Rebooking – Great American Bash 1999

Great American Bash should not of been as bad as it was. It just shouldn’t of been. The company had one of the best rosters at this point, and really was only missing four names at this point; Scott Hall (injury and, well being Hall), Goldberg (recovering from surgery), Hulk Hogan (same), and Scott Steiner (recovering from back injury). You still had Sting, Kevin Nash, Randy Savage, DDP, Raven and others. So you had workers and draws there. So the fact that so much of this pay per view was throw away nonsense is just…unacceptable.

So, the rules for this are simple. I can’t use anyone that’s not available. So I can’t pretend injuries don’t exist. I also can’t just sign anyone who’s not already on the roster. I am a slave to the roster the day of. However, I can have contracted talent come in. So someone like Raven, who was at home, could be used because it was simply them not using him; and not any other reason. I can also reshape the direction the company is going and make dramatic changes; however I have to keep it believable.

So we opened up the original show with back to back to back to back to back throw away matches. Four of them were generic Thunder mid-carder matches, and one was a thinly veiled culture (race) conflict. So we can get rid of that too. Honestly, I don’t think there’s one salvageable match on this card. So let’s just BLOW THIS BITCH UP.

We’re going to have to do a lot of work following Slamboree. Eric Bischoff comes out the night after Slamboree to essentially shuffle things up. First and foremost he brings out Roddy Piper, who tells Bischoff he’s dissolving the position and creating a General Manager role that he is giving over to Eric Bischoff. Now with sole control over WCW, Bischoff announces several major changes. First and foremost, everyone knows how bad Scott Steiner’s back is, as he only wrestled a handful of times from April to Slamboree. So the first announcement is that Steiner is unable to compete for the foreseeable future, and the US Championship will be put up in a tournament that will culminate at the Bash.

Also announced is another tournament, this time an “Open Invitational” tournament. This secondary (and smaller field) tournament will feature six men battling it out for the new Hardcore Championship. Those six men will be Bam Bam Bigelow, Mikey Whipwreck, Hak, Brian Knobbs, Van Hammer, and Ernest Miller. Bam Bam defeats Knobs, Whipwreck beats Miller and Hak beats Van Hammer to advance to the triple threat.

Bischoff announces the eight competitors for the United States Championship would be Roddy Piper, Ric Flair, Dean Malenko, Chris Benoit, David Flair, Perry Saturn, Rick Steiner, Buff Bagwell. The first four matches take place on Nitro’s and Thunder’s heading into Great American Bash, with the four matches starting off the tournament;

Roddy Piper vs. Buff Bagwell
Dean Malenko vs. David Flair
Ric Flair vs. Rick Steiner
Chris Benoit vs. Rick Steiner

Piper and Ric Flair go over in their matches, while Benoit and Malenko dominate theirs. So the first two matches at Great American Bash will be the semifinals.

Rick Steiner as TV champion was fine but he’s past the belt. So Rick will drop the belt shortly after his US Title Tournament elimination, citing his concern over his brother’s health. He’ll cut a promo after his title lost citing a need to prioritize his life. He thanks the fans and leaves, hopefully to a round of applauds.

Steiner drops the belt to Raven, who vows to prove to the world that there is no one tougher than he is. In the same episode Perry Saturn congratulates Raven on winning the title and getting back on track so fast after they lost the titles. Saturn tries to encourage Raven though to not forget their remach clause. Raven rejects him, and blames him for being weak and soft, and assaults Saturn, leaving him bloodied.

The West Texas Rednecks and No Limit Soldiers feud is scrapped completely. This prompts me to rebook Hennig and Windham back into a tag team title feud. Konnan and Billy Kidman (dealing with an injury from Raven) will join Hennig/Windham and DDP and Kanyon in the tag title feud. The Triad will still beat Raven and Saturn following Slamboree, but Hennig and Windham will reincert themselves into the match. Because Konnan and Kidman have issues with Windham and Hennig, they get involved in a No.1 Contender Match on Nitro, costing them the match against the Triad (non-title). Because of the chaos, we get another three team tag, with Hennig/Windham, The Triad and Konna and Kidman.

