DATE: April 11, 1999
VENUE: Tacoma Dome (Tacoma, WA)
COMMENTATORS: Tony Schiavone, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, & “The Professor” Mike Tenay
VIEWING METHOD: Peacock
The World Heavyweight Championship is up for grabs in the main event as Ric Flair defends against Hollywood Hogan, Sting, and Diamond Dallas Page in a Four Corners Match with the returning “Macho Man” Randy Savage as the special guest referee. Also on the show the United States Championship is decided as Booker T takes on Scott Steiner, Hak battles Bam Bam Bigelow in a Hardcore match, Goldberg finally gets his hands on Kevin Nash after losing the World Title (and streak) to him back in December, and most importantly IT’S THE FIRST PPV WITH THE NEW LOGO THAT ONLY I LIKE, APPARENTLY.
- WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair
- WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: Vacant
- WCW WORLD TELEVISION CHAMPION: Booker T
- WCW CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPION: Rey Mysterio Jr.
- WCW WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: Rey Mysterio Jr. & Kidman
- Blitzkrieg vs. Juventud Guerrera (**1/2)
- Hak vs. Bam Bam Bigelow (**3/4)
- Mikey Whipwreck vs. Scotty Riggs (**)
- Konnan vs. Disco Inferno (*1/2)
- Rey Mysterio Jr. [c] vs. Kidman for the WCW CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP (***1/4)
- Raven & Perry Saturn vs. Chris Benoit & Dean Malenko (****)
- Booker T vs. Scott Steiner for the vacant WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP (**1/2)
- Goldberg vs. Kevin Nash (*3/4)
- Ric Flair [c] vs. Hollywood Hogan vs. Sting vs. Diamond Dallas Page for the WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP (***)
-Schiavone, Heenan, & Tenay open the show hyping the card, the new WCW (and Spring Stampede) logo in full view. It f*cking rocks, don’t trust anyone who says they hate it.
–Blitzkrieg makes his entrance to the old Hollywood Blondes theme, but I can’t tell if that’s a Peacock edit or not since the ring announcer is being drowned out.
Blitzkrieg vs. Juventud Guerrera
Winner of this match meets the winner of the Cruiserweight Title match tomorrow night on Monday Nitro. I have to wash my hair so I won’t be tuning in.
Blitz and Juvi trade hammerlocks to start, Blitz flips out and blocks an O’Connor Roll, Juvi catches him with a drop toehold into a roll-up for a two-count. Blitz traps Juvi in a toehold of sorts, Juvi turns it into another roll-up for the 1…2…Blitz kicks out once more and complains to the ref about his mask getting tugged or some nonsense. Don’t be a baby, you big baby. Blitz catches Juvi with a kick and grabs a side headlock, Juvi whips him off and gets dropped with a shoulder tackle. Juvi monkey flips, Blitz lands on his feet and connects with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for the 1…2…not yet. Lots of mask adjusting already by Blitzkrieg, that’s gotta be frustrating. Juvi lights Blitz up with chops, following with a headscissors. Blitz catches Juvi in the corner with a back handspring elbow that Juvi puffs his chest out for so it makes contact, and follows up with count along rights. Juvi gets sent to the apron and repeatedly sends Blitz skull-first into the top buckle, then measures Blitz for a LONG time before hitting a springboard dropkick to the back of the head. Blitz rolls to the floor to buy some time, Juvi gives him a second to breathe then connects with a tope suicida, clearing the top rope. Blitz escapes a suplex attempt and drops Juvi with a jumping back kick. Blitz KICK FLIPS OFF Juvi and sends him to the floor with another boot. Blitz takes a minute to compose himself then heads to the top but Juvi walks to the other side of the ring to avoid it. Blitz regroups and tries again but Juvi catches him on the way down with a missile dropkick and damn near sends him into outer space. Hot damn. Blitz counters a tilt-a-whirl with an armdrag that sends Juvi back to the floor, and follows up with a BEAUTIFUL slingshot into a springboard moonsault. Juvi sits Blitz on the top turnbuckle and goes for something or another but they fall to the canvas awkwardly. Blitz misses a Phoenix Splash but counters a Juvi Driver with a cradle for the 1…2…Juvi kicks out! Blitz plants Juvi into the canvas with an awkward super victory roll for the 1…2…not yet! Blitz puts Juvi back on the buckles and tries again but this time Juvi grabs him and connects with a SUPER JUVI DRIVER for the 1…2…3.
