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NWA/WCW Clash Of The Champions XII: Fall Brawl 1990 Review (Sting Vs. The Black Scorpion)

Hello everyone and welcome to my review of the 12th NWA/WCW Clash of the Champions, featuring Sting taking on the infamous Black Scorpion for the NWA World Title, Ric Flair challenging Lex Luger for the US Title and more – including a rare ladies title match.

Here is the list of champions in the NWA/WCW heading into this show:

  • NWA World Heavyweight Champion: Sting
  • NWA United States Heavyweight Champion: Lex Luger
  • NWA World TV Champion: Arn Anderson
  • NWA World Tag Team Champions: Doom (Ron Simmons & Butch Reed)
  • NWA United States Tag Team Champions: The Steiners (Rick & Scott Steiner)

Enjoy the piece!

IMG credit: WWE &

The hosts are Jim Ross & Bob Caudle
Live from Asheville, NC

The Fabulous Freebirds (Michael Hayes & Jimmy Garvin)(w/ Buddy Roberts) vs. The Southern Boys (Steve Armstrong & Tracy Smothers)(w/ ‘Bullet’ Bob Armstrong)

Cappetta announces this as a six men tag match but then they just do a regular tag match with managers, so I’ll go with that instead. Smothers dominates both Hayes and Garvin with superkicks to set up the usual Freebirds stalling. They come back in to double-team Smothers but Armstrong comes in with a double high crossbody on both heels. And more stalling follows. Smothers dropkicks Garvin until a cheapshot turns things around. Hayes hits a bulldog for two. Smothers comes back with a sunset flip, but Hayes chinlocks him to stay in control. Garvin goes up only to get slammed off and we get the hot tag to Armstrong. He cleans house with dropkicks for a while until Buddy Roberts cuts him off, and then Bullet Bob does the same to Hayes which gets Armstrong two. We get a pier six brawl until suddenly the Boys pin both Freebirds at the same time with a double sunset flip at 8:34.

  • Rating: A short Freebirds match, with the stalling followed by the babyfaces’ comeback. Nothing special but not bad. **
‘Nature Boy’ Buddy Landel vs. Mike Rotunda

Rotunda is accompanied to the ring by the winner of some kind of WCW/Burger King competition. We get a nice armbar reversal sequence to start. Rotunda tries an armdrag but Mike blocks with a clothesline followed by an elbowdrop for two. Landel goes up but Rotunda catches him coming down. Rotunda works a facelock but Rotunda reverses into a backslide for the win at 5:39.

  • Rating: Watchable match albeit short. Nothing wrong with it. *1/2
The Master Blasters (Iron & Steele) vs. Brad Armstrong & Tim Horner

You might know this good looking Steele guy. It’s the official debut of a young gentleman who would later move on to win the World Championship in both the WWF and WCW as Diesel and Kevin Nash, respectively. You might have heard of him! Nash works the arm to start and then so does Iron. And yes I’ll keep calling him Nash during the reviews because it’s much easier. A Nash elbowdrop gets two and so does a powerslam. Nash goes for a sloppy looking elbowdrop that misses and then Iron COMPLETELY botches a headbutt, which misses by a mile and gets a big groan from the crowd. Good lord almighty what the fuck… about a minute later the big guys finish Horner with a flying double shoulderblock at 4:52.

  • Rating: Complete shit. The plan was obviously to make the heels look like badasses, but they left one of the parts at home and instead just looked “bad”. Or “asses”. You decide. DUD
The Nasty Boys (Jerry Sags & Brian Knobbs) vs. Terry Taylor & Jackie Fulton

This is one of Taylor’s first matches back in the NWA/WCW, which at least means no more Red Rooster. Finally! Taylor gets in an early swinging neckbreaker on Knobbs for two. A number of quick hiptosses keep the babyfaces in control and Fulton gets the tag. Back to Taylor who sends Sags into the post and a high crossbody back inside gets two. Taylor hits a backdrop suplex but Knobbs takes him down by the hair and allows Sags to jump in with a kneedrop to take over. Taylor gets in a quick sunset flip before making the hot tag to Fulton. He runs wild with bodyslams for both heels and a german suplex on Knobbs gets two. Knobbs reverses a crossbody into a powerslam though, and the Trip to Nastyville elbow puts Fulton away at 7:11.

  • Rating: Another simple match to showcase the Nasty Boys. It was also nice to see Terry back as himself and not as a chicken anymore. That alone earns this an extra quarter star! *3/4
Tommy Rich vs. Wild Bill Irwin

If you look for “filler” in the dictionary there should be a picture of this match there. Irwin hits a high knee but eats a backdrop suplex for two. They exchange headlocks, which is SO what this match needs. Irwin finally goes somewhere with a sideslam, only to get immediately kicked back down. Another sideslam is blocked by Rich and turned into a sleeper, and then an Irwin blind charge misses and Rich hits the Thesz Press for the win at 3:59.

