WCW: Tuesday Nitro (07.22.97)

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WCW Tuesday Nitro
July 22, 1997
Jacksonville, FL
Jacksonville Coliseum

The current WCW champs were as follows:
WCW World Champion: Hollywood Hogan (8/10/1996)
WCW U.S. Champion: Jeff Jarrett (6/9/1997)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Outsiders (10/27/1996)
WCW World Television Champion: Steven Regal (5/18/1997)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Chris Jericho (6/28/1997)

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

Unlike Raw Thursday Raw, WCW doesn’t bother to temporarily change the graphics for this Tuesday edition. I’m fine with it though since it’s a ‘one-time only’ occurrence and they don’t want you thinking the program has been changed to Tuesday. Strange that we never hear any reason for this happening either.

NITRO GIRLS!

Out comes WCW world champ Hollywood Hogan and Eric Bischoff to answer Lex Luger’s challenge for a world title shot at Road Wild. Art imitates life as Bischoff tells Hogan how much the people still love this man. They both ease on down to the mat for this relaxed interview. Bischoff reminds us of the beating Hollywood laid upon Lex Luger back at Bash at the Beach. In their minds, the more things change, the more they stay the same because Hulk is still *King of the Hill*. Hogan talks about how he made this business and over half of the guys in the locker room are here because of he made them want to be here, brah. As for K-Dawg (Konnan), he’s the icing on the cake for the nWo. Weird and kind out of place to mention that, but okay. Hulk says he’s used to guys shooting bullets at him because that’s what happens when you’re #1. It’s no matter though because he’s bulletproof, Flexy Lexy. He actually wants to wrestle Luger one-on-one to show he’s the better wrestler, not hiding in some tag match. If Lex does manage to rack Hogan, Hollywood says he’s going to break the rack and then break him in half. Long story short, he does accept the challenge for Road Wild. He calls the “nWo” world title the most important thing in his life, and he’s willing to rip Luger apart just for Eric.

  • Konnan vs. Tsubasa

Hogan and Konnan share a quick moment during his entrance. Who is Tsubasa? It doesn’t matter. Konnan attacks him right at the bell and hits the 1-8-7 to set up the TEQUILA SUNRISE for the win in just :30.

  • WCW World Television Champion Steven Regal vs. Ultimo Dragon

Random TV title match with no build. I wonder if this was even promoted on any of the Worldwide, Pro, or Saturday Night shows. After some fancy wristlock stuff, Dragon delivers the Kick Combo. When Dragon does that crazy headstand on the top turnbuckle, Regal grabs him and slams him down. Finally! Someone isn’t in amazement over that move. Tenay mentions Regal’s tights that now have DRS for “Dirty Rotten Scoundrel” imprinted on them. Dragon fights off a superplex and delivers a sunset flip powerbomb. Nice exchange of kicks and European uppercuts. Regal wins that battle and lands the reverse suplex. He calls for the Regal Stretch, but Dragon counters with a series of kicks and clamps on the DRAGON SLEEPER for the tapout and the TV title. (3:25) Wow! Twenty minutes on the Slamboree PPV, but only three and a half minutes here. Really surprising and made you think Regal could be leaving to go up north. *½

Gene Okerlund brings out Ric Flair. He’s here to introduce to us the fourth Horseman. Wrestling fans worldwide, the fourth Horseman is…SYXX? Immediately, our esteemed commentators ponder that Flair could have turned nWo. Syxx tells us that nobody cares about the Four Horsemen anymore. Flair acts like he’s going to walk away from this and doesn’t want a piece of Syxx, but then nails Syxx when he’s not looking square on the jaw. Out comes Chris Benoit for backup. Syxx screams that if Hall or Nash were here, Flair wouldn’t be pulling this crap. Since Benoit wants to find out what would happen if Hall and Nash were here, we’ve now got tonight’s main event.

NITRO GIRLS!

