Monday Nitro #244
Date: June 12, 2000
Location: Richmond Coliseum, Richmond, Virginia
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden, Scott Hudson
We’re past the Great American Bash and there are less than four weeks from Bash at the Beach. Last night’s major development was the Goldberg heel turn, which felt like nothing more than shock value for the sake of shock value. Russo has sworn revenge on Ric Flair tonight and since this show should have a bigger audience, you can almost guarantee that he’ll get what he promised. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap from last night’s stupidest matches, meaning the main events. Something I missed at the pay per view: Tony asks if Goldberg joining the New Blood with two minutes left in the show was the surprise.
Russo, Bischoff and Goldberg arrive. Gee I wonder if they’re going to come out and talk for ten minutes.
Scott Hudson has no shirt on because he made fun of Russo for not having a shirt on. Does it surprise anyone that we have to suffer so we can see proof that Russo has moved above Hudson in the official manliness power rankings?
Tony: “Sting was lit on fire last night. If you want to see something shocking, order the replay.”
Here are the writers for their opening victory speech. Hudson says the one constant in WCW has been Goldberg. The guy that’s had one match since December? Bischoff leads off the bragging by talking about how everyone knew Goldberg was the future. All of the old guys were worried about Goldberg not being a team player but last night Goldberg showed that he was on the right team. Goldberg was sick of the fans and all their autographs so he’s done with them.
Cue Goldberg himself for the big explanation. “Don’t ask me why. The question is why not.” Everyone in the back has been against him since day one and they got all the cheers while Goldberg was gone. Now he’s signed a deal with the devil so he gets what he wants: to stand over everyone who tried to screw him.
So yeah, their big explanation: he didn’t like backstage politics. Not “Nash and Hogan screwed me out of the title.” Not…..well really that’s one of the only storyline explanations I can think of. No instead they’re going with “people were mean to me backstage and instead of being tough and beating them up like when I made this company money, I’m going to turn heel and let the old boring guys be the heroes.” Backstage. As in not in front of the camera. As in not something the fans can easily understand. As in REALLY STUPID.
This brings out Nash who should barely be able to walk after last night. As you might expect, he saunters out with his hand in his pocket instead. Nash talks about WCW giving Goldberg everything he wants. Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair are the kind of people who made Goldberg so tonight, Nash isn’t leaving until he has Goldberg’s blood on his hands. Cops take Nash down but Russo says he wants Nash released into his custody. Russo: “I WANT RATINGS TONIGHT!” Nash vs. Goldberg is announced for later because Bash at the Beach still isn’t important.
So yeah, it’s clear they have nothing for Goldberg other than “he’s a heel now.” There’s no logical character motivation because all they have to do is say that it’s something that happened backstage or that you might have read on the internet without ever having to actually demonstrate or show anything on TV. In other words: the writers are doing whatever they can to get out of the writing.
Jarrett tells Cat that he wants Hogan tonight because Bischoff and Russo are too busy to make the match. I love that he’s finally admitting that the World Title isn’t important enough for either writer to care about.
Nash is put into a cop car until later in the night. Scott Steiner chases Russo off as Nash’s nephew watches on.
Hardcore Title: Big Vito vs. Terry Funk
Vito is defending and locks Johnny the Bull in the bathroom for no logical reason. They start brawling in the back (of course) with Funk’s going head first into a steel wall. The door rises up so Funk tries to crush Vito underneath it. Funk blasts him in the head with a chair but stops to beat up a security guard.
They keep fighting through the back with Funk using the empty water jugs to keep control. It’s time to get into the arena and they come in through the roped off section to make WCW look even worse. Funk is knocked through one of the Nitro Girl cages and off the stage through a table. Down to ringside now with Vito setting up a table and ramming Funk face first a few times. A piledriver off the apron through the table is enough to pin Funk.
Rating: D. Further proof that Bischoff didn’t need to win the title. The idea was that no one could beat Funk for the title and then the Mamalukes beat him down to give Bischoff the title, only to have Vito dominate him the next week in a rematch. Bischoff is off to another feud, making the title change last week look even more like a vanity win. If Bischoff is never going to take a beating for it, then how is it a good move for anyone but him?
Funk hands Vito the belt and shakes his hand post match. Vito blasts him with the belt to look truly evil.
Vampiro talks to someone in a cloak about Sting being gone. The man in the cloak says there are more souls to take. So we have a higher power.
Nash tells his nephew to stay with Scott Steiner. Nash: “Scotty, he’s eight years old. Keep those freaks away from him.”
Shane Douglas/Buff Bagwell vs. Kronik
Shane says his partner is back tonight and they can start taking names again. Kronik beats them down to start and Adams press slams Shane. Clark comes in for the pumphandle slam but Buff makes a quick save. It’s a hot tag to Bagwell (heels, faces, who cares?) for a Blockbuster but Shane tags himself back in. Kronik cleans house and High Times ends Shane in short order.
