by Joe Crowe
This is a topic that we can talk about forever or until the cows come home, whichever comes first. A lot of you got a kick out of Son of Wrestling's Worst Finishers. Sit quietly and stare directly at your monitors while we explore even more bad finishing moves.
A bunch of you, including Charlesweber@webtv.net, let me know that I forgot one of the originators of the heart punch, Ox Baker. In my rush to be a smarty-pants, I honestly forgot Ox. Bmcgrath@sctcorp.com tells me "the story goes that he once killed a man in the ring with that punch, Yadda, Yadda ,Yadda." Bosco at email@example.com tells me Ox used the HP on Vern Gagne and he dropped the belt to Nick Bockwinkel one or two days later. Jeffrey Sacks at firstname.lastname@example.org says "Ox Baker was also claimed to have knocked out 10,000 men with the heart punch during his career."
Ox Baker rules! I love stories like that.
Kevin Wong at email@example.com writes "In this, the "extreme" age of professional wrestling, you left out an unconvincing finisher for an unconvincing wrestler. The move is The Jackhammer. Don't get me wrong. Bill Goldberg looks like one mean dude. But a) he's a horrible worker, b) he's obviously incapable of wrestling for more than 5 minutes, and c) other people have much better suplex-to-moves, which makes a suplex-to-slam look kinda dumb. In reference to c), I give you the following proof: Scott Steiner's Steiner Square Driver (Suplex-to-Piledriver) Sasaki and Hokuto's Brainbuster (Suplex-to-Brainbuster), and Al Snow's Suplex- to-Reverse Powerbomb (Not a finisher, but very impressive)
There are others (such as the fisherman's suplex/buster variations) but these three stand out. Especially the brainbusters. Isn't that particular brainbuster virtually the same thing? I remember watching on Nitro, when Hokuto hit that Brainbuster, the crowd gave a very audible OH! I have yet to hear that with the Jackhammer. Anyways, just my two cents (which, since I'm from Canada, means 1.5 cents after the exchange rate)."
Mr. Goldberg is obviously trying very hard, which is more than you can say about a lot of folks. He's yet to be tested against somebody who can match him in ring psychology. Luckily WCW has about 30 guys they can use as shark bait to work him into shape. Then we'll see. The spear actually got a bigger pop when I saw him live in Birmingham for Thunder.
Kenny at firstname.lastname@example.org notes Damian Demento's not-so frightening finisher. "What a deadly move it was: Kneedrop onto the throat after turning kneepad round! Ohhhhhhh, scary."
Yep, Kenny. For the love of God -- please don't turn that kneepad around! NOOOO!
John McAdam mentions the lameness of Honky Tonk Man's Shake, Rattle, and Roll swinging neckbreaker. DO NOT get me started about the Honky Tonk Man. I'll be here all night.
Terry West at email@example.com also mentions that Ox Baker cacked some guys with the heart punch. You think that'll be rumored someday about Yugi Nagata's "Nagata Lock?"
Terry relates a real-life near-tragedy involving a finisher. He says "Just a couple of notes from an elderly (42) wrestling fan. "Worst" in one way would describe the finishing move of Ted DeBiase when he was wrestling in the old Georgia NWA/WCW days. He wore a glove on the right hand and jumped off the top rope with a flying fist to the head/chest/throat area. Missed once against "Bullet" Bob Armstrong and actually crushed Armstrong's windpipe. Bleeding all over the ring, etc. Doctors had to perform an emergency tracheotomy to save the guy's life. Armstrong never wrestled much again--appeared back on the show still blue all over about 2 months later. Teddy stopped doing the flying fist; moved to the short-lived Universal Wrestling Federation Bill Watts started, became a face, then left when they gave a title shot to Hacksaw Duggan instead of him. Went to WWF as "The Million Dollar Man," adopted the sleeper, and the rest is history."
I never heard this story! After this time, Bob Armstrong was a superhero in my hometown fed, the infamous Continental Championship Wrestling. Actually, "The Bullet" was. Wonder if they were the same guy...
Joe Crowe is a stand-up comedian and writer based in Birmingham, Alabama and a regular contributer to Solie's Newsletter. Part 2 of this article will appear next Monday.
We open with Diamond Dallas Page, Booker T, Ric Flair and Bret Hart lamenting the turn of Scott Steiner last night at SuperBrawl.
Live from the ARCO Arena in Sacramento, CA. Tony welcomes us and announces that Sting is the new WCW World Champ. He is joined by Larry Zybszco and Mike Tenay.
Mean Gene is backstage with Rick Steiner who refuses to comment on his brother's situation.
