Hosted by Tony Schiavone, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, and the “American Dream” Dusty Rhodes
It’s the battle of the Hollywood icons. Who will rule the battle of the silver screen? Hogan or Piper? Read on!
This reflection is sponsored by 5-hour Energy. Thanks, WWE Network!
Match 1 (title vs. title): Dean Malenko (WCW Cruiserweight champion) versus Ultimo Dragon (J-Crown champion w/ Sonny Onoo)
For those unaware the J-Crown is comprised of these eight titles:
British Commonwealth Junior Heavyweight
IWGP Junior Heavyweight
NWA World Junior Heavyweight
NWA World Welterweight
UWA World Junior Light Heavyweight
WAR International Junior Heavyweight
WWA World Junior Light Heavyweight
WWF Light Heavyweight
“Iron” Mike Tenay joined the broadcast table for this match.
As the Nashville faithful chanted “Go Dean go,” Malenko delivered a belly-to-back suplex.
After giving Malenko a snap suplex, Ultimo Dragon got 2.
While the Nashville faithful chanted “U-S-A,” Ultimo Dragon applied a half crab.
He then switched to an STF as the wheels came off the WCW commentary for a moment.
Malenko then reversed a cross-corner whip, blocked the floatover, and shoved Ultimo Dragon down to the floor.
After Malenko missed a baseball slide, Ultimo Dragon slammed him on the floor.
He then faked out Malenko on a dive and gave him a tope suicida. Woohoo!
Back in the ring, Ultimo Dragon delivered an elbow drop and got 2.
Malenko then blocked a vertical suplex and delivered one of his own.
He then hooked a sunset flip but only got 2.
Ultimo Dragon then gave Malenko a swinging neckbreaker for 2.
He then applied an abdominal stretch including trapping the head. Vicious!
Tenay then clarified the origin of Ultimo Dragon’s name as the final protégé of Bruce Lee. Thanks Mike.
Ultimo Dragon then applied a sleeper, but Malenko countered with another belly-to-back suplex.
After delivering a German release suplex, Malenko got 2.
He then gave Ultimo Dragon a knee crusher followed by a dropkick to the knee. OUCH!
Upon reversing a cross-corner whip, Ultimo Dragon came up empty with his handspring elbow.
Malenko then gave him a cross-corner whip but ate boot on his follow-through.
As Ultimo Dragon charged, Malenko gave him a powerslam to a big pop.
Ultimo Dragon came back with a leg lariat and a powerbomb for 2.
Malenko then reversed a tombstone and delivered one of his own to an even BIGGER pop.
Could Malenko snag the J-Crown here?
He then attempted the Texas Cloverleaf, but Ultimo Dragon made the ropes.
Next, he gave Ultimo Dragon a tiger driver, hooked a somersault rollup, but only got 2.
When Malenko attempted a cross body block, Dragon used the ropes to maintain balance and send Malenko over the top rope to the floor.
As Malenko got up on the apron, Ultimo Dragon gave him a spinning kick to the head.
He then gave Malenko an Asai moonsault. Wow!
Upon tossing Malenko back into the ring, Ultimo Dragon mounted the top turnbuckle, got caught, but missed a moonsault.
Malenko then hooked the Texas Cloverleaf to a big pop.
When Onoo got up on the apron, Malenko broke the hold.
Seeing Malenko distracted, Ultimo Dragon rolled him up for 2.
After a clothesline, Malenko delivered a brainbuster but somehow only got 2.
Ultimo Dragon came back with a tiger suplex and got the pin.
He became a nine-belt champion.
Summary: Incredible match that could have gone either way.
Match 2 for the vacant WCW Women’s title: Madusa versus Akira Hokuto (w/ Sonny Onoo & Kensuke Sasaki
For those unaware, Madusa gave an interview on Legends with JBL that was surprisingly good.
“Stagger” Lee Marshall joined the broadcast table for this match.
To encourage xenophobia, Madusa brought the American flag with her to the ring.
