Saturday Nitro is up and running, and last week’s maiden episode delivered action, thrills and spills.
The six remaining members of the Magnificent Seven are finding themselves in separate wars with the front line members of WCW which will likely continue on episode two, and we also have the four quarter-finals in the US title tournament… well, three of them, at least.
Kevin Nash opens the show, in a Saturday Nitro ring for the first time after a candid sit-down interview from home the previous week. He says he’ll cut to the chase. He wants Scott Steiner and he wants payback for Superbrawl.
He’s instead greeted by Rick Steiner who says his brother is too busy preparing for his upcoming world title rematch, but if he wants some, he can get some of the Dog Faced Gremlin. Nash is up for the fight as Rick approaches the ring.
It’s all a ruse, however: Scott emerges from the crowd to blindside Big Sexy before the brothers assault Nash’s leg with Scott’s lead pipe. DDP makes the save with a chair to send the Steiners scurrying.
Page gets the mic and says he too wants a piece of the bros after the events of Greed. Scotty may have a match for Slamboree, but he’d love to give Rick more of what he dished out last week. Rick accepts as doctors tend to the leg of Nash.
From his office, Commissioner Cat says the attack by the Steiners won’t just be accounted for at the PPV, but also tonight with the main event of Rick and Scott v DDP and Booker T.
At that moment, Mike Sanders enters and sucks up to his former foe in hopes of working as Cat’s deputy. Miller laughs the suggestion off, but does say he wants to see Sanders resume his in-ring career tonight, since he has a lot more upside as a performer than, in Cat’s own words, “my tired old ass”.
Rey Misterio beat Kid Romeo by disqualification after 9:21 when Elix Skipper got involved. Billy Kidman made the save but the damage was done and Rey took a bit of a stomping.
Backstage, Disco Inferno/Disqo says he’s sick of being comic relief, and he’s sick of being a punch bag to others. He claims he is done associating with ‘jokes’ like Alex Wright.
He is the smartest man in the business, he continues, and if nobody will give him opportunities to be a star then he will just make stars himself. He says his name is Glenn Gilbertti and he will take some of the finest talent of the 21st century to the top of the new WCW.
A four corners tag match in the cruiserweight division pitted Three Count against Air Raid against the Jung Dragons against WCW debutants the Full Blooded Italians. The one-fall encounter ended in victory for Maritato and Marinera at 10:22 when they hit a double-team Rubik’s Cube on Air Paris.
Three Count were taken out of the equation by another run-in from Jamie Knoble, who this time had an accomplice in laying out Karagias and Moore: David ‘Kid’ Kash.
Mean Gene welcomes Johnny B Badd back to WCW in a backstage interview, and Badd says his homecoming was soured by the antics of Shawn Stasiak and Stacy Keibler. He challenges Shawn to a non-tournament rematch next week on Nitro.
Lance Storm heads to the ring, even though he does not have to compete in the US title tournament quarter-finals due to a bye. He brags about being in the semi-finals already, then demands the ref raise his hand before having the Canadian national anthem play.
In a battle of Jersey Triad alumni, Kanyon beat Bam Bam Bigelow after 7:14 with his feet on the ropes to reach the last four of the US title tournament.
In the second sit-down interview, Mike Tenay spoke to Shane Douglas. The Franchise said that many see him as a ‘bad guy’. Maybe he is. He does some underhanded stuff and he probably always will. But above all else, he like many guys here loves professional wrestling.
He stood up against Rick Steiner and the Magnificent Seven because they were bad for wrestling, and he couldn’t bear to see Ric Flair up to his old tricks again.
He admits he enjoyed Flair and Sting seeing out the ‘old’ WCW but has his doubts if Sting can really get him to ‘see the light’. “Once a bad guy, Stinger, always a bad guy – take it from an expert.”
He finishes by saying he wants to regain his US title in this tournament, and that he knows how good RVD is from the days of ECW but that he will have a trick up his sleeve for Van Dam.
Unfortunately for The Franchise, RVD beat Douglas to reach the semis and book a match against Storm at Slamboree. A ref bump allowed Douglas to fetch a chair, only to end up eating it via Van Daminator before a Five Star finished the job after 11:45.
In a pre-tape, Torrie Wilson says she is looking for the next guy who can satisfy her desires… to manage a champion in WCW.
Backstage, the Mamalukes are interviewed by Mean Gene about their Big Bang beef with the Harrises. They say they’ve wanted to put those two ‘bozos’ in their place since they ‘stole’ the WCW tag titles from them last year. With that, the twins ambush the two and leave them lying in the corridor.
The final last-eight clash in the US tourney ends sees Dustin Rhodes conquer Mike Awesome to book a semi-final clash with Kanyon, deftly turning an Awesome Bomb attempt into a somewhat-surprising sunset flip for the pin after 13:37.
Cat walks into the locker room of Ric Flair, with Jeff Jarrett, Lex Luger and Buff Bagwell also there. He says anyone who interferes in tonight’s main event will be fired, and that since Flair seems torn between Sting and Jarrett he can be the special guest referee of their contest at Slamboree. The others welcome the news, thinking the result is now in the bag. Flair isn’t looking so certain.
Mike Sanders is in the ring for his match, not knowing who his opponent will be. That question is soon answered by the music of Goldberg! Goldberg destroys ‘Above Average’ for a little while before Luger and Bagwell hit the stage.
They stop cold in their tracks as a monster Spear connects to Sanders, followed by a Jackhammer and the pin (with eye contact on Totally Buffed the whole time) after just 2:10. The heels look like they’ve just stumbled upon the Grim Reaper. *
The announcers discuss confirmed matches for next week’s Nitro, which occurs 24 hours before Slamboree. The Mamalukes and the Harris Boys will try to settle their differences, as will Johnny B Badd and Shawn Stasiak. We’re also promised a US title tournament ‘preview’ tag bout as Rob Van Dam and Dustin Rhodes face Lance Storm and Chris Kanyon, while Knoble and Kash meet Three Count in the ring.
In our main event, DDP and Booker T vs the Steiners ended in a DQ win for the faces when the lead pipe was slipped into the ring by Midajah at 12:29 and the brothers left their PPV opponents down in a heap, just as they did at the top of the show to Nash. The Magnificent Seven may now be just Six, but they’re clearly as dangerous as ever as we head to Slamboree weekend.
Matches set so far for WCW Slamboree 2001:
- WCW World title: Booker T (c) vs Scott Steiner
- WCW World tag titles: Sean O’Haire & Chuck Palumbo (c) vs Kronik
- WCW Cruiserweight title, ladder match: Shane Helms (c) vs Chavo Guerrero Jr
- WCW Cruiserweight tag titles, ⅔ falls: Rey & Kidman (c) vs Skipper & Romeo
- WCW United States title tournament: Rob Van Dam vs Lance Storm
- WCW United States title tournament: Dustin Rhodes vs Chris Kanyon
- WCW United States title tournament final
- Tornado handicap match: Goldberg vs Totally Buffed
- Sting vs Jeff Jarrett (Ric Flair as the special guest referee)
- Diamond Dallas Page vs Rick Steiner
Next week: the last stop before Slamboree as Booker T, DDP and Goldberg pick a mystery partner to take on four members of the Magnificent Se.. er, Six!