WCW Saturday Night! Watch it IF YOU WEEL! 6:05PM eastern! TBS! Chris Benoit, Jeff Jarrett, and Meng will all be in action. Plus, we’ll hear from Curt Hennig. The rumor mill also says that the nWo might actually show up on the B-show! DON’T MISS IT!

  • The Giant vs. Great Muta

This was really just a deceptive ploy for the new World order to do a number on the Giant. He NO-SELLS Muta’s dropkicks and goozles him, but gets the GREEN MIST~! There’s a DQ for ya. (:51) Vincent and Muta hold Giant so that Randy Savage can beat on him, but Giant gets ANGRY and pulls Muta and Vincent into each other to scare away Savage. Luger comes out to check on his big blind buddy, but nearly gets the CHOKESLAM when Giant realizes who he’s got by the throat.

  • Steve McMichael vs. Dean Malenko

Schiavone encourages this new thing called “Nitro Parties” where fans should video tape themselves being idiots watching TV in the hopes that WCW will come to their house and throw them their very own Nitro Party. Tune in next week to see how WCW will judge your parties! Tenay says the internet has pegged Dean Malenko as the fourth member of the Horsemen, but that’s still up in the air. Mongo overpowers Malenko and slams him around for most of the match while Larry Z makes some very un-PC misogynistic comments. Jeff Jarrett and Debra strut down to the ring for the obvious distraction. When Jarrett gets grabbed on the apron, he snaps Mongo’s neck on the top rope causing him to take a dropkick in the back of the head by Malenko. An inside cradle by Malenko takes care of Mongo for the 1-2-3. (4:24) I believe there is collusion! Not a strong match. ¾*

Afterwards, Jeff Jarrett and Dean Malenko meet with Gene Okerlund. Mongo tries to get at them, but he’s hauled off by security. Jarrett just needs someone to watch his back because he’s the U.S. champ and he wants that man to be Dean Malenko. Malenko said from day one in WCW that he didn’t need anybody, but he’s not stupid. He knows there’s strength in numbers, which I assume means he’s considering joining up with Jarrett. Debra starts to talk about needing some protection from Mongo because he’s so crazy. She immediately gets booed. Too bad WCW wasn’t smart enough to exploit those reactions. Then again, she’s not the greatest of talkers, she just talks a lot about nothing.

  • Eddie Guerrero vs. Hector Guerrero

Last week, Eddie beat up his nephew. Now he gets to beat up his brother. Actually what happens is Hector works Eddie over to start with a couple of headscissors moves. Hector executes an Oklahoma Roll on the mat and Eddie escapes by BITING Hector’s forearm! Hector is only 42 at this point and still looks pretty good. Superplex gets two. Eddie pokes him in the eyes, but Hector fires back with a tilt-a-whirl headscissors to the floor. Old school pump splash to the floor by Hector. Back in, Eddie kicks the ropes which goes into Hector’s balls. Powerbomb and FROG SPLASH gets the win for Eddie. (3:46) While Eddie puts the badmouth on his brother, out comes Dean Malenko. He decks Eddie when he turns around as retribution for costing him the U.S. title to Jeff Jarrett. Snap Powerbomb to Eddie and now he’s locked in the TEXAS CLOVERLEAF. Even Hector tries to punch Malenko off his brother because he’s still family after all. When he helps Eddie up, Eddie pushes Hector back towards Dean for a back suplex and leaves his brother to be stomped by Malenko. *½

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

We kick off the 9PM hour with the NITRO GIRLS! In this hour, we’ll find out how you can get them to come to your Nitro Party!

Over to Gene Okerlund who is with James J. Dillon. He’s here to get signatures on not one but two WCW contracts. Stevie Richards interrupts claiming he handled the entire talent transaction and takes us over to see Raven in the front row. Dillon seems awfully in a hurry to get this finished. After Dillon hands him a contract, Raven quotes some poetry, rips up the contract, and punches out Stevie. It’s what they do.

