Thursday, March 5, 2015

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–04.01.96


The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro – 04.01.96

Anyone watching Gangland Undercover on History? Holy SHIT what a great show. It’s like Sons of Anarchy crossed with Donnie Brasco and it’s incredibly tense and awesome.

Live from somewhere we don’t even have time to tell you, because Sting is facing the Giant!

Smackdown - March 5, 2015

Date: March 5, 2015
Location: Verizon Center, Washington DC
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, Byron Saxton

Reviewed by Tommy Hall

With just a few weeks to go before Wrestlemania, one of the main stories has been the Intercontinental Title scene. We're definitely getting the big ladder match, but it's not entirely clear who is going to be in it. It's also not clear who is going to hand over the title belt to have it hung above the ring as everyone keeps stealing the thing. Let's get to it.

WCW Nitro: February 3, 1997

Last week: Tony Schiavone lost his luggage at the airport, and was forced to dress like this:

Will he right the ship tonight? Nitro is NEXT!

LIVE from Memphis, Tennessee, home of tomato based BBQ, sad country music, and Jerry Lawler’s criminal history, THIS is Nitro!

BoD Thursday Night Thread

On tap for tonight:

Smackdown starts at 8pm EST on Syfy tonight, highlighted by Ryback vs. Kane and AJ Lee's in-ring return against Brie Bella

The NBA has two games on the schedule tonight with both of them on TNT. At 8pm EST the Oklahoma City Thunder take on the Chicago Bulls while at 10:30pm EST the Dallas Mavericks take on the Portland Trailblazers.

In the NHL there are eight games on the schedule. At 7pm EST on the NHL Network the St. Louis Blues take on the Philadelphia Flyers.

College Basketball has several Nationally Televised games tonight, highlighted by Memphis vs. UConn on ESPN 2 at 9pm EST and VCU vs. Davidson on ESPN U also at 9pm EST.

No shoot interview poll for next week as I will be recapping the Curt Hawkins shoot interview, which was fantastic.

And as usual, talk about anything else going on tonight here.

Make sure to head over to Place to be Nation and read the "Great WrestleMania Re-Book Series" as they cover WrestleMania X. You can check that out by clicking on the link below.

90s Curiosities


Hi Scott,

I took a break from wrestling from 93 until the summer of 97(and was only a kid before that) so there are a few questions I have that I was hoping you or the blog viewers could provide insight on.

1)  Before Starrcade 97, I seem to remember Flair was supposed to face Hennig in a cage but that got changed to DDP vs Hennig shortly before the event.  Was Flair legitimately injured?  I seem to remember him wrestling Jericho shortly after Starrcade leading to Jericho's heel turn and I know he was at Souled Out vs Bret.  Overall, it seems like they tried to make Starrcade as disappointing as possible

He definitely wasn’t injured.  I think it was part of their ongoing plan to kill Flair off, which of course failed roughly 1800 times.  He was “injured” in storyline, so that was the reasoning for switching to DDP at Starrcade.  I will say that the program wasn’t really getting over anyway. 

2)  Sometime before Summerslam 97, I remember hearing on one of the WWF programs, likely Livewire or something minor that Vader was supposed to wrestle Sid.  Any recollection?  Sid was at KOTR 97 but nothing after so it seemed strange.  Sure enough, it was never mentioned at the event and neither man had a different match.

No recollection of that here.  Sid got into a pretty bad car accident after KOTR and that was pretty much it for him for a while, though. 

3)  Late 96 - Was there any hint of Bischoff joining the NWO before he was outed by Piper in-ring in November?  I have a faint memory of him(maybe from Saturday Night, don't think it was on Nitro) being found somewhere outdoors with at least one NWO member beforehand leading to suspicion.  Maybe this was just some wacky dream I had 19 years ago.

There was definitely no hint of it in advance. 

4)  Was the WCW International title thought of as a joke at the time or pretty legit?  It does have lineage from the NWA belt and the titleholders were all very strong (Rude, Sting, Flair)  I don't see it as being any worse than the two belts WWE had for years.

It was thought of as a total joke once Flair got it and it just became “The Big Gold Belt”.  People pretty much considered it on the level of what the secondary titles are now.  The unification between Flair and Sting was really no big deal. 

