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Remembering Power Slam Magazine
Issue #52, November 1998
In the News (edited by Fin Martin)
In all the happenings from WWF Raw is War & Sunday Night Heat...
- From the September 21 Raw is War (taped on September 15th before a sell out crowd of 10,500 in Sacramento, California): The Headbangers turned heel on The Oddities by blasting them with silly string, then beating them senseless. The dastardly Mosh and Thrasher also destroyed Golga’s Cartman doll.
Jacqueline pinned Sable to capture the revived WWF Women’s Title.
In a vignette, ‘Man’s Man’ Steven Regal was shown shaving in a forest.
Al Snow downed Sgt. Slaughter in a lousy Boot Camp match.
Following Val Venis’ bout with Owen Hart, which ended by way of disqualification when Dustin Runnels ran in, his latest ‘XXX’ video aired on the Titan Tron. The sequel to The Preacher’s Wife – broadcast on the previous week’s programme – There’s Something About Terri also co-starred Terri Runnels. The artist formerly known as Marlena then broke the news to Dustin: there were through! Val was the new person in her life – him being the “bigger man” and all...
Finally, X-Pac defeated D-Lo Brown to lift the European title.
- From the September 27 Sunday Night Heat: Golga pinned Mosh in a horrible match.
Michael Cole claimed that 'Triple H' had been attacked and would therefore be unable to defend his Intercontinental title against Mark Henry on the Breakdown show. What a shame that was...
The Hardy Boyz beat Sho Funaki and Mens Teoih in a fast-paced aerial battle.
Finally, Austin disguised as a cameraman, cornered Mr McMahon inside a steel cage and gave him a bit of a pasting.
- From the September 28 Raw is War (held before a sell out crowd of 14,500 in Detroit, Michigan): Vince McMahon came out with the World title belt and claimed that, unlike in June when the championship changed hands at King of the Ring, Steve Austin would not receive a rematch. McMahon then said that he would crown a new champion later on the show...
Owen Hart went to a no-contest with Dan Severn when he nailed him with a tombstone piledriver and Severn suffered a ‘serious’ neck injury.
The Undertaker and Kane came out for the presentation ceremony but, before McMahon could announce who was the new World Champion, he was attacked by Steve Austin. After police hauled ‘Stone Cold’ out of the building in handcuffs, a furious McMahon castigated Undi’ and Kane for failing to protect him from Austin. He then said, as a punishment, they would have to fight it out in the main event of In Your House XXV: Judgment Day in order to determine the new champion, adding that the bout would be officiated by none other than ‘Stone Cole’ Steve Austin. As the ‘brothers’ were leaving the squared circle, The Undertaker caught McMahon giving him the finger, then he and Kane destroyed him.
Finally, The Rock, Ken Shamrock and Mankind defeated The undertaker and Kane when The Rock pinned ‘Taker.
- From the October 4 Sunday Night Heat: From his hospital bed, McMahon claimed that his leg had been crushed and that he was in "excruciating pain." He said that he would never forgive The Undertaker and Kane - then, curiously, placed the blame for the entire incident on Austin.
Kurrgan and Golga beat The Headbangers following interference from The Insane Clown Posse.
The Rock went to a no-contest with Jarrett when Dennis Knight interfered. 'Stone Cold', on commentary, then left the broadcast position and wiped out Knight and Jarrett. The Rock and Austin stared each other down as the show went off the air.
- From the October 5 Raw is War (taped on September 29th before a sell out crowd of 10,000 in East Lansing, Michigan): D-Lo Brown pinned X-Pac to regain the European title.
McMahon was shown giving a nurse a hard time from his hospital bed.
The Headbangers viciously beat the crap out of The Insane Clown Posse.
Steven Regal demonstrated his masculinity by downing a glass of orange juice.
Owen Hart apologised for ‘injuring’ Dan Severn on the previous week’s programme, then left...
Austin, disguised as a Doctor, annihilated McMahon in his private hospital ward.
Finally, The Rock pinned The Undertaker in an average match after Kane blasted him with a steel chair.
