Monday Nitro (04.21.97)

WCW Monday Nitro
April 21, 1997
Saginaw, MI
Civic Center

The current WCW champs were as follows:
WCW World Champion: Hollywood Hogan (8/10/1996)
WCW U.S. Champion: Dean Malenko (3/16/1997)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Outsiders (10/27/1996)
WCW World Television Champion: Ultimo Dragon (4/7/1997)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Syxx (2/23/1997)
WCW Women’s Champion: Akira Hokuto (12/29/1996)

JJ Dillon is here! Why would you care about someone who hasn’t been seen on WCW TV in close to ten years? I don’t know – just watch and find out why he’s here. Okay? Geez.

HOUR NUMBER ONE! Your hosts are Tony Schiavone and Larry Zbyszko.

  • WCW U.S. Heavyweight Champion Dean Malenko vs. Yuji Nagata

This is Yuji Nagata’s WCW debut and he’s already a top contender to the US title. SAY WHAT? Even though Nagata’s an accomplished mat wrestler – because he’s from Japan, his gimmick is that he’s a martial arts expert. They all know how to kung fu! Feeling out process to start. Nagata takes over with an enziguri and then grabs a chinlock. Hey look, Reggie White is here. Malenko fights out with a back suplex and running clotheslines Nagata in the corner. Suplex gets two. Another chinlock and another look at Reggie White. Jumping calf kick by Malenko, but Nagata is back on him with a t-bone suplex for 1-2-NO! Overhead belly to belly gets two. More kicks from Nagata, but Malenko catches one and ducks the enziguri. He elbow drops the knee and locks in the TEXAS CLOVERLEAF for the win. (6:02) Match of the night on a night where the total amount of wrestling has been slimmed down for angle progression and vignettes to be shown. Great offense from both men and the crowd was really into everything. **½

  • Glacier vs. Ciclope

We haven’t seen Glacier in over a month now, yet there appears to be all sorts of things happening between he and Mortis. Soon as the crowd starts chanting “Glacier Sucks!”, he hits the CRYONIC KICK and ends the sucktitude. (:33) The yet-to-be-named Wrath appears and distracts Glacier long enough for Mortis to *appear* and drill him with his own superkick. Crowd loves it! James Vandenberg orchestrates the continued beatdown while Mortis steals Glacier’s helmet with tons of super interesting Japanese history behind it! After he delivers a Rock Bottom of sorts to Glacier, Wrath walks over to the camera and begins to talk, which kills the mystique of his entire character since he sounds like a complete hick.

Tony gives away the reason for JJ Dillon’s sudden appearance. Since Eric Bischoff is no longer in charge, the WCW board of directors have made JJ Dillon the new “big cheese” in WCW. It’s a very dignified role.

Let Us Take You Back To Last Week on Nitro: Sting hands out baseball bats to DDP, Luger, and the Giant. They clean house on the nWo. But wait! Our flashback has been interrupted by Nick Patrick who is wearing a WCW polo shirt. Since he’s trying to get reinstated as a referee, he wants to apologize to WCW for his actions. However, he won’t apologize for the people like Randy Savage or Eric Bischoff who try to impose their will on people because have *power*. Larry Z is less than willing to trust him.

  • WCW World Television Champion Ultimo Dragon (w/Sonny Oono) vs. Bobby Eaton

Bobby gets in a few shots on Dragon, but Dragon is just too quick for him and the Kick Combo is inevitable. Dragon dropkicks Eaton to the floor where Sonny Oono gets in a few more kicks. Back inside, Dragon delivers the Spinning Hurracanrana off the top and then hooks the DRAGON SLEEPER for the win. (2:50) Very well could be the debut of that finisher in WCW. ½*

Gene Okerlund appears with Lord Steven Regal. At Slamboree, he’s got a chance to face the TV champ Ultimo Dragon. Since none of the Americans can take the belt from him, apparently it’s up to Regal to get the job done.

