The task of tackling every PPV on the WWE Network was never going to be easy. I am an adult (in a manner of speaking) that works a full-time job. I have a wife. I’m currently moving to a brand new city after residing in Gainesville, Florida for almost a decade. I have stuff going on.
So, you can understand my trepidation when I noticed that the eighth entry in my project was my fourth Starrcade and it was four… hours… long. Granted, I’m accustomed to WrestleManias being four hours long, but there is a big difference between 240 minute WrestleManias in 2013 and 240 Starrcades in 1986. Actually, there are differences. One of them is a lack of Kid Rock and P. Diddy.
Another difference is my preconceived notions. I expect WrestleMania to fly by because of the anticipation and the modern action. I expected Starrcade 1986 to drag along slower than Bruno Sammartino’s Hall of Fame speech.
Expectations can a funny thing.
PAY PER VIEW NUMBER EIGHT- NWA STARRCADE 1986: THE NIGHT OF THE SKYWALKERS
Written on 6/24/2014
THE FIRST THING YOU SEE: The scaffold is shown in the arena while THAT SONG plays (read every other Starrcade diary to know what I’m talking about). Green lasers are flashing in the rafters and Dr. Evil is happy somewhere. The Starrcade ’86 title card is portrayed on the giant screen in the arena with those lasers. Tom Miller is in the ring and he introduces the show and the National Anthem. Jim Crockett Promotions is too cheap and play the track over the loudspeakers. If it were Eric Bischoff, someone named Charles Ray would be singing it.
-Tom Miller in Greensboro sends it over to Tony Schiavone and Rick Stewart in the Omni in Atlanta. We are running two buildings again, huh? Stewart looks like a MTV VJ.
-Bob Caudler and Johnny Weaver are the broadcast team in Greensboro. I’m not happy about Weaver’s presence. Greensboro sounds like gimmick country tonight and match number one is about to begin.
MATCH NUMBER ONE: Tim Horner and Nelson Royal vs Don and Rocky Kernodle
-There is ZERO introduction besides Caudle saying everyone’s names aloud. Thankfully, I recognize Don and Rocky is Keith Larson from Starrcade 1984. I’ve seen Horner before and process of elimination brings me to Royal.
-Don is finally wrestling on one of these shows. It looks like he has been hitting the Krispy Kreme gym in preparation.
-Nelson Royal is OLD! He would have been out of the game years ago, but he can’t stay home because he hates his wife! (I used Major League in my last diary. Let’s go for Liar, Liar!)
-Horner looks out of place because he appears to be an athlete.
-Royal resembles an old card shark at a casino. He isn’t bad, but he doesn’t care because he is just blowing his pension anyway. You know the kind I’m talking about.
-Awesome spot: Rocky hits a sunset flip on Royal while he applied a sleeper on Don’s back.
-There have been two powerslams in this match and they have both been impressive.
-Another good spot: Horner and Rocky trade leapfrogs and then go for a leapfrog at the same time, colliding in mid-air.
-Don hits a nice looking delayed vertical suplex. This is a good little match.
-Too little, in my opinion.
WINNERS: Tim Horner pins Rocky Kernodle in 6:19 after a victory roll counter.
-The crowd sort of boos Horner, but provide polite applause for the overall effort.
FINAL WORD: No complaints here. That was a nice opening tag match.
-The title card for the next match is displayed and Jimmy Garvin struts to the ring with Precious. Poor Brad Armstrong is already in the ring and he is wearing the white jacket I’ve always seen him in. Schiavone is pulling double duty, ring announcing this contest. Garvin’s entrance attire would make mid-90s WWF Jeff Jarrett blush. The referee for this match has the first name of Scrappy.
MATCH NUMBER TWO: Jimmy Garvin w/Precious vs Brad Armstrong
-Garvin sure can rile up a crowd with his mouth. A lot of animosity is displayed by the two competitors and the crowd is into the early action.
-Precious is annoying at ringside. Isn’t that every woman manager though? (I originally typed that statement by itself, but feel the need to add “manager” after woman.)
