Open: Earlier in the day, The Lex Express finally reached it’s destination to a crowd of fans. Tonight, Lex Luger looks to regain the WWF Championship for America.
Match #1: ‘The Million Dollar Man’ Ted DiBiase vs. Razor Ramon
DiBiase strikes before the bell while Razor’s handing off his jewelry, the bell rings and MDM continues to hammer away with boots and now chops in the corner. Irish whip to the ropes is reversed, Ramon elevates him with a back body drop, throws The MDM across the ring with a fallaway slam, then scores with a stiff right hand, DiBiase rolling to the outside to take a breather. He climbs back inside, collar & elbow tie-up, Razor backs MDM to the corner, DiBiase switches out and buries rights to the breadbasket.
Irish whip across is reversed, The Bad Guy levels DiBiase off the rebound with a clothesline, delivers another, then a third that sends him over the top rope to the floor. The MDM staggers to his feet and pulls himself up to the apron, Ramon flips him back into the squared circle and DiBiase tries to beg him off, baiting him in to pull Razor into the middle turnbuckle face-first. Million Dollar Man now taking control by choking Razor on the top rope, flings him down to the mat and again grabs him by the throat. He shoots Ramon to the ropes for a back elbow, cracks him with a backbreaker, hooks the leg and only gets a count of 2.
The MDM sends him back to the ropes for a clothesline that gets another 2, picks him up only to snapmare The Bad Guy back down and grabs a rear chinlock. Ramon starts to fade away, the referee checks the arms, Razor holds them up on the third attempt and battles back to his feet, hits the ropes, but MDM buries a knee to the midsection, He plants Razor with a neckbreaker, hits a vertical suplex, calls for the Million Dollar Dream, but The Bad Guy staves it off with an elbow to the gut. He can’t build off of it and gets clobbered across the back, DiBiase shoots him to the ropes, Ramon reverses and flattens The MDM with a clothesline, both guys struggling to their feet.
MDM strikes first by driving Razor’s head into the top turnbuckle, The Bad Guy spills to the outside, the ref starts the 10 count and DiBiase exposes one of the turnbuckles. Ramon rolls back in, The MDM meets him with boots, attempts to ram him into the exposed turnbuckle, but Razor turns the tables and introduces DiBiase instead. He lifts The MDM up and drives him down with the Razor’s Edge, hooks the leg and gets the win.
Winner: Razor Ramon (Razor’s Edge)
- EA’s Take: Crowd is pretty hot for this opening match, Razor’s character had finally turned that babyface corner and he was incredibly over. Although you could make a case that The Four Horsemen started it, Razor Ramon was one of the first wrestling heels that was so cool, he became loved, which really was prevalent back at WrestleMania IX when the people were 100% behind him against Bob Backlund. This was his first PPV match after “seeing the light” as they say, DiBiase was really the perfect opponent to help solidify Ramon as a good guy. Money Inc. had been poking fun at Razor over his upset loss to 1-2-3 Kid, leading to the turn and two of our singles matches tonight. The Bad Guy’s ascent would continue, but tonight would be the last WWF match for Million Dollar Man, leaving the company until 1994 when he would return in a managerial role.
In The Arena: Todd Pettengill is standing by with the mom and sister of The Steiner Brothers for their thoughts on what it was like growing up with Rick and Scott as children. Jim Cornette interrupts from the ring to introduce the challengers in our next match.
Match #2: The Heavenly Bodies (Dr. Tom Prichard & ‘Gigolo’ Jimmy Del Ray) w/Jim Cornette vs. WWF Tag Team Champions The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott)
The Heavenly Bodies attack as The Steiners enter the ring, the bell sounds and we’re officially underway, Del Ray dumping Scott to the outside, then hitting Rick with a double suplex. They continue to keep Scott from entering the squared circle, shoot Rick to the ropes for a double flapjack and continue to put a number on him. Scotty’s finally able to get inside and sends Prichard hard into the corner, Rick comes to and the champions send The Gigolo into the same corner to squash his partner.
Scott charges in and monkey flips Del Ray, double hip toss for Dr. Tom, he ducks a clothesline from Rick, The Gigolo gets hit instead and Scott tosses Prichard with a belly-to-belly suplex. The Steiners whip Del Ray to the ropes, Scott plants him with a tilt-a-whirl slam and The Heavenly Bodies finally escape the ring to try and regroup. Order is finally restored, Scott & Prichard taking the ring, collar & elbow tie-up sees Dr. Tom back him to the ropes, but doesn’t break clean. Irish whip into the ropes is reversed, Scotty elevates Prichard with a military press slam, Del Ray tries to insert himself and pays for it via a back body drop.
Scott turns back to Dr. Tom, snapmares him over for a front facelock, tags out and Rick steps in now, locks up with Prichard and Dr. Tom gains a side headlock. Rick pushes him away to the ropes, Prichard counters a hip toss attempt to one of his own, Rick blocks it, levels him with a clothesline, then catches The Gigolo coming in yet again with another clothesline. The Dog-Faced Gremlin delivers a body slam to Del Ray, The Heavenly Bodies hit the floor to re-think their strategy with Cornette. Dr. Tom rolls back in, Rick goes to a wristlock, makes a tag, Scott sends him to the ropes for an inverted atomic drop, Del Ray still hasn’t learned his lesson and comes in again, only to get split by another inverted atomic drop.
Scotty shoots him to the ropes, The Gigolo slides through between his legs, Prichard from behind with a bulldog and the challengers finally get in some offense. Dr. Tom looks for a kick, Scott catches his foot, doesn’t avoid an enzuigiri, Prichard deposits him to the outside and baits Rick into the ring to get the referee’s attention. This allows The Gigolo to jump onto Scotty from the apron with a somersault senton, throws him back into the ring and legally tags in. He comes off the top with a double axe handle to the back, irish whip to the ropes is reversed, Scott attempts a clothesline, but The Gigolo counters and spikes him with a DDT.
Prichard tags back in, Del Ray sends Scotty to the ropes for a drop toe hold, Dr. Tom follows with a knee drop to the head, briefly chokes him on the canvas and slaps on a rear chinlock. He changes his mind and picks Scott up for right hands, Scotty tries to battle back, but Prichard picks the leg and makes a tag, Del Ray coming in to maintain control. He sends Scott to the ropes and clocks him with a superkick for a count of 2, tags back out, Dr. Tom choking Scott on the middle rope, Cornette getting in a cheap shot while the ref backs Prichard away. This baits Rick to come around on the apron, the official works him back to his corner, allowing the challengers to switch out without making a tag and The Gigolo goes back to a choke on the mat.
He makes a legal tag and Dr. Tom drives a knee lift to the abdomen, another tag sees Scott reverse an irish whip to the ropes for a clothesline, Del Ray tries to use the same counter into a DDT from earlier, but this time it’s blocked. Scott throws him with a suplex, crawls toward his corner, Prichard gets the tag first to cut him off, shoots him to the ropes for a back body drop, but Scotty puts on the brakes and plants him with a double underhook powerbomb. Both guys make it to their respective corners this time, Rick comes in with right hands for The Gigolo, sends him to the ropes for a big clothesline, flattens Dr. Tom with another, then delivers body slams to both.
Scott comes back in and clears Prichard out with a dropkick, drops Del Ray with one, The Dog-Faced Gremlin goes up top, spikes The Gigolo with a bulldog and makes the cover. Dr. Tom is back in to break the count at 2, Scott grabs him, throws him into the corner, climbs to the 2nd rope for right hands, but Prichard pushes him over the top to the floor. Meanwhile, Del Ray reverses an irish whip to the ropes from Rick, attempts to leapfrog over, Rick catches him in the air and plants him with a suplex which causes Cornette to climb up to the apron. The official has his back turned as Cornette throws his tennis racket over Rick’s head, Dr. Tom catches it, wallops The Dog-Faced Gremlin in the back, disposes of the evidence and The Gigolo covers, but only gets a near fall.
The Heavenly Bodies with more double teaming, Prichard holds Rick up for Del Ray to head upstairs for a moonsault, Scott makes it back in to pull his brother out of the way, Dr. Tom getting clobbered instead. Rick sends The Gigolo to the ropes, Scott connects with a Frankensteiner, The Dog-Faced Gremlin hooks the leg and the champions retain.
