Posts Tagged ‘Four Horsemen’

KoaNitro copyHello everyone and welcome back to the only chronological journey through WCW’s history on the Internet, starting with the first WCW Monday Nitro and going until Vince buys the whole shebang!  Tonight’s episode comes to us from my current hometown of Miami, FL!  This is the second show in Miami since the show began.  They definitely seem to keep hitting the same places over and over, but hey, at least it’s not Georgia.

Bischoff opens the show telling us that we’re getting a World Title match with Flair defending against Sting.  We’ll see Hugh Morris & Kevin Sullivan vs Anderson and Pillman as well as Savage and Luger tonight.  Mongo says he’s interested in the Flair/Sting match because Sting will want the title even more just to take it from Flair.

Luger’s music hits while Mongo is talking the matches up which leads us to the ring for…

Match #1: Lex Luger vs “Macho Man” Randy Savage

Bischoff tells us that they just found out 40 minutes ago that whoever wins the title match tonight will face Savage next week.  Man, WCW really needs to calm down the title matches in my opinion.  Giving away stuff like this is good for ratings, but it kind of waters down what makes a World Championship match special.  I haven’t seen any of the other titles defended on TV in months, but it seems like every week for the last month we’ve gotten a World Title match.

11596aSavage makes his entrance and runs Luger off to his usual place on the arena floor at ringside.  I’d love to see how much time Luger spends on the floor versus in the ring.  I’d have to say it’s a good 20%.  Luger grabs a chair and throws it into the ring but Savage snags it out of the air.  He tries to use it when Luger gets into the ring but the ref stops him, giving Luger the opening to jump Savage.  Luger takes Savage outside (shock!) and bangs him around on the steps a few times, returning to the ring and stopping Savage from entering when he tries.  On his second attempt, though, Savage pulls Luger under the bottom rope and takes him outside to bang his head off of the steps as a receipt.  Back in the ring Savage hits a double axe handle for two.

Savage does a really good job of showing that he’s trying to get the win.  After every few moves he goes for the pin.  I like that because it shows that there’s an endgame to the match instead of just two guys beating on each other.  Some matches seem to forget that at times.

Savage gets the advantage, taking Luger out with a hot shot and going for the flying elbow.  He gets tons of air and the thing looks beautiful, but Luger moves and Savage eats canvas.  Luger strikes and racks Savage for a good thirty seconds for the win.

Winner: Lex Luger

During the replay you see how well orchestrated the final spot was.  Luger moves at the VERY last moment, giving Savage no kayfabe time to change up his approach so he straight misses the move.  Very well done.

We come back from break to the Dungeon of Doom’s music playing, thinking we’re going to be heading into our tag team match.  Sullivan, Morris and Jimmy Hart are coming out and Sullivan grabs Mean Gene and drags him to the ring.  We also see The Giant and One Man Gang coming out, followed by all four members of the Horsemen.  One Man Gang is holding the WCW United States Championship…a belt that he won in a DARK MATCH at Starrcade!  Yes, a major title changed hands in a dark match at a PPV where the reigning champion at the time wrestled…but not for the title.  Damn WCW, why you gotta be so dumb sometimes?

11596bBack in the ring, Gene asks what the hell?  Anderson and Pillman are definitely not dressed for a match.  Anderson says that he and Sullivan have come to a meeting of the minds.  There’s no money in a fight against the Horsemen and DoD.  Sullivan says he respects Flair and due to that, Flair can “borrow” the Giant for Clash of Champions.  Sullivan says he respects Anderson, Anderson respects him, and all is well there, but he has a problem with Pillman.  Pillman is disrespectful and not Horseman material.  Pillman is in the background making faces and he grabs the mic and starts running his mouth.  Arn Anderson steps up and slaps the ever loving crap out of Pillman!  He tells Pillman that he told him to keep his mouth shut and Pillman retreats to the back of the pack.  Anderson says that outbursts like this will stop because they’re not professional and the meeting comes to a close.

Bischoff tells us that we have a standby match to replace the tag team match that isn’t going to happen and he announces WCW’s newest tag team acquisition from ECW, the Public Enemy.

As part of my ongoing drive to find out more about this time period, I decided last night to finally break down and pay for a subscription to the Wrestling Observer so that I can get my hands on the back catalog of Observer newsletters.  I started at the first issue in January of 1996 and it makes mention of Public Enemy debuting soon in WCW.  Apparently they were supposed to debut earlier than tonight, but there was a hold up because they didn’t know if they would be able to use the name Public Enemy since it was owned by Def Jam Records, who had a deal with ECW at the time.  Apparently they went through and they got to keep the name as well as their individual names from ECW.

Match #2: Public Enemy (Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge) vs The American Males

During the Males’ entrance, we see some cougars getting excited in the ring, dancing a little and taking off their jackets.  Looks like the Males have fans in at least one demographic.

The Males start off strong, double Irish Whips, double back drops and double clotheslines to the floor.  Public Enemy pull the Males under the ropes and beat them down on the floor for a while, moving back into the ring and trying to double-team Scotty Riggs, only for him to duck and Bagwell hit a flying cross body block to both men, sending them to the floor.

We get a small “E-C-Dub!” chant from the Miami crowd.

Grunge goes for a clothesline in the corner but Riggs rolls him into a pin for two, but Grunge hits a hard right hand in his corner.  They aren’t able to really capitalize, though, as Riggs tags out to Bagwell pretty quickly, who takes out both men with dropkicks and clotheslines.

Bischoff tells us that despite the loss earlier, Savage still gets the title shot, which is kind of silly to me.

Public Enemy distract the ref for a quick moment, allowing Grunge to roll Bagwell up with a handful of tights for the win.

