I will be out of town from Christmas Eve through Saturday so there will be no Friday Morning Edition this week. I will be republishing my version of "A Christmas Poem" as is my custom on Christmas Eve. The next full edition of the newsletter will be the Starrcade Report on Sunday.
The airing last night of the documentary film "HITMAN HART: Wrestling with Shadows" on the A&E Network seems have to opened a lot of eyes. You can read comments I have received on the Mailroom page.
Except for the surprise appearance of George "the Animal" Steel, last night's Sunday Night Heat broadcast was a non-event so I didn't choose to write a report on it.
Now on to the news. The following is a press release from WCW commentator Lee Marshall:
Additionally, the endless travel was starting to take it's toll on my health.
Unlike my colleagues, I could not move to Atlanta. First of all, my family is here. Seconly, I own a production company that occupied the few hours I had at home. I had come to the proverbial cross-roads. While my responsibilities with WCW continued to increase my geography remained the same. I was making two round- trips from Los Angeles each week. As I said, the travel was also a WCW issue. During a recent contract conversation, I was again asked if I could move to Atlanta. I do not think WCW was unfair in asking this question. Remember I said I was making two round-trips per week from Los Angeles. Well, the airlines don't fly people for free. This year, my travel expenses cost WCW $100,000. A number that large is certainly reason enough for WCW executives to ask if I could move.
I have not signed the new contract presented to me by WCW. I can not ask WCW to modify their needs to fit my home life and personal business, nor can I ask them to spend huge amounts of money to fly me around the country. WCW executives agree. I have talked with a number of people, including Eric Bischoff, and it is agreed that I will be leaving WCW following the January 4th Nitro and Nitro Blast broadcast in Atlanta.
I hope everyone understands that these decisions were not made out of anger or protest. As I said, my contractual dealings with WCW have always been fair. Our collective time and travel issues are the reasons behind our decision.
It goes without saying that I will miss seeing my friends on a weekly basis.
In particular, I'll miss the friends with whom I worked the closest. Working with Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan, Larry Zbyszko, Mike Tenay and Gene Okerlund was one of the things that made my association with WCW so wonderful. And although this may go against the grain of his "heel" personality, I want everyone to know that Eric Bischoff is a total class act. I go back a long way with Eric. Personally, I am so very proud of Eric for what he has done, and what I know he'll do in the future. He's a good guy and a good friend.
My production company, which is not so creatively called "Lee Marshall Productions" will now get my full, and much needed attention. As in the past, we'll be concentrating on Movie, TV, industrial and commercial voice-overs, as well as producing local and syndicated radio and tv projects.
In fact, should anyone want to reach me, here's my address:
Lee Marshall Productions
23852 Pacific Coast Hwy
Malibu, CA 90265
Thanks. I'll see you at the matches."
The program starts with a montage detailing the rise of the nWo starting with the original Outsiders' Invasion focusing on Eric Bischoff's part in all of it and culminating with scenes from the Heart Attack angle on Nitro and Thunder last week. Cut to Nitro Grrrrrls in the ring dancing in silver spandex. The announcers are saying that they hope to get an update on Ric Flair's condition tonight. Legendary Larry throws his Santa hat to the crowd as Tony blathers on about Starrcade. Tony then says that Scott Hall vs. Goldberg is the main event tonight. Nitro is live from St. Louis.
Fit Finley vs. Scott Putski - the Belfast Bruiser doesn't suffer fools gladly so he immediately ties "the Putz" up. Putski powers to escape. They grapple some more without direction then Finley comes up behind his opponent and grabs a double handfull of his traps! Putski drops to his knees and Finley controls him with this move for a minute or so. He finally powers his way out of it so Finley drops down to attack a leg, twisting in all directions as they drift toward the ropes. He drags Putski back to the center then drops on the leg again. When Putski powers out again he retaliates with clubbing fists. Finley uses a shortcut to regain control then is chased to the floor where the referee gets between them. Finley is waving a chair but the ref relieves him of it. The two are face to face on the floor as we cut to commercial.