From the October 11 Sunday Night Heat: Kaientai defeated Too Much and The Hardy Boyz.
Edge pinned Vader clean.
Al Snow beat Shamrock by DQ when Shamrock refused to release the ankle lock. Mankind made the save.
Austin pinned D-Lo Brown.
- From the October 12 Raw is War (held before another sell out crowd of 10,700 in Uniondale, New York): McMahon was shown arriving at the arena in his Corvette.
It was announced Hunter Hearst Helmsley had been stripped of the Intercontinental title and that an eight-man tournament would be held to fill the vacancy.
In a first round match up, Shamrock beat Steve Blackman via ankle lock submission. After the decision, Owen Hart – in Blue Blazer garb – hit the ring and attacked both men.
In other first round bouts, Val Venis defeated Marc Mero, Mankind beat Mark Henry, and X-Pac pinned Jeff Jarrett.
In Semi-final number one, Shamrock beat Venis with the ankle lock. Following the match, Goldust ran in and destroyed Venis.
X-Pac took Semi-final number two with a win over Mankind, but then fell victim to an attack from ‘The World’s Most Dangerous Heel’...
In the Final, Shamrock beat X-Pac, again using the ankle lock, to claim the title.
[A title tournament with no disqualification finishes, & all decided cleanly. Now isn’t that novel... – KK]
And finally, Austin and The Rock downed Undi’ and Kane by DQ when new signing The Big Boss Man (Ray Taylor) walloped ‘Stone Cold’ with his nightstick.
In all the happenings from WCW Monday Nitro...
- From the September 21 Monday Nitro (held before a crowd of 15,000 in Boston, Massachusetts): In a PISS-poor segment, The Warrior 'kidnapped' The Disciple. Later, Hollywood Hogan discovered Disciple lying on the floor in the toilets. Then the nasty mist was piped in and, when it had cleared, The Disciple was gone!
Raven and Kanyon went to a no-contest with Villanos IV and V when Villano IV suffered a legitimate neck injury (as opposed to a Dan Severn neck injury) when Raven and Kanyon nailed him with a combination neckbreaker/powerbomb and the match was stopped. Afterwards, Raven looked very concerned.
Cruiserweight champion Billy Kidman (who captured the belt from Juventud Guerrera on the previous week's programme) downed Disco Inferno in a strong bout.
Ric Flair had an extremely heated verbal confrontation with Eric Bischoff.
Kevin Nash and Lex Luger went to a non-finish with The Giant and Stevie Ray in a poor match-up when Scott Hall staggered in, tossed the referee to one side and fell down. Nash then challenged Hall to a match at Halloween Havoc.
Finally, The Disciple revealed that he had joined forces with OWN (One Warrior Nation). Fantastic.
- From the September 28 Monday Nitro (held before a sell out crowd of 9,800 in Rochester, New York): Hollywood Hogan issued challenges to Sting and Bret Hart. Later, 'The Hitman' (who turned babyface on the September 14th Nitro) vowed to "kick the crap out of Hogan;" hence, the match was on.
The Warrior cut a pathetic, nonsensical speech which was roundly booed.
Nash beat Brian Adams by disqualification when Ray and Vincent ran in. An apparently sober Hall then hit the ring and lamped Nash.
The bout between Hogan and Hart ended without a decision when Sting arrived on the scene, bringing Hollywood's assault on 'The Hitman's' knee to a halt. He took over as Luger and Konnan carried Hart backstage. Later, Hart returned to the ring and, as Sting held Hogan in the Scorpion Deathlock, 'The Hitman' drilled him with a DDT, before connecting with a barrage of punches. Hogan laughed. Looks like Hart's babyface turn was a ruse.
- From the October 5 Monday Nitro (held before a sell out crowd of 8,800 in Columbia, South Carolina): After a brawl with nWo Hollywood in the backstage area, the Wolfpac headed to the car park where Sting jumped behind the wheel of a fork lift truck which he used to dent, then turn the Hollywood limousine over. Moments later, Nash and the boys began laying into the vehicle with sledgehammers.
