WCW: Monday Nitro (12.14.98)

WCW: Monday Nitro
December 14, 1998
Tampa, FL
Ice Palace

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)

Before we get going, there’s a huge note from the 12/21/98 Observer to be mentioned:

Eric Bischoff had another meeting with talent before Nitro on 12/14. He officially told talent that Kevin Nash and Diamond Dallas Page would be joining in the booking team with himself, Kevin Sullivan and Dusty Rhodes, and that Terry Taylor would be moving over to production. Bischoff heavily stressed all the wrestlers being easy to find at least two segments before they go on television for any fine-tuning of what they need to do, and the need for wrestlers to hit their time marks better since it’s a live television shoot. He, without saying names, talked about people doing interviews or matches for longer than they are scheduled and how it messes with the timing of the show. He spoke about big changes coming in January with the company. He said that they are going to re-invent wrestling early next year, claiming they did so once and will do it again and told everyone he didn’t want them attempting to compete on a vulgarity level with WWF. He claimed that he watched both shows on 12/7 and he believes WCW has a better television show but that WWF is gaining attention of teenagers because it’s more vulgar (the point he’s missing is that WWF is gaining the attention of teenagers to a huge degree for its shock value and swearing, but it is also the better television show most weeks, particularly from a storyline standpoint). He really emphasized not tolerating changing finishes, and he got to put his foot down on 12/14 when Stevie Ray complained about doing a job for Konnan. Ray went up the ladder to complain, and when it got to Bischoff, he totally put his foot down about it.

We get a video package highlighting the HATE triangle including Goldberg, Kevin Nash, and the third wheel Bam Bam Bigelow.

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

NITRO GIRLS~! No Fyre, so FFWD for me.

  • Raven vs. Scott Putski

Raven comes to the ring in his street clothes. Yeah I know, how is that different than most nights? He’s not wearing JORTS. He’s wearing full length jeans right now. Raven sits down in a corner and cuts a typical Raven promo complaining about his mother. Kanyon comes down and tells Putski to take a hike. He tells Raven that nobody gets more airtime doing nothing than Raven does. Raven had a hard life coming up in the world – LEAVE RAVEN ALONE. Kanyon tells the truth about Raven: he grew up rich, he attended ivy league schools, has a pre-med degree, and a $3.2 million dollar trust fund. He got a brand new Mercedes Benz when he turned 16, but Raven feels his mother never loved him. Kanyon thinks Raven didn’t have it hard, but had it too easy. That’s when Raven decides to leave and Kanyon follows. When Raven tells Kanyon to leave him alone, Kanyon keeps talking down to him until we leave for commercial.

  • Eddie Guerrero (w/Spyder) vs. Villano V

I’m guessing Villano V is one of the remaining luchadores to not join the LWO. Apparently, Super Calo turned down an LWO offer and got his ass beat on WCW Saturday Night. Villano V does some cool lucha stuff to start culminating in a tope to the floor. Back inside, Guerrero flips out of a suplex and drops Villano V with a back suplex. He hits a brainbuster and then slams Villano V with a hilo. Guerrero stretches Villano V on the mat six ways from Sunday. Villano V gets a short comeback and applies the Romero Special. The crowd pops for the hold, but Eddie finds a way out. As Villano V goes up top, Spyder crotches him for a superplex by Guerrero. FROG SPLASH is all she wrote, but Eddie gets the ref Mickey Jay to stop the three-count. The ref calls for the bell as we get another non-finish. (6:18) Out comes the rest of the LWO to offer Villano V a t-shirt. THINK OF THE OTHER VILLANOS AT HOME, MUCHACHO. He accepts the LWO t-shirt as they all celebrate. Guerrero calls out to Eric Bischoff that they are “one more stronger”. Rey Mysterio Jr. shows up, but walks away to send a message. **

NITRO GIRLS~! They head over to the announce table to jiggle around. Send in your embarrassing Nitro Party video tapes! Somebody in Simpsonville, South Carolina picks up the “W” this week.

WCW/NWO Magazine ad. Check out the exciting photos of “Halloween Havoc”. You can probably already buy the VHS copy by now.