Winners: Public Enemy

11596dThis match was 100% Males and the PE stole a victory.  Of course, this kind of works out to their advantage because afterwards they beat Bagwell down as Grunge sets up two tables in a double-decker style.  Bagwell gets set up on the top table and receives a Johnny Grunge flipping senton through both tables in what will become a staple of Public Enemy here in WCW as we go to commercial.

We come back from break to Sting’s music playing, meaning we’re leading into…

Match #3: WCW World Heavyweight Championship Match – Sting vs “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (WCW World Champion) w/ Jimmy Hart

Flair tells us during his entrance that he’s been telling us for years…whether you like it or you don’t, you have to learn to love it!

We go to commercial break during Flair’s entrance and come back to a card advertising Clash of Champions on January 23rd which will feature the wedding of Col. Robert Parker and Sister Sherri.

Bischoff tells us that later tonight, Hulk Hogan will take on Meng.  Now I’m pissed.  This is a match between Sting and Ric Flair…for the WCW World Championship…the entire reason that every person in this company is here…and the Main Event is Hogan vs a random Dungeon of Doom member!  Not only is that disrespectful, that’s just stupid.  That shows us that in WCW-land, a random Hogan match is worth more than the championship.  Wow.

Anyway, enough anger, at least for now, because I’ve got Sting and Flair in the ring, and that’s never bad.  Kevin Sullivan mentions quite a few times in his podcast that he knew if he ever got stuck or wrote himself into a corner or didn’t have a show, he knew he could throw Flair and Sting into the mix together and he would get gold.

Just a little over 19 years from this show, Sting will show up on Monday Night Raw.  Something I never thought would happen.  Crazy!

This match is pretty much normal Sting/Flair fair.  That’s not to detract from it.  These two are magic together.  We go to commercial break right after Sting hits a big superplex and goes for a splash but Flair gets his knees up and Sting takes a gut full of them.

We come back from commercial to an ad for SuperBrawl on February 11th.    Sting goes for a Stinger Splash but Flair moves and Sting eats the turnbuckle.  Flair goes for a pin with his feet on the ropes, but doesn’t get it and gets an ear full from worst referee ever, Nick Patrick.  Flair pitches Sting outside where Jimmy Hart gets a kick to the gut in. Flair hits a chop off of an Irish whip, covers and is tossed off of Sting.  Another chop, but Sting retaliates with a clothesline.  Flair tries a whip to the corner, Sting reverses and grabs a sleeper, but Flair gets out of it with a jawbreaker.  Flair starts punching and chopping, but it’s time for Sting to stop caring about all that mess, firing back and reeling Flair.  Sting goes for a dropkick off of an Irish whip, but Flair grabs the rope and Sting falls hard.  Flair goes for the Figure 411596e but Sting rolls it into a small package for two.  Sting tries a back slide for two.  Sting tries a sunset flip and Flair fights it off, resulting in Flair’s tights being pulled down and his ass showing.  Mongo says he’s thankful we didn’t get a reverse angle shot of that and I’m inclined to agree, even if it is with Mongo.  Flair goes for something off the top, momentarily forgetting he’s Ric Flair.  Sting reminds him as he sends him crashing to the mat.  Sting’s fired up now, no-selling chops and hitting a gorilla press slam.  He backs Flair into the corner and out comes Lex Luger.  Luger’s arguing with Jimmy Hart, who is on the ring apron, and takes away his megaphone just as Sting goes for a Stinger Splash.  Sting gets a face full of megaphone, though, knocking him out.  Flair wraps on the Figure 4 and gets a pinfall victory out of it.

Winner: Ric Flair (still WCW World Heavyweight Champion)

Luger attacks Flair but out comes Hogan and Savage, chasing everyone off.  Hogan and Savage check in on Sting as Mean Gene comes in.  Bischoff asks how Sting is going to be able to trust Luger as they’re supposed to tag up at the Clash.

Hogan says that hopefully now the sense has been knocked into Sting.  He brings up Luger holding Sting down at Starrcade and then brings up that Sting could have been champion tonight if it wasn’t for Luger.  Savage says he told Sting day one that he couldn’t trust Luger and says that Sting is dying by it.  Sting asks what the hell they’re talking about.  He says “Luger did this?!”  Apparently Sting doesn’t know what happened so he’s going to go talk to Luger and find out from the horse’s mouth and he heads to the back.

Hogan says that at the Clash, they’ve got a secret weapon.  But tonight, though, Hogan and Savage have problems.  He says that he has been on a roll recently and tonight is now the fourth time that Savage has lost to Luger, but Savage gets a title shot for the belt that Hogan says has his name on it.  I haven’t paid attention to it to find out whether it still does, but you would imagine that as this is the second champion since Hogan lost it that it wouldn’t have his name on it any more.  Hogan whines a little more about not getting a title shot and Savage basically tells him to shove off, leaving Hogan to wonder why Savage is leaving him alone.

Hulk Hogan is the worst friend ever, but he’s got a point.  Savage doesn’t really deserve the title shot in any way other than getting a return match after losing it.  That’s the only way I can see this making sense.  He’s lost more than he’s won recently, especially to Luger.  Not that Hogan should be getting the shot, but damn, Luger probably should.  But, apparently they just give out title shots here in WCW willy-nilly, so maybe Hogan just has to wait his turn.

We go to commercial and come back to the Saturday Night rundown.  We’ll hear from Hogan.  We’ll get Harlem Heat vs Luger & Sting.  We’re also going to get an interview with Jim Belushi for some damn reason.  Seriously, apparently two back to back weeks of Mike Ditka interviews followed by Jim Belushi…that makes no damn sense.

With that, we head into our sham of a main event…

Match #4: Meng w/ Kevin Sullivan vs Hulk Hogan

Kevin Sullivan is wandering around ringside beating up production crew members but no one comments or mentions it until almost a minute into it happening.

