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Charles (Loss)

[1992-09-02-WCW-Clash of the Champions XX] Big Van Vader & Super Invader & Rick Rude & Jake Roberts vs Sting & Nikita Koloff & Rick & Scott Steiner (Elimination)

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This was the first WCW event I ever watched. We taped the replay of the show, and sadly it was cut during the heels entrance of this very match. I saw it for the first time recently on WWEClassics.com. I have to say it doesn't hold up with the rest of the excellent card, it felt like they were in a race with time to get the whole match on the show.

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Fun match, but it's not a sleeper to me. Doing more than one off the top rope DQ in the same match is too much, and I think the match should have gone twice as long since it was elimination rules, since it felt a little rushed. Still, there are some really good moments. I'm guessing the Steiners made a stink about jobbing since Sting and Nikita both ate pinfalls, but they didn't. I liked Jake in WCW. I thought it was a good fit and he seemed like an important headliner. He also drew well on the only PPV he headlined. A shame it didn't last.

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We need more time, but what we got was pretty fun. The Rick Steiner/Vader stuff was just stiff, and some bad ass suplexes. I thought the pinfalls on Koloff and Super Invader was weak shit. Would have liked to see Jake DDT Koloff after Rudes knee to the back. Rude clipping Scotty on that Frankensteiner was sweet. Vader taking out Rude and Sting at once with Rude holding onto Sting was great and a great throwback to the Dangerous Alliance. Jake being a sneaky opportunist was gold. Fun match.

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Invader was just managed by Harley Race, so he was put into the mix.

Fun little Survivor Series match, but like always, it feels rushed. The no top rope rule really is a cheap way to get some dq's here, and Scott Steiner comes off like a complete fool doing it in front of the referee. Rick's exchanges with Vader were super stiff and impressive, but Rick really doesn't sell shit at this point. His released german suplex was amazing though.

Vintage heel Jake stuff at the end. It's worth notice that the DDT is the most over finisher ever at this point, people still chanting for it despite being used against Sting.

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Holy crap the top rope DQ was such a horrible idea. I loved when they had a fan poll with 88% against it. Quick paced action all the way and a breeze to watch. Unsurprisingly it was rushed and needed longer. I have to say that I'm not entirely convinced Super Invader was really from Bangkok. But surely they wouldn't lie to the fans would they?

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Part of me thinks they booked some of the top rope DQ's just to push their telephone poll on whether the ban should be uplifted. Nikita does a good job eliminating himself running into Rude on the apron. Really needed to have Roberts hit the DDT there though. Vader continues to be Steiner's wrestling buddy to toss around. Scott eliminates himself with a clothesline off the top. Heels get it down to a 3 and 1 and Roberts gets to pin Sting. Match should have been longer. Was expecting more here with the elimination match rules in effect.

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Weird that Vader is the 3rd heel introduced. Vader & Rude looked really good here, and Jake absolutely felt like a legit main eventer. I didn't love much we got from the faces here. Fortunately Nikita & Herc are gone pretty quickly. Vader bumped like hell for Rick, though you probably don't want your monster #1 heel getting thrown around like that, even if he looks great doing it. Rick of course then returns the favor by not going up for a chokeslam. Then we get three garbage eliminations of the Steiners and Vader, who should be there at the end. At least Jake got to stand tall. Pretty awful booking but Vader and a good finish saved it.

 

***

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Another all-action match--it's like Bill Watts is in charge or something. As bad as locker room morale was at this point, you know Watts has lit a fire under people's asses when Nikita and Hercules work a pretty damn good sequence. Jake working against Scott Steiner even for a brief spell amuses me--talk about two wrestlers who couldn't possibly be less compatible with one another. There are some great transitions and bumps here, but it's way too rushed and none of the eliminations until the end are done very well, even the pinfall ones. Good finish with Jake covertly sneaking Rude back to his corner, though. Would have been a much better match with more time.

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Fun match even though it did feel rushed and there were some really bad moments. Nothing special overall but there were some nice segments here. I liked everything Rude did, especially when he snuck away after hitting Rick Steiner with the Rude Awakening. Vader's strikes at the beginning on Rick were sick. I really disliked the way the two of them haphazardly transitioned to the outside for the Rick Steiner elimination after the botched Doomsday Device. That was horrible and awkward. So were Super Invader's movements. The last elimination was really well done.