  • Wrath vs. Al Green

Al Green couldn’t hang with Goldberg, but maybe he can handle WRATH. Tony points out the comparisons of Wrath to Goldberg’s rise to fame. Either they wanted these two to wrestle or wanted to repeat history with Wrath. Brady Boone is *your* referee for this match and unfortunately will be making his final live TV appearances tonight as he passes away in a car wreck coming home from a TV taping the night of December 15. Wrath rips into Green here. We get some ringside violence and back inside for a flying clothesline for two. This assault continues on Green until Wrath hits the MELTDOWN for the win. (3:44) There’s just not the excitement there since he lost to Kevin Nash nearly a month ago. ½*

Get your WCW/nWo Superstar Series VHS tapes today: Sting: Unmasked and Macho Man Randy Savage: The Man Behind the Madness! Funny how neither guy has been seen on TV in quite a while now. Tony mentions some sort of sweepstakes you can enter on WCW.com.

Gene Okerlund brings out Eric Bischoff to the ring. Bischoff runs down the people of Tampa, runs down Ric Flair, and tells us he’s “deeply rooted in the millennium” while Flair is “history”. Eric reminds us he knows some karate stuff. He calls Flair old and tired. Forget about his lethal kicks though because Bischoff has Jack Johnson and Tom O’Leary waiting for him with his two powerful fists. RIC FLAIR has enough and runs down to get his hands on Bischoff. Flair baits Bischoff to run down the aisle and catches up to him. Once Bischoff is out of sight, Flair returns to the ring with Four Horsemen signs in his hands taken from the crowd. He gets rid of the signs and starts taking his anger out on the mat. Okerlund holds the mic while Flair tells us we’re in Tampa Florida where they like WRESTLING, boy. We’re in the home of blood, guts, and Eddie Graham, baby. Dusty Rhodes, the Briscos, the Funks, the Sullivans (Dave?), the Windhams, and anybody else who was somebody came through Florida and paid the price to be there. Flair calls Bischoff a “worthless scumbag”, an “aristocrat”, and a “pencil neck”. When Flair gets Bischoff in DC (now he does the Flair Flip and delivers another elbow drop to nobody), he’ll strangle him half to death. He’s going to reach down inside his skinny little neck, grab whatever heart he has, and pull it out to show the world he has no heart. And with that, Flair grabs his left shoulder and slumps to the corner to make it seem like Flair’s having a heart attack. Arn Anderson and trainer Danny Young appear at Flair’s side. Dusty Rhodes even comes down. A gurney comes out and helps take Flair to the back. Instead of staying silent and selling the moment and letting it breathe, Tony is asking the people in the production truck where they are going next.

I *understand* why this angle was done because your competitor who is kicking your tail on a regular basis now is hanging guys on symbols and burying people alive and we’re moments away from that show beginning, but that doesn’t mean I find this entertaining or necessary for the Flair/Bischoff feud. All you needed to do was get the match in the ring. I don’t think this makes Bischoff look stronger or adds any interest to the match whatsoever. If anything, it makes the product look distasteful, because nobody believes anything in wrestling is real.

While all the security people are tending to Flair at the ambulance, a camera catches BAM BAM BIGELOW sneaking around. Scott Hall is seen giving Bigelow a crotch chop, which angers Bigelow and causes him into a rage to throw Hall into a vending machine. He continues to beat on Hall until security gets to him. KEVIN NASH walks over wanting to know what’s happening and why Bigelow attacked his buddy. We get another pull-apart between Nash and Bigelow when GOLDBERG appears to make things worse. Now security is having to hold back all three guys. TERRY TAYLOR shows up and makes a three-way dance for tonight. And the horrible transition from the Flair angle to this main event angle is why NOBODY they tried to keep watching stayed. To quote Meltzer, “The Flair heart attack quarter drew a tremendous 5.9 number, the highest of the night, but to show nobody believed the heart attack, the number immediately dropped to a 3.7 the next quarter as people turned to RAW rather than were curious about the condition of Flair.”

