July 12, 2008
Mike Abitabile

Monday Nitro
Hara Arena, Dayton, Dayton, Ohio
6/2/97

Nitro is on the air with the nWo music playing while Scott Hall and Syxx are in the ring. Hall wants to know if Syxx smells something. According to Hall, that smell is them, ‘cause they’re the stuff. The reason they are here is because fans have been calling and writing saying they haven’t seen enough of the nWo. Hall says they are the reason for everyone showing up and watching on TNT. No Nash tonight, so Hall has both tag belts with him. Syxx continues to mock Ric Flair. Syxx says he thought it would be cool to face Flair, but the guy is and old fossil. Hall calls out Flair but instead gets J.J. Dillon, smiling from ear to ear. Dillon says that he just talked to Ric Flair. Hall wants to know how things are in Charlotte. Ah, so it all makes sense. Call out a guy who they know isn’t in the arena. J.J. says he has no idea how things are in Charlotte because when he talked to Ric, he was on a jet, 30,000 feet in the air, on his way to Dayton! Hall looks a little frazzled. Syxx says he’ll take Flair and Hall is up for that. Dillon says no, it’s going to be Hall vs. Flair tonight! Hall says he’ll wrestle Flair at the Bash with Nash. Dillon says it’s happening one-on-one tonight. Hall and Syxx tell J.J that he can’t tell them what to do. He says that if Hall doesn’t face Flair tonight, he can leave the belts at his doorstep because he will strip the Outsiders of the titles! Hall thinks about it and he says it’s on!

Now we get the normal Nitro intro music and video. In the arena the fireworks go off as Tony Schiavone goes nuts for the upcoming Scott Hall vs. Ric Flair match set for later tonight.

Alex Wright vs. Glacier

Larry calls Scott Hall a coward as Alex Wright makes his way to the ring. Glacier has his regular elaborate entrance as Tony points out this is Glacier’s first appearance in the ring since the attack he suffered at Slamboree by Mortis and Wrath. Alex attacks before the bell rings and goes to work on Glacier. They trade fists and kicks then Alex sends Glacier to the ropes and hits him with a flying leg clothesline then pounds away on Glacier in the corner. Wright then dances for the crowd to show off his new attitude. Glacier attempts to fight back with fists to the midsection and a leg sweep. He follows it up with a back kick then sends Alex to the corner but telegraphs putting his head down so Alex Wright throws him back into the corner then dances a little more. When Alex turns around, Glacier hits the Cryonic Kick out of nowhere for the three count! After the pinfall, James Vandenburg walks down the aisle holding Glacier’s helmet. Glacier begs him to come to the ring. But alas, Mortis and Wrath comes out of the crowd. Glacier does see them and tries to attack but the numbers are too great and they double team him. Alex Wright comes over and tells them he wants Glacier. So they let him beat Glacier up some more! Alex Wright holds Glacier up so Mortis can hit his sidekick but Glacier ducks and Wright eats the foot. Glacier fights back and takes Mortis and Wrath out while the timekeeper gives me a headache by constantly ringing the bell. Honestly, is that going to make this stop? No joke, the timekeeper rang the bell 121 times – I counted. Man. Glacier successfully takes out Mortis and Wrath by himself and didn’t need the help of “Super Heavyweight Karate Champion Ernest Miller” (the exact words of Tony Schiavone). We go to break.

Buff Bagwell vs. Joe Gomez

Before the match starts, we hear pre-recorded comments from Buff Bagwell and Scott Norton. Bagwell says people don’t realize that the nWo is taking over New Japan Pro Wrestling, too. They say they injured Lex in New Japan a few weeks ago. In the arena, Norton comes out with Buff. Tony plugs an upcoming Los Angeles house show, dubbed Saturday Nitro, which will have audio of the event streaming live on WCW.com. They go to lock up but Buff kicks Joe then pounds away in the corner. Buff poses for the crowd. He continues to pound on Gomez then sends him to the opposite corner and runs into a big boot. Gomez takes Buff down with a hip toss then sends Bagwell to the ropes but misses a dropkick. Buff hits a clothesline then tells the camera he loves himself and poses some more. Bagwell continues the assault but Gomez finally hits that dropkick for a two count. He follows up with a hip toss and ten fists in the corner but Buff stops it midstream and drops Gomez on the top turnbuckle, head first. Buff then sends Gomez to the outside allowing Norton the opportunity to slam Gomez into the steel pole and throw him back into Buff. Bagwell slams Gomez then goes up top and hits the Buff Blockbuster for the win.

