Posts Tagged ‘Dean Malenko’

KoaNitro copyIt’s me, it’s me, it’s that good ole S to the D, and we’re back with another episode of WCW Monday Nitro!  This week comes to us yet again from Disney in Orlando, FL.  Last week, Kevin Nash promised us that we’ll hear from Hulk Hogan (who, oddly enough, is still in the intro video for Nitro), so tonight we should find out what made him turn his back on all of the Hulkamaniacs.  Being at Disney means we’re still at that awesome outdoor arena.

The show kicks off with our Hour One announcers Tony Schiavone and Larry Zbyszko, and Tony hypes this up as potentially the biggest night in WCW history.  That will happen A LOT in the future, so it’s interesting to see it start up.  Tony tells us that the New World Order will be here tonight as we rewatch the footage from Bash.  Actual footage this time, not just the pictures, since I guess they’ve sold all of the replays that they’re going to get in the last week.

Larry mentions that now the question is who is the next member, but from what I remember, we don’t get another member for just about two months.  Tony says that the last time Hogan was at MGM Studios was the day he signed his WCW contract and they had the big tickertape parade for him.

Match #1: Fire and Ice VS The Steiner Brothers

Tony says that the nWo has done a good job at picking their shots since they decide to show up tonight when Sting, Flair, and Savage aren’t here.  Those are three big names to keep off of the show.  Could you imagine a Raw without Seth Rollins, John Cena, and Randy Orton?  Crazy.

Norton and Scotty Steiner start us off with Norton kicking Steiner around the ring.  A lot slower moving match than I’m used to from these two.  Norton controls most of the match until Scott suplexes Norton out of the ring and Norton takes a few moments to collect his thoughts while we go to commercial break.

Back from the break, out comes Teddy Long to watch the match.  One can only guess that he couldn’t resist the allure of a tag team match, playa!  Ice Train gets a big powerslam but Rick retaliates by dropping him on his head with a belly-to-belly suplex.  Rick gets a two count off of a reverse DDT as well.  The Scotts tag back in and Norton again goes to controlling Steiner until Rick gets tagged back in and hits a massive Steinerline and then catches Norton in mid air with a suplex.  Ice Train and Norton try to doubleteam the Steiners by having Norton hold down Scott so Ice Train can splash him.  This gets messed up and Ice Train splashes Norton, Rick Steiner rolls up the non-legal man in Ice Train and gets the win.

Winners: The Steiner Brothers

Mean Gene takes us to the entry way with Kevin Sullivan, Big Bubba, and Jimmy Hart.  Fire & Ice walk past, arguing with each other over the end of the match.  The Dungeon cut a promo on the Horsemen, with Jimmy saying he’ll recruit the worlds best athletes to take them out.  Big Bubba cuts one on Lex.  He says that Lex has a concussion and a detached retina.  The Faces of Fear join the men as we go to a Glacier commercial.

Mean Gene is backstage with Fire & Ice.  They’re yelling at each other when Teddy Long comes up and says he doesn’t want to get into their business, but they’re a great team and he wants them to stay together.  Norton pie-faces Long and shoves him down, saying it began with them and it’ll end with them as he storms off.  Ice Train says that if he keeps it up, it’ll end sooner than he thinks.

Match #2: Billy Kidman VS “The Man of 1,000 Holds” Dean Malenko

Jimmy Hart is talking to Dean Malenko as he makes his entrance.  Malenko calls out the Horsemen, telling Benoit to pay attention.  Malenko and Benoit will wrestle at Hog Wild in a 30 minute clinic, so I’m VERY excited about that coming up.

Dean starts off with a vicious short arm clothesline and immediately goes to the floor with Kidman, attempting a piledriver on the floor but Kidman reverses it into a backdrop.  Dean controls the match for the most part but Kidman’s quickness gets him some occasional hope spots, including reversing a victory roll into a sunset flip for two.  Dean isn’t having any of that, though, and takes it to Kidman.  He hits a very nice side suplex and then pulls Kidman’s legs to the ringpost and wraps his left leg around it.  Dean’s a bit more vicious than normal since losing his Cruiserweight Championship, it seems.  Dean hits an Alabama Slam into a roll up that Kidman rolls through, then Dean reverses and rolls through into a volley of pins.  Kidman goes for a shooting star press that Tony calls a “backflip somersault.”  Dean moves, Kidman eats canvas, and then Dean goes into full Beast Mode.  He hits a brainbuster, powerbomb, tiger bomb, and then ends with a Texas Cloverleaf for the win.

Winner: Dean Malenko

Mean Gene is at the entry way with Kevin Greene.  Greene cuts a promo on Hogan, saying he grew up watching Hogan and saying his prayers, eating the vitamins, and then he finds out that Hogan never believed any of it.  He turns towards Mongo and says that if anyone in the back sees Mongo, to send him his way.

We go to commercial, preceeded with a promo from Harlem Heat talking to Col. Parker and saying that he better get his priorities taken care of.  Not sure what that’s about.  Commercials include one for WCW Magazine.  It’s for Issue 18, which you can find on this website!

Match #3: WCW World Tag Team Championship: Rough & Ready (Mike Enos & Dick Slater) w/ Col. Robert Parker VS Harlem Heat (WCW Tag Team Champions) w/ Sister Sherri & Col. Robert Parker

Ahhhhh, so now I get the whole Col. Parker thing.  He’s basically managing both teams.  Apparently he’s the “promoter” of Harlem Heat and the manager of Rough & Ready.

Honestly a pretty back and forth match, but these two teams just are not gelling with each other.  A few spots get botched, or at least are so awkward that they look botched.  This one should honestly be a squash match.  Harlem Heat are the champions and these two other guys are basically jobbers, so Heat should have just destroyed them.  There are quite a few spots with some good heat between the two teams, though. The story is basically that everyone is upset that Parker is with the other team, especially Dick Slater, who doesn’t trust Sherri anyway, dating all the way back to before their “wedding” in January at Clash of the Champions.  Slater tries to take swings at both members of Harlem Heat a few times.

Parker distracts the referee and Sherri runs over and kisses Slater.  He jumps up and starts wiping his mouth, allowing Booker T opportunity to roll him up for the win.

Winners: Harlem Heat (still WCW Tag Team Champions)

Back from commercial, Kevin Greene comes out, rips his shirt off and says he wants Mongo now!  Gene says that’s probably not going to happen because Mongo is going to avoid him like the plague. Greene says he’s got to go catch a plane back to training camp, but after the season, it’s on!

Match #4: Madusa VS Malia Hosaka

Both women are in the ring when the match starts, so neither get entrances.

Tony tells us that Madusa will face Bull Nakano in a “Destroy the Bike” match where Madusa will have her Harley Davidson and Nakano will have a Japanese motorcycle and the winner gets to destroy the other’s motorcycle.

We’re told that Hosaka has been sent here by Nakano and Sonny Onoo to take Madusa out before Nakano can get to her.

Hosaka is definitely controlling the match, including a cool spot where she snapmares Madusa by the hair about four times in a row.  Madusa fights back, getting kicks in the corner and capping it off with 1-2-3 Kid’s spin kick in the corner and then doing the hair snapmare a few times herself.  Tony tells us that the opening ceremonies for the 1996 Olympics are on Friday.  Two future WWE World Champions will compete at those Olympic Games, folks.

Hosaka goes for a dive out of the corner but misses, Madusa capitalizes with a bridging German suplex for the win.

Winner: Madusa

It’s weird that we’re not getting really any buildup for our Hog Wild matches.  We’re told about two matches that will happen but there’s no angle to them…they’re just booked.  At least with the tag team match we got to see the Steiners win their title shot against Harlem Heat by beating the Nasty Boys.

nWoAs Madusa celebrates, the timer goes off and we’re now in Hour #2.
Bischoff starts off immediately asking “where are they and what are they going to say when they get here?”

They go to commercial and bischoff mentions that something is going on behind them.  We see Hall and Nash in the background, placing giant sheets with N, W, and O over the big metal WCW letters on the set.  The crowd chants “Diesel” as Bischoff wonders where Hogan is.

Match #5: Meng w/ Jimmy Hart VS “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson

Yet again, a Horseman without the ladies.

Hall and Nash are sitting in beach chairs and drinking umbrella drinks while the match goes on.

Meng keeps Double A in the corner for the first few moments by kicking at his head.  Double A finally gets a waist lock but Meng gets out of it and again backs The Enforcer into the corner.

Meng is pretty much controlling Arn through this match, keeping him grounded and punishing him with kicks.  The Barbarian comes out and stands at ringside with Jimmy Hart as Meng boots Arn in the side of the face and gets a two count.  With that, we go to commercial while the Outsiders enjoy their drinks.

Back from break, it seems that Double A is back in control.  Meng sends him out to the floor and Jimmy Hart takes the opportunity to put the boots to Arn a few times and mock him.  Meng comes out and rams Anderson’s spine into the ring apron a few times.  The Enforcer is taking a beating here.  Jimmy Hart distracts the referee, Barbarian hits Arn from behind, and Meng hits a mafia kick for the win.

Winner: Meng

Back from commercial and Mean Gene is at the entry way with Mongo, Debra, and Pepe.  Mongo says that Pepe wanted to chase the big rat around, so they’ve been doing that and counting some more money.  Mongo acts surprised that Kevin Greene isn’t there anymore.  Debra says that the Carolina Panthers is a farm team for B players.  She runs off Mongo’s records and asks Greene what records he has.  Mongo flashes the 4 with the Super Bowl ring as we head off into our next match.

Match #6: “The Crippler” Chris Benoit VS Eddie Guerrero

Horseman #2 tonight with no accompaniment.

Black outfit Eddie!  I remember having a pair of shorts back when I was in high school that had roughly the same design on the sides as Eddie’s outfit.  I loved those shorts because they reminded me of Eddie.

Benoit asks the referee to check Eddie’s boots and immediately cheap shots him with a kick to the gut.  Benoit turns it on immediately, throwing Eddie around the ring and going hard with chops and kicks.  He grabs Eddie by the throat and throws him down with violence before tying Eddie up in the top rope and choking him.

Bischoff says that the WCW main eventers are all in Japan.  Nice to finally know where they are, since thus far all we’ve had to go on is that they’re not here.

Benoit goes for a powerbomb but Eddie armdrags Benoit out to the floor and then comes off the top onto him.  Bischoff tells us that Eddie will get a shot at the WCW United States Championship against Ric Flair at Hog Wild.  Benoit hits a back suplex as we get a shot at the set and see that the Outsiders have gone missing.  Eddie fights back with a snap side suplex but Benoit is immediately back on him with headbutts and chops before snapping off a suplex for two.

Bischoff tells us that about 15 WCW guys will be leaving the Mall of America on Harleys and heading to Sturgis.  Benoit locks on a Liontamer and then drops Guerrero with a massive powerbomb that only gets two.  Benoit bodyslams Eddie and goes up top for the flying headbutt, but Eddie jumps up and superplexes Benoit down hard.  The two men get into a chop battle in the center of the ring, really just teeing off on each other.  Benoit catches Eddie off of an Irish whip with an attempted pop up powerbomb, but Eddie is able to headscissors him over the top rope.  Benoit slams Eddie’s head into the steps, which draws out Dean Malenko.  Malenko bounces Benoit’s head off of the ringpost, sending him down.  Eddie is able to answer the 10 count and Benoit is counted out.

