The Ring Report TV Update 7/4/96 Vol. 1, No. 175

The Ring Report TV Update 7/4/96 Vol. 1, No. 175
(“Want fireworks? Forget Fireworks we got work to do!”)
Note: The Ring Report Web site (, has finally been updated. From now on you can find individual listings for each week’s shows in bite sized articles. WCW Nitro & Saturday Night, along with WWF Raw will be up shortly after they happen. The same goes with our Area on AOL.

Subscribers: I’d like to move the majority of those who *can* get the ring report as a single file to the single file subscription list. If you can get the Ring Report as a single file please e-mail a “change me” message to ASAP. Thanks. AOL’R’s note — you’re already on the single file list no need to change.

Finally, SEND NO RING REPORT MAIL TO THE MADDOGJMF@AOL.COM ACCOUNT! I can never find it at the end of the week (and believe me folks I try!), all Ring Report mail goes to I have to put my foot down because I get stacks and stacks of mail at my main account and can’t help you if you if it gets lost in the clutter . . . πŸ˜›

EXTREME CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING TV Report for Tuesday July 2, 1996 by

” . . . the mind that controls the children, is the mind that controls the future, and I am their salvation . . . ”

The ECW World Heavyweight Champion, RAVEN gothically kicks off another fantastic hour of Extreme Championship Wrestling. RAVEN delivers a cryptic monologue on the state of parenting in the world today, the state of despair that the children are in, and the fact that HE is their salvation. Standing next to RAVEN in full RAVEN regalia, to prove his point, is Tyler Fullington . . . the SANDMAN’S son.

The voice of ECW, Joey Styles gives us a quick recap of the SANDMAN-RAVEN situation. He says that at “Heatwave ’96: The Rage of the Cage”, there are three men, TOMMY DREAMER, TERRY GORDY, and SANDMAN, waiting to send RAVEN straight to H3ll.

“LIONHEART” CHRIS JERICHO enters the ring to vie for the ECW World Television Championship. Vie? Vie? No, he’s gonna have FIGHT for the ECW World TV Title, because he’s facing the new champ, PITBULL #2 (Who defeated SHANE DOUGLAS at “Fight the Power” last month). FRANCINE led PIT2 to the ring looking the best I’ve ever seen her. PITBULL 2 dominates the opening of the match with power moves . . . including a Gorilla-press INTO A tombstone piledriver . . . JUST GRUESOME! JERICHO makes his comeback with some of his signature moves, like the springboard drop-kick on PIT2, who was on the apron. In yet another phenomenal move, JERICHO runs into the corner and does a springboard moonsault off the second rope OVER the top rope onto PIT2, who was on the floor . . . uh, these two are AWESOME. The match see-sawed with some really good swerves. Right after PIT2 hits a fall-away-slam from the top, SHANE DOUGLAS comes to ringside and tries to steal the ECW TV belt from FRANCINE. She of course, puts up a fight, and SHANE kisses her. FRANCINE slaps him like the whiney brat he is, and is caught accidentally by a PIT2 clothesline (who was coming to her rescue). PITBULL #1 comes out to carry FRANCINE to the back, as ECW officials force “THE FRANCHISE” to the locker room.Β  Back to the action in the ring, PITBULL #2 climbs to the top, only to be crotched by JERICHO. JERICHO is about to huracarana PIT2 off the top, when PIT2 reverses it into his finisher, “the superbomb”, only to have “LIONHEART” REVERSE THAT into a huracarana for the victory and the ECW Television title . . . this is an ‘”OH MY GOD” finish. You have to see this. I was told by many that it was awesome, but it was even better than I had expected. Afterward, PIT2 presents the belt to CHRIS JERICHO and raises his hand . . . as DOUGLAS whines and throws a tantrum at ringside. PITBULL 2 and CHRIS JERICHO proved they’re going to be major players in the future of this sport. Especially CHRIS JERICHO, he was born to be a superstar. His potential is almost scary!

Joey informs us that a memorable moment in ECW history happened prior to the DUDLEYS match against the FBI (who were joined at ringside by honorary paisen (SP?), Salvatore Bellomo). BUH BUH RAY grabs the mic and says, “My name is BUH BUH RAY DUDLEY”, without stuttering. The crowd exploded! Clips of the match are shown . . . including BIG DICK carrying Sal Bellomo to the back, leaving BUH BUH to beat pummeled by the FBI. D-VON DUDLEY comes from the front door and cleans house with a chair and then clocks BUH BUH . . . BIG DICK chases D-VON out the front door and lets out a BIG DICK growl.

The TV main event is the “Weapons Match” between TOMMY DREAMER and BRIAN “no sell” LEE. Not a lot to report here . . . just smashing each other with weapons, which BRIAN LEE never sells (why ECW keeps this piece of garbage around is beyond me). They brawl outside, smash each other into buildings, cars, the pavement, etc. . . . When they finally return to the ring, DREAMER . . . who’s a bloody mess, smashes LEE with a stop sign (as KIMONA flashes him) and then DDT’S BRIAN LEE on the stop sign for the victory. TOMMY took some B-R-U-T-A-L shots in this match (especially into a metal garage door outside . . . ugh!). TOMMY has no time to celebrate as the BRUISE BROS. (see my thoughts on BRIAN LEE) attack DREAMER. LEE drags TOMMY up above the entrance of the ECW Arena . . . while the BRUISE BROS. stack 3 tables up below (with a 4th next to the three). BRIAN LEE then “prime time slams” (chokeslam) TOMMY DREAMER off the entrance through all 3 tables to the Arena floor. THE ABSOLUTE SICKEST BUMP I’VE EVER SEEN. SICKER THAN ROCCO’S MOONSAULT OFF THE CAGE, SICKER THAN JT’S GETTING THROWN OFF THE EAGLE’S NEST, SICKER THAN THE CHOKESLAM OFF THE SOUNDSTAGE, SICKER THAN ANY SABU SPOT . . . THE MOST EXTREMELY SICKENING SPOT IN ECW HISTORY . . . and I guess they’re proud of that?

WHAT YOU MISSED: DALLAS PAGE came out and said that his LORD OF THE RING ring was stolen and he wanted everyone strip-searched . . . a look at the WORLD TAG TEAM TITLE change from last week’s Nitro . . . THE STEINERS vs. HARLEM HEAT: Good match with lost of action. Harlem Heat are doing the phone gimmick again. COL. ROB PARKER came out to ringside with his wallet out half way through the match. End came when The Steiners were going for the Steinerline off the top rope and Parker hit RICK STEINER over the head with a cane to earn the Heat a win. He left with the Heat . . . an interview with THE FOUR HORSEMEN & THREE HORSEWOMEN . . . KURASAWA made his return to face THE DISCO INFERNO. Kurasawa had Disco down when a second man, dressed like the Disco Inferno came out, the ref. looked at the Disco guy and the Disco ball came down from the ceiling. Disco hit Kurasawa with the ball and it was a matter of hooking Kuraswa for the pin to finish the match . . . DALLAS PAGE came out to face SCOTTY RIGGS, meanwhile (a drunk?) Hacksaw Jim Duggan made comments for Dallas. Pretty good match, with Dallas again showing off his mastery of putting guys other. Diamond cutter got the three count for Dallas . . . RANDY SAVAGE vs. GREG VALENTINE: Eh match. Best moves from Valentine in years as the countdown began for Nitro’s second hour. Savage got the pin — ta da — just as the 2nd hour begins and the explosions go off. Whoo-hoo! Gee that was cool. Huh Huh . . . ERIC BISCHOFF “attends to some personal business” by thanking us all for the cards and letters while he was gone. Bischoff called one of the Outsiders “Nash” then said that he didn’t scare anyone. The Invaders came down to ringside with soda & popcorn. They showed DOUG DILLENGER their tickets and sat at ringside with an empty third chair between them . . . THE GIANT vs. JOHN TENTA: Easy match for the Giant (who, BTW, seems to be defending his title every week on TV — first time in recent history that ANY champ has done that), but the commentators were distracted by the guys at ringside and the possible 3rd man. I liked how this angle put BOBBY HEENAN & ERIC BISCHOFF on the same side for once. Giant pulled out the win then KEVIN SULLIVAN & BIG BUBBA came out and they shaved half of Tenta’s beard . . . a REY MISTERIO JR. video was interrupted by THE INVADERS grabbing a house mic. and harassing ERIC BISCHOFF. Security tried to stop them then LEX LUGER, STING & RANDY SAVAGE came out to stop them, followed by THE STEINERS & THE AMERICAN MALES, KEVIN SULLIVAN, THE GIANT — just about everyone from the dressing room. The Invaders were then thrown out by security. My dial hasn’t changed channels since they came out. This is great TV . . . JIM DUGGAN in an interview, he said that he found DALLAS PAGE’S ring when he was on the way to the bathroom. DDP came out and Duggan dropped the ring, while Dallas bent down to get the ring Duggan taped his fist then punched Page . . . THE ROCK ‘N’ ROLL EXPRESS, JOE GOMEZ & RENEGADE came out to face THE FOUR HORSEMEN: A wrestling lesson by THE HORSEMEN. End came when Renegade was pushed off the top rope by STEVE MCMICHAEL then RIC FLAIR made him submit with a figure four . . .

