WCW: Monday Nitro (09.07.98)

WCW: Monday Nitro
September 7, 1998
Pensacola, FL
Pensacola Civic Center

The current WCW champs are as follows:
WCW World Champion: Bill Goldberg (7/6/1998)
WCW U.S. Champion: Bret Hart (8/13/1998)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Giant & Scott Hall (7/20/1998)
WCW World Television Champion: Chris Jericho (8/10/1998)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Juventud Guerrera (8/8/1998)

Before we get started, we see Hollywood Hogan, Eric Bischoff, the Giant, and the Disciple all react to their dressing room being vandalized by the “OWN” or “One Warrior Nation”. When they leave to go to the ring to confront Warrior, Vincent comes up telling them that members of the nWo B&W have been taken out in an ambulance as see an ambulance leave the arena. Hollywood Hogan is having the WORST DAY EVER! The crew now head to the ring looking for the Warrior. Hogan confirms that Brian Adams and Scott Norton were the ones in the ambulance. Hogan randomly brings up Bret Hart and kicks him off the team for Wargames and replaces him with the Giant since Bret dared to put his hands on the “GOD of wrestling”. Back to Warrior, Hogan says Warrior will have to prove himself worthy before Hogan accepts a match with him. Hogan believes the Disciple would die for him and says there’s no way Warrior can get through the Giant. Hogan calls for the Warrior one last time to show himself, but there’s no Warrior.

HOUR NUMBER ONE! Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Mike Tenay, and Larry Zbyszko. Schiavone reminds us tonight is the kickoff for the FOURTH year of Monday Nitro.

  • Konnan vs. Bull Pain

People sure do love repeating what Konnan says in 1998. Some early feeling out stuff from Konnan in between shaking his junk around. Bull Pain goes to the eyes and dumps Konnan on the floor as Bull Pain delivers a clothesline from the apron. Back inside, Bull Pain hits a frog splash for 1-2-NO! He tries walking the second rope for an elbow drop, but Konnan moves. There’s the K-Factor to lead to the TEQUILA SUNRISE for the submission in 2:50.

Gene Okerlund talks with JJ Dillon about Hollywood Hogan saying the Giant will be replacing Bret Hart for Wargames. Dillon says that won’t happen because the contract has already been signed with Bret Hart’s name attached.

NITRO GIRLS~!

After the break, Gene Okerlund brings out Team WCW Captain Diamond Dallas Page. Gene wants to know if DDP plans to be part of the nWo Wolfpac. The crowd seems down with it. DDP feels like he was threatened by Kevin Nash’s invitation and he doesn’t like being threatened. DDP also says he doesn’t totally trust Kevin Nash either. Well, here comes Kevin Nash. He essentially says if you don’t run with the ‘Pac, you’re hunted by the ‘Pac. When Nash questions DDP as to why he doesn’t trust him, all DDP has to bring up is the two past years of history. DDP also doesn’t see how Sting or Lex Luger can trust him either. Well, here they come to the ring as if they were standing right by the tunnel in case somebody mentioned their names. Luger doesn’t really answer DDP’s question, but he wants to know where DDP’s loyalty lies. DDP asks Lex if he doesn’t think Nash wouldn’t powerbomb him in a heartbeat? Sting grabs the mic and says Nash has already powerbombed him, but again there’s no reason Sting or Luger should trust Nash. Sting says two people from the nWo Wolfpac want DDP and Roddy Piper for tonight’s main event. DDP agrees and dares Nash to be one of the two because DDP wants to BANG him.

More Gene Okerlund time. I like it. He brings Roddy Piper out to hear what he thinks of the idea of wrestling the nWo Wolfpac tonight. Piper brings up a good point: DDP says he doesn’t like ultimatums and then he speaks for Piper to wrestle tonight. He also brings up another good point because he Piper seems to be the only guy who understands: THERE’S NO TEAMS IN WARGAMES THIS TIME! There’s a WCW world title shot on the line. As for DDP, Piper says diamonds are for women and real men wear kilts. YES. Piper is on Team Piper, not Team WCW. Piper agrees to team with DDP tonight, but he’ll be on his own at Wargames.

NITRO GIRLS MUSIC VIDEO! Move your feet, they say.

  • Wrath vs. Lenny Lane

Oh man, Lenny Lane is about to get destroyed. He just throws Lane around for two minutes and the MELTDOWN ends Lane in 2:27.

We go back to the vandalized nWo B&W dressing room to find Hollywood Hogan, Eric Bischoff, and Vincent reacting to seeing the Disciple unconscious and hanging from the ceiling by his feet. Hogan calls out to the Warrior as Vincent runs to find a doctor.

