Monday Nitro – November 29, 1999

Monday Nitro #216
Date: November 29, 1999
Location:
Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado
Attendance: 12,881
Commentators: Tony
Schiavone, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re less than three
weeks away from Starrcade and usually that would mean some of the
matches should be clear. At the moment though, the field is almost
wide open and given who is in charge, I’m not sure if we should
expect to get any development this week either. Last week’s main
event was at least a calm match for a change. Let’s get to it.

This
episode is dedicated to Hiro Matsuda, who trained Hulk Hogan, Lex
Luger, Scott Hall and Ron Simmons among others.
We
open with Goldberg making his full entrance and taking his sweet time
in doing so. Goldberg gets right to the point: he’s not cool with
the Outsiders playing comedy games most of the time and then hitting
him with a chair last week. Goldberg liked the chair though and he’s
ready for some payback. He has Nash tonight and Hall better stay
away from the ring. Cue the Outsiders to say they have five words
for Goldberg: don’t sing it, bring it. They make it to the middle of
the aisle, but Sid comes out and says he’s the new babyface in town.
The brawl is quickly broken up by security, which is more than I was
expecting.
Tony and Heenan run
down the card. Hang on for this one.
Nash vs. Goldberg –
No DQ, no countout
Hall vs. Sid for the
US/TV Titles – No DQ, no countout
Hart vs. Meng for the
World Title – No DQ, no countout
Sting
vs. Jarrett vs. Benoit – #1 contenders match for a title shot after
Starrcade
Jerry Only vs. Steve
Williams – Cage
Mud wrestling with
wrestlers to be announced
THIS
IS ON ONE TV SHOW WITH NO BUILDUP. Three street fights, a cage
match, a triple threat and mud wrestling.
Roddy
Piper arrives with some fairly big (for wrestling that is) women.
One of them appears to be Rhonda Singh, who you might remember as
Bertha Faye from 1995 WWF.
Luger is here in a new
suit and carrying papers.
The
Mamalukes are on the phone with Tony Marinara, who tells them to deal
with Disco Inferno and Lash Leroux.
Tag Team Titles:
Creative Control vs. Buff Bagwell/Booker T.
The
twins are defending of course and have Hennig with them. Buff starts
with we’ll say Patrick and the twin gets cross bodied and dropkicked
into the corner. Off to Gerald and Booker as Tony says Bagwell has
won over five Tag Team Titles of his own, which is of course
inaccurate (five reigns).
Back to Patrick for a
gutwrench suplex on Booker but Mr. T. nails an ax kick, allowing for
the hot tag to Bagwell, despite the match not even being three
minutes old yet. Bagwell cleans house and everything breaks down.
Buff mostly misses the Blockbuster but the other twin offers a
distraction, allowing Hennig to hit Bagwell with a chair to retain.
Midnight comes out for
the post match save.
Russo
is livid that he has to book some Japanese guy named Jushin Thunder
Liger. That’s not me being sarcastic. Russo actually referred to
him as “some Japanese guy.” If Guerrera can beat him tonight for
the IWGP Light Heavyweight Title (again his words), he’ll take care
of Juvy’s visa issues. Russo has a plan to make sure this happens.
If he wants Juvy to win and take care of his visa issues, why not
just take care of them?
Luger threatens to sue
Liz over breach of contract, hence the papers earlier. She offers to
do anything to make him drop the suit, which intrigues Luger.
Piper can’t get in to
see Russo but is fine with waiting if he gets the $3 million a year.
Our hero everyone.
Singh and the other
girl wonder what they should wear for their match tonight.
Symphony (Ryan
Shamrock) receives flowers and a love letter from Maestro.
Jeff Jarrett doesn’t
care about angering Dustin Rhodes and blasts Tenay with a guitar.
Where was he during those One Night Only shows?
Here’s
Brian Knobbs with something to say. That might be better than having
him wrestle. He wants Norman Smiley (who he calls a woman) out here
right now for a fight over the Hardcore Title. We cut to the back to
see Norman cowering because he doesn’t have his protective gear.
Finlay
walks by to send Norman diving under a table as he goes to the ring
to fight Knobbs in Smiley’s place. Finlay comes out to the ring and
throws Knobbs a kendo stick for a duel. This goes about as you would
expect for a fight to go against Finlay, as he beats Knobbs down and
cuts his hair. Finlay says if Knobbs wants to be a soldier, he can
look like one.
The Mamalukes take
Okerlund to a strip club. Ok then.
Russo
yells at Hennig and the twins for getting beaten up by Midnight and
makes Hennig vs. Midnight later tonight.
Piper is ready for the
mud wrestling and cracks some bad jokes.
IWGP Junior
Heavyweight Title: Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Juventud Guerrera
Guerrera
is challenging/trying to get a work visa and neither guy gets an
entrance. Ten seconds in, Buzzkill comes out carrying a Down With
Big Brother sign. They run the ropes to start until Juvy hits a
sitout bulldog ala Rey Mysterio. Liger is sent to the floor for a
springboard dive but comes back in with a frog splash for two. A
tilt-a-whirl backbreaker sets up the surfboard as the fans finally
wake up a bit.
Liger gets two more off
a belly to belly and Juvy taps, which means nothing in this case for
reasons not explained. They fight over a backslide as Buzzkill wants
them to give peace a chance. Tony actually brings up Buzzkill’s
matches against Liger back in the early 90s but Buzzkill doesn’t
acknowledge him. Eh points for trying I guess. Juvy hits a Stunner
over the top rope but Liger escapes the Juvy Driver and grabs a
German suplex. Buzzkill offers a distraction though, allowing Juvy
to hit Liger in the head with a bottle of tequila for the pin and the
title.
Rating:
D+.
I wasn’t shocked to find out that New Japan didn’t acknowledge this
title change for years. Russo has deemed a worthless hippie
character (the character, not the wrestler) more important than one
of the best cruiserweight wrestlers of all time. This shouldn’t
surprise you, as Russo clearly has no respect for wrestling
whatsoever. The match was nothing to see as it barely broke five
minutes and the guys were just doing moves until we got to the stupid
ending.
Chavo
Guerrero has taken over the interviews for the night and offers to
sell us some fine china for $39.99. Oh and Dr. Death and Oklahoma
(his official name now) are going to destroy Jerry Only.
Symphony gets another
gift from Maestro.
Gene is getting drunk
at the club. Because GENE OKERLUND needs a story.
Chavo
tries to sell the Outsiders a home security system before asking when
he’s going to start defending the TV Title. Well that would be
tonight if you listened to Tony earlier. Hall is annoyed that he
hasn’t gotten to meet any TV stars or received any free TV dinners so
he throws the title belt to Nash, who throws it in a trash. That
makes two titles trashed either literally or figuratively in less
than an hour. To be fair though, that thing died during Steiner’s
first reign.
Here’s
the Revolution with an American flag, which they immediately throw
down and step on. Douglas brags about taking out the Filthy Animals
from the inside and now the Animals are gone. The Revolution isn’t
cool with a Canadian like Hart holding the World Title and doesn’t
like the fans cheering him. Malenko was booed when he eat a Canadian
last week so he’s fed up with America.
The
Revolution is declaring themselves a sovereign nation and they all
have snake names. Malenko will be the Python, Shane will be the
Rattler, Asya will be the Boa and Saturn will be……the Trouser?
This of course brings out Jim Duggan to talk about America and swing
the 2×4, which clearly twists around in his hands because it’s made
of foam. I had one of those when I was a kid. The Revolution beats
him down and does the Iwo Jima pose over him with the American flag.
Benoit finally makes the save like a good Canadian. You can add the
Revolution to the list of things Russo didn’t understand. Oh and put
WOOD on there too.
Speaking
of Russo, he wants Piper in his office.
The Wall issues an open
challenge for the Block, which is a SHOOT in a boiler room.
Piper can’t come in to
see the boss because he has to go to the bathroom to take a Vince
Russo. So if he can say Russo’s name, why can’t anyone else?
US Title: Sid
Vicious vs. Scott Hall
Street
fight. This would be a bait and switch on the TV Title no? Heenan
rips on Sid’s talking abilities on the way to the ring. Nash sits in
on commentary and his first line is to call the TV Title a piece of
garbage. Sid hammers on the champ but gets distracted by the shine
on Nash’s hair, allowing Hall to rake the eyes to take over.
The Outsider’s Edge
doesn’t work so Sid grabs a chokeslam, only to bump the referee.
There’s the powerbomb but Nash comes in, only to get kicked in the
face. Jarrett runs out with a guitar to break up the powerbomb on
Nash before putting Hall on top to retain. That would be worthless
street fight #1 of the evening.
Goldberg comes out (in
a t-shirt for some reason) and hits Jarrett with the worst spear I’ve
ever seen from him.
Gene
is still at the club and dancing with what appear to be strippers.
Is there a point to this anytime soon?
As expected, the women
will be in the mud later.
The Nitro Girls get in
a food fight and the mud wrestler starts choking. Juvy runs in with
the Heimlich for the save. It’s as random as it sounds.
Jerry Only vs. Steve
Williams
Escape
only. Williams pounds on the singer to start and scores with a
powerslam as Oklahoma is in on commentary. Heenan: “Why do you say
everything three times?” Oklahoma: “It’s my gimmick son.”
Williams stays on Only but Vampiro and the Misfits jump the barricade
and cover Oklahoma in barbecue sauce. The Oklahoma Stampede (running
powerslam) plants Only but Williams throws him through the door to
give Jerry the win. The announcers treat this as nothing of
interest.
Quick
sidebar on Oklahoma: why is this supposed to be funny? He doesn’t
say anything outlandish other than talk about barbecue sauce, which
is hardly wild stuff. The football obsession is nothing new. What
is the joke here supposed to be? What good is it to mock a guy by
calling moves? Isn’t that what he’s supposed to be doing? Ross is
known for being over the top, so the parody is acting a lot like him
but as a comedic guy? It’s more like a caricature than a parody,
which again isn’t funny.
Guerrera
says he saved the choking girl with mouth to mouth. Russo calls her
a wildebeest. Here’s the thing: yeah she’s bigger than say Lita or
Stacy Keibler, but the commentators are basically calling a fat cow.
She has a fairly pretty face and is far from fat, but since this is a
Russo company, all women have to range from evil to fat to stupid to
property of some man to just a sex character.
Luger has an idea.
Bret Hart knows he has
a tough fight in Meng but he’s ready to fight. Chavo says the shine
in Bret’s hair is due to the hair care product Chavo sold him. Wait.
You have HAIR product and you pitched a security system to KEVIN
NASH??? No wonder you bombed as a salesman. Know your customers!
WCW World Title:
Bret Hart vs. Meng
No
DQ, no countout, which isn’t mentioned during the introductions.
Bret hammers away to start and gets clubbered down for his efforts.
More right hands from the champ are countered by a backhand punch to
the face. A running boot to the face gets two and Meng plants Hart
with a shoulder breaker. Bret comes back with the Five Moves but
Hall comes in and the referee goes down. Meng puts Hall in the
Tongan Death Grip but Nash slides in and goes off on Meng with a
kendo stick. They go after Hart but Benoit comes out with a stick of
his own to beat up the Outsiders. Bret goes back in and puts on the
Sharpshooter for the TKO.
Rating:
D.
The match was nothing, but I liked Bret’s promo (minus Chavo) before.
It was old school Bret where he praised his opponent but said he was
just that much better. That’s Bret’s bread and butter and it still
worked here. I’ll even give them points to building Meng over the
last few weeks and then giving him a match like this. The booking of
the match went down hill, but this was a logically built match with a
decent pre-match promo.
However,
at the same time, the curse of Russo strikes again. The problem with
Russo is simple: if you’ve seen one of his grand conspiracy
storylines, you’ve seen them all. There are little signs here and
there and once you know what to look for, it becomes really obvious.
Now that being said, it had only been seen once in 1999 so it wasn’t
such a problem. What it means though is the story worked back then
and doesn’t hold up as well now.
Now
Symphony gets a bear.
Luger has an idea to
pop the ratings. Would that involve Luger taking a long vacation?
Tygress and Spice fight
again with Tygress being thrown into a shower.
Madusa is in Evan’s
locker room and talks him into a Cruiserweight Title shot at
Starrcade with the power of the lips and silicone.
As expected, Luger
tells Russo that Liz will be in the mud.
Chavo is interviewing
Sting when Liz comes up to beg him for help. Just like last week,
Sting doesn’t care.
Chris Benoit vs.
Sting vs. Jeff Jarrett
One
fall to a finish and the winner gets a World Title shot at some point
after Starrcade. Jeff wins a slugout with Sting to start but Benoit
suplexes Jarrett down for two. All three beat on each other for near
falls until Jarrett comes out on top of it and punches Sting up
against the ropes.
Benoit
flips out of a belly to back suplex but Sting splashes him by
mistake. Well in theory as you can’t tell anyone’s motivation these
days. The Stroke is countered into a Crossface but Sting breaks it
up. Cue Liz for a distraction so Luger can hit Sting with a chair,
but Jarrett hits Benoit with the guitar. This brings Dustin Rhodes
through the crowd with I think the bell to knock Jarrett out, giving
Benoit the pin.
Rating:
C-.
Oh yeah Benoit won but it only took three people running in, a chair,
a guitar and the ring bell with Benoit getting the pin while being
unconscious for a title shot somewhere down the line. Thank goodness
on that one as they were getting close to making someone look strong.
The
Mamalukes leave the club with some girls, meaning Gene is on his own.
Symphony goes up to see
Maestro but it’s David Flair in a wig. Oh good grief. He makes her
go over to the piano and opens it up to find Maestro inside. So now
David Flair some kind of criminal mastermind stalker. Of course he
is.
Goldberg vs. Kevin
Nash
No
DQ, no countout again. Goldberg does his entrance but stops to beat
up Hall. Your US Champion ladies and gentlemen. Nash comes out and
goes after Goldberg as Sid is locked in a room. That lasts all of
ten seconds and it’s a four way brawl as the music keeps playing.
They fight out into the arena and into the ring for the opening bell.
Goldberg cleans house until Hall chairs the referee and Goldberg
down. Sid comes back in but Hart sneaks in and steals the chair away
to blast Nash. Goldberg gets back up and spears Nash, setting up the
Jackhammer for the pin in 100 seconds.
Three
street fights, three ref bumps, one broke three minutes. That’s the
triple main event.
Roddy
Piper keeps ranting about mud.
The Outsiders want Sid
and Goldberg in a cage tonight.
Rhonda Singh vs.
Elizabeth
Piper
is refereeing. Singh comes out to stripper music but there’s no Liz.
We go to the back where Liz says she doesn’t care about the lawsuits
and walks away. Singh slaps Piper and pulls him into the mud, where
he rides her like a horse and spanks her a bit. No Russo doesn’t
have issues with women. Why do you ask? Creative Control gets muddy
as well and Piper covers one of them for a pin.
The
Mamalukes are cooking dinner in the girls’ apartment. This is what,
the fifth time we’ve seen these guys tonight?
Arn Anderson is upset
about being fired so here’s Hennig to offer him a spot on the team.
Anderson just walks away.
Chae gets in a fight
with Skye.
The Wall vs. Jerry
Flynn
Boiler
room brawl, called the Block and billed as a shoot. They fight, they
kick, they punch, they choke, they ignore the fans booing, they can
barely breathe, Berlyn comes in and hits Flynn with a pipe, Wall
chases Berlyn off with the pipe and it’s another no contest. Heenan:
“I don’t get it.” END THIS SHOW ALREADY.
Chavo
is in the back when Piper comes up. Roddy talks about the wars he
had with Chavo Sr. and tells Chavo to stand up for himself. The
Outsiders come in and get in a fight with Piper.
Curly Bill asks Hennig
for a job.
Russo
yells at Luger, who promises to get Liz muddy before the end of the
night. Creative Control is already cleaned up and wearing new suits.
Midnight vs. Curt
Hennig
Hennig
headlocks her down to start but Midnight nips up. A shoulder drops
Hennig and stuns him at the same time. Hennig chops away in the
corner and puts on an abdominal stretch, where he continuously slaps
Midnight’s chest. So we can add sexual harassment to Russo’s time in
charge. The lights go out and Stevie Ray returns to beat up Curt for
the DQ.
The lights go out again
and Curly Bill appears to beat on Stevie, but then the lights go out
again so Arn Anderson can beat up Hennig. Even the Horsemen music
can’t save this mess.
The girls tie the
Mamalukes to the bed, allowing Disco Inferno and Lash Leroux to come
in and pour spaghetti sauce on them. And that’s the big payoff for
the night.
Luger
brings Liz out and throws her in the mud, followed by pouring a
bucket of mud over her. He takes off the jacket but Sting comes out
and shoves him into the mud, ruining most of the suit. Liz appears
to slip badly getting out of the pit.
The
Mamalukes are still in bed. Thanks for coming back to that.
Goldberg/Sid
Vicious vs. Outsiders vs. Chris Benoit/Bret Hart
In
a cage with one fall to a finish and muddy Piper refereeing. It’s a
brawl to start as you would expect with a lot of punching all over
the ring. Both Outsiders get double teamed in the corner and the
fans chant for Goldberg. Nash gets fired up again and punches Sid
down in the corner but Tony talks about sauce (both kinds, because
Russo felt the need to have three people covered in two types of
sauce in one night).
Things
slow down as the match is already three minutes old as even more
punching abounds. Since a triple threat cage match with the Swamp
Thing as referee isn’t enough, cue Jeff Jarrett with a cart full of
weapons. Guitar shots all around of course and it’s time for the
handcuffs with Hart being chained to the cage. Hall gets knocked out
so Benoit, I’m guessing out of boredom, goes up and hits the Swan
Dive on Hall for the pin.
Rating:
D.
I can’t say it fails after that dive but my goodness this was dull.
It was a bunch of standing around and punching with Piper offering
nothing interesting or important to the match. I’m really not even
sure why these people are fighting, but it’s probably better to be
confused than to ask.
Jarrett and the
Outsiders beat up Benoit, Goldberg and Sid, seemingly not bothered by
the loss.
Overall
Rating:
F.
This is the stuff people talk about when Russo is discussed. We have
gimmick matches, unfunny jokes, women being treated a hundred times
worse than the Divas of today are treated, matches being made on the
fly and stories that make no sense. Oh and a bunch of mud for some
reason and titles being destroyed because there’s no point to having
them around.
I
lost count of how many gimmicks we had all night as well as the ref
bumps, the guitar shots and the women being treated as either stupid
or sex objects. That’s a good way to sum up Russo: there’s so much
of the same kind of stuff going on that you can’t tell where anything
is going. It’s definitely easier to sit through than one of the
boring shows, but my goodness the quality goes through the floor.
Horrible show here as Russo just burns through everything he has in
record time.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

Monday Nitro – November 22, 1999

Monday Nitro #215
Date: November 22, 1999
Location:
Palace of Auburn Hills, Auburn Hills, Michigan
Attendance: 11,449
Commentators: Bobby
Heenan, Tony Schiavone
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re past Mayhem now
and Bret Hart is the new WCW World Champion, actually winning the
title mostly clean over Chris Benoit in the Sharpshooter. The next
big night for the company is about a month away at Starrcade, meaning
it’s time to see what Russo considers a big idea. This would be
different than a small match with only four run-ins, a ref bump and a
weapon being used. Let’s get to it.

Jeff Jarrett is in the
back and ranting about how he’s the chosen one.
Opening sequence.
Here’s
Bret to open things up with a very shiny title. He’s finally here
after a long two years but it was all worth it and this title is for
his father Stu. As for things around here, what happened to Goldberg
hasn’t been cool so Bret thinks he should give Goldberg a title shot
at Starrcade. Cue the Outsiders with Hall mocking everything Bret
says, as you would expect him to.
Maybe Bret should take
some lessons from the Outsiders because they took WCW to where it is
today. That joke easily writes itself. They want a match against
Bret and Goldberg tonight and Bret says of course, but Jarrett sneaks
in and blasts Bret with the guitar. Like any good heel, he leaves
with the belt.
Curt Hennig is in the
back and says he can’t wrestle, but he can say goodbye to everyone.
He turns around and sees the Maestro playing the piano. Nothing else
happens, and Maestro will be playing there all night long. Why?
Because that’s what Maestro does I suppose.
Konnan
tells Kidman to stop worrying about his missing camera.
Tony
Marinara is with the Mamalukes, better known as Big Vito and Johnny
the Bull. Vito wants a cheese sandwich, and he says it so
convincingly that I want to buy him a sandwich. They plan on putting
a horse’s head in someone’s bed, then realize they don’t know whose
bed it is. Marinara threatens to call his father the Don and reminds
them that it’s Disco.
Luger is with the
Powers That Be and tells them that he can book Liz in matches due to
owning her contract. They agree, so tonight it’s Liz vs. Meng. I do
enjoy them pretending that this is going to be a match instead of an
angle.
Liz is horrified. Me
too. What a stupid story.
Tag Team Titles:
Konnan/Kidman vs. Creative Control
Whoa!
A match! The twins are challenging. Kidman gets launched into the
air for two to start before the other twin plants him with a slam.
Gerald gets dropkicked down though and the hot tag brings in Konnan
to clean house. We cut to the screen to show Eddie and Torrie in the
locker room talking. Kidman freaks out and runs to the back, even
though they were just casually talking. The monsters don’t really
need the help though as a spinning belly to back suplex gives them
the titles.
Rating:
D-.
Well so much for the Filthy Animals, as they’ve gone from Russo’s
favorite toy to seemingly about to split in the span of about a
month. I can’t say I’m complaining though as they were one of the
most annoying acts I’ve ever seen. The wrestling was fine but my
goodness their talking got old fast.
Kidman
goes after Eddie, but Heenan points out the correct observation: they
were just talking and laughing a bit. Nothing implied that something
was going on.
Goldberg and Hart
aren’t sure how to deal with the Outsiders and Jarrett in the same
night. Goldberg says he’ll fight the Outsiders on his own and Bret
can go after Jarrett. It won’t necessarily be a handicap match
either.
Skye can’t talk Spice
out of fighting Tygress tonight.
With the piano music
still playing, Hennig and Buff agree that there are no hard feelings
about the whole forcing Curt into retirement thing.
Here’s
Hardcore Champion Norman Smiley. He’s the REAL hardcore man around
here. When you look up the definition of hardcore in the dictionary,
you see his tough mug. This morning, he drank a glass of milk that
was TWO DAYS PAST EXPIRATION! It’s open challenge time and here’s
Fit Finlay to scare the milk out of Norman. He kicks Smiley low and
puts on his football helmet for a headbutt. The Regal Roll leaves
Smiley laying despite being the funniest guy in the company in a long
time.
The
announcers recap the show thus far.
Liz can’t talk Luger
out of putting her in this match. Maestro is still playing and has
barely been acknowledged all night.
Hall thinks he’s
figured out Goldberg’s plan. He can’t confirm it, but it might
involve spears and Jackhammers.
Chavo Guerrero is
selling the Mamalukes some gold chains when Disco comes in, freaks
out, and leaves.
Tenay tells Jarrett
that he has a match with Bret coming up tonight so Jarrett throws him
out. Well, he’s got the jerk role down.
Evan Karagias vs.
Saturn
Non-title.
Evan stops to kiss Madusa at the start and gets suplexed out of his
shoes for his efforts. The Death Valley Driver is countered into a
sunset flip for two as we have a hippie coming over to commentary.
It’s Brad Armstrong in yet another new gimmick called Buzzkill
(Heenan: “How do you do Mr. Kill?”) because he needs a
personality. Saturn throws Evan again and puts on the Rings of
Saturn for the quick win. Some champion.
Kidman
yells about Eddie going beyond Filthy Animal business and wants a
match with him later tonight. That could be good.
Eddie reads off a cue
card (some of the most obvious I’ve ever seen) about Kidman not
understanding what’s going on and proving it in the ring tonight.
Vampiro vs. The Wall
Ferrara
and Williams come out for commentary. Well one of them anyway.
Vampiro slugs away to start and knocks Wall to the floor but the big
man kicks him in the ribs to take over. You can imagine what Ferrara
is talking about. The Misfits help their buddy out but Wall shrugs
it off and beats on Vampiro inside. Vampiro’s kicks put him down but
Berlyn comes in with a chair for the DQ.
Wall
isn’t pleased and the Germans come to blows, breaking up the long
standing partnership after all of two months. After they leave,
Williams beats up the Misfits but eats a spinning kick to the face
from Vampiro.
Liz jumps inside a
shark cage because they just have one around.
A limo arrives.
WCW World Title:
Jeff Jarrett vs. Bret Hart
Jeff
is wearing the title after stealing it earlier in the night. Of
course this main events the first hour instead of the entire show.
Bret slugs away to start and takes Jeff into the corner for right
hands and a boot choke. Outside now with Jeff going into the
barricade before they head inside where Bret gets crotched on the top
rope. Back to the floor again as they can’t make up their mind.
Jeff slams him head first onto the announcers’ table as this
wrestling thing just doesn’t do it for either guy these days.
They get back inside
for a sleeper on the champ but he suplexes his way out to put both
guys down. The Five Moves get some near falls and Jeff gets the same
off a middle rope clothesline. Jeff kicks him to the floor and
Creative Control swarms Bret, drawing in Dustin Rhodes to clock
Jarrett with the title. Bret didn’t see a thing and covers to
retain.
Rating:
D+.
I really wasn’t feeling this one as they were all over the place out
there and brawling instead of wrestling like these two could do in
their sleep. But then again, why should either of them care at this
point? Bret’s heart clearly isn’t in it and they’ve wasted him this
long, so why should be believe it’s going to get any better?
The
Mamalukes come up to the Maestro, who has the former Ryan Shamrock
next to him, and ask for some Sinatra. Karaoke is performed in one
of the only times all night that Maestro has been acknowledged.
Luger
is trying to get Liz to come out of the cage. This girls in cages
idea has to be some Russo fetish. She finally gives it up but Luger
says the match is still on. Eh points for making him even more evil.
On the other hand, points taken away for leaving her locked inside
the cage and saying he’ll put it in the ring. After a break, Liz
tries to get Sting to help her but he says to lay in the cage she’s
made.
Kidman vs. Eddie
Guerrero
Torrie
is in a blue swimsuit top and matching blue pants with her hair tied
back. You can imagine the reactions. Why she changed since we saw
her with Eddie earlier isn’t clear. Konnan comes out with Eddie but
Kidman dives over the top to take Eddie down before the bell. They
head in for the first time with Eddie getting hammered in the corner.
That goes as far as it can so Guerrero suplexes Kidman over the top
and out to the floor in a big crash.
After
a whip to the barricade, Eddie takes him back inside for some knees
to the ribs. The camera keeps focusing on Torrie and throwing the
announcers off. I can cut them some slack on this one. Kidman gets
hit low trying a leapfrog and the match slows down quite a bit. The
Revolution comes out to jump Konnan to pick things up and because
that feud just won’t die. The distraction lets Kidman come back with
right hands to Eddie, setting up the Shooting Star but Torrie asks
him for help, allowing Eddie to superplex him down and nail the Frog
Splash for the pin.
Rating:
C.
That wasn’t bad but I could go for anything but the Revolution vs.
Filthy Animals going forward. Hopefully this leads to the Animals
breaking up though as I can’t take much more of their stupid
catchphrases and slang that makes no sense. Or the whole being
thieves that I’m supposed to cheer.
Creative
Control is asked which is Patrick and both point to the other. Quick
one line jokes are Russo’s strong suit. Their next assignments are
to find Duggan (“Big goof, one kidney”) and find out who is in
the limo.
Skye
asks Spice not to fight tonight but Spice has to do what a girl has
to do.
Meng
vs. Elizabeth
Liz,
still in the shark cage, is brought in on a forklift. Meng of course
attacks the cage but can’t break through. Luger offers him the key
and gets put in the Tongan Death Grip as a result, drawing out Sting
with the bat to lay out the monster. He unlocks Liz and they leave
after a non-match. Or did Meng win by DQ?
Jim
Duggan asks Maestro to play Chopsticks.
Lash Leroux vs.
Disco Inferno
Disco
is so scared of the mob guys that he doesn’t even dance and starts
the match quickly. They trade hammerlocks and armdrags to start as
Disco keeps looking over his shoulder. Cue the mob guys to scare
Disco even more, but Johnny accidentally trips Lash, allowing Disco
to take over. Disco stomps away but Lash pops back up with a sunset
flip and Whiplash for the pin.
The mob comes in to
stomp Disco, only to have Lash make the save. Marinara tries to come
in but gets put to sleep and thrown into a white body bag.
Creative
Control tries to see inside the limo to no avail. After a break, the
twins say they have nothing to do with the limo’s car alarm going
off. It should be their limo though since they’re the champs now.
The Powers yell at
Duggan for messing up the bathroom last week, so Russo has been
eating prunes all day. Duggan gets to clean the toilet with a
toothbrush.
Tygress vs. Spice
Let’s
get this over with. Spice is dressed as a schoolgirl and Tygress is
in a leopard print body suit. Tygress easily takes her down and the
fans are dead. Back up and Spice hits a kind of running tackle and
we’re in catfight mode. A snapmare puts Tygress down and the
announcers of course freak. Cue Skye (Stacy, in a leather skirt that
might be nine inches long) with a makeup bag to knock Spice out.
Skye and Tygress put
makeup on Spice. I can’t imagine this story continuing.
We go to the back to
talk to…..MENG? As the Maestro keeps laying just because, Meng
speaks (!), saying he wants Sting in a No DQ match tonight with Sting
using the bat. So Meng is ok with someone hitting him in the head
with a bat. Why would you EVER take him up on that? I know Sting is
stupid but my goodness. Speaking of my goodness, MENG DOES NOT TALK.
This is just a step below WWE ECW having Sabu speak. You just don’t
do it.
Here’s
Hennig for his big farewell. After a hug to Heenan, Curt can barely
speak. He keeps trying but a PERFECT chant cuts him off and he
leaves with tears in his eyes.
We see the limo again.
Duggan finds Russo’s
toothbrush and cleans the toilet with it. You know this is coming
back later.
Cue
Roddy Piper of all people for the first time in about four months.
He rips into writers, ranting about how they put in all these women
and T&A and having a bunch of stupid entrances. This is actually
exactly what you would expect him to say. The mic is quickly cut
off, so Piper grabs a camera guy and takes him to the back to meet
with the Powers That Be.
After kicking the door
in, Piper is stunned to see Russo (well, despite them flat out saying
it was Russo since he debuted, how could Piper know? Did he really
expect there to be a body there instead of just an arm?) and tells
the boss that he has a contract, guaranteeing that he appears on TV.
Russo says Piper has a bad hip and is almost 50 so he needs to go
join Ric and Hulk in Florida. Piper can be on TV though, but it’s
going to be as a referee. Piper fumes about it, then walks to his
limo saying “Yes sir” over and over. Somehow, this fits him
perfectly.
Buff Bagwell vs.
Booker T.
Booker
gets taken down by a nice armdrag to start and it’s time to dance.
They lock up and Creative Control is out before we can even get a
minute into the match. Buff clotheslines him down and they head to
the floor for….nothing. Ok then. Back in and Booker nails the
kicks and the Spinarooni, only to have to nail one of the twins
instead of covering. The distraction lets Buff nail a Blockbuster,
but the other twin distracts the referee so the first can stomp
Bagwell. Cue Hennig to talk to the twins….and then stomp Bagwell.
One of the twins covers Buff and the bell rings because of whatever
their reason is this week.
Rating:
D.
So Hennig spent weeks getting beaten up by whoever Russo threw at him
and then joined them anyway. I’m so glad we’ve moved past that NWO
era and are now getting the same thing from a yet to be named group
led by the Powers That Be. Is there any team Hennig hasn’t joined
since he’s been in WCW?
Midnight comes out for
the save.
The Powers welcome
Hennig to the team. If you can’t beat em, join em you see, even
though he won several of the matches.
Liz offers to manage
Sting against Meng tonight.
Asya vs. Madusa
This
could be gloriously horrible. They’re already fighting on the floor
before the bell finishes ringing. Asya drives her into the barricade
but Madusa gets in some kicks to the ribs. Back in (assuming they
were in there in the first place) with Madusa lifting her up in an
electric chair before firing off even more kicks. Asya slams her off
the top and puts on a leg choke for the submission while Saturn beats
up Karagias on general principle.
Malenko doesn’t like
seeing Canadians fighting for an American prize. Tonight he’s going
to show Benoit how much he cares about Canada with a blowtorch. The
anthem is changing from O Canada to BURN CANADA BURN. This is going
to hurt isn’t it?
Chris Benoit vs.
Dean Malenko
Double
flag match, which is close enough to a pole match that I’m
considering it one. Benoit pulls Dean’s hockey jersey over his face
hockey style, setting up some knees to the ribs. The fans of course
chant USA. I have no idea which flag they need to pull down and
Heenan is too busy making hockey jokes. Benoit heads outside and
grabs…..gasoline. Oh geez this isn’t ending well is it?
Malenko saves himself
from being set on fire (just go with it) with a low blow but Benoit
chops him in the corner. Is that like a Canadian defense mechanism
or something? Benoit stops Dean from getting the Canadian flag and
puts him in the Tree of Woe for a good looking baseball slide. He
whips Malenko in but Dean drops to his knees to beg for mercy. Oh
come on now. Thankfully Benoit dropkicks him in the face, only to be
sent throat first into the bottom rope, allowing Malenko to get the
Canadian flag for the win. Tony makes it even worse by saying you
had to get your own flag but I really can’t bring myself to care.
Rating:
D.
This wasn’t much of a match but Benoit’s dropkicks looked good. It’s
just so depressing watching Malenko have to put up with this nonsense
which he clearly hates doing. At least it was fast though and it’s a
sad day when you have to say that about a Malenko vs. Benoit match.
The
Revolution comes in with a barrel and throw in the Canadian flag.
That’s not enough though as they throw in the American one as well,
but thankfully Bret runs in for the save. He hands Benoit the
Canadian flag and waves the American one because why not. See, this
is where the Revolution dies right in front of you. Russo seemed to
think they were paramilitary or something similar so that’s what
we’re getting: people who hate Canada and the US as well. I’m not
sure how we got here from guys tired of the older generation hogging
the main event and honestly, I’m not sure I want to know because it
might scare me.
The
Powers call Juventud Guerrera into their office to ask about an
expired work visa. Juvy offers the Powers some tequila and Russo
spits it out. He’d like his toothbrush please (you knew it was
coming), despite clearly just being an arm with a voicebox attached.
Meng vs. Sting
No
DQ and Sting is in a t-shirt again. Meng goes right after him to
start, possibly worried that the poly/cotton blend might chafe
Sting’s toned chest. Liz comes out to watch as Sting finally gets
out of the jacket, revealing leather pants. Huh? Sting avoids an
elbow but turns down Liz’s offer of the mace can. The Stinger Splash
has Meng in trouble but here’s Luger. Sting grabs him, possibly to
ask for hair tips, setting up the Tongan Death Grip to give Meng the
win, which I’m sure is totally leading somewhere right?
Liz checks on Sting
post match.
Nash shouts for someone
to come on….but Hall is in the other direction. I don’t see this
ending well.
Goldberg asks his
partner if he’s ready.
David Flair FINALLY
breaks up Maestro’s piano with the crowbar, probably turning into one
of the biggest faces in the promotion as a result. Well assuming the
fans can actually see these segments.
Outsiders vs.
Goldberg/???
Nash
gets to wear the TV Title, which you would think is way beneath him.
Somehow this is the first time Tony explains that Hall is the US and
TV Champion. You would think that would have been brought up earlier
in the night, but we had piano issues to discuss. Now the
stupid/shocking move here would be to go with Sid as Goldberg’s
partner in an act of respect for all the hard fou…..oh of course
it’s Sid so I’m not even bothering with the sarcasm here. They’re
acting like best friends now of course and don’t have the slightest
bit of animosity.
Hall
and Goldberg get things going but Scott throws the toothpick at Sid
to draw him in. The referee actually does his job for once and it’s
off to Sid. Hall is casually shoved across the ring and Sid does it
again for good measure. Tony tries to pass this off as a big respect
thing but it’s just not working.
The Outsiders have to
fight out of a double chokeslam attempt and it’s off to Nash for some
big right hands. A running boot to the face drops Nash though and
it’s time for the Starrcade rematch. Nash gets put with a superkick
and I can’t believe this has held together so long. Some good old
fashioned cheating gives the Outsiders a breather but Goldberg just
plants Scott with a powerslam. Another cheap shot slows Goldberg
down so Sid hits one of his own (with the bandaged arm) on Hall to
even things out.
Nash comes in for the
standard corner offensive package and it’s back to Hall for a front
facelock. Old school missed tag to Sid gets us nowhere so Goldberg
clotheslines both Outsiders at the same time. Sid comes in to clean
house and chokeslams Hall, followed by a big spear. The powerbomb
connects but Nash sneaks in while the referee is with Goldberg and
drops an elbow (just a regular elbow) on Sid to give Hall the fluke
pin.
Rating:
D+.
This was……shockingly watchable actually. The cheating end was as
tame an ending to a Russo main event as there has been yet and this
was a really by the book, standard tag formula power match. I mean,
it wasn’t anything good but for a TV main event in this era to
actually be calm and follow the rules is stunning.
Goldberg and Nash fight
until security pulls them apart to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
D.
It’s a slightly better show this week with a few less things to get
annoyed at, but the Maestro thing got annoying in a hurry. I’m still
trying to get over that main event though as it was a totally calm
and rational match without a bunch of insanity throughout. It’s nice
that they’re focusing on Starrcade already but the stuff in the
middle is going to hurt them in the long run. I mean, do we need to
see the Revolution trying to burn flags or the Hennig nonsense? It’s
also annoying that Luger and Sting have one of the most logical
stories on the roster while everyone else is a mess. Fix that and
the show will improve.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

Thunder – November 18, 1999

Thunder
Date:
November 18, 1999
Location: Allen County
War Memorial, Fort Wayne, Indiana
Attendance: 3,283
Commentators: Scott
Hudson, Larry Zbyszko
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re three days away
from Mayhem and the interesting thing this week is can they keep up
the wrestling on this show. Thunder has definitely become the
wrestling show, with matches getting more time than Nitro gets most
of the time, but with less star power and more bad interference.
Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.
Jerry
Flynn vs. Bam Bam Bigelow
Hardcore
so Bigelow brings out some weapons but Flynn takes him away and nails
Bigelow with a trashcan. Barbarian is out here with Flynn, despite
Jerry beating him in an impromptu boiler room brawl Monday. Norman
Smiley comes out but Hart sends Knobbs and Barbarian after him.
Without noticing what’s going on outside, Bigelow takes Flynn down
with a clothesline. Thankfully he didn’t ruin the mullet.
Time for the cookie
sheet shots followed by the can lids crashing around Flynn’s head
like cymbals. The flying headbutt misses though and Jerry hits
something like a Van Daminator with the trashcan. Barbarian comes in
like a schnook and gets beaten down, followed by a chair to Flynn to
give Bigelow the three count.
Rating:
D.
There was nothing to this one other than Hart and Smiley shouting at
each other a lot. That was the most entertaining part of the match,
which is likely due to the idea of taking two entertaining guys and
letting them entertain. This is different than Flynn who is there
because he knows karate and Bigelow, who could be entertaining but
not in a mess like this.
Disco
can’t get anyone to give him action on a bet for a match tonight.
Bagwell is looking for
Chris Benoit.
Disco Inferno vs.
Prince Iaukea
Non-title
and Iaukea has new gear. Not interesting gear of course but it’s new
with some trunks and boots. Disco goes to the eyes to start but
Iaukea smacks him in the back of the head. I’ll give WCW 1999 this
much: their heels had great hair. After begging off, Disco sends him
into the corner and takes over with all of his usual stuff. A
clothesline and middle rope elbow get two each on the Prince.
Iaukea’s
sunset flip doesn’t work and Disco stays on him with elbows and
chokes, followed by a chinlock to keep the fans bored. Iaukea comes
back with an even less interesting offense (the high spot is a
dropkick) until Disco drops him with a DDT. Thankfully for a change,
we get silly as a messenger brings Disco a package. Inside is…..a
fish? Oh I get it: sleep with the fishes. The distraction lets
Iaukea grab a rollup for the pin.
Rating:
F.
Is it bad that I want to see where the fish story is going? I know
it’s the mafia gambling stuff but it’s more entertaining than most
other stuff going on with this promotion. What isn’t interesting
however is the really dull wrestling in this match as neither guy
knows how to keep an audience. Disco is nothing great but at least
he has something unique with the dancing. Iaukea…..what in the
world do they see in him to keep him on the payroll?
Post match, Disco hits
Iaukea with the fish. Remember that he has a title defense three
days from now.
Evan Karagias says he’s
going to beat Savage for the love of his woman.
Van
Hammer asks Curt Hennig to get counted out tonight and a fight breaks
out. This story is one of the worst in the company and that covers a
lot of ground.
Evan
Karagias vs. The Maestro
The
bubbles in Maestro’s entrance are always odd to see. Maestro grabs a
quick headlock to start and nails a shoulder. Evan comes back with a
cross body but rolls outside to kiss Madusa. The delay works for a
bit but Maestro comes back by raising a boot in the corner. Some
forearms and a belly to back suplex get two on Evan as this is just a
step ahead of the previous match.
More
uppercuts set up a German suplex but Evan flips over the back and
gets two of his own off a snap suplex. Madusa has to play
cheerleader despite looking about 20 years older than she really is
here. A spinebuster puts Evan down but Madusa gets on the apron and
kisses Maestro. Evan kicks him down and checks on Madusa (who didn’t
seem to mind), allowing Maestro to roll him up for the pin.
Rating:
D-.
Boring wrestling, uninteresting characters, Madusa being a focus for
reasons not exactly clear and the #1 contender to the Cruiserweight
Title losing about ten minutes after the champion lost. The
wrestling on this show isn’t great, but the booking continues to be
the real problem dragging this down. I guess they’re setting it up
that Evan is distracted by Madusa, but when the champion loses
earlier in the night and Evan has never really done anything, the
story is a huge mess.
The Revolution talks
about Torrie being a Barbie doll. Shane wants to see Asya rip her
apart, sending Saturn into a rant about taking the limbs off a
Barbie. Shane: “Perry, IT WAS A FIGURE OF SPEECH!” Saturn: “My
point exactly!”
Disco is panicking on
the phone with Tony Marinara.
Benoit
heard that Bagwell is looking for him. He leaves a few seconds
before Bagwell shows up.
Nitro
recap video, complete with Sid’s half the brain line.
La Parka and Kaz
Hayashi have another overdubbed interview with Hayashi sounding like
he’s from rural Georgia. I think these predated Kaientai’s INDEED
promos but they’re around the same time.
Buff and Benoit finally
get together with Bagwell asking Benoit not to use the suplexes or
the Crossface on the bad neck. Benoit says Buff knew what he was
getting into and they brawl.
Kaz Hayashi/La Parka
vs. El Dandy/Silver King
Kaz
has his own chair and even the announcers have to mention the dubbed
voices. Dandy gets flipped around while trying to backslide Kaz so
it’s quickly off to La Parka vs. King. La Parka does his dance so
King dropkicks him in the face and everything quickly breaks down.
King and Dandy are headscissored to the floor and the fans are
actually behind Kaz and Parka here. Dandy comes in and tries a right
hand but hits his partner by mistake. After the calamity calms down,
Kaz gets whipped into a gutbuster as we settle into a more standard
formula.
A
double slam gets two on Kaz but Dandy lets him walk over for the tag
to La Parka. Things speed up with Silver coming in to help Dandy as
the heels take over again. La Parka is sent to the floor so Kaz
comes in, only to get tripped down a few seconds later. The heels
screw up with King hitting Dandy, allowing Kaz to tag La Parka again.
Everything breaks down with La Parka hitting a missile dropkick and
Kaz adding a high cross body to King. La Parka’s kind of Whisper in
the Wind is enough to pin King.
Rating:
C-.
This got messy in the middle but I like the idea of La Parka and Kaz
being these guys who can barely speak English but suddenly have the
dubbed voices. I’m fine with these decent nothing matches on Thunder
though, as they’re clean enough to not make my head hurt and long
enough to quality as a match instead of an angle. It doesn’t mean
anything after the match ends but at least it was decent while it
lasted.
La Parka chairs King
post match.
Bagwell and Hennig get
in a fight over something we don’t hear.
Curt Hennig vs. Van
Hammer
Larry
goes on a rant against the term “Powers That Be”. I kind of
agree as WCW has announced that they’re Russo and Ferrara so why not
just go with that? Curt knees Hammer on the way in but gets thrown
outside for a brawl. To keep up the stupidity of this show, we see a
sign saying “I’m only here for the Nitro Girls.” Maybe Russo is
on to something about the fans being morons. Back in and Hennig
starts in on the leg as Bagwell strolls out to follow up on a five
minute old angle. All the oil on Buff’s arms distracts Hennig so
Hammer can get in a cheap shot and snap his throat across the top
rope.
Curt
goes after Buff but catches Hammer trying to jump him from behind
with a kick to the ribs. Back in and Hennig slams Hammer’s head
against the mat as Buff plays cheerleader for Hammer. Apparently it
works as Hammer comes back with a knee in the corner followed by a
DDT, only to miss a middle rope flip dive. Curt is sent outside for
a brawl with Bagwell, only to have Benoit come out and get sent into
the barricade. Back up and Hammer is accidentally whipped into Buff,
allowing Curt to hit the HennigPlex for the pin.
Rating:
D-.
I need a minute here. Let’s try to figure this out. So the Powers
That Be want to get rid of Hennig by saying he’s gone as soon as he
gets pinned, because a submission isn’t good enough for them for
whatever reason. At the same time, they want to screw with Bagwell
by making him job all the time because wrestling is scripted, but
Bagwell wants to rebel and win his REAL matches.
Now
he’s screwing with Hennig to get rid of him, presumably as a favor to
the Powers That Be to get them off Bagwell’s back? At the same time,
Benoit is involved despite being in the final four of the World Title
tournament because they have nothing better to do with him tonight
and there’s NO ONE else they could throw into this mess? The fact
that I had to write out two paragraphs to understand this story,
ignoring the fact that it completely exposes the business, sums up
Russo’s booking in a nutshell: A stupid midcard feud took that long
to understand and I don’t even care now that I’ve figured it out.
Luger
works out as Chavo sells Liz Amway jewelery. THIS story gets to
continue but we’re not likely to hear any more about La Parka and
Kaz.
Lash Leroux vs.
Kenny Kaos
Leroux
takes him down to start but Kaos kicks him in the ribs and scores
with a butterfly suplex. After a middle rope legdrop gets two, Lash
botches a flip over the back but takes over anyway. Why let
something like a big mishap screw up your quick match right? Kaos
comes back with a boot to the face and a bunch of kicks and punches
in the corner.
A
gutwrench suplex gets two for Kaos but Lash comes back with a Russian
legsweep and stomps of his own. Kaos is sent outside but Lash
baseball slides into his leg to really take over. The leg is fine
enough to catch a diving Cajun though and drive him back first into
the barricade. So he’s generic and doesn’t sell. Back in and Lash
escapes a slam and hits Whiplash for the pin.
Rating:
D.
In the old days, this would be filler on Saturday Night but now it’s
one of the later shows on Thunder. It really is apparent that no one
cared about this show and they were clearly just filling in time.
Again, I’d love to know what someone was high on when they picked
Kaos to be a champion a year ago. That stuff could make me a fortune
on the streets.
The Animals brag about
Torrie being a martial arts expert. I smell an unfunny comedy bit
coming up.
Vampiro wraps a chain
around his hand.
Chavo Guerrero Jr.
vs. Barbarian
Chavo comes out with
his order forms for Barbarian, but Barbarian hits him in the back
with the briefcase, setting up the Kick of Fear for the pin at 8
seconds.
Post
match, Barbarian says he’ll pay Chavo later. Well, at least it’s
something for Chavo to do. Stupid yes but something.
Tournament recap.
Liz and Luger watch
Meng from a monitor.
Meng vs. Vampiro
Vampiro
gets taken down by the hair to start, which you would expect to have
been the other way around. Meng loses a kick-off but Vampiro
stupidly tries a headbutt. Well no one ever accused him of being
smart. Now Meng headbutts the buckle but doesn’t seem to phase it.
A bunch of chops stagger Vampiro and Meng nails a decent dropkick. I
remember Jesse Ventura freaking out when Haku hit those and I can’t
say I disagree.
Vampiro
gets piledriven and sent to the floor for a whip into the barricade.
Back inside and Meng is finally put down by a top rope spinwheel
kick. That’s the extent of Vampiro’s offense though as his
hurricanrana is countered with a powerbomb. Jerry Only of the
Misfits comes in and takes the Tongan Death Grip and that’s the
match, presumably for a no contest.
Rating:
D+.
Meng is one of those guys that is kind of fun to watch, just due to
him no selling almost everything and hurting as many people as he
did. Unfortunately he’s being set up with Luger, which is about as
dull of a program as you can have. The ending here did nothing for
anyone, but that really shouldn’t be surprising.
Liz comes out to
apologize to Meng and the monster is nice enough to stop lunging at
her with the Death Grip as Luger is late with his cue. He finally
shows up and chairs Meng down before crushing his knees with the
chair.
Chris Benoit vs.
Buff Bagwell
Ever
the genius, Buff tries to slide under the ropes and gets stomped
down. Chris takes over with a dropkick and a knee to the ribs but
gets dropped ribs first onto the top rope. They head outside with
Buff dropping Benoit’s throat across the barricade before stomping
away. Back inside and Buff keeps up the stomping motif as this is
actually one of the more entertaining matches of the night due to the
charisma both guys have. Buff wasn’t much in the ring but he had
some energy to him.
A
neckbreaker sets up a chinlock on Chris as I guess Buff is a heel all
of a sudden. They trade punches and chops in the corner before
Benoit takes it to the floor to give Bagwell the beating he deserves.
Back in and Benoit hits the snap suplex and puts on a surfboard
before “accidentally” kicking Buff low. They head outside again
with Buff getting whipped into the barricade but Benoit makes the
same mistake Buff made at the start and lets Bagwell get in some
shops as he comes in.
Buff
hammers away but has to grab the ropes to block a German suplex.
That’s fine with Benoit as he plows through Buff with a clothesline,
only to miss the Swan Dive. Buff goes up for the Blockbuster but
here’s Hennig to break it up, allowing Benoit to slap on the
Crossface for the win.
Rating:
C+.
So to recap, Benoit has gotten two of the longest matches of the
Russo Era and has put in two of the best performances to date. Aside
from Benoit being awesome, a lot of it goes to show that when you
give the guys a chance to show what they can do, you more often than
not get a good match. You can’t do anything with two minutes and
three plot devices at a time.
Benoit stares at Hennig
and leaves, allowing Curt and Buff to brawl to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
D.
They had something here with the self contained story of
Bagwell/Benoit/Hennig ending with a match but I can’t imagine this is
going to be a recurring theme. Other than that though, this was your
usual disaster with nonsensical ideas and booking decisions that seem
to be more there for the amusement of Russo and Ferrara than anything
else. I have no desire to see Mayhem more than I did two hours ago
though, so the show was a waste of time.
No show next week due
to Thanksgiving.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
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Monday Nitro – November 15, 1999

Monday Nitro #214
Date: November 15, 1999
Location:
Barton Coliseum, Little Rock, Arkansas
Attendance: 10,435
Commentators: Tony
Schiavone, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s the go home show
for Mayhem so tonight we get the tournament down to the final four.
The big question this week though is what genre of direct to video
movie are we getting? Last week it was thriller with Kimberly vs.
David Flair, mixed in with the comedy of Kevin Nash as the Grand
Wizard. Heaven help me but let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.
There’s a cage over the
ring. Of course there is.
Norman Smiley vs.
Jimmy Hart
Hardcore,
meaning Smiley comes out in football pads and Jimmy in…..a suit of
armor. Well that’s kind of Genius of him. Jimmy brings in some
weapons and actually doesn’t die at first because Norman can’t see
through his helmet. The weapons shots have no effect on Hart so
Norman just takes him down by the legs. Hart comes back with some
powder to the face and Norman has to take the helmet off to cry.
The fans loudly chant
NORMAN, but I’m sure that’s just because of the weapons and not the
effort or comedic skills he’s displaying right? Jimmy gets in some
weapons shots but Norman gets up, drawing out Knobbs with a chair to
the head. Brian loads up a table but Jimmy misses a dive through it,
giving Norman the easy pin.
Rating:
D+.
This is one of those matches where the guys tried and were having
fun, but they firmly hit the roof of what they were capable of doing.
It doesn’t help that this is to set up the epic showdown between
Knobbs and Smiley, when it seems like there’s something entertaining
in having Hart as a hardcore guy if you keep him in the armor.
Knobbs
beats Smiley down post match.
Here are the tournament
brackets.
Bret Hart
Kidman
Total Package
Sting
Chris Benoit
Scott Hall
Buff Bagwell
Jeff Jarrett
If
Curt Hennig can beat Goldberg tonight, he gets a new contract. And
what stops the Powers That Be from saying he’s fired from that one if
he loses?
Kimberly talks to Terry
Taylor. Why is she in the building after last week?
Tonight,
Nash is dressed like Sid, complete with some pretty good prosthetic
makeup. Well at least he isn’t Slick.
AC
Jazz is out of the Nitro Girls so Fyre and Tygress jump Spice. Next.
Here
are the Outsiders with Nash as Sid, with a chin that is far bigger
than the real version. Keeping in mind that Sid is from Arkansas,
the fans aren’t thrilled with this. Nash says he rules the world
about five times but stops to remind us that he’s stupid. Cue Sid,
who has had enough of these two. We get the famous line of “you
are only half of the man that I am, and I have half the brains that
you do” which has Hall nearly doubled over in laughter. Sid is
already in a match tonight, but he wants to get Nash out of
retirement on top of that. Nash says no so Sid calls him a shell of
his former self and Nash says……nothing.
Tonight,
Booker has to face Creative Control, officially named Gerald and
Patrick. Why having the Harris Twins have the same names as the
Stooges is supposed to be funny isn’t clear but I’m sure Russo gets a
chuckle out of it. Booker says Midnight will strike.
Kimberly tries to see
the Powers That Be but the Twins stop her.
Post break, Kimberly is
in the Powers’ office and Russo puts her in a match with Asya.
There’s going to be a special referee.
Nash comes into Russo’s
office.
Booker T. vs.
Creative Control
Before
he can get to the ring, Booker is stopped by Chavo for an Amway
pitch. After that comedy spot goes nowhere, Booker goes after we’ll
say Patrick but gets whipped into Gerald’s boot. Tony stops talking
about the match to say the Powers That Be have rescinded Nash’s
retirement stipulation. Tony: “It was a lame angle anyway.”
Every show I watch, I understand Cornette’s rantings and ravings just
a bit more.
The
Twins start double teaming him and take it outside where Booker can
only fight one at a time. Back in and Booker manages a dropkick to
put both guys down, setting up the ax kick and a missile dropkick for
two with Gerald making a save. The H Bomb gets the pin on Booker a
few seconds later.
The
gong strikes and Midnight appears to knock out both Twins. This is
after she got laid out by Jarrett last week so the effect isn’t all
there.
Post
break, Russo threatens to make Creative Control into bikers again.
They’re banished to go find the luchadors and Torrie.
Evan Karagias vs.
Johnny Boone
Yes
referee Johnny Boone who is wrestling in jeans here. Madusa comes
out with Karagias, who gets jumped as the bell rings. Evan easily
shoves him back because he’s a referee as Madusa goes to commentary.
They slowly go after each other because Boone, while a trained
wrestler, isn’t much above average and that leaves Evan Karagias to
carry things. Boone gets a boot up in the corner so Madusa rams his
face into her cleavage. He’s out cold and Evan gets the easy pin.
Keep in mind that Evan is challenging for the Cruiserweight Title
this Sunday and this is his big warmup.
Madusa
kisses Evan post match.
Russo
has a bunch of luchadors in his face and makes them a deal: he’s
going to put a $10,000 check inside a pinata and hang it from a pole.
As luck would have it, Juvy is carrying a pinata. They’ll all be
given a stick to hit each other with too. You can see the lawsuits
from here.
Dr. Death Steve
Williams and Ed Ferrara as JR show up.
Creative Control keeps
looking for Torrie.
Villano V vs.
Juventud Guerrera vs. El Dandy vs. Silver King vs. Psychosis
It’s
a brawl to start and the pinata falls down fifteen seconds in. King
moonsaults onto Dandy as Williams and Ferrara come to ringside.
Ferrara gets on commentary and does his JR impression, listing off
football stats, telling Tony to speak in soundbytes and shouting
PINATA over and over. Juvy gets the pinata (PINATA! PINATA!) but
the match just keeps going with the camera on Ferrara. Guerrera does
the elbow drop and shakes the pinata as candy flies everywhere. Dr.
Death gets in the ring and beats everyone up for the no contest,
after almost everyone had the pinata at one point.
Rating:
F.
Well let’s see. It was a bunch of racial stereotypes, the pinata
didn’t last twenty seconds, Juvy didn’t win for no explained reason,
the sticks didn’t go anywhere, it was all about Dr. Death cleaning
house at the end, and they spent the entire match ripping on JR after
ripping on Sid earlier, Grand Wizard last week and Vince the week
before. Pick any two of those reasons and you’ll get why this is a
failure.
Dr. Death takes the
check from King as the bell rings roughly 857 times.
Goldberg doesn’t care
about anything.
Nash
is back in his usual clothes and says he took some time off when WCW
sucked. Now that Hall is back, things are fun again. Well of course
it is. He barely has to do anything but comedy and gets a huge
check. Pay no attention to the company, and therefore the checks,
dying before his eyes.
Goldberg vs. Curt
Hennig
Goldberg is coming out
of his locker room when Hennig slams the door on his head. Unlike
Flair with the WarGames door, Goldberg no sells it and they brawl in
the back with Goldberg getting the better of it. They fight to the
aisle and the bell rings with Hennig getting knocked to ringside and
looking like he’s running scared.
Curt finally gets in
some knees to the head as they go inside. The Robinsdale Crunch sets
up a stepover toehold for well over a minute, with the referee
ignoring Goldberg’s shoulders being down the entire time. Goldberg
finally punches him in the face and puts on a leg bar for the
submission, meaning Hennig keeps his job.
Rating:
D.
So Hennig can lose by anything but pin and keep his job. Why would
the Powers That Be want to keep him around if he never wins because
he keeps submitting or getting counted out? This was another of
those mostly hardcore matches which don’t make people care because it
doesn’t last five minutes and it’s part of a story that makes no
sense.
Kimberly
is on the phone with Page when the lights flicker. She panics at the
fear of bad writing but Jim Duggan comes up with a flashlight and
says the fuses in this place are horrible. I hate to admit it, but
this was kind of funny. Ignore the fact that Jim Duggan apparently
has a working knowledge of the fuses in an arena in Little Rock,
Arkansas.
Creative
Control tells the Filthy Animals that they’re fired if they don’t
produce Torrie. The Animals heed the threat and go find her. Wait
why isn’t she with them in the first place?
Chavo Guerrero sells
Duggan some fuses.
Vampiro/Misfits
vs. Berlyn/The Wall
The
Misfits almost have to be better than the Clowns. The Bodyguard is
officially the Wall, which is more punny delight. Three are three
Misfits and one is named Jerry Only. Berlyn goes after Vampiro to
start and sends him flying with a belly to belly. He misses a
dropkick though and it’s off to the Misfits vs. the Wall. The trio
is chokeslammed with ease but Vampiro comes in and kicks the Wall in
the face.
The
fans are way behind Vampiro here but Berlyn kicks him down, setting
up a missile dropkick/suplex combo but the Germans argue over the
pin. Wall steps aside so Vampiro can hit a quick Nail in the Coffin
but Berlyn counters a top rope hurricanrana into a powerbomb. This
time it’s Wall breaking up the pin but Vampiro breaks it up, only to
eat a chokeslam for the pin.
Rating:
D+.
Most of that is because Wall hit some good looking chokeslams and the
Misfits were little more than cannon fodder. This might have been
the most logical match of the Russo Era so far with Berlyn getting
annoyed at Wall for taking the glory, even though Berlyn is a waste
of a roster spot at this point. Wall looks like someone they could
push as someone interesting, meaning he’s doomed from here.
Berlyn whips Vampiro
post match.
Torrie has been brought
to the Powers’ office and Russo throws her a referee bikini, because
“it’s all about the ratings.” Why did he have one of those
handy?
TV Title: Rick
Steiner vs. Sid Vicious
Rick
is defending even though he didn’t bring the belt with him. We
continue a running theme tonight with the guys brawling in the aisle
but this time Sid is sent over the barricade and into the crowd.
Steiner slams him down on the concrete but Sid fights back, only to
put on something like a chinlock near the stage. That goes nowhere
so Rick is dragged up to the stage for a low blow, setting up a
powerbomb through the stage. Sid walks away and they never actually
got into the ring. No match it would seem.
Post
break, Rick is taken out on a stretcher. This goes on for the better
part of ten minutes and Sid rambles about not wanting to do this to
his friend. He’s ready for Nash tonight.
Nash
is taping up.
We go to the boiler
room for Jerry Flynn vs. Barbarian in something resembling a match.
Remember when Mankind and Undertaker did this? Or Big Show and
Mankind? Well now it’s Jerry Flynn beating up Barbarian, kicking him
up against the wall and I guess knocking him out. Tony brags about
how great this is going to be for the ratings and how it’s going to
make people watch the show.
Benoit says Scott Hall
isn’t standing in the way of getting to the World Title.
Asya vs. Kimberly
Torrie
is guest referee and wearing a bikini. Well at least they’re not
hiding what they’re doing anymore. Asya and Torrie get in a lame
catfight until Kimberly jumps on Asya’s back with a sleeper. The
Animals come out to cover Torrie up and get her out of there. Cue
David Flair with the crowbar and wearing a referee shirt, sending
Kimberly running off. David and Asya fight with David shrugging off
a low blow but the Revolution comes out to clear the ring. So a
minute long non match had two guest referees (I guess?), and I
believe five people interfering?
Sting
is given some flowers with a card from Luger. Liz and Luger are
shown hoping that he likes them, but Sting doesn’t think he can trust
them.
Goldberg has a chilled
beverage.
Kimberly runs from
David.
WCW World Title
Tournament Quarter-Finals: Chris Benoit vs. Scott Hall
Bret
Hart comes out to be in Benoit’s corner to counter Nash. So he’s
Hogan to Nash’s Andre? Hall throws the toothpick at him and finds it
hilarious. That earns him some fluid from Benoit’s nose and they
trade some arm holds. Now Hall wants the test of strength, only to
pock Benoit in the eye. That’s fine with Chris who trips Hall down
and dropkicks him in the side of the head.
The
Outsiders have a breather on the floor as this might be the longest
match we’ve seen in Russo’s Era without any shenanigans. Back in and
they trade chops in the corner with Benoit taking over and getting
two off a snap suplex. Nash can’t help it any longer and nails
Benoit in the back of the neck, allowing Scott to nail a clothesline
for two. Scott gets into his routine and the fall away slam is good
for two.
We
hit the sleeper on the Canadian but Chris suplexes out to put both
guys down. Benoit fights up and plants Hall with a backbreaker
before dropkicking him to the floor. Nash goes after Benoit but Hart
makes the save. In the melee, Sid comes in and powerbombs Hall,
setting up the Swan Dive for two. Nash makes another save but Benoit
Crossfaces Hall to go to Mayhem.
Rating:
B-.
Here’s the interesting thing about the match and the key to the whole
idea: the fans reacted when Sid came in and laid Hall out. Now why
is this time different from all the other matches ending with
interference? For me it’s one simple reason: they allowed the match
to build up before doing the angle. The only thing out of the
ordinary was a single clothesline from Nash, which is minor by
comparison. It’s a good match on its own and the angle is far more
acceptable when they have a good build to get there. This is the
Russo style that worked in the WWF because it had the time to work,
though that’s not the case in WCW.
Bagwell says Jarrett
isn’t going over him.
WCW World Title
Tournament Quarter-Finals: Bret Hart vs. Kidman
Rey
gets in on commentary. Bret takes him down with an elbow to the back
of the head and nails a hard clothesline as this is looking one sided
so far. Kidman slips out of a slam so Bret catapults him over the
top and out to the floor. Back in and a Bodog gets two on Bret but
we’ve got Outsiders. They hit on the robed Torrie but Eddie goes
over for the save as Rey cheers him on from commentary. Back inside,
Bret counters a hurricanrana into the Sharpshooter.
Rating:
D.
This didn’t have time to go anywhere but at least Bret didn’t crush
Kidman. It also helped that they kept things moving quick enough and
the interference didn’t really change much. Mysteiro was kind of a
jerk but the Animals are the worst face group in the history of
wrestling so it’s understandable.
Luger
and Liz get some brownies. We’re approaching bad sitcom territory.
Jeff
Jarrett is the chosen one.
WCW World Title
Tournament Quarter-Finals: Jeff Jarrett vs. Buff Bagwell
They fight on the floor
with Buff taking over and heading inside. Bagwell uses his standard
offense including a good dropkick and an atomic drop until Creative
Control comes out for a distraction. It doesn’t work immediately
though as Buff nails a powerslam, but the referee stops to tie his
shoe. Creative Control comes in and breaks up the Blockbuster, only
to have Buff nail the other with Jeff’s guitar. The referee just
can’t stop looking at his shoes though and Jeff nails the Stroke for
the pin from the suddenly alert referee.
Jeff
and the referee hug because we needed an angle on a match that didn’t
break 130 seconds. Dustin Rhodes comes out for the save and
celebrates with the loser.
Goldberg
headbutts a Surge machine and gets a free drink.
Liz and Luger put
laxatives in the brownies.
The Revolution is ready
for the House of Pain match, but Saturn wants to talk about Everlast
boxing gear and the music video for Jump Around. Saturn asks Dean to
jump for him and staring abounds. I could get into this new
character.
Duggan intercepts the
brownies and says he deserves something like this.
Eddie
Guerrero/Konnan vs. Perry Saturn/Dean Malenko
This
is a House of Pain match, meaning it’s inside a cage and you win by
handcuffing both opponents to the ropes. Saturn superkicks Konnan
before he can get inside, leaving Eddie to get double teamed. Tony
cuts Heenan off and goes on a rant about internet marks thinking they
can do his job. Oh I don’t know Tony. I’ve seen a lot of internet
marks that can sound every bit as stupid as you do.
The Revolution double
teams Guerrero in the corner and pretty easily gets him most of the
way chained up. Konnan comes in with some shots of his own but eats
a spike piledriver. They complete shackling Eddie and Konnan gets
the same just a few seconds later. Total time of a pretty big
gimmick match like this: 2:57.
Rey
comes in and gets laid out by a clothesline from Asya. The
Revolution hangs him upside down from the top of the cage by the
knee, allowing Malenko and Saturn to just destroy Rey’s leg. His
next match won’t be until May. Well that explains why he didn’t help
Eddie earlier.
WCW World Title
Tournament Quarter-Finals: Total Package vs. Sting
The
winner gets Bret on Sunday. Luger (the announcers have forgotten the
whole DON’T CALL HIM LEX LUGER schtick already) hides in the corner
to start as he thought Sting would eat the brownies. Sting kicks him
in the allegedly injured leg and stomps Lex down in the corner to
take over. He takes it to the floor and stays on the leg (Luger:
“HELP ME BOBBY!”) before Lex gets inside to hide in the corner.
An atomic drop does nothing to Sting but a clothesline gives Luger
his first advantage.
Tony starts talking
about how Sting and Luger have been friends for years in this sport
before correcting himself by calling it a business. The Stinger
Splash connects but Luger trips the referee while in the Scorpion.
Liz maces Sting and the Torture Rack goes on, only to have Meng come
out for a Tongan Death Grip (revenge for getting maced last week) to
Luger. Meng puts Sting on top to send him to Mayhem.
Rating:
D-.
I’m getting tired of giving these matches the same grades over and
over but they keep being the same bad, only slightly watchable
matches with some kind of interference and overbooked finishes. This
was in the same category as it wasn’t long enough to go anywhere but
the guys know each other well enough to sleepwalk to a few acceptable
moments.
Here are the final
four:
Bret Hart
Sting
Chris Benoit
Jeff Jarrett
Jim Duggan feels the
effects of the brownies.
Kevin Nash vs. Sid
Vicious
Street
fight. As has been the case almost all night, they start brawling in
the aisle with Nash taking it into the crowd and hitting Sid low.
They head back over the barricade and Nash hits the framed elbows in
the corner. A quick clothesline sends Sid to the floor but he hits
Nash low to take over again.
Back in and Sid slams
Nash down and drops a leg for two. A leg between Nash’s legs is our
third low blow in four minutes. Sid calls for the powerbomb as the
fans call for Goldberg. Cue Hall to break up the powerbomb and the
Outsiders go after Sid. Goldberg comes out to clean house and the
bell rings for a no contest in a street fight.
Rating:
D-.
So now we can’t even get a finish in a match designed to not have a
clean finish? I guess we’re setting up some kind of a tag match in
the future, but that hasn’t been announced for Mayhem or any other
show. On top of that, it would mean ignoring the months of Sid vs.
Goldberg, which is one of those things in wrestling that always
drives me insane. I’m sure in this WCW though, it’s cutting edge TV.
Overall
Rating:
D.
Here’s the thing: for probably the first time since Russo took over,
this show felt like it had a point. They have most of the big stuff
set for Mayhem and gave you a reason to check out the show. That
alone puts it ahead of almost anything else WCW has done in weeks.
However, that brings us to the problem with the show.
Other than Hall vs.
Benoit, this was one of the worst wrestling shows I’ve seen in a very
long time. The wrestling ranged from too short to mean anything to
just flat out bad. However, it did have the best match Nitro has
offered in weeks which somehow makes this a better show. I hate to
say it, but this bad show is somehow an improvement.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
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Thunder – November 11, 1999

Thunder
Date: November 11, 1999
Location:
Allen County War Memorial, Fort Wayne, Indiana
Attendance: 3,283
Commentators: Scott
Hudson, Larry Zbyszko
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re closing in on
Mayhem and I’m losing my will to fight. Thankfully this is a live
show meaning it’s only going to be mostly horrible instead of the
scum of the earth that it can be when it’s taped. One of the few
good things about Russo TV is the matches are short so the horrors
don’t go on as long. Let’s get to it.

One
more note: of those 3,283 in attendance, 1,771 were paid. The WWF
ran a house show at the same venue about seven months earlier and
drew over 7,700 paid. The building’s capacity for a basketball game
at the time: 10,240.
Opening sequence.
Lash Leroux vs. Evan
Karagias
Disco
comes out for commentary, which will be a running theme tonight. For
Nitro: Evan vs. referee Johnny Boone, who is working this match.
Why? Actually I was hoping you knew. Feeling out process with Evan
taking Lash down for a headlock but Leroux uses the ropes for a
break. Evan starts arguing with Boone, so here’s Madusa because the
opening match on Thunder needs this many storylines. They start some
basic wrestling to fill in time before the next story and Lash is
clotheslined to the floor.
Cue the story as Disco
hits on Madusa. That thankfully goes nowhere and Evan hammers on
Lash, only to have Leroux flip out of a belly to back suplex and grab
a Russian legsweep for two. Another suplex puts Evan down as Disco
says he’s going to seal the deal with Madusa. Evan fights back with
some chops and wins a slugout before getting two off a Thesz press.
Instead of following up though, he goes after Disco for hitting on
Madusa, who slaps Disco as she sees Evan. As he heads back inside,
Leroux nails Whiplash for the pin.
Rating:
D.
This ran 4:34 and managed to fit all that nonsense in there. How in
the world do they think this is the best course of action for the
opening match? I have no idea who I was supposed to cheer for out
there or what I’m supposed to focus on, but I’m pretty sure it’s not
the wrestling.
Disco
laughs at Evan and says he’ll bet $25,000 that he can beat Karagias
at Mayhem. Madusa helps Evan up, whispers in his ear and kisses him.
Evan accepts and Disco is given another Whiplash.
Gene
asks Berlyn why he stopped dancing, earning him a hand over his mouth
and a threat. Were we really not supposed to realize that was Wright
until now?
Sid is looking for Rick
Steiner.
Berlyn vs. Curly
Bill
My
goodness. Of all the things in WCW, THIS is the thing that gets a
blowoff??? Curly is announced from South Pittsburgh, Texas. Berlyn
hammers him in the corner as you would expect but Curly slips out of
an attempt at a slam. Cue one of the Misfits to tell Berlyn to come
out back for a fight, but the Bodyguard goes instead. Not that it
matters as Vampiro comes in to jump Berlyn for the DQ. See, this is
one of those things where a simple tweak would have been fine. Why
not have Berlyn get a quick pin on Bill and THEN do the angle? Would
that have really hurt anything?
Post match, Curly
covers Berlyn and counts his own three, so the Bodyguard comes in and
throws him out. Thanks for wasting that extra bit of time guys.
Gene
talks to La Parka and Silver King. La Parka speaks English here, on
orders from the Powers That Be. His English is actually fine, making
me wonder why in the world he’s never used it before. The guy was
over, he was fine in the ring and apparently he could talk so
wh……oh right it’s WCW. Or that wasn’t La Parka under the mask,
which is always a possibility.
Chavo tries to sell
Amway products to a Villano. OH COME ON. They’re making a throwaway
line into an angle?
Rick Steiner rants
about Sid dumping him for the Outsiders so Sid nails him. Security
breaks it up and I guess that’s our next HUGE match.
La Parka/Silver King
vs. Lizmark Jr./Villano V
Before
the match, La Parka talks about learning promos but still getting
stuck in these lame matches. His lips don’t move so maybe I don’t
have to be so annoyed at WCW for not pushing him. Well not really as
he was good enough to be pushed harder but at least the talking
wasn’t as big of a deal. It sounded like Ed Ferrara this time.
Everyone jumps La Parka for what he said and he starts with Lizmark.
A tilt-a-whirl backbreaker puts La Parka down and Lizmark taunts King
into the ring for a beatdown on the skeleton guy. King gets back at
him with a knee to the spine and it’s off to King and Villano.
King slams Villano down
and does a dance (he’s no Big Wiggler) before tagging La Parka back
in. Villano avoids a dropkick and Lizmark throws La Parka to the
floor for a suicide dive. With his partner in trouble, King busts
out the yet to be named 619 to taunt Lizmark before sidestepping a
charging Villano. Now it’s King diving on everyone before what
appeared to be an edit sends La Parka back to the ring. As in he was
on the floor and a split second later he was on the mat. Lizmark
misses a top rope backsplash and gets caught by La Parka’s corkscrew
dive for the pin.
Rating:
C-.
Totally standard lucha tag with nothing interesting and the clipping
being more distracting than anything else. So much for the show
being live too. One might think they’re going somewhere with the La
Parka stuff, but if he never gets near the title scene, none of it is
going to mean much.
Post match La Parka
chairs Lizmark and Villano.
Berlyn
and the Bodyguard beat up Curly Bill in the back. This thing is
continuing???
Hennig
says he isn’t losing and going anywhere.
Chavo
sells a childless Kaz Hayashi a bunch of diapers. I think this
speaks for itself.
Recap
of Nitro.
Booker says he and the
woman from Nitro go back a long way. More on this later I’m
assuming, but we might have to see Chavo selling stuff again.
Sid
stares at Rick Steiner on a monitor. Steiner doesn’t seem to know
that there’s a camera on him.
Disco
is on the phone and says he’ll have their money. Maybe he can get
some additional money if he gets rid of Hennig.
TV Title: Rick
Steiner vs. Booker T.
Steiner
is defending and hammers Booker down in the corner to start. Back up
and Booker ducks a Steinerline and hits the flying forearm and a side
kick. They have to get all their stuff in though as this match isn’t
likely to break five minutes. Steiner comes back with two straight
belly to belly suplexes (check those off the list too) and clubbing
forearms before we hit the chinlock. Booker quickly fights up with
his series of kicks but Steiner shoves the referee in front of the
missile dropkick. Cue Sid to shove Steiner off the top and plant him
with a powerbomb to give Booker the pin!
Rating:
D+.
And never mind as this happens.
Other referee Johnny
Boone comes out and we’ve got a Dusty Finish. Sid powerbombs both
referees and brawls with Steiner. The match was nothing special and
your standard angle disguised as a wrestling match.
Curt Hennig vs. Dean
Malenko
Douglas
is on commentary and Hennig is fired if he gets pinned. I believe
this is the third week where we still have no explanation for why
that’s the stipulation. They do some of that wrestling nonsense to
start with Dean grabbing an armbar before opting to hammer away in
the corner. You can see his soul dying with every punch. Curt gets
two each off a sunset flip, backslide and rollup as he tries to keep
his job.
Malenko bails to the
floor before heading back inside, only to get punched in the face to
send him back outside. Back in again and Dean grabs a quick belly to
back before putting on a chinlock. Curt comes back with his usual
but Dean hits a very unusual (for him anyway) low blow but gets small
packaged to counter the Cloverleaf. Back up and Malenko misses a
charge in the corner, only to have Asya distract the referee so Shane
can hit Hennig with the cast.
This brings out Disco
Inferno as Malenko covers off a suplex. Disco shoves Malenko off and
covers Hennig but Curt gets up and hits Inferno. Dean suplexes
Hennig again for two but Benoit runs out for the Swan Dive on Malenko
as Disco keeps everyone else at bay, giving Hennig the pin.
Rating:
C-.
It’s kind of interesting that you have easily the best wrestling
match of the night going on when they have a nonsensical run-in
followed by a more sensible run-in to end the whole thing. As many
people have said before: Russo did not know how a wrestling match was
supposed to go so he watered it down into something he did understand
and the wrestling fans suffered as a result. It’s so sad to see Dean
clearly just there because he has to be and doing things he doesn’t
want to do. You can see how miserable he is out there and I
completely understand him leaving soon.
Rick Steiner and Sid
fight.
Maestro
is ready for his match with Brian Knobbs tonight and promises to go
heavy metal if necessary. Well he’s already below Van Hammer so it
can’t hurt.
Knobbs and Hart aren’t
happy with Norman Smiley. I am as he’s one of the funniest things on
the shows lately.
Maestro vs. Brian
Knobbs
Hardcore.
Smiley comes out for commentary with a violin case to distract
Knobbs but it doesn’t work so well (imagine, mind games not working
on Knobbs) as Brian nails Maestro with a trashcan a few times. It’s
cookie sheet time but a chair shot doesn’t work as well as Maestro
scores with a dropkick. Maestro gets in some basic weapons shots but
Jimmy Hart grabs his leg, allowing Brian to take over again.
Smiley yells at Hart to
scare him off and the guys in the ring trade more basic weapons
shots. There’s not much to say here other than “Knobbs hits
Maestro, Maestro hits Knobbs, Knobbs and Maestro are hitting each
other.” They head outside where Smiley goes after Jimmy to
distract Knobbs, allowing Norman to hit Brian with a pipe. Maestro
rolls Knobbs up for the pin.
Rating:
D-.
I just sat through five minutes of Maestro to set up a Norman Smiley
vs. Brian Knobbs match. This is what I’ve come to in my life. It’s
also proof that there’s more to this kind of stuff than just hitting
people with weapons. People remember Road Dogg, Al Snow and Crash
doing the same weak spots because they did them with some charisma
and other creative spots to go with it. Also it helped when they did
things outside the ring area but that could go horribly for WCW.
Anyway, match was as bad as you would expect it to be.
We look at Malenko
beating Mysterio on Nitro.
Tag Team Titles:
Kidman/Konnan vs. Barbarian/Jerry Flynn
I’m
assuming this is a title match with Kidman and Konnan defending in
case you’re really new at this. Torrie is in a backless green top
and even Barbarian seems to notice her. After far too many
catchphrases and unintelligible gibberish from the Animals, Flynn
goes outside to hit on Torrie and gets slapped in the face. She’s
not into mullets I guess. Eddie goes after Flynn and gets both
himself and Torrie ejected. There goes the interest in the match.
As this is going on, Konnan and Kidman double team Barbarian with
Kidman getting two off a middle rope Thesz press.
Barbarian shoves him
out of the corner though and it’s off to Flynn for a spinwheel kick.
Yes Jerry Flynn is throwing kicks people. I’m stunned too. A belly
to belly gets two on Kidman before it’s off to Barbarian for a
headbutt and a powerbomb, putting him on the same list as Lodi and
Sid. Now there are three names you’ll probably never see together
again. Barbarian misses a top rope headbutt but catches Kidman on
top with a huge belly to belly superplex. Cool move actually.
Everything breaks down and Kidman hits a high cross body to pin
Barbarian.
Rating:
C.
This was WAY better than I was expecting but that might be due to it
being so simple. The Animals were never in any danger but you have
two guys get in some decent looking offense on them and it’s a nice
little match. I still stand by my theory that Barbarian is very
underrated. The guy kept getting steady work for over ten years and
had some good looking power moves. He was a great role player and
nothing more but he was good at what he did.
Luger says he meant to
mace Goldberg on Monday and promises to make it up to Sting. The
fact that these two are in a feud in 1999 tells you almost everything
you need to know about where this company is heading.
Video on the Nitro
Girls civil war. They really think we remember which of these are
which?
The Revolution says
they’re not done. Saturn starts talking about the Beatles so Malenko
asks him who writes his promos. In an actually funny reply, Saturn
pulls out a notebook and says “I do! I’ve got a hundred of them!”
That one caught me by surprise. Well done.
Total Package vs.
Kaz Hayashi
During
the entrances, Norman Smiley vs. Jimmy Hart is announced for Nitro.
Yes, that’s a match they want to advertise in advance. Luger comes
out with a knee brace and street clothes on, saying he’s wrestled
over 3,000 matches in thirteen years and won’t be able to compete on
this knee. Kaz is annoyed that Luger mispronounces his name and
calls him a chicken so the fight is on. A suplex, choking and a
clothesline set up the Rack to end this in less than a minute and a
half. Total squash.
Luger
holds his knee post match. There’s nothing wrong with a good old
fake injury.
Sid Vicious vs.
Perry Saturn
Sid
shoves him down to start and nails a clothesline as Shane Douglas
jumps in on commentary again. Saturn’s cross body is countered into
a backbreaker as we seem to already be in squash mode. Malenko
offers a distraction but gets stared down, only to have Saturn dive
on his stable mate by mistake. So Sid is so insane that he makes the
other wrestlers make mistakes?
After being dropped on
the barricade, Saturn grabs a quick t-bone suplex back inside,
followed by a springboard leg for two. A springboard forearm
staggers Sid again but he kicks Saturn in the face to take over.
Saturn kicks him low to break up the chokeslam, only to jump into it
a second later. Powerbomb is good for the pin.
Rating:
D-.
Oh sweet mother of goodness they’re turning Sid face aren’t they? I
know it’s been hinted at all night but he’s wrestling this match as
the good guy. Just…..no people. I know he’s insane and the crowd
likes him but I can’t just forget all the matches he messed up,
ruining Benoit’s push and EVERYTHING ELSE he’s done in the last few
months to accept him as a face now.
I rant and rave about a
lot of things WCW does but this actually bugs me. Sid needs to do
WAY more than fight Rick Steiner (after turning on Steiner like a
heel would. So yes, Rick Steiner should be the face in this feud and
good night does that sound wrong to say) to be forgiven for what he’s
done in the last few months but this is the new WCW I guess.
Sid teases powerbombs
on Malenko and Asya but has to fight off an invading Rick Steiner to
end the show.
Overall
Rating:
D.
Somehow this was one of the better shows of the Russo run so far.
It’s another meaningless show with no connection to most of the main
stories, but now we get a SID face push. I can tolerate these shows
a lot more easily than Nitro as it’s shorter and less insane, but it
doesn’t mean they’re fun to watch.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

Monday Nitro – November 8, 1999

Monday Nitro #213
Date: November 8, 1999
Location: Conseco
Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana
Attendance: 8,134
Commentators: Tony
Schiavone, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
With less than two
weeks to go until Mayhem, we have a long stretch of tournament
matches to still get through. The question now is can any match
break ten minutes. I don’t remember the last time we reached that
point, but it’s a very rare sight in Russo Land. Hopefully things
start to make a bit more sense but I wouldn’t get my hopes up. Let’s
get to it.

We open in the
production truck with Sid telling a production guy to play a tape
when he gives him a cue.
Here’s
Sid in the arena with something to say. I can’t see this ending
well. The Outsiders think he’s dumb, but he’s not as dumb as he
looks. This brings him to Goldberg, who quit at Halloween Havoc.
The tape is cued up and we see Goldberg beating on Sid as Sid shouts
I QUIT. That’s it. Seriously, that’s it. This brings out the
Outsiders with Hall carrying the US Title.
Wait a minute. Hall
took the belt from Sid, who wasn’t champion when he took it from
Bret. So does that make Bret Bad News Barrett, Sid R-Truth and Hall
Dean Ambrose? Suddenly my life makes so much more sense. (That’s a
Wrestlemania XXXI reference if you’re reading this ten years from
now).
Hall brings up beating
Sid last week but Sid says Hall was supposed to lay down. Hall
doesn’t lay down for anyone, because that’s how the Kliq works. Nash
wants Sid to call out Bret, but Hart saves Sid the trouble.
Apparently Bret thinks Goldberg is the real US Champion and he’s
going to give Goldberg his belt back tonight. Cue Goldberg to spear
Sid and challenge him to an I Quit match. Goldberg also challenges
the Outsiders to a game of hide and seek. They hide, he seeks and
destroys. Isn’t that the name of Sting’s theme song?
Here are the updated
brackets. Sting and Luger have both advanced due to injuries.
Bret Hart
Perry Saturn
Norman Smiley
Kidman
Total Package
Sting
Chris Benoit
Madusa
Scott Hall
Lash Leroux
Buff Bagwell
Vampiro
Curt Hennig
Jeff Jarrett
That is one lame
tournament.
Sting
isn’t sure he can trust Luger and thinks Lex has a lot of splaining
to do.
Luger and Liz arrive in
Indiana Pacers gear and try to sneak into the building without being
noticed. The camera on them doesn’t help this.
We look at Kimberly
running David Flair over last week.
Kimberly
arrives and tells Doug Dillinger that David has been harassing her
all week. So why is she here? Dillinger gives her extra security.
Kevin Nash has his
security license and that’s all we hear as we go to commercial mid
sentence.
The
Filthy Animals are in the ring for all their sex based catchphrases
because Russo thinks they’re like DX. The insults bring out the
Revolution, with Dean challenging Rey to a mixed tag with Torrie and
Asya. Rey says it’s on.
WCW World Title
Tournament Second Round: Norman Smiley vs. Kidman
Norman
is officially Screamin Norman Smiley. As he comes to the ring, Tony
announces Hall vs. Sid vs. Hart vs. Goldberg in a Texas tornado
ladder match for the US Title. This would be different from all
those ladder matches where you have to tag. Since Norman is hardcore
now, Brian Knobbs and Jimmy Hart come out for commentary. Kidman
rips off the helmet Norman is wearing and it’s fighting time.
Norman can’t quite take
his gloves off though so Kidman takes him to the ropes for a
spanking, only to get kicked low. Something like an inverted
powerbomb gets two on Kidman and Norman does his spanking (what is
with Russo’s obsession with spanking?) dance while Kidman screams for
Torrie. There are so many connotations there, I don’t know where to
start. Knobbs sneaks in with a hockey stick to lay out Norman,
giving Kidman the pin in barely two minutes.
To recap, Kidman is now
in the final eight of the World Title tournament after needing the
help of Brian Knobbs to defeat Norman Smiley in a two minute match
that saw both men being spanked. This is the brilliant Vince Russo’s
grand solution to Rock, HHH, Austin, Angle, Undertaker and company.
Sting searches for
Luger.
David Flair is lurking
around with his crowbar.
Kevin Nash is getting a
rainbow turban put on. Nash as the Grand Wizard would be….well it
would be stupid actually.
Here’s
an angry Sting to call out Luger. He gets Liz instead, who, after
tripping on the ramp because of her heels, says that Luger would
never do anything to hurt their cherished friendship. Sting puts his
arm around her and says she can be the female Total Package. Now
Luger comes out and says he’s here in friendship and apologizes for
what happened last week. Sting chokes him against the ropes and says
he’ll rip his throat out if that ever happens again. As we’ve known
for years, Sting can be a bit of a psycho.
Kimberly goes into her
dressing room when the lights go out. David Flair’s voice says she
won’t feel a thing. What am I even watching anymore?
WCW World Title
Tournament Second Round: Chris Benoit vs. Madusa
Madusa
actually puts on a hammerlock but Benoit calmly brushes it off. He
tells her to leave and talks to the referee but Madusa fires off some
kicks and a hurricanrana. That’s it for Benoit as he rips off a chop
to put Madusa on the mat. Cue Evan Karagias to get in a fight with
referee Johnny Boone, who easily holds his own against Evan. Jeff
Jarrett runs in and lays out Benoit for the DQ, because this isn’t
the WWF and we don’t hit women.
Madusa freaks out on
Jarrett for costing her a shot at the title.
Chavo Guerrero Jr.
comes in to ask the Powers That Be for his opportunity for winning
the battle royal on Thunder. Russo tells him that the opportunity
around here is selling Amway, so get out of his office. So yeah, no
reward and the battle royal was a waste of time.
Jim Duggan is cleaning
toilets.
TV Title: Rick
Steiner vs. Disco Inferno
Steiner
is defending and Disco is Cruiserweight Champion. A quick
Steinerline sends Disco to the floor, where the kid who has been
hanging around Disco is carrying a bucket. He’s officially named
Tony Marinara and says he’s been carrying Glenn since they were kids.
Tony says he wants his money and it turns out the bucket is full of
concrete. Rick takes it away and hits Disco in the head with it,
setting up a German suplex for the pin. We’re getting a mafia angle
aren’t we?
Nash
is indeed the Grand Wizard of Wrestling and has powder, chloroform
and brass knuckles. He and Hall are ready for Sid and they have riot
police following them around.
We see the Nitro Girls
finalists do a mini routine until AC Jazz comes out and throws out
all the Nitro Girl wannabes. They’re skanks and various other
insults so here’s Spice to call AC a ho, triggering a fight. Who
looks at the Nitro Girls and says they need a story? Who looks at
the Nitro Girls and says they need to exist actually?
Kimberly
is hiding in the boiler room. David is there with her and says his
master needs another bride. In case you’re wondering, we’ve had
about five and a half minutes of wrestling time so far but this is
the third or fourth bit about these two.
Here’s
Dustin Rhodes as Seven for his debut promo. With the floor covered
in smoke, he flies to the ring with the help of some not very well
covered wires. “I want everyone here to take a good long look at
this crap I’m in.” He rants about leaving the WWF because of
gimmicks like Goldust, which completely sucked. It nearly ruined his
wrestling career and he wanted to come back home and just be Dustin
Rhodes. The Powers That Be think Dustin is boring though, so he’s
dressed up as Uncle Fester. “My new name is Seven by the way.”
He won’t have any of
this or Goldust and they know where they can shove it. Last week,
WCW fired Dusty Rhodes so now his mission is to make the Powers That
Be, WCW and TNA all suffer the consequences. You will never forget
the name of Dustin Rhodes. To recap, Russo came up with this
character and now has written a promo where he calls it stupid. He’s
already bored of burying the talent so he’s going to bury himself I
guess.
David is still on the
hunt.
Luger and Liz have a
plan to make up with Sting.
Sting vs. Goldberg
Just
a match and Goldberg’s first match of the night. After a two minute
entrance, Goldberg slugs Sting up against the ropes but gets caught
in a sleeper. Cue Luger and Liz as the referee goes down. They mace
Sting (clearly intentional) and it’s the spear and Jackhammer for the
pin in 2:13. These two should have been the biggest match all year
and Russo has run it twice in fifteen days in 5:21 total. That’s
borderline criminal. Also, in case you have hope for the future,
this is their last singles match ever.
And now, after that
huge match, the Outsiders offer Sid the riot squad when Rick Steiner
comes up and demands Sid make time for him tonight. So Rick is the
clingy ex?
Luger and Liz see
Duggan mopping floors and steal his “wet floor” sign.
Kimberly finds a
security guard and, say it with me, it’s David Flair. What happened
to the extra guards she was given earlier?
Vampiro is now a full
on member of the Misfits. Well sweet goodness I totally want to
watch the show, buy the merchandise and order the pay per views now.
This totally changes my perspective on the company and wrestling as a
whole and I can’t put into words how excited I am to have seen this
thrilling turn of events.
WCW World Title
Tournament Second Round: Vampiro vs. Buff Bagwell
The
Misfits jump Bagwell during his entrance and the referee has no issue
ringing the bell during a 5-1 beatdown. Vampiro takes him inside for
a running clothesline but completely misses a top rope flip attack.
Bagwell fights off all of the Misfits but the referee gets poked in
the eye and Vampiro hits a missile dropkick. I don’t see why we
needed a ref bump for that but I’m still reeling from the
announcement that Vampiro has joined the Misfits so I probably missed
the subtext. Berlyn comes down and nails Vampiro with a chain,
setting up the Blockbuster for the pin. Five people, a ref bump and
a chain. Match time: 82 seconds.
The
Bodyguard beats up the Misfits post match. Creative Control comes up
and beats Berlyn down as well. As terrifying as this is to me, I’m
starting to understand these stories.
Luger is on the
bathroom floor holding his knee. After a break, the EMT says there’s
nothing wrong with it.
WCW World Title
Tournament Second Round: Bret Hart vs. Perry Saturn
Bret’s
knee seems to be fine and Shane Douglas is on commentary. Hart goes
after the arm first but gets caught by a forearm to the face. Saturn
gets smart and kicks at Bret’s recently injured knee which Bret
quickly remembers to sell. A t-bone suplex drops Bret but he avoids
the Lionsault. Must be the Canadian instinct.
We hit the Five Moves
of Doom (Shane: “I’ve seen this before!”) but Asya distracts the
referee as Bret puts on the Sharpshooter. Shane gets up and hits him
in the head with a cast, setting up the Death Valley Driver for a
surprising kick out. Saturn throws him outside so Malenko can get in
some cheap shots but Benoit runs out for the save. Bret gets thrown
back in but escapes a sunset flip and puts on the Sharpshooter for
the win to advance.
Rating:
C-.
Another potentially good match ruined by too much overbooking. Hart
kicking out of the Death Valley Drive surprised me a bit, even though
I know how this tournament ends. The bad side of that is I fully
expected there to be a screwy finish if Bret was eliminated because
that’s the standard operating procedure around here these days: be
screwy for the sake of being screwy.
Kimberly asks Creative
Control for a meeting with the Powers That Be.
Nash does Johnny
Carson’s Carnac bit, meaning he gives the answer to a question and
then reads the question. The answer is 316 and the question is how
many times Undertaker and Austin have worked a pay per view against
each other. Oh get over yourselves WCW. That shouldn’t be hard
given how low you are in the ratings.
Here’s
Booker T. with something to say. He’s alone this week as Stevie Ray
has been suspended. Booker has three things on his mind: Jeff
Jarrett and Creative Control. He wants all three of them out here
right now for a Harlem street fight.
Booker T. vs.
Creative Control/Jeff Jarrett
Jeff sits on commentary
because Creative Control can handle Booker on their own. Booker
backdrops one of them to the floor and forearms the other so Jarrett
comes in with the guitar for a threat, allowing Creative Control to
hammer on Booker. Cue a woman who looks like a black Chyna….and
gets hit with a guitar a few seconds after she gets in. That’s the
end of the so called match as Jarrett and Creative Control walk out.
The Powers That Be tell
Luger that he has to face Sid or he’s out of the tournament.
Asya/Dean Malenko
vs. Torrie Wilson/Rey Mysterio
Torrie
is in a swimsuit top, the bottom half of a dress and very high heels.
She tries to take the dress off but Rey stops her for some reason.
Asya handcuffs Torrie to the ring five seconds in and Rey gets double
teamed. Torrie was really that big of a threat? A suplex gets two
and it’s off to Malenko for two more off a clothesline but Rey comes
back with a one legged dropkick. He knocks Asya off the apron but
Dean kicks him in the knee, only to get sent hard into Asya. Rey
misses the Bronco Buster, setting up the Cloverleaf for another fast
ending.
The Animals come in for
the save as Tony says this was a grand plan. There was nothing grand
about this Tony. Well except Torrie.
Kimberly goes into the
shower and David is waiting for her. Good grief just leave the arena
already. Then again David seems to have superpowers tonight so it
might not matter.
Sid Vicious vs.
Total Package
Liz
wheels Luger down and Lex says his knee is too banged up to compete,
but he’ll be fine for the tournament match next week. This brings
Sting out to beat Luger up and throw him in to face Sid. Sid hammers
away but has to move Liz to get at Luger again. Luger actually sells
the knee (still wrapped in ice) as Sid stomps on it. A big boot puts
Luger down and the riot squad comes out. They stop an invading
Goldberg, then step aside so he can come in and spear both guys for
the no contest, even though it should have been a DQ on Luger since
Goldberg got speared first.
Brian Knobbs vs. Bam
Bam Bigelow
Hardcore
of course and the winner will face Norman Smiley for the Hardcore
Title. Norman comes down to do commentary and asks if Bigelow has
dental insurance because he’s been missing that tooth for years.
He’s already the funniest commentator this company has. After some
trashcan shots they fight into the back with Norman playing Road Dogg
as roving commentator.
They knock each other
into a wall and Norman wants to know where Doug Dillinger is when you
really need him. Knobbs hits Bigelow with a chair and drives him
through a table as Norman screams a lot. Kimberly shows up and has
Bigelow come with her, meaning Knobbs wins by countout. Backstage.
In a hardcore match. This was a way for Kimberly to get some
protection but Norman continues to be hilarious.
Norman beats up Knobbs
and Jimmy and throws them in trashcans.
Kimberly and Bam Bam
Bigelow are looking for David. Bigelow: “If you want to pick on a
girl, pick on me!”
WCW World Title
Tournament Second Round: Scott Hall vs. Lash Leroux
Nash
is with Hall and in the Grand Wizard garb. The riot guard is with
them as well to really overbook things. Heenan thinks the guest
referee for the ladder match is going to be from another
organization. We start with a toothpick throw and Lash is tossed
into the corner. Hall drives in the shoulders and puts on an armbar
to slap Lash in the back of the head. Back up and Lash scores with
some forearms and a dropkick as Tony is really putting Lash over.
The Outsiders have a meeting on the floor and Nash offers chloroform.
Back in and Scott
offers a test of strength and pokes Leroux in the eye. Tony talks
about the tournament and Heenan says he sounds like Dick Vitale.
Tony: “Really?” Heenan: “No.” A chokeslam sets up the Giant
imitation, because it makes sense to mock someone who left nine
months ago. Tony tries to cover for him by saying it’s climbing a
ladder, which is better than most ideas he’s had before.
Hall puts on an
abdominal stretch and lifts Lash’s leg to make it even worse. As
Lash makes his comeback, Tony promises a recap of everything that’s
happened earlier in the night. The fact that that’s a featured
attraction tells you how messy this show has been. Hall stops the
comeback with a discus punch and the fallaway slam. The Outsider’s
Edge is good for the pin.
Rating:
C.
You know what? This wasn’t half bad. Maybe it’s my shock that they
had a match end clean, but this was a totally acceptable six minute
(longest of the night) match. It’s nothing great and nothing I’ll
think about by the time this show is over, but this was such a nice
change of pace from the other “matches” all night that it was
pretty entertaining.
Nash
calls the riot squad into the ring and one of them is Goldberg. You
can figure the rest out for yourselves. Before the double spear,
Nash tries to throw powder in Goldberg’s face. I’m sure Nash had a
plan to get it past the helmet and visor.
Recap of Hennig having
to avoid getting pinned to keep his job. We still have no idea why
this stipulation has been put into place.
WCW World Title
Tournament Second Round: Curt Hennig vs. Jeff Jarrett
Hennig
jumps him in the aisle to start and they head inside with Jeff
grabbing a quick small package for two. They head right back outside
for a slugout with Jeff going after the knee as is his custom. Cue
Creative Control to watch from the stage as Hennig kicks out of a
Figure Four attempt.
Curt fights back and
naturally we get a ref bump. You can feel the ratings triple as fans
just know the referee has gone down in a five minute match and the
excitement cannot be contained! The PerfectPlex doesn’t matter
because no one is there to count, allowing Creative Control to beat
Curt down. They slam him through the announcers’ table and it’s a
countout, meaning this stupid angle MUST CONTINUE!
Rating:
D+.
Somehow this might have been the second best match of the night. I’m
already getting bored of telling Russo that there’s no need to have a
match this overbooked when you have two talented guys in there, but
this was more of the same problems over and over again. Boring match
but at least they had some time to set something up.
Jeff gives Curt the
Stroke post match.
Here are the updated
brackets:
Bret Hart
Kidman
Sting
Total Package
Chris Benoit
Scott Hall
Buff Bagwell
Jeff Jarrett
Kimberly comes to the
ring and says she’s tired of running from David, so come get her.
This brings out David but Bam Bam Bigelow jumps him. David hits him
low and gets in a crowbar shot though, sending Kimberly running away
again.
Post
break, Kimberly is trying to get in her car with David Flair behind
her. She drops her keys but gets in anyway, only to have David break
out a window. Creative Control comes up and chases him off, saying
the Powers That Be will see her now. Why she hasn’t CALLED THE
FREAKING POLICE all night is never made clear.
US Title: Sid
Vicious vs. Goldberg vs. Bret Hart vs. Scott Hall
Ladder
match with Goldberg defending. During the entrances, Tony recaps the
evening and my goodness it sounds even worse. Hall and Sid start
fighting before the other two get there and it’s clear that Sid could
easily reach up and pull down the title without a ladder. Bret and
Goldberg come in with no music as we’re reminded about the special
referee. We could also use a ladder, so here comes Nash with a
ladder and a referee’s shirt.
Goldberg and Hall slug
it out in the aisle and we’re told it’s Kimberly vs. David Flair at
Mayhem. So it’s Kimberly vs. a man stalking her and potentially
trying to rape her earlier. No, of course Russo doesn’t have issues
with women. All four get inside as the fans chant for Goldberg but
they get Rick Steiner instead. He plants Sid with the bulldog and
slugs it out with Goldberg. Hart pulls down the belt but Nash hits
him in the bad leg with a pipe and picks up the belt. Hall climbs
one rung and is handed the belt to make him the champion.
Rating:
D-.
Why did I expect anything else here? It was an overbooked ladder
match and that’s the best idea they could come up with, but at least
Hall is the champion now and….what exactly does that change?
Nothing of course, because titles mean nothing in this company and
are nothing more than a plot point. That’s one of those Russo ideas
that has stayed around, despite the fact that it’s rarely made things
even better.
Overall
Rating:
F+.
At what point did this stop being a wrestling show? Somewhere
recently this turned into a bunch of direct to video movies spliced
together. Kimberly was all over this show more than the Filthy
Animals had been recently, which makes for good scenery but some
STUPID moments. She had no reason to be there tonight as she quit
the Nitro Girls and Page is allegedly hurt, but she showed up for the
sake of the plot. Bad show with some watchable matches when they
were given time, but we needed more shenanigans with Luger’s knee or
Kimberly being stupid. Standard WCW fare in other words.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon authors page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
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Thunder – November 4, 1999

Thunder
Date:
November 4, 1999
Location: Cox Arena,
San Diego, California
Attendance: 5,091
Commentators:
Larry Zbyszko, Scott Hudson
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s a taped show in
the Russo Era, which is the kind of thing nightmares are made of.
I’m not sure anyone wants to see what’s going on with this show but
at least it’s only two hours instead of three and there are no
tournament matches in sight. Maybe it’ll even make sense! Ok I got
ahead of myself there. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.
Evan Karagias vs.
Juventud Guerrera
This
is the third shot at this match after having Bret and Sid interrupt
the previous attempts. The fans aren’t pleased with Juvy so he fires
off kicks at Evan, only to charge into a boot and a powerslam for
two. Well we’re already closing in on the first match’s time. Juvy
escapes a suplex but fails on a rollup attempt, setting up a double
clothesline to put both guys down.
Back up and Evan chops
away, only to duck his head and get caught by a DDT. Juvy again
stops to pose for the crowd and walks into a gorilla press hot shot.
Evan misses a Lionsault but is still able to crotch Juvy on the top.
They slug it out until Norman Smiley of all people comes out to
interrupt, meaning the match doesn’t end again.
Rating:
C-.
This could potentially be a running joke. Granted the joke would
have a shelf life of about a month but there’s potential there.
Unfortunately I don’t think that’s the plan and they just don’t care
about the match and are using it as a backdrop for people to come out
here and break the script for whatever they have to talk about. As
usual, Russo has so much to do that he can’t fit it all into five
hours of TV a week.
Norman
asks Juvy (in Spanish) for a minute. Now, everyone knows that Norman
is hardcore to the bone and is here to bring the Big Wiggle to the
division. When you think of hardcore, you think of one man: NORman.
Both cruiserweights beat him up but he eventually collapses, causing
them to dropkick each other. With both guys down, IT’S WIGGLE TIME!
Norman is WAY too talented for this but he’s hilarious in the role.
Shane
Douglas thinks the Revolution should allow new members if someone
good is available. Saturn says even NFL teams screw up in their
first draft picks sometimes.
Sid,
in red pants and a hat that covers about 25% of his hair, is told
that there’s a change in booking tonight. His match: teaming with
Saturn to face Rick Steiner and Chris Benoit. Oh that wacky Russo.
Sid isn’t happy but he’ll do it.
Booker T. vs. Kaz
Hayashi
Booker
easily sends him into the corner to start but lets him out with a
clean break. That Booker is a nice guy. A powerslam drops Hayashi
but Booker poses too long (common problem tonight) and misses an
elbow, allowing Kaz to fire off some low dropkicks. Why do I have a
feeling that’s the extent of his offense in this match?
T.
heads outside where Kaz teases a dive to make Booker duck, only to
hit the slingshot dive on the real attempt. Sensing his brother
being in trouble, Stevie comes over and pounds on Kaz and of course
the referee is all fine with this. Back in and Booker nails a Rock
Bottom, followed by the 110th
Street Slam and the missile dropkick for the pin.
Rating:
D+.
This was supposed to be a squash but it wound up being Harlem Heat
having to team up to beat Kaz Hayashi. Booker really shouldn’t be
having issues like these against someone as low level as this. It’s
almost like they have no idea how to book someone in the midcard.
Also, this is going to be the closest thing we have to a clean finish
all night isn’t it?
The
Filthy Animals steal Doug Dillinger’s wallet with Torrie offering a
distraction. Again, we’re supposed to cheer for these guys right?
Rick
Seiner says he and Sid will be the last men standing in the tag match
tonight. Ok then.
Eddie Guerrero vs.
Coach Buzz Stern
That’s
Glacier if you’ve tried to block this from your memory. Coach
actually takes over with a shoulder block and backbreaker to start as
student Luther Biggs takes notes. That makes sense, as does the
Animals taking his notebook. Hoodlums. Eddie nails a headscissors
that sends Stern over to yell at the Animals, who promptly destroy
him for about 30 seconds. Of course this doesn’t matter because WCW
referees are worthless, including allowing Kidman to hit the BK Bomb
to set up the frog splash for the pin. Comedy match.
Biggs
gets beaten down as well and the Animals steal Stern’s shirt.
The challengers for the
Tag Team Titles don’t seem to get along but are ready to win the
belts. Their names: Berlyn and Curly Bill. This really shouldn’t
surprise you.
Rick Steiner warns
Benoit that it’s going to be a long night. I reiterate: ok then.
Tournament recap.
The Revolution want to
know why Sid is teaming with Saturn, but Sid just says he isn’t
happy. Were they running really short tonight?
Gene interviews La
Parka of all people, with La Parka speaking Spanish about making it
big in the United States and facing Buff Bagwell. That’s pretty
basic stuff, but the captioning is a huge rant about La Parka wearing
his costume as a tribute to He-Man villain Skeletor because he has
every episode on tape at his house and will defeat Bagwell tonight BY
THE POWER OF GREYSKULL! I know I rip on Russo a lot (and with good
reason), but this was hilarious.
Buff Bagwell vs. La
Parka
After
a quick recap of what these two have been through so far, we see that
Buff isn’t that into the match again. La Parka does his dance but
throws in the Hogan hand to the ear to keep himself the most over
unimportant luchador on the roster. An armdrag puts Buff down and
they take more time to play to the crowd. After a lot of strutting
from both men, La Parka slams him down a few times.
Buff
tries to get the fans to cheer for La Parka, but the masked man gets
ticked off. He tells Buff to come after him so Bagwell stomps away
in the corner before kneeling in the middle of the ring so La Parka
can kick him like he did on Nitro a few weeks back. This time though
Buff ducks and stomps away, setting up the Blockbuster for the pin.
Rating:
D.
La Parka is rapidly becoming a favorite of mine, but this Buff
storyline is killing whatever interest anyone else can dig up. It’s
all this “haha we’re so smart that we’re going to expose the
business to make the sheep keep watching”, even though the shows
are getting almost unwatchable at times. But hey, people are
talking! They’re laughing and calling this show a disaster and it’s
killing any future potential, but they’re talking!
Kidman is too
preoccupied with Torrie being back to worry about defending the
titles tonight. Usually that line would make me roll my eyes, but
it’s Berlyn and Curly Bill. Come on.
Tag Team Titles:
Konnan/Kidman vs. Berlyn/Curly Bill
Guess
who’s defending. The intros take forever as all of the Animals have
to jabber on like all those young 90s kids talked. I’ll give them
this on their entrances: going from rap to opera to country is quite
the variety. Berlyn fires off a bunch of strikes at Kidman to start
but Kidman ducks under some clotheslines and gets two off a cross
body. A powerslam puts Kidman down but Berlyn is dumb enough to try
a powerbomb.
Kidman
has been practicing though as he punches down instead of breaking it
up with the usual faceplant. Off to Konnan for his finishing
sequence but he whips Berlyn into the ropes instead of going for the
Tequila Sunrise, earning him a clothesline. Off to Bill who CLEANS
HOUSE (!) but quickly wants the tag. That’s not good with Berlyn,
who knocks him out with the loaded glove, setting up the Tequila
Sunrise.
Rating:
D-.
So the Neo Nazi punched out the black cowboy so the Spanish speaker
and his fellow thieves can retain their titles. Which part of that
makes you scratch your head? That’s a serious question actually as
I’m really curious to see which one of them is the most bizarre.
This is another stupid idea that just gets thrown out there for
surprise value.
The Animals stomp Bill
because they’re good guys like that.
Gene brings out Lash
Leroux, who says he doesn’t trust Disco as far as he can throw his
granddaddy’s mule. Disco has his Cajunweight title and Lash is
coming for it.
After
a break, Gene brings out Van Hammer, who is the rumored newest member
of the Revolution. “For the Revolution, I’ll be a revelation.”
No you won’t be. You suck too much.
Silver
King vs. Lash Leroux
Feeling
out process to start until Leroux gets taken down with a drop
toehold. A standing Harlem Hangover gets two for King before Lash
rolls under a spinwheel kick to send King down. It’s time for the
dance into the splits into a clothesline before they head outside
where King whips him hard into the steps. Back in and Leroux comes
right back with a high cross body, only to get kicked HARD in the
head to put him down again.
King
goes to the ropes for something like a springboard Whisper in the
Wind splash for two. They head outside one more time and now it’s
King being sent into the barricade. Back in again and Lash gets
taken down by another drop toehold but he avoids something like a
Lionsault. A quick dropkick sets up the Whiplash for the pin.
Rating:
C-.
When did Silver King get this good at high flying? He was busting
out some pretty insane stuff out there despite looking like a little
butter ball. Lash isn’t bad but he really doesn’t have a character
outside of being Cajun, and you can only rely on that accent for so
long.
Benoit says Malenko is
his prey now and he’ll fight Sid and Steiner by himself if he has to.
Dean Malenko vs. Van
Hammer
Hudson
says three fourths of the Revolution is here. I’d assume he means
Benoit is the missing link because WCW announcers are stupid. Hammer
says he should be in the Revolution and says they can do this the
easy way or the hard way. Dean decks him for general purposes and
goes after the knee. Hammer limps around but actually catches Dean
in a powerslam. He can’t follow up though because of his knee and
Dean nails him with a flying clothesline.
Since you need help
with Van Hammer, Saturn gets in a knee shot of his own. Back up and
Dean misses a charge, setting up a quick Flashback for two. We hit
the cobra clutch but of course there’s a ref bump (that should be the
center square on Russo Bingo so far), allowing the rest of the team
to crotch Hammer on the post. The Cloverleaf makes Hammer tap.
Rating:
D.
Gah they can’t just let a match go simply can they? At some point
the fans are going to catch on to all the ref bumps (by at some point
I mean by the second one) and stop caring. Then again one of the big
stories right now is THIS IS ALL FAKE AND I HATE THE BOOKING so I
don’t think insulting their intelligence is all that big of a
priority.
Video
showing how much the Powers That Be have been screwing with lower
midcard guys and Madusa. This doesn’t make the whole thing any
better.
Battle
Royal
Steve Regal, Dave
Taylor, Chris Adams, Jerry Flynn, Prince Iaukea, Scotty Riggs, El
Dandy, Chavo Guerrero
E
freaking gads man. Apparently this is an Opportunity Knocks battle
royal and the seven non-winners are on the bubble for roster spots
and the winner gets a golden opportunity on Nitro. Why do I have a
feeling that’s code for getting squashed by Goldberg or getting
nothing because WCW won’t remember it?
Oh
and just because we need one, Hudson says this isn’t a good time “to
go up north.” This is from November 1999. The WWF had been a
national promotion for what……at least twelve years now? And yes
I get that it’s their headquarters but it’s another stupid insider
line that most fans won’t get and another reason why WCW is stupid.
It’s
a huge brawl to start with El Dandy being thrown out just after the
bell. The Brits get in a fight (it’s expensive living in England)
and Chavo takes advantage by knocking out Adams. Regal responds by
kicking him low before Riggs, Flynn and Iaukea are all out in a
hurry, leaving us with Regal, Taylor and Guerrero. The Brits get
together but Taylor clotheslines Regal by mistake but gets eliminated
anyway. A quick catapult sends Regal out to give Chavo the win as
the announcers say there are seven roster spots open.
Rating:
F.
I don’t often do this, but I’m going to give a spoiler for this
coming Nitro: Chavo wins nothing. He goes into the Powers That Be’s
office and asks for his opportunity. Russo says that the opportunity
for Chavo is selling Amway and throws him out. I knew something like
that was going to happen as soon as this match started not because I
read a spoiler, but because that’s how WCW works these days. Total
waste of time and a nothing match.
Rick
and Sid talk about doing the finger poke ending. That’s referenced
and used WAY too often.
Sid Vicious/Perry
Saturn vs. Chris Benoit/Rick Steiner
Let’s
get this over with. Asya and Saturn come out, with Saturn saying
that’s one fourth of the team. If Asya counts as a member, it’s one
half. If Asya doesn’t count as a member, it’s one third. Again, WCW
announcers are all stupid. It’s in their contracts. Here’s the
opening of the match: Rick drops down for a cover but small packages
Sid for two (just like Hall did on Monday). Sid responds by
powerbombing him (hopefully ending their friendship) and leaving,
meaning it’s Saturn vs. Benoit. Somehow this match might now suck!
They
slug it out in the corner with Benoit getting the better of it with
chops and a back elbow to stop a running Saturn. A backbreaker gets
two on Saturn but he pops back up with a t-bone suplex. Benoit has
to raise his knees to block a Lionsault and Rick gets on the apron
for a tag.
Thankfully
Benoit is a wrestling fan and doesn’t let him in….and Steiner
blasts him with a clothesline because WE NEED RICK STEINER IN OUR
LIVES! Steiner suplexes Saturn too, just so we know he’s way better
than both guys, and leaves. The Crossface doesn’t work so Benoit
rolls some Germans instead. The Swan Dive misses but Malenko comes
in for the DQ anyway.
Rating:
C.
This was one of the biggest messes I’ve seen in a good while but it
was mostly Benoit vs. Saturn for four minutes so I can’t complain.
Yet again we have more overbooking because Russo is so sure we need
it, meaning we get nonsense like Sid getting a paycheck for 45
seconds of “work” and Rick Steiner laying out everyone because
he’s Rick Steiner and therefore has to be dominant. Oh geez we’re
getting Sid vs. Steiner now aren’t we?
The Filthy Animals run
in to attack everyone to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
D+.
This was actually a pretty watchable show when they let the wrestlers
wrestle. They kept things moving for the most part which is the best
thing they could do on a show like this. It’s kind of nice to have
something almost completely unrelated from the title tournament
stuff, but it’s kind of terrifying that this was their second best
batch of ideas.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
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Monday Nitro – November 1, 1999

Monday Nitro #212
Date: November 1, 1999
Location:
Target Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Attendance: 8,362
Commentators: Bobby
Heenan, Tony Schiavone
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s still tournament
time and tonight we get the other half of the first round. Some of
the matches were already announced on Thunder, but I’d actually be
surprised if they remembered those matches after four days. Other
than that I’m sure we’ll see a lot more of the Filthy Animals vs. the
Revolution, which hopefully means more of Torrie. Let’s get to it.

The Outsiders are
drinking in their locker room when Bret comes in to yell at them for
interfering last week. They handed him the US Title but Bret wants
them to stay out of his business. You can see it coming from here.
After
the usual intro, here’s Bret on crutches with something to say. He’s
seen the tape from last week (now there’s something you don’t hear
every day) and doesn’t want to be associated with screwjobs. As far
as he’s concerned, Goldberg is still the US Champion. This brings
out Sid to say it’s his because he has proof Goldberg said he quit at
Halloween Havoc. They tell each other to screw themselves but here
are the Outsiders to break up a powerbomb. Nash hands Sid the belt
but tells him to go to the back. They yell at Bret as this is
already confusing.
There’s a cage above
the ring.
Here are some more
brackets for the tournament.
Chris Benoit
Dean Malenko
Madusa
Evan Karagias
Scott Hall
Sid Vicious
The Cat
Lash Leroux
Buff Bagwell
Stevie Ray
Vampiro
Berlyn
Disco Inferno
Curt Hennig
Booker T.
Jeff Jarrett
Double Madusa. Oh joy.
Saturn and Torrie
arrive on a motorcycle but Asya is right there to prevent her from
running off. That’s one of the more logical things I’ve seen on this
show in weeks.
Quick look back at
Savage’s speech last week about finding someone to hand the torch to.
WCW World Title
Tournament First Round: Vampiro vs. Berlyn
Berlyn
takes him down with a headlock to start but Vampiro does the same to
him. In a match between two people who could be World Champion, the
announcers talk about Torrie. Back up and Berlyn scores with a kick
to the ribs but charges into a powerslam for no cover. Cue the band
the Misfits to surround the ring as Berlyn hits a spinwheel kick.
Vampiro kicks him down as well but the referee gets bumped. The
bodyguard comes in with his loaded glove but the Misfits take him
out, allowing Vampiro to hit him with a chair. Vampiro dives into a
dropkick but the Misfits trip Berlyn to give Vampiro the pin.
Rating:
D.
Someone take away Russo’s caffine. It’s a four minute and eleven
second match but there was a ref bump (I’ll go low and say the first
of three tonight) and FIVE people interfering. I’m fine with Vampiro
pinning Berlyn, but you can easily do the same thing and get to the
same post match stuff with WAY more extra stuff. Does Russo really
think fans aren’t going to stick around for this match if the Misfits
and the bodyguard don’t interfere during a ref bump? I know he’s
delusional but come on.
Post match Berlyn says
screw this character and walks off.
Kevin
Nash says he can’t be Scott Hall’s manager tonight so he’ll be his
promoter instead.
Shane Douglas has
Torrie in a cage because that’s how you treat filthy animals. “Is
this how Billy likes it?” This is Russo’s version of porn isn’t
it?
After
a recap of the Revolution kidnapping Torrie last week, here’s the
Revolution for a chat. Shane calls out the Filthy Animals because he
has an offer for them. Saturn has the key to the cage, so he
challenges Eddie for…….wait for it…….you know it’s
coming……..A KEY ON A POLE MATCH!!! I’m stunned it took Russo
this long to get to one. Malenko rips on Benoit so here’s Chris to
say we should make their match a cage match. And thank goodness
there’s one above the ring.
Kevin
Nash is in a makeup chair.
The Filthy Animals
aren’t allowed into the building so they beat up the security guards.
Mike Tenay is in the
back with the Nitro Girls. Kimberly says Page is so injured that she
has to leave the team to take care of him.
WCW World Title
Tournament First Round: The Cat vs. Lash Leroux
The
now blond Miller is here against doctor’s orders though the injury
isn’t specified. He slaps Lash in the face to start and punches his
way out of a sunset flip attempt. Somehow being injured has really
opened up his offense. Lash Irish whips him across the ring,
Miller’s knee gives out, Lash grabs a basic leg lock and Cat gives
up. This didn’t even last a minute and the announcers were too busy
talking about Nash’s makeup to notice the match until it was over.
Hart
says either the Outsiders or Sid are going to pay.
AC Jazz and Spice argue
over who is going to lead the Nitro Girls. Why do they need a
leader? Ah that would be because EVERYTHING HAS TO BE AN ANGLE
around here.
The Filthy Animals are
filming Luger and Elizabeth, with the former wanting to know what
Elizabeth is going to do to help in his matches. The audio is out of
sync and the camera crew is shown directing the scene. I’m assuming
this is more breaking the fourth wall, but it might be something a
bit better, like horrible production and not knowing how to run a
show.
Larry
Zbyszko has gone to Scott Steiner’s house to talk about Scott’s
recent back surgery. Scott hurt his back about a year ago and then a
shoulder injury made it even worse. The medicine didn’t help so he
had surgery and starts rehab in 21 days. This didn’t mean much but
an update is nice.
The Nitro Girls get in
a fight during their routine. My goodness just let them be
cheerleaders.
Tenay tells Buff
Bagwell that the Powers That Be have a new surprise for him. Buff
says that’s two for him and zero for them.
Nash is on the phone.
We recap the Nitro
Girls fighting. Wrestling? Anyone? Soon perhaps?
They fight again in the
back. Egads that’s four segments in the first hour. Add “patience”
to the list of words Russo doesn’t know.
WCW World Title
Tournament First Round: Buff Bagwell vs. Stevie Ray
Wait,
this isn’t ready to go yet either. Stevie says the Powers That Be
have made this a strap match. He chokes away in the corner as Heenan
thinks Nash’s makeup reminds him of a former employer. We’re getting
Kevin McMahon aren’t we? More choking ensues until Buff throws him
over the top to hang Stevie. Cue the Harris Brothers to jump Buff
and that’s a DQ. So the Powers want to screw with Buff by having him
advance in the tournament?
Buff gets away so they
go after Stevie, only to have Booker come out for the save.
Jeff Jarrett is annoyed
people still think he hit Elizabeth with a guitar. What’s funnier to
me is that she hasn’t mentioned it yet.
Here’s
Kevin Nash as Vince McMahon. I guess this is the long awaited
response to the Billionaire Ted skits? Nash says he does everything
for the fans in his best Vince voice, which really isn’t all that
great. He’s the most powerful man in sports entertainment and he
built this place single handedly. In a pre-emptive move tells the
fans not to chant insults at him. He’s a billionaire due to the
stock options but he categorically denies anything going on.
Here’s
his future World Champion who he’ll push as a babyface until people
are sick of him. He’s clean, he’s sober, he’ll work in the main
event against Jeff Jarrett, and he has more than one catchphrase:
Scott Hall. Scott brings Nash a wig and says he can’t follow this
because the Powers That Be told him he’s gone if he has one more
strike and he doesn’t want to burn bridges up north. Hall asks who
picks out Vince’s clothes and thinks they’re from JC Penny. To all
the boys in New York, the attitude is down here.
Hokey freaking smoke
this was horrible. That’s in addition to being stupid, completely
missing the point, ticking off the audience, and being the last thing
they should be doing when they haven’t won a night in the ratings in
a year now. The imitation wasn’t even funny, especially given that
Vince is basically a walking cartoon character. How many of those
jokes do they think the common fan understood? The worst part, I
don’t think they care how many the fans understood, because this was
just for the writers to laugh at and had nothing to do with the
audience, because that’s what WCW is about these days.
Luger
comes up to Meng and tells him that Jeff Jarrett is making fun of him
in the back. I’m assuming this is about Liz getting attacked? Jeff
has been giving out bananas because Meng likes them, so Luger gives
Meng one. Meng eats the banana without peeling it. I could turn
this show in as a psychology project and get an A just for finding
something this insane.
Hennig isn’t going to
retire anytime soon and will beat Disco tonight.
WCW World Title
Tournament First Round: Disco Inferno vs. Curt Hennig
Curt’s
dad Larry is in the crowd and hugs his son. Disco tries to get a hug
as well but Curt nails him from behind and takes him inside for a
nice running dropkick. Some chops put Disco on the floor where Larry
gets in some shots of his own. Back in and Hennig charges into a
boot in the corner, setting up a swinging neckbreaker from Disco.
The offense goes nowhere but Disco blocks the PerfectPlex. Can we go
back to the Larry stuff? The Chartbuster is blocked as well and
Disco heads outside to talk to the yet to be named fan (ECW’s Tony
Mamaluke)…..and gets counted out.
Rating:
D-.
And that man is a champion ladies and gentlemen. The best part of
this match really was Larry Hennig getting a reaction from the crowd
who remembers the days when wrestlers wrestled instead of imitating
the owners of other promotions in not funny comedy bits. If there’s
a reason behind this Curt gets fired if he loses bit, I’m not seeing
it. Finally, there was no mention of Mamaluke being the same guy
that used to be Lodi’s biggest fan.
The
Filthy Animals want Torrie back and Konnan issues an open challenge
for the Tag Team Titles.
Norman Smiley is
wearing catching gear and dancing.
Nash
is “getting into character. Get it?” It makes no more sense on
screen.
Meng vs. Barbarian
vs. Norman Smiley
Hardcore
match. Apparently Madusa is back in the tournament because it wasn’t
fair to have her fight Meng with no warning. Smiley is wearing the
catcher’s gear to the ring which would eventually become football
pads. The monsters fight in the corner but Meng stops to beat him
up. Tony thinks this is hilarious. The former Faces of Fear double
team Smiley with weapons shots until Barbarian hits Meng in the head
with a mop. They do the same sequence again but with a trashcan
instead of a mop.
Norman
keeps trying to fight back but Meng knocks him into the corner and
dropkicks Barbarian down. Meng takes off Norman’s catcher’s mask and
knocks him to the floor where Jimmy Hart rips off the chest
protector. Back to more double teaming of Smiley in the ring and a
stretcher comes out to save Norman. However, it’s a ruse as Norman
sees both guys down in the ring with Meng face first between
Barbarian’s legs. Somehow that’s not a cover from Meng so Norman
runs in to pin Barbarian.
Rating:
D-.
Oh for goodness’ sake. Somehow this match was the longest of the
night at a whopping six minutes and thirty one seconds. I guess this
is supposed to pass for comedy now as you have Norman go from nothing
to being the hardcore idiot, which is better than what he was doing
in theory. Somehow this is going to get even worse I’m sure, but
just let it be shorter. Please?
Norman
does the Big Wiggle on the announcers’ table.
Jeff Jarrett says it’s
time for his public apology.
Jim Duggan talks to the
Powers That Be and says he’s lost a kidney but he can have a bigger
impact in the few years he has left than he’s had in the last twenty
years. A voice (Russo) asks if Duggan is asking for an opportunity.
That’s all Duggan wants, but Russo asks how that will help the
ratings. He’ll think about it.
Sidebar
for future reference: the only people who care about ratings are
either people who work for a wrestling company or people with WAY too
much time on their hands. Stop using them as a plot device, because
almost no one knows or cares what the heck you’re talking about and
it just sounds dumb. Wrestlers fight for championships or to settle
scores, not for the ratings. Also, you lose the right to talk about
ratings after that Nash skit earlier.
Hall and Nash are in
the back and say if Sid gets screwed, it’s because Sid screwed Sid.
Can we at least get a reference to something not almost two years
ago?
Luger
talks to Meng again but Meng doesn’t seem to understand.
Here’s
Jeff Jarrett, who demands Luger come out here and apologize for
accusing him of attacking Liz last week. Jarrett: “This isn’t the
WWF and we don’t abuse women here.” Luger and Liz come out and
admit that they’re not sure it was Jeff, so they’re sorry. However,
Luger thinks it might have been Meng, who Jeff calls a giant ape.
Cue Meng to chase Jarrett off, allowing Liz to mace Meng so Luger can
beat on him with a tire iron. Couldn’t he have done this in the
back? Or during the hardcore match when Meng was out cold? Too
logical I’m guessing?
Sid doesn’t answer when
the Outsiders knock on his door.
Luger asks Sting to
team up with him to go after the Tag Team Titles.
Perry Saturn vs.
Eddie Guerrero
Pole
match with Torrie in a shark cage on a fork lift, wearing a dress cut
lower than this show’s ratings. Eddie is on Saturn from the bell and
takes him outside for a whip into the barricade. The early attempt
at the key doesn’t work though as Saturn comes back in and suplexes
Eddie instead. Eddie pops back up though and nails a SWEET
springboard tornado DDT, but this time it’s Shane stopping the run
for the key.
After a crash onto
Kidman, Eddie runs back in to stop Saturn as I ask the obvious
question: WHY ARE THEY CLIMBING A FREAKING POLE??? I know Russo
hates wrestling but what’s up with the pole thing? Anyway Saturn
superplexes Eddie down and plants him with a piledriver but drops a
headbutt instead of going for the key. Eddie gets back up and sends
him into the cage, where Torrie reaches through to choke Saturn.
With the other Animals going holding back the Revolution, Eddie
climbs the pole and (eventually since the pole is greased. Yes
grease on a pole) gets the key.
Rating:
D.
I’m so glad we built up this story last week and blew it off with a
five minute pole match instead of some big fight between the two
groups to win Torrie’s freedom. Instead, Eddie climbed up the pole
and got the key to the shark cage to get her off the forklift.
Somehow, a week is a long build up for Russo. That sums up so many
of his problems.
Torrie
is freed and that’s that.
The Outsiders are in
the back and “McMahon” tells Sid to trust him. Sid goes into a
rant about getting screwed when he left the WWF so Nash takes off the
wig and Sid starts laughing. For the far too many-th time tonight,
what in the world are they talking about?
Luger is now focused on
the Tag Team Title shot.
Tag
Team Titles: Konnan/Kidman vs. Sting/Total Package
Sting
and Luger are challenging. Tony’s horrible sense of timing continues
as he says last week’s 13 second Sting vs. Knobbs “match” was
about two minutes long. Package starts by posing but Sting cleans
house instead. We finally settle down to Kidman vs. Luger with Lex
laughing at him until a dropkick puts him down. Luger tries to get
up but grabs his knee. He crawls over to Sting for a tag as Konnan
comes in to clean house. It’s so bad that Mysterio and Guerrero come
in for the DQ beatdown of Sting. Another angle instead of a match.
The
Animals destroy Sting and beat him down with the bat. So is Sting
back to being a face like he should have been all along? That might
be the first thing Russo has gotten right. The Animals leave so
Sting yells at Luger.
Hall
says he’ll lay down for Sid tonight. Nash says he did these skits
because he’s the only giant left (remember that he’s saying this to
SID) and has no booking power.
Sting
looks for the Animals, because somehow they’re a main event level
group all of a sudden.
WCW
World Title Tournament First Round: Booker T. vs. Jeff Jarrett
Jeff
goes after him in the aisle but the referee takes the guitar away,
allowing Booker to come back with some right hands. They fight into
the ring where Booker nails a spin kick and spinning forearm, only to
get sent outside for some whips into steel objects. The Harris
Brothers are on the stage as Jeff clotheslines Booker down and puts
on a sleeper.
Booker escapes and hits
his usual finishing sequence, only to have the bald guys throw in a
guitar. With one of them offering a distraction, Jeff nails Booker
with the guitar. Despite seeing the guitar come in, being maybe two
weeks from the guitar hitting Booker in the head and DIVING OVER THE
BROKEN PIECES, Robinson counts the pin.
Goldberg is on the set
of Slam (the name of Ready to Rumble, even though Tenay used the name
Ready To Rumble earlier in the night) and wants to kill Sid and the
Outsiders.
The Nitro Girls are
still fighting so Nash comes in and says save it for the pay per
view.
Evan Karagias wants to
be Madusa’s friend after their match tonight.
WCW World Title
Tournament First Round: Madusa vs. Evan Karagias
Madusa
gropes him to start but then shoves his hat off. Evan grabs her from
behind but rubs her legs. She lays down but Evan pulls her up, only
to get kissed down to give Madusa the pin in another nothing angle
disguised as a match.
David Flair talks to
his crowbar.
WCW World Title
Tournament First Round: Chris Benoit vs. Dean Malenko
In
a cage. Malenko (who got a jobber’s entrance. IN A CAGE MATCH?)
chokes him down in the corner to start but Benoit comes back with
shots to the ribs and a powerbomb, sending Malenko head first into
the top of the cage for a bonus. Benoit chops away and dropkicks him
into the cage, only to miss another dropkick so Malenko can catapult
him into the steel.
A few battering rams
send Benoit head first into the cage, but he escapes a third one and
plants Malenko with a tombstone in a nice counter. Chris slits his
throat and goes up, only to have Malenko pop up and superplex Benoit
off the top. Cue Saturn with a chain, but Benoit intercepts the pass
to Malenko and knocks Dean cold (like ice man). With no real need to
other than to finally wake up the crowd, Benoit goes up top and nails
a HUGE Swan Dive from the top of the cage for the pin.
Rating:
C+.
90% of that is for the Swan Dive alone. Thankfully they let this
have some time (four and a half minutes is time in Russo World) as
Benoit and Malenko could have a good match in their sleep. I’m glad
to see Benoit rising above the rest of the midcard and he deserves
this more than Malenko (not that he doesn’t deserve a push of his
own).
Cue
the Revolution to chain Benoit to the cage. Before they can get much
further though, the Filthy Animals come out for the save but David
Flair comes out to crowbar all of them down. Konnan tries to get out
but Sting comes in to beat him down. Patience Russo, patience. I
assure you it won’t hurt anything and you can get all your nonsense
in every week.
David
Flair leaves and gets run down by a car. Kimberly gets out and pokes
him before getting back in and driving away. I think the whiplash
I’m getting from these fast angles is worse than whatever is wrong
with David.
Nash
is down in the back and says Bret did it. Russo trope: someone being
down when we didn’t see the attack.
WCW
World Title Tournament First Round: Sid Vicious vs. Scott Hall
Sid
has the US Title on. They talk trash until Sid pokes him in the
chest to put Hall down. Sid covers but Hall tries a small package
for two. The bigger guy is ticked off and pounds Sid against the
ropes before getting two off a backbreaker. Sid chokes even more as
the fans want Goldberg. The cobra clutch has Hall in trouble but
Hall fights back with right hands. A chokeslam drops Hall again but
the referee goes down because we need to fill the quota. Bret comes
out and breaks his crutch over Sid’s back, allowing Hall to cover for
the pin.
Rating:
D-.
At least the show is over and at least this story makes something
resembling sense. The fact that I can map out the story from
beginning to end and (if I ignore the Vince stuff) make sense of it
tells me that it’s probably the best story on the show. Now if only
we can get a match to go five minutes.
Hall gets the title to
end the show.
Here
are the updated brackets, assuming they don’t switch things up:
Bret Hart
Perry Saturn
Norman Smiley
Kidman
Total Package
???
Meng
Sting
Chris Benoit
Madusa
Scott Hall
Lash Leroux
Buff Bagwell
Berlyn
Curt Hennig
Jeff Jarrett
Overall
Rating:
D-.
Yet somehow, this was a step in the right direction from last week.
They cut down on some of the stupid stuff, but at the same time
cranked up some of the other problems. The Vince McMahon stuff
wasn’t funny, didn’t lead anywhere and seemed to be there to make
Russo laugh. That MIGHT have gone over better today since Vince has
basically turned into an insane man from time to time, but this was
just one big inside joke that got TV time.
The
wrestling sucked tonight but that goes without saying on a Russo
show. This tournament is a mess, but next week will only (in theory
at least) have half the matches of the first two weeks. Multiple
tournament matches were turned into gimmick matches, because
apparently I’ll care about Stevie Ray vs. Bagwell in a strap match.
At
least there are a few stories taking shape, even if they’re not very
good. Unfortunately for every Revolution vs. Filthy Animals, there’s
a Buff Bagwell REAL LIFE story. These “shoot” stories are
getting old fast but Russo seems to think they’re the greatest thing
since sliced bread (that would be sliced bread #1 in case that’s not
clear). Horrible show this week and I see no reason to keep coming
back, especially with two weeks before Mayhem.
Remember to pick up my new book of 1998 pay per view reviews from Amazon at:
And head over to my Amazong author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

WCW Saturday Night: November 30, 1996

What is it that attracts
us to professional wrestling?
I was left to wonder
that, when I was questioned by a work colleague. Here I am, a fully grown 32
year old man, a married home owner, living the middle class dream as a quality
assurance manager by day, and WCW quality performance analyst by night.
They couldn’t understand
how on earth I still allow myself to watch something as low brow as wrestling;
something that catered to the lowest common denominator. So often in the past,
I’ve found this position so difficult to defend, especially with the modern day
product that is so carefully structured and homogenized to deliver the exact
same meal, week after week. That same, unfulfilling, gut rotting meal.
Still, I didn’t hesitate
this time. It’s an escape. I don’t watch a lot of movies, but I watch my fair
share of old school NWA and WCW. It’s something to make for easy background
noise when I just need to take a load off. It’s nostalgic; like the current run
of Ninja Turtles or Jurassic Park remakes. It’s a creative escape. I love to
write, but I don’t like writing about things that don’t interest me. Even the
worst WCW shows are far more entertaining than anything else I could come up
with on my own. It allows me to be observant, to catch those little moments of
sheer ridiculousness that nobody else does, and share it with you. I have a
library of over 4000 shows sitting on a hard drive that I can access on my PS3
at any time. I have a WWE Network subscription. It’s not for everyone, but it’s
for me. I imagine, it always will be.
Well, until the Faces of
Fear are no more. Then I turn it off FOREVER.
LIVE (but TAPED!) from
the Cyborg Factory on the Mothaship of TBS, home of the Pay Windah, masters of
Filibusterin’, starring the Debulush Woman, and that Jethebel Elizabeth, where
Clubberin’ and Plundah are all the rage, it’s WCW Saturday Night! TONY SCHIAVONE and some forgettable
well-spoken guy host.

LA PARKA vs. CHRIS JERICHO
Excellent start, WCW.
Unless of course, they’re only given 2:21. Then I might be forced to deliver
the Canadian rage all over again. Jericho might be an unbearable wiener, but
the boy can wrestle. La Parka flies at Jericho off the bell, and misses a dive,
hitting the buckle. He picks himself up, and flattens Chris. Jericho comes back
with a dropkick, ducks a spin kick, and hits one of his own. Parka bounces back
with a springboard headscissors, followed by a springboard karate kick, and
scores a 2. He seems confused by his lack of victory (for all the facial
displays he is able to provide), and powerbombs Jericho for 2. He goes for a
second one, but Jericho rolls through and delivers a German suplex, holding on
to the bridge for 2. A back elbow levels La Parka, but he shakes them bones and
powerslams Chris for 2. Jericho bounces up, applies a crucifix, and scores the
win at 3:23. That’s disappointing, I
was sure La Parka was getting the rocket push right up to Hogan. **
In the locker room, “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND feels confident
standing next to LEX LUGER. Really?
I feel like Lex Luger would make me feel quite unconfident in comparison, but
good on you for being true to yourself, Gene. Luger vows to have his way with
every member of the nWo. Errrr, ok, that’s cool, just not on camera if you
don’t mind.
After a break, Gene is
joined by JIMMY HART and THE FACES OF FEAR while Lex heads off,
presumably to shower up and start making bedroom eyes at Vincent or something.
Which he might even appreciate, at least someone would be paying him some
attention. Meanwhile, Hart lobbies for a title shot, and Meng is asked how he
feels about that. Thankfully, I speak a little Jungle Gibberish. “Aren’t you the guy who Makes the Donuts?” Which is actually a great observation from
Meng, and we’ll need to investigate. Barbarian just sticks out his tongue, and
is far too cool for this stuff.
“LORD” STEVEN REGAL vs. BOBBY EATON (for the WCW
world television title)
I don’t mean to disparage
the good name of the former Earl, but Regal’s coming off a hard fought victory
against the legendary Tony Pena, so he might want to just give up now. Eaton
powers Regal back to the corner, and gets a thumb to the eye for his effort.
Regal starts chain wrestling, which rarely goes well this early for his
Lordship. A shot to the jaw has Regal showing a range of disgust, anger, and
pain all in one facial expression. I would pay $1000 to watch him perform in a
Murder Mystery. A backdrop sends the Lord flying, and Eaton’s on him with a
vertical suplex, but Regal packages him on the way down and scores the win at 2:18. I don’t know how I’ll be able to
express to the Faces of Fear that I’ve developed some strong feelings for Regal
this year, but hopefully, they’ll understand. *
SONOKO KATO vs. KAORU
Tony tells us that Kato
is 17-years of age, which is of course a big
fat lie
. Why do that? She’s 20,
that’s plenty impressive. Kaoru is booed, not because she does anything
particularly heelish, or is unattractive, but because that’s what the Applause
sign is telling them to do. If you thought the WWE manipulated their audience,
you ain’t seen the Disney tapings. Kato hits a bulldog, and prances around
congratulating herself. A second bulldog lands a 2 count, which causes her to
celebrate again. I’m not sure I get it. Kaoru fires back with a sunset flip out
of the corner, and nearly scores the pin. Kaoru leaps and hits Kato with a box
to the face, causing the largely male audience to boo. Riiiight. Kato kicks
Kaoru in the back, and drops a leg for 2. Dusty notes that neither girl has
much body fat and are obviously top contenders, but if titles were won on low
body fat, Dusty would have spent his career losing to lower tier workers than
Scott and Steve Armstrong. Kato misses a top rope guillotine, and Kaoru nails a
brainbuster. Top rope springboard moonsault finishes matters easily at 2:37. I’m gonna go out on a limb and
say Gene doesn’t interview either of these ladies. **
KONAN (with Jimmy Hart) vs. EDDIE GUERRERO (for
the Mexican heavyweight vanity title)
Good to see the return of
the useless Mexican title – you keep living the dream Konan. This is a return
match from Monday that I certainly wasn’t clamouring for, but perhaps Mexico
was dying to see their Hulk Hogan get revenge on that evil Guerrero. The pair
trade chinlocks. Snore. Konan pokes Eddie in the eye, which leads to more
exciting moves, like the arm wringer. Eddie connects with a headscissors, but
Konan fires back with the tumbleweed clothesline. A top rope dropkick misses,
so Eddie heads up to finish. Jimmy jumps on the apron to block the Frog Splash,
but Eddie fights him off and steals the megaphone. Konan rushes over, and takes
a megaphone shot to the head to cause a DQ at 3:33. Froggie Splash hits anyway, and that’s too much for THE FACES OF FEAR to watch, who run in
and start the CLUBBERIN’! The viciousness! The violence! The power! Eddie might
never walk again! 1/2*
Next up, a treat for
anyone watching this prior to June of 2007; video footage of last weekend’s
house show in Baltimore between Benoit and Sullivan. From the little we’re
given, it appears to have taken the template of their Great American Bash brawl
(as all subsequent matches would), but with a greater level of violence. In the
bathroom, Benoit is given a Kick of Fear from Meng AGAINST THE WALL! Holy crap!
The beatdown draws Woman in to defend her man, including jumping on Sullivan’s
back and trying to claw his eyes out.
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND stands with KEVIN
SULLIVAN
and JIMMY HART to gets
their comments on what we just saw. Sullivan says he’s made a lot of mistakes
in his life, and while he has no regrets trying to end Benoit’s life, he made
the same mistake Chris is making now. He tells Benoit that he is just a
stepping stone, and he isn’t “the last one”. He vows to put Chris through hell
for ruining his life and causing him mental anguish these last two months. Gene
looks Sullivan square in the eye and tells him, with no disrespect intended,
“you’ve never been wound very tightly”. Gene speaks for ALL of us at home in
asking “guys, am I missing something here?” Sullivan glares at him and says if
anyone knows what he’s talking about, Gene is the guy. If I hadn’t sat through
Vince Russo, I’d call this one of the most confusing and stupidly incestuous
angles of all time. Sadly though, it only ranks about a 1.2 on a WCW2000 scale.
BUNKHOUSE BUCK and MIKE ENOS vs. HARLEM HEAT (with
Sista Sherri)
I abhor short term memory
loss, and it was only just a month ago when we tried out the combination of
Buck and Enos. It went REALLY poorly, largely due to Buck’s continued loyalty to the
Colonel. Nothing has changed, as far as I know, other than the Colonel turning
into a Clue Suspect. On the other hand, I appreciate that they’re trying to freshen up
the never-ending Rough & Ready/Harlem Heat rivalry. In fact, R&R won
the last match by DQ, bringing their record to a brag-worthy 1-7 this year. In
watching Buck on the apron, I realize that we’re sorely due to see him come
back in the WWE. No, not as Jack Swagger’s father again, but as Luke Harper’s.
They’re both equally disgusting, and you wouldn’t even need to come up with any
more back story for Harper, all of his behavior would just suddenly make sense.
Booker jams a thumb in the eye of old Buck, while Tony suggests this team name
themselves Rough & Rugged. I like it, let’s go with that. Stevie winds up
getting double teamed for awhile, but the heels can’t put him away. A sidewalk
slam brings in Booker T, who quickly hits the flying jalapeno for 2. Everyone
starts to brawl, and Buck hits Stevie with his finisher – the cowboy boot to
the face. Sherri manages to trip him up before going for the pin, allowing
Booker time to hit the Harlem sidekick and score the win at 4:17. * Don’t give up, Rough &
Rugged. 1 match is a small sample size, you’ll need at least 7 more to ensure
you’re truly outclassed.
Over on nWo Saturday night,
we appear to have found new contenders in the fourth round of the tag-team
tournament.
TOMMY GRECO
Height: not tall enough
Weight: 140 lbs.
Reach: 32”
Fist: 14”
Hometown: Athens, GA
Pro record: 0-1
Played a 3 Musketeer
Lillipution Champion
THE BACK STABBER
Height: 6’4”
Weight: 280 lbs.
Reach: 37”
Fist: 15”
Hometown: Back Alley, NY
Pro record: 20-20
Uses the Knife Edge
He’s Razor Sharp
Tonight’s ring announcer
is SYXX, who has been lazy about
continuing his cruiserweight tournament. DOCTOR
X
is your referee, as always.
TOMMY GRECO and THE BACKSTABBER vs. THE OUTSIDERS
(for the WCW United States heavyweight title)
No, that’s not a typo.
Nash is in fact defending the US title, which is on loan from the Giant, as
well as providing play by play. Hall chops away, AKA a “gunshot!” Backstabber
gets a tag in, and Hall hits him right away with the Japanese clothesline. Hall
takes over commentary as Nash comes in. Nash hits the “squisher”, and
Backstabber rolls out. Greco comes in without a tag, but nobody seems to care
as he takes a double arm chokeslam from “9 feet in the air!” Hall tags in, and
Nash just stays put to do commentary. “Sometimes, I get so close to the action
it feels like I’m in the ring.” The fallaway slam connects, which affects the
colon if Nash is to be believed. Hall rolls in the Backstabber, as Nash
comfortably just sits on the top turnbuckle. THE GIANT interferes with a chokeslam, allowing Nash and Hall to
score a dual pinfall, with Nash calling it.
These were cute the first
couple of times they ran them, but they’re running out of ideas, and as a
result, running this whole shtick into the ground. I could do without any more
nWo Saturday Night.
JUVENTUD GUERRERA vs. CHRIS BENOIT
It’s been nice knowing
you, Juvi. Against all odds, Guerrera takes the early advantage, and chops down
Benoit. Chris misses a chop, but Juvi blows a sunset flip and lands on Benoit’s
head for 2. An Oklahoma roll gets 2. Juvi calls for a rana, but off the
springboard Benoit catches and powerbombs him. Holding the legs, he catapults
Juvi into the buckle, and follows with a backdrop suplex. To the corner, and we
chop. Scoop slam sets up the Liontamer, which Benoit applies the real way, and
Juvi’s twisted in a seriously unnatural position. Still, he won’t tap, so
Benoit releases and beats him down. A vicious clothesline sends Benoit up top –
thumb to the throat – and the swandive connects. Crossface finishes at 3:16. ** Tony thinks WCW needs to start
considering Chris Benoit to lead the charge against the nWo.
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND grabs Benoit for a quick word. Gene’s
disappointed Woman isn’t joining them. Benoit says that Woman’s become a lot
more than just his manager, and is currently making travel plans. Gene doesn’t
much care for his lack of candor, and asks why everyone’s trying to swerve him
all the time? Benoit fails to answer, and turns his attention to Sullivan. He
says that the whole Dungeon of Doom gave him their best, and it STILL wasn’t
enough to get rid of him. Gene asks why the Horsemen didn’t save Chris on
Saturday. Benoit says it wasn’t Horsemen business, it’s all about himself and
Sullivan.
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. SCOTT NORTON
Tony finally figures out
what the deal with Page is; that he’d probably love to join the nWo, but his
ego won’t allow him to because he insists on being the coolest kid in school,
and they didn’t pick him first. Of course, Page has said this himself at least
a half dozen times, but Dusty is genuinely amazed at Tony’s ability to piece
the puzzle together and believes he’s right. Norton uses his power to overtake
Page in the early going. DDP winds up staggering around after taking an
avalanche, and a clothesline gets 2. Page takes a powder, and on his way back
in he gives Norton a quick snapmare over the top rope. Norton is choked in the
ropes, and Page liberally uses his 5 counts. Swinging neckbreaker gets 2, but
Norton kicks out with some authority, launching Page several feet. A
shoulderblock knocks Page off his ass, but on the follow up charge, Page uses
the momentum to fall backwards into a hot shot. A pancake connects, and Page
calls for the Diamond Cutter. Page tries, but Norton just throws him off
mid-move, and sends Page to the floor. DDP reaches into his tights, and on his
way back in, Norton picks him up. Page punches him in the face with the object
repeatedly, falls on top, and gets the win at 4:10. Still completely scummy, that’s my Page. *1/2
Page stops in for a quick
word with “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND on
his way to the pay windah. I am loving the fact we are to believe this is
happening seconds after the match, despite the fact Page is now wearing a
completely different colored set of tights. Page says he’s tired of answering
the exact same questions on every bloody show, he just wants to go back to
where he was before all this political crap started. His focus is on the US
title tournament, and he plans on walking off with the belt. Gene pressed, but
Page tells him to stop asking him about Hall and Nash because he doesn’t care
what they’re doing. The end.

