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[1992-02-22-WCW-Saturday Night] Sting & Dustin Rhodes & Barry Windham & Ricky Steamboat vs Rick Rude & Arn Anderson & Larry Zbyszko & Bobby Eaton

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This was already talked about here in the PWO DVD Club days, and I don't really have anything to add to that. Still great fun, and it still stands out in the context of all the WCW TV surrounding it. If anything, I think I may like it more now than I did before.

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This maybe my favorite match so far of the set. Maybe not the best persay but by far the most fun. This was my first time seeing this and its just a tremendous display of everything good and fun about wrestling. Over faces, strong heels, a hot crowd this has it all. The talent level on display so far in wcw is really amazing and its a shame that the d.a. was broken up soon after this when Watts came in.

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Just a great TV match and one of the reasons why 92 is one of the best wrestling years ever. The heels are just on another level, especially Arn as they beat the crap out of Dustin.

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Thanks.

 

I did a bunch of write-ups of Arn matches and always got really long-winded talking about his shtick and otherwise obscure stuff. Might be my favourite shtick guy in history.

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This was just super awesome. The heels were great during the shine segment. All 4 were awesome here. Rhodes was great in his FIP role. We get an awesome clusterfuck finish.Plus the fans are hot for this particularly Sting.

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This is a good match, a good deal of fun, but really feels like a spot-a-thon.

 

There probably is a tipping point in the number of people involved in a match and the amount of time on the clock to fill where you're stuck with a spot-a-thon. Give the Midnights and the R'n'R or Fans 15 minutes, and you're going to get some storyline laid out. The MX and Fans did it in less than 15 at the Clash.

 

But when you get to 8 wrestlers of this quality needing to get their shit into a 15 minute TV match, it's almost like a four man tag filled with quality workers having just 7:30 of Nitro time... so you're going to have short segments, and people getting in and out to get shit done. It doesn't really lend itself to 7 minutes of FIP.

 

This would be a really good Nitro Match, or more likely tossed over on Thunder where it would have 15 minutes as a main to do what it want) rather than get rushed and cut down to 10 on Nitro so we could get a Big Angle at the end for the run over). From the same month, Barry & Dustin vs. Larry & Austin on the PPV has a strong sense of being a fully formed match, even if it's got a ton of stuff crammed into it and worked at a more up tempo pace that you're typical US PPV tag in those days. This? More like a time filler match packed with a lot of spots done well by a good group of workers. Does it feel like a match that if you *never* saw it would be a major loss? Not really. From nearly all of these guys, you'd rather watch some matches +/- four months that let you see the individual workers have more time to show what they can do. But that I don't mean only singles matches, but akin to the tag mentioned right above where we're able to see more from Barry, Dustin, Larry & Austin that then can flash here because (i) they have slightly more time to work, and (ii) they don't have to share that time with double the workers.

 

Good, well worked, but disposable. Akin to some of the Jumbo & Co vs Misawa & Co six-man that are perfectly sold, have loads of fun things in them... but there were 30+ of them... I enjoyed them, but plenty are disposable.

 

John

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Super fun TV match. Yes, with more time it could have developed into a great match with all the talent involved, but it got great heat and everyone did some cool stuff. It's kinda like the infamous 10-Man tag from Raw. WCW was running good TV matches like this on nearly every show. But an 8 man tag with no one being worst than good and with 6 out of 8 being downright super workers is rare enough and it does stand out even surrounded by the very good TV from this period. Rude busting out the missile dropkick was neat. So was Arn refusing to plunge into Sting's arms after two of his partners just getting gorilla press-slamed.

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This was crazy amounts of fun, everything just hit on all cylinders and nobody did anything to drag it down. The more of this set I watch, specifically the Dangerous Alliance stuff, the more I think that 1992 is the year for great multiman matches.

