On This Day: February 12, 1996 – Monday Nitro: Enjoy This While You Can

Monday Nitro #24
Date: February 12, 1996
Location: Florida State Fair, Tampa, Florida
Commentators: Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan, Steve McMichael

FINALLY we’re done with the build to Superbrawl. Now it’s time to start building to….oh no…..oh no……NO PLEASE NOT THIS!!! NOT UNCENSORED 1996!!!!! This would wind up being one of the worst shows that I have ever seen and easily one of the biggest jokes of all time. I guess we start talking about it tonight. Flair is champion and Hogan triumphed again last night so that’s what we’re building up with. Let’s get to it.

Theme song opens us up.

The announcers run down the card and talk about the two main events for the most part. Oh and Liz is evil now, meaning she’ll look much hotter now.

We look at the Strap Match where Pillman acted/quit/got released and Anderson had to take his place. Now it’s the title match. Oh and Hogan in a grudge match went on after the world title match of course.

Randy Savage vs. Hugh Morrus

Savage vs. Flair again next week. Macho is all reserved and ticked off as he comes to the ring. Morrus jumps him as he comes in but Savage fights him off. Uh make that Morrus beats on Savage. Hey let’s talk about Hogan! There’s a new member of the Dungeon called the Loch Ness who weighed like 700 pounds. He would be gone in like 2 months and never faced Hogan.

Randy gets a boot up in the corner to break up the momentum. There are going to be WCW guys on an episode of Baywatch. We hit the floor and Morrus eats post. Back in the laughing dude gets a suplex so he can choke. There’s the spinning finger from Savage after an elbow gets him out of trouble. Morrus’ moonsault misses, slam, elbow, another elbow, pin.

Rating: C. Just your basic hero vs. monster match here that was nothing special at all. Savage gets a bit of momentum for the rematch next week which is certainly a good thing. The match itself was nothing special. They wanted to push Morrus I think but they never had the chance to really do so.

Another elbow follows and Savage says he wants Flair.

Gene talks to some racecar driver and no one cares at all.

Scotty Riggs vs. Loch Ness

So it’s a new monster against a near jobbing tag team face. What do you think is going to happen here? Anderson vs. Hogan is the main event apparently. Riggs gets some dropkicks and goes up for a cross body. Loch Ness drops him and falls on Riggs’ knees. A pair of big elbows end Riggs. Yep this was what I expected here.

Liz and Woman wheel out a stretcher and yep Liz looks sexy in those black boots. Flair pops up off the stretcher for no apparent reason. You may not believe this, but Flair talks about styling and profiling and riding in jets and limos and Space Mountain. Liz says she has half of Randy’s money and implies she screwed Flair last night.

Konnan vs. Devon Storm

Storm is more famous (kind of) as Crowbar. Konnan is US Champion here but this is non-title I think. The bell rings after the commercial. Storm takes him down quickly with a dropkick and we hit the floor. Storm sets up a chair and hits a springboard tope con hilo. A dropkick from the apron is enough to put Konnan in the chair. Storm sets up the steps but when he tries a rana off them he gets powerbombed on the floor. Back in the ring now with Konnan hammering away. Konnan gets a sloppy rana for no cover as we speed things up a bit.

Things slow down a bit as Konnan gets a leg lock. George Steinbrenner is here. You know this math stuff and the leg locks are kind of boring. Storm tries a sunset bomb to the floor but is countered into a rana. Eric clarifies that last week when he implied WWF had something to do with a power outage that he wasn’t being serious at all. He sounds sincere when he says that too so I’ll take him at his word there. Back in the ring we get an ECW chant. Storm tries a top rope rana but Konnan counters into a powerbomb with a jackknife pin for the victory.

Rating: C+. This was like a tale of two matches. The first half was incredibly exciting with Storm showing off a lot. The second half was rather boring and sloppy. It’s a great example of a match that would be much better if you cut off maybe 90 seconds, even though it’s a 5 minute match. Fun stuff but too much boring in the end for it to be really fun.

Hulk Hogan vs. Arn Anderson

According to Bischoff, Anderson is tough but Hogan is REALLY tough. Let the Hogan worship begin! He still has a bad eye too. Anderson gets a shot to the head but can’t do much other than that as here comes Hogan. Hogan no sells a clothesline and gets a pair of his own. Out to the floor and Arn backpedals. He tries a Piledriver out ther ebut Hogan counters into a slingshot into the post. Hogan takes the eyepatch off and rams Anderson’s arm into the post.

Almost all Hulk so far here. Steinbrenner seems to like this. Arn gets a back elbow which puts Hogan down. And so much for that as Arn gets crotched on the top rope. Apparently he has balls of steel as he fights back and here are Liz and Flair. Spinebuster gets two as Hogan does the super kickout. Here’s the usual but Hogan struts and puts the Figure Four on. Flair comes in and while Anderson is in the Figure Four Hogan rolls up Flair at the same time. Woman throws powder in Hogan’s face and Flair slips Arn Liz’s high heel which goes into the eye of baldie for the pin.

Rating: C. This was just to give Anderson the fluke win because what happens next is another eye rolling moment regarding Hogan vs. Flair and company. The match itself was just ok as Hogan dominated and then Arn got in like two moves. If Hogan hadn’t been an idiot (I know just go with it) then he would have won in a squash, which says a lot.

Hogan’s eye is apparently fine as he pops up and beats both guys down. Savage comes in to help and they get a chair shot to Flair. Flair storms the broadcast booth and says nothing of note. Hogan and Savage chase them out of said booth. Hogan vs. Anderson II next week.

Overall Rating: C+. The show was pretty good considering it’s just a TV show. On the other hand, I’m about five and a half months into this show now and the problem is clear: we’re almost exactly where we were in September when this show started. Hogan is the ultimate force, Savage is his lackey, Flair is top heel, Giant is an X factor and it’s Hogan vs. two stables. While the details have changed, it’s the same thing we had almost six months ago. The NWO really was a huge deal as it changed everything. Now get us to that point! Weaker show here than usual and not good given what’s coming.


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