Thunder – July 8, 1999: Remind Me Why This Show Exists

Date: July 8, 1999
Location: Jefferson County Civic Center, Birmingham, Alabama
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Larry Zbyszko

It’s the last show before Bash at the Beach and things have gone from boring to completely insane. Thankfully this is one of the live shows which are usually far better, especially than next week’s episode where it will have been taped before the PPV, meaning they can’t spoil anything. Let’s get to it.

The announcers recap Sunday’s main event tag match.

Clips of the main event stuff from Monday which is still disturbing.

Here’s Big Kev with something to say. He’s been looking at the video from Nitro and is now sure that Sting was in on it. Therefore, using his power as champ, he’s making Sunday’s tag match a title match, meaning anyone, including Sting, can pin him for the title. Why they don’t just make it a four way is beyond me but seeing how much they can screw this up should be interesting.

Dean Malenko comes into the Oval Office and yells at Flair for breaking up their PPV match due to a bad back. Flair says it’s from carrying this company for the last twelve years. Anderson and Malenko bicker for a bit before Flair says that Dean may be the Man of 1000 Holds, but he’s not Ric Flair. Point to the Nature Boy.

Clip from Nitro of Eddie’s hunt for a thief.

Lenny Lane vs. Eddie Guerrero

Lodi’s sign: “If you can read this, you ARE NOT from Alabama.” They lock up to start and Lenny bails to the corner for a hug. Back in and Eddie fires off punches and uppercuts followed by a pair of dropkicks. Eddie throws him into the corner but gets backdropped to the apron, kicking the referee down in the process. With the referee down, the luchadors Eddie forced to unmask on Monday come out to beat Eddie down, giving Lenny the fluke pin.

Rating: D+. Thank goodness this is for a story, but you can see that Guerrero isn’t going to get any higher up the card than being the big star who is stuck in the Cruiserweight division. The story is interesting and ties back into the LWO stuff (in a way), but Eddie should be higher up the card than he is and that’s just not happening.

Jimmy Hart is in the back and invites La Parka and Silver King to join the Hardcore Invitational on Sunday.

Disco is in the ring with Gene and talks about his match on Sunday with Ernest Miller. Why they’re fighting isn’t made clear but Disco makes Mr. Miyagi and Tae-Bo jokes before promising a Brooklyn, New York beating.

Van Hammer vs. Al Green

They fight into the corner to start until Green grabs a slap to take over. Hammer throws him across the ring in response and clotheslines him out to the floor. That goes nowhere so Hammer kicks him in the face for two. The Alabama Slam and cobra clutch slam is good for the pin on Green. This was nothing.

Rick Steiner runs in and beats Hammer down post match.

Jimmy Hart tries to get Horace into the junkyard as well.

We get the Bret video from Monday.

Most of Bret’s promo from Monday.

Brian Knobbs vs. Fit Finlay

Finlay jumps him to start but is quickly sent to the floor and into the steps. Jimmy Hart (he’s a busy guy tonight) gets in a few cheap shots of his own but Finlay is able to reverse a whip into the barricade. He sends Brian into the post and goes for a table, drawing in Hugh Morrus and Jerry Flynn for the DQ.

Regal, La Parka, Silver King, Horace and Dave Taylor all come out to brawl. Remember people, this is to preview a match in a junkyard. Like, a real junkyard.

Gene is in the ring with Flair and all of his associates. Piper talks about Peter McNeley (a guy Mike Tyson knocked out in 30 seconds) making Bagwell look good this coming Sunday. Buff asked for the match (no he didn’t) because Piper would kill him in a wrestling match. Flair talks about his match with Dean being canceled (despite it never being announced on the main shows) so instead, Dean gets a US Title shot. That’s quite the punishment. If Dean loses on Sunday, Gene gets a night with Asya. Ok then.

Rap Is Crap video.

This Week in WCW Motorsports, now with Ricky Rachman.

Disco Inferno vs. Kidman

Kidman scores with a quick dropkick and clothesline. His Fameasser is countered though and Disco nails a clothesline of his own. A wristlock goes nowhere so they head outside as we hear that Regal is now in the junkyard match. That match sounds like it could be so bad that it’s amazing.

