WCW Monday Nitro 4-21-97
Live from Saginaw, MI
Airdate: April 21, 1997
Attendance: 5,484 (4,989 paid)
Hosted by Tony Schiavone, Larry Zbyszko, “Iron” Mike Tenay, & Bobby “The Brain” Heenan
Will Nitro contain any surprises? What happens in the next chapter of WCW versus nWo? Read on!
As the program begins, former WWF Vice-President of Talent Relations James J. Dillon exits a limousine to enter the arena. What’s he doing here? For those unaware, Dillon took the front office job with the WWF when Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson left the NWA in late 1988.
Match 1 for the WCW US title: Dean Malenko (champion) versus Yuji Nagata
Summary: Decent opener that showcased Nagata well despite that first enziguri attempt.
Match 2: Glacier versus Ciclope
Summary: Showcase match for Glacier.
After the match, the former Adam Bomb comes to the ring. Meanwhile, Mortis sneaks up from behind Glacier and annihilates him with a superkick. Vandenberg joins the fray as Mortis steals Glacier’s helmet. While Mortis slaps Glacier, the former Adam Bomb delivers a uranage. Mortis then goes after Glacier’s “white” eye. Next, they use the spike of Glacier’s helmet and bury it into his eye. SICK! Unlike the Road Warriors’ destruction of Dusty Rhodes back in 1988, Glacier doesn’t bleed like a stuck pig.
According to Schiavone, Dillon has been named the chairman of the Executive Committee. We then revisit the ending to last week’s show when Sting distributed bats to Giant, Luger, and DDP. Suddenly, referee Nick Patrick invades the broadcast table and apologizes to some WCW people. Afterward, he mentions “Macho Man” Randy Savage along with Eric Bischoff. As he states that the fine he levied against Savage was revoked, he notes his durability, reliability, and loyalty. WE HAVE A FACE TURN!
Match 3 for the WCW World TV title: Ultimo Dragon (champion w/ Sonny Onoo) versus “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton
Summary: Showcase match for Dragon.
At the entrance, “Mean” Gene Okerlund interviews Lord Steven Regal. While the Saginaw faithful chants “Regal sucks,” Regal hints that he slept with the Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson. He then states that at Slamboree he’ll get his chance to regain the WCW World TV title. After he runs down Dragon, he insults the audience at home by calling us “xenophobic, miserable, little toads.” Great promo, Regal!
Match 4: “Lionheart” Chris Jericho versus Meng (w/ Jimmy Hart)
Summary: Showcase match for Meng. Poor Jericho.
At the entrance, Okerlund interviews Hart with Meng and mentions that Meng will face Chris Benoit at Slamboree. Sullivan and Jacqueline join them to mention Sullivan’s daughter Shannon. When Sullivan requests Meng apply his Tongan death grip, Jacqueline, wearing a very revealing dress, stops him.
A video airs featuring Benoit.
On WCW Saturday Night, Ultimo Dragon defends the World TV title against Juventud Guerrera. Also, Lex Luger faces Meng. All in one hour!
Match 5: Public Enemy versus the Steiners
Summary: More angle than match as the Steiners mix it up with the Dungeon.
After the match, Scott makes Konnan taste the steel railing. It must have tasted like the Porker at Coty’s Landing. The six-way brawl continues as even Big Poppa Steiner nails Morrus.
We then revisit moments from hour #1.
At the entrance, Okerlund interviews Dillon. When Schiavone mentions Patrick’s return plea, Dillon states that his reinstatement “is being taken under advisement.” He then has good news and bad news about Bischoff. The good news is that he has NO AUTHORITY in WCW, but the bad news is that he “has an iron clad contract;” thus, he cannot be fired. Dammit!
Suddenly, Bischoff makes his entrance as Dillon notes that contracts for Big Bubba Rogers and Michael Wallstreet are “not valid.” Bischoff then interrupts with “Bite me,” touts WCW as the “#1 wrestling company on the planet,” and questions whether or not he’s a problem within Turner. When Dillon says “yes,” Bischoff responds with another “Bite me.”