  • Lex Luger vs. Scott Norton (w/Buff Bagwell & Vincent)

Luger beats up Norton and when he’s gearing up for the TORTURE RACK, Buff and Vincent come into the ring for the DQ. (1:52) Lex has no problem cleaning house on these three guys though. Now he’s got the stick and wants Hogan right now. Hulk comes out and acknowledges him, but says we’re going to do this *his* way and they will only compete at Sturgis on the Road Wild PPV come August 9, brah. Luger chases Hogan and the nWo B-team backstage, but we cut to commercial before anything cool happens. ¼*

Backstage, Konnan catches Scott Hall and Kevin Nash as they’re coming into the building. He wants to tell them something juicy, but the camera is there. They’ll talk later. Ahh the days when they still acknowledged the backstage camera.

Time to check in Lee Marshall for the 1-800-COLLECT Road Report. He’s in Charleston, WV getting people jazzed about next week’s Monday Nitro. He acts like there’s a lot to do in Charleston. I’ve been there. There ain’t, pal.

  • Mortis & Wrath (w/James Vandenberg) vs. La Parka & Psychosis (w/Sonny Oono)

Tony confirms that the Outsiders will in fact face Chris Benoit and Ric Flair in tonight’s main event. Right before the match, we cut to the back to see Flair talking to Curt Hennig, who is apparently supposed to the fourth Horseman. Wrath starts off with La Parka who bumps around for the bigger guy. La Parka does a back flip sell when he takes a back elbow. They switch and Psychosis biffs as he falls off the top rope to the floor. Oops. He makes up for it with a no-hands plancha onto Mortis. Wrath goes over to help his partner when he receives a corkscrew plancha by La Parka. Psychosis misses a dropkick through the ropes and hits La Parka. Wrath grabs Psychosis for an Ultimate Warrior press slam on the floor. Mortis brings Psychosis back inside with a really cool superplex using only the ropes. Mortis and Wrath might be my MVPs of the month for what it’s worth. Meanwhile, Sonny Oono and James Vandenberg distract us a little bit. Oono doesn’t want Vandenberg anywhere near Mortis and Wrath to have a repeat of Bash at the Beach. Psychosis has a “HEY REF, LOOK OVER HERE!” moment as Psychosis has Mortis pinned in a hurracanrana, but the ref is busy with the two illegal guys. Wrath pulls Psychosis off Mortis and picks him up for the powerbomb-neckbreaker combo for the win. (4:34) Afterwards, La Parka breaks a wooden chair over Mortis and does his strut. Wrath makes him wish he hadn’t done what he did with a Bicycle Kick to the floor. Sure they’re not all-time greatest characters, but I REALLY dig these guys right now. We’re seeing exciting, new offense out of these two and WCW is putting them in situations where they can utilize those strengths. That finisher needs a name though and with the two dark characters they are, it shouldn’t be too daunting of a task. **½

  • Booker T vs. Buff Bagwell (w/Scott Norton & Vincent)

Our esteemed commentators make a big deal out of Stevie Ray not out watching his brother’s back. Bagwell poses a little too much and forgets about the SPINAROONIE and the Harlem Side Kick. Bagwell slaps Booker across the face, which naturally just fires him up. They do the hiptoss-across-the-ring spot that lands Bagwell on the floor. You probably haven’t seen that spot since WCW closed. Bagwell is the first man back inside and takes over. He gets into a shoving match with ref Nick Patrick who is always game for those sort of shenanigans. Patrick shakes his finger good at Bagwell to the point he’s down hiding in the corner pleading for forgiveness. Here’s a question for you: who is the most improved wrestler of 1997 in WCW? Is it Buff Bagwell, Steve McMichael, or Alex Wright? I would say Buff just from his mannerisms, how much tighter he works, how much better he is overall. All that time in New Japan is paying off for him. Booker makes his signature comeback and hits the AXE KICK, but looks confused as to what to do next. Are we really supposed to believe he’s *this* lost without a manager? Nick Patrick gets whacked accidentally, which allows Norton to sneak a clothesline on Booker from the apron. With Booker staggered, Bagwell hits the BUFF BLOCKBUSTER for the 1-2-3. (5:43) Afterwards, they toss out Nick Patrick and put the boots to Booker. *½

