WCW: Monday Nitro (01.12.98)

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WCW: Monday Nitro
January 12, 1998
Jacksonville, FL
Jacksonville Coliseum

The current WCW champs are as follows:
WCW World Champion: Vacant (1/8/1998)
WCW U.S. Champion: Diamond Dallas Page (12/28/1997)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: Rick & Scott Steiner (10/13/1997)
WCW World Television Champion: Booker T (12/29/1997)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Juventud Guerrera (1/8/1998)

Last week on Thunder…

THE WORLD TITLE IS NOW VACANT!

*Sting bat points to JJ Dillon* – “You got no guts.”

*Sting then bat points to Hollywood Hogan* – “You’re a dead man.”

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

They take us back to last week on Nitro when Randy Savage got in Hogan’s face and Kevin Nash belted Savage from behind. As Nash walks away, Hogan is left wondering what just happened.

Gene Okerlund is out in the parking lot to confront the nWo coming out of their limos. Nash says he saw Savage take a shot at Hogan, so he took a shot at Savage before Savage took a shot at him. Hogan tries to sweep it all under the rug saying that this is all family business and the nWo is doing just fine. He’s got bigger fish to fry like getting his world title back. When Okerlund asks why Savage isn’t here, Bischoff brushes by him and tells Okerlund to stop trying to stir up trouble. Nash makes one last comment that Savage doesn’t want a piece of him and that’s all we get. Well, except for Buff Bagwell taking a moment to pose for the camera. It doesn’t really seem like the right time for that, Buff.

  • Bill Goldberg vs. Jerry Flynn

Probably my favorite Goldberg squash to date as he and Flynn do a little bit of MMA. To wrap it up, Flynn kicks Goldberg back into the ropes. Goldberg uses his own momentum to bounce back and spear Flynn to set up the JACKHAMMER to get the win. (1:28) Vintage Goldberg, amirite?

NITRO GIRLS! Whisper gets a call out.

  • Marty Jannetty vs. Black Cat

Black Cat is an undercard New Japan guy known for assisting in the training of greats like the Great Muta and Jushin Liger. But hey, ROCK ROCK TILL HE DROP ROCK ROCK NEVER STOP MARTY JANNETTY is here! Odd that they’re using heel entrance music for him. He stuns Black Cat with a superkick. Black Cat sees a backdrop coming and blasts Jannetty on the back to set up the old Prince Devitt finish. That should have been the end considering how good it looked, but Jannetty kicks out and doesn’t sell the move. Spinebuster by Jannetty leads to the ROCKER DROPPER for the win. (3:01) Tenay calls it the Show Stopper, but nah. I’d like to see more of this Black Cat dude. Jannetty celebrates like he just won the lottery. I guess there are no small victories when you’re Marty. *

Gene Okerlund is back out in the parking lot as another nWo limo arrives. This one held Randy Savage, Elizabeth, Scott Hall, and Hiroyoshi Tenzan. What a car ride, huh? Okerlund asks Savage if he heard what Kevin Nash said about him. Savage doesn’t know and tells Okerlund to repeat what he said, but Gene won’t say anything and gets frightened when Savage gets mad about it. I mean, WHAT ARE YOU DOING GENE? You call that being a journalist? Sheesh.

