BoD Evening Update Smackdown Preview

Kurt Angle Pulled From This Sunday’s “Lockdown” PPV

Angle was originally scheduled to face ECIII. The storyline reason is that ECIII attacked Angle’s knee on Impact this past Thursday but the real reason is that Angle was unable to recover from surgery in time. The injury angle was taped over a month ago in the event that Angle would wouldn’t be able to perform.

Credit Wade Keller,

WWE Television Deal Update

George Barrios, WWE CFO, told “Business Week” that the company thinks it will be able to name a new domestic rights partner by the beginning of May. Barrios also reported that the WWE is negotiating with multiple parties but did not give out any names.

“Grantland” Article on the WWE Network

The article is written by the Masked Man and Bill Simmons

WWF Championship Wrestling December 7th, 1985

December 7, 1985
Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino and Vince McMahon
Tonight, Pedro Morales & Tito Santana will be in action. Also, the Hart Foundation, Paul Orndorff & Dan Spivey, and George “The Animal” Steele.

The Gladiator & Steve Lombardi vs. Tito Santana & Pedro Morales
Tito and Lombardi go at it as Bruno talks about Santana’s “Latin temper.” Pedro tags and slams Lombardi a few times until he tags out. Morales dodges an attack as the Gladiator takes Lombardi off of the apron by accident. Tito tags in and gets caught in the wrong corner as Lombardi beats him down. The Gladiator tags as the fans chant for Tito then go silent as he makes the tag to Morales. Tito tags back in and puts the Gladiator in the figure four but Lombardi breaks it up and the match breaks down until Morales gets the pin with a backbreaker (4:32).
Thoughts: This ran for a bit too long. The crowd loves Tito but seems to be pretty indifferent toward Morales, who was old and on the way down the card. Morales would really begin to not give a fuck at all as 1986 approached. Tito with the IC belt though is just not working out as he has been tagging with JYD and Morales for most of this title reign.
WWF Update with Lord Alfred Hayes. This week’s subject is the Killer Bees as we see a clip of them beating a pair of jobbers from “Maple Leaf Wrestling.” Hayes believes big things will happen to the Bees in 1986.
Gino Carabello vs. David Sammartino
Sammartino had already left the company by the time this match had aired during the “Phantom Submission” match against Ron Shaw in Philadelphia. Sammartino overpowers Carabello to start. They trade slams then Sammartino gets a nearfall off of a hiptoss. Carabello slaps Sammartino in the face, which pisses him off, then Sammartino lays into him with chops until he gets the win with a powerslam (2:42).
Thoughts: The last TV match for David, who wasnt as bad in the ring as most people make him out to be. His problem was that he had little charisma and being the son of Bruno, could never come close to escaping from his shadow. He was overpushed from the beginning and no one took him too seriously after that. 
Gene Okerlund plugs the December 7th show at the Boston Garden (Which I will review and post on Tuesday for those interested) then interviews Bruno Sammartino, who will be facing Roddy Piper. Sammartino said that he is a “Washed-up old man” but will make Piper pay after he called him a “stupid wop.” Sammartino said there is no room for bigots like Piper in wrestling and is coming into the ring not to wrestle, but to fight. Good interview by Sammartino.
Jim Powers & Scott McGhee vs. Hart Foundation w/ Jimmy Hart
Witty crowd sign of the week: “Brett Hart Has the Hair of a Greaseball.” The Harts are rocking the blue and black tights here for the first time on TV to my knowledge. McGhee sends Hart to the floor with a dropkick to the back. Back inside, Powers works the arm of Hart but gets taken down quickly. Hart hits Powers with a backbreaker then tags Neidhart, who beats on Powers. Hart tags and hits a dropkick then softens him up until they put him away with the Hart Attack (2:49).
Thoughts: The Harts actually got their first push around this time. They were coming into their own and Vince was putting them over on commentary here too. 
Okerlund is with Tito Santana, who will be defending his Intercontinental Title against Jesse Ventura in Boston. Santana cuts a promo on how Ventura has not changed (he was playing a face in the ring at this time in a role that did not last long at all) and that he will not lose the belt.
Rusty Brooks & Terry Gibbs vs. Danny Spivey & Paul Orndorff
This was the TV debut for Spivey. Orndorff is wearing a cast, mocking Bob Orton’s broken arm. Spivey works over Gibbs, which makes sense they worked together at the last MSG show. Spivey hits a crossbody in a bad looking spot then tags out as Orndorff nails Brooks with the cast. Orndorff backdrops Brooks then slams Gibbs before tagging out. Spivey hits a pair of dropkicks then tags Orndorff who whacks Brooks on the back of the head with his cast for the win (2:43).
Thoughts: Spivey was really green when he began but most of this revolved around Orndorff and the cast angle, which overshadowed Danny’s debut. Brooks sold the finish like a pro and have to give him credit for that. 
Piper’s Pit with a slew of guests, including the Dream Team, Hart Foundation, Hercules, and Freddie Blassie. They see Orndorff and Spivey walk back from the ring and they all harass the faces. Piper then mockingly has the heels hold him back from them as he makes fun of Spivey & Orndorff for not having any friends then calls the crowd “peasants and peons” as they are all rich people. Funny stuff.
Joe Mirto vs. George “The Animal” Steele w/ Capt. Lou Albano
Steele beats on Mirto as his tongue is wagging around. He then eats the turnbuckle as he chucks the stuffing in the air then smushes some of it in Mirto’s face. He stomps away before getting the win with a flying hammerlock (2:08). After the match, Steele unknowingly leads the crowd into a chant then gets confused and stops.
Thoughts: The same as any other Steele squash match from the 80’s. He was getting a push here as he had been off of TV for a little bit. 
A clip of “Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling” airs which shows the wrestlers in a “Ghostbusters” parody. Man, did Tito sound like the dumbest Mexican stereotype ever in these things.
The Menace & Ron Shaw vs. King Tonga & Ricky Steamboat
Tonga gets the best of Shaw then takes down both men at the same time. The match breaks down as the faces catch the heels with super kicks. They take turns beating on the Menace, with Tonga looking pretty damn good in the process. Steamboat tags and puts on a chinlock before he works the arm. Poor Menace, he is getting the shit kicked out of him in this match from all sorts of moves. Tonga then holds up the Menace as Steamboat comes off of the top with a crossbody for the win. That looked ugly (5:23)
Thoughts: Decent action but way too long for a squash match. The Menace got the shit kicked out of him tonight and bumped around so much that he was gassed at the end. He earned his paycheck for that TV taping. 
Okerlund is with Jesse Ventura, who keeps referring to Tito as “Chico.” Jesse also says that Santana is afraid of him and will also show him what it means to be an athlete. He leaves and Bob Orton enters, making fun of Pedro Morales for wanting another match against him after he beat him the last time. Piper then brings out a cardboard cutout of Whitney Houston, saying that it looks like David Sammartino late on a Saturday night then makes fun of Bruno for being old and that is why there are wrestling in the afternoon. Piper then says Bruno has “garlic ears” before making fun of his nose as the segment ends.
Next week, Adrian Adonis and the Killer Bees will be in action. Also, Iron Sheik & Nikolai Volkoff and the Junkyard Dog will be in action.  