Rating: D+. Simple story here and they break up a team that wasn’t very good in the first place. It also keeps Kronik going forward to the titles down the line while not beating anyone of consequence. I might even say that Kronik has been well booked lately, but I have a feeling the improvement is due to a lack of attention from creative.
Bagwell and Shane argue post match and Shane sucker punches him with brass knuckles.
Cat is livid that Hogan isn’t here tonight.
Kidman thinks Jarrett vs. Hogan needs a guest referee.
We see a press conference from Paisley and the Artist. From now on, he’s just the Artist. Captain Rection’s grandfather is under the table, saying he was looking for pie. THIS ISN’T FUNNY.
Cruiserweight Title: Lieutenant Loco vs. The Artist
Rection’s grandfather is with the Misfits. Rection says that his grandfather is crazy and thinks he’s in Cambodia half the time but it’s still Rection’s pop. It’s a brawl to start and Artist hammers away at the champion in the corner. A dropkick sends Artist into the corner and Major Gunns comes in for Shattered Dreams (Locked, Cocked and Loaded here) but Paisley breaks it up. Chavo’s tornado DDT retains the title.
Post match Pops has to be dragged away from Paisley. Again, THIS ISN’T FUNNY.
Flair and company arrive.
Cat is waiting on Hogan.
Russo has a group of women to do whatever Goldberg wants. Goldberg sends them off.
Hogan arrives and Cat tells him that the title match is in ten minutes. Hulk agrees but gets blindsided by a guitar shot.
Horace is unconscious in the back.
Russo and David Flair come out for a chat. David should be praised for what he did last night, but Russo is tired of being everyone’s punching bag lately. Tony: “You could remedy that by staying out of the ring.” A New Yorker doesn’t have to take that and he’s ending this with Flair tonight. Ric comes out and says he has all the cards because Russo is now 2-1. Russo’s big comeback: “I HATE YOU FLAIR!”
Ric is ready to take David back but throws out a quick challenge for a match against Russo tonight. If Russo wins, Flair is gone. If Ric wins, he takes Russo’s place as a boss, gets David back and gets to shave Russo’s hair. Russo agrees if it can be a tag match with David and Reid involved. Ric says deal.
WCW World Title: Hollywood Hogan vs. Jeff Jarrett
Jarrett is defending and Kidman comes out to be guest referee because that feud is still a thing. Jeff demands that Kidman count Hogan out but here’s Hollywood to start throwing punches. Hogan dominates to start and sends Jeff to the floor for some weightlifting belt shots.
Back in and Jeff punches in the corner but Kidman pulls him away. Kidman takes a chair away from Jeff on the floor and throws it to Hogan as Goldberg and Russo come out to the stage. Hogan hits the big boot and leg but Goldberg breaks it up and spears Hogan and Kidman. Goldberg Jackhammers him through a table and Jarrett spray paints him. Cue…..GI Bro for the save?
Well that was eventful. First of all, Kidman seems to have turned face, presumably for Horace turning on him last night. I don’t really get it either but that’s the story the announcers were pushing and I don’t have the strength to fight anymore. Goldberg vs. Hogan could be interesting until they have the actual match, but unless Goldberg breaks him in half and squashes him (no chance of that happening), it’s going to be a big mistake. The interesting thing here is GI Bro, who has gone from midcarder to the main event almost overnight. The military thing doesn’t fit in this role but at least the talented guy is moving up.
Here’s Diamond Dallas Page, wearing a shirt that says “whatever”, with something to say. Page has a lemon in his hand and says he’s going to put it in his beer after this is over. People have been telling him for years that he can’t do it, including starting wrestling at 35, making it to the main event and being World Champion. When he started wrestling he went up and down the roads with someone he thought was his friend, and that man was Eric Bischoff.
Cue Bischoff, Kanyon and Kimberly but Page says he couldn’t be here without his wife. Kimberly may not have believed in Page the wrestler but she believed in Page the person. Back then, Kimberly was a real woman instead of whatever she is now. Kanyon on the other hand was the one man that he ever took under his wing. He was the one person that Page taught the things his mentors (Jody Hamilton, Dusty Rhodes and Jake Roberts) taught him in the first place.
After last night though, Page doesn’t feel like getting back up again. Maybe Page was the problem, but he’s lost everything because of wrestling. If working with people like Bischoff is what that means, it’s not worth it. Page leaves through the crowd. This actually worked really well, partially because Bischoff didn’t get to say anything. Getting rid of one of the older guys, even for a little bit, could be a good thing for this promotion right now.
Then the moment is kind of wasted as the announcers do the big serious chat but Tony chuckles at Hudson for not having a shirt on.
Discussion about Sting getting burned, same problem with Hudson. If you want to see a man get burned, order the replay!
Here’s Vampiro to say no one believed he would do it last night. Sting is going to spend the rest of his life waking up from nightmares and seeing Vampiro in his dreams. More souls will be claimed.