Juventud Guerrera defeated Blitzkrieg via pinfall (11:12)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: The energy was there but oh man did this end up being a clusterf*ck. Felt like they were wrestling different matches and their big spots were beefed as a result. Still had some fun moments but man I was hoping for better than this especially given how much I remember loving Blitzkrieg back in 1999. I’m sure his TV matches were better but I think this is his one and only PPV match. That’s a shame. Also a shame they didn’t just give him the surprise win and title shot but making new stars wasn’t much of a thing no matter what title division you were paying attention to at this point. (**1/2)
-VIDEO: Hak & Bam Bam Bigelow beat the hell out of each other on various TV leading to tonight’s match.
Hak [w/ Chastity] vs. “The Beast from the East” Bam Bam Bigelow
Hak comes out covered in BOB WIRE and carrying a table, Chastity following behind with his trusty Singapore Cane as the commentators perv the f*ck out about her like she just turned 18 or something. Jeez guys, go outside once in awhile. This is no holds barred hardcore rules so bring on the plundah!
Bigelow attacks Hak with a bin full of weapons in the aisle, Hak fights him off with a trash can and they battle to the Spring Stampede stagecoach set. Hak beats Bigelow down with strikes and puts Bigelow through a completely different table with a somersault from the top of the stagecoach! Somehow this ISN’T the final spot of the match. Bigelow seems relatively unfazed though and beats on Hak as they slowly make their way to the ring, Chastity having dispersed all the weapons from the bin. Hak lays a table between the apron and guardrail, Bigelow cracks him in the skull with a cookie sheet. Bigelow beats on Hak with random weapons from a broom to a salad bowl as the commentators launch into one-liners. Hak blocks a suplex but Bigelow dead weights him and he hurts his knee in the process. Hak shakes it off and introduces a big ol’ ladder into the match, Bigelow goes for it and Hak dropkicks it into his face. The ladder lands on top of Bigelow and Hak somersaults onto it, hurting himself in the process. Hak goes back to the floor and rolls in a table and a guardrail from under the ring. At least having an extra guardrail under there makes sense. The table that had been propped up outside has since been knocked over as the fans have taken their guardrail back. Hak dents the trash can off Bigelow’s head, Chastity sets the table back up between the apron and & rail, Hak climbs the ladder for NO REASON and Bigelow pulls him off, putting him THROUGH the table. WHAT DID YOU THINK WAS GONNA HAPPEN, DUDE? Hak rolls back in, Bigelow whips him into the ladder which is now propped up in a corner. Hak lays Bigelow on the safety rail but misses a legdrop and goes jewels-first into the metal. Chastity tries to interfere, Bigelow sprays her out of the ring with a fire extinguisher, Hak attacks from behind and hits a White Russian Legsweep into the safety rail. They climb the buckles, Bigelow connects with a SUPER GREETINGS FROM ASBURY PARK THROUGH A TABLE for the 1…2…3.
Bam Bam Bigelow defeated Hak via pinfall (11:34)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Total by the numbers hardcore match by two guys who knew that they could get WCW to throw them money at half-assed “ECW”-style plunder, but that is NOT a knock against either of them because I would have done the same thing in their shoes. Match was still entertaining and Hak got to show off with the big bumps, even if some of them did not make sense (why you climbing ladders to nowhere boo boo?). I’m nostalgic for this bullsh*t so I had fun with it, I won’t lie. (**3/4)
Mikey Whipwreck vs. Scotty Riggs
Riggs is rocking a narcissist gimmick, making his entrance with a hand mirror that reads “Better Lookin’ Each Day” on the back. Fair enough. Whipwreck made his debut in easily the best PPV match of the year so far for WCW last month at Uncensored and…I guess hasn’t really done anything since. This was not announced before the PPV so Schiavone bills it as a special addition. Millions of buys down the drain by not announcing this early, WAY TO GO WCW.
