Wednesday, September 12, 2018

WCW Starrcade 1995

Taking a brief detour from WWF 1995 Pay-Per-Views due to there being two left and having a day free for anything else, but let's make a quick hop over to World Championship Wrestling and take a look at that year's Starrcade event, which features the stars of WCW going up against the stars of New Japan Pro Wrestling... because that was a thing that happened back in 1995. Wouldn't you like to see something like that with WWE?

"Yeah, bro. Good one."

Welp, I tried.

Jushin "Thunder" Liger defeated Chris Benoit in the opening contest that featured Kevin Sullivan getting involved and costing Benoit the win. A good, hard-hitting opening bout is always a nice way to start a show from 1995 that I've never seen before and thus have no emotional context going into it.

Koji Kama defeated the Wunderkund Alex Wright in a match that told the story of plunky youngster Wright being outmatched by the superior New Japan veteran but went down without a fight and wasn't treated like a complete joke. Fast forward three years later where Jim Duggan couldn't be bothered to do the same thing because he was such hot shit or something. This was a short, fun match. Me likes.

Lex Luger defeated Masa Chono via submission to Torture Rack. This was a thing that happened and it was alright, but nowhere near the levels of the previous two matches... not a bad thing, I guess.

Johnny B. Badd defeated Masa Saito via disqualification when the 50-plus year old Saito clotheslined Badd over the top rope, which was grounds for instant disqualification back in those days at WCW. I am amazed that the over the top rope DQ rule, which was instituted during the Bill Watts era of WCW, lasted as long as it did, but I guess it helped to provide some drama. Sadly, no drama was to be found here. I wasn't into this one.

Shinjiro Ohtani defeated Eddie Guerrero in yet another great match that established the formula of WCW guys winning equals shit matches while New Japan guys winning equals great matches. Of course, this means the WCW guys are winning the rest of these matches here.

WCW World Heavyweight Champion "Macho Man" Randy Savage defeated Hiroyoshi Tenzan in a non-title match. This was terrible. Not a high point for Macho Man.

Sting defeated WCW United States Champion Kenzo Sasaki in a non-title match to win the coveted World Cup Of Wrestling or whatever the hell it's supposed to be called. He also gets to be in the match versus Ric Flair and Lex Luger... or something. This was a match that tip-toed the fine line between a thing that happened and perfectly acceptable wrestling. Could go either way depending on the mood, I think.

Ric Flair defeated Sting and Lex Luger in a Triangle match via countout when both Sting and Luger fell outside the ring and were counted out. Thus Flair gets an immediate World title shot. Shit finish to a good match... and then we get the World title match, which saw Flair defeat champion Macho Man with the help of the Horsemen and some brass knux to win the title in a rubbish main event. Flair and Savage have had better matches with each other.

Meanwhile, Hulk Hogan is nowhere to be found... gee, I wonder why.

Funny thing about this show was that WCW taped a match for Saturday Night that involved Kenzo Sasaki defending the U.S. Title against the One Man Gang. Gang actually scored the pinfall over Sasaki and won the title despite Sasaki kicking out, but the match was restarted and Sasaki retained. Despite this, WCW only showed the match up to Gang winning the title and never mentioned the restart. And so One Man Gang held the U.S. title for a little over a month before losing the title to Konnan.

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