Here comes the WCW U.S. champ Bret Hart to the ring. No music for Bret for some reason. The nWo B&W theme plays as Curt Hennig, Stevie Ray, and Vincent head down to the ring. Did Vincent ever find a doctor? Whatever the nWo B&W boys had planned was ended immediately as Sting runs down and scares them away with a baseball bat. Bret wants to embrace his “best friend” Sting, but Sting pushes him back using the bat, hands Bret the bat, and turns his back on Bret. Well, Bret drops the bat and Sting walks out. Bret just wanted a handshake.

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

We start the next hour with a Rick Steiner video talking about his issues with his brother leading up to their match at Fall Brawl. As far as their relationship goes, Rick is DONE. This was actually a really good interview from Rick. He’s not doing the Dog Faced Gremlin character whatsoever.

  • Scott Steiner vs. Evan Karagias

Scott sends Buff Bagwell over to steal Mike Tenay’s headset for this match. Steiner talks smack about what he’s going to do to his brother at Fall Brawl. Apparently, Steiner hijacks the match since Evan’s real opponent was beaten up backstage. Scott beats down Karagias, throws him around, taunts the crowd, and the STEINER RECLINER ends Karagias in 1:45.

NITRO GIRLS~! Plus, a Nitro Party video brought to you by Mug Root Beer.

  • WCW Cruiserweight Championship: Juventud Guerrera (c) vs. Hector Garza

Garza is finally back from knee surgery. We haven’t seen him on Nitro since December 1997. Headlocks and shoulderblocks to start. They start running the ropes and Guerrera delivers a tilt-a-whirl headscissors. Guerrera then runs into a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Garza hits one more to stun Guerrera. Over in the corner, Garza misses a charge and takes a dropkick to the floor. Here comes Juventud with a high dive off the top. Back in, Garza dropkicks Guerrera as he comes off the top rope for two. A spinebuster by Garza gets two as well. Garza continues his work on the back with the “Rocking Horse” submission, but Guerrera escapes and trips up Garza for a two-count. Garza then runs down Juventud and applies La Magistral cradle for two. Guerrera escapes a double-underhook submission, but runs into a crash and burn. Guerrera ends up on the apron and yanks Garza down to the mat. He comes off the top with a missile dropkick for two. Garza blocks a headscissors out of the corner, dumps Guerrera to the mat, and then powerbombs the crap out of Guerrera for 1-2-NO! That was *nasty*. Garza fails at the quebrada allowing Juventud to deliver the JUVI DRIVER for the win. (6:49) Pretty wild match and probably the best we’ve seen on Nitro in a while. **½

Gene Okerlund brings out Curt Hennig and Rick Rude to discuss Hennig’s cage match with Dean Malenko. Hennig calls Arn Anderson a “coward” for walking out on the Four Horsemen. Rude says it’s clear that Arn Anderson has been sent out to pasture because the nWo B&W is now where it’s at. Hennig calls Malenko a “Horsemen wannabe” and after their cage match tonight, everyone will know Malenko is just a horse’s well-you-know-wink-wink. Rude looks like he was ready to break.

  • Ernest Miller vs. Kenny Kaos

They are trying to see where things go with the Kenny Kaos singles wrestler experiment. Miller steps on Kenny’s feet to escape a waistlock and then trips him up. Kaos gets thrown to the floor so he can do his springboard clothesline. Kaos gets a few nearfalls, but Miller ducks the second springboard move and hits the FELINER for the win. (3:07) Again, Miller gets on the mic to do his Muhammad Ali-style promo. He dares anybody in WCW to come out and stop him, but I don’t think anyone cares enough to come out and stop him. ¾*

  • Stevie Ray (w/Vincent) vs. Chris Adams

Bobby Heenan joins us so it must be around 9:30 EST. Stevie Ray showing off the new “black on white” nWo gear with “SLAP JACK” put on his butt. Pretty sweet, I don’t care what Meltzer says about it making him look pregnant. This is one of those “glorified” squashes. You know Adams has no chance of beating Stevie Ray, but he gets in more offense than a straight jobber might. Vincent keeps sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong smacking Adams when he gets the chance. Adams comes back with a back suplex and hits the enziguri. He comes off the second rope with a clothesline and drills Vincent off the apron. Adams then turns around and eats a standing side kick to set up the SLAPJACK for the three-count. (3:54) FA-FA-FA-FA LIFE. ½*

Nitro Girls rave music video! Now you can place a name with a face while you’re laying the smackdown on yourself during the Nitro Girls dance routines. Yep.

