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WCW Monday Nitro 04-06-98

Live from Miami, FL

Airdate: April 6, 1998

Attendance: 13,646 (12,448 paid, sold out)

Hosted by Tony Schiavone, Larry Zbyszko, “Iron” Mike Tenay, & Bobby “The Brain” Heenan

What happened to Savage? Who’s do such a thing? Can Nash defeat Sting to become World champion? With a second chance, will Bagwell win the US title? Does Disco regain the TV title? Let’s feast on WCW!

As the show begins, an ambulance arrives at the Miami Arena. WCW Security Director Doug Dellinger informs paramedics that “Macho Man” Randy Savage has been injured. According to Schiavone, this happened “moments ago,” but he’s unsure what happened. Elizabeth crouches next to Savage while the paramedics immobilize Savage’s neck.

Match 1: La Parka, Psicosis, & El Dandy versus Judo Suwa, Nobunaga, & Tokyo Magnum


Rating: ****

Summary: Awesome opener with tons of high-flying from all six wrestlers. Bravo, gentlemen!

After the match, La Parka CROWNS Psicosis with a steel chair as payback for the low blow.

Nitro is sponsored by Valvoline.

Ten minutes into the show, we get the opening montage.

Match 2 for the WCW World TV title: Booker T (champion) versus Disco Inferno


Rating: **½

Summary: Showcase match for Booker T.

Nitro Girls dance in Caribbean-style outfits.

Video airs featuring Hogan and Savage.

Match 3: Kidman versus Lenny Lane


Rating: ***

Summary: Solid showcase match for Kidman containing psychology, workrate, and high-flying.

At the entrance, “Mean” Gene Okerlund shills the hotline and interviews JJ Dillon. As Dillon updates us on Savage’s condition, he wants to find out who’s responsible for injuring Savage.

Match 4: Konnan (w/ Vincent) versus Norman Smiley


Rating: DUD

Summary: Showcase match for Konnan.

This first hour has DRAGGED, and I’d bet the Miami faithful has had their fare share of nachos and beer by now.

We head outside the arena while Savage was being loaded into the ambulance. I understand how careful EMTs need to be, but they don’t take this long to immobilize and transport.

Following a commercial break, the Nitro Girls dance in the ring.

STARBURST ON THE ROAD: Okerlund runs down the upcoming show in Tallahassee on 4/9 for Thunder.

We revisit last week’s episode when DDP chased Raven out of the arena. As Raven stole the US title belt, Bagwell won by countout.

Match 5 for the WCW US title: Diamond Dallas Page (champion) versus Buff Bagwell


Rating: *

Summary: More storyline than match as the DDP-Raven saga continues.

After the match, Bagwell grabs the microphone claiming to be the US champion. Instead, DDP returns and bangs him with a Diamond Cutter to ignite the Miami faithful.

HOUR #2!

A red Dodge Viper peels out of the parking lot, and Savage is lying injured on the pavement. Vincent and Disciple shoo the cameraman away with “this is nWo business.” Next, Disciple grabs Elizabeth to intimidate her with “he’s not so macho now, is he?” Who could be behind this?

Hogan along with members of the nWo emerge through the entrance and head to the ring. As he subtly refers to Savage as a “speed bump,” he touts Nash in their matchup against Piper and Nash at the PPV. He also believes Nash will bring the World title back to the nWo tonight.

TV Rating: 4.50

Match 6: Goldberg versus Hammer


Rating: *

Summary: Creative spot for the spear in an easy squash for Goldberg. He’s 69-0.

After the match, the Flock attempts a sneak attack, but Goldberg scares them away. Goldberg returns backstage, but Saturn jumps in the ring and traps Hammer in the Rings of Saturn to punish him for his loss. Without question, Saturn has lost his cool.

TV Rating: 4.60

Nitro Girls dances at the entrance in red.

In the ring, Okerlund interviews “Rowdy” Roddy Piper who namedrops Goldust by saying “(he) made a man out of (Goldust).” He challenges Hogan whether it’s here in Miami or in Minneapolis next week on Nitro.

Prior to the next match, Eddie speaks with Chavo and calls him a “loser.” He encourages Chavo to beat Ultimo Dragon for “grandma.”

