WCW PPV Main Events

> Hi Scott,
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> We all know about post 1994 WCW PPVs having pretty terrible main events and you generally tuned in just for the undercard, but surely there were exceptions to the rule? Were there any WCW PPV main events that weren’t a complete shambles? Do you have any favourites?
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> I’ve only seen a small portion of WCW’s PPVs so thought it best to ask someone in the know.
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>   Flair v Bret from Souled Out 98 was really good, for one.  Plus there was a good six man at Slamboree 97 with the nWo v Horsemen.  I'm sure there's more I'm forgetting. 

Did “Main Events” die with the Monday Night Wars?

Hi Scott,

A comment in the Smackdown review about Rollins "not being able to main event" got me thinking about when the shows (including PPVs) moved away from the traditional main event.  I don't know a ton about the quarterly ratings but there used to be a lot of talk about popping a rating when RAW and Nitro were going head to head and I guess it made sense.  For a long time now it seems that what would normally be considered your main event on a given TV show can be found anywhere on the card and the traditional main event slot is used as much for interviews and progressing story lines as it is for actual wrestling.  Not to mention Wrestlemania usually advertising about five co-main events lately…  Thoughts?

​I agree that "main eventers" have certainly become a diluted concept in the past few years, especially with two World titles and 50/50 booking all over the shows.  When pretty much everyone but Cena and Orton go unprotected, no one becomes a true star.  It's part of the reason why house show business flattened out so much now that they basically only advertise the WWE brand and not specific matches.  In fact, I just a had a dream last night where they finally came back to Saskatoon after 3 years and they just put up a big screen in the middle and did video packages and skits instead of matches.  That might not be far off from the truth in the future.  ​

Survivor Series Main Events

Do you remember when Big Show and Randy Orton wrestled at Extreme Rules six months ago?  No?  And Cena-Del Rio was one of the lowest buyrates in the history of the company (Vengeance '11) but they're wrestling on multiple PPVs two years later?

Are they just trying to not sell PPVs at this point?

It's a self-fulfilling prophecy with them.  They get the bulk of their money from TV rights fees now, so they ignore PPV revenues and then blame declining PPV revenues on the PPV market dying.  This conveniently ignores UFC doubling their average buyrate on a monthly basis and boxing still making hundreds of millions off PPV even with the sport in the state that it's in today.  But that's the thinking they have, which is why it's REALLY important to get the Network up and running so they can jettison that PPV anchor that's been weighing them down, ya know.  

The Only Review of Summerslam 2013’s Main Events That You’ll Ever Need

Let’s get down to the business of getting down!

I decided to only do the main events of this PPV because the undercard just wasn’t interesting in the slightest. Although I did catch a bit of that Inferno Match. What the HELL is with this Wyatt Family and that stupid lantern? I mean, he lights it up just to blow it out? Caliber votes no on this.

On with the good stuff…

Christian vs. Alberto Del Rio [C] “North of the Border vs. South of the Border” “Affluence vs. Charisma” – World Heavyweight Championship
Am I the only one who prefers when the WHC has the red inlay?
Del Rio grabs the first round of momentum and quickly begins work on Christian’s arm, injuring it with the quickness. Captain Charisma turns the tide with a dive off the top rope, and then some well-planned reversals and timed offenses. Del Rio gets his run back with a sick second-rope Backstabber. Soon after, Christian attempts a spear, but Del Rio offers both his feet smashing into Christian’s face instead. Later, Christian is put in the Arm-Breaker, and they annoy the hell out of me when Christian rolls up to try and reach the ropes, and is clearly pinning Alberto at the same time, but no count is made. He’s flipped back over and has to tap. This was a solid match that really played the back and forth game well, and I’d be more than happy to see them go at it again, especially with an added stipulation. Christian is just an unstoppable workhorse.
Captain Charisma taps to the CAB at 12:29 | ***1/2 A worthy precursor to the main events of tonight’s PPV. Perhaps not worth tracking down, but definitely don’t skip it when you get the PPV.


