WCW Thunder by E.C. Ostermeyer
This is the WCW Thunder report for Wednesday, 7 March 2001, and I'm your recapper, ol' E.C.
Welcome to thirty minutes into your future.
We are still live, but now on tape, from the Bi-Lo Center in Greenville, SC. You're you, and I'm me, but Scott Hudson is now Mike Tenay. Tony Schiavone is, unfortunately, still Tony Schiavone.
Footage from Nitro shows the hilarious sandbagging of Diamond Dallas Page by Scott Scott Steiner.
"Hey! Steiner! Einsteiner! I'm still... Ooooofff!"
Exclusive footage from Nitro shows Scott Steiner pummeling DDP and screaming abuse at him. Cue the Cat, who clobbers Steiner with a steel chair, and drags the groggy DDP out of harm's way.
Yep, the Harris Boys are still there.
"The Quest for the Giant Nut continues in the Lightweight Division, as Backlash takes on Ziggo... "
Oops, hang on, had a Battlebots flashback there.
We get the WCW Cruiserweight Tag Tourney brackets. The winners of tonight's bout get a shot at the Filthy Animals in the semifinal round.
Match #1: Three Count d. Jason B. & Scotty O. (Moore w/guillotine legdrop on Scotty O./pin, 8:06) Cruiserweight Tag Tourney elimination bout.
Jason B. (ex-ECW's EZ Money) replaced Jamie Knoble as Scotty O's partner.
Jason's first act was to wallop Three Count's Evan Karagias off his perch on the turnbuckle stack in mid-pose down. Karagias, understandably miffed, dominates the opening moves of the bout, until jason hits a neat-o handspring slingshot off the far ropes, and lands a stiff elbow smash to Karagias' nose. Moore gets the relief tag from Karagias, as Jason tags Scotty in. Top rope leap into a cross-body block from Scotty clobbers Moore in mid-ring, and almost takes Three Count out of the running. Scotty tries an Asahi moonsault, but just misses the target. This allows Moore to tag Karagias in, and the action quickly devolves to ringside. As Karagias and Moore regain their bearings, Scotty O tries the Asahi moonsault on them off the middle rope, and connects! Back in the ring, Moore regains the initiative, and gets a near fall after a Rocker Dropper on Scotty, but for jason making the save. Blind tag by Jason, who hits a reverse piledriver on Moore, but Karagias makes the save, and counters with his 450 splash. Action fast and furious, as Scotty O breaks up Karagias' pin attempt. Double team by Three Count on Scotty, with Karagias hitting a stiff face slam, and Moore finishing the bout with a top-rope guillotine legdrop.
We go backstage, where Scott Steiner is raging around, bellowing for the Cat. We get a replay of the exclusive footage of the Cat clobbering Steiner with a steel chair.
Well, here comes Da Champ to the ring, still wearing that chainmail beanie of his. Maybe he's trying to ward off aliens controlling his mind. My uncle Ralph used to line his hat with tinfoil for the same reason.
We get a sneering screed about DDP's mind games, and how Da Champ's gonna stick him on his long list of injured opponents.
Next topic was the Cat's messing in where he shouldn't have. Steiner said that if the Cat wants to take a shot at the "physical phenom" how about a match tonight?
Cue the Cat, who strolls out to the top of the ramp and trash-talks Steiner, declaring him to be no challenge at all. Steiner's getting madder by the minute with all this remarkably funny verbal abuse from the Cat, and hollers back that it'll be a cold day in hell before the Cat beats him. Surprise, the Cat's got a partner, good ol'; DDP, who's in his People's Champ role way up in the crowd. DDP keeps teasing and taunting Da Champ, who, in his rage to get at DDP, is all but frothing at the mouth by this time! Whoops, Mr. Cameraman spots Rick Steiner sneaking up behind DDP, and getting ready to turn him into a thin paste. Hooray! It's Hugh Morrus who forestalls the Dog-Faced Gremlin by whacking him across the neck with a big forearm smash. Scott Steiner's screeching at DDP to "stay right there!" DDP laughs and disappears into the crowd.
