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PPV WCW

WCW StarrCade 1991 Review (Who Won The Lottery?)

December 29, 1991
Live from Norfolk, VA
Announced attendance: 9.000 (capacity: ca 13.800)
PPV buyrate: 155.000 (-10.000 compared to StarrCade 1990’s 165.000)

Hello everyone and welcome to my review of the final show of 1991, in the form of WCW’s biggest annual event, StarrCade. This year features exclusively (yep, nothing else on the card) a unique concept known as the battlebowl: lethal lottery, where all the wrestlers’ names will be drawn randomly to form strange tag team matches, most likely featuring unlikely partners and/or opponents. The winners of the ten tag matches move on to the main event, a two-ring “battlebowl” battle royal (more details later).

Despite being irrelevant for this particular PPV, here is still the list of champions in WCW heading into this show:

  • WCW World Heavyweight Champion: Lex Luger [168th day of his reign] – previous champion: Ric Flair, before it was vacated
  • WCW United States Heavyweight Champion: Rick Rude [40th day of his reign] – previous champion: Sting
  • WCW World Television Champion: ‘Stunning’ Steve Austin [209th day of his reign] – previous champion: ‘Beautiful’ Bobby Eaton
  • WCW Light Heavyweight Champion: Jushin Thunder Liger [4th day of his reign] – previous champion: Flyin’ Brian Pillman
  • WCW World Tag Team Champions: Ricky Steamboat & Dustin Rhodes [40th day of their reign] – previous champion: The Enforcers
  • WCW United States Tag Team Champions: The Young Pistols (Steve Armstrong & Tracy Smothers) [54th day of their reign] – previous champions: The Patriots

Enjoy the review!

IMG credit: WWE & culturecrossfire.com

The hosts are Jim Ross & Tony Schiavone

We start the show with the announcers explaining the rules for the night. They throw the ball to Eric Bischoff, Magnum TA & Missy Hyatt who are on the stage to do all the drawings for the matches. Time for our first one already, which looks like this…

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #1 – Michael Hayes & Tracy Smothers vs. Jimmy Garvin & Marcus Alexander Bagwell
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

Freebirds draw against each other in the opener to really put over the concept early on. We have a wild Bagwell making his debut on the series here, the man who would go on to enjoy a successful career in WCW towards the end of the 1990s as Buff Bagwell. Smothers and Bagwell start with the latter hitting an armdrag, but the fans want the Freebirds. Bagwell obliges with the tag to Garvin, who also takes down Smothers with an armdrag followed by a dropkick. Tracy stops to trash talk the fans on the apron, so Garvin big boots him into the railing. Smothers asks for a handshake back in, but Garvin blocks the expected cheapshot and puts him back outside with an atomic drop. Bagwell comes back in, but Smothers catches him with a knee to the head and makes the tag to Hayes, who comes in with an elbow followed by the usual taunting. Smothers comes back in, but Bagwell makes his comeback. A powerslam rocks Smothers and he tags in Garvin, but Smothers runs away and makes the tag to Hayes to force the Freebirds’ showdown. They lockup but stop to have some fun. Hayes gets a roll-up for two and we get a stalemate, as both Freebirds strut and tag in their partners at the same time. Crowd doesn’t give a crap about what’s going on inside the ring, instead chanting for the Freebirds. Tracy takes over but misses an elbowdrop, and Garvin makes the comeback. High crossbody by Bagwell gets two. Bagwell cheapshots Hayes in the corner, though, causing Hayes to enter the ring and return the favor. Hayes hits Garvin out of instinct in the middle of the confusion, and both stop to argue in the corner. Meanwhile, Bagwell blocks a high risk move by getting his knees up, and a fisherman suplex sends him and Garvin to the main event at 12:45. The Freebirds seal the argument with a handshake afterward, with the loser buying the beer that night and life moving on for them.