Match 7: Ultimo Dragon versus Chavo Guerrero, Jr. (w/ Eddie Guerrero)


Rating: **

Summary: Eddie’s presence gave the match some heat while Dragon and Chavo busted their asses.

After the match, Eddie whips Chavo with the towel and slaps him across the face. Once again, Chavo disgraces the Guerrero familia.

TV Rating: 4.50

Nitro Girls dance at the entrance again in red, and Schiavone shills the Nitro Party contest.

We revisit Uncensored ’98 when a despondent Dean Malenko told Okerlund he’s going “home.” The broadcast team speculates on his future.

Match 8: The “Total Package” Lex Luger versus Barry Darsow


Rating: ½*

Summary: Showcase match for Luger.

TV Rating: 4.50

Slim Jim sponsors the replay.

HOUR #3!

We revisit Thunder from two weeks ago when Hennig, Adams, Neidhart, and Smith fought at the entrance. A week ago, Rude handcuffed Neidhart to the ropes so that he and Hennig could make Natalya cry. Seriously, they wanted to put him out of wrestling. Smith made the save, but Adams piledrove him to halt his efforts.

Match 9: Curt Hennig & Bryan Adams (w/ “Ravishing” Rick Rude) versus the “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith & Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart


Rating: DUD

Summary: I’m with the Miami faithful.

TV Rating: 3.90

After the match, Smith tries to grab Rude but gets triple teamed. With the nWo at a 3-on-2 advantage, Bret sprints to the ring to help his brothers-in-law. He gives Hennig and Adams a double noggin knocker, but the Miami faithful couldn’t care less. Methinks WCW needs new stories. Bret grabs the microphone and declares himself the “new sheriff in town,” and ganging up on people is “over.”

Prior to the next match, Jericho grabs the microphone and dedicates the episode to Malenko. Remarkably, he pleads Malenko to return. Next, he cuts a promo on Prince Iaukea whom he will face at the PPV.

Match 10 for the WCW Cruiserweight title: “Lionheart” Chris Jericho (champion) versus Juventud Guerrera


Rating: **

Summary: Solid story, but the Miami faithful wanted the underdog to win.

After the match, Jericho grabs the towel and tosses it back in Iaukea’s face. Iaukea jumps into the ring and brawls with Jericho. As Iaukea backdrops him, he clotheslined Jericho over the top rope down to the floor.

TV Rating: 4.40

We revisit the Viper-Savage incident that started off the show, yet Schiavone still doesn’t have an update on Savage’s status. It’s 10:30pm already, folks. They must be saving the remainder of the story for Thunder.

Match 11: “Big Poppa Pump” Scott Steiner (w/ Vincent) versus Sick Boy


Rating: DUD

Summary: Showcase match for Scott.

TV Rating: 4.30

Nitro is sponsored by Winterfresh gum.

Prior to the main event, Nash grabs the microphone and runs down Hogan. He implies that Hogan ran down Savage, notes that’s why he’s wearing Savage’s shirt, and sarcastically jokes that “if (he) wear(s) your shirt too long, you get fired.” He promises to win the belt and keep it around his “sexy waist” and threatens Hogan.

Match 12 for the WCW World title: Sting (champion) versus “Big Sexy” Kevin Nash (w/ Konnan)


Rating: ***½

Summary: Solid main event with a hot crowd that was primed for a Nash victory. However, Hogan had his own agenda and ruined it for Nash.

After the match, Nash throws Hogan down to the mat wondering WHAT THE FUCK he’s doing. Sting nails Hogan followed by Nash. The nWo storms the ring to ambush Sting, yet Konnan and Nash remain in the corner. As Piper and Giant arrive to save Sting’s bacon, WCW stands tall. Before the show leaves the air, Konnan restrains Nash from getting to Hogan.

TV Rating: 5.80

Conclusion: With all the incessant nWo run-ins screwing up the main event, WCW may have bitten off more they can chew with this bait-and-switch. Nonetheless, Nash almost won the title, but Hogan furthered their tension with his interference. Apparently, this was the only segment the Miami faithful celebrated. Jericho, Booker T, and DDP all retained their titles setting up the main event for a switch that didn’t occur. Viewers may not be so forgiving if the WWF offers something worthwhile on the other channel.

What’s on RAW is WAR?

TV Rating: 4.61

Stay tuned for RAW Is WAR 04-06-98!

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

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