After interrupting a match between Damian and Hector Garza, Eddy Guerrero delivered a monologue at the expense of Eric Bischoff and announced the formation of the LWO (Latino World Order). Damian and Garza signed up.
Diamond Dallas Page defeated Kanyon by DQ in a thrilling match when Raven interfered. Bill Goldberg made the save. A stare down between Goldberg and Page followed.
Finally, Sting and Bret Hart had a wild, backstage brawl.
- From the October 12 Monday Nitro (held before a sell out crowd of 17,500 in Chicago, Illinois): In a segment, The Warrior asked Sting to team with him to face Hogan and Hart in the main event. Warrior was booed again.
Chavo Guerrero Jr., Super Calo and Psicosis defeated La Parka, Ciclope and Villano V, following which Eddy Guerrero offered Psicosis a spot in the LWO. He accepted.
On the heels of their argument on the previous week's Thunder, Scott Steiner nailed Marcus Bagwell and then dropped him throat first on the top rope.
Goldberg defeated The Giant by count-out following run-ins from Stevie Ray and Dallas Page. Afterwards, Goldberg and Dallas had another stare-down.
Finally, Sting and The Warrior downed Hollywood and 'The Hitman' by disqualification when the entire nWo stormed the ring.
Jim Neidhart, 43, was arrested by police on an outstanding warrant for writing a bad cheque to a Publix supermarket in 1996 on the morning of September 8th in Pensacola, Florida. He was released several hours later.
Taz (Peter Senerca) was arrested prior to an ECW card in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on September 12th and charged with indecent exposure and corruption of a minor following an incident at a local solarium around Noon of that day. Senerca, 31, asked a 15 year old female employee of the centre to remove her top. When she did, he is alleged to have exposed himself to her. Senerca was held at Allegheny County Jail until September 14th when he was released on bail. His preliminary hearing was scheduled for October 20th.
Scott Hall was collared by the law again on October 1st when he took one of his keys and put a seven foot long scratch down the side of a limousine outside the Diamond Mine strip club on Orlando, Florida. The driver of the vehicle caught the 39 year old Hall in the act and called the police. Hall was arrested and charged with third-degree assault and released on bail.
The Giant (Paul Wight) was charged with assault on September 9th in relation to an incident at the Marriott Hotel in Uniondale, New York on June 16th. According to witnesses, Wight, after much provocation, punched and broke the jaw of 29 year old Robert Sawyer Jr. in the hotel lobby. Wight, 27, turned himself into the authorities. He was arraigned and released on his own recognisance later that day.
Laugh, I almost choked, when I heard the news on Radio One on September 23rd. During the lunchtime Newsbeat, it was reported that Jerry Lawler had attacked Jim Carrey on the set of Man on the Moon in Los Angeles, California the previous evening; that Carrey, who is playing Kaufman in the biopic, was "badly shaken up" and had been taken to hospital for a CATSCAN; and that Carrey and his manager Eric Gold were considering taking legal action against Lawler. The story was all over the British tabloids. It was also reported in newspapers in the US and many other countries around the world. Here's what really happened on the set: after riling Lawler up all week long, Carrey spat in his face. Whether or not that was part of the script depends on whom one chooses to believe. Then, definitely unscripted, Lawler grabbed Carrey in a headlock and injured his neck. Carrey was rushed to hospital, had his scan, and left...sporting a neck brace! He was so "badly shaken up" that he was back on the set the next day, showing no ill-effects of his run-in with Lawler. Sound familiar? I'd say so. Sound like a publicity stunt? It was: a publicity stunt, designed to increase public awareness of the film. Which it did. Looks like one or two mainstream journalists and reporters - you know, those people who usually have a good laugh a wrestling's expense - have been well and truly had. Perhaps Lawler and Carrey will catch them out again in December when the Letterman incident goes before the cameras.
Recent signing Kurt Angle is making great progress in the WWF's training facility.
A campaign is under way to persuade Sky Box Office to carry WCW Pay Per View shows. If you are prepared to pay to watch these events, write and let the decision makers know.