They are back in the ring as we return and Finley is looking for a friendly handshake. Putski is wary but succombs to a series of suplexes and is then dragged to the apron and smashed. After taking it for a moment, Putski gains the advantage coming back into the ring. He solidifies his advantage by allowing Finley to smash his shoulder into the ringpost. Looks good for Putski as he goes for his father's Polish Hammer maneuver but aims it way to high. Finley gets under it and hoists Putski right into his Tombstone Piledriver for the win.
More video detailing the heart attack skit and then Bischoff's humilliation of Flair's wife and sons.
Ernest Miller comes to the ring alone. He tells the crowd to "Shut Up!" then launches into his spiel. Nobody's beat him, he's the greatest, bring somebody out yatta, yatta. Santa Claus strolls out throwing candy to the kids of all ages. Miller starts by insulting him then he invites St. Nick into the ring. Miller attacks Santa only to find that it is Saturn. He gets suplexed out of his boots. Cut to commercial.
Chavo Guerrero, Jr. vs. Kaz Hayashi - after some byplay with Pepe, Guerrerro finally starts the match only to have Hayashi throw Pepe to the crowd ringside. Chavo retains his cool and a security man rescues the horse. Once joined, the match seems pretty evenly fought through the early moments but Chavo is gaining ground. He eventually maneuvers Hayashi into position for the Tornado DDT and gets the pin. Cut to a video on Bam Bam Bigalow which shows him wreaking havoc then turns into a tribute to Goldberg.
Kevin Nash comes to the ring in street clothes to fire the crowd up. He talks about Goldberg, reciting his win/loss record then mentions his own World Title reign (in the WWF, I assume he means) and quotes a rather dubious statistic of a 190+ title defense winning streak during his time as Champ. He tells the Champ that he (Nash) has more time to prepare because he isn't out there "...representing the corporation..." and he intends to win (duh..?) Cut to commercial.
More Nitro Grrrrrrrls as we return. There is a brand new member tonight -- Storm.
Mean Gene is on the ramp to talk to Raven. The Birdguy comes out with Kanyon. Gene wants to know about Raven's therapy and why his mother showed up last week. Raven says she just wants to be on TV. Kanyon starts to rag on him so Raven attacks his companion. This brings Raven's mother out to pull them apart. She starts lecturing Raven about going back to his doctor for more treatment. He argues with her but it isn't very convincing. She leads him away and we cut to commercial.
Eric Bischoff comes out to a chorus of booos. He wastes an inordinate amount of air time just getting to the ring. He starts his rant as we cut to the back to watch the Horsemen coming in the back with Ric Flair!!! They advance through the building as we listen to Bischoff rants on and on, picking off nWo personnel as they go. Flair flies into the ring and Bischoff is chased right out of the building and out to the parking area. Flair returns to the ring, clearly he is feeling no ill effects from the "heart attack". He promises to kill Bischoff if he can get his hands on him. I'll be damned - I finally predicted something correctly! So now I guess Bischoff will demand a Doctor's clearance and we will get it before the show's over... Cut to commercial.
Video exploration of the Giant/DDP/Bret Hart feud.
Lizmark vs. Wrath - Gosh! How will a monster like Wrath ever to be able to handle the mighty Lizmark..? Tony is apologizing to the wrestlers for talking about everything but their match. Never mind Tony, it's nothing to write home about. Wrath is an imposing guy but he doesn't sell his smaller opponents' moves well enough to justify the over-extended squashes that are his stock in trade. He continues to pour on the punishment long after he could have pinned the man. Lizmark gets the echo of a comeback just before the end then he is put away with the Meltdown. Cut to commercial.
Jingle Bells plays as the Nitro Grrrrrls dance on the platform. This weeks Nitro Party took place at a Bowling alley.