  • Kanyon (w/Raven, Saturn & Lodi) vs. Riggs

Saturn is now holding up Lodi’s signs since he’s still Lodi’s “slave”. Raven cuts a promo on Saturn telling him he should look ahead to being stuck in the Flock forever and switches the match around from Kanyon to Saturn facing Riggs. Lodi forces Saturn into the match using his best “Beavis” voice and calling Saturn a “maggot” because Saturn is an ex-Army ranger.

  • Saturn (w/Raven, Lodi & Kanyon) vs. Riggs

Riggs jumps Saturn and gets a flurry of offense on him. Raven and Lodi continue to taunt Saturn from ringside using the house mic. Saturn comes back with his kicks and suplexes. They go to the floor out in front of Raven as Saturn tosses him into the steps a couple times. Back inside, Saturn appears to be distracted by Raven, but still nails Riggs with the DEATH VALLEY DRIVER for the win. (4:27) Raven then orders Saturn to break Riggs’ fingers just like what was done to Lodi. Raven says to Saturn, “Either break his fingers or break your honor.” Since Saturn won’t do it, Raven decides to break Saturn’s fingers instead. Kanyon then nails Saturn from behind and holds him while Raven snaps Saturn’s fingers. OH MAN. Raven then spits a loogie on Saturn as Raven, Kanyon, and Lodi head to the back. A trainer comes out to help Saturn, but Saturn has TOO MUCH HONOR to get medical attention. ¾*

NITRO GIRLS!

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

  • WCW World Television Championship: Chris Jericho (c) vs. Jim Neidhart

Not sure what Neidhart has done to deserve this title match, but here we are. Neidhart actually throws Jericho around to start. Jericho chops back and dropkicks him to the apron where he then does his springboard dropkick to send Neidhart to the floor. Jericho follows up with a baseball slide and takes Neidhart around for some ringside violence. Back in, Jericho can’t slam Neidhart. He kicks back and hits a suplex though. C’MON BABY. The Lionsault misses and Neidhart runs him down. Neidhart sends Jericho from corner to corner, but then Jericho dumps him out. Neidhart catches a pescado and backs Jericho into the ringpost. This is a weird match. Neidhart misses a splash from the second rope. Jericho attempts the LIONTAMER, but Neidhart doesn’t seem to understand what’s happening to him and the ref calls for the bell when Neidhart is crawling to the ropes. HUH? (4:41) Either Neidhart doesn’t know how to sell a Boston crab or man is he wasted. Cocaine is a hell of a drug. CRAP

Eddie Guerrero interrupts and comes out through the tunnel with a pencil behind his ear and a shirt with a “NO PENCIL” symbol on it. He refers to Eric Bischoff as “Uncle Eric”. The back of his shirt says “Fire Me, Free Me, Please Me” which obviously looks like some sort of J.O.B. Squad t-shirt rip-off. Eddie explains his back is injured and the doctor orders him not to wrestle until he gets an MRI. To avoid all the lawyer issues that making him work would bring about and since Eddie sarcastically enjoys working here soooooo much anyways, he then pulls out his pencil from behind his ear and tells Uncle Eric that he’s given himself the night off before letting Eric know he can kiss his ass.

  • Cage Match: Curt Hennig (w/Rick Rude) vs. Dean Malenko

Hard to buy Malenko in a cage match, no? Sorry, I just don’t see how this feud calls for it other than a direct connection to Ric Flair getting his head slammed in the cage door by Hennig last year. Unless he’s wrestled in cage matches down in Florida independents or something where nobody was keeping track, I believe this is the first cage match of his career. I kind of like Hennig’s nWo boxing shorts. Hennig jumps Malenko as he comes inside the cage. Malenko tries to wrestle Hennig with a back suplex and his jumping shin kick. Hennig grabs hold of the roof of the cage and hoists himself up to be parallel with the roof, but Malenko jumps up and pulls him down. HUH? Malenko misses a corner charge and runs his head into the corner of the cage and ringpost. Hennig starts punishing the shoulder and applies a stepover armbar. Rick Rude appears to be unscrewing part of what holds the cage walls together. The cameraman gets pushed away. Malenko is too short to get his face smashed off the cage. Hennig continues to pound the shoulder. A double-KO sets up a comeback for Malenko. Hennig kicks low and then as he’s beating Malenko down, he’s taunting Malenko to “fight back”. More ripping at the shoulder. Hennig finally throws Malenko shoulder-first over the top rope into the cage. Malenko then grabs a double leg and catapults Hennig into the cage. He starts throwing Hennig into the cage and goes for the Texas Cloverleaf, but for some reason we care about rope breaks. Hennig grabs a slam and ref Scott Dickinson gets whacked by Malenko’s legs. Malenko kicks Hennig off into the cage and applies the TEXAS CLOVERLEAF. Hey wait, here comes Eric Bischoff and Stevie Ray. Bischoff unlocks the door so Rick Rude can get in and go nuts on Malenko. Dickinson wakes up and calls for the bell before getting thrown into the cage by Rude. (12:16) Hennig lays on top of Malenko as Rude counts the pinfall. Hennig, Rude, and Stevie Ray then put Malenko in place to get *his* head slammed in the cage door when OH MY GOSH I LOVE THIS ITS ARN FREAKING ANDERSON comes sprinting to ringside. He runs through Hennig and Rude like a knife through butter. He gets inside the cage to save Malenko as he runs Stevie Ray into the cage and kicks his butt out of the ring. They share a look. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time. I’ll let the DQ in a dad-gum cage match slide for that Arn Anderson moment. The crowd was going absolutely NUTS for that. *½