Man, I’m going to try to be objective, but screw this match, man.  Hogan vs Meng should not main event a show where the title is up for grabs.  I’m going to lay money on it being a screwy finish with the DoD / Horsemen beating Hogan down too.

Meng starts off strong, kicking and punching and sending Hogan outside where Sullivan gets a shot in.

Heenan probably gives us the most real commentary ever when he’s talking about the title.  He says everyone wants it.  Flair has it, Savage wants it, Sting wants it and Hogan is unhappy that anyone else has it.  I know in storyline that Hogan should have never lost the belt and he got screwed in World War 3, but all he has done is bitch about not having the belt ever since then.  It’s worse than Bret Hart in 97 in my opinion, and we all turned on him for being a crybaby at that time.  Of course, the crowd isn’t really as into Hogan as they used to be, which is going to be what causes some major stirring of the pot as we get into July.

Raking eyes, like a "Real American"

Raking eyes, like a “Real American”

Meng is pretty much controlling the match, getting the better of Hogan, until he misses a diving headbutt.  Hogan picks up, firing off right hands and eye rakes.  Yep, the biggest babyface in the company rakes the eyes of his opponent and fires off closed fists…which are illegal in wrestling.  This weekend I actually had about a thirty minute conversation with “The Franchise” Shane Douglas and we talked about watching the babyface be the first one to fire off closed fists.  Straight rule breaking and it doesn’t make sense.  That being said, Hogan is the biggest heel through his entire career.  He always does heel things.  He causes DQs for his friends, he cheats…it’s terrible.

Meng hits Hogan with the spike but gets a two count.  Hogan hits the big boot and then ends up wrestling away the spike from Sullivan, who is trying to give it back to Meng.  Hogan hits Meng in the throat with the spike and gets the win.

Winner: Hulk Hogan

See!  Hogan won with a foreign object!  Granted, it was used on him first, so you could kind of argue retaliation, but if Hogan was the true babyface he should be, he would have found a way to overcome that without cheating.

Savage runs out to chase off Sullivan and he and Hogan seem to have made up as we go back to the announcers, who give us a quick rundown of the show and take us off the air.

—–

Ugh, this show.  Honestly, I didn’t hate it.  I’m just so angry about the placement of the title match.  They could have easily reversed the last two matches and nothing would have changed.  They could have went off the air with Hogan and Savage arguing if that was what they needed to get across and we still would have has a Main Event with the World Title instead of a throwaway Hogan vs Meng match that means nothing other than to further tell us that Hogan and the DoD are feuding.  They’ve been feuding for six months now!  They’ll feud for another few months before we’re finished with them!  Take pride in your championship and make it the focal point of your shows.  If I can main event without the title, what’s the damn reason for wanting the title?  Why does Hogan want it so much when he’s still the focus of the show without it?  Those are logic problems…and damned if they don’t still apply today…but that’s another story.

I’m liking the Pillman stuff going on.  Having Arn take him to the woodshed in front of everyone was a really cool dynamic because it showed that Anderson is trying to keep his ship running smoothly and isn’t going to deal with Pillman’s shenanigans.  I know in either February or March we’re going to get the match with Pillman and Sullivan that breaks the fourth wall, so I’m excited to see how we get there.

Well, folks, that wraps up another Kick Out At Nitro.  I’m almost caught up.  In real time, tomorrow is another episode of Nitro, which I am going to try to get watched and posted tomorrow night.  That’ll leave Clash of Champions on Friday, which may be a bit harder to catch up on, we’ll see.  My plan, though, is after this weekend to have us ready to go for the Nitro on 1/29.  Thanks for sticking with the write-ups and thanks for continuing on this journey with me.  Until next time!

Shane

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 2.4

WCW Nitro Ratings – 3.5

(Raw – 8, Nitro – 8) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 2)

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

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

 

A full point victory!  WCW for the win, ladies and gentlemen!

—–—

WWF Raw results from this week

Owen Hart (w/ Jim Cornette) defeated Marty Jannetty

Steve Austin (as The Ringmaster, w/ Ted Dibiase) defeated Matt Hardy (4:36)

The Smoking Gunns (c) defeated The Spiders to retain the WWF Tag Team Championship

The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) defeated Isaac Yankem DDS (8:30)

 

In-ring debut of Steve Austin!  Owen vs Janetty sounds pretty good.  The Gunns vs Headbangers match doesn’t interest me.  We did, however, get an Undertaker victory over Kane, which is something!

KoaNitro copyWelcome back everyone to a new week of Kick Out At Nitro.  I’m still working on getting everything back in order, but plans are still hopefully underway to get everything lined up again before the new year.  There is a January 1st Nitro, so I’m hoping that the first post of 2015 will happen with that Nitro.

This week, Nitro comes to us live this week from Salem, VA!!!!!  I was unaware that there was a Nitro in Salem!  I knew there was one in Roanoke in 1997, but damn, did not know this.  Always cool to see my hometown area represented!

We open with the announcers telling us about the new World Champion, Macho Man Randy Savage!  Bischoff tells us that there is a lot of controversy around this, though, from Hulk Hogan, alluding to the fact that Hogan was never eliminated from the match.  Apparently they’re still looking at video tape to find out what is going to go on with this.  Bischoff also tells us that Lex Luger and Sting will be teaming up tonight as well.  Mongo says that should be on PPV itself.  Tonight he and Pepe are in animal print.

Bischoff takes us back to last the PPV last night, replaying Hogan rejoining the red and yellow.  The funniest thing about this is that the babyfaces start marking out when Hogan takes off the bandana and shirt, but he’s wearing the yellow and red pants and boots, so it probably wasn’t that big of a revelation since he was standing there in his babyface colors.  Gotta figure either Sting or Savage looked over and went “Hmmmm, guess he’s gotta be going good again soon.”

