Volume 1, Issue 105
January 6, 1997
WCW Saturday Night
Was that Jim Backlund (Jimmy Grafitti, Jimmy Del Rey) wrestling against Chris Jericho under the name of Jimmy Richland Saturday? It sort of looked like him but the style seemed wrong - maybe he was acting the part of a rookie...or, maybe I need new glasses...
Arn Anderson now says that the root of most of the Horsemen's problems is Woman. He rejects Jeff Jarrett as a Horseman - says that Flair "waved a wand over Jarrette's head and made him a Horsemen...well it doesn't work that way...with Flair on the sidelines he is just a spectator like everyone else..." he went on to say that the active Horsemen (he and Mongo) have votes on the matter and that Jarrett doesn't get his vote. he feels the Horsemen need to get their house in order (duh..!)
Dean Malenko and Eddie Guerrero put on an excellent exhibition on the program while the announcers told us about the Ladder Match coming up between Guerrero and Syxx for the US Title at the Souled Out PPV. Eddie has a way of rolling through missed flying moves that brings him back to his feet very quickly. As usual Malenko thoroughly grounded his opponent during the bulk of the action but Guerrero is also superb on the mat. The match ended in a double count-out.
Gene Okerlund talked about a "major" star joining the NWO soon - could this be Savage?
It seemed to be "double count-out day" as we saw a previously taped match of Medusa vs. Hokuto for the Womens Title (re-match from Starrcade). Also we got a couple of NWO matches (complete with "Ski-Mask Patrick as referee) in front of the WCW audience. for a change. They featured latter day NWOers of course (Bubba and Masahiro Chono) against Jerry Lynne and Mark Starr respectively.
The next Clash of Champions will take place during the week before the NWO PPV.
Teddy-in-the-box was better behaved then usual during a surprisingly competitive match for the TV Title between Lord Steven Regal and Ice Train. I notice that Regal actually uses the heel of the hand to strike effective blows. This time the time limit expired.
A great tag match to open the show - Pierroth/Cybernetico vs. Furnas/LaFon - Pierroth is the ultimate heel in Mexico and maintains that image in the States. His protege Cybernetico is a chip off the old block. They ended up getting disqualified when Pierroth pulled the referee into the path of LaFon's flying body block. After the match Pierroth made an extended speech in Spanish - apparently throwing out a challange toward Mil Mascasras who was helping to call the action at ringside. Mascaras didn't bite.
Flash Funk (2 Cold Scorpio) took on Salvitore Sincere (Johnny Gunn) - Sal's ring style is a little too pedestrian to keep up with the aerial antics of the Funkster. Flash won it, after a fairly competitve contest, with a one-and-a-half somersault splash.
We got to see a few clips from the debut of Shotgun Saturday Night (sigh...we don't get it here in the SF Bay area yet). I hear that Marlena dropped her top (facing away from the camera, of course) to distract the Sultan long enough to give Goldust a win.
Bob Backlund sat in at the broadcast position during the Sultan's match with a jobber but he didn't say a word after the match began and then left immediately afterward. The Sultan will face Bret Hart on the program next Sunday.
Boring Hearst Helmsley and Freddie Joe Floyd (Tracy Smothers) put on a lukewarm match in which Helmsley came close to being upset (snore...)
The Goon (Wild Bill Erwin) used his hockey stick to cheapshot the Undertaker and gain an advantage for a little while. Of course it wasn't enough. Later he tried it again but had no effect - UT then grabbed the stick and repaid the favor before winning it with a Tombstone Piledriver. After the match Cornette ranted about what Vader was going to do to UT at the next PPV. He produced a bodybag and promised that Vader would put the man from the Darkside into it. In the middle of his speech the lights went out then came back on to reveal that the Undertaker had taken a position directly behind Cornette! UT then hauled Cornette into the ring and gave him the Tombstone and stuffed him into the bag.
The only good match on this program was the Main Event - Dean Malenko vs. Rey Misterio Jr. Lot of mat mechanics and high flying action. In fact this was a perfect replay of a match between them that I described last week. This time when Rey leapfrogged over Malenko and got thrust upward he managed to land perfectly on the corner ropes and bounced right into a twisting body block that was pretty amazing to watch. The match also ended the same way when Misterio went for a flying Frankensteiner but got spun around and powerbombed, giving Malenko the win.
Monday Nitro Report
Bobby Eaton vs. Glacier - Eaton should have had more of a chance in this match but Glacier dominates with his unconventional style. A round kick makes short work of the man from Alabama.
Review of the Konan/Bubba feud.
Big Bubba vs. Konan - strap re-match - Bubba grabs the early advantage and whips Konan then chokes him with the strap. Jimmy Hart distracts him and then its Konan doing the whipping. Bubba comes back and tapes his fist with the strap to put Konan down. He easily touches three corners before Konan leaps on him and stops his momentum. Konan exhausts his energy and falls victem to the bigger man once again. Bubba wraps Konan's arms up with the strap but that backfires when Konan uses his bound arms as a weapon. Konan gets three corners before Bubba jerks him back with the strap - then knocks him right into the fourth corner and losses the match.