As of October 9th, WCW Thunder is being broadcast immediately after Nitro on TNT Europe on a one-day delay.
In the Ratings
September 21st: WWF Raw is War posted a 4.0 to WCW Nitro's 3.9.
September 28th: WWF Raw is War pulled a 4.7 to WCW Nitro's 4.0.
October 5th: WWF Raw is War & WCW Nitro tied with a 4.5.
October 12th: WWF Raw is War managed a 4.8 to WCW Nitro's 4.7.
WCW Fall Brawl: War Games
We've seen some bad ones over the years: The Great American Bash '91, WrestleMania IX, Uncensored '95, WrestlePalooza '98 - the list goes on. None have been quite as ghastly, however, as Fall Brawl '98 on September 13th in Winston Salem, North Carolina. In the absence of volunteers, the straws came out. Pity him: Fin Martin drew the short one...
Once upon a time, War Games was one of the highlights of the professional wrestling calendar - an eight or ten-man struggle between two warring factions which invariably delivered at least 15 minutes of nonstop, blood-soaked action. Of course, those days are long gone: War Games has offered offered viewers little in the way of excitement since its association with Fall Brawl began in 1993. Since then, many longtime fans have been calling for WCW to scrap the mass of steel and chicken wire which descends from the ceiling each September. After this year's fiasco, the group should heed said advice and comply forthwith: It HAS to go.
Following the opening five minute period, the participants entered the cage at two minute intervals. In no particular order. What's more, the teams were irrelevant; it was every man for himself. Oh, and a pinfall or submission could occur at any time - ludicrous as it sounds. Bret Hart and Diamond Dallas Page kicked things off with some solid action which saw 'The Hitman' overwhelm his foe with punches, a choke and a backbreaker. Stevie Ray subsequently stumbled in and dragged the match down with his spineless offence. He was followed by Sting, who brought the crowd to life with his entrance and enthusiastic dive at Ray from one ring to the other. The bout then slowed, however, and grew progressively worse as Lex Luger arrived on the scene and contributed little, and dear, old Roddy Piper ran through his anachronistic eye-poke routine. The arrival of Kevin Nash revived the audience; but Hollywood Hogan was just 30 seconds (instead of two minutes) behind him. Wielding a blackjack, he knocked out Nash, Luger, Sting, Page and Piper. Ray, Hogan's only ally, then clipped Hart's injured knee and he crashed to the mat as well. At this point, no less than six wrestlers were lying flat out on the canvas. Did Hogan or Ray attempt a pinfall? Don't be silly: Ray just stood around like a spare part while Hogan legdropped Nash a few times - for a laugh or something.
Moments later, dry ice was piped into the ring and, when it had cleared, Rick 'Renegade' Williams was standing there, waving his arms around like a moron. Dry ice then filled the area again, Williams returned to his inflatable camp bed under the ring (via the trap door) and, when the mist had gone, Hogan was left clutching a Warrior robe. The real Warrior then charged down the aisle, clambered into the cage and staggered Hogan with a barrage of punches. Realising that he - and, more importantly, the buy rate for Halloween Havoc - would suffer if he hung around, Hollywood made a hasty retreat and then ran for the door, while Ray kept the face-painted wonder at bay. Once outside, The Disciple mugged the official and padlocked the door shut, whereupon The Warrior went mental. Gasping for air, the super-athletic Warrior began rattling the door and the cage and finally booted down a section of the wall. Before he could lay his hands on Hogan again, though, security intervened. Then Hogan and Warrior wandered off.
Meanwhile, back in the cage, Page blasted Stevie Ray with the Diamond Cutter and scored the pinfall, thus securing the World title shot at Halloween Havoc, as the fans looked on, stunned, no doubt wishing they'd stayed home and watched Sunday Night Heat...
One strong bout (Raven vs Perry Saturn), a couple of adequate outings and heaps of trash, topped off with a contest almost as offensive as the opprobrious Doomsday match at Uncensored '96. September 13th, 1998 was a horrible night for WCW, a night when it drove wrestling on Pay Per View to new depths, a night when it might as well have raised a big, fat finger at its own consumers and yelled, "You Suckers!". Down there with whale droppings, Fall Brawl 1998 richly deserves the title of Worst Card In The World...Ever! It will stand as the measuring stick by which all lousy cards are judged.