-Armstrong has “BA” on his boots. I wonder if he hates flying, too.
-Repetitive wrist locks, headlocks and takedowns get the crowd a little disinterested, but the work has been proficient.
-Garvin and Precious are like the trailer park version of Macho Man and Elizabeth.
-Garvin applies a modified deathlock on Armstrong and he might be falling asleep.
-Garvin taps the mat during a submission and I forget that the bell won’t ring because tapping out isn’t a thing yet.
-Leg scissors don’t look great from some angles, if you know what I mean.
-The commentary on this match is like listening to vanilla ice cream slide off a spoon.
-The mat is going to reek of Garvin and Armstrong.
-The referee actually believes Armstrong mid-pin about Garvin pulling his trunks and stops counting. That might be a first.
-We have reached the ten minute mark. I smell a TLD.
-Armstrong is thrown outside and continually kept out by Garvin. Precious provides the best offense by yelling trash talk.
-Bill Apter sighting in a PWI shirt!
-The pace quickens as time winds down. Multiple pins and two counts start.
-Garvin comes off the top with a cross body. He misses. The suspense… isn’t there.
WINNER: Time Limit Draw in 15:00 (15:10 by my watch).
-The bell seriously rang after Garvin missed. Armstrong didn’t even get a chance to go for a pin. Garvin is knocked out of the ring, post-match, and Precious “holds him back” as Garvin leaves, claiming he can beat Armstrong.
FINAL WORD: Technically sound, but technically boring. I know these two can be better.
-Ugly Mexican music hits in Greensboro. Naturally, it means Baron Von Raschke is on his way to the ring. Don’t be alarmed; Hector Guerrero is with him. Hector is in all silver, with bullets around his body. The Barbarian, who is chained up like a Rihanna music video, and Shaska Whatley, resembling the villain in Princess and the Frog, are their odd opponents.
MATCH NUMBER THREE: Shaska Whatley and the Barbarian vs Hector Guerrero and Baron Von Raschke
-All four men brawl to start. I would love to know how any of these men got together.
-Raschke, from the neck up, is a dead ringer for any teacher that is about to retire.
-Hector hits a sweet springboard cross body. That is enough to become the first MVP of the PPV on this show thus far.
-Weaver and Caudle are better than Schiavone and Stewart, but they are still boring.
-Hector hits a dive onto the Barbarian from the ring to the floor. Caudle says he has never seen that before and I believe it is indeed a PPV first.
-Weaver leaves the booth to try and interview Dusty Rhodes backstage. I can't help but notice how cheap the blue and green apron cover is.
-The children in the crowd are chanting something I don’t understand. It must not be important because Caudle is ignoring it.
-Pistol Pez seems to have been a jobber for good reason later in his career.
-Hector has been getting his butt kicked for a couple of minutes. You can see the Eddie oozing out of him.
-Hector turns the tide by blatantly spitting in Whatley’s face, who is shocked. Hector immediately tags Baron in, who skips to the claw as soon as possible. That’s code for “let’s take this home, I’m late to bridge.”
WINNERS: Baron Von Raschke pins Shaska Whatley in 6:27 after a missed splash in the corner and an elbow drop.
-Hector is detained on the outside and the heels beat down Baron after the bell. Barbarian hits his top rope headbutt and Hector finally saves the day, but the damage has been done.
FINAL WORD: I wouldn’t remember it tomorrow, but it served its purpose. I would have preferred Guerrero vs Barbarian in singles.
-Weaver is backstage outside Dusty Rhodes’ dressing room. Dusty hasn’t been talking to any press before this event and Weaver is rebuked as well. It might be Dusty’s time of the month.
MATCH NUMBER FOUR: US TAG TITLE NO DQ MATCH- The Kansas Jayhawks vs The Russians (Champions)
-HAIRY ASS DUTCH MANTELL!!!! Oh yeah, and his partner is Bobby Jaggers.
-Dutch and Jaggers are off to a quick pace to open the match. Looking at them, you wouldn’t expect that. It is at this point that I realize that it is good to not see blood on a Starrcade yet.
