WCW GREAT AMERICAN BASH 1996
June 16, 1996
We start immediately with some words from Bobby Heenan, Randy Savage (with Kevin Greene and Mongo McMichael), Ric Flair (with Arn Anderson, Woman, and Elizabeth), Lex Luger, and The Giant (with Jimmy Hart) in that order.
Tony welcomes us to Baltimore, Maryland, and sends us over to the presentation of the colors. Presenting is Craig Pittman. During the anthem, we see a pretty good impersonation of Randy Savage!
HIT THE FIREWORKS! Our hosts are Tony Schiavone and Dusty Rhodes, who quickly run down the big matches on tap. Plus, we'll find out whether or not WCW wants a war. Sound familiar? And we remember Dick Murdoch, who passed away.
FIRE & ICE vs. THE STEINER BROTHERS (There must be a winner)
Apparently this stip was put in place after a match where there was no winner. Makes sense to me. Ice Train gets the early advantage on Steiner, taking him down to the mat with a clothesline, which gets an early 2. Scott gets back up and promptly takes out both members of Fire and Ice. Brother Rick comes in, Fire and Ice bail, so Scott rubs Rick's head while Rick barks on the mat. Norton gets control on Rick and knocks him to the mat a number of times with clotheslines and back elbows. Nasty chops on Rick, into the other corner, but Rick comes off with a clothesline! Belly to belly suplex from Steiner gets 2, and Rick tags in Scott. Scott hits a really nice dropkick, but Norton comes back with a Samoan Drop, and Scott rolls out. Back in, Norton out, Ice Train in. Snap suplex on Scott. Belly to belly gets 2. Ice Train tries to throw Scott out, but he won't go, so Ice Train distracts the ref while Norton pounds on Scott from the outside. Scott gets the boot up in the corner and manages to regain control. Norton back in, so Scott Steiner promptly drops him on his head. Steiner to the top, gets caught with the flying bodypress, bodyslam gets 2. Clothesline to Steiner, and we work on the shoulder a little. Ice Train in. He continues to work on the neck/shoulder area of Steiner. Steiner gets out of the rear chinlock, to his feet, but Ice Train promptly takes him back down and tags out to Norton. Norton hits a shoulderbreaker, and puts on an armbar. Rick comes in and kicks Norton in the head several times before Norton lets go. He goes for another shoulder breaker, but on the way down Scott tags out to Rick. Rick hits a waistlock suplex on Norton, backbody drops to Ice Train, and he's a man on fire! Slugfest with Norton, while Scott Steiner fights with Ice Train. Scott gets tossed, and it's 2 on 1 against Rick. Norton hits his powerbomb, Ice Train the splash, and Scott Steiner saves at 2. They go for the Doomsday device, but Scott Steiner breaks that attempt up, and Rick DDT's Norton. Ice Train gets back to his feet and double axehandles Rick, wich is promptly no sold. Ice Train sits around while the Steiners do the double team top rope bulldog on Norton. Scott covers for 2, but Ice Train saves. Scott hits a REALLY ugly Frankensteiner on Norton and that's it!
Mean Gene accuses Jimmy Hart of being a Nathan Lane wannabe. Jimmy Hart prepares Kevin Sullivan for his match against Benoit. They re-itterate that the stip is Falls Count Anywhere. It's not about the Horsemen, but about Benoit and respect. He already made Pillman respect him (ha!) and tonight he'll do the same to Benoit.
EL GATO vs. KONAN (for the United States Heavyweight Title)
El Gato looks suspiciously like Pat Tanaka. Konan brings some belt from Mexico with him, because this is WCW! Konan bounces around the ring for awhile and we're off. Series of armdrags and El Gato wins that series. El Gato then goes for a legdrag. Then a hard armdrag. This match is a drag. Hahaha, I kill myself. Konan back with some kicks, comes off the top with an.....armdrag! Konan hits a clothesline for 2. And we work on El Gato's arm for awhile. Off the ropes, El Gato manages a heel kick for 2. El Gato means cat says Dusty. Gato works on the arm of Konan with an armbar. Back up, headbutt from Gato, and a powerbomb for 2. Gato works a series of armbars, but Konan reverses and works the legs. Funny looking bulldrog from Konan in the corner gets 2. Tumbling clothesline (I hate that move) gets 2. El Gato responds with.....an armdrag! It gets Konan out, so Gato goes for the baseball slide, but misses. Konan gets the sunset flip from the apron and turns it into a powerbomb! Fans like that! El Gato gets back in, he tries the headscissors in the corner, and Konan turns that into a Flashback with a bridge for 3!