Despite there being about
15 minutes left in the show, that was our main event, because we once again
replay the entire Piper contract signing from World War 3 as the credits roll.
If this is anything like last month, we can be sure we’re going to see this at
least another half dozen times between now and Starrcade.

WCW Nitro: November 25, 1996

World War 3 is in the
books. Despite the fact the nWo came out on top AGAIN, there were a couple of
positives. Steven Regal and Lex Luger looked like a million bucks, needing the
entire nWo to eliminate them from the battle royal. The Faces of Fear not only
held their own against the Outsiders, but flat out dominated them; never
actually losing the match, but seeing the useless Nastys take the fall. Jeff
Jarrett got his ass kicked by Sting again – and maybe it’s time he stopped
talking and just put up, as he did in the main event. And … could DDP actually
align with his company instead of his best friends? Seems unlikely, but he’s
still butt hurt from the early rejection. He needs you to need him, and the nWo
doesn’t truly “need” him. Could we be seeing a new faction? And what role will Joe Gomez play in it?
TONY SCHIAVONE is swelling with WCW pride – though lord knows why, since the nWo
continued their winning ways. We are LIVE from Salisbury, Maryland – home of
the steak! LARRY ZBYSZKO joins us,
and we’re all abuzz about Roddy Piper signing on to face Hollywood Hogan at
Starrcade. But, and you won’t believe me, the nWo attacked Piper! Still shots
prove to us that last night, shocking the world, that Eric Bischoff and Roddy
Piper were not particularly photogenic.

ARN ANDERSON vs. LEX LUGER (in a first round
tournament match for the WCW United States title)
Other developments last
night included that Ric Flair had been stripped of the United States title due
to his inability to defend it, and apparently the Giant parading around with it
didn’t make him the champion. Tony tells us if the Giant refuses to give it
back, they’ll just make a new belt. Or, you know, have him arrested for
possession of stolen property – have we considered that? Arn is still wrapped
up from his Halloween Havoc encounter with Luger, and considering his current
momentum, Lex has to be considered a favorite to capture the belt. Both guys
slug it out to start, until Luger gets bored and starts hammering in with some
shoulder blocks to send Anderson to the floor. Arn tries to get back in, and
gets a knee to the face for his trouble. Luger wraps the arm around the ring
post, proving you can cheer the guy all you want, but once a heel, always a
heel. Lex pounds away with axe handles, before turning his attention back to
the bad arm. Anderson breaks up the momentum with a drop toe hold, but Luger
immediately mounts Arn from behind and applies a hammerlock. Back to their
feet, Arn goes for a backdrop, but Luger stops short and kicks him in the face.
Arn starts kicking at Luger with all his energy, and Tony calls for a
commercial break. Sigh.
Back from the break,
Anderson is in the process of hiptossing Luger face first into the buckle. With
Lex finally down, Arn quickly drops a knee and heads up. Unfortunately for him,
Luger’s still fresh, and punches him on the way down. Anderson boots Luger in
midsection, and heads to the floor to choke flexy Lexy. Back in, Arn catapults
Luger, throat first across the bottom rope, and that gets 2. Back to the floor,
Anderson sets up Luger against the ring post, but misses his chop, and Luger
drives him back first into the post. They head back in where Lex hits a
standing vertical suplex, and the fans start to buzz with the prospect of the
Rack. However, interrupting matters is THE
GIANT
, holding the US title. He screams that it’s the most prestigious belt
on the planet, and that he’s still the champion no matter what WCW says.
Whoever wins the tournament is welcome to face him, and then we’ll see who the
real champ is. The wrestlers, amazingly, manage to ignore his ranting, and keep
on keeping on. Anderson heads up for an attack, but Luger cuts him off, and
tries to put him in the Rack. Arn hooks the ropes for safety, so Luger
clotheslines him to the floor instead. Lex comes off the apron, right into a
fist from Anderson, and he goes for a piledriver! Lex reverses, and puts
Anderson in the Rack. The referee orders him back in, but Lex refuses, and both
guys get counted out at 12:56. As a
result, both guys are eliminated from the US title tournament. The favorite is
out. Now what? **
THE NEW WORLD ORDER come strutting down to the ring, led by Bischoff
who has found a “cool” leather jacket to go along with his new friends. Also
here are Syxx, Vincent, The Outsiders, and the Giant. Bischoff starts yakking,
but the audio doesn’t pick it up for awhile. Now the explanation we’ve been
waiting for; it basically boils down to the fact that after he took the
powerbomb at the Great American Bash, he asked if he wanted to be consumed by
the power or lead the force. So with Bischoff’s position as the highest
official in WCW, he gives a warning to the locker room. They have 30 days to
convert their WCW contracts to nWo contracts, or else.
THE AMERICAN MALES come down to ringside, arguing a little. Bagwell
immediately starts high fiving everyone in the group, happily siding with the
enemy. Riggs can’t believe what he’s seeing, but Bagwell goes over to whisper
sweet nothings in his ear … for the last time. Swinging neckbreaker! My god –
they took Hogan, they took the Giant, but breaking up the American Males?!?
Last straw, nWo.
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. DISCO INFERNO
Tony updates us on the
state of the locker room. Apparently tempers are flaring, and everyone’s on
edge. Nobody has any idea what anyone’s going to do over the next 30 days, and
as a result it’s straight up anarchy. One would have to imagine Page is
probably next, regardless of feeling slighted before, he won’t turn his back on
his friends. Page picks up Disco like an atomic drop, but releases him
straddling the ropes – right on the disco balls. Disco slowly recovers, but
gets in a pair of swinging neckbreakers, and so we dance! Tony starts trying to
convince us that there are 37 different variations of the Diamond Cutter, just
as DDP hits the same one he ALWAYS hits for the pin at 2:14. 1/2*
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND slides into the ring to talk to Page. DDP
understands that the nWo is trying to build a dynasty, so they’re courting the
guy with the baddest finisher on the planet. Gene reminds us that Page has a
good relationship with Hall and Nash, who he used to manage and tag wish. And
his next door neighbor is Eric Bischoff. Gene: “You’re telling me you’re not
going with the nWo? Who are you trying to kid?” DDP says he knows Bischoff
better than anyone else, and even he was made to look stupid last week. He
wishes he didn’t know now, what he didn’t know last week.
TONY PENA vs. STEVEN REGAL (for the WCW world
television title)
… I keep waiting for the
announcers to burst out laughing, but it doesn’t happen. This is apparently
serious. Pena is probably better known to WCW fans as “Villano IV”, who debuted
last night at World War 3. I really don’t approve of switching in and out of
masks to give us multiple characters by the same guy, especially in company
with about 1000 people under contract. Both Mr. JL and Jerry Lynn agree
strongly with me. Regal starts with the palm thrusts right off the bell, but
Pena counters by trying to throw him out stealing 2nd base. Regal
delivers a changeup in the form of a drop toe hold, and he goes for the Regal
Stretch. Pena makes the ropes. Pena nails a DDT, but it doesn’t shake Regal,
who fires back with a butterfly suplex for 2. European uppercuts are thrown,
before finally applying the Regal stretch for the submission at 3:05. * Regal gives all the filthy
Americans a dirty look.
Appearing on the ramp is RICK STEINER, with “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND. Steiner’s been in Japan for a few months, but
he’s back, declaring his loyalty to WCW. Steiner doesn’t understand what the
hell Sting’s problem is, but at least WCW has guys like Lex Luger and Roddy
Piper. I feel dumber just listening to him talk.
KONAN vs. EDDIE GUERRERO (in a first round
tournament match for the WCW United States title)
Larry isn’t a fan of
Eddie Guerrero, because he feels like he takes too many high risks and someday
he’ll blow up in mid-air. Wait … what? Like, spontaneous combustion from
plancha? I’ve never heard of such a thing, but it’s entirely possible Larry
knows since I assume he’s watched more wrestling than I have. And just like
that I jump about 3 feet off the couch when I hear something detonating, but it
turns out to be fireworks, because …
It’s hour #2! MIKE TENAY and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN take over the booth. So Eric Bischoff is out?
Did he fire himself from commentary out of disgust for his own actions? Did
Mike Tenay threaten to give him the Tenay Family Heat if he got within 6 feet
of him? And then, a familiar voice. Nope, not Bischoff, but TONY SCHIAVONE has joined them, now
pulling double duty. Have I unfairly kept from calling this match? Probably
not, it’s been all Konan, and I don’t like acknowledging that. A gutwrench
powerbomb gets 2, but Eddie makes the ropes. A leg grapevine is applied while
Heenan starts listing every member of the Guerrero family, which turns out is
quite the list. Tony believes Bobby’s making it up, but I’m not so sure.
Meanwhile, Konan comes off the top, right into a dropkick from the possum
Guerrero. An uppercut flattens Konan, and Eddie heads up to finish. Konan cuts
him off first, and hits the superplex. He goes for the pin, but arrogantly
pulls Eddie up at 2. Really Konan? Mexican Hulk Hogan doesn’t work OUTSIDE
Mexico, so that was probably a mistake. No shock, seconds later, Konan goes for
Splash Mountain, but Eddie twists in mid-air, falling on top for the pin at 5:23. *1/2
BIG BUBBER (with Jimmy Hart) vs. RICK STEINER
Where on earth has Scotty
been? It’s even more concerning that nobody ever seems to acknowledge his
absence, not even his brother (who talks like Scott is still around most of the
time). Rick has some words for Sting on the way to the ring – he never thought
he’d see the day where he no longer trusted him. What’s sad, is no matter how
tame that is, that’s EXACTLY the kind of cutting stuff that’s going to make
Sting lose his business, since he’s so bloody oversensitive to EVERYTHING. Rick
flattens Bubba with a German suplex, but he makes the ropes. STING makes his way down from the
rafters, heading straight towards the ring, just as Steiner hits the top rope
bulldog. Bubba gets dumped to the outside, while Tony speculates that Sting is
here to finally tell us what he’s thinking. Instead, he sneaks in behind
Steiner, and gives him the Scorpion Death Drop! Bubba dives back in for the
easy win at 3:15. Heenan feels
that’s proof once and for all that Sting has sided with the nWo – of course
looking silly while Bubba screams that WCW will prevail. *
PSYCHOSIS vs. REY MYSTERIO JR.
We’re well into hour #2,
but finally, FINALLY we have a glimmer of hope for the fans of professional
wrestling. THE ULTIMATE DRAGON and SONNY ONOO are perched on top of the
ramp with Dragon’s 8 belts, watching this match. Dragon needs to get his
priorities straight, it’s Dean Malenko he wants. Psychosis goes for a
powerbomb, but rolls backwards and throws Mysterio over the top rope. This does
not draw a DQ, because consistency. Rey gets back in, and Psychosis immediately
flattens him with the top rope guillotine legdrop … for 2. Come on guys, that’s
his finish, stop killing it. Rey is placed back up top, and Psychosis goes for
a super splash mountain, but Mysterio catches him on the release for a super
Frankensteiner, and scores the pin at 2:21.
Yes, two minutes and twenty one seconds. 2:21 … EVEN TONY PENA GOT MORE THAN
2:21!!!!! -***** for the cock tease.
The entire contract
signing, the hip scar, the beat down, EVERYTHING from the previous night’s
pay-per-view is aired here, chewing up 15 minutes of air-time. Good stuff, I’m
glad the Mysterio / Psychosis match was cut to 2:21 to give us time for that.
Up yours, WCW.
ALEX WRIGHT vs. JEFF JARRETT
The entrances take a
little under 2:21 to get through, but not much. Jarrett goes to slam Wright,
but Alex kips right up. Jarrett doesn’t like arrogant people, and pounds away.
Wright fires back with a European uppercut, and hits a pair of headscissors
takeovers, finishing the sequence with a dropkick. Jarrett catches Wright
trying a slingshot headscissors, dropping him snake eyes on the buckle. And we
strut. Spinning heel kick from Wright gives him the time to head up for a
slingshot bodypress, but Jarrett kicks out at 2.  An avalanche from Wright misses, and Jarrett
applies a figure four, using the ropes for leverage like his buddy Flair, and
Wright taps at 2:18. I am okay with
the time on this one. *1/2
THE FACES OF FEAR vs. HARLEM HEAT (with Sista
Sherri)
This is your main event,
finally giving the Faces of Fear the spot they deserve. Sherri announces she is
going to be one satisfied woman tonight. Is she planning a 2-for-1 Black Friday?
Booker shoves Barbarian before the bell, which only seems to annoy him. Meng
starts with Stevie. Stevie hits a clothesline in the corner, but Meng comes
flying out with the clobbering. Stevie nails a bicycle kick, which serves to
both draw the ire of Meng who gives him the Kick of Fear, as well as announce
to the crowd that sadly, Stevie Ray has officially gone through his entire
move-set and has nothing left to offer. Booker flies in, illegally, to give
Meng a Harlem sidekick. A little Sweet Chin Music is delivered, followed by an
Axe Kick, but as he goes to cover, Barbarian kicks him in the back of the head
a lot. Meng backdrops Booker, right into the arms of Barbarian who powerbombs
him. Meng takes a second to pose while his buddy goes to finish, but Stevie
saves. A scoop slam from Barbarian sets up both guys to drop with flying
headbutts, but against Stevie makes the save. Barbarian lumbers over to beat
the crap out of him for continuing to stick his nose in here, and all 4 guys
wind up brawling. Booker tries to backdrop Meng, but Meng understands the ropes
don’t actually FORCE him to run, stops, and punches Booker in the back of the
head. A backbreaker gets 2. Meng sets up a spike piledriver, but Stevie stops
that, so Barbarian just takes him to the floor to teach him a lesson. That
draws THE NWO down to ringside to
attack … just Stevie Ray? The referee throws this out immediately at 4:09. **
Looks like the gang
started with Stevie, but Hall throws Barbarian face first into the ring steps.
They enter the ring next, while Vincent chokes the now fallen Stevie Ray all by
himself. Giant delivers a chokeslam to Booker T, and then one for Meng. I keep
hoping Meng immediately pops up, but he doesn’t, and I contemplate crying. Tony
ushers us off the air, because apparently we’re well over the time limit. Why
didn’t they drop the broadcast just 30 seconds earlier, and save me the
heartache?

If you need me, I’ll be
brooding in the rafters with Sting.

WCW World War 3: November 24, 1996

What have we seen in the last 4 weeks? Well, for starters, I’m more concerned with what we haven’t seen. The last pay-per-view was completely dominated with the Savage / Liz storyline from hell, but yet, I remain on edge since Randy disappeared right after that event and hasn’t been heard from since. Of course, the announcers have not mirrored my elevated levels of alertness, but this is WCW so that is no surprise.
In other news, Mean Gene returned to his natural post, while Ric Flair found a shirt that was completely unnatural. Jeff Jarrett has appeared on every show, wrestling the exact same match, and giving the exact same interview. Bill Murray wishes he had that kind of stoic, repetitive range.
Sting has turned into a brooding teenager, and rarely comes out of his room. When he does, he’s in a foul mood, wears dark clothing, and doesn’t want to talk to anyone.
Diamond Dallas Page has started garnering a little fan support by rejecting the nWo, while Chris Jericho has attempted to garner fan support by being a smiling wiener. Nick Patrick has ceased appearing on every single show (it’s true – check out this week’s results!), but Jimmy Hart has not.
The Faces of Fear have turned into the kind of hero warriors that video games are written about. Roddy Piper is rarely seen, but his segments air every 34 minutes, in full. Glacier came, and true to his manhood, hasn’t called us since. Fit Finlay is presumed dead, while Steven Regal is not.
And finally, Eric Bischoff is the biggest weaselly weasel who ever weaselled.
This is World War 3.
All 3 rings CATCH FIRE because we are LIVE in Norfolk, VA! TONY SCHIAVONEDUSTY RHODES, and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN are styling! Well, except Dusty, who’s dressed in the skin of several prized cattle.

REY MYSTERIO JR. vs. THE ULTIMATE DRAGON (with Sonny Onoo) (for the J-Crown championship)
The J-Crown is made up of all 8 belts that Dragon carries around, and they appear to weigh as much as Rey Mysterio Jr. If he wins, I recommend he also try and take Sonny Onoo with him, since there’s no way he’s going to be able to haul those through airports. Dragon works an armlock, and drags Rey to the mat where he drops a knee across the elbow. Dragon connects with a scoop slam and applies a chinlock. Rey slips loose, but misses a moonsault. Both guys try dropkicks at the same time, kip up, and pause to soak in the cheers. Rey blinks first, and Dragon hits a spin kick. Mysterio pops to the apron, but Dragon uses the springboard and dropkicks Rey to the floor. Back in, Rey is welcomed with a German suplex, and the bridge is held for 2. Sonny complains, but it was clean. Rey goes for a rana, but Dragon catches him mid-spin, puts him in the Fireman’s carry, and drops down with the Atlantinda backbreaker drop! He doesn’t relax, immediately connecting with a backbreaker, and a half crab is locked on. The fans try to rally Rey, who refuses to tap. A Dragon Bomb complimented with a slingshot guillotine gets 2! Rey tries to make stuff happen, but is given an atomic drop, and then the Giant Swing! He gets about 8 rotations, or 1/3 Cesaro – and after release, he falls down himself. Mysterio is a mess, and a fisherman’s buster gets 2. Since that didn’t work, Dragon uses a brainbuster for 2. He goes to the well one more time, and Mysterio rolls forward in a package for 2. Dragon pops up, pissed, and starts kick Rey in the ribs. Satisfied, he grapevines the leg, and Mysterio screams for his life. Move released, and a JUMPING TOMBSTONE connects … only getting 2! There’s been about 6 moves that would have ended this in 2014. Rey hits the floor, where Dragon kicks him in the mouth with a swinging dropkick. Dragon then hits the deck, and whips Rey into the guardrail rib-first. And, because we haven’t done enough longterm damage, a tombstone is delivered on the floor, before Dragon scrambles back in for a slingshot splash on the now deceased Mysterio. Onoo waves Dragon with a fan, but I don’t even know that he’s worked up a sweat. Mysterio is placed on the top rope, and nails the Dragonsteiner FAR too easily, but again Mysterio kicks out at 2. A running Dragonbomb is next, and another kick out. Dragon, frustrated, blindly charges, and winds up on the receiving end of a spinning heel kick. Rey quickly follows his first advantage of the match with a springboard moonsault, but only gets 2. He won’t give up however, and connects with a springboard dropkick, sending Dragon crashing to the floor. With momentum, Rey springboards off the second rope, and flies to the outside with his patented somersault dick to the face! Mysterio rolls him in, and is right behind with a springboard sunset flip – but Dragon pops out at 2 and in one fluid move he floats over with a bridged pin … but only 2! Dragon goes for the electric chair, but Rey spins around mid-move, hits the rana and hooks the legs, but Dragon wiggles loose at 2. Rey tries to pound away, but Dragon flattens Mysterio with a fast Dragon Suplex, but Rey again kicks out at 2! He goes for another Dragonbomb, but Rey rolls backwards, and holds on for a package, and 2 count. Mysterio hits the apron, calls for the West Coast Pop, but Dragon holds his legs mid-move, catapults his body off the ropes, and flattens him with a Dragonbomb for the pin at 13:48!! Well, Rey looks virtually unbeatable (even though he lost), and Dragon comes across as the most dangerous competitor in the Cruiserweight department, so … mission accomplished! This is an easy MOTYC. ****1/2
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND has some exciting news for those of you in “cyberspace”. WCW.com is providing play-by-play results, on wcwwrestling.com! Results in real-time? That’s more than my 28.8k modem can handle! Meanwhile, DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE is not far, and Gene wants to know if Page is jumping to the nWo. Page admits when you’re the very best, everyone wants a piece, but he has no interest in discussing his relationship with the nWo. Gene refuses to let it drop, because it’s a public matter now. In fact, because Eric Bischoff is his next door neighbor, his role is more important than ever. Good point, Gene-o. Page says what other people are doing doesn’t affect him, and his only focus is the World War 3 battle royal. He reminds us, he won Battlebowl in the spring, and he will be the last man standing tonight.
NICK PATRICK (with Neck Brace) vs. CHRIS JERICHO (with Teddy Long and one arm – Jericho, not Teddy)
The referee for this one is SCOTT DICKENSON in what appears to be his WCW debut – welcome aboard, Scott! He’s charged with tying up Chris Jericho, as we’re reminded it’s Teddy’s fault that Jericho’s in the mess. A heel turn here from Teddy would be glorious. Patrick talks trash to Jericho, and delivers a shove. Jericho responds by pushing Patrick into the corner and then giving him a legsweep. Patrick’s moving pretty well despite the injured neck, good on him for manning up. Patrick rolls to the safety of the floor, and reminds Dickenson that Jericho needs to watch the neck. Jericho leads the fans in a “PATRICK SUCKS” chant, because he’s unable to draw heat without spelling it out. I *hate* 1996 Chris Jericho. Patrick re-enters and challenges Jericho to a test of strength, but Jericho reaches out and puts Patrick in a hammerlock. A dropkick sends Patrick neck-first into the buckle, and Jericho follows with a hiptoss. Patrick hits the floor once more, where an irate Teddy Long tells him to get his ass back in the ring. Patrick shoves him out of the way, so Teddy shoves back – but the watchful eye of Scott Dickenson sees it, and jumps in between, giving Long a stern warning. Back in again, Patrick delivers a bitch slap, so Jericho gives one right back twice as hard. Patrick rolls back to the floor, but this time Jericho’s right behind him, and with one arm he pulls Patrick back in the ring. A clothesline goes to take his head off … and Patrick hits the floor again. Hah – I know it doesn’t make for the most exciting match, but the stalling is the perfect fan-troll. Jericho goes to punch Patrick in the face, but he ducks and Jericho’s only good hand punches the ring post! Patrick’s got him now, and takes him back in, delivering a Mr. Perfect style snapmare. Patrick works Jericho over like a piece of meat in a freezer, but Jericho swings with a hook and Patrick is staggering. A big boot knocks Patrick out for a second, so Jericho picks him up and slams him face first to the buckle repeatedly. Patrick runs around to the floor again, and once they’re back in, nails Jericho with a shoulderblock. Patrick heads up for a little high flying(!), but Jericho catches him with one fist, and slams him. Sweet Chin Music finishes at 8:04. This match was begging for a screwy ending, to out Patrick as an nWo guy once and for all. Patrick’s arm WAS under the ropes, so maybe we’ll have a re-match next month. *1/2
wcwwrestling.com update – MARCUS BAGWELL and MARK MADDEN are “answering email”. Of course, Bagwell is nowhere near a keyboard, because one fingered typing probably isn’t particularly effective at this task.
Is it the shank of the evening? Because “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND welcomes RIC FLAIR to our program, dressed more like the Nature Boy I know and love. He’s still got an arm-brace, and unlike Nick Patrick, he’s probably not going to wrestle through it. Flair sucks up a little to Sting, when talking about the guys who truly represent the history of WCW. He promises that before it’s all said and done, the nWo will belong to WCW.
THE GIANT vs. JEFF JARRETT
Tony updates us on the US title: because Flair hasn’t been able to defend the title, he has officially been stripped of the belt. And of course, neither is the Giant seeing as how he never won it. No news what we’re going to do with it, but presumably a tournament is in our immediate future. And who doesn’t love a good tournament? Jarrett attacks Giant before the bell, and delivers an uppercut. Giant isn’t phased, and begins to stalk his prey. A punch misses near the corner, and Jarrett mounts the big man to deliver some punches. Giant shoves him off, and runs him over with a clothesline. Jarrett quickly comes back with a series of Stinger splashes, but a third go gets a big old boot to the gut. An elbowdrop ensures the advantage stays pro-nWo, and Giant enjoys this by using Jarrett as a step-stool. Jarrett tries to deliver some chops, but that goes nowhere, and Giant continues to kick him down. All the fans start pointing to the ceiling, because STING is walking back and forth in the rafters, watching the ring. Giant hits a big leg drop as Sting starts descending, and heading through the crowd. Giant delivers a backbreaker, and heads up for a Vaderbomb. Jarrett side-steps, and comes off the top with a crossbody for 2. Jarrett dropkicks Giant, who collapses over the top rope to the floor, and Jeff struts. Sting appears behind Jarrett, and gives him a Deathdrop!!!! The referee sees nothing because he’s busy counting out the Giant, and Sting disappears to the back. The Chokeslam does hit – so Jarrett’s out of bragging material, and Giant scores the win at 6:05. That’ll teach Jarrett to run his mouth about people who he believes are out of earshot. Match was awful. 1/2*
The familiar bagpipes warm up, because RODDY PIPER is most definitely in the house. He’s got a contract in his hand – and with luck it’s a restraining order against the airing of his music video ever again. He’s your mannnnnnn! Heenan laughably calls Piper a bigger movie star than Hogan. Piper doesn’t waste time, ordering Hogan to get his ass out immediately and sign the papers. Instead, we get ERIC BISCHOFF wearing an nWo shirt, and flanked by VINCENT and TED DIBIASE. Uncle Eric reports that Hogan’s a little busy looking over movie scripts, but he has power of attorney. Piper shoves Vincent aside, “I taught you how to fight, get out of my way”. He calls Bischoff a never-was wanna-be, and starts slapping Vincent around. He tells Bischoff he can get away with wearing a kilt because he’s tough enough to do it, and gets in Eric’s face. Eric warns him that it’ll cost him if he takes a swing. Piper: “How much?” Eric: “More than you’ve got.” Piper shows them that he’s signed the contract, and said he doesn’t care if the nWo is ringside and interfering, because he wants the fight. He orders Bischoff to get to the back, and demands Hogan get out here.
On queue, HOLLYWOOD HOGAN emerges from the mist, with ELIZABETHTHE GIANTTHE OUTSIDERS, and SYXX. No love for the nWo Stinger? Hogan tries to talk, but Piper shoves the contract under his nose. Hogan tells Piper that he’s used to dealing with people that are actually on his level. 10 years ago, Piper couldn’t get the job done, but he wants a piece now? Hogan tells him to show the fans his hip. Piper happily lifts the kilt, showing off a hip. But it’s not that one, as Hogan lifts the other side – revealing a massive scar. Hogan says he doesn’t pick on cripples and peg legs, but since the whole world wants to see the War that Didn’t End the Score, he happily signs off on facing Piper. As soon as he does, Piper bitch slaps him, and dives on top. Unfortunately, he’s outnumbered by a ton of guys, and Giant grabs him allowing Hogan to get his shots in. Piper breaks loose, and starts gnawing at Hogan’s face. Giant pulls him back again, and lifts the kilt again showing the scar. Hogan smashes it with a chair, and chopblocks Piper in the hip. And, because we’re not done, Hogan spraypaints nWo across the bare leg, hocks a loogie, and unloads in Piper’s face.
Excellent start to Starrcade, we need a LOT more of this, and a LOT fewer music videos.
THE AMAZING FRENCH CANADIANS (with Colonel Robert Parker) vs. HARLEM HEAT (with Sista Sherri)
The Colonel slays me with his “Vive-la Quebec!”, complete with heavy Southern drawl. Booker promises to hurt somebody, OG style, and it’s on like neckbone. However, before we neckbone, we’re treated to the Canadian National Anthem, which Tony talks all over. How are they to improve, if we never get an honest, respectful chance to hear them out? Dusty complains about the filibustahs. Rougeau and Booker start, with Booker hitting a shoulderblock. Rougeau kips up, and dropkicks Booker, but that only serves to get him going. Booker hits a superkick, and tags in Stevie. Rougeau stuns Stevie with a back elbow, though a math question would have been equally effective. Ouellette enters with an avalanche, but Stevie ducks a clothesline and hits a backdrop suplex. A bicycle kick gets 2, and that’s a problem because Stevie Ray is officially out of move-set. Thankfully, he has Booker, who tags in and drops a knee. The axe kick has Booker giving us a little holla holla, but Ouellette pokes him in the eye. Both guys miss elbowdrops, but the spinaroonie gives Booker the power to hit the Harlem sidekick. Rougeau pulls Booker to the floor, and the Colonel gets in a few shots at his former client, without stopping to mop his brow! Once Booker is safely placed back in, Colonel starts wiping down his waterfall of emotion. Booker is given a double team hotshot, but he manages to sneak in a schoolboy on Carl for 2. Ouellette takes his head off with a clothesline. Rougeau applies a Quebec crab, as Ouellette flies off the top with a legdrop at the same time. Stevie finally gets the hot tag, where he gives Rougeau a gorilla press slam right into Ouellette! All 4 guys wind up in the ring, where Ouellette inadvertently turns the referee into an omelette. Booker misses a Harlem sidekick, and straddles the rope right on the old food stamps. This allows both guys to work over Stevie Ray, and a double spike piledriver connects! No referee to count, so they grab a table, because … why not, I guess. Ouellette also grabs the ringsteps and throws them in beneath the table which is balanced in the corner. A second set of ringsteps is placed on top of THAT, giving them the height they need for a SUPER Quebec Crash! However, as the 1995 referendum reminded us, there is no such thing as a Super Quebec, as Ouellette crashes into nothing, and Stevie clocks him with a superkick. Booker re-enters with the Harlem Hangover, and the referee awakes to give them the win at 9:16. This might be Harlem Heat’s best showing of the year. **1/2
Post-match, the Colonel stomps around in frustration, allowing Sherri to come at him from behind, and slam him face first to the buckle before tossing him aside. Over to Ring #2 now, she throws clotheslines like she’s Lex Luger, before coming off the top with a crossbody. The referee starts counting, and hilariously the Colonel kicks out, before sliding to his French compatriots and running to the back.
After a quick Hotline plug, “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND finds a little time for LEX LUGER. Gene wants to know what was up Sting on Monday, but Lex has no answers. He doesn’t know what the baseball bat means, but he’s worried Sting has been corrupted by the nWo. He doesn’t know why Sting turned his back to him after handing him the bat, but he hopes Sting is willing to talk to him soon. Regarding tonight’s match, he feels he’s got as good a chance as anyone, he’s been on a roll, and he really wants a shot at Hogan to help take some of the tarnish off of WCW.
PSYCHOSIS vs. DEAN MALENKO (for the WCW world cruiserweight title)
Sadly, the crowd gives neither guy much of a response during their entrances, and something tells me this isn’t going to compare the opener. Dusty smartly points out this is the first time these two guys have fought, which makes Tony happy, before Dusty admits Mike Tenay told him. Malenko applies a crossface, but Psychosis quickly makes the ropes. Of course, as soon as they’re back in the middle of the ring, Psychosis is right back in a crossface again. Dusty refers to the belt as the “cruiser heavyweight title”. Malenko locks the arms behind the back of Psychosis, rolls back, and scores a 2. Psychosis finally catches Malenko, and starts with a bunch of hiptosses. Malenko trips the challenger up, and grapevines the leg. Psychosis fights it for nearly 2 minutes before breaking it up. Dean’s a machine though, and immediately puts him in a side surfboard. Psychosis escapes, and nails a spinning heel kick that sends the champ to the apron. A dropkick has Dean crash to the floor, but he trips up during his next springboard and crumbles to the floor as Malenko walks away unharmed. He even appears to have caught his nose against the guardrail, and Malenko rolls his dizzy opponent back in. Malenko scissors the head, but Psychosis won’t tap. Malenko drops a leg, and the ref counts a little fast, but Psychosis still kicks out. Next up, the Edgecutioner – and despite the hip being yanked out of socket, Psychosis won’t give. Malenko releases, hits the tigerbomb, and locks on the Cloverleaf – but Psychosis is too close to the ropes and saves himself. Dean viciously just starts dropping knee after knee after knee on Psychosis’ damaged leg, trying to turn him into sawdust. Psychosis is tied to the tree of woe, but absolutely nothing happens. A monkey flip sends Psychosis over the top to the floor, but he misses the baseball slide and Psychosis gives him a backbreaker. Up to the top rope far too quickly for someone with a bad leg, Psychosis launches himself with a corkscrew senton! Back in, Psychosis hits a springboard guillotinem and that’s his finisher, but Malenko kicks out. That’s awful! Psychosis misses a blind charge, but still manages to stun Malenko who’s gone to the top – and the super Frankensteiner connects … for 2. He tries a brainbuster, but Malenko falls forward and packages Psychosis for 2. Both guys trade piledriver holds, and on the 4th reversal, Malenko hits the tombstone for 2! Going for what appears to be a back cracker, Malenko actually rolls through the move, then bridges back, and scores the pin out of nowhere at 14:35! Look, I love Psychosis like a brother from another madre, but they can do better. A lot better. **1/2
THE OUTSIDERS vs. THE NASTY BOYS vs. THE FACES OF FEAR (with Jimmy Hart) (for the WCW world tag-team titles)
The Nastys are busy clearing the ring before the Faces of Fear even see their music hit. The obvious play here is to team up, and do whatever it takes to work against a team that appears completely unstoppable to this point, but I’m not sure the Nastys and Outsiders are smart enough to do that. Barbarian finds Nash on the floor, and tees off on him like a human punching bag. Turning to Scott Hall next, both guys turn on the clubberin, so Scotty bails. Knobbs goes after Barbarian with an avalanche splash, but Barbarian just puffs out his chest and Knobbs bounces off the brick wall. During that, Meng is casually beating down Sags like he’s a Worldwide jobber. Nash and Hall eyeball the carnage, but don’t dare get involved. Barbarian chops at Knobbs with such ferocity that I am not convinced multiple bones we haven’t even heard of haven’t been shattered. Then Knobbs hits a clothesline, and saps the believability right out of this. Both guys take turns hitting Barbarian, until Meng finally comes in and starts giving the world’s wildest ground and pound sequence to Knobbs. Barbarian is now fully recovered, as he’s gone about 8 seconds without being touched, and jumps in to help his buddy deliver a beating. Nash and Hall look on, amused, from the apron, with Nash pretending to calmly smoke. Meng continues his assault on Knobbs, and screams out in whatever language he speaks – and the fans respond in turn “OOOOH WAHHHH!” Nash tags himself in via Meng, and delivers a bunch of high knees in the corner. Hall starts teeing off on the back of Knobbs’ head, and then quickly tags Meng back in. Meng gives him a little more of the Island Fever, so Nash tags himself back in sensing an opportunity. Unfortunately for him, Knobbs cracks him with an elbow, so Nash quickly goes back to Meng. He and Barbarian trade off, until Knobbs desperately tags Hall. Hall pounds Barbarian in the corner, until Barbarian pops up and grabs Hall by the neck angrily. With one hand, he picks up Hall and tosses him to the corner, and then gives him a vicious clothesline in the corner. A powerslam is plenty, and he goes back to Meng who immediately stomps on Hall’s pooter. Hall tags out, to Knobbs, which is like serving Meng a fresh steak. Sags tries to bumrush the Outsiders now, but both guys see him coming and they beat him down as the referee desperately tries to restore order. Behind the back, the Faces of Fear hammer away on Knobbs like machines that never need to be reset. Once everyone clears, Knobbs gets a cheap shot on Barbarian, and Sags tags quickly to deliver a spike piledriver for 2 – saved by Hall. Sags tags in Nash, so Nash obliges … and punches Sags in the head. That was dumb, because now Barbarian is fresh as a daisy, and he strikes. Nash stops him with a boot to the face, and a clothesline for 1, because Meng is already in and stomping on Nash’s neck. Nash hits the sidewalk slam, but Meng saves again at 2. Hall gets the tag, and works over Barbarian with a series of punches, which lasts about 5 seconds before Barbarian storms out of the corner, and chops away at Hall. Nash runs over to save his buddy, so Meng tags in and gives Hall a sidewalk slam. He scores a really close count, but Hall kicks out at the last second. Hall tags in Barbarian, and Meng pretends to be ready to fight his buddy … but it’s a trick, and he tags in Knobbs. Even in the most important battle of the year, Meng has a sense of humor! Meng for World Champion! The Nastys double clubber on Barbarian, and Dusty immediately breaks out in a cold sweat. Hall tags himself in, which causes Knobbs to yell “YOU FUCK!” Fantastic. Hall paintbrushes Barbarian on the mat, who shoves Hall off with a big foot and takes the fight right to him. Hall tags Nash and TRIES to double team Barbarian, but now Meng is in and they all start trading punches. Nash hits a corner clothesline on Meng, slams him in the middle of the ring. He looks to finish, but Knobbs tags Nash, and they start fighting. Barbarian COULD let them go, but that’s not how he’s designed, and he gets involved too. Sags tags in, and gives Barbarian a backbreaker … for 1. Meng comes in, as does Knobbs, and Brian’s probably sorry because he’s on the receiving end of a piledriver for 2. Sags brings himself back in, but Meng’s like a pig – he’s all chops. Hall tags Meng, but Sags gives him an atomic drop, followed by an Andrew Golota – and Hall falls backwards in pain … tagging Meng. That’s fine by him, as he headbutts his prey. Then, in a moment that’s sheer lunacy, both guys look at each other, and tag Hall and Nash. The announcers figure out immediately why this is a bad move, because Nash lies down and Hall goes to pin him … but both the other teams rush back in and break that up. The Nastys clear the ring of the Fear, and Hall grabs a tire iron to wallop Knobbs. Jackknife from Nash, and the champs retain at 16:10. Who allowed the stupid goddamn Nasty Boys into this match? You want results, you call Meng and Barbarian. Fun brawl. ***
The announce crews are split into 3 different groups, so everyone has their own rings. On ring #3, LEE MARSHALL and LARRY ZBYSZKO make up the worst pairing in the history of ever. MIKE TENAY joins Dusty over at ring #1, and Tony stays put with the Brain by the middle. Dusty chooses his winner, Konnan.
WORLD WAR 3
Your competitors tonight are LEX LUGEREDDIE GUERREROTONY RUMBLEDIAMOND DALLAS PAGEKENNY KAOSROBBIE RAGEM WALLSTREETMARCUS BAGWELLSCOTTY RIGGSSERGEANT CRAIG PITTMANBOOKER TSTEVIE RAYBIG BUBBERHUGH MORRUSKONNANRON STUDDSTEVEN REGALLA PARKA“PISTOL” PEZ WHATLEYMONGO MCMICHAEL (with Debra McMichael)DISCO INFERNOTHE RENEGADEJOE GOMEZMENGTHE BARBARIANBUNKHOUSE BUCKARN ANDERSONJOHNNY GRUNGECICLOPEGALAXYSYXXSCOTT HALLKEVIN NASHTHE GIANTSCOTT NORTONTHE ULTIMATE DRAGONJIMMY GRAFFITIMIKE ENOSREY MYSTERIO JR.ROADBLOCKICE TRAINJACK BOOTJIM DUGGANCHRIS BENOIT (with Woman)JUVENTUD GUERRERAJACQUES ROUGEAUCARL OUELLETTEPRINCE IAUKEADEAN MALENKOJEFF JARRETTBOBBY EATONJIM POWERSDAVE TAYLORCHRIS JERICHOALEX WRIGHTMARK STARRMR. JLVILLANO IVRICK STEINER, and KEVIN SULLIVAN (with Jimmy Hart).
A couple of notes … Firstly, I had no idea Jack Boot was here, or I wouldn’t have bothered recapping this show since he’s the clear winner. Secondly, this is the debut of Villano IV – welcome to WCW Villano IV! Thirdly, Chris Benoit is a total mess, with Kevin Sullivan having cleaned his clock in Baltimore the night before. Apparently the Dungeon ambushed him in the bathroom, and destroyed him.
Benoit and Sullivan start fighting on the floor before the bell even rings, and the Dungeon drags Benoit to the side for more action. Arn rushes in to save his buddy, but they’re outnumbered. Benoit and Sullivan continue to find each other, no matter who else gets involved, and Benoit never stops his momentum. Neither does Sullivan, as both guys are worlds of energy. They disappear into the crowd.
Now we look at a trio of cameras, and it’s damn near impossible to follow along with anything, but I’m always up for a challenge. Benoit and Sullivan have found themselves at the top of the arena, and Benoit is thrown down the stairs. He gets right back up, and pulls Sullivan back to the ring for more.
The nWo stand around together in a corner, with absolutely no one paying them any attention. Somewhere in here, every member of the Dungeon of Doom and the Horsemen are declared out – and in the chaos, Lee Marshall gets smacked down by the Dungeon! Tony calls for medical attention immediately, because he got clobbered. This is my kind of match!
Marshall eventually recovers, and loses his business on Larry – hey that’s the second announcer this week! I’m starting to see a common denominator, Mr. Zbyszko, if you catch my drift.
Speaking of common denominators, pretty much every update features names like “Ciclope”, “La Parka”, and “Galaxy” being eliminated. In a sad turn of events, Pez Whatley leaves us courtesy of Craig Pittman. I never approve of black on black violence.
Mark Starr says his last goodbye, falling directly on his noggin. Should have worn the hard-hat, Mark. Tenay jumps in with a major update, dripping with excitement: “Lex Luger has just … eliminated Kaos!”
Joe Gomez leaves us; I guess that Powers / Renegade / Gomez / Wright alliance wasn’t 4 life, now was it? Marshall announces the loss of “Juventud Guerrero”, who I’ve never heard of in my life. Tony relays that every member of the nWo is still in this, which is impressive since I was led to believe Hogan, Vincent, DiBiase, nWo Sting, Nick Patrick, and Eric Bischoff were not participating.
Giant and Roadblock get into it, which seems to get a little buzz from the fans. Giant wins that fight, as you’d expect, and the fans erupt. Duggan performs experimental medical practices on Dave Taylor’s ding dong, but like Barry Gibb, he’s stayin alive.
The wrestlers start to realize if they don’t start working together, they’re never going to take out the biggest names in this match, and everyone in ring #1 bands together to work over Ron Studd. This includes a giant pile-on, which I haven’t seen since my 4th grade recesses.
Riggs is shown the door by his good buddy Marcus Alexander, who in turn hits the deck via Wallstreet. Riggs feeds it to his pal, and Bagwell does a hilariously exaggerated special needs version of the overhead clap, and both guys point fingers. Dave Taylor is tossed, but still threatens to beat up everyone in the building with his fists in the air like a good British warrior.
Scott Steiner is declared out, which surprises me since he was never in, and I haven’t actually seen him in ages. And with that bogus elimination, everyone combines in Ring #2 – but it takes forever for the cameras to do the same thing.
No surprises in the ring, big names like Craig Pittman, Jack Boot, Jim Powers, and Bunkhouse Buck all made it to the final 20. Ron Studd is still here, despite the group attempts to finish him off. Lex Luger has the Giant on the ropes, but more importantly, the freshly eliminated Jack Boot and Johnny Grunge start a new beef.
Craig Pittman and Booker T are eliminated within seconds of each other. Disco Inferno dances his last dance, and Bunkhouse Buck heads for the showers (finally). Stevie Ray, Rick Steiner, and Ron Studd all go quickly. Rey Mysterio headscissors the Dragon over and out – and nearly gets tossed himself, but he holds on and swings himself back in. Chris Jericho falls out, but Rick Steiner’s back in for some reason.
We’re down to the final 10 as Ice Train’s elimination ends all hope for locomotive lovers everywhere. For WCW, you have Lex Luger, Rey Jr., Eddie Guerrero, Jeff Jarrett, and Steven Regal, against the nWo 4. DDP sits in the middle of both groups, which is almost a beautiful piece of imagery from a usually incompetent group of writers.
Giant picks up Mysterio with one arm, and launches him gorilla press style into Guerrero who’s only just stood up. Jarrett and DDP brawl, because apparently they have no interest in winning this thing and just want to hand it to the nWo. Even his Lordship gets in on it, which disappoints me from the usually brilliant Englishman. Jarrett gets caught in an Outsiders edge, and even though Regal saves him from that, he’s quickly tossed.
DDP makes a run at Regal, who backdrops him over and out! The defending Battlebowl champion can’t make it a season sweep. Regal and Luger are your lone WCW survivors, and all the nWo guys go after Regal. Steve puts up a hell of fight, but the numbers overcome him.
Everyone turns to Luger, and huddle for a plan. I would think it should be easy enough, everyone come as one, and dump him. Instead, they run one by one like the Putty Patrol, and Luger fends them off. Giant comes last, and misses an avalanche, launching himself across the buckle. Luger puts on the Rack to a HUGE pop, but Syxx makes the save. Hall goes for the Outsiders Edge, but Luger backdrops him over and out! Syxx is picked up Gorilla Press style, and he’s thrown into Hall! Luger racks Nash now, so Giant has to intervene, but his shove sends Nash to the floor… with Luger tumbling right behind, and The Giant is your winner at 28:25. ***
As the fireworks explode and the nWo celebrates, Luger points at the crew and tells them that their day is coming.
So if the Giant is the #1 contender … does he cash in on his boss?
More questions, as we start the road to Starrcade. Strap yourselves in.