  • Chris Benoit vs. Dean Malenko

Well this should be fun. They exchange hammerlocks and the like early on as Malenko tries to get a quick pin on Benoit, but can’t. Commentators talk about Benoit being a top U.S. title contender. Hey, The Flock are in the front row. Benoit and Malenko continue to show off their mat skills, but it all feels very robotic and the crowd is numb to that sort of work and so am I. Benoit picks up the action with a hard shoulderblock, but then Malenko fires back with a back suplex. Benoit escapes a chinlock with a back suplex of his own. Big clothesline gets two. Malenko breaks loose of a chinlock and grabs a short arm scissors. Benoit does the BIG STRONG MAN counter to that one and slams Malenko backwards. Snap suplex using his good arm gets two. Suplex counter after suplex counter leads to a nice release German suplex on Benoit that’ll make you cringe. Time to go to the Texas Cloverleaf, but Benoit sees it coming and inside cradles Malenko for 1-2-NO! The Crippler Crossface is blocked as well as Malenko reaches the bottom rope. Some rollup counters leads to another nearfall for Benoit. Malenko catches Benoit with a boot out of the corner and tries a victory roll, but Benoit counters and slams Malenko onto his face. That knocks Malenko silly enough for the easy CRIPPLER CROSSFACE to get the tapout. (6:53) Before Benoit can get up, Raven rips him off the hold and drops him with the EVENFLOW DDT. Malenko locks eyes with Raven, but Perry Saturn grounds him and applies the RINGS OF SATURN to leave both these guys laying. Fun technical match once they stopped doing all the early nonsense that meant nothing. ***¼

Gene Okerlund talks with JJ Dillon concerning the punishment he dished out on Lex Luger last week on Thunder. Since Randy Savage decked Eric Bischoff who is still an executive with WCW (HOW?!) last week on Nitro, he will now be fined $5000 for his actions. Dillon tries to justify Eric Bischoff as although he is a suspended executive, he still holds the title. Therefore, it sticks and so does the $5000 fine against Randy Savage – EVEN THOUGH HE DOESN’T TECHNICALLY EVEN WORK FOR WCW IN THE FIRST PLACE SINCE HE IS A MEMBER OF THE NEW WORLD ORDER. This is starting to make as much sense as modern American foreign policy. Randy Savage comes out and gets in JJ Dillon’s face, but Eric Bischoff tries to stop him from going too far. Bischoff says he’ll pay the fine. Savage tries to turn it back around and tells Okerlund to tell him what Kevin Nash said. Bischoff continues to try and cool Macho Man down, but that’s going to take some time.

NITRO GIRLS! NITRO PARTY! SEND US YOUR TAPES, BROH!

Diamond Dallas Page joins Gene Okerlund in the ring for a quick word. He announces the main event for Thunder this week: DDP and Lex Luger against Randy Savage and…KEVIN NASH. Oh boy. DDP says he thought the nWo was supposed to be 4-Life? The only thing that is 4-Life is he and Lex’s hatred for the nWo. DDP just can’t wait to bang those two.

  • WCW World Television Champion Booker T vs. Perry Saturn

The Flock has been banned from ringside for this title match. Let’s see how that plays out here. Booker looking strong to start catching Saturn with a clothesline and the flying forearm smash for two. Superkick sends Saturn to the floor. Back inside, Saturn lowers the boom on Booker and throws him around the ring. Booker fires back with another flying forearm smash. They go from corner to corner, but Saturn catches Booker charging at him with a boot to the face and rolls him up for the Ric Flair pin to steal the TV title at 3:08. WHAT. Rick Martel and ref Mickey Jay come down to tell Jimmy Jett that Saturn had his feet on the ropes. Why is Rick Martel down here? Anyways, Jimmy Jett restarts the match as Booker fights back with the SCISSORS KICK and the HARLEM HANGOVER for the three-count. (4:17) Afterwards, Booker tells Martel that he owes him one. Well, Martel asks about a title shot. Anytime, anywhere, brother. *

Gene Okerlund brings out WCW Executive VP Nick Lambros and the Giant to the ring. Lambros has some paper in his hands. Since neither Kevin Nash nor the nWo have given a reason for Nash missing his match with the Giant back at Starrcade, Lambros is legally forcing the nWo to post a $1.5 million performance bond for the Nash/Giant match at Souled Out. If they fail to pay the bond, Nash will be suspended for a year from all WCW sanctioned events. In other news, Eric Bischoff has been cut off from the Ted Turner ATM as well. Giant doesn’t care what it takes, he just wants Kevin Nash to show up at Souled Out. Here comes a rebuttal from the nWo. Hollywood Hogan, Eric Bischoff, Kevin Nash, and Hollywood attorney and the newest member of the nWo Henry Holmes. He’s a real Arnie Becker if you know what I mean. Holmes agrees to the terms of the bond, but says that the Giant needs to put up $1.5 million as well to prevent him from putting his hands on Kevin Nash between now and Souled Out. That works for the Giant too. Naturally, Nash gets up in the Giant’s face trying to get him to lay hands on him.

