WCW: Thunder (12.03.98)

WCW: Thunder
December 3, 1998
Memphis, TN
Mid-South Coliseum

The current WCW champs are as follows:
WCW World Champion: Bill Goldberg (7/6/1998)
WCW U.S. Champion: Bret Hart (11/30/1998)
WCW World Tag Team Champions: Rick Steiner & Kenny Kaos (10/26/1998)
WCW World Television Champion: Konnan (11/30/1998)
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Billy Kidman (11/22/1998)

Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan, and Lee Marshall. Since Hollywood Hogan has announced his retirement from wrestling to try and become the next POTUS, they air a video package highlighting Hulk Hogan’s WCW and nWo career. Say goodbye to Hulk, folks.

They replay Scott Steiner’s announcement from Monday Nitro where he and the nWo B&W boys want to make Scott Hall pay. This of course leads to an Outsiders reunion defeating Scott Steiner and Horace Hogan.

Out comes Scott Steiner and his nWo referee to the ring. Since we don’t have Hollywood Hogan around to waste 10-15 minutes, we now have Scott. He talks about banging more women than Elvis Presley – and the crowd boos. After he’s done in the Mid-South Coliseum, he’ll be having sexual relations at the Graceland mansion. Big Poppa Pump is your hook-up, holla if ya hear him. Now he starts badmouthing the people of Memphis and thinks they don’t have TV sets, which makes me wonder how he thinks they learn of this “wrestling” show he’s on. Steiner lets them know now that Hogan is gone, he’s the new leader of the nWo B&W because he’s got the largest arms in the world. Talk turns to Steiner calling out Scott Hall. He’s out of line, out of order, and out of the new world order. Steiner has Hall in his sights and he’s ready to pull the trigger. Be afraid because tonight Steiner will finish the job and promises to HURT Scott Hall.

Get *your* Goldberg t-shirt for only $20 bucks!

  • Eddie Guerrero (w/Spyder) vs. Ciclope

Spyder is still yet to be named, but I’m going with it. Marshall hopes this doesn’t turn into a recruiting moment for the LWO, but he shouldn’t hold his breath. Eddie bullies Ciclope to start. Ciclope reverses a corner whip at one point and charges Eddie, but Guerrero moves. Ciclope slides under Eddie on the apron and trips up Guerrero. Back inside, Ciclope delivers a missile dropkick for two. Eddie avoids a tilt-a-whirl and goes low. He hits the Brainbuster and heads up top presumably for the Frog Splash. Before he flies down, he waves out the LWO. He then gets off the top rope and tells ref Billy Silverman to just end the match. WHAT. (2:41) The rest of the LWO head down and it looks like it’s time to recruit. Psychosis does the recruiting in Spanish. So yeah, then after Eddie yells at him, Ciclope joins the LWO. ½*

We get a clip from Monday Nitro of Konnan winning the WCW TV title.

Watch WCW SATURDAY NIGHT live and in color if you will with Scott Hudson and Mike Tenay. This week you’ll see Booker T, Scott Hall, and Chip Minton all in action!

Next up, we see another clip from Monday Nitro of the Giant helping Bret Hart regain the WCW U.S. heavyweight title from DDP with a SUPER CHOKESLAM.

  • The Giant vs. The Renegade

From the Observer, the Giant would be arrested soon after leaving the Mid-South Coliseum on this night because he was accused of rubbing his dick on a Memphis hotel employee. There wasn’t enough evidence or enough witnesses to confirm the story, so he was able to get off the hook. Renegade’s primary form of offense is to jab Giant several times in the throat using his fingers. Tony thinks this is a good move even though he admits it’s illegal. WHAT. Giant comes out of the corner and gives Renegade the SUPER CHOKESLAM for the win in 1:01. Giant gets on the mic and says this is the second imposter he’s taken out this week: Renegade thought he was the Warrior and DDP thought he was the People’s Champ. When Giant starts calling the people a bunch of trailer park trash, Diamond Dallas Page shows up through the crowd and knocks Giant out of the ring using a chair. DDP grabs the mic, calls the Giant “SCUM”, and dares him to a fight. Giant wants none tonight.

  • Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Mike Enos

Chavo starts off strong, but Enos overpowers Chavo and presses him up. Chavo manages to escape and rolls up Enos for two. They go to the floor where Enos was supposed to catch Chavo, but ends up having to pick him back up and drop him on the guardrail. Enos throws Chavo back in over the top rope and then pulls him into a clothesline. Chavo fights back with a dropkick and the springboard bulldog. Enos blocks a flying headscissors with a SUPER POWERBOMB. Crowd went nuts for that one. Now Enos hits a SUPER POWERSLAM. Enos he looks to pin Chavo, but lifts him up off the mat. Chavo uses his own momentum to land on top of Enos during a powerslam, but gets thrown off to the floor. When Chavo sneaks around ringside, Enos grabs Pepe only to get rolled up by Chavo for 1-2-NO! Enos levels Chavo and goes to give him a piledriver onto Pepe, but Chavo counters with a sunset flip for the win. (4:53) Angry about the way he lost, Enos knocks Chavo down and chokes him until WCW security come out to save him. Enos is standing tall while Chavo is on the mat. I WANT TO SEE MORE OF THIS. **¼

THUNDER RINGSIDE RELEASE: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time on N64.

  • Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Villano V

Rey is still wearing the 6XL LWO t-shirt out to the ring, but he throws it down on the mat. He just shows off to start against Villano V. He does a fake dive and delivers a somersault dive onto Villano V. Back in, Villano V catches a springboard and slams Rey down. He gives Rey a hotshot and knees him right on the side of the head. There’s a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker on Rey. As Mysterio crawls to the ropes, Villano V gives him a legdrop on the apron. He continues to abuse Mysterio and ties him up on the mat in a reverse surfboard hold. Rey tries a comeback with a headscissors, but Villano V blocks the move and runs Mysterio into the corner. He comes off the middle rope with a somersault senton, but Rey moves and stomps Villano V down in a corner for the Bronco Buster. Mysterio lands that wheelbarrow bulldog move he’s been doing lately. A SPRINGBOARD HEADSCISSORS ends Villano V as Rey gets the win. (4:38) I’m just waiting for this to be another LWO recruitment, but it never comes. **½

Tony Schiavone wants to talk to Rey Mysterio Jr. about getting another CW title shot when Eddie Guerrero and the rest of the LWO head down. Eddie won’t allow Rey to get a CW title shot and decides that Juventud Guerrera will get the next title shot instead. As the leader of the LWO, Eddie thinks Rey needs to learn to sacrifice his individual wants for the needs of the entire Latino World Order. Tony lets Eddie know that Rey Mysterio Jr. will meet Juventud Guerrera next week on Thunder for a shot at the Cruiserweight title at Starrcade. Eddie FREAKS out and starts threatening Tony as we close out the segment.

They take us back to Monday Nitro to see the Goldberg-Kevin Nash contract signing. No sign of Bam Bam Bigelow just yet.

  • Wrath vs. Chip Minton

Mike Tenay RETURNS to the announce table after being stricken with laryngitis earlier in the week. Chip Minton seems to be a WCW project we first saw at World War 3. He was a part of the U.S. bobsled racing team in both the 1994 and 1998 Winter Olympics and has been training for years to become a pro wrestler. He briefly wrestled as Mr. World Class in the USWA in 1995 (as you see on his tights) and that of course meant wrestling in the Mid-South Coliseum where WCW is tonight. This is the one time we’ve seen him outside of the 60-man battle royal at WW3 and I don’t believe we’ll be seeing him again on Nitro or Thunder as he retires in the summer of 1999.

Wrath is trying to recover after his loss to Kevin Nash on the November 24 Nitro. He was just never the same after that. Wrath gives Minton a snap suplex on the floor and chops him up against the safety rail. Back in, Wrath hits his slingshot shoulder block. Poor Minton looked like he was readying himself for a shoulder butt through the ropes and he got too close to Wrath. Minton comes back hoping to win with a sunset flip, but Wrath kicks out at one and delivers a back suplex. Wrath abuses him in the corner and whips him across for a jumping shoulderblock. All of this breath by the commentators to put over Minton, but he’s clearly losing this match. MELTDOWN ends Minton at 3:57.

After the break, we get a video package highlighting the latest on the Flair/Bischoff feud. DUSTY RHODES is a babyface again, but he’s FIRED. I really wanted to see a Flip Flop and Fly on Barry Windham.