Winners and STILL WWF Tag Team Champions: The Steiner Brothers (Rick/Frankensteiner)
- EA’s Take: A really exciting match with The Steiners getting the big home town victory, some nice moves from The Heavenly Bodies (specifically Del Ray) that were almost unheard of in this era as well. After finally defeating Money Inc. for the WWF Tag Titles, The Steiners were far-and-away the face of the tag division, but unfortunately the competition was scarce for the company at this time. The Heavenly Bodies were a team that saw a few iterations, previously being comprised of Prichard & ‘Sweet’ Stan Lane, formerly of The Midnight Express. They would compete in the WWF as part of a talent exchange agreement that the company had with Smoky Mountain Wrestling, a promotion based out of Tennessee run by Cornette. This arrangement would see SMW stars not only compete for both companies, but also led to SMW Titles even being defended on WWF TV.
Backstage: Joe Fowler is in the interview area with WWF Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels & Diesel. Michaels says it’s time for all the questions to be answered, such as who is the greatest IC Champ of all-time, himself or Mr. Perfect? Tonight, Shawn vows to prove that he is that man, Fowler reminds him Perfect caused Michaels to lose the title before, but he only regained it with help from Diesel. The champion states that he’s the one wearing it, Diesel letting us all know that HBK can get it done in the ring and he’s just around to keep all the chicks from going too crazy.
Match #3 for the WWF Intercontinental Championship: WWF Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels w/Diesel vs. Mr. Perfect
Collar & elbow tie-up to begin, Michaels with a wristlock, switches to a top wristlock and trips Perfect, arrogantly fixing his hair. They lock-up again, this time Perfect with a hammerlock, snapmares Shawn over and returns the taunting. Third tie-up sees the champion gain a side headlock, The Perfect One pushes him off to the ropes, Shawn slides between the legs, misses a wild right hand and the challenger sets him for a back suplex. Michaels ducks under it, hits the ropes for a clothesline and misses, Perfect tries one of his own with the same result, but catches Shawn coming back through with one from the left side.
The Perfect One takes the champion down with a hammerlock, drives knees into the elbow and wrenches away, Michaels gaining a vertical base and they trade-off hammerlocks. Shawn switches to a side headlock, scales the ropes to take Perfect over, the challenger utitlizes a headscissors to break the hold, then avoids an elbow drop to frustrate the champion. Michaels is more cautious, collar & elbow tie-up sees Perfect back Shawn to the corner, the champion, switches out and doesn’t break clean, scoring with stiff right hands. The challenger gets a surge of energy and turns the tables, serves up a plate of chops, whips him across, Shawn tries to hop up and over, Mr. Perfect sees it coming and puts on the brakes, the Michaels sneaks in a back elbow.
He tries to send Perfect back into the corner, it’s reversed, the champion scales the ropes to the top for a moonsault, The Perfect One ducks it and Shawn lands on his feet, but gets turned inside-out by a clothesline for a count of 2. The challenger goes back to the left arm with an armbar, Heartbreak Kid finds his footing, backs him to the corner and buries shoulders to the midsection. Irish whip across is reversed by Perfect, he follows Michaels in, the champion side-steps out of the way and the challenger runs himself into the turnbuckles. Shawn hops to the top rope, jumps off and gets caught in the air with an arm drag, The Perfect One scores with another, nearly gets a 3 count and slaps the armbar back on.
The Heartbreak Kid gets to a standing position and sends Mr. Perfect off to the ropes, he misses a couple of shots, attempts a dropkick, the challenger catches him by the legs and catapults Shawn over the top to the floor. The Perfect One heads outside after him, Diesel creeps up behind him to get his attention, he turns around and Michaels clocks him with a superkick, then climbs to the apron and comes off with a clothesline. The champion throws Mr. Perfect back in the ring, buries knees into the spine, drops numerous elbows to the lower back, then enjoys his work a little.
He whips the challenger hard into the corner to further damage the back, delivers clubbing blows, then shoots him hard to the turnbuckles again. Michaels cracks The Perfect One with a backbreaker, stretches him over his knee, the fans start coming to life and the challenger breaks out after a fews fists. He battles to his feet from the canvas, Shawn whips him to the ropes, misses a right hand, Perfect hops over a back body drop attempt and connects with a dropkick. The challenger sends Michaels back to the ropes for a back body drop, buries a big knee lift to the chest, then splits Shawn with an inverted atomic drop for a near fall.
The Perfect One shoots the champion back in, scores with a forearm to the face for another 2 count, The Heartbreak Kid reverses another whip to the ropes for a hip toss, but Perfect blocks it and attempts a backslide. Instead Michaels is flipped over, the challenger quickly plants him with a Perfect-Plex, the referee counts to 2, but Diesel reaches in and sweeps The Perfect One’s leg to break the count. The Perfect One is livid, hops to the outside and unleashes a flurry of right hands on Diesel, Shawn tries to clobber him from behind with a double axe handle off the apron, but Mr. Perfect avoids it and The Insurance Policy gets drilled.
The challenger rolls Michaels into the ring, the official’s in the way and Shawn accidentally takes him down, Diesel taking the opening to drive Perfect’s head into the ring post, the referee is back to his feet and finishes his 10 count.
Winner and STILL WWF Intercontinental Champion: Shawn Michaels (Count-Out)
- After The Bell: Diesel raises Shawn’s hand in the ring, Mr. Perfect recovers and ambushes them both from behind, puts up a good fight, but the numbers game catches up to him, getting knocked out cold by a Diesel right hand.
- EA’s Take: Fairly exciting contest between two of the greatest workers to ever lace up a pair, but I think it could have been better. To be fair, the fact that these are two of the greatest athletes in WWE history makes my expectations higher, so don’t get me wrong and think this was a bad match because it wasn’t. I just think it could have been more. Oddly enough, this was the first time in SummerSlam history that the IC Title did not change hands. The feud between Perfect & Michaels was fairly brief, Shawn would end up getting suspended for a positive steroids test the following month. For Mr. Perfect, this would serve as his final WWF PPV match. He’d stick with the company until October, but after being by-passed for the IC Title due to Shawn’s suspension, he was taken off the road by the company for allowing his anger to get the better of him. He’d make a brief return in 1994, attempting to get back into the ring until his back issues flared up again and eventually leaving the company…for a short while.
Backstage: Joining Joe Fowler is The 1-2-3 Kid, making his WWF pay-per-view debut tonight. The Kid speaks about stepping in the ring with IRS and being excited to be out there. He talks about how Schyster is bigger and stronger, but everyone he gets into the ring with is bigger and stronger, so that’s nothing new.
Match #4: Irwin R. Schyster vs. The 1-2-3 Kid
They lock-up to start, IRS backs Kid to the corner and buries right hands to the breadbasket, then grabs a side headlock. The Kid pushes him away to the ropes and gets knocked down by a shoulder, Schyster back into the ropes, Kid leapfrogs over, then catches him coming back through with a spinning heel kick for a quick 2 count. IRS checks his mouth, adjusts his suspenders and they tie-up again, Schyster burying a knee to the abdomen, whips Kid to the ropes and tosses him into the air, 1-2-3 Kid landing face-first on the canvas.
He picks Kid back up, shoots him to the ropes again, attempts a clothesline from the left side, The Kid ducks it, Schyster tosses him into the air again, but this time 1-2-3 Kid counters with a dropkick, gaining another 2 count. He looks to whip IRS to the ropes now, it’s reversed, Schyster drops him with a back elbow, then throws him over the top to the floor. Kid climbs back to the apron only to get clubbed back down, The Kid pulls himself back up, gets flipped into the ring, but grabs a schoolboy on IRS and gets another quick 2.
He can’t build off of it and IRS rakes his eyes, sends him to the ropes for another back elbow, drops one across the chest and hooks the leg for a count of 2. Schyster looking to wear Kid down now with an abdominal stretch, uses the top rope for leverage behind the official’s back, finally gets caught and is forced to release the hold. He snapmares The Kid over and utilizes a rear chinlock, the people chant “1-2-3” and Kid works to his feet, IRS tries to drive his head into the top turnbuckle, but it’s blocked and he gets driven in instead.
1-2-3 Kid with a series of kicks in the corner, whips Schyster across hard, IRS hits the mat, Kid connectsing with a moonsault from the top for a near fall. He stays on IRS with a mahistral cradle for another 2 count, shoots him to the ropes for a spinning heel kick, Schyster catches the foot, but doesn’t see the other coming back around and gets clocked. Kid covers and only gains 2, irish whip to the ropes is reversed, IRS flattens him with the Write-Off and picks up the victory.
Winner: Irwin R. Schyster (Write-Off)
- EA’s Take: Pretty quick match here, lots of high energy as you would expect from The Kid with IRS trying to keep him grounded. IRS was getting back into singles competition because of Ted DiBiase’s hiatus and eventual retirement from in-ring competition, but it’s a little strange that he got the win here. The Kid was making his PPV debut, but had already picked up upset victories over competitors that I’d classify as higher up on the food chain, such as Razor Ramon. 1-2-3 Kid had really taken on the underdog role and was something much different than we had seen in previous years, adding a new element as the company continued to push younger stars.
In The Arena: Todd Pettengill is with Owen & Bruce Hart, the Hart boys informing Todd that their parents aren’t here tonight after Stu had to have knee surgery because of Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler’s antics this past Monday on RAW. Owen states that his parents may not be in attendance, but he and his brother will be at ringside watching in support of Bret.
Match #5: Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart vs. Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler
The King makes his entrance and is on crutches. Todd Pettengill meets his in the aisle to find out what’s going on, Lawler stating that he hates Bret and his family. He can’t wait to get his hands on The Hitman, but he got into a car accident on his way to the building tonight. He claims to have pulled himself from a fiery wreck and showed up at the arena to fight, however the doctors backstage gave him strict orders to not compete. Bret won’t get off easy though, as Lawler brings out his court jester, Doink The Clown to take his place.
Match #5: Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart vs. Doink The Clown
Doink comes down to ringside and finds himself in front of Bret’s brothers, tosses a bucket of water in Bruce’s face. Bret comes up from behind and fires away with right hands, the bell rings and the match is officially underway. He tosses The Clown inside, a group of referees have to stop Bruce & Owen from entering the ring, The Hitman hammering Doink with punches, then clotheslines him over the top to the floor.
Lawler watches on from ringside, The Excellence of Execution climbs outside to keep the punishment going on Doink, driving his head into the ring apron and then sending him to the post. He rolls The Clown back in again, Doink’s trying to beg off, backs himself into the corner and Hart unloads with more big rights, then whips him across and charges in. Doink puts the boot up, The Hitman sees it and blocks it, spins him around for another heavy right hand and sends The Clown spilling to the outside again.
The King gives some words of advice to Doink as he pulls himself up to the apron, Bret walks over and takes a shoulder to the abdomen, The Clown goes to the top, Hitman’s back up and he crotches him on the top turnbuckle. The Excellence of Execution drops Doink face-first on the mat, keeps pummeling him with boots, has words with Lawler, turns around and blocks a number of right and lefts before dropping The Clown with a headbutt. Hitman climbs to the outside and wants to go after The King, this gives Doink the opening to ambush him from behind, drives Bret’s head into the steel steps, rolls him back and and goes up top for a double axe handle to the back.
The Clown starts to take control, Hart tries to battle back, but gets lifted up into a kneebreaker. Doink rolls out to the floor, drags The Hitman to the ring post and wraps his leg into it over and over, slides back in and makes a cover for a 1 count. Doink keeping on the left knee and he hooks on an STF, Bret squirms his way out and to his feet, hits the ropes and runs into a knee to the breadbasket. The Clown hits the ropes for an elbow drop and a count of 2, keeps on the hurt leg by locking on a stump puller, Doink uses the ropes for extra leverage, gets caught by the referee and the official kicks his arm to break the grip. He positions Bret with a body slam, goes to the top rope for the Whoopie Cushion, The Hitman gets his knees up and Doink gets hit right in the groin.
The Excellence of Execution starts to build momentum now with fists, shoots Doink to the rope for one to the midsection, scores with a side russian leg sweep and comes off the 2nd rope with an elbow drop. He goes to put it away with a Sharpshooter and locks it on, The King slides into the ring from behind, clobbers Bret with his crutch and reveals that he’s not injured.
Winner: Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart (Disqualification)
- After The Bell: Lawler’s assault continues until he’s destroyed the crutch completely over Bret’s back, a group of referees have to hold Owen & Bruce from getting into the ring and The King finally starts to leave, bringing Doink with him. WWF President Jack Tunney comes out and cuts them off, informs Lawler that people paid to see him wrestle The Hitman while Bret tries to fight through more officials to get his hands on The King. Tunney comes down to ringside and passes news along to Howard Finkel, The Fink announcing that if Lawler doesn’t face Bret, he will be banned from the WWF for life.
Match #6: Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart vs. Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler
Hart finally breaks through the officials and the brawl is on in the entrance way, Hitman pounding The King with punches and driving him into the barricade back to the ring. The bell rings making it official, Bret really aggressive biting Lawler’s forehead in the corner and smashing him with another big right hand. He whips The King to the ropes for a back body drop, drops an elbow, grabs him by the legs and drops a headbutt to the lower abdomen.
The Excellence of Execution throws Lawler outside, grabs the other crutch and bashes him across the back, sends him into the barricade again and throws him back into the squared circle. Lawler rolls back out the other side, Hitman stays in pursuit, King getting ahold of a piece of the crutch and buries it into Bret’s stomach, then hits him in the throat. He walks around ringside and delivers a cheap shot to Bruce, runs back to Bret as the referee keeps Owen at bay, The King choking the life out of The Hitman with the butt of the crutch.
He sends Bret into the ring, pulls him to the ring post and crotches him on it, King sneaks in behind the official with the crutch to deliver another shot to the throat before disposing of the evidence. Jerry rams The Hitman head-first into the top turnbuckle, talks some trash to the fans, goes to get Bret again and Hart scores with a low blow. Bret drops the straps and Lawler tries to beg him off, The Hitman hammers him in the corner with big rights, shoots him to the ropes for a back body drop, cracks The King with a backbreaker and gets a count of 2. The Excellence of Execution spikes King with a piledriver, comes off the 2nd turnbuckle with an elbow drop, slaps on the Sharpshooter and Lawler gives up.
Winner: Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart (Sharpshooter)
- After The Bell: The Hitman keeps the Sharpshooter on after the bell and refuses to let go of it, multiple referees having to pry him away. The original ref confers with Howard Finkel, reversing the decision and disqualifying Bret for not relinquishing the hold. This only angers Hitman more and he attacks Lawler, WWF officials are able to keep him away, Bruce & Owen hop the barricade and get a couple of shots in before The King is stretchered away.
Winner: Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler (Disqualification)
- EA’s Take: A very heated rivalry here after Lawler’s attack of Bret at King Of The Ring. The Hitman’s hatred for The King really showed a side of Bret that we had never seen before, becoming more vicious and aggressive and leading to very different kinds of matches from him than we’re used to seeing. Jerry was a magnificent heel and talker and although he was older at this point and his in-ring work was never the best, this feud with Bret really hid those deficiencies. The WWF would engage in cross-promotion with Lawler’s USWA company while the rivalry with The Hitman continued into the fall. The King would be set to captain a team at Survivor Series against Bret and his brothers, but had to step away for a period of time. Lawler was facing legal issues after being accused of rape, a charge that he was found not guilty on before returning to the company in 1994.
Video: Ludvig Borga was checking out some of Detroit earlier in the day, speaking about Lex Luger going for the WWF Title tonight and trying to fulfill the “American dream”. Borga is in a run-down part of the city and wonders if this is the “American dream”, broken buildings and crime. Tonight, he will show his opponent Marty Jannetty and Lex exactly the kind of nightmare he is.
Match #7: Marty Jannetty vs. Ludvig Borga
The bell rings and Jannetty gets in Ludvig’s face to have a couple words, unwisely turns his back and Borga ambushes him from behind, putting him in the corner and delivering rights and lefts to the ribs. He whips Marty across and flattens him with a clothesline off the rebound, puts him back in the corner for knees to the abdomen, sends him to the ropes and elevates him into the air, delivering another big punch to the breadbasket in mid-air. He lifts Jannetty with a choke and drops him in the corner, more heavy blows to the midsection and Marty can’t get anything going.
Borga whips him back across, charges in for a splash, Jannetty side-steps it, scores with right hands, hits the ropes and Ludvig levels him with another clothesline. Borga sends Marty back to the ropes for a back body drop, Jannetty tries to counter with a sunset flip, can’t get him over and Ludvig scores with another big right hand, then utilizes a bearhug. Marty with a barrage of rights and lefts to break out of it, attempts a body slam and his back gives out, Borga turning him inside-out with another big clothesline.
He whips Jannetty to the ropes to try the back body drop again, Marty with another sunset flip try, Ludvig goes to deliver another punch like last time, but Jannetty avoids it. Marty staggers him with multiple superkicks, goes to the 2nd rope for a crossbody, Borga catches him in the air and drives him down to the canvas. The Hellraiser from Helsinki with more shots to the ribs, puts him in the Torture Rack and Jannetty gives up.
Winner: Ludvig Borga (Torture Rack)
- EA’s Take: Pretty unexciting match and easily the worst contest of the night to this point, a total squash. Ludvig Borga came to the WWF from New Japan, the Superstar from Finland making his debut on the July 10th episode of Superstars and beginning an undefeated streak similar to Tatanka’s. Interestingly enough, after pulverizing Marty Jannetty here, he would go on to end The Native American’s streak in late September before embarking into a feud with Lex Luger. Jannetty would venture back into the tag division after a lackluster singles run, even though he did manage to gain an IC Title out of it.
Match #8 – Rest In Peace Match: Giant Gonzalez w/Harvey Wippleman vs. The Undertaker
This match is no DQ’s or count-outs, there must be a winner. The bell rings and Undertaker goes right at Gonzalez with uppercuts in the corner, grabs him by the throat and climbs to the 2nd rope to choke the breath out of him. Wippleman hops to the apron to gain his attention, Taker breaking the hold, turns around and The Giant catches him with a big boot, then fires away with headbutts and clubbing shots. He shoots him to the ropes for a clothesline, The Deadman ducks under it and hits one of his own to stagger the big man, then another.
He goes back to the well again and Gonzalez drops him with a shot to the throat, tosses him to the outside and climbs out after him. They trade shots on the floor, The Giant rips at his eyes, drives Taker into the apron, then the ring steps and goes around ringside after a chair. He clobbers The Deadman across the back with it, whips him knees-first into the steel steps and sends him back into the squared circle. The Undertaker crawls towards the urn, Gonzalez clubs him with the heavy artillery, Taker battles back to his feet, goes back for the urn, but Harvey snatches it away.
The Giant shoots him hard into the turnbuckles, The Deadman keeps crawling for the urn, the gong hits and Paul Bearer makes his way to ringside carrying a black wreath. Meanwhile, Gonzalez chokes the life out of Undertaker in the corner, hammers him with big punches, Wippleman charges at Bearer on the outside and gets dropped by a clothesline. He goes around ringside and reclaims the urn, The Giant delivering a body slam to Taker in the ring, notices Bearer with the urn and The Deadman sits up. He unloads on The Giant with uppercuts, hits multiple clotheslines that get the big man reeling, goes to the top rope for a flying clothesline, finally knocking him down and covering for the 1-2-3.
Winner: The Undertaker (Top Rope Clothesline)
- After The Bell: The Deadman places the black wreath next to Giant Gonzalez’s prone body, kneeling to the power of the urn before taking his leave with Paul Bearer. Gonzalez comes to and Wippleman is giving him the business, The Giant hearing enough of it and grabbing by the neck for a Chokeslam, then placing the wreath on his body.
- EA’s Take: Back-to-back rough matches to watch, this one being better than the last. The Undertaker really was getting saddled with some hard opponents to work with and get over, the company really sticking to the formula of matching him up with pro wrestling’s biggest monsters. His face turn would set the stage for a feud with Wippleman’s newest charge, Adam Bomb, however it never came to fruition as Gonzalez would leave the company in October. He would pass away in 2010 at the age of 44 due to complications from diabetes and severe heart issues (Side note: shouldn’t the gimmick for a ‘Rest In Peace Match’ be having to put your opponent in a body bag or something?).
Backstage: Joe Fowler is standing by with WWF Champion Yokozuna, Mr. Fuji & Jim Cornette. Cornette talks about hometown bias being the reason for The Heavenly Bodies losing earlier in the night, but the same thing will not happen to Yokozuna. He warns Lex Luger to listen up good, explaining that Yoko has no fear or compassion for his fellow man, something the power Luger draws from the American people can’t match. The time for talking is over and the last thing we will hear tonight is “Banzai!”.
Match #9: The Smoking Gunns (Billy & Bart) & Tatanka vs. The Headshrinkers (Samu & Fatu) & Bam Bam Bigelow w/Afa & Luna Vachon
The bell rings and all 6 guys start brawling, Bam Bam and The Headshrinkers clearing out the ring, leaving Bigelow and Tatanka. The Beast from the East shoots Tatanka to the ropes and scores with a shoulder knockdown, sends him back in for a clothesline, The Native American ducks under it, hits a shoulder block of his own to stagger Bam Bam, then takes him off his feet with a dropkick. Heavy rights from The Native American, whips Bigelow to the ropes for a back body drop, another irish whip is reversed, The Beast from the East misses another clothesline, both guys are thinking crossbody and they collide in the air.
They crawl to their corners and tag out, Fatu meeting Billy to exchange right hands, Billy gets the better of it briefly, but Fatu clocks him with a superkick. He hooks him up for a vertical suplex, Billy counters, dropping him face-first to the canvas, climbs to the top turnbuckle and scores with a bulldog. Irish whip to the ropes is reversed, Fatu flattens him with a shoulder knockdown, Samu tags in and The Headshrinkers with a double headbutt. Samu shoots him Billy to the ropes and drops him on the top rope with a hot shot, Billy rolls to the outside to collect his breath, Samu distracting the official and allowing Afa to get in a cheap shot.
Billy crawls back into the ring and gets decked by another superkick, falls backwards into his corner, Bart tagging himself in and he unloads a barrage of left hands to Samu. Irish whip to the ropes is reversed, Bart ducks under a clothesline, scores with a crossbody for a quick 1 count, catches Samu with an arm drag and goes to an armbar. Bart swiftly brings him back up, whip to the ropes is reversed, Bart ducks another clothesline, tries to go to a crossbody again, but Samu meets him in mid-air with a back elbow. He shoots Bart back to the ropes and plants him with a facebuster, Bam Bam tags back in, sends Bart to the ropes again and connects with a dropkick for a count of 2.
Fatu re-enters the match, whips Bart to the ropes for a powerslam that gains a near fall, brings Samu back and he maintains control with shots to the throat, then bites Bart on the ropes. Fatu gets a tag and The Headshrinkers with another double headbutt, Bigelow back in and drops Bart with a shoulder knockdown, then uses The Headshrinkers’ skulls to bash Bart’s head off of. Tag back to Fatu, he shoots him to the ropes for a back body drop, Bart puts on the brakes, drives Fatu face-first into the mat, but it has no affect and Fatu floors him with a clothesline. He baits Tatanka & Bart into the ring to hold ref’s attention, Samu comes in with no tag for some double teaming, then he chokes Bart in the corner, baiting Billy back in for Bam Bam & Fatu to do a number on Bart.
Bigelow tags in, double irish whip to the ropes with Samu for a double back elbow, The Beast from the East whips Bart to the corner, charges in for a splash, but he misses and hits his head off the top of the ring post. Bart finally tags out, Tatanka hitting the ring with a clothesline, fires away at The Headshrinkers in the corner, hits the ropes for multiple overhand chops to Bam Bam, then plants him with a body slam. He spikes Bigelow with a DDT, goes up top for a crossbody, covers and gets a near fall
The Native American has an issue with the count and argues with the referee, The Beast from the East takes the opening to drive fists to the breadbasket, rams him head-first into the top turnbuckle, but Tatanka absorbs it and goes into the war dance. He absorbs more shots from Bigelow, Bam Bam cracks him with an enzuigiri to put an end to it, tags out and Samu positions The Native American to come off the 2nd rope with a headbutt. Bart comes in to break up the count at 2, Fatu hits the ring and makes him pay with a superkick, Billy’s right behind him to deliver a dropkick, but here comes Bam Bam and he clotheslines Billy to the outside.
It’s a 3-1 advantage in the ring on Tatanka, The Headshrinkers shoot him into the corner, whip Bigelow in with a splash, triple headbutt to The Native American, The Beast from the East and The Headshrinkers all climbing up opposite turnbuckles to the top rope. They look to hit synchronized diving headbutts, Tatanka’s able to roll out of the way, The Smoking Gunns slide back in, take out Fatu & Bam Bam on the outside with slingshot crossbodies, The Native American utilizes a schoolboy on Samu and steals a 3 count.
Winners: The Smoking Gunns & Tatanka (Tatanka/Schoolboy)
- EA’s Take: A solid contest in what seems to be a bit of a thrown together match with little backstory to it, but pretty good for a 6-man which is something the WWF had always seemed to be less than sub-par at. Tatanka & Bigelow had been feuding a little bit on WWF television, The Gunns & Headshrinkers with no real issue other than they are both tag teams. Billy & Bart are two young talents that are still looking to make a name for themselves as a tandem, their cowboy gimmicks and flare for shooting off blanks with real guns being used to try and bolster their standing with the people.
Backstage: Joe Fowler is in the parking lot on the Lex Express, speaking with the driver of the bus who has been watching the show on a monitor. He speaks about spending the last two months with Lex Luger and how genuine of a guy he is, visiting children’s hospitals on their cross-country trip and lighting up kids faces.
In The Arena: Todd Pettengill is in the crowd speaking with some of the fans about their support for the USA in tonight’s main event. In the ring, Howard Finkel asks everyone to rise and show their respect for the Japanese National Anthem. The Fink then introduces our master of ceremonies for the WWF Title match, ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage accompanied by Aaron Neville, Aaron singing the USA National Anthem.
Match #10 for the WWF Championship: WWF Champion Yokozuna w/Mr. Fuji & Jim Cornette vs. Lex Luger
The official calls for the bell and Luger goes face-to-face with the champion, Fuji sneaks his way up to the apron, tries to get into the ring, Lex feels it coming, turns his back and Yokozuna attacks, but its unsuccesful. Luger with big right hands, shoots Yoko to the ropes for a back elbow, goes for another big haymaker, the champion blocks it and attempts a body slam, but the challenger slips out. He pushes Yokozuna to the ropes and gets clobbered by a back elbow, the champion hits the ropes for a leg drop, Lex avoids it and then targets the leg with kicks to the knee.
Yoko steps to the outside to escape, Luger kicks the ropes for a low blow, Yokozuna falls flat to the canvas, the challenger following with an elbow drop for a 2 count. Lex hits the ropes, the champion catches him with a body slam, hits the ropes for an elbow drop that doesn’t connect, Luger firing away with fists and kicks in the corner. He rams Yokozuna head-first off the top turnbuckle, shoots him across, follows in with a clothesline, then climbs to the 2nd rope for a flurry of punches. The official steps in and forces a break, the champion seizing the opening for a chop to the throat, then chokes the challenger in the corner.
The ref now backs Yokozuna away, Fuji climbs up the steps to throw salt in Luger’s face, but Lex sees it coming and avoids it. He hammers Yoko with heavy rights, goes for a slam, can’t lift the big man and the champion cracks him with a superkick. Yokozuna delivers a headbutt that sends Luger to the outside, Lex tries to pull himself back into the ring, getting dropped back down to the floor after another headbutt. The champion climbs out after him, wraps part of his mawashi around the challenger’s throat, positions him on the ring post and squashes Luger with a splash. Yoko goes after a chair now, takes a big swing, Lex ducks it, fires off a series or fists, rolls the champion back inside, then heads back in and comes off the 2nd rope with a double axe handle.
Yokozuna is rocked, the challenger goes to the top rope and hits another double axe, then back up again, finally taking him off his feet with a forearm shot. Lex covers for a near fall, hits the ropes for a head of steam, flattens Yoko with a clothesline to the back of the head, hooks the big leg and gains another count of 2. Irish whip to the ropes is reversed, Luger ducks under a right hand, both guys go for a clothesline, connect and drop to the canvas, doubling down. Cornette hops onto the apron and grabs the official, Fuji throws the salt bucket in to the champion, Yoko waffles Luger in the head with it and lays him out.
Yokozuna crawls to a cover and only gets 2, scores with stinging knife-edge chops, plants him with a side belly-to-belly suplex, hooks the leg and still can’t finish it. The champion chokes the challenger on the 2nd rope, rips at his face and is totally dominating now. Yokozuna hits him with a back suplex for a 2 count, the champion can’t believe it, snapmares Lex over and slaps on a nerve hold to the trap muscle. Luger gets a rush of adrenaline and works to his feet, battles out of the hold, goes for a slam, Yokozuna falls on top of him, but is still unable to get a 3 count.
The champion drops a big leg drop for another near fall, drags Lex to the corner and positions him for the Banzai Drop, the challenger just rolling out of the way in the nick of time. The challenger tries to regroup, gets his head rammed into the top turnbuckle, absorbs it to fight back, but the champion resorts to biting him on the forehead. Yoko hits stiff chops in the corner, whips Lex across, measures him for a back splash and misses, Lex lifting him off the rebound for a body slam. Fuji climbs onto the apron and pays for it, Luger exposes his forearm with the metal plate in it, clobbers Yokozuna and he spills to the outside, the ref putting the count on as Cornette climbs to the apron, eating a right hand as the count reaches 10.
Winner: Lex Luger (Count-Out)
- After The Bell: Savage, The Steiner Brothers & Tatanka meet Lex in the ring, hoisting him on their shoulders and waving the American flag high in the air as confetti and balloons drop from the ceiling. A montage video is shown about America and The Lex Express making its way across the country towards the site of SummerSlam. Joe Fowler catches up with Luger in the locker room following the video, Lex stating it was an honor to represent his country and wrestle for the WWF Title, Ludvig Borga interrupting. He informs Luger that he’s not impressed with him, his friends or the country he stands for and if he ever steps in the ring with him, he’ll crumble much like the USA is crumbling.
- EA’s Take: Definitely not the best main event I’ve ever seen and certainly an unusual ending. Lex Luger got the epitome of a “mega push” over the previous two months, the WWF doing its damnedest to catapult him into the spot that had been occupied by Hulk Hogan for the past nine years. For some reason however, they chose not to give Luger the WWF Title after all of that build-up, which makes absolutely zero sense. He really should have won the championship here. He may not have been as popular as Hulk, but there’s no denying how over Lex was at this time and it was borderline absurd to hold a big celebration at the end of the night after he won by count-out, but didn’t gain the strap. This would not be the end of the rivalry as they’d continue to off-and-on over the next year.
EA’s Finisher: Another in a lineup of WWF pay-per-views since WrestleMania VIII that really failed to put out any matches that really were memorable or that stood out from the rest, but overall an entertaining show. Luger not winning the WWF Championship at the end was a big mistake and would have given us a memorable moment from this show, but for whatever reason the company went a different direction. The Superstars of the 1980s are continuing to fade away as the company remains persistent in pushing younger talent, this being the final in-ring PPV for an 80’s mainstay, Ted DiBiase. Some failed gimmicks and characters would be moved away from, another trend that will be repeated in the coming years with the WWF sticking by their “cartoon-like” creations of characters, leading to some down years for the company.
Top Three To Watch
1 – The Steiner Brothers vs. The Heavenly Bodies
2 – Shawn Michaels vs. Mr. Perfect
3 – Bret Hart vs. Doink The Clown/Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler
Chairshot Classics: WCW Slamboree 1995 – A Legends’ Reunion
Our weekly Chairshot Classics WCW PPV series continues with Slamboree ’95!
Following a brutally cheesy inaugural Uncensored event in March, what would WCW do to follow-up? Let’s not waste any time and get to the action!
Match #1 for the WCW World Tag Team Championships: The Nasty Boys (Brian Knobs & Jerry Sags) vs. WCW World Tag Team Champions Harlem Heat (Booker T & Stevie Ray) w/Sister Sherri
Jerry Sags makes his way down to the ring by himself at the open. Brian Knobs was previously injured and they’re not sure what his status is. The “Nasty” chants break out for Sags who is by himself. Booker T will start it off for Harlem Heat. He lectures the chanting crowd and rounds the ring. They exchange slaps and strikes, Sags takes the advantage and hits an inside out clothesline. Booker eats turnbuckle, Irish whip and Sags comes in with another big lariat. Stevie rushes the ring, but Sags takes it to both champions with a double DDT.
Sherri is on the apron and she eats a right from the Nasty Boy. Sags sets up a pumphandle slam on Booker and lands it. He makes a cover and Booker kicks out at two. Sags pursues in the corner, but Booker lands a right. The champs double team Sags and Stevie is tagged in. He tries an elbow, but Sags moves. Double leg takedown by Sags and he hits a low blow head butt. Sags sets up again and he drops a leg across the mid section. He makes a cover and Booker T comes in for the save. Scoop slam by Sags and he heads up the turnbuckles. Double ax from the top rope and Booker is forced to make the save once again. Sags tries a cover but Sherri pulls his leg.
Jerry pursues the valet who baits him into a beat down from Stevie Ray. The ref pulls him off and Sags rolls to the floor, where he’s double teamed by Booker and Sherri. Stevie heads out, drives him into the steel and rolls him back into the ring. Double team in the ring by the champs and Booker grabs a reverse chin lock. Back to vertical, Sags tries to go to the eyes but Booker stays in control. He misses an elbow, but with a spin-a-roonie comes back to his feet and hits a heel kick. Tag is made to Stevie, Sags is sent for the ride and he eats a drop kick. Side slam by Stevie and Sags is set up for a senton by Booker. He’s slow to make a cover and Sags gets his shoulder up.
A quick tag is made back to Stevie who lands a leg drop and a big forearm. Another fast tag back to Booker who lifts Sags and sends him to the ropes. Sags reverses a back drop into a piledriver, and finally from the back, here comes a taped up Brian Knobs. Sags makes the hot tag and Knobs cleans house. Scoop slams and back elbows for both. He hits a bulldog on Booker and back drops Stevie over the top. Sherri climbs to the top rope and leaps but Knobs catches her out of the air and drops her hard on the canvass before dumping her to the floor. Knobs tags in Sags, hits a powerslam, Jerry hits a top rope elbow and we have new champs!
Winners and NEW WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Nasty Boys (Sags/Top Rope Elbow Drop)
- After The Bell: The Blue Bloods are standing at the top of the ramp in suits, looking disgusted with the new champions. They seem to want a piece of them, but they shake their heads and head to the back. The Nasty Boys join Eric Bischoff after, and if The Blue Bloods want an opportunity, they’re going to get one.
- EA’s Take: Very good opening match between two teams who are no strangers. The story of Knobs escaping from the back after being kayfabe injured was a nice touch and it popped the crowd when he came rushing down. I continue to respect Sherri’s bumping as a valet. The introduction of The Blue Bloods (Regal and Eaton) will help a pretty thin tag team division.
Backstage: ‘Mean’ Gene Okerlund is joined by Kevin Sullivan. He’ll be facing the man formerly known as The Butcher. He told him not to show up, and he hasn’t slept in the last 5 days. The problem is that ‘The Man With No Name’ still believes in Hulkamania, and he heads for the ring after some deranged musings.
Match #2: Kevin Sullivan vs. The Man With No Name
A brawl breaks out immediately, and a big knee lift sends Sullivan to the floor. TMWNN follows him immediately and continues his assault. Back in the ring, a countoff series of rights is delivered to Sullivan and he gets his eyes rakes. Uppercut by TMWNN and Sullivan eats turnbuckle. A whip to the ropes and TMWNN locks in a sleeper, Sullivan drops to the mat to reverse it and dumps him to the floor. TMWNN hits the steel and they exchange chops. Sullivan is rolled back into the ring, TMWNN takes position in the corner with a splash. Sullivan has a knee driven his neck and gets an eye rake, but he fights back with chops.
It only wakes up TMWNN and he fires back with rights. A big chop between the eyes knocks Sullivan down and he gets a two count. TMWNN sets up for and hits a piledriver. TMWNN is slow to cover and Sullivan barely escapes. He pursues but Sullivan goes to the eyes. TMWNN is smashed into the turnbuckle and dumped outside for a shot on the ring post. Sullivan rakes his back and rolls him back in. TMWNN blocks a chop and fires back. To the ropes they go, TMWNN hits a big lariat. He tries a running splash, but Sullivan moves out of the way. Sullivan sets him up for the tree of woe and he hits a running knee. Double stomp by Sullivan and we have a winner.
Winner: Kevin Sullivan (Devil Stomp)
- After The Bell: A strange voice starts yelling and an image of a creepy man appears on the big screen. He summons Sullivan, but Kevin bails out through the crowd.
- EA’s Take: How many monikers has the man best known as Brutus Beefcake had? Clearly the post-match is planting the seeds for the proper Dungeon of Doom and things are about to get even MORE weird. Hard to imagine after Uncensored, eh?
Backstage: ‘Mean’ Gene is joined by WCW World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan, ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage & Jimmy Hart. They were late showing up tonight because Macho Man was dog paddling from the beach, his dad Angelo was doing the backstroke, and he wishes that he ran into Vader and Flair in the parking lot. With all the power on their side, there is no way they’re making it out alive. Savage says the monster maniacs will not be denied, nothing is raining on their parade. Whatcha gonna do? Ooohhh Yea!
Match #3: Dick Murdoch vs. Wahoo McDaniel
Gordon Solie has joined commentary for this legends match. Both men measure and lock up, McDaniel takes position in the corner and it’s a messy break. Another collar and elbow, McDaniel with an arm drag. A third tie up and McDaniel scores another arm drag. Murdoch blocks a strike and drops an elbow on the head. Murdoch charges into the midsection on McDaniel and grabs a wristlock. McDaniel fires back with a slap across the face and Murdoch falls on the canvass. Collar and elbow tie up, Murdoch hits some knee lifts and a big elbow. McDaniels fights back and chops Murdoch between the eyes. McDaniels gets the top wristlock, he takes position in the corner and the ref calls for a break.
Murdoch doesn’t oblige, he hits some short range rights but McDaniels strikes back and Murdoch falls to the mat. Murdoch’s head hits the turnbuckle multiple times and he eats another chop. Murdoch almost buckles but he hits some knees and stomps. Murdoch bails to the floor and lays an elbow across McDaniel’s throat on the apron. Irish whip by Murdoch, he climbs to the top rope and he hits a modified bulldog. McDaniels is sent for the ride, he eats a back elbow and an elbow drop for a two count. Big elbows across McDaniel’s forehead. Wahoo reverses a whip to the ropes, hits a backhand chop across Murdoch’s throat and that’s good for 3.
Winner: Wahoo McDaniel (Backhand Chop)
- EA’s Take: I get the whole legends thing, but broadcasting the match in black and white was a little cheesy, in my opinion. I love Solie’s voice, though. Due to both men’s age and old style, this match was obviously slow. I fear the modern crowd with their boring chants and ability to get more fired up by beachballs wouldn’t give legends like this the respect they should get if WWE did something like this now.
Backstage: ‘Mean’ Gene is joined at this time by Big Bubba Rogers. He recognizes that Sting is one of the best wrestlers in the world today, but he is one of the few who has a pinfall victory over him. What people don’t know is that when the referee counted 1-2-3, he knows the faith in him disappeared. He plans to do it again because he’s big enough, bad enough, and because he can.
Match #4 for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship: ‘Mr. Wonderful’ Paul Orndorff vs. IWGP Heavyweight Champion The Great Muta
The “Paula” chants inevitably come out and Mr. Wonderful takes it out by yelling at Nick Patrick. The official blows right back up to him and let’s him know who is in charge. Muta backs him up swinging with some kicks, Orndorff wants space. Collar and elbow tie up, they reverse wristlocks and Muta takes advantage. Drop toe hold by Orndorff but he can’t grab a headlock, Muta reversing with a hammerlock by Orndorff is on the ropes. Muta motions that he’s going to kill him and Orndorff tells him where to stick it. Collar and elbow, chain wrestling with Orndorff into a hammerlock. Muta flips out with a single leg and a stomp and both men back up and feel each other out.
Collar and elbow, side headlock by Muta, they hit the ropes and Muta hits a shoulder tackle. He ducks a clothesline and hits a spin kick, Orndorff rolls out. Muta teases a leap from the top rope but Mr. Wonderful sees him and walks away. Collar and elbow hookup, Muta with the side headlock and a takeover. Orndorff counters with a roll up, Muta kicks out and gets back in control. Orndorff escapes and wrestles his way into a hammerlock. He drives the knees into Muta’s shoulder and really cranks the arm. Back to vertical, it’s knee lifts and rights from Orndorff. Muta is on the receiving end of a short clothesline but Muta moves away from an elbow drop, scores with a dropkick, a snapmare, and a theatrical elbow drop.
Another snapmare and Muta goes into a reverse chin lock. Orndorff works back to vertical, tries a reversal but it’s quickly countered by Muta with a head scissor. Orndorff rolls to his knees, Muta tries cranking back and he strikes Wonderful in the eyes. Desperation belly to back suplex by Orndorff and he’s slow to get up. Stomps to the back of the head by Orndorff and he dumps Muta to the floor. He follows and chokes the IWGP champ with a camera chord. He returns to the ring and poses as the crowd boos. He pulls Muta back to the apron and hits a vertical suplex. He comes in with an elbow drop and cranks on Muta’s chin.
He keeps the knee at the top of the back for leverage. The crowd gets behind Muta as he works his way to his feet. He hits some body shots, breaks the hold and knocks Orndorff down with rights. To the ropes, Muta tries a dropkick but Orndorff puts on the brakes. Wonderful drops an elbow across the back and tries a front facelock. They’re on their feet, Orndorff hanging on. Muta counters by lifting with an inverted atompic drop. Short clothesline by Muta, he heads for the 2nd rope and drops an elbow but Orndorff moves. Wonderful hits some forearms and drives Muta’s head into the mat.
Vicious kicks by Orndorff and he hits a snapmare before driving a fist between the eyes, Muta kicks out at two. Orndorff wants a piledriver but it’s reversed with a backdrop. They exchange rights before Muta hits a spin kick. Big back elbow in the corner by Muta and he follows with a bulldog. Muta with a lateral press and Orndorff kicks out. Shoulder block by Muta and he follows with a side breaker. Muta scores with a moonsault from the top rope and he retains the title.
Winner and STILL IWGP Heavyweight Champion: The Great Muta (Moonsault)
- EA’s Take: Great to see Muta again. He’s a guy who deserves to go in the Hall of Fame, but I’m not sure if or when that will happen due to his lack of WWE ties. Just a solid, smart match by two pros here. You had to know the New Japan champion was retaining, but it was enjoyable nonetheless. You also will get a new appreciation for Orndorff through all of these Chairshot Classics as well, as unfortunately he’s almost remembered more for his injury and weak arm than anything else.
Backstage: ‘Mean’ Gene gets a word with WCW World Television Champion Arn Anderson, ‘Nature Boy’ Ric Flair & Vader. What The Enforcer is going to do tonight is going to show Alex Wright why people his age call him Mr. Anderson. Flair is already planning to celebrate his and Vader’s victory, Hogan and Savage have run roughshod long enough. When Hogan looks at Vader, he’s looking at the most powerful wrestler in the world today. He can run, but he can’t hide because it’s Vader time.
Match #5 for the WCW World Television Championship: ‘Das Wunderkind’ Alex Wright vs. WCW World Television Champion ‘The Enforcer’ Arn Anderson
Collar and elbow tie up, they jockey for position and Wright hits an arm drag. They lock up, Wright grabs the headlock, Anderson throws him to the ropes but he puts on the brakes and drops down to re-grab the headlock on the mat. Back to vertical, they hit the ropes again, Wright confuses Anderson by flipping around, hits a drop kick and goes back to the headlock. Anderson tries countering with a roll up but Das Wunderkind stays in control. Back to their feet, Anderson powers into position on the ropes and drives his shoulder again.
Wright reverses a whip, Anderson catches the boot but Wright hits an enzigure. Back to the mat with the headlock and he cranks away. Left hand body shots by The Enforcer, he grabs the leg but Wright hits a backflip and a dropkick. European uppercut and a side headlock takeover by the kid and he hangs on. Back to vertical, Anderson lifts the knee and lays in a punch. He sends Wright for the ride, Wunderkind grabs a boot, Anderson tries an enzigure but misses and Wright moves into complex crossface submission. Anderson pulls himself to the ropes to break the hold and he bails out for some regroup. He takes too long and Wright hits him with a baseball slide before flying over the top rope with a crossbody.
He fires in some rights, Enforcer fights back but Wright makes him eat the ring post. Back in the ring, Wright tries hyperextending the arm and he works down to the mat for some submission work. With leverage, Wright drives his knees into Anderson’s arm. Up to their feet, Anderson is trapped in a hammerlock but breaks it with an elbow to the side of the head. Some kicks and a headbutt by Arn before dragging Wright’s eyes across the top rope. Wunderkind fights back with European uppercuts. Anderson misses with an atomic drop, but the vintage spinebuster is on point. Double ax handle by Anderson and he stomps away before slingshotting Wright into the bottom rope.
Blatant choke by The Enforcer and the ref has to call for a break. He uses the ropes for leverage to drop the boot across Wright’s throat. Anderson cranks with a wrist lock and works over the shoulder. Single leg sweep by Anderson, he appears to try a Figure Four but Wright boots him away. From the 2nd rope, Wright counters with a right to the midsection. Snap suplex by Wright and he heads for the top. He leaps with missile dropkick and Double A is forced to kick out. They hit the ropes, Anderson grabs a front facelock and they exchange inside cradles. On their feet, Anderson pokes the eyes, Irish whip but Anderson runs into elbows. Wright ducks a punch, but Anderson takes advantage of the positioning and scores a DDT out of nowhere to retain his belt.
Winner and STILL WCW World Television Champion: ‘The Enforcer’ Arn Anderson (DDT)
- EA’s Take: I was looking forward to this one as soon as I did the template. It’s also the first time I remember hearing the Arn music, later adapted in general 4 Horsemen matches. I love how many clean finishes there are in this show so far. As Scott Hall has explained, that’s ‘Curt Hennig Booking — if you’re going to make someone, make them and take their finish”.
Chairshot Classics: WWF Royal Rumble ’90 – Every Man For Himself
Our road to the 2019 Royal Rumble continues with a look back at one from the past!
It’s the third annual Royal Rumble, for the first time ever the January WWF tradition would play a major part in the buildup to WrestleMania. The concept of giving the Royal Rumble winner a title shot at WrestleMania hadn’t been introduced yet. However, this would mark the first time the Rumble match would be used to advance and begin feuds heading into the big event, thus you could call this show the inaugural Road To WrestleMania! It’s every man for himself in the Royal Rumble, so let’s head back to the Orlando Arena in 1990….
Open: Vince McMahon voices over a video running down tonight’s Royal Rumble participants, in addition to the great singles matches we have tonight.
Match #1: The Fabulous Rougeau Brothers (Jacques & Raymond) w/’Mouth Of The South’ Jimmy Hart vs. The Bushwhackers (Luke & Butch)
Butch & Raymond will kick off the action, Raymond offers a handshake, then goes to the midsection with a boot and delivers right hands. Jimmy Hart jumps on the apron to distract the ref, Jacques hops in the ring for a double team, but Luke comes in to thwart the attempt. Butch shoots Raymond into the ropes, Raymond grabs a sleeper, Butch driving him into the turnbuckle to break it and biting him on the backside. Butch bites the ref now, Jacques comes in after him and Luke follows suit, delivering a double clothesline to Raymond. The Bushwhackers go for the Battering Ram on Jacques, he rolls outside to avoid it and The Rougeaus have a pow-wow with Jimmy on the outside.
Order is restored, Jacques takes the ring as Luke tags in, Jacques with right hands and some words for the crowd. Luke fires back with lefts and rights, biting Jacques on the bridge of the nose. Jacques reverses a whip into the ropes, leapfrogs over, Luke hangs on, Jacques taunting him and Luke charges, missing Jacques with a clothesline, but hitting Raymond on the apron. Butch comes in from behind Jacques, drops him with a clothesline and The Rougeaus convene with Jimmy on the floor again. Jacques taunts Butch on the apron, drawing the referee’s attention, Raymond clobbers Luke from behind and Jacques takes the advantage.
He drives Luke into the corner, goads Butch into the ring again, allowing Raymond to choke Luke with the tag rope. Jacques covers for a count of 2, tags in Raymond and he connects with a savat kick for another 2 count. Raymond unloads right hands to the breadbasket, sends Luke into the corner with a hard irish whip, then dumps him on the outside and distracts the ref. Jacques hops off the apron, sends Luke spine-first into the ring apron, prompting Butch to march after Jimmy on the outside. Luke rolls back inside, Raymond gets a 2 count, Luke with more biting of the leg and Jacques steps in to stop it. Raymond with a shot to Butch on the apron, preventing the tag, more double teaming from The Rougeaus and Raymond gets another count of 2.
Jacques back in, hits a jumping back elbow out of the ropes, then kips up to a chorus of boos. Quick tags from The Rougeaus, driving Luke back-first into the turnbuckles multiple times, again Butch steps in and distracts the ref, allowing The Rougeaus to press Luke and drop him throat-first across the top rope. Raymond snapmares Luke over, grabs a rear chinlock, Luke fights to his feet, biting the nose to break the hold. Jacques gets the tag and drops Butch off the apron again, puts Luke in the wrong part of town and locks in an abdominal stretch. Raymond offers a hand for leverage from the apron, tags in and fires a right hand to the breadbasket before going back to a chinlock.
Tag back to Jacques, Raymond slams Luke and Jacques looks to follow with a splash, but Luke gets the knees up. Butch gets the tag, unloads with lefts and rights, shoots Jacques into the ropes and buries a right hand to the midsection. Raymond steps in and immediately gets dropped, Butch with a knee lift for Jacques, covers, then bails out to go back after Raymond. Butch with a flurry of lefts and rights, all 4 men in the ring now, they pair off in opposite corners and The Bushwhackers whip The Rougeaus into one another. They set for the Battering Ram, Jimmy Hart grabs Luke’s leg, Butch lays Raymond out with a clothesline and Luke gets ahold of Jimmy.
They go for a wishbone split on the Mouth Of The South, The Rougeaus slide in with double dropkicks, Jacques with a schoolboy on Butch and he gets a 2 count. Raymond puts Butch in a Boston crab, Jacques hits the ropes and Luke trips him from the outside. Raymond breaks the hold, checks on Jacques and The Bushwhackers hit them from behind with the Battering Ram, Butch covering Jacques and getting the count of 3.
Winners: The Bushwhackers (Butch/Battering Ram)
- EA’s Take: Lots of sloppy shenanigans as is generally the case with The Bushwhackers, but a fairly entertaining match only because of the characters involved. The crowd was hot for The Bushwhackers, which I remember them being over when I was a kid, but not THAT over. This would mark the finale of their almost year-long feud with The Rougeaus, after defeating them now 4 consecutive times on PPV/TV. Raymond’s time was winding down quickly and would ultimately come to an end a little later in the year.
Backstage: Joining Gene Okerlund is ‘The Million Dollar Man’ Ted DiBiase with his bodyguard, Virgil. DiBiase doesn’t look very happy, as there was added security this year when it came to drawing entry numbers in the Royal Rumble. Last year, DiBiase paid somebody off for a better number and that wasn’t going to be allowed this year. MDM shows Okerlund his number, which is #1. DiBiase just says that means he’ll be the first man in the ring and the last to leave.
Match #2: The Genius vs. Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake
Brutus stalks The Genius, backing him into the corner and Genius hops to the outside to get away. Back inside they lock-up, Beefcake backs Genius into the corner and we get a clean break. The Barber mocks The Genius, Genius with a front handspring and they taunt each other. They tie-up again, Brutus backs Genius into the corner and gets his eyes raked. The Genius takes control with heavy right hands, goes back to the eyes and chokes The Barber in the corner. Beefcake powers out and hits The Genius with an inverted atomic drop, Genius taking a time-out on the floor.
He regroups and flips back into the ring, they tie-up once again and Genius goes back to the eyes, delivering right hands and driving Beefcake into the top turnbuckle. He shoots Brutus into the corner, charges in for a dropkick and The Barber avoids it. They lock knuckles in a test of strength, Beefcake with the clear power edge brings The Genius to his knees and drops an elbow on his head. Genius tries to bail out over the top, Brutus stops him and he gets crotched on the top rope, jumping to the outside again to take a walk. He climbs back inside, they lock-up and Genius backs Beefcake into the corner, driving shoulders to the midsection and delivering a flurry of boots. He sends Brutus into the ropes, ducks his head and The Barber with a kick.
Genius fires out of the corner with a kick, shoots Beefcake back into the ropes and scores with a dropkick for a count of 2. Genius with more right hands and a rake of the eyes, gets a schoolboy for a 2 count, then slams Brutus and climbs to the 2nd rope. Beefcake buries a right hand to the breadbasket, catching The Genius coming down, sends him into the ropes for another right hand to the midsection. The Barber slams Genius, whip into the ropes and he locks in the Sleeper Hold. The Genius reverses, grabs a side headlock, Beefcake pushes him off and the referee gets knocked to the floor.
More stiff right hands from Genius, Brutus reverses an irish whip and gets him in the Sleeper Hold again, The Genius fades out. Brutus motions for his scissors, grabbing them at the timekeeper’s table and then cutting Genius’s hair. Mr. Perfect hits the ring and unloads on Beefcake, plants him with a PerfectPlex and the bell rings.
Winner: Double Disqualification
- After The Bell: Perfect grabs a chair, The Genius holds Brutus up and Perfect drives the edge of the chair to the breadbasket, then delivers another shot before a bevy of refs get involved.
- EA’s Take: I had completely forgotten just how flamboyant The Genius was, that character was very light in the feet. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. The Genius is the younger brother of Randy Savage, but was more known for his promos that were poems than his in-ring work. He wrestled sparingly and would gain his most notoriety after being paired with Mr. Perfect as his ‘executive consultant’ and occasional tag partner. Beefcake and Perfect’s rivalry would lead them into WrestleMania.
Backstage: Sean Mooney is standing by with Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan, Haku, ‘Ravishing’ Rick Rude & Andre The Giant as they get ready for the Royal Rumble. Heenan tells Mooney it’s not every man for himself, but every family for themselves. Mooney wonders what happens if Rude & Haku are the last two left, Rude saying he’ll do what he has to do to win. The Brain tries to argue with them that they need to stick together, but they can’t seem to get on the same page.
Match #3 is a Submission Match: Greg ‘The Hammer’ Valentine w/’Mouth Of The South’ Jimmy Hart vs. ‘Rugged’ Ronnie Garvin
Valentine leaves the ring at the bell, complaining to the ref about Garvin’s shin guard, then having words with Jimmy Hart. Rugged Ronnie jumps him from behind, firing away with right hands and rolling The Hammer back inside. Valentine tries to beg off, but Garvin’s not having any of it, dropping The Hammer with chops. He drives Valentine’s head into the top turnbuckle, The Hammer turns the tables and serves a plate of chops of his own. They exchange shots, Garvin connects with a big right hand and Valentine slides to the outside to grab a breather.
Back in the ring now, Rugged Ronnie with more punches, tries to pick the leg and The Hammer prevents it, drops elbows until Garvin rolls away from one. Valentine drops a headbutt to the breadbasket, scores with left hand jabs, Rugged Ronnie fights his way out of the corner, hits a headbutt and both men drop to the canvas. Garvin recovers first, sets for a piledriver, Valentine flips him out of it, Rugged Ronnie hanging on for a sunset flip, but this is a submission match. Collar & elbow tie-up, The Hammer backs Garvin into the corner, unleashes a flurry of chops, Rugged Ronnie pushes Valentine into the ropes and collide heads. Valentine looks for the Figure Four, Garvin kicks him off into the turnbuckle and gets a schoolboy, but again there are no pinfalls.
The Hammer comes right back with a back elbow that drops Rugged Ronnie, locks in the Figure Four and it has no affect due to Garvin’s shinguard. Valentine immediately goes back to the chops, elevates Garvin in a modified torture rack, releases and attempts the Figure Four again, getting kicked off and going into a choke. Garvin gains his footing, connects with lefts and rights in the corner, takes Valentine down with a drop toehold and goes into an indian deathlock. The Hammer gets to the bottom rope to force the break, rolls out to the floor and regroups with Jimmy Hart. Valentine drags Rugged Ronnie to the outside, they exchange chops, Garvin sets for a piledriver and again The Hammer flips Garvin over.
Back inside, Valentine drives his shoulder into the midsection in the corner, Garvin reverses a whip across, follows in and gets caught up in the tree of woe. The Hammer delivers punishment as the ref untangles Rugged Ronnie, grabs a headlock, gets pushed into the ropes and they collide heads again. Jimmy Hart removes Garvin’s shinguard, Valentine with a backbreaker and goes back to the Figure Four. Rugged Ronnie battles through the pain, rolls over to counter and Valentine flips back over, grabbing the ropes for leverage. The ref forces him to break, The Hammer going right to work on the damaged knee. Valentine goes for the Figure Four again, Rugged Ronnie counters into a small package to avoid it, but immediately gets dropped by a Valentine right hand.
The Hammer heads to the top, Garvin sees it coming, hopping on one leg and slamming Valentine to the mat. Rugged Ronnie removes The Hammer’s shinguard now, Valentine with a schoolboy, but they didn’t get the memo that this is a submission match. The Hammer shoots Garvin into the ropes, Rugged Ronnie ducks a clothesline, lays in a right hand and ties Valentine up in the ropes. He gets The Hammer’s shinguard, Jimmy Hart to the apron to break Valentine loose, Rugged Ronnie grabs him and brings him into the ring the hard way. Garvin stalks Jimmy with the shinguard, The Hammer comes up from behind with Garvin’s shinguard, Rugged Ronnie turns around and decks Valentine with it, locking in a sharpshooter and Valentine submits.
Winner: ‘Rugged’ Ronnie Garvin (Sharpshooter)
- EA’s Take: The big blow-off to this long-running rivalry fell flat, in my opinion. This seemed like more of a boxing match with countless amounts of punches being thrown. The idea of guys going for numerous pin attempts in a submission match is a bit absurd in and of itself also. This would mark the end for Garvin’s WWF run and essentially his career, after setting up a feud with Rick Martel to follow, nothing ever came of it and Rugged Ronnie would only work indies on a semi-retired basis. The Hammer’s days of being a singles star were numbered as well, forming an alliance with another of Jimmy Hart’s clients The Honky Tonk Man.