I also enjoyed the interview segment with Paul Wight. Some of his observations about his upbringing and the flashes of gentle humor were a definite departure from the image commonly portrayed by these athletes. De-mystifying these guys can only add to their appeal.
Heat is live from San Diego, CA. The New Age Outlaws open the program. The Road Dogg is doing his usual schtick, oblivious to his partner's apparent disatisfaction - though Billy does his usual rejoinder - but there is something sullen under his surface demeanor. They face D-Lo Brown and the newly returned Mark Henry. The Dogg faces Henry to start and then they double-team him. Droz and Prince Albert run in and start beating on D-Lo. This draws Henry out of the ring and the four of them fight off through the crowd. Billy supposedly lets the Dogg convince him to to bury the hatchet with X-Pac. Billy calls Waltman out, apologizes, shakes his hand and then attacks him! Kane comes out and Billy splits, leaving the Dogg to take the chokeslam for his own perfidy. The announcers blather on for a bit and then two limos pull up out back and disgorge first the Corporation then the Ministry. I guess they are together but separate...
The next segment is a little surreal - Michael Cole narrates a video reprise of the happenings among the McMahon family over the last week or two. Couched in terms of a "60 Minutes" episode, it mixes storyline with reality - casting Vince as a newborn face against the evil personality of his own son who has now combined with the powers of darkness. Ooooh....scarey....
In the back, Shane and the thugs watch this on the monitor. Cole postulates that "we all hope" that the partnership between Shane and the Undertaker is coincidental and not part of an overarching plan. Shane takes umbrage at that statement an says he plans to demonstrate that it wasn't coincidence.
Ken Shamrock/Test vs. The Acolytes - the growing feud between Shamrock and Bradshaw is highlighted by a video before the match. The match is very short indeed. Shamrock gets an ankle lock submission on Faarooq almost immediately. The Corporate Ministry (CM) appears and punks Test and Shamrock. Bossman issues a threat directed toward Mankind and then we see Paul Wight arriving in the back as we cut to commercial.
Bossman is out looking for Mankind in the boiler room and finds him - to his immediate sorrow. He recovers from Foley's initial attack and beats on him with a metal rod. There seems to be a referee nearby for some reason. Bossman tries to run Foley over with a golf cart but puts it in reverse instead. Mankind attacks him and then the rest of the thugs show up in the boiler room. Shane locks them in with Foley who is beaten down. The Big Show arrives and rips the doors off then runs off Mankind's tormentors. Cut to commercial.
Paul Wight makes an entrance as we return. He sends out a challange to the Undertaker which is answered when the lights go out and the entire Corporate Ministry appears to surround the ring. UT and his guys assault Wight in the ring. He gets in the giant's face and tells him that he (UT) is the greatest power in the WWF - not Wight. They leave him bent but unbroken - he howls his rage as we cut to commercial.
Wight is scouring the backstage area for the thugs while Shane is on the phone calling the cops, saying that his life has been threatened.
Hardcore Holly (w/Head) comes out to the ring. He laments that the match with Al Snow isn't going to be a Hardcore Title contest. Snow appears on the big screen and tells Holly that he can't give him a Title shot because he (Snow) isn't the Champion - Head is! He complains that without Head he has been reduced to carrying a deer head around!! He enters on a miniature race car to Bob Holly's old music. Holly attacks as Snow drives up and basically beats him into unconsciousness, then declines to pin him because - what's the point if the Title isn't on the line?
The Big Show is destroying one of the limosines with a 2 x 4 as we return. The police arrive and find that their handcuffs won't fit on Wight's wrists (where have we seen that scenerio before..?) They lead him away without incident while Shane yells at them to lock him in a hole somewhere.
The Corporate/Ministry thugs are in the ring waiting for the boss (Shane) to arrive. Shane rants about the power of his stable - pointing out that they have "taken care of" four "little nuisances" tonight. He says that now Austin and The Rock are now in his sights. He puts himself into the referee's position yet again for the next PPV main event - UT vs. Austin for the World Title. He throws a challenge out to his father to come out tomorrow night on RAW and "face the music." He mentions that HHH will face the Rock at the PPV and then again invites his father to show his face on RAW as the program ends.
