WCW: Thunder (06.18.98)

WCW: Thunder
June 18, 1998
Philadelphia, PA
CoreStates Spectrum

The current WCW champs are as follows:
WCW World Champion: Hollywood Hogan (4/20/1998)
WCW U.S. Champion: Bill Goldberg (4/20/1998)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: Sting & Kevin Nash (6/15/1998)
WCW World Television Champion: Booker T (6/14/1998)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Chris Jericho (6/15/1998)

Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Mike Tenay, and Bobby Heenan. Lee Marshall is handling the press conference in Los Angeles concerning the Bash at the Beach main event.

Lex Luger and Konnan from the nWo Wolfpac start the show to give it to us “on the serious tip”. Lex sends a message to Hollywood Hogan telling him that since he’s been gone filming his latest movie, the fans have decided that the Wolfpac is now where the power lies in wrestling. He mentions something about Goldberg for some reason. He says Hogan can play all the games he wants to try and bury them, but it won’t work. Nope, not this time. Because hey, when you’re with the Wolfpac, you are just too sweet.

Now over to Tony and the gang, he mentions there was a confrontation amongst Dennis Rodman, Hollywood Hogan, DDP, and Karl Malone on the “Tonight Show with Jay Leno” last night. Unfortunately, we don’t get any footage. Nevertheless, it is now official that Karl Malone will team with Diamond Dallas Page to face Hollywood Hogan and Dennis Rodman at the Bash at the Beach PPV.

They take us back to Monday Nitro where DDP met Randy Savage in a cage match to finally end their feud. Tony announces that Savage suffered a “broken leg” during the post-match beatdown thanks to a Van Daminator to the leg by Eric Bischoff. Oh yeah that’s right. He’s a karate expert using his skills for evil. I don’t remember seeing this happen, by the way. In reality, Savage needs to take time off for reconstructive knee surgery and was reported to be out of action until Starrcade. There was the rumor that in case Karl Malone didn’t agree to the terms that Randy Savage would team with DDP to face Hogan and Rodman at the Bash at the Beach PPV, but now it’s official.

  • Steve McMichael vs. Mike Enos

This is Mongo’s first match back since SuperBrawl VIII when he broke his wrist against Davey Boy Smith. Tenay tells us he was FORCED to go on the sidelines by WCW. Enos goes right after the wrist for a minute or so, which was really well done. Mongo tries to come back and hit his Tombstone to end this, but Enos blocks. Eventually, he starts NO-SELLING and hits the TOMBSTONE PILEDRIVER for the win. (3:32) Mongo grabs a 4 Horsemen sign from the crowd and shows it off, but all the camera can do is show us the back which says something about Rodman being the true “Maleman”. Hilarious. *½

WCW Saturday Night! Watch it – IF YOU WILL! 6:05PM eastern time! TBS! Only one hour this week! DDP, Van Hammer, and Eddie Guerrero will all be featured! It’s the MUTHASHIP! Take it to the PAY WINDAH, baby!

Raven and his Flock head to the ring. He calls Saturn a malignant tumor who had to be removed back at the Great American Bash. Raven then turns to Reese and fires him up about winning the US title tonight. Good luck with that. Reese leaves to prepare, I guess. Raven sits down in the corner and reminds Saturn how important he has been to his life. WHAT ABOUT ME? WHAT ABOUT RAVEN? He says he will never forgive Saturn for what he did at the Great American Bash. You broke his heart, Saturn! So it is written, so it shall come to pass. Quote the Raven, nevermore. Saturn comes down to the ring to say that Raven let him down and now he’s on his own. As Saturn turns away, the Flock grab him to be slapped by Raven. Saturn gets loose though and knocks Raven to the floor only to be punched back into the ring by KANYON. Saturn and Kanyon then clean house on the Flock, but don’t seem to want to be pals just yet.

MFGWLM HYPE: Jimmy Hart, “The Octagon” (1980) starring Chuck Norris.

  • Fit Finley vs. Brad Armstrong

Armstrong escapes a cravat and hits a powerslam and a back suplex. He forces Finley into the corner and takes him down into an armbar. Finley rolls free and gets in the ropes. He messes around with the marks at ringside which is pretty entertaining. These Philly fans just do not like him. He cheapshots Armstrong to take back control and punishes him on the mat with a chinlock. Finley hits one pump splash, but Armstrong pops up and blocks a second one with an electric chair drop. Although immediately, Armstrong gets nailed coming off the middle rope and given the TOMBSTONE PILEDRIVER for the win. (5:44) Poor Brad. Such an underutilized guy. *½

THIS WEEK IN WCW MOTORSPORTS! Zzzzzz…

Disco Inferno stops by the announce table to tell them to let the world know he is the new “ICON”. Oh no, not that again.