After Hokuto gave Madusa a pair of hair tosses, Onoo tripped Madusa coming off the ropes. SNEAKY!
After choking Madusa, Hokuto sat on the top turnbuckle to celebrate.
That allowed Madusa to use a headscissors to bring her down to the mat.
Hokuto then applied a sharpshooter, and referee Nick Patrick called for the bell.
The Nashville screwjob?
Oh, wait, that’s not what happened.
In reality, Hokuto switched to an STF as the Nashville faithful chanted “U-S-A” again.
Upon slamming Madusa, Hokuto only got a 1-count.
After Madusa drove the back of Hokuto’s head into the mat twice, she delivered a slam for a 1-count.
Next, Hokuto applied a standing choke followed by a Northern lights suplex.
She then missed a clothesline as Madusa botched a DDT.
Hokuto then countered a slam with a German suplex with a bridge for another 1-count. Hey now! Madusa’s not getting pinned with her own finisher.
Upon receiving a cross-corner whip, Madusa leaped to the second turnbuckle, caught Hokuto, and delivered a tornado DDT. That was much better than the standard one she botched.
Madusa then delivered a powerbomb for 2.
She then attempted a second powerbomb, but Hokuto used momentum to land atop Madusa for 2.
After Madusa blocked a kick, she gave Hokuto a German suplex with a bridge for only 2.
What else did Madusa have in her arsenal?
Not THAT arsenal!
Regardless, she then mounted the second turnbuckle, got caught, and received a top rope superplex for 2.
When Hokuto mounted the second turnbuckle, Madusa delivered a dropkick spilling Hokuto over the top rope to the floor.
While Sasuke distracted Patrick, Onoo came into the ring with Madusa’s flag and nailed her with the pole.
Hokuto then mounted the top turnbuckle and hit a missile dropkick.
She then delivered a Northern lights bomb (snow plow) for the pin.
WE HAVE A NEW CHAMPION!
Summary: Poor Madusa. A year ago, she trashed the WWF Women’s title on Nitro. On this show, she couldn’t win the big one to become WCW women’s champion.
Backstage, DDP joined the wcwwrestling.com internet broadcast.
Back in the locker room, “Mean” Gene Okerlund interviews Piper who discusses the battle of the icons.
Match 3: Rey Mysterio, Jr. versus Jushin “Thunder” Liger
Tenay returned to the broadcast table for this match.
A shoulder block by Liger put Mysterio down, but he nipped up.
Since Liger wasn’t impressed, he dropkicked him back down. That’ll learn ‘im.
After a slam, Liger hooked a delayed vertical suplex.
Tenay then mentioned that Liger suffered a brain tumor which occurred in August. Oh my!
Upon delivering a head butt, Liger face-planted Mysterio.
He then gave Mysterio a powerbomb, but Mysterio came back with a flying headscissors.
After a leap frog, Mysterio used another flying headscissors to send Liger over the top rope to the floor.
With Liger on the apron, Mysterio attempted to suplex him back in, but Liger reversed it sending Mysterio down to the floor.
Liger then joined and powerbombed Mysterio on the floor.
GET OUT THE SPATULA!
Back in the ring, Liger placed Mysterio on the top turnbuckle, but Mysterio shoved him down and missed a missile dropkick.
Liger then delivered a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and applied a surfboard.
With Mysterio on the apron, Liger attempted a suplex back in, but Mysterio escaped and gave him a German release suplex.
He then followed with a standing moonsault for 2.
Upon giving Liger a DDT, Mysterio delivered a springboard moonsault for another 2.
Next, he hit a springboard dropkick and applied a camel clutch.
When Mysterio attempted another springboard maneuver, Liger caught him in mid-air with a dropkick for 2. Awesome!
After a German release suplex, Liger got another 2.
He then applied a half crab, but Mysterio made the ropes.
As Liger applied a dragon screw leg whip, Liger delivered a Koppu kick.
Mysterio then reversed a cross-corner whip and gave Liger a monkey flip.
