Volume 1, Issue 83
November 24, 1996
Here is the second part of my Weekend Report
WCW Saturday Night
The program starts with a great match featuring the Faces of Fear vs. Ciclope and Galaxy (from Mexico). The Faces won but the Mexican team took them to the limit.
Another excellent contest featured a very much alive Craig Pittman vs. Chris Jericho. What was interesting here was that Teddy Long came out with Pittman and in the middle of the match he objected to some of his tactics. The upshot was that Long got up on the apron as Pittman was about to put his "Code Red" arm bar submission hold on. Pittman got distracted and gave Jericho the chance to get to the top and put him down witha flying drop-kick for the win. The Pitbull looked pretty pissed as Teddy left the ringside are with Jericho. We might see Pittman get involved in the Jericho/Patrick match tomorrow night - maybe he will join the NWO, who knows.
During the NWO segment on the program we were given another NWO Tag Team Tourney squash match featuring the Outsiders (with mic in hands) pitted against "Pistol" Pez Watley and a very tall jobber (Bigfoot). Kevin Nash - the Red Skelton of the squared circle - got off a pretty good line. Referring to Watley he stated that "there's no room for a pistol in wrestling"...take that Vinnie Mac! These segments are good for their comic relief if nothing else. I'm pretty confident they won't try to keep this nonsense up when they start taking over the first hour of Nitro this week.
The last match on the show was another fine mat wrestling exhibition between those two consummate athletes Lord Steven Regal and Dean Malenko.
The quality of the matches on WCWSN have been getting better over the last month or so. It would seem that Eric (who is still the Executive VP of WCW) may have decided to take the promotion back to its roots which do, after all, lie with the flagship (or mothership as Dusty calls it) Saturday evening program going all the way back to the old Georgia Championship Wrestling organization.
The program opens with Bart Gunn vs. Steve Austin - Bart is the bigger, less flamboyant of the Gunn "brothers" and, in my opinion has been under-rated for a while. In this match he held his own pretty well - his mat wrestling skills being roughly equivalent to Austin's. Austin has the drive and the killer instinct second to none. The latter proved decisive in this contest but still it was very well fought by both competitors. Of course Billy Gunn came down at the end to provide the distraction which, in fact, cost Bart the match so we didn't really get a fair assessment of the contest. After the match Austin grabbed Billy and dropped him with same "Stunner" neck breaker he had used to win.
2 Cold Scorpio made his WWF broadcast debut in his silly Flash Funk character, looking like a pimp in powder blue jumpsuit in wide-brimmed Panama hat. His style is as high-flying and acrobatic as ever. Impressive one-and-a-half somersault finishing move. Let's get him some competition and see what he can really do.
The Headbangers made their debut vs. Alex Porteau and Aldo Montoya on the show today. These guys wear skirts to the ring - real wildmen. I was glad to see them remove all the pins and chains attached to their faces before they got started. The match itself was surprisingly competitive. The Headbangers showed off some very good, if unorthadox, teamwork. Things seem to finally be heating up on the WWF Tag Team scene.
Double J wrestled another uninspired match - I can't believe the push they're giving this nobody (formerly know as "Job" Armstrong). He pulled out a DQ victory over the Sultan (Fatu) - yet another very talented wrestler who is being wasted on a stupid gimmick.
Bret Hart's Weekly Column Summary
Today's Sun column is titled "This Psycho keeps driving Hitman Crazy".
Bret starts off by talking about being at Madison Square Garden last Sunday, and having a bit of "deja vu". "After everything that's happened lately, it was amazing I was only minutes from making a comeback." He had been told by people that when he got back to the locker room, it would be like he never ever left. He says that at first, they were wrong since there are a lot of new guys around. But then it got familiar again, as he heard guys talk about travelling so far to get to NYC. So that's nothing new. He says that the WWF may have a new "cast" but "the play is the same-at least behind the scenes."
He then discusses the aftermath of the match with Stone Cold Steve Austin. He says now that he has beaten Austin, "I have to tell you that for the first time in a lot of years I'd wondered if I was still the best there is." He had to ask himself what he was doing, at age 39-"training to come back and get beat up when I could be sitting on that proverbial beach somewhere."(Rudy note:sounds good. It's been very cold here in Calgary for 10 days. -30'Celsius almost every day. I wish I could go to a beach"
He says that a time will come when age will affect him and take away his edge. He thought this might be the time. He says he trained like crazy, "but what if I was wrong?" He wonders what would have happened if the many beatings and his body just wasn't up to what his mind wanted him to do. Who would have been more let down. Him or the fans?