WHAT YOU MISSED: SHAWN MICHAELS came out to defend his WWF WORLD TITLE to former partner MARTY JANNETTY. JOSE LOTHARIO was outside the ring for Shawn while LIEF CASSIDY & JIM CORNETTE were outside the ring for Jannetty. Very slow match until the ending, which came via a clean superkick leading to a cleaner pinfall. AFTER the match Cassidy came into the ring to eat up Cassidy but received his own superkick then Lothario punched out Jim Cornette . . . a look at SUNNY getting slopped by PIG . . . MANKIND over DUKE DROESE. After the match MANKIND attacked JAKE ROBERTS, who was attacking JERRY LAWLER . . . JIM ROSS said that THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR was in the dog house with the WWF in a plug for the WWF Hotline . . . GOLDDUST defeated MARC MERO when MARLENA distracted Mero by blowing smoke at SABLE. GoldDust then pinned Mero . . .

USWA Report 6/30/96 by MRS. KATHRYN D. LIZENBY
Well, I’m back. The good news is I recorded the USWA on 6/23 and 6/30. I will recap the 6/23/96 show for you in a few minutes. Unfortunately, while I was away, they changed the times for the show in my area, and I didn’t get the 6/30/96 show recorded. The 6/23/96 show was excellent though.

HIGHLIGHTS: These were highlights from the Louisville Gardens which featured Brian Christopher vs. Jeff Jarrett for the Unified Title. This was a brutal match with Jeff and Brian using the railing for a variety of purposes. Brian slams the railing down on Jeff, but Jeff retaliates by racking Brian on the railing.Β  Tony Falk holds up a chair, but instead of Jeff slamming Brian into it, Brian slams Jeff into the chair. This was a great match, but was stopped due to outside interference from Frank Morell and Tony Falk. Doug comes in and saves Brian, and whips Jarrett and his entourage.

HIGHLIGHTS: Match 2 was again from the Louisville Gardens and featured Fire vs. the Punisher. But on Fire’s way to the ring, he was attacked by Ashley Hudson because he was angry that Fire made Dundee leave town. Finally Ashley leaves, and the match begins and Punisher steps in and starts a series of suplexes on Fire. Fire wins.

INTERVIEW: While Fire is still in the ring he calls Ashley Hudson out, and Ashley attacks Fire from behind again. They continue to brawl all over the Louisville Gardens – Fire slams Hudson’s heat into a concrete wall, then slams him into various stuff in the back – like garbage cans. Finally, they move to the back ally of Louisville Gardens where Hudson is slammed into the fence surrounding the parking lot. Ashley is bleeding, and about 15 people are trying to separate them. They are finally separated.

HIGHLIGHTS: These are highlights from the show where the Fan attacks Miss Texas.

INTERVIEW: Randy Hales comes out and says that the fan was embarrassed because Miss Texas beat him so bad. After their match, Fahren the Fan called Randy and apologized for his behavior. While Randy was talking the Fan comes up and apologizes again.

MATCH 3: Kip Morris vs. Flex Cavana – Flex wins

INTERVIEW: Ronnie P. Gossett is upset with Lance, Dave, and Cory and says that if they persist in slandering Double J, he will be forced to bring a lawsuit against them.

INTERVIEW: Jeff Jarrett comes out and shakes Fahren’s hand and tries to get him to challenge Miss Texas for a rematch.

MATCH 4: Jake Thomas vs. Tony Falk – Tony wins with a figure four then he takes a belt and tries to whip Jake. Jeff Jarrett is in the background announcing for this match and saying that Tony is trying to be like old Double J, but he just ain’t whipping him right. Jeff jumps up in the ring and whips Jake. Fahren the Fan also gets in on the action. Fire comes out and breaks it up.

MATCH 5: This is for the vacated TV Title. Brickhouse Brown with Reggie B. Fine vs. Bart Sawyer. Reggie interferes causing Brickhouse Brown to win. The ref. doesn’t see any of this.

Again, another great show, and thanks for reading.

My web page will be updated today with new pictures from the USWA including Flex Cavana, Miss Texas, Jeff Jarrett and more.

Chris Benoit pinned Eddy Guerrero using the ropes. (Eddy was booed and gestured for the crowd to kiss his !!!)

Dean pinned Steven Regal (after the match Regal got on the mic and said he’s glad he doesn’t have to face that caliber athlete every night)

Duggan over Wallstreet (zzzz)

Konnan w/ Pedro Morales pinned Sullivan (ECW chants were quite dominant. Konnan decided to bad mouth the organization that runs in a bingo hall. He dropped to his knees, pointed to the sky, and gave the crowd the finger. Sabu chants rose. Kevin got the mic and said that the feeling of Konnan are not the opinions of the building or the organization. They do not feel that way towards their competitors. he continued by saying he once worked there and has a special place in his heart for those workers and fans. Cool move!)

After listening to my tape recorder once more I noticed something else in Kevin’s speech. After saying “I have a place in my heart for them” he followed up with “In fact I hired one last night.”

Sorry I didn’t pick up on this earlier. I hope the guy they signed isn’t the same guy I heard mentioned while at the show. If so, ECW will never be the same without the cane.

Steiners by DQ over Harlem Heat

Lex Luger torture racked Arn Anderson

Nasty Boys beat PE in a street fight (PE was WAY OVER with the crowd)

Savage pinned Flair after ref. Bruno Sammartino counted Flair pinning Savage but found brass knucks. Savage then pulled Flair’s trunks down, rolled him up, and got the pin.

The Giant over Sting by DQ due to Lex interference.

Overall, BAD!!!
All the heels were cheered (which was cool). All the faces were
booed (also cool). Eddy should NEVER be booed however!

CWUSA 6-29-96 TV Show Summary by Mark Carlton
Announcer: Dutch Savage (17 Time PNW Champion)
Coco Samoa & Sumito vs. Col. DeBeers & Buddy Wayne: Match is joined in progress. DeBeers and Wayne take turns applying a leg lock which twists the h3ll out of Sumito’s lower leg and ankle. They follow it with knee drop and kicks all to the same area. Sumito is really hurt and can’t stand up. Finally he makes the hot tag to Coco who destroys Wayne and DeBeers with chops, headbutts, and bodyslams. Finally Wayne and DeBeers gain the advantage and kill Samoa. Eventually, Sumito enters the ring with a chair and the ref. DQ’s Samoa and Sumito.

Interview with Col. DeBeers and Buddy Wayne:
DeBeers (holding up Sumito’s wrestling boot): This is all that is left of Sumito’s leg. You know as well as I, what I did to Von Erich. I’m gonna do the same to Sumito. <pause> I’m gonna pull his leg off. When I’m finished, he too will follow in Von Erich’s foot steps.

– DeBeers is referring to a match against the late Kerry Von Erich in Las Vegas (I believe), where during a match, he mistakenly pulled Von Erich’s prosthesis completely off. Talk about an embarrassment!

Wayne: Sumito used to be missing an eye, this week a boot and next week a foot. Sumito, if you got the guts show up next week, bring your grandfather Coco Samoa with you. Sumito we used to be friends. Now you want to bring your relatives with you. Colonel, you take which ever one you want and I’ll beat the h3ll out of the other!

DeBeers: We have finished with the jungle savages! It’s on to bigger and better things. They couldn’t answer the challenge. They’re dismissed from another order. DIsssssssMISSSSED!

Interview with Coco Samoa:
Samoa: Savage, I’m gonna make it easy for you. I don’t care what we do to them in the ring. I want those 2 guys in a no DQ match. When I’m finished with you DeBeers, I gonna burn your uniform and you can go back to wherever you came from!

“The Original Wrestling Clown” vs. Richie Magnet:
It’s Doink all the way but he’s not going by that name. Back and forth action with a lot of silly stuff by the Clown. The Clown wins with it with the “atomic drop” off the top turnbuckle and a cover.

Interview with “The Original Wrestling Clown”:
Clown: I will be in the PNW for a long time. He-He-He-He-He I want to challenge all comers, wrestlers or not. He-He-He-He. Dutch, I remember when I was a little kid and you took on Don Leo Johnaton. You were never the same again. He-He-He-He. I’m here and I’m gonna kick some @ss!

Bruiser Brian & Shawn Stasiak vs. Lou “The Bull” Andrews & Dane Andrews:
Constant action inside and out of the ring. Mostly brawling with a bodyslam or two thrown in. Andrews throws the ref. out and piledrives Bruiser. He and Rush then loosen the ring ropes and tie up Stasiak in the ropes and destroy Stan Jr. The bell finally rings and Andrews and Rush are DQ’ed.

Interview with Bruiser & Stasiak:
Bruiser: What they did was despicable! He’s best new talent around here for some time.
Stasiak: This is my third match and the second time they have done this crap. Dane Rush, I’m tired of you running me down. I want a match against you next week, one on one.
Bruiser: I like it. Let’s make it a little more interesting. Lou, how about you and me get it on? I’ll pull that hair of yours out so you’ll look like your friend Kojak!
Interview with Rush and Andrews:
Andrews: Mr. Potato Head #1 and Mr. Potato Head #2, you challenge us? It’ll be not problem. They will end up like a couple of baked potatoes. Bruiser, why do you want a piece of me. I’ve beat you every time. I’ll leave you lying in the middle of the ring just like last time.
Rush: Check it out Dutch Savage (as he flexes). What’s wrong with this picture? Since when did punks challenge the champions here at the Bagley Center? Stan Jr., you’re a punk. I’ve got $100 that says you won’t even show up.