"Sick" Ric Flair and his nutfarm friends are headed to Nitro on a bus. Cut to video review of recent goings-on then to the opening montage. Nitro is live from Charlotte, North Carolina (the center of the Horsemen universe). The Rachmann welcomes us then throws it to the Nitro Grrrrls in the ring.
Heenan insists that he was here last week, disguised as Mike Tenay. We go to the Gorgeous George training video. Hubba, hubba... Cut to commercial.
More video review of the Flair situation as we return. Cut to RR at ringside with WCW's Winston Cup driver Jerry something-or-other. He tells us about the new "Goldberg" car.
The Armstrong Brothers vs. Rey Misterio, Jr./Kidman - non-title match - we get a video recap of how Scott and Steve finally overcame the "Armstrong Curse" by beating Raven in a handicap match last week. Steve faces Kidman to start and has a slight size advantage. Never-the-less, Kidman wipes the mat with him. Scott and Rey tag in. Scott (he's the one who exactly resembles his father, "Bullet" Bob) fares better then his brother for a moment, but then Rey takes his measure as well. Kidman comes in and is immediately suckered into tossing himself over the top rope to the floor. Steve goes out and runs him into the railing before rolling him back into the ring. Steve tags in then misses a rush to the corner - then it starts to break down as wrestlers seem to be moving in and out of the ring at will. It all ends when Rey takes Steve out with his Frankensteiner roll-up. The Horsemen run in followed immediately by Raven and Saturn. The Horsemen are run off but the Tag Champs don't seem to appreciate the help. Both end up being put down - then the Horsemen return and attack Raven and Saturn. In the end it is the Horsemen who rule the ring. Cut to commercial.
Ernest Miller (w/Sonny Oono) makes his entrance (damn - I had hoped this clown was gone for good...) he faces Buff Bagwell tonight - should be a good contest. Miller goes through his usual warning schtick (yawn...) Buff's reaction is somewhat akin to my own - except that I don't find Miller funny. Buff poses as his answer and gets a foot to the face for his trouble. As a wrestler, of course,"the Cat" doesn't have a prayer and Buff runs him out of the ring during their first exchange. Miller circles the ring, jawing with fans and intimidating the announcers then returns, taking his time to lock up again. Bagwell grabs an arm wringer and torques up. Miller responds with a karate thrust but is unable to overcome Buff's wrestling savvy. Miller tries again and manages to knock Bagwell to the floor where Oono gets his feet on him. Miller comes out to get a few shots of his own then goes back to wait in the ring. Returning to the ring, Bagwell re-asserts his dominence for a moment but then Oono gets involved and Buff is distracted so the Miller can land a side-kick. Now it is almost all Miller, with Bagwell refusing to go down but not making much headway. He's trying hard to escape but Miller is attacking his eyes. Then Miller goes for a drop-kick and misses. The tables turn and Sonny Oono rushes in to aid his charge - only to kick him in the face by mistake! Bawell gets the Blockbuster for the pin. Cut to commercial.
We return to the DJ - why don't they take this guy and Rachmann and toss them in a river somewhere..? Out back, Ric Flair arrives with his nut brigade and butch nurse. He fires people right and left as he enters the building. He goes right to the ring as his music swells. Mean Gene is there to welcome him. Charles Robinson, AA and JJ Dillon are in tow. Flair is at his manic best - he wants to see Savage (w/Gorgeous George), Sting and Goldberg. Especially Savage - but Okerlund says, "...forget Savage..." Flair announces that he is giving himself a World Title match for tonight. At Mean Gene's suggestion he turns his attention to Roddy Piper, saying he'll be naked if he wants to be because, "...I'm Ric Flair and you're not!" He starts to strip but Arn and JJ nix that idea. We see Savage and GG headed for the ring as we cut to commercial.
