Message from discussion WWF Monday Night RAW/WCW Monday Nitro (3/10)
From: pet...@bji.net (John Petrie)
Subject: [RESULTS/OPINION] WWF Monday Night RAW/WCW Monday Nitro (3/10)
Organization: Wild.Net, L.L.C.
[RESULTS/OPINION] WWF Monday Night RAW/WCW Monday Nitro (3/10)
WWF Monday Night RAW: Live.
HOUR ONE: Hosted by Vince McMahon, Jim Ross and Jerry "The King" Lawler.
- After the spinning WWF logo goes by, the new intro kicks off: an alarm
siren starts to sound ... the large doors of a steel mill, factory, or
some other kind of plant open and the camera swoops in ... things start
to explode ... shadowy figures scurry about ... Marilyn Manson's "The
Beautiful People" kicks in ... "Stone Cold" Steve Austin walks toward a
fireball ... German shephards bark ... Ahmed Johnson bangs a pipe or 2X4
against a chain link fence ... pictures of bombs dropping, helecopters,
and some of the WWF wrestlers are projected on the walls ... Bret Hart
and the Undertaker (among others) are duking it out in a ring circled by
burning ropes and flaming trash cans ...
Cut to the Worchester Arena. The crowd roars as pyrotechnics go off. The
large "RAW" letters have been replaced by a huge video screen over the
entranceway, which opens out onto a sloped ramp that ends near the ring.
On the screen, the "RAW" letters spin about and reassemble themselves
into "WAR," then back again. The on-screen graphics are new too.
Sure it's a little like the Nitro entrance ... but it still kicks ass.
- Sycho Sid comes out for an interview. Jim Ross asks Sid, due to his
having a meeting with Gorilla Monsoon, if he's hesitant to take part in
his match tonight with the Undertaker vs. Vader and Mankind. Sid
intimates that the Undertaker may be involved in a plot with Vader and
Mankind to eliminate Sid in some way. Sid says he won't fall for it.
The lights go out and the Undertaker appears. He tells Sid to just admit
it if he's afraid. He points out that any plot against Sid would be
illogical because it would jeopardize his title shot at WrestleMania. He
adds that he has as much as Sid to loose as well, as an injury would
again cost him the title shot. The Undertaker says he will handle Vader
and Mankind himself, and that Sid needs to go off and enjoy his last few
days as champion. "I don't need a plot to beat you." The crowd chants
along for the obligatory "Rest In Peace!"
"Ohhhhh yeeeesssss!!" howls Paul Bearer from the entryway. He, Vader and
Mankind approach the ring. Bearer calls the 'Taker and Sid cowards, both
of them having felt the wrath of Vader and Mankind. Vader slips in one
side of the ring and attacks Sid while Mankind attacks Undertaker from
the other side. As the blows are flying Vader glances at the Undertaker
and takes a swipe at the back of his head. The Undertaker turns and sees
only Sid, Vader having been knocked to the mat. The two get nose-to-nose,
teasing a fight, as they cut to a commercial.
- ROCKY MAIVIA vs. TONY ???
The large screen shows clips of each wrestler in previous action as they
make their way to the ring. Tonight's jobber has a name that sounds like
"Roowah," but they never show it on the ring. Mr. Bob Backlund, the
Iron Sheik and the Sultan come out. Backlund insults Maivia as Rocky
quickly beats "Roowah" with a crossbody block off the top rope. The
Sultan charges the ring, but is met by a barrage of blows. A dropkick
sends him back to the floor. Backlund and the Shiek are knocked off the
apron as well. The Sultan slides back in and Rocky slides out, but not
before stopping in the aisle to point out Tony Atlas in the crowd.
McMahon mentions that Atlas used to wrestle with Maivia's dad, Rocky
Johnson. Rocky invites Atlas up onto the ramp and he accompanies him out
of the ring area.
Maivia will face the Sultan at WrestleMania 13. Yuck. At least all this
went by fast.
- PIERROTH/HEAVY METAL/PENTAGON vs. LATIN/OCTAGON/HECTOR GARZA
My first reaction as they came out was "oh great ... Mexicans!" Boy, was
I wrong. This match was pretty good, better than most recent attempts by
WCW. They maintained a fast pace with only a few blown spots. Highlights
include Heavy Metal being whipped into the ropes by Garza, doing a
handstand, bouncing off the ropes, and flying backwards with an elbow
shot. Metal then took a big bump to the floor when he tried to hit Garza
with a high knee in the corner. Garza moves and Heavy Metal flies over
the top turnbuckle to the floor. Once they both get back in the ring they
shake hands in a sign of sportsmanship.
The camera cuts to the middle of the crowd where security has spotted
that huge woman who has been seen with Hunter Hearst Helmsley lately. She
refuses to leave quietly and they have to physically drag her out. The
match is shown split-screen.
The commercial goes by and it's back to the match. Latin Lover knocks
Pierroth to the floor and follows with a plancha from the top turnbuckle.
