Welcome to the third installment of Would You Go To This Show? This time around, myself, Matt and Brandon head to the Cow Palace in California for some World Championship Wrestling action. The show took place on August 20th, 1999. The main event featured a dream match of sorts.
But first, let’s start with the opening bouts and work our way through. We are going to try a new format here, so let’s see how this works.
Matt Peddycord: On one hand, I would love to see wrestling in the famous Cow Palace. Unfortunately, this isn’t the 1960s and neither Pepper Gomez nor Ray Stevens are anywhere to be found. No matter how confusing or terrible it had gotten, I was still loyal to WCW in August 1999. Make no mistake though, those days were numbered. I stuck with Monday Nitro, rarely ever watched Thunder and didn’t feel like I was missing anything, and skipped everything on the weekends by this point. But what we’re here to talk about is not just the only-slightly-interesting-at-most history of my WCW fandom, but whether or not this show would have intrigued me. If I had intended this show, would it have changed my perception of the astounding landslide of the quality in the product and reinvigorated my love for WCW at its lowest point? Let’s find out and I’ll begin with the main event because it’s really what we all pay to see.
Brandon Lyles: Hello peeps and peepets! Welcome to another addition of Would You Go To This Show? This time, I am going to venture back to 1999 in World Championship Wrestling. In August of that year, WCW put on a house show at the old Cow Palace in San Francisco, California. It featured several legends and some promising stars on the rise.
Bob Colling: The popularity that WCW once had was dwindling at a rapid pace as they entered the Cow Palace a venue that the company would visit on a regular basis. WCW would need to provide a compelling show with some of their top names in high profiling matches. Let’s see what the California fans were treated to.
Opening Match: Ernest Miller vs. Chris Adams
Matt: I suspect a lot of kicking going on here. Ernest Miller was a fairly entertaining dude. Chris Adams is also an entertaining individual even in his mid-40s. I could go either way on this one, but I’ll give it a YES out of the goodness of my heart and because Chris Adams was doing the right thing and making the new guys look good.
Brandon: Ernest “The Cat” Miller was beginning to get a big push from the company. Therefore, it doesn’t surprise me one bit that he defeated Chris Adams In the opening of this card. The James Brown mojo was in full-effect at the Cow Palace. I would have enjoyed this match thoroughly for the theatrics from Miller and the fact that I have never watched former WCCW legend “Gentleman” Chris Adams wrestle live in person. Yeah, there is no doubt that I would have enjoyed this match!
Bob: At first I wasn’t all that appealed to the match, but then I started to think about the styles these two wrestled and they are rather similar. I think Miller was always a good heel and would be able to get the crowd riled up. As Matt said, there would be a lot of kicking going on, and I don’t think that would be a bad thing. I’ll give this a YES.
Matt: Nope, not the Dungeon of Doom. After the Dungeon of Doom ultimately collapsed at Bash at the Beach 1997 when Kevin Sullivan lost a retirement match to Chris Benoit, Jimmy Hart resurrected the “First Family” stable in 1999 that he had began in Memphis those many years ago. This incarnation of the group included Brian Knobbs, Barbarian, Hugh Morrus, and of all people Jerry Flynn. What a crew. This is a match you could see on Thunder or Saturday Night. NO, I wouldn’t pay to see this match. Would you?
Brandon: Moreover, the Brian Knobbs and Barbarian tag team attraction with Disorderly Conduct seems to be a throwaway match if there ever was one. It’s not that I don’t care about the participants here, but the combination of Knobbs and Barbarian just makes me cringe. It doesn’t make sense, and Disorderly Conduct is a tag team that I don’t even remember. As someone who watched WCW regularly back then, that’s saying something. Eh, I’ll pass on this one, head to the concession stands and look forward to the next match eagerly.
Bob: I don’t know why this would be on the card whatsoever. I honestly don’t even know who was in Disorderly Conduct. I’d imagine this was just Knobbs and Barbarian beating the crap out of Conduct. Sometimes you gotta sit through crap in order to get to the good stuff.
Third Contest: Buff Bagwell vs. David Flair
Matt: I never cared much for David Flair. It always felt so awkward having him around. He just never felt ready for prime time and I had turned off WCW by the time he turned into a complete psycho, so I can only speak for his work around this time period. As for Buff, he had gotten so much better by 1999 than say 1995. I’m assuming it was due to all those trips he took to New Japan with Scott Norton. Nevertheless, this gets a NO from me. I can’t imagine anyone paying to see these two back then.