Eddie Guerrero and his mysterious body guard come to the ring. Rey Misterio joins them. Eddie rants at Rey about being part of "La Rasa" and not an individual. Oh I see - this is a match... Rey completely bamboozles Guerrero to start then the match goes to the floor where Guerrero turns the tables. Rey is out of it on the floor. Back in the ring, Eddie continues his assault. He seems to be concentrating on Rey's back and neck. He switches to the legs with a modified Indian Deathlock. Rey is screaming in pain. Rey finally rolls out to the apron and gets to his feet. Eddie tries to suplex him in but gets suplexed out instead. Rey rolls him back in and pays for it as Guerrero comes roaring back. He gets Rey in a camel clutch and starts tearing his mask apart. He lays off the mask and goes back to administering body blows. Rey finally kicks out to try a comeback but is stopped in his tracks. Rey is still fighting but he is going down. Eddie clips him behind the knee then applies a submission hold. He lets off of it after a moment. He pounds on him some more then grabs an STF as we cut to commercial.
Eddie has Rey in a modified reversed surfboard as we return. Rey wiggles out of it but Eddie is still in control. He positions Rey upside down in the corner and then rushes him. Rey drags himself out of the way and Eddie crotches himself on the ring post. He tumbles to the floor where Rey splashes him into the railing. Eddie comes right back and assumes control again but now Rey has his second wind. He takes to the air and starts to make his comeback. Eddie stops him again and gets a powerbomb. Rey kicks out and then flies some more. Eddie is almost pinned but no cigar. Guerrero comes back again and the body guard gets involved. Here comes Kidman. He pops up on the apron and tries to hit Guerrero but gets Misterio by mistake. Rey is pinned. Kidman drags Misterio toward the apron as we break away.
Scott Steiner comes down for his weekly rant. He spouts his usual crap then introduces Mark McGuire...except it is Bagwell they play out a little skit that basically seems to accuse McGuire of using performance enhancing drugs. The skit generally denigrates the Cardinals and St. Louis.
Tony and the Weasel discuss Nash's chances at Starrcade.
Norman Smiley vs. Prince Iaukea - Iaukea starts aggressive but Smiley is all over him. Smiley dominates until he stops to do his annoying dance. The Prince makes a comeback but Smiley stops him in his tracks with a body vice submission hold and takes the win. Cut to commercial.
Van Hammer vs. Barry Windham - Windham goes right to work on his slightly larger opponent until Ric Flair runs in and starts to cream him. He chases Windham from the ring then beats him all the way up the aisle and back to the ring. When Windham starts to recover, Flair just shoves his fingers into the big guy's eyes. Now they are in the ring again and Flair is just whaling on Windham. He delivers low blows and uppercuts and sucker punches him in the kidney. Vincent runs in and is dispatched. Arn shows up to even the odds. Here come Adams and Horace only to be attacked from behind by Malenko and Benoit. They fight out to the parking lot until the security and police forces intervene. Benoit gets maced!!! Back in the ring, Arn and Flair are waiting. Flair's clothes are in shambles. He rants against Bischoff calling down the wrath of God against him as he recounts some of the history between the two of him. He mentions Dick the Bruiser and Bruiser Brody and reveals that it was young Reid who convinced him to go after Bischoff in the first place. Bischoff shows up miming that he is crying crocidile tears and Flair quits the ring immediately to go after him. But Bischoff has security placed to protect him. He orders them to stop Flair and arrest him. They converge on Flair and Anderson and start dragging them away as we cut to commercial.
Jerry Flynn vs. Booker T - Booker T starts strong but Flynn matches him in size and intensity and has a credible martial arts attack in his arsenal. Booker has his flying feet and that is all he needs for this one. He gives Flynn just enough rope...then hangs him. Short match. Cut to commercial.
Kenny Kaos vs. Lex Luger - Kenny's musculature looks to rival Lugers, although he is a bit shorter. He and Luger trade moves with Kaos coming out on the receiving end until Kaos decides to stick a finger in Luger's eye. Now it is all Kaos for a while. He is hesitating to much however. Luger recovers and slips in a back elbow. Luger is on the ascendency as Rage comes to the ring and distracts Kaos. Luger racks his opponent and gets the win. Afterward Kaos and Rage have some words about their situation as we fade to the commercial.