Dutch: I’ve got $500 that says he does!

WHAT YOU MISSED: BRITISH BULLDOG beat BUCK “ROCK N’ ROLL” ZUMHOFF . . . SLAM JAM w/DOK . . . DUKE DROESE beat BROOKLYN BRAWLER . . . TL HOPPER talked during the DROESE/BRAWLER bout . . . Highlights from KOTR . . . HUNTER HEARST HELMSLEY beat ??? FOX . . . BRIAN PILLMAN commentated during the HHH match . . . IYH PROMO . . . JIM ROSS interview SUNNY, she ended up getting slopped by the GODWINNS . . . MARC MERO w/SABLE beat JOBBER . . . GOLDUST spoke during the MERO bout . . . Look back at RAW . . . GOLDUST beat TODD BECKER w/CURTAIN CALL . . . RAW Promo for Micheals/Jannetty match . . . FREDDIE JOE FLOYD AKA TRACEY SMOTHERS beat JUSTIN “HAWK” BRADSHAW . . . SLAM JAM w/DOK . . . JUSTIN “HAWK” BRADSHAW spoke . . . NEXT WEEK: AHMED JOHNSON in action, SMOKIN GUNNS w/SUNNY, STEVE AUSTIN . . . !

WHAT YOU MISSED: Nice match — REY MISTERIO JR. defeated BILLY KIDMAN . . . a BASH AT THE BEACH control center . . . JIM DUGGAN over THE GAMBLER . . . footage from NITRO . . . GENE OKERLUND with tickets to the Bash at the Beach . . . another look at THE HOSTILE TAKEOVER . . . JOHN TENTA over BOBBY EATON . . . a promo for The Hostile Takeover featuring RANDY SAVAGE saying that he wasn’t THE NACHO MAN, he is THE MACHO MAN . . . another promo for Bash at The Beach . . . comments from DEAN MALENKO on THE DISCO INFERNO . . . DISCO defeated JOHNNY BOONE . . . and THE FACES & FEAR and MAXX fell to STING, LEX LUGER & RANDY SAVAGE when Savage pinned Maxx via top rope elbowdrop . . .

Greetings everyone! Last Saturday night was the WWF Attitude Adjustment Tour at the “World Famous Joe Louis Arena” in Detroit, MI. So my brother, I, and two of my friends headed on out with sixth row ringside seats πŸ™‚Β  Our signs and cameras were ready.

We arrived around 7 PM, the show started at 8 PM. So we just sat down and talked with some people for a little while. Leif Cassidy was in the back signing autographs, but when my friends went back there he left.

(Note: Ratings are outta 4 Stars)

8 PM came and it was time! The lights went out and the first match was just about to start. First came out the New Rockers. Of course, we were yelling out “AL SNOW!” and telling people that it wasn’t Leif Cassidy, but Al Snow! They danced around the ring like dorks . . . it was funny. Next came out the Marching Morons, the Bushwackers. Ugh, that’s all I have to say! The match was a little slow and we kept on yelling out “AL SNOW!” and the people around us laughed . . . it was great! The end came with Butch rolling up Cassidy. A 1 star match.

After the match, Cornette came out to Owen Hart’s music. The announcer said that the ULLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLTIMATE Warrior “REFUSES TO WRESTLE IN DETROIT!” He made the Warrior sound evil! Cornette then takes the mic and says that Owen should win by forfeit. But no . . . guess what . . . HEEEEEEEEE’S BAAAAAAACCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKK!! “Ladies and gentlemen, I have just been informed that Owen Hart will have to wrestle tonight and it will be again the craziest man in the WWF . . . PSYCHO SID!!!!!!!!!!!!”

The crowd ERUPTED! The place went “bananas!” The roof was blown off! The crowd went wild! Oh my god, h3ll with the Warrior! (Note: I found out the other day that the Ultimate Warrior has not been appearing at house shows due to the death of his father)

Match two was a card change. It was suppose to be Justin Hawk Bradshaw vs. Barry Horriblewitz, but Barry didn’t show (and I’m surprised too . . . a loser like him needs all the gigs he can get! πŸ™‚ . . . so taking his place was Savio Vega, who was suppose to wrestle King Stonecold. The match was all right, with Hawk dominating most of the match. Vega had a few big chops in the match. But neither Bradshaw nor Vega went for their finishing off moves surprisingly. Vega wins with a roll up. We were cheering for Hawk of course! 1 1/2 star match.

Match three pitted Triple H (Without a babe) vs. the “Wildman” Marc Mero (With Sable :). Triple H dominated almost all of the match. Mero’s offense was a few pinning combinations, none of which worked. He did a huge double ax-handle off the top rope . . . I mean he was flying! Triple H had the pedigree ready, but Sable went up on the ring and he let go. We kept yelling for the pedigree while my friend kept yelling for either Sable’s phone number or kept yelling that he had some money for her to do you know what πŸ˜‰Β  Sable jumped down and he went for the pedigree again, but got backdropped again. Mero won with a roll up pin like the Bulldog did to the Hitman at Summerslam in England a few years back. 2 stars . . . HHH kicked @ss and in all it was a decent match. Our taunts of “Johnny B. Badd!” were a lot of fun!

Match four was between the British Bulldog and Yokozuna. Before the match really started, Cornette took the mic and asked Yoko to forget the past and if he’d just shake the Bulldog’s hand he could rejoin Camp Cornette. Well, as some of us kept yelling and gesturing for the hand shake, Yoko crossed his arms in the F*** You! position. Yoko took command early on. He bent over and his a$$ was aiming our way . . . ugh! My friend yelled out “Hey! The moon’s already out tonight, no need to bring it in here!” The people around us were ROTFL! Then the Bulldog took over and we cheered πŸ™‚Β  Yoko got control again and went for the Banzai drop, but Cornette waffled him in his knee with the tennis racket and the Bulldog got the pin. After the match Cornette got Banzai dropped! When he went for the original Banzai on the Bulldog we all said “Lets go Rodney! Beat him up Rodney!” 1 1/2 stars on that match.

Match five was for the WWF IC belt between new champion Ahmed Johnson and former champ GoldDust. We cheered for both of them. GoldDust came out and licked the top rope. No Marlena! : ( He then licked his hand and hit his butt with it as in a “kiss my @ss” gesture. Ahmed then came out and the place went crazy! GoldDust began hitting Ahmed to no avail . . . Ahmed beat him down. GoldDust then got control of the match for a while. Ahmed turned it around with the spinebuster, then said it was time! Pearl River Plunge! But no, GoldDust escapes and walks away. Ahmed by countout. Now I have a question . . . why the h3ll would GoldDust walk away when he’s the CHALLENGER, not the champ? It doesn’t make any sense! This is for the belt and you just give up your chance? We cheered for Dustin Reynolds when he came out πŸ™‚Β  The people around us laughed a lot . . . they loved it! Oh well . . . 1 1/2 stars.

Match six was for the WWF Championship and it was Michaels vs. Vader. I had my “IT’S VADER TIME” sign all ready with “We Can’t Wrestle” on the back of it. Vader came out and my friend and I were like the only Vader fans there . . . actually, someone had a Vader shirt and some kid had a Vader mask (Haha . . . it said “WCW” on the side!). Cornette came out still hurt from the Banzai. Michaels came out and the place exploded! Michaels took control early on, but that wouldn’t last long. He went for a frankensteiner, but Vader held him up there and POWERBOMBED him and then splashed him!! 2 count only though : ( Vader took over for about the next 7-8 minutes. Cornette look our way, so I held up my “IT’S VADER TIME” sign and he saw it and pointed at me, so I gave him the Vader sign with my hand! It was cool! Michaels finally started hulking (sorry, but it’s true) up and took command again when Vader went for a powerbomb only to be punched in the head about 20 times. Michaels got him down and signaled for the Superkick (we wanted to see it too . . . if he missed we were gonna yell either “HE MISSED!” or else “HEY MICHAELS, YOU’RE SUPPOSE TO HIT HIM WITH THAT!”). But when it was gonna happen, GoldDust ran out and started beating on Michaels and then Vader joined in. Ahmed Johnson ran out and helped out, but then the Bulldog came out and the heels took command. Then guess who came out???????? Well, with the Warrior there, it was only right that PSYCHO SID run out and clean house! Gee . . . weren’t Sid and Michaels enemies?! But everyone cheered for Sid! It rocked! Two star match. My friend who was a Michaels fan kept yelling out “Lets go Michael Hickenbottom!” while my other friend who was a Vader fan and I kept yelling out “Lets go Leon White!” πŸ™‚

Intermission time . . . they encouraged everyone to go buy their tickets for the next show on September 27 in advance at the box office.

