Welcome back to Kick Out At Nitro as we continue on towards Halloween Havoc in less than two weeks! Nitro comes to us tonight from Albany, Georgia. Thus far there’s really no rhyme or reason to where Nitro comes to us from. Some weeks it’s a big city like Chicago or Las Vegas and other weeks we’re in Florence, SC or Albany, GA. Very interesting.
We get off to the show pretty quickly but as it opens we get some basic run down from our announce team. Mongo has Pepe dressed as an alien this week. Man, I am starting to feel bad for that little dog. He says that Pepe is from planet Dogtron and he’s going to show us wrestling that we’ve never seen before on this planet. Bobby calls Pepe a tarantula again, which always gets a pop from me. Bobby tells us that Sting will be joining Ric Flair tonight against Arn Anderson and Brian Pillman. This apparently went down on WCW Pro, which was WCW’s Saturday morning syndicated show, so it’s interesting to see storylines playing out on that show as there was really no guarantee who would see that one. I could understand WCW Saturday Night, but stuff like Pro or Main Event is interesting to put major revelations on. We get a clip of that episode of Pro where Flair joins Sting in the ring with a few kids dressed as Sting and pleads to him to join him. Sting accepts but says that if Flair swerves him, he’ll leave him for dead.
Match #1: WCW Television Championship Match – Diamond Dallas Page (w/ Diamond Doll) (C) vs Johnny B Badd
DDP heads to the ring with Kimberly in tow but this time he’s not joined by Max Muscle, so I have no idea where that guy went. During DDP’s entrance we’re shown clips of WCW Saturday Night where it was revealed that DDP was the reason that JBB missed his US Championship match with Sting a few weeks ago. From what I gathered, DDP slashed JBB’s tires so JBB punches him in the mouth for it.
We’re told that no matter who wins or loses this match, these two will wrestle again at Halloween Havoc. Thus far, for Havoc, I think that gives us:
DDP vs Johnny B Badd
Lex Luger vs Meng
Randy Savage vs Kamala
Lex Luger vs Randy Savage (possibly)
Hulk Hogan vs Giant (Monster Truck match)
Hulk Hogan vs Giant (WCW Title Match)
During Johnny’s entrance, DDP blasts him in the back of the head with the TV Championship, knocking him out cold. The referee marks the match a no contest at this point, but that doesn’t stop DDP from stealing JBB’s confetti gun and parading around with it while Kimberly looks on shocked. DDP leans back and covers Johnny, counts his own 3 and then fires the confetti gun after the “win.”
With that, we go to commercial with a graphic showing us that Benoit vs Guerrero is up next.
Match #2: Chris Benoit vs Eddie Guerrero
Eddie comes out first. I’m so used to either his 1997 look or his WWF look that it’s always weird to see that early 1995-1996 WCW look where he was bigger and had that crazy mustache and mullet. He’s in a red and white outfit, which sadly isn’t the black outfit that I’m much more of a fan of. Benoit comes out in his gear from Japan…that blue outfit with the white stripe and star on the back. I wonder when the black outfit with the random red crotch comes in. Does he get that once he joins the Horsemen? Didn’t Pillman also wear those tights? Did he just inherit them from Brian? Too many questions!
The announcers start off putting Benoit over huge. Mongo makes mention of the “Canadian Crippler” name and Brain erroneously tells us that Benoit is from Calgary, Alberta Canada. Close, Brain…but it’s Edmonton.
This match was awesome. There was really only one hitch. Benoit is on the outside and Eddie goes for a dive but pulls back and basically does the 619 spin between the ropes, but his leg catches it and he gets wrapped up in the ropes. He recovers quickly, though, and goes for a dive off of the top rope to the floor onto Benoit.
The best way to describe this match is hard hitting. These two really just take it to each other hard. On the outside, Eddie goes for a clothesline that Benoit ducks, causing Eddie to full force clothesline the turnbuckle post. From there, Benoit targets the arm relentlessly, including two beautiful moves where he ties the arm behind Eddie and hits a back suplex and a northern lights suplex. Very innovative.
We get our first Mike Tenay reference when Bischoff tells us that he’s working the hotline.
Mongo gives me a really nice line when he tells us that “If you’re not a WCW fan after this, you’re dumber than dirt!” Gotta agree with you, Mongo!
