Monday Nitro – June 16, 1997: Another Freaking Celebrity

Monday Nitro #92
Date: June 16, 1997
Location: United Center, Chicago, Illinois
Attendance: 16,500
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Larry Zbyszko, Bobby Heenan, Tony Schiavone

First and foremost, this would have been my mom’s birthday so happy birthday to her. Other than that we’re past the Great American bash and we’re heading for Bash at the Beach. Nothing significant came out of last night’s show other than Savage evening the feud with Page by pinning him. The Outsiders kept the belts (of course) and other than that we’re pretty much in the same place we were before the show last night. Let’s get to it.

The NWO arrives in the back to open the show. Rodman is here with them tonight and we’re in the town of the team he plays for. I wonder who is going to get the loudest cheers tonight. We get a long tracking show that takes us from their car arriving to them coming into the arena. Bischoff, Hogan and Rodman get into the ring with Eric bowing down to them. Hogan laughs at Luger and Giant for wanting to face them at the Bash. Hulk does his normal trash talking and Rodman sounds like an intoxicated non-wrestler trying to fire up a crowd which happens to love him. That’s about it.

The announcers talk about the PPV last night a bit.

Mortis vs. Glacier

The brawl starts on the floor before the bell with Glacier being sent into the barricade. Mortis tries a Fameasser on the steps but Glacier pulls him down onto them instead. They head inside and slug it out with Mortis taking over. Wrath comes out and Mortis hits a Fameasser off the middle rope for two. Mortis gets sent into Wrath and a superkick gives Glacier the pin.

Wrath comes in for a beatdown along with Mortis until Ernest Miller makes the save…..again. Security comes in to take Miller out but Glacier says no.

Here’s Madusa who lost a title vs. career match last night. She says goodbye and no one cares. Seriously, NO ONE cares. Why did she keep getting air time?

Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Dean Malenko

This is happening because Eddie Guerrero cost Dean the US Title last week. Dean calls out Eddie but gets Chavo instead. Dean is fine with this and stomps Chavo down in the corner. Chavo comes back with a dropkick and some European uppercuts but Dean will have none of that. He swats away a dropkick and we head to the floor so Dean can work on the knee a bit.

Chavo comes back with a sunset flip for two and Malenko is getting mad. A suplex gets two for Dean but instead of a good cover he looks around for Eddie. They try Dean’s tilt-a-whirl into the tombstone but slip into a kind of powerslam instead. Dean loads up the Cloverleaf for the submission as Eddie comes out to watch on the stage.

Rating: C-. Not much to see here but it was far more about the storyline than the match itself. Chavo didn’t mean anything yet and wouldn’t for a few more years. Eddie vs. Dean is one of those feuds that works almost no matter why they’re fighting. It would wind up being great but Rey would get involved with them soon enough.

Eddie leaves after just looking at the ring.

Flair was on WCW’s website earlier today.

Super Calo vs. La Parka

This is because of last week where La Parka attacked Calo with a chair after the six man tag. La Parka immediately charges at him but misses a dropkick in the corner. He runs Calo over with a clothesline and gets two off a kick to the chest. Calo comes back with a flipping armdrag to send Parka to the floor, followed by a flip dive that lands Calo in the crowd. Back in and Parka kicks the leg out from under Calo and puts him in the Tree of Woe. After taking him down, a flipping dive misses Calo and a headscissors takes La Parka down for the unlikely pin.

Rating: C. Not bad here but when you have Rey and Dean and Eddie, it’s kind of hard to get fired up for Super Calo and La Parka. This wasn’t bad or anything but it’s nothing of note at all. Calo was basically the cruiserweight jobber while Parka was the big cruiserweight who never did anything.

La Parka breaks a plastic chair over his head post match.

Here are Luger and the Giant for a chat. Luger talks about how Hogan and Rodman are too cocky but he made Hogan give up last week. Giant wants to hurt Rodman and Hogan. Luger wants to do it tonight.

Harlem Heat vs. Amazing French Canadians

We get the Canadian national anthem jazz before the match but the Canadians use the distraction to jump the Heat. Harlem Heat won the #1 contendership last night by beating the Steiners. Booker gets hot shotted to start and it’s Jacques vs. Booker to get us going. Parker and Sherri get into it on the floor and Oullette hits a splash in the corner on Booker.

An odd looking middle rope elbow gets two for the former Qubecers and it’s off to Jacques. Booker gets in a side kick on Oullette and it’s off to Stevie. Parker loses a boot somewhere in there as the Heat hit the Heat Bomb (powerbomb by Ray/elbow from Booker) but Jacques makes the save with the boot. That gets two but the Big Apple (modified Hart Attack) pins Jacques soon afterwards.

Rating: D+. The French Canadians never meant anything in WCW and this would be their last match with the company. I don’t remember if the Heat ever got their shot but honestly I’d be stunned if they did. This was basically a long workout for the Heat which doesn’t make for an interesting match. Granted we’re about forty five minutes into this show and nothing interesting has happened yet.