As they struggle to their feet Heavy Metal lands on the two with a senton
off the top. The three of them stumble to their feet and are hit by
Octagon who does a tope through the ropes. Pentagon comes to the apron,
kicks at Octagon, then hits the group (and the ringside rail) with an
Asai Moonsault. The five get up and form a huddle for the last man,
Hector Garza, who hits the gang with a corkscrew plancha from the top
(which gets a nice pop from the crowd). Even Jim Ross doesn't know what
to call it. ("I'm sure that it's got some elaborate name, but it is sure
as hell high risk!") This was very similar to the sequence of spots done
in the six-man match at the most recent Clash of the Champions (the only
good thing about that match). Unfortunately it was hard to watch because
they again did a split-screen, this time with Brian Pillman. Pillman says
he's about ready to come back and will make his first appearance at this
week's Shotgun Saturday Night ("when those sanctimonious censors are
They show a replay of Garza's corkscrew plancha, which again is
unfortunate, because the split-screen shot distracts from the live
footage of Heavy Metal rolling up Latin Lover for the pin. A good match,
but it suffered greatly from the WWF's intrusive angles. Ross promises
more AAA action this weekend on Shotgun.
Hunter Hearst Helmsley, according to McMahon, has left the building.
- AHMED JOHNSON vs. ROY RAYMOND
Faarooq and the Nation of Domination appear under the big screen. I've
never mentioned it before, but have you noticed how funny the NOD's
lyrics for Faarooq are?
"We are the Nation, live and in color.
Don't dis the Man cuz we'll bumrush your mutha.
Listen what I'm saying, this is real, not playing.
Faarooq is the Man so hit your knees-start praying!"
Damn, that's funny! Anyway, the words "Nation of Domination" pop up on
the screen in time with the beat, as well as the platitude "By Any
Means Necessary." ("Any" being underlined).
Ahmed takes his frustrations out on the jobber by tossing him out of the
ring, following him to the floor, then throwing him back in. He waves in
the Nation then hits a swinging scissors kick to the back of the head,
and a spinebuster. He finishes Raymond off with the Pearl River Plunge.
After being declared the winner he shows disrespect to the Nation by
standing with his back towards them, leaning against the top rope and
inviting them to attack. They do not. Faarooq over the house mic again
accuses Ahmed of not knowing what the streets are about, calling him an
"Uncle Tom." Faarooq says Ahmed will show up "stupid and all alone!" He
says he's coming in with the entire Nation behind him. Ahmed replies that
he's bringing with him the two "meanest, nastiest" men he could find.
"You have a Nation? I'm bringing the entire city of Chicago!"
Cue the Road warriors, who come out of the crowd. A huge pop and an
extremely loud "LOD" chant accompany them. Hawk and Animal make the usual
sort of comments. Ahmed says the Nation is starting to look white, "even
the black boys!" Ahmed wraps things up with a thunderous crowd assited
chant of "You're Going Down!"
If the Worchester crowd is any indication, the whole Nation of Domination
angle, and the return of the Warriors, are way over with the fans.
- OWEN HART/BRITISH BULLDOG vs. THE NEW BLACKJACKS
Jim Ross ambushes Owen and the Bulldog and congratulates Davey Boy on his
European Title victory. Owen says that they aren't concerned with that
right now and to forget it. Ross asks Owen if he's jealous of the
Bulldog. Owen denies it.
Barry Windham gets on the mic and gives credit to the Bulldog, but calls
Owen a "no good son-of-a ... " Bradshaw interrupts and calls Owen a
"stinking Canadian tick!" He accuses Owen of leaching off the Bulldog,
and finishes up by telling him he has a "real purdy pair of lips!" Owen
jumps Bradshaw and the fight is on. Owen and Bradshaw spill to the floor
as the bulldog tries twice unsuccesssfully to clothesline Windham over
the top rope. He whips him into the ropes and is finally able to knock
him to the floor. Things settle in from then on into a standard tag
match. Vader delivers comments from the back via split-screen. Mankind
stands by, nuzzling his head against Paul Bearer.
As the match drags on (including through a commercial break) the subject
of ECW arises and Jerry Lawler once again badmouths every aspect of it.
This prompts a split-screen shot to the back where Taz threatens to come
out and allow Lawler to say some of those things to his face. Lawler says
if he wants to come out he'll tell him "just how short he is ... if I can
bend down that far!" "He looks a lot bigger on the 'Lucky Charms'box, you
The match finally winds down with Owen in the ring with Bradshaw. Windham
enters, as well as the Bulldog. Davey Boy punches away at Windham as the
referee tries to get him out of the ring. Owen meanwhile has slipped
Bradshaw into the Sharpshooter. The Bulldog shoves down the ref and
Windham is able to clothesline Owen. The ref calls for the bell and
disqualifies the Bulldog, giving the victory to the Blackjacks.
