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WCW Great American Bash - July 14, 1991
by Scrooge McSuck
- I don't think we need much of an introduction for this one. For those unfamiliar or who were never in touch with World Championship Wrestling, one of their more famous blunders came during the Spring of 1991. Ric Flair, reigning World Champion, and Jim Herd, WCW President and former manager of a Pizza Hut, were at odds over Flair's direction and place in the company. Things went south fast and Flair was asked to leave... only problem was, not only was he the Champion, but he had financial claims on the belt, somewhere in the thousands, depending on who you ask. Ric Flair's solution was take the belt with him, leaving the company without a belt, with short notice before their second biggest show of the year. It would be another month before Flair showed up on WWF programming, with the big gold belt in hand. I forgot to mention, despite the fall-out, Flair was still heavily advertised to face Lex Luger in the Main Events, with the change to the card onlt happening a few weeks before the PPV, back in the day when there was months between PPV's. With that out of the way, let's take you to the 1991 Great American Bash!
- Coming to you live, from the Baltimore Arena in, you guessed it, Baltimore, MD. We open the show with a self-POV arrival to the arena, with a bunch of unenthusiastic people hanging around, and recieving the tickets without paying for them. I wouldn't be surprised if this crowd was papered, legitimately. I seem to recall that WrestleWar that same year being held in an arena that looked about 3/4 empty, so it's possible.
"Beautiful" Bobby Eaton & "Rapmaster" P.N. News vs. "Stunning" Steve Austin (TV Champion) & "The Computerized Man of the 90's" Terrence Taylor (w/ Lady Blossom):
Two ways to win here, either by knocking your opponents off the scaffold or capturing the other teams flag... wait, what? When the hell was that an option in a Scaffold Match!? You noticed that Bobby Eaton is always involved in these matches, too? Man must've been the only one with enough balls to keep doing it, I guess. Who opens a show with a gimmick match with as little action as possible, anyway? You want the crowd HOT, not sitting in anticipation for something to happen! It's as if they tanked this show from the start, but we all know they didn't, it's just the typical bass-ackwards WCW. Steve Austin had recently won the TV Title from Bobby Eaton... I only know that cause it was on a Steve Austin DVD, and he was really new at this point. Could you imagine if P.N. News fell off the damn thing? The heels take their sweet time climbing to the top... understandable. The crowd is already flat. So are they honoring tags? Eaton creeps along one path, and Austin on the other. EXCITING! Jim Ross saying "unique" means "undefinably stupid." Austin with some punches, then Eaton rams his face into the floor. Austin teases falling off, but hangs on, with a little help from Taylor and Eaton. More standing around, as we are told maybe News is being a goaltender for the flag. So that's where they got the idea for DonkeyLips on Salute Your Shorts... there's a reference no one will get. News and Taylor feel each other out, and News nearly kills him in the process. News smothers Taylor, then gets pulled into the heels edge of the scaffold. News pounds on Austin as the crowd chants "Bobby." More crawling and very weak, protective brawling happens. Everyone huddles up on one side again, and Eaton casually grabs the flag, nails the heels with it, and carries it to his side for victory at around 5:30. Afterwards, Austin gains revenge by blinding his opponents with hair spray. That was the worst opening match in the history of PPV, and that's all else I'm going to say about this one.
- Eric Bischoff, back when he was just an annoying broadcaster, gets words from Paul E. Dangerously, back when he was an annoying manager, and a bored looking Arn Anderson, regarding their match against Rick Steiner and Missy Hyatt later tonight. Nothing great, nothing bad, just hyping the match.