Smackdown – November 28, 2014

Smackdown
Date: November 28, 2014
Location: Allen County
War Memorial Coliseum, Fort Wayne, Indiana
Commentators: John
Bradshaw Layfield, Michael Cole, Tom Phillips
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
The Authority is gone,
for now at least, and much like Raw we don’t have a permanent boss.
There’s a chance that WWE will just use the same rotating boss idea
like they’re doing on Raw, because goodness knows wrestling fans just
aren’t smart enough to get by without a GM pointing the way. Let’s
get to it.

We open with a Sting
montage. That’s still so strange to see in WWE.
Opening sequence.
First up is MizTV with
Miz saying he became WWE Tag Team Champion at Survivor Series. The
fans of course cheer for Mizdow. Tonight’s guest is Big Show and we
see a clip of Rowan knocking him to the floor on Monday. Miz says a
lot of people aren’t happy with Big Show but the only problem Miz
sees is that Show joined Team Cena. Show is so glad that someone
finally gets it. He had to look out for himself because no one else
will and no one knows his situation but him.
Cue Daniel Bryan for an
interruption and a huge ovation. On Monday, Show said that if anyone
has something to say, they should come say it to his face. Well
Bryan has something to say: he’s in charge tonight. First of all,
we’re going to have Ryback vs. Seth Rollins. That’s not all though,
as a title is going to be defended tonight when Luke Harper defends
against Dolph Ziggler.
Miz tells Daniel to
stop stealing his spotlight. Bryan: “Mizdow already did that.”
Show wants Bryan out, but Daniel has something for Big Show too. On
Monday, Rusev refused to say the Pledge of Allegiance, so tonight
he’s defending the US Title in a 20 man battle royal, which starts
right now.
US
Title: Battle Royal
Rusev, Big Show, Miz,
Damien Mizdow, Erick Rowan, Jimmy Uso, Jey Uso, Diego, Fernando,
Titus O’Neil, Jack Swagger, Heath Slater, Tyson Kidd, Adam Rose, Sin
Cara, Cesaro, Goldust, Stardust, Justin Gabriel, Curtis Axel
It’s a huge mess to
start with Show crushing Los Matadores in the corner before throwing
Gabriel and Cara out with ease. Rowan does the same to Slater and
Cesaro punches Axel over the top. Los Matadores throw out Rose but
Show tosses both of them at the same time. We get the showdown with
Rowan and Big Show and Erick gets the better of it by knocking Show
into the corner and eliminating him pretty easily. Show isn’t done
though as he grabs Rowan from behind, allowing Rusev to dump him.
A bunch of guys go
after Rusev to no avail as we take a break. Back with Miz saving
himself and no new eliminations as far as I can tell. We have Jimmy
Uso, Jey Uso, Tyson Kidd, Cesaro, Miz, Damien Mizdow, Stardust,
Goldust, Rusev, Titus O’Neil and Jack Swagger to go. Stardust low
bridges Miz to the floor so Mizdow eliminates himself. Swagger puts
out the Dusts before Titus knocks Jimmy out.
Jey dumps Titus, Kidd
eliminates Jey and we’re down to four: Swagger, Kidd, Cesaro and
Rusev. Everyone goes after Swagger but he fights his way off the and
back inside. He throws all three evil foreigners into the corner and
gives Rusev the Vader Bomb, only to have to save himself from Cesaro.
Kidd dives at Jack but gets dumped, allowing Cesaro to send Swagger
to the apron. He backdrops Cesaro out but Rusev hits the running
superkick to eliminate Swagger and retain at 13:27.
Rating:
D+. This was a fast moving
battle royal that didn’t have any significant threat to the champ.
Show and Rowan could have won just on size and power alone but Rusev
is going to have the title a lot longer than he has so far. You
could tell there wasn’t going to be much here with all those tag
teams in there though.
Kane is working
merchandise tonight when Santino comes up. He mocks Kane’s Ryback
shirt, gets stared at, and runs away.
Bray Wyatt is here for
a chat. When Ambrose started climbing that ladder on Sunday, he
looked like an angel climbing up to Heaven. It almost brought a
smile to Bray’s face, but there’s not enough room for people like
them up there. He could feel those chairs crashing down on him and
it almost made him think he failed Dean for the first time. They
have reached the point of no return and what happens next will change
Ambrose. Tables, ladders and chairs. Bray says it over and over
because he’s going to enjoy torturing Ambrose’s body with all those
things. Follow the buzzards.
TLC ad, set to Jingle
Bells.
Nikki
Bella vs. Emma
Non-title. Nikki slams
Emma down with ease but gets caught in the Dilemma for a few seconds.
A big slap puts the champ down but Emma runs into an elbow to the
jaw. Rack Attack ends this at 1:29.
Post match Nikki has
Brie hold the title and say it’s time to hear the truth about AJ Lee.
We’ve heard her sob story over and over, but Nikki has worked
harder. She’s what a real Divas Champion looks like and AJ will
always be that pathetic little girl from New Jersey. AJ runs in and
nails Brie as Nikki bails. Nikki had good passion in her promo, but
trying to take her seriously as this hard working woman who has
clawed her way to the top cracks me up every time.
Kane has destroyed the
merchandise stand.
Ryback
vs. Seth Rollins
Ryback quickly shoves
him down so Rollins grabs a headlock to take away the momentum. A
slam sends Rollins rolling to the floor but he comes back in for some
unsold chops. Ryback gets all fired up but misses a charge and goes
shoulder first into the post. Back in and Rollins nails a dropkick
for two and puts on a front facelock. Rollins fights out of a quick
Shell Shock attempt and hits the Downward Spiral into the corner for
two. They head outside with Ryback going after Mercury, only to have
Rollins send him into the steps as we take a break.
Back with Rollins
holding a headlock until Ryback lifts him up into a kind of slingshot
belly to back suplex. Ryback’s powerbomb is escaped and an enziguri
connects, followed by a superkick for two. Seth misses a splash in
the corner so Ryback lifts him up, only to be countered into a
running buckle bomb for two. That was a surprising power display
from Rollins. The big guy backdrops Rollins onto the Stooges before
planting him with a spinebuster back inside. There’s the Meat Hook
but Kane runs in for the DQ at 14:46.
Rating:
C-. They telegraphed the ending
with that shot of the destroyed merchandise stand and the match felt
like it was just killing time until we got to this point. That and
Kane runs in on at least a match a week anymore so you had to know
this was coming. At least Ryback should be able to destroy him in a
few weeks.
Rollins
and Kane take Ryback down and Kane destroys
him with a chair.
Curtis
Axel/Slater Gator vs. New Day
New
Day is very excited to be making their debut here. Woods
dropkicks Axel down to start before bringing Kofi in to kick him in
the chest. Big E. nails the Warrior Splash but stops to wipe the
sweat off his face. Axel finally takes Xavier down and it’s off to
Slater for some stomps to the chest. The heels start taking over
until Woods flips out of a suplex and tags out to Kofi. Everything
breaks down and Big E. backdrops Kofi onto Titus and Axel. Back in
and a combination top rope DDT/Big Ending puts Slater away at 3:23.
Rating:
D+. This wasn’t bad but what
are you expecting from two former Intercontinental Champions and
Woods? That’s the problem with a team like this: two of the three
members have already had success, so it’s not like them beating a
team of jobbers really means anything. It’s not a bad idea but they
need to actually go somewhere instead of acting like these wins mean
much.
Recap
of the Authority having to leave and Bryan’s revenge on all of the
Team Authority members.
Bryan
makes Ryback vs. Kane in a Chairs match for TLC. Oh and YES he will
be back soon.
Stardust
says the Cosmic Key is gone but their anguish goes on and on. He
says each day is part of the endless march to oblivion and welcome to
the Black Hole. Goldust declares that darkness has fallen on the New
Day. There’s the first feud.
Intercontinental
Title: Dolph Ziggler vs. Luke Harper
Ziggler
is challenging and goes right at Harper with a rollup like he beat
him with on Sunday. A dropkick puts Luke on the floor and we take an
early break. Back with
Ziggler fighting back with Cole saying it’s rally time. A high cross
body gets two but Harper sends him face first into the buckle. We
hit the chinlock from the champ but Ziggler hits a quick jawbreaker.
Back up and Ziggler hammers away before getting two off the big
elbow. The Fameasser is countered but Dolph slips out of a powerbomb
and hits the running DDT for two.
Harper
gets the same off the sitout Boss Man Slam and Ziggler nails a
Fameasser for yet another two. Luke comes back with the big boot and
Batista Bomb for two more and Harper is getting shocked. Why he’s
shocked I’m not sure as that’s the third time that combination has
gotten a near fall. They
head outside with Ziggler being launched over the announcers’ table,
only to pop up with a superkick, allowing him to beat the count for
the win at 10:52.
Rating:
C+. Nice match here as these
two have good chemistry and Ziggler can take big bumps like almost no
other. Harper is going to be a good dragon for someone to slay and
take the belt but I can’t imagine him as a long term champion.
They’ll likely have a ladder match at the pay per view which should
be fun.
Post match Harper lays
Ziggler out with the discus lariat but takes too long getting the
belt, allowing Ziggler to hit the Zig Zag to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
C-. This felt like a B
house show that was filmed and aired on a Friday night. Nothing on
here meant anything and the only thing that mattered was Ryback vs.
Kane being announced for the pay per view. That being said, it
wasn’t really bad or anything, but it’s back to the old Smackdown
standard: it came, it aired for two hours, it had some passable
matches and I’m never going to think of it again. That makes it far
more dull than bad, which isn’t necessarily a good thing.
Results
Rusev won a battle
royal, last eliminating Jack Swagger
Nikki Bella b. Emma –
Rack Attack
Ryback b. Seth Rollins
via DQ when Kane interfered
New Day b. Curtis
Axel/Slater Gator – Big Ending/Top rope DDT combination to Slater
Dolph Ziggler b. Luke
Harper via countout
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

WCW Worldwide: November 24, 1996

With just hours before
the end of world peace is broadcast on pay-per-view, it remains incredible WCW
is able to maintain any kind of order. Yet, here we are, with a star studded
lineup. What if I told you Hollywood Hogan defends his World Title against Sting,
while Roddy Piper guest referees? For starters, that would make me a colossal
liar. But we have a fair number of substitutes, such as Brad Armstrong, Rick
Steiner, and the Public Enemy.
Our hosts are TONY SCHIAVONE and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN, live from Disney MGM Grand studios in
Florida, in front of a capacity crowd of 8 excited young girls who mistook this
for a Princess tea-party.

THE ARMSTRONG BROTHERS vs. THE PUBLIC ENEMY
Heenan on the Armstrongs:
“Put your arms down, the wind’s blowing.” Heenan on the Public Enemy: “Hang on,
I gotta hide my wallet. Are those old Houston Astros uniforms?” Heenan’s all
kinds of salty tonight, moaning about the length of the Enemy’s entrance
because he’s got other things to get done today. This should be relatively
quick, depending how hard we’re pushing TPE this month. Steve accidentally
clotheslines his brother, but recovers to give Rocco a hotshot. An atomic drop
stuns Rock, and Scott comes off the top with a clothesline so gentle I’m not
sure it would move a dryer sheet. Somehow, Rock sells it, and then takes a
bulldog. Scott points to his arms, because he’s Arm Strong, before he
unsuccessfully attempts a sunset flip. The announcers talk World War 3, and
Heenan explains if he and Tony were tag-team partners, he’d be forced to fight
him. Tony’s fine with that, informing Heenan he’d be the first guy he’d go
after. Heenan is in complete shock, “after all I’ve done for you! I’ve carried
this team!” Tony tries to give it back, while Heenan explains the ideal strategy
to eliminate Schiavone would be to put a bowl of Coco Pebbles on the apron, and
as he reaches for them, dump him over the top. A bored Bobby Heenan is the best
Bobby Heenan, and we’re getting 5 star work from him here. The Armstrongs cut
off the ring and do all sorts of mock hands in the air. After far too long on
offense, Rock is finally able to tag Grunge, who starts slamming losers left
and right. Drive By goes to finish, but Steve Armstrong makes the save. There
is no reason to delay this! Miscommunication from the brothers leads to a
Grunge schoolboy, and it FINALLY ends at 7:39.
*
JIM POWERS (with Teddy Long) vs. MARK STARR
Starr has traded in his
hard hat for tassels, which might violate his collective agreement. Long orders
referee PEE WEE ANDERSON not to pull
any of that “Nick Patrick crap”. I’m starting to think the problem is Teddy
Long’s over aggressive approach with paid officials, as opposed to Nick
Patrick. Juiced Jim hits a shoulderblock, and follows with a hiptoss. Starr
chases him around like Wile E Coyote, failing at every turn despite having some
fine ideas. Powers delivers a pooter punch, and follows with the high knee.
Powerslam gets the win at 3:48.
Nope. 1/2*
GOLDBERG PAT TANAKA vs. GLACIER
For god sakes, Glacier’s
had like 2 fights since his debut, and we’re already running through return matches? I really don’t like that the company that employs Glacier has been
under constant terroristic attacks since his debut, and despite his background
as both a police officer, AND years of training as a martial arts guru – which
the last time I checked encourages peace and honor – hasn’t done a DAMN THING
to help WCW! As is the norm, Glacier gets to wrestle under a blue light. If
that’s the case, Val Venis should be allowed to wrestle under a black light.
Glacier runs through his stupid martial arts routine, before crossing his arms,
and just stopping short of yelling “FINISH HIM!” That gives Tanaka enough time
to hit a powerbomb, but Glacier shows a new kip up, by sliding his split legs
shut, and moving back to a vertical base. Bruno Mars should use that one.
Glacier hits the Cryonic Kick off the top and scores the pin at 2:21. 1/2* Heenan: “He has an eye like
a Siamese cat!”
JERRY LYNN vs. BRAD ARMSTRONG
This is actually
happening, isn’t it? Even worse, it’s being sold to us as a “great
Cruiserweight match up!” Tony decided at some point that having any credibility
is worse than having no credibility, and he’s worked very hard to rectify that.
Side Russian legsweep wins at 2:24.
*
RICK STEINER vs. LEX LUGER
NICK PATRICK is assigned here, and this might be his first match all week. I’ll
give Luger credit for swallowing his pride on his last contract, because there
is no way anyone else in his position would be willing to appear on all of
these syndicated shows, but he’s here at least once a month or more. For all
the shit he ate in the dying days of WCW, Luger was nothing short of a pro
throughout 1995-97. Tony starts in on the fact Patrick isn’t wearing his neck
brace, because he isn’t hurt. Heenan asks how he knows, because after all, “you
thought Hogan was a good guy!” Tony: “… yes I did.” Luger manages a backdrop on
Steiner, but he jumps back up and spears Lex. Luger flattens him with an elbow,
but Steiner shakes it off and hits a clothesline for 2. Luger fires back with a
powerslam, but Steiner kicks out. A vertical suplex fails to secure the win,
and Luger’s a little frustrated. He goes for the roaring clothesline, but
Steiner continues to kick out. They start trading blows, which Luger seems to
win, but Heenan figures Steiner’s always in a daze so it means nothing. And
sure enough, Steiner manages a powerslam, and then hits the top rope bulldog! He
decides not to cover, which is a mistake, and they both tumble to the floor off
a clothesline. Nick Patrick notices it’s over the top rope, which is a double
DQ at 6:45. Tony tries to argue that
it was dual momentum, or some such nonsense – but I’m on Patrick’s side if for
no other reason than to abolish the stupid over the top rope rule! This was
sadly the match of the night. *1/2

No preview for next week.
And no hard-sell for World War 3 at the credits? They managed that clock like
Mike Smith in a do or die situation. Not good, WCW.

NXT – November 27, 2014

NXT
Date: November 27, 2014
Location: Full Sail
University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Rich
Brennan, Renee Young, Jason Albert
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
The big story this week
is Finn Balor facing Tyson Kidd in his first singles match in NXT.
It’s going to be interesting to see how much more impressive he is
than Itami, who hasn’t done much for me, though he needs a longer
match than he’s had so far. Other than that we’re gearing up for
Zayn vs. Neville II in two weeks and it should be glorious. Let’s
get to it.

Marcus
Louis vs. Tyler Breeze
Louis
continues to be in a state of shock and potentially psychotic over
losing his hair. He
doesn’t take his towel off for a few moments as Tyler looks disgusted
by Louis. Fans: “WHERE’S YOUR EYEBROWS???” Breeze says he can’t
be asked to take on the uggo of all uggos and won’t be the precious
to Louis’ Gollum. Marcus takes the towel off his head and Breeze is
even more disturbed. Now he thinks Louis is an idiot and a freak.
“NOBODY WILL EVER LOVE YOU!” Louis looks away and turns around
into the Beauty Shot for the pin at 2:28. Breeze was as evil as I’ve
ever seen him here and I LOVED IT.
Louis
rolls out and screams as he leaves. I could go for more of this
Louis Is Nuts thing as he’s selling the heck out of it. Marcus
gets back in the ring and the fans think this is awkward.
After a break, Louis very slowly walked out the front door of the
arena.
Carmella
vs. Blue Pants
Enzo says he has a
surprise for Carmella (Fans: “BLUE PANTS! BLUE PANTS! BLUE
PANTS!”) and of course it’s Blue Pants, complete with Big Cass
humming a theme song for her. He does the entrances and the fans
actually give her a standing ovation. Fans: “REMATCH! REMATCH!
REMATCH!” Carmella runs her over to start and does it again with a
dropkick. Off to the leg crossface from Carmella for the submission
at 0:48.
Carmella laughs at Enzo
post match. They better not split up Enzo and Cass.
Balor says Kidd should
send a tape of their match tonight to Kidd’s uncle Bret.
Lucha
Dragons vs. Tye Dillinger/Jason Jordan
Non-title. Cara and
Dillinger get things going with Sin grabbing the arm and taking him
back into the corner for a tag off to Kalisto. The champs keep
taking turns on the arm until Dillinger takes Sin over to the corner
for the tag off to Jordan. In something you don’t see all that
often, Jason covers him for no count. Back to Dillinger for some
stomps but we get heel miscommunication to frustrate Dillinger. The
hot tag brings in Kalisto to speed things up with a very high
springboard wristdrag to Tye. Cara’s suicide dive takes Tye out
again and the Salida Del Sol pins Jordan at 3:35.
Rating:
D+. Glorified squash here but
the Dragons looked good going into their title match against the
Vaudevillains at the next Takeover. The problem though is their
reign hasn’t had the time to build yet, and when you’re coming off a
year long title reigns, it’s kind of hard to get into one that has
consisted of the rematch with the champs and potentially the feud
where the titles change. At least there’s been a bit of build to the
upcoming defense though.
We
recap Sasha Banks costing Bayley a match against Becky Lynch last
week and Charlotte making the save post match.
Kevin
Owens, complete with a FIGHT t-shirt, is coming in two weeks.
Here’s
Bayley with something to say. She doesn’t have a match tonight
(“BOO!”) but she has to deal with something tonight. Charlotte
may not be here, but she’s used to dealing with bullies like Lynch
and Banks. When she was a kid she was bullied every day and when she
came home from school crying, her mom told her to go back the next
day and stand up to the bullies because they’re cowards. Cue Banks
and Lynch to shove Bayley but she nails Sasha in the face. Becky
nails her from behind though and they stomp away until the referees
come out. Again, Lynch
looks like a star here.
Natalya
is excited for her husband to get to face Balor tonight. Tyson cuts
her off (Natalya: “But I’m putting you over!”) and says Justin
cost them that match because he has a knack for losing. Tyson has
been working with Bret recently and is the new Hitman. Balor is a
guy who can’t live up to his hype. Yeah he’s good, but he’s not THAT
good. Natalya goes to hug him but Tyson has to go Facetime with the
cats. She doesn’t seem too bothered by this.
Time
for a silent movie starring the Vaudevillains. The Lucha Dragons are
trying to rob a bank and it’s up to the Vaudevillains to stop them.
But first, TRAINING MONTAGE! English does push-ups while Gotch gets
in a fist fight WITH A BEAR. They go for a run before heading to the
bank where they find a box of TNT. It’s the Mini Lucha Dragons
behind it of course, and they wind up getting blow up, somehow making
Gotch and English the NXT Tag Team Champions. Voiceover: “No Lucha
Dragons were harmed in this production, but at NXT Takeover:
R-Evolution,
we make no such promises!” This was GREAT.
We
run down the Takeover card and Sasha vs. Charlotte is confirmed.
Finn
Balor vs. Tyson Kidd
Itami/Balor vs.
Ascension is confirmed too. Technical sequence to start with Tyson
grabbing a wristlock to take over but Balor spins him down to the mat
in a nice counter. Kidd comes back with a chinlock as the fans call
him Nattie’s Wife. It turns to a TYSON CHICKEN chant as Balor
dropkicks him to the floor, only to have Kidd hide behind Natalya to
avoid a dive.
We take a break and
come back with Balor kicking Kidd from the apron but having his
springboard broken up. Kidd knocks him out to the floor and follows
up with a neckbreaker outside. Back in and Tyson hammers away in the
corner before catapulting him face first into the bottom turnbuckle
for two. Another chinlock doesn’t last that long but Kidd stops the
comeback with a kick to the ribs. Tyson puts him in the Tree of Woe
for some knees but stops to yell at Natalya for not helping him
cheat.
There’s a running
dropkick in the corner for two and we hit another chinlock. Kidd:
“ASK HIM!” Referee: “He said no!” Kidd: “WELL ASK HIM IN
IRISH!” Back up and Balor escapes a suplex and fires off some
chops followed by a Pele. A spinning suplex gets two for Finn but he
charges into a boot in the corner. Balor kicks him off the top but
misses the top rope stomp. Tyson can’t hook the Sharpshooter so he
sends Balor face first into the buckle again. The springboard elbow
hits knees so Finn hits a running knee to the face. Up top again for
the stomp but Ascension runs in for the DQ at 14:41.
Rating:
B-. Good but not great match
here as they were just getting going near the end. Balor continues
to look like a much more well rounded guy than Itami, but again I
need to see Itami in a long match like this one to get a better feel
for him. Kidd is still the work horse of this show and I’m glad that
he’s getting some shots on Raw as a reward.
Itami
comes in for the save and a big pull apart brawl ends the show.
Overall
Rating:
B-. I want to see
R-Evolution. That’s the key to TV shows like this and it’s worked
like a charm here. They spent last week building up the main event
and this week it was all about almost every other match on the card.
This was a good, entertaining episode with more wrestling to balance
out last week’s talking heavy show. Good stuff again and the big
show looks like it could blow the roof off the
place again.
Results
Tyler Breeze b. Marcus
Louis – Beauty Shot
Carmella b. Blue Pants
– Leg crossface
Lucha Dragons b. Tye
Dillinger/Jason Jordan – Salida Del Sol to Jordan
Finn Balor vs. Tyson
Kidd went to a no contest when the Ascension interfered

Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and check out my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:

http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

WCW Saturday Night: November 23, 1996

Sometimes it’s hard to embrace change, and other times it’s just so good it’s delicious. I’m still not quite sure what to make of Monday night. On one hand, you can’t question his motives – his track record has earned himself the benefit of the doubt. But was it the right move in the long run? I don’t know. I think at the end of the day, it probably wound up hurting a lot more than it helped at all, and even though likely won the Ugly Christmas Sweater contest at Turner Studios, I truly believe Ric Flair cost himself at least a dozen riders for Space Mountain.
TONY SCHIAVONE has stopped his protest and rejoined the cast of WCW. DUSTY RHODES is dressed with him, all in black, to mourn the death of Ric Flair’s style. Also on the agenda, discussion of Eric Bischoff’s new role as the leader of the nWo.