As Bischoff asks whether or not Dillon can “fill (his) shoes,” Dillon shoots on him about how Bischoff didn’t build up WCW alone. Before leaving, Bischoff finishes with a third “Bite Me.” Dillon closes by asserting his authority vehemently. I guess the nWo is trying to appeal to adolescent fans with their new catchphrase.
After a commercial break, we revisit last week’s show when Reggie White entered the ring to confront Mongo.
Match 6: Jeff Jarrett (w/ Debra) versus Scotty Riggs
Summary: More angle than match as the Reggie White-Mongo saga continues.
Match 7 for the WCW Cruiserweight title: Syxx (champion w/ Kevin Nash) versus Rey Mysterio, Jr.
Summary: Good high-flying from Mysterio with Syxx acting as the ring general.
After the match, Dillon heads to the ring and yells at Syxx to “break the hold.” As EMTs come to the ring, Syxx fought with WCW Security. EMTs then carried Mysterio out on a stretcher. Asserting his authority, Dillon informs Nash and Syxx: “This type of behavior is not going to be tolerated anymore.” Nash and Syxx respond with “Bite Me.”
Next, a video airs featuring Luger.
Lee Marshall then delivers the 1-800-COLLECT road report from “Norfolk, VA.” If Marshall took a tour of the USS Wisconsin, he’d probably ask for some cheese and a polka band.
THE FOLLOWING ANNOUNCEMENT HAS BEEN PAID FOR BY THE NEW WORLD ORDER:
Buy the shirt! Send it to Rock Star Gary. Make it an XL.
THE PRECEDING ANNOUNCEMENT HAS BEEN PAID FOR BY THE NEW WORLD ORDER.
Actually, it’s an nWo promo for Hogan’s latest movie—McCinsey’s Island starring Grace Jones and Robert Vaughn.
The nWo hits the ring, and Syxx calls Flair “banana-nose” as well as a rip-off of Buddy Rogers. When Nash speaks, he mentions “the road (Flair and Piper) paved for (him) and saw nothing but potholes.” He then mentions WCW’s penchant for nepotism (e.g. Watts, Rhodes) as well as Hall’s earlier WCW tenure and pay cut.
Upon mentioning “going to New York,” he needed to “dig the business out of the funk (Flair and Piper) left it in.” Nash then seeks and gains the cheap pop when mentioning his hometown of Detroit yet also demands respect. As he continues with his soliloquy, Nash states that (the young guys) “try their best to patch the potholes that (Flair and Piper) have left behind.”
HOT TAKE: Similar to Shawn Michael’s speech last week on RAW is WAR, this is a carefully-crafted worked shoot. While on RAW is WAR, it generated buzz about the Michaels-Bret rivalry. On Nitro, its purpose is to induce heat for the main event at the PPV.
Match 8: Diamond Dallas Page (w/ Kimberly) versus Psicosis
Summary: Showcase match for DDP.
Among the Saginaw faithful, Savage with Elizabeth calls out DDP and claims that Kimberly has felt the “madness.” Ooh. DDP replies by calling Savage “monkey boy” and challenges him RIGHT NOW. While the Saginaw faithful chants “D-D-P,” Savage retreats.
In the ring, Okerlund interviews Flair, Piper, and Kevin Greene. When Flair begins his promo, all three guys lie down on the mat as Flair challenges the nWo to “pave the highway.” The nWo emerges, and Scott Hall makes his return. As Vincent and nWo Sting hit the ring, Flair and Piper take them down. While Greene dispatches Bagwell, Piper clotheslines Norton over the top rope to the floor. Flair then rams Syxx into the top turnbuckle as Greene clotheslines Nash over the top rope. WE’RE OUTTA TIME!
Conclusion: In addition to plugging matches for Slamboree, Nitro included the introduction of a new authority figure, the nWo worked shoot, and Glacier’s destruction by the WCW audience and Vandenberg’s charges. While not tremendously historical, it was an extremely entertaining show. Check it out! What’s on RAW is WAR?
TV Rating: 3.3
Stay tuned for RAW Is WAR 4-21-97!
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