Riggs backs Whipwreck into the corner and pinches his cheek, playing mind games with his less attractive opponent. Riggs continues the offense but spends too much time showboating between moves, angering Whipwreck who connects with a series of count along rights a back elbow off an Irish whip. Whipwreck connects with a dropkick and Riggs spills out to the floor; no time to regroup though as Whipwreck keeps the pressure going by sending him crashing into the guardrail. Whipwreck rolls Riggs into the ring and lays him across the bottom rope, connecting with a legdrop on the apron. Whipwreck dropkicks Riggs through the ropes and follows up with a slingshot hurricanrana! Whipwreck tries another slingshot legdrop but this time Riggs moves out of the way, then sends him crashing off the apron and into the guardrail, the back of his head connecting with the steel. Helluva bump! Feeling arrogant, Riggs decides to showboat more and tries to “pin” Whipwreck with one finger which doesn’t work for obvious reasons. Riggs drops a forearm as someone in the crowd visibly yawns. RUDE. Whipwreck surprises Riggs with a missile dropkick from the middle buckle for the 1…2…Riggs kicks out, Whipwreck connects with a Russian legsweep for the 1…2…still a kickout. Whipwreck connects with a Frankensteiner for the 1…2…Riggs gets his free foot on the ropes. Riggs ducks a lariat, Whipwreck ducks a lariat, Riggs flattens Whipwreck with a flying forearm for the 1…2…3.
Scotty Riggs defeated Mikey Whipwreck via pinfall (7:03)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: This match had little to no momentum outside of a cadre of Mikey Whipwreck fans scattered about but that didn’t stop them from trying to put on a worthwhile match. YMMV on if they were successful or not but I enjoyed it for the most part. Perfectly Acceptable Wrestling. (**)
-FEUD RECAP: Konnan & Disco Inferno have beef over…music videos or some sh*t. I couldn’t hear a lot of what they were saying due to the sound mix.
Konnan vs. Disco Inferno
Konnan made a music video, Disco Inferno made fun of said music video and also has been mocking K-Dawg as the masked “La Cucaracha” according to the commentary team (HEH). I think the feud was born out of Disco being part of the new nWo after Konnan was kicked out by his former friends but at this point that seems like it’s been swept under the rug as Disco isn’t even wearing Wolfpac colors anymore, he’s back to his sequin ways AS GOD INTENDED.
Konnan assaults Disco before the bell, calling him a “straight up strawberry”, so Disco attacks him and chokes him with his jacket in justified response. Konnan ducks a clothesline and turns it into a bulldog, following up with a basement dropkick. Konnan lays into Disco with rights and stomps in the corner, Heenan calling his kicks a “Mexican Hat Dance”. Wrestling is…something, man. Disco drops a charging Konnan with a back elbow and goes back on the offensive with a series of rights to the back of the head. Konnan floats over Disco in the corner, Disco responds with a running back elbow and celebrates like he won a World Championship before slowing it down with a chinlock. Disco connects with a running neckbreaker but takes too long showboating and Konnan kicks out of the lateral press. Back to the chinlock we go, Disco breaks it for a flying forearm but can’t get the pin so now we’re going into the THIRD chinlock. Konnan surprises Disco with a hip toss, Disco uses Konnan’s own momentum and sends him out to the floor like an IDIOT. Konnan shoves Disco into the steel post. Disco shrugs it off and goes back on the attack…only to go RIGHT BACK TO THE CHINLOCK. Come onnnnn. Konnan escapes, Disco clubs him down and connects with a scoop slam but misses an elbowdrop. K-Dawg starts his comeback, connecting with a rolling lariat and a cradle DDT (called the 187) for the 1…2…Disco kicks out! Disco responds with a swinging neckbreaker for the 1…2…Konnan gets the shoulder up. Konnan catches Disco with a back kick, Disco ducks a clothesline, Konnan shrugs off the Last Dance and HITS A LAST DANCE OF HIS OWN for the 1…2…3!
Konnan defeated Disco Inferno via pinfall (9:17)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Disco carried this one as best he could but maaaan this was a slog. Konnan was so damn cool but seeing him wrestle now all these years later just depresses me, that dude was low-effort as f*ck outside of the promos. And hey it worked for him then and probably still does but for me it’s not a great thing to sit through. Disco Inferno, on the other hand, f*cking kicks ass and continues being one of WCW’s unsung heroes in my eyes. The gimmick was too much for him to really ever overcome in the way he deserved but damned if he didn’t try. Anyway, the match was dull but Disco Inferno was alright. (*1/2)
Rey Mysterio Jr. [c] vs. Kidman for the WCW CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
Mysterio & Kidman are the current World Tag Team Champions, becoming the third team in three months to hold the gold after beating Chris Benoit & Dean Malenko on an episode of Monday Nitro. Honestly that match sounds kind of kick ass and I may search that out later only to be let down because this is 1999. However tonight they are ENEMIES as they battle for the Cruiserweight Championship, a title that Mysterio beat Kidman for earlier in March on a DIFFERENT episode of Monday Nitro. Look, their friendship is complicated, okay?
