Shotgun Saturday Night
Quick review of the ending of the "Rage in the Cage" with Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. "Sycho" Sid.
Jim Ross and Brian Pillman are commentating.
1st match: Henry Godwinn vs. Blackjack Bradshaw
Of course this is a preview to the four way dance at Wrestlemania so I just know we'll eventually see all four teams out. Both Phineus and Windham are outside rooting for their partners. Henry looks tough tonight as when they tie up, they both go over the top rope. This match is basically a brawl that gets interesting only when Phillip LaFon and Doug Furnas come to ringside to observe. Henry takes control with a couple of good moves including a powerslam and a belly-to-belly suplex. Furnas and LaFon become a distraction to the participants inside the ring and then the Headbangers come out and attack LaFon and Furnas. The mess eventually spills into the ring causing a double DQ. After the match the Godwinns and LaFon and Furnas go at it as well as The Blackjacks and Headbangers proving that there are no friends in this match at Wrestlemania.
Evaluation: Henry really looks to be taking pride in his wrestling nowadays. He really looks rough and tough and is working hard as well. I hope he eventually gets rewarded for his efforts.
**1/2 of 5
2nd Match: Bret "Hitman" Hart vs. Sid for the WWF Championship. This is just the match from last Monday night on RAW. See previous reports for details.
Evaluation: Fairly good match that built a good amount of heat for Wrestlemania. Especially from Bret.
*** of 5
"The Slammy Award Winning" Owen Hart comes out to an interview, but Bulldog doesn't come out. Owen is claiming to be the captain of the team. He rants and raves and the Bulldog comes out to defend himself. Bulldog is giving a poor interview and Hart is somewhat better. They are really teasing a breakup here and Owen gets off a great line. "Bulldog and me...we're family. He's married into my family. We have to live with that." Both are claiming superiority and Bulldog is playing to the crowd to set up a complete face turn for him.
We review last night's 1997 Slammy Award Ceremony. All I can remember is Sable in that swimsuit.
3rd match: Goldust vs. Tony Devito
* of 5
They review the Savio Vega-Crush vs. LOD match at RAW and the Ahmed Johnson-Vega match at Madison Square Garden.
The Undercover Segment with Sunny. She sits on her bed talking about rumors about the possibility of the Road Warriors turning on Ahmed and going with the Nation of Domination. Then she goes off about the possibility of Pillman getting involved in the Austin-Hart match. Then she says that Shawn Michaels will be at Wrestlemania. But that means that "Austin isn't the only one that will have to have eyes in the back of his head." She also predicts Rocky Maivia losing the title to the Sultan.
I guess this is OK for hype for Wrestlemania.
Until next week this is Garland riding Shotgun...
Solie's Seattle correspondent, Garland Chan is a student at the University of Washington
WrestleMania 13 is what it's all about this morning (along with the usual rehash of RAW) but they did manage to sneak in a match.
Henry Godwin vs. "Blackjack" Bradshaw - I've heard here on the Net that Bradshaw really isn't Blackjack Lanza's son - but then, I have also heard from the same source that Windham is no relation to Blackjack Mulligan - I know for certain the facts there because I once babysat Barry Windham as a young boy brought to the matches by his father (who was wrestling my uncle Ray that evening - we sat in the stands together). Besides, just look at him, there is no mistaking the resemblance, especially since he grew that mustache and then dyed his hair.
The match is pretty evenly fought until the rest of the participants in tonight's four team elimination match decide to put in their two cents worth. First Furnas and LaFon come down to scout the competition, then the Headbangers attacked them. All of them ended up in the ring, thus ending the match prematurely.
LaParka vs JL - both of these guys need to get new tailors as far as I can see but this was a great high-flying match full of planches and suicide dives. One of the latter by JL early on almost took both competitors out of the contest. In fact JL never really recovered from that move - LaParka won it.
The Taskmaster and his "Lady" did their usual number on the Cheetah Kid. Before the match Legandary Larry said "You never know what's going to happen when the Taskmaster and Jaquelyn are here..." - actually we always know exactly what will happen...
