Thunder – November 22, 2000: The Clouds Are Back Again

Thunder
Date: November 22, 2000
Location: Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center, Augusta, Georgia
Attendance: 3,800
Commentators: Mike Tenay, Stevie Ray, Tony Schiavone

It’s the go home show for Mayhem and unfortunately that means we’re not likely to see much tonight. We might get some build towards the Tag Team Title match which was only added on Monday but other than that, this could be a very long night. Not as long as it would have been for the people who had to sit through this and Nitro of course. Let’s get to it.

Opening Nitro recap.

Here are Mike Sanders, Mark Jindrak and Sean O’Haire to get things going with Mike having a big bandage around his head after the Goldberg match. Sanders brings up all the stuff with Kwee Wee on Monday before mentioning Meng, which draws out the monster.

Meng vs. Mark Jindrak/Sean O’Haire

The Thrillers pound him down as well as they can with O’Haire getting in a good looking clothesline for no cover. Instead Meng shrugs it all off and Samoan drops Jindrak. Something like Poetry in Motion doesn’t work and Meng slowly beats them both down like the glorified jobbers they are. A double Tongan Death Grip brings in the rest of the Thrillers and it’s a big DQ after Jindrak and O’Haire look worthless.

Nash and Page make the save and Sanders is ticked. Mike wants Page to fight a Thriller tonight and Stasiak volunteers, with Sanders making it a lumberjack match for no logical reason.

Scott Steiner is here.

Ric Flair says there’s a restraining order between Scott Steiner and Booker T. If they fight before Sunday, Booker is suspended and Steiner loses his title shot. I’m so glad they did this four days before the pay per view.

Here’s 3 Count to say they are in fact still 3 Count. The dancing ensues and almost no one cares.

Yang vs. Shannon Moore vs. Evan Karagias

Evan and Shannon slug it out to start with Shannon getting the better of it, only to be sent out to the floor for his efforts. Yang misses a kick at Evan and gets rolled up for a fast two as Shannon gets back in. It’s Yang taking over on the singer/former singer before Evan pancakes him down. That means it’s time to drive the Cadillac (that stupid thing where Evan has his hand on a steering wheel and his other hand as a phone), only to have Shannon get come back in with a Fameasser.

Yang gets sent outside so Jamie can stomp him, leaving Shannon to eat a powerslam for two. There’s always something strange about someone Evan’s size doing a powerslam. Helms pulls Evan to the floor but gets whipped hard into the barricade. Back in and Yang hits a quick reverse White Noise for the pin on Shannon. It’s as sudden as it sounds.

Rating: C. As usual this needed more time and some more polish but at least it was entertaining while it lasted. I still have almost no idea why these teams are still fighting but they can do some fun big matches. Unfortunately this was nowhere near long enough and the match was a bit sloppy, which dragged it down too much.

Alex Wright tries to buy Kronik for later tonight but apparently can only afford half. Adams seems to have an idea.

Stevie Ray interviewed Scott Steiner earlier today and oh this could be a train wreck. Steiner is sitting behind a plastic screen, apparently to prevent another version of what happened to Tenay. Scott is ready to right the wrongs of Halloween Havoc, which of course leads into a discussion of the University of Michigan. This sets off a big censored tirade, during which the camera pans over a bit too much to reveal that the plastic isn’t attached to anything. Stevie is all defensive but here’s Booker to hit Steiner with a chair. Some hero.

Here are the Filthy Animals for their match with the Boogie Knights, but first it’s time to hit all the catchphrases, meaning you have time to make a nice sandwich before we get things going. Alex Wright comes out and says he has a surprise.

Rey Mysterio/Kidman vs. Bryan Clark

Kidman gets thrown into the corner to start and it’s time for some stomping. A big boot has him in even more trouble but of course a single dropkick staggers Clark. Where would cruiserweights be without their dropkicks? Mysterio comes in to help but Kidman gets crotched for his efforts. A chokeslam sends Rey flying and it’s back to Kidman for another dropkick. The faceplant to break up a powerbomb gets two on Clark and it’s High Times, with Rey looking right at it and doing nothing. Instead he heads outside to beat on Wright, leaving Kidman to take a Meltdown for the pin.

Rating: D. Why does WCW hate cruiserweights so much? They just had former Tag Team Champions lose to Bryan Clarke in a glorified squash match for the sake of pushing a feud with the Boogie Knights. I know they might not have been the biggest things in the world but it would have been nice to see them not treated as cannon fodder.

Steiner invades Sanders’ office and demands a match. Mike immediately agrees and that’s the segment.

Bam Bam Bigelow and Reno say they’ll win their tag match later.

Page and Nash are ready for the Thrillers.

Vito rambles a bit until Sanders comes in to give him a match tonight. Vito calls him Parmesan face.

Recaps of Steiner vs. Booker and DDP/Nash vs. the Thrillers.

The Thrillers rant a lot and Gene Okerlund swears at them. O’Haire says have Paulshock interview them next time.

Video on Sanders vs. Goldberg. Feel free to have a match anytime here.

Here’s Booker to talk about various player haters. You’ll have to kill him to take the title from him and he’s sorry about giving Major Gunns the Book End. Booker has six words for Goldberg: Don’t hate the player, hate the game. Instead of killing Booker to take the title, maybe you could just teach him how to count. This brings out Goldberg, who says he saved Booker on Monday. After Mayhem, that title is coming back where it belongs. So I guess the Streak angle is officially dead? They shake hands, though Booker is a bit tentative.

