The Furious Flashbacks – WCW Clash of the Champions 24
Posted by Arnold Furious on 05.05.2006
The Furious Flashbacks – WCW Clash of the Champions 24
August 18th 1993. We're at the Ocean Center in Daytona Beach, Florida. Hosts are Fat Tony & Jesse Ventura. Tony tells us that Brian Pillman is injured.
PRE-RECORDED – Pillman tells us his ankle injury is career threatening. Austin tells us that Arn & Roma that their chance will be down the line but WCW ordered a defence tonight so Steven Regal subs in.
Tag titles - Hollywood Blondes (c) v The Horsemen
Regal is replacing the injured Pillman so it's not really the Blondes at all. I'm guessing Hollywood has now moved from halfway between Texas and Cincinnati to somewhere over the Atlantic. This would mark the absolute end of one of the hottest tag teams WCW ever had. The saviours of the tag team division and, at the time, the best tag team in the world. Stupid, stupid, stupid. The ref misses Arn backdrop Austin over the ropes and the crowd is hot as fuck here. How hot that fuck is, I'm not sure. Austin gets a whuppin' so Regal tags in. Roma comes in but Austin trips him up and now Roma takes a heat segment. Pillman decides it's time to stick his oar in and he chokes Roma on the ropes. Roma throws fists as Ventura points out it's the only thing he can do. Oddly enough there's no mention of Roma's short lived boxing career from 1992. He even had a winning record. You'd think they'd point that out. Roma gives Austin the Stun Gun to turn the tide. Regal distracts preventing the hot tag and Roma gets another beat down. Regal eats an Enzuigiri and Arn gets the hot tag. Arn looks for the DDT but gets caught from behind by Regal. Bill Dundee goes to use Pillman's crutch but Austin ends up getting bashed by it and Arn gets the roll up for the pin at 9.49. **1/2. Decent formula stuff and the crowd popped big for the title change even though it was the wrong thing to do. Can't really complain when it pops the crowd I guess but then the finish could have been built up better. The whole title reign of the Blondes deserved a really dramatic ending. This wasn't it.
PROMO TIME – Arn & Roma. According to Roma they're ready to adapt at any time while also pointing out people thought he wasn't good enough but he sure showed them.
Bobby Eaton v Too Cold Scorpio
Scorpio finds himself unprepared for Eaton's aggression in the early going but comes back with a Rolling Prawn Hold for 2. I mark for that. Eaton promptly bashes him in the corner but crashes and burns with a Stinger Splash and Scorpio hits a high crossbody for 2. Scorpio goes back to basics with a headlock before legdropping Eaton's arm. He misses another crossbody and Eaton decides to take out the arm with an eye for an eye approach. To the ropes and Scorpio jumps off to dropkick Eaton to the floor. That was different. Scorpio leaves himself open though and Eaton takes out his arm again. Eaton goes up top but hits the Savage Elbow instead of the Alabama Jam. That gets 2. Perhaps the finisher would have gotten the job done. Scorpio gets back in charge and the 450 splash finishes at 5.26. The lesson being that if you get the opportunity to hit your finishing move, do so. *1/2. Not a bad little match but Eaton was treated like a jobber and Scorpio didn't sell properly. I'm sure that comes as a shock to no one but there you go.
Maxx Payne v Johnny B. Badd
Again? Maxx is getting over as a babyface. He's putting his guitar "Norma Jean" up against Badd's gay mask because he wants to expose his scarred face and make him look foolish. I think Badd manages that by himself as he's wearing all kinds of gay crap to the ring. Badd comes back with the boxing punches. Crossbody misses as Payne is too alert to be taken down by that this early. Payne hits a sidewalk slam. Payne pulls the mask off but there's another, less gay, mask on underneath. Badd hits a flying headscissors but Payne clocks him with a clothesline. Hammerlock slam and Payne is after the Paynekiller so Badd rolls him up for 2. Payne rather foolishly goes to the ropes but misses off there and Badd just pins him at 2.42. Wow. Payne sure got treated like crap in WCW. *. Oddly enough their best match thanks to some decent storytelling before the rather abrupt finish.
POST MATCH Badd says he'll reveal his face to the world in 3 days. Wow. I'm shocked. Seeing as he's been unmasked for years before being masked for about a month.
A Flair For The Gold
Special guests are Sting, Davey Boy Smith and a "mystery guest". If you don't know where this is going let me give you a hint…this could be a disaster, naturally. Flair introduces his maid Fifi. Flair starts shilling War Games and Fall Brawl '93. Davey rambles incoherently about how tonight is "cooking". But in comes Sid with Harlem Heat. Sid wants to know who the mystery partner is. Davey continues to ramble and already this segment is horrible but Sting introduces their partner who's going to SHOCK THE WORLD! IT'S THE MOTHERFUCKIN' SHOCKMASTER! For those who don't know a load of shitty pyro goes off and Fred fuckin' Ottman comes crashing through a paper wall. Only he's wearing one of those Stormtrooper helmets spray painted purple and he falls over. And his helmet falls off. And everyone just stops because it's such an enormous fuck up. You can see said fuck up here. Sid tries to salvage the segment by not laughing. Meanwhile Ole Anderson cuts a badly pre-recorded promo, which is supposed to be the Shockmaster talking. Wrestlecrap had a field day with this shit. "You want a piece of me, c'mon, you want a piece of me". Oh lordy.