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First fall: Jesse's off to a flying start, saying that Pillman turning on Brad earlier was something that he'd been taught by his former pro coach Sam Wyche. JR doesn't respond; I'm not sure if that's because he wanted to get to the intros or because he was afraid to say anything for fear of pissing off the owners of the Falcons, whom he was working for at the time and who I'm sure had a relationship of some kind with Wyche and his then-current employers, the Buccaneers.

 

It's surreal for this WWF fan to see Jake and Rude on the same side of the fence after their memorable feud back in '88.

 

I'll never get used to seeing Vader thrown around like a normal-sized wrestler, especially when it comes out of nowhere against a guy whom he's just been pounding for the last two or three minutes, as was the case with Rick here.

 

Herc (Super Invader) doesn't look bad here, although billing him from Thailand is way, way out there considering his general coloring and such.

 

Sting/Nikita vs. Jake/Cactus looks like one hell of a match. Too bad we never got to see it.

 

I loved the blind tag from Herc to Rude which messed up Scotty's Frankensteiner without him even knowing it. Great tag team coordination between two former Heenan Family members.

 

I don't think JR appreciated Jesse saying that Watts bought a Cadillac with Jake's fine money. For that matter, how did Watts himself take it? On Mid-South TV, even heel commentators played it straight and left him alone.

 

Jake gets the pin on Nikita with a tights-assisted rollup. I have this timed at somewhere around eighteen minutes, and we're about nine in, so it looks like we're going through the rest of this at warp speed, which is a shame. Team Rude 4, Team Sting 3.

 

Second fall: Almost nothing to it; after a brief Sting-Jake sequence, Herc tags in long enough to get pinned after Sting rams his face into the mat. When people are getting pins off moves like that, you know the match is running out of time. Team Sting 3, Team Rude 3.

 

Third fall: The vast majority of this fall is a confrontation between Rick and Vader, which features Rick kicking out relatively easily after taking a powerslam, a Bossman slam and a second-rope splash in succession. What is he made of, titanium? Seriously, if you know the Steiners won't sell unless it's the finish, make sure that a sequence like that is the finish.

 

I liked Jesse trying to get inside Rick's head as he's being pounded by Rude, although I seriously doubt that he was actually surprised by the way pro wrestlers could possibly hit after a seven-year career. Then again, maybe he was, since not too many people actually hit him hard for fear of an unscripted receipt.

 

I didn't like the finish here at all. The botch (if it was one) of Rick lifting Vader is one thing, but Scotty deliberately coming off the top even though he knows it'll get him DQ'ed? That's utterly ridiculous, and they can't claim that he didn't know where he was, either, since he took the time to get set up there. Get a clue, Dusty! Team Rude 3, Team Sting 2.

 

Fourth fall: Another real quickie: Rick and Vader brawl to the outside, then Rude Pearl Harbors Rick and lays him out with the Rude Awakening on the floor. Vader stumbles in, Rick doesn't. I like finishes like these in elimination matches, but I still have a sour taste from Scotty's elimination. Team Rude 3, Team Sting 1.

 

Fifth fall: This one's even dumber than Scotty's elimination; I actually rewound to see it again. Sting's doing a good job fighting three-on-one, so Jake creates a distraction by going for the cobra. While Patrick (?) is distracted, Vader goes up top and squashes both Sting and Rude like bugs. Patrick hasn't seen a second of this, yet somehow Vader's tossed for coming off the top. By whose authority, the popcorn vendor's? I know they were running out of time and couldn't have anyone left on the heel side be cleanly pinned by Sting, but that's no excuse for making Patrick look stupid. I'm starting to think this should have been a standard one-fall match. Team Rude 2, Team Sting 1.

 

Sixth fall: Jake drags Rude to the corner and tags himself in then DDTs Sting to get the clean win. Survivors: Jake and Rude.

 

The two horrible top rope DQs ruined this completely for me. I'd have just made this one fall, as I said above, with Jake getting the win on Sting to set up Havoc. Individual parts of this weren't bad, but the overall bout was stupidly booked and too rushed. Vince does this kind of match way, way better.

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