BoD Thursday Night Thread

On tap for tonight:

WWE Smackdown is live tonight at 8pm EST on Syfy, highlighted by Daniel Bryan vs. Kane in a Casket Match

There are four games in the NBA tonight and two of them will be shown on TNT. At 8pm EST the Denver Nuggets take on the Memphis Grizzlies while at 10:30pm EST the Chicago Bulls face the Los Angeles Lakers.

Also in the NBA a report came out stating Kevin Durant will have the New York Knicks at the top of his list when he hits free agency in 2016.

The NHL has 11 games on the schedule. The Montreal Canadiens vs. New York Rangers are currently underway on NBC Sports and at 10pm EST on the same channel you can see the Anaheim Ducks vs. San Jose Sharks.

College Basketball has a few games on National TV tonight. #16 Maryland vs. Ohio St. is currently underway on ESPN.

If you want to hear about classic wrestling, head on over to Place to be Nation for the latest edition of the “Vintage Vault” where Scott and Justin discuss the 1990 Royal Rumble. Click on the link below to give that a listen.

And as usual talk about anything else going on tonight

RF Video Shoot Interview with The Outsiders

This was filmed in 2007

The interview was conducted by Rob Feinstein

It runs for one hour and fifty-five minutes long.

The interview starts with the guys asked when they first met. They said it was at the first SuperBrawl PPV for WCW. The next day, Nash picked up Hall at his hotel and they worked out then stopped to have a few beers. They both then tell a funny story of how Hall reached across to play with the radio and accidentally brushed up on Nash’s junk a few times, as there was barely any room for them in the car and after the third time Nash held Hall’s hand there, who thought it was either a joke or Nash was going to kick his ass so he called Nash a “fag” jokingly and they became friends after that.

When asked about not getting chances in their first WCW run, Nash said he understood as he was green but Hall had experience. Hall said it was still the most money he was making and that the fans were not knowing how much he was making so he decided to go out and act like he was making a ton until he left for the WWF. Hall then talked about how in WCW, you position on the card was already determined before your first match as no matter what crowd response you received as a guy making $75,000 a year was never going to beat a guy making $750,000 a year. He then talks about in the WWF, everybody gets a “few swings” and the decisions are based about your performance.

They are asked about what pressure you face when being the top wrestlers in a company. Nash talks about how the fans are behind you until you reach the top then the “smarks” start to automatically hate you. Hall says that when Vince ran the WWF back then you were as good as your last performance and it created a competitive environment and how if you had a bad match, agents would tell you what was wrong and how you did. In WCW, they barely cared as Nash recalls a time when they didn’t have his entrance music ready for a show in Tupelo. The agent then told him that it didnt matter because it was a small show in Tupelo and after that Nash said that was his battle cry and how he wanted to be told ahead of time if stuff didnt matter because he could be sitting at home if that was the case.

On their first road trip, they were with Shawn Michaels and all put towels over their faces on the way into the arena because at that time they were still supposed to keep kayfabe.

Hall talks about how he was in a meeting with Vince, Savage, Heenan, Mr. Perfect, and Ric Flair to discuss Savage dropping the belt to Flair. He said that he wanted to stand up and tell Vince if he really wanted to give Flair the belt seeing how he came into his company with the WCW belt. Hall said he almost did that because he hated Flair for fucking him over in WCW when he was the booker.

They are asked about the Ultimate Warrior. Nash said he got along with him but that he was really “different” as Hall admires him for holding out for more money.

When asked if Vince was responsible for the heat between Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart Nash said that Vince always stirred the pot because it was good for business, adding that is not the case today where everything is so heavily scripted. Nash talks about guys shooting on interviews back then as Hall notes how today on Smackdown you can see how the cheers are canned as you hear the noise but do not see anyone reacting in the crowds as Nash adds how there are people who work on Smackdown for a reason.

On working with Shawn, they both joked how he was the reason their matches were any good and talk about how great he is and how he is a lot bigger in person than you would think.

When asked about any road stories while in the WWF, Nash attempts to recall a time when they were all fucked up on pills along with Shawn and the 1-2-3 Kid. HHH was with them but sober and they went into a diner that was filled with cops from a nearby police convention where they gave Shawn the choice to either go to jail or a hospital because he was such a mess. Hall says that he has no recollection of this as Nash jokes that he was probably too fucked up. Nash then talks about how when HHH first started to travel with them, 1-2-3 Kid got so fucked up that they were all trying to slap him in the face so he could wake up then HHH went and slapped him, causing the others to remind HHH that he just started hanging with them and that he basically had not earned that right.

Nash talks about the “50 mile rule” where he would not drink while he was driving until they were 50 miles away from their destination. Hall then said the only driver worse than him was the 1-2-3 Kid.

They talk about traveling to Toronto for WrestleMania 18 and were driving. While approaching the border, they realized they had some pills on them and instead of tossing them out of the window, they decided to take them all. They both talked about having past arrests and not being sure if they would even be able to get into the country but the guy at the border was a fan and they had some merchandise and tickets that the WWE gave them so despite being extremely fucked up they got in and sat and Tim Horton’s were they drank coffee and ate donuts until they sobered up a bit.

Nash talks about how when you are the champ you have to look out for the boys and talks about how they were on a bus that was broken down so he told agent Tony Garea that this better be fixed tomorrow and the next day it was as Nash recalled how he barely even slept that night as he was fearful of his job.

They talk about when Bischoff fired 1-2-3 Kid from WCW and how Nash booted the door to his office and scared Bischoff as Hall stood there leaning on the door so no one could get into the office.

Now they are asked about the deal they made to come into WCW. Hall said that he had a few meetings with Vince to get more money and wanted to come up with solutions like more merchandise or a few weeks in Japan. Vince declined these ideas. Hall then said that when you work for the WWF you are so overworked that you are unaware of the outside world then talks about how Vince always had you on your feet and made you think your job security was always on the line. At the time, 1-2-3 Kid was talking to Barry Bloom, who later became their agent and they got a deal with WCW from that.

On the nWo formation, Nash said that there was never a plan for a 3rd member originally and remembers Bischoff coming over and they then went to a strip club after that as he pitched the nWo idea. Nash joked how Hogan wasnt going to let that “money train” leave without taking a seat when he was approached about the plan. Hall notes how he heard that the Associated Press thought when Nash sent Rey Mysterio into the trailer that it was a legitimate attack.

When asked about working with Hogan, they both said that he was a good sport but Hall recalls how he got upset when at a TV taping in Universal, Hogan referred to them as his “Hollywood Wolfpac.” Hall then talks about how the Wolfpac was Nash, 1-2-3 Kid, and himself as they lost their identities coming from the WWF over to WCW.

They both talk about not getting money from merchandise sales as WCW had intellectual property rights.

Hall said how Michael Hayes once told him that if you are five minutes late, you get yelled at but if you are over an hour late, they are just happy that you showed up so there was no point being just a few minutes late.

Nash talks about they started off driving around then when they got more popular in WCW they got to fly on the private jet with Hogan and Savage and while they did not change, the locker room perception was that they did and were no longer “one of the boys” because they were not with them as much.

When asked about D-X coming to the WCW show in Norfolk, Nash said that he wanted to come out and say “what the fuck are you guys doing here” because there show was live but he couldn’t find them.

On Goldberg speaking negatively about them, they called him a “mark” as Nash said he likes him away from wrestling though. Hall said that he was with him on his first road trip, he brought him along and helped him out then introduced him to Barry Bloom after his first contract was up and has no idea why Goldberg has heat with him after doing all of that.

When asked if WCW would have as successful without them, Nash jokes about how they were heading into the right direction with the Yeti vs. Giant, Dungeon of Doom, and how Alex Wright was misused.