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

The CW champ Billy Kidman comes out to the ring with Gene Okerlund. Apparently, Kidman feels the LWO keep interfering in his matches with Rey Mysterio Jr. and so he invites Rey out to settle the score. Kidman offers Mysterio a WCW cruiserweight title match – RIGHT NOW. Umm, okay.

  • WCW Cruiserweight Championship: Billy Kidman (c) vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.

Lots of running the ropes to start. Our esteemed commentators are talking about Ric Flair which if you’re trying to sell the angle, it does make sense. Kidman stops a hurracanrana up top with a SUPER BK BOMB to Rey for two. Rey headscissors Kidman out to the floor and follows up with a baseball slide to send Kidman into the guardrail. With Kidman up against the guardrail, Mysterio comes off the apron with a flying body press to send both guys into the front row – right in front of Tampa Bay Rays third baseman WADE BOGGS. Back inside, Kidman stops a springboard move with a dropkick to the chest. That gets two. Kidman catches a quebrada and shoves Mysterio off into the corner to then hit him with the clothesline for two. Mysterio avoids a corner charge and hits a springboard bulldog for two. Rey delivers a Bronco Buster and a split-legged moonsault for two. Trainer Danny Young tells Schiavone that Ric is suffering from “shortness of breath and mild chest pains” which we already knew. Kidman avoids a flying senton and delivers a flying splash for two. Rey escapes a chinlock, but eats a dropkick and falls to the floor as Kidman follows through with a pescado. He slingshots in with a legdrop on Rey for another two. Mysterio tries to come back with a couple different rollups, but LWO’S DAMIEN and CICLOPE interrupt to end the match. A DQ victory for Kidman. (7:15) Kidman and Rey try to fight off the onslaught of the LWO, but the numbers game is too much. The crowd finally wakes up for the LWO shenanigans, but not much else. ***

Chris Jericho and Ralphus head out to the ring. Jericho has with him a white board. He claims Konnan ROBBED him of the WCW TV title. Before he gets into that, Jericho congratulates Konnan on being the GREATEST Latino rapper since Gerardo and calls him RICO SUAVE. Even though Jericho can’t understand what Konnan is saying, he does consider himself to be 235 pounds of twisted steel and sex appeal, right Ralphus? Now that’s established, Jericho wants to re-enact the travesty that befell him, claiming that Konnan used a foreign object to assassinate his WCW world TV title reign. Konnan may as well have been standing on the grassy knoll, and Jericho will explain his magic “foreign object” theory right now. He calls out Konnan as “exhibit A” and we get a phony Konnan carrying a transfer shovel. Jericho draws something on the white board and mentions that Konnan put on some brass knuckles (exhibit B) to knock him out. Jericho fought his way back, but Konnan cheats again hitting him with a “steel chain” (exhibit C) in the temple. Jericho felt swimmy headed, but thought of all the people that look up to him as a role model, and kept fighting back. That’s when Konnan pulled out a “steel shovel” (exhibit D) and whacked him over the head. As Jericho was passing out, Konnan grabbed the WCW TV title (exhibit E) and slammed Jericho’s head right down on the championship belt. Jericho had his arms wrapped around the bottom rope, but the three-count still happened. As you can see, Jericho was ROBBED. However, you can’t stop rock n roll and you can’t stop Jericho either. He’s too legit to quit and he’ll show Konnan at Starrcade who the REAL champion is. Now that’s over, Jericho clotheslines the phony Konnan and puts him in the LIONTAMER. Ralphus holds the mic up to Jericho’s chin and lets him talk more smack in Konnan’s direction. Well, that was awesome and way more thought put into a Konnan rematch than you ever would imagine possible.

NITRO GIRLS~! Bobby Heenan makes his way out to the announce table to replace Larry Z. That means it must be at least 9:30PM.

  • Barry Windham vs. Emory Hale

Tony mentions DDP and Bret Hart slated for later tonight over the WCW U.S. title. WHY? Windham jumps Hale from behind to start. They brawl in and out of the ring. Windham hits a running bulldog on and finishes him off with the SUPERPLEX in 1:32. No mention of Windham being aligned with Eric Bischoff right now. He was like an unofficial member of the nWo.

