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/25 November 2000

WCW Worldwide by E.C. Ostermeyer




This is the WCW Worldwide report for Saturday, 25 November 2000.

Opening credits.
Terry Taylor, in the throes of a turkey-induced l-tryptophan overdose, changes "Ground Zero" for the Russian Mir space station from the South Pacific Ocean to Palm Beach County, Florida.
(BTW, when in Ft. Lauderdale, you must eat at least once at Denny's Seafood on N. Andrews. Yummy!)

Your hosts are the ever-dapper Scott Hudson and "Wrestling's etc. etc." Larry Zbyszko.
Bobby "The Brain" Heenan is working on his bid for the presidency in 2004, and "is on an extended sabbatical until further notice."
Yeah, right!

We are still pre-Mayhem PPV, by almost two weeks, so this show was based on the results of Nitros from the UK.

The "Lethal Lottery" is discussed, as is Ric Flair's revival of this time-honored, not to say hackneyed gimmick.
LarryZ says that Flair's got a wicked sense of humor.
Footage from Nitro at the London Arena shows the various matches resulting from the Lethal Lottery pairings. First up is Bam Bam Bigelow & Mike Awesome v. Sting & Scott Steiner. Steiner Recliner on Awesome, and then Sting gets jumped by Kronik, but wins via Scorpion Death Drop on Bryan Clark. Steiner returns to wallop Sting with a steel chair, which brings out Booker T to make the save. Booker T then wallops Sting with a steel chair. Thunder from Manchester has Steiner and Sting for a shot at the champ after Mayhem. Scorpion Death Drop out of a crucifix, and Sting gets the shot. Midajah blocks Sting, allowing Steiner to waffle Sting with the lead pipe, and then put him in the straitjacket. More lead pipe action ensues.
(Upshot of the whole thing is that Sting gets a Title shot against Scott Steiner, who beat Booker T at the Mayhem PPV, becoming the WCW World Heavyweight Champion.


We come back, and it's time for part 2 of the Paul Orndorf interview. The latest issue of WCW Magazine has an expanded interview with Orndorf conducted by Scott Hudson.
LarryZ says that he and Orndorf didn't just help build the business, they BUILT the business way back when. But, "injuries take their toll, and time is not on your side."

Chad Damiani points out that Orndorf, who took years to get to the top in professional wrestling, now regularly sends new wrestlers onto training TV with as little as six months training and experience under their belts.
Orndorf replies that:

1. his job is to find talent, create talent, and to do whatever it takes to get that wrestler on TV, and
2. although his opinion is considered, he doesn't decide who gets on national TV. As for whether or not a wrestler is ready in six months
3. no, it takes three to five YEARS for a wrestler to be considered "ready" in this business.
4. Like a football running back, being a wrestler means knowing his craft so well that he operates on an instinctual level, constantly thinking several moves ahead, and looking for that opening that will give him the pin and the win. This only comes with constant practice and lots of matches.
5. Sadly, today's wrestlers are more into the flash and acrobatic "you flip, I flop" stuff. Though it makes for great spectacle, this sort of thing doesn't improve the art of professional wrestling.
6. Pro wrestling is a chess game. The move-counter-move of the old days is not as much in evidence today.

Orndorf says that there should be a three-step program that aspiring wrestlers should follow:

1. Train at the WCW Power Plant
2. Get out in front of people. Play to smaller crowds.
3. Hone your in-ring wrestling persona.

Wrestlers like Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, and Sting have done it this way, the "old" way, and every time they enter the ring, the fans go nuts.
Damiani asks how rookies like Sean O'Haire got so popular even though they haven't followed Orndorf's game plan, to which Orndorf replies that some of the Power Plant grads would come back after the place closes at 5 PM and stay until midnight perfecting their moves.
Orndorf is also concerned that, in his quest for the "Big Move", the rookie wrestler may wind up injuring himself, much like what happened to Johnny the Bull.
"Johnny is a lot like I was. He will keep going, trying out everything, and not fearing anything.
What Johnny has to learn is that he'd better fear some things, or his career could be cut short, or worse."

Damiani remarks that many of the Power Plant grads don't like Paul Orndorf.
"When you take a kid who thinks he's too good to clean toilets, or mop the floor, and then you make him do things he doesn't want to do, what do those little kids do? (whines) They don't like it.
They may pout and say 'I don't like you no more!'
Phffft! What a load of crap!
They don't understand that it's gonna make them a better wrestler, and respect the business the way it should be respected.
Orndorf's definition of "Hardcore" means doing things the hard way, going out there, busting your butt every day, and EARNING that respect that you demand. Trash cans?
Baseball bats?
If I hit you in the head with a baseball bat what do you think is gonna happen?"
Damiani: "I don't even think I'd remember it."
Orndorf (looks at the camera): "Lights out!"

Back in the studio, LarryZ says that Paul Orndorf's twenty-five years in the business make him a "bottomless pit of knowledge."
Hudson says that when Orndorf talks, he (Hudson) listens.


We come back, and this week's WCW Worldwide features highlights from the E! Entertainment TV show on the "Women of WCW."

