April 24, 2010
Matt Peddycord
The Powerdriver Review

WCW Saturday Night
August 1, 1992
Atlanta, GA
Center Stage Theatre

The current WCW & NWA Champs were as follows:
WCW World Champion: Big Van Vader (7/12/1992)
WCW U.S. Champion: Rick Rude (11/19/1991)
WCW World Television Champion: Steve Austin (6/13/1992)
WCW World Light Heavyweight Champion: Brad Armstrong (7/5/1992)
WCW/NWA World Tag Team Champions: Dr. Death & Terry Gordy (7/12/1992)

Before the program, we see a past interview where the TV champ Steve Austin calls Ricky Steamboat yellow for ducking a title shot because he was home nursing some hurt ribs. Therefore, no more title shots for Ricky Steamboat. Well, Steamboat rips off his Ralph Lauren polo to reveal taped ribs. That proves everything!

Your hosts are Jim Ross & Bill Watts.

Watts says that the champions do not decide who they face. Steve Austin will in fact defend the TV title here today against Ricky Steamboat. Plus, Watts mentions a recent altercation between the US champ Rick Rude and Nikita Koloff that needs to be addressed, but we’ll talk about that later. LET’S HOOK EM UP!

Brian Pillman vs. Sgt. Buddy Lee Parker
Haha, I love Pillman’s theme music back in those days. He loves ALL kinds of women. JR calls Sgt. Buddy Lee Parker – a constant WCW jobber throughout the ’90s – an upcoming light heavyweight star. Pillman is about a month away from ’shocking the world’ and turning heel on Brad Armstrong to try and regain the Light Heavyweight title. Quick armbar squash as Pillman wins with the Missile Dropkick at 3:36.

Afterwards, JR grabs Brian Pillman for a quick interview. Pillman calls Sting’s quest to regain the world title from Vader as his great inspiration to regain the Light Heavyweight title from Brad Armstrong. He’s coming after you, Brad.

Tom Zenk & Marcus Alexander Bagwell vs. Taylor Made Man & Scotty Flamingo
Speaking of more light heavyweights, this could be a good match. Scotty Flamingo – more commonly known as Raven – starts off with Marcus Bagwell. He brings Flamingo over to Zenk for a tag. They take turns working on the arm. Bagwell and Flamingo work in some sit outs, but Flamingo backs Bagwell into the corner and rocks him with a back elbow. Bagwell catches Flamingo charging at him in the corner and sunset flips him for two. Tag to Taylor, he knucklelocks up with Bagwell. He gets Bagwell onto his back, but Bagwell fights up and monkey flips Taylor over. Taylor goes low and delivers a jawbreaker for two. Zenk and Flamingo tag in and Z-Man aggravates Flamingo and Taylor with headscissors takedowns. Bagwell comes in and helps clean house as the babyfaces celebrate! Back in, Zenk surprises Taylor with a flying bodypress out of the corner for two. Jumping enziguri gets two and Taylor bails out to regroup. Back inside, Zenk and Bagwell continue to dominate until Flamingo blind tags Taylor who decks Zenk from behind. Taylor and Flamingo cut the ring in half and pester the crap out of Bagwell while he’s on the apron to draw him every now and then. Zenk fights out of a chinlock and drops Taylor with a swinging neckbreaker to set up the HOT TAG TO BAGWELL! He is ROCKN AND ROLLN! It breaks down and while ref Nick Patrick tries to get Flamingo out of the ring, Zenk comes over and blasts Taylor with a karate kick! Cover by Bagwell, 1-2-3! (9:33) Never a dull moment and for the most part they always managed to keep the fresh man in the ring. Good stuff. ***

Out comes Johnny B. Badd looking ever so gay. He’s ‘tooty frooty’ alright. He thinks he’s a contender to the Light Heavyweight title because he’s a great athlete, he’s so pretty, and he’s a BAAAAAD MAN! Not sure those are the qualifications, but nobody said he deserved a title shot in the first place.

The Barbarian vs. Chad Bird
JR mentions that we will see how Barbarian and Dick Slater won the US tag titles from the Freebirds the next night on the Main Event. Funny how they got rid of the US tag belts right after showing how somebody won the US tag belts. Barbarian roughs this “bird” up, stomps his foot to the mat as the Iron Sheik would do to move around a foreign object in his boot, and then delivers the KICK OF FEAR for the win at 1:39. It’s the little things, folks. Always the little things.