The Cat and Buff Bagwell are ready for their match tonight. Is that match happening ANYTIME SOON???

Shane Douglas and Torrie come out to insult Buff with Shane saying he has a surprise partner to face Bagwell/Cat tonight. That would be Jeff Jarrett, which shouldn’t surprise anyone. For some reason Jarrett makes Christmas jokes about Bagwell and this really doesn’t go anywhere.

Buff Bagwell/The Cat vs. Jeff Jarrett/Shane Douglas

Cat pounds on Douglas in the corner and kicks him a few times, only to get poked in the eye to stop that cold. As usual, heel wrestlers easily defeat karate guys. Jarrett comes in to keep Douglas safe and it’s time for a double beatdown. Cat dropkicks both guys down and makes the hot tag to Bagwell (yeah a hot tag a minute in) for some house cleaning. Everything breaks down and the women argue on the floor, earning Ms. Jones an ejection. The Stroke plants Cat for no count as the referee is out with the women. Buff mostly botches the Blockbuster but gets hit with a foreign object to give Jeff the weak pin.

Rating: D. I’m honestly not sure why these people are fighting in the first place and I really have no idea why I’m supposed to want to see them having matches on pay per view. It really does seem like they’re just throwing whatever they can to fill in a card. That’s never a good sign for a promotion and it’s not a good sign here.

Crowbar and Mike Awesome say they’ll win.

Scott Steiner vs. Big Vito

Before the match, Steiner accuses Goldberg and Booker of having a love fest earlier. After Sunday, he’ll celebrate being the World Champion by getting horizontal. Steiner goes over to the announcers’ table to yell at Stevie but Vito comes out to start the brawling. The fans chant for Stevie as Vito gets thrown around, including the spinning belly to belly. A backbreaker allows Steiner to throw Vito outside and it’s time for another trip to the announcers’ table.

Back in and Steiner keeps beating on Vito in the corner with a genuine imitation mudhole stomping. Vito gets tied in the Tree of Woe for some choking he grabs a quick belly to belly for a breather. The top rope elbow gets two and there’s a flying headbutt for the same. Vito goes up for the third time but gets crotched down, setting up the super t-bone. The Recliner puts Vito away.

Rating: C-. I remember this being way better and that comeback is still pretty good. Vito has gotten some insane mileage out of that Hardcore Title reign despite barely ever winning anything else since then. This was a better match than it had any right to be and it’s clear that they’re setting up something with Stevie vs. Scott, or at least they should be.

Mike Awesome/Crowbar vs. Bam Bam Bigelow/Reno

Hardcore rules. Awesome and Crowbar bring in the weapons because they’re the good guys here. It’s a big brawl to start with Crowbar and Reno heading outside, where Reno uses a trashcan lid to block Awesome’s suicide dive. Crowbar loads up an Asai moonsault and has to hit the mats stomach first as the heels are too busy brawling to catch him. Thanks for that guys.

They head up to the stage for all of ten seconds before it’s back to ringside while Tony plugs Backstage Assault (that wrestling game where you never actually get in a wrestling ring). Reno goes after Awesome’s knee in the ring as Bigelow throws a cookie sheet at Crowbar’s head. Unfortunately it misses and hits a fan, but at least it was a nice try.

Bigelow and Reno are laid onto tables and Crowbar is nice enough to let Awesome powerbomb him over the top and through Reno for the big crash. Bigelow gets up and kind of sends Awesome through another able (kind of as in Awesome jumped WAY harder than Bigelow threw him) as Reno covers Crowbar for the pin o the floor.

Rating: D-. Some of the spots worked here but the match was a huge mess that had no business existing. There’s a Hardcore Title match on Sunday and I really don’t need to see a hardcore match here to help set that up. The title and the division are just so dead and stupid at this point but for some reason it’s still a thing. Really bad match here and no one cared, which is sad when you have someone like Crowbar going all over the place and working so hard to get the stupid idea over.

Shawn Stasiak vs. Diamond Dallas Page

Lumberjack match with most of the midcard sans the Thrillers at ringside. During the lumberjacks’ entrances, Tony mentions Starrcade for perhaps the first time all year. Mike Sanders sits in on commentary to brag about Stasiak’s “youthness.” Page knocks him outside early on and hits a big dive to take out Stasiak and some lumberjacks. There goes the brawl between the lumberjacks and we’re down to a regular match inside of a minute.

Stasiak gets in a jumping back elbow and here are Chuck Palumbo and Kevin Nash to stand at ringside. A fireman’s carry gutbuster gets two on Page as more Thrillers start showing up. We hit the chinlock and some choking before Page starts a comeback, only to get hit in the head with a foreign object for two as Nash pulls the referee out. There’s a Diamond Cutter but there’s no referee, allowing Palumbo to hit Page with a chair to give Stasiak the pin.

Rating: D-. There’s a little credit here for the sake of giving Stasiak a win but this was way messier than it needed to be. They really could have done the exact same match without the lumberjacks and that’s never a good sign. Also well done on having Page lose his first match back before he gets a title shot on Sunday.

Nash powerbombs the referee to end the show, which the announcers find funny for whatever reason.

Overall Rating: F. The horrible days of Thunder are back and it’s as we’re going into a pay per view that I had little to no desire to see in the first place. There’s almost nothing interesting going on here and the main event really couldn’t be more obvious. The second biggest match on the card is going to be Goldberg vs. Lex Luger, which is as horrible of a thought as you could possibly have. This was a really bad show though and there are no signs that it’s getting better.

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