Hello and welcome to another edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews, the only wrestling review series on the internet that makes you want dial that WCW Hotline! It’s time for WCW’s Clash of The Champions XVII, no special name for this Clash? Weird but this could be a good Clash, why? Well we have a world championship match in Lex Luger vs Rick Steiner but we also have Rick Rude vs Sting for The United States Championship, The Enforcers are defending their tag team championships against Dustin Rhodes and a mystery partner while we also have Steve Austin defending his Television Championship against PN News and Brian Pillman defends his Light Heavyweight Championship against Johnny B. Badd. We have a lot of big matches among the usual squash matches so can WCW recover? Let’s see!
(LumberJack Match) Big Josh vs Thomas Rich
The speciality of Big Josh, we have Thomas Rich, a number member of the NWA guys who I feel should be gone from the company but do not seem to go away taking on Big Josh. Rich jumps Big Josh, beating him with his flannel over his head. Rich looks like a cowboy and lands massive elbows to the head of Big Josh. Big Josh fires up and lands a shoulder block, Rich cannot run away from Big Josh. Big chop from Big Josh, atomic drop also. Belly to belly suplex and Log-Roll from Big Josh. Rich rolls to the heel side, The Freebirds and Champion throw Rich in the ring. Big Josh is thrown to the floor, lots of brawling on the floor as Big Josh is sent to the floor again.
Irish whip and clothesline from Rich, Rich uses his wrist-tape to choke out Big Josh. Elbow from Rich, elbow to the head from Rich. Two for Rich, Big Josh is choked with the tape again. Armstrong chokes Big Josh with the tape as Rich talks with the referee, suplex by Rich. Big Josh fires back at Rich, Rich lands a big boot to the head of Josh. Rich climbs high, Big Josh yanks Rich off the top rope. Rich begs for mercy, boots and chops by Big Josh. Suplex by Big Josh for two, Terrence Taylor trips up Thomas Rich as he runs the ropes? What is this? Northern Exposure for the win!
Pretty average I have not been impressed by either of these in their time in WCW, opening match is where they should be on the card, looks like Rich might be back as a babyface. Personally, I would have put Morton in that spot but then again, Morton without Gibson is not worth much to me.
Winner: Big Josh over Thomas Rich via Northern Exposure!
Beautiful Bobby Eaton vs Firebreaker Chip
Two babyfaces who have a very clean start, arm-drag by Eaton and side headlock takedown by Chip. Chip leaps over Eaton and lands a middle rope crossbody for two, top wristlock from Chip. Side headlock from Chip, Eaton escapes and sends Chip to the buckle. Very basic stuff here, Chip sends Eaton to the buckle and Eaton responds with a massive lariat. Back-breaker from Eaton for two, crossbody by Eaton but Chip rolls through for two. Back-slide from Chip for two, whip to the opposite buckle by Eaton but Chip rolls through and lands an O’Connor roll for two but Eaton shoves Chip to the buckle and lands a belly to back suplex for the win.
Very basic, not sure what the purpose of this unless it was to try and make something of Chip considering he was a champion in the company but yeah, I would like to see more of Eaton having great matches and nailing Alabama Jams thanks very much!
Winner: Bobby Eaton over Chip via Belly to Back Suplex!
The Z-Man vs Diamond Studd
Zenk comes in and whips Studd to the buckle, Studd lands a middle rope bulldog. Studd lands right hands before Zenk sends Studd into the ring-post. Diving sunset flip for two, Studd lands a clothesline. Zenk lands a superkick and a crucifix pin for the win. Studd gets his heat back with a chokeslam and a stomp before delivering The Diamond Death Drop! Too brief to rate!
Winner: The Z-Man over The Diamond Studd via Crucifix!
(WCW Television Championship Match) Stunning Steve Austin © W/ Lady Blossom vs PN News
No Dustin Rhodes I see, Austin jumps News with right hands to the head. News reverses and chokes Austin, two-handed slam with Austin begging for mercy. Right hands to the ribs, corner splash from News. Northern lariat from News, Austin is begging for mercy and tries running to the floor. Scoop slam and News delivers an elbow drop, Austin makes it to the floor. Austin lures in News but News sends Austin to the guardrail. News collapses onto Austin when Austin tries a scoop slam, two for News. Ugly dropkick from News, Austin tosses News to the ramp. Right hands by Austin who is back-dropped into the ring, clothesline and a bearhug into the belly to belly suplex. Austin places a foot on the ropes, Lady Blossom actually does it to save Austin.
