What the World Was Watching: WCW Saturday Night – July 29, 1995

Gene Okerlund interviews WCW Champion Hulk Hogan in a dark room.  Hogan says he misses Andre the Giant and how it was unfair the Pontiac Silverdome did not chant Andre’s name.  He does his best to act dramatic, sniffing Andre’s old shirt, as he says he felt Andre’s presence when the Giant threw the shirt at him at Bash at the Beach and that rumors of Andre having a son were true.  Hogan concludes by saying that the time has come to rise and face the challenge of the Giant again and to do so he will have to fight through the Dungeon of Doom.  That journey will start on next week’s Main Event.

Tony Schiavone and Bobby Heenan are doing commentary and they are taped from Atlanta, Georgia.  The matches on this broadcast took place on July 11.

Opening Contest:  Randy Savage (12-1) pins Tom Burton after a flying elbow smash at 1:39:

The match is an afterthought as Schiavone and Heenan discuss Hulk Hogan’s interview that led off the broadcast.  Savage does not have any problems with Burton, though, as he rolls to his sixth straight victory.

Okerlund interviews Savage, who says that Hogan has a lot of friends like Sting and the Renegade to watch his back.

Vader (15-3) defeats Tom Torres after a powerbomb at 1:38:

Vader yells about how much he hates Ric Flair as he tears Torres apart, folding hm up lie an accordion with his powerbomb.

Okerlund interviews Vader.  Vader repeats that Ric Flair took something valuable from him at Bash at the Beach and he has only one dream and that is to destroy Flair in the ring.  Vader concludes by getting to one knee and begging Flair not to get out of their match at The Clash of the Champions.

Paul Orndorff does a split screen promo during the Renegade’s entrance where he promises to win the television title at The Clash of the Champions.

Non-Title Match:  The Renegade (Television Champion w/Jimmy Hart) (10-0) pins Jake Steele after the Renegade Splash in 42 seconds:

The Renegade races into the ring and squashes another jobber in less than a minute as Hart finally shows up to resume his managerial duties.

It is announced that Hulk Hogan has issued an open challenge to the Dungeon of Doom and will face one of their members on Main Event on August 6.

Non-Title Match:  Sting (United States Champion) (20-1) beats Scott Stevens via submission to the Scorpion Deathlock at 3:30:

Schiavone and Heenan continue to talk about Hogan’s legacy as Sting takes his time demolishing Stevens for his fifteenth straight singles win.

Colonel Robert Parker shows up in Japan with Meng to talk with Kurasawa about teaming with Meng.  Parker promises Kurasawa riches if he will come with him to America.  Once again, WCW gets its angle advancement out of order as this needed to be aired before The Clash of the Champions tag match was announced.

Schiavone and Heenan interview Parker, who is carrying one of the WCW tag team titles.  Parker calls out Sister Sherri because he is in a romantic mood and Sherri comes out, not appreciating Parker’s advances.  Sherri says that she and Harlem Heat can defeat Parker, Dick Slater, and Bunkhouse Buck.  This gives Parker the idea to have a six-man tag match at The Clash of the Champions and if the Heat and Sherri win then they will get a future tag team title shot.

Ric Flair (w/Arn Anderson) (5-1) pins Marcus Bagwell (2-3) with the figure-four leg lock at 8:05:

Bagwell is the ultimate underdog entering this battle since no one expects him to defeat Flair.  Flair dominates a lot of the action, with Anderson intervening when the Nature Boy is in trouble.  Bagwell scores a few near-falls but those are token efforts that do not do major damage to the former WCW champion.  Eventually, Bagwell misses a missile dropkick and the figure-four puts him away, with Anderson providing a leverage assist for Flair.  Rating:  **

After the bell, Vader runs out and corners Flair in the ring.  However, Anderson gives Vader a chop block and DDT, allowing the heels to pulverize their foe a week before The Clash of the Champions.

The Last Word:  The heel beatdown at the end was good television and another match was signed for The Clash of the Champions as Harlem Heat will presumably win to get another tag team title shot.  Sadly, the company is hitting the wall in terms of creative storytelling and it just seems to be grinding its gears until Monday Nitro debuts in September.

