WCW Hog Wild ‘96

Live from Sturgis, SD

Airdate: August 10, 1996

Attendance: 5,000

Hosted by Tony Schiavone, Dusty Rhodes, and Bobby “The Brain” Heenan

Since Nitro has spent the last month being outdoors, let’s have a PPV outdoors! In addition, let’s have it at the largest motorcycle rally in the world in Sturgis, South Dakota which is approximately 300 miles NNW of Cheyenne, Wyoming. Since there isn’t a venue big enough to charge admission, this is a free show for the biker crowd who, for the most part, are NOT wrestling fans. Therefore, reactions to certain wrestlers will not be the same as they would be elsewhere. Rev up your engine and let’s get HOG WILD!

Match 1 for the WCW Cruiserweight title: Rey Mysterio, Jr. (champion) versus Ultimo Dragon (w/ Sonny Onoo)


Rating: ***1/2

Summary: Great match with tons of spots. With a little more drama and some psychology, this could have reached the maximum rating.

“Mean” Gene Okerlund shills the hotline with some potential nWo news.

Match 2: Scott “Flash” Norton versus Ice Train (w/o Teddy Long)


Rating: ½*

Summary: Let’s take two power wrestlers, add an injury angle, and see how poor a match they can have. Next!

We revisit the interview from WCW Saturday Night of Flair. As you would expect, he spoke very highly of Arn Anderson.

Get your official WCW Hog Wild t-shirt for $21.95 and denim jacket for $89.95. Holy rip-off, Batman!

Match 3 (motorcycle destruction): Madusa versus Bull Nakano (w/ Sonny Onoo)


Rating: **

Summary: Sketchy finish to a decent women’s match.

After the match, Onoo takes the sledgehammer and nails Madusa’s Harley. If he wants to incite a riot with this crowd, that’s a good way to do it. Regardless, referee Randy Eller raises Madusa’s hand so Madusa smashes Nakano’s Honda. After removing a piece of fiberglass and taking a couple more shots, Madusa pushes the Honda over appeasing the bikers.

Log on to Compuserve and type “go convention” to chat with the Steiners as Rick is having too much fun with a laptop.

Match 4: The “Crippler” Chris Benoit (w/ Woman & Elizabeth) versus Dean Malenko


Rating: ****

Summary: These two told a tremendous story showing a lot of heart that only some chicanery could resolve. If they had wrestled in Chicago or Detroit, this match would have been rated higher. Unfortunately, this was the WRONG crowd for this style of match.

Match 5 for the WCW World tag team titles: Harlem Heat (champions w/ Sister Sherri & Colonel Parker) versus the Steiners


Rating: ***

Summary: The negative reaction to the heel team was almost TOO hot if you know what I mean. On a positive note, both teams did a good job here as you can definitely see the singles potential for both Booker T and Scott in this match.

After the match, a PISSED OFF crowd tosses garbage at Harlem Heat. COME ON. I’ve met bikers, and they are absolutely color-blind. I get the feeling these bikers aren’t. Meanwhile, Scott lays on the mat OUT COLD like he finished partying with Tony Montana.

As the helicopter pans Sturgis, Tony acknowledges a raceway, but Rhodes corrects him by stating that’s the track at the local high school. HA! Tony probably needs the remnants of the powder left on Scott Steiner’s face at this moment. We then get a video of the WCW wrestlers beginning their motorcycle journey from the Mall of America in Minneapolis to Sturgis.

Mongo with Pepe is shown as well as Big Bubba Rogers. In addition, “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff signs an autograph for a fan while Madusa sits behind an older woman on her motorcycle. Both Steiners and Sting are shown riding down the highway. A-ha! The biker crowd loves the Steiners because they’re one of them. Even DDP is smoking his cigar while riding.

Match 6 for the WCW US title: “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (champion w/ Woman & Elizabeth) versus Eddie Guerrero


Rating: **1/2

Summary: Good match with some early miscommunication that brought it down just a bit.

Okerlund interviews Giant with Jimmy Hart. Giant cuts a passionate promo against Hogan after Okerlund mentions how much Giant admired Hogan prior to the heel turn.

Match 7: Sting & the “Total Package” Lex Luger versus the Outsiders


Rating: **

Summary: Intriguing finish, but what does it mean?

Match 8 for the WCW World title: The Giant (champion w/ Jimmy Hart) versus Hollywood Hogan


Rating: *1/2

Summary: While not a good match whatsoever, the leader of the nWo just won the World title cementing this match as historical. On the downside, Hogan’s heel act in the ring needs some work.

After the match, Hall and Nash celebrate the victory with Hogan as the Giant is OUT COLD. In the meantime, while wearing an nWo t-shirt, the Booty Man brings out a birthday cake for Hogan. Upon entering the ring, Booty Man congratulates Hogan on his victory and his birthday. After hugging and kissing Booty Man, Hogan runs down Flair then whispers to Nash. As Nash holds the Booty Man, Hogan nails him with the belt. Along with the cake, a can of spray paint is included. Hogan then sprays “NWO” on the belt. Can someone please check the Giant for a concussion? He’s still OUT COLD.

Conclusion: It was a foregone conclusion that Hogan would win the belt here because if he didn’t, then then the nWo invasion is null and void. With that being said, the outdoor atmosphere combined with a couple of good matches, a unique crowd, and an historic main event make this show a must-see for wrestling fans.

Buyrate: 0.62

Stay tuned for week 49 of the Monday Night War!

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

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