More Nitro Grrrrls... then cut to Konnan's Video (does anybody know the name of this song or who the artist is?)
Konnan vs. Alex Wright - TV Title match - Disco Inferno shows up in his Wolf Pack shirt. He denounces Alex Wright then insists again that he has been made Wolf Pack by Kevin Nash. He offers to prove it after the match. Konnan goes into this one acting a little cocky - he soons thinks better of that idea. He gets serious and Wright leaves the ring and walks away. Wright is returning as we cut to commercial.
We return to find Wright using Konnan's singlet to strangle him. He has pulled out all the stops but when he goes to the top, Konnan is instantly on his feet. Wright jumps down and is steamrolled several times. Konnan applies a reverse chickenwing as the crowds chants "Boring". He turns the hold loose and downs his opponent but can't get the pin. Konnan waits him out then comes back with a vengence. He gets the Tequilla Sunrise to win. Wright throws a temper tantrum after the match. While Wright has Konnan distracted Chris Jericho runs in and brains him with the TV Title belt. He punks Konnan and then dons the belt. He gets in a couple of more kicks then leaves with the belt. Cut to commercial.
Disco Inferno vs. The Giant - Disco comes out and demands an opponent from the ranks of the nWo black and white to prove he is worthy of being Wolf Pack. His worst nightmare is realized as the Giant appears. Disco attacks and is repelled three times in a row. Then the Giant wades in and just starts taking him apart. Disco has little to no offense as the match proceeds. He attempts a Chartbuster but is merely shrugged off. The Giant puts his Super Chokeslam on to take the pin. After the match the Giant taunts Diamond Dallas Page. He promises to pull his head off then mash him like a cockroach. Page answers from the stands with his usual aplomb. Cut to commercial.
Goldberg vs. Scott Hall - non-Title match - Michael Buffer does the honors as the main event gets started. Goldberg is showing some wrestling acumen during the early going. He steamrolls over Hall then Kevin Nash shows up. Nash haunts the ringside area, distracting the Champ so that the tide turns to Hall. Goldberg takes a couple of shots than roars back as usual. Suddenly Bam Bam Bigalow runs in and attacks Goldberg leaving Nash to drag Hall out of the ring as we fade to black...
Mr. McMahon appears to be going somewhere for a workout. He leaves Shane and the stooges in charge, promising to return with a "big bonus" for the corporation. As soon as he leaves, Shane says he has things to do and rushes off, the stooges follow in a confused state.
Shane leads the corporate team to the ring. Shawn Michaels wears a Santa hat. Shane is letting his newfound authority go to his head but before he can elaborate, DX shows up on the platform. They have Mankind with them. Shane orders the Mankind music turned off. He rants at DX who answers him tit for tat. HHH calls Shane an a$$h*le and the crowd takes up the chant. He turns to Shawn to tell the New Age Outlaws what they face tonight. He announces matches between Billy vs. Shamrock, Road Dog vs. Bossman and HHH/X-Pac vs. The Rock/Test. Then Shane sets up a match pitting himself against Mankind!!! Foley and the gang have a good laugh over that one, then he accepts the match. HHH finishes on the "Suck It!" formula...at least he's stopped doing that stupid Michael Buffer impression... Cut to commercial.
The D-Lo and Mark Henry are arguing over Henry's desire to get down with some ladies during the card. Henry wants D-Lo to stand guard while he dallies!
Gangrel vs. Al Snow (w/Head) - that is Teddy Long! I thought I saw him last night on Heat but I wasn't sure. He is the referee for this match. Snows unorthadox attack is effective against the weird but slightly more conventional Gangrel in the early going. Gangrel holds his own but it is clear who is really in control. Snow repeatedly out maneuvers his opponent. His Snow Plow finishes the match then the lights go out. Under occasional strobe light we watch Snow get punked and drenched in "blood". Cut to commercial.