Final Thoughts: Standard show I suppose. There wasnt any major feuds going on at this time. The Piper/Orndorff stuff was starting to really run out of gas as it has been going on for the past several months. Tito vs. Jesse was good out of the ring but their matches sucked, due to Jesse being useless in the ring at this point of his career. No Savage or Funk makes for a much less exciting show. 

Daily Network Thread – 3/7/14

Today on the totally cool and random live stream: the Smackdown pre-show, Old School goes back to Maple Leaf Gardens on 4/20/85 for Hogan vs. Orndorff, and then Smackdown Backstage Pass after the show ends on SyFy. ECW Hardcore TV hits late night, which I think is a very good timeslot for it. It kind of gives it that feel that it had back when it originally aired, where it’s not suitable for all viewers so let’s play it late at night. Put your thoughts on the Network……right here.

Austin at Backlash 2000

> Watching Backlash 2000 on the network. I'm wondering, why did they bring Austin back with a big build up, do this big return…then he vanishes until Survivor Series for another return. A quick Google search did me no good – do you have an answer or any insight?

Austin's neck was FUCKED at that point. He had only had surgery done a few months prior and could barely swing a chair in April. You'll notice he's moving slowly and no one makes any physical contact with him. Survivor Series 2000 was the first time he was medically cleared, and if it's today I doubt he would have even been allowed back then.

As for why they brought him back at that show, to quote the Prime Time Players…MILLIONS OF DOLLARS. No other reason.

The Kevin Kelly Show Episode Four – Featuring Mike Bennett

In the fourth episode of The Kevin Kelly Show, the Voice of Ring of Honor speaks with Mike Bennett about Ring of Honor, BJ Whitmer, his recent WWE tryout and much more. Kevin also shares his thoughts on CM Punk and Raw’s “hijacking”, the WWE Network, Daniel Bryan and much more. As always, Kevin takes your #AsKKevin Twitter questions as well.

Some interesting stuff here on the WWE tryout, their hiring process and the BJ Whitmer injury.  Thanks again!

BoD Daily Update

WWE Stock Continues to Soar

Their stock climb to $29.80 a share yesterday

TNA Taping on the Road This Summer?

Due to a scheduling conflict at Universal, TNA will have to tape some of their TV shows on the road.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

Today’s WWE Network Schedule

QOTD 110: The Network Part Deux.

This question comes from Magoonie! I hope I spelled that right. Thankfully I was able to locate a photo of Mr. Magoo(nie) and it’s to the left!

His question:

Rumors are going around of the WWE Network having new original wrestling shows (a cruiser weight show). Having said that, let’s say Vince while highly inebriated gave you a weekly show on the Network that would be an entirely different federation with separate characters and storylines. He lets you pluck guys from the main roster that they are doing little to nothing with or NXT guys. No big names like Cena, Orton, Bryan, etc though. You can change these wrestlers up any way you want.

So who would you pick for your roster (10-12 guys)? What changes would you make to them? What type of storylines would you run? How would your show/fed differ from the WWE?

Well Mr. Magoo, I would go with bringing back from the dead WMAC Masters with Rob Van Dam:

