Date: February 18, 2001
Location: Nashville Municipal Auditorium, Nashville, Tennessee
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Scott Hudson
I’m still not sure what the REVENGE subtitle is referring to but it might be due to the fact that we’ve seen several of these matches on TV in recent weeks. The main event is Kevin Nash challenging Scott Steiner for the World Title in a match we saw just six days ago on Nitro. Let’s get to it.
The opening video looks like something out of a serial killer movie with someone cutting out pictures of Ric Flair and cutting words like PSYCHO and GREED out of magazines and newspapers. No idea what it meant but at least it looked cool.
Jamie Knoble vs. Evan Karagias vs. Kaz Hayashi vs. Yang vs. Shannon Moore vs. Shane Helms
Elimination match for the #1 contendership. Helms is a replacement after Animal attacked Kidman so we can have these six opening ANOTHER pay per view. Thankfully there are tags here so it won’t be as insane to keep track of. Well at least to start because there’s no way the tags last. Jamie and Shannon start things off but Shane comes in with Shannon tossing Jamie into a powerbomb for two.
Even sends 3 Count to the floor with the Dragons hitting stereo Asai Moonsaults (which the camera mostly misses). Back in and the Dragons double team Jamie, followed by Kaz headscissoring him into the middle turnbuckle. Jamie fights back and it’s off to Evan to beat on Yang. I know it’s not exactly a surprise but it would have been nice to not have a three way tag for a change.
Karagias plants Yang with a full nelson slam and then almost completely misses a springboard dive. Shane tags himself in and goes nuts on Evan before getting spun around into a rollup by Yang. Things are starting to speed up a bit with the Samoan Drop/neckbreaker combination getting two on Yang as Kaz makes the save. Tony says anyone could have made a save and Hudson talks about how anyone should have because he doesn’t know the rules of this thing.
The tags start getting much faster until Kaz starts cleaning house, only to have Evan drive him into the corner. Shane pops up with a top rope superplex to drop Kaz, followed by FIVE straight missed top rope moves to put all six down. Hudson: “The first man to his feet has to be the legal man.” No Scott, that’s not how wrestling works.
Kaz springboards into a kick to Evan’s head, only to get kicked into an X Plex from Shane. Evan hits a good looking springboard dive to take out Shane and Yang on the floor. We get the parade of dives with Jamie going last and being the only man standing. Back in and Evan gorilla presses Kaz into a spinebuster for two, followed by a powerbomb/missile dropkick combo but Jamie and Evan fight over who gets to cover. Guys don’t listen to Scott Hudson. It just destroys your career. In the melee, Yang grabs an over the back piledriver on Evan for the first elimination.
Jamie slips back in and grabs a tombstone to get rid of Yang to get us down to four. 3 Count’s double team doesn’t work as Jamie dropkicks Shannon into the barricade, only to have Shannon come back in with a super Bottoms Up for the pin on Noble. So we’re down to Shannon, Shane and Kaz with the team looking down at Hayashi. Hudson tries to say there are no teams here because he thinks we might believe him. In a fairly scary looking spot, Shannon backslides Kaz and Shane adds a guillotine legdrop at the same time.
Shane calls for the Vertebreaker but Shannon gives him the Bottoms Up in a quick turn. We get a ref bump on the save (STOP DOING THAT!) so Shane can kick out but Shannon low blows him right back down. Kaz and Shannon double team him for a bit before Kaz throws Moore outside. Shane gets back up and hits the Nightmare on Helm Street to eliminate Shannon and we’re down to two. Kaz rolls through a top rope sunset flip and kicks Shane in the face for two, only to get caught in the Vertebreaker to give Shane the title shot.
Rating: B. The match was the fun you would expect from these six but it’s getting really tiresome to see WCW putting them against each other over and over again. It’s cool to see them get some time like this (over seventeen minutes, the longest match on the show) but of course it’s the opener and the match is likely to be forgotten in about an hour because that’s where these guys belong.
