Kick Out at Nitro! – 1/1/1996

Posted: January 14, 2015 by Kick Out At 2! in Kick Out At Nitro, Shane D
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

KoaNitro copyWelcome everyone to the first edition of Kick Out at Nitro of the New Year!  We’re bringing in 2015 right by jumping back into 1996!  Wrestling historians will know that 1996 was the year it all turned around for WCW.  They finally step out of the light of being seen as a small, southern promotion and take their place at the top of the wrestling world.  This is the time that I really look back on as a fan of WCW and smile.  This was the time when talking wrestling around the lunch room at my high school started being cool.  May of 1996 forward was big stuff and I absolutely can’t wait to get into that.  I can’t wait to get Robbie into all of that.  Starrcade 1995 was his first WCW event ever…and he watched that at the end of 2014!  So, as we start heading towards the formation of the nWo, I can’t wait to see how he takes all of that in.  Plus, I can’t wait to relive it!

However, before we get to May, we’ve got to start in January.  January 1st, to be exact!

The first Nitro of 1996 comes to us from Atlanta, GA.  Bischoff tells us it’s the home of the World Champion Atlanta Braves as well as the home of the 1996 Olympics.  How crazy is it that as we’re watching this, Kurt Angle hasn’t even won his Olympic gold medal yet.  Bischoff tells us that tonight we’re getting a World Championship match, bringing us about the fourth Nitro in a row with a title match…this one the night after a PPV.  Ric Flair will wrestle Hulk Hogan tonight.  Savage will wrestle Arn Anderson, who Heenan tells us that Savage blames for his title loss.  We will also find out about Sting and Luger, who had heat at the end of their match.

Match #1: Arn Anderson vs “Macho Man” Randy Savage

Savage makes a bee-line for the ring but is attacked by Anderson as soon as he enters the ring.  Arn attempts an Irish whip but Savage takes control again and sends Anderson outside.  He slams him into the steps and the guard rail.

Bischoff gives us Raw results for the first time in a while.  He tells us that the Smoking Gunns win the “Raw Bowl or Toilet Bowl, whatever they called it.”

Back in the ring Savage hits an axe handle off of the top and keeps control over Arn through some holds, chokes, etc.  Anderson gets a thumb in Savage’s eyes then goes to work on Savage’s arm with a single arm DDT, then wrapping it up in the ropes and finishing off with a hammerlock bodyslam.  Savage escapes to the floor and gets a quick burst when Anderson comes after him by slamming him into the guardrail.  Back in the ring, though, Anderson goes back after the arm.

2Bischoff gives us the rest of Nitro’s rundown with Benoit vs Regal, Sting and Luger vs the Super Assassins and Hogan/Flair.

Anderson keeps attacking Savage’s arm.  He rips some of the tape off of it and then wraps it around the ring post.  Anderson is so good at just looking methodical and vicious.  Savage gets a bit more momentum, hits a back elbow twice but Anderson ducks a clothesline and hits a DDT.  He’s slow to cover and Savage is near the ropes, so he only gets a two count before Savage gets a food on the rope.  Anderson goes for an Irish whip but they run into the ref, taking him out.  Arn goes for brass knucks in his trunks but Savage stops him, grabs the knucks himself and nails Anderson for the win,

Winner: Randy Savage

Benoit and Pillman hit the ring almost immediately, but Savage gets out of the ring and escapes before the Horsemen can get to him.  During the replay you can also see that when Savage covers Anderson, he throws the brass knuckles back into Anderson’s trunks.  That’s pretty damn cool.

We go to commercial break and come back to:

Match #2: Lord Steven Regal vs “The Canadian Crippler” Chris Benoit

Both Bischoff and Mongo mention that this is a match with two people who nobody likes.  I didn’t realize it until they said it, but this is another of WCW’s crazy heel vs heel matches.

3We start with some mat wrestling and Regal starts playing dirty, headbutting Benoit while they’re locked up.  Benoit fires back, though, taking Regal down and hammering on him with fists.  Regal has Benoit locked up in a cravat, getting a few two counts on Benoit.  Benoit twists out of it and gets the arm, though.  Regal escapes and takes Benoit down, hitting him with some wicked crossface hits.

I haven’t seen much of Regal since I have watched some British style wrestling.  Regal really does have that escapology style down, but he just adds a mean streak to it that makes it so awesome.