The SmarK Rant for WWE NXT–03.06.14

The SmarK Rant for WWE NXT – 03.06.14 Welcome to the Network era of the show! The Network actually loads faster and more effectively than Hulu does on my PS3, so moving NXT there is kind of great for me. Speaking of the Network, if you’re enjoying the 1993 season of Monday Night RAW and want to have my rants for ALL of that year’s run as reference, check out my Kindle book, available for only 99 cents on Amazon! Along with some other great Kindle books I wrote, too. Taped from Orlando, FL Your hosts are Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton and William Regal. Adrian Neville v. Camacho They’ve WWE-ized the graphics and set and I’m starting to get uncomfortable with it. Neville has the belt here, so I guess they scrapped the rest of the last taping cycle. So those of you looking for CRZ in the crowd will be sorely disappointed. Neville holds an armbar on Haku Jr, but gets chopped in the corner, setting up a Camacho powerslam for two. Neville comes back with kicks and a missile dropkick to set up the Red Arrow at 3:00. *1/2 Renee Young does a post-match interview with him, and they keep doing bizarre cuts to the crowd during it. Neville cuts kind of a funny promo, pointing out that he looks like an elf and has an accent so thick that even he can’t understand himself, but he’s got the belt and he’s the best. Minor note here, as Neville says he won the belt “last night” when he should have said “last week.” This brings out Bo Dallas for the rematch feud no one particularly wants. Meanwhile, Emma is bummed about losing last week, and Ric Flair brings out Charlotte to rub it in. Flair stops by to creep out Paige after the break as well. Emma v. Charlotte Summer is represented by a head on a stick this week. The stick probably needs to lose some weight to properly match up. They trade wristlocks and Emma controls on the mat and gets a rollup for two. Another rollup gets two. Emma gets distracted by Sasha while Charlotte fakes a leg injury, and the neckbreaker finishes for Charlotte at 3:20. Charlottle is coming along OK. *1/2 Corey Graves v. Yoshi Tatsu Graves bitches about Sami Zayn getting tons of chances despite never winning and derides the relevance of Tatsu. An entitled millennial skinny-jean douchebag is kind of an interesting gimmick. Graves teases walking out, but catches Tatsu with a clothesline on the floor and sends him into the stairs, and takes the countout win at 1:30. That was literally the most devastating trip to the stairs in the entire history of professional wrestling. I mean, Tatsu must have suffered 18 consecutive concussions off that move to be unable to move the one foot from the stairs to the ring. DUD Sami Zayn comes out to answer Graves’ grandstand challenge, so that’s apparently our main event tonight. Meanwhile, we’re at the launch party for debauched British rock god ADAM ROSE, who looks strangely familiar, but is absolutely not a repackaged Leo Kruger despite all ridiculous rumors to the contrary. I’m assuming Kruger went back to South Africa and got eaten by a dingo or whatever animals are hunted there. I’m also assuming the original gimmick name of Alex Rose was changed to avoid the obvious lawsuit. Meanwhile, Alexander Rusev and Xavier Woods have words for each other, although we can’t understand Rusev’s words so they are perhaps less effective of a threat than you’d like. Adam Rose v. Wesley Blake Rose’s entrance is the GREATEST FUCKING THING EVER. He comes out to wacky British pop with an entourage of party animals, and then crowd surfs off the apron onto them while singing along with his own song. I’m not even doing it close to justice. Also, this match appears to be taken from the previous set of tapings. The match is the same Kruger squash (or at least someone who looks shockingly like Kruger, but NOT…remember, eaten by alligator or something, different person) with slightly more flair, as he hits a spinebuster and finishes with the lariat at 2:30. Honestly, Russell Brand is a perfect comedy archetype to swipe from and I’m glad someone finally did it. One thing I’m not glad someone finally did is make a WWE/Scooby Doo crossover movie. Plus it’s not even the awesome Scooby Doo Mystery Inc. continuity with the wacky relationship drama and fourth-wall breaking. Sami Zayn v. Corey Graves Zayn quickly chases Graves out of the ring and threatens a dive, but lets him back in instead. Graves attacks and gets a front suplex for two as we take a break. Back with Graves holding a neck vice on the mat and going to work on the knee. Zayn fights back with a backdrop, but gets caught in a backbreaker for two. Graves misses a blind charge and Zayn hits a crossbody for two. Zayn tries the running boot and runs into a punch to the ear, but he comes back with the Blue Thunder bomb for two. Zayn charges again and Graves clips the knee, but Zayn gets a small package for two. He goes up and Graves tries another backbreaker to counter, but Zayn rolls him into a small package for the pin at 10:20. They just need to find something for Zayn and bring him up already. **3/4 The Pulse Really fun show, highlighted by the awesome debut of ADAM ROSE. Who is not Leo Kruger at all. He was eaten by a wallaby.

Impact Wrestling – March 6, 2014

Date: March 6, 2014
Location: Wembley
Arena, London, England
Commentators: Mike
Tenay, Tazz
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re STILL in England
and it’s the go home show for Lockdown. The main story coming into
tonight is a six man elimination tag for the advantage in Lethal
Lockdown on Sunday. TNA has been doing better lately but they need a
really good showing on Sunday to take it to the next level. Given
their track record, I’m hoping for good things tonight. Let’s get to