Mysterio drops Kidman with a shoulder tackle and flips over a drop down, Kidman responds with a forearm, Mysterio monkey flips Kidman to the mat and both men bridge up to avoid getting pinned. Kidman gets sent to the apron, slings back in with a headscissors takeover to Mysterio, Mysterio floats over Kidman but gets sent to the floor with a backdrop. Kidman takes a second and allows Mysterio to get to his feet, then flattens him once again with a slingshot crossbody, Mysterio reverses Kidman and sends him into the guardrail, Kidman counters a wheelbarrow and drops Mysterio sternum-first on the guardrail then hops into the front row and hits a guillotine legdrop. Kidman can’t get the pin yet though so he settles for a chinlock. Mysterio sends Kidman back to the floor with a headscissors but gets caught in mid-air off a moonsault attempt, Mysterio sends him into the guardrail, Kidman connects with a headscissors and MAN THIS CROWD SHOULD BE LOUDER WHAT THE HELL. Back in the ring Mysterio connects with a springboard seated splash for the 1…2…Kidman kicks out, Mysterio follows up with a Lionsault for the 1…2…Kidman kicks out again. Kidman blocks a rana attempt and turns it into a power bomb but is too hurt to immediately make the cover and Mysterio gets the shoulder up. Kidman connects with a backbreaker followed by a slam but once again takes too long regrouping and the champ kicks out once more. Mysterio escapes a slam, Kidman connects with a Low Down for the 1…2…Mysterio fights out, Kidman slides him to the floor and hits a SHOOTING STAR PRESS OFF THE APRON. Oh damn!
Kidman comes off the top, Mysterio catches him in mid-air with a dropkick and covers for the 1…2…not yet. Mysterio connects with a spinning heel kick, Kidman counters an attempted whatever with a backdrop and runs into a boot, Mysterio charges and Kidman turns it into a snap powerslam for the 1…2…Mysterio kicks out and Kidman slows it down with another rear chinlock. Mysterio escapes and sends Kidman to the floor with a clothesline, following up with a springboard somersault dive. Back in the ring Kidman counters a flying Mysterio with a lariat for the 1…2…champ kicks out and Kidman is back at it with the chinlock. Mysterio escapes, Kidman pops him up but Mysterio counters into a rana for the 1…2…Kidman kicks out and now MYSTERIO is the one cinching in a chinlock. Mysterio sends himself into the ringpost, Kidman tries another pop up but Mysterio counters again this time with an X-Factor for the 1…2…Kidman kicks out. Mysterio ducks a lariat, Kidman connects with a sitout Pedigree and heads to the top, Mysterio meets him on the buckles, Kidman turns it into a sunset bomb for the 1…2…MYSTERIO KICKS OUT. Mysterio seats Kidman on the buckles and connects with a wheelbarrow into a bulldog from the middle buckle for the 1…2…KIDMAN KICKS OUT OF THE MOVE MYSTERIO USED TO WIN THE TITLE JUST A FEW WEEKS AGO. Kidman comes back with a springboard bulldog of his own for the 1…2…MYSTERIO KICKS OUT. Kidman sends himself to the floor and tries to get back in, Mysterio catches him with a guillotine legdrop to the back of the head and follows up with a standing moonsault to the legs for the 1…2…Kidman with the shoulder up. KIDMAN SPECIAL (power bomb countered into a faceslam) and Kidman heads to the top but Mysterio trips him up and connects with a flying hurricanrana for the 1…2…3!
Rey Mysterio Jr. [c] defeated Kidman via pinfall to retain the WCW CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP (15:32)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Can’t get much more marquee for the CW division as Mysterio vs. Kidman and for the most part they delivered. Match started hot, sagged in the middle, but picked up toward the end to the point it forced Schiavone to actually pay attention to the match instead of jab at Heenan. Cut five minutes off this one and it would’ve been a classic, but as it is now it’s still pretty damn good. (***1/4)
Raven & Perry Saturn vs. “The Crippler” Chris Benoit & “The Iceman” Dean Malenko [w/ “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson]
A video that airs before the entrances lays out the beef between the two teams: on the Spring Breakout edition of Monday Nitro Saturn came to the aid of Raven as he was getting beaten up by Benoit & Malenko, and the former Flock members reunited and almost won the Tag Team gold. They came up short thanks to a DQ but got the last laugh on another episode of Monday Nitro, helping Mysterio & Kidman defeat the Horsemen for the titles. Well not much of a last laugh since this would’ve BEEN for the titles had Raven & Saturn not screwed Benoit & Malenko over but you know, it be like that sometimes. Both teams are coming into this one prepared: the Horsemen with Arn Anderson, Raven & Saturn with a table. Lots of talk by Heenan about how much punishment Benoit is willing to subject his body too and man I REALLY WISH HE WASN’T LIKE THAT.
