Rock Star Gary reflects on WCW Clash of the Champions XXIV

Live from Daytona Beach, FL

Airdate:  August 18, 1993

Attendance:  8,903 (2,400 paid)

Hosted by Tony Schiavone & Jesse “The Body” Ventura

Will Vader retain against Smith? Can the Blonds keep their titles against the Horsemen? How will Steamboat fare against Orndorff for the TV title? Who will be Rhodes’ partner against Rude & Equalizer? What other shocking things will happen? Let’s find out!

Prior to the opening match, Pillman, who injured his left ankle during a match on 8/9 in Atlanta, cuts a pre-taped promo alongside Austin. Afterward, Schiavone mentions that the tag titles will be defended tonight, and Regal will replace Pillman. Ventura, obviously a Blondes fan, was vehemently upset about it. He should have borrowed a line from Gorilla Monsoon and called it a “miscarriage of justice.”

Match 1 for the WCW/NWA World tag team titles: “Stunning” Steve Austin & Lord Steven Regal (champions w/ Sir William & “Flyin’” Brian Pillman) versus the “Enforcer” Arn Anderson & “Pretty” Paul Roma

Highlights:

  • Austin clotheslined Arn and followed with a forearm smash for 2.
  • When Arn catapulted him, Austin’s momentum took him over the top rope to the apron.
  • Regal then distracted referee Nick Patrick, so Arn backdropped Austin over the opposite top rope to the floor. SNEAKY!
  • As tags were exchanged on both sides, Roma mounted the top turnbuckle and lowered the boom on Regal.
  • He then slammed and dropkicked Regal before Austin tripped him coming off the ropes. Nefarious!
  • After he tagged in, Austin mounted the second turnbuckle and lowered the boom on Roma.
  • He then delivered a forearm smash followed by a back elbow to Roma.
  • When Austin suplexed Roma, he distracted Patrick so that Pillman could give Roma the business. How dastardly!
  • Regal tagged in and thwarted a sunset flip attempt by Roma.
  • As he hit a somersault senton, Regal got 2.
  • He then delivered a gutwrench suplex for another 2.
  • After Austin tagged in, he reversed an Irish whip and put a knee into Roma’s midsection.
  • He then mounted the second turnbuckle and hit a fist drop for 2.
  • When Regal tagged in, he gave Roma a cross corner whip and followed with a shoulder block to the midsection.
  • Austin tagged in, but Arn distracted Patrick by chasing Sir William.
  • Meanwhile, Roma hooked an inside cradle on Austin for a false pin.
  • Austin then leap-frogged Roma but fell victim to a stungun.
  • As Regal distracted Patrick, a false tag occurred.
  • The champs then illegally switched while Regal gave Roma a cross corner whip.
  • Afterward, Roma hooked a roll-up but only earned a 1-count.
  • He then dropkicked Regal and made the HOT TAG to Arn.
  • When Arn backdropped Austin, he attempted a DDT, but Regal nailed him.
  • With Pillman on the apron connected to the ramp, Sir William got up on an adjacent ramp with Pillman’s crutch.
  • Arn then reversed an Irish whip sending Austin toward the crutch.
  • As he sent Austin into Sir William, Arn rolled him up while grabbing the trunks.
  • 1-2-3.
  • WE HAVE NEW CHAMPIONS!

 

Rating: ***½

Summary:  With the Daytona faithful firmly in the Horseman’s back pocket, the tag formula worked wonders, and the story had an excellent climax. In case you’re wondering why the titles needed to change hands, the Horsemen were filmed during the Disney tapings in July with the belts. Since they lost the title match at the PPV, they HAD to win here.

Following a commercial break, Eric Bischoff interviews the NEW World tag team champions. While Roma’s “proud to call (himself) a Horseman,” Arn, in his own unique way, tells us to call him “champ.”

Match 2: 2 Cold Scorpio versus “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton

Highlights:

  • Eaton replaced Regal in this match, so we get two high-fliers in the same match.
  • As Scorpio leaped over the top rope, he rolled up Eaton for 2.
  • Eaton responded with a clothesline, gave Scorpio a cross corner whip, but came up empty on his follow-through.
  • When Scorpio mounted the top turnbuckle, he hit a SKY-HIGH cross body block for another 2.
  • He then dropkicked Eaton but missed a second cross body block.
  • After he lifted Eaton atop the top turnbuckle, Scorpio joined and dropkicked him to the floor.
  • He then delivered a plancha. Woohoo!
  • As Eaton rebounded with a swinging neckbreaker, he mounted the top turnbuckle and hit a big elbow for 2.
  • Scorpio then delivered a spinning heel kick, mounted the top turnbuckle, and hit the Diss that Don’t Miss.
  • 1-2-3.
  • Scorpio won.

Rating: **

Summary: Showcase match for Scorpio.

Match 3 (mask versus Norma Jean): Johnny B. Badd versus Maxx Payne

Highlights:

  • Payne attacked Badd at the onset and delivered a pair of elbow drops. Since Badd didn’t get a chance to remove his boa, Ventura took pity on him.
  • When a couple of rights couldn’t take Payne off his feet, Badd attempted a cross body block but came up empty.
  • Payne then hit a sidewalk slam and ripped off Badd’s mask.
  • Smartly, Badd wore a second mask unbeknownst to Payne.
  • Speaking of Payne, he reversed an Irish whip but succumbed to a flying headscissors.
  • As he rebounded with a clothesline, Payne delivered an Anderson slam.
  • He then attempted a Payne-killer, but Badd countered with an inside cradle for 2.
  • After Payne clotheslined him again, he hit another pair of elbow drops.
  • He then risked it all, mounted the second turnbuckle, but missed a splash.
  • 1-2-3.
  • Badd won, and Norma Jean became his.

Rating: *

Summary:  Without a hot crowd, this match would get nothing and like it.

After the match, Ventura interviews Badd at ringside. The best part was when he kissed the guitar and stated “time for guitar lessons.” HA! The point behind the interview was to hype his unmasking on WCW Saturday Night.

A FLAIR FOR THE GOLD:   As you’d expect, Flair walks the aisle arm-in-arm with Fifi. He then introduces Sting and Smith. When Flair mentions Fall Brawl ‘93, Smith LOSES HIS DAMN MIND over-hyping everyone. Suddenly, Sid Vicious, Harlem Heat, and Colonel Rob Parker interrupt the interview, but not before Flair mentions a “special tag team partner” for Sting and Smith.

Sting then mentions that his partner “will shock the world because he is none other than the SHOCKMASTER!” After a pyro explosion, a big fat guy falls through a makeshift wall losing a Stormtrooper helmet in the process. Stop it! My sides are splitting!

But seriously, folks, Flair exclaims “oh, God” in complete embarrassment. As groans from the stage are easily picked up on the air, Sid yells at tonight’s feature until the voice of the Black Scorpion returns! Please make the Shockmaster disappear! Instead, Shockmaster challenges Sid while laughing maniacally.

HOT TAKE: In case you were wondering why WCW spent time and money recording their TV shows and editing them in post-production, this is a prime example of an unintentionally funny mistake that ruins someone’s debut/character. For those unaware, Shockmaster was portrayed by former Natural Disaster Typhoon—Fred Ottman. His career would never recover from this blunder.

Match 4 for the WCW World TV title: “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff (champion) versus Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat

Highlights:

  • As Schiavone shills the PPV that will be LIVE on 9/19, Ventura couldn’t keep a straight face while referencing the Shockmaster.
  • Michael Buffer performed the ring introductions as only he could.
  • While the Daytona faithful chanted “Paul-a,” their nemesis ducked a cross body block from Steamboat that sent him flying over the top rope to the ramp.
  • Orndorff then tossed Steamboat back into the ring, mounted the top turnbuckle, and delivered a flying elbow smash for 2.
  • Although Steamboat leap-frogged him, Orndorff repaid him with a slam for another 2.
  • A subsequent hip toss by Orndorff couldn’t earn him a three-count.
  • While Schiavone shilled an NWA title match between Sting and Flair this Saturday on WCW Saturday Night (aired 8/21, taped 8/2), Orndorff face-planted Steamboat for yet another 2.
  • Steamboat rebounded by mounting the top turnbuckle and hitting a chop to Orndorff’s head for 2.
  • Upon delivering a belly-to-back suplex, Steamboat got another 2.
  • He then chopped Orndorff sending him over the top rope to the floor.
  • As he hit a tope con hilo with barely room to spare, Steamboat fell prey to some clever heel shenanigans for 2.
  • Thinking he got 3, Orndorff sought after the belt, but Steamboat rolled him up for 2.
  • Orndorff then attempted a piledriver, but Steamboat countered with a back drop.
  • When he hooked a backslide, Steamboat got another 2.
  • Orndorff responded with a clothesline, gave Steamboat a cross corner whip, but ate boot on his follow-through.
  • After Steamboat mounted the top turnbuckle, he delivered a cross body block; however, Orndorff used momentum to land on top for 2.
  • He then attempted a slam much like Randy Savage at WrestleMania III but succumbed to an inside cradle.
  • 1-2-3.
  • WE HAVE A NEW CHAMPION!

Rating: ****

Summary:  Great back-and-forth match with a plethora of thrills made this match a heck of a ride. Kudos, gentlemen! If I’m Orndorff, I’m thrilled to borrow the finish to one of the greatest matches of all-time.

After the match, Orndorff ambushes Steamboat and piledrives him on the belt atop the ramp. That’s one way to celebrate, I guess.

Fall Brawl ‘93 will be LIVE on PPV on 9/19. Order NOW!

Prior to the next match, Bischoff interviews Race with the Kongs. Race vows revenge against Flair for “sucker-punching” him.

Match 5: NWA World champion “Nature Boy” Ric Flair & Sting versus the Colossal Kongs (w/ Harley Race)

Highlights:

  • Don’t blink or you’ll miss David Flair among the Daytona faithful.
  • Sting dropkicked and slammed each Kong consecutively much to the delight of said Daytona faithful.
  • When Flair tossed King Kong to the floor, he leaped from the apron and delivered a single axe handle.
  • Sting then used two dropkicks and a clothesline to send Awesome Kong down to the mat.
  • As Flair and Race brawled on the floor, Sting hit a Stinger splash on Awesome Kong.
  • He then mounted the top turnbuckle, delivered a flying splash, and pinned Awesome Kong.
  • As a result, Sting and Flair won.

Rating: **

Summary:  Showcase match for Flair and Sting.

After the match, Schiavone interviews Sting and Flair at ringside.

Match 6: “Ravishing” Rick Rude & the Equalizer versus the “Natural” Dustin Rhodes & ????

Highlights:

  • And the mystery partner was…
  • Arriving in a Chevrolet Camaro Z28, Road Warrior Animal duped Rude and Equalizer while Road Warrior Hawk sent them scurrying to the floor. This match marked the Road Warriors’ return to WCW after a three-year hiatus.
  • Hawk was Rhodes’ partner while Animal stood in their corner.
  • As Equalizer tagged in, Hawk dropkicked him.
  • He then attempted a hangman’s neckbreaker, but Equalizer botched it.
  • When Hawk punished him for it with a fist drop, he gave Equalizer a cross corner whip followed by a corner clothesline.
  • He then gave Equalizer a second cross corner whip but ate boot on his follow-through.
  • After Equalizer delivered a clothesline, Rude tagged in, but Hawk and Rhodes hit a Doomsday Device to him.
  • Rhodes then delivered an inverted atomic drop followed by a back drop to Rude.
  • As he gave Rude a cross corner whip, Rhodes attempted a monkey flip, but Rude didn’t fall for any monkey business.
  • He then clotheslined Rhodes who provided a SWEET 360° sell. Woohoo!
  • After he mounted the top turnbuckle, Rude hit a single axe handle to Rhodes.
  • Equalizer tagged in and distracted referee Randy Anderson so that Rude could give Rhodes the business in the heel corner. Devious!
  • As Equalizer delivered a back elbow, he got 2.
  • He then chokeslammed Rhodes with the latter doing 99% of the work. That was extremely obvious.
  • Due to some heel miscommunication along with chicanery by Rude, a false tag occurred.
  • Despite Anderson’s disallowance of the tag, Hawk ran roughshod over both heels.
  • Equalizer then attempted to slam Rhodes, but Hawk mounted the top turnbuckle and shoved Rhodes atop him.
  • 1-2-3.
  • Rhodes and Hawk won.

