By Ervin Griffin, Jr. and Matt Benaka
Part 29: A Year In The WWF, pt. 4: An (Im)Perfect Ending
After dropping the WWF World title to Bret "HitMan" Hart on October 12, 1992, "Nature Boy" Ric Flair was thought to be the leading challenger over the next few months. While he did receive title matches at house shows, the two did not meet at a big PPV event while both were in the WWF (this is one of the few marquee matches that the WWF did not choose to show on PPV Television that was later done in WCW when both men showed up there). Meanwhile, Flair and Scott Hall (aka Razor Ramon) was gearing up for a big tag bout with The Ultimate Warrior and Randy "Macho Man" Savage (they were dubbed "The Ultimate Maniacs"). However, two weeks before the big bout at Survivor Series '92, UW went AWOL on Savage.
It turns out that UW was fired from the WWF for wanting to pursue personal interests that were not favored by the company (Special thanks to Joe De Leon of the Hardcore Wrestling Gazette for that piece of information.). This left Randy Savage without a partner so, appealing to his massive ego, Savage offered Curt Hennig (who was then known as "Mr. Perfect") UW slot as his partner. Bobby Hennen balked at this offer but Hennig, against Flair's and Hennen's wishes, took the offer. This, of course, has Flair livid!!! Then came Survivor Series which saw Savage and Hennig battle Flair and Hall. This marked the first time that Hennig and Flair had fought in the ring together (this was also one of his first matches ever with Scott Hall). Hennig did hold his own with Flair and Hall. Savage, surprisingly, did not do as well as Hall and Flair worked over the legs of Savage. The match ended when the ref called for a DQ on Flair and Hall (I can't remember what for though). This would begin the on/off rivary between Hennig and Flair.
Meanwhile, Flair would continue wrestling in the WWF. He had rematches with Bret for the WWF Title that saw either Hart defeating him again or Flair winning by a DQ or countout which saw Hart retain the title anyway. Flair and Hennig also tangled at the 1993 Royal Rumble. Hennig eliminated Flair within the first twenty minutes of the bout. Although Hennig was eliminated about five minutes later, this was a big psychological blow to Flair. The reason I say that is because, the week of the Rumble on WWF RAW, Hennig challenged Flair to a "loser leaves WWF" match. While I have never seen the match, I have it on good authority that Flair's contract was already up before that match and chose not to renew it. So, for all intents and purposes, this was Flair's last match officially as he jobbed to Hennig. Flair, however, did wrestle some WWF house shows right after he lost to Hennig. He continued to wrestle in those house shows until early-February when he returned to a place that had changed but was still the same. WCW.
NEXT: Texas And Hollywood
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Ervin Griffin Jr. is Solie's resident historian and also contributes to the Ringside Insider on a regular basis. Many of his previous articles are available in the
Scott Steiner assumes the mantle of authority in a video review then challenges Scott Hall. Hall gets Nash and they have a match...etc.
Big Poppa Putz does his best to match up to Hollywood Hogan's standards and falls woefully short. He promises to hurt on Scott Hall later tonight.
Tony tells us that Scott Steiner and Scott Hall will have a match later as we return.
Eddie Guerrero (w/his bodyguard) vs. Ciclope - the latter must be about the last luchedore who hasn't joined the LWO...yet. Guerrero dominates the early going. Ciclope gets loose for about 5 seconds but flings himself into the corner buckle. The match goes out to the floor where Ciclope finally turns the tables. Back in th ring, the continues to hold the advantage for two exchanges then Eddie comes roaring back. Eddie has the match in hand when he suddenly stops and signals his thugs to come to the ring. Eddie hands the mic over to Psychosis to recruit Ciclope in Spanish. He then repeats the pitch in English. Ciclope takes the shirt. Cut to a clip of Konnan after winning the TV Title on Moday, then to commercial.
More clips from Monday - DDP loses his US Title to Bret Hart with an assist from the Giant.
Renegade vs. The Giant - Squash Alert!!!! This match is a joke... Renegade's only offense is a series of stiff-fingered jabs to the throat. He gets chokeslammed off the top turnbuckle for his trouble. After the match, the Giant rants at Diamond Dallas Page until Page sneaks into the ring with a chair and brains the big guy. Actually he used the chair as a shield when the Giant threw a punch and then he brained him. The Giant flips over the top to the floor (it looked like it hurt) and then staggers away from the ring area as Page shouts challenges. Cut to commercial.
Mike Enos vs. Chavo Guerrero, Jr. - Enos has had some good matches lately, he seems to be getting a little push lately (as a top-tier jobber...) - with a great performer like Chavo, he should do pretty good. Chavo dominates the first exchange but then seems to fall prey to Enos' power. He squirms away from it without getting hurt but then gets knocked to the floor. Enos takes way to long lifting Chavo into a gorilla press and tossing him back over the top rope. Back in the ring it takes Chavo almost no time to turn things back around. They go into see-saw mode with Chavo continually thwarting his opponent's power - then Enos finally conenects, putting a super plex followed by a big powerslam. Chavo looks done for and then Enos makes the fatel mistake of pulling Guerrero up. Two move later he goes for a powerbomb but Guerrero crawls right over the top of him and gets a roll-up and the pin. Enos attacks after the bout but is ineffectual at best. Cut to commercial.