Watts confronts the Koloff-Rude altercation that will result in both men being fined $5000 for fighting in the dressing room. It got to the point where all the babyfaces invaded the heel locker room for one HUGE out of control brawl. Watts says he will not tolerate this type of chaos under his watch here at WCW. Over comes the US champ Rick Rude and Madusa. Rude pleads his case as to why he should be fined for $5000 when he’s the innocent one here. NIKITA threw him over the top rope during their match and NIKITA was the one who attacked him in his own locker room. Rude calls Bill Watts a bully and says all he did was defend himself. Rude says he’s going to pay the fine and then take it out on Nikita. What Rude does to Nikita will weigh heavily on Watts’ conscience. Once he’s done talking about the fine, Rude demands a world title shot no matter who the champion is because as the reigning US champion, he is always the #1 contender to the world title. Rude wonders if Watts will grant him the title shot or if there is some sort of conspiracy against him. As Rude and Madusa walk away, Watts sarcastically says that he knows just how *innocent* Rick Rude is. He just might give Rude a world title shot and perhaps even make him defend the US title against some tougher opponents as well.

Dr. Death Steve Williams (w/Terry Gordy) vs. Jimmy Garvin
Dang, Garvin doesn’t have a prayer. Garvin tries to mat wrestle Doc and that just won’t work. Doc levels him with football tackles and then applies a Octopus stretch variation. Garvin reaches the ropes and goes back to grounding Williams with a headlock, but Doc slips out and delivers a suplex for two. Garvin catches Doc with a boot in the corner, but flies down into a powerslam. Cover, 1-2-NO! The ring announcer guy thought it was three. However, the OKLAHOMA STAMPEDE will put everybody down as Dr. Death gets the win. (7:41) Solid, but fairly boring contest. *˝

After the match, the Miracle-Violence Connection say they are the only two guys who can take out the world champ Big Van Vader. Hey come on guys, this isn’t Japan. As for the Steiner brothers, they just need to bring it.

Rick & Scott Steiner vs. Mike Thor & Danny Deese
The MVC watch on from a corner of the Center Stage Theatre. Scott puts Deese in a bow and arrow submission. Rick comes in and hits Deese with a Steinerline while he’s looking at Doc and Gordy. In comes Thor, Scott gives him the double-underhook slam and PLANTS him with the FRANKENSTEINER for the win at 2:04. Did JR just call that the frickensteiner?

The Steiners taunt Doc and Gordy to bring them into the ring for a scuffle, but just enough to make you want more. Rick punches Doc out and as Scott goes for the Frankensteiner on Gordy, Doc pulls his partner out as they retreat. Grizzly Smith and Doug Dellinger keep everybody separated as we go to commercial. Awesome!

Cactus Jack joins JR for the next match for guest commentary. He’s got his eyes set on Big Van Vader too! Cactus says that Vader never would have beaten Sting if it wasn’t for what Cactus did to Sting at Beach Blast in the Falls Count Anywhere match. He continues on and says that Vader owes him what nobody else has had the guts to do and that’s give Cactus Jack a world title shot.

Van Hammer vs. John Peterson
Cactus says he’s somewhat of a Van Hammer expert. For those familiar with Van Hammer, you can make your own jokes. JR tries to sell that Van Hammer is vastly improved, but I don’t see it. The SLINGSHOT SUPLEX that would make Tully Blanchard cry gets the 1-2-3 at 2:29. Thanks Cactus, it’s been fun.

Earlier in the day, Tony Schiavone met with Ron Simmons. He’s focused on winning the world title more than ever before. Even if his opponent is somebody he is friends with like Sting, nothing will stand in the way of his goal. Of course, Ron Simmons would sub for Sting in the Baltimore Arena the next day and become the first African American to ever win the World Heavyweight title.

Back to the program, JR talks with Nikita Koloff. Money is not the issue here, the issue is Rick Rude and the US belt. Nikita wants you BOTH! As for Madusa, stay out of the ring if you don’t want to be abused.