He says Austin was tough, but "...my toughest fight that day was living up to my standards of excellence." He says the fight was between the "Ghost of Hitman past" and if he lost, "I think I would have had to walk away from wrestling for good." He mentions what he said in the past, that he doesn't want to be one those guys who embarresses himself by staying around too long. He mentions that he asked for and received a last minute stipulation regarding a future match by the winner of his match vs the winner of the Sid-HBK match at IYH on Dec 16. - "I pushed for it because I wanted to take care of unfinished business with Shawn Michaels." He says he's upset HBK lost to Sid since he wanted to take the belt from HBK himself. He says despite the differences he has with Micheals, he thinks that HBK was "cheap-shotted out of the title" and that wasn't right. He says that has "happened to him twice- and some might say three times".
He also wants to clear up what happened at WrestleMania XII. He says "it was my decision to get back into the ring after the time limit had run out." He takes full responsibilities for what happened. He says if he had been in Shawn's position, he would have done exactly what he did. But there's no point on dwelling on this issue. He says that actually losing may not have been too bad, as he got to heal up for a while. And now he's back "stronger, tougher, and more resilient than ever before."
Now he mentions that he has to face Sid instead of Shawn, "which isn't quite right because Shawn's the one who wants retribution!" He says that Shawn doesn't need the Hitman to fight his battles for him, but "I'm sure he won't mind if I show Sid the Hitman's brand of justice." He then once again asks for what his strategy should be in his match against "an uncontrollable psycho like Sid." He says Sid is bigger than him, stronger than him and "he's completely nuts." "What would you do?" He asks readers to write him C/O The Calgary Sun. "Stay cool."
That's his column Earl.
The address is:
Bret Hart c/o The Calgary Sun
2615 12 ST NE Calgary, AB T2E 7W9
See you next week.
Thank you Rudy, for another great report.
World War 3 Report
I decided not to buy this one - I've been spending too much money on these Pay-Per-Views lately - so I watched this one on "Scramble-Vision". I tried to augument my perceptions by signing on to IRC and getting the play-by-play from the WCW commentator there but that was a bust - nothing but interviews (and not very good ones) - very little play-by-play - so here it is for what it's worth.
Rey Misterio Jr. vs. Ultimo Dragon to open the program - his match is for all eight of the Dragon's Light-Heavyweight title belts. Dragon overpowers his smaller opponent through most of the match to retain his Championships.
Mean Gene interviews Diamond Dallas Page - he expects to win the Battle Royal but won't discuss his relationship with next-door neighbor Eric Bischoff.
Chris Jericho vs. Nick Patrick - Jericho loses the use of one hand but it doesn't seem to slow him down. Patrick shows up without his neck brace but starts complaining about his neck right away. Jericho dominates the bulk of the match. Patrick makes a couple of brief comebacks but Jericho makes short work of him.
Jeff Jarrett vs. The Giant - Jarrett hits hard and fast and gains some early ground. The Giant seems over confident and doesn't make that great a showing at first. Sting appears in the rafters and then starts making his way toward the ring. Jarrett almost gets a pin and then knocks the big guy out of the ring. As the Giant is picking himself up off the floor, Sting enters the rings and DDT's Jarrett again like he did before on Nitro!! The Giant gets an easy win.
Roddy Piper comes to the ring and calls Hogan out - he has a contract to sign. Eric Bischoff shows up instead with assorted NWO members (Debiasi/Vincent I think) and tells Piper that Hogan is busy reading a script but he has Hogan's Power of Attorney and can sign the contract. Piper's not happy with that he calls Eric a "lying puke". Bischoff threatens him with a fine. Piper wants to know how much it would cost him to take Eric's "ass out".
Piper calls Hogan out again - this time Hogan, the Giant and Elizabeth show up. Hogan tells Piper he has a "big problem" - Piper tells Hogan to put up or shut up. Hogan enters the ring and agrees to sign the contract - says Piper is washed up and reminds him about his hip replacement surgery - he pulls up Piper's kilt to reveal the scar. He then signs the contract and Piper attacks immediately. The NWO tries to restrain him but he's a hard man to hold down. Hogan goes for a chair and uses it on Piper's injured hip...Piper is screaming...Hogan spraypaints the leg. He says he'll "break Piper in half". They leave him in the ring, Piper tries to rise but collapses. Finally he gets to his feet and vows to be there for the match. He limps away from the ring.
The Amazing French Canadians (w/Col. Parker) vs Harlem Heat (w/Sherri) - Sherri gets five minutes in the ring with Parker if the Heat wins - the Heat start out strong but the Canadians turn it around near the four minute mark due to superior teamwork. Heat have the youth and stamina advantage so its pretty even. Then the ref gets knocked out. Stevie Ray gets spikeds and knocked out. Canadians start stacking up furniture and then try a high flying move that backfires and loses them the match. Sherri creams Col. Parker and chases him into one of the other rings where she clotheslines him twice then goes up and splashes him off the top. He flees the scene.
