–Gordon Solie, Dusty Rhodes, and Larry Zbyszko are doing commentary and they are taped from Dalton, Georgia. According to thehistoryofwwe.com, 1,400 fans attended the tapings.
–Opening Contest: The Guardian Angel defeats Mike Corey after a Bossman slam at 2:09:
Corey was a jobber in the WWF under the name of Mike Khoury and he teamed with John Crystal on the independent circuit as a tag team called Models Incorporated. The Angel was Ray Traylor, who came into WCW as the Boss in late 1993 and was forced to change his name for legal reasons because the original character was too much like the Big Bossman. This gimmick still has a law enforcement bent, named for a New York City-based organization that enlisted volunteers to fight crime starting in 1979. And WCW got the Guardians founder, Curtis Silwa, to do a videotape segment that “graduated” Traylor as a Guardian member. The Angel slams Corey a lot before finishing him with his traditional Bossman finish.
–Call the Hulk Hogan Hotline at 1-900-737-HULK. Calls cost $1.49 per minute!
–Diamond Dallas Page comes to the ring with the Diamond Doll, hyping his arm wrestling champion gimmick where he proclaimed himself the “international arm wrestling champion.” During this run, Page faced a slew of competitors in arm wrestling contests, with the winner promised a date with the Doll. Rob Morgan is today’s opponent and Page continually steps back, with Dave Sullivan coming out to watch near the entrance. Morgan appears on the verge of victory, but the Doll kisses Page on the cheek and that leads him to victory.
–Gene Okerlund hypes Clash of the Champions on January 25, headlined by Hulk Hogan & Randy Savage teaming up to face Kevin Sullivan & the Butcher. Sting also faces Avalanche with the Guardian Angel serving as the guest referee. In addition, Stars & Stripes faces Harlem Heat.
–Call 1-900-909-9900 to find out why the Honky Tonk Man walked out of Starrcade!
–Alex Wright beats Chris Nelson after a reverse flying body press at 1:47:
Wright was a young German talent, who was only nineteen when 1995 began, and WCW had high hopes for him, while Nelson had a long career on the independent circuit, doing some jobs for the big leagues throughout the 1990s. Wright was a big hit with young women, but the male wrestling audience was not a fan, finding him overpushed for his level of experience. Solie says Wright could be a future world champion as he uses his quickness to outmaneuver Nelson in today’s contest.
–Non-Title Match: Big Van Vader (U.S. Champion w/Harley Race) pins Chad Austin after a powerbomb at 1:45:
Vader was the de facto number one contender for the WCW World Championship because he was the U.S. titleholder. As expected, he demolishes Austin with ease but does not spike Austin with the powerbomb as one would expect.
–The WCW Flashback replays parts of Vader’s match with Cactus Jack on WCW Saturday Night on April 23, 1993. This was the match where Vader powerbombed Jack on the concrete, winning via count out and leading to a big Halloween Havoc match later the year.
–Non-Title Match: Johnny B. Badd (Television Champion) beats Doug Allen after the Badd Day at 2:22:
Badd survived a dull feud with the Honky Tonk Man over the Television title in late 1994. Allen almost goes head-first into the canvas after a backdrop and that is really all there is to say about this squash. Solie says that Badd will defend the TV title against Paul Roma on Saturday Night.
–Hacksaw Jim Duggan defeats Bobby Eaton (0-1) after a three-point stance clothesline at 10:16:
Duggan made a big impact when he came into WCW the previous year, defeating Steve Austin in less than a minute for the United States title at Fall Brawl before dropping the belt to Vader at Starrcade. With Vader programmed against Hogan, Duggan is not in line for a rematch so he is in desperate need of something to do. Eaton works chinlocks galore before Duggan makes a comeback and catches Eaton with his patented clothesline after an Eaton blind charge. Eaton is pinned a mere inch from the rope as well, not willing to expend the effort to break the count, and that is the perfect metaphor for his WCW run at the beginning of 1995. Rating: ¼*
–The announcers do a hard sell for WCW Saturday Night.
–Tune in next week to see the Nasty Boys in action!
The Last Word: Some big talents appeared and got wins on this week’s show, but nothing really stood out. The arm wrestling gimmick gives Diamond Dallas Page something to do and plays to his strengths on the mic. Obviously, the payoff needs to be good for it to be worthwhile. The feature match was poor, but Bobby Eaton was unmotivated since he was slumming in the lower midcard to begin the year.
Up Next: WCW Worldwide for January 7!