"This is my favorite segment of the show, Legend, I don't mind telling you," cackles Hudson.
"I can dig this," grins LarryZ.

Footage from the show (one of the highest rated ever on E!) details the exploits of Torrie Wilson, Sharmelle "Paisley" Sullivan, and Stacy "Ms. Hancock" Keibler, during a typical week with WCW.
We start with their twice-weekly all-day training sessions at the Power Plant.
"It's that first back bump of the day that wakes you up!" says Paisley.
"When I first started at the Power Plant, I must have cried a hundred times," says Torrie Wilson, who, truth be told, looks great even without her makeup. "It is SO hard; they are definitely kicking our butts!"
Debra "Madusa" Miceli is in charge of training, and could frighten a Marine Corps DI with her ferocious regimen.
"Either you have it, or you don't!" says Madusa, echoing Paul Orndorf's comments earlier on Worldwide.
"She's hard on us," says Stacy Keibler, "but, because of that, she gets me to do things I'd not normally try."
"She (Madusa) is such a BA-AD girl!" laughs Torrie Wilson. "She's really tough!"
"When I started at the Power Plant," says Paisley, "I didn't realize the awesome responsibility that you have as a wrestler, because you literally have someone's life in your hands. You've got to be serious, because one wrong move in the ring..."
We get more workout footage of Paisley and Torrie Wilson...

...uuh, where was !?

Yikes! A close-up of Bryan "Wrath" Clark, who says that, if anything, "the girls have a harder schedule than we do. Twenty four hours a day, and they're concerned about diet, exercise, training, and their looks."

"Most people see only the show part of it," says Paisley, doing dumbbell crunches, "They don't see all the workouts and training that goes into it. When everybody else is eating cheesecake, it's grilled chicken and broccoli for me."

Back to the studio, where Hudson is holding forth about the last segment, and waving his hands around for emphasis.
"You ought to do something with those hands, Scott" says LarryZ, imitating Scott's actions.
"Like what?"
"You got to sm-o-o-o-th those hands out," says LarryZ, tracing an "hourglass" figure in the air.
If you liked that," says Hudson, "you'll like the new WCW Magazine with Torrie Wilson, Stacy Keibler, and Midajah on the cover."
He holds up the magazine. LarryZ takes it away fromhim.
"I got a better picture than that one," says LarryZ, who's busily flipping through the pages. He pauses briefly...
"This girl's about 90 percent LEG!" says LarryZ, impressed.
"That's Stacy Keibler, Legend"
"I know who it is!" says LarryZ, who's suddenly very interested in the magazine.
"You gonna be tied up there for a while?" asks Hudson.
"Nothing else to do. I'm not golfing!"
LarryZ finds Midajah within, and shows Hudson.
"When we come back... aw, please, Legend, I'm having enough trouble trying to concentrate as it is..."


Hudson runs down the fight card for the Mayhem PPV, with sage comments, where appropriate, from LarryZ.

On the "Ask WCW" segment, this week's question comes from Chris Walker of Jackson, Mississippi, who wants to know why Hacksaw Jim Duggan turned against the USA and joined up with Team Canada.

Over to Duggan, who's minus his trademark facial foliage. Without the fuzz, Duggan must be the pinkest man in WCW.
He's also in medium kayfabe mode, and starts off in RetardSpeak: "Way-ull Chris, thatsa reel tuff kwes-chun!" with appropriate eye-rolling and tongue-lolling.

Then, Duggan cranks the kayfabe all the way up to full-bore levels.

"I switched because I was sick and tired! Y'UNDERSTAND? I was sick and tired of being TAKEN FOR GRANTED in WCW! For twenty years I carried the American flag, and for twenty years I did the dirty work in professional wrestling, and what did it get me? NOTHIN'! Ask me how many title shots Hacksaw has had in twenty years? ZERO!
Well, two weeks after I joined Team Canada, and I was fighting for the Tag-team Titles. I'm TIRED of being taken for granted, and THAT'S why I joined Team Canada!"

"So why doncha go eat some apple pie..." (sticks his tongue out!) "...tough guy! Ho-o-o-ooooooo!"

Back to the studio, where Hudson and LarryZ sit in stunned silence.

"Y'know, Legend, there's an eight-letter, two-syllable word that describes exactly what Jim Duggan was just ranting about, but I can't say it on TV."
"Well, the brontosaurus was a huge dinosaur with a brain the size of a pea," says LarryZ. "Evolution obviously didn't do any favors for Jim Duggan. If he was smart he'd be more interested in seeing how much Canadian money is worth compared to ours."
"Hacksaw, " says Hudson, "you got exactly what you deserve!"
"He's an idiot!" sneers LarryZ.


Time for this week's "Professor's Pick," with Mike Tenay.

The date: 16 June 1996
The event: Great American Bash

This week's "Professor's Pick" is a wild bout between Buff Bagwell and Diamond Dallas Page. DDP had won the Lethal Lottery only the month before (May 1996) at Slamboree, and both wrestlers were looking for their first big break. DDP had also agreed to put up his "Lord of the Rings" ring that he won at Slamboree, as the prize for the victor.