The Z-Man (w/ Random Girls) vs. The Diamond Stud (w/ Diamond Dallas Page):
The Stud is would jump ship to the WWF a year later and be rebranded as Razor Ramon, probably because Vince McMahon finally watched Scarface for the first time, since he's always about a decade behind with the times. Studd looks the same and still does the toothpick toss, he just doesn't have a crappy "Cuban" accent. What is with Zenk's entourage? Was this the left-over afternoon squad from the local strip club, or something? The Z-Man might be one of the worst names ever, mostly because it sounds like a dirty joke, all he needed was a valet named Swallow. Zenk with a diving clothesline into the ring to start. Whip to the corner, and Zenk with another clothesline. Zenk with a headlock, but he spills out of the ring, as DDP pulls the rope down on him. Stud follows him out, and whips him into the security rail, then comes off the apron with an axehandle. Back in the ring, and it's a slugfest, won by the D.S. Stud rams Zenk to the buckle, then chokes him across the middle rope. Irish whip, and Zenk comes off the ropes with a cross body for a two count. Stud with a series of knees to the midsection, followed by blows in the corner. Zenk returns the favor, but gets whipped hard to the buckle. Abdominal stretch, and yes, the Stud uses the ropes for leverage. The highlight of this spot is a fan yelling at DDP and calling him an asshole. Diamond Stud maintains control, but it seems every spot is transitioned with a lame slugfest. Stud with a chokeslam to the only pop of the match, so far. Aren't you the heel? Z-Man surprises the Stud with a pinning combination, but thats gets two. Stud gets up first and takes his head off with a clothesline. Zenk goes for a sunset flip, but Stud blocks. Zenk ducks a clothesline and connects with a reverse crescent kick. The action spills outside, again, and Zenk rams the Stud into various things. Zenk to the top rope, and he connects with a missile dropkick for a two count. DDP with a cheap shot, allowing the Stud time to recover and take Zenk down with a bridging back suplex for a three count at 6:58. That felt a lot longer than what it says. No flow, repetetive transitions, and overall a poorly structured match. This belonged on the Power Hour, not a PPV.
Ron Simmons vs. Oz (w/ The Great Wizard):
Sweet Jesus, there's not enough time to describe how stupid this idea was. Oz is a green Kevin Nash (both literally and figuratively, his color scheme is ALL green), who's wearing a goofy mask and is honest to God ripping off the Wizard of Oz (thank you, Ted Turner). His entrance includes a backdrop of a typical 16th century castle... okay, so it's not like the great castle of Emerald City, but that's the least of the problems. Sadly, we don't see the lead-in to his debut, which included people acting out roles of characters from the Wizard of Oz before his big arrival came. His manager is Kevin Sullivan under an even worse mask. Naturally, the gimmick flopped. Jim Ross gets to soil his undies talking about Simmons' college football career after having to put over Oz. Simmons had recently split away from the Tag Team of Doom, and is fresh into a singles push that eventually lead to his winning the World Title.
Lockup into the ropes, and Oz gives a clean break. Lockup into the corner again, and another (mostly) clean break. Oz grabs a side headlock, but Simmons powers out to escape. They hit the ropes for a shoulder block spot, then do it again. One more time, and this time Oz boots Simmons in the face. Jim Ross references Married with Children as Oz works the shoulder tackle. Simmons with a drop toe hold, but Oz goes down in slow motion it seems. Oz hammers away with rights, as some jerk screams "Boring!" over and over. Simmons knees Oz coming, then clotheslines him three times, finally knocking him over the top rope. The crowd probably popped for Oz to finally get over the top rope on a third attempt. Back inside, and Oz wants a test of strength, because he's REALLY tall. Oz boots Simmons down to gain the upperhand. Who knew that from 1989-1993, Kevin Nash's most successful character would be Super Shredder, and even he got jobbed out. Simmons counters with an overhead slam, but misses a dropkick. Oz comes off the ropes with a clothesline... then walks around a while, before clubbing Simmons weakly across the back. UGLY running knee from Oz, who looks like he should be doing spots for that Pro Wrestling Exposed show. Oz with a sidewalk slam for a two count, then dumps Simmons outside, where the Wizard gets a cheap shot... is the Wizard wearing denim pants with his robe? Simmons sunset flips into the ring, but Oz blocks. You know it's a Kevin Nash match, as he slaps on a bearhug. Simmons comes back with a dropkick, then clips the knee on Oz, not one, but twice. Simmons with a diving shoulder for the three count at 7:56. Not the worst match ever, but this one was another in the list of "pretty bad", with no structure and felt more like a weekend syndicated show. So much for Oz's big push.