  • Rating: It was okay. *

Meanwhile, NWA/WCW announces their top ten contenders lists for both the singles and tags’ World Championships. This should be interesting, let’s take a look:

  • NWA World Championship top ten contenders list: 10) Buddy Landel (good heel) ; 9) Tommy Rich (maybe in 1980) ; 8) Junkyard Dog (oh good god…) ; 7) Brian Pillman (nothing wrong here) ; 6) Stan Hansen (okay) ; 5) Sid Vicious (fine, he’s popular) ; 4) Barry Windham (nothing to say here either) ; 3) TV Champion Arn Anderson (same as Barry) ; 2) Ric Flair (WOOOO) ; 1) US Champion Lex Luger (logical) – the champion is Sting
  • NWA World Tag Team Championship top ten contenders list: 10) Mike Rotunda & Tim Horner (LOL) ; 9) ‘Dudes With Attitudes’ Junkyard Dog & El Gigante (oh please…) ; 8) Brian Pillman & Tom Zenk (former US tag champs, sure) ; 7) ‘Samoan SWAT Team’ Fatu & The Samoan Savage (okay) ; 6) ‘Fabulous Freebirds’ Michael Hayes & Jimmy Garvin (of course) ; 5) ‘The Southern Boys’ Tracy Smothers & Steve Armstrong (nothing wrong) ; 4) ‘Midnight Express’ Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane (4 is way too low) ; 3) ‘Four Horsemen’ Arn Anderson & Barry Windham (fine) ; 2) ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Express’ Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson (way too high for their current momentum) ; 1) US Tag Champs The Steiners (unquestionable) – the champions are Doom

Meanwhile, Stan Hansen doesn’t like his place on the list and promises to beat up people on his way to Sting.

Ladies Professional Wrestling Association Championship: Susan Sexton(c) vs. Bambi

This is my first time watching both of these ladies and I have no idea who either of them are. They get into a wristlock reversal sequence that ends with Bambi catching Sexton in a headscissors on the mat. Sexton eventually gets out of there with a bodyslam but Bambi rolls her up for one. She ends up eating elbow on a blind charge in the corner though, and Sexton drops an elbow for two. Bambi cradles her for two, only for Sexton to roll through into her own for the win to retain at 4:11.

  • Rating: This was a little bit sloppy at times, but otherwise decent and at least brought something different to this show. Not bad but way too short to be anything more. *1/2
The Steiners (Rick & Scott) vs. Maximum Overdrive (Tim Hunt & Jeff Warner)

Hunt runs away from Scott and stalls to start. Wise man. Back in for a wristlock by Scott and back out he goes. I have just about had enough of this show at this point. Finally Scott beats up both dudes and Rick comes in with Steinerlines. And they bail. AGAIN. Scott suplexes Warner and brings in Rick, but a cheapshot allows the jobbers to take over for a while. An elbowdrop gets two. Rick finally makes a comeback with a powerslam and a REALLY VIOLENT lariat followed by the double-team DDT for the win at 6:23.

  • Rating: Super boring and long, specially considering the rest of the card up to this point had been quite dull. One of the worst Steiners matches I can remember. 3/4*
Stan Hansen vs. ‘Z-Man’ Tom Zenk

After jobbing to the debuting Vader in a few minutes at the PPV, I wouldn’t put money on Mr. Z-Man here. Hansen suplexes poor Zenk and an elbowdrop gets two. Hansen then proceeds to beat the living shit out of Zenk from pillar to post. Zenk tries to make a comeback with a few dropkicks until Hansen nearly takes his head off with the lariat at 3:19.

  • Rating: Short, to the point and effective. *1/4
NWA United States Heavyweight Championship: Lex Luger(c) vs. Ric Flair

THANK GOD!!! This show is in the heart of Flair Country in the Carolinas and Luger still gets one of the biggest pops of the whole show. This company would have been NUTS not to put the belt on Luger eventually. Shoulder tackle takes Flair down to start but he’s still confident. Flair asks for a test of strength only to cheapshot him and take over. The chops in the corner are no-sold and a Luger press slam gets the crowd on their feet. Flair takes his time getting back inside. He cheapshots Luger once more but the chop still goes nowhere as Flair eats another press slam. Luger follows it up with a clothesline that dumps Flair over the top rope and to the floor, and then meets him outside with a clothesline on the floor. The over the top rope DQ rule was ignored here because it obviously wasn’t the finish. Flair snaps Luger’s throat on the ropes and turns his back to show off to the camera, but Luger no-sells and waits for the showing off to end before press slamming once more! Luger misses an elbowdrop though, and Flair takes this chance to catch his breath. This crowd is HOT for Lex! Flair chops away but eats a clothesline out of the corner. He lands hard on his shoulder though and even asks the referee to forfeit due to injury but… SIKE! A cheapshot turns things around and Flair sends Luger into the railing on the outside. Fantastic!