There was no Main Event telecast for July 30.  WCW did resume running a few house shows in the Carolinas near the end of July and here is the result of two of those cards (courtesy of thehistoryofwwe.com):

Charlotte, North Carolina – Independence Arena – July 28, 1995 (2,000):  Diamond Dallas Page pinned Dave Sullivan…Kamala wrestles Hacksaw Jim Duggan to a double disqualification…WCW Tag Team Champions Dick Slater & Bunkhouse Buck beat Marcus Bagwell & Alex Wright when Slater pinned Wright…Television Champion the Renegade wrestles Paul Orndorff to a time-limit draw…Harlem Heat beat the Blue Bloods when Stevie Ray pinned Earl Robert Eaton…United States Champion Sting beat Meng via disqualification when Colonel Robert Parker interfered…Ric Flair pinned Randy Savage with a roll up after seventeen minutes of action.  Savage initially won the match after hitting Flair with a foreign object but referee Randy Anderson ordered that the match be restarted when he realized Savage used a weapon.

Greenville, South Carolina – Memorial Auditorium – July 30, 1995 (3,700):  Sergeant Craig Pittman beat Frankie Lancaster…Harlem Heat defeated Hacksaw Jim Duggan (substituting for Alex Wright) & Marcus Bagwell…Johnny B. Badd beat Mark Starr…Diamond Dallas Page defeated Dave Sullivan…United States Champion Sting beat Meng…The Nasty Boys defeated the Blue Bloods…Randy Savage defeated Ric Flair.

Backstage News*:        Randy Savage and Ric Flair brought in respectable business for some WCW house shows in the Carolinas, drawing a $20,000 house in Charlotte, $27,000 in Fayetteville, and $36,000 in Greenville.

*WCW is trying to work with Jacques Rougeau to secure the WWF’s television time slot in Montreal.  WCW talent such as Meng, Kamala, and Big Bubba Rogers are working Rougeau’s next show on August 15.

*The company has thought about billing Paul Wight as “Andre the Giant, Jr.”

*WCW might shift its Saturday Night tapings to Monday’s, with two hours prior to the airing of the live show being taped for airing on TBS later in the week.

*Look for Marcus Bagwell to be moved into a new tag team with USWA preliminary wrestler Scott Studd.  The team will have a pretty boy gimmick.  WCW may also use the State Patrol again to bolster the tag ranks, using them to do jobs to more established teams.

*A future feud between Dave Sullivan and Big Bubba Rogers is in the works.  The premise of that program will be that Rogers is allergic to Sullivan’s rabbit Ralph.

*In talent relations news, Jeff Jarrett, who walked out of In Your House 2 after dropping the Intercontinental title to Shawn Michaels, may want to go to WCW.  Jarrett refused to work an angle at the pay-per-view with the Roadie and some think he may want to head to WCW because his father, Jerry, has formed a working relationship with the company.  However, the WWF has Jarrett under contract for the next few months and could block his exit.

*In talent relations news, the company appears to have failed with some of its attempted acquisitions as Al Snow verbally agreed to a WWF offer on July 28.  Snow was never given a WCW offer as previously reported and the company did not get back to him after his tryout, thinking he was WWF bound anyway.  Attempts to acquire Eddy Guerrero may have also hit a rough patch because WCW did not offer him a guaranteed deal.  This could hinder their chances of getting other talents prior to the launch of Monday Nitro such as Dean Malenko, Chris Benoit, and Sabu.  WCW has had serious negotiations with the Ultimate Warrior but concerns about a WWF lawsuit over his gimmick are preventing them from bringing him in.  Finally, Steve McMichael, who WCW signed on July 31, could be a third announcer with Eric Bischoff and Bobby Heenan on the debut episode of Monday Nitro.  McMichael has begun training as a wrestler and may be used in that capacity eventually.

*Backstage news was provided courtesy of Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer for August 7.

And since it is the end of the month here are some win/loss standings for WCW talent at the end of July 1995:

Top Twenty-Five Overall Records

1—The Renegade (13-0)

2—Hulk Hogan (8-0)

3—Frank Andersson (4-0)

4—Diamond Dallas Page (11-0-1)

5—Sting (28-1-1)

6—Randy Savage (20-1-1)

7—Sergeant Craig Pittman (25-2)

8—Alex Wright (47-4-1)

9—Meng (25-2-1)

10—Road Warrior Hawk (4-0-1)

11—Kamala (8-1)

T12—Brian Knobbs (37-4-2)

T12—Jerry Sags (37-4-2)

14—Johnny B. Badd (32-4-2)