- It's time for this week's WCW Top Ten! I can't believe something like this was done on their shows on a weekly basis. It sounds like a cute idea at first, but then you realize it really is a pointless gimmick to make things look like a legitimate sport. And it's nice for them to waste a few precious minutes on a PPV for it. So, without further delay, here's YOUR Top 10 List, for the week of July 14th....
- 10. Johnny B. Badd
- 9. Ron Simmons
- 8. The Diamond Studd
- 7. El Gigante
- 6. Arn Anderson
- 5. Beautiful Bobby Eaton
- 4. Stunning Steve Austin
- 3. Sting
- 2. Barry Windham
- 1. Lex Luger
- World Champion: Title Vacant
Robert Gibson vs. Richard Morton (w/ Alexandra York):
I'm not looking forward to this. Morton turned heel to join the wonderful stable known as the York Foundation, headed by the EVIL Alexandra York (best known as Terri Runnels, a.k.a Marlena, in the WWF), so it's time for the Rock 'n' Roll Express to explode! I didn't realize it, but it wasn't long after that their clones, the Rockers split up too, but at least they had good matches together following the split. Here... let's just say it's not pretty, and Morton is trying to get over as a heel still wearing his RnR Express tights. Both guys were well past their primes at this point, and neither was known for their work in singles matches. York has an over-sized calculator simulating a "lap top." Wow, what a lame prop. They brawl on the ramp to start, as sounds of cats screeching plays.
Into the ring, and Morton bails for a breather... already. Morton comes in the ring and bails again. Gibson slingshots him back into the ring, then plants Morton with a slam, who bails once more. Lockup into the corner, and Morton bails, AGAIN! What is this crap?! Lockup, and Gibson with rights. Morton rakes the eyes and rams Gibson into the turnbuckle. Morton heads out again, and rams the previously injured knee into the ring post. Gibson fights back and puts Morton down with a knee lift, but Gibson clips the bad knee and stomps away. Morton tears away the tights and works the leg some more. Gibson counters a toe hold with a small package for a two count. Morton goes back to the toe hold as I try my damndest to not fall asleep. Weak "Morton sucks" chant, but I'd prefer "this match sucks" to be chanted. Gibson with a surprise sunset flip for a two count, and it's back to the knee for Morton. He slaps on a Figure-Four, but Gibson is too tough! I'm so bored, I'm checking my Facebook page, and I come back and they're still working the damn spot. Gibson finally turns the preasure over, but I never understood how that worked, and why the original applicator doesn't just release... and then TONY SCHIAVONE describes how it works, to make me feel really stupid. Morton rams the knee into the canvas a few times, then plays to the crowd, but no one cares. Gibson mounts another comeback, but Morton kicks the leg from under his leg. Morton with an elbow, then grapevines the leg. Gibson fights free, and rams Morton into the brace. Morton quickly kicks Gibson down, because that's all this match is: kick leg a few times, slap on a rest-hold involving leg, Gibson fights to his feet, repeat. Jim Ross claims "this isn't the match he expected" which translates to "we apologize, they're going for something they can't accomplish, just bare with us." See also: Matt vs. Jeff Hardy, Vengeance 2001. Gibson with the DDT out of nowhere, and the crowd finally pops for something. Gibson with a back drop, and he goes down as well. Gibson attempts a dropkick, but Morton sidesteps it. Morton snaps the leg over and continues to work the knee. Morton with an inverted atomic drop, and he heads to the top rope. Gibson blocks and slams Morton off. Gibson with an enziguri, complete with over-sell. Morton crawls out of the ring, onto the ramp. Gibson follows, and they slug it out. They both go for dropkicks, and miss. Alexandra York runs around the ring, enters it, then exits it, distracting the referee. Morton with the "computer", and nails Gibson across the back with it, and that gets three at 17:23. Twenty minutes for that crap? When you're both known for your "fast pace, high-flying" matches, WHY GO WITH A MAT BASED MATCH that no one anticipated or wanted to see? When the commentators call attention to it, you know something's bad. I don't know if this match lead a bunch of rematches, but let's hope, that if they did, they weren't as bad as this.
- Eric Bischoff is backstage with the Young Pistols and Dustin Rhodes, who are scheduled to face the Fabulous Freebirds in an Elimination Tag Team Match. Dustin Rhodes sounds like a less charismatic version of his father, and he's fairly new to the game at this point. I don't think he'd been wrestling for much more than two years, at this point.