  • Rating: The interactions between the Freebirds were fun to watch to a degree, but the crowd (or me for that matter) didn’t care about anything else that happened during this match. Ultimately it served as a match to get the wildness of the “lethal lottery” concept over by using the Freebirds against each other, but that same goal could’ve been accomplished in four or five minutes instead of twelve, as it’s not like any of the people involved in this match were top contenders to win battlebowl anyway. 1/2*

We take it back to the lettal lothery drawing, which gives us…

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #2 – The Dangerous Alliance (Rick Rude & ‘Stunning’ Steve Austin)(w/ Paul E Dangerously) vs. Van Hammer & Big Josh
Starrcade '91 - Classic Wrestling Review
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

Now we have a stable that actually gets paired up together, in the form of actual contenders as well. Van Hammer slams Austin to start, who stops to talk some strategy with Rude. Whatever that conversation was didn’t seem to go to well though, as Hammer blocked an Austin suplex into his own for two. Hammer works a, hmm, hammerlock while dropping some knees on Austin’s arm. The future Stone Cold manages to escape, however, and brings Rude in for a great clothesline followed by some hip swivel action. Austin comes back in with a short clothesline and a gutwrench suplex, and Rude uses a headlock but can’t avoid the tag out. Big Josh slams him down and stomps the abs, but Rude pops right back up and no-sells it because you can’t hurt the ravishing abs. Josh sets for a clothesline instead which gets two. Austin eats one as well. Double noggin knocker and they bail, as the crowd goes wild for the babyfaces. If you ever question if either Rude or Austin were great workers or not, always remember that they made Big Josh and Van Hammer’s comeback get a standing ovation!

Back in, Austin takes down Josh with a shoulderblock but gets dropped on the top rope and eats a clothesline for two. Hammer comes in and wrestles Austin down with a wristlock, and Josh too goes after the arm some more. Josh goes for an O’Connor roll but Rude cheapshots him out of the corner to break, and Rude comes in with a flying axehandle for two. The Dangerous Alliance take turns pounding Josh down, until Austin eventually dumps him outside so Rude can ram him into the railing. Josh catches Austin with a slam back inside, but misses an elbowdrop and some choking follows on the ropes. Even Heyman gets involved and holds Josh for a move, but he moves out of the way and Austin ends up taking out Heyman instead. Hot tag Hammer with a powerslam and a backdrop suplex, followed by the Warrior shoulderblock. Rude breaks up the pin, however, and he makes the blind tag off an Austin criss cross. Hammer doesn’t see it and backdrops Austin, allowing Rude to simply come in with the Rude Awakening to send the Alliance ahead at 12:56.

  • Rating: Another match that went a lot longer than it needed to, with the action starting quite well in the beginning until the heat spot on Big Josh just went on forever. The match was still pretty alright outside of that, nothing special but perfectly watchable. *3/4

The drawing sets up another qualifying match in the form of…

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #3 – Dustin Rhodes & Richard Morton vs. Larry Zbyszko & El Gigante(w/ Madusa)
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

Schiavone says if he had to choose any partner for himself it would be Gigante, which says a lot about him. Morton wastes no time in running away from Gigante but walks into a slam anyway, and Gigante no-sells Dustin’s dropkicks. Dustin settles for a drop toehold instead, which again does absolutely nothing and Gigante slams him as well. Zbyszko giving him instructions all the time from the corner is pretty funny. Zbyszbo gets tagged in with a swinging neckbreaker for two, as we can finally have some actual wrestling in this match. Dustin cradles him for two, but Zbyszko nails him with a spinning kick and asks for Gigante to get his knee up on the rope. Gigante is totally useless and instead complains with Madusa, while Zbyszko blocks Dustin’s bulldog. Zbyszko tags in Gigante and tells him to follow up, but instead Gigante walks into the corner and confronts Larry. He slaps Gigante for being quite the moron and gets slammed out of the apron into the ring in return. Gigante whips his own parter into stereo dropkicks from Morton & Dustin, with the latter getting the pin at 05:54. He just cost himself (and Larry) a main-event and a possible future World Title shot but he stops to shake the winner’s hands. He might be a geek, but at least he’s a loveable one. Morton refuses the handshake because he has better things to do, like focus on the main event.

  • Rating: Usual El Gigante match, with everyone around him having to do the work for him while he stands there doing whatever. Like costing himself a main event. This was pretty bleh but at least it was short. 1/2*

We move on to…

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #4 – Diamond Dallas Page & Mike Graham vs. Jushin Thunder Liger & Bill Kazmaier
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