Upon giving Liger a spinning heel kick, Mysterio delivered another flying headscissors.
After sending Liger to the floor, Mysterio gave him a gorgeous Asai moonsault from the top rope.
With Liger draped across the second rope, Mysterio delivered a springboard leg drop for 2 thanks to Liger’s foot being on the bottom rope.
After positioning Liger in the middle of the ring, Mysterio attempted a springboard senton but came up empty.
Liger then mounted the top turnbuckle and hit the diving head butt for 2.
After getting reversed on a cross-corner whip, Liger knocked Mysterio off the top rope to the floor.
Liger then remounted the top turnbuckle and got caught.
When Mysterio attempted a super huracanrana, Liger blocked and hit another Koppu kick.
He then hit the Liger bomb.
Summary: The WCW announcing team gave away the result of the match by noting that Liger will face Ultimo Dragon for the J-Crown in the Tokyo Dome on January 4.
Match 4 (no-DQ): The “Crippler” Chris Benoit (w/ Woman) versus Jeff Jarrett
After Jarrett countered three headlocks with headscissors, Benoit slapped the taste out of his mouth. Served him right!
Upon giving Jarrett a back elbow, Benoit earned a 1-count.
Jarrett then leap-frogged Benoit and gave him a monkey flip.
As both wrestlers went around the ring, Woman grabbed Jarrett so that Benoit could nail him from behind.
Back in the ring, Benoit gave Jarrett a cross-corner whip and followed with a catapult into the top turnbuckle.
After giving Jarrett another cross-corner whip, Benoit placed him on the top turnbuckle and attempted a superplex.
Jarrett blocked it and placed Benoit along the second rope.
When Jarrett attempted the running guillotine, Woman grabbed Benoit by the hair to evade Jarrett.
Benoit then delivered a clothesline for 2 and tossed Jarrett over the top rope to the floor.
While Benoit followed him, he whipped Jarrett back-first into the steel railing.
Jarrett came back by guillotining Benoit using the steel railing.
Back in the ring, Benoit gave Jarrett a belly-to-back suplex for 2.
As he applied a rope-assisted sleeper, Jarrett countered with a belly-to-back suplex.
Jarrett then hooked an inside cradle for 2.
Benoit then reversed a cross-corner whip but ate boot on his follow-through.
When Jarrett mounted the second turnbuckle, he ate boot on the way down.
That only got 2 as Jarrett put his foot on the bottom rope.
Jarrett then delivered a SWEET dropkick for 2.
After an overhead belly-to-belly suplex, Jarrett countered a vertical suplex by dropping Benoit on the top rope.
As Jarrett attempted the figure-four leg lock, Woman scratched his eyes. How dastardly!
Suddenly, Arn Anderson came to the ring but rebuffed Benoit. That’s COLD!
After a back drop by Jarrett, Benoit rammed him face-first into the cameraman stand.
Abruptly, Konnan and Hugh Morrus grabbed Woman, but Woman kicked a 60-yard field goal for the Tennessee Titans on Morrus. YEE-OUCH!
While Arn gave Jarrett a DDT on the floor, the Taskmaster entered the ring and WALLOPED Benoit with a balsa wood chair.
After Arn tossed Jarrett back into the ring, the latter pinned Benoit.
Summary: While the finish made sense with the no-DQ stipulation, the shenanigans took away from the match.
At the entrance, Okerlund tries to interview Arn and then Benoit, but neither offer a word. Mongo and Debra come out to address the dissension between the Horsemen. While Mongo is perplexed, Debra calls Jarrett “Horseman material.” She then calls Nancy “rode hard and put away wet.” Okerlund tries to cover the microphone but it’s too late.
Sting montage aired.
Match 5 for the WCW World tag team titles: The Outsiders (champions w/ Syxx) versus Faces of Fear (w/ Jimmy Hart)
As Hall tried to apply an arm bar to Meng, the latter took Hall’s head off with a clothesline. Perhaps Hall should hang out with Marie Antoinette.