Randy Savage (w/GG, Medusa, and Miss Madness) makes his entrance as we return. Flair tells him that he's fired then calls security to remove Savage, Medusa and Miss Madness. The cops arrive as well and Savage is subdued and removed. Robinson gets into George's face and gets punched - at which point the nurse manhandles GG. She is also takes away by security. Flair declares that he will beat Diamond Dallas Page tonight then face Kevin Nash at Slamboree. Sting shows up and knocks Flair down. Flair gets up and calls Goldberg down (apparently he is a glutton for punishment). Flair touts Goldberg as "the man" - Goldberg decks him! Then Sting and Goldberg get into it as the others in the ring scatter. Security and police appear again to break it up. Sting breaks away and they are into it again as security scrambles to separate them. Cut to commercial.
Flair has a meeting with Stevie Ray backstage - he wants Stevie to take Big Sexy out for him - he offers Stevie $100,000 to do the deed. Cut to the Nitro Grrrls on the platform - actually just two of them - AC Jazz and Fyre.
Hak vs. Bam Bam Bigalow - Hak comes out carrying a ladder (all the better to beat you with, my dear...) He throws a table into the ring for good measure. Bigalow is introduced as the "WCW Hardcore Champion" - he emptys a dumpster into the ring before entering and gets hit with a trashcan for his trouble. Ringsiders chant "We Want Blood!" Hak throws down the plunder and starts punching - a practice at which Bigalow excells. Bam Bam takes control - using two trashcan lids like cymbals against his opponent's head. Hak comes back with an eye rake and then wraps a rope around Bigalow's throat. He sets up the ladder in the corner and tries to run Bigalow into it but Bam Bam reverses the field. Stimm, Hak recovers quickly and turns the tables again. Bigalow comes back and Hak is tossed through a table then battered with the ladder. Bigalow beales Hak through a second table then whacks him with a trashcan. Bam Bam places a Surge container over Haks upper body and kicks him over. Hak comes back and bulldogs his opponent onto the ladder. He positions Bigalow's head on a beerkeg and drops an elbow but doesn't get all of it. He chokes Bam Bam with a mop handle. Then he gets the kendo stick and starts smashing it into Bigalow's back. He is setts up the ladder again (on Bigalow's leg this time) and drops his weight on it as we cut to commercial.
Hak is firmly in control as we return. He has shredded the kendo stick. He sets two tables up next to each other then tries to pull Bigalow up on the corner buckle. Bigalow reverses the field and gets a suplex onto the tables. Here comes Brian Knobbs with a trashcan. He attacks Bigalow then he and Hak trades shots on Bam Bam's inert body. Knobbs then attacks Hak, hits Bigalow once for good measure then splits. The referee throws the match out then goes to help Bigalow, who is not moving. In the back, Stevie Ray is telling the B-Team that they have been offered $50,000 to take Nash out tonight. They agree to help and leave. In the background one of Flair's nutty friends sneaks out of a bathroom stall. Cut to video of Piper/Flair shenanegans then to commercial.
Flair's friend is warning Nash about the threat on his health as we return.
Konnan vs. Horace - the latest chapter in Konnan vs. the B-Team. Konnan reveals that he will face Stevie Ray at Slamboree then warns Horace that if his buddies try to interfere tonight they will be sorry, he has made arrangements for back-up apparently. He attacks Horace right away and the fight goes out to the floor where Horace turns the tables. Back in the ring it is all Horace for a while. Konnan is still in it but he is also still on the receiving end. Horace almost gets the pin after a splash but they are in the ropes. He grabs a modified camel clutch then turns it into a face rake. He gets a scoop slam then climbs to the second rope and launches himself onto an upraised boot. Konnan comes back and goes for the Tequila Sunrise. This brings the rest of the thugs to the ring and we are waiting to see who Konnan's back-up is...it;s Kevin Nash!!! He runs in and attacks the B-Team. Adams is the last man removed in a team effort by Nash and Konnan. Konnan doesn't know what to think - he wasn;t expecting Nash obviously. They stare at each other for a moment the Nash leaves. Back in the truck - one of the nut cases is harrasing the crew. Ric Flair talks with his son - he wants to bury the hatchet - he offers David a match on Nitro - Torrie is there and looks dubious. They leave and Flair turns to Arn saying, "Book him with Meng!" Cut to commercial.