  • Perry Saturn vs. Norman Smiley

Headlocks and wristlocks traded to start. They do a spot where Saturn applies an armbar and a headscissors at the same time which forces Smiley down on the mat. Smiley stands up out of it and gets rolled up for two, but Smiley runs down Saturn. Smiley pounds on Saturn and wakes him up to snap on Smiley down in the corner. Saturn politely asks ref Charles Robinson to keep his hands to himself. Insane and patient – those are rare qualities. Robinson backs off. Saturn delivers like a half tiger suplex to send Smiley out to the floor. Back in, Smiley hits that cool slam of his and then does the “Big Wiggle” dance. Smiley applies a waistlock and lifts up Saturn, but then drops him… on his own legs? Hey look, ERNEST MILLER and SONNY OONO have come down to ringside. They’re “Big Wiggle” fans. Saturn snaps on Smiley, Miller, and Oono. As Smiley falls backwards, he nails ref Charles Robinson for an OVER THE TOP sell. As Saturn goes for the Death Valley Driver on Smiley, Miller gives Saturn a superkick. Ref Scott Dickinson is out and sees no problem with Miller’s actions. Miller does a pretty sweet robot dance. Smiley rolls over on top of Saturn and Dickinson fast counts Saturn for some reason. (4:57) We are reminded that last week Saturn gave Dickinson a Death Valley Driver and it looks like “payback” from the referee. Holy crap, we’re getting some CONTINUITY here! Tony is very upset over Dickinson’s actions and gets mad at Tenay for being friends with Dickinson. *½

Gene Okerlund tells us we’re in the “shank of the evening” and brings out the WCW U.S. champ Bret Hart out to the ring. Gene wants to know Bret’s thoughts on what happened to Ric Flair tonight. Bret reminds us that he wiped out Randy Savage, Sting, Booker T, and forgets to mention Chris Benoit. Bret has a pulled groin like you wouldn’t believe – and he’s still out here fighting. He’s a three-time WCW U.S. champ, the best there is, the best there was, and the best that there ever will be, the greatest of all time, and to prove what a swell guy he is, he’ll give DDP another U.S. title shot, if he isn’t too busy hiding behind Kimberly’s skirt. Looks like Tony wasn’t supposed to mention this match earlier, but who was REALLY listening, right? Out comes DDP. Before he gets off the ramp, THE GIANT appears and whacks DDP with a chairshot to the back. Giant then starts dismantling the set – ripping the “WC” from the giant WCW. He picks up DDP and CHOKESLAMS him through the behind the logo. OH MY GOSH. So much for the title match, huh Bret? It’s a very cool spot and adds something to the DDP v. Giant for Starrcade and will get replayed to death on all the other WCW shows, but tonight it will get lost in the shuffle of the other angles on this one episode.

HOUR NUMBER THREE! Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Mike Tenay, and Bobby Heenan. Tony says it’s been an emotional ROLLLLLLLLLLERCOASTER tonight.

The nWo Wolfpac theme plays but no one comes out. The camera goes backstage to see Konnan ignoring Disco Inferno. Remember, Disco wants to be a part of the Wolfpac, got it?

  • WCW World Television Championship: Konnan (c) vs. Stevie Ray (w/Booker T)

Konnan has long time Tampa Bay Bucs defensive end Chidi Ahanotu and some other guy who Konnan called Roberto Duran (and Tony called someone else) hanging with him in the ring for no real reason. Stevie Ray just brings his brother out to watch his back. No Vincent, but who can blame Stevie Ray for that. Stevie Ray goes to pound town to start. Konnan fires back and “sticks his dick” in Stevie Ray’s face. The Rolling Clothesline connects followed by the seated dropkick to send Stevie Ray out to yell at Wade Boggs. He calls Boggs a “sell out” I’m guessing for leaving the New York Yankees for Tampa Bay. I mean, Stevie Ray is from HARLEM, right guys? Back in, Stevie Ray slams Konnan and now it gets awkward. Stevie Ray stops a mule kick from Konnan and gives him a facebuster. When Stevie Ray starts choking Konnan and won’t stop, Booker T gets up on the apron to get his brother to stop. They start arguing over the Slap Jack. Booker wants his brother to beat Konnan the fair and decent way and Stevie Ray is convinced he can beat Konnan without it. Okay then. Konnan immediately comes back with the K-FACTOR for the win. (3:07) Better than expected, but still an awkward matchup. We don’t get to see any Harlem Heat squabble for some reason. ¾*