In keeping with their trend for the weekend, High Voltage gave the faces of Fear a credible run for their money but it wasn't enough. Still, Troy Williams favorite tag team was looking good through most of this match.
Ultimate Dragon vs. Alex Wright - young Mr. Wright came close to winning this match after a piledriver. He continued to dominate through the next few exchanges then made the mistake of stopping to acknowledge the partisan crowd. The Dragon blindsided him and yet Wright came back again and took control again. Several pin attempts were unsuccessfull then he tried to go to the top. He tok too long and got caught there. After struggling for control, Wright thought he had a superplex but the Dragon shifted his weight and dropped Wright on his face. That's allshe wrote...
Was there a Free-For-All? I didn't think to set up the VCR for one.
Live from the Rosemont Horizon in Chicago, ILL
Four Way tag Team Match - Godwins/Blackjacks/Headbangers/Furnas & LaFon - the rules here are the same as the WCW Triangle matches except here we have four teams. The winner of this match will get a Title shot. Everyone is waiting for the Blackjacks to show - as soon as they do the action erupts. Bradshaw vs. Henry Godwin to start. Godwin tags in Thrasher. Bradshaw dominates him then tags in PIG. PIG takes charge and then tags in Mosh. They are not anxious to lock up and pull LaFon into it and double team him. LaFon comes back strong and Windham is tagged in. Windham in control - he puts LaFon down and tags Bradshaw in - they doubleteam LaFon who manages to tag in his partner. They spill out to the outside - Bradshaw gets himself disqualified while Furnas and LaFon are counted out - so much for the fourway match.
Now its just the Godwins and the Headbangers - the Bangers seem to be wearing camisoles tonight... diaphinous black slips with fishnet hose underneath (are these guys aquainted with Goldust?) They are flying around like mad - at one point Mosh tosses Thrasher over the top onto Henry on the floor. Mosh finally wins the match using a Thesz Press variation off the top on PIG. The Headbangers get the shot.
The Honky Tonk Man is threatening to sing again...fortunately he declines and joins the broadcast team ringside - oops! he is singing - damn!
The Sultan vs. Rocky Maivia - Intercontinental Title match - they've tried (and failed) to build some heat for this match - I doubt that anybody cares. Rookie er...Rocky dominates the opening moments then goes out and rams his shoulder into the corner post. The Sultan hauls him back in and starts pounding on him. The former Wild Samoan (the Sultan is Samu) uncharacteristically shows us some of his high-flying skill as he continues the assault. (the Burger King is making tasteless jokes at ringside concerning Christopher Reeves - when is somebody going to shut this guy up?) Rocky makes a comeback and gets a belly-to-belly on his opponent. The he follows up with a DDT. He hits his off-the-top splash but the Iron Sheik has the ref tied up. Rocky is distracted and the Sultan regains the advantage. During a slam attempt Rocky pulls a small package out of the hat and pins his opponent. After the match the Sultan attacks from behind and they take Maivia into the ring and triple team him. Rocky Johnson shows up and cleans house. While he is tending his son he gets clobbered with the Iranian flag. Rocky comes back and fights off the attackers. Maivia and his dad take turns slamming the Sheik before he escapes. Johnson looks great for an old fart...
Todd Pettingill with Ken Shamrock - they review the Shamrock/Billy Gunn dustup. Shamrock plans to call the submission match down the middle and won't be intimidated.
Doc Hendrix with HHH and Chyna - they are threatening Marlena with bodily harm.
At this point I have to leave to go catch the comet. I have the VCR already running.
Goldust (w/Marlena) vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley (w/Chyna) - as usual, Mr. and Mrs. Runnels make their entrance on film...in letterbox format. He then squats in front of Hunter waiting for him to drop his guard. As soon as it happens Goldy springs into a running clothesline. Wow! Vince just admitted he wears a toupe! Goldust dominates the opening minutes - Hunter gets tied up in the ropes and pummeled. Moments later Hunter gets a knee into his opponent's face and turns it around but can't sustain it. Goldust gets a powerslam then climbs to the top. Hunter catches him there and, after a struggle manages to drop the Golden one on his face on the apron. Back inside Helmsley is in control. He starts stomping on him in the corner and comes close to being DQ'd. Goldust is in a lot of trouble at this point. So far Chyna hasn't made a move towards Marlena.