-Krusher Khruschev and Ivan Koloff are resembling Harlem Heat to me.
-Dutch’s whip is called “Shoo-Baby”. The whip has more charisma than Jack Swagger.
-Bobby Jaggers appears to be the NWA’s version of Adrian Adonis to me.
-The announcers discuss the importance of this match for the Russians considering Nikita’s turn and main event against Ric Flair. Nice continuity.
-Dutch takes a hard shot onto a table and then gets crotched on the guardrail.
-The lack of manscaping is seriously bothering me.
-Dutch hits a big double clothesline and Jaggers enters via the hot tag. A melee starts and we are finally fully utilizing the No DQ rule.
-Koloff’s chain is stopped by Dutch’s whip. Shoo-Baby is LOUD! It doesn’t thwart every shot, though.
WINNERS: Ivan Koloff pins Bobby Jaggers in 7:51 to retain the championship after a chain shot by Krusher Khruschev.
-Schiavone’s clock must be off because he called it 15 seconds shorter than I timed it. Or Schiavone sucks.
FINAL WORD: Another totally watchable match. It was nice to see Dutch Mantell in some semblance of shape.
-What fucking version of Rick Rude’s theme is playing? It’s weird, jazzy and has a noir style to it, with a girl speaking at the start. Rude enters with Paul Jones, whose moustache is the LVP of the PPV. THAT SONG plays for Wahoo McDaniel’s entrance.
MATCH NUMBER FIVE: INDIAN STRAP MATCH- Rick Rude w/Paul Jones vs Wahoo McDaniel
-Nothing is more exciting than watching men argue about putting the strap on their wrists.
-The girls shriek for Rude’s robe removal. I shrieked a little, too.
-Rude is bumping around like he will against the Ultimate Warrior in a couple years.
-Wahoo looks very old and very out of shape. He is the real LVP of the PPV so far.
-Rude has been punching Wahoo in the corner for about a minute straight. He finally stops and slams Wahoo, ties him up and starts dragging him, but is stopped at two.
-I cannot stop yawning during this match.
-The blood streak is over. Rude is cut open and I think Wahoo is, too. Wahoo’s win attempt is stopped at three corners.
-Watching a bad strap match is just like watching your wife put the laundry in its appropriate room and then forgetting some clothes over and over again.
-Rude’s top rope dive is screwed up by a jerk of the strap by Wahoo. An elbow drop and dragging is only temporarily stopped by Paul Jones, who eats an elbow as well.
WINNER: Wahoo McDaniel in 8:20 after Rick Rude knocks him into the fourth turnbuckle.
-Post match, Rude and Jones put the boots to Wahoo and Hector and Baron make the save.
FINAL WORD: I would have much rather seen Rick Rude wrestle “Macho Man” Randy Savage in the CAGE OF DEATH. (Liar, Liar joke number 2! I think I can hit the trifecta before “NEXT TIME”.)
-Rick Stewart is backstage with the Russians. Ivan promotes the upcoming Bunkhouse Stampede and threatens Dusty Rhodes for poisoning Nikita Koloff’s mind. Krusher provides some lines that don’t sound intimidating at all, but Ivan was thankfully good.
-Another random ass title.
MATCH NUMBER SIX: CENTRAL STATES TITLE MATCH- Bill Dundee vs Sam Houston (Champion)
-How specific can a title get? Next PPV, I can’t wait for the States on the Northeastern Corner of the Map Title match.
-Dundee is just built like a stocky asshole.
-The whores that keep chanting “Let’s go Sam” can go straight to Sam’s Club and shut their mouths with free samples.
-Houston screams “Ask Him” during a submission. I doubt Jericho was watching a lot of Sam Houston matches.
-Bloodletting has been replaced by trunk pulling on this show.
-Hi, Rich. You enjoyed my direct dialogue with you through these diaries. It is the time during a Sam Houston match where I say “cowboy boots”.