After the usual recap,
here are Roode and the Bro Mans with something to say. The Bro Mans
are champions again, having won the titles in Japan. Nice touch of
continuity there. Roode says he and his team are ready for Lockdown
and he wants MVP right now. Instead he gets Aries (wearing the X
Title to take away the nice bit of continuity) who says that 10% of
the pie isn’t much but it’s a piece and Aries wants half.
The Bro Mans say not so
fast because they want a piece too. Roode says no because he’s the
captain and he isn’t sharing. The top priority is winning the match
and Aries says that isn’t a problem. There isn’t a single person in
this company that can save MVP, so here are the Wolves and MVP to
MVP says he made a
mistake when he trusted Aries, but he won’t be fooled twice in a row.
He had to do some hustling to come up with another partner and he
has made his decision. Before he can say anything, here’s Dixie
Carter to cut him off. She doesn’t care who MVP’s partner is because
she’s been in New York securing the victory for Team Roode. The
company means everything to her and she’ll do anything to keep it
under her control.
MVP understands but
asks if Dixie wants to know the mystery partner. It’s a former world
champion and that’s enough for Dixie to want to know. It’s Jeff
Hardy and Dixie FREAKS. Dixie says over her dead body and MVP offers
to send a wreath to her funeral. Roode jumps MVP and the six man
starts before a break.
vs. Robbie E/Austin Aries/Bobby Roode
Elimination tag and the
winning team gets the advantage at Lockdown. We’re joined in
progress after a break with Robbie driving Edwards into the corner
before it’s off to Roode for some kicks to the ribs. The villains
take turns working over Eddie until he backflips out of a belly to
back suplex and makes the tag off to MVP. The title belts are laying
in the corner of the rung until Davey lays one of them on the floor.
MVP hits a quick Drive By for the pin on Robbie at 2:00.
The Wolves hit a double
kick on Roode for two but Aries comes in with a running dropkick in
the corner to Edwards, followed by the brainbuster for the pin at
3:45 total. Richards and Aries come in for a slugout with Richards
kicking Aries agianst the ropes but Austin coming back with a discus
forearm to put both guys down. A double tag brings in MVP and Roode
for a forearm and clothesline exchange that goes nowhere. Roode gets
knocked down but Aries makes the save, allowing Roode to hit a
clothesline to the back of MVP’s head for a pin (with Roode holding
the feet) at 5:10 total.
So it’s Richards 2-1
against Roode and Aries. Austin starts by working over Davey in the
corner and getting two off a bulldog. Davey is sent outside for a
top rope ax handle from Aries but comes back with a dropkick to take
out both heels. A running knee to Roode’s chest looks to set up the
top rope double stomp but Bobby rolls away. The Roode Bomb is
countered but Richards rolls into a half crab, only to have Aries
come in with a chair to the arm for a DQ at 7:55 total. Edwards
comes out to check on his partner and we take a break.
After a break there’s
no official winner, but Earl Hebner gives them one hour to get Davey
back in the ring for a match with Roode. The trainer doesn’t think
it’s going to happen.
We recap Samuel Shaw
and Mr. Anderson fighting because Shaw creeped Hemme out. Shaw says
last week was beautiful and he’ll do something else beautiful in the
ring tonight.
Shaw vs. Eric Young
Shaw comes out with a
cup of tea. Christy isn’t in her usual ringside seat so Anderson
comes out to do the intros instead. Shaw yells at Anderson and
almost gets rolled up for the pin. Young hammers away in the corner
but Shaw just smiles at him. Samuel hammers away in the corner as
the fans call him creepy. Shaw yells at Anderson again and Eric
hammers away and is sent to the apron for some strutting. A forearm
to the head sets up a belly to belly for two. They head outside and
Shaw throws the tea into Young’s eyes for a DQ at 2:23.
Shaw throws Young into
Anderson and chokes Mr. out again. He says he’ll be going to claim
what is rightfully his. Christy wisely walks away in the back.
Richards says he needs
to go to the hospital but MVP has something to do. Davey looks
Richards says he needs
to go to the hospital but MVP has something to do. Davey looks
Back from a break and
MVP is looking for Aries. He goes into the locker room and yells at
Austin over attacking Davey. MVP knows how things are working now.
We recap the Ethan vs.
Angle showdown last week. Ethan comes in to see Dixie and she tells
him to just focus.
Shaw is looking for
Christy in the back. After a break he’s still looking and goes into
the locker room. Instead he finds Velvet getting dressed and asks
where Christy is. Velvet says the makeup room and runs off.
Here’s Ethan Carter III
to call out Kurt Angle. If there’s one thing he learned last week,
it’s never meet your heroes because they might sucker punch you in
the face. Carter rants about all of the parts of Angle’s leg that
he’ll injure and lists off all the people he’s beaten. Once he beats
Angle on Sunday, he’ll be the American Icon. Angle finally limps out
and says he’s ready to go now but Carter runs. Kurt goes to leave
but Ethan jumps him to go after the leg. He slaps on a leg lock
until referees make the save.
MVP talks to the Wolves
and Richards says he’ll be standing up tonight.
Video on Kenny King
being King of the Night. Nice idea at least.
Female/Gail Kim/Lei’D Tapa vs. Velvet Sky/Madison Rayne/ODB
Madison jumps Gail to
start and scores with a quick northern lights suplex. Off to ODB for
a Bronco Buster but Tapa comes in and powerbombs her down for two.
Back up and they slug it out until it’s off to Velvet vs. Alpha
Female. Everything breaks down and Sabin goes after Velvet with a
chain and yells at her a lot. Chris charges at her but gets low
bridged to the floor. Alpha Female tries a full nelson but gets
kicked in the face. In Yo Face is enough to pin Female at 4:17.
D+. This was a messy match and
it didn’t go much of anywhere. I’m not sure why you would have
Female lose this quickly unless she’s just there for the European
tour. Madison and Velvet only had a few seconds here but that’s
better than no build for their title match on Sunday. Yeah they have
a title match on Sunday.
Shaw is still looking
for the makeup room.
Willow is still creepy.
Shaw goes to find
Christy but finds Anderson in a red wig instead. They fight behind a
door and Anderson puts lipstick on Shaw’s head.
We recap Storm vs.
Here’s Gunner to talk
about the code he lives by. He takes every day at a time and he
remembers a lot of days since he won that briefcase. This Sunday at
Lockdown he’s inside a cage and that brings back a lot of memories
for him. This brings out Storm (minus the catchphrase to start his
music) who says it sounds like Gunner is just complaining about his
bad luck. Gunner needs to pack a lunch on Sunday because it’s going
to be an all day beating. Storm gets in the ring and promises to cut
Gunner down before kicking him low. The Last Call to a kneeling
Gunner knocks him cold. Apparently it’s a last man standing match.
Roode wants Richards in
the ring right now.
Bobby comes out and
wants the referee to count to ten so his team can win. Davey comes
out around six and it’s time for our match.
Richards vs. Bobby Roode
Bobby of course goes
right after the arm and wraps it around the post. Back in and Roode
drops a knee on the arm and stands around for a bit. Richards rolls
to the floor and manages to crotch Roode as Bobby goes after him.
Roode heads outside but gets taken down by a suicide dive, only to
injure the arm even worse. Back inside and a missile dropkick gets
two for Davey and he fires off some kicks to the chest. The Roode
Bomb is countered into a half crab but Bobby rolls over and kicks at
the bad arm. Richards goes shoulder first into the post and the
Roode Bomb sets up the Crossface for the tap at 5:31.
C. Basic idea here but it did
its job well enough. This give MVP’s team a slight disadvantage
going into Sunday which is something they need to do given how one
sided the match is on paper. Richards sold the arm well and it’s a
decent enough story coming into the PPV.
MVP and Edwards make
the save.
Tigre Uno is still
Dixie tells Magnus to
stop worrying and just win on Sunday. She implies his match means
nothing to her.
Here are Magnus and Joe
for their showdown to end the show. Magnus says the two of them have
won titles and championships in Japan and here in TNA, including here
in this building. Joe has had far too many chances to win the title
but has blown it time after time due to his rage, and that’s exactly
what’s going to happen on Sunday.
Joe says that he does
have a rage problem because he wants to make people feel as much pain
as he can. That’s exactly what he can do on Sunday because it’s
Joe’s Rules, meaning he can beat on Magnus as long as he want and
take the title from him. Magnus gets in a cheap shot and gets choked
out to end the show.
C-. This was a good go
home show but it didn’t do much for me. The heels getting the
advantage in the cage isn’t a surprise at all and the matches were
just ok. Joe vs. Magnus was a good build but I can’t imagine Magnus
loses the title this early. It should be a good show on Sunday but
this was just ok.
MVP/Wolves vs. Bobby
Roode/Austin Aries/Robbie E went to a no contest
Eric Young b. Samuel
Shaw via DQ when Shaw threw tea into Young’s eyes
Velvet Sky/Madison
Rayne/ODB b. Alpha Female/Gail Kim/Lei’D Tapa – In Yo Face to
Bobby Roode b. Davey
Richards – Crossface

Remember to check out my website at and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

The Princess Rant for WrestleWar 1992

The best gimmick match in wrestling history? Quite possibly. Meanwhile I have a question for debate. Better tag team wrestler: Arn Anderson or Bobby Eaton?