A huge red stretch limo pulls up and Roddy Piper gets out. He's talking to himself as he goes looking for Flair's office. He finds Flair and attacks wih a plastic trashcan. The nuts are screaming as he throttles El Presidente. He promises to send Flair to the emergency ward in St. Louis this Sunday. Cut to commercial.
Flair encounters Scott Steiner in the hallway and and enlists him to take on Nash. AC Jazz and Kimberly dance while the DJ performs. We cut to a press coference with Lex Luger and Miss Liz but the feed snows out and we return to the arena. Cut to commercial. Jack reveals that Burger King is owned by an English company...that's why they call it Burger King...according to Jack.
Scott Steiner is looking for Nash but finds Buff instead - he creams his former partner then splits. Back to the DJ and his Nitro Grrrl-friends.
Meng vs. David Flair (w/Torrie) - Torrie gets ruight in Mengs face but he won't take the bait so she leaves the ring. David is completely ineffectual against this monster. He chops without affect and is bulled into the corner. He comes back out with kicks and chops but Meng just absorbs the blows - then he goes on the offensive and David is creamed. Meng's chops send David sprawling. The Tongan Death Grip ends the contest (?) Ric Flair comes down to the ring after Meng leaves and berates his son as a trainer attempts to get David out of the ring. Flair taunts Torrie as his son is loaded onto a stretcher. Cut to the Rachmann who introduces the Nitro Grrrrls web site, which goes on line tonight (www.nitrogirls.com - the only wrestling web site that matters!) Cut to commercial.
Some more of the GG eyecandy workout video...
Mean Gene invites DDP to the ring for an interview. Page runs down his varied career in wrestling, pointing out that he went from manager to commentator to wrestler to two-time World Champion. He is pretty full of himself, thats for sure... He compares himself to Elway and Jordon. He says the difference is that he is in his "prime". He compares himself to Flair (who is closer to his age then Elway or Jordon...) Cut to commercial.
More Nitro Grrrrls - in the ring this time...
Booker T vs. Curt Hennig - World TV Title match - this is a rematch from Thunder (when Stevie Ray interefered to cause the DQ). Hennig gets an armdrag to start - a standard ploy for him. Booker decks him then out chain-wrestles him. hennig bails to regroup. He catches Booker near the ropes and drags him to the ringpost to work on his legs. Back in the ring it's all Hennig. Stevie Ray shows up and rushes right into the ring to engage Hennig. Booker is DQ'd then Rick Steiner runs in and attacks him. Cut to commercial.
In the back a couple of policemen determine that it is time to go gather the nuts.
Diamond Dallas Page vs. Ric Flair - World Heavyweight Title match - Flair makes his entrance followed by his personal referee (Robinson) - then we cut to commercial.
Page enters as we return. I hear that he has been inviting his fans to boo him on his web site lately. Page bulls Flair into the corner and punches him out then beales him to the center. Flair sprawls then they lock up again. Page throws him to the mat the applies the boots to his ribcage. Flair comes back and backs the Champ into the corner and chops hi m then hip tosses him out to the center. Page abandons the ring followed by Flair who is immediately put at a disavantage. They brawl on the floor - both of these geezers can go... They brawl up the aisle then Flair takes control with a low blow. He heads toward the ring then turns back. Page hits a low-blow of his own. Back in the ring, Page gets a swinging neck breaker and a two count. He pounds Flair in the corner then Flair spins him around and gets some payback. They struggle some more and Page gets a big backdrop and another two count. Flair is whipped in and flips over the top to the floor. Page chokes him with his boot then with his knee as Robinson admonishes him. Back in the ring, Page tries to pin again but fails. Flair downs him and climbs to the top but is caught there and slammed. Page gets a figure four. Flair gets to the ropes to escape. Page drops an elbow on Flair's midsection then drags him to the center and re-applies he figure four. Flair escapes again and chops Page down. He gets a whip but Page comes back with a clothesline then uses tape from his wrist to choke Flair. For the first time in several years, Flair goes to the top and actually delivers an ax handle blow. Uh oh - here comes Savage and Gorgeous George. In the ring, Flair has the figure four when George comes in and gouges his eyes. Robinson chases her out while Savage gives DDP a weapon to hit Flair with and win the match (Scott Dickenson makes the three count).
