WCW Great American Bash 1996
Sgt. Craig Pittman brings out the flag for the national anthem. Tony and Dusty call this without Brain, as Brain will be coaching Arn and Flair tonight. That's a bummer. I love Brian and Dusty confusing each other. A shout out to Dirty Dick Murdoch, who has passed away that weekend.
Fire & Ice vs Steiner Brothers Number One Contendership There Must Be A Winner
Scott and SMOOV start the match. Dusty likes Train's weird dancing. Scott runs into the brick wall of the Ice Train. I'm going to guess that LOD has quit the company since they haven't been around or mentioned for a while. Tags are made. Huge Steinerline takes both guys off their feet. Belly to belly welly. I'm sure we'll see a lot of those. Scott comes in and gets crushed with a Somalian drop. I want Dusty to do color for my life. I love him just rambling. SMOOV runs into Scott full speed in the corner. Damn. Scott responds with a spinning belly to belly and a Steinerline. Norton comes in and takes about as ugly of a t-bone as you can take. Scott comes off the top rope and is caught into a powerslam. Short arm lariatooooooo. Dusty is amazed that Tony has apparently never hit his elbow once in his life. Norton shoulder breaker. Right into a Fujiwara arm bar. Rick breaks it by kicking him in the face about 5 times. Norton tries it again. Rick tags in and knocks his block off. German suplex. Ugly back body drop to SMOOV. Powerbomb/splash combo. Scott breaks the pin. He's been knocked or thrown to the floor many times. They change corners for some reason. Ice Train breaks the pin after the Steiner Bulldog. Ugliest Frankensteiner on Norton for the win. Hard hitting match. Although the Steiners definitely had defeated this team at least once so the whole conceit of the match was off to begin with.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene is with Sullivan and Jimmy Hart. This whole thing is for Arn.
El Gato vs Konnan WCW US Championship
El Gato is Pat Tanaka in a bootleg Tiger Mask mask. He is also a South American legend and comes out to the sounds of the Amazon jungle. Fucking Konnan. Piece of shit. So you have Tanaka, who is a Hawaiian portrayed as Japanese for most of his career wrestling as a South American legend wrestling with a martial arts style. Konnan is Cuban and wrestling as a Mexican legend. Because wrasslin. Actually, Tanaka kind of wrestles like mid 2000s fat original Tiger Mask, which is fitting since he stole his mask. No idea why they put Pat Tanaka in a mask even though you can see most of his face and it is clearly his body. But then again, I still don't know why WCW put the Powers of Pain in the mask of a 70s territory wrestler. Konnan's bacne is disgusting. Konnan does a sunset flip bomb to the floor. Konnan wins with an Alabama Slam. Title retained. Get this cunt out of here.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene speaks with Sting. Gene calls Regal a "sissy, or a prissy". I guess it was the the mid 90s and it was totally cool for the face and face interviewer to be homophobic.
DDP vs Marcus Bagwell Lord of the Ring
Buff runs to the ring. The Males had a coin toss to see who would get this match. What's the point of staying Lord of the Ring if you don't even get your title shot? Will we ever find out who DDP's "benefactor" is? Why would he even need a benefactor? He lost his money. All he needed was to get reinstated. He still had all of his gear and whatnot. Surely he still had a razor somewhere. He probably could have gotten a factory or other manual labor job since he was a big guy. I'm just not sure what the point of a benefactor is for him. They have a Nitro match. Buff looks way more impressive. I'm still waiting for DDP to flip the switch to get good all of the sudden. I know he does it. I've seen it. I just don't remember when. DDP wins with the Kanyon Cutter. BANG! DDP isn't over, but the cutter is getting there.
TO THE BACK. Gene is now with the Giant and Jimmy. Giant is getting all oiled up. Dude is getting fatter and flabbier by the week. He's been around for about a year and has probably gained 60 pounds or more. Some of it muscle, but a lot of it right around the mid section. The belly welly, if you wheeeeeel.
Rey Mysterio Jr vs That Motherfucker Dean Malenko WCW Cruiserweight Championship
YES. Finally. It took 6 months for AAA guys to come in after Bischoff mentioned it for the first time. INDIE RESPEK. God damn, Rey is tiny. Dean is super short and is a full head and shoulders taller. A lot of flashy lucha stuff to start off. Rey hits a muli-rotation arm drag. Triangle dropkick sends Dean to the floor. More flashy shit. Rey gets sling shot over the top. Dean went for a baseball slide. Rey slides back into the ring and taunts. Dean brings the Euro flavor to this. He does a move where he puts on leg behind Rey's upper arm and kicks his wrist with the other. He continues the arm. Rey goes for a rana. TMF throws him off and lariatoooos his head off. Dean's lariato is really more of a forearm/elbow strike. You'd expect TMF to go after the legs of Rey, but he flipped the script with the elbow work. Hammerlock Northern lights. TMF isn't playing. Rey is able to get a dropkick in, but Dean goes right back to the arm. An interesting Fujiwara arm bar variant. We briefly get a Crippler Crossface. Romero Special dropped into a pin, which the ref was very late on. That dude sucks. He's the one that Macho slapped a few weeks ago. TMF is sticking to that arm like another TMF. Rey finally gets some space and sends Dean to the floor. Springboard somersault plancha! Then a springboard missile dropkick back into the ring. Dean goes for a powerbomb. Rey reverses. Pinning sequence. West Coast Pop! 2 count. TMF Gut Buster is countered with a super rana. Rey tries another spinning rana and TMF flattens that boy with a powerbomb. Dean gets his feet on the ropes and gets the pin. Title retained. Standing ovation. A cruiser match not about cool shit, but with substance and a story. And it was dope.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Lex is only doing this interview because WCW requested it of him. His mind is on the match, not the interview.