- They run another one of those Slammy promos, urging fans to vote in the
category of "Loose Screw" of the year. The nominees are Psycho Sid,
Mankind, Steve Austin, Kramer from "Sienfeld," and Mr. Bob Backlund.
- Taz and Bill Alphonso come to ringside. Lawler says he's sick of this and
gets up to confront him. Taz slaps a choke on Lawler, but Jerry doesn't
sell it and slaps one of his own on in return. As Alphonso tries to split
the two apart, the crowd erupts and Jim Ross yells "there's Sabu!" Sabu
is in the ring, sets up a chair, and leaps off it-over the top rope.
Lawler and Taz move and Sabu crashes through the table holding the ring
bell. The Eliminators come out to help hold Taz back. Tommy Dreamer,
Sandman and Paul E. Dangerously check over Sabu, who lies motionless on
the floor. Lawler points at him with glee yelling "that's good!" They
replay the table shot and Sandman and Dreamer walk Sabu out. (Noticable
this week was the absence of any comments from McMahon about all this
being "too violent" or "out of bounds." Seems that the fan reaction to
two weeks ago has sold him on a minor escalation in the aggression level
in the WWF).
- LEIF CASSIDY vs. MIGUEL PEREZ
Jeez, is Perez hairy or what? What a carpet on his back! They show a clip
of his arrival two weeks ago. The two start off with a mix of mat
maneuvers and the occasional dropkick.
Cut to the back where Paul E. awaits. McMahon asks that Paul E. restrain
some of his men. Paul E. says he will if McMahon restrains his
"comedian." "No more fun, no more games, no more 'interpromotional
cooperation,' no more 'Paul E. Dangerously.'" He points to himself.
"Jerry Lawler ... Paul Heyman." He tells Lawler that he has a lot of
friends and they are all Extreme. He tells Lawler to bring his friends to
the debate tonight, because Paul E. will be bringing his.
Back in the ring the match continues. After some okay moves by both men,
Perez escapes from a powerbomb attemt and victory rolls Cassidy up for
- Sycho Sid laments the fact that he not only has to fight alongside the
Undertaker tonight, but must face Bret Hart next week live on RAW in a
steel cage match.
HOUR TWO: Hosted by Vince McMahon, Jim Ross and Jerry "The King" Lawler.
- The new opening went over so well the first time that they replay it to
kick off the second hour.
- Jim Ross brings out Ken Shamrock and they announce that he will be the
special referee in the Steve Austin/Bret Hart submission match at
WrestleMania. Shamrock tells the fans that it's an honor to be a part of
the World Wrestling Federation, and that he'll call the match straight
down the middle.
"Shut your hole Shamrock!" yells Steve Austin's image, twenty feet high
on the big screen. Austin says he can't believe that Hart is getting
another title shot, but that's fine with him because that'll make his
match with Hart a title match if Hart beats Sid next week. Austin tells
Shamrock that he might knock his lights out after he beats Hart. Shamrock
says he didn't bring his tights, but if Austin wants to come to the ring,
Ken is ready for him. Just then Bret Hart's music starts up and Hart
comes to the ring (which sends Austin into an even bigger fury). Hart
says it's nice to finally be given a chance to talk about his title loss.
He acknowledges the fans who say he (Hart) is crying, but says that it's
too bad, and all he wants is justice. He credits his crying to Gorilla
Monsoon with getting the title shot next week. Hart acknowledges that the
Undertaker may be the one that gets screwed in all this, and Steve Austin
is getting a real break. He runs down the list of everyone that has
screwed him again. He tells Shamrock that he has no problem with him, but
that he'd better call the match straight. Shamrock says he isn't a
marriage counselor, and isn't here to listen to Hart's complaining.
Austin then comes out, but stays back by the entryway.
- The Honky Tonk Man comes out and threatens to sing, but tells the
audience that they didn't treat him well the last time he was there, so
as punishment he won't sing.
- BILLY GUNN vs. ALDO MONTOYA
Billy seems to have recovered from his paralysis. He quickly dispatches
Aldo with a legdrop off the top rope. They split-screen to a shot of
Sunny, who hypes her "Undercover with Sunny" segment on Shotgun Saturday
- Mankind tells us all he isn't as dumb as the WWF makes him out to be, and
that the real "big" story in the WWF is just how solid a team he and
- GOLDUST (w/ Marlena) vs. TIM MCNEEDY
Hunter Hearst Helmsley and the mystery woman come out through the
entryway. Goldust toys with McNeedy for aminute or so before applying the
Curtain Call. The mystery woman (Joanie Lee?) removes her jacket (the
camera getting a low angle chest shot. "Look at those deltoids!" exclaims
the Honky Tonk Man). Goldust and Marlena are distracted as Helmsley is
able to sneak up from behind and hit Goldust with forearm off the top
turnbuckle. Helmsley and his galpal stomp on Goldust until Marlena, who's
seen all she can stand, jumps the woman from behind, riding on her back
and pulling her hair. The ring fills with officials and the two are
separated. Marlena slaps the woman, which earns a tremendous roar from
the crowd. The Amazon shoves one referee down, then hoists Harvey
Whippleman over her head and tosses him like a rag doll across the ring.
