WCW Halloween Havoc 1991
by Scrooge McSuck
- Broadcasted live on Pay-Per-View on October 27th, 1991, from the UTC Arena in Chattanooga, TN. Jim Ross and Tony Schiavone are calling all the action. The lame special effects for the opening of the show includes some stuff I'm sure a middle schooler could've put together as a side project in Computer Class. The entrance set is even campier, with a backdrop of a second rate "Haunted House", and a handful of tombstones with comical inscriptions on them. Har Har, what great writing and effects from the WCW Production Crew.
We're informed that Barry Windham was injured at the hands of... a flashback of Eric Bischoff standing in a field, greeting the arrival of Cactus Jack and Abdullah The Butcher. Now it's DDP and the Diamond Studd arriving. FINALLY, Barry Windham pulls up with Dustin Rhodes, and Arn Anderson goes all Horsemen on Windham, slamming the car door on his hand. Rehashing Horsemen tactics is cool, when it matters.
Chamber of Horrors Match:
Way to start off the PPV with the most heavily advertised match on the card. If you check the promotional poster, the entire heel side seems to have been subbed out, originally advertising Oz, the One Man Gang, and Barry Windham as partners for the Diamond Studd. So was Windham getting his hand broken a babyface turn for him? WCW always made very little sense with the random turns, especially Windham, who flip-flopped every six months, it seems. I don't understand the point of introducing the teams in an alternating style, but even that gets flubbed up, as Gigante gets introduced, then three members of the heel team. The cage is the same cage used at Halloween Havoc '89 for their Thunderdome Cage, except now we've got an electric chair inserted into the cage, and the point of the match is to strap one of the participants in and "throw the fatal lever." I love how Sting is the only one to get his own music played for his entrance, but it's STING, so he can get away with it. Sting kicks ass, and always will, but I may be a little bias.
Sting, El Gigante, Rick & Scott Steiner vs. Big Van Vader, Cactus Jack, Abdulllah The Butcher, The Diamond Studd:
Cactus and Abdullah ambush Sting on the ramp, but Rick Steiner makes the save to even the odds. Inside the ring, Gigante hammers away on Vader, while Scott Steiner takes it to the Diamond Studd. Sting has a giant stick, and he plays Whack-a-Heel with it. Did I just see a CASKET propped up in the corner of the cage? Someone comes out of one of the coffins (some masked scrub), but Scott lays him out and slams him across the casket. Damn Black Scorpion just won't go away! The referee has a camera mounted on his head (the Refer-EYE Camera, har har...), as if that matters. Sting ducks a clothesline from Vader, hits a dropkick, and a clothesline of his own sends Vader spilling out of the ring. Random people climb the cage for no other reason than to be pulled back down. Sting with a plancha on Vader as Ross mentions a Tag Team Tournament held won by Vader and Tatsumi Fujinami a few weeks earlier... WHA? The Chair of Torture gets lowered, nearly crushing Cactus Jack underneath him. There's even LESS room now to do anything. The crowd is absolutely dead, probably because YOU CAN'T SEE ANYTHING. Jim Ross: Someone is going to get a rather shocking experience! Vader sets Rick in the Chair, but Rick fights his way out, and a Steinerline sends Vader over the top rope. Sting with a boot to the face of Cactus, and he tosses a casket lid into the air, landing on top of the head of Cactus. Suddenly, a bunch of EMT's wearing white makeup zombie-walk their way down the aisle. I'm NOT making any of this stuff up, by the way. There's a lot of aimless brawling, and Cactus has done a solid blade job. For whatever reason, the camera pans a shot of the Black Scorpion, laying dead outside the ring. Scott Steiner with a chain, and he chokes Abdullah with it. Sting gets placed into the chair, but Scott helps him escape, using the chain. Sorry for lazy PBP, but it's hard to pay attention to any one thing, and it's mostly punchy-kicky. Sting has bladed, too, as has Abdullah, naturally. Cactus plays with the switch, and I think he flipped it back into the off position... that's pretty funny. Then it falls AGAIN, and I spy a referee setting it back up. Ugh... More nothing happens, until finally Abdullah gets placed in the chair, and Cactus, Dumbass of the Night, flips the switch, thinking it's Rick Steiner in the chair (after Rick spends 30-seconds LOCKING HIM IN THE CHAIR, with Cactus clearly buying time taunting the crowd), and the match is thankfully over at 12:34. Decent fireworks display as Abdullah pretends to be electrocuted, despite the head piece not being anywhere near his head. Match wasn't awful, but it wasn't very good, was hard to keep up with, and it didn't seem like most of the participants put forth too much effort.