Winner: Eddie Guerrero (via countout)

As we go to commercial it looks like the nWo banners have been pulled down.  Big Bubba has a quick promo telling Lex Luger not to worry about Sting, Hogan or the Outsiders, but to worry about Big Bubba.

Match #7: Big Bubba w/ Jimmy Hart VS “The Total Package” Lex Luger (WCW Television Champion)

Bischoff says that Luger’s doctors wanted him out for 60 days but he refused.

Bubba is beating down Luger for the most part, outside of some early offense from Luger.  Bubba hits a nasty punch on Luger from the outside as we cut to the black limo and see Hall and Nash emerge.  Bubba continues the onslaught.  Bischoff calls the second “back leg round kick” of the evening.

Jimmy Hart is in a completely different jacket from earlier.  He was in a Taskmaster one earlier, now he’s got one with himself on the back.

Bischoff says that he heard people talking about Hogan for years but didn’t believe it.  Heenan says he’s been saying it for years.  He’s not wrong.

Nitro_7-8-96_6Both men are down as The Outsiders begin to make their way to the ring.  Jimmy Hart tries to distract the referee and throw something to Bubba.  Luger takes it and clocks Bubba and then goes after Jimmy, asking him what the hell.  The Outsiders hit the ring and beat down Luger.  As they do, out comes Hogan, dressed all in black.  Nash jackknife powerbombs Luger as Hogan shakes Hall’s hand.  Hogan slaps Luger around a bit while he’s down.  Hogan helps Big Bubba up and shakes his hand.  Heenan and Bischoff speculate if Bubba is the fourth member of the group.  Hogan signals to Hall and Nash and they jump Bubba, beating him down and sending him out of the ring.

Mean Gene jumps in the ring and says that Hogan and the Outsiders have led us down the primrose path.  Hogan says he wishes he had done this two years ago.  He says he’s bigger than pro wrestling.  Gene says that the children are all disgusted with Hogan.  Hogan says that after he had spent years leading those children down the right path, the parents had the gall to boo Hogan one more time.  Hogan cuts a promo on Sting and on Savage as the fans pelt the ring with trash.  Gene asks where the nWo is going and who is going to be in it.  Hogan says Hall and Nash are just the foundation.  He says that what the people don’t realize is that when he builds his empire, it could be more outsiders…or it could be people close to Ted Turner and Eric Bischoff.  He says there have been double loyalties in the locker room for years, and those people know what where Hogan goes, that’s where the money goes.

July_15,_1996_Monday_Nitro.3Gene is spending way too much time stretching this out.  Hogan’s talking a lot of crap, but it’s just not meshing yet with what Hall and Nash are all about.  He’s pulling down their cool.  Hogan calls out The Giant at Hog Wild then calls out anyone from the back, saying they’ll destroy the entire WCW.

Just as it seems we’re going to go off the air with no answer, out come the Steiners, Faces of Fear, and Arn Anderson.  Bischoff says we’re out of time as he leaves Bobby Heenan alone in the broadcast booth.

 

This wee’s Nitro had about the same feel as last week’s, with the exception of having a Benoit VS Eddie match.  I like this ever-present threat of the nWo a lot.  Them coming out when no one was around and destroying Luger was nice.  It gave them the dominance of beating down a top guy, but showed them to be cowardly heels in the process because they only struck when the timing was right and WCW was weak.  I liked Hogan almost siding with Big Bubba and then ordering his goons to drop him.  Shows that Hogan is a backstabbing kind of guy now, even to people who were his friends.

I’m liking the Benoit / Malenko program.  I absolutely love the match they have at Hog Wild, so I like seeing the build up, with Jimmy Hart possibly paying off Malenko go to after one of the Horsemen on behalf of the Dungeon of Doom.

Hogan’s promo at the end was a little rough.  He went on for about two minutes too long.  I partly blame Mean Gene on that one as he just kept asking questions and stretching it out.  Hogan’s cutting an old school wrestling promo and that’s a bit below where Hall and Nash are right now.  Their promos work because they add a sense of realism to this whole thing.  They just come out and talk normally.  I always loved Nash’s “lay on the top rope and just talk” style and it really sets them apart.  Watching Hogan cut a five minute heel promo was a bit rough.  Hopefully that’ll get better with time.

I’ve got a bit of a plan for catching up now, so hopefully you’ll be seeing these things a bit more regularly.  I hope you enjoyed seeing the issue of WCW Magazine earlier this week.  If you have any copies of magazines that you want to part with, please let me know as I do not have a line on getting every one at the moment.

Until next time, fans!

-Shane

 

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 2.6

WCW Nitro Ratings – 3.4

(Raw – 17, Nitro – 22) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 5)

WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 6

WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 5

 

WCW’s longest official win streak thus far!  5 wins in a row.  Only one more win and they’re tied with WWF.

 

WWF Raw results from this week

WWF IC Champion Ahmed Johnson defeated WWF Tag Team Champion Bart Gunn (w/ Sunny) with a spinebuster and the Pearl River Plunge. (11:28)

Marc Mero (w/ Sable) defeated TL Hopper with a right jab and left hand punch. (11:30)

WWF World Champion Shawn Michaels (w/ Jose Lothario) pinned WWF Tag Team Champion Billy Gunn (w/ Sunny) with an elbow drop off the top and the superkick. (14:00)

 

Wow…those matches all go over 11 minutes?  A TL Hopper match went 11?  What the hell?

Advertisements

KoaNitro copyHello WCW fans! We are now one day removed from Bash at the Beach and the greatest heel turn of all time!  I refuse to believe that anyone watching WCW at that point in time saw it coming.  It was so perfectly done and it’s always going to be one of the big things that I point to when I talk about WCW and how much they did right.  WCW gets so much bad tossed its way for the latter part of the company’s tenure, but those first few years running through Nitro were some of the best ever!

Tonight’s episode is one I remember watching so vividly.  I was at my uncle’s house in South Carolina and we were all stunned to find out just that morning that Hulk Hogan had become the 3rd man in this hostile takeover.  This episode will always stick in my mind since it’s the first outdoor event I had ever seen.  I had only really been following wrestling hardcore since the night Nitro began, so this was something very new to me.

The show starts with Tony Schiavone and Larry Zbyszko coming to us live from Disney/MGM Studios.  Tony gives us a bit of a hint of what happened the night before but we’re told that we’ll get pictures during the second hour.  Tony puts over Rey Mysterio, Jr. VS Psichosis as well as Disco Inferno VS Dean Malenko.  He tells us that our first match will be…

Match #1: WCW Cruiserweight Championship Match: Rey Mysterio, Jr. VS “The Man of 1,000 Holds” Dean Malenko (WCW Cruiserweight Champion)

I have to go back to last episode to see if the padding around the ring had the flames on it.  It seems like this is the debut of those, but I’m not entirely sure.

Dean tries to start off on the mat but Mysterio is able to move the match towards his momentum, hitting some high moves and sending Dean to the floor to try to slow down the pace.  Rey attempts a springboard moonsault but Dean is able to catch it, but Rey slips behind him and sends Dean into the turnbuckle.  Rey hits a missile dropkick but then there’s a weird spot where Dean goes for a move and just kind of loses Mysterio.  He turns back towards him quickly and tries to cover him, but for a moment, Rey was just laying there on his back awkwardly.

Dean uses that opening, though, to go back to his ground game, applying a surfboard stretch as we go to our first commercial break.  Back from break and Malenko is controlling the match, sending Rey high into the air off of an Irish whip and just letting him fall down flat on his face.  Dean follows with a powerbomb for a two count and immediately transitions into a camel clutch.

Tony apologies for some things he said the night before and says it was all his emotions that got the better of him.  I’m guessing this is in regards to telling Hogan he can go to Hell.

Dean moves from a crossface chicken wing to dumping Rey outside and dropping him on his head with a brainbuster on the floor.  Tony tells us that they’ve never received as many phone calls, telegrams, etc, as they have over the last 24 hours.

The miscommunications continue, unfortunately, as Rey hits a very awkward Frankensteiner and follows it by totally wiffing on a suicide dive.  Rey is down for a good while but back in the ring Rey hits a Frankensteiner and it seems as if the momentum is his until Dean drops him with that crazy top rope gutbuster.  Damn, that move never doesn’t look absolutely devastating.  Belly-to-belly suplex for two, but Dean pulls Rey off of the mat, ending the pin.  Dean goes for a tilt-a-whirl slam but Rey is able to wrap him up quickly with a Frankensteiner for the win.

Winner: Rey Mysterio, Jr (new WCW Cruiserweight Champion)

We watch the replay as Larry tells us that it wasn’t so much Rey winning as Dean losing due to the mistake of ending the pin.  Weird for Dean to do that, I must say.

We go backstage with Mean Gene, The Steiner Brothers, and The Nasty Boys.  We find out that these two teams will wrestle tonight to see who gets a title shot against Harlem Heat at Hog Wild in August.  Scott starts talking and Knobbs interrupts him, which gets a pre-Big Poppa Pump response of calling Knobbs “fatso!”  Even back in 1996, it seems that Scott Steiner hates “fat asses!”

Glacier commercial.  It now just says “Coming to WCW” instead of “Coming in July.”  I did a little research and it seems that the nWo angle was just so big that they decided to hold off on Glacier’s debut for a while.  Apparently he doesn’t debut until September!  I’ll definitely make sure that we cover that when it happens, though.

Match #2: Big Bubba & Hugh Morrus w/ Jimmy Hart VS Lord Steven Regal & Squire David Taylor w/ Earl Robert Eaton & Jeeves

A heel VS heel tag match…really, WCW?  There is entirely too much heel VS heel stuff in WCW.  While on one hand I like that it’s something more than just babyface VS heel all the time, and it really does make it seem like WCW is a legit sporting event where wrestlers will have to go against each other, regardless of alignment, but from a fan standpoint…who do you root for?  The fans hate everyone involved in this match.

The fans decided that they’re going to cheer for the Dungeon of Doom, oddly, by chanting “USA!”  Weird.

“Apparently being originally from Alabama [Eaton] doesn’t know how to treat a butler the right, proper way. Butlers do all the dirty work.  We have the same arrangement over here…we just call them wives.” – Larry Zbyszko

Regal attempts a clothesline and Bubba catches him for the Bossman Slam, and Regal just yells during the move like it caught him straight by surprise.  That, coupled with the fact that the Bossman Slam is such a badass move, was the highlight of this match.

John Tenta shows up at ringside and brawls with Big Bubba, allowing the Blue Bloods to hit Morrus with a double back suplex for the win.

Winners: The Blue Bloods

Quick commercial for WCW Magzine, including fitness tips from The Booty Babe.  Where the hell has she been?  Granted, I’m all for Booty Man being gone, but Kim missing is something that makes me sad.

Match #3: Psicosis VS Eddie Guerrero

Neither men get an entrance as the match just starts as soon as we get back from commercial.  We oddly cut away from that to Rey Mysterio backstage apologizing to everyone for Hulk Hogan being the third man.  It was odd and half of it was in Spanish.

Very quick pace with these two.  Quicker than Dean/Rey, honestly.  Psicosis flips out of a monkey flip and Eddie catches him in a crazy arm drag, sending the masked man to the floor to slow the pace.

Tony tells us that last night saw the return of Sister Sherri as she and Col. Parker came back together and are now managing Harlem Heat.  This must have happened on a dark match or something along those lines.

Psicosis sends Eddie to the floor and goes for a crazy top rope twisting dive.  Eddie has to quickly step into the oncoming path, but it’s not too bad.  Move looked devastating.