Eddie tries to wrap the move up with the frog splash but Benoit gets the knees up. He then hits my absolute favorite Benoit move ever, the snap powerbomb. Seriously, I’ve never seen someone snap off a power bomb before this…or since. It’s like as the upper body is still going up, Benoit is already pulling the move down, so the guy just whips into the canvas on his shoulders. It’s nasty. The power bomb is kicked out of and Eddie punches Benoit but with the bad arm, throwing him off. Benoit locks up a full nelson and gets the win with a tiger suplex. Mongo tells us that this match shows us that Benoit is a “bad hombre with a scary case of the quicks.” Definitely a great debut.
Coming off of that match, Eric tells us that the WCW Championship Committee is currently considering establishing a Cruiserweight Division so that we can see these wrestlers compete for their own championship. For those of you who didn’t play WCW: The Home Game back in the day, the Cruiserweight Division was way more than a random Dean Ambrose joke. It was basically WCW’s calling card, outside of the nWo. The first hour of Nitro was always the best one because it was the Cruiserweight/lucha showcase, so it’s pretty awesome to see it develop from the beginning.
Our next segment starts with Mean Gene in the ring, plugging the hotline. He tells us that a top official in the WWF is no longer with the company. He also tells us that a WWF wrestler got into an altercation with a fan in the parking lot and came out on the losing end. I immediately wondered if this was Shawn Michaels. I know that around this time he gets jumped a few times by fans, so I can only imagine this is a reference to him. May have to research that.
The Giant and Kevin Sullivan make their way to the ring so that they can be interviewed by Gene. Kevin basically spends the entire time talking about how evil he is and how evil the Dungeon of Doom are, and that Hogan may be talking about showing us the evil in him now that he’s all in black, but that there’s still good in his heart so he’ll never defeat the pure evil that is Kevin Sullivan. He tells us that come Halloween Havoc, the Giant is going to be the new champion. Giant says he’s going to push Hogan off of the roof and when they have to cut him out of his monster truck with the jaws of life and drag his carcass into the ring, he’ll pin him and be champ. Still loving the out right death threats coming from the DoD at this point.
We go to commercial with some graphics, letting us know that Meng vs Hacksaw Jim Duggan is up next. Also, this week on Saturday Night we’re going to get Hacksaw vs Wallstreet, Alex Wright vs Disco Inferno and we’ll hear from Savage, Hogan and Hugh Morris (who may still be called the Man of Question) at this point. I didn’t hear if they called him by name, sadly).
We come back from commercial to Disco Inferno deciding he’s going to have his one man dance party in the entrance way again. Just like the last three weeks, the regularly scheduled wrestler walks past him and away goes Disco.
Match #3: Meng vs Hacksaw Jim Duggan
Meng attacks hard and the two trade blows. Eric Bischoff keeps bringing up the fact that Kevin Sullivan isn’t with Meng, just like he did when Luger wrestled Meng a while back. They’re definitely making a big deal of the fact that Meng is wrestling on his own now, though. Thing is, I don’t remember Meng leaving the DoD until the team basically disbands, so I have no idea where this is going.
Spike to Hacksaw’s throat, Meng wins. Match was a throwaway match.
We go to commercial break with a graphic telling us the Main Event is up next.
We come back to a video of Hulk Hogan and Jimmy Hart cutting a backstage promo. Hulk mentions the “Hulkamanioids” instead of the normal “Hulkamaniacs.” Is a Hulkamanioid the evolved form of a Hulkamaniac? Which one can defeat a Mew?
Anyway, Hogan tells us that he knows that him dressing in black has made us shake and quake in fear. He says now we know the evil in his heart, despite the fact that over the last two weeks he’s done nothing evil except for tell Mean Gene and Jimmy Hart to keep their mouths shut. He says that he can stop an elephant in its tracks. He can make a promoter drop to his knees and cry because the promoter knows that Hulkamania is bigger than the entire promotion. Apparently black Hulk Hogan’s evilness is just to rag on Vince McMahon and take potshots at him. Who knew? Jimmy pipes up and tells us that Hogan is scaring the crap out of him and Hogan tells him to stay out of it. Hogan tells us that the Bigfoot guys (the guys making his monster truck) are under the gun and that if they don’t finish the truck by Havoc that he’ll tie up to the Giant’s truck himself and pull it around the arena. He’ll then lift the Giant over his head and slam him, burying him beside his “father.” Apparently the black outfit and no stache are making Hogan’s delusions of grandeur even worse!
Match #4: Arn Anderson and Brian Pillman vs Ric Flair and Sting
Arn and Pillman come out to the ring flashing the 4 Horsemen sign. I like the idea that they’re going to form their own Horsemen without Flair, but I also remember being a teenager watching this and laughing at Pillman flashing the 4 handsign when there were only 2 or 3 people in the Horsemen. Maybe wait until you actually form the group before you start flashing gang signs, guys.
