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WCW Great American Bash 1998

Live from Baltimore, MD

Airdate: June 14, 1998

Attendance: 12,810 (11, 061 paid, sold out)

Hosted by Tony Schiavone, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, and the “Iron” Mike Tenay

Who will win the World tag team titles? Can Piper and Savage get along long enough to beat Hogan and Hart? Can Konnan defeat Goldberg to become US champion, or will Goldberg become 100-0? Who will win the best-of-seven series and face Finlay for the TV title? Who will win the vacant Cruiserweight title? Summer has begun, and WCW has all the vittles. Dig in!

Because the broadcasters TALK TOO MUCH, the impatient Baltimore faithful chants “Gold-berg.” We revisit Thunder when Bret cost Benoit the #1 contender spot. Or did he? Booker T wanted match #8, and JJ Dillon granted it for tonight.

Match 1 (best-of-seven #8): The “Crippler” Chris Benoit versus Booker T


Rating: *****

Summary: What a fantastic match! Yes, they’ve wrestled eight times (on television) together, but this was their masterpiece. Bravo, gentlemen!

We head to the wcwwrestling.com desk where Chavo’s talking about his uncle Eddie.

Match 2: Saturn versus Kanyon


Rating: ***

Summary: Workrate personified, but there was ZERO heat to maintain the minute attention span of the Baltimore faithful. It’s a product of having 3-minute matches. When they’re longer, the matches linger as opposed to build. These guys gave it their all but got nothing to show for it.

After the match, one of the Mortis men raises Kanyon’s arm and spikes him with a DDT. It’s Raven! He grabs the microphone and chastises Saturn. While the Flock returns, Raven agitates Saturn who explodes upon him.

The Flock intervenes and pummels Saturn. Heel miscommunication puts Saturn back in control as he splatters Riggs with a head-and-arm suplex. Next, he decimates Lodi with a superkick sending his sign flying. Kidman receives an overhead belly-to-belly suplex, and the Baltimore faithful rejoices. WE HAVE A FACE TURN!

We revisit Thunder when Malenko relinquished the Cruiserweight title to get his hands on Jericho.

Match 3 for the vacant WCW Cruiserweight title: Dean Malenko versus “Lionheart” Chris Jericho


Rating: ***½

Summary: What a colossally stupid finish to an otherwise fantastic match. I understand the maniacal inclination to defend your family, but Malenko should have realized the circumstances. As a result of the DQ, Jericho regains the Cruiserweight title.

After the match, Malenko continues to punish Jericho down the aisle before ramming him face-first into the entrance platform. He drags Jericho backstage and whips him into some cases. As Jericho tries to escape into the women’s room, Malenko not-so-politely reminds him that this isn’t Benoit-Sullivan, so there will be no bathroom brawls.

Instead, he drags Jericho into the parking lot and rams him into a mailbox. WCW Security Director Doug Dellinger separates them as Jericho seeks Popeye’s spicy fried chicken across the street.

We return to the wcwwrestling.com desk, and Eddie pleads for Chavo to cancel the match. Much like Chavo on previous shows, Eddie does a great job of overacting.

Interesting note: A fan at ringside has a whiteboard which is much smarter than carrying several signs. He must have attended UMBC because he’s as smart as their basketball coach whose team defeated UVA in the first round back in 2018.

Video featuring Guerrera airs. What in the blue hell is this shit? WCW isn’t winning any Emmys with this crap.

Match 4: Juventud Guerrera versus Reese (w/ Lodi)


Rating: DUD

Summary: Overbooked. Unbelievable (as in not believable). C-R-A-P. C’mon, WCW.

After the match, Guerrera leaps into Hammer’s arms in celebration.

Match 5: Eddie Guerrero versus Chavo Guerrero, Jr.


Rating: ***

Summary: Considering they grew up together, they had tremendous chemistry. Hopefully, this “relationship” isn’t over, and they can top themselves soon.

We revisit Nitro when Piper and Savage exchanged pleasantries.

Match 6 for the WCW World TV title: Fit Finlay (champion) versus Booker T


Rating: **

Summary: This was NOT 90s wrestling, and I hope we never see Finlay with a title again anytime soon. Booker T was forced to wrestle his match, and it practically put the Baltimore faithful and me to sleep.

After the match, Stevie Ray jumps into the ring to celebrate with his brother.

Match 7 for the WCW US title: Goldberg (champion) versus Konnan (w/ Curt Hennig & “Ravishing” Rick Rude)


Rating: *

Summary: Showcase match for the now 100-0 Goldberg (according to WCW math).

Afterward, the Baltimore faithful showered Goldberg with his chant. Rude and Hennig lifted Konnan to his feet, and Hennig demolished him with an Axe. WE HAVE A HEEL TURN! As Rude and Hennig double-team Konnan, Luger and Nash rush to the ring to rescue their Wolfpack buddy. Off-camera, Hennig removes his Wolfpack shirt to reveal an nWo Hollywood shirt. Although it’s predictable, an angle for Hennig to switch factions works in this case.

Promo airs for Bash at the Beach '98 LIVE on PPV on 7/12. Order NOW!

Match 8: “Hollywood” Hogan & Bret “Hitman” Hart (w/ Disciple) versus “Rowdy” Roddy Piper & “Macho Man” Randy Savage


Rating: **

Summary: Thank heaven they implemented and executed the tag formula well; otherwise, this had trainwreck written all over it.

After the match, “Mean” Gene Okerlund interviews Piper in the ring as Savage writhes in pain. Piper and referee Charles Robinson assist him to his feet, but Savage clotheslines Piper.

Match 9: “Macho Man” Randy Savage versus “Rowdy” Roddy Piper


Rating: DUD

Summary: Forgone conclusion with Savage’s knee a hot mess.

Match 10 to determine the WCW World tag team titles: Sting versus Giant


Rating: **

Summary: This was all Sting as Giant barely had any offense. Nonetheless, his finisher was spectacular and a great way to end the show. But who will Sting choose as his partner?

Conclusion: Memo to WCW: if you’re going to have fifteen-minute matches with your midcarders, you need to build them up properly on TV rather than make them an afterthought. Notwithstanding, Benoit-Booker T is a magnificent match that I highly recommend. The Jericho-Malenko madness continues, and hopefully so does Chavo-Eddie. Additionally, Savage is severely injured, so he may need time off. Bret looks out of place in the tag match, but Hogan needs someone with him to make it look passable these days. My recommendation’s in the middle because I love Benoit-Booker T, but the rest is rather meaningless.

Buyrate: 0.75

Stay tuned for WCW Monday Nitro 06-15-98!

Comments? Suggestions? Send them to me at rsg@rockstargary.com and follow me on Twitter (@rockstargary202).

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