WCW World Heavyweight Champion Big Van Vader (w/Harley Race) vs. Jim Nash
Another week, another nasty squash for Vader. He hits his signature stiff moves and puts Nash away with the neck breaking POWERBOMB followed by a splash off the ropes at 2:08.

JR brings out Sting for some interview time. He’s got an upcoming world title match, ya know. Sting says he’s ready to kick some booty. That’s about all we get.

WCW World Television Champion Steve Austin (w/Paul E. Dangerously) vs. Ricky Steamboat
Naturally, Steamboat still has the ribs taped and that’s where the story for this match will be surrounded around. Austin goes for the ribs early, but Steamboat will not let him touch them. Instead, Steamboat cranks on an armbar while Paul E CRINGES at ringside. That’s just a great use of a manager – to sell the pain even when he’s not the one the pain is being inflicted upon. Steamboat stays adamant with the armbar, but it’s never boring. Basically he’s driving the point home that if he is going to be at a disadvantage, so will Austin. They go for a hiptoss reversal spot, but Austin can’t get Steamboat over because of his arm and Steamboat can’t get Austin over because of his ribs. GREAT use of psychology there. Steamboat applies a hammerlock down on the mat. Austin fights out and they run the ropes, but Steamboat trips Austin up and grabs hold of the armbar again. Commercials! When we return, both men are dripping with sweat as Austin gets a break and starts punishing Steamboat’s ribs. Steamboat kicks Austin away out of the corner and comes off the second rope for the karate chop, but he can’t get the height on the jump that he usually could get because of the ribs as Austin catches him in the ribs on the way down. AWESOME. Austin grabs a bearhug while JR hypes the WCW hotline which has information concerning HULK HOGAN. Remember, Hogan doesn’t step foot in WCW until 1994, but he isn’t exactly involved with the WWF at the time either. The reason he hadn’t considered coming to WCW at the time had to do more so with Bill Watts being in charge than anything else I would imagine. Bill Watts just would not have put up with Hogan’s BS. And where would Hogan really fit in a Bill Watts world? Meanwhile, Austin takes off the protective wrap off Steamboat’s ribs. Steamboat is forced to bail as Austin lays in the blows. Austin follows him out and backs him into the apron before bringing him back inside the ring with a suplex for two. Steamboat claws out of an ab stretch and goes for a slam, but he can’t get Austin up. However, Austin can slam Steamboat. Another slam gets two. Steamboat catches Austin with a knee to the gut and starts up the chops, but ducks low off a whip and takes an elbow to the top of the head. Austin pins Steamboat with his feet on the ropes, but ref Nick Patrick is on his game. To the mat we go, Austin grabs a body scissors until Steamboat punches out. Austin stops Steamboat with a back suplex, but then a splash from Austin hits knees. Steamboat mounts another comeback and hits a backbreaker for two. Inside cradle gets two. O’Connor roll gets another nearfall. Steamboat grabs a sleeper, but Austin backs him into the corner. Double-KO ensues! Now Paul E gets up on the apron and throws some taped knux into the ring when Nick Patrick isn’t looking. Steamboat reaches the knux before Austin and uses them to KO Austin. Once Paul E drops off the apron (WHY WOULD YOU GET OFF THE APRON?), the ref counts the 1-2-3! (18:12 shown) We’ve got a NEW TV champ? Nope. As Nick Patrick raises Steamboat’s arm in victory, the knux are still on Steamboat’s hand. Well that changes everything. Patrick reverses the decision and gives Austin the win via DQ. I guess that’s part of why Steamboat is arguably the best babyface of all-time. He doesn’t know when to hide the evidence when he’s done something wrong. Just excellent psychology by the master of the art of selling better known as Ricky Steamboat. Great finish too, as Steamboat fell to the temptation of using the taped knux when he knew he couldn’t pull off the signature moves to defeat Austin because of his injured ribs. ***˝

After the match, Paul E Dangerously rejoices over Austin’s victory. Next week, his boys from the Dangerous Alliance Arn Anderson and Bobby Eaton have accepted a match against his better judgment where they will take on Larry Zbyszko and Brian Pillman where the ‘no coming off the top rope’ rule has been waived. It’s against his better judgment because coming off the top rope is Pillman’s entire arsenal and nobody knows the Dangerous Alliance better than Larry Z. That could be interesting. Too bad I don’t have that episode. Maybe some day!

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