Liger and Graham have a nice little sequence to start, before it’s off to Kazmaier for some power moves on DDP. Bill gets whipped outside but skins the cat back inside and clotheslines DDP for two. More slams on DDP but he goes up and misses a flying splash, as DDP pounds away until Bill tags in Liger. He takes DDP down with a spinning wheel kick, and DDP brings in Graham. Liger meets him with an enziguiri and a springboard splash for two. Bill gets tagged back inside and Graham goes for a single leg takedown, but that goes nowhere and Graham releases it. Kazmaier works the arm but Graham reaches for the tag to DDP, who eats a clothesline. DDP goes for a slam but Bill lands on top for two, and DDP has had enough already and brings Graham back inside. Liger gets tagged in too, and a drop toehold puts Graham down. Liger follows it up with a surfboard, but Graham trips him down and rolls over into the Boston crab for his own submission. Just leave these two in the ring the whole time, please. They exchange a number of nearfalls off a pinfall reversal sequence, and we get a stalemate.

Backslide by Graham gets two, but Liger turns things around and he goes to work on the leg. He makes the tag to Kazmaier, so Graham makes the tag to DDP too. That sound you hear is the match quality being flushed down the toilet. Thankfully it’s right back to Liger and Graham, as Liger explodes with an awesome Connor McGregor-like rolling thunder kick. He fires away with multiple kicks to Graham, and Bill gets in with a slam for two. Bill works a bearhug but it’s right back to Liger, but Graham misses a blind charge in the corner and hits the buckle with his knee, before Liger meets him outside with a flip dive. Back in, a backbreaker sets up the moonsault but DDP breaks up the count, and Bill comes in too as IT’S BREAKING LOOSE IN TULSA. Graham gets tossed outside and Bill slams Liger onto DDP for the win at 13:08.

  • Rating: When it was down to Liger/Graham, the match was always very good. They put on some tremendous stuff in there together, but the other two just weren’t even close to their level and dragged the overall thing way down. DDP turned out to be much better by the end of the decade. But still this was so far the best match thanks to Liger and Graham. **1/2

Promotional video for WCW SuperBrawl II in February 1992

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #5 – Lex Luger & Arn Anderson(w/ Harley Race) vs. ‘Z-Man’ Tom Zenk & Terrance Taylor
IMG credit: WWE & myjourneythroughwrestling.wordpress.com

Arn bails from Zenk to start, only for Taylor to surpise him with a punch on the outside. All hell breaks loose back inside, and Luger & Arn bail some more. Taylor works on Luger’s arm back inside until Luger catches him with a gorilla press slam. A snapmare takes Luger back down, however, and Mr. Perfect’s necksnap gets two. Swinging neckbreaker gets two. He tries a sunset flip but Luger’s too strong, and Arn comes in off the blind tag with a hard knee to the spine. Arn’s neckbreaker is blocked with a backslide for two and Taylor pops right back up with a clothesline for two more. A corner slingshot splash by Taylor gets two, and Zenk comes in with a high crossbody for two. However, Harley Race trips him up on a criss cross and Arn plants him with a nice DDT for two. Luger comes in with a vertical suplex for two, but Zenk then faceplants Anderson. He tries to reach Taylor for the hot tag, but the WCW World Champion prevents that and hits a powerslam for two. Arn eats knee on a blind charge and Zenk goes up, but Arn knocks him down only to miss a high risk move as well. Hot tag Taylor and he runs wild, including an atomic drop that sends Luger into Arn followed by a roll-up on Luger for two. High crossbody gets two. Backslide gets two. Luger cuts him off with a rake to the eyes, but Taylor comes back with a gutwrench powerbomb as Arn saves the pin. All hell’s broken loose and the ref misses Taylor’s inside cradle on Luger as a result, allowing Arn to cheapshot Taylor to set up Luger’s Attitude Adjustment (Luger’s piledriver, not what you’re probably thinking!) to send them to battlebowl at 10:25.

  • Rating: Another good match, with this even surpassing the previous one in my opinion. Luger had been taking less and less bumps and wrestling safer matches in the recent months, as it was becoming more apparent that he was onto a new step in his career soon – WBF (sigh). With that in mind, it was Arn Anderson who got to do most of the work for their team, and when that’s the case you’re guaranteed to see (at the very least) a pretty good match. That’s what happened here, with Zenk playing Ricky Morton well enough. The fans weren’t all into Taylor’s hot tags, but that’s understandable since he was a heel too, and those are the kind of things to expect from a concept like this. ***

We take a look at the list of battlebowl participants thus far – Marcus Alexander Bagwell, Jimmy Jam Garvin, Rick Rude, ‘Stunning’ Steve Austin, Dustin Rhodes, Richard Morton, Bill Kazmaier, Jushin Thunder Liger, Arn Anderson and the WCW Champion Lex Luger.

