All things considered, it wasn't a bad show. There was a pre-Summerslam buzz in the air, which helped offset the fact that there was (if I remember correctly) ONE clean win during the whole show. Sheesh. Austin was, of course, bringing the roof down, but the crowd semi-turned on him when he wouldn't come down and fight Kane/Taker after the cameras went off. Austin attoned, however, by beating up Pat Patterson, and throwing him into the ring to take an Undertaker chokeslam.
Austin may be over like Roagaine in the Bollea family, but it looks to me like the WWF may be working an Austin-or-nothing philosophy. When he wasn't around, you could tell the crowd wasn't really into what was going on - just waiting for Austin to come out. That may not be the wisest strategy.
Y'know who got the biggest pop aside from Austin? No, not DX. Not the Rock. Not even Sable. It was Max Mini. The crowd went freakin' nuts for him!
I've come to the conclusion after that show that Steve Austin isn't a wrestler - he's a walking T-shirt marketing machine with a goatee. I swear, I have never seen that many different shirts for one person in my life. It seemed like everyone there had an Austin shirt, and no two people had the same ones! It was crazy! But, I guess, if it brings in the money....
From the "That's Odd" department - Ken Shamrock and Sable both made their entrances to the ring, turned around, went back, and did it all over again. I guess the timing was off or something.
When we last left you two weeks ago, Tony Schiavone was taking an opportunity to remind us every 2.5 seconds that A) The WWF was taped that night, WCW wasn't, and B) the WWF was going to have a 10-second main event, while WCW delivers on what they promise. Now, that may have been well and good, but it was rather silly for Tony to go on and on about this, and then have WCW turn around and give us a main event with a YAnWoS ending (Yet Another nWo Screwjob). That's prounounced "Yan-wose", in case you were wondering.
Well, Jim Ross got on his hotline report after that, and basically said: "While I was disappointed, it's not Tony's fault. He's a great guy, with a great family, and was just doing what he was told to do. He's got political considerations to deal with. I'm just as guilty of doing that myself sometimes, but I'm trying to move away from it." So, kudos to Jim Ross for taking the moral high ground.
Of course, now we go back to "choppy-choppy your pee-pee," but it was good while it lasted....
Now, on the one hand, I'm happy about that - Flair doesn't have too much more time left in the ring, and I'd like to see him go out with the company he built. But, on the other hand, The Horsemen in general and Flair in specific have been relegated to the back burner in the days of the nWo. I don't know about you, but I don't want to see Flair back if they're going to do something like push a Horsemen vs. Flock feud, or have Flair going after the nWo B-Team, or God forbid, Flair putting over Hogan's saggy orange ass yet AGAIN.
WCW was wrong to sue Flair - period. WCW was wrong to drag this thing out, just so Flair couldn't leave - period. And I guess we can only hope that, in return for coming back to WCW, Flair has required the company to give him the respect he has so greatly earned during his years in the sport.
There are over 100 wrestlers, ranging from the big names in Japan (Muto, Chono, Tenzan, Liger, Chris "Wild Pegasus" Benoit, Eddy "Black Tiger" Guerrero, Johnny Ace, "Dr. Smelling Salts" Steve Williams, etc.) and Mexico (Konnan, Psicosis, Rey Misterio Jr., Hijo del Santo) to Americans including: Rob Van Dam, Hogan, Vader (pre-suck), Sting, Savage, the Steiners, the LOD, Cactus Jack, and Shawn Michaels, to legends like Lou Thesz and Antonio Inoki. There are UFC-type guys like Ken Shamrock and Dan Severn , which comes in handy when you fight in an actual UFC octagon! There are also six-man battle royales, tournaments, titles to be won and defended, even an exploding-electrified-cage match!
Probably the crowning achievement in this game, though, is the "create-a-wrestler" mode. You can choose from nearly 200 body types, with a large selection of wrestling gear, and a huge spectrum of colors. And there are several hundred moves you can assign each wrestler: Unlike Warzone's edit mode, where you give your created wrestlers, say, Golddust's move set, you are free in 6MS to mix-and-match from a huge variety of powerbombs, suplexes, DDTs, kicks, submission holds, and more. There are even pl anchas, slingshot moves from the apron, and off-the-turnbuckle moves including the Tornado DDT, Shooting Star Press, and a second-rope Tombstone! You can save 16 wrestlers with the Saturn's own battery backup, and up to (I think) 80 on a RAM cartridge!
- The ring looks MUCH smaller in person (Is that the right word?)
- Wrath is HUGE!!! (Per your report, it looked like a legit knee injury for his opponent from where we were)
- Excuse me, why the hell was Spice in freakin' OHIO?!?! OHIO?!?!?!?!?? Are kidding me??? This is MIAMI, baby! Bring the whole team!!!
- Really disappointed with Konnan, who was seriously going through the motions during his match in what he claimed to be his hometown (is that right? Because there aren't too many barrios in Miami Beach!)
- Best signs: "I was at Goldberg's Bar Mitzvah" "The law firm of Horowitz, Shenkman, Kaplan and GOLDBERG!!!"
- Best sign OF ALL TIME, a pink one held up by cute girl - "THROW ME TO THE LESBIANS!"
- Speaking of women, we've got the best down here, hands down. During the Juvy-Courageous match, a real hottie wearing a lime-green Sable-esque catsuit kept standing up and earning twice as much attention as the match. You may have heard the entire arena (the guys, at least) yelling "TAKE IT OFF! TAKE IT OFF!" The cops came down to make her settle down, and got a huge boo.
- Final note on the ladies: the finest ones in the joint were a couple of similar-looking blondes in our section on the floor wearing srategically-tied-in-the-back tank tops with matching "Goldberg" etchings across their chests....MAD fine.
- Biggest pops: DDP, Wolfpac, and that nice Jewish boy.
- Our section went nuts when Arn came out, but he didn't get THAT big a pop from the crowd...I wonder why.
- No Hacksaw tonight...I wonder if they think Miami isn't "American" enough of a city to appreciate his shtick, because he seems to have led-off every Nitro for the past month.
- Funniest moments:
- When Disco delivered the "Stone Cold Stunner/Diamond Cutter", we all looked at each other like, "did we miss a meeting?"
- Jericho: "Untock, gleebin', gloutin', globin'"
- It's interesting that you thought it was a good show; the general response from the crowd was pretty negative: only two matches in the first hour and no real advancing of the "narrative." With WWF taking the night off, WCW had a real opportunity to grab new viewers with some kick-ass action and surprises, and did NOT deliver. Was there ANYTHING new tonight? Painted-face hero in the rafters? SEEN IT! Scott Steiner with the doctor and Buff playing a role? SEEN IT! Arn refusing to join the Horsemen? SEEN IT! Goldberg and Norton ass-whipping a couple of jobbers? SEEN IT, SEEN IT, SEEN IT!!!
- And yet....it is REALLY cool to be there; to see the faces in person; to watch and be part of the crowd; to participate in the call-and-response lines; and to be able to tell your grandkids that you saw the likes of Anderson and Hogan...that's pretty special.