Mean Gene with Kevin Sullivan - Kevin hints that Benoit is being set up by saying that he has put Benoit into position to be "check-mated..."
Four Horsemen interview - Arn starts as the spokesman then throws it to Flair by asking him where Benoit and Woman are. Flair says they are out together and he seems to approve. Mrs. McMuffin prattles on in her usual fashion (gag me...no gag her - please!!) She seems to be taking Jeff Jarrett's side of things - Jarrett shows up and asks Flair if he want Jeff to be a full-time Horseman. Arn interrupts to answer for Flair and is in turn interrupted by Jarrett who says he didn't come to talk to the "horse's behind..."
Arn reacts as could be expected and beats Jarrett back into the ring. Mongo is encouraging Arn - Flair just watches the fight - seems to be enjoying it...Jarrett meanwhile takes the upper hand and takes a quick pin. This seems to upset Flair who tries to attack Jarrett but is blocked by Debra who clearly has more courage than brains...
Mongo defends his wife even though he obviously doesn't agree with her - we are seeing a major breakdown of the Horsemen here. Arn's got his hands on the Haliburton case but doesn't get to use it. Mongo and Flair calm him down then Flair goes over and shakes Jarrett's hand. Arn throws up his hands and leaves.
Diamond Dallas Page's music plays but there's no sign of DDP. Steven Regal comes to the ring for a TV Title match. Jim Duggan disproves the rumors that he has gone to the WWF by showing up to take Page's place.
The NWO run Tony and Larry off so they can call this match. They say that Dallas is having dinner with Scott Hall this evening - apparently they are still trying to recruit him. Duggan and Regal have a knock-down drag-out battle with surprisingly (for Lord Regal) little wrestling taking place. During his commentary Bischoff seemingly squashes the rumor that Randy Savage is coming back to join the NWO - but you never know. Meanwhile Duggan and Regal fight it out to a time limit draw.
Tony and Larry are back at the 50 minute mark.
Hugh Morrus vs. Jim (the jobber) Powers - Morrus dominates this match from the get-go although Powers holds his own. The contest is cut short when Morrus catches his opponent in mid-air and powerslams him. A moonsault puts Powers away.
Review of Arn and Jeff Jarrette's set-to from earlier this evening.
Psychosis vs. Rey Misterio Jr. - Psychosis outweighs his opponent (doesn't everybody? I think I do...) and puts that weight advantage to good use right up to the moment when he manages to splash the steel guardrail with his chin. It's all down hill from there although he continues to compete valiantly. He even recovers sufficiently to start exhibiting some overconfidence - never a good idea with Misterio. As usual Rey pulls off one of his flying Frankensteiners into a victory roll to win.
Taskmaster vs. Chavo Guerrero Jr. - Sullivan attacks before removing his robe and Chavo never really gets anything going. Sullivan takes his opponent outside and mauls him then takes him back in and hangs him from the "Tree of Woe" - squash city...
Review of the attack on Piper from last week. The announcers are trying to decipher what Piper was saying as he was hauled away. We see some new footage of Piper being rolled into the ambulance but get no clue as to what he was babbling about.
Alex Wright vs. Eddie Guerrero - We haven't seen the young German star in a while. Eddie rather reluctantly shakes his hand. Obviously Wright hasn't gathered any ring rust in his absence - this youngster is an excellent mat wrestler. But then so in Guerrero, plus he's a consummate high flyer. This is a great match!
Syxx shows up in the aisle with a ladder. He's wearing the US Title belt and standing on the ladder to taunt Guerrero. Wright takes advantage of the distraction to get control. Eddie soon regains his focus and wins with a Frog Splash after putting Wright down with a superplex. Guerrero rushes out into the aisle but Syxx flees - leaving his ladder behind...
Amazing French Canandians (w/Col. Parker) vs. Harlem Heat (w/Sherri) - What again..? The battle erupts before the bell. The Heat dominates early on. The Canadians may have better teamwork but Booker T alone has enough talent to make up for it. In fact it takes both of the Frenchies to keep him in check. They manage to blow it when Oulette tries to use the Quebec flag on Booker T and gets his partner instead. The Heat wins it in short order.
Review of Stings mysterious actions at Starrcade,
Lex Lugar vs. Meng - Meng is certainly a worthy opponent. One of the most talented power wrestlers in the game. He pummels Lugar pretty thoroughly with martial arts blows, a powerslam and a piledriver. Lugar comes back and levels him with that loaded forearm of his. Meng finally launches himself into the corner and falls right into the Rack. Barbarian breaks that up so Lugar Racks him! The referee, a little woozy after being knocked down gives Lex the win against the wrong opponent...
