WCW Monday Nitro - April 7, 1997
by erick von erich
It's the Greatest Night in the History of our Sport; an old episode of Monday Nitro! But fans, it was just last night at WCW's Spring Stampede that there was DISSENTION in the ranks of the nWo! Here's video proof! Randy "Macho Man" Savage was busy choking out Kimberly Page, when Eric Bischoff came out to save his future wife-swapping partner. What does this mean?! But right now, we're coming to you LIVE from Huntsville, Alabama's Von Braun Civic Center! With fireworks! Plus Tony Schiavone and Larry Zbyszko! Plus more stills from last night: as Nick Patrick came out to sub for an injured ref in the Macho/Diamond Dallas Page match...and Patrick proceeded to rule against the Macho Man! This brought out Kevin Nash, who power-bombed Patrick, which eventually brought out the entire nWo to stare menacingly at one another! But with some much going on in WCW, let's get down to ringside for..
Match 1: Konan & Hugh Morrus vs. Alex Wright & Psychosis
Psychosis is suddenly a face in this makeshift "Ger-Mex Connection" team. Wright tries dodging Morrus, but gets pounded. Wright flips out of an armbar, delivers a hip-toss and a leg lariat. Psychosis is tagged in and gets pummelled by Konan's rolling somersault clothesline. Psychosis gets a reverse crescent kick, a flying head scissors, then leaps off the top turnbuckle with a corkscrew leg lariat to Morrus on the floor. Back into the ring, where Konan works over Psychosis some mroe with a seated drop-kick and more pounding from Morrus. But fans, what's this?! Earlier today.... Diamond Dallas Page CAME INTO THE BUILDING! Meanwhile, Konan powerbombs Psychosis for a 2 count. Wright returns with a drop-kick and an armdrag takeover on Konan. Morrus stops Wright's flying crossbody rpess attempt, slams him and delivers a swinging neckbreaker. Morrus hits his "No Laughing Matter" moonsault off the top rope to score the 3 count. For fun, Konan runs in and hits Psychosis with a DDT suplex to get his own 3 count. Now, as we go to commercial, let's show you stills of last night's Akira Hogoto/Madusa match! Don't ask us who won...
Match 2: Steven Regal vs. Rey Mysterio, Jr.
Regal is on a mission to regain the TV Championship and takes out his frustration on Rey. He pounds Rey all over the ring, then throws him outside to deliver a fireman's carry slam onto the railing. But forget about this match, we have VIDEO of the nWo arriving at the building! They're not united, as Hollywood Hogan, "Trillionaire" Ted DiBiase, Eric Bischoff and Vincent arrived in a seprate limo. Back in live action, Regal delivers a jumping kneesmash and an underhook butterfly suplex. Rey flips out of the suplex, flies off top rope with a dropkick, then tries to land his flying hurracanrana cradle move off the top turnbuckle. 2 count only, but Regal stops messing around, hooks a reverse front suplex and applies the Regal Stretch. Rey reaches the ropes, but Regal cinches the hold and won't break it. The referee signals for the DQ as Regal cranks away. Prince Iaukea runs in to make the save and also gets clamped in the Regal Stretch. Iaukea sells a rib injury and does a stretcher job.
Earlier tonight..another nWo limo arrived! Full of Nash, Macho Man, Syxx and the fake Sting. Two separate limos?! Things are not well in the nWo! Now let's shows some stills of last night's Kevin Nash vs. Rick Steiner match and how Scott Steiner was arrested before the match. Actually, it was supposed to be a tag match, but Scott Hall no-showed, so it was made into a 1-on-1.
Now let's show some footage from the World Premiere of "Double Team", starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and the newest nWo member, Dennis Rodman. Rodman and Hogan cut a goofy promo and Rodman gets in a shot at Ric Flair. He also mentions July 13, but Hogan and the announcers completely no-sell that tidbit.
Match 3: Hector Guererro vs. Kevin Sullivan (w/Jacquelyn & Jimmy Hart)
Complete squash match, as Sullivan tosses hector outside so Jackie can suplex him. Sullivan kicks Hector in the mug and headbutts him out, again. This time, Jackie chops and slams him. Hector is rolled back in and Sullivan ties him to the "Tree of Woe" (upside down in the turnbuckles). Sullivan rams into him, then delivers the EVIL back-scratch. Double foot-stomp to the tummy and Sullivan gets the elementary 3 count. Sullivan looks at the camera and tells us that: "it ain't ovah!" Cut to some more stills from Spring Stampede, when Public Enemy faced off against Jeff Jarrett and Steve McMichael. Again, don't ask who won...