5)  When Luger took off about 2 months in late 91 - early 92 as champ, did they kayfabe explain why the 30 day rule was not enforced or was it just ignored?  Also, what was the legit reason, guaranteed dates contract?  I didn't think those existed at the time.

Yup, the legit reason was that Luger had a guaranteed dates contract and WCW literally booked him for too many shows.  They also did that with Sting in 96, which is part of the reason why he was sitting around in the rafters for much of the year.  As far as I remember, on TV they basically said he was training for Sting, and the 30 day rule was never really addressed. 

RF Video Shoot Interview with Alberto (Del Rio)

This was filmed on November 7th, 2014

The interview was conducted by Rob Feinstein

It runs at two hours and one minute long.

BoD Daily Update

SummerSlam Location Announced

The show will take place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY on 8/23.

Samoa Joe Heading to the WWE?

According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Joe will be going to the WWE. However, it is unclear as to what type of deal as it could be a short-term tryout, a Developmental Deal, or a deal that will see him in NXT Briefly before heading to the main roster.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

WWE Interested in Ring of Honor Talent

There is currently a "significant" amount of talent on the RoH roster that the WWE is interested in as they are more open about signing smaller, fast-paced wrestlers and want to start expanding NXT into a Nationally touring group and to do so they need bigger names.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Newsletter

The Rise and Fall of WWE-Trailer


Good to see they're already getting set for the aftermath of Roman's Reign.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–03.25.96


The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro – 03.25.96

Live as live can get from somewhere not mentioned.

Your hosts are Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan and Mongo.

NXT - March 4, 2015

Date: March 4, 2015
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Jason Albert, Rich Brennan, Alex Riley

Reviewed by Tommy Hall

Tonight it's time to get back to the serious business around NXT as Sami Zayn is making his first appearance after losing the NXT Title to Kevin Owens by referee's decision. Owens is currently gearing up to defend against #1 contender Finn Balor, but it's clear that another showdown with Sami is coming. Let's get to it.

BoD Wednesday Night Thread

Talk about everything going on tonight here

WCW Worldwide: February 2, 1997

LIVE on 3-MONTH DELAY from the Disney MGM studios, it’s WCW Worldwide! What kind of sizzling hot action can we expect this week? Alex Wright, Kaoru, and Konan amongst others! For god sakes don’t you change that channel to … whatever the hell else airs on Sunday afternoons after football season!

TONY SCHIAVONE and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN who does not appear to be having an easy time standing up are your hosts. Heenan starts hyping tonight’s main event between Mysterio and Malenko for the 5000th time, by talking about Malenko’s 1000 holds and counters, then trying to figure out whether Mysterio has more or fewer, but he winds up confusing himself (and Tony), so Schiavone just moves it along by saying “it’s quite a rivalry!”

Monday Nitro - October 11, 1999

Monday Nitro #209
Date: October 11, 1999
Location: Mississippi Coast Coliseum, Biloxi, Mississippi
Attendance: 9,000
Commentators: Bobby Heenan, Tony Schiavone

Reviewed by Tommy Hall

We've coming off a genuinely great wrestling match last week and something tells me that it's going to go downhill from here. The main event is Benoit/Hart teaming up against a team to be announced. Other than that, we might get to see more car hijinks between Sid and Goldberg in the parking lot. Let's get to it.

Fake Razor/Diesel


Been watching the 1996 Raws as they've come out lately. Can you shed some light on Fake Razor/Diesel insanity? Was Vince trying to prove how intellectual property laws worked or something? Why was JR portrayed as the villain that introduced them? We were supposed to hate JR because he got fired after contracting bells pallsy? The entire thing made ZERO sense on any level and the reaction they got is Michael Scott during Diwali level awkward. 

It was so weird.  Vince's point, as best as I can tell, was that the characters were the intellectual property of the WWF, and thus if the people playing the characters were to leave, they were replaceable.  Frankly I'm not 100% sure, but that seems to be the gist of it.  It was also something dealing with the lawsuit that was launched over the "we're here to start a war" rhetoric but I was never clear on what was supposed to be proven there.  I actually thought Rick Bogner was a pretty good hand, but that gimmick just killed him for good. 