Gene gets a moment with Sting. Sting and Gene agree Steve Regal is a sissy and a prissy. Meanwhile, Sting's paint is pink. We continue to attack Regal's sexuality for the next couple of minutes, pretty much stating gays are not welcome in the United States. Way to go guys.
DIAMOND DALLAS PAGE vs. MARCUS BAGWELL (for the Lord of the Ring)
Gotta love Page with that stogie sticking out of his mouth. He works the cheap heat calling the crowd Baltimore Bimbos, and soon they'll forget about Carl Ripken when he's done. Tony corrects him, and Page yells at him. Page rules! Bagwell takes off his shirt and Page throws him out of the ring with an axhandle. Bagwell takes Page over the top rope and Page takes a mansized bump! Page into the guardrail, over the guardrail. Tony asks the security to check his ticket stub. Marcus rolls him back in, and hits a crossbody for 2. Bagwell knocks Page back to his ass, and starts working the arm. Armbar into a hammerlock. Off the ropes, Bagwell takes him out with an elbow. Back to the armbar. Page escapes, but Marcus punches Page stiffly! A dropkick takes Page out and a flying crossbody to the floor levels him. Page back in, and he takes a headbutt to the stomack. Bagwell up top, but Page knocks the ropes. Page throws him off the top and Bagwell gets stomped on. Tony: "I do not practice these moves at home." Dusty: "That's not what I hear." Page starts choking out Bagwell, goes to the ropes and fishhooks him. Off the ropes, back elbow. Off the ropes again, and Page hits a backbreaker which gets 2. Side suplex gets 2. Page puts on the abdominal stretch and uses the ropes for leverage. The ref checks a few times, Page gets caught the third. Anderson kicks his arm off the rope and Bagwell throws him over with a hiptoss. So Page reverses a headscissors attempt into a powerslam for 2. Page gets tripped up trying to kick Bagwell. Tony says he'll never punt for the Ravens. DDP takes a bunch of atomic drops, Bagwell with the rights, and a clothesline. Back elbow, and he goes to the apron. A flying clothesline gets 2. Page retaliates with a back elbow in the corner and uses the ropes for 2. He tries again, and starts jawing with the fans. Bagwell goes for the headscissors again and hits it this time! Bagwell tries a bridge suplex, but Page blocks and hits the Diamond Cutter and that's it!
Mean Gene interviews The Giant and Jimmy Hart. How many times do we have to hear from this guy tonight? The Giant runs down his list of guys he's taken out. Giant threatens the Chokeslam on Luger.