Tony tells us that next week we’ll hear from Hulk Hogan.  Can you imagine…a major angle and they’re going to just let the fans sit on it for a week!  Larry calls Hogan’s actions “unmanly” for the fiftieth time tonight.

Eddie gets a two count off of a quick head scissors, then catches Psicosis in an atomic drop as he comes off of the top rope with a double axe handle.  Eddie charges into the corner but Psicosis moves and Eddie rams the post with his shoulder.  Psicosis hits a top rope Frankensteiner for two, then goes back up top, but Eddie races up after him.  It’s all for naught, though, as Psicosis sunset flips him off of the top rope for two.  Psicosis goes up top again, Eddie chases again, but this time is able to hit a superplex.  Eddie follows with a frog splash for the win.

Winner: Eddie Guerrero

Pretty good match.  Faster paced than the earlier cruiserweight match and the crowd popped nicely for Eddie winning.

Tony sends us to Mean Gene in the entry way with Kevin Sullivan, The Giant, and Jimmy Hart.  Gene asks Jimmy about Hogan since he’s been with him for years.  Jimmy cuts the first promo in a year that didn’t involve him yelling in his annoying ass voice, but he basically just says “I’m speechless, no comment.”  Sullivan is pissed because he’s been trying for so long to end Hulkamania and Hogan came along and ripped that away from him.  Sullivan says the sins of his past have come back to visit him since now all he can see when he closes his eyes is Chris Benoit.  Giant says that as long as he has the World Championship, nothing in WCW can go wrong.  He’s the one that took the belt from Hogan, so he’s gonna make sure everything’s good.  Giant says that last night the Horsemen may have won the battle, but he and Sullivan won the war since he doesn’t have to wrestle tonight.

Match #4: The Nasty Boys VS The Steiner Brothers (Winner gets a title shot against Harlem Heat)

90’s hair mom in a Beetlejuice dress dancing during the Nasty Boys entrance.

Tony pitches us Hog Wild, coming Saturday, August 10th.  I can’t wait for this one!

Scott and Saggs start off and Saggs hammers off on Steiner’s head with back elbows before hacking him into the corner where both Nastys club him.  Saggs keeps the momentum until Scotty catches him with a boot and a HUGE tiger bomb, followed up with an “out of nowhere” Steinerline by Rick.  Rick gets the tag in but is decimated in the corner by a tandem of Nasty clotheslines, followed by a whipped cross body in the corner by Knobbs.  Rick rebounds with a powerslam and another teeth-rattling Steinerline for two.  Scott comes in and gets an expoloder suplex and tries for the Frankensteiner, but Knobbs is wise to it and blocks it, allowing him to tag out to Saggs.

Saggs grabs a chair from a little boy at ringside (where oddly there’s no barrier) and just straight waffles Scotty with it in the face as we kick off to hour #2.  As always, our hour #2 commentators are Eric Bischoff and Bobby “The Brain” Heenan.  Scott gets a belly-to-belly out of the corner but the pin is broken up.  Suddenly, everyone stands up and looks to the entry way where we see Col. Robert Parker and Sister Sherri.  Sherri rushes to the ring and jumps up to distract referee Nick Patrick.  Parker hits Saggs with his cane and allows Scotty Steiner to get the pin.

Winners: The Steiner Brothers (win a title shot at Hog Wild)

Mean Gene joins the Nasty Boys in the ring where Jerry Saggs yells about Col. Parker hitting him.  He says something is going to need to change because it’ll be a long time before that happens to the Nasty Boys again.  Knobbs says he didn’t know what Hogan was going to do, but he doesn’t see anything wrong with it either.  He says it seems the nWo does whatever they want to do, just like the Nastys used to do.  With that, there are fireworks and we go to commercial.

Match #5: Jim Powers VS “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (WCW United States Champion) w/ Woman, Ms. Elizabeth, & Debra McMichael

Eric Bischoff says that the reason that he wasn’t able to be at the PPV last night was due to the fact that he was in WCW meetings until late into the night.  He then mentions that when he came in today he asked about the general feelings around the office and there were many calls in from families saying their kids were crying and that they were destroying their Hogan merchandise.  Heenan says that he has been telling us for twenty years that Hogan is no good, but people called him a buffoon.

Woman is looking good tonight!

Bischoff says that they’re going to update us on Lex Luger’s situation later tonight.

Normal match, Powers getting good offense but Flair cutting it off.  Flair dumps Powers outside and Woman goes to the eyes.  Powers comes back in the ring strong, though, grabbing and keeping a side headlock on Flair until Flair gets a thumb to the eyes in the corner, followed by some chops and a punch to the face.

Powers frustrates Flair, so he heads to the floor, heads around the ring like he’s pissed, grabs Woman, spins her and starts dancing back into the ring.  He tries to go up top, Powers reminds him he’s Ric Flair and sends him to the mat.  He follows it with a duo of clotheslines and gets a duo of two counts.

Flair regains control, Figure 4 for the win.

Winner: Ric Flair

Mean Gene meets up with the ladies, Flair, Double A, and Mongo.  Gene asks about last night and Anderson says last night made him puke.  He says that The Horsemen never claimed to be role models but Hogan had.  He says it wasn’t supposed to end like that.  Hogan was supposed to stand for something.  Mongo says the Apocalypse is upon WCW, but it has to do with the Four Horsemen.  Flair pours the ladies some champagne, cuts a promo on the Horsemen, and tells the Giant that there’s a new champion, one that can go all night!  He ends by dancing and singing La Cucaracha as we go to commercial.

Man, this outdoor Nitro is awesome.  I love outdoor wrestling and there’s just something so cool about this set.

Bischoff says that we still don’t know the status of Luger.  He was supposed to be here to take on Benoit, but instead we’re getting…

Match #6: Sgt. Craig “Pitbull” Pittman w/ Teddy Long VS “The Cripper” Chris Benoit

Bischoff says that he heard Benoit described as a “wolverine.”  Is this the first WCW reference to Benoit as such?  I believe so.

90’s hair mom doesn’t like Benoit as she gives him the thumbs down.

Pittman and Benoit start off mat wrestling; Pittman getting a big slam and a duo of gigantic suplexes.  Pittman is looking better than he has since this whole thing started for me.  However, all he’s done now is piss off “The Crippler,” who starts stomping the ever-loving crap out of him.

Benoit goes after Teddy Long, which brings out Pittman to cut him off.  Benoit rolls Pittman back in the ring and locks on the Crippler Crossface.  Within seconds, Teddy Long comes in to throw in the towel.

Winner: Chris Benoit

Match #7: “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson VS Sting

It’s odd, thus far, Flair is the only Horseman to come out with the entourage of ladies.  Benoit nor Double A get accompaniment.  Interesting.

Stinger shows class, slapping the hands of the little Stingers at ringside.  Nice to show kids that despite Hogan being a jerk, he’s still a good guy and there is still a hero.

Arn extends his hand, seemingly looking for an even contest.  Sting just stares him down, leaving Arn to shake his head and start the match off.  Bischoff mentions that Sting is focused and it does show.  This isn’t a Sting that’s out here to mess around.  I like it.  Everyone else tonight has talked about Hogan and what happened, but Sting is the first one to really make it look like he’s changed up his game after last night.

Arn sends Sting to the floor and goes for a piledriver, but Sting backdrops him to the mat.

Biscoff says that we will have “visitors” tonight as we go to commercial.

Glacier promo.  Do they run this for another two months?

Back from break, Sting tries to leapfrog Double A but is caught by that beautiful Arn Anderson Spinebuster.  As both men are down, Bischoff tells us that there is a black limo pulling up outside.  Double A turns it up, choking out Sting and then locking him in an abdominal stretch.  He gets a few two counts, but Sting is firing back.  Sting catches him in a leg scissors as we see the aforementioned black limousine.

Sting starts firing back with kicks as Hall and Nash make their way out of the limo.  Sting hits a big clothesline from the top rope and goes down for the pin but only gets two.  Sting and Arn start firing off on each other as Hall and Nash try to get into the ring.  Sting and Arn finally see the Outsiders and stop the match, daring them into the ring.  Out comes Randy Savage to join in.  While distracted, Double A tries to get the win with a DDT, but Sting wraps on the Scorpion Deathlock while staring the Outsiders down.

Winner: Sting

Savage and security back Hall and Nash up as Sting jumps to the turnbuckles and continues staring them down.  Man, I love this pissed off, intense Sting.  I love surfer Sting and I love Crow Sting, but honestly, THIS is my favorite version of Sting.  Pissed off, at war, dark haired Sting.

hqdefaultMean Gene asks Sting about last night.  Sting says he should have known.  He should have known when Hogan was taking a limo to all the events.  When he was staying away and showing up for cameos.  When he referred to Sting, Luger, and Savage as “three little dogs” waiting to wrestle the great Hulk Hogan.  He says Hogan told the kids to believe in themselves, and it’s a good thing he did because they sure as hell can’t believe in HIM.  He says Hogan finished off by telling the kids to “stick it.”  No, Hogan, you stick it!  I’m loving it!  Sting is fired up and pissed!

Gene asks Savage what he thinks since they’re so close.  Savage says that he has a message.  But what he wants to say and what he wants to do to Hogan, he can’t say, especially at Disney.  He says if Hogan takes the worst thing he can imagine, then multiplies it by 9,000,000…then multiplies that by “infinity and beyond,” that’ll be like a grain of sand to what he’s got in mind.

Gene wraps us out of the interview as we go to commercial.  Coming back, Mena Gene is hanging out at the limo with Hall and Nash.  What the hell?!  Gene getting all chummy with the Outsiders?  Nash says that last night WCW and the fans took a beating.  He says Hulk built pro-wrestling and these people can’t appreciate that, but he can.  He says next week the third man, Hulk Hogan, will be here.  Gene says he doesn’t know if they coerced Hogan or if he did it out of his own volition.  Hall says this portion has been brought to us by The Outsiders and Hulk Hogan.  Hall is now speaking sans accent, so I guess that WWF lawsuit has already happened.  Gene asks where Hogan is.  Nash says he’s on set, doing a movie.  Hall says he heard Savage talking about Hogan and asks if he’s jealous.  He says Luger didn’t get hurt, he saw them and fainted.

With that, we go to commercial and come back to Bischoff and Heenan at the announce booth.

Bischoff says he told the fans they would show us what happened last night, and he does the normal slideshow of images that they do the night after a PPV.  Can’t be showing video because there’s that replay to sell…especially after something as big as this one!  Bischoff and Heenan wrap up and send us off the air.

 

Good stuff here.  Rey winning the cruiserweight Championship was awesome and is going to usher in an era of cruiserweight wrestling that is going to be amazing.  The Steiners are going to go against Harlem Heat for the titles at the next PPV, which is always a good match.  Sting is riled up and pissed off, which is amazing.  Bash at the Beach changed a lot in WCW, but now it’s all about getting WCW together to fight off this new menace.  I’m loving it right now.

Shane

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 2.5

WCW Nitro Ratings – 3.5

(Raw – 17, Nitro – 21) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 5)

WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 6

WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 4

 

WCW has now tied their longest winning streak in the war to this point.  21 wins, four of them consecutive now…WCW is on fire; especially when you consider that they beat Raw by a full point this week!  

 

WWF Raw results from this week

The Ultimate Warrior defeated Owen Hart (w/ Jim Cornette) via disqualification

Savio Vega defeated Justin Bradshaw (w/ Uncle Zebakiah)

Davey Boy Smith & Vader (w/ Jim Cornette & Diana Hart Smith) defeated Henry Godwinn & Phinneas Godwinn (w/ Hillbilly Jim)

 

Eh.  Not to say this Nitro was anything amazing, because it was kind of run of the mill, but that is just not a great card.

