The mood on Monday night was a defeated mood. With new champion, who was also the REALLY old champion, Hollywood Hulk Hogan in charge, the majority of the WCW roster threw their arms up and decided “hey, you won”.
Oh sure, Sting and Luger still have a little spark in the gas tank, and Konan is off on Planet Konan where he seemingly can’t decide whether or not he is all for Hogan, or against Hogan. Glacier is still coming, but whether he arrives before the next ice age to help is a mystery. The Giant has been neutered. And Ric Flair might in fact be the 4th man.
But hope is not lost. Larry Zbyszko is showing the kind of fire he usually reserves for the golf course. Bobby Heenan is sometimes vindicated, but often drunk. And between the round spin high kicks, Eric Bischoff does not appear to be a big fan of the New World Order.
It’s an announcer uprising. And it continues tonight, on the Clash of Champions.
LIVE from Denver, Colorado, it’s Clash of Champions XXXIII! TONY SCHIAVONE is joined by “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN who looks about as happy to be there as a man throwing deck after deck of cards into a 10 gallon hat (Gambler excluded).
DEAN MALENKO vs. REY MYSTERIO JR. (for the WCW world cruiserweight title)
MIKE TENAY joins the booth in order to ensure that the announcers not get tongue tied trying to call this thing (AKA, Tony’s an idiot). Malenko attacks before the bell, but Rey rolls to the floor to escape. Malenko follows, by which point Rey is back in the ring. A dropkick leaves Malenko there, and Rey comes at him with a baseball slide which he converts into a rana! Tony mentions this is their fourth matchup, with the only one I’ve missed appearing on WCW Pro (which I would happily recap if I had copies of it, because four shows + PPV and Clashes isn’t enough). Speaking of copies, my screen goes black. For an extended period of time. HRMPH! By the time we return, 2 minutes have passed, and Malenko has Rey tied up in a rear naked choke variation. And then we take a break. Up yours, WCW!
Back from break, Rey manages to dodge move after move, with springboards and counters – action is fast and furious now. Eventually he ties Malenko up in confusion, and Rey is able to bridge back on a pin attempt for 2. Malenko, irritated, grapevines the leg. Tony’s pretty enthused here, he can’t stop talking about Nick Patrick who is not the referee in this match. The boys run the ropes, and Rey drops down which sends Malenko to the floor. A swinging dropkick sets up a springboard senton backsplash! Malenko tries to whip Rey into the guardrail, but Mysterio leaps onto it and hits a moonsault! Back in, a springboard dropkick gets 2. Malenko tries a tilt-a-whirl, but Rey counters his weight mid-air and lands on top for 2. Frankensteiner gets 2! Rey is moving fast now, words you’ll never hear in 2014. Up top, Malenko catches Rey this time and applies a fireman’s carry – turns it into a super gutbuster(!!!), and scores the pinfall at 9:06, despite Rey’s foot on the ropes. Then the referee notices, and re-starts the match. In the confusion, Rey gets an Oklahoma roll, and retains at 9:28! Deano was royally screwed here, not cool Pee Wee Anderson. ***
MOTHER OF GOD! Glacier is COMING!
VK WALLSTREET vs. “HACKSAW” JIM DUGGAN
I’m sorry, is it 3 months ago? I haven’t seen either of these clowns in ages, and I was *totally cool with that*! Could THIS not have aired in the main event slot on Prime that got clipped? Wallstreet calls himself far too smart for Duggan, so Jim slams his head into the buckle about 400 times and sticks out his tongue. Hiptoss sets up a clothesline, and Duggan goes into the 3 point stance. Wallstreet hits the floor, and starts looking for a prop. He comes up empty, but he’s able to regain control anyway. An elbow gets less than 1, because Jim Duggan is better than you. A back elbow drops him for 1. Duggan fights out of a headlock by hitting a Stone Cold Stunner. Swinging scoop slam, and Duggan loads the fist. The referee tries to stop it, and Wallstreet rolls up Duggan for the win at 3:52. Two identical finishes in a row, strong creativity yall. *
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND is with the NASTY BOYS. Saggs wants to fight nasty. Knobbs re-affirms his loyalty to the Nasty Boys, and promises to make a nasty statement. Nasty.