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #6 – Ricky Steamboat & Todd Champion vs. Cactus Jack & Buddy Lee Parker
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

Poor Buddy Lee gets absolutely destroyed by Adbullah the Butcher backstage after he’s denied the chance to be Cactus’ partner. The referee refuses to accept Abdullah’s request to be apart of the match, so Foley is forced to go at it by himself. Parker still comes out, but Adbullah kills him some more on the ramp. We start with Steamboat/Foley, which sounds like a pretty interesting matchup to me. Cactus bites away and adds some choking on the ropes, and a clothesline gets two. Steamboat shows some life with the chops and he skins the cat back inside, where he blocks a Cactus Clothesline with a backdrop that dumps Cactus. Steamboat meets him outside with a dive and Cactus tries to leave, but Dragon makes him eat some railing instead and sends him back inside. Steamboat slides underneath Foley’s legs to block a clothesline and knocks him down with his own clothesline before bringing in Champion. He comes in with a slam followed by a legdrop, while Parker tries to crawl his way down the ramp. Cactus bites his way out of a bearhug and he dumps Champion, setting up for the Cactus flying elbowdrop to the floor. Cactus works a chinlock back inside while Parker’s already on the apron, and a powerslam by Champion gets two. An elbowdrop misses but Foley misses a flying move too, and a double noggin knocker sends Foley into Parker for the tag. Steamboat gets the tag as well, and a powerslam followed by the high crossbody ends Parker at 07:48.

  • Rating: Another random tag match, but at least this one had some story into it. Plus watching Steamboat and Foley go at it was pretty fun, and while it was just for a few minutes as apart of a random tag match, it made me want to see more. **1/4
Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #7 – Sting & Abdullah the Butcher vs. Flyin’ Brian Pillman & Bobby Eaton
IMG credit: WWE & myjourneythroughwrestling.wordpress.com

Abdullah obviously comes out and attacks Sting with the stick before the bell even rings, and here’s Brian Pillman early to save him. Bobby takes over on the injured Sting, who makes the comeback with a backdrop over the top (take a drink) followed by a dive. Dropkick and Sting slugs away on the floor before bringing him back inside. Sting goes to work on the arm with a wristlock, but Abby gets in to break up the hold with a stick shot to his own partner, giving Eaton two. Bobby works a chinlock and then gets some more help from Abby, who grabs JR’s pencil from the announce table to attack Sting, until Pillman once again comes in to save Sting with a dropkick to Butcher. Pillman slams Abby inside the ring (totally missed by the cameras as they were shooting Sting posting Bobby) followed by a splash, as then… the participants try to switch corners/partners. An abdominal stretch by Eaton is turned into a piledriver from Sting, who completely botches it. Abdullah once again comes after Sting and there’s Pillman to save once more, allowing Sting to backdrop Eaton. Now Cactus Jack joins us back with the stick but it misses and hits Abdullah instead, allowing Sting to finish Bobby with a high crossbody and sends both him and Abby to battlebowl at 05:55.

  • Rating: What a confusing match this was. The guys hitting each other throughout the match made it quite distracting, and the finish came pretty much out of nowhere. Not to mention that the previous match had already ended with a high crossbody. Plus that piledriver by Sting looked like shit. Not good. 3/4*

Cactus and Abdullah get into a fight after the match as this gets even crazier

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #8 – Rick Steiner & The Nightstalker vs. Big Van Vader & Mr. Hughes
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

If this wasn’t strange enough as it is already, Vader comes out to this match unmasked. I believe this is Nightstalker’s first appearance back on the series since the infamously HORRIBLE match he had with Sid Vicious at a Clash of the Champions about a year earlier. Vader uses his power to take over on Rick to start until Steiner explodes with a Steinerline out of the corner. Belly to belly(!) followed by a clothesline over the top rope, which is enough for the DQ to send Vader & Hughes ahead at 01:29.

Who am I kidding, of course the rule is ignored again, take a drink!