Don’t forget WCW Saturday Night has a special start time this weekend- 7PM eastern, only on TBS. You’ll see Public Enemy, Harlem Heat, DDP and Kimberly and Hector Guerrero. Don’t miss it!

We go to Mike Tenay, who is standing in front of the crowd to introduce his special report on Ernest Miller. He has uncovered some more information on the man that saved Glacier. Ernest Miller is known as The Cat in the ISKA (International Sports Karate Association) and he has a football background. Ernest Miller has invited WCW to attend a sparing and workout session this week and they will have footage for us next week.

Hugh Morrus vs. Prince Iaukea

As Hugh is on his way to the ring, Konnan attacks him from behind with a broomstick! Konnan runs away after the attack as the trainer attends to Hugh and advises him not to go to the ring. Hugh will have none of it and stumbles to the ring. Hugh comes out and attacks Iaukea, sending him to the ropes and hitting him with a kick. Morrus tries a clothesline but Prince ducks and hits a dropkick. Iaukea sends him to the ropes, but Hugh reverses. Prince slides through Hugh’s legs and rolls him up with a schoolboy for the quick win, thanks to Konnan and his pre-match attack! Konnan stands on the stage mocking Hugh.

We go to the aisle where Gene is with J.J. Dillon. J.J. is happy that we will see Hall vs. Flair tonight and lets us know Flair has just arrived at the arena. Gene brings up the tag team situation. Dillon says we have a tag title match at the Great American Bash in just under two weeks – The Outsiders vs. Ric Flair and Roddy Piper, but they still need to determine who the number one contenders would be for the winners of that match. J.J. says the WCW Committee has determined that the number one contenders are the Steiners, which brings out Harlem Heat and Sister Sherri, who are not happy. Sherri says they are the number one contenders. Dillon says this decision is not meant to diminish the Heat and if the Steiners win tonight, that will cement their number one contender status. The Heat and Sherri are not happy and tell us actions cause reactions.

We go to a video of DDP getting ready for Savage-Page II at the Bash. DDP says he lost his first 79 matches as we see footage of him from the early 90s getting beat up. They said he’d never beat Savage, but they were wrong. Now we see footage of him beating Randy Savage at Spring Stampede. He did it once and he can do it again. BANG!

Masa Hiro Chono and The Great Muta vs. The Steiner Brothers

Chono and Muta come out to the nWo music, showing off an nWo shirt. Scott and Muta start out. They lock up and Muta hip tosses Scott over. Back to neutral corners. They lock up again and this time Scott hip tosses Muta. Muta complains that Scott pulled his hair and threatens to mist the ref! They lock up a third time and Scott backs Muta into the corner then hip tosses him out. A fourth lock up but Muta is able to pound away on Scott and apply a headlock. Scott sends him to the ropes and they each try a shoulder block but no one moves. Muta hits a leg kick from behind though to take Scotty down. Muta sends Scott to the ropes and telegraphs a back drop so Scott hits a double under hook power bomb on Muta then bench presses him! Muta slithers out of the ring to take a break. He’s back in as Scott tags in Rick. Muta runs from Rick and bails while he does his barking taunts! Muta comes back in as Rick Steiner spits on the nWo shirt. Chono tags in and wants a test of strength with Rick. They lock fingers and Rick gains the early advantage. Chono tries to get cheap with a kick but Rick hits his own kick then takes Chono over with a suplex. Chono bails. Chono comes back in and attacks Rick. He throws Rick to the ropes but is taken down with a shoulder block then a huge power slam by the Dog Faced Gremlin! Muta comes in off the top rope but Rick hits him with a shot to the midsection! Chono and Muta head to the floor to regroup. Tony has just been handed a note stating that the Steiners will in fact face the winners of the tag title match at the Bash if they win tonight. Scott comes back in and Chono goes to the eyes. He tags in Muta and they both pound away on Scott. Rick tries to get it and that only lets them double team Scott some more as the ref tries to keep him out. They try a double clothesline but Scott reverses it and takes both men down himself. He tags in Rick and the Steiners hit belly-to-belly suplexes on both men! Chono responds with a Mafia Kick to Scott as Muta sends Rick to the corner. Handspring Elbow! Muta holds Rick up and Chono goes for the Mafia Kick but Rick ducks and Muta goes down! Rick and Chono fight on the floor while Scott sets Muta up for the top rope bulldog by Rick. All of a sudden the Harlem Heat come out and push Rick off the tope rope. While the referee is trying to regain order, Rick gets hit with a chair and Muta applies a leg lock submission. Since Rick is out, the referee counts his shoulders down giving Muta and Chono the win! The Heat help the nWo, but surely not on purpose.