Big Bubber vs John Tena
You can't have a bigger contrast between two matches. This match is "not a pretty sight". Bubber apparently KOs Quake with something. Momentarily at least. Not a lot of interest here. Quake was definitely past his prime. Boss Man was as well. The biggest spot was probably Bubber hitting a belly to back. Quake wins with a powerslam. Bubber gets a chunk of his beard cut.
TO THE MEAN GENE. Gene is with Mongo, Kevin Greene, and the wives. Kevin Greene says, "baby" like 900 times in a 15 second promo. Coach Macho steps in.
Chris Benoit vs The Taskmaster Falls Count Anywhere
Benoit intercepts Sullivan in the aisle and we got us a fight, Maggle. Into the crowd we go. Into the men's room. Benoit gets a stall door slammed on his head. Multiple times. Double stomp in the bathroom! We almost get a swirly in a urinal. "THERE'S A LADY! THERE IS A LADY IN THE MEN'S BATHROOM! LOOK IT THERE! THERE'S A WOMAN IN THE MEN'S JOHN HERE IN BALTIMORE!" We got plundah! Dusty wants them to go to the women's bathroom. They brawl back into the arena. Benoit gets knocked down the stairs, but thankfully he only makes it a few rows before stopping. So Sullivan throws him down some more and stomps on his balls. A lot of stiff punching and chopping. Sullivan Sabu's a chair. Dusty loves this shit. Is that Don West in the front row? Benoit gets a table out. It finally enters the ring. It made it to the bathroom before the ring. Benoit sets the table up on the top rope. Superplex from the table! Benoit wins! Benoit continues to beat on Sullivan after the match. Arn runs down and pulls Benoit off of him. Then he attacks Sullivan and the fans GO BONKERS. The DoD run out and the Horsemen bail. The Horsemen are back!
TO THE MEAN BY GOD GENE. Gene is with Flair, the broads, Brain, Benoit, and Arn. The head of the DoD has just been cut off. Chris Benoit has earned his stripes tonight. NOW we are truly at war and the Horsemen are loaded for bear. They're going to fuck these football players up, son. TMF. And TMF Jr. Woman is That Fatherfucker.
Steven Regal vs Sting
The action starts fast and furious and Regal gets sent over the top rope, then back dropped on the floor. Without Brain around, Dusty has been giving Tony a lot of shit all night. Tony hypes 4 events in WWF strong holds (including the theater of MSG), which will all have Bruno Sammartino and Pedro Morales involved. ECW Hat Guy is in the crowd. Regal almost slaps a woman. Regal offers a hand shake. Sting gives him a pelvic thrust. "How come you are sitting so close to me in this booth?" Dusty is THE BEST. The random shit he says is so wonderful. Sting wins a test of strength. But Regal's technical prowess is able to over come that. He's knocking Sting's dick into the dirt, friends. Sting is now tied up in holds and all that fire he was showing has been extinguished. I wish Regal was still wrestling. Like if he was 10 years younger and still on TV, he'd be the most entertaining guy on Raw for sure. Dropkick to the EAR. Regal is a meanie. I am ALL ABOUT that Regal meanness. Everything he does is fucking MEAN. It's wonderful. And when he isn't being mean as fuck, he's being hilarious. He's controlled about 90% of the match so far. Just grinding away on Sting's arm and face. I love how Regal always knows where a camera is and manages to shit talk right into it while having his opponent tied up. A mid ring collision momentarily changes Sting's fortunes. God damn it Regal is such an asshole. Mashing Sting's face into the mat and then grinding his forearm on Sting's ear just to be a dick. Just wonderful. Regal has been focusing mostly on the arm of Sting, which Tony is somewhat surprised about due to Sting's well known knee injury. It's similar to Dean working over Rey's arm. Sting hits his own big dropkick and now he's FIRED UP. Butterfly superplex! The Regal Stretch is lock on. Sting wouldn't give up and Regal doesn't know what the fuck the deal is. Let's just hit the mother fucker in the head a lot. A bitch slap was the wrong choice, Steve. However, Regal gets his knees up on a Stinger Splash. It doesn't deter Sting too much, though. Scorpion Deathlock! Regal taps out! This was 100% the Steven Regal show. I like Sting a lot and all, but he was absolutely secondary in this. This was Regal being Regal for 16 minutes. And I love Regal being Regal, so I enjoyed this a whole lot.
