Hello and welcome to another edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews, the only wrestling review series on the internet that continues to do nothing to improve and expect results! This is Clash of The Champions XXIII and this is a big one ladies and gentlemen. Ric Flair is back competing inside of the squared circle teaming with Arn Anderson to challenge for the World Tag Team Championships held by The Hollywood Blondes! We also have a massive six-man tag match as Sting, Dustin Rhodes and British Bulldog take on Rick Rude, Vader and Sid Vicious which should be a treat! Barry Windham also defends his NWA World Championship against 2 Cold Scorpio which should be an interesting contest.
Ron Simmons vs Dick Slater W/ Paul Orndorff
This was meant to be a TV championship match but Orndorff is injured so Simmons takes on Dick Slater, Simmons has slipped down that card dramatically but many would agree that Simmons was not ready to be world champion. Simmons starts with an atomic drop, Slater takes the leg and stretches it before Simmons kicks off Slater. Monkey flip, clothesline and flying shoulder block for two. Slater is on the floor, Slater comes back into the ring and slaps Simmons. Simmons tosses Slater but Orndorff stops the flying tackle by grabbing the foot. Slater flattens Simmons and decks him with rights and lefts, face rake from Slater. Swinging neck-breaker from Slater for two, Simmons and Slater slug it out. Massive powerslam and it’s over.
Quick match, not much back and forth but they obviously wanted to do Orndorff vs Simmons for the championship so nothing wrong with the result and the fans are into this one big time.
Winner: Ron Simmons over Dick Slater via Powerslam!
Lord Steven Regal vs Marcus Bagwell
With Scorpio challenging for the NWA Championship, it looks like Bagwell will be cannon fodder once more. But who is his opponent? We have none other than Lord Steven Regal, one of the best technical wrestlers in the game with expressions that put the best to shame. Regal is a sentimental favourite for many a wrestling fan and I am looking forward to seeing how Regal does in WCW because there were quite a number of good moments in there before Regal’s demons would take hold as the years progressed.
Regal looks disgusted by the sight of Bagwell, lock-up and Regal takes the leg before transitioning to the arm. Bagwell counters and works the arm before Regal shows some nice technique to gain hold of the arm. Bagwell counters and works the arm, Regal rolls through and drop toeholds Bagwell but Bagwell slips out for the hammerlock and drives the knee into the arm two times. Regal elbows his way out and lands a fantastic uppercut, Bagwell fights back and works the arm. Regal is whipped across the ring, more nice arm-work from Bagwell. Regal drives Bagwell to the ropes, uppercuts and forearm shots. Chop-block to the knee from Regal, Bagwell is selling that knee.
Snap-mare into the ropes to work the legs, Regal snap-mares Bagwell into the ropes again. Regal drives the knee into the mat, more leg-stretches from the brawler from Blackpool. Another sweep and stretch from Regal, Bagwell manages to land a spinning kick. Irish whip but Bagwell ducks the head, Regal sweeps the leg and smashes it into the mat again. Uppercuts and a drop toehold into the stretch, Bagwell kicks and flips out of the hold. Running forearm by Bagwell, back body drop. Powerslam for two, Regal cannot get the leg as Bagwell lands the backslide for two. Vicious clothesline by Bagwell, Regal begs for mercy. O’Connor roll from Bagwell but Regal rolls through with a handful of tights for the win.
Not the cleanest execution when it comes to the finish, not my idea of a dominant performance for a new face in WCW but maybe they have a bigger plan. As for Bagwell, Bagwell continues to show that there might be something there with this kid, kind of shocking when you consider what he was like when he was at his most over.
Winner: Lord Steven Regal over Marcus Bagwell via Handful of Tights!
(NWA World Championship Match) Barry Windham © vs 2 Cold Scorpio
Windham faces bright young babyface in Scorpio, Windham shoves Scorpio to the corner with ease for a clean break. “You are mine” says Windham, Scorpio catches Windham with a dropkick. Windham rethinks his strategy, Windham works the arm with arm-bars. Scorpio manages to land a scoop slam, Windham pushes Scorpio to the corner. Massive right hand and a splash, Scorpio dodges the second splash and wants a single leg crab but Windham scrambles to the floor to reset. Eye rake by Windham, right hand to the jaw. Irish whip reversed by Scorpio, both men duck before Windham lands a kick to the head. Windham climbs high, Diving Clothesline by Windham!
Scoop slam and knee-drop by the champion, Windham wants the verbal submission from Scorpio but Scorpio says no way, Windham drills Scorpio with a float-over suplex for two. Windham rakes at the face of Scorpio, Windham lands a massive DDT in the middle of the ring for two. Windham is incensed with this, small package counter by Scorpio for two. Windham lands another huge right to the face, gut-wrench suplex by Windham. Right hands by Windham, Windham talks with the referee. Scorpio begins to rally, dropkick takes down Windham. Windham fires back with a flying clothesline, Scorpio is dropped across the top rope. Scorpio is dumped to the floor, Windham and the referee continue to have words.
Windham pulls Scorpio onto the apron, massive shot sends Scorpio to the apron. Scorpio lands shoulder thrusts, slingshot crossbody for two. Windham is right back up, kick to the gut. Windham lands a dropkick, Samoan drop from Windham for two. Measured right hands by Windham, belly to back suplex from Windham for two. Windham slaps Scorpio and Scorpio fires back, eye-rake from Windham. Scorpio counters the Samoan drop for a victory roll, two for Scorpio. Clothesline by Windham, Scorpio flips out of the belly to back and lands a belly to back suplex of his own. Eye-rake by Windham, Windham wants his superplex. Scorpio throws off Windham, twisting splash for two. Hurricanrana from Scorpio, superkick staggers Windham. Victory roll for a close two, scoop slam by Scorpio.
Slingshot splash for a close two, the crowd is coming alive for this match. They love the hard work from these two, missile dropkick from Scorpio for another close two. Windham is dragged up by his hair, Scorpio is sent to the apron. Slingshot is blocked as Windham lands a massive right hand, Windham lands that leaping DDT for the win.
Really good stuff here, Windham’s facials in this match are great. Tremendous stuff from the big Texan, you could feel his disdain for Scorpio in the match and Windham had no interest in Scorpio as an opponent. Scorpio holds his own here, that finishing flurry of attacks had the crowd going nuts, good work from both of these men on this night. A match that I thought would have been relatively straight-forward was anything but that, these guys brought the pain and the fans including me loved being taken on that ride.
Winner: Barry Windham over 2 Cold Scorpio via DDT!
Sting/The British Bulldog/Dustin Rhodes vs Sid Vicious/Vader/Ravishing Rick Rude W/ Harley Race & Colonel Robert Parker
What an absolutely stacked six-man tag team match, so many awesome wrestlers in one match. Sting and Rude to start, crowd is going nuts before they have even touched. This might be one of the best Clashes based off of this crowd, side headlock by Sting. Rude is trying to break out of the hold, Sting is holding on tight. Hammerlock counters, Rude backs Sting to the ropes. Elbow by Rude, forearm shots from Rude. Sting reverses an Irish whip and back body drops Rude, Rude is pressed onto Sid and Vader but Sting batters everyone with punches. Eye-rake by Rude, Sting almost cradles Rude for two.
In comes Rhodes, right hands all around. Vader splashes Rude by mistake, in comes Bulldog. Sid decides to come in against Bulldog, this is going to be as meaty as it gets, knees by Sid. Bulldog lands right hands, Sid is slammed by Bulldog. Sting sends the ropes into Sid’s groin, clotheslines by Sting and Rhodes but Sid is not going to stay down until Bulldog lands a flying shoulder block. Rhodes comes in, knees by Sid. In comes Vader, Rhodes tees off on Vader. Rhodes suplexes Vader! Elbow to the groin from Rhodes and a low clothesline, Rhodes misses a diving elbow drop. Lariat floors Rhodes, Vader climbs high. Vader Bomb connects, Rhodes squeaks out at two and a half.
In comes Rude, forearm shots to the spine from the Ravishing One. Front suplex from Rude, two for Rude. In comes Sid, kicks to the ribs. Sid rakes the eyes, Rhodes is bounced off the buckle in the corner. Make it double, Rhodes collapses to the mat, Rhodes fights back into the match before Sid lands a boot. Sid kips up and lands a clothesline for two, Vader is in and clubs the shit out of Rhodes. Middle rope splash is countered for a powerslam by Rhodes, Rude is tagged into the match. Knees all around, Rude wants the tombstone but Rhodes counters and drops Rude on his head. Sting is tagged in but the referee does not see the tag, Vader and Sid rough up Rhodes. The match breaks down, all six men are brawling. Vader cracks Rhodes with a briefcase and Rude covers for the win.
This was a lot of fun, crowd is on fire for everyone and the babyfaces get a fantastic shine in the beginning of the match. Everyone does a great job putting over Sting, Bulldog and Rhodes, we get down to the control segment which is great because Sid and Vader decimate Rhodes so easily all building up to that finish which builds for Rhodes vs Rude for that US Championship. A good day at the office for WCW and arguably one of my favourite Clashes of all-time so far.
Winners: Team Rude over Team Sting via Briefcase to the Head!
