Hello ladies and gentlemen! We’re one night removed from WCW Halloween Havoc 1995 and we’re heading into the stretch leading us to the first ever World War 3 coming up at the end of November. WCW Monday Nitro comes to us tonight from Dayton, OH, and we’re back to our normal Nitro announce team of Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan and Steve “Mongo” McMichael. We kick off with Bischoff telling us that the footage from last night is arriving later in the night. I’m not sure why the production truck wasn’t able to bring something shot on video just last night…in that same production truck…along with them. Hell, if someone had watched it on PPV and video taped it, they could have the footage quicker than it’s going to show up at this major television show. Seriously, just one of those little things they do to build suspense that made no sense to me. They could have just as easily said that they would show it to us later and not had to build up this whole “it hasn’t arrived yet” thing. Bobby Heenan said that he hasn’t been to sleep yet, which is nuts. Maybe he was up all night celebrating Hogan getting his ass whipped. We also see Pepe dressed up as a witch bat…
We get some information that Randy Savage is out tonight and therefore won’t be able to wrestle Craig Pittman. Instead, Eddie Guerrero will be taking his place, which leads us to…
Match #1: Sgt. Craig “Pitbull” Pittman vs Eddie Guerrero
Pittman had to wrestle Mr. Wallstreet to get a shot at this match, we find out. Not sure why. Both men have wrestled on Nitro before, so why is that a big prize to wrestle for?
Eddie is in his black tights, so I’m happy. I just like them way more than the white ones.
This match was honestly way better than I thought it had any reason to be. Pittman took it to Eddie, making him work a ground game instead of letting him fly. Pittman took Eddie down quite a few times pretty handily but Eddie returns the favor with a pretty nice slam. Off of an Eddie Guerrero two count Eric tells us that Eddie almost got the upset victory there. How sad is that crap? Eddie Guerrero, one of the best wrestlers ever, almost got an upset victory over Craig Pittman. Wow.
We get a pitch for World War 3 and Bobby Heenan asks if Bill and Hillary know about WW3. Bischoff says that the rumor is that they watched Halloween Havoc, so he’s pretty sure they do. Really…?
Pittman is controlling this match and working on Eddie’s arm so that he can set up for the Code Red. Pittman is nailing some great throws and suplexes here. Eddie gets a quick roll up and almost gets three, but Pittman answers with another suplex as Bischoff lets us know that they just got word that the footage is on its way. So…nothing new? Pittman Irish whips Eddie, who quickly rolls him up for the win.
Winner: Eddie Guerrero
We go to commercial with a graphic saying that we have Scott Norton vs The Shark up next.
We come back to a replay of the 9/11 Nitro match between Norton and Randy Savage. We see how The Shark’s interference cost Norton the match. We then get a replay from last week on Nitro when the two got in each other’s faces backstage, setting up our match tonight. We also get info from Bischoff telling us that during the break, Bobby Heenan left the announce booth.
Wow, this is Norton’s first match on Nitro since that Savage match. The two lock up “like two mooses in rutting season.” We’ve got a full on hoss fight on our hands here as the two basically beat each other around the ring. Not much technical wrestling going on here, that’s for sure. Norton hits a nice flying shoulder block off of the top rope and a body slam, leading us to a double clothesline spot that looked pretty rough.
We cut to where Bobby Heenan has been sitting all this time. He’s eating sushi with…wait for it…Sonny Onoo! Called that crap, didn’t I?!
Norton and Shark brawl to the floor and continue to brawl at the ringside area, causing the referee to call for the bell due to count out. They continue to brawl up the ramp, taking a moment to slam each other’s heads into the giant steel WCW letters and then brawl backstage.