Princess Retro Rant for WCW Wrestlewar 1992: War Games

From the Jacksonville Memorial Coliseum in Jacksonville, Fla.

Hosted by Jim Ross and Jesse “The Body” Ventura

U.S. Tag Team Championship:  The Taylor
Made Man & Greg Valentine vs. The Fabulous Freebirds

I’m assuming “Badstreet USA” was dubbed over but the ‘Birds were in a weird
babyface run and cutting bad songs as “musicians” so this could easily just be
one of those. The Taylor Made Man is Terry Taylor doing a cheap rip off of Ted
DiBiase’s gimmick down to the tear away tuxedo shirt. Greg Valentine is…well
Greg Valentine. The Freebirds are Michael Hayes and Jimmy Garvin.  Taylor and Valentine are the champions and
BILL ALFONZO~! is the referee.

Taylor and Hayes start out and do a ton of posturing and strutting and other
forms of stalling and fanfare. Taylor makes the blind tag but goofy heel
miscommunication leads to a near fall by Hayes. Hayes gets the first impact
move in – a hip toss but when he goes for it the second time Valentine clubs
him with a forearm. Hayes comes back with an atomic drop and a couple of
clotheslines that get a two count.  Hayes
chops away before tagging Garvin and the Freebirds decide to work on Valentine’s
arm to set the pace. Garvin tries a roll up but Valentine counters and misses
the elbow. Freebirds double team the arm and continue the basic work as the
crowd chants DDT. Valentine fights out and tags Taylor, who misses an elbow.
The Freebirds continue to work on Taylor’s arm with a succession of quick tags
and arm bars. High cross body (actually not very high at all) gets two. Garvin
drops a leg on Taylor’s arm and tags back to Hayes. Sticking with the arm and
Taylor tries to headbutt his way out of this predicament but Hayes casually
grabs Taylor’s ponytail and pulls him down. Finally Taylor breaks the arm but
gets back body dropped. Hayes follows with a running elbow and an elbow drop
for a two count. Crowd still chanting DDT as Taylor uses leverage to send
Garvin to the floor. Valentine roughs up Garvin while he’s down there.

Back in the ring Taylor with a jawbuster and now Valentine in the ring and he
lays in the chops. Corner whip but Valentine eats boot off the blind charge.
Garvin goes for the tag but Valentine cuts him off. Garvin, however, gets a
suplex on Valentine although Garvin was worse for wear. Valentine tries a
splash and hits knees but manages to hold off Garvin long enough to tag Taylor.
Taylor with a corner clothesline and a chin lock to break up the movement.
Garvin with a clothesline out of the hold and a hot tag to Hayes. He takes on
both guys and we’ve got a donnybrook here. Hayes goes for the DDT on Valentine
but Taylor hits the five arm on Hayes for a near fall. Wow I thought that would
finish it. Valentine with a backbreaker gets two. Valentine gets in all of his
traditional offense including the great headbutt to the lower abdomen.
Valentine tries another splash that hits knees but Valentine rolls into a tag
and Taylor goes to the eyes to maintain control. Hayes reverses an irish whip
but sets too early so Taylor hits a doctor bomb for two. Tag to Valentine and
he goes right to the figure four so Garvin quickly jumps in to break that up.
Valentine decides to go with a step over armbar. Hayes gets vertical and gets
chopped a few times for doing so. Valentine with a hard corner whip and he
couldn’t follow up because Hayes oversold it. Taylor tagged in and he tries to
ram Hayes’ head into the turnbuckle but Hayes reverses it and drops him with a
left. Hot tag to Garvin and he cleans house on both men. Double clothesline by
Garvin but Valentine trips him off the ropes and Taylor hits a knee drop for
two. Taylor goes for a slam but Garvin rolls over and hits the DDT for the pin
and the belts. Crowd goes wicked loud for that. Freebirds were over in Jacksonville.

(Freebirds def. Taylor/Valentine, pinfall, ***1/4, old school Southern formula
tag team match with four veterans that know how to do it. Fun stuff.)

Tony Schiavone, looking quite svelte, and Eric Bischoff do some post match
analysis before our next match.

“Young Pistol” Tracy Smothers vs. Johnny B. Badd

Jesse goes straight for the gay jokes of course and…well Mero gives him no
reason not to, wearing more makeup than a room full of Italian housewives.
Smothers is going to play the heel in this match as he makes a point to
complain about Badd pulling the tights early. Badd with a hip toss and an
armdrag that forces Smothers to take a powder. Badd gets a cross body for two
off of a rope sequence and then an armdrag that transitions right into an
armbar. Smothers gets back to his feet and corners Badd. Smothers roughs up Badd
in the corner and hits a jumping side kick to the face for two. Smothers does a
little more “martial arts” and hits a BEAUTIFUL flying back elbow from the top
for two. Smothers goes back up to the top and hits a cross body but Badd rolls
over and gets a two count. Smothers, however, stays in control and hits another
jumping side kick for two. For those wondering I think his tag partner, Steve
Armstrong, had left for the WWF at this point. Smothers hits a few more chops
and gets another two count. A body slam attempt is countered into an inside
cradle for two but Smothers gets the chinlock. Badd rallies with a high knee
and a series of punches. Powerslam from Badd and a top rope sunset flip gets
two but Smothers is up first. He misses the side kick and Badd hits the “kiss
that don’t miss” (a punch to the face) for the three count.

(Badd def. Smothers, **3/4, perfectly acceptable stuff that could have been
really good with 3-5 more minutes.)

Missy Hyatt talks with the Freebirds and PRECIOUS~! With brown hair no less.  She looked pretty good too.

More analysis from Tony and Eric.