Intermission was over . . . Match seven was for the WWF tag team titles – Smokin’ Gunns (Without the barred Sunny : ( : ( ) vs. the Godwinns (With Hickbilly Jim). We were thinking about yelling out some redneck jokes, but ended up not. Some guy stood up and yelled “SMOKING GUNNS RULE!” so my friend stood up and yelled “GO SMOKING BUDDS!” ROTFL! Gunns with the sneak attack, but the Godwinns took over. Pretty boring match too. Godwinns win when Bart hit HOG over the head with his boot after Billy got Slop Dropped. 1 star match. Now what’s the difference between hitting someone with your boot when it’s on your foot and when it’s on your hand?!

Shawn Michaels then came out and said that if GoldDust wanted a piece of him then he didn’t have to interfere . . . they’re gonna get it on at the September 27th show. Also announced was a signed match between Vader and Psycho Sid! πŸ™‚

Match eight was the special attraction match scheduled for one fall and it was between the Slammy Award Winning King of Hart’s Owen Hart and Psycho Sid! I had a King of Hart’s sign made and on back we made a Psycho Sid sign πŸ™‚Β  Owen came out . . . too bad he didn’t look our way so he didn’t see my sign : ( Then the music played . . . it’s Psycho Sid! He had to of gotten the biggest pop of the night! He came in, they went at it, Owen off the ropes, Sid missed the clothesline, but then catched him with the choke slam . . . “POWERBOMB!!!!!!” he yelled! People still on their feet cheering. Owen’s up, Owen’s down . . . ONE, TWO, THREE!!!!! The roof came off! Sid on the second rope on our side . . . “MY NAME IS SID!!!!! I AM THE MAN . . . THAT RULES . . . THIS WORLD!!!!! People wouldn’t stop cheering for him! It ruled! Even a “Psycho Sid” chant started, but not enough people picked up on it : ( 2 star match just because it was Sid returning to the ring and he was a crowd favorite.

And in the ninth and final match of the night, in a no DQ match, originally suppose to be Vega vs. Austin in the no DQ, but they changed it . . . now the Undertaker vs. Mankind match would be the no DQ match without anyone knowing it to begin with. Mankind came out, we yelled “CACTUS JACK! Lets go Cactus Jack!” Then the lights went out and many people held up their lighters. The Undertaker and Sid got about the same pop from the crowd . . . just awesome! He went up the steps to turn on the lights, when BOOM! Fireworks explodes outta the ring posts! Sweet! The lights came on and they went right at it. Pretty much a back and forth match. We were also yelling “LETS GO MARK CALLOWAY!” Most of the match was on the floor with a chair being used once. They took it UNDER THE RING! The Undertaker popped out first on our side and took control. The crowd started chanting “REST IN PEACE” all at the same time . . . not like TV where you hear a few then everyone, they all started at the same time. Now my Bro’ and I want to know the purpose of this chant. Who are you chanting to Rest in Peace, the Undertaker or Mankind?! Anyway, Mankind had him down and went for that submission hold, but the Undertaker grabbed his arm to block it . . . he took command from there, hitting Mankind with a flying clothesline, chokeslam then the tombstone for the victory . . . and what a great tombstone it was!! Oh . . . after he did I think the flying clothesline, something went flying into the ring. Some 10 year old boy threw his coke in the ring trying to hit Mankind, but he like hit the Undertaker in the head! Haha . . . the Undertaker flipped back his hair and all the coke and ice went flying outta it! It was so funny. They kicked out the little kid too . . . well . . . they didn’t let him see the rest of the match. We saw him in the halls after the show was done though. By far the best match of the night . . . gotta give it 3 1/2 stars. After the match when he raised his arm to draw power from the urn (like the 50th urn he’s had [grin]), fireworks explodes from all four ring posts this time! Just awesome!

So overall it wasn’t that bad of a house show. The return of Psycho Sid and no Warrior made it awesome for me! Us yelling out the real names of the wrestlers was funny for everyone around us πŸ™‚Β  If one thing needs to be changed it has to be little kids in the front rows. There was this one kid who kept standing on his chair and everyone was yelling at him “Hey Warrior kid (since he had a Warrior shirt on), sit your f***’in @ss down before we beat ya!” I don’t think that the kid ever got the message! Also, some girl (much older) was standing on her chair and everyone was yelling at her too. What made everyone laugh was my friend yelling to her “Sit your god d@mn @ss down bitch . . . I didn’t pay $24 dollars to see the back of your neck!” Hahaha . . .

After the show we went down to the ring where some guy was walking around asking people what their favorite match was and least favorite was (if any). He came to us and we said for best match “Mark Calloway vs. Cactus Jack!” and for least favorite I don’t remember. On our way out we wanted to see what they still had for sale so my friend went up and said “how much for that Mark Calloway shirt?” Hehe . . . then I saw they had stupid Bushwhacker boomerangs for sale?! Now who wants to buy a stupid boomerang that don’t fly for $6? And with the Warrior sounding evil now and Sid running out and helping Michaels and Ahmed, will this change anything for the next IYH? A few other things to note . . . during the show, about 10 people started chanting “NITRO, NITRO, NITRO . . . ” but it didn’t last too long. And someone had a “IV HORSEMEN” sign there, so of course we held up the four fingers and gave a big “WOOOO!” We ended up running in to the guy on the way out while talking with these guys from the AWOL (American Wrestling of Livonia) . . . gotta love that league name! The guy from AWOL was the biggest Lawler fan alive . . . we all like Lawler too . . . and said that he was Pillman’s second brother (which in a way he looked or reminded me of Pillman). He and my friend Jerome talked about setting up a feud between their two federations . . . AWOL vs. JWF in which both would benefit. Just the belts in the AWOL fed aren’t the normal World, IC, Tag . . . ohhhh no . . . hehe . . . it Intergalactic (Champion of the Universe!) and TV Dinner Title! Hehe . . . so I turned around and saw the guy with the “IV Horsemen” sign and was like “Four Horsemen!” so then the other guys turned around and said “Four Horsemen, WOO!” and we pretty much “Woo’d the rest of the time πŸ™‚ Hehe . . . all in all, an okay house show.

Questions, comments . . .

WCW at the PHILADELPHIA CIVIC CENTER 6/29/96 by Tom Robson
There was no one in the crowd when this thing started, something that drastically changed by the end of the night. There couldn’t have been more than 1000 people at the opening bell, but by the end, I would estimate the crowd at closer to 3000. During the middle of the show, David Pinzer announced that this would be WCW’S last ever show at the Civic Center. I’m not sure how much I like this. I guess that means that WCW is now going to be using the Coorstates Spectrum as the WWF moves over to the new Coorstates Center. The Civic Center, while run down, has a very nice feel and ambiance. Onto the matches . . .

Match #1: “Crippler” Chris Benoit vs. Eddy Guerrero Crowd popped nicely for both competitors. Started slowly, but got much better. One of the nicest power bombs I have ever seen by Benoit. Crowd was split, with half behind Chris and the other half behind Eddy. Both men missed their finishers. Eddy missed the flying DDT and the frog splash, Benoit missed the flying headbutt. End came when Benoit stepped into a Guerrero victory roll and scored the pin. ***1/2

Match #2: “The Man of 1000 Holds” Dean Malenko vs. Lord Steven Regal Crowd hated Regal. Drew the most heat during his entrance of anyone all night. Malenko was over, basically because the Mutants were out in force. Malenko had the Texas Cloverleaf on Regal, but he reached the ropes. End came when Malenko placed Regal in a body scissors, rolled over and bridged. After the match, Regal said that he had a lot of respect for Malenko. **1/2

Match #3: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. VK Wallstreet Duggan greeted by a chorus of boos during his entrance, but then the kids took over and there were actually several chants of “USA” during the bout. I didn’t see any of it as I was standing in line to buy food. Duggan won. No rating since I missed the match.

Match #4: “Taskmaster” Kevin Sullivan vs. Konnan (US Title Match)Β  I was still in line, so I didn’t see any of the match. For an arena that holds 6300 people, there should be more than one concession stand. Konnan won the bout.

Match #5: Harlem Heat vs. The Steiner Brothers (Tag Team Title Match)
Crowd popped nicely for the Steiners, and Heat had quite a few supporters. Great match. Both teams pulled out all the stops. Highlight for me though, was in the beginning when Stevie Ray was jawing with a ringside fan and the fan whipped off his shirt and tried to jump the ringside barrier. Doug Dillinger calmed him down and Rick went over and placed his headgear on him. In the match, Scotty used a great belly-to-belly. Rick hit one off the top rope, and Scott used the Tiger Bomb. Booker T has a lot of really great kicks, all of which he used. He missed the Harlem Hangover, though. Steiners hit the top rope bulldog, but Ray kicked off Rick and threw him over the top rope, causing the DQ. ***1/2

Intermission. We discovered ECW superstar Damien Kane and wife (?) Lady Alexandra roaming around the concession area. We didn’t recognize Lady A. Kane asked if we had ever seen her, we said no, and he said “good”.