Lex Luger vs. Curt Hennig (w/Rick Rude) - Luger is still heavily taped around the ribs. The nWo music starts and then is cut off as Luger takes the mic to make a statement. He congratulates Sting on his victory then comments on the Steiners' situation. He challanges Scott Steiner to a match. There is a lull, then the nWo music starts again and Hennig shows up with Rick Rude. Hennig goes after the ribs the first chance he gets but doesn't make an immediate dent. Suddenly Scott Steiner runs in - he's hard t o recognise at first because he has bleached his hair and beard. Hennig is DQ'd but he doesn't care. Steiner goes to work on Luger who takes it momentarily then comes back. He has Steiner well in hand when Buff Bagwell runs in and attacks Luger. Rick Steiner runs in next and downs Bagwell then confronts his brother, but then Brian Adams changes the balance again. Now the entire nWo lower echelon is in the ring but here comes Sting descending from the rafters. The nWo scatters as soon as he enters the ring. A coterie of WCW guys, faces and heels alike come in to attend to Luger. They applaud Sting and we can see the Barbarian comforting Rick Steiner. Cut to commercial.
Interestingly, I heard over the weekend that Scott Steiner has been resisting the idea of breaking up the team with his brother and had to be pursueded to go through with it.
Nitro Grrrrls frolic on the ramp...
Hammer (w/the Flock) vs. Diamond Dallas Page - this can't be a US Title match..? No, apparently it isn't. Hammer has superior strength and size going for him...and that's it. He fails to make a nip up after the first time he is downed. He uses his strength advantage well as the match goes on but he is caught in a Diamond Cutter off the second rope before he can have much effect. Raven runs in and puts a DDT on DDP but then Chris Benoit shows up almost immediately and thwarts whatever plans the Flock had for the US Champ. Cut to commercial.
We see a limo arrive with Hogan and Bischoff, it looks like they have a surprise that they don't want to reveal right away. They stomp into the building, seething. The camera switches back to the broadcast position then back to the nWo striding toward the arena floor. Again the scene is in the arena as Hogan and Bischoff go straight to the ring. They are pissed... Bischoff takes a mic and tells the crowd to "Shut up and listen!". He rants as the crowd heckles them. Hogan rants about Sting's cowardice then turns his guns on Nick Patrick. The crowd chants "Hogan Sucks!" as he rants on. He still claims to be the Champion. He announces that Scott Hall will face Sting for the World Title tonight. He then takes off on Randy Savage (I wondered when he'd get around to him...) He wants Savage in a cage at Uncensored. Savage gives his answer from the stands, and of course it is "Yes". He says he's going to kick Hogan out of the nWo. Hogan rants some more and Savage does likewise. Cut to commercial.
Kaz Hayashi vs. Ultimo Dragon - Tony tells us that the Giant will be here tonight to discuss his injuries and his future as the competitors are introduced. Hayashi is a newcomer to WCW, seems to have some wrestling talent and is an excellent high flyer. Still he falls for the Dragons headstand gambit. Hayashi throws what we used to call a "Brannie" when I was on the high school gymnastics team - a half twisting somersault planche from the inside out to down his opponent out on the floor. Back in the ring the Dragon is having a definite problem with the youngster but then Hayashi takes to long climbing to the top. The Dragon Frankensteiners him off the top then slaps on the Dragon sleeper. But Hayashi escapes with a knee to the forehead. Dragon downs him again and re-applies his sleeper to get the submission victory.
Mean Gene hypes the Hotline then we cut to commercial.
Nitro party video.
Raven (w/the Flock at ringside) vs. Chris Benoit - Benoit attacks Raven in the aisle as he approaches the ring. They end up in the ring but Raven is already reeling. Benoit puts him down then goes for his diving headbutt and misses. Raven almost gets the pin. Raven takes the advantage and brings his chair into the ring. He bulldogs Benoit onto the chair. Benoit ends up on the floor. As he gets up Raven has positioned the chair so that he can do a baseball slide and run into Benoit's face. Back in the ring , Raven tries to use the chair from the top but Benoit gets an arm in front and forces the weapon into the face of his opponent. He wedges the chair into the corner and flings Raven bodily into it. Now the Flock swarms into the ring but Benoit is ready for them - he beats Kidman and Lodi to the punch, ducks out of the way of Sick Boy's splash then gets caught by Riggs. He is overwhelmed untill DDP shows up. They fight the Flock and each other alternately and clear the ring. They almost face off but the Flock returns and divert their attention. Cut to commercial.
More Nitro Grrrls (actually its the same number of women but you get my drift...)