Gene Okerlund speaks with Rey Mysterio is out here on crutches. He’s not sure when he’s going to be back inside the ring, but he does love his sport and doesn’t fear much of anything. Especially not injuries or Konnan. Well, here comes Konnan, who kicks the crutches out from under Mysterio. As Rey limps to try and get away from him, out comes some luchadores to stand by Rey and stand up to Konnan who has pushed them to the wayside since joining up with the nWo. Interesting that they’re all rudos, too. Rey says Konnan knows nothing about ‘la familia’ or ‘la raza’. Konnan’s gonna pay, says Mysterio.

  • Curt Hennig vs. Michael Wallstreet

This is Curt Hennig’s wrestling debut on Nitro. Wallstreet is in no-man’s land right now not being a member of the nWo, but also not wanting to be a part of WCW. Weird! This is pretty much the last we see of Rotunda until he returns in 1999 for that brief Varsity Club reunion. He would work sporadically in Japan until 2003 when he retired and later became a road agent for WWE. Anyways, this is a nothing match. HENNIGPLEX ends Rotunda. (:50) The important stuff comes after when Diamond Dallas Page enters in through the crowd to get him a piece of Hennig. When it appears Hennig got the better of him, DDP counters the Hennigplex into the DIAMOND CUTTER and the crowd erupts. Security is out to kill the flames.

NITRO GIRLS!

  • WCW World Tag Team Champions The Outsiders (w/Syxx) vs. Ric Flair & Chris Benoit

Hall throws the toothpick at Flair and gets chopped down. Tenay makes a great comment suggesting that if the nWo has any group to fear, it’s Ric Flair and the Four Horsemen who invented the gang mentality that has made them famous. Tag to Benoit, he treats this like Japan and hits a leg whip and a Northern lights suplex back to back. In comes Nash, and he wants Flair. WOO! Flair works Nash down like a big man (which he is, but you don’t see guys besides maybe Bret wrestle him much that way). Syxx provides a forearm to Flair from the floor straight into a Side Slam by Nash. Hall tags in and delivers a Fallaway Slam. Flair has become *your* face in peril and the Outsiders ground and pound the man. Flair and Hall trade sleeper holds, which ends with Flair countering with a back suplex. HOT TAG TO BENOIT! He handles the Outsiders all by himself while Flair pulls Syxx off the apron and punches him down. Swandive Headbutt to Hall! Cover, 1-2-NO! Flair is even getting some guardrail action on Syxx. The crowd is eating it up. Nash goes for the Jackknife on Benoit, but he punches the big guy down. Benoit goes after Hall, but then turns back around into a Big Boot from Nash for the 1-2-3. (8:04) An actual clean win for the nWo for once and one of the Outsiders best tag matches that you always knew from their WWF stuff they were capable of pulling off. ***

Meanwhile on the floor, Syxx has Flair stuck in the BUZZKILLER. While the Outsiders put the boots to Benoit, out comes Mongo to pull Syxx off Flair. Also, the Steiner brothers are waiting at the top of the ramp challenging Hall and Nash! What’s going to happen next? You’ll never know because WE’RE OUTTA TIME!

Was there any mention of why this happened instead on a Tuesday? The NBA playoffs are long gone. Not a mention of a TNT movie premiere. Strange!

rw_97

Road Wild goes down on August 9. Here’s the card as it looks right now.

MAIN EVENT: WCW World Heavyweight Champion Hollywood Hogan vs. Lex Luger
WCW World Tag Team Champions The Outsiders vs. Rick & Scott Steiner
Diamond Dallas Page vs. Curt Hennig

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Posted on October 5, 2013, in WCW and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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