THE ULTIMATE DRAGON (with Sonny Onoo) vs. KONAN
Dragon is #3 on Dr. Unlikely’s “ones to watch” list as potential nWo members, so we’ll need to keep our eyes on him here. I’d have been concerned with #10, Glacier, but he has still not come. Both guys here are heels, so the fans boo everything. Konan puts Dragon in a really convoluted Sharpshooter that no reasonable human being would ever allow themselves to get tied up in, but he escapes in short order. Dragon bounces off Konan like a pinball, because I guess all 5’9” of the man is just too much for Dragon to handle. A dropkick sends Konan to the floor, and Sonny attacks with kicks, but Konan grabs him by the throat – missing Dragon flying in off the top buckle. Back in, a top rope moonsault sets up La Majistral, but that’s only 2! Dragon suplex into a bridge is reversed by Konan, he hooks the tights, and gets the pin at 2:59. Not cool. *
If you log on to CompuServe right now, you can chat with ICE TRAIN. Or, rather, you COULD have been had SCOTT NORTON not run in and beat him up! This is all a stark reminder that there was a time that people actually used CompuServe.
MENG (with Jimmy Hart) vs. “MACHO MAN” RANDY SAVAGE
Macho no shows, so “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND storms the right to ask senior referee NICK PATRICK what he knows about this? It turns out that Savage is too injured to fight after the chair shot on Monday, and Meng is declared the winner by forfeit. Meng wins! Meng wins! MOTYC
Gene welcomes out the rest of the DUNGEON OF DOOM – I spy The Barbarian, Hugh Morrus, and Kevin Sullivan. They want to share their recipe for a homemade remoulade. Sullivan starts with a half a cup of mayonnaise … wait, sorry, I changed over to Food Network. They’re actually talking about Hulk Hogan. RON THE LEPRECHAUN runs around outside the ring gnashing his teeth. Sullivan is offended nobody takes the Dungeon of Doom seriously anymore. Anymore? Kev, I have news for ya.
BULL NAKANO (with Sonny Onoo) vs. MADUSA
Nakano dodges a dropkick, which is not easy to do with that hair. She throws Madusa around the ring like a Frisbee, and Sonny tosses her some nunchucks. Heenan: “Lovely woman!” With the referee distracted, Madusa is pounded with the nunchucks, and a big splash gets 1. Madusa botches a crossbody, which Nakano sells like death. A couple of hair pull moves get 2. Madusa tries a sunset flip, but Nakano just sits down on her for 2. Nakano heads up – but Madusa kicks her to the floor. Then Madusa flies off the top buckle, but Nakano dodges and Madusa hits Sonny! Back in, Sonny tries to kick Madusa but he nails Nakano instead, and Madusa rolls her up for the pin at 2:44. You know, when Flair and Sting wrestled to a draw at the first Clash of Champions, I’m sure that they did it with the future in mind, and matches just like this one. 1/2*
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND is with RIC FLAIR, WOMAN, and ELIZABETH. Gene says that everyone in WCW is in this together to combat the nWo. Flair: “Let’s get one thing straight Gene, you and I will never be in this together, wooooo!” Woman runs her hands all over Gene, which he tries gently swatting away like a fly throughout the interview. Woman’s usual shtick is funnier than the norm tonight, and I’m far too distracted to her trying to get Gene’s attention to listen to Flair, I’m not gonna go back. The jist, I gathered, is that Hogan can never beat up Flair’s best friend the way he beat up his own.