Pick of the Week: Diamond Dallas Page d. Marcus Alexander "Buff" Bagwell, ( "Diamond Cutter" finisher/pin, we saw 6:50 or so), DDP's "Lord of the Rings" trophy ring defense, 1996 Great American Bash.

Your ring-side hosts are Tony Schiavone and The American Dream, Dusty Rhodes.

Bagwell, at that time a member of the "American Males" with partner Scotty Riggs, got to this match as a result of a coin toss between he and Riggs.
As Bagwell climbs into the ring, he gets clobbered from behind by DDP.
Bagwell falls through the ropes, and DDP hauls him back up on the ring apron. Two forearms across the upper body of Bagwell, but a third gets stopped when Bagwell grabs DDP by the neck and hauls him over the top rope and down to the floor at ringside. "DDP didn't see that coming!" says Dusty. Two forearm smashes by Bagwell, but DDP stops a third with a poke to the eye. Ringside whip by DDP gets reversed and it's DDP who ends up smashed against the steel guardrail. Big Right Hand from Bagwell puts DDP over the railing and into the crowd.
Bagwell drags DDP back over the railing, then rolls him back in the ring. DDP counters, and hammers Bagwell with a double axe-handle to the back. Cross-ring whip by DDP gets Bagwell rebounding with a cross-body block that levels his opponent. Cover by Bagwell, 1,2, but DDP gets a shoulder up, and referee Randy Anderson stops the count.
Bagwell drops DDP with a drop toe-hold and an armbar. Bagwell drops a knee on DDP's upper arm. Meanwhile Tony Schiavone is relating the story of how DDP came to be reinstated in WCW, involving lawyers and large sums of money.
Sounds like a certain presidential race doesn't it?
DDP is in control now, hammering at Bagwell's gut with lefts and rights. Dusty says that body blows to the stomach takes the air and breath out of you, slowing you down. Bagwell recovers, and hits DDP a good one, staggering him back, and gets him tangled in the ring-ropes.
Bagwell nails DDP through the ropes to the floor with a double dropkick.
Fast forward to later in the bout, and DDP's in control, hitting a massive powerslam on Bagwell, hooks the leg, 1,2, NO!
DDP's arguing with referee Anderson about a slow count, then steals some heel heat from the crowd.
Turning his attention to Bagwell, DDP continues the trip to Stomp City. An attempted punch by DDP gets countered by Bagwell, with a punch in the gut. DDP staggers back to his feet, tries a big punt, but misses Bagwell entirely and takes a massive pratfall. Back on his feet, DDP runs right into a Bagwell Inverted Atomic Drop, followed by another Atomic Drop the right way round.
Both men are trading punches, with Bagwell giving better than he's getting.
Kick to the gut by DDP gets caught, then DDP gets clotheslined. Bagwell needs to pin his opponent, but he keeps grandstanding to the crowd. Cross-ring whip by Bagwell, who clobbers DDP with an elbow on the rebound. As DDP gets to his feet, he's nailed by a vaulting Bagwell clothesline across the top ropes, and down he goes again.
Lateral press by Bagwell, cover, 1,2, DDP gets a shoulder up!
Bagwell continues to hammer away at DDP, but a cross-corner whip goes bad when Bagwell runs into a DDP elbow.
DDP covers, 1, (puts his feet on the bottom rope for extra leverage,) 2, but Randy Anderson sees the cheat move and breaks off the pin count. The fans are all over DDP for this last bit of treachery, and DDP's giving it back volt for volt.
Cross-ring whip by DDP gets countered with a sloppy-looking Acid Drop by Bagwell, but DDP sells the move like he'd just had his spine ripped out.
Bagwell tries for a bridge suplex, but DDP's got a hold of the ropes to block the lift.
DDP counters with a punch to the gut...

Diamond Cutter!
Hooks the far leg, 1,2,3! Your winner, Diamond Dallas Page.

Mike Tenay says this Pick of the Week is one of the first-ever times DDP used his new signature move, the Diamond Cutter, to score the win.

Next week, we get a treat. The N.W.O's "Souled Out" PPV, the only PPV ever promoted by the New World Order. In addition, next week inaugurates Tenay letting the fans choose the "Pick of the Week" from a selection of matches available over at WCWdotcom.
Hudson hopes the list will include the "Big Josh" match. Tenay says that's unlikely.


Hudson briefly runs through the fight card for the Mayhem PPV once more.
Scott and LarryZ shill the new edition of WCW Magazine, Goldberg's new book, "I'm Next!" and "The Ultimate Guide to World Championship Wrestling."
Looks like another trip to Barnes and Noble, doesn't it?

Closing credits.
A good show this week, especially Paul Orndorf's comments and the "Women of WCW" highlights piece from E!

They just might make a go of this format change yet!

See you next week.

E.C. Ostermeyer
[slash] wrestling

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Copyright (C) 1999, 2000 Christopher Robin Zimmerman & KZiM Communications
Guest column text copyright (C) 2000 by the individual author and used with permission