A Very Special nWo In-Ring Interview
They come out in 2 groups, with Macho Man in the rear on crutches. Liz is there, too...and I never thought she could look hotter by simply lightening her hair, but she pulled that off well. Tony calls this interview one of the "Biggest Moments in Nitro History"! DiBiase calls the interview to order, then passes it off to Hogan to moderate. Hogan and Nash have some heat over Scott Hall's disappearance and Nash being alone on Easter Sunday. Nash says that Hall is still with the team, "for life". Hogan and Nash do a little wolfpack finger bump and they've now resolved their differences by sharing their feelings. Same for Macho Man and Bischoff, who are now "on probation" with each other. They would keep teasing a split in the nWo for another YEAR.
Hour 2 Kicks-off!
More fireworks as Bobby "The Brain" Heenan and "Iron" Mike Tenay join Tony in the rear broadcast booth! By my unofficial timer, hour 1 checked in at 35 minutes....which means that there must have been a Chris Benoit match in the original broadcast.
A Very Special In-Ring Interview with Ric Flair
"Mean" Gene Okerlund welcomes Flair to the ring, who announces plans for his reurn to the ring. He wants to take out the nWo with his old pal, "Rowdy" Roddy Piper. Flair e Piper comes out to his bagpipe music and the two begin dancing and babbling in the ring. Flair mentions that a THIRD guy also wants to play; #91, Kevin Greene! That gets.... no pop from the crowd. But shortly after, Greene himself walks to the ring and the crowd suddenly realizes who Flair was talking about, and cheers. All 3 guys playfully bump into each other in the ring. Shut up... I absolutely loved this team, back in the day.
Match 4: WCW United States Championship:
Dean Malenko (c) vs. Chris Jericho
They start off with some criss-cross action, until Malenko gets a reverse roll-up for a quick pin attempt. Jericho with an enseguir and a flying leg lariat (apparently the move of the night). Malenko tumbles to the apron so Jericho can deliver his flying diagonal shoulder-block. Malenko returns to the ring, where Jericho hits him with a top-rope missile drop-kick and a backslide for 2. Malenko breaks out with a powerbomb and tries to hook his Texas Cloverleaf submission hold, but Jericho makes the rope break. They fight on the top corner and Jericho tries for a super-plex. Malenko shoves him off and Jericho ends up on the apron. Jericho accidentally hits the turnbuckle and sells a nose or facial injury. Jericho stumbles to the center of the ring, selling the injury. Malenko tries to act "concerned", walks over to Jericho and kicks him right in the face! Malenko then covers for the 3 count to retain his title. That is just so frickin' EVIL! Damn, I love Dean Malenko.
Some hype for WCW Saturday Night, including that famous green robotic arm!!
Match 5: Public Enemy vs. High Voltage
("Flyboy" Rocco Rock & Johnny Grunge vs. Rage & Kaos)
A return match from an ealier Nitro, when High Voltage won due to interference from the Four Horsemen. High Voltage walk out and are their own biggest fans. PE hits the ring and they begin brawling. They do a double-team backdrop on Rage and a double-suplex on Kaos. I notice that Rocco's head is recently shaved... which probably means that he was doing double-duty as the masked Cheetah Kid on some shows. More brawling, with High Voltage doing a double shoulder-block move on Rocco. Rocco comes back with a swinging neckbreaker and tags in Grunge to clean house. Grunge slams Rage, then brings in Rocco for a double team backdrop to send Kaos out of the ring. They set up Kaos on a ringside table, but Kaos rolls out of the way and Grunge flies into the table (and also eats some railing). Back inside, Rage nails Rocco with a Northern Right suplex and gets the pin!
Afterwards, "Mean" Gene enters the ring to have a word with PE. Rocco quotes "The Warriors" by saying: "High Voltage: you did good. REAL good". They challenge them to a Philadelphia Street Fight, when Nitro hits Philadelphia next week. Grunge says that they'll "put the E in Excitement in WCW". Huh?!? Just in case you didn't catch the subtle bulldozer they're talking about, Rocco says they're going: "back to their roots... and we'll might get a lil'....EXTREME"! Now some still of Rey Mysterio and Ultimo Dragon from Spring Stampede (don't ask who won...)
After the commercial break, we see Prince Iaukea in obvious pain, getting his ribs taped up in the locker room.