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. EDDIE GUERRERO (for the Lord of the Ring)
Class act Page spits on Eddie, and shoves him down. As he celebrates this early victory, Eddie kips up and hits Page with a rana. Eddie misses a blind charge, and cracks his shoulder against the ringpost. Page goes right for him, stomping away on Eddie. Gutwrench gutbuster sets up his tilt-a-whirl slam, and gets 2. Page locks on a headlock, and uses the ropes to his advantage. He isn’t caught, but Eddie escapes anyway. Eddie sweeps the legs, and Page does the slip on the banana peel routine. Running knee from Eddie drops Page, and a slingshot senton gets 2. Page comes back with a jawbreaker, and hits a powerbomb for 2. Mid-90’s wrestling, where powerbombs are transition moves. They battle to the top, where Eddie headbutts Page off and hits the Froggy Splash for the win AND the battlebowl ring at 4:22. ** Page offers a handshake after the match, which of course sets up the Diamond Cutter. He tosses the referee, hits a second Diamond Cutter, and that draws out CHAVO GUERRERO JR. Page knocks him away, and hits a 3rd Diamond Cutter, this time off the top rope!
For some reason, as Page walks to the back, HULK HOGAN forces “MEAN” GENE OKERLUND to the stage. Okerlund is pissed that he’s being “manhandled”. I’m shocked he hasn’t threatened a “fleet of lawyers” yet. Hogan promises to shut up all the chumps tonight. Flair isn’t even worthy to lace Hogan’s boots. He blows his analogies, by comparing himself to the Babe Ruth of wrestling and Michael Jordan of basketball. Hogan warns Gene to stay out of his face in the future.
From deep inside the iciest chambers of the Dungeon of Doom, it’s imperative that you know, and I know, that GLACIER IS COMING.
CHRIS BENOIT (with Woman and Elizabeth) vs. THE GIANT (with Jimmy Hart)
Woman goes to remove Benoit’s vest, but his arm gets caught and Giant runs at him, running him to the buckle. One of the finest Chokeslams you’ll ever see finishes at 0:23, which eases my irritation. Daniel Bryan and Sheamus would steal this finish on a much bigger stage years later. DUD
THE STEINER BROTHERS vs. STING and LEX LUGER vs. HARLEM HEAT (with Sista Sherri) (for the WCW world tag-team titles)
Tony carries on about the amazing state of WCW’s tag-team division, which makes it all the sadder Harlem Heat are the champions. With ANY foresight, they would have left the gold on Sting and Luger to eventually drop those to the Outsiders, and they also would have fired Stevie Ray and immediately put the US title on Booker T. Sorry, I got carried away. NICK PATRICK is your referee in the world of things that make you go hmmmmm. COLONEL ROBERT PARKER storms down to ringside after the entrances, and goes straight to Sherri. Tony uses his head for the first time in a decade, by pointing out the correct strategy is to constantly tag your own partner, because if you turn it over you may lose out on being involved in the finish. Good job, Tony, you may collect a paycheque this week. Booker and Scott start, and Scotty eats a mule kick. The pair battle to the top, where Booker shoves him off, but Scotty’s back to his feet and gorilla press slams Booker genital first over the ropes! Jesus! Lex Luger then rushes in out of nowhere and clotheslines the ever loving snot out of Booker. Luger tags in as does Stevie Ray, and Luger is a house o fire. Patrick pulls him off Stevie, so Luger fires in a clothesline. He misses the next one, but Rick Steiner tags Luger and clotheslines Stevie … AND LUGER! Booyah! Top rope bulldog gets 2, saved by Luger. Stevie delivers a superkick to Rick(!), and we need to step aside for a commercial break. Enough of that!