CM Punk vs. Brock Lesnar – “Wolverine vs. The Incredible Hulk” “The Best vs. The Beast” – No DQ

First off, THAT’S how you start a brawl, with both guys running at each other like freight trains that have absolutely no care for their own body, so long as the other person is hurt worse. Wow, Lesnar really needs to work his legs more. They’re embarrassingly small compared to his upper body. Punk gets some momentum after smashing Lesnar’s head with repeated knees, but soon Brock returns to form and literally throws Punk all over the place, it’s fantastic. Back in the ring, Brock continues to work through pain, taking Punk’s occasional flurries. Hell, Brock doesn’t even go for his first pin until 10 minutes into the match. They trade submissions, and Lesnar actually taps out. But see, Lesnar’s version of tapping out is powerbombing you so hard he’s charged for attempted vehicular homicide, and that doesn’t even make sense. Punk nails Lesnar with a few graphic chair shots until Brock catches one and attempts to return the favor, however he gets punched in the Cock Lesnar, and follows it up with a variant of Sabu’s Arabian Face Buster. After that, the third act of the match is fucking beautiful, and is the stuff written in dreams. Brutal chairshots, submissions, finishers, reversals, close-calls and counters. I mean, when Brock hits Punk with the chair, it’s not because he’s mad Punk hit him with it, no, he’s mad because fucking Punk wasn’t doing it right. An F5 on the chair finishes what is arguably not only the MOTY, but the greatest SummerSlam match of all time. Oh, and Triple H, next time you lose a big-time match, please reference this on how it’s done. You get up, you’re pissed off, you show it, and leave. You don’t sit around in hopes the crowd gives you a verbal BJ.
Brock hits Punk with an F5 on the chair for the pin at 25:17 | ***** This match was so burly, the word document I wrote this up in needed a shave. A fantastic battle, and a modern classic. If you haven’t seen it, do so immediately.

John Cena [C] vs. Daniel Bryan “The Champ vs. The Dragon” “Never Quit vs. Never Shave” – WWE Championship

They start off with some traditional chain wrestling, however Cena is too much of a monster for Bryan to wrangle. They brawl outside for a moment, including a pretty sick suplex off the steel chairs. Back in, Cena tries to put Bryan down with some power moves, but Bryan proves resilient when he pummels Cena to the mat with a barrage of kicks and elbows. Cena is wrestling with this fantastic aura of “I’m only giving you 50 percent, because any more and you’d break. Oh, you want to push me? OK…” Great spot for Bryan where he keeps leveling Cena with kicks to his injured elbow, and then yells “GET UP!” Bryan does one hell of a brilliant move where he superplexes Cena off the top rope, but locks his legs between the ropes, thus not having to take the impact. Afterwards, Cena MAKES Bryan when he puts him up on the top turnbuckle in an attempt to give him a top rope AA. When the hell have we seen him do that? This shows that he sees Bryan as one huge fucking threat. Ooh, soon after Bryan attempts his whole flip-backward off the turnbuckle ordeal, and you can tell Cena was supposed to catch him for an AA, but missed. That would have really been something. He soon finishes off Cena with one of the most devastating fucking moves I’ve ever seen. I mean, he practically rocketed upward into Cena’s chin. Awesome. From here on out, the move will be known as the Goat Knees Pizza. I have to say, I didn’t love this match as much as others. I expected a bit more frenzy, intensity and close-calls, but was still happy with what I got. However, this is one of the most important matches in history, because it’s the final nail in the coffin of “only big guys can be champion/main event.” Not only did Bryan defeat Cena clean as a sheet, but he hung with Cena at every step, and John treated him like one of the biggest threats he’s ever had. After the match, Orton comes out to cash-in, decides against it, Triple H Pedigrees Bryan, Orton comes in for the pin and the title. I really dug the whole turn, and love that Bryan was a man and took the Pedigree like someone from the 90s.
John Cena eats The Goat Knees Pizza and a pin at 26:54 | ****1/4 Not a classic in terms of quality, but a classic in terms of what it means. Still though, great stuff mat-wise and worth spending your time and money on.

Something I love about the end is that no one boos what Orton does. Because as wrestling fans, we see it as a start of a great angle, so we cheer that. We love it when we think we have it all mapped out, only to be surprised. Of course, as long as that surprise is actually good and makes sense.