- Backstage, Missy Hyatt, dressed as a street-walker (or Randy Savage, considering the large feather in her hair) and Eric Bischoff is Dracula (must... resist... obvious joke...). The Young Pistols come in and cut a lame promo... they run down The Patriots, so I guess they turned heel sometime over the summer? Lame.
P.N. News & Big Josh vs. The Creatures:
What is a squash match doing on a Pay-Per-View? The Creatures are just random, generic masked Jobbers, with some goofy ass entrance music. It's like the Casio-For-Kids version of the Halloween theme, I think, but it's just so bad, I don't want to go back and listen again. P.N. News with a LAME (and I mean lame) rap before the match, and the camera pans the most dorky, uncool white kid POSSIBLE getting into it. I guarantee that guy's still a virgin. Big Josh starts, and throws Creature #1 down like a sack of manure. Creature #1 clobbers Josh, and #2 tags in for more of the same. Whip to the corner is reversed, and News comes in to crush Creature #2. News wiith a running dropkick on Creature #1, but the Creatures regain control with double team tactics. News uses his massive bulk to bounce Creature #2 around. Josh in with a top rope clothesline, and a release German suplex. Creatures cheat to gain control, but Josh is a tough guy from the woods and fights back. News tags back in, and takes a Creature over with a northern lights suplex, but misses a charge to the corner. Josh tags back in and slams Creature for a two count. Josh with a powerbomb, but he chooses not to cover. Why must you torture me?! Josh with a spinning axehandle, followed by "the Northern Exposure" (the Earthquake butt splash). News tags in, splashes Creature from the second rope, and it's over (finally) at 5:15. I don't see why this had to be on PPV.
"Beautiful" Bobby Eaton vs. Terrence Taylor (w/ Alexandra York):
This has a chance to be decent, depending on how many heel tactics Taylor performs to stall the action. Eaton has been going solo since the previous Havoc, and outside a losing effort challenging for the WCW Title on an episode of Clash, hasn't done much. He does bring back the Midnight Express theme, and that rocks all kinds of awesome. Taylor is playing a different version of the Million Dollar Man gimmick, except unsuccessfully. It's still better than the Red Rooster.
Shoving match to start. Lockup to the corner, and a rough, but otherwise clean break. Taylor with an arm drag, then taunting. Taylor does it again and slaps Eaton, because he's a jerk. Eaton blocks the arm drag, and takes Taylor over with a pair of his own, then sends Taylor out of the ring with a clothesline. Back in the ring, and Taylor tosses Eaton out... okay. Taylor whips Eaton into the security rail, but gets back dropped into the crowd. Back in the ring, and Eaton slaps on a hammerlock. Taylor with an elbow to the jaw to escape, but Eaton takes him back down with an arm drag and goes back to working the left arm. Taylor escapes again, using a jaw breaker, and the action spills to the ramp. Eaton with an atomic drop, followed by a slam. Eaton heads to the top rope, and he hits a flying knee drop onto the ramp! Back in, and then back out goes Eaton, courtesy a handful of tights. Taylor rams Eaton to the buckle from the apron, then knocks him into the rail with a running knee, and lays him out with a clothesline. Back in the ring, and Taylor with another clothesline, followed by a knee drop for a two count. Eaton fights back with rights, but gets tossed through the ropes, and it's back to the ramp. Taylor follows and plants Eaton with a gutwrench, sit-out powerbomb. E-C-Dub! E-C-Dub! ... Did I just see a sign high in the crowd that says "KKK Rules"!!??! Uh... that's not good. Back in the ring, and Taylor maintains control. Taylor to the top rope, and he comes off with a splash for a two count. CHINLOCK! Eaton fights free, but takes a knee to the midsection, and gets knocked out of the ring, once again. Eaton fights his way back in, and takes Taylor over with a sunset flip for a two count. Taylor levels Eaton with a clothesline, then drops a knee for a two count of his own. Another chinlock, and this eats up a few minutes. Eaton escapes, and now it's a sleeper hold from the Computerized Man of the 90's. Eaton uses the jaw breaker to escape that hold, then meets the knees of Taylor going for a splash. Taylor to the second rope, and he suffers the same fate. Eaton with roundhouse rights, followed by a back drop. Eaton with mounted punches in the corner, and a snap suplex for a two count. Eaton with a swinging neck breaker, and he goes to the top rope, only to get crotched across the turnbuckle. Taylor attempts a super-plex, but Eaton fights it off, then comes crashing down with the Alabama Jam, and it's over at 16:50. This goes under the category of Perfectly Acceptable Wrestling. Not terribly exciting, and a little dull at times, but a very solid performance from both men, and the crowd was into it.