Winner: Double count out
We go to commercial break and come back to Tony Schiavone in the ring. If I’m not mistaken, this is his first Nitro appearance. He shows us pics from the PPV last night, courtesy of WCW Magazine. I guess the film guy got there quicker than the video guy. He runs down the Anderson/Pillman vs Sting/Flair match from last night and then welcomes out the Horsemen. There’s a funny moment as Ric Flair grabs one of those foam Hulk Hogan signs from a fan and carries it into the ring. I always kind of feel bad for the people who get their crap stolen. Those foam Hogans definitely cost money. Same thing with that guy who got his hat stolen a few weeks back by Disco Inferno. Terrible thieving wrestlers. Pillman tells us that last night brought us one step closer to the reformation of the Horsemen. Anderson tells us that for two years people have asked him to bring back the Horsemen. Be careful what you wish for…because now you have it. Seriously…I love Arn Anderson, but is this the only promo he cuts from 1995 onwards? He cuts this same promo in September of 1998 as well. Flair tells us that whether we like it or don’t like it, we need to learn to love it because they’re the best thing going today. He says Sting is like the women they deal with. THey tell him what he wants to hear and then they do what they want to do. He challenges Sting next week.
We go to break finding out we have Sabu vs Disco Inferno up next. Coming up on Saturday Night we have Alex Wright vs Chris Benoit, Ric Flair and Arn Anderson vs Renegade and Cobra, and Harlem Heat, who are now the WCW Tag Team Champions, apparently, vs The Blue Bloods (Steven Regal & Bobby Eaton). It looks like Harlem Heat won the tag belts back on the Saturday Night episode that aired on 10/28, according to Wikipedia.
We come back from commercial to:
Match #3: Sabu vs Disco Inferno
Bischoff gives us another useless footage update. We get it, Bisch…just tell us when the damn tape arrives and quit giving us non-updates.
We are also told during the wrestler entrances that next Monday’s Nitro will be fan interactive. The fans will get to control which matches happen. So, Taboo Tuesday or Cyber Sunday almost ten years early? Bischoff runs down two lists of wrestlers, from blue and red locker rooms, and tells us we’ll get to choose which wrestlers face each other.
The match starts out with Disco dancing and Sabu unceremoniously punching him in the mouth for it.
Heenan’s back, so they ask him about the meeting. Heenan says it’s just a friend in town and he’s showing a little hospitality. Nothing they need to worry themselves over.
Disco is showing a bit of a mean streak in this match as he grabs Sabu’s hair and whips him across the ring a few times. It’s not Bull Nakano levels, though. Man, that should start happening soon. After years of garbage WWE Divas matches, some Madusa vs Bull Nakano matches sound pretty good. Maybe some Akira Hokuto thrown in there as well.
Disco is pretty much running this match, which is odd on both the standpoints of it being a Disco Inferno match and he usually never runs it as well as Sabu not just destroying his opponent. Disco’s Achilles heel, though, is that after ever little bit of offense, he dances. It costs him momentum. I do like that they’re keeping that little bit of character with him. He does well through the match but his dancing hubris always seems to cost him. The crowd starts getting behind Sabu, though, and chanting his name. Dancing costs Disco hitting a splash in the corner. The recoil from hitting the corner sends Disco to the mat where he’s hit with Sabu’s flipping leg drop.
Sabu’s normal post match beat down starts at this point. Sabu hits a flip to the outside, taking Disco out, but after getting up all Disco is really worried about is his hair. Sabu has taken the time to go to the end of the ramp and retrieve a table, which he hits Disco with and then puts him up on. He goes for the flipping dive over the top rope but Disco moves and Sabu takes the table back first and it doesn’t break. Looked like a pretty rough landing. Disco high tails it out of the ringside area as Sabu flips out and starts throwing stuff, starting with the ring steps.
We go to commercial break again and come back to…
Match #4: Lex Luger and Meng (w/ Jimmy Hart and Kevin Sullivan) vs The American Males
We get a quick update that the footage is finally here. Thank Heavens!
The Males are getting full babyface cheers. I know that Meng and Luger are pretty hated right now, but last time we saw the Males I didn’t think that they were really that over. Heenan says that Luger and Meng are full-time wrestlers and that the Males have another day job where they work at the mall and spray cologne on people. That cracked me up.