Match #6: “The Total Package” Lex Luger vs. “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson (TV Title)
Crowd popped HUGE for Luger, and there were several Horsemen fans too. Pretty pathetic match. Lex escaped the DDT by grabbing the ropes. Hooked AA into the Rack and got the submission. **

Match #7: Public Enemy vs. The Nasty Boys (Street Fight)
Nasties jumped TPE before the match, pissing off the entire crowd. Numerous “ECW” chants throughout the match. In fact, at one point, as Grunge was preparing to deliver a slam, he paused and listened for a second. Wild brawl that saw the four use a garbage can, a table, numerous chairs, some signs from the arena walls and the ringside steps, which ended up in the ring (!)Β  End came when Grunge whipped Knobs into a table set up in the corner and scored the pin. Best TPE/Nasties match I’ve seen. ****

Match #8: “Macho Man” Randy Savage vs. “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (Bruno Sammartino as referee)
Sammartino warmly welcomed. Crowd popped huge for both wrestlers. Flair on the mic before the match said that the only reason Sammartino held the belt so long was because he wasn’t around. Mediocre brawl. Does anyone know why Flair continually goes to the top rope, since he hasn’t hit a move off of there in years? Woman tossed a pair of knucks to Flair, who KO’d Savage and scored the pin, but when Bruno raised his arm the knucks fell down and Sammartino continued the match, allowing Savage to roll up Flair from behind. BTW, this is the EXACT same ending that the WWF used in August 1992 with Duggan as referee for the match. ***

Match #9: The Giant vs. Sting (World Title Match)
Crowd LOVED Sting. Decent match. Sting has nicest drop-kick in wrestling. Giant went for a “Stinger” splash in the corner and got some great height for such a big man. Giant had Sting set for the chokeslam, but Luger came down and bashed Giant with a chair, causing a meaningless DQ. After the match, Luger and Sting teased a breakup, with Lex almost clocking Sting with a chair and Sting almost nailing Lex from behind. **

All in all, I would say that this was the best non-ECW card I have ever attended live. The fact that the tickets were free made it even better.

5- Lex Luger
4- Public Enemy
3- Randy Savage
2- Ric Flair
1- Sting

THE STUFF by Agahzi Giorgis
King of the Ring ’96

Bodydonnas vs. New Rockers
Wow! This match was very good, I think the fans got a real bargain considering this was on the Preview Channel. The Rockers were very over with the crowd, but not as heels or faces. The Bodydonnas were not as over, but the crowd popped for both teams after high impact moves. The Donnas introduced their new manager as Cloudy (Jimmy Shoulders dressed in drag like Sunny). Yucky!!!! Anyway, Skip hit a great frankensteiner for a huge pop, and Lief got a huge pop for an incredible spinebuster that would make Arn Anderson jealous. The largest pop was for a superbomb (powerbomb off the top rope) that Jannetty executed on Skip. Great action, this match should have been on the actual PPV instead of Gunns/Godwinns! The end came when Cloudy kissed Lief and Zip rolled him up. Very good. (3) ***

Semifinal Match — “Wildman” Marc Mero (w\Sable)Β  vs. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.
This had to be anticipated as possibly the best match of the card, it wasn’t far from it. The first minute of the match I was staring at Sable (WOW!)Β  Some good action early on. Austin has really looked good since DiBiase has been gone. Both Mero and Austin continue to be impressive. Early on, Austin dropped Mero on the exposed concrete for a hard bump and Mero sold it well. Austin used stiff blows and repeatedly played to the crowd, which generated lots of heat. Mero hit a nice frankenstiener off the top rope for a huge pop. At the end of this match Austin picked Mero up for a powerbomb, but instead flipped him over and dropped him on the ropes. He then hit the “Stone Cold” Stunner (almost like a diamond cutter) for the win. A great match, they both worked hard. *** 1\2 (3 1\2 stars)

Jake “Snake” Roberts vs. Vader.
Tell me who deserves the push and who would make a better match with Austin? Of course Vader, try telling that to Cousin Vinny. 3 minutes into it Jake hits the DDT, but Vader grabs the ref. Ring ring, Disqualification. At least Vader didn’t job cleanly. Afterward he beat the crap out of Jake, severely injuring his ribs. They took this Jake thing too far, Thank God Vader got his hits in after the match.

Smokin Gunns vs. Godwinns- Tag Team Title Match
Somebody tell me what the h3ll happened to tag team wrestling in the WWF, did I miss something? One minute you’ve got the Steiners, Beverlies, Money Inc., Headshrinkers, and Quebecers. Now we have Gunns and Godwinns. I hope I’m dreaming. Pathetic, I’ve worked better matches in my attic. same old story, pathetic wrestling, Gunns cheat and keep the belts. About 9:00 minutes and then Bart uses Sunny’s boot to hit Phineas. Surprisingly Phineas ignored Sunny. Horrible match 1\2* (half star cause of Sunny). This match was a good way to get the fans to beg for Demolition, Harts, LOD, Steiners, and Shrinkers.

Ultimate Warrior vs. Jerry Lawler-
During his entrance Lawler insulted fans. He said to one lady “when you wear blue, do people try to mail letters in you?” and to two other girls “it’s girls like you that turn men into people like GoldDust”. I laughed until I almost cried, and then I did cry when Warrior came to the ring. I knew what I was in for. Lawler attacked and choked Warrior earlier on and he actually sold it. Then Lawler hit his patented piledriver, Warrior popped up hit three clotheslines, a flying tackle and a splash for the win. It was only 4 minutes so I was able to bear it. Lawler should have cracked jokes the entire 3:50 of the match. (not deserving of a rating)

Mankind vs. Undertaker-
I expected brawling, brawling, and a tombstone. Instead I got good brawling, incredible spots, and a surprise ending. The music played, Paul Bearer came to ringside alone. When the lights came on the Taker was on the top rope and he hit an unbelievable clothesline. Taker was vicious early on, but then Mankind took over. They brawled very well throughout the match including some great chairshots! Mankind showed us some real stuff. He is only 29 years old and he can work. He is starting to fit in his gimmick very well. Mankind went for the Mandible Claw, but UT blocked it, Bearer went to hit Mankind with the urn, but he accidentally hit UT. Mankind put on the Mandible Claw for the win. Unbelievable for these to. Possibly setting up a Paul Bearer heel turn. ***1\2 (3 and 1\2 stars)

Ahmed Johnson vs. GoldDust (w/Marlena) for the IC Title
After a whole month without Ahmed on TV, he made his return . . . and with a bang! As soon as Ahmed’s music played he burst through the King of the Ring doors, knocking over the door attendants. He ran to the ring and attacked GoldDust, repeatedly pounding him. Ahmed hit a tope to the outside, he didn’t hit it full, but he tookΒ  a nice bump. After Ahmed pounded on him, GoldDust took over the offense. He dominated most of the match, but after he released a sleeper and gave mouth-to mouth to Ahmed, he was dead.Β  Ahmed pounded him, gave him a spinebuster, and then the Pearl River Plunge! Ahmed became the new IC champ, and the first African-American to win a singles title in the WWF. (***1\2)

“Stone Cold” Steve Austin vs. Jake “Snake” Roberts (King of the Ring Finals)
Not much to tell. Jake’s ribs were injured from Vader so it wasn’t much of a match . . . I’m not sure it would have been regardless. Austin really beat on Jake badly. Monsoon came out to stop the match, but Jake refused to quit. 2 minutes later, Austin hit the “Stone Cold Stunner” for the win!

Shawn Michaels vs. British Bulldog for the WWF Title
No power outages and no unconscious referees — a helluva match. Fast action early on, with Michaels getting the best of it. They both appeared to be a lot more calm then at IYH8 Beware of Dog. It was very well paced. Michaels hit a bodypress over the top rope and then pulled himself back in the ring. He then went out to the ring apron and hit a frankensteiner. (nice). Back in the ring it was very action-packed, and well worked. Bulldog took over and every time Michaels tried to make a comeback, Bulldog cut it down. In the last few minutes, Michaels picked Bulldog up for a slam, but Bulldog’s feet inadvertently hit referee Earl Hebner, knocking him down. He got up slowly as Michaels began his finishing sequence. After the slam and the elbow . . . Michaels signaled for chin music. He hit it, but not good because Bulldog was too close. He went for the cover, Perfect jumped in and made the count also, but as Perfect went for the 3 count . . . Owen Hart pulled him out . . . still the real ref. made the count and Michaels is the winner. (****1\2) In comes Owen, but Michaels fights him off. Bulldog gets up and he and Owen double team Shawn. In comes IC champ Ahmed Johnson to clean house, but then comes Vader. He destroys them, and goes up for the moonsault, but Warrior runs in and knocks him off. Warrior cleans house. Michaels, Ahmed, and Warrior (w\Lothario) pose to close the show. Monsoon announces: Vader\Owen\Bulldog vs. Shawn\Ahmed\Warrior at IYH9 July 21.

Good show . . . Everyone tried their best! Ahmed did very well and looks good with the gold. “Stone Cold” continues to impress and gave a great interview after winning the KOTR final. Mankind vs. UT was surprisingly very very good. Shawn speaks for himself . . . he gets better and better by each show!! The New Rockers need to be pushed and Vader needs to be reestablished as a dangerous heel. Overall an excellent show and the best PPV of the year.
Overall rating: **** (4stars)

I don’t know if anybody out there missed me, (I love you all!) but I’ve been gone for awhile. This time let’s chitchat briefly about what’s happened since I left.