Helmsley watches all this from ringside, having scrambled as soon as the
ring filled up.
Paul E. and his camp are show in a hallway awaiting "The Great Debate."
- Jim Ross presides over the debate. They've dragged out the WWF podium
again. Ross outlines a set of rules and guidelines for the debate-none of
which come into play. The question: "Should ECW exist?" Lawler, having
won a "coin toss" starts by questioning if Extreme Championship Wrestling
even does exist, pointing out that they are now being seen by more people
than ever. Lalwer calls the ECW fans "morons and brain damaged idiots."
Lawler says ECW draws about 1100 people. He points out that the WWF draws
22,000 fans at the Corestates Center. "Shut up! Shut the hell up!" yells
Paul E. as Lawler has run way over his alloted time. Paul E. says that
the number of fans either promotion draws is irrelevant, it's all about
pleasing those fans, and that no one works harder than ECW. The rest of
the ECW have come out by this time. "Give me the high sign and I'll cane
his ass!" declares the Sandman. Paul E. holds him back and Ross asks for
some decorum. Lawler again questions the wisdom of Vince McMahon even
allowing ECW to hype it's PPV. "You're proud of drawing 1100 fans-there's
four million people (in Philadelphia). There's 1100 morons that'd come to
watch paint dry!" Paul E. asks if Lawler is shooting with him. "Yeah, I'm
shooting with you!" "How're you doing at the seesaws(?) in Loisville,
Jerry? Your own sons don't even call themselves Lawler. Why? Because
they're ashamed of your ass!" Lawler calls Paul E. "a thirty-five year
old man who lives with his mother and father." "How old are you, Jerry?"
Lalwer asks why Paul E. hangs around these guys. Paul E. describes ECW as
the "Howard Stern" of wrestling. Lawler accuses him of being "a little
light in the loafers," and that that's the real reason he hangs around
wrestlers. Tommy Dreamer comes over and challenges Lawler to bring out
"all your guys and I'll show you how to start an F'n war!" The podium
finally gets smashed. Sandman guzzles a beer, then smashes it against his
head. The Dudleys, Eliminators and Beulah are now in the ring as well.
Lalwer says he'll bring his friends out and calls to them out from the
back. No one shows. Paul E. says pick any one of his men and the first
two shots are free. After no one from the WWF has come to Lawler's aid
Paul E. tells him to "get you ass out of here, or we'll get it out of
here for you!" Lawler does leave and McMahon remarks that Lawler
apparently has no friends. The Honky Tonk Man claims he does, but that
they couldn't hear them in the back.
A lot of this had to be over the heads of most of the fans (I didn't even
know what a lot of what they mentioned referred to) but they sold the
whole thing as a dual shoot and shattered any surface illusion of a
cooperative effort. This should quiet some of the criticism (mostly from
non-ECW fans) that Paul E. "sold out." I suspect there's more to come
from this, but I have no idea how far they will take it.
- THE UNDERTAKER/SYCHO SID vs. VADER/MANKIND (w/ Paul Bearer)
Sid comes out alone and has to handle both Vader and Mankind by himself.
Sid takes a good pounding in the corner before the Undertaker finally
runs (yes, runs) to the ring. While mankind works on Sid, the Undertaker
hoists Vader up for a chokeslam, then knocks him over the top rope with a
big boot. Mankind charges Undertaker and clotheslines him, sending both
tumbling over the top rope to the floor. Mankind is slammed against the
ring steps. Vader meanwhile has reentered the ring and is beating up Sid.
Instead of saving him, the Undertaker takes up his tag rope position on
Vader goes on the offense, applying a chinlock resthold. Mankind can be
seen getting back up on the apron and a regulation tag team match has
been achieved. Maybe two minutes go by without much happening other than
the fans chanting "SID!" Then a commercial. Then the Karate Fighters
Rewind. Now that maybe a good five minutes have elapsed Sid is finally
able to turn the tables on Vader with a suplex. Sid crawls to the corner
to make the tag, but the Undertaker isn't there: he's on the floor
fighting Mankind. McMahon announces that the USA Network will be giving
them extra time (as they are dangerously close to 9:00 PM Central Time).
Vader whips Sid into a clothesline then tags in Mankind. Mankind tries to
contain Sid, but he makes it over and tags in the Undertaker. The
Undertaker delivers a barrage of fists, then a whip to the ropes and a
big boot. He then does a chokeslam and covers for the pin. Sid enters the
ring, as well as Vader, and the two go at it, tumbling to the floor. The
Undertaker pulls up from Mankind, not going for the pin. A headbutt sends
Mankind through the ropes and to the floor. The Undertaker comes out to
the apron and tries to drop a forearm on Vader, but hits Sid instead. The
Undertaker tries to go to work on Vader, but Sid comes over and pops him
one. The two begin to trade blows. Sid is rolled back into the ring. The
Undertaker chokeslams him to the mat, then bounces off the ropes and does
a diving plancha over the top rope to the floor, splashing Vader and
Mankind! The crowd nearly goes ballistic.
