A title change, a legendary first encounter between future WWE Hall of Famers and the greatest jobbers ever, and Flair & Arn team up. Plus, why is Baby Doll kissing the Road Warriors, what did the Horsemen do to the Rock & Roll Express, and what is the gestation period for a bull moose? Answers to these questions and more on this week’s show…
–Vince McMahon and Jerry “The King” Lawler are doing commentary and they are still in Newark, Delaware.
Some classic comedy lines from Jim Cornette, a brainbuster on the concrete floor, and the promise of the return of the fourth Horseman. That and more on this week’s episode…
An attempted murder of Jim Cornette by some “mysterious” masked men, a historic and devastating first encounter between the Midnight Express & Mulkey Mania, Ric Flair & Arn Anderson in a rare, in-studio tag team appearance, and the Great American Bash hype begins. That and more on this week’s program…
Magnum T.A. and Nikita Koloff have a major confrontation with the Russian Chain involved and Arn Anderson puts his World TV Title on the line against Ronnie Garvin. Will the Four Horsemen get involved? Plus, Paul Jones’ Army grows and the hype for the Crockett Cup continues.
We open with a clip of last week’s confrontation between Ric Flair and Ricky Morton…
Tony Schiavone and David Crockett are our hosts this week. They hype the upcoming TV Title rematch between Arn Anderson and Ronnie Garvin. Tully Blanchard and J.J. Dillon come out. They put down Garvin and note that he doesn’t deserve another shot at the TV Title. Blanchard calls out Wahoo McDaniel, who’s in the ring, and Tully hands J.J. an envelope with two round trip tickets to Paris.
To the ring, Wahoo McDaniel vs. Ray Traylor. The future Big Bubba Rogers/Big Bossman fared very well against Ivan Koloff last week. Traylor gains the early advantage against the ropes, but Wahoo reverses and lays in some stiff chops. He takes Traylor down with a snap mare and chops away some more. Wahoo struggles to lift Traylor up for a body slam and converts it into a powerslam. Traylor keeps clawing back, but Wahoo eventually puts Traylor away with more chops. *1/4
Magnum T.A. comes to the podium to introduce a clip of a recent confrontation between him and Nikita Koloff. The video shows the Koloffs double-teaming Rocky King and whipping him with the Russian Chain. Magnum comes out to save the day. The crowd goes nuts. He takes out Ivan Koloff with a dropkick. Nikita swings the chain at Magnum, but misses. Magnum slugs him, grabs the chain and wraps around Nikita’s neck. Magnum throws Nikita over the top rope and he’s hanging him! The crowd goes absolutely berserk…
Back live, Magnum says Nikita has been trying to intimidate him with the Russian Chain Match challenges, but nothing intimidates Magnum.
“This is what it’s all about,” Magnum says, pointing to his U.S Title. “This is what’s pushed this confrontation to a head and if it’s a Russian Chain Match, that’s just fine. They make steel right here in the good ol’ U.S. of A. too and I can handle it just fine. Remember real well what it felt like when I choked up on that chain because I’ll never forget it and I’ll get the opportunity to do it again. Let’s get it on.“
Once again, a good, intense promo from Magnum.
To the ring, Joe Nighthawk Coltrane vs. Tony Zane. This is our first look at Nighthawk in the ring. He’s a good sized, fairly muscular guy. Coltrane uses basic power moves and ends it quickly with the over-the-knee shoulder breaker. *
Jimmy Garvin & Precious join Tony. Garvin has some bad news. He found out Wahoo McDaniel has a dreaded disease called swamp fever and he’s not going to wrestle someone with a nasty disease. The sure signs are Wahoo’s swollen nose and his hair is falling out.
After a break, Ragin’ Bull Manny Fernandez vs. Bob Owens. The usual Fernandez match, which is a combination of strikes and mat wrestling. He wins with the Flying Burrito.*
Wahoo McDaniel comes to the podium. Referencing Jimmy Garvin’s comments earlier, Wahoo says he’s always had a big nose. He played pro football for 10 years and had his nose broken 11 times. Wahoo challenges Garvin to sign the contract and meet him face-to-face.
After a break, Ronnie Garvin joins Tony. He’s still after Ric Flair, but says there’s a lot of titles out there, and he’ll be there any time there’s an opportunity, including today vs. Arn Anderson for the TV Title.
