Monday Nitro #157
Date: October 5, 1998
Location: Carolina Coliseum, Charleston, South Carolina
Commentators: Larry Zbyszko, Bobby Heenan, Tony Schiavone, Mike Tenay
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We're very slowly making our way towards Halloween Havoc and the stories are already dragging. Thunder was actually a nice break from the Hogan vs. Warrior stuff as Goldberg and Page got the spotlight. We're also in Horsemen country tonight meaning an appearance from Flair and the boys is a solid possibility. Let's get to it.
We open with a recap of Hart turning on Sting and revealing his allegiance to Hogan, shocking very few people.
Nitro Girls in pink.
Halloween Havoc promo.
Tony wants to know about the maniacal laugh. I have a very bad feeling about where this is going.
Bret vs. Sting for the US Title tonight.
We look at Piper telling Bret Hart to be a man a few months back as the fans want Flair.
We look back at Bret saving Sting from a whipping by Hogan back in August.
WCW Mastercard ad. Those looked awesome when I was ten and didn't quite know what they were.
Normal opening about ten minutes into the show, complete with hearing Penzer counting the crowd down to cheer.
Lizmark Jr. vs. Saturn
Saturn grabs a hammerlock to start before pounding away in the corner with kicks to the head. A superkick drops Lizmark but he comes back with a hot shot and chops in the corner. Saturn clotheslines him down and hits a nice falcon's arrow followed by the Death Valley Driver for the pin. Not much to see here.
Videos on the main events at the PPV.
Nitro Girls in black.
Kaz Hayashi vs. The Cat
Miller does the five seconds thing and calls Hayashi Jackie Chan like the jerk that he is. Tenay lists off Miller's athletic background including some time in the NFL. Hayashi tries to come back but a stiff kick to the head drops him again. We get an old school stomach claw as the fans aren't thrilled with this one. Hayashi throws him down and goes up top, only to jump into a side kick. A big kick to the chest is enough to give Miller the pin.
Post match Miller grabs a mic and runs his mouth as Sonny Onoo comes in wearing a purple suit. Sonny offers his services and Miller seems to accept but it's not clear. Hayashi, a former client of Onoo, isn't thrilled.
A bunch of eight year olds win the Nitro Party contest this week.
Another Page vs. Goldberg video.
Jerry Flynn vs. Juventud Guerrera
Disco Inferno takes Tenay's place on commentary and we stay on them for a few moments. Flynn pounds away to start as Disco complains about Juvy messing with his weight. Juvy slides through Flynn's legs but gets kicked in the face to put him right back down. Guerrera finally gets in some offense with a springboard missile dropkick followed by some chops in the corner. A sitout bulldog ala Rey Mysterio gets two on Jerry and Juvy sends him outside for a big dive. Back in and a quick Juvy Driver gets the pin.
Rating: D+. Why did Juvy get that much offense in this one? It was looking bad for Juvy to start but at least he got the clean win at the end. Disco vs. Juvy in a non-title feud could be interesting, especially if Disco gets to show off some comedy skills by trying to make weight. I'm not sure why Guerrera didn't win with the 450 here but it was a nice change of pace.
Third Page vs. Goldberg video.
Tenay asks some fans who will win the title match. The people are split.
Heenan joins commentary while Tenay is taking a phone call. The announcers talk about how great Hogan vs. Warrior will be.
Long Hogan vs. Warrior video.
Villano V vs. Wrath
Wrath throws him into the corner and slams him down with ease. Villano is tossed outside and sent into the steps before a slingshot back elbow to the jaw drops him again. The Meltdown is enough for the fast pin. Wrath looked like a monster here.
We get our third video on Hogan vs. Warrior as the night of the video packages continues.
Tenay asks more fans about the World Title match and again it's split.
A Hummer limo arrives in the back with the Wolfpack. They appear to be hunting for someone as they walk through the back. Konnan is holding a broom and head into the wrestlers' dressing room. They run behind a wall and a brawl can be heard. The camera shows that it's against the Black and White until security pulls them apart after a few minutes. They break away from security and the brawl continues until Sting goes into another room and finds Bret Hart. Cops finally come in and break the two of them up.
Back from a break with the Wolfpack walking outside and finding a forklift to flip over the Black and White limousine. Nash and Luger bash it with hammers and Sting slashes the tires for good measure. Cool segment actually.
Hour #2 begins. It's nice to see the first hour end with something interesting for a change.
Hector Garza vs. Damien
Hector pounds away in the corner to start and takes Damien down with a hiptoss. A tilt-a-whirl backbreaker drops Damien again but here's Eddie Guerrero maybe a minute into the match. The referee calls for the bell before Eddie does anything.
Eddie wants to talk about what Eric Bischoff has ever done for either of them. Damien and Hector can't answer and that's Eddie's point: they're just wrestling each other week in and week out without ever getting anywhere. Why can't they ever climb the ladder of success? They can't even afford their own rental car or hotel room because the NWO is taking all of the money. Eddie says La Raza has to unite as the LWO and he has shirts for everybody. Both guys accept them and leave with Guerrero.