-Fuck! Houston hits an atomic drop and Dundee flies over the guardrail, but he awkwardly flips on his head. He seems okay, but that looked BAD.
-Dundee recovers and hits a big diving fist drop from the top rope. He was Jerry Lawler’s longtime partner, all right.
-Dundee applies a Boston Crab and Houston counters by awkwardly driving rolling both men out of the ring.
-Dundee walks the ropes like the Undertaker to dive onto Houston. I think Bill Dundee is the new MVP of the PPV for the solid and impressive work of getting me invested in a Sam Houston match.
-Schiavone and I’s clock is synced up now. Ten minutes have gone by.
-Ref bump and a loose cowboy boot. If that doesn’t sound like an end of a match, I don’t know what does.
WINNER: Sam Houston by DQ in 10:22 to retain the title when Dundee hits Houston with his cowboy boot.
-Houston retreats and Dundee gives the FU sign with his arms to the crowd.
FINAL WORD: Can we get Bill Dundee to commentate Monday Night Raw?
-Some song was starting, but we probably don’t have the rights to it because there was a quick edit and we are ready for the next match.
MATCH NUMBER SEVEN: HAIR VS HAIR MATCH- Jimmy Valiant w/Big Mama vs Paul Jones w/Manny Fernandez
-When did The Ragin’ Bull turn heel? Also, why is he dressed like a WMAC Master?
-Big Mama’s hair is on the line? What a sexist pig Valiant is.
-Manny will be locked in a cage suspended above the ring, but he tries to just sit ringside instead. Earl Hebner argues with him until the undercard babyfaces arrive to push Manny in the cage. Wahoo shows up last and basically gets the undeserved credit for it. The cage is raised and I’m left wondering why this gimmick isn’t used anymore.
-The Boogie Woogie Man’s tights are orange and black, naturally ready for Halloween one month late.
-Valiant’s hair is cut short already. That is probably why Big Mama’s hair is on the line. My bad.
-Jones hits Valiant with a foreign object. Valiant is busted open. I know, you’re shocked.
-Despite his constant appearance on these shows, Paul Jones still seems like the low-end manager. He’s basically the NWA Slick.
-Jones’ punches are pretty crappy. I’m can’t believe I’m saying that Valiant has been carrying this match.
-Valiant gets his hands on the foreign object. It took two years, but the loss is avenged to a deafening pop.
WINNER: Jimmy Valiant in 4:22 after a shot with the foreign object.
-Valiant immediately starts shaving Jones’ head. I have no idea why his arms are all bloody and cut up. Manny is lowered and jumps Valiant from behind. Rude joins in the double team and they hit MNM’s Snapshot on Valiant. Where are the babyfaces from earlier? The heels leave, covering Jones’ shaved head and people finally come to check on Jimmy, who looks like dead Santa Claus. It moves slowly, but he finally gets up and out of the ring.
-They replay the haircutting and none of the action.
FINAL WORD: The crowd’s pop saved this match from being totally awful. Also, it wasn’t Jimmy Valiant’s worst match. I’m throwing him a bone.
-Bob Taylor is in the Starrcade Control Room, previewing the Bunkhouse Stampede. He sends it to Nelson Royal, who is sitting at a campfire. As a guitar plays, he gives the history of the Bunkhouse Stampede. Man, is this weird. He sounds like your grandfather telling you about the job he worked after the war. Clips of the previous Stampede are shown and EVERY SINGLE PERSON IN THE RING IS BLEEDING. I’m basically watching the dumbest people on Earth all trade diseases like baseball cards. Dusty wins the match and Royal is still gabbing. It’s so long and boring, I almost make Royal the LVP, but it ends before I finish writing it.
-Hot chicks are shown in the crowd as the show goes to intermission.
-Schiavone promotes the Jim Crockett Memorial Cup Tag Tournament and we watch another video package reviewing last year’s event in the Superdome (not SilverDome, Hogan). I get to see Giant Baba and Tiger Mask kick Black Bart’s ass, the Sheepherders being serious and the Road Warriors win it all. Killing time has never been more obvious. Mrs. Crockett gives the $1 million check to Hawk and the close up of the signature looks forged to me.