Match #2: Shawn Stasiak d. Norman Smiley, (a sort-of chokeslam thingie/pin, 6:31)
Smiley comes to the ring, still scanning the crowd for signs of Glacier. I thought that angle was dead and gone by now? As Shawn Stasiak makes his entrance, Tenay says that the Cat will face Scott Steiner tonight, and Hugh Morrus will face Rick Steiner.
Stasiak takes a LONG time getting to the ring, because he's handing out autographed pics of himself to the fans. One fan at ringside takes one, and then wipes his butt with it right in front of Stasiak. Footage recaps Stasiak's recent wins.
In the ring, Stasiak hands an 8x10 glossy to Smiley. Smiley responds by kicking the stack of photos all over the ring. Stasiak gives Smiley a puzzled look, then bends down to collect the photos...and nearly gets pinned when Smiley rolls him up in a small package. Stasiak bails out, only to have Smiley start chasing him around the ringside area. Smiley turns the corner once too often , and gets poleaxed with a stiff forearm smash from Stasiak, who then rolls Smiley back in the ring. Stasiak misses a clothesline attempt, and Smiley takes the opportunity to attempt his Norman Conquest finisher, but Stasiak sees what's coming and makes a wild grab for the ropes. Stasiak regains the momentum with a catapult into a backbreaker combination, getting the near-fall. Smiley counters with a cradle-slam, then starts looking for Glacier again. Stasiak reverses out of the pin attempt and powerslams Smiley. Stasiak then goes up top for the giant splash, but Smiley gets a boot up and Stasiak learns all about "sole" real quick. Smiley hits an Atomic Drop, and then follows it with a reverse Atomic Drop. Smiley hangs Stasiak out to dry on the middle ropes, then does the Big Wiggle, much to the delight of the crowd. Cross-corner whip by Smiley gets reversed, and Stasiak nails Smiley with a bulldog. Swinging neckbreaker by Stasiak, who finishes Smiley with a weird-looking sort-of chokeslam for the win. Stasiak then "marks his kill" with another signed 8x10, and we get to hear him blather about how the fans had just had their "brush with greatness" for the evening, and the pleasure was all theirs.
Expanded WCW Upcoming Events Calendar:
3/11 McMinnville, TN (House show)
3/12 Knoxville, TN (Nitro)
3/18 Jacksonville, FL (Greed-PPV)
3/19 Gainesville, FL (Nitro)
3/25 Mobile, AL (House show)
3/26 Panama City, FL (Nitro)
(WCW is still not posting any new dates beyond the 3/26 show in Panama City, FL. Stay tuned for further developments.)
Out in the parking lot, M.I. Smooth is checking the trunk, and flicking a few invisible flecks of dust off the gleaming finish of his limo. Kanyon arrives and hammerlocks Smooth, snarling about how he knows that Smooth is the one who ratted him out to the Cat about his little visit to Ms. Jones in the hospital. Smooth sort of chuckles, then easily reverses Kanyon's hammerlock into a wristlock that drives Kanyon down to his knees with pain and anguish. After Kanyon finishes this unwilling dose of reality, Smooth releases him, and Kanyon runs off. Smooth gets in the limo, and, laughing, starts to phone the Cat.
Yikes! Kanyon comes back with a freakin' FORKLIFT! He tips over the limo with Smooth still inside! Cool! After trash-talking Smooth for a bit, Kanyon hears sirens approaching, and runs off.
Impressive lil' vignette, huh?
Back to the parking lot, where the paramedics are trying to extricate Smooth from the limo. "Where's the pain? Squeeze my hand! Ouch!" say the medics. We get a replay of the forklift scene, and the hang time on the limo is just spectacular! Tenay and Schiavone wonder if anyone is as psychotic as Kanyon?
Well, howza 'bout that sawed-off lil' squirt who shot up his high school in San Diego?