Nash then jokes that blaming Russo for WCW going under is like blaming the cello player on the Titanic for sinking the ship, stating it was dead and there was no way to resurrect the company at that point.

They are asked about Bischoff as Nash talks about how he was given Nitro under the guise that it would fail and how they could get rid of wrestling on Turner once and for all.

Hall tells a story of how they worked a show in Little Rock, AK and that the fans were throwing stuff at them and Nash got on the mic and said they would leave if they did not stop as they didnt come to this “shithole” town to get hurt and they ended up walking out and leaving then on the next RAW, they introduced the fake Diesel and Razor Ramon.

Nash said that by the time Russo took over it was over. Hall then said that he should apologize to Russo for how he treated him at that time but was not comfortable with him booking his career.

On the WCW Invasion angle, Nash said that the WWE contacted him about coming in, offering 50 cents on the dollar of his $2.3 million dollar contract. The WWE also offered him a $750,000 downside and Nash said that he could have taken that and busted his ass on the road and might have made as much as he would have sitting at home watching TV and smoking pot until his contract ran out.

When asked if the nWo promos would have gotten over as much as they did if they were scripted, Nash said absolutely not and that (scripted promos) is what is wrong with WWE TV today. They recall when they went back to the WWE as the nWo they had to rehearse promos in front of Vince as Nash jokingly says “welcome to Monday Night Contrived!” He also asks why the production values have not picked up as Hall notes how Heenan used to get pissed when the crew was shown in the background and whenever he sees that now he thinks of Heenan.

They are now asked about a few tag teams. They both liked working with Harlem Heat as Hall tells a story about how he spit on Stevie Ray during a match to get heat, stating that he did not want to tell him before the match and have him say no. After Hall spit on him, he tagged out then after Stevie got some heat on Nash, he spit right back at Hall, which is something that Hall credits Stevie or doing. They also both liked working with the Steiner Brothers.

Nash joked that it was “too fucking late” when asked about Bischoff questioning if he gave him too much power. Hall says how Nash seizes power and that they would call him the grouch as everything when he traveled was too small and that it would wear him down. Hall then talked about how Nash’s first night in charge he put over Rey Mysterio on Nitro just to show that he was all business. Hall then talked about how he would do jobs himself when he was not supposed to on Nitro then get chewed out by Bischoff afterwards.

They talk about how the same unnamed guy who told them to not care about the show in Tupelo would complain about their ideas then when asked if he had anything, that person said they did not and this leads Nash to say how Hall was one of the best “shit stirrers” and that they were both pricks so they could work every angle. Nash then talks about the whole business being a work as the person he is once he grabs his gear and heads into the arena is a lot different than the one traveling on the road and at home. Hall said they would drop their gear and look around to decide how to stir some shit, like telling rookies their gear looked like shit or saying that guys looked stoned when they were in the ring.

Hall talks about them as a team as he recalls a story while sitting next to Scott Norton on a bus trip in Japan. Norton kept telling him that he was not wrestling Japanese style and after a few days, Hall turned around and told him that he was not Japanese and that they have seen him work and was brought in for that reason. Hall then said that they were one of the best tag teams in the world and Norton thought about it and agreed. They both talked about how they liked Norton and how he was a straight shooter.

When asked about Jim Cornette’s rant against them on RAW, Nash said he took no offense as at the time he knew no one was watching the WWE at the time as Hall was cracking up.

They close the interview about how they will be touring the independent scene as Nash notes how Hall will be sober but cannot promise that he will be as Hall talks about taking Antabuse to help with his alcohol abuse issues. Feinstein then talks about how the next time he wants to have the 1-2-3 Kid join them for an interview all about road stories.

Final Thoughts: Solid interview. Towards the end, these two really seemed like they wanted to leave as Hall checked his watch a few times but they were both funny and the best parts where when they went off and bullshitted between questions.

If you have seen any shoot interviews between these two before then there isnt a whole lot of new stuff here. However, Nash always delivers in shoots and this was no exception. Hall was fine here as well, although a bit reserved at times.

Too bad the shoot between them and Waltman never happened. That would have been great.

Overall, I recommend this interview but be warned that if you have seen these guys in different shoots that you will some stories you have heard before.

You can purchase the video for $20 at or download a digital copy for $9.99 at by clicking on the links below.

Saving Reigns

Outside of turning him heel and aligning him with heyman, is there actually a way to salvage this main event?

By viewing it as a bizarre social experiment, ala Brock-Goldberg?  Can 70,000 people wreck a match by chanting for Daniel Bryan?

BoD Daily Update

New Plans for Daniel Bryan at WrestleMania

According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the plan for Bryan at WrestleMania is to face Dolph Ziggler and that the stuff on Twitter was done by design to helpset up the match.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

WWE Officials Very Pleased With Kevin Owens

Word from the WWE is that the merchandise sales for Owens t-shirt is done extremely well and that they are also very happy that he has brought his fanbase over to NXT.

WWE Enforces New Dating Policy

WWE has made a rule that talent and office people and talent and production people are not allowed to date. They do not want staff and talent interaction past the professional level.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

Possible Reasons for Justin Gabriel Quitting the WWE?

Gabriel quit the WWE this weekend and sources close to the situation said that he had been “fed up” with the system and knew the company was not going to do anything with him so he decided to rebuild his value as a wrestler away from the WWE. There is a feeling that he will make more money away from the WWE at first because he was not on a full-time schedule with the company. There is also a belief that an opportunity came up outside of wrestling that could make him more money. Gabriel had done some acting and modeling before signing with the WWE

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

TNA Knockout Done with the Company?

Havok looks to be done with TNA as she did a run-in during the Shine iPPV on 1/23. TNA talent are not allowed to appear on iPPV’s for other companies.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

Also, head on over to Place to be Nation and listen to the Kevin Kelly Show Podcast with guest Mark Briscoe. Click on the link below and give that a listen

You Can Trust Me, Brother

For some reason I’ve been really interested in watching World Championship Wrestling from the late summer to early fall of 1999. This would be right around the time that the company was obsessed with bringing in musical acts to play on Nitro and Kevin Nash had “retired” after a loss at Road Wild in August.
It’s also the last several months that Eric Bischoff was in control of the company. The last major program that occurred on his watch was a WCW World Heavyweight Championship feud involving Hulk Hogan, who had just gotten back into the red and yellow, against his on again off again friend, Sting.
I’ve got to provide some background to really understand what was going on. Right after the July pay per view Bash at the Beach, Hulk Hogan returned to the company and reclaimed his “rightful spot” at the top of the company when he defeated new WCW World Heavyweight Champion, Randy Savage in the main event on the 7/12 Nitro.
Over the next five weeks, Hogan would align himself with Goldberg and Sting to feud with the heel trio of Kevin Nash, Sid Vicious and Rick Steiner. Hogan focused with Nash & Sid, Sting dealt with Steiner and Goldberg was after Sid, as well.
For the most part, the good guys dominated the feud and Hogan was appreciative of his friends. So much so, that he offered to give Sting a title shot on the 8/23 Nitro from Las Vegas.
The dastardly Total Package making his move to ruin a friendship.

The dastardly Total Package making his move to ruin a friendship.
Everything was going all fine and dandy until Lex Luger returned to WCW television on the program and told Sting that he didn’t have a good feeling about Hogan. Lex suggested that Sting not trust Hogan. Sting dismissed the allegations and was focused on regaining the championship later on in the night.
As per usual with WCW Nitro main events, Sting and Hogan battle for several minutes until Sid and Rick Steiner caused the bullshit no contest. Hogan offered a rematch with Goldberg and Luger watching their backs to get a decisive winner.
The following week, Hogan went on the offensive against Lex Luger saying that he would never stab Sting in the back and wanted to see Luger’s proof. If Lex were to be trying to frame him, he’ll just kick his ass. Later on in the program, Lex shows Sting a picture of Hogan standing next to a white hummer, which had been a topic over the summer when someone drove a hummer into a limo that then WCW World Heavyweight Champion Kevin Nash was in.
Luger's evidence that Hogan is a real bad guy. He drove the HUMMER!

Luger’s evidence that Hogan is a real bad guy. He drove the HUMMER!
Hogan denied the allegations, but the news seemed to be making Sting think about everything. Sting even said “How many times have you stabbed me in the back? Why am I supposed to believe you?”
At the end of the 8/30 Nitro show, Sting walked into Hogan’s locker room to see Randy Savage sitting with his girlfriend Gorgeous George. It was looking more and more like Hogan had been lying.
On the following weeks 9/6 Nitro, Hogan warned Luger to stay out his business with Sting. He also noted that he drives a black hummer and not a white one. Why wouldn’t he have made note of that last week? Plus, he swears he didn’t know that Randy Savage was in his locker room.
Later on, Sting and Luger walk into a locker room where Hogan and Bret Hart are talking. The lights go out and a brawl appears to take place. When the lights come back on, Sting is laid out and there is almost a fight between Luger and Hogan over what just happened.
That would leave Hogan and Goldberg to a disadvantage in a handicap steel cage match against Sid, Rick Steiner and DDP. Of course, Sting made a miraculous recovery and helped his team win the match. Afterward, Luger was livid with Sting and hit his friend with a punch, only for Sting to return the favor. Perhaps Sting was coming to his senses?
Hogan and Sting would meet for the first time on pay per view in a singles match since Superbrawl VIII on September 12th at Fall Brawl. Of course, they were the main event. The ending of the match saw Bret Hart and Lex Luger come down with Luger bringing a baseball bat into play. Sting had the bat and proceeded to use the bat on Hogan to effectively turn heel and reveal that is was all just a screw job so Sting could be champion again.

The next night, Sting and Luger teamed to take on Hogan and Hart in a huge tag team match. Luger and Sting got the victory after Luger whacked Hart in the face with a baseball bat allowing Sting to get the pin fall.
On the 9/20 Nitro, Sting continued to try and get fans to boo him by viciously attacking Hogan’s left knee with a baseball bat, but the jeers just weren’t happening.
The following week there was supposed to be a six man tag match with Sting teaming with Luger and DDP to take on Flair, Hogan and Bret Hart. However, at the start of show Sting attacked Hogan by pretending to be a fan and strikes the bad knee several times. As Hogan gets checked on by the doctor, Sting comes into the room and delivers a baseball bat shot to the knee.
Hogan recovers to come down to the ring after the main event ended in a disqualification to fight off the heels with a bad leg because Hulkamania overcomes the odds. Hogan would get some revenge when he cleanly pinned Sting on the 10/4 Nitro in a tag match that saw Flair team with Hogan and Luger teamed with Sting.
In a weird moment on the 10/11 Nitro, Hogan cut a promo saying that the internet made him sick and didn’t want to come out and wrestle. He also told the guys in the back at he’d get the last laugh at Halloween Havoc when he wrestled Sting for the title.
The ending of the feud, which was over two months and was the focal point of the end of the summer and most of the fall, saw Hogan simply lay down and allow Sting to pin him to retain the title.
WCW never learned from their mistakes.

WCW never learned from their mistakes.
As if WCW hand’t learned their lesson from January and the Finger Poke of Doom. Hogan would vanish from WCW television until February of 2000.
The weird thing is that the angle had a lot of poetiental to be something good for the company. Luger’s role in the feud was the first time in years that Lex had been used well. I mean, he had a good run in 1997, but 1998 saw him being used as a cheerleader for Kevin Nash. The return of a douche bag Lex Luger was exactly what needed to happen.
Having the heel turn at Fall Brawl didn’t accomplish anything positive for the storyline. Sure, Sting turned heel, but nobody wanted to boo the guy. I don’t think anyone has ever truly hated Sting when they were supposed to.
Lets face it, by this point people had grown tired of Hogan, especially the internet. So, everyone wanted to see a guy who had been held back by the Hulkster to get the better of him, and they ate it all up. The attempt to get heat on Sting with the association of Luger helped, but obviously Luger benefited from the angle more than anyone else. It really helped rejuvenate his career in the company.
Eventually, Sting would turn back into a good guy, Luger would break his arm and they would wrestle at Starrcade 1999, which Sting won. So, the heel turn lasted all of two months, if that.
Prior to the Sting/Hogan feud, WCW had a fun three vs. three feud with Hogan, Sting and Goldberg feuding with Nash, Sid and Rick Steiner, as noted before. Had they continued that throughout the fall, and perhaps have a WAR GAMES match at Fall Brawl, it would have been more successful.
You could do the same angle, but have Sting realize that Luger is a liar. So, at the pay per view it would be Hogan, Goldberg, Sting and Bret Hart vs. Sid, Steiner, Nash and Luger in a WAR GAMES match. That could have been some fun with mega star power in there. Maybe even have a Hitman heel turn to set up Hogan/Hart at Starrcade?
Now I’m just having too much fun with this.
What were your memories of WCW circa the fall of 1999? Did you believe in Sting as a heel? Are my ideas ridiculous? Was Hogan/Sting played out by this time?
Leave your thoughts below!

For more reviews and columns, head over to WRESTLING RECAPS

Thanks for reading.

Miz As WWE Champ


I was watching a RAW where Miz and Cena were fueding, and like most people I think I completely blocked out that he main evented WrestleMania as walked out as champ.

What the heck was going on during that time-frame where the Miz was their pick to battle Cena? And walk out as champ?? Horrifying.

​They thought Miz was gonna be their guy, they took a shot with him, it failed spectacularly.  The lesson here:  Never try.  ​

NXT – January 28, 2015

January 28, 2015
Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Alex Riley, Jason Albert, Tom Phillips
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
is another big show as we’re two weeks out from Takeover and the
showdown between Owens and Zayn. The contract signing is tonight and
Owens has promised to say what he has to say to Zayn to his face.
Also tonight the tournament to crown a new #1 contender continues
with more first round matches. Let’s get to it.

Team Titles: Lucha Dragons vs. Buddy Murphy/Wesley Blake
and Murphy are challenging and have some new, loud entrance music.
We even get big match intros before we get going. Cara and Blake get
things going with Wesley slamming him down in the corner, only to
have Cara come back with a double springboard wristdrag.
dropkicks him out of the air for two though as the challengers are
staying aggressive. Blake puts on a chinlock for a bit until Cara
fights up and makes the tag to Kalisto. Everything speeds up and a
sunset bomb gets two on Buddy as everything breaks down. Blake
counters Cara’s springboard and makes a blind tag. Kalisto hits
Salida Del Sol on Murphy but the legal Buddy rolls him up for the
clean pin and the titles at 4:00.
C. This is where NXT’s booking
pays off for them in the end. Murphy and Blake haven’t won a bunch
of matches over the months, but they’ve hung in enough of them that
this isn’t the most shocking win in the world. In
WWE, a team like Slater Gator has been crushed almost every time they
go out there and would have almost no chance in a title match. Even
if they won, it wouldn’t be accepted. On the other hand, this was
fine and made sense, as well as giving us a fresh set of matches for
the division.
recap Bayley suplexing Charlotte last week and Regal making the
fourway title match.
yells at Bayley but Bayley says maybe she’s been too nice. She saw
what Sami Zayn did when he got more serious and now it’s time for her
to do it. Charlotte says if Bayley tries that again, she won’t make
it to Takeover.
Breeze is going to be watching the rest of the tournament very
Contenders Tournament First Round: Adrian Neville vs. Tyson Kidd
fans are split on who they like best. They
hit the mat to start for a nice counter sequence leading to a
standoff. Adrian starts cranking on the arm before he takes Tyson
down with a hurricanrana, sending Kidd scrambling to the floor.
Neville even teases him with
a dive but pulls back with a Tajiri handspring flip. Kidd
keeps sliding under the corner and out the other side of the ring to
break the count, eventually drawing Adrian outside where he gets sent
into the floor.
take a break and come back with Kidd hitting a hard dropkick to the
face and rubbing the same face into the mat. Neville
sends him right back outside with a clothesline and hits a big old
flip dive to take him down. A
standing moonsault gets two for Neville as the referee is drenched in
spinning fisherman’s neckbreaker snaps Adrian’s neck for two but he
flips out of a release German suplex and grabs a Batista Bomb (crowd:
“Better than Batista!”)
for two. Neville heads
outside but a hard dropkick sends him to the floor. Back
in and Kidd can’t hook the Sharpshooter, allowing Neville to hit a
running kick in the head (similar to the Helluva Kick), setting up
the Red Arrow for the pin at 16:25.
B+. These guys beat the heck
out of each other and it got better and better throughout the match.
This is the basic idea of
hitting each other really, really hard over and over again until one
of them can’t get up and that’s a great way to enjoy a match. Really
fun stuff here and worth checking out.
says he’s ready to face either Corbin or Dempsey. The fans seem very
interested in Neville vs. Corbin. I
can’t say I disagree.
Lynch implies she’d turn on Banks to win the title. Good, as I like
her better than Sasha.
and Blake are thrilled to win the belts and would give the Lucha
Dragons a rematch anytime anywhere. They’re still getting the hang
of this talking thing.
Lynch/Sasha Banks vs. Bayley/Charlotte
fans aren’t as into Bayley as they used to be. Bayley and Banks get
things going with Bayley hitting a springboard armdrag but botching a
second attempt, allowing Banks to take over. Off to Lynch for a
forearm to the back before it’s already back to Sasha. Charlotte
comes in and snapmares Becky down before tagging Bayley right back
in. In a smart move, Bayley thinks about going to the ropes but
realizes Banks would nail her in the back and opts for a jumping
clothesline to a seated Lynch instead.
villains use some cheating to take over and Sasha gyrates a bit,
drawing a Sasha’s ratchet/no she’s not dueling chant. Becky comes
back in and goes for the knee, only to get suplexed down, allowing
the hot tag to Charlotte. She quickly gets Banks in the bridging
Figure Four but Becky breaks it up as everything breaks down. Sasha
Bankrupts Charlotte and Bayley makes a save but hits her partner in
the process. Charlotte and Bayley start fighting each other and the
opponents come in, drawing a double DQ at 5:50.
C. The match wasn’t great but
it was exactly the right booking. There
was no need to have anyone get a pin here and it let Bayley show a
lot more aggression. I’m still really high on Becky but she needs to
show that she can do something in the ring as she’s barely had any
ring time so far. The
fourway could be awesome if they let these four go nuts.
Itami comes up to Finn Balor in the back and says he brought Finn
into the company and will take him out if he has to in order to
advance in the tournament.
returning Emma says things haven’t gone as she planned since she left
NXT so next week she’s coming back to face Carmella.
Contenders Tournament First Round: Bull Dempsey vs. Baron Corbin
sends him into the corner to start and runs him over with a shoulder.
Dempsey bails to the floor but Baron is right back on top of him to
send him back inside. Back in and a corner splash has Bull in
trouble and the End of Days is good for the pin at 1:31. Total
squash here with Dempsey getting nothing. That almost has to end the
Corbin says he just took a step closer to becoming NXT Champion and
next week Adrian Neville takes a step closer to being erased.
Dempsey comes up and says he’ll knock Corbin’s teeth out. Baron just
walks away. That would seem to be the way out of Baron losing clean
next week.
time for the contract signing. The champ comes out first but Regal
is hesitant to bring out Owens. Kevin comes out and Sami looks sad
as much as mad. Regal isn’t going to let this turn into every other
contract signing in WWE because he’ll cancel the match if they make
any contact. The fans chant OLE and Sami signs without saying
anything. Owens looks at Sami instead of the contract. Sami asks if
he’s just going to look at him or if Owens is going to explain why.
Owens doesn’t move so Sami says he’ll talk about the last 12 years.
fought with and against each other so maybe he should have seen this
coming. The truth is he didn’t see it coming though and he never
thought it would happen on a night like R-Evolution when both of them
arrived. It doesn’t matter though because Sami is going to beat the
heck out of him at Takeover. Owens still won’t sign because he
doesn’t like it being a non-title match.
Owens did at R-Evolution was business because he’ll fight anyone for
the right prize. That title means more money and a better life for
his family, so Owens isn’t doing this unless it’s a title match.
Regal doesn’t like Owens’ last minute demands but Sami says wait a
minute. Make it a title match because Owens really won’t do it if he
doesn’t get what he wants. Regal writes something on the contract
and Sami signs again. Owens eventually signs and throws the pen at
Sami before leaving to end the show.
B. This
show was about moving things forward for Takeover and they’ve done a
great job. The title change was a nice surprise as it was something
you almost never get on TV but it made sense. That’s the tagline I
would use for almost everything on this show: it made sense. It’s
clear that someone is paying really close attention to these stories
and has planned them out step by step. That’s such an important
thing to do and the matches are almost always worth the payoff. Good
show here and they’re doing a very good job of a short build to the
next Takeover.
Murphy/Wesley Blake b. Lucha Dragons – Rollup to Kalisto
Neville b. Tyson Kidd – Red Arrow
vs. Sasha Banks/Becky Lynch went to a double DQ
Corbin b. Bull Dempsey – End of Days
Remember to check out my website at and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

This Week in 90’s Wrestling: January 25th-31st

From Place to be Nation this feature chronicles all of the happenings in the world of professional wrestling during the 1990’s.

Highlights from this week include:

Halftime Heat Empty Arena Match between Rock and Mankind
Coin Toss Between Bret Hart and Lex Luger, with the winner facing Yokozuna first at WrestleMania X
First Vignette Hyping the Debut of Mankind
Clash of the Champions XIV

And many more matches and interviews.

Click on the link below and give it a view.

Monday Nitro – September 6, 1999

Nitro #204
Date: September 6, 1999
Miami Arena, Miami, Florida
Attendance: 8,623
Commentators: Bobby
Heenan, Tony Schiavone
Reviewed by Tommy Hall

one of those rare weeks where WCW has given us the slightest glimmer
of hope coming off this past week’s Thunder. They actually let
Saturn escape with his life against Sid and the Revolution got to
stand tall to end the show. We’re coming up on Fall Brawl this
Sunday though, and that means it’s time to crush the hopes and dreams
of fans so the main event talent can carry the day again. Let’s get
to it.

Clips from last week.
Opening sequence.
new music, here’s Bret Hart in his medium return to WCW. He thought
it was a good idea to come down to Miami and show up back here after
a lot of time off to think. After all that time, it occurs to him
that he hasn’t accomplished his goal of making a difference here in
WCW. This isn’t about titles, but he wants to face Hogan. Even if
the title isn’t on the line, he can’t move forward with his career
until he gets that one match. That’s quite the random challenge
without much of a reason. Glad to see Bret is fitting right in.
are Riki Rachman and Kimberly for the first round of the Nitro Girl
search. There are two finalists and the fans get to vote on
Kimberly wraps it up by telling us how hard it is to be a Nitro
Girl. I’m sure it is. The saving grace of this segment: Rachman to
the crowd: “SAY OH YEAH!” Crowd: “NO!” When WCW’s fans
reject you, get out while you can.
Lodi vs. Evan
a matter of killing times until the Clowns and Vampiro show up.
Lenny offers an early distraction so Lodi can throw Evan outside.
Back in and Evan hits a quick dropkick for two, followed by a Sky
High for the same. The champ tries another distraction but this time
gets send running back to the floor.
A powerslam and
neckbreaker get two each on Lodi and Evan dives onto Lane before he
can get on the apron again. They start brawling and it’s nice to see
Lenny actually fight for a change and show a backbone. Lodi
accidentally dives on his brother and here come the Clowns for a
distraction, allowing Lodi to grab a quick DDT for the pin.
My goodness this company is falling fast. It’s nice to see the
backbone of the company getting bigger stories, but we’re opening
shows with a guy famous for carrying signs vs. the pretty boy of the
week. How is this supposed to make me want to keep watching? A
mostly dull and short match with Lodi winning isn’t exactly the most
thrilling thing in the world.
Ran y Las Chicas Nitro.
Hogan with something to say. Thankfully he keeps it short here,
saying he has no idea why Savage and George were in his locker room
or what Luger’s agenda is. He even clarifies that he has a black
Hummer instead of the white one in the picture. I still can’t
believe that was a plot point they had to address. Hogan can’t wait
for his six man cage match with Sting and Goldberg against
Page/Sid/Steiner. You would think that match would be mentioned
earlier in the night but WCW wants to keep us guessing you see.
Horowitz vs. Al Greene
Sid doesn’t come out during this…….It’s a very bad sign when a
match doesn’t seem good enough for a taped Thunder but that’s what
we’ve got here. Feeling out process to start with Barry raking his
eyes because if there’s anyone you can buy as a heel, it’s Barry
Horowitz. An armdrag and dropkick put Greene down and Barry chokes
him on the ropes. For another match that should have been announced
earlier, Tony promises a battle royal with the final two men having a
regular match for a World Title match next week.
we have piano music playing and cut to a man with bleached blond hair
playing the piano being lowered from the ceiling. That would be the
Maestro, who we’ll get to know more in the future. As this is going
on, Sid comes out and powerbombs both guys for the no contest. Tony
declares him 77-0, despite that being his record at the start of
Thunder. I would say this is a big rib, but I don’t think WCW has
the intelligence to pull that off. However, I can give it to WCW to
have Sid, Tony screwing up, a piano being lowered from the ceiling
and the debut of a new guy in a Barry Horowitz (as a heel for some
reason) match.
promises to break Goldberg’s record. I think we’ve gotten the point
by now.
West Texas Rednecks are getting ready for the battle royal without
Duncum, who will be out two to three months. The door swings open
and there’s a cowboy silhouette, complete with tons of smoke.
Instead of someone interesting, it’s Vincent, now dressed like a
cowboy, offering the Rednecks his help. Since the Rednecks aren’t
that bright, they take him up on his offer. Curt’s nickname for him:
Curly Bill. Sure why not.
Harlem Heat with something to say. Gene asks them about their title
match on Sunday and Booker says he’s here to turn this mother out.
He knocks the microphone out of Gene’s hand and just takes it from
him next time. As usual, Gene really doesn’t have a reason to be
here. Stevie says they will be the nine time, nine time, nine time,
nine time, nine time, nine time, nine time Tag Team Champions. Now
Booker wants to burn this mother up but we’re out of time.
and Sting go into a locker room to find Bret and Hogan. Sting wants
to talk to Hogan, who agrees….and there go the lights. Sound
effects ensue and we come back with Sting out cold. Luger and Hogan
blame each other for doing it. Didn’t we see this same storyline
with the roles reversed back in the early days of Nitro? As in with
the same exact people?
more to that battle royal than announced earlier. There are twelve
people in the battle royal and the first four will be eliminated.
The next six out will face each other in singles matches later
tonight, and the final two will have another singles match with the
winners facing each other for a title shot next week. Those first
three singles matches don’t seem to be for anything other than a way
to torment us. Thankfully WCW has a graphic for this because the
idea of Tony or Bobby remembering this would have been a disaster.
Battle Royal
First Family,
Revolution, West Texas Rednecks
1996 might have had a better lineup than this. Somehow they can’t
even promote a match like this properly as Hennig stays on the floor,
making it an eleven man battle royal, in theory meaning the first
three are officially eliminated. Everyone brawls to start with
Saturn choking Barbarian before moving over to Barry. The First
Family seems to have the most continuity as the Revolution is on the
other end with everyone fighting for themselves.
backdrops Knobbs out and Benoit dumps Bill. Barbarian goes up top
like the lunkheaded savage he is and gets dropkicked out, leaving us
with eight. Benoit and Saturn chop on Morrus in the corner as Hennig
keeps walking around on the floor. Shane backdrops Kendall out but
Kendall grabs Douglas from the floor and pulls him out as well. I’m
assuming that’s a match later. Benoit throws Barry out and Saturn
dumps Flynn, leaving us with Morrus, Saturn, Benoit and Malenko.
Morrus gorilla presses Saturn out, only to walk into a double
clothesline to give us Malenko vs. Benoit for the title shot later
Gah we’re in for a very, very long night with what could be a great
match to cap it off. This was a really boring battle royal with a
bunch of low level guys and the US Champion and pals in there to take
over near the end. I’m not sure why I would want to see Kendall
Windham vs. Shane Douglas, Jerry Flynn vs. Barry Windham or Hugh
Morrus vs. Perry Saturn (ok that could be decent) but if WCW can
waste our time with stuff like this, why not?
for Cat-Bo, a parody of Tae-Bo. See, this is the kind of stuff that
can actually be entertaining, though it only kind of accomplishes the
goal. The problem here is that it’s only kind of funny and comes off
more like a really badly made serious version of what they’re making
fun of. I mean, it’s a bunch of out of shape people moving around
and exercising with a professional athlete leading them. That’s not
really funny and is pretty much exactly the point of Tae-Bo in the
first place. In other words, WCW had something resembling an idea
but managed to screw it up.
Swinger vs. Prince Iaukea
the main roster on vacation or something? Swinger hides in the ropes
to start and takes a shoulder to put him down. Prince hammers away
in the corner and backflips over Swinger into a rollup for two. My
goodness why is this not a dark match? Johnny hammers away in the
corner as Tony brags about the huge audiences watching the show.
There’s actually something to that as Nitro was within very close
striking distance of Raw for a few weeks around this time. Granted
by next week they lost by two points but they were there at this
Swinger hammers away
even more because he doesn’t know how to do much besides punch. The
fans again want Sid but instead get Iaukea missing a dropkick before
making his comeback. Cue Vampiro and the Clowns again with Violent
J. tripping Swinger, allowing Vampiro to give him the Nail in the
Coffin so Iaukea can get the easy pin.
I mean…..dang man. They really are pulling out all of the horrible
ideas here to make sure no one wants to keep watching this show.
Yeah they tried to push something here with the Clowns recruiting
people, but who in their right mind would recruit Prince Iaukea?
This is clearly another episode where they’re not trying and expect
the fans to just suffer through whatever they’re given and stick
around for the main event stuff, despite that plan not working in
about a year and a half.
today, Buff Bagwell was signing autographs when Berlyn came up and
spoke German. Bagwell doesn’t take kindly to someone speaking
anything other than AMERICAN and goes after him to no avail.
Berlyn video.
Steve Regal vs. Buff
starts a USA chant to keep up his xenophobic run. Feeling out
process to start as they trade arm control with Regal clearly not
going at full speed. A backdrop and clothesline put Regal on the
floor, allowing Buff to do some high quality posing. Back in and
Buff wins a slugout until Regal drives a knee into the ribs. Dave
Taylor loads up the flag shot despite his buddy being in control,
only to hit Regal by mistake, which sets up the Blockbuster for the
fast pin. So our American hero got beaten up for most of the match
and won due to some failed cheating. USA indeed.
match Buff grabs the mic and says he loves Miami because it’s part of
America. This Sunday, Berlyn will be fighting all of the USA. This
would be somewhere around Booking 101.
Guerrera/Psychosis/Blitzkrieg vs. Kidman/Chavo Guerrero Jr./Eddie
a huge brawl to start as this is already moving fast. Juvy and Eddie
are left alone in the ring with Eddie taking a powerbomb before it’s
off to Psychosis to start some triple teaming. Psychosis crotches
Eddie on top and just lets him drop down. That’s a different method
of operation instead of like, doing something interesting. Psychosis
hits a top rope spinwheel kick (not a plancha Tony) and another
triple stomp ensues.
finally gets a break by grabbing Psychosis’ hands and climbing the
ropes into a headscissors takeover to Juvy while wristdragging
Psychosis. Guerrero could hit that move like no one I’ve ever seen.
He tags both partners and everything breaks down Kidman dropping a
guillotine legdrop on Blitzkrieg but it’s off to Juvy for a bulldog
out of the corner. He catches Kidman on his shoulders, allowing
Psychosis to come in off the top with a missile dropkick for a big
to Blitzkrieg for his overly flippy elbow drop before it’s already
back to Juvy. Kidman nails the BK Bomb but here are the freaking
Clowns again. Everything breaks down again and Juvy pulls Chavo to
the floor, only to have Blitzkrieg hit his partner with a dive by
mistake. Back inside, Psychosis can’t powerbomb Kidman (he’s no
Lenny Lane), setting up the Frog Splash for the pin.
Either do something with the Clowns or stop having them come out so
many times a show. They just stand there and then try to recruit
some low level cruiserweight to set up whatever big recruitment story
they have which isn’t going to make the Clowns any better in the
ring. Or interesting for that matter.
Douglas vs. Kendall Windham
make it quick. Shane asks the fans if they want a revolution.
Kendall doesn’t seem to want one as he elbows Shane in the face, only
to eat a gordbuster. The necksnap gets two and they head to the
floor with Windham taking over. Shane is sent into the barricade and
steps before taking him back inside for a legdrop for two. Kendall
takes a quick atomic drop and Shane weakly punches him in the corner.