Goldust makes a brief comeback but Hunter is back in control almost immediately. By now both men are moving slower, Goldust is starting to mount another comeback. Helmsley goes to the top and tries to drop a double-axe handle but Goldust gave him a butt-bump in mid-air to stop his momentum. Now Goldust is controlling the action for the first time since the very beginning of the match. He gets a bulldog on his opponent. Chyna is moving towards Marlena. Goldust has a Curtain Call set up when he notices Chyna menacing Marlena. He drops Hunter and goes over to pull Marlena to safety on the apron. Hunter hits them from behind and Marlena is flung into Chyna's arms. Chyna starts wrenching her around as Hunter slips in his Pedagree maneuver on Goldust to get the win. Goldust carries Marlena to the back after the match.
Vader/Mankind vs. Owen Hart/British Bulldog - Tag Team Title match - Jim Ross is trying to stir up trouble between the Champions before the match. Vader overpowers Owen at the beginning. He then makes a mistake and tries to go for a Vader bomb too early. The Bulldog runs over and prevents it from happening. Both teams exchange. Bulldog in with Mankind and is overpowering him. He gets a verticle suplex, Vader runs in and gets the same treatment. Moments later Vader pulls down the top rope and causes Bulldog to topple to the floor. Outside he and Mankind are slugging it out when Vader clobbers him with the urn.
Back inside Vader is in charge. against the Bulldog. He hits him with a splash off the second rope. Mankind tagged in and starts pummeling the Bulldog. Now the two of them are doubleteaming him. Vader tagged in and goes for a splash off the top but gets caught and powerslammed. Owen tagged in and Vader comes back. He shoves Owen to the outside then follows him out. He holds Owen on his knee while Mankind drops an elbow on his chest. Owens parents are right there in the front row.
Mankind outs him down again then goes back inside. Owen climbs to the apron and he and Mankind struggle for a verticle suplex. Mankind wins the encounter by turning loose then snapping Owens neck off the top rope. Back inside the ring Mankind continues to work on the now groggy Owen Hart. Hart comes back with a round kick but can't follow up. mankind and Vader exchange - the big guy continues the assault. he exchanges with Mankind who tosses Owen out of the ring. Outside Mankind gets caught in a belly-to-belly on the floor.
Owens slips back into the ring and manages to tag in the Bulldog. Mankind misses the tag but Vader comes in anyway. Bulldog is fighting both men and Vader is forced out. Bulldog gets Mankind into position for the running powerslam but Mankind twists around and gets his finger into his mouth. Owen tries to help but is cut off by Vader - during the melee Mankind and the Bulldog are dumped outside. Mankind continues to hold onto his claw hold and they are both counted out. Mankind has to be forced to release the clawhold. The Champions retain their titles.
Review of the Austin/Hart feud leads to the submission match. Ken Shamrock is in the ring to referee. Austin breaks through a painted glass door to enter the arena. Hart enters through the same door and has to step over the glass. Austin tackles Bret as soon as he is in the ring. They are outside in a flash - Austin gets rammed into the ring post then Bret gets dropped spreadeagle on the railing. They fight into the stands. Austin grabs a softdrink cup - drinks some and then throws the rest of it at Hart. Hart comes right back though. Shamrock is following in their wake - trying to hold back the crowd. Hart seems to be dominating the fight. He drags Austin back down to the rail and tosses him back to ringside. He drops on him from off the railing but then Austin slams him into the steps. Austin jumps up on the apron and flips a double bird before diving onto Hart.
