What the World Was Watching: WCW Monday Nitro – September 25, 1995

Monday Night Raw

-Eric Bischoff, Steve “Mongo” McMichael, and Bobby “the Brain” Heenan are in the booth and are live! If my observations are correct, this is the first Nitro that has a small ramp by the entrance.

-Opening Contest: Alex Wright vs. The Disco Inferno:

The Disco Inferno’s theme is one of the greatest in wrestling history and Disco took a gimmick that for most guys would be a career killer and got it over. Disco attacks Wright from behind and tosses him to the arena floor. Disco dances a bit, but that gives Wright time to recover and he delivers a springboard dropkick. Wright whips Disco into the corner with authority and drills him with a spinning kick for two. Wright tosses Disco to the floor and takes him out with a plancha. When they get back in the ring, Disco screws up giving Wright a hot shot and he follows it up with a running elbow. After a short-arm clothesline Disco takes too long to climb the top rope and Wright dropkicks him off to give us a brief double KO. Wright makes the comeback and hits a bulldog for two. Wright puts his head down too early and Disco delivers a side suplex, but Wright catches him with a backslide out of nowhere for the pin at 4:00. A good, quick match, but Disco still needed some seasoning. Grade: C-

-WCW Champion Hulk Hogan, who is wearing a neck brace, is with Jimmy Hart in the “locker room” and he says he hasn’t missed any workouts. He goes on to claim that he will beat the Giant there just like he beat his father. Hogan must have thought highly of his line about the Giant being “big and stinky” because he invoked it in every promo leading up to the pay-per-view.

-We’re treated to a replay of Randy Savage and Lex Luger’s faceoff from last week’s show.

-“Mean” Gene Okerlund talks with Savage and Luger quickly comes out. Luger says that Savage doesn’t respect him and he challenges him to a match next week, which Savage accepts. Luger puts his future title shot on the line and says that if he doesn’t beat Savage next week he’ll leave WCW. Since Savage isn’t putting anything up on his end I think that’s a really poor career move, Lex. The intensity between these two is awesome, but I would have liked a better build in the segment instead of both guys screaming at each other from the get go.

-Bischoff runs down the Halloween Havoc card.

-Kurasawa (w/Colonel Robert Parker) vs. Sgt. Craig Pittman:

This is going to be a battle of armbars because both men specialize in that. Sure enough, Pittman wastes no time going after the arm and he maintains the attack until Kurasawa kicks him to the floor. Kurasawa hits a baseball slide and Heenan says he’s the best wrestler he’s ever seen from Japan. The Great Muta may disagree on that one. Outside, Kurasawa suplexes Pittman on the concrete and works Pittman’s arm when they get back into the ring. After getting into the ropes, Pittman backdrops Kurasawa to the floor and Nick Patrick doesn’t disqualify him for some reason. Pittman pounds away on the floor and suplexes Kurasawa inside by his arm and delivers an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. A Code Red follows, but Kurasawa gets his foot on the bottom rope to force a break. Pittman pounds away, but Kurasawa counters with…you guessed it, an armbar. Pittman suplexes out of that, but Kurasawa wins a battle of positioning and hits a German suplex for the win at 4:25. So all the work on the arm and it didn’t impact the outcome? For shame. Grade: C-

-Okerlund interviews “Flyin’” Brian Pillman and “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson. Pillman tells Flair that he and Anderson will exercise their right to hospitalize anyone who wants to team with him at Halloween Havoc. Anderson says that the better man won at Fall Brawl and argues that Flair has screwed over too many people and has no one to turn to. It’s really hard to disagree with that logic.

-Kevin Sullivan’s attack on Randy Savage on the Baywatch set is shown again.

-“The Taskmaster” Kevin Sullivan (w/the Zodiac) vs. “Macho Man” Randy Savage:

Savage chases Sullivan around the ring, but Sullivan kicks away and distracts the referee, which enables the Zodiac to do a number on Savage. Sullivan beats on Savage after the Zodiac throws him back inside and then he hurls him to the floor. Tons of pointless brawling between the two follows until Savage makes the comeback. Savage hits a top rope ax handle and tosses Sullivan into the Zodiac. Savage clotheslines the Zodiac and tosses the referee to the side and that causes a disqualification at 2:58. Savage slams the Zodiac, slams Sullivan on top of the Zodiac, and goes for the elbow smash, but Sullivan rolls out of the way and only the Zodiac takes the blow. Grade: F

-As Savage beats on Sullivan some more, the Giant comes out and when he gets to the ring he kills Savage with a chokeslam. Some jobbers come out to help Savage, but they get chokeslammed. Alex Wright tries to dive onto the Giant, but the Giant catches him in a bearhug and slams him into the mat. Lex Luger comes out as the Giant chokeslams Savage a second time and stands over Savage like a conquering hero. When the Giant doesn’t take kindly to that and tries to chokeslam him, Luger briefly fights him off, but succumbs to a chokeslam like the rest. Sullivan looks at the Giant in a “what did you just do” kind of way after that and he heads to the locker room. THIS is how you get a monster over.

-Lex Luger vs. Meng:

Luger is still recovering from the Giant’s chokeslam so Meng rushes the ring and immediately takes it to him. Bischoff says that Hogan will be in Denver next week as Meng keeps up the assault. A piledriver gets two. Meng pounds and chokes away and hits a suplex for two. Nerve hold time, but Luger’s hand only drops twice and he elbows out. Luger unloads, but Meng turns the tide with a kick and gets a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. Meng covers again for two. Chinlock time since the nerve told didn’t work and Meng eventually releases it. Meng hits a leg drop for two. Back to the chinlock, which gives us one rest hold per minute thus far. Meng delivers a Samoan drop, but when he dives off the second rope Luger moves and throws Meng’s face into the canvas. Luger makes the comeback, but the referee eventually pulls him off Meng. As he does so, Meng pulls out a spike and blasts Luger for it to get the pin at 6:47. So Luger gets chokeslammed by the Giant and gets beat on for six minutes, by Meng no less, and it still takes a foreign object to beat him? That’s just ridiculous. They should’ve had this match earlier in the show and had the Giant’s rampage play us out. Grade: D-

-Tune in next week to see Luger face off with Savage and The American Males and the Nasty Boys will be in action!

The Final Report Card: WCW found something special in the Giant and they were doing a great job making him look like a force. The Luger-Savage interactions were carrying the show in Hogan’s absence and guys in the midcard were putting on more serviceable matches than their WWF counterparts during this period. However, the matches at the top of the card REALLY weigh this show down.

Monday Night War Rating: 2.7 (vs. 1.9 for Raw)

Show Grade: D

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