Thunder – April 29, 1999: I’ll See Your Smackdown And Raise You…..Whatever This Was

Thunder
Date: April 29, 1999
Location: Bryce Jordan Center, State College, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Larry Zbyszko

The question coming out of Monday is will anything that happens tonight actually mean anything. Nitro saw two World Title changes resulting in Diamond Dallas Page winning and losing the title on the same show. We’re still on the way to Slamboree with Nash vs. Page for the title and Flair vs. Piper (both of whom may be fired) for control of the company. Let’s get to it.

After the opening sequence, we get some clips of Flair in the hospital on Monday. Thankfully Scott Hall’s bizarre cameo is omitted.

TV Title: Booker T. vs. Curt Hennig

Curt is challenging. Booker shoves him into the corner to start as the announcers talk about the second World Title change on Monday. A hiptoss sends Curt out to the floor and we take an early break. Back with Hennig hammering Booker down and kicking him in the ribs. They switch to boxing for a bit until Booker nails him with a forearm to the head for two.

Some right hands in the corner have Booker in trouble but Curt steps forward for a hot shot into the buckle. A low blow has Booker in even more trouble and Curt chops away in the corner. Curt puts on a sleeper for a good while before hitting a piledriver for two. Booker pops back up and hits the super, ax and side kicks. He goes up for the missile dropkick but Stevie Ray comes in with the slapjack to Hennig for the DQ.

Rating: D+. That sleeper just crippled anything the match had going for it. This Booker vs. Stevie stuff isn’t the most interesting story in the world but maybe they’ll actually have a match as a result unlike Rick and Scott. Hennig was coming back from an injury here and he didn’t look like his usual self.

Hotline plug

The Nitro Girls are getting their own site.

Video on Nash.

Here are Hak and Chastity with something to say. Hak talks about how awesome his hardcore matches have been and calls the three way with Bigelow and Raven the most extreme match ever. Chastity gets to pick his opponent for tonight and the schoolgirl chick selects Kevin Nash. Great. The hardcore mess is invading the main event.

Booker and Rick Steiner are fighting backstage. Why WCW thinks anyone cares about Rick Steiner in 1999 is beyond me.

WCW will be on QVC soon.

Video on Goldberg.

Here’s Buff…..dressed like Scott Steiner. Oh this could be good. Tenay: “I would say that’s a Buff Bagwell imitation of Big Papa Pump.” You can’t buy analysis like this people! Buff talks about partying at Penn State and how much it made him realize Michigan really sucks. He’s nailing the screech in Steiner’s voice. Buff tells us to close our eyes and picture the Big Bad Doodoo Daddy.

He was at Motel 6 watching BET last night to find more lines to steal and came up with this one: “I’m not a player. I’m just on parole a lot.” If Bagwell wants a US Title shot at Slamboree, that’s what Buff is going to get. He’ll show Bagwell that there’s no bigger liar than Scott Steiner. Flush him if you hear him. This really wasn’t as funny as it could have been but the voice was awesome.

Jerry Flynn vs. Stevie Ray

Ray hammers on him in the corner to start but gets caught by some kicks. Jerry catches one of Stevie’s kicks and turns it into an ankle lock. That goes nowhere so Jerry tries an armdrag into a cross armbreaker. Vincent offers a distraction and Horace comes in to break it up because the Black and White are a bunch of inept morons. After a beatdown on the floor, Stevie slams him down and drops a leg for two. Jerry pops up and nails a spinkick, only to get distracted by Horace so Ray can hit a bad looking Slapjack for the pin.

Rating: D-. Does anyone else find it sad that the Wolfpac is basically done but we have the Black and White stooges around, taking the whole group to beat up Jerry Flynn? Stevie just isn’t any good in the ring and it’s showing here. He’s one of those wrestlers whose offense consists of forearms to the back and a lot of shouting. Granted that’s better than Flynn who can’t even talk.

Hardcore Hak vs. Kevin Nash

Hak loads up a ladder and table before Nash’s music hits. He charges at Nash to start but Big Kev grabs a kendo stick to send Hak into the corner. Nash picks him up for a suplex onto the ladder before driving it into Hak’s ribs over and over. The table is set up in the corner but Hak reverses a whip to send Kev through it.

Some kendo stick shots put Nash down and puts the ladder on top of him for the slingshot legdrop. Nash is sent hands first into the ladder but he grabs the stick to blast Hak in the ribs. He can’t follow up though and Hak nails him a few more times to put Nash back down. A top rope swanton onto the ladder onto Nash gets two. Chastity comes in with a fire extinguisher but Nash takes it away and blasts Hak. The Jackknife through the table is enough for the pin.