In The News (edited by Fin Martin)
In all the happenings from WWF Raw is War, Sunday Night Heat & In Your House XXVII...
- From February 14 Sunday Night Heat (held Live before In Your House XXVII): Dominic DeNucci, The Iron Sheik and that madman Bob Backlund ‘trained’ Mankind for his World title match with The Rock.
Viscera defeated Test by DQ when The Bossman ran in.
Finally, Billy Gunn went to a non-finish with Tiger Ali Singh when Venis and Shamrock hit the ring.
- In results from In Your House XXVII: St. Valentine’s Day Massacre (held before a sell out crowd of 19,000 in Memphis, Tennessee): Goldust defeated Bluedust in a stinker
Bob Holly pinned Al Snow to raise the vacant Hardcore title in a passable brawl (which actually took place in the Mississippi River!)
The Big Bossman bested Mideon in a mind-numbingly boring match-up.
Val Venis pinned Ken Shamrock to win the Intercontinental title in another boring match, officiated by Billy Gunn.
Chyna and Kane beat Triple H and X-Pac in a surprisingly entertaining match when Chyna pinned Triple H.
Mankind went to a double knockout with The Rock in the best match of the night.
And finally, Steve Austin downed Vince McMahon in a decent cage match when Paul Wight burst through the ring canvas and hurled Austin into the cage which subsequently collapsed and, consequently, Austin hit the floor. During the bout McMahon bled heavily and took a dangerous bump from the side of the cage onto a ringside table.
- From the February 15 Raw is War (held before a sell out crowd of 13,906 in Birmingham, Alabama): With a bandage on his forehead and a brace around his neck – from the pounding he received the previous evening at In Your House XXVII: St. Valentine’s Day Massacre – Vince McMahon persuaded Commissioner Shawn Michaels to book a ladder match between World Champion Mankind and The Rock in the main event of the programme.
Triple H and X-Pac challenged Kane and Shane McMahon to a match. After convincing X-Pac to put his European title on the line, McMahon accepted the invitation.
Val Venis gave Ryan Shamrock the elbow.
Kane and Shane defeated Triple H and X-Pac when McMahon pinned X-Pac, with assistance from Chyna, to become the new European Champion.
Finally, The Rock regained the World crown from Mankind in a red hot Ladder match, following inference from ‘Big Nasty’ Paul Wight.
- From February 21 Sunday Night Heat: Shane McMahon defeated Gillberg in less than half a minute. Ha-ha-ha.
Viscera beat The Bossman by DQ when the Corporate ‘B’ team of Test, Kane and Shamrock jumped in.
- From February 22 Raw is War (taped on February 16th before a sell out crowd of 8,000 in Chattanooga, Tennessee): The Public Enemy beat Gangrel and Edge by disqualification in a dreadful match when Christian ran in. Afterwards, Flyboy Rocco and Johnny Grunge were the recipients of a ‘blood bath’.
Goldust pinned Val Venis in a non-title match with assistance from The Blue Meanie.
Hardcore Champion Bob Holly beat Bart Gunn in a wild brawl after Steve Williams shoved Gunn off the stage – onto and through a table – and the champ scored the pin.
The Undertaker downed Kane in an Inferno match. Afterwards, Undi’ grabbed Vince McMahon’s teddy bear (which Paul Bearer had given to him earlier in the show) and set it on fire. Vince freaked out.
- February 28 Sunday Night Heat: The programme failed to air due to technical problems.
- From March 1 Raw is War (held before a sell out crowd of 16,560 in Cleveland, Ohio): Jim Ross turned heel on Bart Gunn and aligned himself with ‘his boy’ Steve Williams.
Road Dogg had a big brawl with Al Snow and Bob Holly outside the building.
Mankind beat The Undertaker by count out. Following the decision, Undi’ attempted to chokeslam Vince McMahon, but The Big Bossman made the save.