  • Meng (w/Jimmy Hart) vs. Chris Jericho

Jericho tries to trade blows with Meng to start. Bad idea. Meng swats away a missile dropkick and drops Jericho with a back suplex. Jericho comes back with kicks and attempts the Lionsault. Meng was supposed to catch him, but it doesn’t work out. Jericho pushes off the Snake Eyes and hits a bridging German suplex for two. He tries a flying headscissors, but Meng stands his ground and hotshots Jericho. TONGAN DEATH GRIP! It’s all over. (3:20) Is that another debut of a new finisher on this show? ½*

Gene Okerlund meets Jimmy Hart and Meng stands by. Jimmy says that tonight is the night the Dungeon of Doom turns The Monster Meng loose on Chris Benoit! Kevin Sullivan and Jacqueline join the twosome. Of course Sullivan starts spouting off a bunch of nonsense. Not sure what happened, but Meng threatens to put the Tongan Death Grip on Sullivan. Jacqueline stands in the way of *her* man. Snap snap!

Since he’s not here tonight, Chris Benoit gets a video montage so you can see how awesome he is.

  • Rick & Scott Steiner vs. Public Enemy

This is the return of the Steiners since Scott took mace in the eyeballs. Too bad it’s RUINED by Hugh Morrus and Konnan! WCW security finally keeps them separated in time for the Steiners to make their match. They receive a strong hometown welcome. The Steiners throw Public Enemy around for a few minutes until Konnan and Hugh Morrus run down for the DQ. (3:14) Public Enemy help the Steiners beat the DOD to the back. Could that crowd be any hotter? ¾*

HOUR NUMBER TWO! Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan, and Mike Tenay.

Gene Okerlund meets in the aisleway with JJ Dillon. The man is going to be the new Chairman of WCW. First bit of business, what to do with Eric Bischoff and he has an answer. The good news is that Eric Bischoff has no control over WCW. The bad news is he has an iron-clad contract with WCW. What that means is he will retain his title and continue to get a paycheck, but he still has no authority. That brings out Eric “Eazy E” Bischoff complete with evil goatee! There’s nothing JJ Dillon can do about the nWo’s contracts either. The only two people who are still under WCW contract in that crew are Big Bubba and Michael Wallstreet. Huh? Bischoff wonders over to the mic and tells JJ, “Bite me.” Whoa! He loves that JJ wants to fire him, but he can’t. He makes JJ Dillon admit that he made WCW the biggest thing in wrestling and now he wants to make the new World order bigger than WCW, JJ has a problem with it. JJ also admits that Bischoff has had mindboggling success over the past two years and has now set the standard for wrestling, which is something that was usually done up in New York City. The reason he has a problem with it though is because Bischoff has betrayed powerful people like Ted Turner and Harvey Schiller who had instilled their trust in him. Bischoff says “Bite me”, and leaves. JJ Dillon finds this so unacceptable.

After the break, Let Us Take You Back To Last Week: Steve McMichael and Reggie White go face to face, then a loogie triggers a brawl. You’ll see that match at Slamboree!

  • Jeff Jarrett (w/Debra) vs. Scotty Riggs

This is a rematch from Saturday Night. Riggs beat him with his feet on the ropes, then paid for it with a Memphis beating afterwards. Riggs BUM RUSH THE SHOW, but Jeff sees him coming and puts the boots to him. Swinging neckbreaker and a gutwrench suplex follows. Did I just see the Stroke from Jarrett? He then telegraphs a backdrop, but Debra distracts Riggs and he takes a backdrop to the floor. Jarrett makes Riggs eat the steps and drops him on the guardrail. Back in, Riggs mounts a comeback as we look at Reggie White in the front row. Riggs hits a flying bodypress for 1-2-NO! FIVE-ARM connects, but Debra kind of puts Jarrett’s foot on the bottom rope for the break. Here comes Mongo! Reggie White jumps the rail, grabs the Haliburton away from him, and scares McMichael to the back. Meanwhile, Jarrett shakes the ropes to trip Riggs up top. He falls funny on his leg, which makes him easy pickings for the FIGURE-FOUR. (3:54) Short and sweet. Jarrett avenges his loss and Reggie White one-ups Mongo. It’s all building to something, folks! *

  • WCW Cruiserweight Champion Syxx (w/Kevin Nash) vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.

