Rock Star Gary reflects on WCW WrestleWar ’91

Live from Phoenix, AZ

Airdate: February 24, 1991

Attendance:  6,800

Hosted by Jim Ross & the “American Dream” Dusty Rhodes

“War” in the desert? Is there some hidden meaning here?

Read moreRock Star Gary reflects on WCW WrestleWar ’91

Rock Star Gary reflects on NWA Halloween Havoc ’90

NWA Halloween Havoc ’90

Live from Chicago, IL

Airdate: October 27, 1990

Attendance:  8,000 (sold out)

Hosted by Jim Ross & Paul E. Dangerously

Can Sting overcome Sid while still dealing with the Black Scorpion? What trick does the Black Scorpion have up his sleeve? Read on!

Read moreRock Star Gary reflects on NWA Halloween Havoc ’90

Sin 2001

Sin
Date: January 18, 2001
Location: Conseco Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana
Attendance: 6,617
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Scott Hudson

We’re down to three WCW pay per views to go and the build to this one hasn’t exactly instilled me with confidence. The main event is a four way for the World Title with a mystery man included. Based on everything else WCW has done with their attempts at surprises in recent years, I really can’t imagine this going well. Let’s get to it.

Read moreSin 2001

Thunder – January 10, 2001

Thunder
Date: January 10, 2001
Location: X-Cel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota
Attendance: 4,500
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Stevie Ray, Tony Schiavone

It’s the final show before Sin and things aren’t looking all that interesting. The four way for the World Title has the potential to be an absolute disaster as Sid/Steiner/Jarrett don’t have the best chemistry in the world and it’s just asking for trouble whenever WCW brings in a surprise. The rest of the show isn’t looking great either so let’s get to it.

Read moreThunder – January 10, 2001

Monday Nitro – January 8, 2016

Monday Nitro #272
Date: January 8, 2001
Location: X-Cel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota
Attendance: 4,500
Commentators: Scott Hudson, Disco Inferno, Tony Schiavone

We’re finally back after several weeks off and it’s the go home show for Sin. The big question is still who is the mystery man but it seems that something is up as Sid has been put in the title match on Sunday after winning last week on Thunder. Other than that we have the continuing saga of Goldberg and a career jobber masquerading as a guy we’re supposed to take seriously facing Totally Buff because Bagwell isn’t allowed loose on his own. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – January 8, 2016

Thunder – January 3, 2001

Thunder
Date: January 3, 2001
Location: Mid-South Coliseum, Memphis, Tennessee
Attendance: 2,547
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Tony Schiavone, Stevie Ray

Happy New Year everyone and welcome to some of the final months of WCW. It’s been a little while since we’ve had anything to actually watch as a few shows were preempted by holidays. Even WCW wasn’t stupid enough to try and have a show on Christmas night so this is a fresh start for them. Let’s get to it.

Read moreThunder – January 3, 2001

Starrcade 2000

Starrcade 2000
Date: December 17, 2000
Location: MCI Center, Washington, D.C.
Attendance: 6,596
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden, Scott Hudson

We’ve uh…..arrived. It’s the final edition of WCW’s flagship show and it’s looking somewhere between a bad C show and a horribly unfunny joke. The main event is Scott Steiner (won the title three weeks ago) defending against Sid Vicious (not in the promotion three weeks ago). Such is life in the dying days of this company. Let’s get to it.

Read moreStarrcade 2000

Thunder – December 13, 2000

Thunder
Date: December 13, 2000
Location: Centurytel Center, Bossier City, Louisiana
Commentators: Konnan, Tony Schiavone, Mike Tenay

It’s the final show before the biggest show of the year and the big match announced for tonight is Sgt. Dewayne Bruce vs. Lex Luger. Odds are Sid and Steiner aren’t going to be in the arena tonight because the idea for the match seems to be based on them being apart as long as possible before we get to the pay per view. Let’s get to it.