To the ring, Ivan Koloff w/ Nikita Koloff vs. Gene Ligon. Ligon is a longtime JCP jobber who has been around since the late 70s. He would later become Thunderfoot II. Ligon comes out firing but Ivan quickly responds. Ivan misses a knee drop off the second rope and Ligon applies the spinning toe hold. Ivan kicks him off and all the way out of the ring. The match goes back and forth. Ligon grabs Ivan’s leg and rams it into the post! It continues to be a competitive match. Ligon gets dumped outside again and Nikita hammers him in the back with the Russian Chain. That helps Ivan win it after a knee to the midsection. **
After a break, it’s Dusty Rhodes & Baby Doll. He talks trash on the Four Horsemen and notes that Ole Anderson has yet to reappear. Dusty hypes a cage match tomorrow with Arn Anderson in New Orleans.
“Double A Arn Anderson, prepare yourself for a broken leg, broken jaw, and broken heart. Because broken hearts are dished out by Dusty Rhodes, the American Dream daily, whether it be man, woman or child or beast that crawls this earth, broken hearts are handed out by Dusty Rhodes, the American Dream. Titles are dictated by Dusty Rhodes, the American Dream. (That’s a shoot.) Ric Flair. Tully Blanchard. And life is dictated by Dusty Rhodes, the American Dream, because the American Dream lives in this country. I have no equal. I have only one thing, the greatest sports attraction in the world today. The greatest revenuer, producing revenuer product on the Ted Turner the Superstation in this country is Dusty Rhodes, the American Dream.
To the ring, it’s Hector Guerrero vs. Carl Styles. This is Hector’s TV debut. He and Chavo Guerrero (Classic) will team up in the Crockett Cup. Hector displays his speed and agility with arm drags and dropkicks. He does a nice forward roll under a back elbow attempt. Guerrero hits a double-flying forearm that is similar to Manny Fernandez’ Flying Burrito. He locks in a stretch hold and Styles bites Guerrero’s fingers to escape. Hector locks a version of in the Indian Death Lock and bridges back. Nice move. Hector continues to work the legs of Styles and wins with a reverse splash. *1/2
After a a break, six-man tag action with Pez Whatley, the Barbarian & Baron von Raschke vs. Rocky Kernodle, Brodie Chase and Bill Tabb. We now know for sure that Pez Whatley, who turned on Jimmy Valiant last week, is aligned with Paul Jones, who also comes out with Teijho Khan. Whatley holds up the pony tail he cut from Valiant. Pez very aggressively dismantles Kernodle. The Baron does the same. The Barbarian press slams Big Bill Tabb. Impressive show of strength. Whatley bites Brodie Chase’s face. Jones takes several shots at Chase on the outside, right in front of the referee, who does nothing. The Barbarian and Baron botch a double elbow. The Baron then trips over Chase and the fans laugh. Barbarian lands a stiff flying shoulderblock on Tabb. The squash continues for way too long. Whatley ends it by running the ropes into a flying headbut on Tabb for the pin. 3/4*
Arn Anderson comes out. “Have you ever seen a nicer group of guys in your life,” Arn says regarding Jones’ Army. Funny. Arn says he already gave Ron Garvin a chance at greatness. He says he’s fulfilling his promise to defend the TV Title weekly. Arn tells the camera to zoom in on his face. His forehead is heavily scarred. He says he earns it every night, facing Wahoo, Magnum, Garvin and others and he will continue to be the TV champ as long as he wants. “Once again, it’s been your pleasure.” Good stuff, as usual, from Arn.
After a break, it’s Jim Cornette. He’s happy and even the sideshow freaks in the audience can’t put him out of his good mood. Cornette says after the Midnight Express wins the Crockett Cup, they’re going to burn him at the stake for being a witch because of his supernatural powers in predicting it. Cornette hypes upcoming showdowns with the Road Warriors. “If brains were gasoline, the Road Warriors couldn’t propel a flea’s motorcycle around a raindrop. They’re stupid.” He says without the tag titles, the Road Warriors are just another couple of musclebound clowns. He then starts talking about the Rock & Roll Express…
The Rock & Roll Express’ music plays, interrupting Cornette. They’re facing Larry Clarke & Art Pritts. Morton controls with quick arm drags. He tags Gibson and they do the double team move where Morton punches the opponent in the gut and Gibson hits the running kneelift. Cornette must have left. David & Tony don’t bother to tell us. They work the leg for several minutes and end it with the double dropkick. The usual R&R showcase. *1/2
Morton & Gibson join Tony at the podium and hype the Crockett Cup, their upcoming matches with the Midnight Express for the tag titles, and their new feud with Ric Flair. We see last week’s footage where Morton got the better of Flair. The fans in the studio absolutely love the R&R.