Marcus Alexander Bagwell vs. Scotty Flamingo

Speaking of Missy Hyatt, Bagwell is one of the boys she brought into Atlanta I
believe. Scotty Flamingo is/was better known as Raven. They slap each other in
the face several times and finally Flamingo dumps Bagwell to the floor but
Bagwell jumps back in the ring and tackles Flamingo. They go back to slapping
each other. Are they going to use their nails next? Maybe some hair pulling?
Anyway Bagwell does something and gets a back suplex for two. Flamingo tries a
suplex but Bagwell reverses it and gets two. Flamingo recovers to send Bagwell
to the floor. Back in the ring Bagwell counters a kitchen sink knee with a
rollover for two. Flamingo recovers with a back suplex. Snapmare and Flamingo
hits the fist drop from the second rope for two. Flamingo with a chin lock and
we wait. Thankfully he goes to the choke and gets a two count. Back to the chin
lock for Flamingo. They do a few rope sequences before Flamingo lands a high
cross body that sends both guys over the top rope. Both men are back in the
ring. Bagwell sends Flamingo to the canvas face first but Flamingo fights back
on the ground. Bagwell rallies back with a hip toss and a clothesline. Bagwell
to the second rope and hits a double axe to the head. Fisherman’s suplex gets
two when Flamingo has his foot on the ropes. Bagwell with a roll up but
Flamingo reverses it and grabs the tights for the three count.

(Flamingo def. Bagwell, *1/2, both men…or at least Flamingo were capable of

We look back at the events that led to this tag match between Ron Simmons and
JYD against Cactus Jack and Mr. Hughes. Cactus and Abdullah beat up Simmons at
Superbrawl and JYD SLOWLY came in for the save. JYD was so slow had it been a
shoot Simmons would have easily been dead.

Cactus Jack & Mr. Hughes vs. Ron Simmons & Junkyard Dog

Wow JYD is super fat, he makes Cactus look like a light heavyweight in
comparison. Not sure why they dubbed over Simmons’ “Doom” music with this
techno scratching crap but whatever. Anyway Cactus jumps JYD on the ramp and
after a short brawl Cactus takes him out with the suicide elbow. Bang Bang for
sure. JYD does the stretcher job and after a short delay Simmons decides to go
at it alone and damn near kills both guys with a double clothesline. Cactus
decides to chill for this one and let the homeboys battle it out.

Ron Simmons vs. Mr. Hughes

Simmons beats him up with power stuff and Hughes takes a powder. Back in the
ring and Hughes takes control with a clothesline and an elbow drop for two.
Hughes slams Simmons and hits a knee drop for another two count. Jesse points
out that he loves Hughes wrestling with his shades on. Hughes and Cactus do
some more cheating but Simmons rallies with a hip toss. In a funny spot Cactus
tries to tag in but Fonzie is having none of it. Hughes misses a sit down
splash and Simmons rallies with the big spinebuster. Cactus tries for the save
but Simmons cuts him off at the ropes and hits Hughes with the running tackle
for three.

(Simmons def. Hughes, pinfall, ½*, nothing of note there.)

Tony and Eric talk about JYD’s potential injury. He would return or maybe not. A
few months after this Hughes would go to the WWF at the request of the Undertaker.

Todd Champion vs. Super Invader

They are really busting out the big names for this one. Somehow Harley Race got
stuck with the Super Invader but he would eventually just saddle up with Vader
full time. For those that don’t know the Super Invader used to be known as “Hercules”
in the WWF but you give a guy a mask and all of a sudden he’s a Thai fighter.
Go figure. As for the match Invader does all that “oriental” stuff, which means
he chops to the throat a lot. Champion is a big, good looking kid. Not sure if
he was worth a shit in the ring but I’m surprised Vince never threw a worker’s
contract his way. Not much going on here, Invader goes hard with the chinlock
and then a clothesline before dumping Champion to the floor. Back in the ring
and Invader goes up to the top and gets caught with a boot to the face.
Champion hits an ugly shoulderblock and a slightly better spinning elbow but
Invader catches him on the third move with a stun gun. Praying powerbomb
finishes this snoozefest.

(Invader def. Champion, pinfall, ½*, nothing of note here either.)

And we’re right to the next match.

Richard Morton vs. Big Josh

Big Josh is the late Matt Bourne in a smiling Billy Jack Haynes-Paul Bunyan
Northwoods type gimmick. Richard Morton is Ricky Morton using his legal name.
Morton tries to play cat and mouse with Josh but eventually he gets caught and
beat up with power stuff. Morton catches Josh with a knee lift off the ropes
and he rips Josh’s flannel shirt off because he’s really angry I guess. Josh
corners Morton, however and roughs him up. Running forearm hits Morton stiff as
hell. Damn I felt that one. Josh misses a corner elbow and Morton with a back
suplex. Inverted atomic drop from Morton and a knee drop. Morton, playing the
heel, goes for the choke. Josh fights off a roll up but misses an elbow and
Morton gets a two count from all of that. Morton with a snapmare and another knee
drop for two. Morton with an armbar and he takes it to the ground. Josh fights
to get back to his vertical base and easily breaks the hold. Morton goes for a
monkey flip but Josh casually stomps him in the face. Body slam and a big elbow
drop gets two. Josh sets too early off of an irish whip and Morton kicks him in
the mouth. Back to the arm for Morton and he adds a few elements to the armbar
because Morton always tried hard. Headbutt from Josh breaks the hold and hits a
beautiful belly to belly suplex. Josh corners Morton and gets a double
underhook suplex for two. Morton goes to the eyes and then to the ropes but
gets caught with the spinebuster and the northern exposure (a running butt splash)
for the pin.

(Josh def. Morton, **1/4, nothing offensive here.)

Tony and Eric give us more analysis! Talking light heavyweight championship
here and former tag partners exploding! We see a clip from the WCW Saturday
night where Zenk and Pillman set up their match by arguing while wearing some
of the best clothing Chess King could provide.

WCW Light Heavyweight Championship: Flyin’ Brian vs. The Z Man

Jesse is reveling in the two pretty boys clashing and asks Ross who is going to
cheat first. Both guys keep it scientific to start and do an extended rope
sequence before trying for dropkicks at the same time. Pillman gets a drop toe
and goes to the arm. Zenk fights out and another rope sequence sees both guys
try for arm tosses. Pillman gets a snapmare and a knee drop for a two count.
Pillman goes to the side headlock but Zenk gets an armdrag and he works the
hammer lock for a while before going to the armbar. They do more rope stuff and
Pillman gets the head scissors take down on a counter and he goes to the arm
before switching to a sitting head scissors. Zenk fights out and gets a
backslide for two and then a sunset flip for two so Pillman chops the shit out
of him. Indian deathlock from Pillman as he works the leg and then moves down
to the knee and ankle specifically. Pillman drops the elbow on the knee and
starts wrenching away. Pillman extends Zenk’s hamstring a couple of times but
misses a somersault senton. Suplex from Zenk gets two and now Zenk works on the
back with a couple of knees. Backbreaker by Zenk and a springboard splash
catches knees. Pillman goes back to the leg and drops the elbow on the knee a
couple of times. Anklelock from Pillman turns into a half crab. Zenk fights to
his feet and hits an enziguri for the near fall. Zenk with a corner whip but he
misses the flying knee and Pillman applied the figure four and both guys start
SLAPPING each other. Awesome.