Match 6: Four Horsemen (w/Debra McMichael) vs. Harlem Heat (w/Sister Sherri)
(Jeff Jarrett & Steve "Mongo" McMichael vs. Booker T & Stevie Ray)
Mongo is a no-show, so Jarrett goes it alone. Booker starts out with a kneelift and pounds away, while Jarrett tries his hardest to stay out of the Heat's corner. Jarrett makes a brief comeback, cleans the ring with a drop-kick and does a little struttin'. Sherri distracts him, allowing Booker T to hit a side-kickw while Stevie Ray follows up with a legdrop for a 2 count. Debra tunrs to the camera to drive home the point of "where is Mongo?" Booker lands his axe-kick and tries for a suplex. Jarrett reverses into a small package for 2. Booker tosses him into the corner, but Jarrett leaps over and performs a sunset flip for another 2. The Heat with a double-team suplex for 2. Jarrett misses a drop-kick attempt and Sherri manages to get into some choking and Greco Roman Eye-Boinks. Jarrett gets a backslide on Booker for another 2. Booker misses a leg lariat and gets tied up in the ropes, just as Mongo finally makes his way to the ring. Mongo tags himself in and cleans house by slamming both guys and executing his goofy 3-point stance "chop block" move. He tags the weary Jarrett back in, out of spite. Jarrett looks confused, but Mongo slaps him in the pecks as hollers "get in there". Jarrett is pushed right right in a side-kick from Booker T. Booker makes the cover and scores the 3 count for the Heat.
Post-match, "Mean" Gene interviews Mongo, Jarrett and Debra. JJ wants to know why Mongo no-showed, but Mongo babbles about "every dog having his day" and blows him off. Hope you dig this, because this angle will run for a few more months!
Time now for LEE MARSHALL, on the road in Philadelphia, at a Nitro Party! Of course, by "Nitro Party", he really means: "at home in my apartment with my pants off". He makes an awful joke about Philly having "oar-houses".
Match 6: WCW Television Championship:
Prince Iaukea (c) vs. Ultimate Dragon (w/Sonny Oono)
The graphics say "Ultimate", but they call him "Ultimo". Iaukea is still selling the Regal rib attack. Dragon goes right after him with a series of kicks and a slam. Iaukea keeps trying to pick him up, but can't. Iaukea manages a small package and a backslide attempt for 2 counts. Dragon kicks away, slams him, then heads up top for a launch. Iaukea gets his feet up, so Dragon tries to injure his heels with his chin. Doesn't work. Iaukea does some typical Polynesian chops, but puts his head down for a backdrop attempt. Dragon dodges, kicks Iaukea in the injured ribs and makes a roll-up for a 3 count and the title. Ultimate/Ultimo is your NEW Television Champion.
Match 7: Scott Steiner vs. The Giant
YOUR main event and it's face vs. face. Steiner doesn't make it to the ring, as he's attacked by Konan and Hugh Morrus. Giant comes out to make the save. They chase the bad guys to the back, stopping to shake hands at the entrance way. No match... and the fans are pissed!
A Very Special In-Ring Promo from Diamond Dallas Page
DDP comes to the ring with a black-eye and shoulder brace, still feeling the effects of last night's match against the Macho Man. Page looks like shit usually, so it's tough to distinguish his look from his usual appearance. Page gets the mic and basically congratulates himself for being in the "main event", last night. He calls out Savage, who appears on the ramp, limping down the aisle on crutches. Hogan and the rest of the nWo are out to halt him. Hogan says "this one's on me" and teases getting into the ring with Page. But Sting suddenly appears, rappelling from the rafters! Sting drops to the floor, armed with his baseball bat and tosses a second bat to Page. The two stand in the ring, facing off against the nWo as the show ends.
Why'd You Tape This??
The no-show "main event" was a disappointment, but the other 6 matches weren't too bad for free TV stuff. Malenko/Jericho, not surprisingly, is probably the best match. The Jarrett vs. Harlem Heat match was given way too much time, and it was especially bothersome with the senseless post-match interview from Mongo. The segment with Flair, Piper and Kevin Greene is amusing in a "let's get drunk and rassle" kind of way.
This was one of the first times they did the "dissention in the ranks of the nWo" thing, which would run forever. They were also hyping up the Spring Stampede replay with all the stills and recaps. A typical fan tactic, back then, was to wait until the PPV aired and if Nitro made it sound good, you'd order the replay on Tuesday night. This isn't a highlight episode by any means, but it's not a waste of 80 minutes, either.