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Charles (Loss)

[1992-02-08-WCW-Power Hour] Steve Austin vs Ricky Steamboat

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Steamboat keeps the pace here pretty crazy in the early stages with a really fast series of nearfalls finally culminating in a tope through the middle ropes. Austin also nails him with a great clothesline at one point. This goes to a 10-minute draw. Austin has said it, but it really is true that you can track his improvement through matches with Steamboat. Austin spent a majority of his WCW time in a program with him, either in singles or tags.

 

Also gotta love Jim Ross's shameless self promotion, plugging his radio show, recent speaking appearance, and a 900-line plug midway through the match, acting like he may end up getting in trouble for what he said.

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Man Jim Ross's commentary is just annoying so far in 92. Especially when he's by himself.

 

As for the match. Good draw with Steamboat looking great and Austin stepping up big. Loved the Steamboat/Madusa teased spot at the end.

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This was just a good solid t.v bout. The opening salvo makes perfect sense for Steamboat since it's a 10 minute time limit. Austin gave Steamboat a ton. Steamboat sold for Austin, it's a nice little give and take bout that doesn't devalue Steamboats chances at taking the U.S title from Rude at Superbrawl. Like Loss said Austin learned so much from working with Steamboat. With that said their is a laundry list of guys who can say that from working Steamboat. Just some names that pop in my mind are Shane Douglas, Pillman, Luger, Helmsley had one of his 1st good televised bouts with him in 94, one of Bret Hart's 1st excellent single matches in WWF, Dustin Rhodes, plus their is a ton more. Steamboat is one of the all time great veterans of the business.

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Ross was in a strange mood during all this show, plugging his hotline all the time, and being a chill basically.

I wonder when this match was taped because Steamboat had a tag belt in hands while at this time Arn & Eaton were the champs. Ah, good old TV tapings with championship issues.

Really good TV match, Steamboat is on fire and you see Austin learning from him. I must admit that sometime the übertheatrical selling from Steamboat kinda bothers me a bit when he's selling a simple shot like he's being tortured. It's like he's selling like a heel, going overboard for comical fashion (like Rude would do with the atomic drop), only he's a face. I dunno, sometime I can't help but think about what HTM said about him, that he sold a punch like he'd been shot. But hey, he was still one of the best worker in the world in 1992 no matter what. The Madusa spots are fun, and for once she's not wearing a ridiculous outfit.

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I must admit that sometime the übertheatrical selling from Steamboat kinda bothers me a bit when he's selling a simple shot like he's being tortured. It's like he's selling like a heel, going overboard for comical fashion (like Rude would do with the atomic drop), only he's a face. I dunno, sometime I can't help but think about what HTM said about him, that he sold a punch like he'd been shot.

I watched one of the 86 Jake matches a few days ago and noticed this now more than ever. It didn't bother me, but it stands out. He sells like some dude getting beat up by nunchucks in a 70s Japanese karate movie that has English dubbed voices over it. It's awesome.

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This was a pretty good TV match, with Steamboat clearly in charge, but Austin following along nicely. There was a great moment when Madusa tried to interfere, but got thwarted, but Austin took advantage of the distraction to get them from A to B anyway.

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Steamboat never failed to deliver with Austin, and this was no exception. They give you what you want for a 10 minute draw,which is a hot opening trading near falls before building to neither man being able to close the deal.

 

That was all well and good, but Ross's plugs for free Blimpie at upcoming tv tapings is about as close to bush league as it gets.

 

***

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Ross was pretty plug-happy but I think this is relatively mild compared to some of his other calls (Submit or Surrender was the absolute fucking worst just because it came during a great match with two guys killing each other). Actually I thought his hotline plug was kinda clever.

 

This has a great beginning with Steamboat going all-out and Austin doing a great job of keeping pace. Austin continues to improve--however, his offense is still pretty skimpy except for his great clothesline, which looks good and doubles as an excellent transition move. They don't do a really great job of building to the time limit but it's another solid TV match. The subtle build to the Rude/Steamboat full-blown war continues to be very good, one of the better long-term set-ups WCW has pulled off in awhile.

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WCW TV Champion Steve Austin w/Mad USA vs Ricky Steamboat - Power Hour 2/8/92

Steamboat is at the very least in contention for being the best championship wrestler of all time. I love how his intent is to always win a contest. Now of course, this leaves something to be desired often when he is in a blood feud, but in a nice little TV title defense he is in his element. The opening with him trying a barrage of nearfalls and just hurling his body at Austin looking to pick up the win. I thought this is best I had seen Austin look this early in his career. He is definitely taking a lot from Flair and Arn, but it looks great with him being totally discombobulated by Steamboat's onslaught. They worked a nice transition using Madusa as a distraction for Austin to hit a clothesline. Austin's clothesline was way ahead of his punches and stomps at this point. Austin is a great heel dropping Steamboat neck first on shit and eyerakes. Steamboat's selling was a little comical especially on the outside. I get playing to the cheap seats, but he looked liked a Dad trying to make his baby laugh with his funny contortions of his face. I don't mind the draw finish, but at 10 minutes it is a little short and it is not a very dramatic home stretch with Austin and Steamboat heads colliding and neither one really able to capitalize. It is a good showcase to see how well Steamboat is on offense and how well Austin understood the role of the heel so early on in his career. ***

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I wonder when this match was taped because Steamboat had a tag belt in hands while at this time Arn & Eaton were the champs. Ah, good old TV tapings with championship issues.

For the record, this was shot 1/7/92 and originally aired on Worldwide the weekend of 1/18, during which the 1/16 title change was just then being announced on the TBS shows.

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I liked the different way the match was constructed, with Steamer's hot nearfalls at the start. It looked like he borrowed quite a few of them from Mania III, but they were still compelling. I didn't really notice his selling very much, but it's never bothered me before.

 

Austin's offense is getting crisper all the time. Maybe being in there with a ring general like Steamboat relaxes him and allows him to concentrate on making everything look its best; it sure seems that way.

 

Medusa was used effectively, and it was nice to get reminders that Steamer has justification for the way he feels about her, despite the vicious lies that the DA tries to spread about him being a woman-hating bully.

 

As I mentioned above, the match structure was a good way to hide the fact that this was going to a draw; the old "challenger has champion down for two and three-quarters just as the bell rings" bit is so old that it applied for AARP back in 1975.

 

I might be the only one who didn't mind JR here. When else is he supposed to promote WCW programming and upcoming events other than during the matches? Besides, unlike Vince and his crew, he manages to stay on top of the action in the ring. His plug for the hotline was unnecessarily cute for its own good, but I had no problem with the rest, including the Blimpie plug. If free food helped to fill Center Stage for the upcoming taping, it was time and money well spent.

 

I tried to catch what WCWSN was being preempted for, but I couldn't. It sounded like golf, and I know that Turner had the rights to a few tournaments back in those days. I'm curious to know which tournament it might have been.

 

Nice line from JR about Heyman being a skinflint when it comes to paying his wrestlers. Maybe he had a crystal ball!

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It was...golf...and it seems JR feels the same way I do about golf. Great opening with Steamer cutting a ridiculous pace. Liked the transition with Madusa interfering. Really good TV match and Austin is looking better all the time.

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