Vampiro vs. The Demon
Demon has a torch because this is still a thing. They quickly fight to the floor and then the stage with Vampiro in control. He climbs up onto the video screen and some fire spits up from the stage. Vampiro dives down onto Demon and lands on his feet….with his knee buckling underneath him as the match is thrown out.
Steiner leaves Nash’s nephew with Shakira.
Russo is panicking about losing his hair.
Here are Kimberly and Positively Kanyon so Kimberly can debut her new perfume: Positively Me, at a cost of only $395. Kanyon says that he was recovering from his spinal cord injury (he winks), the people actually believed it. Bischoff came in and told Kanyon that all he had to do to be a star was turn on Page last night. Now though, he’s going to take everything there is he can from Page, including his moves, his music, his wife, and his book. It’s open challenge time.
Before we get to the match, we need to go over this. Last night at the pay per view, the announcers speculated that there were two possibilities:
1. Kanyon was hurt and Bischoff got inside his head.
2. Kanyon never was hurt and it was all staged.
Now you’re telling me that BOTH OF THEM HAPPENED??? Kanyon heavily implied that he faked his back injury but then said that Bischoff got in his head. So he was in the hospital, maybe not as bad as it seemed, and Bischoff got to him anyway? Or was the whole injury faked in the first place? If it was faked, why would Bischoff need to talk to him? As usual, WCW tries to make things WAY too complicated and the whole story falls apart because it doesn’t make sense.
Scott Steiner vs. Positively Kanyon
Non-title. Steiner wants to know why Kanyon is bragging about being with Kanyon when everyone has been with her. That was good. Scott throws him around to start but gets caught in a sitout Alabama Slam for two. The referee takes the Kanyon Cutter but Mike Awesome has to come in and break up the Steiner Recliner. We’ll say the match is thrown out around here. Kronik comes out for the save.
Post match the guys brawl to the back but Hancock stops Kimberly from leaving. Kimberly agrees to fight if she’ll take the glasses off, meaning it’s time for perfume to the eyes. Unfortunately they’re Kimberly’s eyes because the bottle was turned the wrong way. YOU HAD ONE JOB! Even worse: Hancock sells it and Kimberly breaks her glasses for the big triumphant moment.
Scott Steiner wants to kill Russo but Shakira has lost Nash’s nephew.
Vince Russo/David Flair vs. Ric Flair/Reid Flair
For Russo’s job, Ric’s career and hair vs. hair so Ric has hair clippers with him. Ric chops David to start and stops an interfering Russo. The chops have no effect on Russo so Ric unzips the jacket and finds a chest protector. Shouldn’t Russo have sold the chops anyway to prevent Ric from finding out? Oh wait, that isn’t what a MAN would do so Russo is fine. Ric puts David in the Figure Four but Russo blasts him with the bat.
Reid tries to make the save but David takes him down. Russo wants Beth to come in and gives her one last chance to jump on his bandwagon. He tells Beth to hit Ric with the Statue of Liberty but Russo does it instead. Vince starts choking as security fills the ring and have to hold Ashley back. David puts Ric in the Figure Four and Ric’s daughter Megan throws in the towel to give Russo and David the win. The fans are all over Russo for this and I’m sure that validates his decision.
Rating: F. Russo wins again. So he wins in the cage, he gets David completely on his side and now he gets to retire Flair and shave his head. If there is any doubt that this was all about Russo the entire time, I’d love to hear someone defend it now. The match isn’t the point here. Russo beat Ric the entire way here and won in the end with no one ever making Russo look bad. Russo wins and that’s what the entire show is about.
The fans are LIVID as David and Russo shave Ric’s hair. Oh and by the way: this is Ric’s last match in 2000. They get some of Reid’s hair too. Russo wins completely because David, who could have done THE EXACT SAME THING LAST NIGHT, is just an accessory here.
Goldberg vs. Kevin Nash
The New Blood is out with Goldberg and Nash is in street clothes. They slug it out to start and Nash knocks him out to the floor. Back in and Goldberg takes over with a superkick. Nash fights back and here’s the New Blood, allowing Goldberg to hit Nash with a chair. Goldberg hammers away as Nash’s nephew comes down to watch…..and here’s Russo to force the kid to watch.
Nash is out cold and busted open but Steiner comes in for the save. Scott beats down the cops so they go after him with billy clubs. Nash’s nephew comes in to check on Kevin as Russo hugs Goldberg to end the show. The match was thrown out at some point so no rating. I think you can guess my thoughts on it though.
Overall Rating: F. So tonight we lose Flair and probably Page for awhile and Russo stands tall. This company deserves to die with stories like this and I can’t say I would have missed them a bit if they were done the night after this show. The wrestling wasn’t a factor here of course as this was almost all about telling bad stories and trying to explain the nonsense from last night, but it only made things worse because Russo can’t tell stories. It’s only going to get worse from here as Russo and Bischoff try to make this whole thing even more about them.
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