A video review of the rise of Shane's new Corporate Ministry starts the show. Guess who comes to the ring for the opening rant (c'mon guess...) Shane and the Boys saunter in and take over the ring. Shane taunts the crowd - suggesting that they have meaningless lives - he calls them losers and extolls his own virtues. HHH rants at the Rock next, mocking his "People's eyebrow" and his catch phrases. Shane holds the mic for UT who says he hates everyone - but Austin is at the top of his list...yatta, yatta... He plans to sacrifice Austin at Over the Edge to a "higher" power. Shane reminds Austin that he (Shane) will be the referee for that match then he orders his father to come down and face him sometime during the program. Mankind, Test, Shamrock and the Big Show appear on the ramp with 2x4's in their hands. Foley calls them a "union" - the Union of People You OUght to ReSpect - U.P.Y.O.U.R.S. for short. They head for the ring and start taking names as e cut to commercial.
Billy Gunn vs. X-Pac - this is a direct result of the growing feud between these former team mates. Waltman seems to have Billy's number in the early going as they go out to the floor and then return. Then he misses a rush to the corner and loses it. Billy is all over him and has a pretty considerable size advantage. He carries the fight until he gets cocky and misses a splash in the corner. Both guys are down. Now X-Pac takes to the air and turns the tables handily. But he goes for the bronco buster and runs into an outstretched foot (ouch!!) Billy delivers one more decisive blow and gets the pin. He goes out for a chair but Road Dogg comes in to break that up. Billy and the Dogg get into a slug fest and Billy is knocked to the floor. The Dogg bends over Waltman and takes a big chair shot - then the lights go out. Kane runs Billy out of the ring then carries his partner away. Behind closed doors we can hear Shane swearing to bring the "Union" down as we cut to commercial.
The Corporate Ministry is back in the ring. We see Vince, Stephanie and Linda Mcmahon arriving. Shane makes a couple of handicap matches with Test to face Bossman, Viscera and Mideon (he calls it a four corners match) - and then Mankind is to take on the Acolytes. HHH is set to face Ken Shamrock with Chyna as the referee. He also assignes the Posse to take on Pat and Gerry. also, the Big Show vs. The Undertaker and Sable vs. Debra in an evening gown match. And finally - Austin vs. The Rock with the CM as lumberjacks around the ring. Vince appears and heads for the ring. He is followed the two women who are flanked by police officers. Vince tells Shane to stop before he "goes to far" - Shane's answer is a challenge for a match tonight. Vince refuses. Linda tries to appeal to her son but he tells her to shut up. That gets a rise out of Vince but he wisely gets himself under control and they back away. As they retreat, Shane reveals that he masterminded the abduction of Stephanie by the Ministry. They were in it together all the time. Vince returns to the ring in a fit of peak and gets thrashed. Linda demonstrates that she isn't near the actress that her daughter is. Vince agrees to the match against Shane and we cut to commercial.
Vince's women try to talk him out of the match but he orders them taken back to their hotel.
The Mean Streets Posse vs. Gerry Brisco/Pat Patterson - as could be expected a couple of ring veterans like Patterson and Brisco make mincemeat out of these two geeks. The "match" is over in a matter of about 20 seconds.
In the back Shane is telling the thugs to make an "office visit" - uh oh... Cut to commercial.
The thugs are searching for someone...
Test vs. Bossman vs. Viscera vs. Mideon - Four Corners (handicap) match - Bossman takes on Test to start and doesn't fare to well. Viscera comes in and also takes some shots - he tries to tag in Mideon but the latter refuses the tag. Test turns around and is suplexed then Mideon is tagged in - against Test. The rookie is being worn down. Test flubs a DVD and Mideon looks to have landed on his head. Bossman runs in and accidently conks Mideon with the nightstick - Test takes the pin. He is ganged on but the Union comes down to save his cookies. In the back, Vince is being punked by the thugs. Cut to commercial.
