I REALLY CAN'T SLEEP AND OBVIOUSLY HAVE GONE INSANE TO BE READING THIS, I KNOW. (Yet there's e-mail I haven't got to because that would require effort and this is EZ)
Reader: "I'm writing to ask you about the Chris Benoit and Booker T best of 7 series that happened in WCW. I didn't watch much of WCW during that time so I have a few questions about it. First, how did it take place? Was it all on one event, or was it spread out over different Nitro's, or different PPV's? Also, was it for any belt's, and was the belt up for grabs in each match, or did whoever win the entire series get the belt. ALSO, were they all just regular one on one matches, or were there any gimmick matches thrown in? "
Scott: It was spaced out over three Nitros and three Thunders, and then the final match was on PPV. The deal was essentially that they were fighting over #1 contendership to the TV title, and in fact Booker won the series 4-3 and then went on to beat Fit Finlay for the belt later in the evening. They were all straight one-on-one wrestling matches, no gimmicks.
I guess you have to buy the book to get the whole story, but because I'm a nice guy who CARES ABOUT YOU, THE PERSON WHO IS BORED ENOUGH TO BE READING THIS, let me point out that once again Scott is wrong. Not just wrong with lack of information, but wrong with the information provided.
The great thing is that I can just quote myself here for the right answer (there's nothing better than quoting yourself! Leads to massive self-ego! See, oh never mind) - Let's Go Back To the 07/22 RAW (me filling in for CRZ, who TEASED me by promising a Don Zimmer card the next week and never delivered, that no good hippy) and watch me ramble for three paragraphs because I was so totally bored with Eric Bischoff ALREADY. Skip past the second set of lines if you know this already -----
Booker T (w/ads) vs Chris Benoit for the #1 Contendership to the Unified InterContinental Title - You know, this isn't the first site that I've written for that Eric Bischoff has personally killed. That was DDTDigest.com. I've always felt a little bit guilty about not doing another piece for Bill since WCW folded - it's not that I didn't have ideas, it's just that I didn't get around to finishing any of them. As luck would have it, one of those unfinished pieces sitting around my hard drive is a look back at the Best of 7. And since I know they aren't gonna bother to give any more background here than "they had a Best of 7 in WCW", let me take a break from this and talk about some good television. You may want to skip two paragraphs if you don't care.
Back in WCW, they had a Television Title, which was on about the same level as the WWE European Title, except that people actually took it seriously and cared about it (until Konnan won it.) Booker T won the title in late '97, because Rick Martel forget his wrestling tights or something along those lines, and it ended up leading to his first major WCW single's push. In Spring of '98, Booker was still champion, and went to two 10 minute time limit draws against Benoit (which, being WCW, were more like 7 minute draws), leading up to a pay per view match where Benoit could've won, except for ref nuttyness. The issue not resolved, they actually traded the TV title four times one weekend set of house shows, but WCW didn't actually acknowledge those changes on TV. Instead, thanks to a Benoit distraction, Booker lost the title to Fit Finley (though he's had some memorable matches against then Steve Regal, he was mostly used as a jobber by WCW, and is now a WWE road agent), and Booker repaid by costing Benoit a match against Finley. WCW tried to announcer Booker as the #1 contender but Benoit punked them out before they could, so the only fair way they could solve the matter was a best of 7 series over two weeks, with the winner getting the shot at Finley at the PPV.
Match 1 saw Benoit win with an armbar takedown into the Crossface after Booker missed the Harlem Hangover, and Booker tied it up by hitting the Hangover in the second match. Benoit tried to go for the same armbar takedown in match three but it was blocked - he used a bridging German suplex instead. He tried for the same in Match 4, but was too tired to hold it for three count. Benoit did manage to reverse a suplex into the Crossface, and that put him up 3 to 1. Match 5 had Benoit distracted by a Stevie Ray appearance, and not noticing a missile dropkick till too late. Benoit nearly won Match 6 with a German suplex again, but Booker T got his shoulder up in time. That was one of the great things about the series - they built on the previous finishes. Anyway, Booker debuted that corner sunset flip move that he still uses from time to time to tie it up, but came up limping and Benoit attacked the leg after the match. Match 7 featuring Benoit working on Booker's legs - taking away some of Booker's offense in the process. Still, Benoit was unable to put Booker away - he would not stay down for three or give up. After a Swandive Headbutt didn't work, the ref checked on Benoit, and missed Bret Hart coming in and braining Booker with a chair. [I'd explain why, but that'd be another long digression and we're already at two long paragraphs here.] Benoit actually opted to explain the situation and DQ himself instead of taking the easy win - but WCW decided later in the night that it shouldn't end like that, called that a no contest, and ordered a Match 8 for the PPV. Again, Chris Benoit was breaking out everything he could but couldn't put Booker away - he even pulled out a Dragon suplex for the occasion but no dice. Benoit wouldn't go down easy himself, but after two Harlem Sidekicks and a Harlem Hangover, Booker won the match and the series. And a little later, he anti-climatically won the TV title back too.
Numbers of evil commissioners/owners/general managers needed for the angle: 0
So 8 matches where Scott said 7, check. I didn't mention it up there but I believe it was match 3 that was on WCWSN, check. Shockingly missing an angle involving both Chris Benoit and Bret Hart, totally unlike Scott.
Too bad that Scott didn't read the Observer before posting his bit, or he could've quoted the section about Perfect and his WWF World Title chances word for word. Not to mention the bit that Vince really wanted to show up for that WCW PPV, but got talked out of it. Maybe next week?
It's a nifty idea to think that Hogan putting over Flair or Vader after he came into WCW would have created new stars. I'm not exactly sure who these new stars would BE, but it's a nifty idea.
What's with the caps tonight? Insane insane insane. Oh who cares
And if you add in all the draws they had to set up the series - it was a lot more than 8.
Just for the record (from the matchlist I have for the tape of the entire series. God bless questionable VQ tapes.)
1) Nitro 3/23/98 - Time Limit Draw 2) Nitro 3/30/98 - Time Limit Draw 3) Spring Stampede 98 4/19/98 - No Time Limit (for TV Title) 4) Sat Night 5/2/98 - TV Title Match 5) Nitro 5/11/98 - Winner faces Fit Finlay at Slamboree 6) Nitro 5/25/98 - Match 1 of 7 7) Thunder 5/27/98 - Match 2 of 7 8) Sat Night 5/20/98 - Match 3 of 7 9) Nitro 6/1/98 - Match 4 of 7 10) Thunder 6/4/98 - Match 5 of 7 11) Nitro 6/8/98 - Match 6 of 7 12) Thunder 6/11/98 - Match 7 of 7 13) GAB 98 6/14/98 - Match 8 of 7
Aahhh.... the days the WCW TV Title meant something
4/30/98 - Benoit d. Booker for title in Augusta, GA 5/1/98 - Booker d. Benoit for title in Greenville, SC 5/2/98 - Benoit d. Booker for title in Charleston, SC 4/3/98 - Booker d. Benoit for title in Savannah, GA