REY MYSTERIO JR. vs. DEAN MALENKO (for the World Cruiserweight Title)
This is Rey Jr.'s debut. Mike Tenay joins Tony and Bobby on commentary for this match. This is apparently the first meeting between Malenko and Rey. They shake hands and we lockup. They quickly trade holds and Rey gets the advantage on 2 occasions. Both guys kip up simultaneously and Malenko starts taking Rey to school. He reverses a headlock, and they bounce off the ropes, Rey hits a really impressive armdrag. Dean tries to drive Rey's head into the turnbuckle but Rey reverses and dropkicks Dean to the floor. Back in and they trade holds again before Malenko is able to throw Rey over with a catapult. Dean goes for a baseball slide, but Rey moves and Dean looks annoyed. Dean pulls Rey's arm from the mat and he sells the elbow. Dean hits a hammerlock slam and is now taking control. Dean pulls the arm again, then takes him to the mat. Dean drops a knee on Rey's elbow several times, and goes to an armbar. Rey rolls out to the floor, but Dean's all over him, and kicks the elbow in the guardrail. Malenko throws Rey back in, knocks him to the mat but Rey gets up, springboard dropkick. Dean gets up, tries a powerbomb, but Rey escapes and Dean clotheslines him. Great moveset! Malenko goes for the pin, only gets 2. Back to the elbow again and armbars the elbow and shoulder. Rey's selling like crazy. Dean sets Rey's elbow on the turnbuckle and dropkicks it. Vicious stuff. He again drops Rey with the hammerlock slam. On the mat we get a headlock and armbar combination on Rey. An overhead hammerlock suplex gets 2 and Malenko's getting annoyed with Rey. Rey manages to try an springboard moonsault, misses, but hits a dropkick taking everything out of him and allowing Malenko to go right back to the elbow again. Surfboard on Rey, and it's not as bad as most surfboards you'll see. Malenko drops him back onto the mat and holds on, and gets 2. Malenko's getting flat out pissed with Rey and starts getting tougher with his holds. Short arm scissors and Rey is banging on the mat. Rey's banging like crazy as the hold stays on longer and longer. Malenko finally gives up and starts pounding on Rey, follows up with a waistlock, and gets 2.9. Butterfly suplex, and Mysterio kicks out again. Dean tries desperately to keep those shoulders down and gets 2 a couple of times. Dean starts pulling on the arm pumphandle style over the shoulder, takes Rey to the mat and pulls the elbow some more with an armbar. Dean tries another waistlock, but Rey armdrags him out and Dean hits the cameraman. Malenko back on the apron but gets his feet kicked out via the baseball slide. Swinging dropkick followed up by a springboard tope con hilo! Rey throws Malenko in, springboard dropkick gets 2. Malenko tries a powerbomb, Rey reverses, Malenko escapes, but Rey gets a bridge for 2 and the fans applaud. Rey over with a handspring, and a springboard Frankensteiner, and Malenko escapes! The fans thought that was it. Rey hits a shoulderblock from outside, up top, but Dean cuts him off. Rey hits a top rope hurricanrana. He gets 2 off a midair crossbody that looked like Dean was setting up a tilt-a-whirl! Rey tries another hurricanrana but Malenko with a NASTY powerbomb, Dean puts his feet on the ropes anyway, Rey's not getting up. Now that is a match!
Mean Gene stands with Lex Luger. Luger's mind is many miles away. He's not gonna shout and scream cause he's thinking about The Giant. The Giant has changed WCW forever. He starts naming off the titles he's held, and the titles he's holding (TV and Tag-Team). Because Giant thinks he's invincible, he's gonna make mistakes and Luger's gonna capitalize on those mistakes.
BIG BUBBA (with Jimmy Hart) vs. JOHN TENTA
Oh boy. I can hardly wait. Tenta apparently promised to cut Bubba's hair, and then he'll go after The Giant. They start slugging it out in the aisle, back in and Bubba goes up top but Tenta shoves him off. Outside the ring Bubba is tossed into the steps. Dusty calls him Bubber. Bubba begs off in the ring, then goes for a cheapshot but the fat absorbs the blow. Tenta then tosses Bubba into the corner and drives his ass into him repeatedly. Bubba gets control thanks to a foreign object from Jimmy Hart, and the ref doesn't see it. It gets a 2. Enzuigiri from Bubba on Tenta, and follows it up by doing a whole lot of nothing moves. Bubba goes for a pin with the legs on the rope, but the ref catches him. Dean Malenko you're not! Tenta tries to slam Bubba but the weight is too much and Bubba falls on top for 2. Tenta gets punched but doesn't sell it. Bubba catches Tenta sleeping and goes out of the ring, trips Tenta and drives his leg into the ring post. It sounds better than it looked. Kneedrop from Bubba to Tenta's knee. Nash style choke on the ropes by Bubba. Tenta reverses a whip, but Bubba's able to suplex him. Bubba up top, Hart on the ring showing off the scissors and doesn't pay attention as Bubba gets powerslamed from the top and pinned. Post match, Bubba's beard is cut off but we don't see it.
Mean Gene stands with Kevin Greene (with Tara) and Steve McMichael (with Debra). McMichael has no gameplan, except that they're coming to get Flair and Anderson. Kevin Greene is coming hard and coming heavy. Randy Savage arrives and smells winning and perfume. Everyone's psyched for the match.
