WCW Nitro 1/19/1998
Written By: Bob Colling
World Championship Wrestling presents Nitro
From: New Orleans, Louisiana
After the Nitro Girls bust some moves, Nitro kicks off with a match!
Opening Contest: Rick Martel defeated Eddie Guerrero: Considering Martel is new to the promotion he pretty much dominates Guerrero. It’s a shame since Guerrero is one of the most entertaining wrestlers in WCW at the moment. Anyway, Martel maintains his offense from the opening bell until winning the bout with the Quebec Crab.
After the announcers talk about the issues in the New World Order, we see footage from Thunder where Luger fought Savage and Nash. DDP was taken out of the contest after Hogan whacked him with a crutch.
Hollywood Hulk Hogan makes his way down to the ring for a interview. Hogan believes that he is the reason that the New World Order is able to remain together despite all of the issues they have been having. Bischoff hands Hogan Sting’s bat. Hogan uses the bat to tell his followers that if they decide to step out of line they will suffer the consequences. Hogan is confident that he will beat Sting one, two, three in the middle of the ring just like he did at Starrcade. He finishes off the segment by saying the New World Order is 4-Life.
Second Contest: Chris Benoit defeated Marty Jannetty: Benoit backs Jannetty into a corner to deliver a few blows. Jannetty takes Benoit over with a head scissors and a super kick after avoiding a chop. They trade chops in the corner until Jannetty punches Benoit several times. Jannetty hits Benoit with a leaping fist drop. Jannetty runs into a double big boot from Benoit in the corner. Benoit turns Jannetty inside out with a clothesline followed by a double forearm strike. Jannetty punches Benoit until Benoit strikes back with a right hand. Jannetty is able to drop Benoit with a knee lift for a two count. Benoit blocks a snap suplex attempt and takes Jannetty over with one of his own for a one count. Benoit tosses Jannetty to the floor but is dropped throat first across the top rope by Jannetty from the apron. Jannetty slides back into the ring to punch Benoit a few times. Jannetty blocks a backdrop with a face buster as Raven and his Flock come down to the rings. Benoit gets the Crossface on Jannetty to win the bout. **
After the match, Benoit fights off the Flock until Sick Boy hits Benoit with a springboard dropkick. Benoit gets the Crossface on Boy until Raven enters the ring and wants Benoit. However, Saturn hits Benoit with a clothesline. Jannetty leaps off the top to cross body Saturn and helps Benoit clean house! Jannetty takes a few Flock members out with a slingshot cross body on the floor! Benoit hits the diving head butt on Lodi!
Third Contest: Ernest Miller defeated Jerry Flynn: Miller ends the match, and any suffering fans may have been enduring, by hitting Flynn with a top rope spin kick.
Scott Hall comes down to do a survey. After the survey, Hall taunts Larry Zbyszko by completely discrediting everything he had achieved. Hall suggests that Larry was only the AWA champion because his father in law was the owner. Larry wants to fight Hall as Nitro goes to commercial.
Fourth Contest: Steiner Brothers defeated Konnan/Buff Bagwell: Scott and Bagwell start off the contest with Bagwell knee lifting Scott followed by a hip toss. Bagwell poses several times for Scott. Bagwell continues to work on Scott in the corner with right hands until Scott comes back with a backdrop and a clothesline. Scott connects with a side belly to belly suplex. Konnan tags in but is met with a clothesline from Scott. Scott continues his dominance with a gorilla press slam, which causes Konnan to roll to the floor. Bagwell returns to the contest by hammering away on Scott a few times. Scott counters a power slam by ramming Bagwell back first into a corner and chokes Bagwell for a few moments. Scott shoves the referee right in the face. Bagwell clotheslines Scott over the top to the floor. Scott looked to hit his head dangerously on the apron. Rick helps his brother on the floor by attacking Vincent and Konnan. Scott is double teamed briefly back in the ring. Konnan nails Scott with a rolling thunder lariat. Scott kicks Konnan in the face as he leaps off the middle rope. Scott clotheslines both men and power bombs Bagwell. Scott takes Konnan over with a overhead belly to belly suplex. Scott tosses Bagwell to the floor and plants Konnan with the Steiner Screwdriver to win the bout. Rick Steiner did nothing because Scott refused to tag out. *1/4
After the match, Scott decides to exchange poses with Bagwell. Scott turns around after talking to DiBiase and is met with a stare down with Rick. Scott leaves the ring celebrating the win.
Mean Gene interviews the Giant regarding his match against Hogan later on. This brings out Hogan and Kevin Nash. Nash decides to tease Giant to hit him, but Giant doesn’t give in. Randy Savage tries to attack Nash from behind but Hogan prevents that from occurring. Savage shoves Hogan into Nash who falls into the Giant. Hogan whacks Giant over the back with a bat! Sting runs down to the ring and plants Hogan with the Scorpion Death Drop! Sting ends the segment by pumping Giant up for his upcoming match.
Fifth Contest: WCW Television Champion Booker T defeated Mortis to retain the title: A fairly uneventful title defense from Booker this week. Mortis attempts a top rope hurricanrana but Booker is able to block it with a power bomb! Booker manages to hit the Harlem Hangover and retains the championship.