BoD Daily Update

WWE Issues Statement on Bill DeMott

“WWE took the accusations made two years ago by Austin Matelson very seriously, conducted a full investigation and was unable to validate the claims.  Regardless, WWE continues to reinforce policies and procedures to ensure a positive training environment.”

DeMott was still working at the Performance Center yesterday in his normal capacity.

Mark Henry Update

Henry was backstage at RAW this week and expected to return to the road full-time as well.

Rey Mysterio Update

Mysterio announced yesterday during a press conference for the AAA "Rey De Reyes" event that he will be returning to the company for that event, which will be held on 3/15.

RAW Ratings

Ratings for RAW went down this week with just 3.82 million viewers. Here is the hourly breakdown:

8pm: 3.55 million viewers
9pm: 4.07 million viewers
10pm 3.86 million viewers

Even more reigns!


At this point are you actually looking forward to the main event due to the likely cena-Orton rumble 2014 or brock-Goldberg reaction?

While the "its so bad it's good" of the last few months isn't a good thing in the long run, it is kind of making me excited for mania after all.

​I don't think that reaction is likely, just because people don't care about Reigns enough to have that kind of passion about it.  If it gets out before that Brock is leaving, then maybe it'll be interesting and finally turn Reigns babyface with the smart fans, but otherwise I feel like they'll do a safe and boring match that will be intensely rehearsed and probably more dull than anything.  ​

WM Venues

After upgrading from arenas to stadiums for WrestleMania for WM23, WWE has been in a different city/venue since. It seems unlikely they can continue with this trend after the Cowboys Stadium. Theres rumblings of Philly wanting the event, but whats left after them? A new stadium is opening in Minnesota but would wrestling fans travel from around the world for that? Atlanta is another new stadium on the way but they just hosted a WM. Is a move back to arenas a possibility or maybe baseball stadiums like WM 19?

​I'm still hoping for BC Place in Vancouver (aka the STAR Labs reactor in Flash!) so I can go.  Plus I'm sure in the future greedy NFL owners will demand new stadiums at some point.  They could also do one from the rotting corpse of the Silverdome for fun.  Reigns will probably only be drawing about 12 people per show by then anyway.  ​

Muraco's Monday Morning Matches of the Week - [s2, e9]

The Tuesday Night Edition, as Blogger has been acting up over here the last 2 days. Nonetheless we move on, featuring one of the most beautiful segments of the year, a must see tear-jerker.

DG: BxB Hulk (c) vs. Uhaa Nation - [3/1/15]

A great title match, and more importantly the post-match is one of the most fantastic things you will ever see in this business. Go out of your way to watch the second video posted.

BxB Hulk (c) vs. Uhaa Nation (Dragon Gate) by JAHMAL1111

Uhaa Nation Graduation Ceremony (Dragon Gate) by JAHMAL1111  

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Repost: The SmarK Rant for WCW Uncensored 1996


(2015 Scott sez:  I actually don’t have the original file for this one stored on OneDrive for some reason, so I had to use Google-Fu and find it on 411 from the original 2003 posting.  Thankfully I created a new Word document for posterity as well.  For those of you who care about that sort of minutia of my life.

Also, to those who want a full re-rant, fuck you.  In the most loving way.  That is all.) 

The SmarK Retro Rant for WCW Uncensored ‘96

– I decided to finally redo the rant for this one when I was sick, so that it couldn’t do any more damage to me than it already has. The way I figure it, the cold medication should be enough to fight off any mental or physical illness I may suffer from watching it again. I may, however, need to stop and vomit at various points, so I’ll be sure to give you fair warning before I do. By the way, in a kind of cosmic warning to me, the tape arrived broken, probably as a way for the universe to try to keep me from sacrificing myself by watching this again, but I was able to transplant the reels into a fresh casing, because that’s the kind of thing you learn to do after years of trading tapes on the ‘net.  (Man, those were the days.  Thankfully the Great VHS Purge of 2004 was coming and I would soon convert everything over to DVD once and for all.) 

– Live from Tupalo, MS.

– Your hosts are Tony, Dusty & Bobby.