Benoit gets out, Regal goes for a clothesline but Benoit ducks and hits a German suplex.  Regal hits a butterfly suplex for a two count and immediately goes for another cover, again for two, repeat kickout, repeat cover for two.  Benoit takes Regal up top and Regal back elbows Benoit, causing Benoit to retaliate by elbowing the back of Regal’s head.  Benoit lifts Regal on his shoulders and falls backwards, then goes up top for the diving headbutt, but Regal misses.  Regal goes for a tombstone but Benoit reverses and hits one of his own.  Regal does this awesome sell job in the middle, though, where he lets go of Benoit and waves his arms, not grabbing again until Benoit jumps for the move.  It looked awesome.  Benoit goes for a dive to the floor but Regal moved and Benoit ate floor.  Regal rolls Benoit back into the ring for a pin and the win.

Winner: Lord Steven Regal

I really liked this finish.  They always call these moves high risk, but we hardly ever see someone lose a match due to it, so this was pretty awesome.

Mean Gene is in the ring with Pillman, Anderson and Benoit.  Pillman is wearing the black leather duster that Sting will be wearing later this year and he is pissed.  He says that only 5 days after Flair wins the title the Horsemen are 0-2.  Pillman is on a tirade and he gets started on Anderson.  Anderson says that Pillman is starting fires that he should be starting.  Their job is to guard the championship.  Anderson says that the stuff with Orndorff went too far and now Pillman’s starting in on the Dungeon of Doom.  Gene tells them that they’re out of time and out come the Dungeon of Doom.  Sullivan is in the lead and he’s pissed, but The Giant grabs him and pulls him to the back.

We go to commercial and come back with the Saturday Night rundown.  American Males vs Anderson and Pillman.  Luger vs Cobra.

Match #3: The Super Assassins w/ Col. Robert Parker vs Sting & Lex Luger

Guess we’re in for Random Parker Tag Team #245.  These guys are as generic as they come.  Heenan comments at the absence of Jimmy Hart, saying Luger has a working relationship with Hart that he doesn’t show up when Lex teams with Sting.  Mongo makes a point about Sting and Luger not coming out together, too.

Craig Pittman makes his way to the announce booth.  For some damn reason they find him a microphone.  Pittman wants to talk to Mongo.  He says he’s making a transition from amateur to pro and that Mongo has similar experience.  He wants Mongo to be his manager.  Mongo says he has his hands full just announcing.  He tells Pittman to do what they told him to do in the Marines…take people out systematically and he’ll rise to the top.

In the ring, Luger starts the match off for the team, gets one move and then starts getting hammered.  Luger gets a thumb to the eyes of one of the assassins and tags in Sting.  Sting comes in and starts clearing house of both of the Assassins, taking one to the floor with a clothesline.  On the floor, though, one of them gets Sting in a gorilla press slam, giving Sting a taste of his own medicine for once.  Back in the ring they get Sting in a Canadian backbreaker / Gory Special kind of gimmick, that Sting just kind of rolls out of but is met with a clothesline for his trouble.

Heenan tells us that this Saturday he thinks Parker will propose to Sherri.  Heenan says “imagine how beautiful the kids will be” and Mongo starts laughing then almost under his breath you hear him say “what an ugly dog.”  Was this in reference to Sherri?!

3.5Sting is taking an ass whipping now but gets a tag to Luger, but Worst Referee Ever Nick Patrick doesn’t see it, so Lex gets sent back out and Sting gets beat down again, including taking a big powerbomb.  One of the assassins goes for a splash but Sting moves, finally allowing him to get the hot tag to Luger.

Heenan says he wishes Hart was out there with Luger.  He says that Hart will manage anyone, even a janitor, if they can take out Hogan.  Guess that’s not true.  Either that, or Hart figures Craig Pittman is worse than a janitor.

Luger gets a torture rack on one Assassin and Sting grabs the other with the Scorpion Deathlock and their team gets the win.

Winners; Sting & Lex Luger

We go to Mean Gene who says he’s expecting Jimmy Hart and the “son of Andre,” The Giant.  Hart asks if Gene is really that short or is he standing in a hole.  The thing is, Hart is the same height!  You can clearly see it.  Hart says that he learned when he was with Hogan to keep his enemies close.  Now he’s switching gears, though, and you may see him with Luger one night, Ric Flair another, or with The Giant tonight.  Giant talks about Hogan beating him down with a chair a few weeks ago and says he’ll get beat up for it.  Gene pitches us to commercial and the “Coming Up” graphic showing Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan.

We get a reminder for Clash of the Champions on January 23rd, live from Las Vegas.

Match #4: “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (WCW Champion) vs Hulk Hogan

Flair comes out first, presumably because Hogan can’t come out first.  I hate it when the champion doesn’t come out last.  Everything should always build to the champ.  The champion should never come out first.  It’s just dumb.  But, they do the same thing with Cena anymore, so apparently nothing has changed.