Pretty much right as the match starts, we go to commercial. Only one interruption tonight, though, which is good. Not like that one Nitro where they went to commercial in every match! Does a WCW match ever end on commercial break? It almost seems like I remember that happening once.We come back to the Males controlling Luger, surprisingly. Granted, until Saturday the Males were Tag Team Champions, but still, this is Lex Luger we’re talking about. And a newly heel Luger at that! I wouldn’t imagine the American Males would be leading the match. Even Mongo is shocked that this is happening. He says that they’re kicking the “shag” out of Luger and Bischoff almost has a heart attack at the word that Mongo could have used. Heenan applies a little logic to it saying that the Males are a full-time tag team whereas Luger and Meng have only been together since last night. Both Bischoff and Mongo comment that they’ve been together way longer than last night, hinting that the Luger/Dungeon of Doom alliance has been going on a good while. Even if that is the case, one would have to assume that the connection has been between Luger and Sullivan and that Meng had no part of it, especially since Meng seemed awfully pissed and shocked last night when Sullivan cost him that match. Luger takes a terrible looking backdrop that the announcers put over like a million bucks, with it eliciting a “nice!” from Bischoff twice and a “very nice” from Heenan. Meng and Luger get an opportunity and almost take Scotty Rigg’s head off and regain control of the match.
When does the Barbarian show up? I liked the Faces of Fear.
Meng’s hair is really fluffy today. Not that I would ever tell him that. I’m legit scared of Meng.
Bischoff says that Hulk Hogan hasn’t spoken to anyone since last night. Well, I guess he really doesn’t have any friends left at this point, since Savage is out and Jimmy Hart turned on him.
Why hasn’t Bobby Heenan told us what happened to the Giant last night between his fall off of the Cobo Arena and him coming out to for the World Championship match? He promised!
Riggs gets the hot tag to Bagwell who comes in and cleans Luger’s clock with a few clotheslines. Jimmy Hart distracts the referee during some American Males double-teaming, which is only lightly less homoerotic than it sounds, allowing Meng time to come in and superkick the crap out of everyone. Torture Rack to Bagwell for the win.
Winners: Meng and Lex Luger
We head to commercial with promises of the footage from last night when we return.
We come back and head to our announce booth where Bobby Heenan is still sipping champagne from his earlier sushi dinner with Sonny Onoo. Man, that makes me really want sushi right now. Haven’t had any in a while! Mongo decides to trick ‘r treat for Pepe, holding out his bag, into which Eric deposits the fabled full Snickers bar. He says it’s because they’re a sponsor, but I think it’s because Eric has the money on the block and is handing out the good candy. I know at one point Jimmy Yang went to Bischoff’s house dressed as Sting and has a cool pic of him ready to hit him with the Scorpion Death Drop…I remember seeing that in WCW Magazine. Anyway, Mongo offers the bag to Heenan, who no-sells it, and gets covered in silly string as a result. I love how they play up the fact that Heenan hates Mongo. That being said, I wonder how much “playing” is involved.
We finally get our damn footage from last night, showing us everything that happened from the Hogan leg drop on. Since I can’t replay the footage, I’ll replay yesterday’s post so you can see what happened. See…I can play this game too…but I didn’t spend all post baiting you and telling you that “I’m about to copy and paste from last night, folks!”
Hogan Hulks up again, big boot, hits the leg drop and suddenly the ref hits the floor. Hogan has the match won, but the ref is out. Hogan and Jimmy Hart talk a bit; Hogan lifts the ref up and hands him to Hart to get him ready to make the count. Hogan turns his back; Hart shoves the ref and nails Hogan with the WCW Championship. Hogan no-sells it, turns on Hart and goes to beat him when the Giant gets up and we’re back to the bear hug.
What was funny is that during the whole Hogan/Hart/ref gimmick, The Giant would randomly look up and around, and then drop his head down. I don’t know if this was inexperience on The Giant’s part, or if he was playing possum knowing what was coming. It just cracked me up.
Kevin Sullivan attacks at this point, making Jimmy Hart motion to the entrance, presumably for the rest of the Dungeon of Doom. What he gets, however, is Luger and Savage. They hit the ring and Savage goes to help Hogan, which brings out the Yeti. As soon as the Yeti hits the ring, though, Luger turns on Savage. The Yeti joins the Giant in bear hugging Hogan, but it looks like the most useless, stupidest thing ever. The Giant has a legit bear hug, but the Yeti, who is a good four or five inches taller than The Giant, just puts his arms around the two of them and looks to apply no pressure. Luger puts Hogan in the Torture Rack while the Giant and Yeti go to hug on Randy Savage for a while. Luger drops Hogan and then racks Savage for good measure.