CHRIS BENOIT vs. THE TASKMASTER (with Jimmy Hart) (Falls Count Anywhere)
I don't think anything could kill a crowd more than the Dungeon Of Doom theme. They start brawling viciously in the aisle right away. Benoit chops away and then Sullivan does the same. They're in the crowd. Sullivan uses eyepokes to keep control. Benoit headbutts Sullivan but Sullivan knocks him back down. They continue up the stairs. Benoit sent headfirst into the wall. They're in the men's washroom. There's some plunderin' going on! Benoit's head slammed in the bathroom stall. Twice. Then he's tossed stiffly into the fall. Benoit down and Sullivan slams his head a THIRD time in the stall door! Sullivan jumps on Benoit's stomach (his finisher). Benoit fights back and almost gets his head shoved in a urinal. Benoit slams the door on Sullivan now and chops away. But Sullivan with a poke to the eyes. Dusty: "There's a woman in the men's bathroom! She just stopped off!" Hilarious! Benoit slammed into the storage cupboard and is attacked with toilet paper. Sullivan slams a trashcan on Benoit's back. We're out of the bathroom now, and Benoit slams the trash on Sullivan's head. Dusty wants to see the women's bathroom. They're back to slugging it out in the hall. We're headed back down into the arena again now. Benoit gets tossed down the stairs, but it takes a couple throws to get him all the way down. Finally they return to ringside. Benoit gets dropped on his groin on the guardrail. So Benoit returns the favor a minute later. He goes under the ring and tries to get a table out, but he has trouble, so he tosses Sullivan into the guardrail and tosses him. Benoit gets the table (a real table, not the cheap stuff the Dudleys use) and throws it at Sullivan. Benoit sets it up in the ring corner and tries to throw Sullivan but it's reversed and it doesn't break. Sullivan charges and Benoit moves. It doesn't break. Benoit is back bodydropped onto the table which is now balanced on the ropes in the corner. Benoit gets Sullivan up and hits a superplex from the table and that's it!
You won't see anything better in 10 minutes anywhere! Non stop action and a wild brawl all the way! Arn Anderson runs out and he throws Benoit off Sullivan before turning on Sullivan to a MONSTER POP! They double team Sullivan and the Dungeon Of Doom comes out to clear the ring. Great stuff!!!
Mene Gene stands with Woman and Elizabeth. Arn Anderson, Chris Benoit, and Ric Flair join them. Arn cuts a great promo reforming the Horsemen. Flair compares Anderson and Benoit to football players. Bobby Heenan is scared of Savage but denies it in a funny segment.
LORD STEVEN REGAL (with Jeeves) vs. STING
Regal makes faces on the way to the ring. Sting beats on Regal and he flies over the top rope. A toss into the guardrail and back bodydrop have Regal begging for mercy. So he pokes Sting in the eyes and comes back with European uppercuts. A kneedrop gets 1. Regal goes to the headlock as the fans chant USA! Palm shots to Sting while in the headlock. The audio goes out on the announcers. Damn, there's Tony. Regal leaves the ring to go argue with fans. Regal offers to call the whole thing off with a handshake and the phoniest smile you'll ever see! He snarls at the crowd when they scream no. Sting won't do it, fakes a charge at Regal and Regal freaks out getting a laugh from the crowd. Regal gets control with a single leg takedown and tries to wrestle Sting to the mat. Sting powers out and takes Regal down. Regal back up with European uppercuts. He mocks Sting and kicks him in the face. Double arm underhook submission. Sting gets out, goes for a sunset flip that Regal struggles like hell to get out of but gets caught anyway for 2. Regal comes right back though and has Sting back on the mat. Palm shots to Sting while in a headlock on the mat. It looks nasty. Sting tossed into the turnbuckle and gets a dropkick to the head. That gets 2. Elbowdrop to Sting. Regal talks to the camera while he has Sting in the submission, something more guys should try cause it's hilarious. Regal puts on an interesting armbar where he puts his knee on Sting's head and wrenches back on the elbow. Things aren't looking good for Sting as he's hopping on one knee while he's up which isn't all that long before Regal has him back on the mat. Sting throws off a headlock into the ropes, but a shoulderblock sends Sting back down. Regal rubs Sting's head on the mat and rubs his elbow into Sting's ear. OW! That's just plain dickish. Regal puts his legs on the ropes while he holds a hammerlock on the mat. He then argues with the ref for awhile while Sting gets a chance to recover. Sting manages to get an abdonimal stretch. But Regal gets the ropes and knocks Sting back down. He poses for the crowd and struts. Regal gets a headscissors on Regal and arches back the elbow. Pin attempt gets 2. Regal with another armbar variation. Sting up and starts the hulk up. Regal can't do anything...except the eye poke. Regal with a butterfly submission. Sting shoves him off and starts the superman comeback for real with a dropkick and some clotheslines for 2. Up top, he gets caught by Regal and he gets tossed off for 2. Regal puts on the Regal Stretch and Sting won't give up. Regal is pissed and starts kicking the man while he's down. Punches while back on his feet. Sting starts no selling again and takes Regal down with a series of punches. Sting with a Stinger Splash and it misses but he gets the Scorpion Deathdrop for the win.