Read moreThunder – December 13, 2000

Monday Nitro – December 12, 2000

Monday Night #270
Date: December 12, 2000
Location: Centurytel Center, Bossier City, Louisiana
Commentators: Stevie Ray, Tony Schiavone, Scott Hudson

It’s the go home show for the final Starrcade and the show is airing on a Tuesday, likely due to something else getting the regular timeslot on TNT. These recent shows have ranged from mostly missing to somehow shooting yourself in the foot, dropping the gun and having it shoot you in the other foot but hopefully things pick up a bit before the biggest show of the year. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – December 12, 2000

Monday Nitro – December 4, 2000

Monday Nitro #269
Date: December 4, 2000
Location: Pershing Auditorium, Lincoln, Nebraska
Attendance: 3,433
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden, Scott Hudson

Starrcade is rapidly approaching and WCW is clearly on its (final) last legs. We’re building towards a double main event of Goldberg vs. Lex Luger II and Scott Steiner vs. Sid for the World Title. If you need a better reason than that to explain why WCW is in the shape it’s in, you haven’t been paying close enough attention. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – December 4, 2000

Monday Nitro – November 27, 2000

Monday Nitro #268
Date: November 27, 2000
Location: Metro Center, Rockford, Illinois
Attendance: 3,800
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden, Scott Hudson

We’re past Mayhem and on the road to Starrcade with Scott Steiner now the World Champion for the first time. It’s hard to say where things are going now but hopefully things pick up a little bit after we’re done with another pay per view. If nothing else it should be interesting to see how things go to get to the biggest show of the year with less than three weeks of build. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – November 27, 2000

Thunder – April 12, 2000

Thunder
Date: April 12, 2000
Location: World Arena, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Attendance: 3,118
Commentators: Bobby Heenan, Mike Tenay, Tony Schiavone

Now this is the interesting show for me as Monday was all about setting up this new world. This show is the first time where we get to see how things are going to work under the Russo and Bischoff regime. I thought Monday’s show was a disaster so maybe things can pick up tonight. Let’s get to it.

Read moreThunder – April 12, 2000

Monday Nitro – April 10, 2000

Monday Nitro #235
Date: April 10, 2000
Location: Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado
Attendance: 9,074
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden, Scott Hudson

It’s kind of hard to preview this show as it’s all about the company being reset. Russo and Bischoff are coming in to a bigger reception than Hogan back in 1994 because they’re writers and therefore more important than anything else. Since WCW is stupid, this is also the go home show for Spring Stampede, which has nothing set up so far. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – April 10, 2000

Monday Nitro – March 20, 2000

Monday Nitro #232
Date: March 20, 2000
Location: O’Connell Center, Gainsville, Florida
Commentators: Mark Madden, Tony Schiavone

Uncensored has come and gone and I think we’re all a little bit better because of that. I’m not entirely sure what you would call the big story coming off the show but I guess Scott Steiner returning for the second time this year is up there. It’s not a good time to be a WCW fan at the moment and last night gave me no reason to think that is going to change anytime soon. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – March 20, 2000

Uncensored 2000

Uncensored 2000
Date: March 19, 2000
Location: American Airlines Arena, Miami, Florida
Attendance: 5,000
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Mark Madden, Tony Schiavone

We had to get here eventually. This is one of the lamest sounding shows I’ve seen in a very long time and it’s not something I want to sit through again. The main event is Jeff Jarrett vs. Sid for the World Title, but the real big match is Hogan vs. Flair, because we only did that last year at this same show so it’s high time to do it again. Let’s get to it.

Read moreUncensored 2000

Monday Nitro – March 13, 2000

Monday Nitro #231
Date: March 13, 2000
Location: Civic Center, Providence, Rhode Island
Attendance: 5,996
Commentators: Mark Madden, Tony Schiavone

It’s the go home show for Uncensored 2000, meaning we might finally get a breather from all this nonsense if we can just get through one more week. The big draw tonight is the return of Hogan and Sting, because that’s what the world needs right now. Other than that we might even be treated to more Jarrett vs. Sid build. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – March 13, 2000

Monday Nitro – March 6, 2000

Monday Nitro #230
Date: March 6, 2000
Location: Student Activities Center, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Attendance: 4,682
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden

We’re getting closer to the horror that is Uncensored 2000 and Jeff Jarrett vs. Sid Vicious. Both guys are talented and have their place on the card, but the main event isn’t the right spot for either of them, especially coming off HHH vs. Foley and transitioning into HHH vs. Rock. Other than that, since we’re in North Carolina, you can pencil in Flair for a loss or some sort of humiliation. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – March 6, 2000

Thunder – March 1, 2000

Thunder
Date: March 1, 2000
Location: Fargodome, Fargo, North Dakota
Attendance: 5,368
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Bobby Heenan

We’re getting closer to Uncensored, meaning it’s time for more matches that people don’t want to see and characters old enough to be our parents. The big story continues to be Sid vs. Jarrett, with a co-main event of WCW vs. the fans in a battle to make us accept Jarrett as anything but the career midcarder that he is. Let’s get to it.