GALAXY and CICLOPE vs. THE FACES OF FEAR (with Jimmy Hart)
Biscuit! writes: When you see them comin’ better run for cover
Girls you don’t need a weekend lover…
MMMMM!!!! The Faces of Fear!
Biscuit! – congratulations, you are this week’s winner of the inexplicably awesome WCW comment of the day. Here is your prize:
When we tuned into Nitro on Monday, Galaxy and Ciclope were making their debut as a tag-team, and had been effectively wiped out by the Outsiders and their baseball bats. WCW, in their infinite wisdom, decided “you know what? Let’s give them a match with the Faces of Fear. That’ll make everything better.” Ciclope manages a missile dropkick on Meng from behind, and the Luchadores use a double team attack. It’s mildly effective, until Meng beats them both up and headbutts them to death. Barbarian comes in and gets clubbered, but that only pisses him off, and it’s boots for everyone! A backbreaker on Galaxy gives him a seizure or something, and Meng delivers a superkick for good measure. An elbowdrop sets up Meng picking Galaxy up at 2, because he ain’t done, no sir. Barbarian gives him a military press slam, but refuses to get the pin. Double headbutts bring Meng back into the fray, but Galaxy slips away and tags in Ciclope. He chops Meng with everything he has, a springboard crossbody … barely gets 1. Meng backdrops him into the awaiting arms of Barbarian, who hits the powerbomb for the pin at 4:22. Galaxy tries to get in a free shot, so Meng gives him the Kick of Fear, while looking completely unconcerned. **
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND grabs the winners backstage, and Meng is actually smiling! Gene thinks that Hart paid someone off to get a tag-team title match, but Hart swears it was common sense from WCW. Yeah, they’ve never displayed that before, not buying that.
KEVIN SULLIVAN vs. SCOTTY RIGGS (with Marcus Bagwell)
Riggs declares it a great night for a fight! I’m betting he’s right, but what he DOESN’T know is that it’s probably coming with Bagwell. Sullivan kicks Riggs in the jaw, and runs him over with a clothesline. Riggs fires back with a pair of dropkicks, and hits a flying forearm shot for 2. Sullivan tosses Riggs through the ropes, and kicks Bagwell in the back of the head. That draws Bagwell to the apron as Riggs gets back in, but Riggs winds up running into him off an Irish whip, and Sullivan gets the pin off a small package at 1:53. Riggs has had just about enough of Bagwell costing him matches, but Marcus pleads his innocence. Tony suggests they take a break. I disagree, ask Ross Gellar how that turned out. DUD
Meanwhile, “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND has tracked down CHRIS BENOIT and WOMAN. Later tonight, he faces Kevin Sullivan in Baltimore, and if things go according to Sullivan’s plan, he won’t even make it to World War 3. Benoit says Sullivan isn’t even a fraction of the man he used to be, because while he’s been at home sipping margaritas in his $250,000 luxury pad (Christ how times have changed!), he’s been on the road, in hotel rooms with Woman, perfecting his “craft” if you know what he means. While he’s been on Lear jets, politicking and pushing the pencil, he’s been laying people out. This whole angle is ridiculous. While they’re trying to be cutesy and “subtle” without specifically saying “hey Sullivan, I’m laying the pipe to your wife”, because Woman has never been ACKNOWLEDGED as Sullivan’s wife, you’re left with a feud between one of the most intense wrestlers on the planet, and a crazy old man, who sit around and speak in tongues to 98% of the 1996 audience. But hey, at least Sullivan’s Working The Boys! Ha ha!
SERGEANT CRAIG PITTMAN (with Teddy Long) vs. CHRIS JERICHO
This is a warm up match for Jericho’s upcoming “one hand behind his back” match with Nick Patrick, except he totally wrestles here with two hands so either he lacks self-confidence, or Tony’s a complete liar. The two dance to the corner, which would have been impossible with just one arm. Not that one-armed people can’t dance, but certainly not in that violence scrappy way, without getting hurt. Jericho drops a knee across the shoulder of Pittman, which is certainly do-able with one arm, but the test of strength that follows likely would not have gone well at all. Not that it goes well here, but Jericho eventually wriggles loose. Jericho is tossed to the floor, and Pittman uses a CLENCHED FIST! Tony is beside himself with anger. Then he throws Jericho into the ring post, and Teddy Long tells him NO, that’s WRONG! Pittman goes for Code Red, but Teddy interjects reminding him Jericho needs that arm, playa. As they argue, Jericho perches himself up top, hits the missile dropkick, and scores the pin at 4:07. * Long rushes over to raise the hand of Jericho, as Pittman scowls. Can’t we all just get along?
Jericho is stopped on his way to the Pay Windah by “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND. Jericho promises revenge tomorrow night against Nick Patrick, because he’ll still have one arm, two legs, and a head to hit Patrick with. He doesn’t even want to think about what’s going to happen. How Chris Jericho became one of the best talkers in the business is lost on me, because he’s about the least convincing wrestler I’ve heard speak. Even worse than that guy with one leg.
BUNKHOUSE BUCK vs. ARN ANDERSON
Was this taped in 1993? Does the winner face Stunning Steve for the US title? How will this affect Dustin Rhodes? Neither announcer pays any attention to this, because Tony’s too busy whining about the nWo attack on Monday, and promises that if they do it again, he’s going to leave yet again. I’m going to assume that since the boss is on THEIR side, that might be a career limiting move. Arn kicks Buck in the throat, and pounds him as he lays face down on the buckle. Meanwhile, it’s just occurring to Tony, that at Bash at the Beach, Eric Bischoff disappeared at the last second and he had to do the broadcast. And who was responsible for the briefcase in the limo? Now they’re using their heads, props to the announce team and writers for keeping the story together nicely. DDT wins it for Anderson at 3:38. DUD
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND invites Arn to chat. He hopes that Luger saw the DDT he just gave Buck. See, because Luger failed to finish him at Halloween Havoc, he’s come back to haunt him, and he’s gonna catch him at World War 3. Then he’ll win the Battle Royal, because in the last year alone he’s beaten Hogan twice, and even Flair. You tell ‘em, Arn!
THE AMAZING FRENCH CANADIANS (with Colonel Robert Parker) vs. MARK STARR and CASEY THOMPSON
The Canadians try their best to show a little patriotism, but nope, Tony Schiavone talks ALL over them. As we all try to shake off our collective disgust, I am a little intrigued by Casey Thompson. Is he our 4th member of the Men at Work? Should we order him a hard hat? Or did Mark Starr tender his resignation, and has gone scab against the Union to work independently going forward? Honest to god, WCW does not do anywhere near enough with their sideline reports (I’m looking directly at YOU Gene Mean) to answer these types of pressing questions. Of course, without the Union protection, this match does not go well. Casey Thompson is unpolished, and probably doesn’t belong in this kind of environment, succumbing to an assisted senton at 1:33. Mark Starr never even got a chance to enter the ring. DUD
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND discusses tomorrow night’s World War 3 with the French Canadians, or as Gene calls them, “The Amazing Canadians!” The Colonel is a little late, because he’s changing into his “war clothes”. Ouellette promises to show the world what Quebec is all about tomorrow night. A high rate of teenage smoking, and unemployment? Vast Pepsi consumption and an unhealthy obsession with hockey? The Colonel arrives, dressed like the missing piece from your Stratego box, and vows incapacitation for Harlem Heat. He’s still livid that Sherri “jerked him off” … the apron, and slapped him. He will have his way with her one more time. Oh my.
THE FOLLOWING ANNOUNCEMENT HAS BEEN PAID FOR BY THE NEW WORLD ORDER
Nash is a little annoyed that he only just got a leaflet that indicates they’re now in a triangle match at World War 3 last night. The way he understands it, if one of the fat guys pins one of the other fat guys, they lose the belts. Hall knows it’s a lame attempt by WCW to screw them over, but they’ve already taken out the Nastys before and they’ll do it again. Regarding the “savages” from the island, they punked them on Monday, so they’re no problem either. Eat your words.
MIKE ENOS vs. JEFF JARRETT
Dusty’s all about this match up, because in his opinion, Mike Enos can beat anybody at any time. I’d like to start by seeing him beat anybody before we get ahead of ourselves. Enos headbutts Jarrett, but Jeff punches him around and struts. A hiptoss keeps Enos grounds, and Jarrett points to his head cuz he’s so gosh darn smart. Enos tries to come back, but misses a big splash, and winds up locked in an armbar. Enos fights loose, running Jarrett from corner to corner, but he misses an avalanche and gets pounded. More strutting leads to a swinging neckbreaker. Enos tries to powerslam Jarrett, but his knee buckles, and Jarrett applies the Figure Four for the win at 3:57. *1/2
Backstage, “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND is lurking like a moustachioed sex offender, dreaming of the golden locks of Jeff Jarrett. Jarrett reminds us he was never chokeslammed at Halloween Havoc, despite the fact Giant has chokeslammed every member of the Horsemen in the past. He’s going to chop Giant down to size, and then win World War 3.
Over in the world of nWo Saturday Night, the tag-team tournament rolls on. Tonight, we’re looking at:
“PISTOL” PEZ WHATLEY
Height: 6’1”
Weight: 299 lbs.
Reach: 32”
Fist: 18”
Hometown: Chattanooga, TN
Pro Record: 99-76
Doughboy look-a-like winner
The largest small man in wrestling
“BIG BUCK” BREZNER
Height: 6’9”
Weight: 263 lbs.
Reach: 40”
Fist: 18 1/4”
Hometown: Hamtramic, Mich
Pro Record: 33-32
a.k.a. Sasquatch
Has the biggest feet in pro wrestling
Your ring announcer is TED DIBIASE, and the referee is the mysterious DOCTOR X.
“PISTOL” PEZ WHATLEY and “BIG BUCK” BEZNER vs. THE OUTSIDERS (with The Giant and Syxx)
Nash provides commentary on his walk to the ring, including glorious stuff like “it looks like Nash is going to stay on the apron”. Hall throws his toothpick in the eyes of Whatley, but fails to collapse in a laughing fit. Whatley uses “some kind of arm maneuver”, chosen because Hall is at his best from a vertical base. Still, Hall immediately turns the tables with a Japanese clothesline. Nash sees a great open opportunity, and tags himself in (without a tag and Hall on the other side of the ring), hitting a Japanese clothesline of his own while calling the action the entire time. Doctor X joins the fun now, and goes for the cover, but Nash’s neck goes out before he can make the 3 count. Buck tags in, and Hall takes over the commentary. Nash hits the barrage, and Big Grouchy is in full control. Hall tags in, and puts Buck in a pretzel hold. Nash compliments Buck on his astounding good looks, and he’s apparently often used as an extra on Melrose Place. Nash comes in and uses his big size 15 into the mush, and the sidewalk slam finishes, only after he demands a 5 count.
“LORD” STEVEN REGAL vs. DEAN MALENKO (for the WCW world television title)
Chance for Malenko to grab double gold here, though let’s face it, against my man Regal, he has no hope at all. With luck, the time limit on this one is longer than the 4 minutes we got last week. The two trade off a little chain wrestling, while the fans chant “USA” even though Tampa Bay isn’t actually acknowledged as part of America by any reputable geography major. Malenko takes down Regal in a test of strength and nearly scores a pinfall, but Regal’s strong core keeps him from staying down. Malenko grapevines the leg, so Regal escapes the hold using some of the finest counter moves taught to him by wily old shooters on the mean streets of Blackpool; specifically, he pokes him in the eye. A palm thrust is enough to draw a 2. Regal applies a grounded stretch, releases, and throws his knee into Deano’s face. Malenko fires back, but can’t whip the Englishman who hooks the top rope for safety. Regal misses a blind charge, but blocks a double axehandle off the top. Dean goes behind, but Regal reverse switches and gets a schoolboy for 2. Malenko comes right back with a backslide for 2. Regal mounts him from behind, but Malenko switches and hooks the shoulders almost getting 2. Regal turns to the European uppercuts, but Dean bridges backwards, hooks Regal’s legs, and scores the pinfall at 5:10. New champion? My mouth just went dry. I have lost the will to live. Wait, is that a glimmer of hope? Yes – Dean’s shoulders were down, and Regal retains! Regal lectures Malenko, which draws the ire of Dean and a nasty look. Please, Regal invented the nasty look. **1/2
Our main event is a complete replay of the Bischoff turn, which you and I already covered on Nitro. And that’s a wrap!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone south of the border. Enjoy your time with your family. I’ll be back soon.

WCW Nitro: November 18, 1996

No intro; instead, we’re
led right into the ring where THE
OUTSIDERS
are standing over a fallen gang of wrestlers. Let’s see, we’ve
got HIGH VOLTAGE, THE NASTY BOYS, CICLOPE, and GALAXY. The
head right over to the ringside seats, where your announcers TONY SCHIAVONE and LARRY ZBYSZKO are sitting. Nash is peeved at Tony for laughing at
him last week, and asks him if he ever wants to be able to pick up his kids
again? Hall says all he’s ever heard anymore is that the Faces of Fear are the
scariest team in the world, but if they have the guts to come down to ringside,
they’ll slap the coconut breath right out of them. (Hey, that’s racist!) Larry
refuses to back down, no matter how much they try to intimidate him.
The Outsiders head to the
back, and they’re ambushed by THE FACES
OF FEAR
and JIMMY HART. Hall is
able to throw a heavy full garbage can at Barbarian, and he DOESN’T EVEN
FLINCH! The Fear beat their asses all the way to the outside of the arena,
where the camera man gives up following. I think my heart just grew 3 sizes.

After a commercial break,
Tony explains that there was a triangle tag-team dark match between “The Nasty
Boys, High Voltage, and a couple of Mexican wrestlers”. WCW’s view on the
Cruiserweight division in a nutshell! Tony feeds it to Larry for not defending
him, since he’s a former wrestler and Tony is not. Tony says he’s got 5 kids at
home, a wife, and he doesn’t need 7 foot tall wrestlers getting in his face.
And with that, he walks off, leaving us alone with Larry. No no no no, please,
god anything but that! Is Chris Cruise in the back? Has Lee Marshall returned
from the Road? Is Mark Madden running WCW Live? Actually, scratch that last
option.
LA PARKA vs. JUVENTUD GUERRERA
This is the debut of the
Skull Captain, your hero and mine, La Parka! I do my best to stay faithful to
the Faces of Fear, but I do have a wandering eye and I can’t help myself. Juvi
perches himself on the second rope waiting for the bell, and the second it
sounds, he pounces and … somersaults. Oh. Skull Captain kicks Juvi in the mouth
for being such a turd, as MIKE TENAY
joins Larry. La Parka gives Juvi a rana over the top rope, and nails him with a
HARD tope suicida! New World Odor count hits 2. Both guys battle to the top,
and Juvi crotches La Parka. A springboard rana looks to finish, but La Parka
kicks out at 2!! Good false finish. A springboard moonsault also gets 2, but
this is the Skull Captain’s hizzouze, and this is not how we do. Juvi
springboards again, and this time Parka catches him with a dropkick mid-move
for 2. Juvi rolls to the outside, and Parka’s right behind him with a plancha
off the top rope – which is a lot of weight travelling a long way! Back in, a
powerbomb gets a close 2. New World Odor #3. Parka locks Juvi in the surfboard,
then releases the arms and just squeezes Juvi’s legs to pieces as he hangs in
mid-air. Juvi fights and manages to twist out, falling on top for 2. Juvi heads
up for a missile dropkick, but Parka escapes at 2. Tenay drops a bombshell;
Roddy Piper will make an appearance tonight. Is it to refuse the video evidence
that he’s the biggest tool on the planet? Juvi hits a super Frankensteiner, but
Parka just will not stay down. They fight back and forth, with Juvi leaping on
to Parka’s shoulders, but Parka’s fighting … no, Juvi hits the rana, but Parka
kicks out! Parka snaps up, and slams Juvi, heading up – but he misses whatever
he was going for, and Juvi leaps on top for 2. Juvi hits a jumping spin kick,
spikes Parka with the DDT, but he kicks out again. Parka fights Juvi to the
top, but Juvi flies off with the tornado DDT for … 2! There is no end to the
fight in Parka! Parka is again perched on top, and Juvi goes for the super
Frankensteiner, but Parka hooks the ropes and Juvi has no one! Parka is right
behind him with a corkscrew senton, and scores the win at 9:23!!! The fans were nowhere near as into this as I was, but that
was a fantastic debut and match. ***
THE ULTIMATE DRAGON (with Sonny Onoo) vs. DEAN
MALENKO (for the WCW world cruiserweight title)
Is it Ultimate, or
Ultimo, WCW? Make up your minds! Dragon has 8 belts with him, which are: The
British Commonwealth Junior Heavyweight Championship, the IWGP Junior
Heavyweight Championship, the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship, the
NWA World Welterweight Championship, the UWA World Junior Light Heavyweight
Championship, the WAR International Junior Heavyweight Championship, the WWA
World Junior Light Heavyweight Championship, and the WWF Light Heavyweight
Championship. All of these make up the elusive J-Crown, and is considered
amongst the most prestigious titles in Japan. Of course, despite the honor and
prestige of holding these titles, I am holding out a LITTLE bit of hope that
Dragon dumps the WWF belt in a garbage can, but it never comes.
Before we get started, we
hear from REY MYSTERIO JR. Rey, as
usual, says absolutely nothing. Blah blah blah, you were great Dean but I want
another title shot, snore. Moving forward, let’s block him from talking.
Dragon is busy twisting
Malenko into a human pretzel, as our New World Odor count hits 4. Dragon starts
throwing kicks like a ninja, and follows with a handspring back elbow. Dean
doesn’t really sell that move because it’s stupid, and locks Dragon in an
Oklahoma roll for 2. Dragon hits the Dragon Suplex, but Dean kicks out FAR too
easily at 2. I don’t care for that one bit. Dragon nails a spinning heel kick,
and Deano hits the deck. Dragon misses a baseball slide, but still manages to
whip Malenko into the guardrail anyway. Back in, Dragon goes up, but Malenko
pounces. Dragon elbows him off anyway, but misses the moonsault. Dean goes for
the Texas Cloverleaf, which draws Sonny to the apron. Malenko charges him, but
now Dragon’s all over Malenko. A backdrop sends Dragon to the outside and …
wait, we’re calling an over the top rope DQ at 4:05???? They haven’t called that in like a YEAR. I don’t have the
energy to crawl back through my archives to find the last time they did that.
Come ON, WCW. That was the laziest, cheapest, STUPIDEST way to avoid jobbing
these guys I can imagine. Well, unless they’d gone to another 4:30 draw or
something (I’m staring at YOU, WCW Saturday Night). Sorry, if Dragon is
outclassing your champion to that degree, then you either don’t book the match,
or you put him over and deal with it. Malenko was completely out of his element
here, and Dragon looked like a million bucks. **1/2
THE AMAZING FRENCH CANADIANS (with Colonel Robert
Parker) vs. THE AMERICAN MALES
Parker has completely
embraced his new French Canadian roots, dressing like an 18th
century soldier. His cigar remains intact, in a nice touch. Does this breathe a
little easier than his last getup? Can he avoid mopping his brow? Meanwhile,
Bagwell is feeling patriotic tonight, waving the American flag with such
ferocity that the National Hurricane Center mistook him for a tropical storm.
“It’s a great day to be an American!” screams Bagwell, and leads the fans in a
USA chant. You can literally see the patriotism oozing from his pores, and it
looks like HGH. He’s bulked up nicely in his time off, buff you might say.
Rougeau starts doing kip ups, showing off his excellent cardiovascular system.
Riggs puts him in a headlock, because he kinda sucks. Still, he’s in control
and having fun, until a leapfrog sees him crash directly into Bagwell by
mistake. Marcus is none too happy with his buddy, and lets him know it. That
gives Rougeau lots of time to come over and whip Riggs to the heel corner, and
the Frenchmen take over. Ouellette gets scoop slammed onto Riggs. Carl picks up
a head of steam, bouncing off the ropes repeatedly, before hitting a hard
clothesline. A double hotshot is all Bagwell can stand, and he hits the ring to
get in a couple of free shots. Riggs manages the hot tag, who cleans house with
slams on everyone! A backdrop levels Ouellette, and both guys are given the
noggin’ knocker. Riggs dropkicks Rougeau, which sends him forward to headbutt
an unsuspecting Bagwell, and Ouellette rolls Jacques on top for the pin at 5:24. **1/2
Good news, after the nWo
vandalized WCWwrestling.com, they’ve managed to regain control, and … oh my
god, this could NOT be more mid-90’s. It’s only missing the dancing baby, the
flying toaster, a green hit counter, and a guestbook.
HUGH MORRUS vs. LEX LUGER
Luger gets a heroes’
welcome to the arena, and for all the heat the nWo has sucked out of WCW’s
side, Lex Luger has been turned into the hottest babyface act this company has
seen since … what, late 1993 Ric Flair? Incredible, considering 6 months ago he
was a slimy conniving dirtbag trying to convince Sting he had his best
interests at heart, while making enemies of everyone else. Before we start…
ARN ANDERSON chips in, reminding Luger he’s coming for him in Baltimore. They
might want to think about televising this house show.
Luger starts working over
Morrus, while the fans scream “WE WANT STING” in unison, without taking away
their love of Luger. Luger hiptosses Morrus with far too much ease, and runs
him over with a clothesline. Morrus comes back with a poke to the eye, and runs
Luger into the guardrail. Avalanche drops Lex, and Morrus kicks him in the gut.
Are we seeing an upset here? Is Hugh Morrus the answer to the nWo? Have we been
overlooking the savior this entire time? A huge karate chop to the throat
emphasises Morrus’ desire to be the man, and he’s grinning ear to ear. The fans
try to rally Luger, but Morrus heads up for a big splash … no, he misses! Luger
immediately puts him in the Rack, and wins at 4:22. The heat was off the charts great here. **
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND hits the ring to talk to our winner. Gene is
amazed that week after week Luger’s been winning. Other than submitting at Fall
Brawl, I can’t remember the last time Luger lost a match, honestly. As they
praise him, STING enters from the
crowd, and you can feel the tension immediately. Luger tries talking to Sting,
who just stares a hole through his soul. He points a red baseball bat at Luger,
and shoves him to the corner, before handing him the bat … and walking away.
Gene tries to keep the interview going, but Luger has no interest, and walks
off, bat in hand.
Hour #2 kicks off, and
taking over announce duties are ERIC
BISCHOFF
and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN.
It’s gonna be hawt, sez Bischoff!
JOHNNY GRUNGE vs. CHRIS JERICHO
Bischoff tells us he’s
worked a deal with New Japan to send Jericho overseas in the near future. Will
he still be in America when he’s scheduled to fight Nick Patrick? The fans
start to boo right away, and focus on the entrance way, because NICK PATRICK, wearing his neckbrace and
wearing all black, is scouting Jericho. Jericho slams Grunge’s face to the
buckle, but misses a moonsault off the top and gets run over with a
clothesline. A sunset flip is blocked with Grunge falling forward, and he gets
2. Jericho comes back and sends Grunge to the apron, followed by a springboard
dropkick to shoot him to the floor. Grunge grabs a chair, but Jericho baseball
slides through his legs and trips Grunge who falls chin first against the
apron. Still, they get back in, and Grunge gives Jericho a hot shot. The chair
is set in the middle of the ring, where Jericho is placed following an atomic
drop. A clothesline fires Jericho backwards over the chair – and since the
referee appears cool with letting weapons go, Grunge goes to grab a table! Jericho
is rolled on top of it, Grunge grabs the chair, and goes for a splash through
the table with the chair – but Jericho rolls away! A quick missile dropkick
finishes things at 5:22. That
probably should have been thrown out at least 5 different times. No way Nick
Patrick lets all those weapons go, he’s a man who believes in the rule book.
*1/2
Jericho stays behind on
the ramp to talk to “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND.
TEDDY LONG joins them, and wants to
tell Jericho that the one-armed match with Patrick might be too much. He apologizes
for getting Jericho tied up in this mess, but Jericho reminds Teddy he’s an
intelligent man with a great mind for the business. He says the one-armed match
was a favor, because it’s the only way he’s going to be able to get revenge
against a coward. This would be brilliant if it was a plot by Teddy Long to
catch Jericho in a trap, and put him in the hospital, because he’s clearly
stolen Jim Powers’ rightful spot in the mid-card.
HOLLYWOOD HOGAN, TED DIBIASE, ELIZABETH and VINCENT come strutting down to the announce booth, causing Heenan
to disappear immediately. Hogan demands Bischoff anoint him as a bigger icon
than Roddy Piper. Bischoff agrees, in order to avoid getting beat up. Hogan
takes it further, ordering Bischoff to call Piper a coward. Bischoff says not
everyone would agree with that, but because that’s what Hogan wants to hear, he
agrees. Hogan goes further, by insisting Bischoff tell the world he’s 100 times
richer than Roddy Piper, and if they stood on each other’s collective
bankrolls, he would tower above Hot Rod. Bischoff agrees once more, and begs
him to leave. Hogan allows him to carry on, now that everyone knows the nWo is
running the show. Bischoff apologizes to everyone at home.
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE comes out before the nWo leaves, to talk to “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND. Page says ever
since Hall and Nash came back to WCW, that DDP was nowhere to be found while
they wreaked havoc. That draws in the OUTSIDERS,
SYXX, and THE GIANT. Hall asks Page if he’s received his wake up call yet?
DDP says he really didn’t appreciate the Bischoff slag. Giant insists they punk
DDP out like all of Hogan’s friends, but Nash and Hall hold him back. Nash
promises something beautiful for later tonight, while Page re-affirms his
loyalty to himself with a self-high-five. I want to know what happened outside
with the Faces of Fear quite frankly, a missed opportunity from the usually
sharp Gene Mean.
BOBBY EATON vs. JEFF JARRETT
I guess the Great Giant
Killing Tour of 1996 is over, unless of course Eaton plans on wrestling this
one on stilts. Heenan asks Bischoff why he keeps allowing the nWo in the
building? Bischoff reminds him there’s been stipulations he needs to adhere to.
MIKE TENAY joins the booth, but with
neither guy under a hood, I’m not sure why. Jarrett takes Eaton to the floor,
dropping him throat first across the guardrail. Back in, he gives Eaton the leg
straddle across the ropes, and delivers a suplex. The Figure Four is applied,
as RIC FLAIR in an ugly Christmas
sweater shows up on the ramp. Eaton taps at 2:19. DUD
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND wants to talk to Flair and Jarrett, but fails to
ask why Flair has been shopping for clothes in the discount bin of TJ Maxx.
Jarrett reminds everyone that WCW needs to unite, and is happy that Ric Flair
has been able to do just that. Gene remembers that Sting hit him with the
Scorpion Death Drop a week earlier, but Jarrett refuses to talk about the
dissention from “the clown”. He wants to focus on The Giant. Flair endorses
Jarrett as “good to go!”, and gives him his spot in the Four Horsemen as he
recovers. STING watches all of this,
intently, from the rafters.
BIG BUBBER (with Jimmy Hart) vs. JIM POWERS
No Teddy Long, and no
Nick Patrick – it’s a new day for Juiced-Up Jim! Bubba misses a blind charge,
and gets caught in a series of arm wringers. Tenay wants to know what the
latest on Roddy Piper is, but Bischoff says there’s nothing to talk about
because Piper isn’t there. He hasn’t been able to get a hold of any of Piper’s
management, and any discussion of his arrival was just Internet rumors. Bubba
locks Powers in a headlock for no less than 3 hours. Upon its release, Powers
drives Bubba’s head to the buckle 10 times, and he’s staggering. Punch to the
gut sets up a high knee, but Bubba fires right back with the Bossman Slam for
the win at 3:57. 1/2*
CHRIS BENOIT (with Woman) vs. EDDIE GUERRERO
This is a make up for the
post Havoc show, where both guys were beat up and unable to wrestle
effectively. Eddie hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, and chops Benoit in the
ropes. Benoit tries to come back with a monkey flip, but Eddie lands on his
feet, so Benoit hiptosses him and locks on the Crossface. Eddie makes the
ropes. A European uppercut rocks Benoit, and follows with a slingshot senton
for 2. Benoit throws Eddie into the buckle, and nails a backdrop suplex before
slapping Eddie around. A hammerlock overhead belly to belly does more damage to
Eddie’s already bad shoulder, and Benoit holds on to keep stretching the arm.
He moves into an inverted surfboard, but Eddie won’t tap, so Benoit drops an
elbow on his head. An abdominal stretch is applied, released, and Benoit goes
for a powerbomb. However, Eddie rolls right over the shoulders, and catches a
sunset flip for 2! With a short advantage, he thumbs Benoit in the eye, but
Chris just smacks him with a forearm smash. Bischoff calls for a break about 4 different
times, and is finally appeased.
Back from break, Eddie
snaps off a rana, but Benoit pops up and throws Eddie in the air with a belly
flop. A forward suplex leaves Eddie hanging over the top rope, and they fight
to the top. Benoit wins that too, with a superplex, and both guys are hurt.
Benoit tries for another powerbomb, but it fails again as Eddie turns it into a
rana and they both crash to the floor. A slugfest emerges with Eddie getting
the better of it – so Woman throws herself in the way to stop him. Eddie has
enough class not to hit a woman, and Benoit uses that to attack some more. Back
in, Eddie hits a side suplex, and heads up for the Froggie Splash! He changes
his mind for a senton, but Benoit moves, and Eddie rolls through. He’s up first,
hits a rana, but Benoit keeps rolling and scores the win at 9:24!! That was much more of what I’d
expect from these two, good stuff as always. ***1/2
Main event time, and we
get … ERIC BISCHOFF? He thanks
everyone for coming out, and apologizes again for being forced to kiss Hogan’s
ass earlier. He vows to keep doing whatever it takes to sign Roddy Piper to
fight Hogan, but he hasn’t been able to get past his attorneys and manager to
get a hold of him. However, a familiar set of bagpipes fires up, and out walks RODDY PIPER in the flesh, and he does
NOT look happy. He stares a hole right through Bischoff the entire way to the
ring, before cracking a sly smile and grabbing a microphone. Piper vows to tell
the truth tonight, because he hasn’t heard that many lies since he was in his
prime. He’s tired of being called a coward, and he points a finger squarely at
Eric Bischoff, who’s looking really guilty about something. He shakes Eric’s
hand, and gets in his face to make him a little uncomfortable. Piper wants to
know if Eric flew first class or coach to Portland? He wants to know if the
road is crooked or straight as you approach Piper’s ranch? Bischoff says he
can’t remember, which just fires Piper up as suddenly THE GIANT appears and is all over him. SYXX, THE OUTSIDERS, and
VINCENT aren’t far behind, and
restrain him, for HOLLYWOOD HOGAN
and TED DIBIASE. Hogan walks right
over to Bischoff and gives him a hug, who starts grinning like a Cheshire cat.
Hogan tells us what Piper’s already figured out; that Bischoff works for the
nWo. DOUG DILLINGER is with various
security guys, and just glares at Bischoff the entire time – beautiful touch.
Hogan tells Piper they’ll never have a match, and vows to teach him respect
now. Unfortunately, security intervenes, and keeps everyone apart, rescuing
Piper (who’s trying to fight off security himself to get a shot at Hogan).
Tenay and Bobby break the silence, and are in complete shock, barely able to
form their sentences. Tenay calls for the show to end as Hogan backs up the
ramp with his new buddy.
Wow. What else can you
say? Everything makes sense, but you couldn’t have seen it coming without the
benefit of hindsight. It wasn’t DDP getting them in and out of buildings; but
Bischoff. It explains his mysterious disappearance the night of August 5th, which he refused to address, because the nWo
were additionally not there. It explains why Nick Patrick keeps getting
assigned to critical matches, despite being an obvious nWo plant. It explains
why the nWo have been able to negotiate unreasonable, almost terrorist like
demands, with absolutely no resistance from WCW. It even explains why Bischoff
left the announce booth on September 30th, because the nWo was talking business without him
present, and he needed to get to the hotel before they did something silly like
sign the Nasty Boys to the group.
Everything’s there. But
was the powerbomb at the Great American Bash planned? How much of a role did he play in
getting Hogan to join? And why on earth would he attack his own company?

It’s a lot to digest in
one night. Hopefully the pay-per-view answers a few of those questions.

WCW Worldwide: November 17, 1996

I don’t mean to moisten your knickers, but tonight is a pretty big show. Disco Inferno, Brad Armstrong, Billy Kidman, and The Public Enemy are ALL scheduled to be here. Do you know why the nWo hasn’t bothered with this show? Because every week, they see the beastly lineup, and can’t figure out how they’d successfully “take over” without getting their collective asses handed to them. Given all the baseball bats in the world, they’d have no chance to fend off Billy Kidman, and his size 12 waist.
Your hosts are TONY SCHIAVONE and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN.

