It was January 2000, and it was the start of a pivotal year for WCW. After this year, business would never be the same for the company as guys like Vince Russo, Eric Bischoff, and others assumed control of the on-air product. The Nitro preceding this episode of Saturday Night saw Terry Funk named WCW commissioner and he immediately appointed Arn Anderson as WCW's enforcer to deal with the New World Order. Yea, two old guys are going to try and control several somewhat younger guys with weapons. Not to mention, this lasted all of a couple weeks, along with the new New World Order. Arn Anderson ended up kidnapped and in the back of the nWo's car and subsequently was tortured for three days until WCW Thunder. Yes, the announcers indicated he had been tortured the whole time. Also, DDP and Buff Bagwell were mad at each other because DDP thought Buff was trying to hook-up with his wife. WCW was headed into Souled Out with a bunch of lame gimmick matches and dream bouts such as David Flair v. Vampiro. This is the January 8th Saturday Night show, taped January 5th in Rock Hill, SC.
We've got a new look for Saturday Night after an apparent few week break along with a danceclub intro. Scott Hudson and Mike Tenay are the announcers. Hudson started off by saying that if the next 51 weeks in WCW are anything like the the first then we are in for a doozy. Who'd have thought Scott Hudson could be so wise?
Curt Hennig v. David Sierra
Sierra had previously wrestled as Fidel Sierra and as one of Los Especialistas with Ricky Santana, in the 90's. This was a short match and neither guy brought a lot of emotion into the match although Hennig did work hard. Basic stuff here with hammerlocks and headlocks with Hennig winning out.
Hennig even hit a cartwheel in an exchange but walked right into a clothesline. Both announcers hypothesized that Hennig might still have ties to the Powers That Be, seeing as how he had ties with them in 1999. Sierra made the ultimate mistake by going for a back drop and Hennig nailed the Hennig Plex that Tenay said was perfectly executed, for the win. In scouting Hennig for a match, one would think that the first thing to go over would be to not go for a back body drop EVER, during the match. Shows why Sierra never rose above jobber status I guess. Maybe he just needed a good manager.
Tenay and Hudson recap Nitro and run down Souled Out with no videos or anything, just verbal stuff and lots of hand gestures.
Lash LeRoux v. Al Green
LeRoux came out all happy and smiling but Green came out like he wanted to kick someone's ass. Green rushed him right away, pressed him up and tossed him over the top rope onto the floor.
Then, Lash got launched into a railing outside but he got back in. Tenay and Hudson got some plugs in for the big Tank Abbott/Jerry Flynn match at Souled Out and Hudson called Tank a pitfighter. LeRoux had some minor hope spots but Green still hit a powerslam and a lariat. This show has tons of piped in heat and it was getting annoying considering we could see the fans sitting on their hands. LeRoux finally hit a missile dropkick and a fancy snap mare/russian leg sweep neckbreaker. He went for the Whiplash but they cut away to a fan wearing a Psychosis mask and apparently Green had countered or that was the idea. Green missed a leg drop though and Lash fired up and hit the Whiplash, which starts off in a fireman's carry with Lash spinning him and Green landing on his back/head between Lash's legs. Not too bad of a match here but I really wanted Green to win. On a side note, I noticed that Green fought The Barbarian in June 26, 1999 and that had to have been good!
Kid Romeo v. Mike Sanders
They put over how these guys are straight from the Power Plant and they're the stars of the future. However, during the match, all Tenay and Hudson talked about was the “shoot” interview with DDP from Nitro and his feud with Buff Bagwell. Romeo and Sanders worked hard for this one but I was more impressed with Sanders. He was way more put together than Romeo, by this point. Romeo was sketchy in some parts and a decent portion of the match just felt like moves being strung together. It was still an exciting match though. Sanders came out to surfer music, for some reason. They did a test of strength and then some lucha flips and monkey flips out of it. Romeo won out and hit a headscissors that sent Sanders outside and then he hit a massive crossbody from the top.
Romeo hit some bad looking knees in the corner and he went for another headscissors but Sanders countered, as Romeo was spinning, with a side suplex that sent Romeo outside. This was by far the best move of the match and it looked very crisp. Sanders hit a standing moonsault off the apron after this and he went for a powerbomb that was countered into a DDT and both guys were down. Romeo hit an enzugiri and a rana from the top and followed them up with his Romeo Recliner/Snowplow move and won.
The Villanos v. Dean Malenko/Perry Saturn w/Shane Douglas
Douglas cut his usual promo beforehand and he swore a lot and he was bleeped out with a whip sound, which I found amusing. He said the Revolution isn't getting their due respect and they have a surprise mystery partner against the Filthy Animals at Souled Out. The story of the match was that the Villanos were the faces and they got decimated until they hit their comeback and started getting some offense going. Their comeback was exactly the point where the match started to get interesting. Saturn and Malenko on top were boring. I'm not sure which Villano was which as the announcers did not specify and I'm not too well versed in the Villanos knowledge. One of them hit a crossbody from the top and made the tag to his partner and a few moments later, all four guys were in.