I can’t be the only one who would have traded my tickets just for the chance to have Henry splash me, right? For those that didn’t see the PPV, a fan from a house show was allowed to trade his tickets for Summerslam tickets, if he allows Henry to splash him. He also has to wear this really stupid Dorito’s shirt.

As always, much thanks to my editor, Steven Ferrari. I met Steven when I moved to California with my mom. I was getting beat up by the popular guys at school, and Steven was not just the apartment handyman & editor, but he was also a karate expert, and he taught me how to defend myself. Then there was this one time we went to Okinawa…

For more Caliber, there’s always…
Str8 Gangster, No Chaser – Recently updated with 4 Most Fucking Frustraiing Moments In My History With Nintendo, along with reviews for The Wolverine, Kick-Ass 2, and the most recent episodes of Breaking Bad & True Blood.
WCW In 2000 – Recently updated with a Nitro where there was, get this, a swerve!
Caliber’s books on amazon! – Each book is less than a dollar! That’s such a deal that every time I say it, I have to go buy them! I’ve sold hundreds to myself!
[email protected] – If you wanna chit-chat over tea, send in a QOTD, or whatever, there you go.

Till next time…

WM Main Events

Scott, Had this idea after last year’s Mania.  Don’t expect you to answer all 29, but thought it might be fun for the readers to discuss.  The topic is, what really should have been the main event for each year’s Wrestlemania.  I get really fuzzy on the 19 through 26 period, so maybe someone has better ideas.  Here’s my list: What SHOULD have been the Wrestlemania Main Events?