First minute is spent in a staredown, letting the crowd get more and more hyped up as they appear to really be looking forward to this. Saturn tumbles to the floor, Malenko tries a double ax but gets caught with an inverted atomic drop on the way down then whips Benoit into his own partner. Raven tags in and they hit a sorta Total Elimination lariat-style for the first two-count. Raven connects with a front suplex, Saturn comes off the top with a splash and covers for the 1…2…Malenko intervenes. Benoit dropkicks a distracted Raven to the floor, Anderson & Malenko puts the boots to him as the ref (Charles Robinson, hmmm) is too busy to pay attention. The Horsemen continue the offense, turning Raven into a wishbone and clearing Saturn off the apron for added insult. Malenko drills Raven with a beaut of a vertical suplex for the 1…2…not yet. Benoit tags in, Raven surprises him with an inside cradle but Robinson spends too much time trying to get Malenko out of the ring to make the count. HMM. Raven catches a charging Malenko with a pair of boots and a driving clothesline. Saturn gets the tag and puts the forearms to everybody, including Anderson which gets a big pop from the crowd. Malenko stops the momentum with a right hand and drops Saturn on the buckles, Raven peels Malenko off on his shoulders and Saturn hits a flying crossbody. Benoit prevents the Death Valley Driver, Malenko dropkicks Saturn into a German Suplex from the Crippler. Raven & Benoit get sent to the floor, Malenko locks Saturn in the Texas Cloverleaf, Saturn guts it through and makes it to the ropes. Saturn pulls Malenko in, DVD for the 1…2…BENOIT BREAKS IT UP WITH A DIVING HEADBUTT AND MALENKO COVERS FOR THE 1…2…SATURN KICKS OUT. This match f*cking rules. Benoit stomps on Saturn’s left leg, helping weaken it for his partner’s finisher. Malenko tags in and connects with a sliding dropkick and PLAYS TO THE CROWD which is a strange thing to see from The Iceman. Malenko covers, Saturn kicks out at 2 so he switches gears into a sleeperhold, bringing him to the mat and wrapping his legs around the torso to turn it into a rear-naked choke.
Raven breaks it up with a kick, Benoit knocks Raven off the apron and covers Saturn for the 1…2…shoulder up. Benoit tries again with a Northern Lights Suplex but Saturn gets his shoulder up in the nick of time once again. Saturn falls to the floor, Malenko punts him in the ribs and chokes him with his boot while Robinson remains oblivious. Saturn dodges Malenko in the corner and rolls Benoit up with a sunset flip for the 1…2…Deano breaks it up with a dropkick to the back of the head and slows it back down with another chinlock, legs grapevine around the body. Saturn breaks it up with a belly-to-back suplex and makes the tag to Raven, who sends Malenko out to the floor with a clothesline. A chair gets tossed into the ring, Raven sends him into the steel with a drop toehold, Saturn misses a splash on the floor and goes through the table he set up earlier. Raven reverses an Irish whip into an Evenflow and covers, Anderson runs in and places a chair on the back of Raven’s head, Benoit connects with a flying headbutt as Robinson argues with Double A, and Malenko covers for the 1…2…3.
Chris Benoit & Dean Malenko defeated Raven & Perry Saturn via pinfall (14:11)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Man I f*cking loved this match, a great contest between two evenly-matched teams that had no boring moments whatsoever. Hell it was so good you could hear Schiavone get emotionally invested in a way he seldom has so far on these 1999 PPVs and that in an of itself should be considered a win. Of course with WCW being WCW they decided to have Benoit & Malenko lose the belts before the PPV, robbing us of what could have been a standout TITLE match. As it stands though it’s a great statement for the division and I would watch these two teams kick each other’s teeth in over and over…maybe with less Benoit head bumps into steel chairs though. (****)
-VIDEO: Ric Flair strips Scott Hall of the U.S. Title and puts it up for grabs in a tournament which concludes tonight. Chris Jericho lost to Scott Steiner in the first round but campaigned to get back in, only to lose to Booker T in the next round via DQ thanks to interference from Steiner. Booker/Jericho wrestled again on Thunder with Steiner interfering but Stevie Ray surprisingly helped his estranged brother by slapjacking Jericho.