Ever watch "Oz?"
Match #3: Shane Helms d. "Prime Time" Elix Skipper, ("Vertebreaker"/pin, 8:12)
Shane's sporting the new entrance production thingie, with Nitro Girls garnish to boot. Helms doesn't waste time getting started on Skipper, who responds with a slam to the mat and a near pin. Helms charges right back on the strength of a Thesz Press, and started hammering away at Skipper, who wisely bailed out to regroup. Helms pursues, waves Mr. Cameraman out of the way, and then tosses Skipper into the steel guardrail, then OVER it. Helms goes and drags Skipper out of the crowd, then tossed him back over the railing to ringside. Ross-body by helms flattens Skipper, before Helms tosses him back into the ring for a near fall. Snap suplex by Helms also gets nothing, as does the backbreaker and Fist O' Doom combination. Second Big Right Hand gets blocked by Skipper, who counters with a suplex that hangs Helms out to dry on the ropes. Helms rolls under the ropes to the outside and staggers away, only to get a corkscrew cross-body block from Skipper that hammers him Into the floor at ringside. Skipper tosses Helms back into the ring, but his follow-up dropkick misses, and Skipper winds up tangling himself in the ring-ropes. Flying guillotine legdrop by Helms on Skipper, and a near pin. Skipper recovers, and hits a clothesline before stomping on Helms for a bit. Belly-to-belly suplex on Helms, and Skipper goes up top again. As Helms staggers to his feet, he's spiked with Skipper's flying missile dropkick. Cover by Skipper gets a close near fall. After brawling in the corner, Helms hits a power surge and nail Skipper with the Sugar Smack, but only gets a two count. Giant Splash by Helms also goes nowhere, as does a clothesline, which Skipper ducked by using that cool "Matrix" bridge move of his. Helms sees the opportunity, and lassos Skipper into his "Nightmare on Helms Street," then spikes him for good with the "Vertebreaker" finisher, getting the win.
Post-match, Kid Romeo charges the ring and starts pounding on Helms. Skipper joins in, which brings out the Filthy Animals to make the save.
Best Match of the Evening, hands down!
Well, here's the Dog-Faced Gremlin again, out looking for revenge on Hugh Morrus. Footage shows Rick Steiner's victories over Lash LeRoux and Big Vito.
Match #4: Rick Steiner d. Hugh Morrus, (Steiner Driver, 7:55) non-Title match.
I wonder how Hugh Morrus is going to carry Steiner through this match?
Steiner starts off real slow, then shoves the referee into Morrus. As they get untangled, Steiner kicks Morrus right in the in-seam! Morrus goes down, and Steiner stomps on him while trash-talking to the crowd. The crowd, surprisingly, is all up in Steiner's face about him booting Morrus in the jimmies. Steiner says several unkind things to the fans, then tries for a pin, but comes up empty. Steiner is very deliberate in his moves tonight, and Morrus seems to be dragging his feet as well. Steiner's walloping on Morrus, and gettng no reaction or response out of him at all. Jeez, could it be that Morrus is going deliberately off script? Steiner starts working on the left knee of Morrus, who still has no riposte to any of Steiner's offense. Man, this is about as exciting as watching paint dry! Steiner tries a half crab, but Morrus gets to the ropes to break the hold. Rear chinlock by Steiner to slow things down to a crawl again. DDT by Steiner goes nowhere toward resolving the bout. Cross-ring whip by Steiner but Morrus rebounds with a spinning heel kick from the bad leg, and gets a near fall. Running lariat attempt by Morrus gets shortstopped and converted into a Steinerline by the DFG, and a near fall again. Morrus finally hits a power surge, and clotheslines the DFG, then goes up top for the "No Laughing Matter!" This brings out Lance Storm and Mike Awesome. Storm distracts the referee, while Awesome wallops on Morrus. Steiner grabs Morrus on a rebound from Awesome, and hits the Steiner Driver for the pinfall. Post-match, Team Canada
Begins putting the boot in on Morrus, but Konnan charges the ring, (and right past Steiner, who's heading for the back) to chase them away.