-THAT SONG brings Ron Garvin out in street clothes. Some rip off of a TV cop show theme naturally leads Big Bubba Rogers in, led by cocky ass Jim Cornette. Bubba looks like a snazzy P.I.
MATCH NUMBER EIGHT: LOUISVILLE STREET FIGHT- Ron Garvin vs Big Bubba Rogers w/Jim Cornette
-Without the jacket on, Bubba looks so young and Amish.
-Falls count anywhere in this match and a 10 count or pinfall will end it.
-The crowd boos to warn Garvin about engaging in a test of strength with Bubba… or they just don’t want to see a test of strength.
-Zero chemistry to start this match. Garvin throws soda in Bubba’s face to gain the advantage back and Bubba keeps selling the Hands of Stone by constantly staggering.
-Bubba uses a roll of nickels as a weapon. Quarters would have been better, but they did have savings of 80 percent.
-Garvin is bleeding, probably internally as well after a big splash by Bubba.
-Garvin didn’t grow up on a farm because he utterly failed at hog-tying Bubba with a rope.
-There is no rhythm to this match. Right on a cue: Bubba locks in the bearhug.
-Garvin hits some bloody, unprotected headbutts. Ask Nigel McGuinness if those are a good idea.
-Bubba shows his athleticism with a big bump over the top rope.
-Bubba was still obviously green. He sells everything a half second too late.
-Garvin catches Bubba off the top rope with an impressive slam.
-RICH, DON’T WATCH!!!!! Garvin hits an ugly piledriver on Bubba. After that, Corny hits Garvin in the head with the tennis racket. Tommy Young counts to ten, but announces that there must be a winner. The next man that reaches his feet will win.
-Cornette tries to enter, but Young forcefully throws him out. Bubba distracts Young and that is why two is better than one.
WINNER: Big Bubba Rogers in 11:51 after Jim Cornette hits Ron Garvin again with the racket and Bubba makes it to his feet.
-The replay shows that Garvin had to hang onto Bubba’s belt to complete the piledriver. So unsafe.
FINAL WORD: It was bowling shoe ugly, as Jim Ross would say. Strangely watchable at points, though.
-THAT SONG plays before the First Blood match. HA!!!! That’s a sweet idea!!!!! Tully Blanchard enters with JJ Dillon. Another new song for Dusty follows, this one sounding like Cactus Jack’s WWE theme. Dusty finally leaves the dressing room and we follow him to the ring. He is wearing a Magnum T.A. shirt and “Tully” strangely written in marker around his ears.
MATCH NUMBER NINE: TV TITLE FIRST BLOOD MATCH- Tully Blanchard w/JJ Dillon vs Dusty Rhodes (Champion)
-Dusty gets the biggest pop of the night so far. Tully and Dillon hilariously start to put headgear on as Hebner argues with them. It gets thrown out, only for JJ to grease Tully’s face like a boxer afterwards. Great heel tactics. Hebner rips Tully’s face off with a towel and Dusty has had enough, elbowing JJ in the head. JJ comes up bleeding. Okay, I get it here.
-The bell finally ring and the announcers won’t shut up about Dusty’s haircut.
-The match has been nothing but avoiding contact and Dusty prancing and mocking.
-This is reminding me of the Shawn Michaels and Rick Martel match from SummerSlam 1992 where punches to the face weren’t allowed. In all the worst ways, too.
-Dusty Rhodes hits the stupidest move in a First Blood match: a headbutt.
-Dusty Rhodes his the stupidest move in a First Blood match: an elbow drop to the leg.
-Poor JJ has to stand at ringside all bloody.
-JJ trips Dusty, who falls on Hebner. Dusty recovers and suplexes Tully into Hebner, knocking him down again (and roughly). Dusty hits the elbow repeatedly and Tully is bleeding, but the ref is still down. Dusty looks for anyone to verify Tully’s blood while JJ wipes Tully’s face clean.