We come out of the replay to Tony Schiavone back in the ring with Lex, The Giant, Sullivan and Jimmy Hart. I guess Mene Gene had the night off because he’s usually the one involved in all of these segments. The Giant still has the WCW World Heavyweight Championship belt around his waist, despite not winning the title legit last night. Tony tells him that he’s not the champ and he asks Jimmy Hart about last night. Jimmy tells us that maybe he’ll put everything in the book he’s writing…or maybe he’ll tell us next week on Monday Nitro. He says that Kevin Sullivan told Hogan that there was evil in his house…and he was talking about Hart! He then tells us that he was the only manager Kevin Sullivan has ever had. That was his past and the Giant and Lex Luger are his future. So, it seems instead of waiting for his book or for next week, he’ll just tell us now. Lex cuts generic wrestling promo #255 and I honestly remember nothing from it. Giant says he’ll defend the title next week on Nitro. Tony then closes out the show pitching next week’s show from Jacksonville, FL.
The thing that struck me most about this show is something that I think WWE could learn from. Not just this show, but Nitro in general over the last few weeks. Think of WCW’s main stars at this point. Flair, Sting, Luger, Hogan, Savage…Hogan and Sting definitely tying for the John Cena spot…and they’re not on the show at all. This show didn’t feature a match from any of the top five or six stars. We got two very quick interview segments from Luger and Flair…both of them being multiple man interview spots…and that’s it. And the show didn’t really suffer for it. We got some pretty good matches, we moved some story along and we didn’t need the major guys along for the ride. Now, I know that Saturday Night is still up there as a main show for them. At two hours and as their longest running show, Saturday Night could still be considered their top show if you really wanted to argue it, so maybe that’s why we don’t always get the main stars here. Thing is, it makes the main stars more of an attraction when they do show up. Sure, I missed Sting, but it’ll make it more exciting when he shows up next week. Of course, Nitro at this point is still only an hour, so that’s why they can get away with it. I don’t think that would fly on a two hour show.
I’m interested to see where the World Title picture goes. Of course, I’m saying that knowing full well where it goes, but it’ll be cool to be along for the ride.
This takes us out of October and through our second full month of Nitro and WCW PPV recollection. I’m having a pretty good time, honestly. I don’t watch Raw anymore. Truthfully, WCW is the only wrestling I really watch right now, outside of catching the PPVs on the Network. I’ve kind of come full circle I guess, as at this time in real time, I didn’t watch WWF, only WCW. At least this time I’m getting to watch the PPVs. I didn’t get to order a PPV until Road Wild 1996, so this stuff is all new to me. I’ve seen pretty much all of these Nitros back during original airing, but the PPVs are all brand new stuff, so that’s super exciting. How is everyone out there enjoying the journey so far? Feel free to leave comments and let me know how I’m doing.
Until next week!
WWF Raw Ratings – 2.1
WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.3
(Raw 3, Nitro 2) (Tie Weeks – 2)
WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2 weeks
WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2 weeks
Nitro’s first winning streak! Two weeks in a row!
WWF Raw results from this week
Goldust defeated Savio Vega (5:46)
Marty Jannetty defeated Joe Dorgan (2:44)
The Smoking Gunns (Bart Gunn & Billy Gunn) (c) defeated John Rechner & Phil Apollo to retain the WWF Tag Team Championship (2:51)
Razor Ramon (c) defeated Owen Hart (w/ Jim Cornette) by disqualification to retain the WWF Intercontinental Championship (10:16)
Razor and Owen looks like a good match, especially at 10 minutes. Savio and Goldust doesn’t sound bad either. Janetty and the Smoking Gunns in squash matches sounds like garbage, though. That’s one thing I can say for Nitro up to this point…no real squash matches. They’ll have quick matches, but no jobbers that I’ve seen thus far. Definitely makes for a better show in my opinion.