Lex Lugar discusses Stings weird behaviour of late - confesses to being baffled.
Dean malenko vs. Sychosis -Cruiserweight Title match - Malenko grounds his high-flying opponent throughout the match - working on his legs. As soon as he gets a chance, Sychosis goes to the top and promptly loses his balance and tumbles to the floor. Sychosis escapes a Texas Cloverleaf attempt by grabbing the bottom rope then mounts a come-back. Moments later he gets caught in a Tombstone piledriver, rolled up and pinned.
Triangle Match for the Tag Team Titles - Faces of Fear/Nasty Boys/Outsiders (Champions) - at first the Outsiders seem to trying to stay out of it. But then it dawns on them that they can lose the match if one of the others gets pinned. Faces hold a distinct advantage because they don't have any particular ax to grind in this match. They just want to win. The Nasties want to get the Outsiders and end up screwing themselves out of a victory. At one point both Outsiders are tagged in. Hall lays down for the pin but one of the Faces makes the save. Jimmy Hart brains Knobbs with the megaphone outside the ring - Hall powerbombs Saggs and takes the pin.
World War 3 - obviously it will be hard for me to call this one since I didn't actually see it (except for brief moments between the squiggly lines) but here are some of the highlights...
The Outsiders (Hall/Nash/Giant/Syxx and Vincent I assume because the announcers say there are five of them) were all put in one ring and spent most of the Battle Royal huddling together in a corner to avoid contact and getting eliminated. The Horsemen present (Benoit/Arn/Mongo) get into a vendetta with the Dungeon of Doom. The whole kit and kaboodle of them leave the ring fighting - never to be seen again. Benoit and the Taskmaster are headed for the nearest bathroom (the announcers tell us that when Chris and Kevin met in Baltimore last night they fought their way to the mens room where the rest of the DOD were lying in wait for Benoit). Announcer Lee Marshall got caught up in the DOD/Horsemen melee and was creamed while Larry Legend stood by and watched.
The American Males squared off against Troy Williams favorite team (High Voltage). Tony Rumble (whoever that is) was the first man eliminated. Ciclope is next.
Marshall gets back to his seat and starts ragging on Larry for not rescuing him.
Mike Enos out next, then La Parka gets tossed out by Lex Lugar. Bobby Eaton and Squire Taylor are facing off. Scott Norton out next. Craig Pittman eliminates Pez Watley. The NWO continues to stand there watching the action. Jimmy Grafitti, Galaxy and Mark Starr go out next, next and next.
For some reason Chris Jericho tries to pin Juvantud Guerrera. Chaos eliminated by Lugar (sorry Troy) - Prince Iakea gone - Big Ronn Studd is laying waste to the competition. Joe Gomez gets tossed.
Now Harlem Heat and the Males are squaring off - plenty of history there. Hall/Nash/Syxx and the Giant are still in (I assume Vincent was eliminated but no one mentioned it). Pittman saves Wallstreet - looks like he is definitely going to turn heel soon. Mr. JL is out next. Eddie G and DDP are renewing their feud. Ron Studd gets ganged up on and then gang pinned (sorry fellows - this won't buy you anything).
The Canadians and Jim Dugan fall out together and get into a melee on the outside. Bagwell eliminates Riggs then gets eliminated by Wallstreet. The Males start arguing on the outside before they are ushered away.
Eaton eliminated, Juvantud out. Page and Guerrero get into a dust-up on the outside as they move from ring to ring. Jack gets Booted (cute huh?) Jarrett throws Malenko out. Pittman eliminated then Booker T, Disco Inferno, Bunkhouse Buck, Stevie Ray and Ronn Studd eliminated in rapid succession. Misterio eliminates Ultimo Dragon. Jericho gets tossed.
Eddie and DDP are still going at it. The NWO guys have started getting involved now. Misterio goes to work on Nash (remember who speared Rey Jr. into the side of the trailer?) Rey Jr. gets tossed out head first. Jarrett thrown out then DDP goes.
Regal and Lugar are left with the remaining NWO guys. Regal gets tossed out by Lugar (I think). The last part is pretty confused but what I believe happened is that the Giant attacked Lugar who side-stepped him and put him into the "Rack" - a tactical error if ever there was one. The Giant escapes and somehow Hall, Nash and Syxx get tossed out (I think Syxx and Nash were eliminated together) - the upshot is that Lugar is left in with the Giant. Lugar gets tossed and leaves the Giant in the ring as the winner.
So now we have the fascinating situation wherein the Giant is set to face Hollywood Hogan for the WCW (NWO?) Title, ironic isn't it? Considering who it was lost the title to Hogan in the first place...
Anyway, that's the way I see it...
editor Solie's Wrestling Newsletter
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