Rating: *

Summary:  While the surprise of the return of the Road Warriors made an impact, Equalizer’s inability to perform simple moves baffled me beyond description.

Promo airs for the Chevrolet Camara Z28 sweepstakes. Hmmm…both promotions touting Chevys. I can just hear the folks at Ford Motor Company.

Match 7 for the WCW World title: Vader (champion w/ Harley Race) versus the “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith

Highlights:

  • According to Schiavone, the disqualification rule was waived for this match.
  • Buffer rumbled.
  • The match began on the ramp as Smith and Vader brawled.
  • When Vader delivered a short-arm clothesline, Smith suplexed him on the ramp. Impressive!
  • He then clotheslined, dropkicked, and clotheslined Vader again.
  • As he attempted a springboard splash, Smith ate knees.
  • Vader then tossed Smith to the floor, attempted a running body block, but tasted the steel railing instead. It must have tasted like the Bird of Paradise at Hamburger Mary’s.
  • After Smith hung him out to dry on the steel railing, he returned Vader to the ring for a Samoan drop and got 2.
  • Vader then reversed an Irish whip and delivered a running body block.
  • When he clotheslined Smith, Vader delivered his own Samoan drop.
  • He then mounted the top turnbuckle and hit a flying splash for 2.
  • As Smith attempted a sunset flip, he avoided getting SQUISHED by the skin of his teeth. Whew!
  • Vader then reversed a cross corner whip that resulted in a Smith flip.
  • While the camera remained focused on the downed Smith, the camera microphone picked up referee Nick Patrick’s telling Smith to “stay down.”
  • Vader then splashed Smith’s back as the Daytona faithful grew restless.
  • Upon ducking a clothesline, Smith hooked a crucifix.
  • Do we have a new champion?
  • 1-2-NO!
  • Vader then pummeled Smith in the corner and rung his bell.
  • When Vader mounted the top turnbuckle, Smith caught him with a dropkick.
  • He then charged Vader in the corner yet ate boot.
  • As Vader mounted the second turnbuckle, he delivered a Vader bomb for 2.
  • He then mounted the second turnbuckle again, leaped, but Smith countered with a powerslam.
  • In the meantime, they knocked down Patrick causing Smith to only earn a false pin.
  • After Smith attempted to suplex Vader, Race crawled into the ring and school-boyed him.
  • 1-2-3.
  • Vader retained.

Rating: ***

Summary:  By the hair of his chinny-chin-chin, Vader kept his title, but Smith’s effort remained solid. Perhaps a forthcoming rematch will earn Smith a World title victory.

Following the match, Smith nails Race so Vader defends his manager. Suddenly, after a four-month hiatus, Cactus Jack storms the ring to brawl with Vader, and, boy, is he PISSED.

Conclusion:  Let’s do the math, shall we? The WWF holds their “spectacular” on free TV two days prior to this event. They then offer a PPV six days afterward. With this show, WCW tries to oversaturate the market to deter the PPV buyrate. With that being said, this show, with two title changes and something for everyone on the card, I truly endorse this show.

Of course, this show lives in infamy thanks to one man.

Thanks, Fred.

Rating: 3.8

Stay tuned for WWF Summerslam ‘93!

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