News is chasing down Blossom, not a good idea from News. Austin dives over the top rope and lands a suicide dive-like manoeuvre onto the challenger. Shoulder thrusts in the corner, News sends Austin to the buckle but Austin dodges and scoops up News using the ropes for leverage to retain the championship!
Not bad for how quick it was, did not overstay its welcome and they accomplished a fair bit here, News is still over with the fans and they bought into News possibly winning the championship while Austin continues to cheat to survive, would like to see Rhodes or Windham or even Eaton be in there with Austin because its clear that Austin has something despite his terrible gear and hair-style.
Winner: Stunning Steve Austin over PN News via Roll-Up!
Cactus Jack VS Van Hammer
They are feeding Jack to Van Hammer are they? Cactus jumps Hammer and attacks with chokes before Hammer lands a belly to back suplex and a dropkick, plancha from Hammer. Big boot from Hammer, leg drop from Hammer for two. Cactus whip Hammer to the buckle and lands a face-buster, Cactus Jack Clothesline. Middle rope Elbow Drop from Cactus onto Hammer, Cactus stomps all over Hammer. Right hands but Hammer is firing up, big rights rock Cactus before a rake to the eyes changing the control before Hammer lands a clothesline to the back of the head. Diving Knee Drop from Hammer, two for Hammer. Eye rake by Cactus and both men bang heads, Cactus stabs Hammer in the throat with the guitar and its over.
Hammer was obviously limited in what he could do inside the ring but to have his defeat come so quickly into his push? I suppose it is what it is, Cactus did impress and had way much more upside than Hammer but it looked like they had some sort of vision for Hammer.
Winner: Cactus Jack over Van Hammer via Guitar To The Throat!
(WCW World Tag Team Championship Match) The Enforcers © vs Dustin Rhodes & A Mystery Partner
Anderson & Zbyszko won the championships in a tag team tournament defeating Rick Steiner and Bill Kazmaier in the finals, Anderson and Zbyszko had taken out Barry Windham’s hand so we need a replacement. A mystery man with some sort of Dragon on his head, could this be some sort of reject from Halloween Havoc? The dad of The Creatures? Rhodes reveals that it is Ricky The Dragon Steamboat! It’s been roughly two years since we have seen Steamboat, the trilogy with Flair and the match with Luger being the highlights of Steamboat’s last run with WCW.
The tag team champions are not happy to see Steamboat, Steamboat and Anderson start with Steamboat punching and chopping Anderson. Anderson rakes the eyes but Steamboat batters the champions, pier six brawl time with everyone on the floor. Chops and right hands all around, Anderson meets the ring-post and Zbyszko is rammed into the buckle, spinning reverse elbow on Zbyszko. Inverted atomic drop and dropkick on Anderson, we take a breather. Zbyszko in with Steamboat now, they lock-up and Steamboat has the side headlock. Shoulder block by Steamboat into the side headlock takedown, Zbyszko almost rolls out of the hold but Rhodes comes in and works the arm. Leg drop to the arm into the arm-bar, Zbyszko tries a scoop slam but Rhodes holds onto the arm. In comes Steamboat, diving chop to the arm.
Steamboat sends the arm of Zbyszko into the ring-post, tag to Rhodes. Knee drops to the arm into the arm-bar, Anderson gets the tag as Zbyszko pushed Rhodes to the buckle. Big lefts from Anderson, Rhodes reverses the Irish whip but Anderson lands a knee to the ribs. Anderson goes high, Rhodes tries to yank Anderson off the buckle but Anderson rakes the eyes and lands a diving axe handle. Anderson whips Rhodes to the buckle, knee after knee counter from Rhodes and we have Bionic Elbows to The Enforcers and we reset once more as Steamboat continues to cheer on the rookie Rhodes. Anderson wants a time-out, tag to Zbyszko. Zbyszko wants Steamboat, Steamboat is pissed now.