Here’s Curt Hennig to
nail Shane in the back as we cut to a split screen to show the
Revolution in the back. They don’t bother coming out or anything, so
Harlem Heat comes out and jumps Hennig. Stevie completely misses a
slap jack shot to Kendall, setting up Shane’s Pittsburgh Plunge for
the pin, even though all four shoulders were down.
It was boring, it was sloppy, it had three people running in and
there was no reason for these two to be fighting other than they were
both in a battle royal earlier in the night. I’m not sure what the
idea was behind the battle royal setting up matches but it feels like
they have no idea what else to do.
is giving away a million dollars next week. Given how much money
they’ve given away over the years with bad booking, that might be a
financial improvement.
Jerry Flynn vs.
Barry Windham
takes him into the corner for a bunch of kicks and punches as he’s
doubled his offensive repertoire. More kicks and chops have Barry
looking annoyed so he rakes Jerry’s eyes across the top rope. Jerry
kicks him even more until Jimmy Hart trips Barry, causing Curly Billy
to go after Hart. The distraction sends Jerry after Bill, who blasts
him in the head with a title belt. Barry hits a quick DDT for the
pin. Thank goodness this wasn’t three minutes long as I don’t think
I could come up with a low enough rating.
of Berlyn debuting last week.
Gene brings out Berlyn
and gets frisked by one of the security guards. Berlyn’s Lana says
every stupid cliché you could imagine about how great Germany is and
promises to show America that Germany is just better. Thankfully
they kept this short.
Nitro Girls.
Hugh Morrus vs.
Perry Saturn
has to be better right? Morrus hammers away to start and counters a
sunset flip, only to miss his sitdown splash. Saturn sends him out
to the floor for a breather before punching Morrus instead of
accepting a test of strength. Somehow this is already more
interesting than what we’ve seen so far tonight.
up and Morrus stomps and chokes in the corner but gets pushed into
the buckle and punched even more. Even more forearms and punches
have Saturn in trouble but he kicks back from the mat. That’s it for
his offense for now though as a clothesline sets up a chinlock. This
match is dying.
up and Saturn hammers away, only to have Morrus bite his face. A
gorilla press sets up a top rope splash but Saturn rolls away. Some
suplexes have Morrus reeling but Jimmy Hart breaks up a Death Valley
Driver attempt. The distraction lets Morrus nail Saturn in the back,
only to have him miss No Laughing Matter. The Rings of Saturn
finally end this.
Just end this show already I beg of you. This was by far the best
match of the three battle royal fallout matches so far and it’s only
because Morrus is the least horrible of the heels involved. What
does this prove? That Morrus can beat up Saturn for ten minutes
until Saturn hits a quick move for the win? It didn’t work for Randy
Savage back in 1995 and it doesn’t make me want to see Saturn fight
for the TV Title on Sunday.
Chris Benoit vs.
Dean Malenko
but the winner gets a World Title shot next week. They shake hands
hard to start before Benoit takes him down to the mat. Dean does the
exact same thing before nailing a shoulder to get us to a standoff.
A test of strength goes to Malenko but Benoit monkey flips him for
two, setting off a sweet pinfall reversal sequence for several near
falls each. Benoit is sent to the apron but gets pulled back inside
almost immediately.
start getting more intense as Benoit chops away and sends Dean into
the buckle. It turns into a slugout with Benoit getting the better
of it before we hit a quick chinlock. Thankfully that goes nowhere
and they fight over a tombstone with Chris planting Malenko…
Sid comes out. Benoit misses the Swan Dive, drawing in Sid to
powerbomb Malenko and talk trash, giving us a no contest, which
should have been a DQ win for Benoit but WCW doesn’t understand how
wrestling works. So yes, the ENTIRE BATTLE ROYAL and all those
boring matches mean NOTHING.
I should have known. I mean I really should have known. You knew
WCW wasn’t going to give Benoit or Malenko a crack at the top spot in
the company because that would be elevating one of these guys, when
it’s clear they only exist to make people like Sid look good. The
match was getting good until the end, which crippled it more than
jumping off the top rope did for Sid.
Video on Hogan vs.
Video on Page vs.
cage is lowered, complete with a top on it.
Hogan/Sting vs. Sid Vicious/Rick Steiner/Diamond Dallas Page
still doesn’t have the TV Title with him, though to be fair, Hogan
doesn’t have his belt either. Hogan comes out first and the fight
starts 3-1 with the World Champ in trouble. Goldberg is nice enough
to go through his full entrance as his partner gets triple teamed.
Apparently Bigelow and Kanyon aren’t pleased with Goldberg’s laziness
and jump him outside the cage as we’re waiting on Sting. Bigelow and
Kanyon show their stupidity by throwing Goldberg inside the cage and
he immediately starts his comeback. He fights out of a Diamond
Cutter attempt and powerslams Page before clotheslining the other two
Hogan gets back up and
the villains are beaten up even worse. The trio starts fighting back
as Sting and Luger come out with Lex telling Sting not to go in.
Sting doesn’t listen to Luger (would you?) and comes in to clean
house again, sending Sid and Steiner running away and leaving Page to
get big booted and legdropped for the pin. The ending was odd as
Hogan seemed to get up at two and a half while Goldberg and Sting
just stood there with nothing to do.
And now I’m supposed to pay for Goldberg vs. Page this Sunday? He’s
become the main event whipping boy in the last few weeks, but at
least it’s better than having the young guys doing these jobs. Not
that they would ever be allowed near Hogan, Goldberg and Sting of
course. This was another massacre with Hogan and Goldberg barely
breaking a sweat before Sting came down to take away any possible
threat. The main event heels are looking so worthless right now that
having any two parts of the holy trinity fighting each other is the
only real option they have.
gets in the ring and right into Sting’s face, saying Hogan can’t be
trusted. Sting and Luger start fighting as the show goes off the
There have been books written about what killed WCW. You’ll hear
reasons ranging from the AOL-Time Warner merger to guaranteed
contracts to a lack of elevating new stars. I however offer a new
theory: their shows SUCKED. Look at what they presented here tonight
and tell me how they were trying to put out a good product. I for
one don’t really need to see Jerry Flynn and Kendall Windham working
twice in a night but that’s just me.
on here would make me want to come back? Is it the boring to
horrible matches? Maybe the young guys getting crushed? Or is it
the Clowns coming out three times a show? It could be sitting
through three terrible matches and one passable one to find out that
the entire concept was just there for Sid to beat up more young,
talented guys. This show drew a 4.1 rating compared to Raw’s 4.4.
Next week’s ratings: 6.0 for Raw compared to a 3.3 for Nitro. This
show didn’t make people stick around and how can you blame them?
Total disaster here and it was clear they weren’t even trying.
Remember to check out my website at and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