Rating: D. This was a few steps ahead of the usual hardcore stuff and it’s mainly due to having less weapons than the other matches. There were only a few in this one as opposed to the dozen or so that we usually get. It also helped that there was some actual wrestling in between the spots instead of weapon shot after weapon shot. It’s still bad but it at least resembled a match.

Bam Bam Bigelow comes out and wants to keep Hardcore Night going by getting a shot at the World Title. He issues the challenge to Page “from one homey to another.” Sure why not.

This Week In WCW Motorsports.

Goldberg vs. Meng

We get a very loud Goldberg chant out of nowhere. That’s as obvious of a piped in chant as I’ve ever heard. They trade slams to start and Meng bails to the outside. Back in and Meng rakes the eyes to take over before planting Goldberg with a backbreaker for two. Goldberg pops up with a kick to the face and a powerslam of his own, only to get his eyes raked again. Meng hammers away with various chops, kicks and punches before superkicking Goldberg down for two. More punches have very little effect and Goldberg pops up with a superkick, setting up the spear and Jackhammer for the pin.

Rating: D+. Basically a longer version of the standarg Goldberg match. He had to try a bit here but Meng has gone from unstoppable killing machine to standard power heel. They did such a great job of setting him up as a one off challenger last year but now this is the best we can get. It’s a sign of the times for WCW.

Page comes out to talk about what happened on Monday and thanks people like the Masked Assassin, Jake Roberts and Dusty Rhodes for helping him out. He doesn’t think much of the fans though and tells those who got on the bandwagon to “no not suck it. Jump off!” We get some good old fashioned cheap heat when Page asks what town we’re in. He’ll give Bigelow the shot tonight, even though the fans don’t deserve it.

QVC promo.

Slamboree ad.

Randy Savage vs. Disciple

Savage has Miss Madness, Madusa and Gorgeous George with him here. Why he’s playing a face here after helping the heel Page out on Monday isn’t clear. Randy grabs an armbar to start before they shove each other around a lot. Disciple gets taken down and chinlocked before it’s back to the armbar, followed by another chinlock for a change of pace. Choking ensues and Savage drills him with an elbow to the jaw for two.

Disciple fights back with his wide range of punches, kicks and choking before dropping an elbow for two. We hit a chinlock on Savage as this isn’t quite the same level I’m used two with Macho. More punching and choking from Disciple before Savage throws him to the floor out of boredom. Savage is sent into the barricade and Disciple puts on the sleeper on the floor. Madusa makes a save and sends Disciple into the post before Savage sends him back in for the big elbow and the pin.

Rating: D-. Of all the people on WCW’s roster for Savage’s first real match back, they pick Disciple? The match was horrible and most of it was due to Savage having nothing to work with. Disciple’s entire offense was built around punching and choking which really doesn’t make for a well done match. Also, Savage needed help from the girls to beat the Disciple? Really?

WCW World Title: Bam Bam Bigelow vs. Diamond Dallas Page

Hardcore and Page is defending of course. Page slugs away to start but gets knocked out to the floor with a big right hand. Back in and Bigelow drops him throat first across the top rope, sending Page back outside for another breather. It’s time to bring in some weapons but Page dives over the top to take Bigelow back.

We take a break and come back with Bigelow knocking him down the aisle before taking Page over to the announcers’ table. He loads up a regular table but Page rolls away, sending Bigelow crashing down onto the concrete. Page sends him into the barricade a few times and they come back towards the ring with the champion in control. More weapons are brought in though and a trashcan to Page’s back gets two on the floor.

They head back inside for the top rope headbutt from Bam Bam but Page is up at two. A side slam gets the same but Page comes back with a discus lariat for a near fall of his own. The floatover DDT drops Bigelow but the referee gets bumped. Bigelow gets two off a suplex but Page low blows him for the same. Greetings From Asbury Park is countered into the Diamond Cutter….and Savage comes out to drop a big elbow on Bigelow for good measure. Page gets the easy pin.

Rating: D. I really don’t see the need for this to be a hardcore match. The Savage thing didn’t need to be there as Bigelow was out cold before Macho came out. I like Page winning matches on TV, but he needs to do something different in the ring as he’s basically having the same matches he was before save for the occasional low blow.

Overall Rating: D+. This show tried for a change and I’m sure it has nothing to do with WWF having a pilot for some show called Smackdown at the same time. It was another show that didn’t need to exist, but I definitely prefer a show with a bunch of people I kind of care about over a show with a bunch of people I barely recognize. The hardcore matches for the guys in the main event were annoying but bareable, which is more than I can usually say for this show.

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