Brandon: Following that match, we have another singles encounter. Buff Bagwell against David Flair doesn’t seem like a match that will draw a huge crown, and quite frankly, it isn’t, but a chance to see Ric Flair’s son wrestle in person for the first time doesn’t seem like such a bad situation. In fact, if memory serves correct, he was nearing a partnership or already in one with Torrie Wilson. I don’t think she was booked on this show, but if she was, then heck yeah! Anyway, I am a fan of Buff Bagwell. The guy can work in the ring and he was really embracing the Buff persona. Similar to Earnest Miller, the theatrics from Buff would have been enough to satisfy me for this match. His top hats were awesome!!!
Bob: The good stuff isn’t Bagwell vs. David Flair, though. I’ve watched some of David’s stuff in ’99 and he was no way ready to wrestle. Actually, I don’t think he was ever ready to compete in a ring after years of training. This match is another rone that gets a no from me. I liked Bagwell, but this is a waste of him.
Fourth Contest: WCW Cruiserweight Champion Rey Mysterio Jr., Eddie Guerrero & Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Bobby Duncum Jr., Barry & Kendall Windham
Matt: At the time, we were so conditioned to seeing the cruiserweights only doing cruiserweight stuff, which just looks goofy to me against heavyweight guys unless it’s done right. Another problem is that I don’t see them making a compelling enough situation for the cruiserweight team to make it interesting either. I get the feeling this would be your standard face-in-peril and hot-tag situation with the West Texas Rednecks not ever really getting that major heat on one of the cruiserweights as it should be. I could be wrong! I just don’t remember these two teams ever tearing the house down against each other on TV, which is why this will get a pass from me just from what I remember from 14 years ago. NO.
Brandon: Rey Mysterio Jr., Eddie and Chavo vs. The West Texas Rednecks has the word fantastic written all over it. You have an influx of cruiserweight wrestling, Rap Is Crap theatrics and a contrast in styles between each team. This is what I call a good old fashion six man tag team match. I’m not sure what the current storyline was involving these teams, but with the babyfaces winning, there had to be something that management was tinkering with to see what would come of each team if this outcome was to take place on Nitro or Thunder. It wouldn’t surprise me if The West Texas Rednecks defeated Rey, Eddie and Chavo at a house show around the same time period.
Bob: I’m always a fan of little guys against big guys. This match would likely make the West Texas Rednecks look pretty good and their moves look even better. Especially with three workers like Rey, Eddie and Chavo. I could watch those cruiserweights wrestle all day and having them in action against three out of the four guys of the Rednecks would be a fine match. This would probably be the match of the night, if I had to guess. If these got fifteen minutes to wrestle, they would surely be able to provide some quality stuff. So, this is the first YES from me!
Fifth Contest: Bill Goldberg vs. WCW Television Champion Rick Steiner
Matt: Man, I really thought I would hate this show just thinking about the timeline. On paper, Goldberg spearing Rick Steiner and throwing him around the ring does get me a little excited. I was still a fan of Rick Steiner at this point and I even liked his bully singles persona that he had incorporated. I wouldn’t want it to go on for very long, but I would look forward to this match. YES.
Brandon: Goldberg vs. Rick Steiner was nothing special, but if you like hard-hitting action from two bulls, then this is the match for you. Do you really want to talk about the term….. stiff? Well, this match had to be stiff has heck, and just for that, I would have marked out during this match from the stiff beatdowns. Goldberg was a shell of himself during 1999, but he was still one of the most interesting and box office attractions in pro wrestling. On the other hand, Rick Steiner was finally getting a major single push after nearly teaming with his brother Scott for ten years. The new look and heel attitude from Rick was refreshing for him and the fans. I still would have liked this match for the stiffness…… a la Texas Wrestling!
Bob: I actually enjoyed heel Rick Steiner. I wouldn’t see this match going over six minutes, but a Goldberg squash would be effective for the crowd as they were always pumped up to see the spear and jackhammer. Plus, having Goldberg on the card would probably draw some people to the show.