J.J. Dillon, with Mean Gene, confronts the Heat in the aisle. The Heat say this makes them the number one contenders. Dillon disagrees. He says this match is under review and the Heat should worry about their match tonight. Sherri screams and yells at Okerlund as we go to break.

Tony welcomes us to hour number two as he is now joined by Bobby Heenan. We see clips of the tag match that just ended. Brain says the Heat had to do what they had to do and if Tony doesn’t like it, he can take it up with them himself. Tony talks about Hall vs. Flair later tonight and sends it to Mean Gene in the aisle with Ric Flair! Woooooooo! Flair gets a huge ovation. MEANNNNNNNNNN GENE! Flair wants to know why the nWo will not leave well enough alone. Flair notes that Nash isn’t here. Flair says he is going to stomp a pothole in Hall’s “toothpick chewing, white, honky ass!”

US Title Match: Champion Dean Malenko vs. Mr. Wallstreet

Wallstreet still has on his anti-WCW shirt. They lock up and Dean arm drags Wallstreet over. Wallstreet says he used the tights. They lock up again and Wallstreet takes Dean over. Dean kicks out of it. Again they lock up and Dean applies a headlock. Wallstreet sends him to the ropes and kicks him then reverses a school boy attempt by Dean. Tony points out the reinstated Nick Patrick is the referee here as Patrick gets into a shouting match with Wallstreet. Dean comes in and works on Wallstreet in the corner. He snap mares Wallstreet over and applies a chin lock. Wallstreet is up and takes Dean down by pulling his hair. Patrick didn’t like that and tells Wallstreet about it. Wallstreet works on the arm then throws Dean out of the ring. Dean comes back in and goes behind. Wallstreet reverses so Dean goes to the arm. Wallstreet walks the ropes to break it then takes a cheap shot at Dean. He throws Malenko into the corner then snaps him over and drops an elbow. That gets two. Wallstreet puts on a chin lock of his own and Dean fights up. He breaks it with elbows to the midsection but Wallstreet stops the momentum with a knee. He applies an abdominal stretch and uses the ropes for leverage. Again, Nick Patrick tells Wallstreet to stop cheating. Malenko fights back and hits a leg clothesline for two. He suplexes Wallstreet over for another two. Malenko throws Wallstreet to the corner then goes for the legs and the Cloverleaf. Wallstreet goes to the eyes and breaks it. He follows up with the old Write-Off clothesline. Wallstreet runs into Dean who ducks and Wallstreet dumped himself over the top. Malenko suplexes Wallstreet back in but Debra is out with Jeff Jarrett and she grabs Dean’s legs. Wallstreet falls on Dean and seems to get a three count but Nick Patrick calls it two. Dean then applies the Texas Cloverleaf while Nick Patrick stands in the way of Wallstreet getting to the ropes! Wallstreet has no choice but to tap out. Interesting developments.

Gene is in the ring with Jarrett and Debra. Jeff wants a rematch against Dean. He says it took two people to beat him at Slamboree and calls Malenko non-charismatic. Dean comes back and says Jarrett can have the rematch next week on Nitro. Now Mongo comes out and tells Jarrett to let him know when he comes out to the ring in the future. Jarrett says he is now looking out for number one and tells Debra to leave with him. Debra stays with her husband as Jarrett takes off. Mongo says he revitalized Kevin Greene’s career and now Greene is going to get his at the Bash.

Harlem Heat vs. Ciclope and Damien

Sherri is with the Heat. Stevie Ray starts out with Ciclope and Stevie pounds and kicks away on Ciclope while Sherri yells at the luchadore. Stevie sends Ciclope to the ropes, catches him coming in then drops him with a power slam. Book wants in. Stevie tags him in then Booker T hits a Harlem Sidekick and sends Ciclope to the corner. He charges in but Ciclope moves and tags in Damien. They double team Book and send him out of the ring then Damien hits a suicide dive through the ropes to the floor. Back in, Damien sends Book to the ropes but it is reversed and Book hits a wicked knee. He tags Stevie Ray back in who kicks away on Damien. Stevie sends Damien to the ropes and hits a clothesline. Booker T tags back in and dumps Damien to the floor then works on him against the guardrail. As this is happening, Stevie works on Ciclope and the referee tries to break that up. All of a sudden, the Steiners come up and attack Booker T with a chair! Rick Steiner throws Booker T into the ring allowing Damien to hit a pretty weak splash off the top rope to score the upset pin!

