Clash of the Champions Count-Up – #30: Only Six Left

Clash of the Champions 30
Date: January 25, 1995
Location: Casear’s Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada
Attendance: 3,200
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan

Back to 1995 WCW because all of the time I had suffered through it wasn’t enough I guess. This is another attempt by me to end this far too long stretch of stuff I’ve done with WCW. Tonight, the main event is Hogan/Savage vs. Butcher/Sullivan and we also get Sting vs. Avalanche because…well because someone has to fight him I suppose. I’m not looking forward to this but let’s get to it.

We run down the card which includes a video of Savage shaking Hogan’s hand instead of slapping him in the face at Starrcade. You know, because that would have made things interesting and such.

Flair may be here, despite being retired.

TV Title: Arn Anderson vs. Johnny B. Badd

This was voted on by fans. Anderson has Colonel Parker with him as manager at this point and is champion. This is a rematch after Anderson stole the title earlier in the month. Fans are walking around in droves in the crowd. Badd takes over and Anderson chills in the corner to break the momentum. Anderson takes over for a few seconds but for some reason tries to go up top. His career record up there is worse than Flair’s so Badd dropkicks him down to the floor.

Badd adds a big dive to the floor and works on the arm in the ring. The idea here is that Anderson can’t keep up with Badd’s speed. The announcers talk about how WCW had the only wrestling show in the top 100 cable shows. This is pre-Nitro so that’s on the weekends only, which is pretty impressive. Johnny tries to jump over Arn in the corner but gets caught and clotheslined on the top like a Stun Gun.

Off to a chinlock which doesn’t last long and Arn keeps control. He sets for the traditional jump off the rope into the boot but Arn, ever the genius (no sarcasm) landso n his feet and drops an elbow for two. Badd starts his comeback and knocks Anderson out cold to the floor. Colonel Parker pours water on Anderson and Chase the Manager begins. Badd comes in but gets caught in a DDT to end this.

Rating: D+. This started off pretty well but after that it fell apart quickly. This feud would go on at least until Uncensored where they had a boxing match for not much of a reason. This went nowhere after it became a kick and punch and chinlock match. It could have been worse, but this was a clearly screwy ending coming a mile away.

Kevin Sullivan says that Flair and Vader both may be here plus a guest for Vader. Sullivan says that even though Hogan is surrounded by friends, he’s going to get stabbed in the back. Butcher (Beefcake) says nothing significant in his heel promo.

Video on Alex Wright, who was a hot commodity at this point.

Alex Wright vs. Bobby Eaton

This was far more common back in the day: take a guy like Eaton and put him in the ring with a guy like Wright and let Eaton make Wright look great. It was very common back in the day and very effective. Wright grabs an armbar which doesn’t last long. A headscissors takes Alex down but we’re right back to the arm again. Alex misses a dive and lands on the top rope as Eaton takes over.

Eaton hooks a chinlock and this isn’t going anywhere for the most part. Wright grabs a suplex but hurts his own neck on it to shift momentum again. Spinwheel kick puts him down and a missile dropkick gets two. This really isn’t as good as they were expecting I don’t think. Cross body for two. Eaton pops up out of nowhere and hits the Alabama Jam (top rope legdrop) for two but Wright hits another cross body for two.

Rating: D. This didn’t do much at all for me here. The first few minutes were really boring and then after that, the whole thing was nothing but Wright hitting something for two and then hitting another one of something he hit earlier for the pin. I know Eaton was good but this didn’t work at all for me.

Gene talks about Hogan vs. Vader and how they can’t fight until SuperBrawl. Here’s Vader (US Champion at this point) who says Race might be here tonight and he has a ticket for him. He asks who is the man and gets a mixed response. Vader has looked for Hogan everywhere but there’s been no Hulk. He says Hogan is hiding but Vader will have a ticket tonight.

Tag Titles: Harlem Heat vs. Stars N Stripes

Bagwell/Patriot are the challengers. And they’re late. Instead….here’s Ric Flair. He was retired at this point due to the events of Halloween Havoc. Heenan goes over to shake Flair’s hand, being the suckup that he is. Flair takes a seat in the front row. Here are Stars N Stripes. Booker vs. Bagwell to start with Bagwell hammering away. This is a return match after the Heat basically stole the titles.

Bagwell dropkicks him to the floor and the challengers clear the ring. The fans chant USA. Why can’t Harlem Heat be patriotic? They’re from New York which is certainly part of the United States. Patriot hammers away on Stevie and works on the arm a bit. Really basic tag match here and not much to say for the first three to five minutes.

Bagwell is getting beaten down at the moment, taking that spinning forearm smash for two. The fans show their anti-New York sentiment again. The announcers talk about why Vader has two seats at ringside since Harley Race isn’t here. Heenan: “Maybe he’s going to use the other chair to crack Hogan over the head.” A few seconds of silence pass. Tony: “Maybe he’s going to use the other chair as a weapon.” Heenan never got a break.