To the ring, Magnum T.A. vs. Randy Mulkey. Can MulkeyMania overcome Magnum’s usual quick squashes? Nope. 15 seconds and it’s over after the belly-to-belly suplex.*
Paul Jones’ Army joins Tony. The Army is complete and they’re ready for war on Jimmy Valiant. Jones says Pez Whatley’s attack on Jimmy Valiant was planned by him. Pez has now been renamed Shaska Whatley. He calls Nighthawk Coltrane an Uncle Tom, and says Jimmy Valiant is “a white Uncle Tom”, whatever that means.
To the ring, Arn Anderson vs. Ronnie Garvin for the NWA World TV Title. 10-minute time limit. They wrestled to a draw on the March 1 program. Good mat wrestling early on as the advantage goes back and forth. Garvin catches Arn’s boot and nails him with the right hand and open handed chops. Garvin sends Arn down with the headbutt. Garvin ties up Anderson “like a pretzel” as the crowd chants encourages Garvin to break Anderson’s arm. Sadists. Fisticuffs, which Garvin gets the better of and Arn ducks outside. Back in, Arn pulls the tights to get Garvin down and works the arm. Garvin escapes into a rear chinlock and drops elbows on Anderon’s head. He locks in a sleeper and we go to a break…
We’re back Garvin is in control. Tully Blanchard & J.J. Dillon join the ringside commentary. Garvin decks Arn with the closed fist, which Blanchard notes is illegal. Garvin suplexes Anderson, but Arn catches him with the shoulder to the gut, then applies a gutbuster, followed by the body scissors. Garvin pokes the eyes and lands more chops. A backdrop by Garvin and he sets up for the knockout punch. Arn sees it coming and wisely ducks outside. Back in, they collide heads and both men are dazed. Garvin locks in the abdominal stretch and Tully interferes to break it up. Garvin wins by DQ.**1/2
But that’s not the whole story. Tully & Arn hit the double gourdbuster on Garvin. Along with J.J. Dillon, they stretch Garvin and wrap his hand around the ringpost. Blanchard uses his cowboy boot to pound away repeatedly on Garvin’s right hand, the vaunted “hand of stone”. Blanchard says Garvin won’t be able to use that illegal punch ever again and Arn says he and Tully are THE team for the Crockett Cup.
After a break, Jim Cornette comes back out and compares his Midnight Express with the Rock & Roll Express, saying the MX is like a mirror image of the R&R. It’s like wrestling a dark side of themselves. Cornette hypes the Crockett Cup and some of their past battles with teams in the tournament like the Fantastics and the Fabulous Ones.
To the ring, Cornette’s Midnight Express vs. Mike Simani & Denny Brown. Brown, the NWA Jr. Heavyweight Champion, fares well early on vs. both Bobby and Dennis. Brown tags in Simani and that ends quickly. Bobby drags Simani over to the podium and slugs him in the face. Back in, he delivers the top rope kneedrop to the back of Simani’s head. Dennis ends it with the full nelson facebuster. *1/2
Ivan & Nikita Koloff come out. Nikita is pissed about Magnum putting their chain around his neck. He rips off his shirt and shows off the roided up neck and shoulder muscles. Ivan says Nephew Nikita is too strong and too well conditioned to be hurt. Ivan keeps ranting and Tony says time is up. Ivan’s says don’t you cut him off as the credits roll.
Another good show this week. Thanks for reading.
Tonight we get the seedings for the first Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup Tag Team Tournament, more awesomeness and hilarity from Jim Cornette and the Midnight Express, a good TV Title match, and a major confrontation between Baby Doll & J.J. Dillon. Will others get involved?