Finally, Austin went to a non finish with Kane when Chyna and Paul Wight interfered.
- From the March 7 Sunday Night Heat: The Acolytes gave The Public Enemy a savage beating en route to a disqualification loss.
Goldust and Shamrock beat Venis and Billy Gunn when Goldust pinned Venis.
Finally, The Rock and Paul Wight argued. Steve Austin came out and nailed the champ with the Stone Cold Stunner.
- From March 8 Raw is War (held before a sell out crowd of 17,000 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania): Test pinned X-Pac after Shane McMahon nailed him with the European title belt.
In an angle, Kane threw a fireball at Triple H, but he moved and the fire hit Chyna.
Tori (the former Terri Power) beat Luna Vachon by disqualification when Luna refused to release her choke-hold. During the match, Sable came out and showed Jerry Lawler her nude photo spread in Playboy magazine. Lawler got really excited. Afterwards, Sable attacked Tori.
The Undertaker and the Ministry crucified The Bossman.
In a match refereed by Wight, Mankind beat Austin by count out.
In all the happenings from WCW Monday Nitro & SuperBrawl IX...
- From the February 15 Monday Nitro (a truly dreadful show, held before a sell out crowd of 2,500 in Tampa, Florida): The Wolfpac destroyed Ric Flair in a field in the middle of nowhere.
Bret Hart crushed Will Stasso, a member of the cast of MAD TV.
Roddy Piper beat Hollywood Hogan by disqualification in a terrible match.
Benoit and Malenko beat Mike Enos and Scotty Riggs in a tourney bout.
Finally, Flair arrived at the arena in a truck, all beaten up, and received another pasting from the Wolfpac.
- WCW Superbrawl IX: It's Good To Be Bad - especially if you wear red and black. Those Wolfpac boys compiled an outstanding win/loss record at SuperBrawl IX on February 21st in Oakland, California, as Fin Martin reports.
Hot? The crowd were red-hot for the first bout of World Championship Wrestling's ninth annual SuperBrawl pay per view. But then, that's what happens when you create an issue between competitors who are over and fairly evenly matched. Everything the opening attraction of Souled Out wasn't, Disco Inferno and Booker T worked the crowd like a couple of old pros while trading one massive move after another.
Booker T pinned Disco Inferno with the Harlem Hangover. Great opener.
Contest number two was a peculiar one. We saw: Perry Saturn camping it up in a dress and eye-liner; Chris Jericho's crack bodyguard Ralphus waddling around in an old dear's frock and earrings; and referee Scott Dickinson playing it straight, with no explanation as to why. In the end, Saturn drilled Jericho with the Death Valley Driver. But, then, instead of making the cover, he nailed referee Dickinson with the DVD and left, thus losing the match by count out. From this, one can only conclude that Saturn enjoys wearing the dress. After all, the stipulation was that if Saturn won, Jericho would have had to don said garment. Oh, well. Each to his own...
Kidman beat Chavo Guerrero Jr. with the shooting star press in a fairly entertaining bout.
The odds were stacked against the combo of Robin Ethics and Dean Malenko in the closing stages of the World Tag Team Title Tournament: they had to best the much larger tandem of Curt Hennig and Barry Windham twice to raise the vacant belts. The finish was as follows: as 'The Crippler' pounded Hennig in the corner, Malenko wrapped Windham up in the Texas Cloverleaf in the centre of the ring and the big man tapped out. Prior to their second match, the final of the tourney, there was meant to be a 30 second rest period. It didn't happen: Benoit and Malenko immediately flung themselves at their opponents - which, unfortunately for them, backfired big time. As the ref attempted to separate Benoit and Hennig, Windham removed his belt, lassoed Deano and pulled back with all his might, and then flattened his foe with a clothesline and made the cover, obscuring the belt with his arm and torso. Hollow as their victory was, Curt Hennig and Barry Windham were the new Tag Team Champions.