Vader slips back into the ring and covers Sid. Undertaker and Mankind
battle their way up the ramp. Vader gets a two count. Sid then comes out
of the ring, grabs the Undertaker, and tosses him back into the ring. Sid
cinches him up and powerbombs him like a big sack of dog food. Sid then
strolls off to greener pastures as Vader covers for the pin. Vader sets
up the Undertaker for the Vaderbomb. Vader's music plays as he climbs the
turnbuckles, but Sid returns to the ring and mysteriously pushes him off.
Vader tumbles to the mat and the Undertaker regains his feet. He dumps
Vader over to the floor, stomps on Mankind, then steps over the top rope
in pursuit of the departed Sid.
Bret Hart is in the interview area in the back. McMahon asks how Hart
managed to get a title match next week. "How did I get it? I guess by
crying a lot about it!"
- Next week's main event: Bret Hart vs. Sid in the cage for the belt.
Comments: A wild, hot installment of RAW. The new look is great. They
delivered a little bit of everything this time around. Some okay wrestling
(but not much). Tons of angles. WrestleMania got a huge boost tonight. Every
upcoming match was touched upon and hyped. What's more, they threw in a
major bit of mystery regarding next week's RAW: will Bret beat Sid for the
title, thus making his match with Austin the main event? For once they
haven't run out of momentum prior to WrestleMania (like they did last year).
Next week's show promises to be just as big.
The reintroduction of a few squash matches helped to build the PPV without
oversaturating us with marquee matches. Squashes can serve a valuable
purpose, so long as they are kept short, which they did for the most part.
(The only match I question was the Gunn/Montoya match, which really served
no purpose other than to show that Billy Gunn was back. Couldn't that have
waited until Superstars, or after WrestleMania? I suppose it was to give
Billy a much needed paycheck).
The ECW thing has all the earmarks of building to something. Just what, I'm
not sure. I doubt a fullblown interpromotional feud. I don't think at least
one match with Lawler vs. Paul E., or Dreamer or Sandman is out of the
question. Some have said this cooperation wouldn't help the WWF. Obviously
ECW has benefitted (it's regular fans seemingly pleased by what has happened
thus far. It seems like it's WCW's fans that have cried "sold out!"
Jealous?) Meanwhile the WWF has benefitted by adding a touch of excitement,
unpredictability, and perhaps even "danger," to two editions of RAW. It
hasn't hurt the WWF in any way. Even if it's fans have no knowledge of ECW,
they've gotten to see something out of the ordinary. Think of it as akin
to a fan running into the ring, only taken to, well, the extreme.
WCW Monday Nitro: Live.
HOUR ONE: Hosted by Tony Schiavone & Larry Zbyszko.
- WCW, terrified that someone may turn to RAW, starts even earlier than
usual. This time it's about three minutes before RAW. Hulk Hogan and
Dennis Rodman are standing next to a promo display for Rodman's movie
with Jean Claude Van Damme. The clips lasts all of fifteen seconds, and
Hogan claims Rodman is the newest member of the NWO. Schiavone, though
mentioning the press coverage of Rodman's signing with WCW, urges fans to
stay tuned to see if the New World Order confirms it.
Roddy Piper and his "family" are showing arriving via limousine. Piper's
team is made up of John Tenta (the former sumo wrestler), Craig Malley
(the boxer-a former bodyguard of Piper's), and Layton Morrison (the
kickboxer). They are all wearing kilts.
This week's show is from Club La Vela, a beachside bar/restaurant. The
ring is on a platform over a swimming pool. You know someone is going in
that water before the night is over.
- JEFF JARRETT/STEVE MCMICHAEL (w/ Debra) vs. HIGH VOLTAGE
Jarrett easily handles both members of High Voltage. He tags in Mongo,
who piledrives Rage for the easy win. Jarrett and Mongo are now a focused
team, meaning WCW pretty much spent the last two months wasting our time.
The crowd, already bored, chants for Ric Flair.
- Mean Gene Okerlund interviews "Rowdy" Roddy Piper and his motley crew.
Piper decides to take this opportunity to silence his critics. He says
Howard Stern is afraid of him. (And annoyingly yells "Uncensored" every
time he says something that he feels is controversial). He warns Dennis
Rodman that it's a kilt he's wearing, not a dress. He then mentions the
WWF, saying that they criticised Piper by claiming that they don't have
any "one-hip wrestlers" on their PPV's. "That's right, they don't have
one, hip, wrestler!" He also calls them a liar because when he wrestled
Goldust, he had one hip. He goes on to say that he'll be faithful to his
Out comes Ric Flair, Arn Anderson, Jeff Jarrett and Steve McMichael. Arn
tells Piper that they've all been beat up by the NWO, and that this is no
time to put his trust in amatuers. Arn offers the services of the
Horsemen to be on Piper's team. Piper seems reluctant. Flair then takes
over the interview, telling Piper how important it is that they beat
Hogan, hyping each member of the Horsemen one at a time. He whips off his
jacket and goes into that fitful little jig of his. Okerlund says "if the
jacket fits, wear it." Piper puts on Flair's jacket and says it does fit,
and that he accepts Flair's offer. Gee, didn't Piper just go back on his
promise to be faithful to his new family? Talk about WCW backpedaling.