Earlier today Chavo Guerrero was with Animal and Ric Flair but we can’t hear what was said. Chavo was upset though.
Hugh Morrus says General Rection did a lot of good things for the Wall in WCW but then Rection (he’s speaking like Rection is a different person) felt Wall’s betrayal. Tonight it’s Hugh Morrus, who has nothing but hatred in his heart.
Ric gives Scott Steiner an envelope that contains Kevin Nash’s future. Scott is very pleased by this.
Commissioner Lance Storm tells Kronik (arriving half an hour into the show) that Clark has to be seen by the company doctor before he can wrestle tonight. The Brian/Bryan’s don’t seem to mind.
Hugh Morrus vs. The Wall
Grudge match following the split of the Misfits in Action. Wall hammers away to start and gets an impressive looking shoulder to knock Morrus outside. Morrus comes back with a hard shot of his own and sends Wall into the steps, which he uses to crush Wall’s head up against the post. They get back in after a few minutes on the floor with Hugh dropping a top rope elbow for no cover.
Wall comes back with some big chops, followed by headbutts in the corner. Morrus avoids a top rope legdrop and both guys are down again. A spinebuster plants Morrus and keeps up the string of hard hitting moves. Back up and Wall gets flapjacked so we can have another double breather. They slug it out from their knees, which Hudson describes as not wrestling of any type. Then why exactly am I watching? Morrus gets up first and hits a German suplex to set up No Laughing Matter for the pin.
Rating: D. This started off well with them beating on each other with heavy shots that looked like they did a lot of damage but then the ridiculous amount of laying around after big spots got annoying in a hurry. Cut this match down by about two or three minutes and it’s actually a fun power brawl but it was clear that they were out there too long. Wall didn’t look as horrible here, which is high praise in his case.
Konnan goes after Animal for what he did to Kidman.
We recap the battle of the Thrillers, which is basically about who has the Tag Team Titles, which set up a rivalry over who were the stars of the team.
Tag Team Titles: Sean O’Haire/Chuck Palumbo vs. Mark Jindrak/Shawn Stasiak
O’Haire and Palumbo are defending. Before the match, both teams say they’re awesome and promise a win. A quick brawl breaks out at the bell before Stasiak clotheslines O’Haire to start. Sean sends Jindrak throat first into the ropes though, allowing Palumbo to get in a dropkick to the face. The champs take over with Palumbo jumping over his partner to land on Mark’s ribs before grabbing a sleeper.
Stasiak actually does something right for a change as he distracts Palumbo so Mark can get in a clothesline to take over. A double clothesline into a double nipup into a double elbow drop let the challengers show off a bit, only to have Palumbo hit that insanely hard right hand on Stasiak’s jaw. It’s not enough for the tag though as Jindrak takes him back into the corner for more stomping.
Mark grabs the chinlock on Palumbo as they’re doing the smart thing here by waiting on the hot tag to O’Haire, who is by far the most interesting of these four. Back to Stasiak for an armbar before Jindrak grabs a tilt-a-whirl slam for two. They’re certainly giving Stasiak and Jindrak a bunch of offense.
Shawn misses a top rope splash (which would have overshot Palumbo by three feet anyway) and the hot tag finally brings in O’Haire to a moderate pop. That’s not bad considering there’s no reason to cheer the champs, who never have done anything to turn face. Everything breaks down and Stasiak has to pull his partner away before the Seanton Bomb can launch. Not that it matters as Palumbo Jungle Kicks Shawn down, setting up the Seanton to retain.
Rating: B-. Not bad at all here and the clean finish did a lot of good here. Sometimes you just need one side to come off as the better team and that’s what happened in this match. O’Haire looks like a star and I’m really surprised he didn’t become a bigger deal in wrestling due to his look and athleticism alone. The other three were average at best (Palumbo) and a warm body at worst (Stasiak) with all four of them really needing personalities and/or characters.
Dustin Rhodes blames Ric Flair for keeping him out of WCW. Tonight he’s drawing first blood on his team. After that, you will never forget the name of Dustin Rhodes.