(Scott sez:  Sure, I’ll play along after the break.)  Wrestlemania I – Hogan/Mr. T Vs. Orndorf/Piper – Stick with the original.  The main stream attention that Mr. T brought to the card was important to kicking things off.  It also allows you to build to… Wrestlemania II:  Hogan Vs Piper – Piper was still the hottest heel in the company and this would be the proper blowoff to the feud. Wrestlemania  III:  Hogan Vs Andre – Duh. (Scott sez:  Agreed on all three of these.)  Wrestlemania IV:  Hogan Vs. Dibiase – Instead of the tournament, I would’ve had MDM win the title with Andre’s help and Hogan win it back here.  The Million Dollar Man was such a huge heel and Dibiase deserved a run on top. (Scott sez:  Should have just kept the belt on Dibiase after buying it, and you get a double main event of Hogan/Andre 2 and Savage challenging and beating Dibiase.)  Wrestlemania V:  Hogan Vs. Savage – Can’t argue with history.  You’d have to move some stuff around to get the belt on Savage though. Wrestlemania VI:  Hogan Vs Warrior (Scott sez:  Duh.)  Wrestlemania VII: Hogan Vs Warrior 2 or Warrior Vs Savage; Either would be better than Slaughter.  The rematch would probably still draw even if Warrior didn’t draw well as champ.  Another option would be to just move the Savage/Warrior feud to the main event. (Scott sez:  Warrior should have just dropped the belt back to Hogan to spare us WWF champ Sgt. Slaughter, plus Hogan-Warrior at Halloween Havoc.  Kills two awful birds with one stone.)  Wrestlemania VIII:  Hogan Vs Flair – At this point, the only way to keep Hogan main eventing Mania fresh would be a dream match.  Huge no brainer. (Scott sez:  The all-time wasted opportunity.)  Wrestlemania IX:  Hart Vs Hogan – Hart wins to usher in the New Generation Era. (Scott sez:  Keep Hogan away from it entirely.  Hart v. Savage FTW.  Same result, no chance of Hogan shenanigans.)  Wrestlemania X:  Bret Vs Owen – The mini tourney was a waste.  Bret Vs Luger would have more name value, but Owen gives us the brother angle and the better match. (Scott sez:  It was OK the way it was, I think.)  Wrestlemania XI:  LT Vs Bam Bam got a ton of press at the time, so that is hard to argue with.  The only other option would have been Shawn Vs Bret a year earlier. Wrestlemania XIIShawn Vs Bret (Scott sez:  Yeah, but not an Iron Man match.)  Wrestlemania XIIIHart Vs Austin – This was the only good match on the card and they just had to get the belt on Hart to make it the main event. (Scott sez:  I don’t know that Austin was really ready for the main event of that show at that point, honestly.  How about Bret v. Undertaker?)  Wrestlemania XIVAustin Vs Michaels Wrestlemania XVAustin Vs Rock Wrestlemania XVIHHH Vs Rock –  I don’t like multi-man matches as main events.  HHH was at the top of his game (har) here, as was Rock. (Scott sez:  Yeah, the four-way was really disappointing from a booking standpoint.  Everything was building to HHH v. Rock. But at least they got a monster buyrate for Backlash.)  Wrestlemania XVIIAustin Vs Rock – The fact I wouldn’t change the participants in the last four years shows how well the company was booked at the time. Wrestlemania XVIII:  This is where the Invasion should have culminated.  I won’t fantasy book other than to say double main event of Goldberg Vs Austin and Hogan Vs Rock. Wrestlemania XIX:  This is where the company lost focus after the monopoly, along with Austin and Rock leaving.  Tons of talent, but nothing that just screams “Main Event”.   I feel like Brock was still a bit green at this point, another year of experience would have helped.  Of course, if he hadn’t botched the SSP we would probably STILL be talking about it. Wrestlemania XX:  On one hand, it was good that they tried to move the focus onto the next generation.  On the other, history has tragically proven that Benoit and Eddie couldn’t handle the pressure. Wrestlemania XXITriple H Vs Batista was perfectly fine. Wrestlemania XXII:  Was Batista injured?  I don’t remember, but Cena Vs. Batista would have been better than pulling Trips back to main event. (Scott sez:  It pretty much made Cena, though.)  Wrestlemania XXIIICena Vs HBK was fine.  At this point, parity booking made everyone so equal that few guys had that special Wrestlemania feel.  Shawn’s comeback was a success, so why not? (Scott sez:  It was a great match, although the booking seemed to be leading towards Cena-HHH or Cena-HHH-Michaels.  Plus this was the most successful WM of all-time, so you can’t argue with the results.)  Wrestemania XXIVMichaels Vs Flair was THE reason to watch this show.  They could have put one of the belts on Shawn to make it the Main Event. (Scott sez:  Respectfully disagree.  I wasn’t into the Flair forced retirement at all.)  Wrestlemania XXV:  This is where they dropped the ball on Orton.  He was getting huge heat for punting the McMahons and it would’ve been easy to turn Orton VS HHH into a double turn where Orton turned face and HHH turned heel.  Fans were already cheering him for punting Vince anyway. (Scott sez:  This is the point where I get really fuzzy on what happened when, so I won’t have much to add past this.)  Wrestlemania XXVI:  You had Cena Vs Batista about 3 years after it should have been done.  All anyone cared about was HBK Vs Taker, so just throw a belt on one of them to make it official. Wrestlemania XXVII:  Obvious that Miz was not the choice to main event, but Cena and Orton were heavily played out by this point.  I think they should have thrown more money at Rock and done Rock Vs Cena here to bring the special feel back to Mania. Wrestlemania XXVIII:  Rock Vs Cena is the easy choice, but in my world we did it a year ago.  I think you have Rock Vs Cena II as one main event and Punk Vs HHH as the other.  Punk was coming off Summer of Punk six months earlier and there was no excuse for not utilizing him in a big way.  Again, I’ll skip the fantasy booking and just say that Punk would’ve feuded with Trips with HHH trying to get Punk and the title back to the WWE and slowly revealing himself to be a political monster who used Punk’s exodus with the belt to steal the company from Vince. And finally…Wrestlemania XXIX:  A year ago I would have said that Rock Vs Cena II was a no brainer, but what a difference 12 months can make.  Cena is even more played out and fans are even getting tired of Rock.  Had you put over Punk in a big way last year, I think you could’ve milked his title reign and heel turn longer and made it a bigger deal when Rock beat him, so I’ll say Punk Vs Rock should have been this year’s main event.