15—Brian Pillman (24-4)

16—Hacksaw Jim Duggan (32-5-1)

T17—Booker T (36-6-2)

T17—Stevie Ray (36-6-2)

19—Lord Steven Regal (24-4-2)

20—Vader (19-5)

21—Big Bubba Rogers (21-7-1)

22—Kevin Sullivan (20-7)

23—Steve Austin (14-5)

24—Ric Flair (7-3)

25—Earl Robert Eaton (21-9-2)

Inactive Wrestlers that Would Have Qualified:  Wahoo McDaniel (1-0), the Great Muta (1-0), Dustin Rhodes (18-2), the Blacktop Bully (15-5), the Patriot (23-9)

Top Ten Singles Records

1—The Renegade (11-0)

2—Kamala (6-0)

3—Frank Andersson (4-0)

4—Hulk Hogan (3-0)

5—Diamond Dallas Page (11-0-1)

6—Sting (21-1)

7—Randy Savage (13-1)

8—Sergeant Craig Pittman (25-2)

9—Alex Wright (41-3-1)

10—Meng (25-2-1)

Inactive Wrestlers that Would Have Qualified:  The Blacktop Bully (15-0), Wahoo McDaniel (1-0), the Great Muta (1-0)

Top Ten Tag Team Records

1—The Monster Maniacs (4-0)

2—Ric Flair & Arn Anderson (1-0)

3—The Nasty Boys (37-4-2)

4—The Blue Bloods (18-3-1)

5—Harlem Heat (36-6-2)

6—Sting & Randy Savage (2-0-1)

7—Dick Slater & Bunkhouse Buck (15-9)

8—Scott Armstrong & Tim Horner (1-1)

9—The State Patrol (0-4)

Inactive Teams that Would Have Qualified:  Kevin Sullivan & Avalanche (3-0), Dustin Rhodes & Johnny B. Badd (3-0), Lord Steven Regal & Jean Paul Levesque (1-0), Kevin Sullivan & the Butcher (6-2), Stars & Stripes (21-7), Big Bubba Rogers & Avalanche (2-2), Brad & Scott Armstrong (2-2), Brad Armstrong & Tim Horner (3-6), Arn Anderson & Bunkhouse Buck (1-2), Pretty Wonderful (2-4), Ric Flair & Vader (0-1)

Top Ten in Televised Match Appearances (Iron Worker Award):

1—Alex Wright (52)

T2—Booker T (44)

T2—Stevie Ray (44)

T4—Brian Knobbs (43)

T4—Bunkhouse Buck (43)

T4—Jerry Sags (43)

7—Arn Anderson (39)

T8—Hacksaw Jim Duggan (38)

T8—Johnny B. Badd (38)

10—Marcus Bagwell (37)

Most Appearances By Show:  Prime-Johnny B. Badd and Steve Austin (4); Pro­-Alex Wright, Brian Knobbs, Bunkhouse Buck, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, and Jerry Sags (13); Worldwide-Booker T and Stevie Ray (12); Saturday Night-Alex Wright and Arn Anderson (16), Main Event-Alex Wright, Arn Anderson, and Johnny B. Badd (6)

Top Five Matches in July 1995

1—Hulk Hogan vs. Vader (Steel Cage Match for the WCW Championship, Bash at the Beach ’95, July 16) – ***

2—Diamond Dallas Page vs. Dave Sullivan (WCW Pro, July 29) – ***

3—Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage (Lifeguard Match, Bash at the Beach ’95, July 16) – ***

4—Dick Slater & Bunkhouse Buck vs. the Nasty Boys (WCW Pro, July 22) – **½

5—The Blue Bloods vs. Harlem Heat (WCW Main Event, July 23) – **½

Top Five Overall Matches in 1995 (to this point)

1—Brian Pillman vs. Alex Wright (The Great American Bash, June 18) – ***¾

2—Harlem Heat vs. Sting & Randy Savage (WCW Tag Team Championship Match, WCW Saturday Night, February 25) – ***½

3—The Patriot vs. Ric Flair (U.S. Championship Tournament First Round, WCW Main Event, May 14) – ***½

4—Arn Anderson vs. Alex Wright (WCW Television Championship Match, WCW Saturday Night, March 11) – ***½

5—Alex Wright vs. Ric Flair (WCW Saturday Night, June 10) – ***½

Up Next:  WCW Pro for August 5!