Match #1: Return match for the WCW Television Championship – Johnny B Badd © w/ Diamond Doll vs Diamond Dallas Page

1Johnny has both the lady and his glitter gun so things are looking up in Johnny B Badd-land.  Kim looks way happier with Johnny than she did with DDP.  After JBB throws out a couple of Frisbees, he lets Kim shoot the glitter gun.

DDP comes out and is definitely in a bad mood.  He’s carrying a dozen roses as well.  DDP comes in and immediately offers the roses to Kimberly and begs forgiveness but he then sucker punches Johnny B Badd.  DDP takes it to JBB while Kimberly is looking distraught outside, looking from the ring to the flowers and back and forth.  Kim starts inspecting the flowers, though, and finds a length of chain hidden down between the flowers.  Kim is trying to figure out what to do with the chain while DDP continues to take it to Johnny in the ring.

DDP starts asking Kim for the chain but she throws it into the ring between his legs and it is grabbed by JBB.  Johnny wraps it around his fist and nails DDP with it for the win.

Winner: Johnny B Badd

JBB asks Kim what she’s doing and Kim plays it off, finishing with “You won!”  JBB doesn’t seem too happy about winning this way, despite the fact that he was the one who used the chain and got the win that way.  Can’t be getting upset about it now, Johnny.  Deed’s done.

We come back from commercial break and the announcers kick us over to Mean Gene who is joined with Kevin Sullivan and Jimmy Hart.  Sullivan says he always thought Hart was a smart man…he has a really easy question for him…why is Luger running around with Sting?  Last night Luger could have changed wrestling history if he’d have kept the arm hold on Savage for 10 more seconds.  Savage wouldn’t have won the title, there’d be no Hogan issue…either Luger or someone from the Dungeon of Doom would be champion.  Hart says that Luger and Sting are friends and they go back a long way just like Hart and Sullivan do.  He says it’s going to take a long time to chip away at this, but they’ve got a plan and they’ll do it.  With that, Gene kicks us off to commercial.

Match #2: Cutie Suzuki & Mayumi Ozaki vs Akira Hokuto & Bull Nakano w/ Sonny Onoo

Looks like we’re getting a return match from World War 3.  The announcers talk about the heels and how ugly they are, with Bischoff even saying that Hokuto is “unpretty in pink.”  Heenan admonishes him and says for him to wait until she takes her mask off as she’s very pretty and he’s actually right.  Hokuto isn’t a bad looking lady, truthfully.  Nice to know the rest of the announce team is shallow.

The heels start off strong.  Hokuto grabs Ozaki by the throat and climbs to the top rope, swinging her in a hanging method.  Nakano tags in and whips her across the ring by her hair in that way only Nakano can do.

2Ozaki tags in Suzuki and the babyfaces get the momentum back.  Suzuki tags Ozaki back in and the two stomp Nakano in the gut, then climb to the top rope and double stomp her as well.  Nakano tags in Hokuto, who power bombs Suzuki and takes momentum back.

Bischoff talks about the Japanese wrestlers and says he’s “has this fear” that we’ll start seeing more of a Japanese influence, referencing Heenan’s business deals with Sonny Onoo.  Don’t know why that would be worrisome, Bischoff…more 90s NJPW is never bad.  Bischoff quickly mentions that we’d find out more about the Japanese influence as it comes to Starrcade.  I’ve heard that there is going to be a big NJPW presence at Starrcade but I have never seen that PPV so I don’t know exactly what we have in store.

The heels keep control except for a quick move off the top rope by Hokuto the babyfaces and takes out Nakano.  They keep control, however, until Hokuto takes the win with a side brainbuster, Emerald Fusion type of move.  We’re told this is Kensuke Sasaki’s move as well and that Sting will be paying attention to it as he prepares for his match with Sasaki at Starrcade.

Winner: Akira Hokuto and Bull Nakano

We go to commercial with the “Up Next” graphic of Hugh Morris and Hulk Hogan.  Interestingly, Hogan is pictured in his black outfit, despite getting rid of it last night.

Back from commercial with a plug for Saturday Night.  We’re going to have Sting vs Kurasawa, Dean Malenko, American Males, and Hacksaw Jim Duggan vs VK Wallstreet.  6:05 Eastern on TBS!

Match #3: Hugh Morris vs Hulk Hogan

Bischoff says that this is the match that a lot of people have been talking about.  Um…no, no they haven’t.  This came out of nowhere.

Neither Kevin Sullivan nor Jimmy Hart accompany Morris to the ring.  Wonder what that’s about.

3Bischoff says that Hogan may not have the title around his waist, but in the hearts, minds and psyche he is and will always be the champ.  Great way to crap all over Savage’s title reign there, Eric.  Eric says that as far as the WCW Championship Committee, there is no Hogan/Savage controversy: Savage IS the WCW World Heavyweight Champion.  However, the controversy is between Hogan and Savage the individuals.  Later tonight they’ll review the footage from last night together.

Not gonna lie, this match sucks less than it should.  Morris and Hogan are taking it to each other pretty well.  One great spot near the beginning had Hogan sending Morris into the corner, Morris jumping to the second rope and turning back around with a clothesline.  Morris drags Hogan over and goes for the moonsault, only hitting a head-butt out of it…wonder if Hogan just didn’t want to take the move or if he really just overshot that much.  The not-moonsault wakes up Hogan, who goes through his whole Hulk Up, punches, Big Boot, Leg drop routine for the three.

Winner: Hulk Hogan

Up Next, Sting & Lex Luger vs Arn Anderson and Brian Pillman.