- PRINCE IAUKEA vs. SQUIRE DAVID TAYLOR
They cut fully away from the match to show the NWO arriving in the
Hummersine. No Rodman. As they enter the building, another member is
mysteriously attacked. This time it's Wallstreet.
Iaukea wins quickly with a ... a ... pin. Taylor picks him up to bodyslam
him and Iaukea shifts his weight, falling on him for the pin. So as not
to be considered a hypocrite, I'll give credit to this squash for being
- EDDIE GUERRERO vs. JIM POWERS
Dean Malenko sits in for color commentary. Malenko claims he's there to
show us the "real" Guerrero. This wasn't an entirely terrible match, but
since I can't stand Jim Powers, don't expect me to rave about it. Eddie
pushes Powers into Teddy Long (who was up on the apron) then rolls him up
for the pin. Malenko offers this questionable finish as proof.
Mean Gene interviews Eddie. Guerrero furthers the "evil" Guerrero
plotline by mentioning that all his friends and family think he's
Again, so I'm not a hypocrite, this squash was short. Okay, so maybe it
wasn't a sqush. In that case, it sucked.
- SGT. CRAIG PITTMAN (w/ Teddy Long) vs. DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE
Page wins via the Diamond Cutter. Almost a squash. Not short enough.
Schiavone alerts all the fans in Philadelphia that a major announcement
is forthcoming, so stay tuned. Later he announces that WCW will be in
Philly next month. That was the big announcement.
Page starts an interview. He's in the process of challenging Randy "Macho
Man" Savage when all the lights go out. It's a power failure. They go to
break, Tony talks for a minute, then they go to another break. Page
continues his interview several minutes later.
- REY MYSTERIO JR. vs. GALAXY
Rey squeaks out a pretaped interview via split-screen. A decent match
which, were I in a more cynical mood, would disregard by calling a
"spot-fest." I won't this time around, but only because the flow of the
match was better than usual. Mysterio wins yet again with his huracanrana
roll-up. The crowd finally starts to reawaken.
HOUR TWO: Hosted by Tony Schiavone, Bobby "The Brain" Heenan and Mike Tenay.
- Mean Gene brings out John Sencio from MTV. Sencio then brings out "Miss
WCW Monday Nitro." A bikini clad college student named Pamela Rogers.
Sencio announces that Scott Hall, Kevin Nash and Syxx will be on MTV
during one of their spring break specials, "Fame or Shame," later this
- THE AMAZING FRENCH CANADIANS/GREG "THE HAMMER" VALENTINE/ROADBLOCK vs.
THE STEINER BROTHERS/LEX LUGER/THE GIANT
Roadblock chokeslammed. Pin. Squash. Short. Interview. My stomach hurts.
- JUVENTUD GUERRERA vs. ULTIMATE DRAGON (w/ Sonny Onoo)
An okay match. It started really fast, then slowed down to an almost WCW
style match with few high spots. It picked up again at the end. Dragon
did a huracanrana off the top rop. Guerrera did a senton from the top
turnbuckle onto Ultimate Dragon at ringside. Dragon eventually wins with
a Tiger Suplex (according to Mike Tenay). Match went several minutes, but
I liked the shorter Mysterio match better.
- CHRIS JERICHO vs. SCOTTY RIGGS
They go a few minutes and look to be evenly matched. Buff Bagwell runs in
and hits Riggs with a strap. Riggs wins via DQ. The crowd seemed to like
Bagwell's teeny, tight cutoff jeans.
- Madusa kills a minute by telling us how mad she is.
- Lee Marshall phones in from Savannah, Georgia.
- KEVIN SULLIVAN (w/ Jacquelyn & Jimmy Hart) vs. HARDBODY HARRISON
Harrison is a thin, muscular jobber. He gets in no offense here. Sullivan
mauls him, at one point throwing him out of the ring so that Jacquelyn
can beat on him as well. (This gets perhaps the loudest reaction of the
night from the crowd). Back in the ring Harrison does a Sunset Flip, then
a small package, but that's it. Sullivan tosses him back out and he and
Jacquelyn whip him into the metal railing that lines the catwalk running
out to the island that the ring is on. Sullivan picks him up and drops
him crotch-first across the railing. He is then dragged completely away
from the pool area towards the beach. Sullivan slams him against posts,
hits him with pieces of wood, even throws him down some stairs towards
the beach. He eventually drags him back to the pool and chucks him in
(it's about time). Either Sullivan is disqualifed, or both men were
counted out. Mean Gene interviews Sullivan and Jacquelyn.