The champions keep beating down Bagwell but Sherri gets on the apron to keep the tag from being noticed. The American comes in anyway and everything breaks down. Sherri’s shoe comes in somehow and Bagwell gets an O’Connor Roll on Stevie. Booker kicks his head off to reverse the control though and the Heat keeps the titles.

Rating: D. Total meh match here. This felt like they were told there had to be a tag title match so here’s a quick one so that we can say we had one. It’s not that the match is bad but rather that it’s painfully boring. The Heat would hold the titles for like 5 months until the Nasty Boys won them after they lost them. Long story, don’t ask.

The Monster Maniacs (Hogan/Savage) say exactly what you would expect them to say.

Off to the Control Center which discusses SuperBrawl. One of the things we learn here: Vader has a ticket to tonight’s show. Top notch reporting there Gene!

Sting vs. Avalanche

Guardian Angel (Big Boss Man) is guest referee. Big brawl to start and I think it’s going to be a safe bet that if you’ve seen one of these Sting vs. monster matches you’ve seen them all. Flair has left his seat. Avalanche drops an Earthquake on Sting but poses instead of covering. You know, because THAT has a great track record. There’s a powerslam for two. Sting takes him down and does the falling headbutt to the balls spot. There’s the Splash in the corner and make it two of them. Ok three and the fourth sets up a slam for the Scorpion to end this.

Rating: C-. Dull match but Sting’s incredible charisma helped it a lot. The splashes in the corner worked well enough and the slam is always impressive. The inherent problem with WCW at this time though was that none of these monsters ever got a pin, which really hurt things after awhile because this feud would go on for almost a year.

Nick Patrick came out to call the submission. Angel got in Sting’s face and they brawled, with Angel helping for a double beatdown on Sting. Alex Wright and Stars and Stripes make the save.

Angel says he was disrespected. He says he’s Big Bubba Rogers again.

Hulk Hogan/Randy Savage vs. Kevin Sullivan/The Butcher

Vader is up and all annoyed for Hogan’s entrance. Flair is back in his seat now also. Hogan and Butcher are set to start us off but Butcher stalls like a true southern man. Savage comes in and this is totally one sided to start us off, which is about what you would expect. Back to Hogan who beats on Beefcake even more. Hogan hits a jumping knee (called a boot by that moron Schiavone) but Butcher hooks the sleeper, which put Hogan out at the last Clash.

Now we get one of the weirdest moments ever in wrestling history. Butcher puts Hogan out with the sleeper but lets go early ala Adrian Adonis at Mania 3. The heels celebrate so Savage comes in to wake Hogan up. It doesn’t work, so Savage goes up top and drops the big elbow on Hogan. For absolutely no logical reason at all, this wakes Hogan up and he’s fine again. WHAT SENSE IS THAT SUPPOSED TO MAKE??? I mean who came up with that idea??? Cocaine is a powerful drugs kid.

The heels start cheating and take over with evil tactics, including throwing Savage to the floor. It turns into a standard tag match with Butcher and Sullivan hammering away on Savage. Savage is on the floor and is all shaky as Hogan checks on him. I think they’re playing up that he might have a concussion without saying he’s got a concussion. Back inside he gets rammed by the Tree of Woe because Hogan got drawn into the ring.

The sleeper doesn’t work and Savage kicks Brutus away for the hot tag to Hogan. Notice the pretty weak pop for him coming in for the save WCW. Everything breaks down and Savage drops the elbow on Brutus but Hogan gets to drop the leg for the pin, because goodness knows we can’t have the new guy get the pin.

Rating: D+. It’s just a main event tag match and not a very good one. The problems that WCW had are really showing themselves here: Hogan never loses. I mean he never even got close to losing. He never broke a sweat here and Savage doesn’t even get the pinfall. Also, having Kevin Sullivan and Brutus Beefcake as the top heels didn’t help anything. Vader got beaten up by Hogan so much that he gave up and went to the WWF.

Vader comes in post match for the big staredown. Vader beats him down easily and powerbombs him….and Hogan pops right back up, showing that Vader has zero chance at all of beating him clean. Hogan and Savage clear the ring and stand tall. As Vader leaves, he manages to plug the show: “The champ goes down February 19 in Baltimore. Be there and witness history!” He shouts that at the camera as he leaves. See how simply you can add something to the show’s build? Why is that so hard? Oh because we need things trending on Twitter right?

Hogan and Savage pose for two minutes to end this. Running short on time I guess.

Overall Rating: D. This was boring. That sums up WCW in this year: everything was predictable and only Hogan and his friends got significant time. Not an interesting show at all and not even a big commercial for SuperBrawl (which sucked) really. It wouldn’t be helped at all until Giant came in around October to FINALLY give Hogan a challenge. Bad show, and this whole year isn’t worth watching.


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