We catch George Steinbrenner is hanging out with NFL Hall of Famer Warren Sapp up in one of the luxury boxes. Apparently, Tony is a Yankees fan? Bleh.

A somber Eric Bischoff (with glasses!) comes out to the ring. I think he wore those just so he could dramatically take them off. Bischoff apologizes to the Flair family and all the Flair fans for driving Ric Flair to such an unhealthy level of insanity. He admits Ric Flair does deserve a tremendous amount of credit and respect. He again apologizes to the Flair family and hopes he gets a chance to apologize to his children and his wife Beth soon. He hopes to see Flair back in action again doing what he does so well. After what they have done with Scott Steiner and Buff Bagwell in the recent past, I think everyone was just waiting for a snicker or a laugh from Bischoff. It doesn’t happen here, but it will happen soon enough.

Gene Okerlund brings out Booker T for a talk. Before he gets started, Booker lets everybody know he’s praying for Ric Flair and hopes he gets well soon. Talk turns to Stevie Ray, Booker says Stevie Ray made his choice to join the nWo B&W. That’s all good with Book. Out comes Stevie Ray. He tells Booker better start praying for himself. Nobody in WCW gives a darn about Booker T. Stevie Ray confesses that Booker made him join the nWo B&W. THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT, BOOKER. If it wasn’t for Booker, Harlem Heat would still be the best tag team in the world. Together, Harlem Heat had everybody shaking in their boots. Since Booker seems to want to impress who Stevie Ray feels don’t care, Booker goes around wearing ties instead of nWo B&W t-shirts. Stevie Ray tosses a shirt to Booker and leaves him to think it over. Booker doesn’t know what to think and walks away.

Backstage, we see security is stopping a woman claiming to be Raven’s mom from entering the building. She’s covered in jewelry and looks RICH. She fired up her Lear jet just to come see her son. Busy man Doug Dellinger steps in and offers nothing. Kanyon comes over to tell Dellinger that she is in fact Raven’s mom, but Kanyon says he’ll handle it. But first, Kanyon needs $50. She refuses to pay him to take her to see his son. That’s understandable. As Kanyon walks on, Raven’s mom leaves with him. There’s been way too many wrestler’s moms showing up on this show in 1998.

  • Scott Hall vs. Horace

Tony and Bobby reminisce about Ric Flair. Hall does the shoulder butt thing and slaps Horace around while he’s got an armbar applied. Horace pulls him into a short-arm clothesline to stop it. Hall reverses a corner whip and chokeslams Horace. Hey, there’s the Giant impression. I’m going to miss that. Horace throws Hall out to the floor and delivers a suicide dive (!!) to send him into the guardrail. Back in, Horace stomps around on Hall and hits a backbreaker and splash for two. He slams Hall for a legdrop for two. I guess the fatal legdrop isn’t in the genes. Sleeperhold time. Hall fights up into a back suplex. Horace still manages to roll over on top of Hall for a two-count. Hall mounts his comeback and hits the Fallaway Slam. When he calls for the Outsiders Edge, the nWo B&W boys come into frame for the DQ. (6:27) Stevie Ray, Scott Norton, Vincent, and Brian Adams wail away on Hall. Who will come to his aid? It’s DISCO INFERNO wearing an nWo Wolfpac tank top. Tony questions where he got that shirt, but I’d imagine there’s several WCW/nWo merch stands throughout the building, and I’m surprised that he doesn’t know that. The IWGP heavyweight champ Scott Norton grabs Disco and stuffs him with a POWERBOMB. The mugging continues as we go to break. One of Horace’s better matches. *½

NITRO GIRLS~! No Fyre, so you know what I do.