Shane comes to the ring as we return - it's time for his match with dear old dad - of course Vince is a bit under the weatherat the moment. Shane calls on his father to appear - an exercise in cynicism if ever there was one. He tells the referee to raise his hand but - here comes Vince. He is limping and holding his ribs. He stumbles on the ramp and Shane runs up and drops him with a clothesline. He puts the boots to him when he ties to rise then drags him to the ring and rolls him inside. Vince is clearly helpless as Shane drags him to the corner than throws a bronco buster on him. He postures for the jeering crowd. But Vince gets up and gets a whip and a clothesline then applies a Stunner and pins him! Cut to commercial.
Mankind vs. The Acolytes - Hardcore Handicap match - Foley brings his 2x4 for the party. Bradshaw brings a shovel! Foley catches them coming in but Bradshaw gets a shot with the shovel as Mankind turns his attention to Faarooq. They take him to the floor and mug him then toss the stairs into the ring. Bradshaw flings Foley into the stairs held by Faarrooq. Back on the floor then continue to assault their victim. In the ring again, Mankind gets a double clothesline then tosses Faarooq out. Foley finds a box under the ring but it hardly affects Bradshaw. He is takes to the announce table and pummeled. He is hit with th bell but recovers and uses a trashcan on both of them. He DDT's Bradshaw on the floor but Faarooq is back. Back in the ring, Faarooq manages to whack his partner with a chair then gets DDT'd. Foley dons Socko and gets the claw on Faarooq - but Bradshaw hits the chairshot. They set up two chairs and powerbomb him on them. Foley is pinned and left lying in the ring.
Ken Shamrock vs. HHH - Chyna is the special referee - Shamrock easily outwrestles the "Shnoz" in the early going - then he goes for a Frankensteiner and gets powerbombed. HHH is all over his opponent and, of course, the referee is letting him get away with murder. The first pin attempt shows that she is capable of counting very quickly. Shamrock barely escapes. When Shamrock gets the ankle lock submission hold - the referee gouges his eyes. She ignores it as Hunter pounds away in the corner. Shamrock comes back with a suplex and both are down for a moment. Kenny starts to gain ground as the match prgresses but Chyna refuses to count the pinfall. Shamrock reverses a pedegree attempt to an ankle lock - but Chyna pulls the ropes over for HHH. Shamrock gets in her face and threatens a suplex, but HHH applies a cheap shot from behind then a pedegree to take the pin (this time Chyna counts the fall). Cut to commercial.
The Big Show vs. The Undertaker (w/Paul Bearer) - UT starts out fast and furious but runs into a truck called Paul Wight. Wight's aagility is pretty amazing for such a big man. UT is knocked from the ring where he gets some ether from Paul Bearer and soaks his elbow pad Funny thing how the announcers can smell the sedative but the referee doesn't seem to notice. Wight starts to succomb but then powers out of UT's grasp. UT gets a baseball bat and shatters it on the Big Shows giant head. He is busted open and out of it completely. After a few more kicks to the chest, UT leaves the ring area with Baul Bearer. Cut to commercial.
Sable vs. Debra - evening gown match - the King is going off on his "puppies" jag again. Debra comes to the ring but then Sable appears on th big screen and reveals that she isn't in the building - she's at the Playboy mansion getting ready for another photo session. Nicole Bass takes her place. Rather take a beating, Debra just strips down. Nicole wants a piece of Debra anyway - but as she attacks - Jeff Jarrett runs in and hits her with his guitar. Val Vanis runs in and attacks Jarrett and then carries Debra away. Cut to commercial.
Steve Austin vs. The Rock - lumberjack match - during the break there was a brawl between Jarrett and Val. The lumberjacks swarm into the ring forcing Austin and Maivia to fight them off. They aren't enough of course but then Vince sends the Union down to lend a hand along with several other non-corporate wrestlers. It becomes a free-for-all. The Rock gets separated from the frey and is ganged up on by UT, Chyna, and HHH. Austin runs in and attacks the Undertaker then is taken down the Brood's trapdoor and disappears with UT. Meanwhile, Maivia is overcoming his opposition. Austin is back but UT is right behind him. Austin is tossed off the platform and crashes through a table on the arena floor. Maivia is sent to join him and we fade to black.
I'll be back on Thursday with more of the Steamboat interview. 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 1999 - Jump City Productions