  • WCW World Heavyweight Championship: Bill Goldberg (c) (140-0) vs. Scott Putski

Thought I might as well add the win streak back. Why not. This is the highest profile match of Scott Putski’s career and it’s about to be over in under a minute. Goldberg NO-SELLS a suplex and runs down Putski for the Spear and the JACKHAMMER for the win in :52. He needs more believable heels to work with at this point. Running through guys nobody takes seriously every week is not going to help him, but putting him up against more established and beloved babyfaces (which is the route they end up taking) because they are “dream matches” on paper is not going to help him one bit either.

Nitro Girls~!

  • Sting & Lex Luger vs. Diamond Dallas Page & Roddy Piper

Sting and Luger are all about slapping each others butts tonight. Not sure what that was about. Some fans have been throwing confetti tonight. DDP and Piper seem to be arguing before the match gets started. It’s Team Piper, not Team WCW. Anyways, DDP starts with Luger. Lex shoves DDP back out of a tie-up and does the double bicep pose, so DDP tags out. Piper punches Luger down and stomps him on the mat. He then runs Luger from corner to corner with turnbuckle smashes. To the floor they go, Piper bounces Luger’s head off the guardrail and the steps. I mean, yeah, he probably needed that since he hasn’t wrestled since June. Tag to DDP, he elbows Luger in the corner and then delivers a back suplex for two. A swinging neckbreaker gets two as well. Luger comes back with the Bionic Forearm and tags in Sting. There’s the running face slam followed by an atomic drop. He comes off the ropes with a jumping DDT. Haven’t seen Sting do that in a long time, which means our esteemed commentators have NEVER seen him do that. Sting tries a hiptoss, but DDP counters with a DDT of his own. He covers Sting and Luger jumps DDP while the ref stops Piper. Now all four men are in the ring. The crowd starts to stand up looking to the entryway. Piper low blows Luger and follows him to the floor. Hey look, it’s Kevin Nash. He throws Piper in the ringpost and then goes into the ring to JACKKNIFE POWERBOMB the crap out of DDP for running his mouth earlier in the show. There’s your DQ, folks. (3:55) Nash rips off his nWo Wolfpac shirt and “buries” DDP with it. Well, the match needed to be chaotic since we’re heading into Wargames. But of course once again WCW looks dumb, which we should all be used to by now. *½

Hollywood Hogan and the Giant head down to the ring for our MAIN EVENT SHOWDOWN. Hogan is armed with a chair, which he strums like a guitar since he’s beltless now and doesn’t know what to do with his hands. Somewhere La Parka is ANGRY. Lol, can you imagine? Come out, Warrior, wherever you are. Hogan calls for the cage to be lowered. If Warrior can get past the Giant tonight inside a STEEL CAGE, Warrior can get a shot at Hollywood Hogan. After Hogan wins Wargames and beats Goldberg to get his belt back, he’ll make Warrior history. The ring fills up with smoke. Once the smoke clears, the Warrior is shown sitting in a chair, the Giant is out cold laying on his backside, and Hogan is scared to death. They start circling the ring as Eric Bischoff comes down to ringside. Warrior takes off his coat and drapes it over the Giant. He charges Hogan to whack him with a chair, but Hogan moves and whacks Warrior with his own chair. Warrior NO-SELLS and shakes the ropes while Hogan gets out of the cage. Bischoff locks the cage door leaving Warrior all alone to taunt them. Warrior then turns around to face the crowd and pumps his arms into the air and beats his chest as smoke fills the ring again to send Warrior back to wherever he came from to close out the show.

Thunder is NEXT! Then, FALL BRAWL 1998. Oh boy.

Until next time, so long for now.

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