Johnny B. Badd (w/ Theodore R. Long) vs. Jimmy "Jam" Garvin (w/ Michael Hayes):
I have no idea who the babyface is supposed to be here. Badd debuted earlier in the year at Slamboree, doing his best impersonation of Little Richard, and I'm very shocked that the Freebirds (WCW Version) were still hanging around. For whatever reason, the Freebirds are sporting Atlanta Braves gear. The crowd is pro-Freebirds, because the south hates African-Americans and homosexuals, so an African-American playing a VERY flamboyant character just isn't going to try and play anything but heel. Garvin leads the crowd in that STUPID Atlanta Braves chant. Ugh... I hate you, Garvin. Lockup to the corner, and Badd with a blow to the ribs. Criss-cross sequence, and Garvin takes Badd over the top with a hip toss... no DQ? Hayes with a sucker punch with his "injured" arm (who's the heel!?) to a big pop, and then another Braves chant. SHUT THE FUCK UP!!! Badd with a side headlock and shoulder block. Garvin retaliates with a powerslam, then bounces off the ropes with a big forearm, knocking Badd out of the ring, once again. Garvin with a wristlock, then slaps on an armbar. Badd escapes, and pounds away. Irish whip, and Badd with a diving clothesline, folllowed by choking with a towel. Whip to the corner is reversed, but Garvin eats boot, and a clothesline puts Badd back in control. Badd to the top rope, and they blow a sunset flip, thanks to Garvin being too far away for it. Badd with a slam, and he comes off the top with an elbow drop for a two count. Badd to the top rope again, and this time he takes a blow to the midsection, although the camera practically missed it with a bad angle shot. Badd tries for an elbow in the corner, but Garvin dodges it, and Badd goes flying over the top rope. Garvin brings Badd back in with a slingshot, but misses an elbow drop. Criss-cross, and a double leap frog puts both men down. LAME! Garvin with the DDT out of nowhere, but the referee is distracted! Badd comes back to life, KO's Garvin with a left hook, and the three count is made at 8:26. Horrible finish to a lackluster match. I'm sorry, but Badd shouldn't have been able to get up that soon from the DDT, a move that's KO'ed people far higher on the card than him.
WCW Television Championship Match:
I'm sure I say this all the time, but it's just weird to see Austin with a full head of hair. It's like looking at a picture of the Sandman, then looking at him back when he was dressing up as a surfer bum. Both men are still considered new to the wrestling world at this point, and that really makes you think how quickly twenty years has passed. Lockup, and a clean break. Austin grabs a side headlock, then they trade hammerlocks. Austin sweeps the leg and applies a toe hold, but Dustin counters and half-crabs Austin, until Austin grabs the ropes. Austin comes off the ropes with a shoulder block, as J.R. and Schiavone do a good job putting over the Television Title. Criss-cross sequence leads to a clothesline and dropkick from Rhodes for a two count. Rhodes with a headlock takeover, and Austin counters with a head scissors. Grandma Rhodes is sitting in the cheapest floor seats possible, rooting Dustin on. Back to a standing position.... Austin with the headlock, and this time Rhodes counters with a head scissors. Rhodes with a shoulder block, Austin comes back with a hip toss. Austin misses an elbow drop, and Rhodes clotheslines him over the top rope, without drawing a DQ. Back in the ring, and Austin quickly takes Rhodes down with a back suplex for a two count. Irish whip, and Rhodes with a knee to the face. He goes for the bulldog, but Austin counters. Rhodes settles for a headlock takeover, and gets a near fall with it. I guess the camera man is bored, so we take a shot at Lady Blossom, complete with wolf whistles. Austin fights back to his feet, but Rhodes quickly puts him down with a cross body and goes back to the side headlock. Austin counters with another head scissors, but Rhodes escapes and goes back to the headlock.