-Coins are having a big night as Dusty is hit in the face with a roll. He’s bleeding now, too. Gee, I wonder who the referee is going to see first… directly in their face as soon as they wake up… FART NOISE.
WINNER: Tully Blanchard in 8:39 to win the TV Title
-Dusty has a hissy fit after the bell covered in blood. He is complaining about the use of illegal change in a First Blood Match.
-The title card has a typo, declaring Tully as the new “TV Champions”.
FINAL WORD: What a colossal waste of time, talent and promotion.
-The title card for the Skywalkers is shown and I’m all ready for that bootleg Midnight Express theme!!!! Standard rock music brings the Road Warriors out and I know why they are credited for their own pop. Their look alone makes them the new MVP of the PPV. Animal makes a beeline up the ladder and the door at the top breaks because it is a cheap ass little bar. I would shit myself.
-Cornette is selling fear in the ring, looking up. The camera work is great, with multiple shots and angles of the scene. Minutes go by without anything else.
-I love that the Midnight Express were billed from “The Dark Side”.
MATCH NUMBE TEN: SCAFFOLD MATCH- The Midnight Express w/Jim Cornette and Big Bubba Rogers vs The Road Warriors w/Paul Ellering
-Dennis Condrey starts to climb up, but stops halfway. Animal flaps his arms like a chicken and that elicits a giggle out of me. Making me laugh harder is Cornette hugging Eaton’s leg as he starts to climb up. After letting go, Corny runs over to the commentators and complains.
-The entrance to the scaffold is so rickety and shitty. Good lord, I’m concerned for these men’s well-beings and this happened before I was born.
-The Midnight Express are barely standing and the bell rings.
-To say trepidation exists amidst the action is an understatement.
-Animal looks like he is trying to rape Bobby Eaton.
-The Midnight Express throw powder in the eyes of the LOD. No matter what that substance actually is, that is a poor freaking idea at that height.
-I know the result to this match, but my heart is still in my throat.
-Hawk hanging over the side of the scaffold petrifies the crowd. Animal’s leg hanging over the side does as well.
-Eaton swings and hangs by Animal’s leg before reaching the ladder. Good grief, look at X Division Eaton!
-Both Condrey and Eaton are now bleeding. How many impairments did these guys need!?!?!
-Technically, this is shit. Dramatically, this is riveting.
-Condrey starts climbing down, but Hawk pursues. They are both hanging for dear life over the ring.
-I’m not sad that everyone is climbing lower and underneath the scaffold. They are much closer, yet still high up.
-Everyone is hanging and swaying like they are on monkey bars now. Kicks are thrown back and forth.
WINNERS: The Road Warriors in 7:08 after kicking the Midnight Express off the scaffold.
-Eaton is a bloody mess and Cornette is being chased up the scaffold. Animal is back, waiting for him. Cornette hangs off the scaffold to escape and this will never get easier to watch. BOOM!!! Bubba’s stupid glasses cause Cornette to shatter his knees and scream and shriek all the way back to the dressing room. Jimmy, here is the MVP of the PPV to make you feel better.
-Replays of all three falls are shown almost in full. This rightfully feels like a big deal. Schiavone and Stewart’s awful commentary doesn’t.
FINAL WORD: The edge of my seat has my ass print dug into it. That was enthralling to watch because of the time, the participants, the story and the risks taken.
-We get another video package, this time recapping the Great American Bash tour. What, we don’t have any Divas to calm us down? The tour review features Baby Doll pinning Cornette, Wahoo winning another damn strap match and Valiant shaving Whatley’s head.
-Also featured in the package is David Allan Coe performing. I’d rather see David Alan Grier. The video concludes with Dusty winning the NWA Title from Flair in a cage. The people go nuts and Dusty probably lost it three weeks later.
-Another intermission is announced, but we don’t get the privilege as the cage is assembled and the credits roll with an hour left in the show. THAT SONG plays for the credits and keeps on chugging away as the Andersons enter with a big burst of dangerous looking pyro. A different rock song plays to bring the Rock N Roll Express out, in black and pink tights that are strange looking.