They take the fight to the floor, where Vader rams Steiner’s back into the post. Vader tries to suplex him from the ring to the floor, which Steiner turns into a (half assed) suplex of his own to put Vader back inside. Massive yawner, thank god there are just two tag matches left after this one. Hughes comes in to eat a backdrop from Steiner for two. Hughes chokes away on the ropes but misses a blind charge and gets German suplexed out of the corner for two. Double noggin knocker sends Steiner into the tag to Nightstalker (another spot being repeated tonight). Steiner gives Hughes a flying bulldog but he’s not legal so the ref won’t count, as Vader simply splashes Nightstalker for the pin at 05:05. Good job, Nighstalker. What a geek.

  • Rating: This sucked so bad. Steiner’s suplexes on Vader didn’t all look very good due to Vader’s size, and Nightstalker is just the worst. A couple of good spots from Steiner and Vader save this from a big fat DUD, though that’s not exactly a compliment. 1/4*
Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #9 – Scott Steiner & Firebreaker Chip vs. Johnny B. Badd & Arachnaman
IMG credit: WWE & myjourneythroughwrestling.wordpress.com

Mr. Arachnawhatever is Brad Armstrong, so I think I’ll just go by the name to make things a bit more easier for me and you! Johnny and Chip start, with the latter getting a couple of japanese armdrags. Johnny responds with a back elbow and an elbowdrop for two. Badd fires away with the punches but Chip hits a springboard crossbody for two. Armstrong gets tagged in but so does Steiner, finally waking up the crowd. He catches him with a powerslam followed by a huge dropkick. A clothesline sends Armstrong over the rope to the outside, which is obviously isn’t a DQ. You know what that means. Badd knocks Steiner down with a cheapshot, but Steiner quickly turns that around and easily overpowers Badd while throwing him around for fun. And Scott tags out to Chip, thus killing the room in the process. It’s back to Steiner with a Steinerline and the butterfly powerbomb, and he tags out again. Chip and Brad exchange a couple of nearfalls, but boy the people couldn’t care less. And neither do I. And then as I type this we hit the chinlock, which is exactly what this match needed. Scott finally gets the blind tag off a criss cross sequence to catch a charging Brad with a Steinerline. Thilt-a-whirl slam and an overhead suplex finish Brad at 11:16.

  • Rating: Scott Steiner looked like a million bucks as all his stuff looked impressive, but man this didn’t need eleven minutes AT ALL. *

And finally here’s the last qualifying tag team match…

Lethal Lottery Tag Team Match #10 – Ron Simmons & Thomas Rich vs. PN News & Steve Armstrong
IMG credit: WWE & classicwrestlingreview.com

Simmons is wrestling his first match back since Halloween Havoc, where he broke his wrist during his WCW World Title match with Luger. Steve slugs away on Ron to start with an arrogant dance to boot, which earns him a running shoulderblock in the process. It’s off to PN News and Rich as the main event just won’t come. The fans apparently agree with me as they start a “we want Ron” chant. Rich obliges (what a loveable heel) setting up a babyface showdown between Simmons and PN News. PN hits an avalanche in the corner but misses a second one, as Ron explodes with a bulldog out of the corner for two. An explosive shoulderblock takes News down for two more. He goes for a second one but News meets him with a clothesline and hits a crossbody(!) for two. And just to make sure we don’t keep up the interest levels, it’s off to Rich and Armstrong for a while. Just let Simmons run over them and get his inevitable spot in the battle royal so we can move on. The strange bedfellows tag concept is quite fun, but ten matches of that kind in a row is a little bit too much, to put it mildly. Steve misses a blind charge on Rich in the corner but the crowd still wants Ron. But instead PN News comes in for a slam because THIS MATCH MUST CONTINUE. It’s back to Armstrong so he can choke away on the ropes, and even PN News stops him from doing so, probably wanting this match to end as well. Steve hits a swinging neckbreaker for two and… works a hold. Yep. Indeed he does. A fucking sleeperhold. Rich FINALLY gets the fuck out and makes the hot tag to Simmons, who slams PN News and finishes Armstrong with the spinebuster at 12:01.

  • Rating: Quite similar as the previous match – the only star of the match (Simmons in this case) came off looking like a million bucks, but in doing so we had to suffer through another endless match. Technically watchable but fuck I couldn’t wait for this to end after watching NINE similar matches. *

This marks the end of the lethal lottery qualifying phase (THANK THE LORD), as Eric Bischoff thanks the drawing hosts Magnum TA and Missy Hyatt.