New WWE Geographic Strategy?


Just wondering if you think Sunday's Rumble crowd is going to force the WWE to re-think where they book major events? I mean, we all know they sure as hell aren't gonna change how they book. But would a final four of Reigns, Show, THEDEMONKANE, and Rusev played better somewhere in fly-over country? Is the company going to try and avoid these kind of reactions by avoiding smark cities?

Been a fan for a while–thanks for all the information and entertainment!


Yeah, but how many excuses can they make for this stuff before they run out of cities?  We've now heard "It's not us, it's Philly" and "It's not us, it's Pittsburgh" and "It's not us, it's Toronto" and "It's not us, it's New York" and "It's not us, it's Chicago".  How many places can they burn through before they find the idealized smark-free city that will happily accept the Roman Empire as their conqueror? Plus, as noted, that Rumble was basically booked to get the worst reactions in every conceivable way, so it's not like putting it in, say, St. Louis was going to save it.  It just happened that the Philly crowd was much less shy about expressing their frustrations with the product.  

BoD Daily Update

Undertaker Update

At this moment, there is still no word on whether or not the Undertaker will be wrestling at this year’s WrestleMania.

Credit Dave Meltzer,

RAW Ratings Update

Despite the storm cancelling the live show, RAW still had incredible ratings Monday with 4.41 million viewers. Here are the hourly breakdowns:

8pm: 4.47 million
9pm: 4.68 million
10pm: 4.14 million

Randy Orton Update

Orton, who was originally scheduled for Smackdown this Thursday, is no longer advertised for the show.

TNA Impact Rating Rises

TNA had 517,000 viewers this past Friday, up from the 387,000 they had the previous week.



How far are you into SOA now? Did you get to the finale of season 3, and did your mind explode over that plot twist? Are you into or through season 4, and were you mirin' the heel work of that character who I won't name in case you aren't that far yet?

​Yeah, I'm about halfway into season 5 now and we're still kind of reeling from the Very Bad Thing that happens at the beginning of the season.  Season 4 was super awesome and intense, but the finale was kind of a dud and pretty much deflated the season with a Russo-esque twist right off the bat.  Even my wife, who isn't someone that watches with an eye for story structure and stuff like that, commented that the twist was pretty nonsensical in a lot of ways.  Season 5 is just such a downer that we're actually slowing down the binge watching a lot.  Season 3 was like a WWF PPV from the Attitude era:  Shitty undercard, fantastic main event.  Season 4 was WCW:  Crazy good buildup and workrate, and then a disappointing finish.  
Please do avoid discussing spoilers past season 5 here because I'd rather not accidentally have the rest of the show ruined for me before I finish it up by the end of next week or so, though.

BoD Tuesday Night Thread

On tap for tonight:

On the WWE Network at 8pm you can watch WWE 24.

The NBA has 6 games on the schedule, with two of them on NBA TV. At 7:30pm, the Cleveland Cavaliers take on the Detroit Pistons while at 10pm the Chicago Bulls take on the Golden State Warriors.

Also, the NHL returns from their All-Star break with 11 games on the schedule. At 7:30pm the Tampa Bay Lightning take on the Carolina Hurricanes on the NBC Sports Network.

There are several college basketball games on National TV tonight. At 7pm on Fox Sports 1, Xavier takes on #21 Georgetown.

And as usual, talk about anything else going on tonight here.

What the World Was Watching: Monday Night Raw – November 30, 1998

by Logan Scisco

A video package
recaps how the Undertaker tried to embalm Steve Austin alive on last week’s
show.  The Undertaker and Paul Bearer are
shown talking backstage moments before the show went on the air.
Jim Ross and Jerry
“The King” Lawler are in the booth and they are live from Baltimore, Maryland.