Austin picks up the steps but loses his footing and drops them behind him. The punch each other and then roll back into the ring. Hart then gets a swinging neck-breaker. Vince is suggesting that if Hart loses this match he'll come up with some kind of excuse. Bret is starting to work on his opponent's leg now. Setting up for the Sharp Shooter. He misses a move and Austin comes back with a Stunner. Hart is back on his feet surprisingly fast and kicks Austins legs out from under him. He drags Stone Cold over to the post and wraps his legs around it. Then he slaps on a figure four from outside the ring. He grinds on Austin but the latter refuses to submit. Hart brings a steel chair into the ring and sets Austin up ala Brian Pillman with his ankle in the folding chair. He goes for the top but takes too long getting there. Austin regains his feet and slams the chair onto the back of Hart's head. As Hart struggles to get up Austin smashes him again. Now Austin is in charge for the first time. Bret's daughter is covering her face at ringside. Austin slaps on a weird combination submission hold but Bret won't submit. Austin changes to a Boston Crab but Hart inches over to the rope and breaks the hold. Now Austin tries to go for a Sharp Shooter but Hart rakes his face to escape.
Hart starts punching but gets flung out to the floor. Austin comes out and gets flung into the timekeeper's table. Austin is bleeding profusely. Back in the ring we see that the cut over Austin's eye is not a pretty sight. Bret is concentrating on the head now. Bret gets the chair and starts spearing Austins knee. He goes for the Sharp Shooter but gets his own eyes raked. He goes back to punching his opponent until Stone Cold gets in a low blow. Austin flings the Hitman into the opposite corner and then stomps a mudhole in him. He then puts him up on the corner buckle and superplexes him to the mat. Austin is a bloody mess now. He goes out and finds a coiled extention cord. He brings it in and wraps it around Harts throat - he attempts to hang him but Hart gets a hold of the bell and brains his opponent with it. Back in the ring Hart slaps on the Sharp Shooter as Austin's face lies in a pool of his own blood. He almost powers out of the hold but Hart keeps his legs in position and re-asserts the hold. Austin finally passes out and Shamrock ends the match declaring Bret the winner. Austin never submitted.
As his music plays Bret paces then goes back to the still unconscience Austin. He starts to re-apply the hold - Shamrock waist-locks him and throws him down. Shamrock seems to be trying to goad him into a fight but Hart leaves the ring.
Austin refuses any help. When a second official tries to assist him he kicks the guy then puts a stunner on him. He limps away from the ring to the chant of "Austin! Austin!" McMahon praises his courage as we gaze at the blood on the mat. Lawler reminds us that Austin didn't actually submit.
Todd Pettingill with the heavily armed Nation of Domination - Faarooq says that they are thugs. They have trashcans, a 2X4, numchucks, billy clubs, a highway sign etc.
The NOD comes down first and occupies the ring. Ahmed comes out is a Road Warrior style spiked vest. They bring a 2X4 and a kitchen sink! The fight goes to the floor and his happening all over the area around the ring. Animal spikes Faarooq on one of the annouce tables. Then he douses him with the contents of a fire extiguisher. In the ring they are using trash cans. Faarooq sems to be getting it especially bad in this one. Savio Vega gets a noose around Ahmed's neck but he escapes before they can do any real damage. Animal has the road sign and his using it to good effect. Hawk gets hung over the rope with the noose but then he jerks Faarooq to the floor with it. He then hangs Faarooq with the noose. Ahmed almost gets Faarooq in the Pearl River Plunge but the entire NOD attacks him to prevent it. Moments later Crush is on the receiving end of the Road Warrior's two-story finisher. Animal flings him into the 2X4 held by Hawk and Ahmed then pins him for the win - but its not over quite yet - Savio and the remaining members of NOD (PG-13 and the two stooges) rush the ring but are over powered. Animal and Ahmed hold PG-13 on their shoulders while Hawk hits them with a double clothesline from the top. Now its over...
Shawn Michaels comes down to commentate on the Title match. Lawler says he'll have to restrain himself from "...punching Michael's lights out" (Yeah right...)