Chris Jericho vs. Lenny Lane - Cruiserweight Title match - Jericho enters wearing Juventud Guerrera's mask. He makes a variation of his usual stupid speech. He wants the name of the program changes to Monday Night Jericho (dream on Jerkoholic...) How jobber Lane deserves a title shot I don't know... Lane reminds me of a young Lex Luger - I wonder if they are related (both use the initials LL...hmmmm) He manages to get the best of Jericho on several occasions. Lane reverses a Lion Tamer attempt and almost gets a pin. Moments later Jericho succeeds in getting his signature finisher. Cut to commercial.
The announcers discuss the Scott Steiner situation and show clips from earlier tonight.
Vincent vs. Rick Steiner (w/Ted Dibiasi) - this will be a squash no doubt. Steiner and Dibiasi come out grim faced. Steiner puts the boots to his opponent immediately. He's biting and choking as the match goes on. He superplexes Vincent off the second rope then bulldogs him and pins him with a knee on the chest. After the match he continues his assault. Cut to commercial.
Yuji Nagata (w/Sonny Onoo) vs. Saturn - Wow! What a great match-up! These two are both powerhouses and submission specialists. They give us a mat wrestling lesson to start the contest. Saturn seems to have his opponent's number until Onoo gets involved. The distraction gives Nagata his opening and he capitalizes masterfully. Saturn has to get a hold of the ropes to escape Nagata's leghold. Moments later a Dragon Screw Legwhip cripples Saturn. Nagata drops to the mat and applies a legbar submission hold. Saturn escapes but he's having trouble standing. Nagata is back on him in a flash but Saturn is very resiliant and turns thigs around. The match begins to see-saw. Yuji goes for the Nagata lock but falls into the ropes. One more exchange puts Saturn in position to apply his Rings. Cut to commercial.
Renegade vs. Booker T - what is this? Squash night? I guess Booker has earned a evening off after his steller performance last night, but why waste our time with this? The fact that Renegade is a former TV Champ impresses me not at all. He holds his own in the beginning and gets a pretty good offensive flurry toward the middle of the match but there is no question about who will win this contest. Booker T dominates the latter third of the match and gets a fairly easy win. Cut to commercial.
Konnan vs. Lizmark Jr. - The nWo seems to be mostly coming down on their own tonight. Konnan has this one in hand from the get-go. The announcers are talking about what an upset a Lizmark win would be but there seems little chance of that happening. The masked Luchedore takes to the air and has a little success mid-match but then it's all down hill. A cradle DDT by Konnan sets up the Tequilla Sunrise and the submission. Konnan grabs a mic and makes a speech in partial Spanish about Juventud Guerrera's humiliation. He claims to have asked Guerrera to join the nWo and refers to him by his given name. Cut to commercial.
Nitro Grrrls dance around the broadcast booth...
Vicious & Delicious vs. High Voltage - we haven't seen Troy Williams favorite tag team on Nitro in a while. They seemed to have been getting a push a while back but now appear to be on a back burner. We hear they have been in Japan lately. HV look to have sharpened up their act in the Orient but they fare not well at all against the nWo team until the second half of the match. Rage is really showing us a lot tonight. An offensive flurry forces the bad guys to resort to an illegal doubleteam to turn the tables. Then Buff throws away the advantage by turning his back to pose. Moments later HV try to double suplex Norton but he blocks it and reverses the move! That's pretty much all she wrote as Buff throws a Blockbuster from the top and pins Rage (sorry Troy). Cut to commercial.
Disco Inferno vs. Eddie Guerrero - Disco frequently surprises us with his wrestling skill so this could be good. Sure enough this is fast paced and full of action. Eventually Guerrero focuses his attack on Disco's dancing legs. Disco comes back by throwing Eddie off the top rope then gets a pancake suplex. Guerrero comes back with another attack on the left leg including a missle drop-kick from the top rope on his knee!! A frog splash does the trick. Cut to commercial.
Nitro Grrrls dance in Nitro T-shirts...then peel them off and upset the announcers' concentration.
Mean Gene talks to JJ Dillon. Dillon reveals that he sent Nick Patrick to the ring last night to replace the assigned official and reconfirms that Sting is the undisputed Champion. He asks Patrick to come down, congratulates him then sends him to the ring for the next match.
Brad Armstrong vs. Ric Flair - the Governor of Minnisota has declared this coming Friday to be Ric Flair Day according to Tony. The announcers are speculating about who was in the limo earlier. Armstrong fares pretty well at the beginning of the match. Of course Flair is much slower these days but he stands Brad up in the corner and slaps in those chops as the crowd wooos. Armstrong comes back and executes his Russian Leg Sweep and almost gets the pin. Then he tries a splash off the top and misses entirely. Figure Four time. Cut to commercial.