Six-Man Tag Team Elimination Match:
Dustin Rhodes & The Young Pistols vs. The Fabulous Freebirds & Badstreet (6-Man & U.S. Tag Team Champions) (w/ Big Daddy Dink):
The Pistols are a lame "cowboy" gimmick featuring Tracy Smothers and Steve Armstrong. Think of them as the cheesy predecesor to the Smoking Gunns. Badstreet is Brad Armstrong, in yet another failed gimmick, but at least he got to wear a mask here. Dink is Oliver Humperdink, acting as the Freebird "road agent." You know there's too many tag titles when one team has two of them, but only one of those championships is represented in a physical form. The fact the 6-Man belts were only created to give to the Road Warriors so they never had the World Tag Titles is enough to say these belts are fucking worthless, especially by 1991 standards. Rhodes and Hayes start, and I think I hear chants of "We Want Flair." They exchange struts and moonwalks, but I give the win to Hayes. Hayes hammers away and sends Rhodes to the corner. Whip is reversed, and Rhodes with slams and elbows to both Freebirds. Lockup, and Rhodes with a headlock, but Garvin knees him from the apron. Badstreet clotheslines the Pistols off the apron as Rhodes gets worked over. He fights off both Freebirds, and the Pistols come off the top rope with shoulder tackles. We get another breather ouside the ring from the Freebirds and Company. Garvin tags in and wants some of the Pistols. Smothers tags in, and we get some stalling from Garvin. What is the point of this nonsense? Lockup, and Garvin with knees to the midsection. Whip to the corner is reversed, and Smothers with a back drop, followed by a dropkick. Smothers misses a second attempt, but makes a blind tag to Armstrong, who comes off the top... eventually, with a clothesline to Badstreet. That was a horribly put together and practically blown spot. Armstrong with a wristlock on Hayes, and Smothers comes in to slap on a headlock. Garvin with the blind tag, and a criss-cross leads to Badstreet pulling the top rope down, then Dink taking Smothers out with a clothesline. Badstreet with a slam and some trash talking, while the Freebirds distract the referee. Back inside, and Hayes pounds away. Smothers hops on the apron to avoid a charge, and gets punched off for his troubles. Garvin takes his turn at the spot, while Badstreet plays the role of annoying bastard outside the ring. Back inside, Garvin with a slam followed by a knee drop. Irish whip, and he rams a knee into the midsection. Badstreet tags in and drops Smothers with a clothesline.
Hayes tags back in and slaps on a sleeper hold ("good night!"). If I were to describe this show as a wrestling move, it would definitely be a sleeper hold. We pan the crowd, and EVERYONE is sitting on their hands right now. Whip to the corner is reversed, and Smothers with mounted punches. Hayes ducks a clothesline and bitch punches Smothers to a pop. Garvin in, taking Smothers over with a snapmare, and applying his own sleeper. I'm so bored, I looked at Hayes trunks, and for a second I thought they said "Fantasia", but it's probably "Badstreet USA" and my eyes are playing tricks. Badstreet with a swinging neck breaker for a two count. Smothers surprises him with a sunset flip for a two count. Hayes tags in and works him over in the corner. No wait, they DO say Fantasia... what? Hayes goes for a DDT, but Smothers counters. Armstrong tags in to no reaction and nails people with dropkicks. Everyone is in the ring, and the Pistols double team Hayes. More chaos until Hayes Armstrong with a clothesline, then plants him, along with Badstreet, with a DDT for the three count at 13:58 to a nice pop. Hayes then back drops Smothers over the top rope, and gets Disqualified for it at 14:07?! What the HELL!? Garvin takes Smothers down, and Badstreet tags in, planting him with a slam. Badstreet to the top and he connects with a double axehandle. The only guy over in the match is gone, and it shows. Smothers makes the hot tag, but the referee missed it, of course. Double DDT to Smothers, and Garvin covers for three at 15:25. Dustin jumps in with a clothesline on Garvin for a three count at 15:32. So they go the WHOLE match without an elimination, then do them rapid fire?! Badstreet with a boot to the face, followed by a double axehandle. Badstreet with a snapmare, followed by an elbow for a two count. Badstreet with a slam, but he gets caught coming off the top. Rhodes connects with a lariat, but Dink distracts the referee from counting. Whip to the corner is reversed, and Rhodes with the bulldog for the three count at 17:08 to become the Survivor of the match. The second half-picked up, making it the most watchable match on the card, so far, but that's like saying "Bob Holly vs. the Roadie from King of the Ring '95 was the best match on the card."