Lock-up, wristlock and karate kick from Steamboat, slap from Zbyszko who blind-tags in Anderson, Steamboat misses it and Rhodes is irate which allows the double team on Steamboat. Suplex by Zbyszko for two, Anderson his the knee from the apron but Zbyszko lands a big spinning sole butt. In comes Anderson, whip to the buckle hard and Steamboat collapses to the mat. Steamboat chops and kicks back at Anderson, low headbutt from Anderson. Sunset flip from Steamboat, Zbyszko was blind-tagged in at the time so Steamboat’s efforts is all for naught. Abdominal stretch with a little leverage from Anderson, Rhodes is irate and tries entering the ring. In comes Anderson, Steamboat chops back but eats an elbow and a belly to back suplex for two. Zbyszko complains about the referee’s count, Anderson ducks his head off the Irish whip and Steamboat lands a massive face-buster. Anderson grabs the leg which allows Zbyszko to come into the ring. Back-breaker from Zbyszko for two, Steamboat tries a scoop slam but does not have the energy to hold Zbyszko.
Drop toehold from Zbyszko, Anderson decks Rhodes off the apron and applies a bearhug on Steamboat, Boston crab from Anderson. Zbyszko is in now, Zbyszko applies the hold in the middle of the ring. Anderson distracts the referee so the tag to Rhodes is not allowed, Anderson tags in legally and whips Steamboat to the buckle but Steamboat dodges, atomic drop into the buckle so Anderson cracks the back of his head off Steamboat’s face. Anderson decides to go for it all on the top rope, Steamboat blocks with his boots to the face. Rhodes gets the tag, right hands and elbows all around. Flying clothesline on Zbyszko, scoop slam on Anderson. Anderson gets dropped with The Running Bulldog as Steamboat is tagged in, Steamboat climbs high and lands The Diving Crossbody and we have new champions!
What a great match, Steamboat is an all-time seller and I have missed him so much because the second that heat segment begins, it is all out from Steamboat who looks like he is drawing his final breathes in that ring. That hot-tag is great too, Rhodes cleans all sorts and that finish is just fantastic. An actual worth watching match on The Clash, it’s been such a long time since that happened or at least feels like it, great to have Steamboat back and great to see these two teams going at it heading into Starrcade!
Winners: Ricky Steamboat & Dustin Rhodes over The Enforcers via Diving Crossbody!
(WCW Light Heavyweight Championship Match) Flyin’ Brian Pillman © vs Johnny B. Badd W/ Teddy Long
Pillman looks to be heading into a battle with one Jushin Thunder Liger so it looks like Badd will be a sacrificial lamb here. Pillman uses his speed to send Badd to the ramp, Air Pillman from the champion. Pillman wants a piledriver but Badd back-drops Pillman and sends Pillman into the guardrail. Badd is in the ring, telling the fans who the man is in this contest. Pillman on the apron lands a slingshot crossbody for two, powerslam by Pillman who climbs high. Diving splash is blocked with the knees by the challenger, Badd lands an elbow to the face. Reverse chin-lock from Badd, scoop slam and Badd climbs high. Pillman catches Badd in mid-air with a dropkick, flying clothesline by Pillman. Spinning heel kick by Pillman for two, Badd ducks a clothesline and lands his own flying clothesline. Badd is up top, diving sunset flip but Teddy Long is talking with the referee. Pillman shoves Badd into Teddy Long and into the O’Connor roll for the win.
More of an angle to get Badd as a babyface as we see Badd knock out Teddy Long following the bell, not really dramatic and played out but I guess they achieved what they wanted to achieve with this.
Winner: Brian Pillman over Johnny B. Badd via O’Connor Roll!
(WCW United States Championship Match) Sting © vs Rick Rude W/ Paul E. Dangerously & Medusa
Lex Luger had appeared from the mystery box and clipped the knee of Sting, Sting was injured and taken to hospital, Sting returns for the match though. They want Sting but The Stinger is limping badly. Can the champion compete? Sting and Rude brawl on the ramp, military press slam on the ramp. Rude is flopping all around for the champion, we are back in the ring. Rude rakes the eyes, Rude climbs high. Sting dodges the axe handle, right hands by the champion. Back body-drop, Rude is bounced off the buckle again and again. A right hand floors Rude, Rude is clotheslined onto the ramp hard. Rude trips up Sting and sends the injured leg into the ring-post, sickening from Rude.
