bumped on a Jarrett chairshot. Jarrett hits the Stroke on said chair, but no ref. Still another ref comes in and counts two. Booker gets an ugly neckbreaker for two, and the Book-End finishes at 14:31. I thought the company line was that Booker and Jarrett would have a blow-away match to erase the memory of last month’s one? I actually liked the one at Bash at the Beach better than this one, which felt even more rushed and stuck together with chewing gum. **3/4 Fans pelt the ring with garbage after sitting through that PPV.  (I want to pelt my screen with garbage just for reading about it.)  The Bottom Line: Rome is burning while Russo is shooting. I think six months of this is pretty conclusive evidence that a) Reality angles don’t draw money and b) The crowd doesn’t care about them. A good match to start and a decent main event (but reminiscent of Summerslam 93, where the WWF literally promised a ****+ Michaels-Hennig match and couldn’t deliver) but the chances of the Dragons/Three Count feud leading anywhere are nil (Yup.) and Booker’s becoming a lame duck champion after a promising start (Double yup.), much like the entire dying promotion. (Bingo!)Next month: Kevin Nash brushes his teeth, live on PPV! It’s REAL, baby! Thumbs down.

Deadspin Wrestler run-in stories

Decent installment. Read on to see what happens with Mick Foley and “Dollface” and find out how Lou Ferrigno is a dick. Plus, dont tell Scott Steiner what size pasta to order and don’t mouth off to Lesnar. Also, a great Virgil story and a funny one about th Bushwhackers.


Macho Man’s successor

Just re-watching Savage's last WCW appearances and reminded myself about this segment where he names his successor…and nothing came of it. Any idea who it was supposed to be or what was going to happen? You seem to have a good idea about…everything.
P.S. Please say it was Luger.

That whole period was just a mess of week-to-week booking, especially Macho Man's stuff.  Much like that week on Thunder where they had the battle royale and Savage randomly appeared and then was never mentioned again.