(WCW World Tag Team Championship Match) The Hollywood Blondes © vs Ric Flair & Arn Anderson
Ric Flair’s first match since returning to WCW, The Four Horsemen ride again in WCW! 2 out of 3 Falls match against The Hollywood Blondes, this is a match of two generations. It is the 80s vs the 90s, Pillman mocks Flair’s strut and his age. Pillman sends Anderson to the buckle, clean break before Anderson knocks down Pillman with ease. Make it double, Pillman clubs down Anderson. Slap from Pillman, Anderson lands lefts and decks Pillman who begs for mercy. Eye poke by Pillman, eye rake too. Chop by Pillman, Anderson drops Pillman across the top rope and kicks him all over. Austin comes into the match, calls Anderson a fat boy. Side headlock from Austin, elbow to Flair on the apron. Anderson tags in Flair, massive pop from the crowd.
Slap from Flair, chops from The Nature Boy. Whip to the buckle, back body drop and Pillman is chopped too. Flair has Austin by the jaw, chops in the corner and measured right hands. Pillman is chopped in the ring too, elbow to the face of Pillman. Austin and Flair are trading punches, Flair chops and punches Austin. Anderson tags in, stomps in the corner. Hammerlock scoop slam from Anderson, tag to Flair who lands a knee-drop and chops Pillman off the apron. Tag to Anderson again, Pillman is trying to antagonize Flair. Flair is with the referee as Pillman chokes Anderson with the Hollywood towel. Austin takes control of the situation, tag to Pillman. Jaw-breaker and choke from Pillman, eye rake by Pillman who also bites the head of Anderson.
Tag to Austin, clubbing blows to the back of the head. Anderson lands knees and headbutts, Austin sends Anderson into Pillman’s knees. Austin and Pillman rough up Anderson, suplex by Austin. Anderson fights and fights, Austin gains control only to miss his rope attack so Anderson lands a disgusting DDT. Pillman chop blocks Anderson but Flair got the tag, chops and right hands all around. Inverted atomic drop on Pillman, elbow sends Austin to the floor. Ten punches in the corner, Austin is back in though to save Pillman. Flair and Anderson take the first fall as Austin is pulled out by Anderson and Flair lands a flying forearm on Pillman for the pin-fall.
Flair and Pillman restart the match, chops by Pillman but they are answered by Flair’s chops. Flair flip to the buckle, Flair chops both Blondes down before Pilllman bumps Flair off the apron to the floor. Austin takes advantage with a suplex on the floor, Pillman drops Flair on the guardrail before Austin chops Flair in the ring. Pillman chokes Flair with the towel as Austin looks for a superplex, it connects. Austin covers for two, Flair fights back but Austin bites and chokes Flair. Flair chops his back into the match, Austin grabs the foot to prevent the tag. Tag to Pillman, chops by Pillman. Both men collide with headbutts, Anderson gets the tag. Left hands all around, Spinebuster on Austin. Pillman clips the knee again, Austin covers for two.
Pillman goes to work on the leg, Pillman is relentless with elbows and dropping his weight down on the leg. Anderson cannot really walk at this point, Pillman covers for two. Tag to Austin, knees to the thigh. Leg stretch from Austin, tag to Pillman who applies the single leg Boston crab. Austin and Pillman help one another with leverage, Anderson escapes the hold so Austin comes in and drags Anderson to his corner. More leg work from the Blondes, snap-mare and Pillman climbs to the middle rope. Anderson blocks the attack with his boot, Anderson makes the tag to Flair. Flair comes over with rights and lefts, chop for Austin. Pillman is sent to the floor, belly to back suplex on Austin. Flair wants the figure four but Barry Windham is here. We have a DQ! The Blondes and Windham batter Anderson and Flair before Paul Roma the newly minted Horsemen brawls with The Blondes.
Very fun tag team match from these two, a return Flair match is something you do not want to miss in WCW territory, Flair brings his A-Game here along with everyone in the match. Great leg work from Pillman and Austin, great babyface fire from Flair and Anderson. Good tag team psychology out there and Windham who is arguably one of my favourite acts in WCW at this moment comes in and screws up everyone’s good time like a good heel. Windham’s promo after the match is good stuff too, crowd wants to see Windham and Flair wrestle also so that’s a big win in my book.
Winners: Team Flair over The Hollywood Blondes via DQ!
WCW’s Clash of The Champions XXIII was a really good show from WCW, the Clashes have been horrendous at times but all these matches were from WCW and they built up to the upcoming Beach Blast PPV. I am excited for the conclusion of Rude vs Rhodes, I want to see Windham vs Flair. So, mission accomplished from WCW on this night, they had big stars who delivered in big matches. Thanks for reading and remember: there’s always another night!