Rey Misterio, Jr. vs. Villano V- Rey wears the too-large LWO shirt to the ring and moves to Eddie Guerrero's music. He looks disgusted. In Mexico this would be the top of the card - the Villano's are legendary throughout Latin America. Villano V is too experienced to fall too quickly to Misterio's aerial assault. In fact he ties the smaller man up pretty good through much of this match. Of course he also has a massive size advantage. Eventually, Misterio gets some room to maneuver and that's about the last we see of the legendary Senor V. Rey does hia best X-Pac impression, riding cowboy on his opponent in the corner before putting him away with the famous Frankensteiner. Tony intercepts Misterio to interview him and starts to talk about an upcoming Cruiserweight Title contention match when Guerrero shows up with his gang o' thugs. Eddie interrupts Schiavone to say that he, as leader of the LWO, has chosen Juventud Guererra as the next Champion. Tony then continues his announcement that Juvey and Rey are scheduled to have a match for Title contention next week. Eddie loses it, Rey skedaddles. Cut to commercial.
We come back to video of the World Title match contract signing from Monday.
Chip Minton vs. Wrath - here we go again. Minton is an Olympic athlete (bobsled) yatta, yatta... he grabs a headlock to start then never surfaces again. He gets loose and misses a drop-kick, then is swatted away, then launchs himself right into Wrath's arms. They go to the floor, where Wrath just devastates the rookie. Back inside and Minton is still showing surprising strength...when he kicks out... His offense consists of shoulder blocks and mean looks. Wrath just absorbs it and railroads ahead. Usual finish. Cut to commercial.
Video montage shows the Horsemen drama from Nitro - Flair gets to have a match with Bischoff at Starrcade. Raven/Kanyon vs. Steve McMichael/Chris Benoit - the K-man decides to cheer Raven up by calling for his question - only he rewords it so that the answer "Everyone" suits his purpose. Benoit starts with Kanyon who outmaneuvers his opponent until Benoit just stands his ground and throws a chop. Kanyon slows it down but now Benoit is on top of the wrestling game. Kanyon can't get Raven to pay attention - much less get a tag, so he is wrestling this match by himself. He starts trying to smother Benoit and then turns to yell at his partner. Mongo tags in during the lull and then starts knocking Kanyon off his feet repeatedly. They work their way over to the Horsemen corner where Benoit can lend assistance. Kanyon is in a lot of trouble - meanwhile Raven is pouting with his back to the ring. McMichael and Benoit continue their assault on the hapless Kanyon, who keeps showing some spunk despite reeling around defenslessly. Benoit goes for his diving headbutt and misses. Kanyon tries for a tag but Raven just ignores him. The referee orders Raven into the ring, but he just hops off the apron and walks away. He is counted out as the legal man. Cut to commercial.
More footage of Konnan winning the TV belt. Then another airing of "his" music video. It sure looks like Konnan just hijacked his singing partner's video - cut to commercial...please!!
Disco Inferno vs. Konnan - Disco says that he will have a "major announcement" at Nitro then suggests that he and Konnan should do a video together. That's before the TV Champ makes his entrance. Konnan energetically goes through his paces and gets a good pop, then he tells Disco to stuff it... Disco is just a little too lightweight (philosophically speaking, of course) to stand up to Konnan's attack. The Champion literally stomps Disco into the corner. Moments later Disco tries to make his move, crawling up to the top, but Konnan gets to his feet to quickly. After taking a foot to the face, Disco redoubles his efforts and finally starts to pull ahead. As he takes control his concentration starts to slip and soon he's bumping and grinding when he should be taking care of business. Quick as a flash, Konnan turns the tables and has an extended flurry. Disco finesses a swinging neck breaker and then hits a second one. That's all he gets as Konnan comes right back with a flurry that ends in a Tequila Sunrise. Cut to commercial.
Scott Steiner vs. Scott Hall - I just can't get to excited about Scott Steiner as the "new Hollywood", and I can't believe that situation will last very long. I still see this as a perfect opportunity for Scott Hall. After buttering Kevin Nash up for a while, he turns heel again and emerges as the leader of the nWo black and white. Hall fools the "referee" into checking Steiner's knee pads and uses him as a sheild for his intitial assault. Steiner comes back and is obliged with a fast count by his toadie. Hall is tossed to the outside after the "official" trips him. Steiner starts working on Hall's left knee. He chokes Hall with impunity. The "referee" starts acting like a cheerleader for Big Papa Putz. He pauses for a cavalier cover which fails. Steiner grabs a standing sleeper. Hall reverses it then gets suplexed onto the back of his head. Both guys are down for a moment. Steiner gets another fast two count then Hall comes alive. In a flash he has Steiner pinned but the "referee" slows his count accordingly. He does it a second time then pulls him out of the "Edge". Hall pauses to "Edge" the "referee". Steiner is back and attacks. He gets Hall into the "Steiner Recliner" and pours it on. Fade to black...be back on Monday...
At least that's the way I see it...
Editor, Solie's Wrestling Newsletter
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