WCW: Monday Nitro (08.25.97)


WCW Monday Nitro
August 25, 1997
Columbia, SC
Carolina Coliseum

The current WCW champs were as follows:
WCW World Champion: Hollywood Hogan (8/9/1997)
WCW U.S. Champion: Steve McMichael (8/21/1997)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Outsiders (10/27/1996)
WCW World Television Champion: Alex Wright (8/21/1997)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Chris Jericho (8/16/1997)

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

Before we get started, they replay the “Vulture Incident” from the Clash of the Champions. Now according to WCW, it’s all so clear as to what Sting wants.

Gene Okerlund is now in the ring. He explains that JJ Dillon now knows what Sting wants, but whether or not he will get Hollywood Hogan is a different story. Gene brings out Eric Bischoff to make a comment on that. Bischoff says it’s a shame that WCW is going to continue on without Sting because he won’t get Hollywood Hogan. Okerlund talks to JJ Dillon via telephone. For all you kids out there, it’s like “Skype”. As chairman of the WCW board, he plans to sign Hogan vs. Sting by the end of the year. Bischoff explodes and says that match will never happen because he says so. Hogan has title defenses all over the world, movies to make, and other appearances to make. Bottom line, IT WON’T HAPPEN. Well, here comes Sting. Bischoff goes to his knees and gets a “Hollywood Rules” t-shirt shoved in his mouth. While Bischoff lies there scared to death, Sting SMIRKS at the camera and then leaves.

Elsewhere, Raven cuts one of his grungy ECW promos. Much like grunge music in general, it’s just so whiny. Quoth the Raven: nevermore.

NITRO GIRLS! What a segue!

  • Glacier & Ernest Miller vs. La Parka & Psychosis (w/Sonny Oono)

Rejoice! This is the last time we see Glacier and the Cat as a team on Nitro. Sonny’s luchadores try a fast one on Glacier to start, but La Parka kicks Psychosis by mistake. However, Miller falls for their tactics and gets a double stomp on the apron by La Parka. Once again, Psychosis and La Parka work against each other and Glacier gets the hot tag. He’s got chops for both guys. Miller comes off the top illegally with the roundhouse kick. While the ref is busy with Miller, La Parka bashes a chair over Glacier and puts Psychosis on top of him for the win. (2:00) Kind of a mess, but in a fun way. ¾*

Afterwards, Ultimo Dragon comes out to protest the outcome and all the interference. Next thing we know, Silver King tries to jump Dragon and receives the Dragon Kick Combo. Psychosis and La Parka swarm Dragon when he goes after Sonny Oono, which leads to a 4-on-1 attack. Silver King gives Dragon the Whirlybird. Meanwhile, the four guys from the last match all start diving on each other. This is just anarchy! Commercials!

  • Ultimo Dragon vs. Silver King

Dragon sells that attack like he may not be able to continue, but he does. Silver King takes his time with a missile dropkick and a flying moonsault for two. He misses a flying senton as Dragon is on the move, but gets cut off with a clothesline. King works a deep abdominal stretch for a bit. He comes off the top again, but Dragon catches him on the way down with a dropkick. HERE COMES DRAGON! He fires away on King in the corner and delivers the Handspring Elbow. Headscissors followed by a Hurracanrana gets 1-2-NO! He stops King up top for the DRAGONSTEINER and then applies the DRAGON SLEEPER for the win. (5:21) A little botchy on the headscissors, but otherwise a fine match that Dragon needed after losing the TV title. **

Scott Hall, Randy Savage, and Elizabeth appear on the ramp to say that Diamond Dallas Page is the NEWEST member of the nWo after the blind Diamond Cutter to Luger at the Clash. Savage says he voted “no” for DDP, but the nWo doesn’t have a weak link, so it’s cool. HUH? He also brings up Luger’s slump. Because the crowd chants “Macho sucks”, he challenges Lex Luger for a match tonight. Luger’s going to feel the big elbow, brotha. OH YEAH. Hall makes things worse telling Lex that he doesn’t have a friend in WCW or in Columbia, South Carolina. Tony is not fooled for one second that DDP has joined the nWo, but all those Fake Stings that keep popping up are REALLY confusing!