Randy Anderson made his return to WCW as the referee for this match.
- "Hollywood" Hogan, Bischoff, and the rest of the NWO come out. They
confirm that Rodman is in the NWO by running another clip. This one lasts
less than a minute. Rodman accepts an NWO t-shirt from Hogan. Besides
that, they give Sting, who is hovering about the fringe of the group, his
NWO t-shirt as well. Sting doesn't take it in hand and they have to drape
it over his shoulder. Hall and Nash taunt the Steiner Brothers. Randy
Savage has a few words for Diamond Dallas Page. The rest of the NWO mill
about uselessly, and the crowd pops bigger for the NWO's music than for
anything any of them said.
- THE PUBLIC ENEMY vs. HARLEM HEAT (w/ Sister Sherri)
This had been hyped as the main event, but it never happens. The P.E.
give Mean Gene a brief interview (where they badmouth the Horsemen) then
get jumped from behind by the Heat. Even though there's at least a minute
to go before the top of the hour, Nitro simply ends.
- Next week's main event: None announced.
Comments: Ouch! NOTHING HAPPENED! The location was cool, the crowd started
out hot, yet WCW gave them nothing. Even though they never specificly
promised Rodman, lots of people assumed he'd be there. He wasn't, and the
two clips they showed barely totaled a minute. The NWO's appearnace was
subpar, even by NWO standards. The only main event caliber match (hah!)
never even happened. How many weeks in a row is it now that Nitro has
promised a main event that didn't take place? There was some okay wrestling
in a few of the matches, but overall none of the matches were that promising
or interesting when announced.
Of course they'll get a huge rating, but no amount of commercial success can
make up for how bad this was.
The Bottom Line: WrestleMania 13 looks, at the very least, to be shaping up
as a very solid card. Here's what looks to be the final lineup:
* Sycho Sid vs. The Undertaker for the World Title. I think both of these
guys have shown recently that they can make this match at least
watchable. Should Sid lose the title next week this could drop to the
next-to-last match slot.
* Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin in a Submission Match w/ Ken Shamrock as
special referee. Obviously the main event if Hart wins the title next
week. There's no reason this shouldn't be an excellent match.
* Rocky Maivia vs. The Sultan for the Intercontinental Title. This is
really the only weak match on the card. I don't understand why the Sultan
is getting a push when the reaction to him months ago seemed fairly
negative. I don't think that has changed. I have two theories regarding
1. This is what he was promised-a push at this time, or more specifically
a match on the WrestleMania card. Perhaps Vince would have liked to
set up something else, but he was obligated to push the Sultan.
2. Vince wants to continue Rocky's push with a win at WrestleMania and
the Sultan was the only one willing to do the job.
I suppose having Helmsley tied up with Goldust, and Marc Mero being
injured really forced Vince to dip into the midcard pool. This whole
match only even became possible a week ago. I assume the addition of Tony
Atlas will offset any interference by Backlund and the Sheik, allowing
Maivia to get the quick, easy win.
* Owen Hart & The British Bulldog vs. Mankind & Vader for the World Tag
Team Titles. This match is perhaps the biggest question mark. Will one
team split up? The other? Both teams? Will we just see a straight match?
Can the two teams' styles mesh for a good match? All four of these guys
have been involved in some interesting stuff lately, and the WWF would
really have to blow it for this to be the low point of the card. My
prediction? Vader and Mankind win the belts, furthering the Owen/Bulldog
* Faarooq, Crush & Savio Vega vs. Ahmed Johnson & The Road Warriors in a
Chicago Street Fight. This match may have improved, if they are allowed
to really go at it.
* Hunter Hearst Helmsley vs. Goldust. These guys can put on a good show if
they want to and don't just phone it in. The addition of the women at
ringside should make things at least interesting.
That gives us seven matches, which is about the minimum necessary for a PPV.
I'd also expect appearances by Sunny, Shawn Michaels, and maybe a "surprise"
ECW run in. I've also heard that there may be a AAA match, perhaps during
the Free For All.
Uncensored, on the other hand ... stinks. We have:
* Hogan, Hall, Nash & Savage vs. Luger, Giant & the Steiners vs. Piper and
three members of the Horsemen. Each team will send a man to the ring and
they'll wrestle for five minutes. Then each team will send another man
every two minutes until all twelve are in the ring. Each man can be
eliminated by the usual means. When all the members of two teams are
eliminated, the remaining team wins. If it's the NWO, they get the right
to challenge WCW for any title, anywhere, at any time. If it's WCW, the
NWO has to surrender all their titles and are barred from any and all WCW
events for 36 months (yeah-that's gonna happen). If Piper's team wins,
Piper will get a cage match with Hogan at a future date. Wanna bet
Piper's team wins? Given that Hogan is involved in this match I'd be
surprised if any of these rules are adhered to (look at the last two
Uncensored's for examples). I find it hard to believe that WCW's plan all
along was to ally Piper with the Horsemen. It seems more likely that this
was to repair the damage done by the selection of Piper's "family."
