JULY 2, 2003: AIRTIME #76
Matches taped at the last Nitro were:
- Juventud Guerrera seeing off CM Punk with the Juvi Driver in 7:03.
- Guido Maritato and Johnny Stamboli beating Jerrelle Clark and Shark Boy after Stamboli gorilla pressed Shark into a huge powerslam before tagging in Guido so he could make the easy cover after 4:44.
- Psicosis overcoming Julio Dinero, finishing with the Guillotine Legdrop in 5:57.
- And in a match filmed just before Sting’s celebration on Nitro (whereas the other three were before the Nitro taping started), Paul London and Brian Kendrick defeated Matt Bentley and Sonny Siaki by DQ in 9:09 when Glenn Gilbertti pulled the referee out before he could count a clear three following London’s Shooting Star Press to Bentley.
- A brawl broke out after the bell until Billy Kidman came out with Torrie Wilson in tow to decimate London and Kendrick alongside his apparent new stablemates in GGE. After a Kid Krusher to Kendrick, Billy grabbed London by the scruff of the neck and berated him for using the SSP before telling him he would show him how it is done. Gilbertti and Bentley held London down while Siaki put additional boots to Kendrick. Kidman went up to the top, signalled for his own SSP, but as he has been doing quite frequently as of late he paused and instead dropped a big elbow onto Paul from the top.
JULY 5, 2003: SATURDAY NITRO #113
Sting’s successful return and dethroning of Sean O’Haire ended the reign of terror headed up by O’Haire and his manager Vince Russo. However, with a contracted rematch, the threat isn’t over just yet. And with Sting willing to fight the demonic heavyweight in any match he wanted (and with Commissioner Flair ruling that there would be no career or similar stakes this time), Russo announced that he wanted revenge for Sting laying hands on him and unseating his meal ticket.
Indeed, ‘Russo’s Revenge’ is coming back, and champion and challenger will be locked inside the bottom tier of a triple cage with the championship belt hanging above the roof of the very top cage at Bash at the Beach. But first, the two men will be on opposing sides as Sting, Jeff Jarrett and Chris Harris take on O’Haire and his two unmasked helpers and longtime Russo allies, Elix Skipper and Christopher Daniels tonight.
Meanwhile, the cruiserweight title takes centre stage as the rivalry between former tag team champs turned bitter rivals is settled in a ladder match, with Jamie Knoble rematching new champ Kid Kash. And Rey Mysterio has challenged Billy Kidman to a hair vs mask match tonight, though even WCW.com was unable to confirm in the days preceding whether GGE had accepted the challenge or not.
Taped on June 27 in Atlanta.
Raven opened the show in a singles match with Sinn, in his quest to dismantle the New Church one by one until he got to fight Father James Mitchell’s new monster, apparently called Abyss. Looking to avoid the same fate as Tempest last week, Sinn and his tag partner Slash jumped Raven as soon as he arrived and attempted a 2-on-1, which worked until Raven was able to send Slash into the entrance wall and take Sinn to the ring for a beating.
Slash eventually returned with a chair but missed a wild swing and then had the weapon thrown into his face. Raven then hit the drop toe hold to Slash onto the unfolded chair before catching Sinn with the Evenflow for the pin in 4:21 official ring time (with a few minutes more brawling outside before the referee got things underway).
Raven once again took the mic and warned Father James that his men would suffer until he got the monster. He waited, to no response, before hitting both Sinn and Slash with the chair repeatedly. Finally, Mitchell showed up on the big screen where he told Raven that his men were prepared to suffer unspeakable pain for him, but even that won’t compare to what Abyss does to Raven at Bash at the Beach. He says the only way Raven will be able to get out of his annihilation is by crawling out of the ring, over to where that microphone he loves so much is kept, and begging Mitchell to take him into the New Church after all. Raven leaves, seemingly satisfied that he at least has his war set for the PPV.
Kid Kash was filmed earlier watching the ring get set up, as well as the apparatus that will suspend his cruiserweight title above the ring for his match tonight. He is then approached by a stage hand who takes the belt from him to be attached. He hands it over, turns to the camera and says though it probably looked like an easy thing to do, it was hard to give away the belt he worked so hard to earn, knowing what he has to go through to get it back later.
He says he’s known Knoble for years and always respected him as a fighter, but he resents the fact that he thinks he can destroy their team and do better in singles than Kash. Tonight, he will prove once and for all that he is the star of the team. And then, he says, he will offer one man a title shot no questions asked: Guido Maritato.
He says it makes him sick that he was the one who brought Guido to the Hardcore Revolution, to try and make amends for being busy with title challenges himself, only for him to stab them in the back and make Kash look like a fool. He says Guido and Stamboli will pay for what they did, once Knoble has been silenced.
Next on the schedule was the 3 Live Kru taking on Lance Storm, Eric Young and Johnny Devine. However, Team Canada were joined by fellow team member Bobby Roode, and Storm took the mic before the bell to announce that Roode would be taking his place in the match. The confusion following the announcement was brief, and the six-man began.
3LK would win a lively encounter following Killings’ Truth or Consequences suplex to Young in 8:32. Most notable was a glaring opportunity for Storm to cheat with the referee occupied, but he once again ensured he was not physically involved in any way, even if it meant defeat for his troops.
Steve Corino, Mike Awesome and CW Anderson are with Jeremy Borash. When asked about their future plans as outlined last week, Corino says it’s not difficult to imagine all of the championship belts belonging to the Extreme Horsemen in the near future. He says unlike the Hardcore Revolution, they exist on a focused MO and a camaraderie fuelled by more than just soft nostalgia and Rob Van Dam’s ego. And they, unlike HR, really are Extreme, rather than being a bunch of cruiserweights who “jerked the ECW curtain”.