Zenk furiously fights the hold and turns it over but Pillman turns it back,
however Zenk grabs the ropes and forces the break. Another nasty chop from Pillman.
He goes for a slingshot shoulderblock but Zenk catches him with a powerslam for
a near fall. Zenk lays in the chops and but Pillman with a arm crucifix for two
and a half. Pillman sets Zenk up on the ropes and goes for the superplex but
Zenk dumps him off the ropes and climbs to the top where he hits the cross body
and gets another two count. The competitors do another rope sequence and knock
heads to temporary stop the flow. After a short double count Zenk hits a
flapjack for another two count. Zenk misses the elbow drop but catches Pillman
with a straight kick for two. Zenk goes for the top rope dropkick but Pillman
moves out of the way and gets the double leg rollup for the pin!

(Pillman def. Zenk, pinfall, ***3/4, that turned into a hell of a match.)

And right to the next match.

Takayki Iizuka & Tatsumi Fujinami vs. The Steiner Brothers

Now when I WANT the WWE to overdub generic music with the “Orient Express”
theme it doesn’t happen. MAKE ME HAPPY NETWORK!! Anyway the Steiners are the
WCW World Tag champions but this match is to determine the IWGP Number One

Scott and Fujinami start and do some scientific stuff to start and it looks
like they will wrestle a more Japanese-style match to start at least. Scott
tries to give Fujinami the reverse slam and almost breaks his neck. Iizuka
comes in for some and the reverse slam hits cleanly. Scott then stiffs Fujinami
on a forearm because he was pissed. Iizuka tagged in and he slams Scott, hits a
second rope elbow and then a somersault double kick from the top for a two
count. Nice. Iizuka gets a boston crab. Iizuka turns it over into a double leg
but Steiner bridges out of the pin and hits the underhook power bomb. Scott puts
Iizuka over his shoulder and tags Rick who comes off the top with the elbow for
a two count. Tag to Fujinami and we go back to a headlock to slow the pace down
but Rick with a vicious release belly to back suplex for two. Damn. Tag to
Scott and he hits Fujinami with an elbow and now a single crab. Jesse points
out that Iizuka is bleeding from something Steiner did, probably the elbow from
the top. Tag to Rick and they let Fujinami out of the corner. He gets Rick in
an electric chair and tags Iilzuka who hits the cross body from the top but
Steiner turns it over in the air for two! Steiner gets a football tackle and
another two count before Iizuka tags out. Fujinami comes in and works on the
leg with a variety of things including a single leglock and a super hamstring
extender using the second rope. Tag to Iizuka and he does a sit down splash on
the leg. Rick finally tags out and Scott hits a tilt-a-whirl slam for two.
Scott applies a chicken wing and then gives Iizuka a T-Bone suplex before
tagging in Rick again.

Rick with a step over armbar and then Rick scoops him up and runs him into the
corner. Tag to Scott, who hits an abdominal stretch slam for two and back to
the ground stuff. Iizuka is taking an ass whipping in there. Iizuka tags
Fujinami and he goes after both Steiners so Rick gladly beats the fuck out of
him for daring to bow up. Fujinami with an abdominal stretch on Scott and he
pulls it back into a pinning hold for two. 
Scott fights back to his feet and tags Rick back in. He and Fujinami
continue their brawl but the Japanese corner Rick only for him to easily muscle
out and give Iizuka and ridiculous belly to belly overhead suplex as Jesse
loves this shit. Scott snapmares Iizuka and sends him into his corner where
Fujinami makes the tag. The Japanese try a double team but Scott with a double
armdrag and Rick with a springboard double clothesline. Scott sets up Iizuka
but the referee is concerned with Rick so Fujinami gets a belly to back suplex
on Scott. Nasty german suplex from Iizuka with an aborted release. SPIKE
PILEDRIVER~! from the Japanese team and Iizuka comes in with a top rope
dropkick, illegally I might add. Fujinami with a sleeper and now the dragon
sleeper but Scott gets to the ropes. Regular sleeper and Scott kicks Fujinami
to the face and hits a clothesline. Scott and Fujinami knock heads and both
guys retreat to the corners for the tags but Rick gets the hot tag. Big
Steinerline and an elbow gets two. Belly to Belly rollover suplex for two. All
four men in the ring. Steiner with a belly to belly from the top and that
finally gets the pin.  Oh my goodness!

(Stieners def. Fujinami/Iizuka, ****1/2, that match went into the awesome zone
as Iizuka and Fujinami were willing to die for my pleasure.)

Jesse and JR recap the goodness we just saw.

Tony and Eric with some more analysis. Will Sting and Nikita Koloff get along?
Can the Dangerous Alliance stick together?

Wargames: The Dangerous Alliance (“Ravishing” Rick Rude, “Stunning” Steve
Austin, “The Cruncher” Larry Zbyzsko, “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson and “Beautiful”
Bobby Eaton) vs. Sting’s Squadron (Sting, Nikita Koloff, Barry Windham, Ricky “The
Dragon” Steamboat and “The Natural” Dustin Rhodes)

Funny thing is you can pretty much mix any of these ten guys in a tag match and
get an easy ***+ out of it. Ok I haven’t seen this match in a good long time so
I am going to guess who bleeds:

All right Austin and Anderson are obvious ones for the DA while Dustin and
Windham probably started blading on their way to the ring. Zbyzsko isn’t much
of a bleeder and neither is Koloff so let’s eliminate them. Ricky Steamboat has
his nose taped so there’s a good chance he’ll bleed. I’ll say Eaton will show
some red and that’s all. So Austin, Anderson, Eaton, Steamboat, Windham and
Rhodes are my designated bleeders for this match. Let’s roll.