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Every week of WCW tv seemed to give something awesome from the Dangerous Alliance. This really did squeeze in a ton and had that feeling where a bunch of guys are running through their checklist rather than building something, but who cares when its these 8? Eaton was a bump machine early, and Zbyszko was also flying all over the place. Dustin is probably still my favorite worker on the face side to this point in the year. Loved the creative hot tag to Steamboat out of an atomic drop. Fun match building to Superbrawl a week later.

 

***1/2

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Holy shit, this is the WCW Match of the Year to this point. It was fast-paced yes, but I didn't get any "spot-a-thon" vibe at all. It came off like a quick multi-man AJPW tag with the layers that it had and they had room for a pretty epic Dustin FIP segment where the DA takes his leg apart. Plus Arn gets some awesome little things in, both in the ring and on the apron, like refusing to engage Sting when he's tossing DA guys around left and right. Dustin's hot tag is hot indeed, and Steamboat going nuts on all four opponents is one of the best things he's done since coming back. Fantastic TV match in front of a psychotic crowd.

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Sting has one of those haircuts here that is acceptable in pro wrestling and nowhere else.

 

This another in a string of great Dangerous Alliance v. faces matches on WCW television. Would've loved more time for this as everyone was on their game but the match did it job in getting me very excited for the Superbrawl matches that are coming up shortly.

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There is so much talent in this match. Six all-time great workers plus Zbyszko & Sting. I'm not knocking Zbyszko, I just haven't seen that much of him. What I have seen has been a lot better than the reputation he has and I would place him over Sting, who I'm not that big a fan of. Sting isn't horrible and can be good, but he is definitely the weakest worker of this bunch. Dustin Rhodes has already surpassed him at this point despite only a few years in the game. Anyway I think the amount of talent here is just too much for a match of this length to contain. Nobody gets enough time to really build this up and make anything special happen. We get a few flashes of brilliance and a lot of little moments that show how talented these guys are and what they're capable of. The match is fun AND good for what it is, but it's really a teaser for everything we're going to get out of these guys this year.

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Dangerous Alliance (Rick Rude, Arn Anderson, Bobby Eaton & Larry Zbyszko) vs WCW (Sting, Ricky Steamboat, Barry Windham & Dustin Rhodes) - WCW Saturday Night 2/22/92

If Ricky Morton never existed, I think we would call it "Playing Dustin Rhodes" because hot damn is he just tremendous in FIPs. I saw Steamboat in there and I was like "O they will probably have Steamboat set up by the hot Sting tag", but was very, very pleasantly surprised that Dustin got to play Ricky Morton. I loved when he was mounting a comeback on Larry Z and he was starting to go wild and he stymied himself when he kicked with the wrong foot. He just lost control of himself in the moment and then sold it. Arm really digs the assisted hotshot as transition to a heat segment. I will give him that is very effective, but I would like to see him switch it up. Eaton clipping the knee really set up some great work. Rude busting out the missile dropkick, a wicked Arn DDT and an Eaton figure-4 was a great showcase for the Dangerous Alliance's offense. Especially after the WCW Franchise Players were mopping the floor with him. I would have liked to see Windham show the same intensity that he did in Clash 18, he got in there with The Cruncher and treated him like anybody else. Arm did a great job throughout the match especially trying to rile up Steamboat, but The Dragon was too smart to venture over to his corner. I thought The Living Legend was by far the best bumper and stooge for the babyfaces in this match making Dusting look great and his verbal selling is close to Flair's level. Of course, the entire beginning built to the big marquee confrontation between Rude&Sting. WCW how did you not run this at Havoc or Starrcade (Starrcade he would have been injured so I guess they get a pass). The crowd was absolutely nuclear for this match up. Sting just rocked it here. Everything was simple, but really popped the crowd and was fun stuff. Then he let Dustin handle the heavy lifting of selling for the Dangerous Alliance. I liked the finish with the faces turning the tables on the Dangerous Alliance. In most of the matches to this point, Dangerous Alliance had taken advantage of the chaos to have Eaton nail an Alabama Jam and score the victory. This time Steamboat is able to isolate and pin Larry Z with a top rope cross body. The match is great fun, but disjointed would be my major issue. The shine builds to Rude/Sting. They blow that off to get to heat segment and finish. Each are great, but I think there is a better way to connect them still best tag match of the Dangerous Alliance so far. ****

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This really is a cut above the numerous DA tags and six-mans that have already occurred. The transition of Dustin's headscissor takedown into him getting tossed over the top is beautifully timed and executed. Taylor is a welcome addition on commentary.