WCW Saturday Night: February 1, 1997

One Year Ago: On the 02/03 Saturday Night, Ric Flair cheats to beat Dean Malenko before vowing to have Elizabeth ride Space Mountain one more time. On the 02/05 Nitro, Chris Benoit and Randy Savage tear it up, Marcus Bagwell has what is likely his best singles match ever, and the Road Warriors get a tag-team title shot. Feel free to look back fondly at all your favorite Todd Morton moments by clicking those links. I’ll still be here when you get back.

TONY SCHIAVONE and DUSTY RHODES welcome us to the Cyborg Factory aboard the Mothership for my favorite 2-hours of the week. Yes, even more-so than Nitro, because the nWo stays away from this show and they’re really starting to get on my nerves. Thank god Hogan doesn’t work Saturdays.

WWF WrestleMania III

March 29th, 1987

From the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, MI

Your hosts are Jesse Ventura and Gorilla Monsoon

BoD Evening Thread

Talk about everything going on tonight here.

RNR Express in 1988


Watching Clash of the champions Miami Mayhem and they have a segment welcoming back the rock n roll express. Yet I don't remember them doing anything of note in the nwa that year. So, is there a story behind this?

If it's the time period I'm thinking of, they jumped to the AWA for a little while and bounced around between there and Memphis.  The appeal was really dead in the water by late 88 because it was really a short shelf life on the teen idol thing.  They didn't really pop up again until 1990 and by that time the act was pretty much done thanks to Gibson's pretty gnarly knee injury and the Steiner Brothers becoming the team everyone wanted. 

More Reigns!


To me, the turning point for Roman's demise was immediately after the Rollins betrayal.  Look at the contrast between the reactions of Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns:

Dean Ambrose: Goes off the deep end seeking revenge and talking Rollins, turning it into the hottest feud in the WWE for a couple of months.
Roman Reigns: "Meh."

Yeah, but in Vince's mind that's a feature, not a bug.  The John Cena Babyface Prototype is always stoic in the face of setbacks, laughs off big losses because he can always get another title shot, and presents himself as being above the midcarders because he's a star.  That was their way of pushing Reigns.  

CM Punk Chants

This came up in the comment section:

1) What are your thoughts on them in general?

2) Do you feel having them during AJ Lee's return is a setback for #GiveDivasAChance?

1. Given that he now has a contract with UFC, it seems like a futile gesture on the crowds' part.  

2.  If giving Divas a chance means more Bellas, I hope no one does.  

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–03.18.96


The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro – 03.18.96

Live from Chattanooga, TN

Your hosts are Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan & Mongo

Lenny Lane: The Forgotten Cruiserweight Champion

Often times when people think about the WCW/WWE Cruiserweight Championship wrestlers such as Rey Mysterio Jr., Eddie Guerrero, Billy Kidman, Chris Jericho, Dean Malenko Juventud Guerrera and Chavo Guerrero Jr. are likely to come to mind. Rightfully so as those guys continually put on incredible matches in the mid to late 1990s for World Championship Wrestling. The WCW Cruiserweight Championship became a championship match that fans were almost guaranteed a fantastic match.

Eventually, the repetitive championship switches started to annoy fans. How many times could we deal with seeing Rey Mysterio Jr. beating Juventud or Psychosis to win the championship before it was no longer interesting? WCW took notice and in the summer of 1999 they made a controversial decision.

BoD Daily Update

Former NXT Wrestler Alleges Bill DeMott Bullied Trainees with Homophobic and Physical Abuse

Austin Draven, who wrestled as Judas Devlin in NXT, revealed the memo that he sent to WWE Officials accusing DeMott of misconduct. You can click on the link below to view the memo.

WWE Planning New Tag Match for WrestleMania

Even before last night's return of AJ Lee, the plan was for AJ & Paige to face off against the Bella's at WrestleMania

Kevin Nash Already Confirmed for the WWE Hall of Fame?

According to Mike Johnson of, Nash is listed as a Hall of Famer this year in a special WrestleMania retrospective magazine that has recently hit the shelves. Johnson himself had reported that Nash would be inducted weeks ago.

Matt's Monday Night RAW Recap - 3/2/2015

The main event at WrestleMania is still Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar. Rumors are flying that Lesnar's unhappy with his current contract and that he's considering a UFC comeback and that he may not even show up at WrestleMania.

Monday, March 2, 2015


This has nothing to do with the WWE

The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro–03.11.96


The SmarK Rant for WCW Monday Nitro – 03.11.96

All the cool kids are watching Nitro on Monday nights, you know.