Rodman will be with the NWO at ringside. They've left the door open for
WCW winning by admitting that Bischoff has hired a lawyer and that none
of these stipulation may be binding.
* Eddie Guerrero vs Dean Malenko in a No-DQ Match for the U.S. Title. This
is WCW's best hope for a good match.
* Ultimate Dragon vs. Psychosis. This could be good as well, but I wouldn't
bet on it.
* Prince Iaukea vs. Rey Mysterio, Jr. for the TV Title. I'm betting Lord
Steven Regal interferes again.
* Glacier vs. Mortis. I don't think this was even mentioned on Nitro. How
are we as fans supposed to be excited about a match involving a wrestler
we'd never heard of two weeks ago?
* The Public Enemy vs. Jeff Jarrett & Steve McMichael in a Texas Tornado
Match. I see no reason to expect this one to be all that good.
* Diamond Dallas Page vs. Randy Savage. I think this is on the card.
* Buff Bagwell vs. Scotty Riggs. Is this one?
* Madusa vs. Akira Hokuto. Madusa mentioned this match, but I'm not sure if
it's at Uncensored or not.
The problem is WCW as usual has spent so much time hyping the main event
that the undercard is mostly an afterthought. I'm not sure if the above
matches are correct, and I've probably left some off. What about Benoit and
With all these gimmick matches and meaningless matchups, expect lots of
screwy endings, brainless mayhem, and a main event that does little more
than hype next week's Nitro.
Two final thoughts, these regarding the wrestling newsgroup. There's been
lot's of debate over what exactly makes Nitro popular. I and numerous others
have made the case tht it's been WCW's introduction of ex-WWF wrestlers.
Instead of arguing this point on it's own merit, most Nitro defenders have
nitpicked this assertion by claiming most of the wrestlers in question
started out in WCW, the NWA, or other places. Let me just say here that I've
never claimed that Hogan, Hall, Nash, Savage, Jarrett, DiBiase, or any of
the rest started out in the WWF. I know they all started in other regions.
I've merely pointed out that most of them achieved their greatest stardom in
the WWF, and it's that reputation that WCW has fed off of.
Secondly, there's been a lot of debate over the weekly TV ratings. I don't
want to rehash all that here, but I'd just mention that Nitro has a lot of
the deck stacked in it's favor in that regard, not the least of which is
that the live airing runs unopposed on the west coast, while the replay runs
unopposed on the east coast. RAW goes head-to-head with Nitro live, and the
tape delay feed that the west coast gets is on at the same time as the Nitro
replay. Also Nitro always starts before RAW, thus "hooking" many viewers. No
matter how early RAW tried to start, Nitro could beat them to the punch.
Finally, Nitro can often run on after RAW has ended. This can positively
affect their rating. (Right now Nitro isn't running long because TNT is
airing new episodes of Robin Hood. Once they go into reruns, Nitro will
again be able to run as long as they want).
As to what the ratings mean, let's not forget that we're talking cable TV
here. In that context, RAW's "low" 2.something average is considered quite
good for a weekly show. RAW would have to drop pretty low, and maintain that
low rating for some time before it would be in any danger of cancellation.
Nitro meanwhile has seen a slow, gradual decline in their average over the
last few months. Their low 3's/high 2's are still considered phenomenal,
but it is a sign that a few times a month RAW is making some headway against
them. Either that, or the lack of quality on Nitro is slowly losing some
viewers. As for PPV's, the buyrate for "Souled Out" was one of their worst
ever. SuperBrawl, while doing better than the Royal Rumble, was still quite
a drop from Starrcade, which was WCW's most profitable PPV in ages. It seems
to me that fans may be getting bored with what WCW is presenting. Anglewise,
things haven't advanced all that far beyond what they were back in January.
Ultimately it all comes down to what each fan personally thinks of the
product that's being offered. Me, I'm disappointed by WCW. They have so much
talent and so much potential, and it's all wasted or not drawn upon. They
had nine matches this week. Had I seen the card beforehand on paper, not one
of them would have sparked my interest. As they unfolded, except for a good
move here and a humorous/notable comment there, the show just seemed to drag
on. I kept waiting for a quality, big name match. I kept waiting to see
something new. I kept waiting for WCW to pay off on all that hype they
spewed forth. With Dennis Rodman they made us wait an hour and fifty minutes
to see a 45-50 second clip which confirmed what we knew from the start-that
Rodman had joined the NWO.
RAW had eight matches, and while hardly any of these matches offered
potential beforehand themselves, they were either done well or finished
quickly. They also delivered a legitimate main event match which, despite
all odds to the contrary, ended in a pinfall finish. The rest of the show
was filled with enough surprises to keep me guessing as to what would happen
With Nitro I just wondered when something would happen. Anything.
This Week's Winner: RAW.