"What an entrance by the Shockmaster" chuckles Jesse Ventura. Indeed. Fat Tony has to change the subject because he's laughing too much and so is Ventura. Some sidenotes on the Shockmaster. His costume appears loosely based on the early costume of a character from GI Joe: The Action Force called Serpentor. Weak. Shockmaster is one of those rare instances where I don't think it's actually possible to defend it. Yeah, he probably would have looked like considerably less of a tool if he hadn't fallen over on his entrance but he still had Ole Anderson voice over his voice. He still had a Stormtrooper helmet covered in purple glitter. And ultimately, he's still Fred Ottman. The guy that played Tugboat is never going to be a threat to Vader or Sid. I don't hate Fred Ottman. I just pity him. And as for WCW, they continued to push Ottman despite this unmitigated disaster. Uncle Eric figured wrestling fans were too stupid to notice. Or something along those lines even though I've heard several people say this very moment destroyed their love of professional wrestling.
TV title – Paul Orndorff (c) v Ricky Steamboat
Orndorff has trouble dealing with the "Paula" chants. Steamboat controls the early going with a headlock and a quick shoulderblock gets 2 before he goes back to it. Steamboat has a clear cut advantage in terms of speed and he's showing Orndorff that technically he's his match. Orndorff only has one course of action and overpowers Steamboat with a wristlock. Unfortunately for Orndorff it's reversed back into the headlock with power. In other words Orndorff has no advantage at all. Steamboat misses with a dive near the ropes though and takes a spill to the floor. Orndorff sees his opening and drops an elbow to the standing Steamboat's head for 2. Now Orndorff is keen to show he's technically on a par with a solid chinlock and when Steamboat gets out Orndorff slams him for 2. Back to the chinlock and perhaps Orndorff isn't taking enough advantage of Steamboat's mistake but then he's also got one eye on the clock as Steamboat only has 10 minutes to take the title. The chinlocking gets a bit excessive for such a short match but Orndorff's plan is clear. Whenever he goes for a pin he holds Steamboat down and forces him to kick out multiple times. He's trying to take Steamboat's energy and his time away. Up to halfway in the match and Orndorff has used superior tactics to stay ahead BUT as a result he missed his chance to capitalise on the only mistake Steamboat has made in the match. Now Steamboat takes a chance to mount a comeback and hits a back suplex for 2 with Orndorff looking for another chinlock. Steamboat chops Orndorff over the top rope and Ventura calls the tactics "questionable". Steamboat doesn't want to give Orndorff recovery time and he gets up a head of speed for a suicide dive. Steamboat turns his back and gets a shoulder in the ribs. Orndorff slingshots in for 2 but Steamboat gets into the ropes. Orndorff gets the title belt with the intention of using it but Steamboat rolls him up for 2. Orndorff tries for a piledriver but Steamboat gets out into a roll up. Orndorff powers out with a great bridge but Steamboat backslides him for 2. Steamboat goes up for the high crossbody but Orndorff rolls through it for 2. Steamboat is far more alert though and it seems Orndorff is disorientated by all the quick roll up's as a he falls prey to another one at 8.14 and there goes the TV title. ***. Great match for less than 10 minutes. Steamboat was working his ass off towards the end. If they'd kept that pace throughout then it would have made less sense but it would have been a stellar match.
POST MATCH Orndorff is pissed off and he piledrives Steamboat on the belt. On the ramp. That'll learn him.
Ric Flair/Sting v Awesome/King Kong
The Kong "brothers" are Dwayne McCollough and Scott Thompson. If you've never heard of them there's a reason for that. Harley Race is managing the duo. As you can tell from the names they're big chaps. They're also masked and hard to tell apart. Not that it makes the blindest bit of difference here as they're up against the two biggest players in WCW. Even with their enormous size advantage they don't stand a remote chance. It doesn't even need the lengthy Michael Buffer introduction letting us know that the Kongs are the "biggest tag team in wrestling today". Doesn't matter. They're just the heaviest jobbers. In fact Buffer's intro runs longer than the match. Sting hits a dropkick and a pair of slams. That's half the match. Sting keeps hitting dropkicks and the Kongs have managed nothing so far. Stinger Splash. Sting adds in a splash off the top for good measure but Awesome Kong is just lying there counting the lights. It was already over. Match time is 2.12. ¼*. Flair didn't even need to be out there, which begs the question; why did they book this?