Booker T vs. “Big Poppa Pump” Scott Steiner for the vacant WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
Booker T defeated Scott Steiner for the Television Title last month at Uncensored thanks to the accidental help of Buff Bagwell; he’s still the champion as of this show so if he wins tonight he’ll become a double champion. If he does that, does that mean he has to vacate the TV Title and WCW will have to hold a THIRD tournament in four months like it’s 1991 all over again? I mean this show is like 22 years old at the time of this recap so I guess I can figure it out but ehhh.
Steiner f*cks with the ringside crowd, mocking a dude as his girlfriend/wife touches his chest and getting in the face of someone who VERY MUCH DID NOT WANT THAT TO HAPPEN. It happens for longer than it should but the ref didn’t really care about administering a count so he’s safe. Booker gets the crowd cheering, Steiner bails from the ring and HOPS INTO THE FRONT ROW TO JAW WITH THE FANS as security does their best to keep everybody safe. Goddamn. Finally they lock up and Booker brings Steiner to the canvas with a waistlock, Steiner fights out of a front chancery and buries elbows to the back of the head. Steiner runs Booker over, Booker responds with a dropkick followed by an armdrag and Big Poppa Pump rolls to the floor once again to regroup. Steiner backs Booker in the corner and lights him up with cheapshots as the ref tries to separate them. Booker ducks a clothesline and connects with a flying forearm, following up with a clothesline off the apron after sending Steiner to the floor. Booker introduces Steiner to various pieces of the guardrail and rolls him back in, Steiner calls for a timeout but doesn’t get it; instead he gets a boot to the face and a series of right hands to the moneymaker. Booker WRECKS Steiner with a corner clothesline, Steiner counters corner mount rights by dropping him jewels-first over the top rope.
Steiner continues the offense, leveling Booker with a clothesline and showing off with some mid-match pushups instead of making the cover. Let’s see if that bites him in the ass as the match progresses. Steiner stomps Booker in the corner, ref admonishes him and Steiner pie-faces him but doesn’t get DQed because the ref would like to keep his life. Fair. Steiner with a backbreaker and lateral press, Booker kicks out of the lateral press as the crowd chants “STEROIDS”; the commentators remark on them being loud but doesn’t admit what they’re chanting exactly. Steiner continues intimidating the ref, even kicking Booker full force in the junk and posing for the crowd knowing that he won’t get in trouble. Steiner slows it down with a standing bearhug, Booker tries to pry him off but Steiner traps the arms and turns it into a belly-to-belly suplex. Hell yeah. Steiner goes for a suplex, Booker escapes and turns it into a DDT but is too out of it to make the cover. Booker mounts a comeback with a spinwheel kick and series of lariats; Booker charges in and Steiner pulls the ref in between them to take the official out. Booker connects with the Ax Kick and a flapjack, spinning to his feet for another heel kick for the…visual pin only, unfortunately. Booker picks the ref up, Steiner clobbers both and the ref goes back down, Booker heads to the top but Steiner trips him up. Steiner brings Booker to the canvas with a FRANKENSTEINER and grabs the ref, making his own count of 1…2…AND BOOKER STILL KICKS OUT. Steiner grabs a foreign object from his tights, Booker ducks it and goes for a suplex, Steiner hits him with the mystery object and Booker goes down. A second ref tries to wake the first up, Steiner pulls said ref in and he groggily counts the 1…2…3.
Scott Steiner defeated Booker T via pinfall to win the WCW UNITED STATES HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP (15:56)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Scott Steiner being a big ol’ roid rage bully is fun to watch but also kind of gross in a “art imitating life, he was probably really like this to people backstage” way. Match itself was pretty good, didn’t hold my attention for the whole time but the opening few minutes of Booker outsmarting his foe were good. At least Booker still has the TV Title and won’t have to face a Steiner on next month’s PPV OH HEY WAIT A MIN- (**1/2)
–Rey Mysterio Jr. gets interviewed at the WCW.com booth by Mark Madden and…dad sweatshirt man. I don’t know who that is still. Mysterio meets Juvi tomorrow on Monday Nitro after the events of tonight.