We get a Giant tribute video before the real thing. Mean Gene is in the ring and calls the Giant down. He wears a neck brace and his civies. Gene asks the Giant for an update on his condition but he wants to rant at Kevin Nash first. He reveals that the doctors are telling him he may never wrestle again but he's having none of it. He vows that revenge and a chokeslam are in Nash's future. Cut to commercial.
Mean Gene is still in the ring as we return. He brings out Brian Adams for an interview. Adams is truculent to say the least and offers to smack Mean Gene then takes the mic. His rant is directed at Bret Hart. He is interrupted by the man himself who calls his bluff. They go at it as Okerlund bails. Adams gets the early advantage but Bret turns it around and gets the Sharpshooter. Hennig hits the rings but also gets beat on. Rude lends a hand and they turn the tables until Flair shows up to even the odds. The nWo guys retreat. I see a Flair/Hart vs. Adams/Hennig match to come. Flair takes the mic and praises Hart using his famous "...best there is" tag line. He offers his help to Bret. Bret in turn challanges Hennig to match at Uncensored. Cut to commercial.
Sting vs. Scott Hall - World Title match - we've been waiting to see this match since the day Sting slapped the spit out of Hall's mouth during the latter's second appearance on Nitro. Michael Buffer starts the intros. He is cut off as he entire nWo comes to the ring except for Hall. We notice that Scott Steiner's beard is two-toned - kind of zebra striped. Bischoff takes the mic from Buffer who looks around apprehensively as the thugs surround him in the ring. Bischoff promises that the gang will leave as soon as Sting appears. Sting comes down and stands off from the ring. We still haven't seen Hall. A second "Sting" approaches from behind with a baseball bat. He attacks as Sting practically backs into him. It's Hall. Sting is dragged into the ring and punked then spray painted. Savage runs in and is subdued. There is a stranger in the ring. A big bearded guy with long brown hair who stands in the corner and doesn't participate. Luger runs in with a steel chair and chases them off. Fade to black...
Hype for the Tag Team Title match between the Outlaws and LOD opens the program.
RAW comes to us on tape from Texas Coloseum in Waco. It looks like we get the main event at the top of the show as the New Age Outlaws come to the ring. The Road Dog is in rare form as he introduces the match on his way to the ring.
New Age Outlaws vs. The Road Warriors - World Tag Team Title match - LOD takes the early advantage as the rush the ring. The fight goes out to the floor and Hawk gets smashed into the ringsteps. Back in the ring, the Outlaws are all over Hawk but they have a hard time holding him down. Gunn whips him to the corner and he rebounds right into Billy's face. Animal gets in and cleans house. Moments later they get the Doomsday Device on the Road Dog. But Hawk is taking his time getting out of the ring and has the referee distracted. Billy rushes in and knocks Hawk from the ring then gets one of the belts and brains Animal. He is pinned. After the match, the Warriors get into a shouting match and then start beating on each other! The officials swarm into the ring to pull them apart. The end of an era is at hand... Cut to commercial.
Jeff Jarrett vs. Ken Shamrock - this is not an NWA North Amrican Title match - soon after the beginning of the match, Shamrock makes mincemeat out of his opponent. Jarrett has to thumb the eye to turn the tables - but it doesn't last long. Jarrett is clotheslined to the outside. He climbs on the apron and Shamrock tries to suplex him back in but Cornette has his foot. Jarrett falls on his opponent but both of them together can't hold Shamrock down. Ken gets his hands on Cornette but is blindsided before he can do anything. Jarret has the advantage for a while but Sharock turns it around again with a foot in Jarrett's face. The criss cross and hit head-to-head. Both guys are down as the crowd chants "Jarrett Sucks!". The action gets underway again and Shamrock holds the cards. Cornette pops onto the apron and distracts Shamrock again. In the next scuffle the ref is knocked down and Cornette slips into the ring with the racket...and hits Jarrett! Shamrock applies the ankle lock but it's academic. Jarrett is out cold. Jarrett comes to and leaves the ring muttering about parting ways with Cornette. Cut to commercial.
In the dressing room, Lawler tries to interview Animal who doesn't want to talk. Hawk runs in and the room fills up with officials and wrestlers trying to separate the two.
DOA vs. The Truth Commission - this is a 7 man match with Kurrgan as the 6th and 7th man. Recon starts with Skull. He is in against all three of his opponents and is going down. Kurrgan forces the tag and takes on both Bruise Brothers. They manage to double slam him but he pops right up and ends the match with a Claw on 8 Ball. Afterward Sniper and Jackyl get into another shouting match then come to blows. Kurrgan settles that argument with another Claw. He drags Sniper up the ramp still holding onto the Claw. Cut to commercial.