Main Event – Battlebowl Battle Royal
IMG credit: WWE & thesportster.com

First of all, here are the rules: it will be a two-ring battle royal, with all the wrestlers starting in ring #1. A wrestler is eliminated from ring #1 by being sent over the rope onto ring #2, where then “another match” will begin. When eliminated from ring #2 by being sent over the top rope and onto the floor, the wrestler is officially eliminated from the whole match for good. In the end, the final guys standing in both rings will meet each other. Basically you can technically lose once and just win the whole thing, just as long as you make sure you don’t get dumped twice. Eh, alright. Once again, here are the participants (listed in order of entrance): Big Van Vader, Marcus Alexander Bagwell, Jimmy Garvin, World Tag Team Champion Dustin Rhodes, Bill Kazmaier, Light Heavyweight Champion Jushin Thunder Liger, TV Champion ‘Stunning’ Steve Austin, Richard Morton, Todd Champion, Thomas Rich, Ron Simmons, World Tag Team Champion Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat, Mr. Hughes, Scott Steiner, World Champion Lex Luger, US Champion ‘Ravishing’ Rick Rude, Arn Anderson and Sting.

Arn and Steamboat fight on the ramp for a while, as it’s your usual battle royal action that’s hardly possible to follow to start. Kazmaier gets thrown over the top to the floor, but not to ring #2 so he’s still in there. Kicky punchy action follows, until Vader stops to slam Steamboat on the ramp, but he misses an elbowdrop out there. They head back in, but Vader gets bored pretty quickly and gorilla presses him all the way back to the ramp just for fun. Dustin goes up but gets crotched, as Thomas Rich is the first one sent over onto the second ring, meaning he can actually rest for a little while. Soon he gets some company in the form of Bagwell, who gets thrown over by Richard Morton. Hughes slams Firebreaker Chip onto the second ring, and Jushin Liger soon gets thrown too. Richard Morton follows him there (by going between the ropes), which somehow counts too. Normally I would call him out on not following their own rules, but this show has been way too long for me to care at this point. Liger catches Morton going for a high crossbody and turns it into a powerslam, followed by a senton and a springboard moonsault. It’s funny how the cameras just keep on filming these two having a great mini-match while completely ignoring everything else. Morton blocks a spinning wheel kick but eats it on a second try (didn’t look very good), as they then eliminate each other and are the first ones out of battlebowl.

Simmons moves out of the way of Mr. Hughes’ charge, who literally flies all the way onto ring #2. Meanwhile, Thomas Rich gets eliminated from battlebowl off camera. Jimmy Jam and Todd Champion get sent to ring #2, and so do Steve Austin and Scott Steiner shortly thereafter. There goes Jimmy Garvin flying out of battlebowl at the hands of Firebreaker Chip, while Kazmaier, Abdullah, Simmons and Dustin all get sent to ring #2 in quick succession. This allows Sting and Rick Rude to unload on each other as the crowd goes absolutely bananas, and they take the fight all the way to the second ring, leaving only Vader and the champ Luger in ring #1. Vader splashes Luger while we get the announcement of Firebreaker Chip’s elimination (off camera), and Luger clotheslines Vader over to make him the winner of ring #1, meaning now he just has to wait for the fight in ring #2 to end.

We get three straight eliminations in the form of Abdullah, Kazmaier and Todd Champion. Sting and Rude are still going at it as Rude goes for an elimination but can’t dump him out. Arn Anderson makes the stupid mistake of going up during a battle royal, and gets (rightfully) dropkicked out by Dustin Rhodes. Never go to the top rope during a battle royal. Dustin himself gets dumped by Austin, while Ron Simmons and Mr. Hughes clothesline each other out. Austin eliminates Bagwell while Sting & Steamboat double clothesline Big Van Vader out. Scott Steiner too gets eliminated off camera, as we’re down to Sting, Steamboat, Rude and Austin in ring #2 while Luger keeps on waiting. Rude irish whips Sting right into a Stinger Splash on Austin, and Steamboat gives the Dangerous Alliance members some double noggin knocker action. Rude attempts a clothesline on Steamboat near the ropes, but he moves out and Rude ends up clotheslining his partner Austin out instead. Rude dumps Steamboat but he skins the cat and hurricanranas Rude out, who then pulls Steamboat out with him to make Sting the winner of ring #2 and leave it down to Luger/Sting in the end. However, Rude takes his frustration out on Sting with the Rude Awakening before leaving.