LUGER versus SAVAGE – WCW/nWo SOULED OUT – January 24!

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

  • Lex Luger vs. Hugh Morrus

Not your typical Luger match of the time where he takes 80% of the damage and comes back with two moves and wins. This one is more like a normal squash with Lex looking strong since he’s fixing to main event Souled Out in twelve days. Morrus misses a splash off the top and gets put in the TORTURE RACK for the win. (2:48) Afterwards, Elizabeth runs down trying to get Luger to help her with Randy Savage, I suppose. Next thing we know, Savage is running Luger over and beats him in the aisle. He even holds Lex to get a slap from Liz. DDP appears to check on his pal, but the damage is done. ¾*

NITRO GIRLS!

Our esteemed commentators discuss the problems between the Steiners. Bobby thinks Tony and Mike are just being nosy.

  • Steve McMichael vs. Chris Jericho

Another match Jericho really has no business being in so he can get beat and throw a tantrum. To hand it to Mongo, he at least tries to take some of Jericho’s offense like the hurracanrana out of the corner. Of course it looks silly on such a big dude. Nevertheless, McMichael catches Jericho trying a float over in the corner and delivers the MONGO SPIKE for the win. (3:20) After the bell, Jericho gets upset and really turns bipolar. These outbursts will never happen again – honest. *

  • WCW Cruiserweight Champion Juventud Guerrera vs. Rey Mysterio

While Jericho is still in the ring, Rey Mysterio makes his entrance. Jericho is now upset that Mysterio is interrupting his interview time. Mysterio didn’t mean him any disrespect – he’s just trying to regain the cruiserweight title. Jericho shakes his hand and sarcastically wishes him the best. When Mysterio turns his back to Jericho, Jericho runs him over. He works over the back and applies a NASTY LIONTAMER. Juventud Guerrera has to sprint to the ring to save Mysterio and runs Jericho back to the locker room. THIS WAS AWESOME. There will be a match though as Rey Mysterio will not die. Juventud takes advantage of the moment – and why not. Mysterio refuses to quit. Rey gets up on Guerrera’s shoulders and punches him down. He tries a springboard quebrada, but Juventud catches him in mid-air to spike him with a JUVI DRIVER. Ouch. 450 SPLASH connects and the pinfall is academic. (1:00) Great segment there. Sets up the title rematch for Thursday AND the title match with Jericho at Souled Out as well.

They replay the announcement of the decision to vacate the world title on Thunder.

Speaking of the world title, Hollywood Hogan and Eric Bischoff head to the ring for more discussion. Sounds like their attorney Henry Holmes is going to do something about the Starrcade finish too. I feel like we’ve already heard all this. NOW WORSHIP THE GROUND HOGAN WALKS ON. Once Holmes gets WCW in federal court, he’ll take them for all they are worth. Hogan makes fun of some fan wearing a Sting mask. When you’re with the boss and the nWo, you’re just too sweet. Hogan loves you! He really really loves you.

FLAIR versus HART – WHO IS THE BEST? WCW/nWo SOULED OUT – January 24!