WCW Saturday Night! Watch it IF YOU WEEL! 6:05PM eastern! TBS! Glacier, Rick & Scott Steiner, Eddie Guerrero, the new U.S. Champ Steve McMichael, and select members of the new World order will all be appearing. It’s the MUTHASHIP! PAY WINDAHS AND PLUNDAH, BABY!

Gene Okerlund brings out Diamond Dallas Page to find out what the heck is going here. DDP in the nWo? It’s just ridiculous. It’s also bizarre, foolish, nonsensical, comical, funny, odd, crazy, outlandish, preposterous, laughable, and silly. Was the Diamond Cutter on Luger an accident? Duh. He’s been trying to apologize to Luger since last Thursday, but he can’t get a hold of him. If Lex is in the building tonight, they will talk it out.

  • Jeff Jarrett (w/Debra) vs. Chris Benoit

As usual, Benoit is super intense. Jarrett wants to do his Memphis shtick though. He uses Debra to take control and quickly goes for the FIGURE-FOUR, but Benoit is in the ropes. Benoit hits a back suplex and tries the Swandive Headbutt, but Jarrett moves out of the way. Benoit stops Jarrett up top and delivers a superplex, but Jarrett hooks Benoit in a small package once they hit the mat for the win. (3:00) Pretty cool finish and I wonder why it’s not used more often. **½


NITRO GIRLS! This is Gene’s opportunity to shill the Nitro Party paraphernalia. Here’s the back of one of the Monday Nitro t-shirts with a “Top Ten Reasons to Watch Monday Nitro” list.

  • Mortis & Wrath (w/James Vandenberg) vs. The Faces of Fear

They take us back to last week where Meng locked Wrath in the Tongan Death Grip. Big power showdown between Wrath and Barbarian to start. Vandenberg distracts Barbarian so that Wrath can hit a Bicycle Kick. Barb gets so annoyed with Vandenberg that he chases him through the ring only to get caught with a Flying Clothesline from Wrath. Tag to Meng, the Faces of Fear deliver the STEREO FLYING HEADBUTTS to Wrath for two. Mortis breaks up the pin, but gets planted with a sitout powerbomb from Meng to pop the crowd. Ha, why not. Back to Barbarian, he gives Wrath the Stroke for two. Wrath catches Barb with a crossbody block and tags Mortis. It takes one clothesline, two clotheslines, and a spinning heel kick for Mortis to put down Meng. He tries another powerbomb on Mortis, but Wrath comes in and kicks Meng in the gut so that Mortis can hit the Rocker Dropper off Meng’s shoulders. Sweet! Match breaks down and Mortis flies down into the TONGAN DEATH GRIP for the pinfall. (4:47) Meng and Wrath roll around beating up each other like school children until the sparklers go off celebrating the start of the second hour. *½

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

To open the hour that changed professional wrestling, Gene Okerlund brings out Ric Flair, Chris Benoit, and the U.S. Champ Steve McMichael to the ring. He makes the mistake of mentioning Arn Anderson’s name, which you may or may not have caught. Way to go, Gene. Flair wants Curt Hennig out here right now. Either he’s a Horseman or he’s not. Well, here comes Hennig. He would love to give Ric an answer, but he can’t tonight. Ric has someone in mind who would love to have a word with Curt. That man is Ric’s best friend: Arn Anderson. HUGE pop for Arn. Here is what is known as the Arn Anderson retirement speech (courtesy of DDTdigest.com):

“Well, Gene, all I can tell you, to get a response like this makes what I got to say tonight mean that much more. You see, I’m a realist. As everybody knows, I’ve got average size and speed and average ability. But I’ve parlayed that into what I would call a very successful career. And I did that on sheer will alone. But another reality is four months ago they took four vertebrae out of my neck. Consequently, I’m left with a hand, my left hand, too weak to hold a glass, too weak to button a button.

But I thought in my mind, I knew in my mind I could overcome that too through sheer will. And I was doing just like that. I think I’ve come back a long way. But the other day I had something happen in the gym that was like a cold slap in the face of reality. A guy about your size Gene came up and he slapped me on the back and he said, ‘Double A, where ya been? We hadn’t seen you on TV.’ And just that slap sent a jolt through me and I dropped the water I was drinking and just for a second my system shut down. And it became crystal clear as I watched the few little drops of water draining out of that bottle the symbolism that was involved. It was like someone had turned an hourglass over and the sand was running out on the career of Arn Anderson.