Elizabeth's hair or Rey Mysterio Jr.'s mask? Someone was going to lose something at the conclusion of the next match, pitting Liz's guys Kevin Nash and Scott Hall (replacing an injured Lex Luger) against Mysterio and Konnan. The second best match of the night, and a darn good one at that, the opening sequence between Hall and Mysterio could not have been better. The finish came when Liz distracted the ref (and who can blame her?) and Hall sneaked in and walloped Rey with the Outsider Edge, then dumped the semi-conscious Nash on top of him, whereupon Liz ended her conversation with the official who promptly turned around and slapped the mat three times, giving Nash and Hall the victory. When Mysterio removed his mask, that funster Kevin Nash took one look at his face and told him to put it back on...
Scott Steiner beat Diamond Dallas Page for a hugely popular win via the Steiner Recliner. Best match of the night.
Scott Hall pinned Roddy Piper in a pathetic, embarrassment of a match.
Goldberg bested Bam Bam Bigelow with the jackhammer.
Main Event time. Time for those old geezers to slug it out again. Can't say I was looking forward to it; in fact, I was dreading episode 126 of the Hollywood Hogan/Ric Flair feud: no way would the decrepit 45-year-old and the haggard gent just days away from his 50th be able to pull it off. As top-liners go, this was going to suck. Actually, it didn't. Not even slightly. It was a damn good, extremely hard-hitting, and very bloody headliner between two guys who obviously still have a lot to offer pro wrestling, whether we like it or not.
A Great Wrestling pay per view, the best of of the five promoted thus far in 1999, the Atlanta crew certainly came through with SuperBrawl IX. No doubt the fans on hand at the Oakland Arena appreciated it, for the rip-roaring action and the outcome of the matches which, from the title tourney onwards, nearly all went the good guys' way.
Yeah. Good guys.
Some call them bad guys. But they're good guys, really. In the current, upside-down world of WCW, the heels are the heroes.
Kevin Nash and Hollywood Hogan have made sure of that.
- From February 22 Monday Nitro (held before a sell out crowd of 13,900 in Sacramento, California): Booker T pinned Bret Hart in an excellent match-up to become the number one contender to the United States title.
Hugh Morrus dropped Chris Jericho, following interference from Perry Saturn.
Rey Mysterio Jr. cleanly pinned Kevin Nash in an entertaining match.
- From March 1 of Monday Nitro (held before a sell out crowd of 18,600 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina): Nash and Lex Luger offered Rey Mysterio Jr. a spot in the Wolfpac. Rey wasn’t up for it, apparently.
Kidman beat Psicosis in a good match.
‘Giant Killer’ Rey Mysterio Jr. pinned Bam Bam Bigelow in a decent bout. Backstage, Nash attacked Mysterio Jr.
Then Bigelow, Raven and Hardcore Hak (James ‘Sandman’ Fullington) had a huge brawl.
Benoit defeated ‘The Hitman’ by DQ in a fine match.
Finally, Flair hyped up his Cage match with Hollywood Hogan at Uncensored.
- From March 8 (held before a crowd of 11,000 in Worcester, Massachusetts): Raven went to a non-finish with Hak when Bigelow ran in. Afterwards, they brawled backstage where Raven DDT’d Hak’s head on the bonnet of Ric Flair’s limousine.
Scott Steiner downed Booker T with the Steiner Recliner.
Mysterio Jr. beat Scott Norton in a poor match-up.
Bill Goldberg went to a no-contest with Ric Flair in a decent bout when the nWo/Wolfpac ran in.
ECW was on the verge of closure in February due to serious cash flow problems, stemming from the expansion of the pay-per-view schedule. At press time however, the crisis appeared to be over: Paul Heyman has obtained a loan to tide his company over until the outstanding pay-per-view revenue comes through and struck a sweet deal with Buena Vista television to co-promote ECW’s pay-per-view and television shows.
Taka Michinoku may return shortly [to the ECW] – ‘on loan’ from the WWF.
Richard Wilson died of a self-inflicted gun shot on February 22nd at his home in Marietta, Georgia , following an argument with his girlfriend. He was 33. Wilson wrestled independently as Rio Lord of The Jungle, but was more famous for his disastrous tenure as Ultimate Warrior rip-off Renegade in WCW in 1995.