RIC FLAIR and ARN ANDERSON (with Woman, Elizabeth, and Bobby Heenan) vs. STEVE MCMICHAEL and KEVIN GREENE (with Debra, Tara, and Randy Savage)
Michael Buffer does intros for this very special tag-team grudge match. Both of the football players' wives look like cheap whores. I'm just sayin'. The football players roll around and are really pumped for this one. Anderson takes Mongo to school right away showing him up on the tie up. Anderson celebrates. McMichael gets frustrated and goes to Greene for advice. Tony mentions that Mongo jumped from Chicago to Green Bay for money. They square off in football form and Mongo knocks Anderson right off his feet. We do it again, but this time Anderson's thinking and goes to the drop toe hold. Great sequence! Anderson gets caught with a foot to the face and a shoulder tackle though and Anderson is shocked. Flair won't go near Mongo. Greene and Mongo stomp a mudhole in Anderson. To the outside and Anderson gets run over by Savage. The horsemen have a conference. Alot of stalling is taking place. Anderson asks Mongo to tag in Greene, which he does. Greene throws himself around to the mat to show his excitement. So Flair comes in and dances. They go to lock up, but Flair backs off and is stylin'! Flair dares Greene to come get him. The ref crosses between them and it's enough distraction for Flair to kick Greene in the head and take control in the corner, but Greene shoves him off and hits a tackle. Flair takes off down the aisle and appears to be leaving. Savage chases him though and drags him back to the ring. Tomorrow night - Savage vs. Flair. Back in the ring, Greene hits a back body drop on Flair and tackles him again. Flying clothesline by Greene. Mongo in and Flair runs to the corner but Mongo cuts it off. Flair's been chasing Debra, so he's scared of Mongo. Flair on his knees begging. Flair whoo's and runs into Mongo twice, who's a brick wall. Flair gets him in a corner though and gets control. Chop to Mongo which he no sells. Mongo no sells a bunch and starts chopping away at Flair. A hiptoss and Flair's begging off again. Whip into the corner, back bodydrop. Flair to the eyes, and he's back in control. Flair heads up top....and gets caught. Imagine that. Mongo puts the figure four on Ric Flair! Kevin Greene in and now he has a figure four on Anderson! The horsemen girls chase the football girls to the back. Anderson hits a DDT on Mongo. He drops a knee on Mongos head and stomps away. Flair back in and he chops away at Mongo and tosses him to the outside. Anderson's there but Savage chases Anderson off. Mongo on the apron, and there's a headsnap and Mongo's back out. So Heenan gets him a cheap shot and Savage chases him, but Anderson gets in Savage's way. Flair chops at Mongo but he's no selling again. Mongo chokes Flair to his knees so Flair low blows him and hits a kneedrop. Anderson tagged in. Arn keeps the ref busy while Flair chokes Mongo on the ropes. They double suplex Mongo and then give him a double chokehold but Greene knocks Anderson away with a tackle. Does this guy do anything else? Mongo gets an inverted bulldog on Flair. He starts to head to his corner but Anderson cuts him off. Anderson misses a chop, takes an Atomic Drop and runs into Flair. Both horsemen down. Mongo crawls to Greene, and makes the hot tag! Tackles for everyone! Bodyslams for everyone! Flair gets back bodydropped, then powerslammed. Flair keeps begging off, gets tossed into the turnbuckle, Flair flip to the apron and Mongo delivers a big boot. Flair still on the apron and gets vertical suplexed back in, so Anderson clips the knee of Greene. He starts to work over the knee behind the referee's back and Savage breaks that up. Flair tags out to Anderson. Arn gets