Kidman scores with a dive but Disco grabs an atomic drop back inside, only to charge into a boot. You know you would think a match with these two would be a bit more entertaining. Kidman hits a high cross body and the Low Down for two. Cue Sonny and the Cat as Kidman gets two off a top rope bulldog. Not that it matters as Cat kicks Kidman with the red shoe for the disqualification.

Rating: D+. Every time they get close to giving me something to care about, we get something like Sonny Onoo to screw it up. What happened to Kidman anyway? Oh that’s right: this company is more about screaming HOOTY HOO than having Rey and Kidman tear the house down every night. Also, can we get a match to break five minutes tonight?

Disco lays out Cat post match.

The Triad comes out and says they’ll win on Sunday because Benoit and Saturn have never come close to beating them.

Chris Benoit vs. Kanyon

This HAS to be better. Kanyon goes after him in the corner but gets taken down with chops. Benoit runs him over again but Kanyon rakes him in the eyes. That’s fine with Benoit who snaps off a suplex to send Kanyon rolling out to the floor. We get a chase around the ring with Kanyon getting in first and stomping on the Canadian, only to eat more chops as a result.

They head outside again but WAIT A MINUTE. Jimmy Hart has gotten Mikey Whipwreck into the junkyard match. We’re still not done with anything but the match as Tenay talks about Team Madness going insane in the back because they can’t be on camera. Kanyon suplexes Benoit on the floor and takes him back inside, only for Benoit to fire off more chops.

Back up and Kanyon headbutts him down, setting up a middle rope Fameasser for two. We hit the chinlock for a bit before Benoit fights up, only to have his powerbomb countered into a sitout version from Kanyon for another near fall. Kanyon heads up top, only to get caught in a superplex to put both guys down. Back up and Benoit starts rolling Germans, only to get drilled in the face with an elbow.

Cue Bigelow with a title belt but Benoit whips Kanyon into the big guy to knock him off the apron. Chris loads up the Swan Dive but gets shoved off by Bam Bam. Now Saturn comes out to even things up but gets whipped into the barricade. Benoit hooks the Crossface but has to avoid Bigelow’s flying headbutt. A dropkick puts the big man outside again and the Crossface makes Kanyon tap.

Rating: B-. The interference was a bit much but they let two talented guys have a good match for about ten minutes. It’s not the best match in the world or anything but after the hour and a half that I had to sit through put this just a step below Steamboat vs. Flair. Kanyon hasn’t been busting out much new stuff lately but he’s still different enough to stand out in the sea of brawlers in WCW.

Page comes out and the Triad lays out Benoit and Saturn to make sure they don’t lose any heat.

Here’s Megadeth’s performance from Monday to waste about five minutes.

Curt Hennig vs. Konnan

Konnan has to chase Bobby off the apron to start before kicking Curt in the ribs to break up a test of strength. A bulldog and dropkick put Hennig down as well, meaning we at least get some great selling. The less famous Windham interferes to give Curt control with all of his usual. Konnan comes back with the rolling clothesline and X Factor, only to have Hennig throw him outside. A huge brawl breaks out on the floor as Konnan hooks the Tequila Sunrise, only to have Barry come in with the cowbell to give Hennig a cheap win.

Overall Rating: D-. Well let’s see. Eddie loses to Lenny Lane, one match broke five minutes, the show long story was Jimmy Hart adding people to the junkyard match, despite no affiliation with the guy running it, multiple matches for Sunday were either added or changed, and about a fourth of the show was spent on videos from Nitro. Someone remind me why this show exists.

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1 comment

  1. Gillberg!!! says:

    So all the dramatic build of “Can Nash trust Sting, or vice versa? Will they work as a team or not?” is completely scrapped, and we just have your standard four-way match, like we had a whopping 3 PPVs back. FFS.

    If Disco is the face in his “feud” with the Cat, why is he booked as a heel against Kidman? Why is the Cat helping him? Why should we care?

    And why, for god’s sake why, is the Hardcore Junkyard match getting so much push? It’s not going to set up a Hardcore titlist, or even any future hardcore matches, since hardcore is currently banned. And the winner can’t get much of a push from a one-off match in a freaking junkyard. AND it’s not as though any feuds are being resolved. Having Scott Hall and Lex Luger have a monster-truck demolition derby match would be more relevant.