WCW Monday Nitro 3-24-97

Live from Duluth, MN

Airdate: March 24, 1997

Attendance: 5,238

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

How will Nitro counter a post-WrestleMania RAW?

As the program begins, we revisit last week’s show when Savage challenged DDP.

Opening montage.

In the crowd, Larry “The Axe” Hennig was shown albeit subdued. Someone call Verne Gagne!

Match 1 for the WCW US title: Dean Malenko (champion) versus Konnan


Rating: *1/2

Summary: Showcase match for Malenko.

After the match, “Mean” Gene Okerlund interviews Malenko who believes Syxx and Eddie Guerrero are in cahoots. He then cuts a promo on Benoit whom he will face at Spring Stampede.

We then revisit Uncensored when Mortis and Wrath double-teamed Glacier.

Match 2: Mortis (w/ James Vandenberg) versus Jerry Flynn


Rating: **

Summary: Showcase match for a very innovative Mortis.

Prior to the next match, Schiavone notes the lack of Scott Hall. According to Meltzer, Hall voluntarily entered a rehabilitation clinic. That changes the dynamic of the World tag team title match at Spring Stampede to say the least.

Match 3: Juventud Guerrera versus La Parka


Rating: ***

Summary: Good lucha libre match with plenty of high-flying, and the Duluth faithful enjoyed it.

First, we revisit nWo Souled Out when the Steiners won the WCW World tag team titles against the Outsiders. Second, we revisit the following Nitro when Bischoff stripped them of the titles. Third, we revisit the Nitro I attended when Dr. Schiller suspended Bischoff. Fourth, the Outsiders provided evidence of the auto “accident.” Fifth, we revisit Uncensored when the Outsiders laid out Rick Steiner. Finally, we revisit last week’s episode when the Outsiders challenged the Steiners for Spring Stampede and beat them up later. That’s a lot of revisiting.

From the entrance, Okerlund interviews the Steiners.

On WCW Saturday Night, prepare for lots of enhancement matches.

Not THAT kind of enhancement!

Match 4: Public Enemy versus High Voltage


Rating: **

Summary: More angle than match as the Horsemen/Public Enemy feud continues.

After the match, Mongo comes out to question Jarrett and Debra’s shenanigans.

From the entrance, Okerlund interviews Giant and the “Total Package” Lex Luger. They will compete in a four-corner match against Harlem Heat at Spring Stampede. The winner will face Hogan for the WCW title “at a later date.”

Match 5: Psicosis versus Super Calo


Rating: **

Summary: While not as good as La Parka/Guerrera, this lucha libre contest had its moments.

HOUR #2!

We then recap highlights from earlier.

Match 6: The “Crippler” Chris Benoit (w/o Woman) versus Hugh Morrus (w/ Jimmy Hart)


Rating: **1/2

Summary: Upset victory for Morrus thanks to Dungeon of Doom interference.

After the match, Sullivan joins his charges and beats up Benoit. Malenko comes to Benoit’s aid as the Duluth faithful chants “Horse-men.” Suddenly, “Nature Boy” Ric Flair hits the ring and destroys the DoD by playing the “Nutcracker Suite” if you catch my drift. He then keeps Benoit and Malenko separated as the segment ends.


Buy the shirt! Send it to Rock Star Gary. Make it an XL.


Match 7: Harlem Heat (w/ Sister Sherri) versus Faces of Fear


Rating: ***

Summary: Good tag match that showcased Harlem Heat well.

From the entrance, Okerlund interviews Flair and Benoit. After Benoit cuts a promo on Sullivan, he turns his attention to Malenko. Flair then cuts a promo on Piper to an appreciative Duluth faithful.

Match 8: Madusa versus Malia Hosaka


Rating: *

Summary: Showcase match for Madusa.

Lee Marshall then delivers the 1-800-COLLECT road report from “Roanoke, VA.” Hopefully, he’ll get stuck in the pinball museum and TILT.

Match 9: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan versus Renegade


Rating: *

Summary: Showcase match for Duggan. In the meantime, Renegade’s heel turn is as flat as a pancake.

A video featuring Sting aired.

Promo airs for Spring Stampede LIVE on PPV on 4/6 featuring the Horsemen.

Match 10: Steiners versus the Amazing French Canadians (w/ Colonel Parker)


Rating: *1/2

Summary: Comedy and showcase match for the Steiners.

Match 11 for the WCW World TV title: Prince Iaukea (champion) versus “Macho Man” Randy Savage (w/ the nWo)


Rating: **

Summary: Not a real match as the DDP/Savage feud stood as the focus.

Afterward, Nash gives DDP the jackknife powerbomb as the Duluth faithful chants “We Want Sting.” Savage then mounts the top turnbuckle and hits the big elbow on DDP. As Nash delivers a jackknife powerbomb to Iaukea, he and Savage hold DDP so Bischoff can deliver a thrust kick. Savage then spray-paints both DDP and Iaukea.

Conclusion: The push for Spring Stampede is on as Nitro hyped matches and advanced a few angles for it. Unfortunately, the wrestling took a back seat to it. What’s on RAW is WAR?

TV Rating: 3.00

Stay tuned for RAW Is WAR 3-24-97!

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

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