Goldberg vs. “Big Sexy” Kevin Nash
Goldberg spent 1998 becoming WCW’s hottest superstar, embarking on an undefeated streak and winning the World Heavyweight Championship on a memorable July Monday Nitro at the Georgia Dome. It seemed like despite itself WCW had themselves the next big star to carry them through the waning interest of the New World Order…and then Nash ended the streak at Starrcade ‘98 and the nWo was reformed for the 1000th time and yadda yadda. Goldberg has spent 1999 tying up loose ends, beating Scott Hall (the man who tased him at Starrcade which led to his loss) at Souled Out and Bam Bam Bigelow (the man who came to WCW specifically to fight him) at SuperBrawl IX. After sitting out Uncensored he’s ready to finally put the past behind him by hopefully getting the win over Big Sexy himself. Commentators don’t really play this up though, instead they talk about how BRAVE Nash is for taking this match despite not needing to prove himself which is…a choice.
The bell rings but before they make contact Nash gets on the mic with a little “HEY YO” and “WOLFPAC IS IN THE HOUSE”. Cool? This isn’t 1998 anymore, Wolfpac isn’t cool. Nash works Goldberg over in the corner, driving knees into the sternum/gut as Lex Luger & Miss Elizabeth show up at ringside. Nash keeps the offense going in the corner, Liz distracting the ref so he can connect with an unenthusiastic low-blow. Nash throws Goldberg into opposite corners and manhandles him into a sidewalk slam for the 1…2…not enough. Nash misses the big boot, Goldberg leaves his feet and drops him with a flying forearm of sorts. Goldberg ducks a series of strike attempts, bobbing and weaving and dropping Big Sexy with a hook kick. Goldberg charges, Nash LEAPFROGS HIM and the ref eats a Spear. Luger takes the opportunity and wallops Goldberg in the back with a chair, Nash pulls the straps down and goes for the Jackknife but Goldberg counters with a low-blow of his own. Luger runs in and gets dropped with a kick, Goldberg spears Nash and hits the Jackhammer (!!!) for the 1…2…3!
Goldberg defeated Kevin Nash via pinfall (7:45)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Not a lot to it but there were a couple of memorable moments (Nash leapfrogging Goldberg, Goldberg actually muscling Nash up into a Jackhammer, a move I didn’t expect Big Sexy to agree to do tbh). Goldberg finally gets his win back, except four months too late and not for the World Title. Better late than never, I guess? Oh well. (*3/4)
Goldberg celebrates as Schiavone calls it the most defining win of his career. I dunno I’d argue beating Hogan for the World Title was more of a career-defining thing myself.
–David Penzer introduces the returning “Macho Man” Randy Savage as the special guest referee, who comes out to a generic nu-metal instrumental theme accompanied by a MUCH YOUNGER girlfriend (Gorgeous George). Savage is in full-on midlife crisis mode here and it’s hilarious and also sad. Also hold up where’s Michael Buffer? You drag him out for UNCENSORED but not for a real PPV?
SPECIAL GUEST REFEREE: “MACHO MAN” RANDY SAVAGE
“The Nature Boy” Ric Flair [c] vs. Hollywood Hogan vs. Sting vs. Diamond Dallas Page for the WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
Flair beat Hogan for the World Title last month at Uncensored, turning heel and becoming PRESIDENT OF WCW FOR LIFE (for now). This same match turned Hogan into a babyface I guess, but he’s still the leader of the nWo as far as I know so I’m not sure where he stands with that. This is Sting’s first appearance on a WCW PPV in 1999, having sat out some months dealing with personal issues, and this is DDP’s second shot at the World Title on PPV, memorably having come up short against Goldberg at Halloween Havoc 1998. This match is “tornado rules” meaning everyone can fight at the same time, and it’s one fall to a finish.
Savage calls for the bell and chaos immediately ensues, Flair & Hogan battling to the floor as Sting goes for the Scorpion Death Lock on DDP but DDP makes it to the ropes. Sting blocks a hip toss, DDP turns it into a swinging neckbreaker and covers for the 1…2…not yet. Sting clotheslines DDP, Hogan works Flair over with his weight belt on the floor. Sting hits DDP with a Stinger Splash and covers for the 1…2…Flair makes the save and Hogan re-enters as well. Sting slams Flair off the top turnbuckle but ends up battling DDP on the floor as Hogan whips Flair with his weight belt in the ring. Hogan connects witha backdrop followed by a clothesline, Sting splashes DDP against the guardrail. Hogan brushes off Flair’s chops and connects with a series of rights and a big boot. Hogan connects with the Big Legdrop for the 1…2…Sting releases the Death Lock on DDP to break the pin. Flair chop blocks Hogan’s knee and goes to work on it as DDP throws Sting into the safety rail, making sure to keep an eye on what’s going on in the ring. Flair slaps on the Figure Four Leglock, Sting misses a splash and goes ribs-first into the guardrail, Hogan reverses the FIgure Four and DDP runs in to break it. DDP muscles Flair to the floor with a clothesline, then grabs Hogan and locks in a RINGPOST FIGURE FOUR. Hogan screams in agony, Sting attacks DDP to break the hold but the damage has already been done and Hogan gets helped to the back by Doug Dillinger and WCW trainer Danny Young, with a concerned Eric Bischoff checking in on him.