We open with video of Ric Flair & Arn Anderson vs. Dusty Rhodes & Ron Garvin in a tag team match. Rhodes puts Flair in the figure four. Anderson comes in to break it up, but Garvin nails Flair with the knockout punch and Dusty covers the world champ for the pin. The crowd pops huge as Garvin, Rhodes & Baby Doll celebrate.
Tony Schiavone & David Crockett are our hosts and they let us know there has been a “major title change”…
We open with video of Ron Garvin knocking out and pinning NWA Champ Ric Flair from a house show. This was after a 60-minute draw. They agreed to continue the natch. Garvin won, but did not receive the NWA Title since the time limit had already expired.
Tony Schiavone and David Crockett are our hosts today. Coming up on the show, Garvin will face Flair’s cousin and Four Horseman teammate Arn Anderson for the NWA World TV Title. Ric Flair will make a rare in-ring appearance on the show. Dusty Rhodes, the Midnight Express, the Rock & Roll Express, many more, and news about the Crockett Cup also coming up.
Our opening shot is Gorgeous Jimmy Garvin & Precious making their Jim Crockett Promotions debut in Fayetteville, NC on one of the syndicated shows, coming to the ring to ZZ Top’s “Sharp Dressed Man”, or in this case on the WWE Network, a sad ripoff.
Tony Schiavone & David Crockett are our hosts this week. Today, we get our first look at the Big Gold Belt, which Tony says cost $35,000. Also coming up, Arn Anderson defends the World TV Title, and we’ll have lots of new about the Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup Tag Team Tournament.
Our opening clip shows the end of the time limit draw between Dusty Rhodes & Tully Blanchard from “Superstars on the Superstation”, after which Blanchard delivered a piledriver on Rhodes and J.J. Dillon stole Dusty’s National Heavyweight Title.
Tony Schiavone is our host this week from the TBS Studio. David Crockett is still on special assignment, thankfully. Coming up, Arn Anderson defends the World TV Title vs. Sam Houston in what should be a good match and the Midnight Express will defend the NWA World Tag Team Titles. Also here are the Rock & Roll Express, Magnum T.A., the Russians, Paul Jones will unveil a new charge, and much more.
There is a two-week period in between the last show and this one. WWE Network is apparently missing the February 1 show. TBS also aired “Superstars on the Superstation” on February 7, with supposed “dream matches” that the fans voted for. It’s not on the WWE Network either, but Rock Star Gary provides a good review here. The Midnight Express defeated the Rock & Roll Express for the NWA World Tag Team Titles on that show, which brings us to tonight…
In celebration of my birthday, I thought I’d write about a birthday cake angle from Jim Crockett Promotions prior to Ted Turner’s buyout.
Live from both Greensboro, NC & Atlanta, GA
Airdate: November 27, 1986
Attendance: 16,000 in Greensboro, 14,000 in Atlanta
Hosted by Bob Caudle, Johnny Weaver, Tony Schiavone, and Rick Stewart
This reflection is dedicated to the illustrious but shortened career of Magnum T.A.
Live from Irving, TX
Airdate: May 5, 1985
Hosted by Marc Lowrance.
by Logan Scisco
next round of reviews by covering the 1998 season of Monday Night Raw. 1998 is when the WWF finally turned the
Monday Night Wars in its favor and began the process of grinding WCW to dust
(assisted by poor WCW booking patterns and the AOL-Time Warner merger). The year saw the creation of new stars, the
continuation of a more mature product, and Steve Austin solidify himself as one
of the greatest WWF stars of all-time.
to modify my rating style for this set of reviews. I don’t like doing star ratings for TV events
because of the length of the matches, so when I review the pay-per-views I’ll
revert to the star rating, but for the TV shows I’m going to do an average
point system. If a match or lengthy interview
segment is worthwhile, it will receive a point.
Otherwise, it won’t. I hope that
this can better clarify the good and bad elements of a show. If everyone hates it I can revert to stars, but
that’s my logic.
with Steve Austin in the parking lot talking about how everyone in the locker
room wants to get him and he sent them a “3:16” message on their pagers. He encourages the audience to watch tonight’s
show where he will strike first at everyone that is out to get him.