The Yellow Dog (w/ Man's Best Friend) vs. Johnny B. Badd (w/ Theodore R. Long):
Yellow Dog is announced as being from "The Kennel Club", which might be the worst hometown in the history of Pro Wrestling. Brian Pillman is doing the whole "Midnight Rider" thing, losing a "Loser Leaves WCW" Match to Barry Windham, then started doing this, which is a nod to the past as Windham at one point did the exact same thing as the Yellow Dog. Johnny B. Badd had only debuted a few months earlier, and the resemblance to Little Richard is uncanny... scary, even. The scariest part is that this gimmick was the highlight of Marc Mero's career. "I'm so pretty, I should've been born a little girl" might be the greatest catchphrase never to grace a t-shirt. Jim Ross actually mentions Badd's boxing career, including a victory of Razor Ruddick, some guy who was scheduled to fight Mike Tyson around the same time. Oh, this is a "Bounty Match for the Mask", by the way. As if anyone ever lost one of those. Yellow Dog screams at the camera "Johnny B. Gay", and Jim Ross actually apologizes for it... oh, and it sounds JUST LIKE BRIAN PILLMAN.
Lockup into the corner, and Dog with a bitch slap, then blows a kiss. Badd kicks him in the head for it, and takes the Dog over with a hip toss. Badd with a scoop slam and some taunting. Irish whip, and Badd with a shoulder tackle. Dog with a hip toss, followed by a dropkick. Badd rolls away to catch a breather. Long wipes down Badd with a pink hankerchief... okay? Back inside, and Dog with a headlock, followed by a sunset flip for a two count. Irish whip, and Dog fails at a roll up, but he dropkicks Badd into Long, instead. Is it me, or does Pillman, I mean the Dog, seem to be going in slow motion? Badd wipes the Dog out with a clothesline, then rams him into the security rail. Back inside, and they exchange blows. Whip to the corner, and Dog misses a cross body press. Badd to the top rope, and he comes off with a sunset flip for a two count. Dog with a lazy version of the Ricky Steamboat Special™, but Badd quickly counters into a chinlock and goes for the mask. Dog escapes the grip with a jaw buster. Irish whip, and Badd with a running high knee. Dog ducks a roundhouse left, and takes Badd down with a German suplex. Irish whip, and Badd clearly is calling spots every time they do that hug against the ropes. Dog ducks a clothesline, and knocks Badd down with one of his own. Dog heads to the top rope, and comes off with a cross body press, but Long runs in for the Disqualification at 6:01. Dog fights Long off and nails a diving clothesline. Badd recovers and KO's the Dog with a left hook, but DOESN'T go for the mask, but checks on his manager instead. What is the point of a cop-out finish on a PPV? Especially between two guys who have very little, if any, problems that need to be resolved?! It was okay, but Pillman was definitely holding back here, and Badd was still pretty green, but looked capable.
- Eric Bischoff is hanging around backstage, talking about Missy Hyatt and Jason Hervey, he of Wonder Years fame. We even hear Hyatt's "assistant" read a card to her from him. Aww, how sweet! Apparently she's in the shower, and Bischoff is pitching a tent at the idea of being able to invade her privacy. She throws things at him, and rightfully so. Pervert.
Big Josh (w/ More Skanks) vs. Black Blood:
I don't know why this needs to be a Lumberjack Match, unless it's a cute play-on-words with Big Josh's gimmick. If it's just for the hell of it, why does it need to be a Lumberjack Match? If it's the latter, how stupid and childish are the bookers that they have to have a guy from THE WOODS competing in a Lumberjack Match!? Black Blood is Billy Jack Haynes, about three years past being useful, and he steals the Yellow Dog's award for worst home town, being introduced from "A Little Town in France." Jim Ross even makes fun of Black Blood's hometown. What's with all the random scuzz-looking girls coming to the ring tonight, first with Tom Zenk, and now Big Josh. Schiavone breaks my heart, drawing comparison of Josh and being a Lumberjack.