The Villanos hit double corner fists but the ref was busy trying to stop one of them and Douglas whacked the other Villano with a chain. Finally, Malenko put the Texas Cloverleaf on and won the match.
La Parka v. Adrian Byrd
Byrd was incredibly green here and not ready for tv as he was very slow and didn't move very well. Byrd was a very large, muscular guy but that's about all he had going for him. His moveset was very basic with arm drags and clotheslines and even a dropkick.
La Parka danced a lot here and controlled the match except for a tiny Byrd comeback. Byrd's dropkick sent La Parka outside backwards, similar to Harley Race's backwards bump. La Parka hit a missile dropkick, powerslam, and finally, a twisting senton splash from the top for the win. Not a very good match here.
Big Vito/Johnny the Bull w/Tony Marinara v. Disorderly Conduct
Whoever came up with the name Tony Marinara is an idiot. The Italians weren't very interesting here but Disorderly Conduct were amazingl. Vito and Johnny were in control until Johnny missed a charge in the corner allowing Disorderly Conduct to get some offense in. Johnny pressed up Mean Mike after eating a spinebuster a couple minutes beforehand.
Then, Johnny did a standing leap to the top but missed a spinning leg drop allowing Mike to make the tag. Tough Tom came in and cleaned house with a ton of fire as he looked amazing here. Suddenly, all four guys were in but Disorderly Conduct got double clotheslined and Vito hit a twisting DDT for the win.
Booker T w/Midnight v. Chris Williams
Williams was a young “Wildcat” Chris Harris from TNA and Braden Walker from WWE. He was green here but not nearly as bad as Adrian Byrd from earlier in this episode. Nowhere in the same galaxy, actually. Booker was winning initially and even hit the Bookend but Williams went on to nail an eye poke and got some offense going.
He had Booker in a chinlock as Booker kept trying to fight out but Williams pulled him down a couple times. Booker finally got out, hit Williams with a scissors kick, and then finished him with an Alabama slam for the win. This wasn't the worst match on the show.
Apparently, Bret Hart released a compilation album of metal music around this time, as a commercial aired for it.
Disco Inferno w/Big Vito, Johnny the Bull, and Tony Marinara v. Scott Armstrong
Scott Armstrong is, of course, a current WWE referee and in this match, he had a giant W on his ass. Can someone please fill me in as to why this was on his tights? This was a pretty basic match, similar to just about every other match on this episode. Armstrong started out great with a ton of fire but it didn't last long. Disco used Scott's momentum to send him out to the floor and his pals did a number on him.
Disco hit a high inverted atomic drop and he started to dance but Vito put a stop to that. Disco tried for a middle rope elbow but he spent too much time dancing and missed it. Scott hit his comeback, which was underwhelming. Either that or I was expecting too much from him because it wasn't really bad. How the WCW rules committee let all three of Disco's pals at ringside is baffling. They all jumped up and Scott took a swing at Vito as Tony distracted the ref. Vito handed Disco some brass knucks but Disco missed the first time and got it right on a second try and he won.
Lord Steven Regal/Dave Taylor v. Crowbar/David Flair-WCW Tag Team Title Match
Here's the main event and it was the best match on the show but not great or anything. Flair started out by getting destroyed by Taylor and Flair escaped. Taylor followed and nailed both opponents. They got in and both teams tagged in and Crowbar did better against Regal. He threw Regal out and then nailed a baseball slide and a splash off the apron.
Now, all four guys were brawling outside and this seemed like it would end in a double-countout but that wasn't the case. Crowbar accidentally threw Flair into a railing. They all got back in and exchanged control as a “We Want Flair” chant broke out. Regal was down now and Crowbar hit a slingshot leg drop and he tried to go to the top. However, Regal caught him and hit a double-underhook superplex and made the tag to Taylor who went nuts on both guys. Crowbar and Regal brawled outside as Taylor hit a double-underhook cradle and tried to pin Flair. The ref was trying to control Regal and Crowbar came in and whacked Taylor with a pipe and put Flair on top of him for the win.
I forgot to mention that they aired a segment where Disco Inferno was acting as a debt collector for Big Vito and he had to collect from an old guy at a corner store. The old guy wouldn't pay up, so Disco convinced him to pay if he gave the guy his Rolex. The agreed and gave Disco a small amount money for Disco's watch and Disco gave the money to Vito, waiting outside. Laughable acting by everyone but a fun segment. I would've put it earlier in the post but I lost track of it until I was done formatting everything.
Follow me on Twitter @stevesgraps for more pics from this show and other pics. Email me there or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, please check out another site I write for at Voices of Wrestling.