Now the fact of the matter is not only do I put myself in a suicide situation by trying to wrestle again, I endanger these two men’s careers (Benoit and Mongo) and I respect them too much for that. And rather than being anything other than the Enforcer in my best friend’s eyes, I’d rather walk away. And for all of you people out there that have ever bought a ticket to see Arn Anderson wrestle, whether you loved me or you hated me, you know that when that bell rang you got all I had that night. Whether I won, whether I lost, I gave you everything I had. And you knew that. And when you did this to me (the four fingers extended) that was your acknowledgement.

Well, the fact is I got nothing left to give. And I want you to remember me as I was, not as I am. But being the man that I am, my last act formally as a Horseman, I got one last challenge. And that is to you, Curt Hennig. And don’t misunderstand me. It’s not for a fight. You got something special. I’ve seen you in this ring. Your skills, your maturity, your commitment to excellence make you something special. And what my challenge is to you, Curt, is stand beside my best friend, Ric Flair, and lead these two men back to the glory and the prominence that the Four Horsemen once had. And I’m going to tell you what your prize is. It’s not a spot in the Horsemen. This is worth a lot more than that to me. I’m going to give you the only thing I got left. Not a spot. I’ll give you my spot.”

Curt Hennig feels nothing but honored to have Arn’s spot in the Four Horsemen offered to him and considers it a privilege to take that spot. With that said, Hennig shakes Arn’s hand and finally Flair with tears in his eyes has sealed the deal he’s been wanting now for six weeks.

  • WCW U.S. Champion Steve McMichael vs. Eddie Guerrero

Eddie makes Mongo wrestle his kind of match to start with a Tornado DDT and a rope-walking headscissors takedown. Mongo gets a hold of Eddie for a tilt-a-whirl sideslam. He goes for the three-point stance, but Eddie leapfrogs him and causes McMichael to run into the corner. Guerrero runs towards the corner for a moonsault press, but he’s caught in mid-air for the MONGO SPIKE. That’ll do. (3:07) Hey, it’s the HBK/Taker finish from WrestleMania 25! It might have been cool to see Hennig interfere on Mongo’s behalf to put over his new role in the Four Horsemen, but whatever. They either didn’t think of it, didn’t want to mix Hennig in with Mongo’s troubles with Jarrett and Guerrero, or felt Mongo should be able to handle a “cruiserweight”. ¾*

Gene Okerlund introduces us to Rey Mysterio Jr. Rey comes hobbling down the ramp to meet him. He says he was trying to avoid surgery, but now he doesn’t have a choice after his match with Konnan back at Road Wild. Speaking of Konnan, here he comes. Gene asks for some extra assistance and gets none. Konnan threatens to punch Okerlund so hard if he doesn’t shut up, that he’ll put Gene’s dentist into the next tax bracket. Rey Mysterio gets some assistance in a big way as the Giant comes out the tunnel. Konnan backs into the Giant and then scurries away while he still can. Giant shows Rey a little support as they walk off together. That’s a moment that will probably never be mentioned again. A main eventer with a cruiserweight? NO WAY THAT COULD BE MONEY.

Next thing we know, Eric Bischoff comes over to the announce table. Heenan doesn’t want any trouble and just leaves. Tenay gets bullied away as well. Bischoff puts on Heenan’s headset because now he wants to do color commentary. So now it’s just Tony & Eric. Crowd starts to chant for “Larry”. Let’s hope he appears sooner than later. Eric reminds us of the restraining order he’s put out on the Giant and Larry Z.