Both guys take turns cranking on a headlock to start. Rey open hand slaps Syxx, but YOU DON’T SLAP A MAN. Syxx whips Rey into the ropes and slam dunks him on the mat. He follows up with the sliding legdrop and the Three Kick Combo in the corner. Bronco Buster connects. Syxx takes a page out of fellow nWo-ite Mr. Wallstreet’s playbook and cheats using the ropes during an ab stretch. Tony mentions how Scott Hall has been MIA for weeks now. Rey reverses the hold, but Nash distracts the ref while Syxx hiptosses Rey over the top rope since that was still a DQ back then. With Rey trying to regroup, Nash stalks Rey around the ring. Back inside, Rey comes back with headscissors takedowns. VINTAGE MYSTERIO! Syxx ends up bailing to the floor, but you’re not safe out there with Rey in the ring! Somersault plancha by Mysterio! Rey heads back in to celebrate, but here comes Nash to big boot and JACKKNIFE him while the ref is busy putting the ten-count on Syxx. Mysterio is clearly finished, but Syxx applies the BUZZ KILLER (crossface chicken wing) for the win. (5:54) JJ Dillon heads down to ringside to shake his authority around as he leads security down to escort Nash and Syxx out of here. Meanwhile, Mysterio gets carried out on a stretcher. Not the *strongest* cruiserweight outing that we all came to know and love from watching WCW. **¼

To the back, Rey Mysterio gets carried out in an ambulance for a trip to the hospital.

Is that a Lex Luger vignette set to the WCW Thunder theme song? I believe it is. It’s just funny to me that they just had that lying around in stock somewhere and decided it was going to be the theme music for their next TV show.

It’s time for “On the Road with Lee Marshall”! It’s usually one of the highlights of the night. He’s in Norfolk VA tonight partying it up for next week’s Nitro. He makes a bad weasel joke connected to Wayne Newton. Bobby says Lee should do something with his false teeth, but I can’t make it out. I’m sure it was hilarious. Speaking of hilarious, check out and follow http://twitter.com/BobbyHeenanSaid. Cheap plug!

We join Hollywood Hogan on the set of the movie ‘McCinsey’s Island’ who is hanging out with co-star the super creepy Grace Jones! The great Robert Vaughn (The Man From U.N.C.L.E. and Bullitt) who is not even in the movie makes an appearance acting like he supports the nWo. In fact, the whole crew is wearing nWo gear.

Out comes Kevin Nash, Syxx, and a couple other extra nWo members. Syxx calls out Ric Flair for stealing everything from Buddy Rogers. Not sure that exactly makes sense considering the new World order are supposed to hate everything old. Syxx, you just went BACK a generation BEHIND Ric Flair, my friend. Anyways, Kevin Nash gets on the stick and helps get us back on track. He brings up Roddy Piper mentioning last week how he was laying down asphalt and cutting down trees for the next generation dating back over ten years ago. Nash claims that all Piper and the rest of the 1980s big shots left were potholes. When he left WCW and went to the WWF, all there was to do up there was get the business out of the funk that guys like Roddy Piper and Ric Flair left it in. Nash says that he and his boys have no problem flying commercial or piling three people in a rented Ford Taurus. What they are gonna do is kick back, drink a 40 ounce, and fill the potholes guys like Flair and Piper left behind. Although this appears to be a worked shoot, I’m pretty sure Nash just made blue collar heroes out of these guys.

  • Diamond Dallas Page (w/Kimberly) vs. Psychosis

This doesn’t last long. Psychosis gets one dropkick in and then DDP stops him up top to bring him down with the DIAMOND CUTTER. (:51) As typical of the last few weeks, Randy Savage (still on crutches) and Elizabeth confront DDP and Kimberly from the stands. If you can’t feel the Madness, ask Kimberly because she sure has felt it. DDP won’t be baited into the crowd this week. He calls Savage down, but I don’t think he’s coming. ¼*

Gene Okerlund brings out Roddy Piper, Ric Flair, and Kevin Greene for a response. They call out Kevin Nash and Syxx to come down and pave the highway. WOO! Well, here comes the nWo. They all turn around to salute the return of the nWo originator: Scott Hall. There’s a big standoff with the nWo surrounding the ring until we are outta time! It’s that, or my tape goes out. I believe it’s the latter.

TOTAL TIME OF WRESTLING SHOWN: 26:38

WCW presents Slamboree on May 18 in Charlotte NC!
Here is the announced card as of April 21 1997:

MAIN EVENT:
Ric Flair, Roddy Piper, and Kevin Greene v. Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, and Syxx

WCW World Television Champion Ultimo Dragon v. Lord Steven Regal
Steve McMichael v. Reggie White
Chris Benoit v. Meng

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Posted on August 4, 2011, in WCW and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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