4Mean Gene is at the top of the entrance ramp and welcome out our New WCW World Heavyweight Champion, “Macho Man” Randy Savage.  Savage says he’s ecstatic and he’s about to go on a reign of terror and if it only happens for one day or forever in a day, that’s cool with him because he’s on top of the mountain and he’s ready to face everyone.  Gene brings up the Hogan controversy.  Savage says Hogan is a friend of his, if he has a problem then come settle it with him right now.  Hogan runs out before he even gets it out of his mouth.  Hogan refers to Savage with “brother friend.”  He says that two men didn’t go over the top rope last night and that if Savage looks at his title, he’ll see Hogan’s name on the plate.  Savage says he’s planning on getting that changed.  Hogan says roll the footage.  The footage rolls and right before Giant pulls Hogan under the bottom rope, the tape goes to static.  Hogan asks what’s up and Savage says a picture is worth 1,000 words before getting cut off by the Giant and chokeslammed on the concrete floor.  Giant takes Hogan to the ring and out comes Sting.  Hogan grabs a steel chair and hits the Giant in the back with it four times before he got him out of the ring.  As the camera focuses on The Giant on the floor, Bischoff says that Hogan elbowed the referee.  Hogan beats the crap out of the Giant, hitting him repeatedly with the chair down the entrance ramp until Sting finally takes the chair away from him and makes him focus on Savage, who is still down.

The announcers discuss what just happened and they speculate on why Sting stopped Hogan from beating down The Giant.  They wonder if there is a connection there with Lex Luger.  With that, they go to commercial.

Match #4: Arn Anderson and Brian Pillman vs Sting and Lex Luger

Lex Luger comes out well after Sting and to no entrance music, which is odd.  Lex’s entrance music doesn’t kick in until about ½ way down the entrance way.  The Horsemen start off strong, sending Sting into the ropes on an Irish whip where Pillman kicks him in the back of the head, sending him into a beautiful Arn Anderson Spinebuster.  They get just a few moments, though, before firing Sting up and Sting taking both of them out, following in a tandem of gorilla press slams from Sting and Luger.  The Horsemen bail from the ring at that point and Double A calls for a time out.

5Back in the ring, Sting tags out to Lex, who takes over.  He runs through the Horsemen, tags Sting back in, who hits Arn with a Stinger Splash and locks in the Scorpion Deathlock.  Pillman climbs the top rope and Lex runs over and shoves him off of the tope rope, but right into Sting and Arn, breaking up the Deathlock and putting Sting down.  Arn tags out to Pillman, who takes it to Sting.  The announcers keep saying that Sting is hurt now.  Pillman tags back out and they double team Sting.  Luger only appears to break it up after the referee has already done so.  Luger goes to the floor and is fighting Pillman, but Sting finally makes it to the corner and Lex Is not there.  By the time he arrives, Anderson pulls Sting away.  The Horsemen take Sting back to the corner and double team him again, but Lex makes the save this time.  This gives Sting enough advantage to roll Pillman up for the win.

Winners: Sting and Lex Luger

The moment Sting gets the win, out comes Flair, who jumps Luger.  The Horsemen (sans Benoit) start beating down the babyfaces, which brings out Hulk Hogan.  Hogan and Flair get into it, Hogan sending Flair to the ropes but Anderson pulls Flair out of the ring.  As the Horsemen clear out, Hogan grabs Luger and is ready to punch him but Sting calls him off, leading Sting and Hogan to talk it out in the ring about Luger.  They finally hash it out and hug.

Why hasn’t Hogan’s mustache grown back yet!?  It’s been two months!

We go to break and come back to the announcers.  Bischoff says that as of right now we don’t have any information on Randy Savage’s condition.  Tune in on Saturday Night and hopefully they’ll have it then.  Mongo pitches us the replay of World War 3.  Bischoff says he just got word that on Saturday Night we’ll get a special word about Starrcade and with that we go off the air.

—–

I wish that the first Nitro from near my old stomping grounds would have played out better, but alas…

Not to say that it was really bad, because it wasn’t.  It just wasn’t that great.  A pretty basic episode, unfortunately.  We got to see the next wrinkle in the Savage, Hogan stuff, I guess, but I really thought the “tape going out at the crucial moment” was pretty dumb.  Maybe Hogan and Savage can get together tomorrow and watch the replay of WW3 that the announcers kept plugging and they will be able to see the entire thing play out.

Overall, basic episode, but cool to see the Salem Civic Center on TV.

-Shane

 

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Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings –2.3

WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.5

(Raw – 5 , Nitro – 5 ) (Tie Weeks – 2)

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

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

 

All tied up!  Each company has won five weeks of the Monday Night War.  Very interested to see what we get next week.

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WWF Raw results from this week

Ahmed Johnson defeated Rad Radford (2:46)

Aja Kong & Tomoko Watanabe defeated Alundra Blayze & Kyoko Inoue

Hunter Hearst Helmsley defeated John Chrystal (2:21)

The Undertaker (w/ Paul Bearer) defeated Sir Mo (w/ Kama & Ted DiBiase)

 

Looks like WWF decided to get in on the Japanese Women’s tag team action!  Of course, I think we’re just a week or two from Alundra Blayze becoming Madusa, so she’s about to decide that WCW is the better place to be.  More squash matches, though, which is sad.  WWF seems to have 1-2 jobber matches a week where WCW really doesn’t have any.  I’ve really yet to see a match that wasn’t a name vs a name.  Sure, we might get Hogan vs Hugh Morris, like we did this week, but that was still a decent match and Morris took it to Hogan pretty well.  I’m sure it was a more even fight than HHH vs John Crystal.  Taker vs Mo sounds dreadful, though…