Who will be the 3rd WWFer? Every week we get a new name added to the rumor mill. Although all the wrestlers are ex-WWF, and that should bind them together as a unit– I can’t think of anybody who’d really fit in with Razor and Diesel. R and D’s storylines were so intertwined most of the time, even as enemies. Even their backgrounds are they same. Throwing in a big nuisance like Mabel, or a showboater like Jeff Jarrett would hurt. It’d be better, in my opinion, to go with 2 on 2.

I’m surprised nobody has started the rumor about it being Sid. There! I just did.

The Rock ‘n Roll Express. One of the three greatest tag teams in history are back. Nobody remembers them. The crowds won’t chant Rock ‘n’ Roll.” But they lose to the Horsemen. At least *some* things never change.

I really dig the hostile takeover. But I’m pondering something. I sat glued to the set in front of Nitro this week, and saw the ruining in the main event. What in the world were those policemen planning on doing with those guns? Maybe if Razor and Diesel had sawed-off shotguns instead of Louisville Sluggers.

Tony Schiavone kept saying he was “scared to death.” Larry Zbyszko even said that he’d protect him. I would LOVE to see that. Eric doesn’t need to come back until Razor and Diesel go after Tony. Then Dusty and Larry could help him out. Wouldn’t that be sweet? I’d love to some Bionic Elbows upside R and D’s heads. Git funky like a monkey, babieth!

Tony Schiavone is the most underrated announcer today. He’s the only one without a gimmick. He’s not the owner of the fed (Vince, Eric). He’s not an ex-jock (Mongo). He’s not, nor has he ever been, a wrestler (Lawler, Dusty, Larry, Perfect). He’s not a knowledgeable inside analyst, not a manager, not an effervescent outsider like Todd Pettengill. Todd doesn’t know a headlock from a hamhock, but he can tell you how exciting every wrestling show is except the one you’re watching at the time.

Tony, on the other hand, is just a guy. He’s the workaday announcer who produces the shows and reacts to everybody else. He’s got a wry sense of humor that only Jesse the Body has been able to bring out. Nothing wrong with that. I think he’s mighty good.

Last week at the Sun Coast Video in the Birmingham, AL Riverchase Galleria, I ran into Kevin Greene. Well, I didn’t “run” into him, because he would’ve crushed me. Kevin “Shallow Grave” Greene, according to Jay Leno. Who went to Auburn University, my favorite college football team and my Dad’s alma mater. Who had wrestled only two nights before. From a safe distance I watched he and his lovely wife Tara shop. He was only an aisle away. “Hi Kevin. I saw you wrestle the other night. You did a great job, that was a lot of fun.”

At least, I would have said that if I could’ve moved my lips and my feet at the same time. I vaporlocked, and then the Greenes left the store. Maybe next trip.

Auburn University, by the way, is the Ricky Steamboat of college Football. They usually get a decent push, but job to Alabama in November.

Happy wrestling, everybody.


Yes, it’s a new column! But don’t worry, you won’t have to read my ramblings every week.

I got the idea for this column while watching some old tapes. We can’t get cable, and the Columbus, OH stations we can get don’t carry wrestling, so I get my kicks from the Report and old tapes. Anyway, I thought, why not look at old tapes, pick out specific events, and see how they affect wrestling today? This week’s topic: Thanksgiving 1987.

Beginning in 1983, Jim Crockett Promotions owned wrestling audiences on Thanksgiving in closed-circuit and, later, pay-per-view with a little thing they called “Starrcade.” The first one featured Harley Race defending the NWA world title in a steel cage against Ric Flair. This card, while not seen all around the country (I still haven’t seen all of it), was the very first “supercard” of the modern era. For four years, while other wrestling organizations were taking the holiday off, the NWA was kicking @ss. In 1984, Ric Flair and Dusty Rhodes wrestled for $1,000,000. One of the most brutal matches I’ve ever seen is the Magnum TA/Tully Blanchard I Quit cage match from Starrcade 1985. And in 1986, for better or worse, the Road Warriors took on the Midnight Express in a scaffold match while Ric Flair defended the US of A against the “Evil Empire,” represented by Nikita Koloff.

But in 1987, Vince McMahon fought back. He presented the first Survivor Series from suburban Cleveland, OH on Thanksgiving night, at the same time as Starrcade 1987, and on many more PPV systems than Starrcade. We all know the formula now, but in 1987, five-on-five elimination matches were new to the viewing public. For those of you who don’t remember, Honky Tonk Man, then-I-C champion, left the ring in the first match when he was left alone with Randy Savage, Jake Roberts, and Ricky Steamboat. The Jumping Bomb Angels were the lone survivors in the women’s match, setting them up to win the WWF Women’s Tag Team title (!) two months later at the first Royal Rumble. The Killer Bees and the Young Stallions barely survived the two-on-four onslaught of the Islanders in the tag team match. And Bam Bam Bigelow became a serious contender after eliminating both One Man Gang and King Kong Bundy before being squashed by a well-rested yet sadly-out-of-shape Andre the Giant.

The NWA tried to compete. They had the Rock & Roll Express throw the Midnight Express off the scaffold that year. Nikita Koloff beat Terry Taylor to unify the NWA and UWF TV titles. Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard kept the tag titles in the Four Horsemen against the Road Warriors. Dusty Rhodes beat Lex Luger in a cage to win the US title, and Lex was out of the Horsemen weeks later. And Ric Flair won the NWA World title in a cage again, this time against Ronnie Garvin.

Both cards were good for what they were. The Survivor Series did not try to be regular wrestling, it tried to be a special event, much like the first Royal Rumble two months later. Starrcade went for conventional matches for the most part (including props), and it was that. However, only one card could stay on Thanksgiving the next year. And you’ll notice that Starrcade is still held around Christmas.

Say what you want about Vince and the two-headed Tederic monster. But, to me, the first shot in the WWF/WCW war was not fired by Bischoff on Nitro. It was eight years earlier against the NWA. And THAT, folks, is this week’s history lesson.

THE SUPER BOMB by Tom Robson (
I’m having difficulty deciding what I want to comment on this week. I could talk about how happy I was to see Harlem Heat get the tag team titles back this week. I could talk about how “Stone Cold” Steve Austin makes up for Mabel winning last year’s King of the Ring. In fact, I think I will talk about Austin next week, but the one thing the most on my mind right now is that Ahmed Johnson is now the World Wrestling Federation Intercontinental Champion.

Ahhh yes . . . the infinite wisdom of the WWF booking team. Here is this big stiff who’s almost as bad as Mabel when it comes to almost crippling opponents, and now he’s holding a belt that has previously been held by such greats as Randy Savage, Ricky Steamboat, Rick Rude, Curt Hennig, Bret Hart, Roddy Piper, The British Bulldog, Shawn Michaels and Jeff Jarrett. In my opinion, Ahmed is one of the most painful people to watch in the world of wrestling today. This guy obviously attended the Hulk Hogan and Ultimate Warrior school of how to no-sell the moves that should put people in the hospital (example: Jarrett bashes him in the skull with a guitar, 60 seconds later he’s sprinting down the aisle, another example: He gets KO’d with Owen Hart’s cast, then crashes through a door within 5 minutes of going out.)

From what I can see, Ahmed has four moves: a punch, a plancha, a spinebuster and a tiger bomb (and no matter what he may call it, that is what it is.)Β  I believe it was in these pages a few months ago that I read a column where someone commented that they had invented a game where after each time that Johnson executed a move, they tried to figure out if the guy was just selling the hold really well or if he was in legitimate big-time pain.

One other thing, will someone clarify for me this question: Wasn’t it Johnson that virtually crippled Jarrett for a while? I think it was. Till next week.

THE RIGHT VIEW by Jim Sondergeld
Has anybody else noticed that John Tenta is keeping the shaved half of his head shaved? The first shaving was over a month ago; I’d think it would have started growing back by now. Now he’s lost half his beard, and it’s really surprising that Bubba didn’t take half his mustache as well.

Tenta is either getting paid handsomely for this personal defacement, or else he has no self-respect whatsoever. The reality is probably a bit of both.

– – –

With WCW’S Bash at the Beach PPV looming, the time is optimal to engage in a round of educated speculation:

I think it likely that WCW moved up the date of this event as early as it could in order to pull off the Diesel/Razor Ramon/??? vs. Sting/Lex Luger/Randy Savage match before a court injunction filed by the WWF blocking WCW from using the Ramon and Diesel characters in its operations could be handed down. Considering that Titan Sports owns Ramon lock, stock, and Vaseline, and has threatened Scott Hall with termination of the remaining payments under his WWF contract if he violates its copyright by portraying Ramon in WCW, even promoting this “Hostile Takeover” angle is something of a gamble on the part of Eric Bischoff, especially since I can discern no fall-back position should Vince McMahon win his injunction. This behind-the-scenes legal wrangling is a logical explanation for Bischoff’s two week “convalescence.”

That being said, it is obvious that this is a shoo-in for Best Angle of 1996. It can easily go the rest of the year, since Hulk Hogan and Paul “Giant” Wright won’t get involved in it until at least the August “Hog Wild” PPV.