Steve Austin is
shown arriving at the arena with a shovel. 
The Headbangers and the Insane Clown Posse are already in the ring, so
Austin proceeds to give all of them – save Shaggy 2 Dope – a Stunner.  Getting on the mic, Austin promises to use
his shovel against the Undertaker.  A
throwaway segment and I am never a fan of one guy taking out tag teams.  0 for
Mark Henry is
shown getting ready for his date with Chyna. 
D-Lo Brown tries to make sure he looks good.
Ross hypes Austin
and the Undertaker being on TV Guide.  He
reminds viewers that if they cannot find them they will have to settle for the
“retired” Hulk Hogan or the “Austin wannabe” Goldberg.  Austin is still looking for Vince in the
back.  He runs into Stephanie McMahon,
who is not identified as such, and she says she has not seen Vince around.
Opening Non-Title
Contest:  The New Age Outlaws (WWF Tag
Team Champions) defeat Gangrel & Edge (w/Christian) by disqualification
when Christian hits Billy Gunn with a tag team title belt at 2:56:
The previous night on Sunday Night Heat, the Corporation
was attempting to recruit the Outlaws and they appear on the ramp to watch the
match.  Typical 1998 accelerated tag team
match here, although a young Edge shows off by doing a super hurricanrana on
the Road Dogg and taking a powerbomb off the second rope from Billy Gunn.  After Christian runs interference to prevent
a Gunn piledriver, the Big Bossman and Ken Sharmock run in and beatdown the
Brood.  So are the Brood faces or heels
at this point?  I am so confused with
their booking.
Steve Austin
continues to search for the Undertaker backstage, checking out several
freezers.  Predictably, he walks into one
to investigate, but gets locked in by the Undertaker and Paul Bearer.
Steve Austin
giving Stunners to the Headbangers and Violent J earlier in the show is the
Glover Rewind segment.
Mark Henry is
nervously excited for his date and he asks D-Lo to accompany him to give him
confidence.  D-Lo reluctantly agrees to
The Undertaker
comes out and calls out Kane because we definitely need to see more of
that.  They briefly battle over whether
someone will be eternally damned before the Undertaker gives Kane a Tombstone.  Paul Bearer brings some orderlies from a
mental institution to the ring, but Kane beats up a couple of them before
walking through the crowd.  Sadly, this
ridiculous angle would continue.  0 for 2
D-Lo complains
that he is not dressed right for Mark Henry’s date, but Henry has a jacket for
him and a pair of sunglasses.  However,
he hands him a chauffeur hat next, meaning that D-Lo needs to drive Henry’s
limo.  That was a good comic twist on
that sketch.  After the commercial break,
Chyna is not happy to see Henry at the hotel and she refuses to accept the
flowers Henry offers her.  She is puzzled
that D-Lo is the chauffer, which is pretty funny.
X-Pac comes out
and calls out Shawn Michaels, angry about Michaels costing him his match
against the Rock last week.  Michaels
threatens to “send him back to that money pit in Atlanta,” but refuses to fight
him because he is not an active wrestler. 
He books X-Pac to face Ken Shamrock, with the European title being on
the line.  He exits to D-Generation X’s
music because “he was DX before DX was cool.” 
At least this was short, but they did not give X-Pac a lot of mic time
here.  0 for 3
Mark Henry and
Chyna arrive at their date location, where Chyna pulls out the price tag for
Henry’s flowers (they are $1.99).
A camera shot of
the freezer shows that Austin has escaped.
On the date, Mark
Henry botches the pronunciation of Perrier water.
Goldust defeats
“Double J” Jeff Jarrett (w/Debra McMichael) via disqualification when Owen Hart
interferes at 3:26:
This bout is a rematch from three weeks ago where Jarrett
blasted Goldust with a guitar and the two had a locker room fight.  Owen Hart is on guest commentary for the
match and he tries hard to keep a straight face when talking about the
Henry-Chyna date with Lawler.  By itself,
this match has very little heat.  Goldust
dominates, with Jarrett only avoiding defeat when Debra puts his foot on the
rope after a Curtain Call.  Debra gets in
the way of Shattered Dreams and her distraction leads to Owen attacking Goldust
from behind.  This show is falling into a
really bad habit over the last few episodes of having no clean finishes.  Rating:  *¼ (0 for 4)
After the bell,
the Blue Blazer appears to help attack Goldust, but suddenly the Blazer turns
on Owen.  The Blazer unmasks to reveal
Steve Blackman to arguably the biggest pop Blackman has received up to this
point in his career.
A split screen
shows Austin looking for the Undertaker backstage, while Paul Bearer and the
orderlies look for Kane.
Al Snow nailing
Ken Shamrock in the head with Head on last week’s show is the Medievil Slam of
the Week.
Championship Ladder Match:  The Big
Bossman defeats Mankind (Champion) to win the title at 6:11:
This is the first ladder match to be held on RAW.  Shawn Michaels does commentary and scores
some of Mankind’s moves since he says Mankind is going to try to outdo him in
the match type that made him famous.  If
you hate the slow climb, you will not like this one as Mankind does it within
the first several minutes where it makes no sense to do it.  When Mankind appears set to win, the Rock
interferes and the Bossman wins.  Of all
the WWF ladder matches up to this point, this was clearly the worst.  Everything was rushed and there was not a lot
of wrestling between the climb spots.  Rating: 
* (0 for 5)
The Undertaker and
Paul Bearer think they have found Kane. 
After the break, the Undertaker and Kane fight in a dark room in the
arena.  The Undertaker comes out on top
and tells Bearer to get the orderlies as he tries to put Kane in a body
bag.  However, Austin comes out of the
darkness and breaks his shovel over the Undertaker’s head.  You can see where this is going…
Match:  Duane Gill (Light Heavyweight
Champion w/The Pasadena Chargers) pins “Marvelous” Marc Mero after the Blue
Meanie tosses Mero off the top rope at 2:08:
Before the match, Mero says that if he cannot beat Gill
that he will never appear again.  The
youth football team that Gill coaches comes to the ring, since he is wrestling
in his hometown.  As expected, Mero
manhandles Gill, but the Blue Meanie interferes and Gill wins.  This was Mero’s last in-ring appearance on
WWF television.
Bearer directs the
orderlies to get Kane.
Mark Henry reads
Chyna a poem and she proceeds to guzzle down lots of alcohol.  He says that they need to go dancing after
having dinner.
Championship Match:  Ken Shamrock (Intercontinental
Champion) defeats X-Pac (Champion) via disqualification when Triple H
interferes at 4:47:
This is our first good bout of the evening, well that is
until interference runs its course again. 
X-Pac hits the X-Factor, but Shawn Michaels distracts the referee and
the Big Bossman clocks X-Pac.  However,
when Shamrock applies the ankle lock, Triple H runs in, which gets a pretty
sizable pop.  This warrants a point for
Triple H alone as I am a mark for surprise returns.  Rating:  ** (1 for 6)
The orderlies
place the filled body bag on a stretcher and strap it in.
Mark Henry dances
because, well of course, but Chyna does not want to dance.  Henry leaves for the restroom, leaving an
opportunity for some guys to hit on Chyna. 
She does not take kindly to that, leading to her clocking one of them
and Henry beats up another.  This was
fun, especially when Henry threw a guy across the bar.
Val Venis (w/The
Godfather & Hos) beats Tiger Ali Singh (w/Babu) via disqualification when
Terri Runnels interferes at 2:58
This feud between Tiger Ali Singh and the Godfather is
just going nowhere and doing very little for either guy.  That still beats today’s product where guys
wrestle each other with little backstory, but some Attitude Era feuds never
seemed to click and this is one of them. 
The hos neutralize Babu, while PMS comes out and interferes in the bout.  What a mess this was, and this was our fourth
disqualification finish of the evening. 
We are also six-for-six when it comes to run-in finishes.
After the bout,
the Acolytes, who recently debuted elsewhere on WWF programming, destroy Tiger
Ali Singh and Babu.  Why have these guys
beat up Singh and Babu and not a face team, though?  The Jackyl was the initial manager of the
Acolytes as well, but that did not last long.
The ambulance that
is supposed to take Kane to the mental facility departs, but Steve Austin and
Kane are shown watching footage of the whole thing in the back.  One guess who was in the body bag and is
headed for the mental health facility.
Shane McMahon
comes out to say that Sable is about to learn a lesson in humility.  She comes out and models WWF Attitude
cologne, which costs $19.99 (plus $4 shipping & handling).  Shane asks to smell it and tries to do so all
over Sable, but she squirts it in his face. 
You see, it is all funny!  1 for 7
Match:  The Rock (WWF Champion) defeats
Al Snow (w/Head) with the Rock Bottom at 4:57:
The Rock is back to using some kind of weird theme
music.  It is slightly better than the
disco theme they tried to give him a month earlier, but the beat for this theme
is one of those generic numbers you would get on the No Mercy video game.  It just does not add to the atmosphere or fit
the Rock at all.  Compared to other RAW
main events of this period, this has only a fraction of the expected crowd
reaction, an indication that tonight’s show has not delivered.  The Rock hilariously delivers the Corporate
Elbow to Head after a ref bump, which wakes up the crowd, and then beats Snow
clean.  Snow does get a visual pin on the
Rock by hitting him with Head in between all of that.  Rating:
 *½ (1 for 8)
After the match,
the Rock, Ken Shamrock, and the Big Bossman beatdown Al Snow and Mankind.  The JOB Squad finally makes a save.
Paul Bearer runs
into Austin backstage when he tries to unlock the freezer Austin was placed in
earlier.  The freezer opens to reveal
Kane and they haul Bearer out to the ring. 
Austin prevents Kane from immediately beating up Bearer or getting a gas
can.  Instead, he opts to cut Bearer’s
shirt and tie with a pair of scissors and teases stabbing him.  Austin aborts that idea too and they take him
outside and open a manhole cover.  They
shove Bearer down into the sewer head-first to close the show.  How is that punishment worse than killing
someone?  1 for 9
The Final Report Card:  Most of these shows have been good for the
last few months, but this show is beginning to illustrate how Russo is getting
a little too much creative control for his own good.  Every match, save for the WWF title match at
the end, had a run-in finish and the majority had disqualification finishes.  I do not mind DQ endings, but if you use them
too much throughout the show it really burns out the crowd and gets
irritating.  Some of these other angles
are also getting really ridiculous. 
Austin throwing a guy down a sewer? 
The hos gawking over Babu? 
Medical orderlies going after Kane? 
Things are really going off the rail.
Monday Night War Rating:  5.0 (vs. 4.2 for Nitro)

Show Evaluation:  Thumbs Down