Mike Tenay is in the back with the Wolfpack. Nash says Hall isn't here but he's going to go from bar to bar until he finds him. Cameras are going with them.
Another video on Sting vs. Hart.
David Flair is in the front row and acknowledged by the announcers.
Nitro Girls in white.
Cruiserweight Title: Juventud Guerrera vs. Kidman
Kidman is defending. Psychosis works on the arm to start and wraps it around the top rope, only to get taken down by a hiptoss. A quick northern lights suplex gets two for the champion and Psychosis is sent outside for a nice plancha from the champ. Back in and Psychosis busts out a gordbuster of all things for a delayed two count. A top rope spinwheel kick to the back of Kidman's head (called a body attack by Tony) puts the champ down again but Psychosis takes forever to cover a second time.
We hit the chinlock on the champion but Kidman is quickly up with a dropkick. That's the extent of his offense at the moment though as Psychosis hiptosses him out to the floor and follows up with a nice plancha. Billy gets sent into the steps and dropkicked down again as this has been one sided for awhile now. Back in and Kidman scores with a hard clothesline for two but walks into a suplex for the same for Psychosis.
Back to the chinlock from the masked man before he just stomps the heck out of Kidman. The third chinlock doesn't last as long as Psychosis tries a powerbomb, only to be countered into a faceplant for two. A standing hurricanrana gets two on Kidman and a tilt-a-whirl slam gets the same. Kidman comes right back with a sitout spinebuster for two but walks into a moonsault press off the top. Psychosis puts the champ on top for a hurricanrana but Kidman shoves him off and drops the Shooting Star on Psychosis' face to retain.
Rating: C+. Nice match here but the ending was looked nasty. Kidman's knees landed on Psychosis' face so it's lucky that Psychosis is even getting up. It's nice to see a match get some time tonight instead of having them all fly by like the earlier matches have. Kidman is getting better and better every week.
Warrior talks about the Wrestlemania VI main event and rambles about power. The point is he beat Hogan before and can do it again.
Scott Steiner takes credit for the Steiner Brothers' success.
Tenay is chasing the Wolfpack limo as they hunt Scott Hall.
Here are Buff Bagwell and Scott Steiner to the ring when it's supposed to be Rick Steiner vs. Brian Adams. Scott promises to prove how great he is at Halloween Havoc and Buff starts to bark. This brings out Rick who reminds Bagwell that this is the building where he hurt his neck. Buff might want to make a joke about it, but Rick has someone who takes this seriously: Buff's MOM, Judy Bagwell.
She gets on the apron and rips Buff apart, talking about sitting with him in the hospital and reading the fans' letters. Buff says he made a decision and that she and his dad couldn't eat without his support. Judy slaps Buff in the face so Scott gets in her face. Rick takes out Scott and Judy drags Buff out by the ear. This was so hilariously stupid that it was awesome.
Back from a break and we get a clip of Scott and Brian Adams double teaming Rick.
Rick Steiner vs. Brian Adams
This is joined in progress with Rick in big trouble. JJ comes out and ejects Scott as Brian hooks a chinlock. Adams walks around for awhile before getting two off a piledriver. Slow choking ensues and a backbreaker gets two for Adams. Rick comes back with a powerslam and Steiner Line but walks into a boot. Luckily for him it's to the head, meaning Steiner can easily come back with a DDT and the top rope bulldog for the pin.
Rating: D. Slow match here though the high impact spots weren't bad. Rick going through the Black and White on the way to his showdown with Scott is fine for an idea, but they need to actually have a complete match at some point. Adams was good in this role but he shouldn't go much higher.
Hour #3 begins.
Tenay and the Wolfpack go into a bar to look for Scott. No luck so the search continues.
Time for Hogan and Bischoff who we somehow haven't seen so far. Bischoff brags about Hogan's physique. Hogan talks about how the Warrior has been looking for him but it's clear that Warrior is terrified. Warrior can come out here right now if he wants a fight but no one appears. Hogan runs his mouth even more before they leave.
Video on the Horsemen.
Nitro Girls in black.
Kanyon vs. Diamond Dallas Page
Page gets a very quick two off a rollup before shoving Kanyon across the ring. A belly to belly suplex gets another near fall and a forearm puts Kanyond outside. Cue Lodi with signs begging Raven to reform the Flock but he gets a dive from Page instead. The distraction lets Raven come in with a Diamond Cutter to Page for two. Page fights up and throws Kanyon into the corner for some rights and lefts but walks into a Fameasser for two.
We hit the chinlock on Page before he comes back with a sunset flip. A clothesline drops Kanyon but Page can't follow up. Page hammers away and gets two more off the Pancake but a Raven distraction lets Kanyon grab a rollup for a near fall. Page calls for the Cutter but Lodi and Raven run in for the DQ.