shoved off and Greene crawls to make the tag but Flair keeps him out of the corner. Flair jerking the knee, going for the figure four, but it's reversed for 2. Flair with a single leg pickup and drops down hard. Figure four is put on Greene and gets help from Anderson. Savage comes over and starts taking it to Savage. So Benoit runs out and the 2 of them brawl, until Anderson gets up and it's a 2 on 1 beatdown. Debra comes out in a new dress with Woman and Elizabeth. Dusty wants to know what's going on. Debra has a suitcase with a horsemen shirt and money for Mongo. Greene looking for a tag.....so Mongo wallops him with the case. Flair gets the pin!
Savage confronts Mongo, so the horsemen beat him down. We have #4! McMichael puts on the shirt and shakes the hands of the horsemen. Dusty declares it stupid.
Eric Bischoff stands on the stage. He mentions the "interuptions" and is willing to give the answer to the guys who are declaring war on WCW. No names are dropped. Nash and Hall walk out cocky as ever. Bischoff tells them they're going to have a match at Bash At The Beach. He asks if they work for the WWF. They both say no. Hall asks who's on team WCW. Is it Nacho Man, or Huckster? Billionaire Ted can buy anyone but they're mystery partner will take them out. They want to know who team WCW is. Bischoff won't tell, so he gets POWERBOMBED through a table off the stage! Tony runs off to help Eric. The crowd is completely in shock from that one.
LEX LUGER vs. THE GIANT (with Jimmy Hart) (for the WCW World Heavyweight Title)
Luger stops off to make sure that Eric is alright. The crowd is completely dead still not sure how to react to the powerbomb. Buffer does intros again. Luger charges at Giant but eats a boot. Giant whips him into the ropes, and Luger comes back with several clotheslines that eventually take Giant over the top. Giant pulls him out of the ring and tosses him in. Luger gets control by throwing everything at The Giant, and finally leaping on his back and putting on the best sleeper hold he could hope for. Jimmy Hart on the apron and goes to whack Luger with the microphone but Sting is out and chases Hart to the back. Luger still holding on. Finally Giant gets him over and drives him into the turnbuckle. Tree of woe, and Giant stomps at him 'til he falls off. Giant beats on the back of Luger, then delivers a foot to the throat in the corner. Backbreaker and Giant keeps him there in a backbreaker style submission. Gutwrench into a variation of the Torture Rack. Giant continues to work the back of Luger. Luger gets a jawbreaker and tries to slam Giant, but he's too heavy and Giant falls on top for 2. Giant stands on Luger's back. Luger set up on the top rope where Giant punches away on the back. Luger manages to sneak in a rope assisted dropkick and charges Giant in the corner. Luger throws elbows, clotheslines and clips the knee trying to get Giant down. He gets him to one knee but Giant shoves him off. Giant runs at Luger in the corner and misses landing on the top rop. Luger kicks him in the stomach until he turns over onto his back. Luger sees this as his chance to rack The Giant, gets him up, but collapses under the weight. Giant hits the Chokeslam and that's all she wrote.
Giant lets us know that nobody can beat him. And that's it.
Total Matches: 9
As far as pure wrestling is concerned, the undercard is absolutely loaded! 3 matches hit the **** mark at least, with Benoit and Sullivan peaking at ****3/4. And the powerbomb of Bischoff through a table sent waves at the time because everyone knew Bischoff was the president and these guys invading his turf. And for the time, the was considered quite the high risk. Pick this tape up! You'll never see any better out of WCW!