"Stunning" Steve Austin (w/ Lady Blossom) © vs. "The Natural" Dustin Rhodes:
Criss-cross sequence, Dustin goes for a crossbody press, and goes flying out of the ring for his efforts. Rhodes follows out and hammers away on Rhodes with rights. Rhodes does a blade job from being punched... now that's loving your craft. Austin to the top rope, and he comes crashing down on Rhodes with an axehandle. Back in the ring, and Rhodes throws a desperation right, but Austin goes to the eyes, and takes Rhodes down with a gutwrench suplex for a two count. Austin with a chinlock, and yes, he does use the ropes for leverage. The referee catches him in the action of cheating and forces a break. Rhodes again with some big rights, but he can't take Austin over with a monkey flip, and gets his head taken off with a clothesline. Austin with a slam attempt, but it's countered with a small package for a two count. Rhodes with a clothesline for another two count. Irish whip, Austin side-steps a dropkick, and covers for a two count. Lady Blossom gets some cheap shots in behind the referee's back, and Austin goes back to choking Rhodes across the middle rope. Austin misses a sit down splash, allowing Rhodes to connect with an atomic drop and clothesline for a two count. Rhodes dumps Austin out of the ring and rams him into the ring post, giving us another blade job. Back in the ring, and Rhodes with a powerslam for a two count. Rhodes with a snapmare, followed by mounted punches to the cut on the forehead of Austin. Irish whip, and Rhodes with the bionic elbow for a two count. Rhodes with mounted punches in the corner, then elbows. Irish whip, and Rhodes with an axehandle for a two count. Rhodes to the top rope, and he comes off with a flying clothesline, but that only gets two, and the bell rings at 15:00, giving us a time limit draw. I figured it would come to that, but it was a still a pretty good match, and the fact it didn't rely on a cop-out finish with a premature bell ringing is always a plus. Dustin Rhodes, during his first WCW run, is one of those guys I've learned to appreciate more over the years.
- Starrcade '91: Battlebowl Lethal Lottery advertisement. Yes, that was such a great idea.
Bill Kazmaier vs. Oz:
... EW! Green Kevin Nash (quite literally) and a barely mobile world's strongest man is one combination I didn't care to see. Kazmaier (I hate typing that name) comes to ringside with an inflatable globe that he carries on his shoulders. WCW really was geared towards the children demograph, weren't they? Oz went from possible main event to undercard filler since the release of the promotional poster. Lockup, and Kazmaier proves to be the stronger man. Kaz' slaps on a chinlock, and that's probably the highspot of this match. Irish whip, and Kaz' with a shoulder block barely moves Oz. Kaz' hits the ropes and nails a clothesline, then plants Oz with a slam. The crowd is definitely not into this match. Test-of-strength, and it's as exciting as you would expect it to be. Oz cheats to take control, but Kaz' is much too strong to keep down. They manage to blow an Irish whip spot, and Kazmaier takes Oz over with a hip toss. Kaz' misses a charge, and Oz takes him down with a back suplex for a two count. YAWN! Kaz' actually skins the cat back in the ring and nails Oz with a clothesline. Kazmaier traps Oz in the Torture Rack, and it's over at 3:56, despite Kazmaier barely putting any preasure on the hold. Match was short, and that's always a good thing when you've got matches like this. It's nice of Kazmaier to rip off the finishing move of the WCW Heavyweight Champion.