LIVE (after a one week break for a mini-series) from Winston-Salem, NC

Your hosts are Eric Bischoff, Bobby Heenan & Mongo. Funny how Bischoff keeps calling it “the Warzone”, considering what RAW would become less than a year later.

Monday Night Open Mic

Howdy Blog O'Doomers!

The road to Wrestlemania continues tonight. I know I'm jacked! Should we have another "RAW Reunion" show before the day?

Anyway despite the apathy that some of us have for the top of the card, I'm hopeful they can get the ball rolling on the rest of these matches soon enough.

As for TV


5 NBA Games, 3 NHL...remember to check the trade deadline in the NHL to make sure the team you support hasn't been completely dismantled.

The Bachelor, The Voice, Gotham, Better Call Saul...all new episodes tonight!

Keep it clean!

World Class Lightning Round

Scott....Going thru my VHS tapes purge has inspired me to ask: can you do a "World Class" version of the Lightning Round? If you could give me (your pick) the best (North America) match of the following:

Kerry Von Erich (overall)

He had some hellacious matches with Flair (duh) but my favorite was actually a match with Harley Race of all people, shortly before Kerry won the title.  It was on WWE 24/7 on some random themed month and it was GREAT. 

Kerry Von Erich (post amputation....after 1986-ish)

Jerry Lawer at Superclash, and it's not even debatable.  Everything else he did with the missing foot was hot garbage.  

Bruiser Brody

I honestly haven't seen more than about 3 Brody matches in my life.  He was before my time as a fan for the most part.  

Chris Adams

Discovering and training Steve Austin eclipses anything else he did in the business.  He had some great tag matches with Gino, but nothing I can think of off-hand.  Another guy who was basically before my time as a fan when he was peaking.  

Kevin Von Erich

Gotta be Flair.  

David Von Erich

Died before I even became a fan.  

Michael Hayes

One of the 80 million six-mans with the Von Erichs.  

Terry Gordy

He had a lot of great ones in All Japan.  

Gino Hernandez

Before my time.  I vagely remember the team with Chris Adams and saw some good stuff there, but otherwise I couldn't judge.  

Abdullah the Butcher

Yeah OK then.  

Brian Adidas (talk about obscure.......)

No idea.  

Jimmy Garvin

Flair in the Precious cage match.  


(Also, going forward, which email is the best one to use?)

BoD Daily Update

Brock Lesnar Update

While the exact reason as to why Lesnar walked out before RAW is still unknown, his argument with Vince McMahon was described as "loud and heated" and it became loud enough that people were became concerned, mainly for Vince. Also, at last Tuesday's Smackdown tapings, people within the WWE reportedly asked Vince if they needed to come up with a backup plan for the WrestleMania main event but Vince said no and assured them that Lesnar would be there working the show because he is contractually obliged to and said something to the effect that he would sue Lesnar if he did in fact no-show the PPV.

Jon Stewart to Appear on RAW

Stewart will appear to accept a challenge that was brought on Seth Rollins, who challenged Stewart on the "Daily Show."

Samoa Joe Update

Independent promotions have been told that Joe will not be taking any more dates after April, which has lead to speculation that he might be signing with the WWE. Joe's last date for Ring of Honor is on April 25th.

Credit Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer Radio

WWE To Introduce a Diva to the 2015 Hall of Fame Class Tonight?

The website is teasing that a Diva will be announced as a Hall of Famer tonight

Also, head on over to Place to be Nation and check out "This Week in 90's Wrestling" as they tackle March 1st-7th.

Question for you regarding another match closing out besides Roman/Brock..


Hey Scott, what's going on?

So, at this point, I wouldn't be surprised if the E flushing down Lesnar/Reings midway though the show, for several reasons.

I think it's safe to assume that Brock's just closing out whatever business he has left at this point. As in, fulfilling his contract by showing up and not much else. Go out there, make the appearance, do the job, get paid, go back home to hunting and screwing Sable. 

On the other side of the coin, you have Roman Reigns, who's probably gonna get booed out of the building, and the whole thing is gonna be far more awkward than Brock's other match with Goldberg. At least Goldberg had a following, no matter how hostile the crowd at 20 was toward him. Roman's got, what, a very small fanbase of women, children and Vince McMahon?