Sting and Flair do battle as DDP sits back and lets them go, waiting for his moment to strike. Sting no-sells Flair’s chops and sends him off the apron with a clothesline, DDP clubs Sting from behind and covers for the 1…2…not yet. DDP drops an elbow and covers again for the 1…2…not yet. Flair re-enters the match and gets leveled with a discus lariat, DDP covering for the 1…2…shoulder up. Sting reverses a corner whip and pancakes DDP with a Stinger Splash, DDP tries the Diamond Cutter but Sting escapes and connects with a one-handed bulldog. DDP throws Flair to the floor, DDP counters Sting and drills him with a Tombstone for the 1…2…Flair pulls him off and tosses him to the floor. Sting seats Flair on the top turnbuckle and connects with THE MOST SUPER OF PLEXES but the impact hurts them both and by the time Sting covers, Flair has the energy to get the shoulder up just in time. Flair connects with a belly-to-back suplex and covers for the 1…2…Sting kicks out. Flair locks in a Sleeperhold, DDP comes from behind and locks in a Sleeper on Flair! Sting almost fades but drops to his ass and connects with a DOUBLE JAWBREAKER to break everything. That ruled. All three beat the count, DDP & Flair double team Sting but it only revs him up and he drops them with a double clothesline. Sting drives DDP into the canvas with a bulldog and flattens Flair with a Stinger Splash. Sting locks in the Scorpion Death Lock, DDP clubs him from behind immediately to break it. DDP goes for a suplex, Sting escapes and counters into a SCORPION DEATH DROP but is too out of it to make the cover. Finally he does, Flair pulls him off and drops a knee to the groin area which Savage is not a fan of. He doesn’t call for a DQ or anything. Flair locks in the Figure Four in the center of the ring as DDP struggles to get to his feet. Sting finds his second wind and rolls into the ropes to try and force a break…but INSTEAD SAVAGE PULLS FLAIR BACK IN AND CONNECTS WITH A FLYING ELBOWDROP! What the f*ck? Savage plays to the crowd a bit then starts counting everybody out but DDP gets to his feet to break it. Flair goes for a chop, DDP ducks and hits the Diamond Cutter for the 1…2…3! YEEEEEEEAH!
Diamond Dallas Page defeated Ric Flair [c], Hollywood Hogan, & Sting to win the WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP (17:27)
- JON’S THOUGHTS: Randy Savage getting physically involved did not make a lick of sense and didn’t seem to really help anything other than to pop the crowd but besides that I really enjoyed this match and especially seeing DDP win his first World Title. That man truly deserved to get the nod and it’s awesome that they gave it to him by beating arguably the top three stars in the company. Interference aside Savage played it mostly down the middle and did fine as a ref, and I appreciated him not doing slow counts and forcing them to actually get up and keep the match going. Overall a solid main event and I love the winner of it. (***)
DDP barely gets time to celebrate before Schiavone signs off. Oh.
I’m ready to call it: Spring Stampede is the first legitimately good WCW PPV of the year, with a varied and entertaining undercard as well as a main event that not only delivered wrestling-wise but also crowned a World Champ that people weren’t expecting (at least I don’t think they were). Raven/Saturn vs. Benoit/Malenko absolutely f*cked and is my PPV match of the year so far, tremendous chemistry there. I’m sure there are some bad booking decisions and whatever to analyze but from an enjoyment perspective this is the first PPV of 1999 I’ve actually dug open to close. IT’S A MIRACLE.
- MATCH OF THE NIGHT: Raven & Perry Saturn vs. Chris Benoit & Dean Malenko
- MOMENT OF THE NIGHT: Kevin Nash LEAPFROGS Goldberg mid-Spear attempt. Who knew Big Sexy had it in him?!?