When Meng gave Hall a cross-corner whip, he ate boot on his follow-through.
Hall then mounted the second turnbuckle and hit a bulldog on Meng. Wow!
Barbarian and Nash tagged in.
After Nash ambushed him in the corner, he gave Barbarian a cross-corner whip.
Unfortunately, he ate a back elbow on his follow-through.
After Patrick distracted Barbarian allowing Nash to nail Barbarian from behind, Faces of Fear began “clubbering” on Nash. Thanks, Dusty.
They then tried a double back drop, but Nash countered with a double noggin knocker.
Give Nash an F on his homework, because that didn’t work.
In response, they gave Nash a double head butt.
Barbarian then delivered a sidewalk slam for 2.
Next, he mounted the second turnbuckle but missed an elbow drop.
Nash came back with Snake Eyes and distracted referee Nick Patrick. In the meantime, Hall clotheslined Barbarian from the apron.
While Nash applied the boot choke in the corner, Hall gave Barbarian another clothesline from the apron.
Hall tagged in but received more “clubbering.”
As Hall came off the ropes, Meng nailed him in the head.
When Hall turned his attention toward Meng, Barbarian gave him a Mafia kick.
That only got 2 because Patrick was “distracted” by Hart. Uh huh.
Meng tagged in and gave Hall a piledriver for another 2.
Barbarian tagged in and powerbombed Hall for a 1-count thanks to a save by Nash.
When Meng tagged in, he gave Hall an inverted atomic drop.
Barbarian then followed with another Mafia kick.
When Hall reversed an Irish whip, Nash nailed Barbarian from behind allowing Hall to deliver a clothesline.
With Hart on the apron, Syxx grabbed him and stole the megaphone. Syxx then chased Hart backstage.
Hall then countered an elongated nerve hold with a belly-to-back suplex.
Hot tag Nash.
After Nash gave Barbarian the big boot, he only got 2 thanks to a save by Meng.
All four men were in the ring.
When Meng tossed Hall between the ropes to the floor, Hall grabbed him as they brawled outside the ring.
Barbarian then missed a third Mafia kick and received the Jackknife powerbomb from Nash.
The Outsiders retained.
Summary: Where were all the maneuvers Faces of Fear used to climb the mountain to get here? I guess I can be thankful that the Nasty Boys were not involved this time.
Standing alongside Vincent and Elizabeth, Ted DiBiase interviews Hogan who cuts a promo on Piper.
Match 6 for the WCW US title (tournament final): Diamond Dallas Page versus Eddie Guerrero
Right off the bat, a dropkick by Eddie sent DDP between the ropes to the floor.
Eddie then joined and rammed DDP back-first into the steel railing.
DDP came back and rammed Eddie face-first into the steps.
As the Nashville faithful chanted “D-D-P,” Eddie snapmared DDP over the top rope to the floor.
Upon tossing DDP back into the ring, Eddie delivered a springboard somersault senton for 2.
DDP then attempted a clothesline, but Eddie evaded and referee Scott Dickinson ducked. He then sailed over the top rope to the floor.
Eddie then gave DDP a plancha.
Back in the ring, Eddie gave DDP the ten-punch count-along, but DDP countered by dropping Eddie face-first on the top turnbuckle. Clever!
DDP then guillotined Eddie using the top rope.
After giving Eddie a pancake, DDP applied a rear chinlock. Does DDP serve them with Aunt Jemima or Log Cabin?
He then delivered a vertical suplex for 2.
Next, he hooked a rope-assisted abdominal stretch and didn’t get caught. SNEAKY!
Eddie then executed a sunset flip, avoided the knuckle sandwich, and hooked an inside cradle for 2.
DDP then gave Eddie a swinging neckbreaker for 2.
He then hooked another rope-assisted abdominal stretch, but Dickinson caught him this time. Tsk-tsk.
After DDP finished arguing with Dickinson, Eddie hooked him in an abdominal stretch.
When DDP tried to counter, Eddie rolled him up for 2.