Ric Flair vs. Scott Hall

Hall comes out accompanied by Syxx. Brain says Scott Hall is in the fight of his life and Tony asks him if he knows who the impact player is that will debut on Nitro in Las Vegas on June 30. Hennan has no clue. Flair comes out to a huge ovation. Hall throws his toothpick at Flair so Ric responds with fists and chops! He kicks Hall’s shins then kicks out his legs. Hall sends Flair to the ropes and Syxx tries to take a cheap shot but Ric no-sells it and takes out Syxx! He drops Hall with chops again. Hall throws Flair in the corner but Flair reverses it and hits some more chops! Hall sends Flair to the opposite corner and Flair does hit flip over the turnbuckle. When he lands on the apron, he lunges at Syxx and beats him up on the floor! Hall comes out from behind and takes advantage of Flair. He works on Flair’s lower back and sends him into the side of the ring. Hall throws Flair back in and kicks Flair in the corner. The crowd chants “FLAIR! FLAIR! FLAIR!” as Hall continues to kick him in the corner. Scott Hall distracts referee Pee Wee Anderson allowing Syxx to sneak in and hit the bronco-buster. Hall hits his fall away slam on Flair and gets two. Hall sends Flair to the corner then follows in with a clothesline. Hall then hits a belly-to-back suplex for two. Hall applies his abdominal stretch and gets leverage and help from Syxx on the floor. Pee Wee finally sees it and breaks the hold allowing Flair the chance to hip toss Hall over but he is too hurt to capitalize though. Hall takes Flair down with fists to the face. Flair pulls himself back up and chops Hall! They trade blows and Flair sends Hall to the ropes. Hall reverses it and locks on a sleeper but Flair grabs the leg and drops Hall’s knee across his own. Hall responds with a huge clothesline for two. They again trade blows once back on their feet and Flair sends Hall to the ropes again then catches him with an inverted atomic drop. Syxx is up on the apron so Flair takes him down again! Syxx goes up top so Flair hits him and crotches Syxx on the top turnbuckle! Flair sends Hall into Syxx who lands on the floor. Flair hits a standing suplex on Hall then goes for the figure four! Syxx crawls back in and Flair is able to take down both men again. Hall finally grabs the tag title belt and hits Flair with it, causing the disqualification. Syxx holds Flair up while Hall pounds on him and the timekeeper goes nuts with the bell again. They continue to double team Flair (and the timekeeper continues to ring the bell) until Mongo comes out with the briefcase to make the save. Jeff Jarrett shows up to help once the nWo has left. Times the bell was rung at the end of this match: 138.

We go to Tony and Bobby who tell us that Piper will be at the Bash to team with Flair. He wasn’t here tonight because he is working on a new movie. All of a sudden, the nWo music hits again and we see Randy Savage, with Miss Elizabeth, dragging Mean Gene to the ring. He says he wants to set something straight right now. Gene says he doesn’t want to do this interview and he is doing it under protest. Savage tells Gene he wants him in the ring to do the interview and Savage keeps threatening Gene with physical harm if he doesn’t go. Tony tells Gene to walk with Savage. Heenan tells Gene to fight him! They finally get to the ring and Gene tells Savage that he has misjudged DDP. Gene says Savage didn’t give Page enough credit. Savage says he is the greatest wrestler ever. Gene disagrees. Savage grabs Gene by the tie and challenges Gene. J.J. Dillon makes his way down to the ring and takes the mic. Gene takes off. J.J. has something to say to Savage. He tells Savage to never put his hands on a WCW announcer again. J.J. says Savage owes Gene an apology. Savage wants to know if Dillon wants to straighten him out right now. J.J. says he has no respect for Randy Savage anymore. He expected better from Savage. There was a time when Savage would have been a man and addressed his opponents and his issues. Dillon says he is not the same Macho Man he once was. Dillon says he sees Savage hiding behind Liz. This sets Randy off so he responds by laying out Dillon with a right hand! Eric Bischoff runs n and tries to pull Savage off J.J. as WCW security tries to break it up. Bischoff tells Savage not to do this. Savage spits on Dillon as medics attend to him. Bischoff keeps trying to tell Savage to relax. The fans chant “DDP!” which sets Savage off again as he goes back after J.J. Dillon! It takes five men to hold Savage down. Easy E grabs a microphone and tells J.J. that he started this. He provoked the Madness. Bischoff tells DDP to snap into this while they help Dillon out of the ring. And we’re out of time.

A quick note - before the main event, Chris Benoit made The Barbarian tap out to the Crippler Crossface (here), which was edited out of the 24/7 broadcast.

Next week, Nitro invades Boston and, even though 24/7 didn’t show the episode because they claimed the master tape was damaged, I’ll still have the recap for you all thanks to a good friend.