Cole, and Kevin Kelly are in the booth and they are live from New Haven,
Contest: Ken Shamrock beats Faarooq
(w/Kama Mustafa & D-Lo Brown) via submission to the ankle lock at 5:02
Shamrock in the first round of the Intercontinental title tournament back in
September. The Rock also volunteered
Faarooq to take on Shamrock in his contest on last week’s show. During the match, Ross keeps hyping Shamrock
as a future WWF champion. Faarooq works
the ribs and the Rock comes down to ringside shortly before the commercial
break. The Rock tries to direct
interference whereby Kama will hold a chair in the corner so that Shamrock can
be whipped into it, but heel miscommunication results and Shamrock wins to go
three-for-three against the Nation.
Shamrock had some good selling in this match, but the match never worked
up a consistent pace. 0 of 1
Faarooq argues with Kama on the floor as the Rock and Shamrock stare each other
down in the ring. Before they can do
anything, though, Steve Austin runs out and gives each of them a Stone Cold
Stunner before exiting through the crowd.
out with Howard Brody and Dennis Coralluzzo of the National Wrestling Alliance
(NWA). Cornette announces that both men
will award the NWA North American championship to the winner of our next match.
American Championship Match: Jeff
Jarrett defeats Barry Windham to win the title at 3:34:
it was the second most prominent title in the promotion. Reckless Youth (remember him?) was the
previous champion, but the NWA vacated the title in December 1997 for use in
this angle. Cornette educates the
audience about the NWA on commentary, but Cole has to ask him if it is a bogus
promotion to show off his stupidity. Windham
uses his size and power to dominate much of the match, but Jarrett puts his
foot on the bottom rope to avoid being pinned after a lariat. After that, Coralluzzo distracts the referee
and as Windham prepares to give Jarrett a superplex, Cornette runs into the
ring and hits him in the back with his tennis racket. Windham manages to complete the move, but is
knocked out and Jarrett pins him to win the title. 1 of 2
Jarrett struts around with his new title, but Steve Austin runs out and gives
him a Stone Cold Stunner.
proceeds to break down the house show circuit.
the announce team that he would love for the Royal Rumble to come down between
him and Austin.
a schoolgirl outfit to do guest ring announcing duties for our next match.
8-Ball defeat Sniper & Recon (w/The Jackyl) when Skull pins Recon with a
DDT at 3:39:
it here, but since the time on it is short it’s a tolerable matchup. The Jackyl keeps laughing when Recon misses
big moves, justifying his behavior by saying that Recon is just trying to be a
star. The Disciples of Apocalypse end
this out of nowhere after all hell breaks loose after the hot tag. Speaking of nowhere, this feud is headed
there, but that’s because the booking team has no idea what they want to get
out of either team. 1 of 3
Kurrgan comes out and a three-on-two beatdown commences, which allows Kurrgan
to show off his size and strength.
segment is the Undertaker helping Kane clear the ring of the superstars that
tried to attack him on last week’s Raw.
comes out. Chyna is pushing Triple H in
a wheelchair because he has suffered a dislocated knee cap that might require
surgery. Triple H brags about costing
Owen Hart the WWF title last week and he dares Owen to come out and face
him. Owen appears on the Titantron and
lets Triple H know that when his right knee heals he is going to destroy his
left one. Owen tries to sell the “blackheart”
element of his character, claiming that he has no conscience and feels no pain,
but the result is a corny promo that Triple H mocks before ending the segment. 1 of 4
Slam of the Week is Vader hitting a moonsault on a jobber on Shotgun Saturday
recap of Steve Austin’s rampage on tonight’s show.
hour two, Jim Ross and Jerry “the King” Lawler take over announcing duties.
Savio Vega (w/Los Boricuas) with a rollup at 4:05:
going after Savio and incorporating a Lou Thesz press in the early going. It doesn’t take long for D-Generation X to
appear by the entrance and that gives Savio an opportunity to turn the
tide. The Boricuas also assist Savio in maintaining
the advantage, but this leads to another referee coming out and ejecting them. However, this doesn’t happen quickly enough
and Savio is able to get out of a Sharpshooter when Jose tries to get into the
ring. Owen still wins with a rollup shortly
thereafter. Lackluster matchup and Owen’s
in-ring style does not really fit this hard edged character that they want him
to play. 1 of 5
Owen tries to go after Triple H, but the Boricuas attack him and then bring him
to Triple H to slap around. They make
sure to collect their payment before leaving.