In the “what to look for” department, it’s already known that Ted DiBiase has signed a three-year deal with WCW, and will almost certainly be the manager of the “WWF invaders.” The fact that Lex Luger and Sting lost the tag-team belts adds further fuel to the rumor that Luger will turn on Sting and Savage and reveal himself to have been a “WWF spy” for the past year. It would be an extremely lame excuse, but it’s the same explanation given for Ed Leslie’s transformation from Zodiac to Bootyman, so there is precedent. But here’s something else I noticed.

On last week’s Nitro, when Hall and Kevin Nash (the latter of whom Bischoff mentioned by name this week) came to ringside with baseball bats (Parenthetically, that was a really stupid skit. Independence Arena in Charlotte, NC was supposedly crawling with security, which had succeeded in keeping Randy Savage out over the previous two months, but Hall and Nash broke through? What was worse, arena security was SURROUNDING them, though at a considerable distance, as they came down the aisle.), only Harlem Heat kept their minds in the tag-team triangle match. Not only did they roll up Luger (a little collusion, perhaps?), but the Heat left the ring and walked right by Nash and Hall, and the latter two didn’t even give them a second look, which seemed awfully odd. Plus, the Heat have been jawing on their cellular phone again. Conclusion? Harlem Heat will be a part of DiBiase’s stable, with the Steiners as their primary challengers. Reality? The Heat may be hooking up with Rob Parker instead, which would be much less imaginative. Why? Read on.

I furthermore predict that Arn Anderson and Chris Benoit will defeat the Giant and Kevin Sullivan at BATB via Steve McMichael bashing Sullivan with his now-trademark steel briefcase. The next night on Nitro, Ric Flair (who won’t win the U.S. title from Konnan — it’d be beneath him. It’ll end in a countout or DQ) will challenge the champ, and McMichael will try his skull tattoo ploy again (the only move he knows, apparently) — this time without success. Mongo will get chokeslammed, but then all the Horsemen will attack him and this time do some damage. Thus softened up, Nash will win the World title from the Giant, while, in the meantime, Hall is taking the U.S. title from Konnan (Ramon vs. Konnan — “Latino” vs. Latino. It’s a natural.). If Luger is their third, he’ll already have the TV championship, and Harlem Heat would be the tag-team title holders. VIOLA! A clean sweep. The “hostile takeover” would be complete. And the stage would be set for Hogan to return and lead the counterattack to “liberate” WCW.

Something along these lines has to be in the offing, especially after all the hype and buildup Bischoff has poured into this angle. It’ll either be a home run or the biggest whiff in pro wrestling history. And given the high degree of certainty of a copyright infringement suit, WCW has nothing to lose by swinging for the seats.

– – –

Eric Bischoff had a magnificent zinger at Little Mac’s expense in a recent interview that was reprinted in the latest issue of Pro Wrestling Illustrated. He said, (paraphrased), “The WWF tries to portray this as Big, Bad Ted Turner versus Poor, Little Vince McMahon. HA! I doubt if Ted Turner thinks of Vince McMahon more than once or twice a year. He just can’t deal with the fact that it’s Eric Bischoff who’s kicking his @ss every week.”

I can’t top that.

E-MAIL: Many thanks to Michael Noll and Bryan Koval for providing this King of the Ring report below. You saved me a job!

My First WWF PPV by Michael Noll & Bryan Koval

The ride to the Mecca in Milwaukee was long and treacherous. We encountered lots of rain, including 3 downpours that almost made us stop the car. This after supposedly finding out that Vader was out of the KOTR tourney by some “smart mark” on AOL. So needless to say we were pretty exhausted by the time we got there, after all the speculation of what would happen with the Tourney and all. Plus not to mention all the speculation on if the new talent was going to show up tonight or not. But all in all, a very good time. Even after all the BS we encountered.

So we finally get to the arena, after not knowing where the arena is and making a pit stop. We get to a line we thought was the way to get in. And of course it wasn’t, finally we went around everybody and found our way into the lobby, where we proceed to wait some more. Oh did I mention that we waited in the line outside the arena for 35 minutes? We were in the lobby at 5:25 and get into the arena about half-way through the New Rockers/ Body Donnas match. No one in the arena had any clue as to where their seats were or could help us to find ours. Needless to say after walking in and out of several areas we finally found our seats. Appropriately next to some very “smart marks!”. By the way HHH squashed Aldo Montoya in the match after the Free For All match. Decent match, good looking woman with HHH (did you expect anything less?) and it was over within 6 minutes (at least I think so, we couldn’t time it because of the delays!).

Now to the KOTR!!! Finally we sit down about 2 minutes into the Mero/Austin match (again no time for the match). Great match, lots of high impact moves by both, ending with a Supersuperbulious (OK so I made up that word πŸ™‚ )Β  Stun Gunn. Austin with a bloody mouth, frankensteiner by Mero, and a few other great moves, with which I won’t bore you with. And ends with a clean pin by Austin! Yeah . . .

Match 2: Jake/Vader. Jake looked fabulous (IMO), took some of Vader’s best shots and floored Vader with the DDT. Ref. gets pushed by Vader and awards the bout to Roberts via DQ. Post match attack by Vader which, we thought, would knock Jake out of the KOTR tourney. (approx. 7 min.)

Match 3: Smokin Gunns/Godwinns. Hohum . . . (I went for a beer run) Gunns win in 10 minutes. Couldn’t see much of Sunny . . . Oh well!

Match 4: Lawler/Warrior. Lawler in “rare form” tonight. “Nice to see that you’re off the street for a NITE”, “Looks like you ate at BK one too many times” and my personal favorite “The Brewers can’t even win a game . . . ” (I don’t exactly remember that one, but ohh so true) After Warrior’s entrance (nothin’ less than spectacular) Lawler jumps Warrior from behind, and dominates for 4 minutes. After a Lawler piledriver, Warrior regroups, and within 30 seconds scores the pinfall. (4:35)

Match 5: Mankind/Undertaker. The best match of the card! Can you believe that?! Well I cannot put into words this match, all I can say is get a copy and see it for yourself!!! Mankind with clean pinfall/ with mandible claw (19 min.)

Match 6: GoldDust (IC) /Ahmed Johnson. Marlena looked Spectacular! Ahmed jumps Goldie, but somehow (and this is where things get fuzzy) Goldie fights back to a decent show. In the end, Pearl River Plunge and a new IC Champ. (15 min.)

Interview with Brian F’n Pillman: Needless to say Milwaukee does not have the best sound system in the world, so we heard very little of what the Loose Cannon had to say. But it must of been good because Ross was a bit shook up over the whole thing.

Match 7: Austin/Jake. After being told earlier in the NITE, by the Fink, that Roberts refused medical attention, so that he could try to fulfill this dream to be KOTR. Roberts showed up, much to our surprise. Austin immediately worked on Jake’s injured ribs. Gorilla came down to check on Jake, and halted the match. Jake wanted to continue and gained momentum, until Austin gave a modified Diamond Cutter to score the pin in 4 minutes.

Coronation ceremony: conducted by Doc Hendrix. Austin seemed to do a “shoot” interview. And ranted about how he didn’t need what it is that seems to keep Jake going in life, and warned the WWF that he was taking names and didn’t intend on losing! Look for Austin to get his well deserved title shot at Summer Slam.

Main Event: British Bulldog/ Shawn Michaels. I can’t believe the response that Michaels got. Definitely the biggest POP of the NITE. Hmmm . . . What’s wrong with this picture? Anyway, Shawn is Back! Or so it seems to me. He was ready this time. One step of BB for the first 10 minutes until BB’s gorilla press over the top to the floor! WOW! To bad we were seated away from the action on that one. Anyhow, great match, lots of drama. See it to believe it. Cool to see Perfect help in the final moments with the 3 count. Winner Shawn Michaels (26 min.)

The Brawl: Owen helped BB to pummel Michaels who surprisingly held his own. Then . . . came Ahmed to help . . . Then . . . Vader, 3 against 2, did you hear our Warrior shout-outs? Finally my finest hour was to be realized: the man, the myth, aw h3ll you already know what happened! Warrior came and kicked some @ss! Then the 3, very unlikely friends, celebrated in the squared circle. After words Michaels took his own celebration to the fans by the Royal Throne . . .

Overall, tons of funs, although the “marks” were out ‘O Plenty tonight! This was about 9:00 PM on the dot when we left the arena area. Good time . . .

MY KOTR COMMENTS: Check back to my predictions, and you’ll see that I got 5 out of 8 matches right. However, I got one main prediction right – this year’s KOTR was a lot better than last year’s effort. Mero/Austin, Undi’/Mankind and Shawn/Bulldog were amazing matches. On a scale of 1 to 100 (90+ Excellent, 80+ Pretty darn good, 70+ Average, 60+ Lacking etc.), I would have to give this year’s KOTR an 89, ‘cos it was pretty darn good!


Had to tape both Raw and Nitro this week (6/24). Had a work function to attend : ( Finally got to watch it 6/26. It looks to me as if Luger will be a member of the WWF Invasion team. With the belts being transferred to Harlem Heat on Monday, it looks like Lex is free from Sting and now can join Nash and Hall plus their mystery partner. He did not look at all upset about being pinned at all nor was Sting that upset about the win. So I guess when everyone is in the ring plus Security, There is no disqualification πŸ™‚ Look for Harlem Heat to lose the belts to the Steiners. So at the BATB, Lex will turn heel and join the other team.