VERY slow-paced match. I am almost positive that Hugh Morrus deliberately worked the match slow, so as to force Rick Steiner to actually put forth some effort. I am speculating here, but I am convinced that Morrus might have been retaliating, "sending a message" if you will, on behalf of the locker room for Steiner's working his matches "stiff" and hurting people. (LeRoux, Vito, and Booker T) The best way to damage a wrestler's career is to make him look bad in front of the fans. If you can do it on TV, the damage compounds tenfold. The only question now is if the DFG got the message.
Match #5: Chuck Palumbo d. Lex Luger, (rollup/pin, 3:12)
Y'know, I've been on Luger's case for some time now, but I think he's finally developed a sense of purpose with this little feud with Chuck Palumbo.
Once in the ring, Luger gets on the stick, and waxes poetic about how tough it is being the Total Package. He spins a tale of the great victories he's had, being careful to mention Bill Goldberg's name, and how his loss to an "overmatched and under-talented" rookie like Chuck Palumbo just sticks in his craw. It had to have been a fluke, says Luger, because if Palumbo wrestled Luger 1000 times, he'd never be able to duplicate the win. And with Sean O'Haire injured at Luger's hands and gone from the building, Palumbo doesn't stand a chance.
Well, Chuck Palumbo ain't havin' any of THAT, and just tears into the ring. He ends up getting the stuffing stomped out of him by numerous well-placed kicks from the Total Package. Palumbo retaliates by walloping Luger with several Big Right Hands. Standing double dropkick spins Luger to the mat. Luger recovers, then goes to work on Palumbo's back,then tosses him out to the floor. Luger spins Palumbo back-first into the edge of the ring apron. The match seems to be gettng slower and slower with Luger in charge, running down like a wind-up toy. Luger tosses Palumbo back into the ring, then follows...and gets neatly scooped into Palumbo's fearsome inside cradle slam, but Luger kicks out. Forearm smash by Luger, followed by a powerslam, and Luger starts gesturing for the Torture Rack. He gets Palumbo up in the Rack, but Palumbo wriggles free, slides out of the Rack down Luger's back, and rolls him up quickly for the pinfall. After the bout, Palumbo bails out of the ring quickly to avoid Luger's wrath at having been beaten by this guy. Again!
Good match with a clean finish. Lex Luger is to be commended for his work in putting Chuck Palumbo over, and twice in a row.
See kids, there IS a place for everyone in the great scheme of things.
In the back, Luger's almost beside himself with rage over being beaten by a ROOKIE!
Konnan does the "Hamlet" bit, staring off into the three-quarter frame's distance.
Topic for discussion is the politicking and back-stabbing going on in the locker-room. Hugh Morrus? Good! Team Canada? BAD!
Greed PPV gives the complete card rundown.
Match #6: Lance Storm (w/ Mike Awesome) d. Konnan, ("Maple Leaf"/submission, 3:27)
Lance Storm gets serious for a moment, and says the only thing he dislikes worse that Americans, is people who pretend to BE American. All rise for the playing of "O Canada." Which doesn't get interrupted, because Konnan zips in through the crowd to blindside Storm. Konnan almost gets a pinfall after a sweet inverted DDT, then doubles up with another near fall off a straight DDT. The action shifts to ringside, where Storm takes over after whipping Konnan face-first into a steel chair. Another whip by Storm, and Konnan eats a whole lot of steel guardrail. Boot in the ribs by Storm, who then rolls Konnan back into the ring. Legrop gets nothing, and Storm starts working on Konnan's lower back with kicks and punches, and almost getting a pinfall. Elbow shots by Konnan start an attemtp at offense, but Storm gouges Konnan's eyes, and regains control with a scoopslam. Storm goes up top for the BIG elbow smash, but Konnan gets a boot up, and Storm gets a mouthful of shoe leather. "Rolling Thunder" clothelsine series by Konnan sets up for the "Tequila Sunrise" finisher, but Storm reverses it and escapes. Konnan's attempt at a facebuster gets blocked by Storm and countered with the Maple Leaf submission. Konnan taps out, which doesn't end the abuse, as Mike Awesome joins in for the Team Canada beat-down. Storm and Awesome are taking Konnan to Stomp City, when Hugh Morrus charges into the ring to make the save.