"Heavy Metal" Van Hammer vs. Doug Somers:
We're informed that this was supposed to be Hammer taking on Michael Hayes, but Hayes backed out with an injury that isn't too legit, so he's replaced by former AWA midcarder and current (1991 current) scrub Doug Somers. Yeah, that's a suitable replacement. I love how WCW gave people gimmicks and props that the wrestler had no idea how to work with. He's not even trying to play air-guitar, he just keeps waving the damn thing in the air. Hammer quickly applies a headlock, then blows a CLOTHESLINE. How do you fuck up a clothesline? Irish whip, and Van Hammer with a powerslam. Whip to the corner, and they botch another spot. Hammer with an elbow drop, followed by a leg drop. Van Hammer with a slingshot suplex that was so bad, that Tully Blanchard would roll over in his grave if he were dead, and it's mercifully over at 1:12. Quite possibly the worst match I've ever seen to last 60-seconds. Just plain awful.
WCW Light-Heavyweight Championship Match (Vacant):
Qualifications of being a member of the York Foundation: Washed up babyface needing something to do, must change name to a snobby, more professional sounding version. Outside of Pillman, did WCW have any real high flying wrestlers? When Bobby Eaton is one of them, and he's not exactly built like a Lightweight, you know the division is doomed from the start. Lockup to start, and the Refer-eye Cam is back, missing the action. Morton with an arm drag, then trash talking. Irish whip is reversed, and Morton bails. Back in the ring, and Pillman plants Morton with a slam, then knocks him out of the ring with a spinning heel kick. Back in the ring again, and Morton pounds away. Pillman comes off the ropes with a double axehandle for a two count, then takes Morton over with a headlock. Irish whip, and a shoulder block gets a two count. Morton counters another headlock with a head scissors, as Jim Ross makes fun of the Cincinnati Bengals (they're 0-for-the season so far). Pillman takes Morton over with a Japanese arm drag and goes back to the headlock. This is NOT what I would expect from a Light-Heavyweight match. Morton escapes, but misses an elbow drop, and it's back to the headlock. I was never THAT big a fan of the Rock n' Roll Express, but I sure as shit remember Morton being a much better worker than he displayed during his solo heel run here. Morton finally takes control with an inverted atomic drop, takes Pillman over with a hip toss, and works the shoulder. Jim Ross name drops Jushin Liger, and man, I would take a half-assed match from him right now over this snoozer. Jim Ross runs out of things to talk about and talks about the camera work. That's the Lord Alfred Hayes red-alert for boredom. This is just a steaming pile of monkey shit. Pillman finally pops the crowd with a clothesline, but Morton rakes the eyes to kill it. Morton with a back suplex for a two count. Pillman with an enziguri, followed by a back drop. A shoulder block spots knocks both men out of the ring, and Pillman gets introduced to the ring post. Pillman shrugs it off, comes off the top with a cross body, and it's finally over at 12:45. That felt more like a half-hour, and just as boring as it reads. I thought the WWF's Tournament Final of TAKA vs. Brian Christopher was a horrible example of the Light-Heavyweight Division. This was even worse than that.
Flyin' Brian Pillman vs. Richard Morton (w/ Alexandra York):
The Z-Man vs. The Halloween Phantom:
The Phantom comes to the ring to that piece of music composed by Bach, that I'm sure is mistaken for something from Dracula or the Phantom of the Opera. Zenk is playing the role of JTTS, much like he did when Vader Debuted at the previous years Great American Bash and crushed him. The Phantom is masked and wearing the Black Scorpion outfit. The Phantom hammers away and takes Zenk down with a forearm, then plants Zenk with a slam. Irish whip, and the Phantom with a knee to the midsection. The Phantom is rocking a pretty nice porn-stache. Phantom with a stomach buster, followed by a pair of elbows across the back of the neck. Irish whip, and Zenk gets his token offense of the match. The PHantom no-sells a dropkick and nails Zenk with a neck breaker for the three count at 1:25. That was even more of a squash than the Van Hammer match. Zenk wasn't just some scrub, he actually was used in a decent role most of the time. Tony Schiavone identifies the finishing move as the "Rude Awakening." Hmm...