Luger takes out Sting with a clothesline and he stops to mock Sting’s signature taunt. Luger dumps Sting between the ropes and holds the referee to allow Harley Race to add some cheapshots, but Sting counters and slams Race on the ramp. However, Luger comes in from behind and knocks Sting onto the railing. Sting makes Luger taste the railing in return as well, before taking him back inside the ring. Sting puts Luger on the top rope but Harley Race interferes again, earning him a suplex. Stinger Splash misses though, and Luger dumps Sting but he holds on to the top rope. Luger thinks he’s won and turns his back, opening the door for Sting’s comeback. Sting clotheslines him over but Luger hangs on, but Sting knocks him over for good to win the first battlebowl at 25:10.

  • Rating: This match was pretty much impossible to follow for the most part, with the fact that it took ten minutes for the first elimination to occur not helping at all. But once the rings started clearing and there was actually space for the guys to wrestle, it got much better. The exciting mini-match between Jushin Liger and Richard Morton was the first highlight, as was the final sequence in ring #2 and the Luger/Sting, which the crowd were really into. Much like pretty much everything else on this card, the match had its moments but it was just way too freaking long. Twenty five minutes to set up the definitive showdown between Sting and Luger for SuperBrawl II, now with the WCW Championship on the line. **1/2

END OF THE SHOW

Final thoughts: I don’t particularly dislike this concept, I actually think it’s pretty interesting and it could work. Just for the love of god make it a bit shorter. The qualifying strange bedfellows tag matches took up the entire show, meaning we got the same story (give or take) for 10 straight matches, across 40 participants. And all to set up a battle royal that was there to set up the World Title match at the next PPV. Especially when you consider that this is their biggest show of the whole year. Needless to say, the show felt really long with the same similar thing happening for ten matches in a row. If I had to recommend anything, just watch the final sequence of battlebowl. Bad show to close the year. 2/10

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POINT SYSTEM

Click here to know more about my point system. As for the special battlebowl match, the winner (Sting) will get three points, but everyone else will just lose one point (as usual) for coming up short

WrestlerStar ratingsResultMain-eventingExtrasTotal
Sting0.75 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
+3 for winning battlebowl
8.75
Lex Luger3 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
-1 for losing battlebowl
7
Arn Anderson3 + 2.511-1 for losing battlebowl6.5
Jushin Liger2.5 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
-1 for losing battlebowl
6.5
Bill Kazmaier2.5 + 2.511-1 for losing battlebowl6
Rick Rude
Ricky Steamboat
1.75 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
-1 for losing battlebowl
5.75
Steve Austin
Todd Champion
1.75 + 2.511-1 for losing battlebowl5.25
Scott Steiner
Ron Simmons
1 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
-1 for losing battlebowl
5
Dustin Rhodes
Marcus Bagwell
0.5 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
-1 for losing battlebowl
4.5
Thomas Rich
Firebreaker Chip
1 + 2.511-1 for losing battlebowl4.5
Big Van Vader0.25 + 2.511+0.5 for winning the fall
-1 for losing battlebowl
4.25
Abdullah the Butcher0.75 + 2.511-1 for losing battlebowl4.25
Jimmy Garvin
Richard Morton
0.5 + 2.511-1 for losing battlebowl4
Mr. Hughes0.2511-1 for losing battlebowl3.75
Tom Zenk3-12
Terrance Taylor3-1-0.5 for losing the fall1.5
Mike Graham2.5-11.5
DDP2.5-1-0.5 for losing the fall1
Cactus Jack
Big Josh
1.75-10.75
Van Hammer
Buddy Lee Parker
1.75-1-0.5 for losing the fall0.25
Johnny B. Badd
PN News
1-10
Brian Pillman0.75-1-0.25
Steve Armstrong
Arachnaman
1-1-0.5 for losing the fall-0.5
El Gigante
Michael Hayes
0.5-1-0.5
Rick Steiner0.25-1-0.75
Bobby Eaton0.75-1-0.5 for losing the fall-0.75
Larry Zbyszko
Tracy Smothers
0.5-1-0.5 for losing the fall-1
The Nightstalker0.25-1-0.5 for losing the fall-1.25

And that’s all for today’s review, thank you so much for joining me as always. As we close the final page of the 1991 book, make sure you don’t miss the upcoming year end article, where I’ll be looking back at the top matches from both companies (and overall), as well as the top wrestlers based on my point system. Until then, see you soon!