JJ says that Hogan and Rodman will face Giant and Luger tonight. Harlem Heat come up and JJ says because of the interference last night, Harlem Heat don’t get the title shot. Next week it’s Steiners vs. Harlem Heat AGAIN for the title shot. Vincent, the guy that interfered last night, says that the interference was a gift from the NWO because the Outsiders would beat up Harlem Heat. Vincent gets destroyed and no one saves him.

Cruiserweight Title: Syxx vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.

I’m assuming the title is on the line here, which means Rey is challenging. The Outsiders are here with Syxx. Syxx pounds away to start and after dropping Rey with a flapjack, it’s HOUR NUMBER TWO!!! A pair of fast legdrops hit Rey and Hall drops some ashes from his cigar on Mysterio’s neck. The Bronco Buster keeps Rey in trouble as this is one sided so far.

Mysterio comes back with a spin kick and hits a headscissors to take the champ down. Syxx is sent to the floor and Rey hits a flip dive off the top to take him out. Back in and Rey hits a top rope West Coast Pop but has to beat up the Outsiders. Syxx kicks his head off and the Buzz Killer gets the submission to retain the title.

Rating: C+. This is the best match of the show so far and much better than the other cruiserweight match. Mysterio was awesome when his knees weren’t falling apart and he had someone in the ring that could keep up with him. As soon as you saw the Outsiders out there though you knew the ending, which sums up Nitro in a nutshell.

The Outsiders kill Rey post match and get a mic. They talk about how they beat up Flair and Piper last night and keep smoking the cigars. Hall brings out Savage who also won last night. Savage brags about winning last night and praises Hogan a bit. Page and Kimberly pop up in the crowd and they bicker a bit. Page wants a tag match at Bash at the Beach. He has a mystery partner and tells Savage to get one of his own.

Ultimo Dragon vs. Chris Jericho

We’re told that Syxx is defending against Jericho on Saturday Night. Jericho turns down an offer from Sonny Onoo on the way to the ring. Things start very fast with Jericho taking him down with a shoulder and a leg drop gets two. Off to a surfboard hold by Jericho but Dragon comes back with the rapid fire kicks. Jericho dropkicks him to the floor and mostly misses a dropkick to the floor. They trade rollups back inside but Jericho counters a rana into the double powerbomb. More rollups are traded until the Tiger Suplex gets the pin for the Dragon.

Rating: C+. This was another fast paced match as the focus tonight has been on the cruiserweights. Jericho would get a lot better very soon while the Dragon would get the TV Title later on in the summer. The ending here was good stuff as they were moving around very fast with a bunch of near falls, which is always cool to see.

Road Report.

Piper has something to say now. He runs down Rodman, making him the biggest heel in the arena tonight. Piper complains about Flair leaving him in the tag match last night but he doesn’t believe Flair did it out of malice. He calls Flair out with Naitch confirming that he didn’t do it to hurt Piper. That’s it.

Scott Norton/Buff Bagwell vs. Jeff Jarrett/Steve McMichael

Mongo vs. Norton to start things off with Scott taking over with a corner splash. Mongo comes back with a bulldog and a three point clothesline. Off to the US Champion (Jarrett) who gets double teamed almost immediately. Jeff comes back with a dropkick to send Norton into the corner but walks into a bearhug. Off to Buff who runs his mouth a lot but gets caught in an atomic drop.

Jeff hits a swinging neckbreaker for no cover and won’t tag. A running crotch attack to Buff’s neck keeps him down but Jeff still won’t tag. Jeff hits a middle rope elbow but gets clotheslined down by Buff. Buff slaps the taste out of Mongo’s mouth which results in a Horsemen double team. Jarrett struts….and Mongo tombstones him, drawing a HUGE face pop. This is due to last night when Jarrett accidentally hit Mongo in his match with Greene. Bagwell gets the easy pin. Debra leaves with Mongo.

Rating: D+. Nothing to see here as was the case with most Jarrett and Mongo matches of this era. They put the US Title on both guys and to the shock of no one payint attention, no one cared. Buff and Norton would wind up being the low level NWO tag team who went nowhere either.

Buy NWO shirts!

Hulk Hogan/Dennis Rodman vs. Lex Luger/The Giant

Rodman is holding the belt as they come out. Before the match, Hogan runs his mouth a bit about hanging with Savage in the back. Rodman says he’s ready so we take a break. Luger and Giant haven’t come out yet. Back from the break and there’s still no Luger or Giant. Rodman says they’re leaving but as they head up the aisle, here are Luger and Giant. Hogan and Rodman get back in the ring and it’s quickly a brawl. By brawl I mean Giant almost chokeslams Rodman until Hogan makes the save. Rodman hits Hogan with the belt and Hogan does the same to Luger. Here’s the Wolfpack for the big beatdown. No match.

The Outsiders and Syxx beat on both guys and Rodman spraypaints Giant. The ring fills up with trash and the NWO celebrates to end the show. No Sting.

Overall Rating: D+. This wasn’t a very good show. The cruiserweight stuff was pretty good but it’s nothing of note. This was about setting up the tag match at Bash at the Beach but it’s another celebrity match, which hasn’t been any good the first two times, so why should I be interested in the third one? This wasn’t a particularly good show but I’ve seen far worse.

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