WCW World Tag Team Championship Match:
(Arn Anderson & Larry Zbyszko vs. Todd Champion & Firebreaker Chip)
The Enforcers © vs. The Patriots:
I've lost all interest in this show at this point. The Patriots are the reigning United States Tag Team Champions, and are either rejected members of the Village People, or did their gimmick shopping at the discount Halloween store down the block. Chip is a wanna-be Fireman and Champion is... I don't know, a member of the Army? They're introduced from WCW Special Forces. I heard their commissioner was Dave Sullivan. Zbyszko starts with Chip, and I wish the match would right now to spare me of the suckfest I expect this to be. Chip with a headlock and shoulder block. Zbyszko with an abdominal stretch, but Chip quickly escapes and plants Larry Z with a slam for a two count. Chip counters a neck breaker and takes Zbyszko over with a back slide for a two count. Anderson tags in to a babyface reaction (thank you, Tennessee), and dicks with Champion, standing on the apron. Anderson with a waistlock takedown, but his success ends there, complaining that Chip is too oiled up. I'm going with the Village People excuse now. Champion tags in, and goes to work on the arm. Anderson takes control and stomps away. Champion responds by bringing Anderson over the top with a sling shot, to the floor. Back in the ring, and Champion slaps on a bearhug. Zbyszko tags in to help break the hold, but a double team effort fails. Zbyszko tags back in, and I'm ready for Dreamland. Anderson tags in to sneak up on Champion, and tosses him over the top rope, behind the back of the referee, of course. Irish whip, and Anderson with a shoulder to the midsection, followed by a snapmare and knee drop. Zbyszko with a slam for a two count, followed by a swinging neck breaker for another two count. Champion battles back, but the heels make a blind tag, and Zbyszko with a double axehandle from behind. Zbyszko with a back breaker, and it's chinlock time. Champion takes Zbyszko over with a suplex, and Chip gets the Special Tag. Chip with slams and crappy dropkicks to both men. Chip with a powerslam on Anderson for a two count. Everyone brawls until Anderson plants Chip with a spinebuster for the three count at 9:51. No one does it better, but this match still sucked. It shows how weak the tag team division is when the Patriots gets to be in the Tag Title Match on a PPV.
- Eric Bischoff is standing by for a very special interview with everyone's favorite loud-mouth from New York, Paul E. Dangerously. He has some shocking news for WCW. He rants and raves about being dismissed from the broadcast booth of WCW, and says it's on like Donkey Kong. He still has his managers license, and he's out to take Sting out, because it's going to hurt the pockets of WCW Executives in the process. He credits Madusa with finding him the man that can take care of Sting. The WCW Halloween Phantom comes out, the reincarnation of the Black Scorpion, I guess. Thankfully, he unmasks himself, and it's... Ravishing Rick Rude. That's a pretty big revelation for the time. WCW actually did something right, for once.
WCW Heavyweight Championship; 2 out of 3 Falls Match:
I don't know much about the backstory here, so please excuse me for not going into detail. As a WWF fan looking in, I found it weird that Ron Simmons went from being a member of the Tag Team of Doom, to main eventer. Luger won the title at the Great American Bash, and the less said about that show, the better. Referee Nick Patrick ejects Mr. Hughes from ringside during the prematch instructions. Title matches always seemed more important when they did stuff like this. I mean, it would be ridiculously goofy if an oddly gimmicked person was fighting, but with two straight personas, it works.
Lex Luger © (w/ Harley Race & Mr. Hughes) vs. Ron Simmons (w/ Dusty Rhodes):
Fall #1: Staredown to start. Jim Ross notes they are former teammates for the Tampa Bay Bandits of the USFL (?). Lockup, and neither man is able to gain the advantage. Luger grabs a side headlock, and takes Simmons over. Simmons counters with a head scissors, but Luger is quick to escape. Luger with a hammerlock, Simmons counters, and Luger hooks the rope to break the hold. Dusty Rhodes with useless advice from the corner, no doubt inspired by Doc Louis. Tell him to join the Nintendo Fun Club, today, while you're at it. Lockup into the corner, Simmons blocks a sucker punch and pounds away. Irish whip, and Simmons misses a dropkick. Luger with his screaming offense, pounding away across the back of Simmons. Simmons fights back with boots and slams Luger face-first into the canvas. Irish whip, and Simmons charges with a clothesline. Simmons with a powerslam, and the spinebuster gets three at 4:51, giving Simmons the first fall of the match.