Sixth Contest: Sting vs. Sid Vicious
Matt: I’m a huge Sting mark since I was old enough to comprehend television. Blonde hair, dark hair, baseball bat, Stinger Splash, the whole deal. And no matter how old I get, I still love watching this man wrestle and want to get behind him. You may not think of him when you consider Sting’s most popular feuds, but Sid Vicious is one of Sting’s oldest and biggest rival dating back to 1990. Sid was Sting’s first PPV opponent after becoming the world champ for the first time. Never been a huge fan of Sid, but I would watch this match. That’s another YES.
Brandon: Sting taking on Sid Vicious just does not interest me one bit. By this time, I did not care for crow version Sting anymore. He should have ceased that character and replaced it with colorful Stinger after Starrcade ’97. Sid Vicious was being groomed for a run with Goldberg and wanted to be referred to as The Millennium Man….. undefeated and wanted to destroy Goldberg. Sting and Vicious just didn’t click, and I would not have cared as much about this match as I probably wanted a better booking vision for both guys. Don’t get me wrong. This is a PPV quality match, but this is nothing special.
Bob: I don’t know why but a match between these two has always appealed to me. That is confusing because I feel like everytime they wrestled it was always a lackluster match between the two of them. Probably has to do with the fact that I have always enjoyed both men’s work for some reason. Sting being a good worker and Sid for being a monster. I’d actually like to see these two wrestle on a house show.
Main Event: WCW World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan vs. Bret Hart
Matt: t’s the WrestleMania 9 main event that never happened. I actually didn’t mind the resurgence of the Hulk Hogan character during this point. Similar to the character in 2002, at least for a short time the nostalgia is pretty fun. In this case, I don’t think it would necessarily be a good match simply because Bret is not much of a bumping wrestler especially for the kind of bumps he would have to take for Hogan. I just don’t see him going down to the Hogan formula that he tried so hard to destroy and reeducate fans being the true wrestling storyteller that he is. The best match you could get out of these two in my opinion would be heel Hogan against babyface Bret because I think Bret has a better comeback and people would want to see Bret beat Hogan regardless. I’d be curious to know how long this match went, too. YES.
Brandon: The main event pitted two guys, Bret Hart and Hulk Hogan, in a showdown that seems like a total PPV match-up. Given that Hogan wrestled at houses shows regularly back then, you had to want to make time to see The Hulkster. This match ended in a no-contest, and that just can’t happen anymore. Screwjob finishes are horrible enough, but when it’s done to the conclusion of the event, I cringe a bit more. I’d like this match for watching Bret and Hulk in person.
Bob: This is a huge main event for the time in WCW. These two should have competed on pay per view with the biggest prize of them all on the line, but that never was able to happen. So, being able to see these two wrestle live at a house show is something I wouldn’t be able to pass up. I wasn’t aware of them wrestling against each other in ’99, and I think the crowd atmosphere would make this to be a highly anticpiated and fun main event to witness. I don’t see them mailing it in, either. Anyway, it’s a strong main event that I would shed out some cash to see even in ’99.
Matt: Final Score: YES, 4. NO, 3. WCW would get my money here by a slim margin. I don’t think this show would have changed my perception of WCW or kept me from finally making the change and flipping over to the WWF, but I would have more than likely had a good time on this night in August 1999. I feel like there’s enough star power here to make up for any low expectations of what goes on in the ring.
Brandon: Overall, this is a decent card. I’d pay my money to watch it live. Although there are at least two throw-away matches on this card, there are enough PPV quality matches to peek my interest while keeping me entertained throughout the process. World Championship Wrestling circa 1999 had many problems, but going to a live show with someone while enjoying a cold beverage, popcorn and pro wrestling is worth the time to make for attending a live show. Well done WCW and on to the next show……… Until next time peeps and peepets, I am Spec_Sun. I’ll check you out next time with more reviews and opinionated banter on Would You Go To This Show? Now go watch an episode of WCW Nitro and relive the times!
Bob: All things considered, it’s not an awful show to go to. I’m picturing an enjoyable six man tag match, a decent opening match, Goldberg killing Rick Steiner, an average match between Sting and Sid if I’m lucky and a rare main event. I can’t hate on that, really. I’d take the one night out of my summer to watch WCW for the two and half to three hours that they would be there for. The good outweighs the bad here. A rare saying for WCW at the time.
So, it’s a clean sweep for WCW this time around. All three of us would attend this WCW house show. Would you attend the show? Why or why not? Let us know!
Thanks for reading!
34-year-old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Long-time fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls, and Minnesota Vikings. An avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on old-school wrestling.