After Eddie missed a clothesline, DDP LEVELED him with his own.
He then followed with a cross-corner whip and shoulder block.
After another cross-corner whip, DDP came up empty on his follow-through.
Eddie then gave DDP the ten-top-turnbuckle count-along.
Upon giving DDP a vertical suplex, Eddie got 2.
He then gave DDP a belly-to-back suplex, mounted the top turnbuckle, but missed the frog splash.
Yet with one of the most nonchalant lateral presses, DDP only got 2.
After a combination suplex/powerslam, DDP got another 2.
He then gave Eddie a gutbuster, mounted the top turnbuckle, but Eddie crotched him.
Eddie then joined him and hit a backflip.
When DDP leaped, Eddie caught him with an inverted atomic drop. Poor Kimberly.
Eddie then hooked another inside cradle but only got 2.
He then executed a backslide for another 2.
When DDP attempted the Diamond Cutter, Eddie countered with another backslide and almost got 3.
Afterward, DDP reversed an Irish whip and gave Eddie a sit-out powerbomb.
Do we have a new champion?
When DDP signaled for the Diamond Cutter, he accidentally bumped heads with Eddie.
That sent Eddie to the floor as the Outsiders and Syxx came to the ring.
While Syxx argued with Dickinson, Hall entered the ring and gave DDP the Outsider Edge.
Eddie then mounted the top turnbuckle, hit the frog splash, and got the pin.
WE HAVE A NEW CHAMPION!
Summary: Crappy finish to a decent match. While some folks thought Hall would help DDP, the nWo got its receipt for DDP’s refusal to join them.
After the match, the nWo comes into the ring, but Eddie fights them off including Syxx with an inverted atomic drop as he comes off the top turnbuckle. After Eddie dropkicks Hall, the nWo outnumbers and triple-teams him. Syxx then takes the US title belt as Hall and Nash tell DDP “you don’t get it.”
For some reason, the WWE Network skips a promo for nWo Souled Out. C’mon, guys!
Match 7: The “Total Package” Lex Luger versus Giant
After a few rounds of Luger punch followed by Giant swat, Giant clotheslined Luger.
He then delivered an elbow drop and punted Luger between the ropes to the floor. That was quite the field goal!
With Luger on the apron, Giant returned him to the ring via a vertical suplex.
After trash-talking Luger, Giant worked on Luger’s back and gave him the boot choke in the corner.
Next, he gave Luger a pair of HARD cross-corner whips as the Nashville faithful chanted “Lu-ger.”
After giving Giant a double axe handle to the back, Luger attempted a slam, but Giant fell on top for 2.
Upon giving Luger another elbow drop, Giant gave him the running guillotine.
When Giant gave Luger a third cross-corner whip, he came up empty on his follow-through.
With Giant in the corner, Luger charged but ate boot.
After Giant clubbed Luger in the chest against the ropes, he tried a dropkick but missed. You don’t see that every day.
Luger came back with a pair of clotheslines but couldn’t take the Giant off his feet.
He then succeeded by delivering a neckbreaker for 2.
HUGE kick-out by Giant sent Luger atop referee Mark Curtis SQUISHING him.
As Nick Patrick came to the ring, Luger slammed Giant.
When Luger attempted the Torture Rack, Patrick came into the ring and kicked Luger in the leg. The scoundrel!
Luger then shoved Patrick down as Sting came through the crowd.
While Luger put Giant in the Torture Rack again, Syxx entered the ring and kicked Luger in the midsection.
Having seen enough, Sting came into the ring, pushed Patrick down with the bat, and dropped it in the middle of the ring.
He then whispered to both Luger and Giant before exiting.
When Luger tried to pick up the bat, Giant stepped on it.
To gain the upper hand, Luger then gave Giant a low blow.
After giving Giant a few shots with the bat, Luger removed the evidence and got the pin.
Summary: More angle than match as Patrick continued his nWo persona while Sting leaned toward WCW. Interestingly, the big names of the nWo didn’t come out to support the Giant. Do I smell foreshadowing?
