Monday Nitro – May 12, 1997: A Horrible Go Home Show For One Of The Most Worthless PPVs Ever
Date: May 12, 1997
Location: 1st Mariner Center, Baltimore, Arena
Commentators: Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan, Larry Zbyszko
I think this is another of those hour long shows due to the NBA Playoffs which is a good idea lately. Slamboree is this Sunday and THANK GOODNESS FOR THAT. The shows have been so insanely boring lately that they need something to be completely changed. 1997 wasn’t kind to the company but everyone remembers it as being awesome for some reason. Hopefully there’s more Sting and Hogan here tonight as without them, these shows suck. Let’s get to it.
Michael Buffer of all people opens the show.
Here are Savage and Liz with the Macho Man on his own feet instead of crutches. He talks about Page jumping him last week and firing him up. Savage wants a fight tonight and that’s it. He talked for 25 seconds max. That’s kind of refreshing.
Apparently Sting wants to conduct a one on one interview with Bischoff. The source of this news: Bischoff. Naturally the announcers accept this with no questions.
TV Title: Juventud Guerrera vs. Ultimo Dragon
Dragon is defending and Regal talks about how he can outwrestle anyone and will take the title on Sunday. Guerrera starts with a springboard cross body for two followed by a headscissors to send the champ to the floor. Back in and Dragon fires off some kicks followed by an over the shoulder backbreaker for two. Juvy kicks him in the face for two and hits a northern lights fisherman’s suplex for two.
A rana is countered by a Dragon powerbomb and things slow down. Juvy rolls through a rana into a sunset flip for two before escaping a dragon and tiger suplex. They both go up top, resulting in Dragon hitting a superplex to put both guys down. Juvy gets pulled to the floor by Sonny Onoo and Dragon jumps on Guerrera from behind, saving Sonny in the process. Onoo kicks Juvy in the back and back inside, the super rana sets up the Dragon Sleeper to retain the title.
Rating: C. Not bad here but they kept starting and stopping. Juvy is a good choice for an opening act though as he can fly all over the place and do it almost as well as anyone else. That being said, he had no chance at winning the title, but for the most part that’s ok. Sometimes it’s fine to throw out an entertaining match even if the ending isn’t in doubt.
Here are Piper/Flair/Greene to talk about Sunday. Please let this be short. Greene says that everyone pays taxes, everyone dies, and on Sunday he’s going to hurt the NWO. Flair says they’ll be there on Sunday. Piper says he’s isn’t Dorthy from the Wizard of Oz. The NWO shows up and makes fun of the guys in the ring. On Sunday, it’s no DQ and no countout.
Dean Malenko vs. Steve McMichael
Dean takes him to the mat almost immediately but Mongo shoves him down almost just as fast. Malenko goes after the knee but Mongo escapes a Cloverleaf attempt. The leg lariat gets two for Dean but a Jarrett distraction lets Mongo clip Dean from behind. Mongo powerslams Dean but the referee went down during the slam.
Here’s Reggie White but Jarrett distracts him too, allowing Mongo to get in a shot. White hits a clothesline and splash on Mongo (Bobby says it’s not fair as Mongo has already been in there five or ten minutes. It hasn’t even been three yet) giving Dean the pin. This was a mess and it set up Reggie White vs. Mongo on Sunday so if it could be rated, the grade would be very low.
Reggie says he’s fighting for Wisconsin on Sunday.
Lee Marshall does his thing. Remind me again why this guy was getting a paycheck?
Scotty Riggs vs. Wrath
Even Scotty Riggs gets pyro. Man how much money did they have to burn at this point? Before the match, James Vandenberg names his monster as Wrath. As for the match, picture any squash between a small pretty boy and a monster that lasts about 40 seconds. That’s the match you get here. Wrath wins it with his double arm Rock Bottom.
Here’s Glacier post match. He doesn’t do anything but he does in fact show up.
Konnan/Hugh Morrus vs. Alex Wright/Ice Train
Clearly a main event in any arena in the country. Tonight, it’s the main event in the 1st Mariner Arena. The Dungeon team jumps Train to start with no avail at all. Train and Morrus officially start us off with Ice Train hitting a powerslam to take over. Off to Wright who is booed out of the building. Wright won’t tag out and it lets Morrus take over. A clothesline puts Train down and Wright bails to the floor. Train fights back but Wright claims a knee injury and walks away. The Dungeon double teams Ice Train until the Tequila Sunrise gets the submission.
Rating: D. This was all about the heel turn and not about the match at all. This didn’t lead to a match between Ice Train and Wright, at least not on Nitro. This would be Train’s last match on Nitro that I can find for over three years. Nothing to see here as it was an angle instead of a match, but at least the angle seemed to be what was needed given the crowd hating Wright when he came into the match.
We recap the beatdown on DDP by the NWO last week.
We cut to the back where Piper is down and injured. To the best of my knowledge this wasn’t mentioned at all on Sunday.
Here’s Bischoff for the big interview with Sting. Bischoff stalls a lot and we’re rapidly running out of airtime. To the shock of absolutely no one with a functioning brain, it’s the NWO Sting. The fans say they want Sting. Bischoff says a bunch of things that run Sting down while praising Hogan and Sting nods in agreement with everything. The real Sting comes out and beats up the fake one. Bischoff runs to end the show.
Overall Rating: D-. The only thing keeping this from being a total failure is that it was half the length of a usual show. There was NOTHING on this show of value at all and it was pretty clear that no one was interested in what they were doing out there. Slamboree would wind up being the textbook definition of a throwaway show and even though the main event wound up being decent, it didn’t mean anything at all past Sunday night. This show however was horrible and thankfully we’re moving towards something new now.
Here’s Slamboree if you’re interested:
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