Blood attacks before the bell, hammering away, then tosses him in front of the heels. Back inside, and Blood dumps him again, this time in front of the faces. They exchange chops, with Josh taking control, then taking Blood over with a hip toss. Josh with a dropkick, then a shot to the throat, knocking Blood out of the ring. Back inside, and Josh with a snapmare. They exchange chops to little reaction from the crowd. Josh does a log-rolling effect on Blood's stomach, then knocks him back out of the ring. Josh with mounted punches in the corner, but he eats turnbuckle for being too carried away. Blood drops Josh across the top rope, and I notice that the Scaffold isn't there anymore. I guess it came down shortly after the match took place. The Lumberjacks scuffle as Blood continues to punish Josh. Blood brings Josh back into the ring with a suplex. Blood with a leg drop, but misses a knee drop. Irish whip, and Josh with a shot to the throat. Whip to the corner, and Josh runs into a boot. The camera focuses outside as Blood connects with a release German suplex. Blood grabs his axe prop, but Rhodes nails him with Josh's axe handle, and Josh cradles him for the three count at 5:50. Another match better suited for the weekend shows on TBS, but this one was the most watchable, probably, mostly because it was short and the crowd seemed to respond to parts of it.
El Gigante (w/ Midgets!) vs. The One Man Gang (w/ Kevin Sullivan):
I don't know why, but Sullivan and the Gang look like a couple of rejects from the local showing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. They cut a promo during their entrance, and hey, did you know they are responsible for shaving the head of Gigante? Gigante has four midgets with him, and the one riding his shoulder looks like Tiger Jackson, and two others look like Queazy and Sleazy from the 1994 Survivor Series. This match is going to SUCK. Sullivan is barely taller than one of the midgets, which is a hilarious site to see. Gigante tosses the Gang into the ring, from the ramp, and clubs him across the back. Gang tries for a shoulder block, but it has no effect. They play the slowest game of cat-and-mouse, then Gigante takes Gang over with a hip toss. "Fans need to have patience with him" means "we know he sucks, but he's young, so deal with it." Gang avoids a charge and comes off the second rope with a clothesline. Gang bashes Gigante with a WRENCH, so someone must've played World Championship Wrestling on the NES before the show. Gang uses the weapon again, knocking Gigante off his feet. Sullivan gets a cheap shot in... and where the hell are the midgets? Is that a Big Lipped Alligator Moment or something? This match just crawls along with no response from the crowd. Gang with a splash, but Gigante kicks out, sending Gang out of the ring. Gang hangs Gigante up across the top rope, then goes to the top rope... and Gigante blows the spot, taking forever to slam the Gang off. Irish whip, and Gigante with a back elbow. Gigante takes the Gang over with a suplex, then nails Sullivan off the top rope and noggin' knockers them. Gang gets Sullivan's stash of coke, but Gigante kicks it in his face, clotheslines him from behind, and covers for three at 6:11. Terrible match, but it was short. Not short enough, but short.