KoaNitro copyHello ladies and gentlemen!  We’re one night removed from WCW Halloween Havoc 1995 and we’re heading into the stretch leading us to the first ever World War 3 coming up at the end of November.  WCW Monday Nitro comes to us tonight from Dayton, OH, and we’re back to our normal Nitro announce team of Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan and Steve “Mongo” McMichael.  We kick off with Bischoff telling us that the footage from last night is arriving later in the night.  I’m not sure why the production truck wasn’t able to bring something shot on video just last night…in that same production truck…along with them.  Hell, if someone had watched it on PPV and video taped it, they could have the footage quicker than it’s going to show up at this major television show.  Seriously, just one of those little things they do to build suspense that made no sense to me.  They could have just as easily said that they would show it to us later and not had to build up this whole “it hasn’t arrived yet” thing.  Bobby Heenan said that he hasn’t been to sleep yet, which is nuts.  Maybe he was up all night celebrating Hogan getting his ass whipped.  We also see Pepe dressed up as a witch bat…

We get some information that Randy Savage is out tonight and therefore won’t be able to wrestle Craig Pittman.  Instead, Eddie Guerrero will be taking his place, which leads us to…

Match #1: Sgt. Craig “Pitbull” Pittman vs Eddie Guerrero

Pittman had to wrestle Mr. Wallstreet to get a shot at this match, we find out.  Not sure why.  Both men have wrestled on Nitro before, so why is that a big prize to wrestle for?

Eddie is in his black tights, so I’m happy.  I just like them way more than the white ones.

October_30,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00002This match was honestly way better than I thought it had any reason to be.  Pittman took it to Eddie, making him work a ground game instead of letting him fly.  Pittman took Eddie down quite a few times pretty handily but Eddie returns the favor with a pretty nice slam.  Off of an Eddie Guerrero two count Eric tells us that Eddie almost got the upset victory there.  How sad is that crap?  Eddie Guerrero, one of the best wrestlers ever, almost got an upset victory over Craig Pittman.  Wow.

We get a pitch for World War 3 and Bobby Heenan asks if Bill and Hillary know about WW3.  Bischoff says that the rumor is that they watched Halloween Havoc, so he’s pretty sure they do.  Really…?

Pittman is controlling this match and working on Eddie’s arm so that he can set up for the Code Red.  Pittman is nailing some great throws and suplexes here.  Eddie gets a quick roll up and almost gets three, but Pittman answers with another suplex as Bischoff lets us know that they just got word that the footage is on its way.  So…nothing new?  Pittman Irish whips Eddie, who quickly rolls him up for the win.

Winner: Eddie Guerrero

We go to commercial with a graphic saying that we have Scott Norton vs The Shark up next.

We come back to a replay of the 9/11 Nitro match between Norton and Randy Savage.  We see how The Shark’s interference cost Norton the match.  We then get a replay from last week on Nitro when the two got in each other’s faces backstage, setting up our match tonight.  We also get info from Bischoff telling us that during the break, Bobby Heenan left the announce booth.

October_30,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00006Match #2: Scott Norton vs The Shark

Wow, this is Norton’s first match on Nitro since that Savage match.  The two lock up “like two mooses in rutting season.”  We’ve got a full on hoss fight on our hands here as the two basically beat each other around the ring.  Not much technical wrestling going on here, that’s for sure.  Norton hits a nice flying shoulder block off of the top rope and a body slam, leading us to a double clothesline spot that looked pretty rough.

We cut to where Bobby Heenan has been sitting all this time.  He’s eating sushi with…wait for it…Sonny Onoo!  Called that crap, didn’t I?!

Norton and Shark brawl to the floor and continue to brawl at the ringside area, causing the referee to call for the bell due to count out.  They continue to brawl up the ramp, taking a moment to slam each other’s heads into the giant steel WCW letters and then brawl backstage.

Winner:  Double count out

October_30,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00008We get a tight shot on Bobby and Sonny and we can overhear Bobby basically running down WCW’s programming schedule, then accepting an envelope from Onoo.

We go to commercial break and come back to Tony Schiavone in the ring.  If I’m not mistaken, this is his first Nitro appearance.  He shows us pics from the PPV last night, courtesy of WCW Magazine.  I guess the film guy got there quicker than the video guy.  He runs down the Anderson/Pillman vs Sting/Flair match from last night and then welcomes out the Horsemen.  There’s a funny moment as Ric Flair grabs one of those foam Hulk Hogan signs from a fan and carries it into the ring.  I always kind of feel bad for the people who get their crap stolen.  Those foam Hogans definitely cost money.  Same thing with that guy who got his hat stolen a few weeks back by Disco Inferno.  Terrible thieving wrestlers.  Pillman tells us that last night brought us one step closer to the reformation of the Horsemen.  Anderson tells us that for two years people have asked him to bring back the Horsemen.  Be careful what you wish for…because now you have it.  Seriously…I love Arn Anderson, but is this the only promo he cuts from 1995 onwards?  He cuts this same promo in September of 1998 as well.  Flair tells us that whether we like it or don’t like it, we need to learn to love it because they’re the best thing going today.  He says Sting is like the women they deal with.  THey tell him what he wants to hear and then they do what they want to do.  He challenges Sting next week.

October_30,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00010We go to break finding out we have Sabu vs Disco Inferno up next.  Coming up on Saturday Night we have Alex Wright vs Chris Benoit, Ric Flair and Arn Anderson vs Renegade and Cobra, and Harlem Heat, who are now the WCW Tag Team Champions, apparently, vs The Blue Bloods (Steven Regal & Bobby Eaton).  It looks like Harlem Heat won the tag belts back on the Saturday Night episode that aired on 10/28, according to Wikipedia.