Back from break. It’s the usual of seeing Booker getting walloped, right now by Rick Steiner. Sting tags himself in, and comes off the top at Booker, getting 2. Sting tosses Booker T out, but it’s not an over the top DQ because it’s declared “forward motion”. What the hell is with the rules in this place? Things get messy a bit, but the continuing theme is Booker T is getting destroyed. Eventually Stevie gets the not-so-hot tag, and he attacks Sting. Stevie gets too close to the Steiner corner, and Scotty tags himself. Sting and Scott Steiner is something of a dream matchup at this point; but Sting is playing hero in peril, so we don’t get what we deserve. Sting delivers a hot shot, and heads up top in the neutral corner with a bodypress for 2. Luger and Rick get into it, with Nick Patrick in the middle – and he angrily orders both guys to smarten up. Scotty with a tigerbomb for 2, saved by Luger. Rick tags, and works a headlock – but he backs into the face corner and Luger tags himself in. A clothesline flattens Rick, but a blind charge misses and Rick tosses him with ease, flawlessly delivering a release German! Scotty’s right behind with a belly to belly, and he heads up. Luger somehow catches him in midair and applies the Torture Rack in one motion! Everything falls apart as everyone hits the ring – leaving Booker and Scott alone. Booker delivers a sweet Harlem sidekick, and follows with a back elbow. THE OUTSIDERS make an appearance now as Scott Steiner hits a Frankensteiner! 1 … 2 … Patrick spies the Outsiders in the aisle, and throws the match out at 10:35! Scott Steiner goes ballistic, grabbing Patrick by the collar and screaming all kinds of Turner unfriendly words! Dr. Unlikely, please update your rankings to include Harlem Heat. ***
“MEAN” GENE OKERLUND grabs Patrick on his way to the back, and demands to know what happened? Gene asks if they got in the ring, he said no, but they interfered and every printed rulebook today would have his back. Gene screams they didn’t even get within 30 feet of the ring, and Patrick points out that what makes a referee great is being able to see 2 things at the same time. He doesn’t want to get hauled down the WCW offices, but he followed the book to the letter of the law. “I’m innocent, WCW all the way Gene.” Gene mentions he’s seen the Armani suits in Patrick’s closet. Can we make this a new segment? “Mean Gene rifles through people’s stuff”, or MGRTPS.
RIC FLAIR (with Elizabeth and Woman) vs. HOLLYWOOD HULK HOGAN (for the WCW world heavyweight title)
The result of this one should not be in doubt. There is absolutely no chance they’re getting the belt off Hulk this soon, we’re in for a long, long ride. Flair slaps on a headlock while Heenan mentions that Hogan’s always been selfish, and he’s been telling us this for years. Hogan lifts Flair out of the headlock and puts him on the top rope, where Flair bitch slaps him. Hogan sells it with shock, and quickly puts Flair in a hammerlock on the mat. On their feet, Hogan misses a clothesline and Flair chops away. Hogan hits the deck, where a SERIOUSLY IRATE FAN has been waiting to give Hogan a piece of her mind. Hogan threatens to knock her head off, but Flair comes in off the apron with an axehandle. Back in, Hogan wants to do a test of strength, so Flair accepts and starts biting his knuckle! Hogan screams, and Flair throws some more chops. Outside the ring they go again, and Hogan throws Ric face first to the ring post, knocking him out cold. Back in, Flair ducks a clothesline and punches Hogan between the eyes. Vertical suplex, but Hogan starts hulking up. He no sells all of Flair’s punches and does the old routine. YOU, block punch, punch, punch, big boot, but he misses the legdrop and Flair slaps on the figure four in the middle of the ring! Flair uses the ladies for leverage, but Hogan manages to turn it over … only for Flair to turn it over the other way! Hogan grabs at the referee, and throws him into the buckle knocking him out. That draws in THE OUTSIDERS, as Hogan taps out, so Flair is forced to break the hold to do battle. The trio stomp Flair into nothing, but THE HORSEMEN, STING, and LEX LUGER rush in to chase them away. The match is declared a DQ win for Ric 8:32. ** That was a nice change to the usual Hogan/Flair formula.
Hogan poses with the belt at the top of the ramp, and declares himself the most powerful man in wrestling. Arn locks eyes with him, and leads the army right in Hogan’s direction, but he’s already behind the curtain. The announcers hype Sting and Luger taking on the Outsiders on Monday, and we wrap.