Cruiserweight Title: Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Chavo Guerrero Jr.
Chavo is defending after Rey won a gauntlet match earlier in the month. Rey starts fast with a running clothesline as you can see far too many empty seats in the upper deck. The champ sends him to the apron for an attempted sunset bomb which is countered into a hurricanrana to send Chavo flying. Back in and Chavo drapes him ribs first across the top rope.
Going after Rey’s ribs has worked for years so there’s no reason to not go for it again. Rey gets tied up in the Tree of Woe to work on the knee but Chavo stays on the ribs. Now that’s just versatility. It’s time for the Gory Special for a bit with Chavo teasing the Gory Bomb (not Gory Buster, no matter how many times the announcers try to refer to it as such). Rey escapes and tries a springboard, only to dive into a dropkick to the ribs. This has been all Chavo as he keeps countering everything Rey throws at him.
There’s an STF of all things before Chavo sends him outside. Rey comes up holding his knee which is quickly sent into the steps. Chavo steals a fan’s Mysterio mask and puts it on Rey before grabbing a chinlock. Back up and Rey crotches him on the turnbuckle, setting up a hurricanrana as the mask comes off. Chavo takes a breather outside so Rey flip dives over the top to take him out as he FINALLY starts acting like himself. Another springboard goes badly for Rey though as he bangs up his knee, also just like himself.
It’s time for a chair because….well I have no idea actually. Rey sends Chavo into the buckle and tries a hurricanrana, which finally sends Chavo outside after two botches. Hudson praises Rey’s execution, which Tony says is appropriate since he almost killed Chavo. That was far too close to being amusing. Cut it out Schiavone. Back in and the Bronco Buster hits Guerrero as Rey is way too healthy in a hurry. Rey goes for a chair so Chavo finds another one to crack Rey in the head, setting up the brainbuster to retain the title.
Rating: B+. What is with this show tonight? We’re almost halfway in and there has been one bad (and not even that bad) match so far. Chavo was basically wrestling himself for most of this match, which you really don’t expect out of Rey. To be fair though there’s a good chance that Mysterio is injured or at least banged up as he was so often. Chavo on the other hand is looking like the best champion in years and his matches are getting better and better every time.
Commissioner Storm moves up Kronik’s match, meaning Clark might not be tested in time.
We recap Dustin Rhodes vs. Rick Steiner, which is basically “Dustin is back and was here ten years ago so therefore he’s awesome” and Rick Steiner is here because he has to be.
US Title: Rick Steiner vs. Dustin Rhodes
Steiner is defending after Dustin pinned him on Nitro. Dustin starts fast with a DDT and clothesline as we hear about the Rhodes vs. Flair feud. A missed crossbody sends Dustin outside and it’s time for the brawling. Rick slowly pounds away and rakes the eyes, making sure he has as little wrestling involved as possible.
We hit the chinlock for a bit before it’s off to a half crab. It’s off to another chinlock until Dustin gets a jawbreaker (more like a Diamond Cutter) to escape. A clothesline puts Rick down again but he won’t sell a faceplant. Dustin’s bulldog sends the champ outside but the referee takes a chair away from Rhodes. During the argument, Rick takes the turnbuckle pad off and a hotshot onto the steel retains the title.
Rating: D. Rick Steiner sucks and I’m not sure I need to go much further than that. It doesn’t help that Dustin is such an uninteresting character with his clotheslines and bulldogs as we wait on the latest chapter in Dusty vs. Ric. This is probably the best example of WCW’s biggest problem: old guys hogging spots with no one else ever getting a chance. I’m no fan of his but Shane Douglas has been tossed aside in this whole thing for the sake of Steiner and that’s a downgrade at this point. At least Shane can cut a good heel promo.
Post match Rick beats on him even more but Dustin fights back and hits Shattered Dreams.
Ric tells Storm that everyone not on their team needs to be out of the building after their match. Also, Kronik vs. Totally Buff is now a #1 contenders match. Storm says consider it done. This has been your most recent plot advancement.