WCW Superbrawl IX pulled a 1.1 PPV buy-rate for a company gross of around $5.3 million.
Word is that Chris Jericho is seriously considering taking a job with the WWF when his contract expires in July. If I were him, however, I would reconsider: now, more than ever this decade, the WWF is a big man’s promotion. And if there’s one thing Jericho isn’t – it’s big...
Sting has found God.
Bret Hart is said to be most disgruntled with the manner in which he’s being booked. And who can blame him?
A WCW staffer drove his motor over Scott Hall’s foot in the car park of an Oakland area bar after the Superbrawl pay-per-view. Hall was not seriously hurt.
Mikey Whipwreck was backstage at Nitro on March 8th. Believe it or not, booker Kevin Nash had no idea who he was.
St. Valentine’s Day Massacre pulled a 1.2 pay-per-view buy rate for a company gross of $5.7 million, making it the biggest money IYH event ever.
Jerry Lawler is considering running for Mayor in his hometown of Memphis.
Shawn Michaels has split from longtime fiancée Jennifer.
Steven Regal is still trying to kick a prescription drug problem.
Road Dogg spent some time in drug rehab in February.
Dan Severn accepted his contract release and is finished with the WWF.
The Body Shop used a photograph of former two time WWWF World Champion Bruno Sammartino in its advertising campaign for Mother’s Day.
Bill Goldberg appeared on NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on February 19th. Came across damn well, too: in discussing his three year tenure with the Atlanta Falcons, his Jewish ancestry (did you know his mother was a concert violinist and his dad was a gynaecologist?), and his commitment to the fans with the large chinned chat chap, Goldberg confirmed what insiders have known all along. He’s a bright guy, with a strong sense of humour.
But our Bill wasn’t booked on Leno’s show to regale the audience with his war stories and self-depreciating gags; he was there to issue a challenge. Leno set it up, Goldberg delivered.
Leno: “This Steve Austin guy...I hear ‘Goldberg’s scared of him.’”
Goldberg: “I guess this gives me the opportunity to throw a challenge out.”
Leno (feigning surprise): “You want to throw a challenge out there?”
Goldberg: “Ever since I started, everyone’s always called me a rip off of Steve Austin. You guys and I know there’s only one Goldberg...I’ll (put up) $100,000 of my money, Austin; any time, any place. We can even (wrestle) in the back alley of the NBC studios.”
Leno: “A hundred grand! Austin, you’re a dead meat!”
As luck would have it, ‘Stone Cold’ Steve appeared on the Howard Stern radio show three days later. Naturally, the Goldberg invite came up. Austin responded with words to the effect of, ‘I’m far too busy to waste my time with someone from the minor leagues’.
Meanwhile, on the SuperBrawl IX and subsequent Nitro broadcasts, Tony Schiavone mentioned that Goldberg had issued a challenge on The Tonight Show. Only trouble was, he didn’t say who he’d issued the challenge to, for fear of legal reprisals from Titan. What’s more, Goldberg himself never acknowledged his throwing-down-the-gauntlet on WCW television (for the same reason). And by the end of the week, WCW had ditched the entire thing; it was like it never happened.
Why it happened in the first place when WCW could not legally talk about it on its own television programmes is mind-boggling to say the least.
Here’s Goldberg, the organisation’s hottest star, appearing on a highly-rated network television show to issue a challenge to a grappler who works for the opposition – a challenge that will never be answered or acknowledged on WCW TV. It’s two days before a major Pay Per View and, instead of promoting that, Goldberg, under strict orders from Eric Bischoff, is saying “How about it, Austin?”.
What a waste of time.
In the Ratings
February 15th: WWF Raw is War posted a 5.9 to WCW Nitro’s 3.9.
February 22nd: Raw is War pulled a 5.5 to Nitro’s 4.7.
March 1st: Raw is War drew a 6.3 to Nitro’s 4.3.
March 8th: Raw is War posted a 6.5 to Nitro’s 4.5.