Well I’ll be. Gene Okerlund brings out Jim Neidhart for his return to WCW. Although not wearing the Hart Foundation jacket, he does come out to Bret’s theme song. Neidhart is here because he can’t stomach the comments Ric Flair made last week about Bret Hart. Flair is great, but Bret is the best. Ric Flair comes out to confront the man. He knows Neidhart is married into the Hart family, but Flair wants him to say that Bret is better directly to his face. Neidhart does exactly that. That fires Flair up. This is WCW! He calls himself the Davy Crockett – king of the wild frontier. Flair asks if Neidhart has his gear. Yep, Jim does. Flair doesn’t want a piece of him, but Neidhart pushes the issue. Flair says he’ll head to the back for a second. Okay, no gear. Flair heads to the ring, takes off his jacket, and wallops Neidhart with a pair of brass knucks. Ref gets knocked out as well. WOO! FLAIR IS BACK. He stomps the legs and puts Neidhart in the RINGPOST FIGURE FOUR! AWESOME. Bret Hart runs down and chases Flair around ringside. They exchange a few blows on each other, but Flair gets away while Bret checks on his brother-in-law. Except for that pointless Hogan segment that nobody is buying, this has so far been a great second hour.

NASH versus GIANT – WCW/nWo SOULED OUT – January 24!

NITRO GIRLS! They air your typical frat boy Nitro party video.

  • WCW World Tag Team Champions The Steiner Brothers (w/Ted DiBiase) vs. The Outsiders (w/Hollywood Hogan)

Odd to see Hogan out here. Michael Buffer calls this a title unification match. Tony announces that Ric Flair has been fined for his attack on Jim Neidhart. No amount is given though. Steiners are hot to start. Hall bumps around for Scott. Nash tries to save his partner and winds up taking a double-team suplex. While the nWo regroups on the floor, Randy Savage makes his way to ringside to stir up trouble. Hogan tries to play mediator here and keep Savage from doing anything to Nash. Back in the ring, Nash tags in and slows things down with knees in the corner and the regular Nash offense on Rick Steiner. Nash gets caught with a comeback flying shoulder block and a powerslam from the DFG. Tag to Scott, Nash puts him down with a short-arm clothesline. Hall takes over and delivers a chokeslam to Scott. He mocks the Giant and turns around into a sweet belly to belly overhead suplex. Cover, 1-2-NO! The Steiners start working on legs. Nash tries to fire back with the Snake Eyes, but Rick shoves him off into the corner. Rick looks for the Flying Bulldog, but Hogan trips him up top. Scott Steiner and Hogan get physical for a moment or two. Nothing that would signify they have an issue to settle. Meanwhile, Hall is working over Rick and the crowd wants Sting. Fallaway Slam gets two. Nash hits the Side Slam for a nearfall as well. Hall peppers Rick with slaps on the head as he’s been known to do. That wakes up Rick as he fires back on Hall, but then Nash nails Rick as he comes off the ropes into a clothesline from Hall for two. Heel miscommunication fails as Nash boots Hall into the ref and Scott Steiner. Steinerline to Nash! He powerslams Hall and covers him, but no ref. Nash low blows Rick (off camera) and covers him. HEY WAIT. Savage is on the top rope looking to drop a MACHO ELBOW on Nash, but Nash moves at the last second and Rick gets nailed. Hall and Nash then both dogpile Rick and the half conscious ref counts three. (11:17) We’ve got new tag team champions. Savage seems beside himself here. Hogan tries to keep the peace, but there doesn’t look like there’s going to be any peace tonight. Anything with Hall was fine, but the Nash stuff was just lazy and dull. Definitely not deserving of the tag belts tonight. *½

TOTAL BELL-TO-BELL TIME: 34:04.

So Kevin Nash is getting into problems with Randy Savage. The Steiners are close to breaking up. Funny how soon-to-be-working-together teams like Jericho/Eddie for one work their butts off and should be holding the tag titles will never come close to the belts – and will quickly be discouraged from teaming together to go into individual singles feuds. The more I think about it, it’s really not that funny. In fact, it’s quite sad.

souledout98

SNICKERS presents WCW/nWo Souled Out LIVE ON PPV on January 24 from Dayton, Ohio.

DOUBLE MAIN EVENT – Lex Luger vs. Randy Savage
DOUBLE MAIN EVENT – Bret Hart vs. Ric Flair

Larry Zbyszko vs. Scott Hall
The Giant vs. Kevin Nash

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Posted on December 15, 2015, in WCW and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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