Diamond Dallas Page gives Cat a pep talk.
Totally Buff vs. Kronik
Before the match, Totally Buff has to laugh that Goldberg is gone. After getting through that, Buff says Clark hasn’t been medically released so this is a handicap match. Clark comes out but gets blasted in the head by a Buff chair shot to really make this two on one. Bagwell keeps moving to break up a full nelson slam and it’s an early double teaming to keep Adams in trouble. A double back elbow gets two and it’s off to Luger to stay on the back.
Adams makes a big comeback with some clotheslines and throws Bagwell at Luger. The super Blockbuster is broken up and here’s Clark into the ring as…..Bryan Clark comes out to the stage. IT’S A SWERVE as the Clark who was laid out earlier (when Kronik’s mood lighting was still on) was actually Mike Awesome in disguise. Mike lays out Adams with a German suplex, setting up the Blockbuster for the pin and the title shot at Greed.
Rating: D-. When I have to sit and try to figure out how many parts there were to a swerve, it might be a bit too complicated. It also doesn’t help that this is a match we’ve seen so many times already in recent weeks that all the novelty or interest in it has gone away. Bad on so many levels, not the least of which is Luger getting a title shot at the next pay per view.
The announcers talk about the swerve with Hudson pointing out that Storm must have been in on it, not realizing that Tony JUST SAID THAT. Bobby Heenan used to do that as a gag with Monsoon. Hudson does it because he’s not that bright.
Storm ejects Kronik from the building but they beat up security.
Lance Storm vs. The Cat
Winner is Commissioner, though if Cat wins it doesn’t take effect until midnight. Before the match we get a quick fan poll to decide who the people want as commissioner. Storm rides him to the mat to start and slaps him in the back of the head for fun. A spinning kick to the face sends Lance outside but he sends Cat into the barricade. Cat’s leg is bent around the ropes to start the build towards the Mapleleaf. Hudson says Cat won’t give up that easily because he wants that corner office back.
Storm kicks the leg out to break up a comeback bid but he takes too long going up and gets slammed back down. The leg is wrapped around the post though and Cat is down again. That lasts all of ten seconds before he comes back with his dancing offense, including the elbow drop. There’s a kick to the head but cue Mike Sanders, who is quickly taken down by Miss Jones (who is looking great tonight). The Feliner puts Storm away and makes Cat Commissioner again.
Rating: D. Thank goodness our six day international crisis is over. This could have been a lot worse but the key thing here was keeping it short. Cat is only going to be able to do so much in the ring, even with a technician like Storm out there doing most of the work for him. This was more of a spectacle, but Storm really should have been out of power longer.
Quick recap of Jeff Jarrett vs. Diamond Dallas Page, which is mainly over Jarrett having Page arrested (went nowhere) before bringing Page’s old enemy Kanyon back to feud with Page again.
Cat is the new Commissioner but Ric has thrown him out of the building.
Jeff Jarrett vs. Diamond Dallas Page
Not so fast because Jeff brings up Page saying he would fight Kanyon anywhere anytime.
Diamond Dallas Page vs. Kanyon
Kanyon sneaks in from behind but Page is ready for him with the discus lariat. They head outside with Kanyon going into the barricade a few times. Kanyon sends him in as well though, followed by a Fameasser from the apron onto the steps. Page has some blood on his eye as Kanyon suplexes him from the bottom rope back in for two. Another Fameasser (which Tony calls innovative) gets two more for Kanyon and we hit an innovative chinlock.
Back up and Kanyon uses Page’s swinging neckbreaker for two as there is a lot more blood in a hurry. Page fights back with a swinging Rock Bottom, only to eat a sitout Alabama Slam for another near fall. Kanyon hits the Cutter but the referee goes down, allowing Jarrett to come in with the Stroke. A Flatliner puts Page away.
Rating: C+. These are two guys who are going to have a good match with almost anyone you put out there and that’s what we got here. The Kanyon Cutter should have finished the match but at least the right person won here. Kanyon should have been a big deal but all the heel turns and time off really held him back.