Russian Chain Match:
Sting vs. Nikita Koloff:
I never quite got this feud, and still have a hard time trying to make sense of it. Nikita Koloff returned at WrestleWar and immediately injected himself into a program with Lex Luger over the United States Title, but then at SuperBrawl, Koloff cost Luger and Sting a match with the Steiner Brothers, and suddenly, Koloff had problems with Sting, that lead to a series of random attacks. Insta-Feud? Another match with a gimmick that probably didn't need it. They tug away at the chain in an opening feeling out process. They then go face-to-face and we get some shoving. They trade kicks, and Sting hammers away with rights, then tosses Koloff out of the ring, where he introduces Koloff into the railing. Back in the ring, and Sting rams Koloff into the buckle ten times. I know, because the crowd counted along with it. Back outside the ring, and Sting chokes Koloff with the chain. Back inside, and Sting starts touching the corners, but Koloff interrupts after two and takes Sting's head off with a clothesline. Outside the ring again, and this time Sting gets to taste the steel, and Koloff connects with another clothesline. Koloff hammers away on Sting with the chain, in quite a boring manner. Sting blocks being rammed into the rail, then pulls Koloff into the ring post. Back in the ring, and Koloff attacks with the chain, then drops a pair of elbows, with the chain wrapped around his bicep. Koloff chokes Sting with the chain, as the match continues to drag. Koloff misses an elbow drop, allowing Sting to gain the upperhand. Sting gives Koloff a chain wedgie, to one of the first pops of the match. Sting rakes the eyes, and Koloff returns the act. Koloff whips Sting with the chain, snapmares him over, and goes for the corners. Sting breaks the momentum, and I just never understood the concept of this match. Things get exciting, as Koloff applies a bearhug, then they tussle around the ring, touching corners in the process. Koloff goes blatantly low, and then Sting does the same. Holy crap, WCW had their own Sting wrestling buddie? I thought that was a WWF thing. Somehow, they are allowed to continue the progress they've made, despite the low blows rendering both men incapacitated in the center of the ring. Sting pounds away on Koloff, then slowly moves to the fourth corner... but Koloff stops the momentum and nails Sting with a clothesline. And yet, the progress still continues! Koloff goes for the corner, but a Stinger Splash makes the decision anyway, and Koloff touches the fourth corner first, for the victory at 11:48. Wow, that match sucked, and Sting was in a period where it seemed like he was having good-great matches every show. Sting gains revenge after the match, giving him yet another chain wedgie. What a great sports man Sting is.
- We have a video package highlighting Lex Luger and Barry Windham, and when we return to the broadcast position, a thunderous chant of "We Want Flair" begins, damn near drowning out the nonsense babbling of Jim Ross and Tony Schiavone trying to put over Windham as a serious contender for the World Championship. Schiavone references Windham's last shot at the title was damn near FOUR years ago. They seriously talk for FIVE MINUTES, uninterrupted, about anything that can link Luger and Windham together into a sensible match for the World Title.
WCW World Heavyweight Championship; Steel Cage Match:
"Total Package" Lex Luger (US Champion) vs. Barry Windham:
Is Barry Windham's music a cheap knock off of Z.Z. Top's "La Grange"? We get a shot of the belt, and it has a tacky "World Championship" plate mounted over it, and from reports around the 'net, it's a left-over belt of Dusty Rhodes filling in since they didn't have time to have a real belt made. I forgot that Lex Luger was a babyface here, it seems like they couldn't make up their mind wether he was face or heel for the better part of three years. "We Want Flair" chant is in full force, despite lame firework displays. They then pan the crowd, and they're chanting it too. Nice job, WCW production crew. Lockup, and Windham with a side headlock, followed by a shoulder block. Windham attempts a suplex, as does Luger, but neither man can get the other over. Windham with another headlock, and this time a shoulder puts Luger down. Criss-cross, and Luger with a hip toss. Lockup, and Luger with the headlock and shoulder block. Criss-cross, and Windham with a dropkick. "Cautious" means "not trying very hard." Luger surprises Windham with a cradle for a one count. We change things up with a "Nature Boy" chant. Lockup, and Luger with a slam, but he misses that stupid elbow that always misses. Lockup to the corner, and they trade blows. Irish whip is reversed, and Windham with a back drop. The action stops, and again the Flair chants resume. Windham with a headlock, but Luger counters with a head scissors. Windham escapes with a well placed right. Luger blocks a suplex and takes Windham over with his own. The action stalls, yet again. Lockup, and Windham with a slam, then he unwisely attempts a Figure-Four, but Luger kicks him off, anyway. Luger blocks a kick and sends Windham to the corner with an atomic drop. Who does the crowd want? Neither of these guys right now. Lockup, and Windham with another headlock. Irish whip, and a shoulder block. Criss-cross, and Luger with a sleeper hold. What was WCW's obsession with constantly panning the crowd during matches? Windham escapes and slaps on his own sleeper.