Billy Gunn vs. Ken Shamrock - the match is announced as being for the Intercontinental Title - I am surprised to see that Billy dwarfs his opponent. He brawls while Shamrock uses submission tactics. Billy's size and tactics prove the more effective as the match progresses. He drops Shamrock with a tackle then grabs an arm bar. He maneuvers Shamrock into a corner then kicks him to the mid-section. Shamrock comes back with a big clothesline then starts working on the left knee that Billy injured last week. Tghe fight goes to the floor where Shamrock tries to use a chair but is prevented by the referee. Back in the ring, Shamrock is really tearing into Billy's knee. He gets a series of unsuccessful pin attempts. Shamrock goes for a Frankensteiner but is blocked and rolled up. Billy gets the pin and the Title!! Wait a minute, here comes Michaels - he declares that the match was non-title despite what the announcer said at the beginning. Billy wins the match but not the title. He moons the Commissioner after the call. I'm so glad he decided to be adult about the situation. Cut to commercial.
Hawk comes to the ring with a big cast on his left arm. He has a "dark deep little secret" to reveal about Droz. Droz comes down as well. He accuses Droz of being a drug pusher who tried to push Hawk out of the LOD. He tells him he has "hatred for" Droz then turns his back to leave. Droz attacks him but then Animal shows up to get between them. In the back D-Lo is still whining about his guard duty. Jacqueline and Terri show their heads from behind the door and invite Henry in. Henry obliges and D-Lo shakes his head as his partner disappears through the door. Cut to commercial.
We return to video of what Steve Austin did to Santa Claus last year.
Steve Blackman vs. The Blue Blazer (whoever that is) (w/Owen Hart) - Hart distracts Blackman so that the Blazer can get in the first blow. Owen joins the broadcast team while Blackman makes mincemeat out of the masked one. He allows himself to be distracted by trying to remove the mask. The match goes into see-saw mode until Owen gets involved by grabbing Blackman's leg from the outside. He enters the ring and helps punk Blackman until Goldust appears to even the odds. Hart battles Blackman while Goldust pursues the Blazer. Eventually Blackman and Goldust surround the Blazer and get his mask off- it's Jeff Jarrett. In the back Terri and Jacquie are offering to take a shower while Henry watches. Cut to commercial.
Henry is enjoying peeking through the shower curtain as we return. Following that they replay the tape of McMahon leaving earlier.
Road Dog vs. The Big Bossman - Hard Core Title match - Road Dog goads the Bossman into putting his Title up for grabs. The Dog lures Bossman to the outside then back in to take the early initiative but Bossman is too formidable to be held off for long. Jesse James will have to use guile to pull this one off. He leads Bossman out to the floor and whacks him with a chair. Bossman comes right back and throws the ringsteps at him!! The Dog is on the receiving end as Bossman tosses him over the barrier then follows him into the crowd. He runs the Dog into a technician's table then breaks a broom head over his arm. He drags his opponent back to the ring and starts beating him with his belt. Bossman tries to get some powder out of his pocket but the Dog kicks it into his face then beats him with his own belt. The match goes outside again where Bossman attacks James with a broken fan. Somewhere he gets a noose and puts it around the Dogs neck. He goes for a pin on the concrete but fails. Road Dog comes back with a low blow then puts a trash can over his opponent's head and upper body. He drop kicks him but then Bossman comes back and is destroying him when Mankind shows up, tosses a net over Bossman's head and then hits him with the night stick. Road Dog pins him on the floor and takes the Hardcore Title. Cut to commercial.
The girls are undressing Henry as we return. They get him down to his red silk under drawers then fasten a studded collar round his throat. Terri wants to give him a massage so they lead him to a massage table and lay him down. Terri puts oil on him then sprays whipped cream on his chest. They have put a ball in his mouth and now Terri is waving something around that buzzes electrically. Cut to commercial.