Rating: C. Better match that I was expecting given the first few seconds. I was worried they were going to squash Kanyon but he got to look good at the end. I'm not sure why they didn't let Page get a pin but it' snot the worst result in the world. The Goldberg vs. Page match should be awesome.
Page gets double teamed post match but Goldberg makes the save.
Hall isn't at the second bar either.
Lenny Lane vs. Disciple
Lane dances around like Warrior to start and gets his head knocked off as a result. Lenny tries snapmares and some kicks but Disciple no sells everything, clotheslines him down and wins with the Apocalypse.
Disciple says he's done carrying Hogan's bags because he's his own man now. Hogan and Bischoff come out but Disciple storms past them. The two of them head into the back and the storyline takes a sharp turn into a nose dive. Hogan stands in front of a mirror and says everything is falling apart. He looks up and sees Warrior standing behind him but there's no one behind him. Hogan sees Warrior in the mirror again (we can see him too) and begs him to come to a truce. Bischoff can't see the Warrior and asks Hogan what he's talking about. Hogan ignores Bischoff and keeps talking to Warrior until Bischoff tells the cameraman to get out of here.
So yeah, apparently Bischoff is the crazy one as only he couldn't see Warrior. I could live with the storyline being stupid and only existing to stroke Hogan's ego. The segments were really stupid to start with the smoke and everything, but you could REALLY stretch and say Warrior was attacking them under the cover of the smoke. They had toned it down in the last few weeks and just used regular (as regular as Warrior can get) promos to build the match but this takes it to a level where it's stupid and bordering on insulting rather that just eye rolling. Why do I have a feeling it's only going to get worse too?
Tenay follows the Wolfpac to a bar that looks a lot nicer on the inside than on the outside. Hall is inside and Nash goes right after him. Nash sends Hall into the mens' room. The Wolfpack follows him in a few moments later and invite the camera in. Hall is out cold just like you would expect him to be.
Here's a distressed looking Bischoff with something to say. He assures us that Hogan is just fine but has a story to tell us about a man named Flair. Bischoff makes fun of country fans that go to Waffle Houses, drawing a huge WE WANT FLAIR chant. Flair isn't here tonight and Bischoff has made sure of that because Ric is a coward. This brings out Double A who says this is a Horseman job. He's officially in charge of head games, so let's just bring out the champ right now.
This brings out Reid Flair in a singlet with a medal around his neck. Eric is annoyed and says there are Flairs everywhere. Reid: “Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeean WOO! Gene!” He's here to handle his father's light work and steps up to Bischoff before easily taking him down twice in a row. Bischoff goes after him but Arn gives him a look to scare Eric off. Reid holds up the four fingers and Bischoff doesn't know what to do.
Back from a break with Bischoff alone in the ring, ranting about wanting Ric Flair out here right now. Liz comes to the ring with a phone and is told to call Ric right now. Someone answers but it's Ric's wife Beth who yells at Eric until Ric's music comes on. He hits the ring and takes off the jacket but here's the Black and White. Benoit, Malenko, Mongo, Anderson and Reid hit the ring to protect Ric and the NWO bails. David Flair gets in the ring as well to complete the showdown. Awesome segment as the Flair vs. Bischoff showdown is another week closer.
US Title: Sting vs. Bret Hart
Pay per view? What's that? The challenger Sting is alone here as the Wolfpack is still gone from chasing Hall. Bret comes down the aisle but turns around and heads back through the entrance. Sting gives chase and the fight is on in the back. No match of course. Sting sends him into a steel door and then hits him with a dry erase board. Bret gets his jacket off and they head to the cafeteria area where thankfully there isn't any food left.
Hart takes over with some right hands and suplexes him through a table to put Sting down. He goes after the leg and ankle with a chair and pounds away with fists until Sting throws him down. Sting limps after him and crotches Bret against the side of a door. Bret gets away and tries to commandeer a golf card but there's no key. Sting chokes him with a pole and puts on a Scorpion. Bret: “CHEATER!” Security breaks it up to end the show.
Overall Rating: C+. This was a very angle heavy show and they worked for the most part. That being said, the Hogan mirror stuff is just so stupid and sticks out like a sore thumb. The NWO stuff still doesn't have an end game but at least they're building up to a card of matches at Halloween Havoc. There are still a lot of problems plaguing the show though.
As has been the problem since he first turned, we really don't know why Bret turned in the first place or why he turned again last week. The closest we've gotten is he respects Hogan and wants to support him but it's still a problem in the whole story. We know they're feuding, but there's really no backstory other than one guy turned on the other after being together for no apparent reason. It's not confusing and you can figure it out well enough now, but it was a confusing few months leading up without an actual reason for any of it happening.
The wrestling wasn't the focus here and that's fine. Kidman vs. Psychosis was a decent enough match but it was just there to have a longer match. This show still needs to be back at two hours as there's too much meaningless filler. There was only one really bad part tonight and the pure awesomeness of Judy Bagwell brings this one home.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with wrestling books for under $4 at: