Written by: Matt Peddycord
May 15, 1993
(Taped on 4/20/1993)
The current WCW & NWA Champs were as follows:
WCW World Champion: Big Van Vader (3/17/1993)
NWA World Champion: Barry Windham (2/21/1993)
WCW U.S. Champion: Dustin Rhodes (1/11/1993)
WCW/NWA World Tag Team Champions: The Hollywood Blondes (3/2/1993)
WCW World Television Champion: Paul Orndorff (3/2/1993)
Your hosts are Tony Schiavone & Jesse Ventura.
- Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart vs. Mustafa Saed
This would be Neidhart’s Worldwide debut, according to Ventura. He had already been in the company for a couple weeks at this point. Saed would go on later to success as one-half of the original ECW tag team known as the Gangstas along with New Jack. At least as successful as you can get when your partner is New Jack. Pretty stiff little squash. Neidhart hooks a cobra clutch for the submission win. (0:51) Okay, I wasn’t expecting this to be *that* short.
- Ron Simmons vs. Fred Avery
Simmons went from chasing the world belt, to the US belt, and now to the TV belt in the span of six months. That should tell you where his career is at right now. Ron channels the spirit of his former DOOM partner Butch Reed and quickly finishes off Avery with a Flying Shoulderblock. (0:49) They are zipping right through this show.
- Scott Norton vs. Johnny Gunn
Norton is looking for some RESPECT~! and has that same attitude the Undertaker had in late 2001-early 2002. He nails Gunn before the bell starts and powerslams him for the win before Gunn even gets his jacket off. (0:27) Good gosh these are short. Norton was originally supposed to wrestle at Slamboree against Sting, but he left early due to knee problems and wouldn’t return to WCW until 1995.
- Flair for the Gold
Yeah! There is something salvageable about this show after all. This was Flair’s interview segment while WCW waited for his no-compete clause to run out. On this segment, Flair plays Johnny Carson and Arn Anderson plays Ed McMahon. You know, to take some of the pressure off of Johnny. I mean, Ric. Apparently it was successful enough to continue on past Flair’s no compete clause to include such memories as the debut of the Shockmaster. But I’m getting ahead of myself here. Today’s guests are the tag champs the Hollywood Blondes: Steve Austin and Brian Pillman. Flair puts both guys over and the Blondes proceed to bury Flair and Anderson by making old people jokes. Austin says that the other day he was looking in the history books, WAYY WAYYY back in the history books, and mentions something about the Four Clovers? Or was it the Four Hunchbacks? Flair corrects him and tells him he means the Four Horsemen. Austin says the Horsemen are old news and wouldn’t stand a chance today because of the Hollywood Blondes. Pillman says at Slamboree, he and Austin are going to fly all the old-timers and so-called legends in for a nice meal before the show. He hopes to see AA and Flair are first in-line. AA stands up to possibly bust some heads, but Flair cools him down. Austin makes some more old people jokes, which causes Flair to take off the jacket. Uh oh. GERITOL ON ICE? Flair starts yelling, so the Blondes exit stage right. Good thing Fifi the hot French maid is there to make it all better.
- WCW U.S. Heavyweight Champion Dustin Rhodes vs. Rick Rude
This was one of those “computerized” contenders challenge matches, meaning the computer would decide who a champion would defend his belt against. Kensuke Sasaki was originally chosen to face Dustin, but he’s injured so Rude is subbing for him. So what’s the point of the computer again if you’re still just going to choose someone else to wrestle? This had been a long time coming anyway and makes a ton more sense considering Sasaki and Rhodes were scheduled to be partners at Slamboree against Rude and Orndorff. For a little bit of backstory, Rude had to forfeit the US title in December due to an injury. In January, Rhodes won the title tournament, so whoever was US champion when Rude returned would obviously be targeted. To the best of my knowledge, this is Rude’s first televised US title shot since he returned two months before. Rhodes has his shoulder taped up from an injury of his own. Very intense tie-up to start. Rude whips Rhodes hard into the corner and works the back. Rhodes battles out of the corner with a knee lift and nails Rude with a clothesline off the middle rope for 1-2-NO! Now Rude gets the same turnbuckle treatment. Gutwrench suplex gets two. We JIP to a Rude bearhug. Rhodes claws Rude in the face to escape and then tries a slam, but he can’t get him up. Rude’s back hurts too, so he can’t suplex Rhodes either. Double clothesline! Once they’re both up, Rude ducks a clothesline and powerslams Rhodes for 1-2-NO! Rude turns Rhodes over on his stomach and comes off the top with a flying knee drop! Cover, 1-2-NO! Rhodes reverses a tombstone piledriver into one of his own for 1-2-NO! Now Rhodes comes off the top, but Rude gets his boot up to block. Rude comes off the top again, but Rhodes ducks out of the way and delivers a DDT out of nowhere. He covers for 1-2-NO! Rude jawbreakers out of a sleeper, but gets caught up on the top turnbuckle for a slam to the mat. He then goes to the eyes and whips Rhodes into the ref to send him out to the floor. Rude school boys Rhodes and holds the tights, but there’s no ref. Duh. Rude goes over and yells at the ref. Rhodes charges, but takes a backdrop to the floor on TOP of the ref. There’s your first controversial ending where Rhodes should’ve won by DQ. Ref Randy Anderson comes down and checks on the original referee Nick Patrick. Meanwhile, Rude tries to suplex Rhodes back in from the apron, but Rhodes flips out and rolls Rude up. Ref Randy Anderson slides in and makes a late count for 1-2-NO! Rhodes delivers a bridging back suplex for 1-2-3! Both guys got their shoulder up before the three-count, but Randy Anderson only saw Rude’s shoulder fly off the canvas. There’s your other controversial ending to the match. Rude gets the strap tonight thanks to Randy Anderson, but Nick Patrick saw Dustin’s shoulder come off the mat, so the title gets held up. (9:38 shown) Good back and forth match, but just a tad overbooked with all the controversy. ***¼
Final Thoughts: A fun show with the “Flair for the Gold” segment and the US title match. Of course, the squashes are so short, they don’t even really matter.