Brisco and Patterson are trying to calm Shane down but he is insisting that he will face Mankind later tonight. Meanwhile the girls are strapping their victim onto the table.
The Acolytes vs. The Job Squad (Holly and Scorpio) - Scorpio is thrown out of the ring immediately. Bradshaw follows him out leaving Holly to face Faarooq. The other two mount the corners and the tag team match is on. The Squad tries to doubleteam Bradshaw but it isn't too effective. Scorpio is almost pinned with a cavelier cover. Holly saves his cookies. The Acolytes seem to eschew tagging in and out. Now the two black guys are brawling outside while th two white guys fight in the ring. Eventually the referee gives up and disqualifies the Acolytes. In the back, Shane is still running ahead of the stooges who plead with him to reconsider his decision to fight Foley. Cut to commercial.
Shane McMahon (w/the Stooges) vs. Mankind - Shane gets the first few jabs to Mankind's face and then he gets run down. The Stooges are trying to interfere but are not getting the job done. Foley has a chair but then instead of using it he gives it to Shane and invites him to use it. Shane whacks him from behind but Foley no-sells the shot. He is all over Shane then dons Mr. Socko for the claw. The corporation runs in and attacks followed by DX who come in on Foley's side. Cut to commercial.
The Stooges are out in the parking lot worrying about what will happen to them. In the arena, D-Lo is trying to get Henry to join him for their match.
D-Lo Brown/Mark Henry vs. The Headbangers - Henry fails to appear of course. In the back he is tied down with a C-Clamp on his crotch, covered in hot wax and being whipped by the girls. Back in the ring D-Lo is being slowly defeated although he holds his own for quite a while. All through the match Lawler keeps up a running commentary that hints at what is going on with Henry and the girls. In the ring D-Lo is still overmatched and pinned in a flash. Mark Henry appears in a disheveled state to be upbraided by D-Lo. In the parking lot the stooges are trying to blame each other. Vince arrives and tries to sort out the story then pushes past them and heads into the building. Cut to commercial.
HHH/X-Pac (w/DX) vs. The Rock/Test (w/The Corporation) - HHH goes into his MB impression (damn, I knew it was too good to be true...) This is Test's first official match. Michaels orders the excess DX'rs to leave the ring area. Vince appears on the ramp and countermands that order then joins his troups ringside. Rock starts with X-Pac and is outwrestled. HHH is tagged in and so is Test. Test takes control right off the bat with a series of punches and forearm blows until he telegraphes a move and gets reversed. HHH comes on strong for a while but is distracted by Maivia which gives Test a chance to get a boot to the face. The Rock comes in a continues the assault. He tags in Test who drapes HHH's neck over the bottom rope. HHH gets loose and tags X-Pac in. Waltman turns the tables but gets levered to the outside and smashed into the corner post. In the ring the referee is between Test and HHH - Waltman is the legal man still. Back in the ring, X-Pac is getting creamed by doubleteams as HHH continually distracts the referee. The Rock gets his elbow drop then HHH comes in and breaks up the pin. Test is back in and on the attack again. He misses a boot to the face and Waltman puts him down but can't follow up. They each struggle to tag out and succeed. The Rock faces HHH and is on the defensive immediately. Waltman is tossed out while HHH gets the Pedegree on Test. The Rock makes the save and...the lights go out. Kane appears on the platform fresh from the looney bin. He strides into the ring and faces the corporation - then turns and chokeslams HHH! He then joins the mob around Billy and gives him the same treatment. He starts to do the Rock then turns uinstead to X-Pac. Chyna attacks him and is next in line. Kane seems to be about to chokeslam her when the picture fades.
That's it for tonight, I will be publishing a Christmas Eve issue and then I'll see you all Sunday night. Until then...
At least that's the way I see it...
Editor, Solie's Wrestling Newsletter
This page is a personal tribute and is in no way connected to any of the wrestling promotions mentioned on it. It is dedicated to the Dean of Wrestling announcers, Gordon Solie. Copyright 1998 - Jump City Productions