Any idea what the deal was with the Benoit match? If I remember correctly they kind of just chalked it up to being Woman's bad and moved on. I was pissed at the time, but it was one of the nicest chokeslams you will ever see.
Originally posted by cfgbTHE ULTIMATE DRAGON (with Sonny Onoo) vs. KONANDragon is #3 on Dr. Unlikely’s “ones to watch” list as potential nWo members, so we’ll need to keep our eyes on him here. I’d have been concerned with #10, Glacier, but he has still not come. Both guys here are heels, so the fans boo everything. Konan puts Dragon in a really convoluted Sharpshooter that no reasonable human being would ever allow themselves to get tied up in, but he escapes in short order. Dragon bounces off Konan like a pinball, because I guess all 5’9” of the man is just too much for Dragon to handle. A dropkick sends Konan to the floor, and Sonny attacks with kicks, but Konan grabs him by the throat – missing Dragon flying in off the top buckle. Back in, a top rope moonsault sets up La Majistral, but that’s only 2! Dragon suplex into a bridge is reversed by Konan, he hooks the tights, and gets the pin at 2:59. Not cool.
Just to recap, Dragon comes to America almost immediately after the nWo forms and makes his PPV debut right after we learn that the nWo has a mysterious fourth member. The man who discovered that there were four members of the nWo? Why, that would be Rey Jr., the very man that the Dragon seemingly targeted upon arrival and tried to take out at his PPV debut, the very same night Hollywood Hogan captured the World Title. The night after that PPV, the former US Champion and the self-styled "Hulk Hogan of Mexico" Konan calls out Hogan and the nWo. Immediately after at the Clash of The Champions, Ultimo Dragon has changed his target to Konan. The only conclusion we draw here is that the fourth and final member of the nWo must be "The Last Dragon", recruited specifically to get the new World order a foothold in both Japan and Mexico and to bring them the Cruiserweight Title. If I'm Konan, I regret this win and start seeking out allies for protection.
Originally posted by cfgbEverything falls apart as everyone hits the ring – leaving Booker and Scott alone. Booker delivers a sweet Harlem sidekick, and follows with a back elbow. THE OUTSIDERS make an appearance now as Scott Steiner hits a Frankensteiner! 1 … 2 … Patrick spies the Outsiders in the aisle, and throws the match out at 10:35! Scott Steiner goes ballistic, grabbing Patrick by the collar and screaming all kinds of Turner unfriendly words! Dr. Unlikely, please update your rankings to include Harlem Heat.
Is it possible that Colonel Parker would have the financial means at this point to back the new World order, and that's why he was late getting to the ring for this match? Or could it be Sherri - perhaps upset at being left out of the Alliance To End Hulkamania - who went over to Hogan's side instead with the promise of delivering the Harlem Heat and the tag titles, freeing Hall and Nash up to collect the US and TV titles after Dragon gets the cruiser belt?
Originally posted by cfgbVertical suplex, but Hogan starts hulking up. He no sells all of Flair’s punches and does the old routine. YOU, block punch, punch, punch, big boot, but he misses the legdrop and Flair slaps on the figure four in the middle of the ring! Flair uses the ladies for leverage, but Hogan manages to turn it over … only for Flair to turn it over the other way! Hogan grabs at the referee, and throws him into the buckle knocking him out. That draws in THE OUTSIDERS, as Hogan taps out, so Flair is forced to break the hold to do battle. The trio stomp Flair into nothing, but THE HORSEMEN, STING, and LEX LUGER rush in to chase them away. The match is declared a DQ win for Ric 8:32. ** That was a nice change to the usual Hogan/Flair formula.
This may be an historic moment if we assume, probably safely, that this was the last time Flair would ever be protected in a finish vs. Hogan or the nWo or possibly anyone else ever again in WCW or WWE.
Interesting interview with Rodney Mack, where he talks about the locker room contrast from the WWE to ECW, "old school" wrestling versus "sports entertainment," and trying to run your own promotion. Hyperlink: http://www.twnpnews.