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I liked this, but it was a tease for SuperBrawl and not much else. Still, we got two things I never thought we would: a short but spirited Sting-Rude confrontation (much to the DA's chagrin) and a clean pinfall finish, as Steamer beat Larry Z clean in the middle with the flying bodypress to establish momentum for the faces going into the pay-per-view.

 

I liked the Dustin FIP stuff, which is another thing we seldom get from the DA in these televised matches. Dustin probably won't sell the leg at SuperBrawl, but it would certainly be understood if he did.

 

Rude and Sting were great here, and it was nice to see them go at it, but it would have made more sense if the match had been Dustin/Windham/Steamer/Rick or Scott vs. Rude/Larry/Austin/Arn or Bobby. Austin's absence in particular was mystifying; I hope he had a title defense that week.

 

JR had to do kind of a thankless job here; he had to call what was going on in the ring and make it sound important, but at the same time keep reminding the fans that the really big stuff was going down at SuperBrawl. He managed to walk that particular line quite well. Taylor wasn't bad on commentary, but succumbed to HDD (Heel Dipshit Disease) when he "wondered" if the fans' chant of "We Want Sting" was "Taylor Made" instead. That was such a reach it's a wonder he didn't break his collarbone.

 

He did make one excellent point, though: Why would Sting get involved when his match at SuperBrawl doesn't involve anyone in the DA? I know he's still got a score or ten to settle with them, but he can certainly have do that after the pay-per-view once he's safely World champion. Then again, that's part of what makes the Stinger who he is: he fights the good fight where he finds it, regardless of the potential cost to himself.

 

Who was Steamer's ninja friend supposed to be?

 

Overall, I'm just glad that this wasn't the five-minute double schmozz pull-apart that most matches between warring factions this close to a pay-per-view usually are. For WCW's sake, I hope this inspired a few people to lay their money down and see what happened next.

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I tried to single out any one amazing performance above all others and found a small edge going to Arn here. But there was so much really good stuff crammed into these 15 minutes it's hard to really say. I will agree that it needed more time to reach it's potential, but it's not meant to be the main attraction regardless of the sheer amount of talent in the ring for this match.

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Electrifying match. One of the better US multi-man tags I've ever seen. Everyone was on point, itching to win Fry's Match of the Night bonus, clearly. Everything played their role to perfection and them-some. The Dangerous Alliance in that first part of the match were just great. The bumping from all, the stooging , the constant struggle to gain control only for it to be turned back on them. I particularly enjoyed the sequence from Rude taking Sting into the corner and he fights his way out of it, powerslams Eaton and Larry on after the other and Arn feigns going in. Great stretch of wrestling. Dustin's FIP section of the match was so good -  his selling, like always, was really good, slipping and flopping around, needing the ropes to get back up. Ricky and his karate offence was both hilarious and thrilling to watch. And the DA being totally afraid of it puts it over so much. Poor Eaton, who got his ass kicked for most of it but if you want a heel to get his ass kicked, Beautiful Bobby is the one to do it. Rude goading Sting in when the rest of the DA didn't want Sting in was great. It put over the pure arrogance of Rude, the dangerous of Sting and made for a hell of a moment when Sting kicked the hell out of Rude! Arn was the MVP of this whole thing. Turning from a stooge to a cold killer with ease. Just watch Arn. Great match. ****1/2 

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