Sycho Sid vs. The Undertaker - WWF Title match - the Undertaker is wearing his old outfit tonight. Ross reminds us that the Undertaker first appeared at WrestleMania in 1991 and defeated Jimmy Snuka at that event. This will be one of the few times Sid has been the shorter and lighter of two combatants. Here comes Bret Hart as the two behemoths go nose to nose. Bret gets a mic and calls Shawn a faker and warns him not to interfere in the match. He tells the Undertaker that their friendship is over after the cage match incident last Monday. He then tells Sid that the belt belongs to him and that Sid is a fraud. Sid answers him by kicking him in the stomach and powerbombing him! He then picks up the mic and tells Bret to get his "whiny ass out of here".
The officials help Hart out of the ring. Sid continues to rant until the Undertaker attacks him from behind. As expected, the Undertaker dominates early on. But he makes the mistake of trying a splash in the corner and gets held in a bear hug. Sid uses the rest hold to regain his composure then starts pounding on UT's back. He slaps the bearhug back on but UT "rings his bell" to escape. Undertaker gets clotheslined over the top but lands on his feet. Sid comes over and UT grabs his legs and attempts to pull him out. Sid kicks him into and over the Spanish braodcast position as announcers flee in all directions. Sid then slams him on the table upsetting it - monitors go crashing. We are informed that both competitors requested that this be a no-holds barred match and Gorilla Monsoon has sanctioned it as such.
Meanwhile UT gets slammed back-first into the ring post then thrown into the ring. Inside Sid slaps on a camel clutch. He releases it and comes crashing down on the back. Sid launches himself off the second rope and crashes down again. UT gets up and mounts a comeback but Sid reverses a whip and catches UT in a powerslam. Sid drops a big running legdrop on him. We hear that Austin is refusing medical help in the back.
In the ring Sid whips the Undertaker and it is his turn to reverse. He can't follow up though. They fight in the corner and Sid gets knocked to the outside. UT follows him out and throws him over the railing. They slug it out over the railing. Sid is dragged over and slammed into the ring steps. He rolls Sid back in. He goes for an elbow drop and misses. Sid grabs a reverse chinlock on the prone Undertaker. After a while UT struggles back to his feet using uppercut punches to overcome his opponent. Sid rakes the eyes but as he moves in he is powerslammed. UT grabs onto Sid's traps to try and regain his wind.
Sid fights his way to an escape the whips his opponent and raises a foot. UT puts on the breaks and spins Sid around then clotheslines him - both men are down. UT goes for a feeble pin attempt - which fails. Both men are up they bounce off the ropes and then kick each other in the face! Sid recovers and tries a pin - no cigar. Sid mounts the second turnbuckle and waits for the Undertaker to rise. He drops a double axe-handle then mounts the opposite corner. He bowls his opponent over again then mounts the corner once again. This is one time too many. UT catches him with a fist to the midsection. He follows up with a kick to the solar plexus then lays in an elbow. Sid comes back with a rake to the eyes then scoop slams the dead man.
Sid goes to the corner again and climbs to the top. He gets caught and slammed to the mat. Now UT gets aerial and hits his flying clothesline then rolls over for a pin. No luck. UT draws the thumb across his throat. He puts Sid up for the Tombstone but Sid reverses it on him. Still no three count. They go back outside. Sid backs up and there is Bret Hart hitting him twice with a chair! The suits surround him and try to usher him away. Undertaker grabs Sid and slams his back into the post. Back in the ring he stalks his opponent and then chokeslams him. He goes for a pin but fails.
UT goes for a flying clothesline but Sid ducks it. Now Sid has UT in position for the powerbomb but here comes Hart again! Sid drops the Undertaker and attacks Hart who drops down and snaps Sid's neck off the top rope. Sid stumbles back right into the Undertaker's grasp. This time he gets the Tombstone and the pin! The Undertaker is the two-time WWF Champion.
So the undertaker got his due but in a very controversial fashion because of Bret Hart's interference. Overall a pretty good PPV.
Anyway, that's the way I see it...
editor Solie's Wrestling Newsletter
Bret Hart's Weekly Column The Calgary Sun has started publishing Bret Hart's column on line so rather than continue to summarize it here from now on I will be putting this link to it so you can go peruse it for yourselves.
(Editor's Note: If you have found anything thats been said here to be particularly offensive please read this disclaimer).
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