GAB96It’s Pay Per View time once again, ladies and gentlemen out there in WCW world!  We’ve been building to it for a while and it’s finally here…the Great American Bash!  We open to a quick montage of promos for the big matches.  We get Heenan alone, looking a bit scared.  We get Mongo, Greene, and Savage.  We get Arn, Flair and the ladies.  We then finish off with Lex Luger saying he’s already got two titles, he’s coming after the third and then the rebuttal from The Giant.

From there, we go into the National Anthem and the presentation of the flag, which they’ve never done before in the PPVs that I’ve been watching.  I guess since it’s the Great AMERICAN Bash, that’s why.  Sgt. Craig Pittman is the man presenting the colors.  We go to our announce team of Tony Schiavone and Dusty Rhodes.  We’re minus Bobby Heenan due to him being the “coach” of the Horsemen team tonight.  They open the show running down some of the issues we’ll see tonight, including telling us that we’ll find out if WCW will accept the challenge from Hall and Nash.  Of course, they’ve yet to be named, so they’re still just referred to in a roundabout way.

Tony tells us that Dick Murdock has died recently. Dusty says that he would have loved a night like tonight when you can smell a fight in the air.  Odd to see Dusty talking about his departed best friend just a month or so after his own death.

Match #1: Fire & Ice VS The Steiner Brothers – There Must Be a Winner

These two teams have apparently been having a lot of matches on Saturday Nights where there hasn’t been definitive winners, bringing us this match.  The only one I know of is the Monday Night match from a few weeks back, which makes me sad that I don’t have access to Saturday Night.

Scott and Ice Train start off, looking pretty even until Scott gets a quick burst off offense, bringing in Norton, who gets a hip toss.  This brings in Rick Steiner and the Steiners hit their classic pose while Fire & Ice regroup on the outside.  After regrouping, both teams tag out and we get Norton vs Rick.  Rick hits a massive Steinerline and follows with a belly-to-belly suplex before tagging out to Scott.  Norton sends Scott to the ropes and surprises him with a massive Samoan drop.  Damn, I love a Samoan drop.  This derails Steiner enough for Norton to tag back out to Ice Train, who takes over, getting a two count out of a side belly-to-belly suplex.

We get our first inclinations of heelishness out of one of our teams when Norton attacks a downed Scott Steiner while the referee is distracted.  Until this point, Fire & Ice had been presented as a babyface team, so it’s interesting to see a heel move there.  Of course, Norton does come across as the more heelish of the two, so it kind of works.

Scott comes back with an overhead suplex and a Steinerline to Ice Train.  He tags out to Norton and Steiner gets an ugly suplex and dumps Norton on his head.  Norton and Ice Train do come back and begin to control the match, though, with quick tags.  Norton picks Scott Steiner up and drops him hard with a shoulder breaker, but instead of going for a pin like normal, he goes for a submission.  Rick comes in and starts kicking Norton in the face to get him to break up the hold, but Norton refuses to release, even after five or six kicks.  Norton gets another shoulder breaker, but Rick was able to tag in.  He Steinerlines Norton hard, then dumps him with a German suplex.  He follows up with a Steinerline/suplex combo to Ice Train as well before going back to Norton.  Ice Train sends Scott to the floor and they hit a powerbomb/splash combo bit the pin is broken up by Scott.  They send Scott back outside and attempt a Doomsday Device but Scott Steiner is able to knock Ice Train off the top rope.  The Steiners get their top rope bulldog off of Scott’s shoulders, but Ice Train breaks it up at two.  Scott hits Norton with a bad looking Frankensteiner for the win.

Winners: The Steiner Brothers

Another good match between these two.  I just wish Scott could have hit that Frankensteiner better, though.  I love that move and I hate seeing it messed up.

We go to the back with Mean Gene, Jimmy Hart and Kevin Sullivan.  Jimmy tells Sullivan that they don’t need to be messing with the Horsemen.  Sullivan says this isn’t about the Horsemen.  This is about showing Arn Anderson and Ric Flair that Benoit doesn’t deserve to be a Horseman.  He says he ran off the last guy who didn’t deserve to be a Horsemen and he’ll do the same to Benoit, and he’ll do it for Double A.

Match #2: WCW United States Championship: El Gato VS Konnan (WCW United States Champion)

El Gato looks like he’s wearing a pair of black dress slacks and a Tiger Mask mask.  This guy is a superstar?  Konnan comes out with the US title as well as the Mexican Championship.  He’s also wearing the Mexican flag as a poncho.

I can’t tell if El Gato is Mexican or Japanese.

We get a volley of armdrags followed each time by El Gato adjusting his mask and going into a martial arts pose.  Konnan connects with a nice flippy armdrag off of the ropes, then charges El Gato and they have an awkward exchange ending with Konnan sitting on the top rope.  El Gato goes to setup for a movie but Konnan pulls him down to the mat by his mullet.  Granted, El Gato is under a mask, so I don’t know for certain it’s a mullet…but this guy is so bad thus far that I’m going to go ahead and call it a mullet.

Konnan comes off the Irish whip and attempts a Frankensteiner but El Gato does his first good move and drops him with a sitout powerbomb.  El Gato and Konnan trade crappy looking arm and leg holds before Konnan whips El Gato to the corner, does a reverse roll and a weird looking bulldog.  Konnan does his rolling clothesline, which I always like, but El Gato kicks out at one.  Konnan goes to the floor, El Gato tries to do a baseball slide dropkick but Konnan moves and El Gato simply slides out of the ring and hits the floor.  They go to move back into the ring and Konnan surprises El Gato with a sunset flip powerbomb to the floor.  Konnan whips El Gato to the corner, El Gato tries to jump backwards out of it but Konnan catches him and Alabama Slams him for the win.

Winner: Konnan (still WCW US Champion)

Wow…this was bad.  Konnan has yet to impress me during this run and El Gato looks like a guy that they just grabbed from backstage.  This was bad.

Backstage, Mean Gene is joined by Sting and they talk about Lord Steven Regal being prissy and a sissy, drinking his tea with a little pinky out.  Sting questions his masculinity through most of the promo, saying he’s a little “iffy,” and that he’s “not too sure about him.”  Damn, Stinger, just come out and call him gay already…we know that’s what you’re hinting at.

Match #3: Battle Bowl Ring on the line – Diamond Dallas Page (Lord of the Ring) VS Marcus Alexander Bagwell

DDP says that once the women in Baltimore get a load of him, they’ll forget all about “Carl” Ripken.  Ugh.  Man, it takes Page a while to really get running, doesn’t it?

Bagwell hits the ring running but Page takes the low road and comes from behind him while Bagwell has his back turned.  Bagwell is able to pull him to the floor and whips him into the crowd.  Page gets into the ring first and cuts Bagwell off when he enters.  Bagwell gets a two count off of a crossbody block and starts working the arm.  Tony gives us a bit of history of Page and his fall and subsequent rise back to the ranks of WCW.

Bagwell sends Page to the ropes, but Page grabs the ropes with his arms and legs, hanging between the top and second rope.  Bagwell dropkicks him in the gut through the ropes and follows with a dive over the top to the floor.  Marcus goes up top but Page is able to knock him off the top rope and take over.

Bagwell fires back while Page is jawjacking with the crowd. Page goes to punt Bagwell but Buff-to-be moves and Page eats the mat.  Bagwell hits an atomic drop and a revere atomic drop, then they do this thing where Page kicks, Buff grabs his leg, spins him, ducks under a clothesline, then clotheslines Page himself…when he could have just pulled Page’s leg and clotheslined him from there.  Really some odd wasted movement that could have been way better by just clotheslining him right off.  DDP gets his own clothesline and tries to get a pin twice with his legs on the ropes.  He tosses Bagwell to the ropes and goes for a tilt-a-whirl slam but Buff gets him in a headscissors.  Bagwell goes for a suplex, DDP grabs the ropes to stop it and then hits the Diamond Cutter for the win.

Winner: Diamond Dallas Page (still possesses the Battle Bowl Ring)

We go backstage with Mean Gene, Jimmy Hart, and The Giant.  Mean Gene asks Jimmy about his alliance with both The Giant and Lex Luger.  Jimmy gives a non-answer, saying everyone’s worried about it, but Jimmy isn’t.  Jimmy irritates me.  He’s stuck in the 1980s and he really sticks out like a sore thumb in these interviews.  Giant cuts a promo talking about all the stuff he’s done to Luger and his buddies, puts down the Torture Rack and puts over the choke slam.  Gene says that Luger may use the choke slam and his memories of being choke slammed to fuel him in this match.  Giant says he should be scared and they leave it at that.

Match #4: WCW Cruiserweight Championship: Rey Mysterio, Jr. VS “The Man of 1,000 Holds” Dean Malenko (WCW Cruiserweight Champion)

Rey comes out to no fanfare, which is going to change very quickly.  It’s interesting to see Rey not get any real pop, since from the moment I saw him, he was very popular.  Of course, this is his first match in WCW, so he’s essentially an unknown (despite spending a little time in ECW before this).

Mike Tenay joins the commentary booth since we’re watching a huge international star.  Glad he came out here instead of for El Gato.

Match starts with a feeling out process, with some arm wrenches, reversals, etc.

I apologize if this match writeup is lacking because I have a feeling a lot of this is going to be hard to transcribe.

20130205_Playlist_JPGGreat volley of moves from Rey springing from the mat to Dean’s shoulders and then getting a quick sunset flip powerbomb that Dean rolls out of and then slingshots Rey to the outside.  Dean heads outside to get Rey but Rey slides quickly back into the ring.  Dean begins attacking the arm and slowing the pace down a bit.  Dean applies an armbar and holds it for a bit until Rey is able to escape by getting to the ropes.  Rey heads to the floor, but Dean wraps his arm in the guardrail and kicks it, further injuring it.

Back in the ring, Rey is in a knuckle lock but walks up the ropes and hits a dropkick.  He charges into the corner and trying to hit a hurracanrana, but Dean pushes him off and Rey flips to his feet to be met with a devastating clothesline from Dean,

Mike tells us that Eddie Guerrero defeated Jushin Liger to win the Super J Cup in NJPW this year.

Dean hits a beautiful hammerlock northern lights suplex, which is the first time I’ve ever seen a move like that.  Dean is soooo good.  It’s too bad he doesn’t have much of a personality, though, or he could have been a big star.  That being said, I am suddenly reminded of the Dean Malenko they tried out in WWF where he was a ladies man, and I’m a bit more okay with his Ice Man, no personality, character that I was at the beginning of this paragraph.

Dean has been controlling this match for a good while now, controlling the arm of Rey Jr.  Dean pulls Rey back into a Romero Special, then drops it and goes into a bridging pin for two.

Rey is able to reverse an Irish whip and send Malenko to the floor.  He hits a springboard somersault to the floor, jumping PAST the mats and taking Malenko down on the concrete and it gets a huge pop.  Back in the ring, Rey gets a springboard dropkick for two and the crowd is now firmly behind Mysterio.  Rey reverses two more moves into near falls, then goes out to the apron and gets a top rope Frankensteiner for two.  Now it’s easy to see why Rey Jr became such a big deal.  We haven’t seen wrestling like this before in WCW.  He goes up top, but Dean follows, and it seems like Dean is trying to do his top rope gutbuster, but Rey turns it into another top rope Frankensteiner.  Dean tries a tilt-a-whirl slam but Rey reverses it into a crossbody block for another two count.  Rey rushes Dean and tries another Frankensteiner, but Dean reverses into a powerbomb and a pin with his feet on the ropes for the win.