Hugh Morrus demands a match with Team Canada at the "Greed" PPV.
Booker T does the "Hamlet" bit. He talks about how he handled the injuries he received at the hands of Scott Steiner. In addition to the cracked sternum, Booker T had his knee looked at. From the inside. Ouch! Booker T swears vengeance upon Scot Steiner, and says that if he has to go through Rick Steiner at the Greed PPV just to get to Scott, then that's fine by him.
Match #7: Scott Steiner d. The Cat ("Steiner Recliner"/submission, 4:07)
As the Cat takes his time about getting into the ring, we are reminded that Da Champ said he was going to keep the Cat in the Steiner Recliner until he was injured.
Steiner opens with a chop/forearm smash series in the corner. A snake-eyes attempt by Steiner gets ducked, and the Cat reverses it. Two front kicks and a spinning heel kick start off a flurry of chops and punches by the Cat on Scott Steiner. Da Champ hits an inverted Atomic Drop out of the corner, then hammers hime a belly-to-belly suplex. Steinerliner and the kiss-the-bicep elbow drop on the Cat. Steiner does the usual five-count of push-ups ("I'm just warming up!") before he tosses the Cat out of the ring. The Cat gets spun into the steel guardrail, then gets a chair-shot. Another whip into the steel guardrail, and Steiner tossed the Cat back into the ring. Steiner hits a backbreaker on the Cat, after bellowing "Somebody call the Cat's Momma!" Steiner backs the Cat into the corner and starts chopping away at him. The Cat counters with a desperation side kick that floors Steiner momentarily. Blatant choke on Steiner, and cue the "Dancin' Machine!" uppercut, and an elbow drop by the Cat, but Steiner counters with a jaw-jacker. The Cat shakes it off and starts a flurry of karate kicks. Steiner weathered the storm, and finally hit a snap belly-to-belly suplex. Steiner tries another, but the Cat snaps off a mean looking enziguiri. Da Champ is tottering, and the Cat's beginning to mount an offensive...
Aw, shoot, here's Rick Steiner out to make the save. The Cat laced a sweet roundhouse kick upside the Dog-Faced Gremlin's head, spinning him off the apron, but Scott Steiner hammered him from behind. Booker T came out to make the save, and began brawling with Rick Steiner at ringside. Meanwhile, Scott Steiner locked the Cat into the "Steiner Recliner," and got the submission. Da Champ kept the hold on as Mr. Timekeeper beat the ring bell into an unrecognizable lump. Out comes DDP, who nails Steiner right in the head with a double axehandle. This brings out Animal, Jeff Jarrett, and Lex Luger, just as Steiner retaliates with a forearm smash right in DDP's in-seam. Rick and Booker T continue to brawl at ringside, as Scott locks DDP into the Steiner Recliner...
Definitely a "works-in-progress" show, designed to fill in the story arcs and angles, as well as set the last few matches for the "Greed" PPV show in Jacksonville, FL on the 18th. We saw 40 minutes and 50 seconds of actual in-ring wrestling, but though it was down from last week, they still put on a good show.
Best Match of the Night honors goes to the Shane Helms/Elix Skipper bout, while the Dud Match dis-honors is a tie between the Shawn Stasiak/Norman Smiley fiasco, and the Hugh Morrus/Rick Steiner yawnfest.
We are all set for the final push towards what could be WCW's last-ever PPV. All that's needed is the final polish to the various feuds and angles that can be applied at the Nitro/Thunder show in Knoxville on March 12th.
And guess who's gonna be there in person?
See you next week.
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