  • WCW Cruiserweight Champion Chris Jericho vs. Yuji Nagata

It’s been a while since we’ve seen Nagata. Bischoff thinks he’s a bit beefy for a cruiserweight. After some feeling out stuff, Nagata connects with a back leg round kick, says Bischoff. “Eric sucks” chants go up. Jericho hits a suplex and a slingshot splash for two. With Nagata in the tree of woe, Jericho levels him with a baseball slide. Commercials! When we come back, Jericho hangs Nagata out to dry, catches him with a springboard dropkick to send Nagata to the floor, and follows up with a pescado. Back inside, Nagata blocks a double ax handle and takes Jericho over with a belly to belly suplex. Jericho avoids the rolling koppou kick and explodes on Nagata with a series of running corner clotheslines. He connects with the Lionsault, delivers the Double Powerbomb, and clamps on the LIONTAMER for the submission victory. (4:32 shown) Eric makes Tony do the replay. Please bring back Bobby. *

Time to check with Lee Marshall who is On the Road with 1-800-COLLECT. He’s in Pensacola, FL. Everybody is a Nitro fan there. He makes a Ponce de la Bischoff looking for the “Fountain of Arrogance” joke. BRING BACK BOBBY NOW! PLEAAAASSSSEEEE.

Gene Okerlund brings out Harlem Heat and Jacqueline. They want the Steiner brothers to step aside so they can take care of Scott Hall and Kevin Nash as the REAL #1 contenders to the WCW tag team titles. Stevie Ray says he and his brother never had to go up north or over to Japan to get a reputation. They did it all right here in WCW. Well, obviously that brings out the Steiners and Ted DiBiase to respond. This doesn’t go well as the Steiners point out that Harlem Heat could never get it done against Hall and Nash while they have beaten Hall and Nash on several occasions. Vicious & Delicious with Vincent appear. Buff makes matters worse as he thinks neither team can beat V&D. This results in a big three-team fight that heads towards the locker room. Eric warns everybody to keep their hands off Vicious & Delicious, but just sits there when Tony challenges him to get up and do something about it. This appears like a setup for a three-way match for Fall Brawl, but of course plans change.


  • WCW World Television Champion Alex Wright vs. Dean Malenko

Some fancy Malenko mat wrestling to start. Wright bails, but comes back inside to drop an elbow on Malenko’s back. A backbreaker hold ensues while the crowd gives Alex crap. He shoves off a superplex by Malenko, but flies down into a boot. Wright avoids the Texas Cloverleaf and delivers a pair of suplexes for two. Malenko tries for the Texas Cloverleaf again, but out comes Eddie Guerrero and Jeff Jarrett to attack him for the DQ. (3:45) While Jarrett has Malenko in the FIGURE-FOUR, Wright jumps off the top for his flying stomp and then Eddie delivers the FROG SPLASH. What an odd assortment of people Debra has put together. Tony mentions that Malenko and Jarrett will have their day come Fall Brawl. Match was okay, but I dug the aftermath more. ¾*


  • Lex Luger vs. Randy Savage

Most of the match was punches, kicks, and ringside violence from Savage. He tries to get Luger counted out at one point. What was really interesting to me about this match though was the conversation between Bischoff and Schiavone over Hogan not wanting to face Sting. Bischoff just flat out won’t let it happen, but Schiavone feels that how can Hogan call himself the best if he never beat Sting. Whenever Tony would bring it up, Bischoff would just stay quiet or change the subject. Bischoff either really legitimately didn’t have a comeback or this is me giving WCW credit where it’s not warranted. Either way, it came off really well as a weakness in the nWo where there rarely is one. Anyways, Luger gets his second wind and delivers a bunch of inverted atomic drops on Savage. He hits the Bionic Elbow and calls for the Torture Rack, which brings out Scott Hall. Luger bumps Savage into Hall, which then bumps Savage into Luger. In the final moments of what airs, Diamond Dallas Page appears in the ring. As he tries to help up his disoriented friend, Luger hoists DDP up in the TORTURE RACK thinking he’s Randy Savage. At least that’s what we’re hoping he’s thinking, right? (8:14 shown) And with that, WE GOTTA GO, FANS. WE’RE OUTTA TIME! *


WCW presents Fall Brawl on September 14 at the LJVM Coliseum in Winston-Salem NC. Here is the card that has been announced as of August 25:

WARGAMES: Team WCW vs. Team nWo (participants yet to be decided)
WCW World Television Title Match:
Alex Wright (c) vs. Ultimo Dragon
WCW Cruiserweight Title Match:
Chris Jericho (c) vs. Eddie Guerrero
Dean Malenko vs. Jeff Jarrett


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