Flair comes to the ring and it looks like his pyro goes off a little too close as he jumps back a bit and sells it. On camera it looks like it happened right in front of him. I’d like to see that from the side to see how close it actually was.
Flair gets in the ring and we don’t get the entrance of Sting. The bell rings and we start the match 2 on 1, just like Flair said he would do it. The announce crew spends a lot of time telling us that of course there’s no way that Sting would ever trust Flair and that’s why he’s not coming out. Flair takes it to both men, though. I like that they didn’t play up Flair being upset at no Sting since last week he told us that he’ll take on both men without a partner anyway. He’s fired up and he’s going to put as much hurt on both men as he can.
The match works with Flair pretty much dominating until Anderson gets him down. He goes for a knee drop but Flair catches the leg, stands up and slaps on a figure 4. He’s got it on for a few moments when Pillman climbs to the top and dives off. Flair moves over and Pillman eats canvas. Flair drops the figure 4 on Arn and puts it on Pillman. We go from there to a double axe handle off of the top by Flair, but then Flair is double teamed. He gets kicked in the back of the head by Pillman, which staggers him into a spinebuster by Double A. This brings out Sting. Flair tries to tag for a while but is getting beaten down until he gets the hot tag and Sting cleans house. The moment that Sting gets the tag, the arena explodes! It is probably the loudest pop I’ve heard in Nitro since I started this journey. This crowd was hot for Sting and hot for him being in this angle. That pop was awesome and it basically took Sting to another gear in the match as he goes nuts, hitting clotheslines, bulldogs and does the chest beating deal. Pretty awesome visual. He backs Arn and Pillman into opposite corners and hits two Stinger Splashes on both men. Both men hit the floor as Flair gets up and back into the ring. Arn and Pillman decide to take a powder, however, and head to the back, giving Sting and Flair the win via countout.
We go to commercial and come back with Mean Gene in the ring with Sting and Flair. We get the full announcement of the same match at Halloween Havoc. Gene mentions that there must have been some reluctance on Sting’s part and that’s why it took him so long to come out. Sting says definitely, but that might be out the door now. No one on the planet thought that he could trust Flair, but Sting was watching backstage and saw that Flair had guts and integrity, so that brought him out. He says that now he knows that Flair is on the straight and narrow path so that at Halloween Havoc, the two of them will destroy the Horsemen. Flair puts over Sting pretty huge and we go back to our announce team.
Heenan says that he’s getting sick of Sting and Flair being friends. Flair being a babyface bothers him and he’s sick of it. Mongo makes a comment and Heenan ends the show with “Step outside with me,” apparently challenging Mongo to a damn fight!
We go off the air with next week’s rundown, letting us know that Sting and Luger will be wrestling Harlem Heat. We’ll also see Chris Benoit and Dean Malenko teaming against Alex Wright and Eddie Guerrero in the match I’m most excited to see next week. We’ll also hear from Hulk Hogan, sadly.
This week’s show was pretty damn good. It was possibly the best episode thus far due to the Benoit/Guerrero match and the main event. The Benoit/Guerrero match was just so good and I can’t wait to see those two and Malenko start trading off matches over the next few months. Plus, we’re getting the Cruiserweight division coming up, so things are really about to get good. The crowd reaction to Sting coming out during the Flair match, though, was outstanding. It was just so cool. I love responses like that and it came off so cool on TV.
Pretty excited about next week and the fact that we’re getting closer to Halloween Havoc!
Until next week.
WWF Raw Ratings – 2.6
WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.2
(Raw 3, Nitro 1) (Tie Weeks – 2)
WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2 weeks
WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – N/A
After two weeks of ties, we’re back to Raw winning the night. Looking at the card, no idea why, but at this point, WWF is still the established show and has been on the air for over two years, so I would imagine that plays a lot into it. That being said, I’m also not watching the WWF show like I am the WCW show, so I don’t know if it came across a lot better on TV than it did on paper, but looking at the lineup, I seriously doubt it.
WWF Raw results from this week
Hunter Hearst Helmsley defeated Doink the Clown
The Smoking Gunns defeated PG-13
Dean Douglas defeated Joe Dorgan
Bret Hart defeated Dr. Isaac Yankem
Wow, Raw has just looked terrible over the last few weeks. Strictly on paper, I see no way that it’s hanging with Nitro right now. Like I said before, I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt since I haven’t been able to watch those episodes of Raw, but still…these matches just look terrible. Oh well.
Until next week, have a good one! We’ll see you back here next week!