Ric Flair/Arn Anderson vs Steve McMichael/Kevin Greene
Due to popular demand, Macho will be reinstated tomorrow night. Mongo and Arn start the match. Arn decides it is a good idea to try to go into 3 point stance against pro football players. Then he uses his wrestling knowledge to bait Mongo into shit, much the the delight of the fans. Mongo hits a shoulder block from the second rope. TMF is shook. Arn gets the boots put to him by both men. Macho even throws a punch for fun. The heels regroup with Coach Heenan. Kevin Greene tags in. So does Flair. Flair baits Greene. Greene's strength and athleticism proves to be a problem. Flair power walks to the ramp. Macho attacks him and throws him back in. The ref was watching and didn't care. Definitely should have been a DQ. TMF doesn't want any of Mongo. Mongo gives Flair the business. "Jay Leno would be lucky if I gave him a nick name." Oh shit. Mongo has put Ric Flair in the figure four! And the best part is that Mongo AND Kevin Greene did the figure four better than Hulk. Woman breaks Mongo's with an eye rake. Woman and Liz chase the wives away and now Arn is enforcing on Mongo. Lol, Brain takes a cheap shot at Mongo. Really, Mongo totally had that coming. Mongo was SUCH an asshole to Brain, completely unprovoked from the very first Nitro on. He should throw some more cheap shots. If I'm not mistaken, the first words Mongo said on a WCW broadcast were an insult towards Brain and his family. Macho goes after Arn. Benoit flies down to ringside and attacks Macho. Greene has been in the figure four for a while now. Debra comes back with Liz and Woman, now in a salmon dress. She gives Mongo a briefcase. Mongo opens it. Inside is a Four Horsemen shirt and a whole lot of money. Greene turns the figure four. Mongo hits Kevin Greene with the briefcase. SWERVE! Flair pins Greene for the win. Macho attacks Flair. Mongo pulls him off. Mongo holds Macho for Flair to hit him with the briefcase. Mongo has joined the Four Horsemen! "Aw get loose from that!" Mongo and Debra have sold their souls for the money. Just like Mongo did when he jumped to the Packers. About as enjoyable as any celebrity match up to 1996. Flair and Arn put their work in. You'd expect something really shitty out of two football players with zero wrestling experience, but they were able to fit in to he Arn/Flair formula just fine.
TO THE BISCHOFF. Eric brings out his invited guests, Scott Hall and Kevin Nash. Hall is still rocking that denim on denim. Bischoff has worked out a match for these guys. At Bash at the Beach. Eric point plank asks them if they work for the WWF. Both men say they do not and continue with the promo. Bischoff won't tell them who the WCW team is until tomorrow night. Hall punches him in the gut. OH MY GOD Kevin Nash just powerbombed Bischoff off the stage through a table! MY GOD. Eric is dead. He died. Rest in peace. Tony leaves the booth to check on Bischoff. Dusty says bottom line, this shit is uncalled for. They wanted a war and they're going to get a war.
Lex Luger vs The Giant WCW Championship
Amazingly, Buffer doesn't fuck up during his introductions. Giant looks like he has a terrible hang over. I wouldn't even be surprised if that was the case. Lex runs right into a big boot to start the match. He knocks Giant over the top rope with a lariato, but Giant tosses Lex right back into the ring. Lex gets on the back of Giant with a sleeper. Jimmy was about to hit Lex with the megaphone when Sting shows up and chases him to the back. Tony and Dusty are still pretty distracted by the Bischoff thing. Lex totally did a stunner. Giant misses a splash in the corner and lands on the ropes. Lex is able to get him up for the rack from this position, but couldn't hold on to it. Giant fell on him. Chokeslam for the win. Title retained. I like how strong Giant has been booked over the last 2-3 months, but you can see him getting bigger and flabbier every week.
A lot better of a PPV than the last couple. Even then, it was really a 2 match show. Rey/Dean was dope. Great debut for Rey. Regal/Sting was a 16 minute Regal showcase, which is wonderful. The rest of the matches ranged from whatever to decent. Hall and Nash have to say they don't work for Vince so Bischoff can avoid getting sued. Let's flip this segment. Imagine Sting/Luger were invading the WWF and they powerbombed Vince through a table live on PPV. Imagine the reaction from security, police, wrestlers, fans. When it happened to Bischoff, people cheered and no wrestlers came out, no security ran the Outsiders off. Tony briefly left the booth to check on him, but no one else from the back did. The lack of caring from the roster is really strange so far. Regal has talked some shit and Sting got up in Hall's face, but that's it. Regardless, I'd say the angle just kicked up a few notches.