DISCO INFERNO vs. ALEX WRIGHT
Tony points out that the winner of World War 3 will either be someone they predict, or someone they don’t predict. That’s actually his selling point. I will say this, I love that NICK PATRICK apparently has the fair hair growth of a werewolf. On Saturday Night, he’ll be sporting a full goatee, on Worldwide he likes to trim down to a rockin’ moustache, before going goatee again on Nitro. He is also refereeing here. The fans start cheering and booing right off the bell, sounding much like the crowd on nWo Saturday Night. Disco is concerned about messing up his hair, which both Tony and the fans take issue with. I wish they wouldn’t judge. Wright applies a side headlock with zero regard for Disco’s mousse application. Disco comes back with a headlock of his own, which seems to keep Wright at bay, so he stops to shake his booty. Of course, Wright snaps off a headscissors takeover immediately. Avalanche is missed, and Wright smacks his head on the buckle HARD. Disco is right there with a neckbreaker, but he dances before going for the pinfall and only gets 2. Wright comes back with a belly to belly for 2. Tony feels that Wright is showing the stuff he needs to win World War 3, as he connects with a missile dropkick for the win at 4:07. The fans legitimately lose their minds in happiness over this, I can’t believe I’m even writing this, but the entire place is on their feet clapping, screaming and dancing. **
BRAD ARMSTRONG vs. CHAVO GUERRERO JR.
Tony declares this a matchup of two of the “greatest Cruiserweights in the world!” And when you have a matchup with the very best, you turn to NICK PATRICK. I’m impressed that WCW is so popular that apparently the ticket packages are now on a per-match basis, because this is a completely different crowd. Of course, you can only have a demand for tickets like this if you’re forever featuring the best, in this case, two of the best Cruiserweights in the world. Chavo hits a dropkick, and locks Armstrong in a hammerlock, a staple of any lightweight division. Fans chant USA, because El Paso declared their independence in late 1993, making Chavo a foreigner. Chavo nails a Frankensteiner and hooks the legs for 2. Armstrong fires back with a powerbomb for the win at 3:31. This was awful. 1/2*
JERRY LYNN vs. BILLY KIDMAN
I know I say it EVERY time Jerry Lynn wrestles, but I can’t get over the fact he uses Jerry Flynn’s music. Nor can I get over the fact that NICK PATRICK has been assigned a 3rd straight match, but this IS featuring two of the greatest Cruiserweights in the world. So, Heenan starts talking about Syxx in a way that seems a little too personal, and Tony accuses him of working with the nWo. Bobby backtracks, and I’ll leave the rest to verbatim.
Tony (sounding legit pissed): “I think it’s very obvious to everyone here that you have been communicating with members of the nWo. And I’m gonna put you on the spot. You look out for yourself, you always have, always will! If they make you a better offer than WCW, you leave! You’d leave today! You’d leave me high and dry, you’d leave us! Armdrag takedown by Billy Kidman. Now respond, oh self-centred one!”
Bobby: “Yes, that was an armdrag.”
There will never be any better than Bobby Heenan.
Of course, he eventually tells us the truth, which is he’d join the nWo in a heartbeat if Hogan wasn’t involved, but as long as he’s there, no chance. Lynn hiptosses Kidman a couple of times, but Kidman fires back with a springboard bulldog for 2. Lynn hits a rana, but can’t score the pinfall. Kidman uses his small package, but it does little damage. Lynn comes off the top with a crossbody, which is usually the end on this show, but only 2 today. Kidman manages to dodge a dropkick, hit a slam, and finishes with the Shooting Star Press at 3:42. **1/2
PRINCE NAKAMAKI vs. CHRIS JERICHO
Tony: “Boy oh boy, Prince Iaukea is here!” No one will ever question his enthusiasm. Have I told you recently that Chris Jericho is a wiener? Probably, but this time I’ll let HIM tell you.
This is a man in more dire need of a heel turn than John Cena. Jericho hits a back elbow, before both guys hit each other with dropkicks. They share a handshake because they’re BOTH wieners. Tony continues his nWo interrogation of Bobby, even though he already gave the best alibi on the planet with the Hogan hate. Iaukea takes over the offense for several minutes, which is code for “very little happens”. Jericho comes back with a spinning heel kick, before trading Oklahoma rolls with each other, which happens to be Jim Ross’ nickname when he heads to the beach. Iaukea hits the Northern Lights, but Jericho kicks out at 2. Well, that finisher is killed. Jericho comes back with a suplex, screams “ARE YOU READY?”, hits the Lionsault, and scores the win at 4:19. *1/2
JOE GOMEZ and THE RENEGADE vs. THE PUBLIC ENEMY
This is your main event, though I imagine that should have been obvious with these names. Everyone shakes hands for the 4th match in a row, and Bobby declares this the worst week of Worldwide ever. Gomez tosses Grunge around for awhile, but eventually gets kicked in the face. A swinging neckbreaker gets 2. A double clothesline leaves Gomez dizzy, and he tags in Renegade, who powerslams Rock for 2. Renegade misses a blind charge, and slams the buckle. Everyone trades off, and Grunge beats the piss out of Gomez. Gomez botches a sunset flip, so Grunge just sits on him. A double boot sets up a double elbow drop, and Grunge leaves the ring. A moonsault from Rock misses, and Gomez hits a clothesline. Hot tag to Renegade after Gomez was in there for a whole minute, and everything breaks down. Renegade is promptly tossed, and the Drive By finishes at 4:17. Hey, he wasn’t legal! *
On a serious note, if we throw in referee Pee Wee Anderson, 80% of the people in the main event are no longer with us, all of 18 years later. Steroids, drug habits, concussions, and depression are no joke, and I’m genuinely happy the WWE has taken SOME steps in the right direction to correct these destructive areas. Of course, none of that applies to Pee Wee Anderson, who was an unfortunate victim of testicular cancer. I’m 32-years old, and of an age where stuff like that starts to become important, so without getting too preachy, guys, get checked.
Closing on a lighter note, Heenan and Tony talk about Sting to close the show. Heenan grabs the stick, and calls out Sting. He says some people believe WCW needs him. However, Sting needs to stop pouting and walking around in black and white because he thinks he was “backstabbed”. Either join the nWo already, or come home. Tony: “Thanks Reverend, I’m sure he’ll listen to you since he hasn’t to anyone else.”
Next week, Glacier, Brad Armstrong, and Rick Steiner are all in the house. Are they trying to pop a big rating or something?
Nitro tomorrow, where we’ll finally answer the question on everyone’s mind: Has Piper released a statement through his agent citing his embarrassment for the footage we were subjected to last week? If he needs a little PR clean up, I have his back.
To all my fans around the world:
Last week, a music video aired, that contained footage of me frolicking around on a beach, and singing that I was your man. Today, I stand before you to admit that yes, years ago in Germany, I did make that video. And I’m ashamed of its contents.
I want everyone to know that I do not believe in what you witnessed. As a God fearing Christian man, I will prove to you through my actions, and not my words, that my days of metrosexual softcore music videos are behind me. I want to move forward. WCW needs a hero at this time, and that person is not me, not now.
I would like to extend a huge debt of gratitude to Eric Bischoff for letting me speak my mind when I went face to face with that walking tanning bed, Hollywood Hogan. But after last week’s actions, it’s clear I am not ready to carry the torch. I fully endorse Lex Luger as the man who should represent WCW at Starrcade.
Finally, I request that you respect the privacy of my family as we deal with this tumultuous footage.
Respectfully,
Roderick Piper

Smackdown – November 21, 2014

Smackdown
Date: November 21, 2014
Location:
Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, Tennessee
Commentators: Tom
Phillips, Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It’s the final show
before Survivor Series and we’re all the way up to five matches for
Sunday. With the addition of the always treasured Divas elimination
match, the card….is pretty much exactly the same as it was on
Monday. There’s a major change to Sunday’s main event announced
though so things aren’t all finalized. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of
the Authority forming their team and decimating Team Cena. This
turns into a music video like you would see on a pay per view.
Cole brings out HHH to
open the show. We recap Sunday’s main event in case the video you
saw two minutes ago didn’t get the message across. HHH basically
tells Cole to shut up but Cole goes into a list of various sports
teams winning that would be similar to Team Cena winning on Sunday.
The boss sucks up to the fans before saying their opinions are
worthless.
Cole asks if this is
all about the Authority’s egos but HHH goes into a rant about his
legacy and how he became a huge star in the Attitude Era and lists
his name alongside Hart, Austin and Rock. Now some people could
argue that some of them were bigger stars than him or that that they
were more popular, but he’s the only one still around. He’s still
here because he’s always been smarter than all of them, just like
Vince.
HHH talks about how
brilliant Vince was and how he’s been the constant in WWE all these
years. There are only two people that can follow Vince’s footsteps:
the Authority. Without them, this place has two years max. Without
them, the WWE has no future. HHH brings up Cole’s sitdown interview
from earlier in the week with John Cena but he’d like Team Cena to
come out and see it for themselves.
The clip is Cole asking
Cena if he’s responsible for what happens to his teammates at
Survivor Series. Cena says he’s asking his teammates to put their
livelihood on the line. If they lose, the Authority will be all over
them and that’s something they have to risk. He doesn’t actually
answer the question though. Back in the arena, HHH says that when
Team Cena loses on Sunday, they’re all fired. Well other than Cena
of course because he’s good for business. Team Cena is all stunned
as Rusev and Lana come out for the first match.
Rusev
vs. Dolph Ziggler
Non-title. Rusev
quickly knocks Ziggler out to the floor but Dolph comes back in and
hammers away. That’s fine with Rusev who throws Dolph into the
corner and stomps Ziggler down, only to eat a dropkick. Another
dropkick puts Rusev on the floor but he whips Ziggler hard into the
steps as we take a break. Back with Dolph fighting out of a chinlock
and avoiding a charge in the corner.
Rusev’s powerbomb is
countered into a sunset flip for two before a superkick gets the same
for Ziggler. JBL talks about how he’d turn on Cena to keep his job
as Rusev throws Dolph out of the corner to take over again. Ziggler
escapes the Accolade and nails a quick Zig Zag for a delayed two.
Back up and Rusev avoids the Fameasser before the jumping superkick
ends Dolph at 10:18.
Rating:
C+. This was about what I
expected. At least Ziggler has lost the title so the belt isn’t hurt
by another loss and Rusev gets to rack up another big win. That
superkick as a finisher is going to work better for him as he rises
up the card as some guys just aren’t going to lose to a submission
hold no matter what.
Rusev
Accolades him for good measure.
Kane
is on the phone when an unseen someone comes in for a talk.
Kofi
Kingston’s New Day video.
After
a break, Cesaro is in the back with Kane. Cesaro may not be an
official member of Team Authority but his loyalty will be rewarded
after Sunday. Kane needs
one more thing from Cesaro though: slaughter Erick Rowan.
Miz/Damien
Mizdow vs. Los Matadores
The
Dusts and Usos are on commentary to give us a seven man booth. Miz
works on Diego’s arm to start but gets chopped to the ropes. We get
a criss cross until Fernando
knocks Mizdow off the apron, only to eat a forearm from Miz. The
Reality Check is countered but Mizdow tags himself in and hits it
with ease. That’s too much for Miz who tags himself in and has the
Finale countered. The masked men send them outside and Miz is thrown
onto the Usos. Of course Mizdow launches himself onto the Dusts,
leaving Diego to hit a high cross body on Miz for the pin at 2:40.
Here’s
Dean Ambrose to talk about his survival kit for Bray Wyatt. Dean
talks about having a screw loose and how he isn’t going to change for
anyone. When he was a kid, his mom gave him a $20 bill to go buy her
cigarettes and lottery tickets. He ran into some older guys who beat
him up and robbed him.
Dean
went home and told his mom what happened, so she gave him a pair of
brass knuckles. They were his survival kit back then but now his
survival kit is every single part of his body. On
Sunday, Dean is going to use every part of his body to send Bray
running back to the woods. Now he’s the hunter and Wyatt is the
prey. On Sunday, he’s going to be put down.
Wyatt
pops up on screen from inside a prison cell. He asks Dean if this is
how he remembers his father, locked inside a cage like an animal.
Maybe Bray reminds Dean of his father right now. The apple doesn’t
fall far from the tree, so this is Dean’s future: being trapped
inside a prison of his own design, begging for freedom that he’ll
never receive. It doesn’t have to be like this though. Dean is
trapped inside a cell full of filth and it’s never going to end.
AJ
Lee vs. Brie Bella
Non-title and AJ is
dressed as Nikki, complete with strategic stuffing. Brie takes her
down to start but AJ uses her enlarged hips to take over. Back up
and Brie sends her face first into the buckle a few times before AJ
does the same to her. Some right hands have Brie in trouble and it
turns into catfight mode until Brie counters into a half crab.
AJ grabs the ropes and
slaps on a guillotine choke. That goes nowhere so Brie dropkicks her
down and hits a running knee against the ropes. A missile dropkick
gets two on AJ but Nikki gets on the apron. AJ rams them together
for the pin on Brie at 3:23. You could see that one coming a mile
away.
Rating:
D. This would be the second
match in a row where the story was about someone dressing up as
someone else in the match. Aside
from that though, what happened to the whole personal servant thing
between the Bellas? They seem to be fine here and Brie has a reason
to fight AJ after AJ beat her up on Monday, so Nikki really didn’t
need to be there. I’m actually not clear on who I’m supposed to
cheer or boo in this feud and I have a bad feeling we’re just getting
a Bellas reunion out of it, three months after they first split. It
would make for quite the Total Divas season finale though right?
Video
on Sheamus’ injury.
Erick
Rowan vs. Cesaro
Cesaro slaps the mask
off his face but Rowan easily knocks him outside. Back in and Cesaro
scores with a running dropkick, only to get caught in a bearhug.
Cesaro snaps Rowan’s throat over the top rope and grabs a sleeper.
That goes nowhere so he heads to the top, only to be slammed down. A
pumphandle backbreaker and torture rack make Cesaro tap at 2:40.
This was just a step above a squash.
Harper comes out to
stare down Rowan post match but leaves before any contact.
Big E.’s New Day promo.
Team Cena, minus the
captain and with Rowan playing with a Rubik’s Cube, talks about how
everything is on the line on Sunday. HHH’s tactics didn’t have the
intended effect because it just fires them up more. Ryback says
actions have consequences and his job being on the line just makes
him hungrier. Tonight, he and Big Show are feeding on Kane and
Rollins. Ziggler talks about the Authority costing him the
Intercontinental Title, which he shared with the entire WWE Universe.
He has nothing left to lose so he has nothing to fear. They can put
the Authority out of power and he isn’t backing down now. Rowan:
“Freedom.”
Seth
Rollins/Kane vs. Ryback/Big Show
Ziggler and Rowan are
banned from ringside. Ryback drives Rollins into the corner to start
and Seth bails to the floor. Back in and Rollins hammers away but
Ryback takes him down with a Thesz press. Off to Big Show for the
loud chop in the corner before Ryback no sells Seth’s chops. He
shoves Rollins into the corner and calls him stupid before planing
Seth with a powerslam.
Kane gets knocked off
the apron and Seth gets backdropped…..next to him as Kane
completely missed catching him. That one might be worthy of an ice
pack. Cue HHH and the rest of Team Authority as we take a break.
Back with Show slamming Kane for two but ducking his head and taking
a running DDT. Off to Rollins for some running kicks to the face for
two. Kane gets the same off an elbow drop and we hit the chinlock.
Show powers out of it and makes the hot tag so Ryback can clean
house, only to have Team Authority come in for the DQ at 10:25.
Rating:
C. This
was your standard main event tag and it was fairly obvious that we
were getting a run-in finish. It’s a good sign that the fans were
into Ryback but there wasn’t much interest outside of him. Granted
the fact that two of the others were Big Show and Kane probably had
something to do with it.
The
Authority beats down Ryback and Show until Ziggler comes out for a
failed save. Rowan comes out as well to take down Rusev and Henry
before going inside for the showdown with Harper. That
goes nowhere though as Kane chokeslams Rowan, only to have Ryback and
Ziggler get back in it. Henry and Rusev are back up as well though
and the Authority’s advantage takes over. Big
Show does his war cry to alert the Authority that he’s coming. The
Stooges get chokeslammed but HHH comes in with a chair to take down
the giant. All of Team Cena takes chair shots and Ryback takes a
Pedigree to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
C-. This
was a pretty standard go home show when the entire pay per view is
about one match. They aren’t even trying to hide the fact that they
don’t care about anything else on the card and it’s been old for
weeks. I’m so sick of hearing about the match that even if it’s
good, which it likely could be, I’m so burned out on that I’m not
going to care as much as I should. Thankfully
some of the other matches on Sunday (as in the four others) got some
hype save for the Divas elimination match, but that might not have
been announced when this show was taped.
Results
Rusev b. Dolph Ziggler
– Superkick
Los Matadores b.
Miz/Damien Mizdow – High cross body to Miz
AJ Lee b. Brie Bella –
Rollup
Erick Rowan b. Cesaro –
Torture rack
Big Show/Ryback b. Seth
Rollins/Kane via DQ when Team Authority interfered
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at:
http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

WCW Saturday Night: November 16, 1996

LostInUbe writes: Wait, so IF the nWo had offered DDP a spot earlier he would have joined them? So his standing up to the nWo is not about supporting WCW but about his hurt feelings?
Of course he would have, and it would have been completely in character. Here’s the thing about DDP, he’s a *total* scumbag who would screw over anyone to better himself. But he needs to feel like the most important guy in the room. He had Kimberly dancing around the ring for years, holding up scores of “10” to remind him how great he was. He wouldn’t even hand over the worthless BattleBowl ring to Eddie Guerrero after a loss, even though it has absolutely NO value, because it’s a reminder that he was awesome one night in May. Everything is about Diamond Dallas Page.
By neglecting Page until 7 other guys joined, he was basically being told “you’re worth less to us than Virgil”. And that, by anyone’s standards, and especially an egomaniac like Diamond Dallas Page, is NOT ok. So by staying with WCW, he can still worry about himself because nobody else is working in simpatico anyway, making him nobody’s lackey. He would have done the same thing if WCW had come to him as Sting’s replacement for War Games.

Dr. Unlikely on Piper: I have distinct memories of watching the mysterious package stuff happen and just being completely thrown by how weird the whole thing was. Like, they played a whole music video by actor “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. A music video that contained a SECRET MESSAGE and was delivered by a mysterious courier who hopped the barrier and hand-delivered it to Tony Schiavone on live TV and they just went ahead and put it on, presumably (knowing what we’re going to know on the next show) without anyone in the company previewing it first. It could have had a murder on it! It could have had a curse on it that made everyone who watched Nitro die in seven days!
So, let’s assume that Piper sent this and that Tony – using his critical analysis skills as a telejournalist – was right that, what we were supposed to focus on was the Piper vs. Hogan marquee. Does that man Piper really had been angling for this for four years at this point, but this was the first opportunity to get that message to anyone? Or did Piper need to find a way to secretly deliver that message and was like “Oh, yeah, I got that weird-ass music video I randomly made that one time, got Hogan’s name in it, I’ll pay some guy to hop the rail and give it to Schiavone if security doesn’t kill him first”?
It truly was mind-boggling how incredibly stupid the entire deal was. We are supposed to believe that a LIVE television show is prepared to show whatever’s on this tape, because it might be relevant to the product. But what happens if they put it in the VCR and hit play just as Ron Jeremy’s letting loose a seven roper all over TNT? That’s probably the second most likely thing on the tape. (Most likely: The mid-90’s equivalent of the YouTube Vlog, featuring the dude staring in the camera and awkwardly giving his “take” on the wrestling business.)
But then, because there were 4 or 5 shots of the Marquee Event at the start of the music video, the secret message was that Roddy Piper wanted a match with Hogan. Congratulations, you cracked the code. If they’d spent 5 minutes talking to him at any point during the last 25 years, they’d have reached the same conclusion. Piper was angling for a match with Hogan at Wrestlemania as recently as this year! He’s the real life equivalent of Sal Bandini, and he’ll be popping up in Hogan’s life until they’re 90 years old, asking “wanna wrestle?”
We all could have saved ourselves a world of embarrassment if Twitter had existed in 1996. Tony: “Fans, we’re taking you now to a ‘Tweet’ from Roddy Piper, which reads ‘at RealHulkHogan, Starrcade? Hashtag WCW Hashtag Piper’s Pit Hashtag I’m Your Man.’ Brain, it sounds like Roddy Piper wants Hollywood Hogan at Starrcade, and he’s telling us he’s the man. We’ll check in with the nWo later who I’m sure will have a lot to say, but first, let’s take you back to Saturday Night where Brad Armstrong’s date that was set up on ‘Tinder’ turned out to be a ruse by one M Wallstreet.”
Your hosts are TONY SCHIAVONE and the KOOL AID MAN. Sorry, that’s Dusty Rhodes. He’s speculatin’ about Sting’s face paint, they a different colah if you weel. With ANY hope, this means they’re completely abandoned the Piper angle after Monday’s atrocity. (Spoiler: Full steam ahead!)
“HACKSAW” JIM DUGGAN vs. THE GAMBLER
Full-fledged riverboat Gambler tonight, AND he’s stolen that giant deck of cards from the Price Is Right! That’s dedication to one’s character! Duggan stomps around like an elephant with herpes, screaming and hollering the entire way. He pounds on the Gambler, while Dusty preps to filibuster about. Dusty says Gambler’s still lookin’ for his first trip to the pay windah, unfortunate for a man trying to keep himself in action. Duggan bites Gambler in the ear, but doesn’t get disqualified because WCW sucks. Nick Patrick wouldn’t have stood for it. A scoop slam leads to Duggan reaching around into the deepest part of his trucks, whipping out … a roll of tape. The referee isn’t having that, so Duggan tosses it to Gambler, who’s so confused that he gets nailed by the 3 Point Stance for the Duggan win at 2:30. Tony is all over patting Duggan on the back for not cheating. HOW DIDN’T HE CHEAT? He used the tape, an ILLEGAL OBJECT, to distract his opponent. Bruno Sammartino would be spinning on Frank Gotch’s grave! 1/2*
HUGH MORRUS vs. JIM POWERS (with Teddy Long)
Morrus is without the cavalry; but they’re probably preparing to defend the Leprechaun in his upcoming match with Jack Boot. Somehow, the WCW executive team took a look at tonight’s card, saw the name of Jim Powers, and didn’t immediately think “yes, this would be a good non-controversial place for Nick Patrick to referee.” It’s like they’re learning. Powers hits a scoop slam, but Morrus clotheslines and tosses him out of the ring. Powers comes back in and tries a crossbody, landing safely in the awaiting arms of Morrus who slams him with ease. Powers finds himself locked in a bear hug, and the HGH is literally being squeezed from his pores. He breaks loose, and goes to slam Morrus, who’s way too fat and falls on top for 2. Despite being well in control, Morrus cheats and chokes the man out. The referee keeps control, by giving Morrus 5 seconds to release. Even today’s modern non-violent parent shows less restraint. Powers mounts a comeback for like 3 seconds before being given the No Laughing Matter at 5:09. Tony’s excited to announce that Hugh Morrus will be in the Battle Royal at World War 3! *1/2
TONY SCHIAVONE (hey, I thought we had Gene back!) stands with JIMMY HART and KEVIN SULLIVAN. Hart is so happy he wants to kiss Tony (from which Tony hilariously backs away), because the Faces of Fear have been added to the World Tag-Team Title match! YES! *I* want to kiss Tony Schiavone! Meanwhile, Sullivan’s still grumbling about Benoit for some reason. Sullivan vows after they fight in Baltimore on a house show they are inexplicably hyping the crap out of, that one of them won’t be reporting to the PPV the next night. Benoit’s history says neither of them will.
HECTOR GUERRERO vs. CHRIS BENOIT (with Woman)
So, Hector’s appearance on Monday wasn’t some sort of inside joke? He’s actually on WCW’s roster? Benoit of course was destroyed by the Dungeon of Doom Monday, and is a little tender tonight. NICK PATRICK referees inexplicably, he has no beef here. Hector takes full advantage, backdropping Benoit to the floor and then hitting a slingshot reverse plancha. They head back in, and Benoit’s fairly upset to be fighting a 3rd tier Guerrero, hitting a hard backdrop suplex and pounding away in the corner. Guerrero sneaks in a cradle, but can’t score the pin. Benoit chokes Hector across the ropes, but upon release he misses a blind charge. Hector flies off the top with a crossbody, and goes for an abdominal stretch but Benoit’s in the ropes quickly, throwing elbows. A powerbomb from Chris seconds later scores the pin at 3:18. Good stuff here. Tune in next week when Mondo Guerrero makes his debut. **
Benoit storms off to the back, and enters HUGH MORRUS’ dressing room. (Morrus has his own dressing room!?!?!) He destroys Morrus with broken brooms over his back, before what appears to be ICE TRAIN and KENNY KAOS attack, and get laid out immediately. Morrus screams violently, while everything is bleeped out.
JACK BOOT and HARDBODY HENDERSON vs. HIGH VOLTAGE
Kaos sure recovered fast. Hardbody Henderson? How will his twin brother Hardbody Harrison feel about this? Voltage kills both in short order, with Kaos nearly scoring the pin via Hart Attack, but the NASTY BOYS hit the ring and decide to wipe the floor with everyone at 1:20. Jack Boot should consider joining the State Patrol, there’s no way Buddy Lee Parker would have put up with this. DUD
Knobbs (correctly) reminds everyone they’re not wanted. Still, he hears the cheers of “NASTY”, so he thinks the fans still need them around. They made a mistake trusting his best friend, Hulk Hogan, but everyone makes mistakes, and they hope to earn everyone’s respect. They are coming across as butt hurt, vindictive, jilted ex-lovers, who turned their backs on all their friends for their possessive significant other, and once they were tossed to the curb (as everyone knew they WOULD be), they want their friends back. Careers – neutered.
Elsewhere, TONY SCHIAVONE is hanging out with JEFF JARRETT. He’s pissed at Sting for laying him out, and he feels like Sting has no reason to have beef because he’s the one who turned HIS back on WCW. He figures Sting can’t handle the truth, that he’s a traitor. Jarrett says everyone’s worried about Sting behind them – he thinks Sting needs to worry about Jeff Jarrett. Turning his attention to next Sunday; he’s going to beat the Giant and then win World War 3. Lofty goals.
JUVENTUD GUERRERA vs. DEAN MALENKO (for the WCW world cruiserweight title)
Juvi gets more title shots than Wilt Chamberlain gets ladies. When he starts winning matches, this guy’s gonna hold every belt in the company. Juvi starts with the armdrags, which sends Dusty off his rocker, screaming about the Mothaship. Man, if one hurricanrana hits, he’s going to need to change his underoos. Juvi misses a springboard something, and gets nailed with a backdrop suplex. Malenko drops a knee and goes for a “whirleebirdy” (tm Dusty), but Juvi falls on top. Malenko quickly recovers and slams Juvi’s face to the buckle. Double underhook suplex gets 2. Tony says “Cable Ace Awards” about 700 times, reminding us they’re airing tonight. Malenko tries a suplex, but Juvi rolls through and gets 2. Nearly a trip to the pay windah! Malenko misses a blind charge, and Juvi hits a springboard missile dropkick, drops the Mexican People’s Elbow, and gets 2. Dean jumps to the apron, and Juvi punches him to the floor. He goes for a springboard, botches it, heads up a second time, and hits the plancha, while Malenko stands there staggering the entire time. Back in, 360 splash gets 2! They brawl to the top rope, where Malenko wins with a super gutbuster, and scores the pinfall at 6:10. **1/2
ALAN SHARPE is here tonight! NICK PATRICK with his neck brace want a word with TONY SCHIAVONE. Before we get anywhere though, Tony blindsides them with appearances from CHRIS JERICHO and TEDDY LONG. Long says that Patrick has cost Jericho every match he’s wrestled on Nitro for weeks. And, since Sharpe did some digging into Teddy’s past the other day, he went poking into his business. Starting with the fact his law firm is called Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe. Sharpe reminds everyone that Jericho’s father was a hockey goon, just like Jericho. Jericho angrily states this has nothing to do with his father. Long says Jericho could beat up Patrick with one hand behind his back at any time. Sharpe says that’s a verbal contract, and Jericho’s fine with that, because he knows he can beat him. Patrick says he feels like the Real Deal Holyfield, and his neck is starting to feel just a little bit better.
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. THE CHEETAH KID
I’m fairly certain Iaukea’s under the hood tonight. Not that it matters, NICK PATRICK is the referee, and his good friend Page never loses. Except, something weird happens. The fans actually start a “Dee Dee Pee!” chant. They seemingly don’t want him to go to the nWo, it’s like his strong booking, confidence, and charisma is winning them over. Cheetah tries some sort of single leg crab, but Page fires back with a gutbuster and struts around taunting “come here pussy cat!” Cheetah hits a snapmare, and dropkicks Page to the apron. A springboard dropkick sends Page crashing, but Cheetah’s subsequent Asai misses and he hits the grill. Page drags him back in, but pulls Cheetah up at 2. Why? Because he wants to hit the Diamond Cutter, which he does, at 3:50. “Divide, and conquer! GOOD GAWD!” *
TONY SCHIAVONE confronts Page on his way back to the locker room, first buttering him up as a strong battle royal competitor since he won Battlebowl in May. Regarding the nWo, Tony wants to know where he’s at. Page is pissed because Nash insinuated his friendship with Bischoff went above the nWo. Page says he never wound have tipped Bischoff about the nWo and their business, because his relationship with Hall and Nash is different than his friendship with Bischoff. He says once he wins World War 3, it’s him and Hogan, and then he’ll see what Hall and Nash want to do at that time.
THE AMAZING FRENCH CANADIANS vs. BOBBY EATON and CHAVO GUERRERO JR.
For the first time since their arrival in WCW, the Canadians get the entirety of the National Anthem, which Tony talks ALL over because he has no class. NICK PATRICK is assigned again. I hope Bobby Eaton regrets his decision to turn on Dave Taylor. This cannot be considered a step up, no matter how many Guerrero family members Chavo has at his disposal. The Canadians use all their fantastic double team moves, 100% of which involve Rougeau throwing Ouellette around like a cannonball. “Vive la Quebec!” screams Jacques, which in fact is a heat magnet in every Canadian province aside from the chain smoking capital of the world. Ouellette hits Chavo with a top rope legdrop during a giant shmozz, and Rougeau follows with a double leg slam. Quebec Crash scores the easy win at 3:50, which was the same length as the last match. It’s like the matches are predetermined or something. *1/2
Meanwhile, on nWo Saturday Night, tonight’s featured competitors are …
BRIAN COSTELLO
Height: 6’1”
Weight: 242 lbs.
Reach: 35”
Fist: 18”
Hometown: Leevittsburg, OH
Pro Record: 38 & 30
Wrestling Fashion Plate 1984
Richie’s Place Guzzling Champ
JACK SHANE
Height: 6’3”
Weight: 263”
Reach: 37”
Fist: 17”
Hometown: Gregory, SD
Pro Record: 27-17
Green Wrestler Award 3 yrs.
Tri State Grappler of the Year ‘91
We’re warned to look out for Costello’s flashy tights. Your ring announcer is TED DIBIASE, who announces this match is for the WCW world tag-team titles, sanctioned by WCW. DOCTOR X is your referee. Your announcers are SCOTT HALL and KEVIN NASH. Nash worries about Shane’s ability to adjust to the left coast time change.
BRIAN COSTELLO and JACK SHANE vs. THE OUTSIDERS (with the Giant and Syxx) (for the WCW world tag-team titles)
Doctor X pats down the Outsiders for illegal objects, sounding a LOT like Nick Patrick, but it can’t be as he’s not in a neck brace. Nash and Hall gush over the “history, tradition, and pride” of the belts, which are falling apart and kept together by tape. Hall chops away, as Nash announces “that’ll leave a mark, especially on THAT white skin!” Nash tags in, and keeps the stick, even calling his own sidewalk slam. Hall: “Give him the snake eyes big man!” And so he does, with Hall finishing with a clothesline. Nash throws Shane to the corner to force him to tag out, because Nash wants to work over Costello. Hall loves the yellow and green tights, and gets the tag. Hall: “In comes Hall!” Nash feels the bleached hair doesn’t work in 1996 wrestling arenas, but congratulates him for trying. Nash hits a big boot, and Hall wants an Outsider Bomb. Nash delivers, and Hall can’t believe Costello still has hair on his chest. Shane jumps over to get involved, and canned heat from the empty arena boos mercilessly. Hall flattens him with the Outsiders Edge, and the Outsiders retain at 4:41.
PSYCHOSIS vs. “LORD” STEVEN REGAL (for the WCW world television title)
Regal, always the gentleman, wipes his shoes on the apron so as not to soil the ring. I’m torn here, I don’t know what to do. I love both of these men. Can’t they each have a TV title? I think that’s the only way to go here. It worked for Jericho and Chyna, right? We get some chain wrestling, including a test of strength which Regal loses. Penzer announces there’s only 3 minutes left in television time. What the hell is that??? Both guys rock back and forth, trading 2 counts. Regal pokes Psychosis in the eyes, but I’m not quite sure how. European uppercuts, delivered at a force of roughly 0.75 Dave Taylors. Regal drops Psychosis “on a very vital part of his anatomy” says Dusty. I’ll let you guess which one, but you’d probably be wrong. Regal tries to rip the horns off Psychosis’ head, before giving up and going to the butterfly suplex. Regal smartly recognizes that time is ticking, and locks Psychosis in a chinlock. He releases, and schoolboys the challenger for 2. With 40 seconds to go, Psychosis gets a rollup for 2. However, Regal nails a European uppercut. With seconds left, Psychosis hits a spinning heel kick, connects with the guillotine legdrop, and time runs out at 5:23. ** Yes, you read that right. And even though we’re out of TV time …
TONY SCHIAVONE still finds time to talk to his Lordship. We were so robbed here, I’m not happy. Regal says he’s the only champion left in WCW, and he’s ready to lead them. He could even make Piper sound sedated if they let him. He feels he could show Dean Malenko how to beat Psychosis at the pay-per-view, but without his help he has no chance. And when Psychosis wins, he’ll take the title away from him too, and prove he’s the greatest. You don’t need to prove it to me, Lord Steven.
I’d like to point out we ran out of TV time about 5 minutes ago, but APPARENTLY we can re-live the package delivery and subsequent Piper music video from 1992. Priorities! And I stupidly sit here and watch it, rocking back and forth like a catatonic in-patient unable to look away. He’s a full load, it’s why they call him Hot Rod. I’m going to be ill.

And STILL, enough time remains for Hogan’s response! There are days this company lives to drive me insane, and even 18 years later, I can still get as aggravated as ever. Please, Worldwide, save me!

NXT – November 20, 2014

NXT
Date: November 20, 2014
Location: Full Sail
University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Renee
Young, Alex Riley, Rich Brennan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re getting close to
the end of the year and ultimately the next Takeover special, but now
the main event isn’t as clear. Last week Sami Zayn was tricked into
losing his NXT Title shot against Adrian Neville, leaving his future
up in the air. Other than that we have Itami/Balor getting ready for
their showdown against the Ascension which will be the newcomers’
official welcome to the company. Let’s get to it.

We recap Sami’s loss
last week.
Opening sequence.
Bayley
vs. Becky Lynch
Bayley is sent out to
the apron to start and gets dragged right back in. A release
northern lights suplex and legdrop give Becky two and we’re already
in a chinlock. They get right back up with Bayley hitting some quick
ax handles to the chest for two. Sasha offers a distraction from the
floor though, allowing Lynch to pull the hair and grab a rollup and
tights for the pin at 2:14.
Charlotte comes out to
save Bayley from a post match beatdown.
Bayley thanks Charlotte
for the help but warns her to stay away from Sasha. They hug and
everything seems ok.
Here are the
Vaudevillains with something to say. They’re patient gentlemen, but
they deserve the title shot that they’ve earned. Cue two mini
wrestlers dressed like the Lucha Dragons (Renee: “Kind of like
Lucha-Loompas!”) and we’re actually having a match.
Mini
Lucha Dragons vs. Vaudevillains
The full sized guys
takes turns with airplane spins on #1, even handing him off between
each other instead of dropping him. #2 gets tagged and doesn’t want
to come in. A quick neckbreaker from English gets the pin at 1:29.
Kevin Owens (Steen) is
coming on December 11, 2014.
Baron
Corbin vs. Elias Sampson
End of Days, 22
seconds. The fans were counting again.
Bull Dempsey comes out
for his match and stares Corbin down on the way.
Bull
Dempsey vs. Steve Cutler
The fans start counting
again. Fans: “21! 22! 23! BARON’S BETTER! BARON’S BETTER!”
Bull destroys Cutler and no sells some right hands before the top
rope headbutt ends this at 54 seconds.
Tyson
Kidd vs. CJ Parker
It’s the rare heel vs.
heel match here. Kidd grabs a hammerlock around the ropes as the
fans chant TOTAL DIVAS. Parker nails a quick kick to the face for
two but Kidd knocks him out to the floor. A dragon screw leg whip
onto the ropes has Parker in even more trouble and the Sharpshooter
ends him at 2:59.
Kidd offers to
excellently execute Finn Balor next week.
Enzo takes credit for
Carmella’s success but nothing comes of it.
Enzo
Amore/Colin Cassady vs. Dash Wilder/Scott Dawson
Enzo and Cass aren’t
the Parker Brothers, but they’ll scrabble your headpiece, monopolize
you, connect your four eyes and never feel sorry for it. Enzo grabs
a headlock on Dawson to start as Renee critiques Amore’s hair. Off
to Cass to clean house before shouting “ENZO! I’M GONNA TAG YOU
IN!” Cass kicks Dawson’s head off, giving Enzo the pin at 1:38.
Ascension runs in and
destroys Wilder with the Fall of Man. Fans: “SEVEN MORE TIMES!”
They’re going to kill Itami and Balor before they rise again.
Zayn thanks Regal for
the chance to get something off his chest tonight. End of scene.
Here’s a serious
looking Sami Zayn to talk about last week. He’s known he has what it
takes to be a champion his entire life, but last week proves
otherwise. We see a similar video to the opening montage of Neville
pinning Sami in the title match last week. Fans: “YOU GOT ROBBED!”
Sami asks Neville to come out so here’s a limping champion.
Sami talks about having
no business being here if he can’t win the big one. Now Neville
doesn’t owe him anything because he gave him a title match last week,
but if their friendship means anything to him, Adrian will give him
one more chance at the NXT Championship. If Zayn can’t win that one,
then he’s done. Neville says he’d give him a rematch tonight but
that’s not his decision.
Above all though
they’re friends, and Neville thinks Sami has nothing left to prove.
Zayn gets mad and says the only thing he has left to prove is on
Adrian’s shoulder. If he can’t beat Neville for that title, then he
doesn’t need to be here. Sami sounds like he’s on the verge of
tears. Cue Regal who says Zayn is far from a failure.
Sami was part of NXT
Arrival and Regal can’t think of any main event better than Sami Zayn
vs. Adrian Neville. That rematch will take place at NXT Takeover:
Our Evolution on December 11. Neville is pleased but he doesn’t want
Sami’s career on the line because he won’t be responsible for ending
Sami’s dream. Zayn again says he’s done if he loses and drops the
mic to end the show.
Overall
Rating:
B-. This is a hard one
to grade as everything went by so fast. I kind of like it that way
though as the matches may have been short but they all did their jobs
efficiently enough, especially when two of them were about winning as
fast as they could. Sometimes you don’t need to keep a match going
just for the sake of keeping it going and NXT was smart enough to
realize that. Sami’s promo at the end was awesome but it kind of
telegraphs the ending to the match. Still though, solid show tonight
as NXT continues to destroy the main show in making
the most out of their time.
Results
Becky Lynch b. Bayley –
Rollup with a handful of tights
Vaudevillains b. Mini
Lucha Dragons – Neckbreaker to #2
Baron Corbin b. Elias
Sampson – End of Days
Bull Dempsey b. Steve
Cutler – Top rope headbutt
Tyson Kidd b. CJ Parker
– Sharpshooter
Enzo Amore/Colin
Cassady b. Dash Wilder/Scott Dawson – Big boot to Dawson
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