Rude climbs high, diving clothesline to the back of the head from Rude. Rude Awakening but Sting escapes, eye-poke by Rude. Right hands but Sting fires back with rights of his own, massive roundhouse right but Rude chop-blocks the knee. Dangerously cracks Sting in the back of the head with his cellphone, Rude crawls into the cover but Sting kicks out at two! DDT by the champion, Dangerously is on the apron. Rude clips the knee again and rolls up Sting with a handful of tights, we have a new champion!
Very solid angle/match right here, Sting coming back and fighting through the pain is glorious cheese and I am all for it like the fans in the arena, the military press slam on the ramp was very unexpected but Rude does a great job of selling the threat of Sting. Finish is good too, Rude works that leg and it plays into the finish, very good way to get the championship off of Sting without hurting the momentum of The Stinger.
Winner: Rick Rude over Sting via Handful of Tights!
(WCW World Heavyweight Championship Match) Lex Luger © vs Rick Steiner
Not sure why this is happening, Luger against tag team specialist Rick Steiner. Steiner out-wrestles Luger, Luger goes to the ropes. Fans are throwing trash in there, not a fan of Luger’s style of stalling. Steiner continues to out-wrestle Luger, shoulder block and powerslam for two. Luger is on the floor after a Steinerline, Luger suckers in Steiner. Elbows and punches but Steiner shakes it off, whip to the buckle and back body-drop. Right hands by Steiner, eye-rake by Luger. Luger gets caught in a German suplex for two, Harley Race is not happy at ringside. Luger begs for mercy, headbutt to the ribs.
The two are trading blows, Luger sends Steiner to the buckle. Luger drops Steiner on the top rope, northern lariat and a lariat before some kicks to the ribs. Luger rakes the eyes of Steiner across the rope, knees to the head. Steiner blocks the suplex and suplexes Luger hard, Luger pokes the eyes and lands a scoop slam followed by an elbow. Fist to the head by Luger, Steiner is canned to the floor. Harley Race comes close and boots Steiner in the head, Scott Steiner is irate at ringside. In the ring, Luger gets two. Steiner fires up with right hands, powerslam from Steiner. Two for Steiner, Steiner climbs to the top rope. Diving Bulldog from Steiner but Luger places his foot on the ropes, Luger is placed on the top rope. Super belly to belly suplex, Mr. Hughes is brawling with Scott Steiner. Frankensteiner on Hughes, Rick Steiner has Harley Race in the ring for a suplex. Luger has the championship and cracks Rick Steiner in the face and Luger retains.
What has happened to my boy Lex Luger? I have never seen someone look so unmotivated as a world champion, Luger is turning in some of the worst matches I have seen from him in a while. How much longer can they have that championship around The Total Package’s waist? Rick is fun here when throwing Steinerlines and suplexing Luger but Luger just seems content to half-ass his way through these matches.
Winner: Lex Luger over Rick Steiner via Championship To The Face!
That was WCW’s Clash Of The Champions XVII and it truly was a one match show, the tag team match and return of Steamboat is a fantastic grab for WCW, Steamboat is an all-time great with so much to offer to the company whether it be getting talent over or creating moments like he did in that ring tonight, very excited about the tag team scene once more well at least the world tag team championship scene, no idea about the United States tag team scene if The Patriots are the champs. Stunning Steve Austin continues to impress as does Brian Pillman so it’s good for the mid-card that they have reliable workhorses like those two along with Bobby Eaton to turn in performances so I don’t have to suffer through the likes of Big Josh and Firebreaker Chip. Sting and Rude is a great angle, Rude is a big name and will only benefit the company as a whole so hoping that Rude wins that World Championship sooner than later because Lex Luger has ultimately let me down as world champion, looking like a far cry from the man who was killing it in tags with Sting or singles with Flair. Thanks for reading and remember: there’s always another night!