The NWO comes down to the ring (most of them anyway) - Bischoff introduces Hollywood Hogan by asking him what it was like to destroy both Piper and the Giant...puleeez! Hogan starts his rant but gets interrupted when the Giant shows up. Hogan hides behind his thugs who attack and are repulsed by the Giant one after another. With his hand around Hogans throat the Giant is then attacked by Eric Bischoff who has no real effect accept to provide a distraction. It's enough - Hogan grabs a chair and smashes it into the Giant's back. The pack wrestles him to the ground and Hogan pounds on him some more with the chair.
Hogan invites Bischoff to get in some more licks then gives him the WCW Title belt to carry as they leave the ring and commandeer the broadcast booth singing "We are the champions..." badly. Meanwhile Sting is in the ring with his bat. He rolls the Giant over and tells him something, points the bat at the NWO then leaves.
Hogan sends Vincent down to the ring to retrieve the bat and maybe use it on the Giant. Vincent is cautious at first but gets careless after the Giant doesn't stir. Of course he's playing possum. Vince gets mightily choke-slammed. The NWO rescues their man but think better of attacking the now-armed Giant a second time.
We fade to black on a split screen dissolve shot featuring both the Giant and Sting.
Owen Hart vs. Mankind - we get both Hart brothers in great matches tonight (Bret will face Vader later in the program). Hart goes right after his opponent and tries to slap on a Sharpshooter but Mankind rolls through it. He then gets an uppercut in and takes control. Owen fights his way back up but Mankind trips him up and sticks his fingers in Owen's mouth. Owen bites down hard before the hold gets set. They end up outside where Owen drops his nemesis over the guard rail. Back inside he maintains his advantage over the guy with the leather jockstrap on his head. Hart slaps on an abdominal stretch. Mankind escapes then grabs a leg and gets a round-kick to the back of the head for his trouble. Outside again, Mankind uses a plastic tub as a weapon. Cut to commercial.
We're back an Mankind is in control in the ring. Then Owen reverses a hold and gets a DDT. He flies form the top but gets caught in the mandible claw. He escapes by using leverage and another kick to the back of the head. Owen rushes into the corner and geta a shoulder full of ringpost. Shortly thereafter he gets piledriven and loses the match.
Shawn is backstage with Jose Lothario and his son Pete. Pete says he plans to take care of his dad at the Royal Rumble. Shawn says he'll be commentating for the Bret Hart/Vader match later.
Clips from Shotgun Saturday Night - I don't want to hear about it - I can't believe the program isn't being shown here in the Bay Area.
The Imposters ("Razor & Diesel") vs. Doug Furnas/Phillip LaFon - Furnas and LaFon outwrestle these glorified jobbers. The Imposters are bigger and stronger...and uglier and stupider...regardless they are in control as we cut to commercial.
We come back to the Imposters still in control. They take Furnas into their corner and work him over. LaFon finally gets tagged in and cleans house for a while - man can that guy deliver a chop! In the end Furnas and LaFon's superior teamwork carries the day.
Sid interview - Sid's not intimidated by having to face Shawn Michaels in his own backyard...yatta...yatta. Shawn shows up and does a dance for us on the announcers' table. Sid apologizes for what he is going to do...cut to commercial.
Bret Hart makes his entrance as Michaels complains about character assasination. Big Van Jobber comes down to the ring alone (Cornette is still recovering from the drubbing he took at the hands of the Undertaker yesterday - see the story above). It looks like both Harts get to fight with guys who wear leather jock straps...
Vader comes on strong at the beginning (what else is new..?) but of course he is overconfident. Hart is a master at suckering opponents into this position. Outside the ring Hart takes the advantage. He throws Vader into the steel steps and smashes him into the ringpost. Then he rolls him back into the ring. Hart works on the big guy's left arm. Vader gets loose and uses his superior size to turn the tables. Stone Cold Steve Austin is watching in the back - so much for the idea of a clean win in this one. Cut to commercial.
Vader has taken control during the break. He splashes Hart from the second rope but can't get the pin. Then he takes his time setting up for the Vader bomb and pays for it when Hart gets his knees up. Hart scoop slams the big man in a surprising display of strength - drops an elbow on him from the second rope then suplexes him when he staggers to his feet. Bret then rushes Vader who is against the ropes. They both tumble over to the floor. Now Sid is back and dragging a cameraman away. Vader has a chair but the ref gets in the way...giving Austin the chance to sneak down and Pearl Harbor the Hitman. Vader rolls him nack into the ring and Vader bombs him for the pin.
In the locker room Sid is attacking Pete Lothario - he powerbombs him on a bench as Shawn and Jose sprint toward the back. Cut to commercial.
We're back and Shawn is freaking out in the locker room. Bart Gunn is there to help and also Aldo Montoya. Shawn stalks out. We fade to black on a slow motion shot of Sid poerbombing the hapless young Lothario...
Two good shows tonight. It seems like both sides are trying harder these days...good for us fans...
Anyway, that's the way I see it...
editor Solie's Wrestling Newsletter
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