Read moreThunder – March 1, 2000

Monday Nitro – February 28, 2000

Monday Nitro #229
Date: February 28, 2000
Location: Target Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Attendance: 4,638
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden

The big story coming out of Thunder is that the old guys are actually starting to mix it up with the younger guys in the form of Dustin Rhodes vs. Terry Funk and Vampiro vs. Ric Flair. I fully expect WCW to screw this up as only they can, but it’s nice to dream for a little while. I’m sure Luger and Hogan will be here tonight to explain how things really work in wrestling. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – February 28, 2000

Thunder – February 23, 2000

Thunder
Date: February 23, 2000
Location: Lawlor Events Center, Reno, Nevada
Attendance: 3,777
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Bobby Heenan

After Monday it’s very clear that this is the old guys/NWO (assuming you still think of them as the NWO) show. The wrestling has taken a backseat to “let’s see how simple a feud the old guys can put together” and it’s really not working too well. There have been a few glimmers of light with some young guys getting some upgrades lately and hopefully they continue tonight. Let’s get to it.

Read moreThunder – February 23, 2000

Monday Nitro – February 21, 2000

Monday Nitro #228
Date: February 21, 2000
Location: Arco Arena, Sacramento, California
Attendance: 9,408
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden

It’s the night after SuperBrawl and almost nothing has changed. That’s about as close to the truth as you can get here as no titles changed hands, unless you count a tournament final for a new champion. The big story continues to be Hogan/Sting vs. Flair/Luger as we’re back in the earliest days of this show, minus Randy Savage. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – February 21, 2000

SuperBrawl 2000

SuperBrawl 2000
Date: February 20, 2000
Location: Cow Palace, San Francisco, California
Attendance: 8,569
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden, Mike Tenay

Well the TV shows have been some of the least interesting things I’ve ever had to sit through, so maybe the pay per view will be the complete opposite and be entertaining. I mean, stranger things have happened right? The main events tonight are Sid Vicious defending the World Title against Jeff Jarrett and Scott Hall in a three way, plus Hogan vs. Luger and Funk vs. Flair because they haven’t replaced the Radicalz, but these old guys are still going to be fighting each other no matter who else is on the card. Let’s get to it.

Read moreSuperBrawl 2000

Monday Nitro – February 14, 2000

Monday Nitro #227
Date: February 14, 2000
Location: Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, New York
Attendance: 8,160
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Mark Madden

It’s SuperBrawl week and you can see most of the card at this point. If you hurry, you can still cover your eyes before your face melts like the Nazi in Raiders of the Lost Ark. The big stories tonight are Hogan vs. Flair and Luger vs. Funk as they mix up the big matches before Sunday. Let’s get to it.

Read moreMonday Nitro – February 14, 2000

1993 WCW Disney tapings

As you may already know Eric Bischoff prides himself more as
a television producer than a wrestling promoter. The seeds of such thought were
planted back in the summer of 1993 during his first year as Executive Producer/Vice-President
of WCW.