MATCH NUMBER ELEVEN: NWA TAG TITLE CAGE MATCH- The Andersons vs The Rock N Roll Express (Champions)
-The girls go bananas for the RNR Express and Tom Miller tells the audience “Get ready to boogie!”
-Ole and Robert Gibson start the match. That wasn’t what I was hoping for.
-The stars on Ole’s tights make him look like he is a mediocre waiter at Cracker Barrel.
-Gibson takes a substantial beating like the previous Starrcade. I’m starting to wonder if Ricky Morton was just lazy.
-The leg work on Gibson in a cage match has me ready to doze off. The boring commentary doesn’t help. Weaver and Caudle sound like gold announcers.
-Gibson makes the hot tag and Morton is a ball of fire for two seconds until Ole sends him into the cage twice. Putting Ole Anderson on offense for this long is cruel.
-The Rock N Roll chant from the crowd sounds like RKO to me.
-Morton’s face is raked across the cage. I don’t understand why Earl Hebner has to count or restrain anyone in a fucking cage match.
-Morton, a bloody mess, launches a comeback that reaches three seconds before being stomped out again.
-I’m excited to see Arn Anderson get away from Ole very soon.
-13 minutes into this match and I’m starting to wonder if the RNR Express are into S&M with the back-to-back cage matches with prolonged beatdowns.
-Morton definitely isn’t lazy. He has a full crimson mask and gives the crowd so many hope spots, playing them like a giant fiddle.
-Ole even nails a good top rope knee on Morton’s arm. The suspense and drama are starting to build because the crowd LOVES Ricky and Robert.
-Even the heads colliding spot doesn’t result in the hot tag.
-This has felt like the longest match ever.
-If another hot tag is interrupted, I think the crowd might collectively scale the cage and beat up Ole and Arn.
-Morton gets a good false finish with a small package and Robert runs in to begin the brawling.
-Ha! There WASN’T an actual tag!
WINNERS: Ricky Morton pins Ole Anderson in 19:03 to retain the championship after Robert Gibson dropkicks Morton in Ole’s arms.
FINAL WORD: I’m glad the formula was strayed from at the end. It was a good tag match that felt drawn out at the end, but the electric crowd helped.
-The title card for the main event is shown and 2001’s theme leads Ric Flair out in a blue robe. Shitty Kane-like fireworks hit and Flair stands in place for the whole song before walking to the ring. I’m still waiting for Ric Flair to feel like Ric Flair. A fan yelling “YOU SON OF A BITCH” at him will help.
-Magnum T.A. walks to the ring…NOPE. Wrong timeline. Instead, I have to try and explain this: a really crappy song, presumably called “She Believes in Love” plays. The sun is beaming, Magnum is running on the beach, some woman’s back is shown and we see Magnum wrestling, bloody. Is Magnum the woman we are hearing about? This is so cringeworthy. I’m going to research who sings this and give them the LVP of the PPV (I’m not certain, but it might be a dude named Matt Santry). Magnum goes up to the woman, who could be his wife or mother. They walk into the ocean and Jim Crockett didn’t want to lose his money on this footage after Magnum’s accident.
-That travesty is finally over and Nikita walks to the ring with his name chanted. What a badass. I’m glad he is still United States Champion here.
MATCH NUMBER TWELVE: NWA TITLE MATCH- Ric Flair (Champion) vs Nikita Koloff
-Staredown! Nikita is thinking in Russian. Flair is thinking about carrying Nikita.
-Flair’s first WOOO: a little cracking, but before the bell. That is a good sign.
-Flair is already selling like a madman, then chops the shit out of Nikita, almost with his forearms. Nikita no sells and Flair bails.
-Flair lets out his second WOOOO of the match. It is cocky, but unsure. Screw it, he is the MVP of the PPV already. I’ve been waiting for this guy. He just threatened to kick Nikita’s ass after being a pussy. Ric Flair has acted more like himself in two minutes than he has on the past three Starrcades.
