Clash of the Champions XX
November 20, 2014
Clash XX was billed as the 20th anniversary of pro-wrestling on TBS and was made out to big a big deal, so they did a short Red Carpet arrival bit and had many legends and dignitaries at this event. The Event took place September 2nd 1992 at Center Stage in Atlanta. I'm not sure why they picked Center Stage as the venue, because it is a tiny TV studio and looked very unimpressive. It's possible that the first show 20 years ago was done at Center Stage and this being the anniversary doing it from the same venue seemed appropriate but if that was the case they should have pushed that to us.
I doubt Center Stage holds more than 800 people and with the amount of TBS Executives and Wrestling Legends at this show I doubt there were more than a couple hundred fans at this show. Seriously this place is maybe 1/2 the size of the Impact zone. We ran Center Stage once when I was in ECW and I thought it was a small dingy place compared to our usual ECW buildings; think about that for a second. The show pulled a 3.7 rating on TBS which was a big jump up from XIX and back to a more standard Clash number.
The show opened with Eric Bischoff and Missy Hyatt on the Red Carpet interviewing guests as they arrived. Andre the Giant and Bruno Sammartino were the big surprises for me, seeing as they are more associated with WWE. This was in fact Andre's final appearance on TV before he passed away and Bruno was in full Anti-WWF mode really putting over WCW's wrestling and how terrible that other promotion is. Bill Watts and Hank Aaron arrived in the same limo, which I found amusing knowing how Watts' run in WCW came to an end.
The show was filled with interviews with legends and dignitaries as well as video packages highlighting the greats who appeared on TBS over that past 20 years, so there wasn't that much wrestling on the show. The show only had 5 matches none of which went very long.
Steve Austin vs. Ricky Steamboat (TV Title): Paul E Dangerously was Austin's manager but he was suspended in a small lock cage at ring side to keep him from interfering. This was also a no DQ match, which is important because this was during the Bill Watts era where he invoked a ban on Top Rope moves. Don't try to understand it, it was universally hated and a really bad idea. They even did a pole during the show about whether WCW should revoke the ban and start allowing top rope moves again and I think the results were close to 90% in favour of ditching the ban. This was a fun solid match, but nothing that would knock your socks off. It went just over 10 minutes and Steamboat picked up the win with a Cross Body off the top rope. Yes with this dumb rule Steamboat would have been disqualified for using this traditional move and lost. Thankfully this was a no DQ match so the move was allowed and Steamboat captured the TV Title, to the crowds delight.
Brad Armstrong was supposed to defend the Light heavyweight Title against Brian Pillman but due to an injury had to forfeit the title in a promo segment, which led to Pillman turning heel burying Armstrong for not defending his title.
Arn Anderson & Bobby Eaton vs. Dick Slater & Greg Valentine: This was a weird match choice because all 4 guys were heels so there wasn't a lot you could do with this match to get the crowd to care. They kept the action moving with each team cheating to get the advantage and thankfully wrapped this up in under 6 minutes. Everything they did was good, but it's hard to care about a match with 4 guys you aren't supposed to like. Larry Zbyszko tried to interfere to help Slater and Valentine, but it backfired and Arn and Bobby picked up the win.
Ron Simmons vs. Cactus Jack (World Title): This match was really sad. Ron was the World Champion but this felt like anything but a World Title match. When you think WCW World Title you think of 30-45 minute classic Main Event bouts with Ric Flair. Ron Simmons was placed in the mid card (3rd of 5 matches) in front a few hundred people and went less than 9 minutes against Cactus Jack who was not built up to be a top contender. On top of that it wasn't a very good match so this felt like a nothing more than a mid card match. All 8 guys in the Main Event were presented as bigger stars than World Champ Ron Simmons.
Here we got a video package highlighting Masa Chono's victory over Rick Rude to win the NWA World Title tournament in Japan. I think the clips were from the Tokyo Dome so both guys and the NWA Title came of way more important than Ron Simmons and the WCW Title.
Barbarian & Butch Reed vs. Barry Windham & Dustin Rhodes: Butch Reed was a suprise addition to this match and pushed as a new challenger to Ron Simmons, I guess because they used to be a tag team during their run as Doom. Cactus was involved with these two and introduced Reed and sat in on commentary. This was a short nothing special match that went 8 minutes. The World Champ working underneath this match did nothing for this feud, and to make it worse Barbarian picked up the win so Reed wasn't even the guy who came off the strongest.
Rick Rude, Jake Roberts, Big Van Vader & Super Invader (Hercules in a bad mask) vs. Sting, The Steiners & Nikita Koloff: This was an elimination match and really good but fell off a bit at the end with due to some crappy eliminations. Vader and Rick Steiner had some of the best moments in this match with some amazing suplexes by Rick. I'm convinced at this point in his career Rick Steiner could suplex anything: Elephants, small cars, you name it. At one point Jake was on the apron and not paying attention and got knocked off the apron when someone hit the ropes. Nikita got pinned by Roberts after getting kneed in the back while running ropes. Super Invade was pinned next, by Sting, then things got dodgy. Scott Steiner was eliminated next via DQ for coming off the top rope to clothesline Vader. Rick was then counted out after taking a neck breaker on the floor from Rude. The next elimination was one of those spots that likely looked good on paper but looked far too staged in execution. Sting gave Rude a Sling Shot suplex near the corner and then they both had to lay there a while waiting for Vader to come off the tope rope with a Splash. I guess Vader has bad aim because despite both guys laying completely motionless he splashed both guys and managed to fold over his one wrist at the same time. It looked very painful. Vader was DQ'd for coming off the top leaving Sting to face Rude and Jake. With both Rude and Sting selling the Vader splash Jake tagged in and DDT'd Sting to win the match and set up their upcoming match at Halloween Havoc.
After this match came the real main event, the Spin the Wheel, Make the Deal mini movie. They did 3 or 4 of these mini movies to promote PPVs and they are must see, because they are so whacky. If you have the Network, you have to pull up this event and watch the last 5 minutes to see this video. We get Madusa in a skin tight cat suit (always a plus) in a dark alley open a trap door and climb down a metal ladder. She then gets to a heavy door with the sliding eye hole in it. The secret code to get in is off course the door man stating Spin the Wheel, and Madusa responding Make the Deal. She then enters Jake's evil lair featuring numerous ruffians sitting at tables with mugs of ale, and of course a midget with an eye patch. I assume the 1 eyed midget was an inside small penis joke, but who knows. Madusa and the visually challenged little guy make their way to the wheel, which is a giant saw blade with countless gimmick matches written on it, and a big lever. Madusa of course grabs the large lever and looks at the camera all sexy and dramatic (no doubt to the childish snickering of whoever wrote this). Amidst Spin the Wheel chants Sting arrives and asks Jake, "What's the Deal", seriously that's what he said. After some hokey overly dramatic dialog, the lever is pulled, the Wheel spins and Jake steps up for the face to face standoff with Sting. As the 2 heated rivals stand 4 feet apart laser beams shoot out of their eyes meeting in a big ball of laser energy in the middle that would eventually explode, with the words "To Be Continued" appeared on the screen.
This was not a very good show, but it is must see for the Spin the Wheel video alone. If you watch the event they play shorter version of the mini movie all through the show but only play the full length version at the end of the show, and it is must see.
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