Corino is about to answer JB’s second question, which title they’ll be pursuing first, when Simon and Swinger rush over to their stablemates to tell them something has happened. Corino tries to brush it off while he finishes his promo, until he’s told that Justin Credible has been laid out. The group rush off.
Next, the commentators tell us, is Rey Mysterio vs Billy Kidman. Rey had issued the challenge last week for mask vs hair. However, Kidman emerges first alongside Glenn Gilbertti and Torrie Wilson with his hair noticeably cut short already.
As commentary speculate over what happened, GG takes the mic in the ring and offers to explain. He says everyone at GGE heard Rey’s challenge last week, and they couldn’t believe it. What they couldn’t believe was that Mysterio could take such a “meaningless” stipulation and try to make it sound like something big and important.
Glenn says Rey’s mask has been put up for leverage so many times it belongs in a pawn shop, and that nobody cares whether he wears it or not. That he’d try to wager it against forcibly shaving Kidman is laughable, and that’s why Kidman did what Rey only wishes he could do: change his look, his lifestyle and his career by his own power.
Kidman then takes the mic and says that’s exactly what he did when he removed Rey from his life, because his mask, his lucha culture and the way he uses his friends are all about as meaningful as that bunch of hair lying on the floor of a barbershop in Pennsylvania. If it’s a fight Rey wants, however, he will be happy to embarrass Mysterio again like he did at the Bash. Mysterio arrives and makes a beeline for Kidman, and the grudge match is on!
Misterio would defeat Kidman by DQ after 10:42 when Sonny Siaki and Matt Bentley ran down to prevent a certain pin following a wheelbarrow bulldog off the top rope to counter Kidman’s attempt at a top rope elbowdrop. Rey fought both off until he was chopblocked by Gilbertti. Paul London and Brian Kendrick then ran down to stop the gang attack… only to join in on the assault instead!
Gilbertti held Rey’s bad knee in place for Kidman to hit two flying elbows off the top, leaving Mysterio in agony while Kidman’s four partners-in-crime kept Juventud Guerrera and Psicosis from helping their friend. As GGE set up for a third with a chair wrapped around Rey’s leg, the music of 3LK hit and the trio were finally able to help Juvi and Psi run the heels off. It didn’t look good for Rey, however – and Konnan in particular was distraught that things had come to this.
We cut backstage where someone else is in a bad way. A member of staff has found Simon Diamond laid out in the remains of a broken table.
D’Lo Brown registered another successful title defence with a win over Joe Legend – who surprisingly came out alone – with the Lo Down frog splash in 9:15.
After the bout, Ric Flair came to the stage and congratulated Brown on his bright start so far to life in WCW. The Commish added that next week, he has earned a break from competition, but we will find out who is next to challenge him when AJ Styles meets Eddie Guerrero one-on-one for a title shot at Bash at the Beach.
Sting, Jeff Jarrett and Chris Harris formed somewhat of a makeshift trio to take on three of Vince Russo’s most dangerous ever soldiers, Sean O’Haire and Triple X. However, what they lacked in natural teamwork compared to the heels, they made up for in passion and a determination to end Russo’s stronghold on WCW once and for all.
And when Jarrett turned Angel’s Wings into a pinning combination to beat Daniels after 13:31, the tag champions were incensed. And you can only imagine how Russo and O’Haire felt, as the fight continued after the bell and Vince’s men used chairs to lay out the winners before Commissioner Flair despatched security to ensure things did not escalate into another career-ending O’Haire assault.
We are joined by Corino, CW, Awesome and Swinger, the four Extreme Horsemen left standing after a pair of attacks backstage saw to Simon Diamond and Justin Credible. Corino says the sneaking around has to end, and he knows exactly who’s behind it. He calls out RVD and his “stooges”, telling them that the war is over and the Horsemen won.
He then hear Van Dam’s voice over the loudspeaker system, as he corrects Corino: RVD says the Horsemen’s war has actually only just begun. We then see RVD, Jerry Lynn, Tajiri and Super Crazy appear on the stage. Van Dam says when they decided to fight against the Revolution and not by their side, HR tried to approach the battle in a manner true to their beliefs. But thanks to sneak attacks, dirty tactics and betrayals, the Horsemen always snuck out with the upper hand. So, if it’s guerrilla warfare they want, that’s what they’ll get – only this time, it’s the Horsemen aspiring to wrestle for gold and it’s the Revolution that will be making their lives hell with sneak attacks.
They then rush the ring and Corino immediately flees, leaving his three buddies to fight the four remaining Revolution members. The faces get the upper hand, putting Awesome through the announce position and wiping out CW and Swinger with a series of finishing moves.
Finally, Kid Kash ended the war with Jamie Knoble, emerging victorious from a brutal ladder match to retain the cruiserweight title in 18:35. Kash hit a Money Maker onto a ladder bridged between two other ladders before climbing up to retrieve his belt.
He took his fair share of brutal bumps in the war, but as he gingerly climbed back down and celebrated with the belt he was blindsided by Guido Maritato and Johnny Stamboli. Guido posed with the title belt until the Hardcore Revolution returned to run the treacherous Italians off, the GAB remaining fresh in their mind.
And though the relationship between the HR and former charter member Kash remained frosty, RVD helped Kash to his feet after a dramatic pause and the quartet congratulated the champion as the show faded to black.
Bash at the Beach 2003 card so far:
- WCW World title, Russo’s Revenge triple cage: Sting (c) vs Sean O’Haire
- WCW Cruiserweight title: Kid Kash (c) vs Guido Maritato
- Raven vs Abyss
Next time: Sean O’Haire invites Sting to meet him at the WCW Power Plant. Will the famed training facility be able to survive their confrontation!?