Luger escapes, sending Windham to the corner, then connects with a DDT for a two count. Luger climbs up to the top rope, but gets slammed off. Windham with a knee drop for a two count as well. Windham to the top rope, and he comes off missing an elbow drop. Irish whip, and Luger with a back drop, followed by a series of clotheslines for a two count. Irish whip, and Luger with a back elbow for another two count. Irish whip, and Luger plants Windham with a powerslam, then calls for the finisher. Luger traps Windham in the Torture Rack, but Windham kicks off the cage to escape, and takes Luger down with a back suplex. Luger with a sledge across the back, then sets Windham up across the top turnbuckle. Luger follows him up but gets shoved off, and Windham comes off with a flying clothesline. Irish whip, and Windham with a back drop, followed by a diving clothesline. Windham with a scoop slam for a two count. Windham to the top rope, and this time he he connects with a missile dropkick, but that only gets two! Suddenly, Harley Race and Mr. Hughes make their way to ringside, distracting Windham. Race gets in Luger's ear and tells him now's the time. Luger immediately nails Windham with a knee to the back, then connects with a piledriver for the three count at 12:30. After the match, Luger leaves with Race and Hughes, probably turning heel, again. Despite the distractions of the renegade crowd, this wasn't a bad match, and is easily the best match of the card. I'd probably call it **1/2. It tried to go for something the crowd wasn't caring about, but managed to suck the fans into the last 5 or 6 minutes of non-stop action. The finish is confusing, kind of like Steve Austin's turn at WrestleMania X-Seven, but more so, because it doesn't make any sense... oh, and the show isn't over.
Intergender Tag Team Cage Match:
Rick Steiner & Missy Hyatt vs. Arn Anderson & Paul E. Dangerously:
What is the point of putting this match on last? There's barely any time left for the PPV, and the crowd is no doubt deflated by the finish of the last match. I guess they wanted the crowd going home happy with a babyface going over in the finale of the show? Paul E. and Hyatt had some dumb, uninteresting feud going on, and I think Anderson was semi-responsible for Scott Steiner's injury (in storyline), but don't quote me on that. I never realized Hyatt went with a brunette look at this point. She looks more suited for a bitchy heel than annoying babyface, but that's just me. Jim Ross informs us it was the Hardliners responsible for Scott's injury... who? They make their way to the ring, and it's Dick Slater and Dick Murdoch. That answers my question. They kidnap Missy Hyatt, and the World is better off. FALSE ADVERTISEMENT! Lockup, and Anderson with a knee to the midsection. He tries ramming Steiner into the cage, unsuccessfully. Lockup, and Steiner with a headlock, followed by a shoulder block. Steiner plants Anderson with a powerslam, then jaws at Paul E. Anderson with a knee from behind, but he gets caught in a bearhug. Paul E. comes off the top rope with an axehandle, and Steiner actually sells it! Anderson to the second turnbuckle, but Steiner nails him coming off with a clothesline. Paul. E tries to escape, but Steiner drags him back and plants him with a slam, then connects with a Steinerline for the three count at 2:09. Well, that was pointless. And within seconds of the finish, we end the broadcast.
Final Thoughts: Chalk me up for another bad show in the books. This show had everything that was wrong with WCW at the time, and a lot more buried within, kind of like a rotten onion. You peel away the outer layer, and the more you peel, the more disgusting it gets. First, the card looks like it was thrown together with little thought or care. Second, almost everyone seemed to have it in cruise control, with one or two notable exceptions, and even then, most of the matches sucked. Third, excessive use of gimmick matches when the matches in question didn't require them. Fourth, the lame attempt at ripping off the WWF by having a lot of goofy cartoon characters acting like total buffoons (Oz, Black Blood, Big Josh, P.N. News, the list goes on). Fifth, promising a match where the sole purpose was to see Hyatt beat up Paul E., then not even come close to following through. The list continue from there, but we've covered how horribly screwed up this company was to fire the champion two weeks before the PPV, then trying to rush together a nonsensical match where the finish was never in question to begin with. Then, in a bush league move like no other, taking a piece of crap belt, slapping a gold plate on it, and saying it's the World Title. The UWF had a better belt than that. I don't know what this show was trying to accomplish, other than putting on one of the most head-scratchingly awful PPV's of all time.
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