Next consider the drama from this past week with Brock walking out on a scheduled appearance and later showing up at a UFC event. Wouldn't be a big deal except he's rumored to be rejoining that org. It isn't like Taker showing up. It's a clear message and shot fired towards Vince and co. 

So, if they don't outright take the title off of Brock and remove him from the event, change the main event and go another direction, let's just say that if it were me running the E, I would be a little paranoid at this point that my champion would sandbag the final match on the biggest show of the show. That's assuming he shows to begin with. 

So, assuming he stays as professional as needed and shows up with the title to do the business, a middle-of-show placement would be good strategic planning in case the match absolutely flops or he flakes out mid-match and says to hell with it, pin me, pay me, I'm out. 

Do you think, at this point, it would be better to close out with another advertised match?
- Cena's the top star anyway, and his fued with Rusev has much more momentum and audience participation. 
- Sting, on the other hand, has been one of, if not the THE most long-awaited arrival ever in the E and his story with H is the longest running right now. Definitely a main event in its own right. 
- Taker and Wyatt, well, there's that stupid rumor that they want to put the match high in the card so it happens after dark. It's Taker, so what the hell, would it hurt for him to main? Bray's superstrong right now, so like Sting/HHH, it's a main in its own right. 

- OR, call the same audible, get Brock/Roman out of the way early and then have Roman pull double duty against Bryan or Rollins in the final match of the night? It would guarantee a good show-closing match. WWE's not really behind Bryan, that much is obvious, so a second main-event of Roman versus Rollins would be an excellent show closer, as well as make a ton of sense. Seth's been the top heel for the last year, Roman's the next big thing and they have a ton of history. 

None of the other scheduled matches mentioned should main this Mania, but they're bigger on paper on paper than what's advertised in the main. 
Also, I feel a two minute MITB cash-in mini-match with Seth Rollins would feel cheap. Any other show, yeah, but not Mania; so how about opening the show with Rollins hijacking the mic, holding the case high and saying he wants Reigns or Lesnar at the end of the night? A straight-up almost-fair one-on-one match really wouldn't fit his chickenschittt persona, but it would present a best-case scenario for salvaging a troubled card. WWE's had a couple of shows in the past where the card changed mid-show, so while it would be a mess, it's still better than what's currently advertised.

Again, I feel that finishing the wrestling year with Roman defending against Rollins would make a million times more sense than any other match, for multiple reasons (quality, prior history, etc). Roman wins the title, Brock gets wished well in future endeavors, show goes on before closing out with Roman and Rollins. Roman wins, Vince is happy and people are satisfied with a decent main. (Rollins can always have a rematch later.)

I didn't mean for this to be a novel. It just seems to me that there are so many other, better quality, more sense-making ways to go about your biggest show of the year. 

- CX

- Brock's a man on a mission, and while I can't fault him at all, I wouldn't trust him at this point to do anymore than simply show up.
- there's no hope for Roman/Brock anyway, so get it out of the way, mid-show. 
- if not one of the other huge matches being the show closer, have Roman defend against Rollins, if not Bryan. 
- Roman and Rollins makes way too much sense anyway, so while it would make sense to be the main of Mania, it makes too much sense for WWE to book it.

You know, for everyone that complains about how little they care about this year's show, I sure get a lot of e-mails about it every day.  Damn smarks, am I right, Dougie?  High five, buddy.  

Bret Hart singles push



Do you think the Bret Hart push should have started sooner?  They clearly always had plans of pushing him solo, even when he and Anvil were competing for the tag titles.  I feel like they should have just had Demolition retain at SummerSlam and built up to them dropping the titles to newly-arrived LOD.  Bret could have started his push right after SummerSlam '90.    Maybe do Perfect-Bret for the IC title at Mania 7 (with someone else insulting Boss Man's mama and such) AND a re-match at SummerSlam '91.  

That was absolutely the original goal.  The whole point of the phantom title switch was that they fired Neidhart for cost-cutting reasons and were 100% ready to proceed with the Bret push.  But then they changed their mind and un-fired Neidhart.  As you note, they probably shouldn't have bothered.  Building to Demos v. LOD at WM would have been pretty awesome, whether or not Eadie was involved.