Post match Kanyon introduces Jarrett for the original match.
Diamond Dallas Page vs. Jeff Jarrett
Tony is saying Page just went “Ten, fifteen, twelve minutes” against Kanyon because just over eight minutes is close enough to twelve or fifteen. They fight into the crowd with Jarrett rocking the staggered Page with right hands. Back to ringside with Page sending him into the announcers’ table, only to be hit in the ribs with a few chair shots. Jeff drops some slow shots to the head but gets caught by the discus lariat. Sleeper, counter sleeper, jumping DDT from Page for a change of pace instead of the belly to back.
Back up and Page keeps slugging away with Jarrett going face first into the buckle over and over. Cue Kanyon, who Tony wants knocked out with a ball bat. Now come on Tony. You know it’s the ball bat that sets up the finisher which knocks people out around here. Jeff chairs Page down for two but the guitar hits Kanyon by mistake, setting up the Diamond Cutter for the pin. Hudson: “THAT IS A PERFORMANCE FOR THE HISTORY BOOKS!” For having back to back long TV matches?
Rating: C+. Despite a lot of the flack Page gets, he’s always going to give you a good match if he’s allowed the chance. It probably won’t be the best thing in the world but at least you’re guaranteed something totally watchable at worst, which is something WCW is severely lacking at this point.
We recap Scott Steiner vs. Kevin Nash. Basically Nash is standing up for WCW but Steiner hit him in the knee with a pipe on Nitro.
Ric Flair comes out for commentary on the main event.
WCW World Title: Kevin Nash vs. Scott Steiner
Steiner is defending but before we have the match, let’s look at the Sid Vicious injury to show how bad Scott can be to people. Ric has an announcement to make: the loser has to retire, which apparently was the ruling in the envelope. Nash is wheeled out with some good looking nurses and the leg in a cast. It looks like a countout but Nash stands up and we’re ready to go. A belt shot to Steiner’s head pins him in 12 seconds.
Of course that’s not it as Flair says it’s 2/3 falls and no DQ. We cut to the back to see Totally Buff lay out Page in the back as Nash beats on Steiner at ringside. Nash slowly hammers away before clotheslining him out to the floor. Midajah offers a distraction so Steiner can hit Nash in the head with a pipe. Flair makes it falls count anywhere so Steiner pins him on the floor for the second fall.
Some brass knuckles shots have Nash in even more trouble as the crowd is groaning as they’re far from impressed here. Both guys are bleeding and Steiner keeps hammering away at the cut on Nash’s head. The push-ups elbow gets two followed by the t-bone suplex for the same. Another knuckles shot is blocked with Nash hitting a side slam to put both guys down.
Midajah pulls the knuckles away from Nash but Flair sends in a chair so Nash can be knocked out (Tony: “He’s dead!”). The Recliner is broken up (with Tony acting like Nash is the new Goldberg as a result) and Nash gets two off a chokeslam with Midajah making the save. The Jackknife connects but Midajah interferes AGAIN, earning herself a side slam. Flair pulls the referee out and punches him in the jaw, allowing Steiner to get in a low blow, knuckles shot, chair shot and the Recliner to retain.
Rating: F. Nash isn’t exactly the new Goldberg because it didn’t take this much to put Goldberg down. You could see what they were going for as soon as Nash pinned him off the belt shot and it was just a bunch of Tony treating Nash like the greatest thing that ever lived for the rest of the match. Nash actually wouldn’t wrestle in WCW again so for once they did something right, though I’d be surprised if he wasn’t on Nitro tomorrow.
Overall Rating: C+. This is a good example of a show where you knew exactly what you were going to get out of each match. Six man cruiserweight elimination? Good stuff. Lance Storm vs. The Cat? Waste of time. Kevin Nash vs. Scott Steiner? Oh please. The big surprise though was how much good stuff there actually was and the show was very nice as a result. I can’t imagine anything else they’ll have will top this but at least it was nice to have one more easy show to sit through.
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