Again, I was more impressed with Nitro this week than Raw. Raw is just getting too boring for me. Besides Sunny, only Brian F’n Pillman was worth watching. Nitro meanwhile wasn’t that much better, but it was still better. Will be taping both next week too.

Notes: Ahmed as IC champ. Look for Ron Simmons to come in managed by Sunny and go after Ahmed. Cloudy?????? Enough of the gender benders McMahon. And no more jobbers on Raw. 4 matches is not too much. The King cracks me up πŸ™‚ ROTFLMAO at DI coming in the middle of the Malenko match. I’d rather watch him than listen to Mr. No Personality Malenko. Good wrestler though. Still think he and Benoit would be an awesome team. Wow Flair and Anderson on Nitro, what a shock. Hehehe, love watching Eric get Jack knifed, kept rewinding it. Oh, nice Eric Sucks Dick sign on Raw πŸ™‚ Sullivan, No Mustard on my wrestler please. If I were Scheme Gene, I wouldn’t mind Woman’s hands on me. Mongo’s wrestling again??? Here come my boys Nash and Hall. Nice look on the (cop), almost looked real reaching for the gun.


It had been speculated that HARLEM HEAT were going to be let go by WCW. However, with their winning of the WCW TAG TITLES on NITRO this past Monday, this means that WCW will keep HARLEM HEAT around and they were given the Tag Titles to appease them. This allows now allows STING and LEX LUGER to fight the WCW War against the “WWF” invaders – SCOTT HALL and KEVIN NASH.

How ironic was it to see RANDY SAVAGE and LEX LUGER smiling in each others company on NITRO??? If I recall correctly, SAVAGE and LUGER had a feud last fall and winter and they had some pretty heated and hostile confrontations with one another. I did not know that SAVAGE and LUGER had made up and become friends again!!!

I hope that RIC FLAIR wins the US TITLE from KONNAN at the BASH AT THE BEACH PPV. FLAIR could restore some much needed prestige to a belt that is lower in class right now than the CRUISERWEIGHT TITLE. FLAIR should no longer be the WCW CHAMPION and the US TITLE is the perfect belt for FLAIR to hold at this stage of his career. KONNAN has brought nothing in the way of excitement or prestige to the US TITLE and at least FLAIR would bring interest back in the US TITLE again.

Anyone take CLOUDY seriously??? CLOUDY may be one of the worst gimmicks I have ever seen!!! It is pathetic to watch someone dress like a woman and then not be funny. At least GOLDUST is funny to watch as he performs his “feminine” charms, BUT CLOUDY is just simply a BAD creation by the WWF creative staff.

Do you think that PAUL BEARER is going to turn on THE UNDERTAKER??? I would like to see it happen. Having PAUL BEARER turn heel would be a great twist in the UNDERTAKER-MANKIND feud. I have a feeling that this is going to happen because why then would the WWF start this potential angle and then not finish it??? This is not WCW, where few angles are ever finished!!! Look for PAUL BEARER to turn heel on the UNDERTAKER. If the rumors are true and JAKE ROBERTS would then manage THE UNDERTAKER, that would be GREAT!!!

RAVEN has went as low as one can go in his war against THE SANDMAN. Not only has he brought back THE SANDMAN’S ex-wife, PEACHES, now RAVEN has turned THE SANDMAN’S son, TYLER, against him as well. RAVEN will stop at nothing to ruin THE SANDMAN and it should be a wild match next time THE SANDMAN and RAVEN meet at the ECW Arena.

The WWF is in trouble. KOTR did not provide the punch needed, the court refused the temporary injunction, and they got smashed in the Monday night ratings.

No one really cares about this angle between Sunny and Cloudy. Jake Roberts-Vader was absolutely bland, and the UT-Mankind match weakened the gimmick of the ‘Taker. Furthermore, Vince once again forgot his “family oriented” policy he once had by allowing the tirade of King Austin, which borders on, if is not outright, anti-Christian bigotry.

Monday Night RAW didn’t do anything to help. Pillman’s speech didn’t draw the heat expected, and once again we saw a shift in angles: from UT-Mankind back to UT-GoldDust, which I heard would be at the next IYH.

Worse off, the WWF is apparently trying to develop a lesbian angle between Sable and Marlena. That’s not what they need to expand their base. The WWF has always had a base for family and kids. They will not gain any new converts by pushing an angle which most parents would forbid their kids from seeing. This also allows GoldDust more time in the spotlight, which is not what they need either, since most of the fans are tired of GoldDust.

If Vince and co do not wish to loose more ground, they’re gonna have to come up with something big. Something that they can uniquely do to revitalize interest in their product.

A lot has been written about the war between the WCW and WWF in the last few weeks. With the WWF filing a lawsuit and the subsequent fallout (Bischoff’s infamous “Nash” statement this week on Nitro), and impending pay per view revenue before us I offer up this statement: The war is a good thing.

For the first time in history Wrestling is in prime time and doing numbers that are comparable to oh, Late Night with David Lettermen or the Tonight Show. When combined, the two Monday night shows ratings — both cable only shows — rank right up there with some the highest rated shows on cable.

What does that mean? Well, this means that with the influx of the war all of a sudden we wrestling fans are tuning in and turning on to wrestling in levels that boggle the mind. Even in the “heyday” of wrestling — 1984/1986 — wrestling never drew these sort of numbers.

What does THAT mean? That means that we’re watching wrestling. We may not be going to house shows in the numbers that we did in the 1980’s (70’s, 60’s, 50’s . . .), but we are watching. Since the “war” started we’re watching in record numbers.

So what are we watching? It’s interesting to see what patterns that the rating numbers bring. Thanks to Alex Marvez for bringing weekly ratings on AOL I can bring you the fact that it seems that quite a lot of people are watching the “Invaders” storyline and quite a lot of people tune out whenever the WWF shows GoldDust, Cloudy, and *slow* matches.

This is where the lawsuit comes in.

For the first time in recent memory the WCW is winning the ratings war. The “Invaders” storyline, Kevin Nash & Scott Hall coming into the WCW, is the hottest thing in wrestling since the last big scandal. The last few minutes of Nitro this week earned a possible record Nielson rating for wrestling. The WCW is working hard to create excitement for their federation and the PPV numbers for this weekend’s Bash at the Beach is expected to be pretty good.

It’s money and it’s hurting Vince McMahon. That’s why there’s a lawsuit IMODO, delayed for a couple of weeks because the judge doesn’t know anything about wrestling, Vince is losing for the first time in his life.

After years and years of doing everything right, winning every war, taking every “big guy” away from the competition at the time and destroying every obstacle that was put in his way (anyone remember the sex scandals from a couple of years back? How many of the guys who “resigned” are back with the WWF? Hmm . . .), Vince is in a situation where the other guys seem to be on top.

So what are his options? Well, he’s suing. That’s what he’s doing. He filed a lawsuit and listed everything he could possibly find fault with the WCW and Eric Bischoff in hopes a judge would look at one of the counts (hopefully one of the obscure ones), and grant a temporary restraining order against the WCW in order to prevent the “invaders” angle. He didn’t get it and he’s getting his rear end kicked in the ratings every week.

I guess it’s time for a wake up call. It’s not 1985 anymore. All of the big stars have either retired or jumped ship and Vince isn’t taking it well. Right now, IMODO, he should be fighting this “Invader” storyline with one of his own. Heck, he was Brian Pillman — the man who broke kayfabe and exposed the biz on a live PPV (and known thorn in the side of Eric Bischoff) — in his pocket and he’s not using him. IMODO, every time Pillman appears the ratings should jump by a whole ratings point. Brian has done this with every other wrestling area he’s come to and even injured as he is — an appearance by Brian in an “invader” type storyline should and could beat the return of Nash and Hall to the WCW.

Last weekend the Ultimate Warrior disappeared. He was replaced on the house shows with Sid Vicious (coming out of retirement). Every phoneline and all the On-Line message areas screamed with rumors about what went on. This was possibly the hottest story in the wrestling world and a show detailing what went on could have knocked the WCW’S “Invaders” on it’s rear end.

So what do we get on RAW? Slow pre-taped matched. Marty vs. Shawn. Oh boy — they don’t work until the last minute or so. The rest of the show has the fans literally dead in the stands. This is not a way to run a war. Vince is resting on his laurels and I’ll tell you now that a lawsuit isn’t going to bring back fans. So he sues to stop Nitro, the Invaders, Eric Bischoff bad-mouthing him, etc. By the time of the lawsuit the WCW will have blown the roof of the “Invaders” angle and taken all the big numbers that they’re going to get from this storyline. So the lawsuit is a moot point now what happens?

We go back to the beginning. Ratings are up for wrestling at the highest numbers in their history. If one does not succeed in this time and place — with so many people watching — then maybe they should get out of the wrestling business. I’ll tell you boys and girls, the next month or so is going to be *very* interesting for the WWF. If Vince doesn’t get with the program — and do it fast — the “war” will be over without a shot fired by the WWF. That’s IMODO . . .


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