We come back from commercial to:

Match #3: Sabu vs Disco Inferno

Bischoff gives us another useless footage update.  We get it, Bisch…just tell us when the damn tape arrives and quit giving us non-updates.

We are also told during the wrestler entrances that next Monday’s Nitro will be fan interactive.  The fans will get to control which matches happen.  So, Taboo Tuesday or Cyber Sunday almost ten years early?  Bischoff runs down two lists of wrestlers, from blue and red locker rooms, and tells us we’ll get to choose which wrestlers face each other.

The match starts out with Disco dancing and Sabu unceremoniously punching him in the mouth for it.

Heenan’s back, so they ask him about the meeting.  Heenan says it’s just a friend in town and he’s showing a little hospitality.  Nothing they need to worry themselves over.

Disco is showing a bit of a mean streak in this match as he grabs Sabu’s hair and whips him across the ring a few times.  It’s not Bull Nakano levels, though.  Man, that should start happening soon.  After years of garbage WWE Divas matches, some Madusa vs Bull Nakano matches sound pretty good.  Maybe some Akira Hokuto thrown in there as well.

Disco is pretty much running this match, which is odd on both the standpoints of it being a Disco Inferno match and he usually never runs it as well as Sabu not just destroying his opponent.  Disco’s Achilles heel, though, is that after ever little bit of offense, he dances.  It costs him momentum.  I do like that they’re keeping that little bit of character with him.  He does well through the match but his dancing hubris always seems to cost him.  The crowd starts getting behind Sabu, though, and chanting his name.  Dancing costs Disco hitting a splash in the corner.  The recoil from hitting the corner sends Disco to the mat where he’s hit with Sabu’s flipping leg drop.

Winner: Sabu

Sabu’s normal post match beat down starts at this point.  Sabu hits a flip to the outside, taking Disco out, but after getting up all Disco is really worried about is his hair.  Sabu has taken the time to go to the end of the ramp and retrieve a table, which he hits Disco with and then puts him up on.  He goes for the flipping dive over the top rope but Disco moves and Sabu takes the table back first and it doesn’t break.  Looked like a pretty rough landing.  Disco high tails it out of the ringside area as Sabu flips out and starts throwing stuff, starting with the ring steps.

We go to commercial break again and come back to…

Match #4: Lex Luger and Meng (w/ Jimmy Hart and Kevin Sullivan) vs The American Males

We get a quick update that the footage is finally here.  Thank Heavens!

The Males are getting full babyface cheers.  I know that Meng and Luger are pretty hated right now, but last time we saw the Males I didn’t think that they were really that over.  Heenan says that Luger and Meng are full-time wrestlers and that the Males have another day job where they work at the mall and spray cologne on people.  That cracked me up.

Pretty much right as the match starts, we go to commercial.  Only one interruption tonight, though, which is good.  Not like that one Nitro where they went to commercial in every match!  Does a WCW match ever end on commercial break?  It almost seems like I remember that happening once.October_30,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00017We come back to the Males controlling Luger, surprisingly.  Granted, until Saturday the Males were Tag Team Champions, but still, this is Lex Luger we’re talking about.  And a newly heel Luger at that!  I wouldn’t imagine the American Males would be leading the match.  Even Mongo is shocked that this is happening.  He says that they’re kicking the “shag” out of Luger and Bischoff almost has a heart attack at the word that Mongo could have used.  Heenan applies a little logic to it saying that the Males are a full-time tag team whereas Luger and Meng have only been together since last night.  Both Bischoff and Mongo comment that they’ve been together way longer than last night, hinting that the Luger/Dungeon of Doom alliance has been going on a good while.  Even if that is the case, one would have to assume that the connection has been between Luger and Sullivan and that Meng had no part of it, especially since Meng seemed awfully pissed and shocked last night when Sullivan cost him that match.  Luger takes a terrible looking backdrop that the announcers put over like a million bucks, with it eliciting a “nice!” from Bischoff twice and a “very nice” from Heenan.  Meng and Luger get an opportunity and almost take Scotty Rigg’s head off and regain control of the match.

When does the Barbarian show up?  I liked the Faces of Fear.

Meng’s hair is really fluffy today.  Not that I would ever tell him that.  I’m legit scared of Meng.

Bischoff says that Hulk Hogan hasn’t spoken to anyone since last night.  Well, I guess he really doesn’t have any friends left at this point, since Savage is out and Jimmy Hart turned on him.

Why hasn’t Bobby Heenan told us what happened to the Giant last night between his fall off of the Cobo Arena and him coming out to for the World Championship match?  He promised!

Riggs gets the hot tag to Bagwell who comes in and cleans Luger’s clock with a few clotheslines.  Jimmy Hart distracts the referee during some American Males double-teaming, which is only lightly less homoerotic than it sounds, allowing Meng time to come in and superkick the crap out of everyone.  Torture Rack to Bagwell for the win.

Winners: Meng and Lex Luger

We head to commercial with promises of the footage from last night when we return.

We come back and head to our announce booth where Bobby Heenan is still sipping champagne from his earlier sushi dinner with Sonny Onoo.  Man, that makes me really want sushi right now.  Haven’t had any in a while!  Mongo decides to trick ‘r treat for Pepe, holding out his bag, into which Eric deposits the fabled full Snickers bar.  He says it’s because they’re a sponsor, but I think it’s because Eric has the money on the block and is handing out the good candy.  I know at one point Jimmy Yang went to Bischoff’s house dressed as Sting and has a cool pic of him ready to hit him with the Scorpion Death Drop…I remember seeing that in WCW Magazine.  Anyway, Mongo offers the bag to Heenan, who no-sells it, and gets covered in silly string as a result.  I love how they play up the fact that Heenan hates Mongo.  That being said, I wonder how much “playing” is involved.