Match 8 (non-title): WCW World champion “Hollywood” Hogan versus “Rowdy” Roddy Piper
Buffer rumbled, and did NOT refer to this as a WCW World title match.
Interestingly, Hogan came out first with DiBiase, Vincent, and Elizabeth.
While referee Randy Anderson ejected Vincent and Elizabeth, DiBiase remained.
Due to some Piper fisticuffs, Hogan sought refuge outside the ring.
To keep Anderson from counting Hogan out, Piper put him on the top turnbuckle like a toy.
When Hogan returned, he gave Piper a cross-corner whip but missed the corner clothesline. Nice nod to previous history, WCW.
Piper then clotheslined Hogan and poked him in the eye.
After another clothesline by Piper, Hogan sought refuge outside the ring again.
As Piper held a side headlock, Hogan countered with a belly-to-back suplex.
On the other hand, Piper maintained the hold!
A shoulder block by Hogan tied Piper in the ropes until Hogan guillotined him using the top rope.
With both wrestlers on the floor, Hogan gave Piper a double axe handle.
Back in the ring, Hogan missed a clothesline, but Piper didn’t.
Piper then gave Hogan an enziguri that sent Hogan between the ropes to the floor.
With Hogan in the aisle, Piper chased after him and made him taste the steel railing. It must have tasted like the Local Yokel at the Acme Feed & Seed.
As they made their way back to the ring, Piper made him taste it again. Waiter, could you give the balding egomaniac a Broken Spoke as well please?
Piper then unseated David Penzer, took his own belt, and whipped Hogan in the back with it.
Back in the ring, the whipping continued until Piper slammed Hogan.
As Piper came off the ropes, DiBiase hooked his foot.
When Piper sauntered after DiBiase, Hogan gave him a double axe handle to the back.
He then made Piper taste the steel railing. Um, waiter, could you give the blown-up Scotsman the Overnight Sensation?
Next, he rammed Piper face-first into the steps as the Nashville faithful chanted “Rod-dy.”
As they returned to the ring, Hogan worked on Piper’s hip.
He then applied an abdominal stretch as the camera focused on Piper’s hip scar.
As a counter, Piper used a hip toss to escape and gave Hogan a double axe handle to the head.
He then hooked an inside cradle for 2.
After another poke in the eye, Piper gave Hogan a vertical suplex for another 2 but missed a knee drop.
Hogan then attempted the leg drop but missed.
Piper then came to life (Pipering up?) as Giant entered the ring.
While Hogan occupied Anderson’s attention, Giant tried to chokeslam Piper.
Suddenly, a fan charged the ring as Piper kicked Hogan away.
After gouging Giant’s eyes and tossing him over the top rope to the floor, Piper hooked a sleeper on Hogan.
Anderson then raised Hogan’s arm three times without response.
Summary: There appears to be a weak spot in the nWo as both Giant and Hogan lost at Starrcade. I wonder what’ll happen on Nitro to explain this.
After the match, Piper stands on Hogan with one foot as the Outsiders hit the ring. Remarkably, he holds them off and exits the ring. Once again, the Nashville faithful chants “Rod-dy” while Hogan is still OUT COLD. As Piper celebrates with his kids, a grumpy Giant traipses back to the locker room.
Suddenly, Giant gets in Hogan’s face and questions his whereabouts during Giant’s match. Hogan responds by saying that Giant “dropped the ball.” As the Nashville faithful chants “Hogan sucks,” Hogan cries for his belt, and DiBiase ultimately delivers it. He then lies about beating Piper and spits on the camera.
Conclusion: With a main event ten years in the making, no one thought Hogan-Piper would be a masterpiece. In fact, it was nowhere near one, however, for the sake of entertainment, it fit the bill. In addition, with the Malenko-Ultimo Dragon and Mysterio-Liger matches, this show was a fun-filled three hours. If you’ve never seen this show, I recommend it. If you haven’t watched it recently, relive the excitement at your earliest convenience.