Austin and Windham will go for the five minute period. Slugfest to the shock of
no one, Austin tries to send Windham to the cage but Windham blocks it. Back
and forth action as Austin back drops Windham and drops an elbow. They work to
the other ring as Windham tries to send Austin to the cage but he blocks it so
Windham DDTs him instead. Windham tries to rub Austin’s face in the cage but he
blocks it and clotheslines Windham over both ropes and the other way. Austin
tries to use the top of the cage for leverage but gets a flapjack for his
trouble and now Windham sends him into the cage twice! Austin is the first
gusher of the night as Windham bites him and adds a kneelift. Coin toss goes to
the DA, I’m shocked. Rick Rude comes in for the 2-on-1 and he roughs up Windham
and goes to the eyes. Rude goes with the intensity and power to take the
advantage but Windham blocks the cage attempt. Austin fights back to his feet
and hits Windham with a clothesline from the middle rope. The heels team up and
send Windham to the cage not once but twice and I’m sure Windham is bleeding so
two down and four to go.

Steamboat comes in for the Squadron and he goes CRAZY. Austin is sent into the
cage, a DDT for Rude, a DDT for Austin and the crowd is LOVING it. Austin’s
face is completely submerged with blood. Fuck TV PG man. Steamboat with a
franksteiner on Rude and some ground and pound as the faces are rolling.
Windham is back to his feet and they double team Rude. Anderson gives the heels
the 3-on-2 advantage and he DDTs Windham and then goes to the other ring to hit
Steamboat with the spinebuster. Double boston crab by Rude and Anderson on
Steamboat and he’s tapping out but this long before that was a way to submit.
Windham tries to save his partner but the numbers game is too great. All five
men are now in one ring. Nasty piledriver by Rude on Steamboat and then he
launches the Dragon into the other ring! Steamboat and Rude clothesline each
other. Dustin Rhodes on deck and its bionic elbow time for Anderson and a
clothesline for Austin. Now Steamboat has a Boston crab on Rude with Windham
adding to the punishment. Electric chair for Rhodes on Austin while Windham has
Anderson’s head wedged in between the rings! Wild action everywhere and now
Steamboat with a figure four on Rude. I need to breathe for a second.

Zbyzsko is the seventh man in the ring giving the DA a 4-3 advantage and Medusa
climbs the cage to slip the phone to her men before Sting chases her off. Rude
goes after Steamboat’s nose while The Enforcers torture Dustin Rhodes and send
him into the cage. Anderson sends Windham hard into the cage as Rude puts a
sleeper on Steamboat. Sting evens the battle and a facebuster for Anderson, a
jawbreaker and press slam for Rude. Sting sends Anderson into the and back
drops poor Austin into the cage. Austin has taken a grade-A shitkicking tonight.
Medusa tapes Eaton’s hand while Sting grates Anderson’s bloody face into the
cage. I love it! I LOVE IT! Austin with a ridiculous lariat on Rhodes while
Windham and Larry Z knock each other out with something else. Eaton gives the
DA its final one-man advantage of the night, he sends Steamboat into the cage.
Rhodes with a big boot on Austin and Rhodes is wearing a serious crimson mask.
Eaton sends Windham back into the cage as Zbyzsko and Rude are trying to loosen
a turnbuckle. Windham with a figure four on Anderson while Steamboat chops
Zybykso in the corner. Crowd chanting for Nikita as we have 30 seconds left
before The Match Beyond begins. Koloff sends the Anderson into the cage and
extends a hand to Sting. They do a stare down and then Nikita pushes Sting out of
the way and takes a double clothesline from Austin and Anderson. The faces rally
back with clotheslines of their own, high five each other AND NOW ITS ASS
KICKING TIME as the place is about to riot! Rude goes back to working on that
turnbuckle. Sting with a Stinger splash on Anderson and the Scorpion deathlock
but Eaton broke it up.

Dustin with a figure four on Zbyzsko while Nikita continues to make Austin’s
shitty night even worse, just torturing him in a corner. Rude breaks the figure
four that Dustin had but Koloff just chokes him out. Rhodes misses a top rope
elbow on Austin. Steamboat with a sleeper on Rude but Eaton and Zbyzsko corner
Sting and Larry Z grabs the steel hook on the buckle and accidentally hits
Eaton in the shoulder with it. Sting sends Zbyzsko to Larryland and then slaps
a shoulderbar on Eaton. Sadly the Beautiful one only lasts about 15 seconds in
the hold before calling it a night. Final blood count was Anderson, Austin, Windham
and Rhodes. It looked like Eaton was actually hit with the bar because he had a
NASTY purple bruise, although that could have come from anything. Unbelievable

(Squadron def. Dangerous Alliance, submission, *****, I would say it is the
greatest gimmick match of all time.)

The Bottom Line: Something for everyone here and no complaints from me. One of
the great PPVs when both promotions were doing different things extremely well.

Two World Titles

Hey Scott

I know there has been a long held general consensus that there should only be one world title…..however, do you think that December was the worst possible time to unify the belts? Besides from the mistakes they made if it anyway (just 3 weeks build, disregarding Jericho's previous win, burying it on a forgettable December PPV), I can't help but think that if they wanted an Orton v Batista title match (for say the WWE title), they could have had the match and not had the negativity surrounding it simply by putting Bryan in a World title feud leading up to Mania (take your pick of opponents – Christian, Ziggler, Cena, Reigns, Sheamus).

Even at EC, they could have run a storyline of Orton safeguarding one belt by only putting the World title on the line in the chamber (and of course losing it).

I would say it is too late to split the belts now in time for Mania…..or is it?! Vince returns Monday and splits the titles, tournament for one culminating at Mania (with D-Bry winning)?

Keep up the great work

Yeah, it's too late now, what's done is done, but god they could not have possibly picked a worse time for the unification.  As you note, if they had both titles they could give Bryan the WWE title in a meaningful match and let Batista rot on Smackdown with the World title and everyone would be happy.  In fact the original plan was apparently Cena v. Wyatt for the World title before they decided to switch to a unified title at the last minute.  
But hey, the stock is at like $30 today, so what the fuck do we know, right?