-Nikita slams Flair with one arm. Good lord.
-Nikita’s bearhug doesn’t completely kill the momentum of the match because Nikita holds on in a unique way into a pin.
-The crowd gives Flair a face pop during his comeback. He hits a great vertical suplex on Nikita, who no sells it again and Flair bails again. Nikita looks stronger than Hulk Hogan right now and Ric Flair is the reason.
-Nikita is finally affected by chops and punches, but again bounces back with a clothesline-like choke.
-At this point in the PPV, I’ve been taking notes in my book so long that the lines on the paper have rubbed onto my hands. They look like the Great Muta’s mouth.
-Less than ten minutes in, Flair slaps on the Figure Four using the ropes for momentum.
-Flair’s chops are less credible than Zack Ryder with all this no-selling.
-Flair throws Nikita into the scaffold support. Guess who is bleeding now!!!!!
-Nikita has Russianed up half a dozen times in this match. Flair and a teenager’s face have a lot in common right now: they are both bumpy.
-Flair is sent into the scaffold. Ric Flair bleeding in a main event match is a surer thing than KISS playing Rock N Roll All Night during a concert.
-A slugfest ends in a Flair flop. It is followed by a nearly botched ref bump, but Tommy Young pulls it off and sells a leg injury on the floor.
-BIG Russian Sickle from Nikita. He gets the visual three count on Flair. That’s not a good sign.
-A new referee runs in while Flair has Nikita rolled up. Good two count.
-Nikita DESTROYS Scrappy the ref with a Sickle. He somehow knocks Young back down. Young recovers fairly quickly, but Nikita throws him down twice in the midst of beating Flair down.
-The bell just rang. Wow. Biggest show of the year! Nikita’s face below says it all.
-Nikita is sickling everyone in sight. The heels have run in and begun holding Nikita so Flair can get his shots in. Soon, the whole locker room empties to try and separate these two. Young tells the commentators the final decision.
WINNER: Double DQ in 19:16
-The fight keeps going until Flair is literally pulled back to the dressing room. There is a pile on Nikita in the ring.
FINAL WORD: During the replay of this match, Starrcade is called “The Super Bowl of Wrestling”. This match felt like it. Yet, wouldn’t it suck if the Super Bowl ended in a tie?
-Schiavone and Stewart recap the show ever so briefly verbally before the visual recap. It is our usual still photography over bad music.
THE LAST IMAGE: A title card that reads “See You at Starrcade 1987. Thanksgiving Night”. Thanks for the warning.
THE WRAP UP
FINAL MVP of PPV: Nikita Koloff looked like one of the greatest wrestlers ever and Ric Flair is the reason why. He finally showed me why he was considered so far ahead of everyone at the time. The fact that he has been ridden more than Seattle Slew is irrelevant (I was getting worried I wouldn’t squeeze Liar, Liar joke #3 in!)
FINAL LVP of PPV: I made a lot of jokes about it being other people, but Wahoo McDaniel had the opposite effect on Rick Rude that Flair had on Nikita.
MY FAVORITE MATCH: The Road Warriors vs The Midnight Express
MY LEAST FAVORITE MATCH: Dusty Rhodes vs Tully Blanchard
WWE HALL OF FAMERS IN ACTION: 7 (Jimmy Valiant, Tully Blanchard, Dusty Rhodes, Hawk, Animal, Arn Anderson, Ric Flair)
DEARLY DEPARTED IN ACTION: 8 (Nelson Royal, Brad Armstrong, Shaska Whatley, Bobby Jaggers, Wahoo McDaniel, Rick Rude, Big Bubba Rogers, Hawk)
FINAL THOUGHT: Starrcade is back in my eyes. Sure, it had Dusty’s stank all over it, booking-wise. However, almost every match was okay, with more on the good side. For its length, it flew by. I was impressed more often than I was scoffing. A Flare for the Gold has been dethroned. MULLET RECOMMENDS
NEXT TIME: A little shindig called WrestleMania III. I think some people showed up to it.