I waited to write this, waiting for Extreme Rules – The Pay Per View! (2013 edition) to finish, thinking I’d go off about one thing or another on the show.
I was underwhelmed by the PPV. Jericho/Fandango was good, though, and the Shield winning was expected but welcome. Look, it wasn’t a bad PPV. It had good matches and good moments, and was fine for what it was, and even pleasantly surprised me. But nothing really ‘grabbed’ me.
So I wondered what to write about. As I’ve said in past columns, I’ve tried to present an eclectic and wide-ranging series of columns. I don’t get the hits – in fact, I think I am the least read columnist on Pulse – and I don’t generate the abuse-laden comment sections, but I like to think I bring something unique to the table.
Well, sorry, this is a rehash. Because nothing ‘grabbed’ me at ER13, I got to thinking what did grab me when I was more of a fanboy. Well, it was wrestling matches that I thought were fun.
So what I have decided to do is show you some wrestling matches which I think are underrated. These are all from that long-reviled waste paddock that was WCW. Well, I *liked* WCW, and so I shall inflict these upon you. Matches like this we just don’t see anymore, and this is why I miss Turner’s pride and joy. Not in TNA’s X-Division, not in WWE’s main event scene, not on the indy scene.
5 matches = 5 reasons. Fair enough? No? Too bad. Here they are in year order.
Match 1: Randy Savage v Arn Anderson (Nitro Jan 1 1996)
The first match of the first Nitro of 1996 and damn if it wasn’t a good one to kick off the year. I would have loved it if these two were given time on a PPV, but you have to take what you can get, and what we got was 10 minutes of goodness.
Match 2: Juventud Guerrera, Super Calo & Hector Garza v La Parka, Ciclope & Damien (Nitro May 26 1997)
One thing WCW did well was showcase talent from around the world, especially Mexico. So when we were given, on Nitro, a match like this which was basically just a spotfest, done under lucha libre rules, it was not only different, but also exciting to watch.
Match 3: Diamond Dallas Page v Goldberg – WCW World Heavyweight Title match (Halloween Havoc 1998)
This was Goldberg’s best match ever, and while it stood out at the time (because it followed that abortion that was Hogan-Warrior II and was cut-off midway through the PPV feed) it tends to get overlooked. It shows clearly why Ryback will never be Goldberg and why DDP actually was decent in the ring.
Match 4: -Juventud Guerrera v Blitzkrieg (Spring Stampede 1999) April 11, 1999)
And another cruiserweight match, this with two guys at the top of their game going all out to steal the show in what little time they were given, down to one of the deadliest looking finishers I have ever seen.
Match 5: AJ Styles & Air Paris v The Jung Dragons (Thunder 31 Mar 2001)
As it lie dying in the gutter of mediocrity, one of the things WCW did right was create the cruiserweight tag team titles. It resulted in some awesome matches, so damn fast that calling them live must have been a nightmare. So we come to this one. There were a few awkward moments, but the match was so fast and they fit so much into 9 minutes that it’s like watching a match recorded on 33 1/3 played back on 45. (Hah! Historic allusion that less than 25% of the readers will understand!) Still, loved this match then, still do.
Okay, so that’s it. 5 reasons why I miss WCW. They’re all matches, they are all forgotten for the most part today, and I think they are pretty damn impressive. Yes, I know 3 of them involved the little guys, yes I know DDP and Goldberg appear in a match, yes, I know Juvy appears twice, and yes, I know I am a sad old fart, but that doesn’t matter.
Hope you enjoyed watching!
Tags: AJ Styles, Arn Anderson, DDP, extreme rules, goldberg, Randy Savage, TNA, WCW