PROMO TIME – Now Fat Tony gets a chat with Sting & Flair who shill the Saturday Night match up the following week between the two. Sting goes after the NWA title. Of course thanks to the Disney tapings everyone already know that Flair retains. And then loses to Rick Rude at Fall Brawl for that matter.
Rick Rude/The Equalizer v Dustin Rhodes/Mystery Partner
Equalizer was the early incarnation of Dave Sullivan, Kevin's untalented brother. Or rather he wasn't because this is wrestling. His actual name is Bill Dannenhauser. Wrestling, eh? Rhodes mystery partner is Roadwarrior Animal. Only it's not as Rude says he's prepared for Animal so in comes Hawk from the other side of the arena. This was their triumphant return to WCW after a mediocre, by their standards, run with the WWF. Hawk is the actual participant and he has too much power for Rude and too much agility for Evad. Dustin fills in for Animal on the Doomsday Device and Rude gets roughed up. The only upside to this match is that the crowd is into it. Rude clocks Rhodes with a hard clothesline and Rhodes sells it big. Rude lays him out again and grinds. Rhodes gets worked over for a while and the crowd gets on Rude's case. He stands there doing nothing, which is tremendously exciting. It seems that WCW is more intent on giving away the car that Animal drove into the arena tonight than actually focus on the match. This is one of the rare occasions where I'll be happy for them to do that. On the plus side, I like Rick Rude. On the downside, he's really not capable of carrying Rhodes let alone the other two stiffs in there. Evad is so awful. He goes to slam Rhodes but Hawk shoulderblocks them both over and Rhodes pins at 7.41. DUD. It's hard to imagine exactly what the line of thinking was when they decided to put Evad Sullivan on TV. Giving him a stupid gimmick just makes matters worse and makes Rude look like a twat for hanging around with him. Rhodes buddying up with the LOD at least makes him look reasonably smart and adds to the continued and unrelenting push that nepotism will get for you.
WCW title – Vader (c) v Davey Boy Smith
Vader dumps the mask early and lays Davey out on the ramp. Davey gets back up and demonstrates his power with a stalling vertical suplex on the ramp. Clothesline back into the ring and Davey slingshots back in only to get Vader's knees in his gut. Vader lays in the punches in the corner. Outside and Vader tries for a splash on the rail but misses. Back inside and Davey hits a Samoan drop for 2. Davey runs right into the Baby Bull chest smash. Vader hauls him up and now it's his turn for a Samoan drop. Vader climbs and hits a splash off the top rope for 2. Davey looks for a sunset flip, Vader sits down but misses and Bulldog pins for 2. Vader muscles his way back in front and splashes Davey's spine. Davey tries for a crucifix, Vader goes for the Samoan drop again but Bulldog rolls with it into a pin for 2. Vader dishes out another pummelling in the corner. Vader climbs but Davey crotches him with a dropkick. Vader pummels Davey down again though - VADERBOMB gets 2. Vader looks to come off the top again but Davey slams him knocking the ref out in the process. Davey looks for another suplex but Harley Race sneaks in to clip the knee and Vader falls on top for the pin at 11.11. ***1/2. Not Vader-Sting but still a decent match proving Vader could work with a variety of other main event talents. Cactus Jack attacks Vader post match making a triumphant return only for the show to end.
The 411: Good grief this show is awful. The only professionals out there were Ricky Steamboat and the guys that went on last. Everyone else looked like they didn’t want to be there. The whole Disney tapings thing had the entire company in an absolute mess. Sure it probably saved a little money but they flushed that away on lost buyrates because no one cared about shows when the results were already easily available from anyone who attended tapings for shows 3 months from now. The obvious example here is the tag match where the Blondes had to drop the titles even though Pillman was injured because WCW had already filmed footage of Arn & Roma as champions from the following weeks show. So WCW had painted themselves into assorted corners by cementing their title reigns for the following 3 months. WCW ended up losing a fortune during 1993 and it seemed as the year went on their made worse and worse decisions. Compare this year at the hands of Eric Bischoff to the previous year of Bill Watts and you’d be amazed which one is considered a genius when it comes to running a wrestling company. Watts’s shows were vastly, vastly superior and the company did better financially. Bischoff looked totally out of his depth and despite a huge talent roster they couldn’t put on good shows. Bischoff couldn’t buy a good show. Well, he could, and he would but in 1993 he couldn’t afford to. There are two decent matches here with Davey-Vader and Steamboat-Orndorff being entertaining but everything else is horrific. Especially the Shockmaster. It’s so retarded that it’s possibly the stupidest thing I’ve seen a wrestling company do. Scratch that. Gobbledygooker. But apart from that this is the most retarded. The only good thing about Clash #24 is it got the Vader-Cactus Jack storyline back on track, which thanks to Davey losing again was the only main event WCW had left. Well, apart from Starrcade but you have to wait for that.