out looking disheveled and he tells the Undertaker that he hopes he loses to
Shawn Michaels at the Royal Rumble. The
storyline here is that Kane has left Bearer after last week’s events, so Bearer
is freaking out. He begs Kane to come
home before leaving in despair. Really
nice promo to continue the slow burn for this angle. 2 of 6
is shown leaving a locker room and Mark Henry is shown in pain on the
floor. So Austin has attacked another
recaps Marc Mero’s treatment of Sable and Tom Brandi’s intervention on her
Mero (w/Sable) beats Tom Brandi by disqualification when Steve Austin
interferes at 3:47:
instead of throwing it on Raw. The crowd
works up a loud “Sable” chant when Mero hides behind his valet when Brandi
charges after him at the beginning of the contest. Mero gets knocked out of the ring and falls
on top of Sable, but when Brandi goes to help her he gets a double axe
handle. Mero hits a TKO, but when he
goes for another Steve Austin runs in and gives Mero a Stunner. The crowd comes unglued for that and that was
because of Mero’s display of carelessness for Sable that occurred throughout
the match. 3 of 7
1-900-737-4WWF to find out what old NWA stars Jim Cornette is recruiting and
hear who is attending the WWF’s training camp!
recap of Steve Austin’s rampage. Do we
need to hit back to this every time come back from commercial?
defeats The Artist Formerly Known as Goldust (w/Luna Vachon) by
disqualification when Luna interferes at 2:32:
70s persona in his latest display of weirdness.
I’m surprised that the WWF signed off on this in 1998, but you can bet
that they would never do it today after going public. Flash nearly wins after a spinning heel kick,
but Luna pushes him off the top rope when he tries to the Tumbleweed in plain
view of the referee and costs her man the match. The short length of the contest prevented
some of Goldust’s traditional stalling and that helped it significantly. 4 of 8
Goldust hits the Curtain Call but Vader runs out and Goldust flees.
hypes Steve Blackman.
1-900-RUMBLE-98 to register yourself in the Steve Austin pickup truck
contest! It’ll cost you $1.99 or you can
send a postcard to Devon, Pennsylvania.
of Chainsaw Charlie is shown.
appearance on Regis and Kathie Lee is shown.
These guys got sent out on a lot of the WWF’s public relations work at
this time despite doing squat in the ring.
Match: The New Age Outlaws (WWF Tag Team
Champions) beat The Headbangers when Billy Gunn pins Mosh after a face
miscommunication at 4:58:
double team maneuvers. The Godwinns
appear by the entrance, apparently scouting the Outlaws for a tag team title
shot that they are owed. Thrasher and
the Road Dogg give each other simultaneous low blows when they dropkick each
other at the same time. This cues the
hot tag and all hell breaking loose, but the Headbangers blow a Stage Dive
attempt when Thrasher jumps too early for the flying leg drop and Gunn rolls up
Mosh for a clean win. This had a creative
finish that solidified the credibility of the Outlaws. The loss cements the Headbangers status as
one of the lower ranked teams in the division.
5 of 9
Cactus Jack and Chainsaw Charlie run out and the Outlaws walk back to the
WrestleMania XIV, but says that his contract negotiation with Vince McMahon to
make Mike Tyson a part of it has not been finished. It’s close, though!
Hell in a Cell match between Shawn Michaels and the Undertaker is shown in
order to hype the Shawn Michaels-Undertaker title match at the Royal Rumble.
Michaels comes out and says that he will show the Undertaker is a loser at the
Royal Rumble. He calls out the
Undertaker and druids wheel out a casket.
The casket is covered in graffiti like last week and Michaels calls for
Triple H and Chyna to get out of it. No
response happens so Michaels continues his juvenile antics. Triple H and Chyna then come out on the ramp
and warn Michaels that they are not in it and before Michaels can put two and
two together, the Undertaker bursts out of the casket and pulls Michaels inside
as we go off the air. AWESOME closing
segment, even if it was predictable. 6 of 10
but the second hour was full of fun segments and matches so that barely saves
the show with a 6/10 rating. Austin’s victory
at the Rumble was very obvious, but at least the WWF booked it in an
entertaining way that placed him on the perfect trajectory to challenge for the
title at WrestleMania.