–Tony Schiavone and Bobby Heenan are doing commentary and they are taped from Orlando, Florida. Heenan puts over his business partnership with New Japan, ignoring that he took their money fraudulently for half of WCW Pro.
–Opening Contest: Lex Luger (w/Jimmy Hart) (8-3) beats Leroy Howard via submission to the Torture Rack at 3:54:
Schiavone clarifies that New Japan’s challenge to WCW is a “best-of-seven” variety. Luger corners Howard and beats him down, extending that beating to the floor. A powerslam and Torture Rack send Howard to the showers.
–Gene Okerlund interviews Dean Malenko where Okerlund puts over Malenko’s technical acumen. Malenko nervously navigates through a promo where he says that he did not come to WCW earlier because he did not think anyone could challenge him.
–Kurasawa (w/Colonel Robert Parker) (12-2) beats Steve Storm via submission to the Fujiwara armbar at 2:33:
Storm cannot protect his arm from a sustained attack, eventually submitting to the Fujiwara armbar. Kurasawa is booked to face Sting on WCW Saturday Night so this is building him up for that encounter.
-For the second straight week, Meng comes to the ring for a squash and Kurasawa is still meditating in the middle of the ring. Meng has had enough of this and begins brawling with Kurasawa, with Kevin Sullivan beating up “Not THAT” Manny Fernandez. WCW officials race into the ring to separate both men, failing to do so as Meng knocks out Nick Patrick. They brawl to the floor as the show goes to a commercial break.
–The Super Assassins (w/Colonel Robert Parker) (1-0) defeat the Nasty Boys (44-6-3) when Super Assassin #1 pins Brian Knobbs after a flying headbutt at 8:58:
WCW’s tag team division has been dormant since Harlem Heat regained the titles from the American Males in late October. As an illustration of that, the Nasty Boys have not competed on television since November 4 when they defeated the State Patrol on WCW Saturday Night. This match is a slog because both teams are brawling types and do not use diverse offenses. The Nasties take things up a notch by bowling over Super Assassin #1 and double suplexing Super Assassin #2 after the hot tag. Knobbs hits the Nasty Splash, but the referee is busy getting Jerry Sags out of the ring and that allows Assassin #1 to come off the top rope with a headbutt to help the new team capture a big win. With their lack of use and taking lots of losses in big matches to the Assassins, the American Males, and Dick Slater and Bunkhouse Buck since August one would think that the Nasties were on the verge of being released. Rating: ½*
–Okerlund interviews Chris Benoit, who promises that he will be looking for a victim at Starrcade. He says that New Japan wrestlers are technically proficient, but they will be no match for the Four Horsemen. Okerlund notes that Benoit is a Stu Hart trainee.
–Okerlund does the first Starrcade Command Center. The show will take place on Wednesday, December 27 in Nashville, Tennessee. Okerlund notes that there will be a “World Cup” between WCW and New Japan, contested over a series of seven matches and the promotion that wins four of them will win the competition. Okerlund says that Randy Savage, Johnny B. Badd, Sting, Eddie Guerrero, Alex Wright, Chris Benoit, and Lex Luger will represent WCW. Immediately this concept makes little sense because if WCW wanted to show the supremacy of their promotion why are they not using other top stars like Hulk Hogan, the Giant, and Ric Flair?
–Koji Kanemoto & Shinjiro Otani (w/Sonny Onoo) (1-0) defeat the American Males (12-3) when Kanemoto makes Scotty Riggs submit to a spinning toehold at 6:09:
Commentary is not on the same page as Okerlund’s Starrcade report as Schiavone says that Flair and Scott Norton are on WCW’s team. Otani’s lack of kneepads is an odd look for American fans who are used to seeing ninety-nine percent of wrestlers sport them. The participants in the match are technically sound but the match barely gets out of first gear, with a weak heat segment on Bagwell by the Japanese squad. Heenan helps things by making jokes about Tennessee and how there will be sizable culture clash when Onoo and his gang see lots of fans without teeth and shoes. Otani amazes in the matches closing stretch by flipping when he is whipped into the corner and then landing a springboard dropkick to Riggs to re-enter the ring. That sets up Kanemoto’s moonsault, with him opting to trap Riggs in a spinning toehold to secure a win. Rating: *½
–After the bell, the Males continue the fight with the New Japan stars and send them to the locker room. Based on Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer this was done because the Males were upset they had to lose to a foreign team cleanly via submission.
–Tune in next week to see Harlem Heat face the Blue Bloods! Also, Sting, the Diamond Dallas Page, and Chris Benoit in action!
The Last Word: This show did a lot to clarify the confusion that came out of WCW Pro as to what was going to happen at Starrcade. Again, WCW jumps the gun on its syndicated programming by saying that it has accepted New Japan’s challenge when that is supposed to be revealed on WCW Saturday Night. The idea of a team challenge is okay, but fans are being asked to simply boo the Japanese talent because they are foreign and the Japanese stars have not done one dastardly thing since they began competing on American television. That is hardly going to rope in buys for Starrcade unless WCW has another idea up its sleeve.
Up Next: WCW Saturday Night for December 2!
To check out past reviews, check out my website at www.wrestlewatch.com. Also, my second e-book is near completion as it will recap WCW from January-August 1995 (and the third will take WCW from the introduction of Nitro to the end of that year).