We finally get our damn footage from last night, showing us everything that happened from the Hogan leg drop on.  Since I can’t replay the footage, I’ll replay yesterday’s post so you can see what happened.  See…I can play this game too…but I didn’t spend all post baiting you and telling you that “I’m about to copy and paste from last night, folks!”

19951029_gianthogancroppedHogan Hulks up again, big boot, hits the leg drop and suddenly the ref hits the floor.  Hogan has the match won, but the ref is out.  Hogan and Jimmy Hart talk a bit; Hogan lifts the ref up and hands him to Hart to get him ready to make the count.  Hogan turns his back; Hart shoves the ref and nails Hogan with the WCW Championship.  Hogan no-sells it, turns on Hart and goes to beat him when the Giant gets up and we’re back to the bear hug.

What was funny is that during the whole Hogan/Hart/ref gimmick, The Giant would randomly look up and around, and then drop his head down.  I don’t know if this was inexperience on The Giant’s part, or if he was playing possum knowing what was coming.  It just cracked me up.

Kevin Sullivan attacks at this point, making Jimmy Hart motion to the entrance, presumably for the rest of the Dungeon of Doom.  What he gets, however, is Luger and Savage.  They hit the ring and Savage goes to help Hogan, which brings out the Yeti.  As soon as the Yeti hits the ring, though, Luger turns on Savage.  The Yeti joins the Giant in bear hugging Hogan, but it looks like the most useless, stupidest thing ever.  The Giant has a legit bear hug, but the Yeti, who is a good four or five inches taller than The Giant, just puts his arms around the two of them and looks to apply no pressure.  Luger puts Hogan in the Torture Rack while the Giant and Yeti go to hug on Randy Savage for a while.  Luger drops Hogan and then racks Savage for good measure.

October_30,_1995_Monday_Nitro.00021We come out of the replay to Tony Schiavone back in the ring with Lex, The Giant, Sullivan and Jimmy Hart.  I guess Mene Gene had the night off because he’s usually the one involved in all of these segments. The Giant still has the WCW World Heavyweight Championship belt around his waist, despite not winning the title legit last night.  Tony tells him that he’s not the champ and he asks Jimmy Hart about last night.  Jimmy tells us that maybe he’ll put everything in the book he’s writing…or maybe he’ll tell us next week on Monday Nitro.  He says that Kevin Sullivan told Hogan that there was evil in his house…and he was talking about Hart!  He then tells us that he was the only manager Kevin Sullivan has ever had.  That was his past and the Giant and Lex Luger are his future.  So, it seems instead of waiting for his book or for next week, he’ll just tell us now.  Lex cuts generic wrestling promo #255 and I honestly remember nothing from it.  Giant says he’ll defend the title next week on Nitro.  Tony then closes out the show pitching next week’s show from Jacksonville, FL.

——

The thing that struck me most about this show is something that I think WWE could learn from.  Not just this show, but Nitro in general over the last few weeks.  Think of WCW’s main stars at this point.  Flair, Sting, Luger, Hogan, Savage…Hogan and Sting definitely tying for the John Cena spot…and they’re not on the show at all.  This show didn’t feature a match from any of the top five or six stars.  We got two very quick interview segments from Luger and Flair…both of them being multiple man interview spots…and that’s it.  And the show didn’t really suffer for it.  We got some pretty good matches, we moved some story along and we didn’t need the major guys along for the ride.  Now, I know that Saturday Night is still up there as a main show for them.  At two hours and as their longest running show, Saturday Night could still be considered their top show if you really wanted to argue it, so maybe that’s why we don’t always get the main stars here.  Thing is, it makes the main stars more of an attraction when they do show up.  Sure, I missed Sting, but it’ll make it more exciting when he shows up next week.  Of course, Nitro at this point is still only an hour, so that’s why they can get away with it.  I don’t think that would fly on a two hour show.

I’m interested to see where the World Title picture goes.  Of course, I’m saying that knowing full well where it goes, but it’ll be cool to be along for the ride.

This takes us out of October and through our second full month of Nitro and WCW PPV recollection.  I’m having a pretty good time, honestly.  I don’t watch Raw anymore.  Truthfully, WCW is the only wrestling I really watch right now, outside of catching the PPVs on the Network.  I’ve kind of come full circle I guess, as at this time in real time, I didn’t watch WWF, only WCW.  At least this time I’m getting to watch the PPVs.  I didn’t get to order a PPV until Road Wild 1996, so this stuff is all new to me.  I’ve seen pretty much all of these Nitros back during original airing, but the PPVs are all brand new stuff, so that’s super exciting.  How is everyone out there enjoying the journey so far?  Feel free to leave comments and let me know how I’m doing.

Until next week!

-Shane

—–

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 2.1

WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.3

(Raw 3, Nitro 3) (Tie Weeks – 2)

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

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

Nitro’s first winning streak!  Two weeks in a row!

—–

WWF Raw results from this week

Goldust defeated Savio Vega (5:46)

Marty Jannetty defeated Joe Dorgan (2:44)

The Smoking Gunns (Bart Gunn & Billy Gunn) (c) defeated John Rechner & Phil Apollo to retain the WWF Tag Team Championship (2:51)

Razor Ramon (c) defeated Owen Hart (w/ Jim Cornette) by disqualification to retain the WWF Intercontinental Championship (10:16)

Razor and Owen looks like a good match, especially at 10 minutes.  Savio and Goldust doesn’t sound bad either.  Janetty and the Smoking Gunns in squash matches sounds like garbage, though.  That’s one thing I can say for Nitro up to this point…no real squash matches.  They’ll have quick matches, but no jobbers that I’ve seen thus far.  Definitely makes for a better show in my opinion.