Flair pounds away back inside as he starts getting more confident. He even dedicates a chop to Ted Turner and Jim Herd. Yeah, I imagine he wanted Herd to be in Luger’s place! Back to the floor they go so Flair can throw Luger into the railing some more. Damn this crowd hasn’t stopped making noise for one second, you love to see it! Flair stomps the knee so you know IT’S TIME TO GO TO SCHOOL WOOOOO!! Flair pounds away on Luger’s leg but Luger fights back as they get into a slugfest. Luger wins that but Flair “accidentally” thumbs Luger in the eye while going down on a Flair flop. Amazing! A Flair hiptoss is block by Luger who powers him into a backslide for two. Flair fights back with chops but Luger slugs away in the corner and blocks an atomic drop with a clothesline for two. And all while selling the leg. Flair snapmares Luger and works the count a number of times to try and run Luger out of stamina. Flair goes up and SHOCKINGLY gets slammed off! Whip into the corner sets up the Flair Flip and Luger meets Flair with a clothesline on the apron. Luger press slam followed by a powerslam and good lord this crowd is SCREAMING for Luger! Beautiful superplex for the win but Flair gets his foot on the ropes. Luger pounds away in the corner until Flair cuts him off with another thumb to the eye. They take the fight to the floor once more and the pissed off #6 contender Stan Hansen is back to destroy Luger for the DQ at 15:28.

  • Rating: Well surprise surprise, these two just saved this show. This is not even close to being the greatest match Flair and Luger ever had, but it’s very fun to watch with an awesome crowd supporting it. Really good match. ***3/4

Meanwhile, The Black Scorpion says he’ll reveal his identity if Sting beats him. Sting says he has to win and know who it is in order to move on.

Main Event – NWA World Heavyweight Championship: Sting(c) vs. The Black Scorpion

HerdMania running wild, baby. They were actually teasing the Scorpion to be the then WWF Champion The Ultimate Warrior, with him only revealing that he is Sting’s former partner in California. No shit! To their credit Scorpion’s entrance does get the desired reaction, with the people not taking their eyes off him while he slowly walks to the ring. I’ll call The Black Scorpion “BS”, because that’s what this whole thing is. Slugfest gets things going and BS chokes away on the ropes. To the floor they go where Sting drops BS throat first on the railing. BS takes over back inside with more CLUBBING BLOWS! Sting fights back and tries to take the mask off but BS cheapshots him to stay in control. BS slams Sting on the floor and chokes away. We get it, you can choke. JR again mentions that BS is from California and he’s a man from Sting’s past in 1986. I’m starting to think it might really be Warrior!! Sting faceplants BS back inside and we actually get a CHOKEFEST OF DEATH as both guys try to out-choke each other. This is electrifying. BS takes over near the ropes with… wait for it… wait for it… CHOKING! Sting press slams BS and follows it up with a flying high crossbody for two. BS turns things around with chok… I mean a snapmare. Sorry, I forgot to turn the auto pilot mode off. Actually never mind it’s time to turn it back on because BS CHOKES AWAY!! Sting fights back with a clothesline and the Stinger Splash finishes BS to retain at 8:13. Sting then unmasks BS… but he has another mask. And then the REAL Black Scorpion appears on top of the ramp. So basically Sting didn’t beat the Black Scorpion and didn’t even wrestle him. Let the BS continue!

  • Rating: A complete waste of time. The angle is dumb and the match sucked too. But never mind, just wait until he’s revealed as The Ultimate Warrior! 1/2*

Sid Vicious challenges Sting for the title and beats him up before declaring himself as the next contender for Halloween Havoc to close the show. Nice way to make the top ten lists from THAT VERY SAME NIGHT completely pointless as well. We’re starting to move from the NWA to WCW more and more and that’s not particularly a good thing. At all.


Final thoughts: This show was bad and it never got into second gear. Watch the US title match between Luger and Flair but you can burn the rest of this show alive. 3/10 (all for Flair and Luger)

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For more info about my point system click here

WrestlerStar ratingsResultMain-eventingExtrasTotal
Lex Luger3.750.5+1 for retaining a title5.25
Sting0.511+1 for retaining a title 3.5
Steve Armstrong21+0.5 for winning the fall3.5
Susan Sexton1.51+1 for retaining a title 3.5
Ric Flair3.75-0.53.25
Brian Knobbs1.751+0.5 for winning the fall 3.25
Tracy Smothers213
Jerry Sags1.7512.75
Mike Rotunda1.512.5
Rick Steiner0.751+0.5 for winning the fall 2.25
Stan Hansen1.2512.25
Tommy Rich112
Scott Steiner0.7511.75
Steele01+0.5 for winning the fall 1.5
Jimmy Garvin2-11
Terry Taylor1.75-10.75
Michael Hayes2-1-0.5 for losing the fall0.5
Buddy Landel
The Black Scorpion0.5-110.5
Tom Zenk1.25-10.25
Jackie Fulton1.75-1-0.5 for losing the fall0.25
Wild Bill Irwin1-10
Tim Hunt0.75-1-0.25
Jeff Warner0.75-1-0.5 for losing the fall -0.75
Brad Armstrong0-1-1
Tim Horner0-1-0.5 for losing the fall -1.5

That’s all I got for you today. Thank you so much for your time. Make sure you follow the blog so you don’t miss any of the next articles, including my reviews of the NWA/WCW’s Halloween Havoc and the WWF’s Survivor Series pay-per-views. Stay safe everyone!