Instead of the darker, papered crowd atmosphere in Macon, GA
or Dothan, AL Bischoff wanted to put bright lights, glitz, and glamour on WCW’s
television programming. For instance, from January to April of 1993 WCW
Worldwide was taped 9 times in seven different locations. The programs, while
entertaining, looked bland and boring compared to the higher production values
of WCW’s competitor, the World Wrestling Federation.
From July 7-10, WCW taped FOUR months of WCW Worldwide in
front of a papered (mostly tourist) crowd at the Disney-MGM Studios in Orlando,
FL.
Here is a list of the current champions heading into the
Disney tapings:
WCW World Heavyweight champion: Big Van Vader
NWA Champion: Barry Windham
US Heavyweight champion: held up after a controversial match
between “Ravishing” Rick Rude and Dustin Rhodes
World TV champion: “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff
WCW World tag team champions: The Hollywood Blonds
(“Stunning” Steve Austin and “Flyin’” Brian Pillman)
Let’s break down the highlights day by day:
Day 1 (7/7/1993):
For the August 28th episode Arn Anderson and Paul
Roma were taped as WCW World Tag Team champions in spite of the fact they had
not yet won the titles. Their title victory would take place on August 18 at
the Clash of the Champions as Lord Steven Regal had to be substituted for Pillman
due to an ankle injury.
Additionally, for the September 4th episode “Nature
Boy” Ric Flair was involved in a match as the NWA champion against Big Sky. In
actuality, he won the belt at the Beach Blast PPV over Windham on July 18.  This would not sit well with the NWA.
For the September 11th episode Ricky “The Dragon”
Steamboat was featured as the World TV champion against Denny Brown although he
was not yet the champion. He won the belt at the August 18 Clash.
Day 2 (7/8/1993):
During the September 18th episode Dustin Rhodes
was featured as the US Heavyweight champion in a tag match with Sting against Orndorff
and Chris Benoit. Rhodes actually won the belt against Rude on August 30 in
Atlanta, GA.
On the September 25th episode Regal defended the
World TV title against Keith Cole.  He defeated
Steamboat for the belt on September 19 in Houston, TX.
Also featured on that show were the WCW World tag team
champions the Nasty Boys. They won the titles from Anderson and Roma on
September 19 in Houston, TX.
On the October 2nd episode the Hollywood Blonds
were featured in a tag match but did not bring their title belts to the ring.
On the October 9th episode Rude was featured as
the new World Heavyweight Champion (formerly NWA champion) in a match against
David Dee.
The importance of this match derives from the withdrawal of
WCW from the NWA in September. The NWA felt that these tapings were a breach of
kayfabe. WCW withdrew their affiliation from the NWA making the belt worthless
in the process.
Day 3 (7/9/1993):
However, in an attempt to legitimize Rude’s championship,
WCW renamed the title the International World champion on its October 30th
episode. Rude would defeat Brady Boone on this show.
For the November 6th show Regal successfully
defended his not-yet-his TV title against Johnny B. Badd.
Day 4 (7/10/1993):
Also on the November 6th episode Rude won a
non-title match against Frankie Rose. While describing the match Tony Schiavone
recognized Rude’s title as a World title rather than just a “Gold Belt.”
On the November 13th episode despite being the
current TV champion Orndorff won a match while not showcasing the title since
Regal would be champion by this point. Furthermore Steamboat won a match but
did not possess a belt in spite of winning and losing the belt between the times
this match took place and when it would finally air.
For the November 20th episode the Nasty Boys were
featured again as WCW World tag team champions.
So, in spite of three PPV and two Clash of the Champions
broadcasts, WCW gave away months of booking plans within this 4-day span.
Although I cannot locate the specific instance, it has been documented that Sid
Vicious was taped as WCW World Heavyweight Champion. This video was supposed to
air after Starrcade ’93; however, on September 19 Sid and Arn Anderson were
involved in an infamous late night brawl overseas involving safety scissors.
Subsequently Sid was fired after several wrestlers threatened to quit. Flair
was inserted in Sid’s place.
While money was saved in the process of filming these shows WCW
had two problems on their hands. The first problem was fulfilling the title
changes. The Regal substitution on August 18 stands out as a glaring example of
what can go wrong. The second problem was the wrestlers’ attitudes after the
tapings. Since title plans were already put into place during the tapings, the wrestlers
who would not hold titles held grudges instead and their work ethic in matches
suffered. At the very least WCW would learn from this mistake and not tape wrestlers with titles for Worldwide in the future.
WCW lost $23 million in 1993 not because of the Disney
tapings but due to overestimated revenue. Having seen the extremely low
attendance figures for the house shows I can safely say that WCW lost money
whenever they stepped into a gym or an arena.  Amazingly, they even cancelled a show at the
Omni on July 3 dubbed “The Great American Bash.”

Wrestling in 1993 was no longer a mainstream product. The
positive mainstream attention wouldn’t resurface until 1996; however, the
negative stigma was due to the WWF steroid trials. With such a black mark on
the industry it was difficult for WCW to make a profit. The Disney tapings only
served to facilitate further losses. 
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