After the match, Wrath comes down to the ring to give Booker the Death Penalty. Rick Martel decides to be a good human being by making the save for Booker. Martel asks Booker for a title shot at Souled Out. Booker accepts.
Mean Gene interviews Ric Flair. The interview is pretty much the same thing Flair has been talking about for the past two weeks. Flair is better than Bret Hart in his mind. Flair actually lays down on the canvas and dares Hart to put him in the Scorpion. However, Hart isn’t in the ring so that doesn’t happen.
Sixth Contest: Chris Jericho defeated Juventud Guerrera: Guerrera controls Jericho early on but ends up missing a dropkick that sends him to the floor. Jericho soon connects with a power bomb and makes Guerrera tap out to the Lion Tamer.
After the match, Jericho feels remorse for not letting go of hold because he didn’t know that Guerrera was giving up. Rey Mistero Jr. eventually runs down to help Guerrera beat up Jericho.
Seventh Contest: Lex Luger defeated Scott Hall by disqualification: Hall with the usual toothpick spot but is slapped by Luger this time. Hall backs Luger into a corner but Luger powers out of the corner to shove Hall to the mat. Hall knee lifts Luger followed by a few short arm shoulder blocks. Luger battles back with several right hands before getting a hammerlock on Hall for a few moments. Hall tricks Luger into doing the test of strength by instead kicking Luger in the midsection. Hall controls Luger with a bow and arrow type of move. Luger tries to power out but Hall knee lifts him to maintain the advantage. Luger powers out of the hold only to put the hold on Hall. Hall is able to get out of the hold after a low blow as the referee had his backed turned to the action. Hall begins to stomp away on Luger for several moments. Hall continues a slow pace by putting Luger in a sleeper hold. Luger gets out of it and puts Hall in the sleeper. Yawn. Hall crotches Luger on the top rope for a two count. Luger blocks a few punches by Hall and delivers several of his own. Luger connects with a clothesline followed by an atomic drop, twice. Luger delivers a running forearm smash. Luger goes to put Hall in the Torture Rack, but Randy Savage runs in to cause the DQ. 1/2*
After the match, Luger punches Savage and nails Hall with a leaping back elbow off the middle rope. Luger is double teamed by Savage and Hall until Larry Zbyszko runs into the ring to make the save. Zbyszko is double teamed by Hall and Savage. Luger returns to the ring with a chair to chase them off.
Before the main event, Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff come out with Hogan wearing a neck brace. Bischoff has an important announcement. Bischoff says that because of Giant’s earlier actions, Hogan will be unable to compete against Giant. Giant decides to pull Hogan onto the apron and suplex Hogan into the ring to start the match!
Main Event: The Giant defeated Hulk Hogan: Giant chops Hogan in the corner several times followed by a running clothesline in the corner. Kevin Nash has come down to ringside. Giant chokes Hogan until Hogan bails to the floor. Giant follows Hogan and ends up ramming Hogan into the ring steps and guard railing. Giant press slams Hogan over the top rope back into the ring! Giant connects with a backbreaker followed by a right hand which drops Hogan back to the mat. Hogan double axe handles Giant from behind. Nash is able to drop Giant throat first across the top rope as the referee was distracted. Hogan works on Giant with several right hands in the corner. Hogan rams Giant face first into the top turnbuckle. Hogan continues his rather poor offensive by simply choking Giant before delivering several more punches. Hogan clotheslines Giant in the corner and big boots Giant in the chest. Hogan chops Giant and is able to scoop slam the Giant! Hogan hits the leg drop but Randy Savage shows up on the top rope which causes the referee to stop counting. Hogan is distracted by Savage on the floor. Giant recovers and choke slams Hogan to win the bout. *
After the match, Nash attacks Giant, who was grabbing Savage. Nash grabs Savage and looks for the power bomb but Lex Luger runs down to attack Savage instead. Everyone in the New World Order enter the ring until Sting comes down from the rafters. Sting walks through the crowd before entering the ring. Sting cleans house alongside Luger. Savage gets out of a Scorpion Death Drop attempt. Giant has gotten up and chops Hall in the corner as Nitro goes off the air!
End of show
My Take: Benoit/Jannetty was a enjoyable fast pace contest. I really enjoyed the aftermath with the Flock and the fans popped pretty good for what happened. I don’t think Jannetty has gotten that big of a reaction in at least three years. Benoit’s popularity continues to grow with the WCW fan base.
The tag match wasn’t all that bad action wise. It did do a good job of advancing Scott’s eventual heel turn as his attitude continues to spiral towards being a heel. I find it kind of odd that Scott and Bagwell continue to seemingly impress each other by posing for each other. It’s kind of creepy if you ask me.
Hall/Luger was very slow, repetitive and boring. I’m not sure why I decided to recap that match since I had a feeling that would happen. Oh well…
Giant/Hogan would have been much better if Hogan didn’t mail in his performance. Hogan’s offense was left a lot to be desired. Though, Hogan scoop slamming Giant was pretty impressive. The aftermath was the usual stuff you would see to end Nitro, so nothing new in that regard.
Overall, this week’s episode was rather lackluster. A lot of the show was centered around the New World Order issues which after awhile it just gets annoying and unproductive. I just hope this eventually leads to Savage leaving the New World Order since he should have never joined them in the first place.
Thanks for reading.