  • Chris Benoit & Steve McMichael (w/Arn Anderson) vs. Raven & Kanyon

Kanyon asks a depressed Raven why he put his head through a window today. What will hopefully turn Raven’s frown upside down is asking the crowd the question “WHO’S NOT BETTA THAN KANYON?” Of course the Memphis crowd falls for it and Kanyon is elated over the response. Tenay – “Shades of Andy Kaufman!” Raven actually makes it up onto the apron, which our esteemed commentators consider improvement. Essentially, Kanyon is going to have to wrestle Benoit and Mongo by himself. Lots of reversals to start. Benoit ends all that with a couple chops and a clothesline from the apron by McMichael. As Kanyon gets the better end of a wristlock with Benoit, he reaches over to Raven for a tag and gets no response. Benoit misses a corner charge and receives a Russian legsweep by Kanyon. He tries to tag Raven again, but nothing happening. Meanwhile, Mongo has tagged in and waits for Kanyon to turn around into some three-point stance moves. He misses a big boot in the corner though allowing Kanyon to deliver an easy back suplex. Kanyon goes to yell at Raven some more, but gets rolled up by McMichael for two. Now Kanyon is in the HORSEMEN corner and gets his ass beat. Benoit is even yelling at Raven and tries to bounce his face off the top buckle. There’s a snap suplex to Kanyon for two. Mongo tags in and keeps Kanyon down. Arn is shown checking in on Raven and shakes his head. McMichael hiptosses Kanyon across the ring and tags in Benoit. Kanyon continues to get abused. Benoit delivers a dragon screw leg whip and slams the knee on the mat. AA yells to Benoit to punish Kanyon as Benoit comes off the top with the Swandive Headbutt, but Kanyon moves out of the way. Kanyon gives up on trying to tag out and delivers a flapjack off the shoulders. He ends up slapping Raven’s hand for a tag. Instead of getting into the ring, Raven drops off the apron and gets counted out. (9:12) Meanwhile, Benoit has Kanyon in the CRIPPLER CROSSFACE – just for fun. I don’t think this is the type of battles they brought the Four Horsemen back for, but here we are. **½

Ad for WCW/nWo Revenge for N64 airs.

Get your “Big Sexy” Kevin Nash t-shirt for only $20 bucks!

They take us back to Monday Nitro to see Konnan beating Chris Jericho to win the TV title. I guess you shouldn’t have told Eric Bischoff “no” to resigning, Chris!

For no reason at all, they replay Konnan’s rap video.

  • WCW World Television Championship: Konnan (c) vs. Disco Inferno

KEEPIN’ IT 100 EXPLODES! Konnan tells Disco if he wants to continue wearing those tights, Konnan can find somebody to toss his salad. The crowd explodes because they surely have no idea what he’s talking about. Lots of wristlocks exchanged to start. They switch to brawling as Konnan hits the low dropkick and a bunch of stomps in the corner. Disco goes to the eyes and drops an elbow, but Konnan comes back with a DDT. He starts to retreat, but then yanks Konnan’s neck on the top rope. Disco catches Konnan with a clothesline for a nearfall. He goes for the piledriver, but Konnan backdrops out only to run into a back elbow. Disco hits the elbow drop from the second rope for two. It’s chinlock time from Disco. Konnan breaks loose, but telegraphs a backdrop. Disco misses a second flying elbow. Here comes Konnan with the Rolling Clothesline. He follows up with the 1-8-7 for 1-2-NO! Disco comes right back with a pair of swinging neckbreakers for 1-2-NO! Time for the Chartbuster, but Konnan kicks him off and hits the K-FACTOR. The TEQUILA SUNRISE submits Disco for the win. (5:22) A fun back and forth match, but there wasn’t too much sold here. They didn’t let anything breathe here. *½

MFGWLM HYPE: “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” (1985) starring Mel Gibson and Tina Turner.

  • Scott Hall vs. Scott Steiner

Tony reminds us that all WCW referees have decided to not referee any of Scott Steiner’s matches due to it being a “dangerous work environment”, which explains the continued prescence of the nWo ref we will know as Mark “Slick” Johnson. Still no music for Scott Hall, but he gets a nice reaction from the crowd. While Hall gets the nWo ref to check Steiner’s knee pads, Hall slugs Steiner when he’s not looking to get this started. Steiner bails out when it gets too hot. Back inside, Hall whips Steiner into the ropes when the nWo ref grabs both of Hall’s legs to allow Steiner to come back around and clothesline Hall down. The fast count gets two. They brawl in and out of the ring with Steiner in total control. Back in, Steiner puts Hall in the tree of woe and bends one of Hall’s legs on the top rope. A pumphandle slam by Steiner still only gets a fast two-count. The butterfly slam by Steiner gets only two as well. SCOTT HALL WILL NOT DIE! They trade sleeperholds, but Steiner counters with a back suplex. Hall punches back on Steiner and delivers the chokeslam. Of course we get a slow count by the nWo ref. Steiner runs into a boot in the corner. As he staggers to his feet, Hall delivers the Steiner Bulldog for another slow count. Time for the Outsider’s Edge, but the nWo ref helps pull Steiner down. Since he can’t give his finish to Steiner, Hall gives the OUTSIDER’S EDGE to the nWo ref. After Hall celebrates, he turns around into a Steinerline to set up the STEINER RECLINER. The broadcast ends with Hall in the hold for a no-contest. (7:28) Not a classic naturally, but this was the best singles match I’ve seen from either guy in a serious LONG time. The nWo ref really added to the heat as well. Fun stuff! **½

Until next time, so long for now.

LIVE ON PPV from the MCI Center in Washington, DC on Sunday, December 27!
MAIN EVENT: WCW World Championship: Goldberg (c) vs. Kevin Nash
Ric Flair vs. Eric Bischoff


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