Fall #2: Both corners gets advice during the one minute rest period. Rhodes is so close to Simmons, he appears to be a second away from making out with him. Luger is still selling the back as the second fall begins. Luger quickly goes for a suplex, but can't power him up, and Simmons counters with his own. Simmons whips Luger from corner to corner and takes him over with a back drop. Luger thumbs the eyes and sends Simmons to the corner, but runs into an elbow, and Simmons takes the champ down with a bulldog for a two count. Luger hides in the ropes to catch a breather, then sucker punches Simmons on the way in. Luger with a slam attempt, but Simmons counters with a small package for a two count. Oh... now I get it. J.R. and Schiavone name drop Steve Avery and John Smoltz, and I just remembered the Braves were in the World Series at the time. Simmons with a sunset flip for a two count. Simmons with a clothesline, but a second one is side-stepped, and Simmons goes spilling out of the ring. Back inside, and Luger finally has gained control of the match, using eye rakes and chokes to his advantage. Luger with an elbow drop for only a two count, 'causing Race to have a fit at ringside. Irish whip, and Luger with a powerslam for another two count. Whip to the corner, Luger boots Simmons coming in, and lays him out with a clothesline for a two count. Luger snaps Simmons over with a suplex, and covers for another two count. Luger with a chinlock, and it's forgivable for the first true rest-hold of the match. Yes, he does use the ropes for leverage. Simmons fights back to his feet and escapes with elbows to the midsection. Simmons avoids a charge to the corner and school boys Luger for a two count. Irish whip, Luger goes for a hip toss, but Simmons counters with a back slide for another two count. Simmons comes off the ropes with a shoulder block, then gets tripped by Race on a second attempt. Luger charges, but Simmons back drops him over the top rope, drawing the Disqualification at 10:06. That was an ugly spot, and replay shows Luger actually went for a cross body, but Race pushed Simmons back from the ropes, preventing Simmons from going over the top rope with Luger, giving it the illusion that Simmons did it intentionally. Sometimes instant replay IS a good thing.
Fall #3: Luger continues to play living dead until sucker punching Simmons, and going crazy on him with axehandles to the back. Simmons is just getting pissed more than anything, and corners Luger, hammering away with rights. Luger counters with an atomic drop, but Simmons blocks and nails Luger with a clothesline for a two count. Whip to the corner, and Simmons takes Luger over with a back drop for another two count. Simmons covers again for a two count. Irish whip is reversed, and Simmons with an inverted atomic drop. For a second, it looked as if he was going for the Spinebuster. Simmons scoops Luger up and places him across the top turnbuckle. Simmons with a super-plex, and a cover only gets a two count. Irish whip and a powerslam from Simmons, followed by a second turnbuckle shoulder block, knocking Luger out of the ring. Simmons follows and rams Luger into the security rail. Luger thumbs the eyes, and rams Simmons into the ring post. Back in the ring, and Luger connects with the piledriver (called the Attitude Adjustment), and that's enough for the third and deciding fall at 4:03, allowing Luger to retain the Heavyweight Championship. As much as I don't care much for either man, this was a well done, highly entertaining match, with little in terms of gimmick stipulations, over-the-top over-booking, or the other usual nonsense known from WCW to occur. It felt like it deserved to be considered the main event of the card.
Final Thoughts: Overall, this show has some extreme highs and lows. On the positive side, we got some pretty good action from the WCW Title and Television Title matches, as well as some good old school style wrestling from Eaton and Taylor. Then of course, is the surprise debut of Rick Rude, and that is one of the most memorable positive moments from this show. On the downside of things, the Chamber of Horrors was a waste of most of the talent on the roster, the Tag and Lightweight title matches bored me to tears, and the undercard filler was unnecessary, featuring squash matches and awful performances. One thing I would say that came as a real surprise is some very well done play-by-play from Jim Ross and Tony Schiavone. It seemed like they were both in top form, describing the action to us as if we're all new to the game, without dumbing it down to the point it became obvious. If you're in the mood for Luger/Simmons, it's worth a view I guess, but practically the entire undercard of non-title matches can be skipped without fear of missing anything good.
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