Winner: Dean Malenko (still WCW Cruiserweight Champion)

x240-UkZThis was a great match.  The finish worked well, too.  The story of the match was that Dean could barely control Rey, so when Rey got on a roll, Dean did what he needed to do to win the match.  The crowd loved Rey, so this will definitely be a rivalry for the summer if they keep following through with it.

We go to the backstage area with Mean Gene and Lex Luger.  Luger cuts a really subdued promo on The Giant.  He says his mind isn’t on the interview and he’s only there out of respect to WCW and Mean Gene.  He says he’s thinking about the match and that’s where his focus is.

Match #5: Big Bubba w/ Jimmy Hart VS John Tenta

Jimmy and Bubba come out with what we are to believe is John Tenta’s hair.  Why they still have this is beyond me.  It’s also kinda nasty, if you think about it.

Tenta comes out to no music and no crowd reaction.  Listening to Kevin Sullivan’s podcast, they were really trying to get Tenta over on his own but it’s not happening.

The two start brawling on the floor before the match.  Jimmy is running around holding scissors, and I can only assume that’s not safe at all.

Big Bubba goes down and pulls something out of his pants, nails Tenta with it with an uppercut, then throws it to Jimmy Hart.  Bubba covers and gets two.  Bubba kicks Tenta, who grabs his foot and then is hit with a surprising enziguri from Big Bubba.  Bubba goes for a cover with his feet on the ropes but referee Nick Patrick realizes it at two.  Tenta goes for a scoop slam and then falls down so Bubba can cover him for two again.  Bubba then starts trying to get his hands in Tenta’s mouth, apparently.  I have no idea what was happening there, but it looked like Bubba was trying to force Tenta’s mouth open.

Dusty keeps calling Bubba “Bubber” and it’s annoying.  I wish Heenan was there, as I feel he would make a “Bubber” VS “Blubber” joke.

Bubba controls the match some more and then gets a big belly-to-back suplex.  Bubba goes to the top rope and dives off, but Tenta catches him and powerslams him for the win while Jimmy Hart is dancing on the apron.

Winner: John Tenta

Tenta grabs the scissors from Hart and goes to cut Jimmy’s hair, but Bubba charges them, Tenta moves, and Bubba hits Hart.  Tenta cuts a bit of hair from the goatee of Big Bubba as the heels retreat.  This match was terrible, and Big Bubba controlled every bit of it, which is dumb booking if they’re trying to get Tenta over.

Backstage, Mean Gene has Mongo, Kevin Greene, and their wives.  They cut a quick promo and in comes Macho Man, in ring gear for some reason.  Of course, every time we see Savage, he’s in ring gear…even coming into the arena.  I’m going with the idea that Savage is just ALWAYS in gear.  He cuts a promo, fires everyone up and they all head out to the ring.

Match #6: Falls Count Anywhere: “The Crippler” Chris Benoit VS “Taskmaster” Kevin Sullivan

During the entrances, Tony brings up the point that this feud is interesting because of how Arn Anderson seems to be siding more with Kevin Sullivan than he is fellow Horseman, Benoit.

Sullivan makes a beeline for the ring, walking with a purpose, but Benoit meets him halfway with a clothesline.  They starts brawling immediately, slamming each other into the guardrail, then the ring apron, the steel steps…

Benoit chops Sullivan three times, but Sullivan no-sells all three and the two of them brawl into the crowd.  They punch and slap each other as they brawl up the steps and head out into the concession area.  They brawl into the men’s room, Sullivan slamming Benoit into the stall doors, then slamming the door on Benoit’s head a few times.  You see the crowd start to spill into the bathroom on the opposite sides with just Randy Anderson and Doug Dillinger to try to stop them.  Sullivan slams Benoit’s head in the door another time for good measure, then double stomps him on the bathroom floor.  Benoit starts teeing off on Sullivan’s head with big right hands, but Sullivan is able to break it off, attempting to put Benoit’s head in the urinal.  Benoit fights that off, slams Sullivan’s head in the door, then they slam each other into the wall.

Dusty goes nuts when a woman appears in the men’s room.

Sullivan slams Benoit’s head into the metal door of the utility closet, then slams Benoit with a plastic bag full of toilet paper.  Benoit tries to suffocate Sullivan with the plastic bag, then they start brawling out into the hallway again, with tons of people lining the way and making it hard for security to keep the crowd from the wrestlers.

Sullivan pushes Benoit down the steps and Benoit takes a spill for about ten steps or so before Sullivan picks him up and tosses him down a few more.  Sullivan stomps Benoit in the crotch for good measure.  Benoit gets back to his feet and starts firing off rights again as they hit the arena floor.  They begin to trade blows at the guardrail, then Sullivan picks Benoit up and crotches him on the steel guardrail and clotheslines him off.  Sullivan grabs a chair and throws it at Benoit’s head.  Benoit returns the previous favor and crotches Sullivan on the guardrail, then goes under the ring for a table.  Benoit seems to have some trouble getting the table from under the ring, so he whips Sullivan into the guardrail and then tosses him into the crowd.

Benoit is able to get the table, finally, and tosses it into Sullivan to buy some more time.  Benoit gets the table into the ring and sets it up in the corner.  Sullivan whips Benoit into the table, tries to jump into Benoit, but Benoit moves and Sullivan hits the table.  Benoit bridges the table over the top ropes in the corner.  Sullivan backdrops Benoit onto the table, then follows him up.  Benoit stands, pulls Sullivan to the top and hits a superplex off of the table for the win.

Winner: Chris Benoit

“He didn’t win, he survived!” – Tony Schiavone

Benoit slaps Sullivan around for a bit more, and out comes Arn Anderson.  Anderson pulls Benoit off of Sullivan forcefully and Benoit gets in his face.  Anderson motions for him to hold on a moment, then Anderson punts Sullivan and the crowd erupts as Benoit and Anderson double team Sullivan.  Out comes the Dungeon of Doom, but the Horsemen retreat, arms in the air, 4 fingers held high!

Good match, brutal and violent, and put the Horsemen back together with Benoit firmly cemented.  This is basically Benoit’s real “introduction” into the Horsemen, since we haven’t really seen him be too involved since he became one.  I like it.

We go back to Mean Gene, who is in the locker room alone with Woman and Liz.  I’m going to set a timer to see how long it takes Gene to make an inappropriate or sexually suggestive comment.

In comes Double A and Ric Flair.  Arn brings in Benoit.  Arn says there have been wannabes who have wanted to be Horsemen, but they’re out of here.  He says Benoit proved himself as a Horseman.  Arn says Benoit severed the head of the snake and earned his stripes.  He says that the Horsemen and the DoD are now officially at war.  Benoit says he warned Sullivan not to mess with the Horsemen.

“Football players…you want a visual aid?  You just got it!” – Arn Anderson

Flair puts over everyone, ending with Bobby Heenan.  Heenan says that Gene has been insinuating that Heenan is terrified about Macho Man, Heenan says he’s not scared.

“There’s a lot of things that Macho Man would like to do that he can’t do anymore.  Right, Liz?  Wooooo!” – Ric Flair

They finish their promo and head out.  Damn, I loved this!  Benoit legitimized as a Horseman, Flair’s final line…damn, I loved this!

Match #7: Lord Steven Regal w/ Jeeves VS Sting

Sting starts off strong with a right hand and then more chops and punches in the corner before sending Regal to the floor.  He sends him to the guardrail and then back body drops him as Regal makes a rush at him.  Back in ring, Regal nails a quick succession of European uppercuts, rocking Sting and sending him to the mat.  Sting comes back with a Japanese armdrag off of an Irish whip and Regal heads to the floor to jaw with the crowd in the front row.

Coming back into the ring, Regal apologizes for the slap and offers his hand to Sting.  Sting shakes his pelvis at Regal and then acts like he’s about to charge, freaking Regal out for a few moments.  It was a very weird exchange, honestly.

x240-l4nRegal takes over with a full nelson until Sting breaks out and is able to get a sunset flip.  Regal overacts fighting to stay standing during this way too much.  I really like Regal, but this match he’s looking like a bit of a buffoon when WCW should be using this to make him an uppercarder.  Regal ties Sting up in a side headlock and fires off a European uppercut and some punches again, then does this weird dance around to celebrate.  I’ve never seen Regal act this weird.

Tony reminds us of the two matches Regal had with the Belfast Brawler at Uncensored and the next night on Nitro, and I am immediately wishing for THAT Regal to show up in this match.  That Regal, against Sting, would be amazing.

Regal has been controlling this match basically since right after Sting’s opening attack.  It really is interesting that Regal never really made it out of the midcard.  He’s super charismatic. He’s a great wrestler.  He could have been the total package, honestly.  Maybe it’s due to the silliness in this match that he never got taken seriously.  Yeah, that’s what I’m going to go with.  It’s the ONLY explanation I can offer as to why he shouldn’t be a megastar and former World Champion.

Sting sends Regal into the corner, Regal jumps out and eats an awesome Sting dropkick and then two running clotheslines!  Sting goes up top but Regal follows him with a dangerous looking top rope butterfly suplex for two.  Regal follows with the Regal Stretch right in the center of the WCW crosshairs.  For some reason, Regal just lets go and stands up because Sting hasn’t given up in ten seconds.  Damn, Regal, just stay in the thing until he does!

Regal backs Sting into the corner and fires off chops and punches, which shows Regal hasn’t watched too many Sting matches.  Sting gets pissed off and starts firing off punches.  By this point, Sting’s facepaint is completely gone, which is actually pretty cool.  I almost would have liked to see Sting start wrestling without the facepaint as it’s an interesting look, truthfully.  Sting goes for a Stinger Splash but Regal gets his knees up.  Sting is able to take Regal down with a backdrop as Regal comes out of the corner.  He locks on the Scorpion Deathlock for the win.

Winner: Sting

Tony sends us to a promo for Bash at the Beach, coming up in three weeks (AKA whenever I am able to actually get to the thing).

Match #8: Grudge Match: “Nature Boy” Ric Flair and “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson w/ Bobby “the Brain” Heenan, Woman & Ms. Elizabeth VS Kevin Greene & Steve “Mongo” McMichael w/ “Macho Man” Randy Savage, Debra McMichael, Tara Greene & Pepe

During the entrances, Flair and Anderson keep turning around and looking to the entrance for Heenan, but he is finally introduced on his own at the very end of the Horsemen entrance.

Mongo & Greene apparently get their own WCW entrance music.  I couldn’t tell exactly what it was saying, but I did make out something about “WCW tag team” and “Mongo and Kevin Greene.”

Tony tells us that due to requests from the fans of WCW, tomorrow we will see Macho Man reinstated into WCW.

Greene & Mongo start off doing dropdown drills before we start off the match with Mongo and Double A.  Tony calls Mongo & Greene the “athletes of the 90s.” Tony lays down some foreshadowing here when he talks about asking why Mongo finished his career with the Green Bay Packers when they’re the rivals of the Chicago Bears, which is the team Mongo is most associated with.  Mongo’s answer?  Money.  Remember that, folks.

Mongo’s first offensive move is a clothesline from a three point stance.  This is preceded and followed by a lot of standing around and posing.  Mongo and Double A both go down into three point stances again, but when Mongo charges, Arn drops him with a drop toehold and an elbow to the back of the head.  Mongo does surprise Double A with a fling shoulder block from the second rope, though.  Arn and Greene stomp Arn until he’s able to escape the ring, but he’s then punched by Macho Man.  Bobby hits the apron to complain but is chased off by Savage.

After some more gaga, Mongo tags out to Kevin Greene.  Greene does some drop down drills in the middle of the ring for no damn reason, but it fires up the crowd.  Double A tags out to Flair, who comes in stylin’ and profilin’.  Flair wants to get down in three point stance, Greene goes down and Flair stomps him in the top of the head.  He backs Greene into the corner and hits some chops, but Greene shoves him off and shoulder blocks Flair out of his boots.  Arn comes in and gets some of the same. Flair hits the ground and heads to the back as Kevin Greene starts strutting in the ring.  Macho Man nails Flair from behind and sends him back into the ring into the waiting arms of Kevin Greene.  Greene whips him into the far ropes, body drops him, then hits a pair of flying clotheslines before tagging out to Mongo.  Flair runs to Double A, but Mongo rushes Arn and cuts off the tag.  Flair begs off, then finds his confidence, wooo’s, and tries a shoulder block and eats canvas twice as a result.  Flair lures Mongo into the corner and kicks him in the gut.  He follows with a chop and Mongo channels the Stinger, no-sells them, asks for more, fires up and chases Flair into the opposite corner for a trifecta of chops and a hiptoss.

Flair is finally able to cut Mongo off with a thumb to the eyes, then, as usual, forgets he’s Ric Flair and goes up top.  Mongo sends him crashing off the top and then applies the Figure 4 to Ric Flair.  Arn rushes in, Kevin Greene meets him with a shoulder block and applies his own Figure 4 to Arn!  Woman rakes the eyes of Mongo, breaking up that hold, and all four of the women get in each other’s faces as Woman and Liz back Debra & Tara towards the entrance.

Flair breaks Double A out of the Figure 4 he’s in and then Arn and Mongo get into it, despite the fact that Arn never got tagged in.  Nice heel tactics to use the confusion to their advantage.  Arn tags Flair in and he kicks Mongo in the gut and then chops him, punches him in the gut and sends him to the floor to the waiting boots of Arn Anderson.  Macho Man chases Arn off, but like Dusty says, it’s too late, the damage has been done.  Flair sends Mongo to the floor and, as he casually walks by, Heenan gets a kick in on Mongo.  Savage chases him off and rolls Mongo back into the ring.  Mongo is throttling Flair but the referee’s back is turned and Flair gets in a low blow, followed by a knee drop before tagging out to Arn.  Arn comes in with a kick to the lower abdomen and a choke on the second rope to Mongo.

Arn and Flair double suplex Mongo and both go to choke him, but Greene comes in to knock Arn off of the pile. Flair sends Mongo to the corner but Mongo comes out with a nice hook clothesline.  Flair tags out to Arn, who comes in with a stomp to Mongo.  Arn goes for a clothesline, Mongo ducks, atomic drops Arn and sends him into an incoming Flair, and is finally able to get a very weak hot tag to Greene.  Greene comes in with two low tackles to Arn, a powerslam and a backdrop to Flair, but he doesn’t follow up any of his moves with a cover.  Greene sends Flair to the corner, Flair flips over it, runs down the apron into an awaiting big boot from Mongo.  Greene suplexes Flair back into the ring but again doesn’t capitalize with a cover, so Arn comes in with a chop block and takes out Greene.  Flair and Arn double team him, cutting off the tag, and Flair goes for a Figure 4 but is rolled up by Greene for two.  Greene applies a side headlock but Arn drops him with a knee breaker and then finally locks in the Figure 4 well into the Horsemen territory.  Arn is helping Flair add leverage to the Figure 4, but is attacked by Macho Man.  This brings out Benoit and Savage is double teamed by Arn and Benoit.

We cut to the entry way and out comes Debra McMichael, dressed in a beautiful pink dress, flanked by Woman and Liz.  She’s holding a silver briefcase and approaches her husband, opening the briefcase to reveal a Horseman shirt and a lot of cash.  Greene reaches out for the tag, Mongo shuts the briefcase and nails Greene with it.  Flair covers for the win.

Winners: Ric Flair and Arn Anderson

After the match, Mongo gets in Savage’s face and Savage is attacked from behind by Flair.  The Horsemen, a true foursome now, attack the downed Savage.  Mongo puts on the Horsemen shirt, shakes hands with Flair and Arn, and the Horsemen celebrate in the ring with the ladies and Heenan.

Tony reiterates the story about why Mongo jumped ship to the Packers for money, making sure we know that Mongo is a sellout.

I’ve given Mongo a lot of shit in the past about being a bad Horseman, but after this match, I’m honestly not against it.  I like it.  I’m interested to see Mongo’s wrestling career in this new light.

Tony sends us to Eric Bischoff at the entry way and says we’re going to hear about the attacks on WCW.  Bischoff mentions the “interruptions” starting on 5/27, and says that he mentioned last week that WCW would give them an answer.  He doesn’t call them by name, saying “I know who they are” and calls them out.  Out comes Hall and Nash to the stage.

The two flank Bischoff.  Bischoff says he’s got some questions that need to be resolved.  He says he was in the WCW offices, says if they want a war in the ring, they’re going to get it.  Hall says “they fell into the trap, big man!”  Bischoff says it’ll be at Bash at the Beach, in July, in Daytona.  Hall says he’s free.

Bischoff asks if they work for the WWF.  Both men say no.  Hall says to forget about the past.  They’re here now.  He wants to know who the three men are.  Is it the Macho Man?  The “Huckster?”  Hall says the “big man” and the “medium size man,” and their surprise buddy will carve WCW up.  Hall asks for the three men, Bischoff says he’ll tell them tomorrow on Nitro.  Hall says you don’t jack them around, punches Bischoff in the gut, and turns him to Kevin Nash who jackknife powerbombs him off of the stage.  Hall grabs the mic and says “the real big boys…they just left the building.”

bischoff-and-the-outsiders-o

This is probably the biggest image of the invasion (before Bash at the Beach) outside of Hall arriving the first night.  Bischoff had only been an announcer at this point.  We didn’t even know he ran WCW right now unless you read the dirtsheets, but now these outsiders have attacked an announcer.  They’ve set this up so nicely thus far.  I can’t wait for the Bash!

We go back to Tony and Dusty, and Tony looks concerned and goes off camera, leaving Dusty alone.  Dusty cuts a promo on the Outsiders, saying that WCW will be ready.  He mentions McMichaels and the Horsemen again, then sends it off to Michael Buffer, after mistakenly sending it to David Penzer.

Match #9: WCW World Heavyweight Championship Match: “The Total Package” Lex Luger (WCW Television and Tag Team Champion) VS The Giant (WCW World Heavyweight Champion) w/ Jimmy Hart

Luger stops during his entrance and checks on Bischoff.  This is actually a bit more of a babyface move than Luger has been pulling off recently, which is interesting.

There is also no ring announcing during the entrances.  Buffer waits until they’re in the ring.  I was starting to wonder if they had forgot.

Luger starts the match off running towards Giant, but eats a big boot and some stomps for his trouble.  Luger fires back, clotheslining Giant and sending him out of the ring.  Giant pulls Lex out of the ring, press slams him and sends him back between the second and top rope.  Luger tees off on the Giant as he tries to get into the ring, kicking and punching him.  Luger has Giant staggered, then dives off of the second rope into what I can assume will be a sleeper, but he doesn’t get it, then has to jump back up and apply the sleeper.  Giant backs Lex into the corner where Jimmy Hart is poised to strike with the megaphone.  As Hart draws back, out comes Sting.  He grabs the megaphone and chases Jimmy to the back.

Giant is able to get Luger off of him, tying him in the tree of woe and kicking him in the gut, eliciting the loudest grunts from Luger imaginable.  Luger is a lot like Foley in that he yells and grunts with each move, offensive and defensive.  Giant chokes him with his boot in the corner and yells at Nick Patrick for trying to break it up.  Giant sends Luger to the corner and drops him with a backbreaker and then pushes down on Luger across his knee.  Giant keeps on Luger’s back with a surfboard.  Luger tries a bodyslam but Giant is too much and Luger crashes to the mat.

There is an interesting spot where Luger is on the apron, Giant rushes trying to knock him off, and Luger ducks, pulling down the top rope.  This would normally result in Giant tumbling to the floor, but Giant takes the ropes gut first and bounces back.  I don’t’ know if Giant didn’t know what he was supposed to do, or if he just called an audible.  Lex jumps into the ring with a dropkick and then staggers Giant, sending him down to one knee at one point, then in the corner.  Giant goes to splash Luger in the corner, but Luger moves and Giant ends up laying on the top ropes in the corner.  Luger kicks him a few times, turning him from his stomach to his back, and then Luger picks up The Giant in the Torture Rack.  Giant’s weight seems to finally be too much and Luger crashes down, Giant dropping on top of him.  It was actually really convincing looking.  Giant picks Luger up, chokeslam, and the win.

Winner: The Giant (still WCW World Heavyweight Champion)

Tony tells us that we’ll have the information about the Bash at the Beach as well as the information about Eric Bischoff on Nitro tomorrow and then sends us off the air.

 

Honestly, pretty humdrum PPV until the last half.  Mysterio made a nice debut and had a great match with Malenko, one I know for a fact we’ll see in three weeks at the Bash at the Beach.  Benoit and Sullivan ignited their war and a war between factions and cemented himself as a true Horseman.  Mongo was added to the Horsemen in what was actually a really good match and a really cool ending.  Sure, they had to have Savage and Heenan and the ladies out there to cover for the shortcomings of the two football players, but I liked the way it played out, especially bookended by Tony talking about Mongo leaving to Green Bay for money.  It gave us a reason for him joining the Horsemen out of nowhere and made him an instant heel.

The Outsiders taking out Bischoff is one of those moments that will be burned into my memory.  I didn’t get to see it live…this is actually the first time I’ve watched this PPV, but I remember seeing it on Nitro and actually being shocked by it.  I wasn’t used to wrestlers beating up announcers.  It just wasn’t done.  I can’t wait until they get into the stuff over the next few weeks, including jumping everyone backstage and ruining Nitro in a few weeks.

The Main Event was whatever and if it hadn’t featured the Championship, I would have argued that the football match should have gone on last.

We’ll be back soon with a recap of Nitro on the following night as we march towards Bash at the Beach as well as towards finally catching up.  You’re going to be hearing from Derick and Phillip over the next few weeks, so get ready for that!

Until next time, WCW fans!

Shane

 

KoaNitro copyIt’s Nitro time again, ladies and gentlemen!  Welcome back as we continue along our journey into 1996 and as we move towards the end of our first volume of 1996.  Recently, Kick Out at 2 released Kick Out at Nitro! Volume 1 to Amazon, chronicling all of our Nitro reviews from 1995.  This summer, Volume 2 will arrive, covering January to Slamboree, which is just a few short weeks away (in 1996 time…in 2015 time, it’s just a few days away).

This episode of Nitro comes to us from Daytona Beach, Florida!  It is a 7PM show time instead of the normal 9PM show time due to the NBA Playoffs. Pepe is dressed as a sailor because, and I’m not making this up, Mongo says Pepe heard that a sailor can get lucky in this town.  Hopefully Pepe has better luck than I had last time I was in Daytona, but that’s another story for another time.  Bischoff tells us that Jushin Thunder Liger VS Dean Malenko!  Holy crap!  Bischoff kicks us to ring announcer David Penzer to bring us into our first match.

Match #1: Hugh Morrus VS “Macho Man” Randy Savage

Morrus is without anyone else from the Dungeon of Doom.  Interesting.

Bischoff mentions Hog Wild, which I’m looking quite forward to.  I’ve mentioned it before (and will again) but that was my first wrestling Pay Per View purchase ever.

Morrus jumps Savage before he can even get to the ring. Morrus slams him into the side of the ring and bodyslams him onto the floor, putting the hurt on Savage before the match itself can really start.  Savage finally pulls himself into the ring and the referee calls for the start of the match.  Morrus mocks Savage by dressing in Savage’s entrance gear and mimicking his taunts but Savage fires back with a kick to the gut and a thumb to the eyes which he refuses to let go of until the referee pulls him off of Morrus.

Savage grabs his entrance coat and begins choking Morrus with it, tossing him over the top rope and hanging him with it as well.  Referee Mark Curtis calls for the bell, disqualifying Savage.

Winner: Hugh Morrus (by disqualification)

After the match, Savage hits a flying elbow for good measure.  Savage tries to cover Morrus and the referee shoves him away, resulting in Savage slapping the taste out of the referee.  He bodyslams the ref, climbs to the top and delivers a flying elbow drop to the referee.  Randy Anderson tries to stop him but Savage runs him off.

I love this crazy ass version of Savage!  Flair has driven him insane.  If I remember correctly, Savage spends a lot of the next few weeks getting arrested and barred from arenas.

Out comes Doug Dillinger, Nick Patrick, Randy Anderson, and three rent-a-cops to remove Savage from the ring.  We go to commercial as they clear the ring.

Out of the commercial we’re told about the passing of Ray Stevens (the wrestler, not the musician).  Donations can be made to Cauliflower Alley Club.

Match #2: Dean Malenko VS Jushin Thunder Liger w/ Sonny Onoo

We’re told that we’ll see Otani, the WCW Cruiserweight Champion on WCW Worldwide on 5/18 and then we’ll see the title up for grabs at Slamboree.

Liger in a cool black, silver and yellow outfit.  I like it.  Liger and Malenko trade quick holds and reversals to open the show, ending with a leapfrog and then Liger hitting an enzuigiri, sending Malenko to the outside.

We go to split screen and see Ric Flair, Woman and Liz coming out to sit in the “VIP section.”  Back in the ring, Liger hits a big brainbuster to Malenko and locks on a seated abdominal stretch that he rolls to a pin just as we go to break.

Back from commercial, Flair and the ladies are at a table with champagne, candelabras, etc, spending Savage’s money.

Malenko locks on a kneebar as Heenan talks up Malenko, saying he has ice water in his veins, showing no emotion as he wrestles.  Malenko looks to be going for the Texas Cloverleaf but is rolled into a small package for two.  Liger sends Malenko to the corner and hits his rolling kick.  He lifts Dean to the top rope, looks to go for a brainbuster or something, then decides to just dropkick Malenko to the floor.  Liger dives off the top rope to Malenko on the floor to follow up.  Rolling back to the ring, Liger sends Dean to the ropes and goes for a handspring back elbow, but Dean catches him and rolls to a pin for 2.  Liger goes up top, Malenko follows, then throws him off the top rope and catches him with a gutbuster.  Bischoff marks and says he’s never seen it before, which is garbage because I know for a fact I’ve mentioned that move a few times on this blog.  Dean goes for a powerbomb but Liger rolls his weight and crashes down for a two count.  Dean hits a tiger bomb for the win.

Winner: Dean Malenko

This was a realy good match.  Man, I love Dean Malenko!  We go to commercial with an Up Next graphic for Sting VS Steven Regal.

Back from break and Mean Gene is with Flair and the ladies.  Gene asks what this is all about and says Robin Leech would be envious.  Flair says that Leech couldn’t get invited to a Nature Boy party.  Flair says they flew to Daytona in a Leer jet and decided to go across the street and see what the normal people have going on.  Flair says that people tell him he should be upset about The Giant.  Flair says that Giant got lucky and when his time comes back around, he’ll get his.  Gene asks if he can have a drink and Flair gives him some champagne.  Flair says at Slamboree, he and Savage will be going against Arn Anderson and Eddie Guerrero.  He warns Anderson not to make the wrong choice again.  Woman says that she predicts that Naitch will end up on top.  Flair says that he feels Debra McMichael would love a drink, so he sends her some champagne.  She pours out the drink and smiles.  Liz says not to worry about the champagne because Randy has plenty of money.

Commercial…

“Our world is about to change…Blood Runs Cold…Coming to WCW…”

Match #3: Lord Steven Regal w/ Jeeves VS Sting (WCW Tag Team Champion)

Bischoff apologizes for Flair and Mongo says it’s cool.  Bobby says what he thinks happened is that Debra has never had champagne before and was so excited that Flair sent it over that her hand shook and she spilled it on accident.  Bobby trolling Mongo always makes me happy.

Regal has tape over his left eye and has his right thigh wrapped up.  Looks like he’s still selling the match from last Monday.  Of course, that match was so damn brutal he may actually be tore up from it still.  Sting starts off fast, sending Regal to the corner, hitting a back body drop and going for the Scorpion Deathlock.  Regal gets to the ropes and heads to the floor as we go to commercial.

Sting’s tights are in the color scheme of the WCW race car.  He’s even got the number 29 on the side instead of the normal “STINGER” text.

Bischoff says that since the Bellfast Bruiser got injured last week, Regal will be teaming with Dave Taylor in their match in the Lethal Lottery.  I believe that Finlay is actually just at the end of his current agreement and is going back overseas.

Regal struts around the ring, prompting Sting to grab the rope and give a very limp wristed pose, mocking Regal.  The crowd digs it, Regal hates it, and the two start trading head locks and chin locks.  Sting gets some momentum with a drop kick, a pair of Japanese arm drags, an hip toss, and goes for a Stinger Splash but Regal moves and Sting hits the turnbuckle hard.  Regal goes for a butterfly suplex but Sting lifts him out of it and falls back into a pin.

Winner: Sting

I love when wrestlers don’t win with their finishers.  Yes, wrestling is choreographed, but the idea that one move will always end a match can get a little silly.  Having a wrestler win a match with a random move really makes it look like they capitalized on an opening and shows their ingenuity.  I like it.

We go to commercial and come back and we’re still playing Sting’s entrance music for some reason.  The announcers say that Luger has a World Championship match tonight and he reportedly isn’t in the building.  Sting’s music stops and out comes Hacksaw Jim Duggan.  The announcers are baffled and the crowd is silent.  Randy Anderson and David Penzer ask Duggan “what the hell?”  Penzer then announces that Lex Luger hasn’t arrived yet and Hacksaw has offered to take his place.

Wait…so any wrestler can just show up and offer to wrestle for the WCW World Championship?  Shouldn’t there be a hierarchy?  Why didn’t Flair get a rematch?  Why didn’t the US Champion Konnan, who is technically the #1 contender, get the match?  Maybe this is how Jerry Flynn and Ernest Miller get so many damn title matches in mid-1998.

Match #4: WCW World Heavyweight Championship Match: Hacksaw Jim Duggan VS The Giant (WCW World Heavyweight Champion) w/ Jimmy Hart

Hacksaw tries to start off strong but Giant puts a stop to that mess.  No real scientific stuff here…just beating down, kicking, punching, etc…most of it coming from The Giant.

Giant finally ends it with a pretty rough looking choke slam.

Winner: The Giant (still WCW World Champion)

Giant choke slams Duggan one more time after the match for good measure.  Out comes Cobra.  Yes.  Cobra.  Cobra gets his ass choke slammed as well.  Next out is The Cuban Assassin.  Choke slam.  Alex Wright.  Choke slam.  The Giant makes his way through a few of the roster of WCW Saturday Night, apparently, before Flair runs down and cracks Giant with a chair.  Giant is about to choke slam Flair when Sting runs out and hits a top rope dropkick to Giant and begins attacking the back of Giant’s legs.  Sting starts rocking Giant with right hands, staggering him, before heading back up top and coming down with a double axe handle that puts Giant on his back.  Sting begins to go for the Scorpion Deathlock, finally getting him turned before getting cracked in the back of the head by Jimmy Hart’s megaphone.  Sting no-sells the hell out of it and out comes Lex Luger.  Luger is in his pinstripe Zubaz and tanktop attire, holding a silver Haliburton briefcase and threatening The Giant.  Jimmy Hart calls off Giant and they head to the back.

Sting asks Luger where the hell he’s been.  Luger asked Sting if he’s ever missed a flight as Mean Gene kicks us off the air.  I’m guessing they hit the time limit and TNT wasn’t about to let wrestling move into their NBA timeslot.

 

Wow, this show is so much better without Hulk Hogan.  Now, not gonna lie, I’m kind of on an anti-Hogan kick right now (aren’t we always here at Ko@2?) due to the fact that he’s representing my Tampa Bay Lightning and doing things like calling John Cooper “John Conner,” but still, compare the last few shows to the ones running through March and April.  They’re night and day.  This show is just better without Hogan and his friends taking up the main event spot.  There’s been no Hogan, no Booty Man…and it’s been glorious.  I like knowing we’ve got a few more months of this before Hogan comes back…and knowing what’s coming up at the end of May…Oh man, I’m loving it.

I’m going to try to run through a lot of Nitro this week and a half, so be ready.  I do have class and hockey, so fitting it in is going to be a chore, but I want to be near caught up before I head to Virginia for a few weeks, so you’re going to be getting one of these nearly every day for the next little bit.

Until next time, ladies and gentlemen!

-Shane

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 4.1

WCW Nitro Ratings – 1.9

(Raw – 15, Nitro – 14) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 4)

WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 5

WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 4

 

Holy crap what an ass kicking!  A 4.1 is the highest rating that either of these shows have gotten since the War began, aside from a 4.7 a few weeks back when Raw ran unopposed.  Crazy to see such a lopsided victory.  We’ve never had one show DOUBLE the other’s score.  Sad day for Nitro fans.   I’m really hoping this is due to the fact that Raw ran unopposed, practically, and Nitro was two hours out of its normal time slot.

—–—

WWF Raw results from this week

Marc Mero (w/ Sable) defeated 1-2-3 Kid (w/ Ted Dibiase)

Davey Boy Smith (w/ Jim Cornette & Diana Smith) defeated Fatu (10:30)

Skip & Zip (w/ Sunny) defeated Techno Team 2000 (9:15)

The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) defeated Owen Hart (9:15)

This show did a 4.1?  Interesting.  Tonight’s Nitro was a damn good show.  

KoaNitro copyWelcome everyone to the final WCW Monday Nitro of 1995 (and 2014).  It’s been a fun few months doing this and reliving the wrestling that made me the huge fan that I am and I’m happy that you’ve been coming along for the ride with me.  This episode comes to us on Christmas day from Augusta, GA (prerecorded after last week’s episode of Nitro).  Bischoff is in a Christmas sweater, Heenan is in a Santa hat and Pepe is dressed as Santa.

Match #1: Lex Luger w/ Jimmy Hart vs. Scotty Riggs

During Lex’s entrance, Bischoff reminds us that Ric Flair gets his title shot tonight, thus negating the need for him to be in the triangle match at Starrcade in 2 days.

Riggs gets the jobber entrance as he is already in the ring as Lex makes his entrance.  Mongo says that Riggs should have Bagwell with him because Riggs isn’t enough to take Luger.  Despite the fact that this buries Riggs a bit, I actually do like it because it gives clear lines of demarcation when it comes to the kayfabe power tiers in WCW.  A guy like Riggs shouldn’t be able to take Luger by himself.

December_25,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00002Despite all that, Riggs gets the upper hand with a few quick dropkicks, sending Lex to his usual place at the start of a match…the outside of the ring.  Bischoff brings up the Sting/Lex relationship again, saying that is the wildcard in the triangle match because Flair would be the odd man out at that point.  Mongo says he doesn’t think Luger and Sting are going to be all that chummy when the match starts.  Mongo says that everything about Sting tells him that he’ll be siding with Luger and turning heel before too long.  Bischoff tells them that they’re both reading too much into this.

Back in the ring, Luger has taken control of the match by bringing it down to a slower, more methodical pace.  Riggs gets a bit more offense after leapfrogging Luger and arm dragging him into an armbar.  Riggs Irish whips Luger and goes for a dropkick but Lex grabs the ropes and stops his momentum, letting Riggs fall to the mat.  Riggs attempts a suplex but Lex blocks it and lays him out on the top rope, then clotheslining him to the floor.  Lex suplexes Riggs back into the ring from the apron for a 2 count.  Riggs builds a little more offense, resulting in a cradle for 2 then goes off the top for a dropkick but Luger moves.  Irish whip, body slam and Luger calls for the Torture Rack.

Winner: Lex Luger

December_25,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00004Bischoff sends us to Mean Gene and Sting.  Gene says he has to ask the question that everyone is asking…what’s up with Sting and Luger.  Sting says enough is enough!  He’s right because he’s only asked that about ten times.  Sting says he’s tired of being asked that question.  Luger is a friend of his and he’s doing everything in his power to straighten him out.  Gene brings up Flair and Sting says he didn’t get it out of his system with Flair and he just wants one more chance to lock on the Scorpion Deathlock and never let go.  Gene brings up that Sting is going to be in the team challenge with NJPW.  Sting puts over WCW.  Gene asks one more time “what’s up with you and Luger” and Sting gets in his face as they go to commercial break and the Up Next graphic with Sting and Big Bubba.

Match #2: Big Bubba vs. Sting

Interesting that they give Sting a full entrance when he was just out at the entrance ramp when they went to commercial.  Not only that, but he’s coming out second!  As he’s coming down he makes a point to mark out over the scorpions being made of light on the entrance ramp, which is pretty cool to tell the truth.

Bubba and Sting get in each other’s face and Bubba slaps Sting…which shows he doesn’t watch much wrestling because that’s never a good idea.  Bubba bounces Sting around a few times but Sting no-sells and shows it didn’t affect him.  Bubba goes back to putting a pounding on Sting again, though.  It’s fun that the psychology of a Sting match is basically beat Sting down, Sting no-sells, beat him down, no-sell, Sting rallies and wins.

Sting hits his bulldog face smash to Bubba on the floor outside the ring, which was pretty sweet.  Back in the ring, Sting and Bubba trade arm wrenches until Bubba goes for Sting’s eyes and hits him with a Stinger Splash, which the announcers completely fail to comment on.

Bischoff mentions Hogan and we find out that Hogan is suspended.  I’d imagine so, since last week he came out and just started beating down everyone in the middle of a match.  This means Hogan won’t have a presence at Starrcade, which will make Derick way happier when we watch that PPV later.

Bubba is kicking Sting’s ass in this match, honestly.  Sting comes back on the outside, but goes for a move off the top that Bubba blocks with a poke in the eyes.  Bubba goes for a top rope suplex but Sting falls into an inside cradle for the win.

Winner: Sting

We come back from break and are met with Mean Gene, Lex Luger and Jimmy Hart.  Gene mentions that Luger will be part of the WCW/NJPW World Cup (where he’ll face Masahiro Chono) as well as the triangle match with Sting and Ric Flair, but he’s going to ask Luger the same question he asked Sting…what’s the deal with he and Sting.  Luger says Sting is a friend, has been for 10 years, but Luger is the uncrowned WCW Champion.  We see Sting look on smirking.  Jimmy Hart starts talking and out comes Sgt. Craig “Pit-Bull” Pittman.  He says he has no problem with Luger…as far as he’s concerned; Luger is the uncrowned WCW World Champion.  He’s not out here to ask about that, though.  He wants to ask Jimmy Hart to manage him.  Jimmy says he came to the right man, as he was just crowned Manager of the Year.  He tells Pittman to take off his shirt, though.  Pittman obliges and Jimmy says to look at his body and then look at Luger’s.  Why would he want to manage Pittman?  He hands Pittman a quarter and tells him to take it and call a manager who needs a few good men.  With that we go to commercial with the Coming Up graphic of Dean Malenko and JL.

Match #3: Dean Malenko vs. JL

It feels like it’s been a while since we’ve seen Dean Malenko.  I’m going to have to go back through the archives to see when the last time we saw him was.  The match starts as JL turns his back to Malenko and gets a dropkick to the back for his troubles.  Malenko goes on the offensive quickly as he nails JL with a clothesline in the corner and a slam off of an Irish whip.  JL gets on the offense rolling a move into a pin, then a flying head scissors off of an Irish whip.  Malenko goes to the outside to clear his head and is met with a JL flipping dive.  As Dean climbs onto the apron he gets his head run into the turnbuckle and then suplexed into the ring for a two count.  JL goes for a monkey flip out of the corner but Dean holds on and sends JL to the floor.  JL pulls a pin attempt up into a sit out powerbomb for two.

December_25,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00013The announcers mention Pittman coming out to talk to Hart and Heenan says that when you come out like that you’re at their mercy.  Hart may eventually manage Pittman but he’ll do it on his terms.

Dean catches JL on the top rope and comes off with that beautiful gut buster off the top that only Dean can do.  He finishes off with the “Malenko Leg Lock” which I don’t remember, but it gets the win.

Winner: Dean Malenko

We go to Mean Gene at the entrance ramp with Ric Flair.  Flair’s been wearing that purple robe an awful lot recently.  He says tonight he’ll face Savage for the championship…possibly Flair’s 12th World Championship.  As Flair starts his rant, out comes Jimmy Hart.  He apologizes for last week and Kevin Sullivan interrupting Flair and Anderson.  Hart says that Sullivan has a short fuse, just like Pillman.  Hart says that he owes Flair one for a few weeks ago when Flair saved him from Savage.  Hart asks if he can manage Flair for the title match tonight.  Flair says if he wants to sit there at ringside when he beats Savage, make himself happy.  He tells him to start getting the party together because they’re going to style and profile.  Gene pitches us to commercial with the Up Next graphic showing Savage and Flair.

Match #4: WCW World Heavyweight Championship – “Nature Boy” Ric Flair w/ Jimmy Hart vs. “Macho Man” Randy Savage (Champion)

Bobby calls the WCW title “50 pounds of gold and diamonds” which is just a little bit of an exaggeration…man, a title belt that weighed that much would be rough.

The bell rings and Savage is immediately aware of Hart at ringside.  Savage gets Flair to the corner and referee Randy Anderson separates them, and although it happens off camera and is hard to see, Savage spits at Flair.  Savage gets Flair down, wraps his leg around the ring post and then applies the Figure 4 in the middle of the ring.  Jimmy pushes the bottom rope into the ring as far as he can, allowing Flair to get the bottom rope.  He gets it three times before the referee breaks up the hold, though.  It’s nice to see Savage more on the offensive early in the match as for the last few weeks a Savage match usually starts with him getting beat down.

Flair goes for a Figure 4 himself but Savage pulls it into an inside cradle for 2.  Man, tonight is the night for inside cradles it seems.

Flair pitches Savage outside where he crashes hard into the barricade and Jimmy Hart attacks as we go to break.  Coming back December_25,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00017Flair is continuing the beat down outside.  Flair makes it back to the ring and one of the fans hands Savage a steel chair which he almost brings into the ring but is stopped by Anderson.  Flair is fully in control now, especially with Hart on the outside.  Every time Flair gets the referee’s attention, Hart chokes Savage or attacks him in some way.  Flair spends most of the time attacking Savage’s injured arm, including getting him in an arm bar and using the middle rope for leverage on the hold.

Savage gets a clothesline off of an Irish whip.  He stops a hip toss attempt and pulls it into a backslide for two.  Flair punches and chops a few times but Savage fights him off, leaving Flair to do the classic beg-off.  Savage gets him in the corner, Flair turns his back and kicks back in a mule kick nailing Savage in the groin.  Flair follows with a vertical suplex for two as we go to break.

Coming back from break, Flair has Savage in the corner beating him down.  Flair starts chopping and much like when he does it to Sting, it just fired Savage up and he started punching back.  He sends Flair to the corner, who flips over it and makes it to the outside.

Bischoff tells us that next week’s Nitro, the first of 1996, comes to us from Atlanta, GA…which has to make five or six episodes from Georgia since Nitro began.

Flair switches the attack to Savage’s knee, setting it on the bottom rope and sitting out on it.  Savage is so good from fighting back from being hurt.  It’s so believable.   Flair puts on the Figure 4 and positions himself to be able to use the ropes for leverage.  Bischoff tells us that they may be running long on time but he doesn’t care, we’re staying with the match no matter how long it takes.

Flair breaks the hold and goes up top, but Savage gets to him, hopping over to the turnbuckle on one leg, selling the Figure 4.  He slams Flair off of the top rope but can’t follow up as Flair gets him into a sleeper hold.  Savage throws himself into the corner, though, ducking out of the way so Flair hits the top turnbuckle.  Flair goes for a piledriver but Savage reverses it into a back body drop for 2.  Savage goes up top for the double axe handle for two.  Hart tries to get into the match but is met with a punch to the face, as is Flair.  Savage starts pummeling Flair and out comes Luger, attacking Savage.  Savage pulls off of Flair and ends up choking Luger in the corner, which brings out Flair.  Sting and Flair pair off, Flair getting a Stinger Splash and a gorilla press slam for his trouble.  Savage runs Luger off and we’re left with Sting and Savage, meeting back to back, but then they turn and get in each other’s faces as the show goes off the air, leading us into Starrcade in two days.

 —–

I think this was a great lead into Starrcade as far as the main story line for the WCW World Championship goes.  Everyone has something against everyone going into the triangle match and then carrying that over into the title match.  The NJPW stuff could have been built up a little better as we really only got two mentions about it with Luger and Sting, but I think that may be due to the fact that the show was taped on the 18th instead of being live.  That being said, the NJPW/WCW World Cup is going to be 7 of the nine matches on the PPV, so they could have used a little more build up, especially since most of the WCW fans at this time wouldn’t have been exposed to most of the NJPW wrestlers outside of Sasake, the current United States Champion.

I’m excited to go into Starrcade and close out 1995, though.  It’s been a fun run through 17 episodes of WCW Monday Nitro in 1995 and I can’t wait to get into 1996 knowing what’s in store there!  See you at Starrcade!

-Shane

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – NA (No Raw this week)

WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.5 (Unopposed)

(Raw – 6, Nitro – 7 ) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 2)

WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2

WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2

 

WCW ran unopposed this week, so I’m not counting anything as far as the totals when it comes to ratings.  There have only been two unopposed weeks thus far…the first week when Nitro debuted and this week.  My ratings started on the second week so I am not going to count this week either.

—–

WWF Raw results from this week

There was no episode of WWF Monday Night Raw on 12/25/1995.