  • The Giant (w/Vincent) vs. Disco Inferno

Smoke ’em if you got ’em. Tenay announces the Giant weighs 519 now. Disco jokes that smoking will “stunt your growth”. Giant blows smoke in his face and destroys him with a lariat. CHOKESLAM will end Disco in :59.

After the break, Tony Schiavone brings out Dean Malenko to talk about Chris Jericho. He will do everything in his power to get the WCW cruiserweight belt off Jericho and onto someone who will wear the belt with pride and dignity. Is that man not you though, Dean?

  • Masahiro Chono & Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Davey Boy Smith & Jim Neidhart

As we learned on Nitro, Chono and Tenzan are the IWGP tag champs. nWo Japan pearl harbor Bulldog and Neidhart to start. Neidhart gets floored so they can double-team Davey Boy. They put him down with the YAKUZA KICK and try a second one, but Bulldog moves and Tenzan gets wiped out. Davey Boy press slams Chono as Neidhart slingshots him with the shoulder block on Tenzan. Meanwhile, our esteemed commentators are discussing the press conference that will be shown on Nitro. When the action settles down, Chono and Tenzan go for Neidhart’s knee. They draw Bulldog into the ring to double-team Neidhart for a few moments. Neidhart blocks a suplex and slams Tenzan before tagging in Bulldog. He gives Tenzan the RUNNING POWERSLAM, but Chono stops the pin by nailing Davey Boy with one of the tag belts for the DQ. (4:20, man) Not that it was a great run, but this is the last match for Tenzan in WCW. *

Tony Schiavone brings out Rick Rude to talk about Curt Hennig training with Brad Rheingans to ready for Bill Goldberg. Rude then starts to tear down Goldberg saying when he started in WCW a year ago, he got out of a rusty Toyota. Now he’s gotten soft riding around in limos. While Goldberg flies to LA to do commercial endorsements, Hennig is training harder than ever. While Goldberg is shaking hands and kissing babies, Hennig is staying focused on only Goldberg. When these two mega powers meet, we’ll find out if Goldberg is the hottest thing this sport has ever produced or if he’s just another flash in the pan. Great promo by Rude.

  • Konnan vs. Alex Wright

Wright BUM RUSHES THE SHOW on Konnan to start. He hits that flying stomp and follows up with a backbreaker. The slingshot splash hits knees though allowing Konnan to come back and hit the Rolling Lariat. Rick Rude comes out to distract Konnan as Wright puts the boots to him. Wright still can’t put Konnan away as Konnan delivers an X-Factor. He leg rolls Wright to get the three-count, which seemed out of nowhere. (4:17) Weird match-up, amirite? ¾*

They take us back to Monday Nitro on June 8 when Dennis Rodman skipped practice to hang with Hollywood Hogan and pearl harbor DDP with chairshots.

  • Chris Benoit vs. Eddie Guerrero

Now this should be a treat. Benoit goes crazy on Guerrero to start with stomps and a Snap Suplex. Eddie reverses a corner whip though and dropkicks Benoit in the back of the head. The “Eddie sucks” chant starts up, but Guerrero ignores them and gives Benoit a back suplex. He walks the ropes and gives Benoit a hurracanrana for 1-2-NO! Guerrero works the leg for a few moments, but Benoit flips out of a suplex and delivers a pair of Germans. The Swandive Headbutt misses, but so does the Frog Splash. Benoit finds the CRIPPLER CROSSFACE though and taps out Eddie. (3:45) It figures Eddie would be off his game since losing to his nephew back at the Great American Bash. Chavo Guerrero comes out to encourage his uncle with total nonsense. Eddie walks away disgusted. **½

  • Philadelphia Street Fight: Public Enemy vs. Sick Boy & Riggs (w/Lodi)

Ironic Public Enemy are wearing Flyers jerseys on Thunder, but were wearing Islanders jerseys on Nitro. Another garbage fight just like on Nitro – except with more toilet seats around the neck and crotch shots. These are the type of matches that make you wish Dusty Rhodes was back on commentary. The PE put Sick Boy through the double-decker table spot for the win. (6:21) Like the Jerry Springer Show, it’s entertaining garbage. ½*

  • WCW U.S. Heavyweight Championship: Bill Goldberg (c) (100-0) vs. Reese

Horace comes out onto the apron and hits Goldberg with the stop sign. Goldberg NO-SELLS and clotheslines him off the apron. Reese gives him a suplex, but Goldberg NO-SELLS *that* as well and SPEARS Reese to set up the JACKHAMMER for win #101 in 1:14.

That’ll do it for another week of Thunder. Until next time, so long for now.

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