Jim Ross interviews DX via satelite in Shawns rec room. The idea of a lawsuit is floated by Ross and shot down by Shawn. They talk about making WrestleMania "X-Rated". Cut to commercial.
Sunny comes down on red patent leather to announce the next match.
Taka Michinoku vs. Barry Windham - this is a gross mis-match which Cornette blames on the fact that Taka couldn't read the contract. Windham creams the little guy and is about to get the pin when the lights go out. Kane shows up and Cornette and company depart in a hurry. Kane chokeslams the Light Heavyweight Champ then Tombstones him. After the slaughter, Cornette challanges Steve Austin to face Kane next week. Cut to commercial.
Clips of the Raod Warrior's demise...
Michael Cole tries to get the Outlaws to comment on the breakup of LOD. They take credit for it of course, then get into their car. As they start to pull away, Chainsaw Charlie and Cactus Jack attack their car. Jack smashes the windshield with a ball bat while Funk uses his fake chainsaw on the door. Sparks are flying but from the engine compartmen, not the blade...cut to commercial.
Jim Ross assures us that Dusty Rhodes talked to a WWF official tonight and had a good laugh over it as Goldust comes to the ring dressed as the WWF version of his dad - polka dots, arm and forehead scars and all.
Dustydust vs. Bradshaw - Bradshaw looks incredulous but decides to wrestle anyway. Goldust is creamed during the early going. In fact he offers almost no offense for several minutes. He finally comes up with some punches but then gets clotheslined out of his boots and pinned. Michael Cole talks to Runnels Jr. who just wants to get out of his costume. Okay, maybe Kevin Kelly can get a comment out of Hawk...nope. Cut to commercial.
Steve Blackman vs. Rocky Maivia - Blackman beat Faarooq as a result of Maivia's interference Saturday night. Blackman suffers almost immediately from his rookie status - he's getting creamed. Somehow Faarooq will mess this up for his protege. Blackman makes a brief comeback but Maivia catches him in a powerslam. Faarooq pops up on the apron and distracts the referee when the Rock could have been getting the pin. A mis-step causes Mavia to knock Faarooq off the apron. Moments later Maivia has the advantage and there's Faarooq up on the apron again. D'Lo tries to throw the rookie's Numchucks to Maivia but overshoots. Blackman catches them and uses them while Faarooq is distracting the ref again. Rocky gets pinned and Blackman remains undefeated.
Kevin Kelly with Luna who makes threats directed towards Sable as she tapes her fist. Cut to commercial.
Stills from No Way Out. The Kane/Vader match reviewed. Vader is set to have surgery tomorrow morning for broken bones in his face.
Sgt. Slaughter goes to the ring and tells Tommy Young he can't referee the next match which is for the NWA Tag Team Titles. He puts Earl Hebner in Young's place.
Headbangers vs. The Rock & Roll Express - NWA Tag Team Title match - Morton and Mosh start the match. R&R vaunted teamwork doesn't seem to be happening tonight. They keep hitting each other. In fact they end up in a shoving match which Cornette has to come up and mediate. He gets knocked on his can for his trouble. It looks like R&R are finally getting it together as the match continues...but no - they muff the double drop-kick. Mosh throws Gibson over the top rope but Hebner has no problem with that. Meanwhile, Cornette uses the his racket...on Morton! The Bangers win the Titles!
We meet another disgraced athlete who is involved in WrestleMania. Pete Rose will be there. Another proud moment for the WWF. Cut to commercial.
Tribute video to Steve Austin.
Marc mero (w/Sable) vs. Owen Hart - European Title match - Mero sends Sable back up the ramp before they reach the ring and we cut to commercial.
The crowd is chanting Sable's name as we return. Owen makes his entrance. This will be a short match because there are only about 4 minutes left in the show. Owen dominates this match from the beginning. Just after Mero turns the tables, Sable comes striding to the ring. The distraction almost gets Mero pinned. Mero maintaines his advantage but only for a moment. Owen is back on top in no time and Mero is going down. Mero uses his boxing skill to come back - he shoves the referee down then gets in his low blow. Owen is out of action only momentarily but comes back. It doesn't matter because the ref DQ Mero for shoving him. Luna runs to the ring and we have another potential cat fight as officials and the two respective mates try to keep the girls apart. Luna is escorted away so Sable grabs the mic and says "You get back here you little b**ch!" A melee is threatening as we fade to black...
The cat fights are the best part of the WWF lately...
At least that's the way I see it...
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