Bischoff calls Hogan “the man who rules the wrestling industry.”  Kayfabe-wise, no, he doesn’t.  Flair does.

Flair is still in his crazy color combination from Starrcade.  Black trunks, red knee pads, yellow boots.  He goes for a couple of shoulder tackles but Hogan takes him to the ground both times.  Hogan grabs a knuckle lock and Flair sells it like he’s been shot.  He backs Hogan into the corner and gets in a chop and a punch to the face, though, before Hogan runs to the opposite corner.  Chop, punch, to the 3rd corner.  Flair finally gets one chop too many, though, and Hogan starts no-selling.  Flair really should learn to stop chopping Sting and Hogan.  Hogan gets five punches in the corner and goes for an Irish whip but is stopped short by Flair.  Flair goes to the top rope, though, because he’s dumb, and Hogan tosses him to the mat and knocks him outside.

Why is there always a creepy Hogan lookalike in the front row?

5On the floor, Hogan beats Flair down a bit and rolls him inside.  Back inside, Irish whip to the corner, which Flair flips over, and Hogan clotheslines him on the apron.  Flair reverses a move and goes for the leg, though, taking him down from behind and then dropping a knee on the leg.  Hogan is having trouble standing now as Flair stomps the back of Hogan’s knee and then jumps on it and stomps it a few more times for good measure.  Flair locks on the Figure 4.  Hogan reverses the move, though, and out comes Jimmy Hart.  Hogan limps to the corner, selling more than I have seen him sell in a while, and goes for Hart, but Flair kicks him in the leg from behind again.  Flair hits a vertical suplex and Hogan starts haing a spasm in the middle of the ring.  Flair covers, Hogan kicks out and starts to Hulk Up.  Chop, Finger wag, blocked punch, punches, Irish whip, big boot, leg drop, Hogan goes for the cover but Hart jumps up on the apron.  Hogan is distracted and doesn’t see Arn Anderson hit the ring.  He nails Hogan with brass knucks, but Hogan no-sells the crap out of it.  He nails Anderson and grabs the brass knucks, showing the referee.  The ref calls for the bell, ending the match.  Out come the rest of the Horsemen, but Hogan takes them all out and then puts on the brass knuckles as the Horsemen cower in fear (man, typing that hurts).  Out comes The Giant with a wooden stool, but Savage stops The Giant from hitting Hogan with it.  The rest of the Dungeon of Doom come out and bring The Giant back to the back as we go to commercial.

Back in the ring we have Mean Gene, Hogan and Savage.  Hogan challenges Flair and Anderson to a tag match next week.  Savage says they have secret weapons they haven’t even thought about.  Hogan still has the brass knuckles on and says “monkey see, monkey do.”  He says that they have to get past Hogan and Anderson to get to The Giant.  Hogan and Savage keep yelling random things into the mic, like “Gut Check, If they got the guts, to infinity and beyond,” etc.  Hogan says they’ll take out the Horsemen by themselves as we go back to the announcers.

Bischoff says that there are members of the Executive Committee here and the match has been signed, so next week we’ll have Hogan & Savage vs Flair & Anderson.  The stands right behind the announcers seem super empty, and the show just ended, so I don’t know if those people are just leaving or if they never were there.  Someone apparently didn’t want us wondering that, though, as the lights in that section dimmed suddenly.

We go off the air with Bobby Heenan grabbing his bolo tie and saying “Thank you Diamond Dallas, thank you very much.”  Wonder what all that nonsense was about.

All in all a good episode.  Good start to a good year for WCW.

-Shane

Ratings Breakdown

WWF Raw Ratings – 2.6

WCW Nitro Ratings – 2.5

(Raw – 7, Nitro – 7 ) (Tie Weeks – 2)

(Unopposed weeks – 2)

WWF’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2

WCW’s longest Winning Streak (to this point) – 2

 

Back to tied up to start the new year.  Let’s see how long that lasts, shall we?

—–

WWF Raw results from this week

World Tag Team Champions The Smoking Gunns defeated Razor Ramon and Savio Vega, Owen Hart and Yokozuna (w/Jim Cornette and Mr. Fuji), andSycho Sid and The 1-2-3 Kid (w/Ted DiBiase) in a “RAW Bowl” tag team Battle Royal

Diesel defeated King Mabel (0:08)

 

Technically, Nitro ran unopposed as Raw aired on January 2nd.  However, there are still ratings for the showdown, so we’re including it.  That being said…two matches?!  And one of them was only eight seconds?  Damn.

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