  • Scott Steiner (w/Buff Bagwell) vs. Van Hammer

With all the Flair talk, Heenan wants to know if there’s any update on DDP. Nope, nothing. The highly charismatic nWo ref handles this match. Hammer knocks Buff’s hat off his head and so Steiner attacks from behind. Why would a chill hippie like Hammer even agree to this match? STEINER RECLINER ends Hammer in 1:24.

Afterwards, Steiner gets on the mic and tells us all to pay homage to the new leader of the nWo B&W. The attacks from the nWo on WCW have been more “kakulated” than ever before, says Scott. Now Steiner says he wants to talk to Lex Luger. He comes out in his street clothes. Buff tells Lex this is all business – no hanky panky. Bagwell tells the world that Lex was the first guy to call him when he was injured (WHY WOULD HE DO THAT? Lex was WCW and Buff was nWo) and offered him training advice to get back into shape. He says that Lex is always giving, but he’s never receiving. Giggity. Buff has seen the Konnan music video so many times, he could puke. Where was Lex’s face in that video? Did Konnan even ask LEX LUGER – THE WHITEST MAN IN WCW to be in his RAP video? Where is Lex in the nWo Wolfpac t-shirt ads? Why did Sting head out to California to become a movie star and leave Luger behind? Does Lex remember who eliminated him at World War 3? It was KEVIN NASH. Lex should have a WCW world title shot, but he doesn’t get one. Steiner tells Lex he’ll make sure Luger get title shots. Lex needs to forget about the nWo Wolfpac and think about the B&W. The shirt gets offered. Lex walks off, but you have to wonder if he’s thinking about it. I mean, they have do have good points here.

  • Goldberg vs. Kevin Nash vs. Bam Bam Bigelow

The camera goes from a “GAY-BERG” sign to showing Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Rickey Medlocke in the front row. Kevin Nash can’t wait to get his hands on Goldberg right now. Pretty weird, actually. Like a genius, Nash stands back and lets Bigelow beat on Goldberg. I mean, why wouldn’t you. Goldberg clotheslines and kicks Bigelow down. He covers Bigelow, but Nash breaks up the pin and corners Goldberg with the usual. Bigelow joins Nash to tear down Goldberg. Somehow, Goldberg fights his way out. Nash thumbs Goldberg in the eye and gets Bigelow to help him whip Goldberg into the ropes, but Goldberg runs through them and comes back around to clothesline them both down. Nash and Bigelow head out for a breather. Heenan – “NITRO HAS NEVER BEEN BETTER THAN TONIGHT.” The crowd is solidly behind Goldberg. But yeah, end the streak. This guy is dead in the water. Back in, Goldberg and Nash punch down Bigelow. Nash clotheslines Goldberg and gives him a Side Slam for two. Bigelow makes the save and slams Goldberg for a diving headbutt for two. Goldberg heel trips Nash and bars the leg. Bigelow hits a diving headbutt on Goldberg to break it up. He runs down Goldberg with a shoulderblock. Goldberg counters a vertical suplex and runs down Bigelow with a Spear. He looks for the Jackhammer, but Nash breaks it up and hammers away on Goldberg. Nash gets tripped up and Goldberg chokes him. Once Nash gets to his feet, he thumbs Goldberg in the eye. Is this a Three Stooges routine? Goldberg ducks the Big Boot and levels Nash with a Spear. Goldberg then clotheslines Bigelow and calls for the Jackhammer on Nash. Oh wait, here comes Scott Hall to attack Goldberg. Throw the match out. (5:00) Shouldn’t he be attacking Bigelow? There we go. Hall and Bigelow brawl out of the ring leaving our Starrcade main event in the ring. They trade blows on each other while Hall and Bigelow do the same on the floor as we call it a night. *½

The final Thunder of the year is next! Until then, 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
WCW World TV Championship: Konnan (c) vs. Chris Jericho
Ric Flair vs. Eric Bischoff
Diamond Dallas Page vs. The Giant


Posted on August 25, 2022, in WCW and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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