There’s no major match up’s for the Cruiserweight Championship that would work, without doing Billy Kidman and Dean Malenko but I don’t want to take Malenko out of the tournament, and putting the belt back on Kidman right now makes no sense. So instead I’ll put Lash LeRoux, La Parka, Juventud Guerrera, Psychosis, Villano V, Blitzkreig and yes, Chris Jericho in a battle royal of sorts. Yes, Jericho is leaving the company but he’s still under contract with WCW and doing house shows. So the battle royal will crown a new No.1 Contender and would see Jericho eliminate everyone in the match but La Parka, who would assault Jericho with his chair. Parka continues beating on Jericho, writing him off t.v. for good. La Parka will then assault Rey Mysterio with the chair as well, “injuring him”. Bischoff will try and DQ La Parka but claiming he’s well over the 225 weight limit but La Parka will constantly come in at 225 or 224 every night. Despite La Parka being obviously over the weight limit, Bischoff will be unable to get La Parka out of the match and the two end up signing on for a match at Great American Bash.

One of the under card feuds is Horace Hogan and Vincent teaming up against Stevie Ray. The nWo is officially disbanded after Slamboree by Bischoff, and cites Hogan, Luger, Scott Steiner and Hall’s injuries for dissolving the nWo Elite, and Stevie Ray unable to beat Konnan for the end of the nWo Hollywood faction. Horace and Vincent think they can be fired now without the nWo’s protection and blame Stevie Ray. The two assault him on a nightly basis but eventually Booker T tells them to step off, which gets him beat. The Nitro before Great American Bash, Booker runs out to help Stevie Ray in the two on one beat down and chases off Horace and Vincent. The duo then challenge the brothers for a match and they agree, announcing that at Great American Bash Harlem Heat was back! However, Scott Norton returns, and makes it a three on two handicap match.

The main event needs to be salvaged. Randy Savage couldn’t work anymore, and it was pretty obvious. So instead of trying to have Savage and Nash main event, why not insert Sting into the match instead? Sting would be deemed the number one contender for Nash’s title, and would get the match at the event. This would include both men getting chastised by Savage. Savage declares that he’ll go after both men at the event if he’s not included, ruining the match for everyone. Bischoff suspends Savage from the event, claiming that if he shows up, he’ll be fired. So Sting and Nash build up a simple feud, former tag champions, former nWo teammates, now fighting over the title. It’s a “friendly’ rivalry. However the presence of Savage’s threats linger. Savage claims that he’s get ‘vicious’ whether he’s there or not.

Rebooked Card

WCW United States Title Tournament
Dean Malenko vs. Roddy Piper

WCW United States Title Tournament
Chris Benoit vs. Ric Flair

Harlem Heat vs. Norton/Vincent/Horace

WCW Hardcore Championship
Hak vs. Mikey Whipwreck vs. Bam Bam Bigelow

WCW Television Championship
Perry Saturn vs. Raven (c)

WCW World Tag Team Championship
Windham and Hennig vs. Kidman and Konnan vs. The Triad (Kanyon/DDP)

WCW Cruiserweight Championship
La Parka vs. Rey Mysterio (c)

WCW United States Tournament Finale
??? vs. ???

WCW World Heavyweight
Sting vs. Kevin Nash (c)

Booking The Show
– So we open the show with the first U.S. Title tournament match. Say what you will about Piper and Flair at this point; but I feel like both men would be willing to put over the younger guys. So Malenko and Piper open with with a bunch of wrist reversals, with Malenko eventually taking Piper down and dominating the legs. A series of strikes and holds gives Piper a limp of sorts. Due to Piper’s bad hip, this is easy to believe. Eventually Malenko gets Piper in the Texas Cloverleaf resulting in a tap out, much to everyone’s surprise. Piper embraces Malenko as Buff Bagwell comes down to the ring. He gets in the ring with Piper, with Piper loosening his boots in order to put them in the ring. Bagwell stops him after the first boot and tries to talk to piper, but ends up driving a heel into Piper’s face. Malenko runs back and chases Bagwell off.

Flair and Benoit have a less respectful match, with David Flair and Arn Anderson running interference for Flair. Benoit dominates Flair for eight matches, and Flair gets himself DQ’ed to save himself from further embarrassment. Benoit starts assaulting both Flairs and Arn until Windham runs down and cuts off Benoit. Flair leaves with the men, forming a wall between them and him.

Scott Norton, Horace Hogan and Vincent come out as the Hollywood Heroes (rocking a double H logo). Harlem Heat returns after a year and half away, and charge the ring. Vincent constantly avoids Stevie Ray, allowing Norton to use his size against Ray when he’s least suspecting it. Horace and Booker goes one sided for most of their interactions and it soon becomes obvious that Norton is the one they’re relying on. Norton, not wanting to carry them, leaves the ring allowing Stevie Ray to hit a Slapjack on Vincent, followed by a Harlem Hangover by Booker for the win.

Bam Bam is still rocking his flame attire, and gets jumped by Hak to start the match. Whipwreck, dives ontop of them from atop the entrance structure, surprising everyone involved. The match descends into chaos, as any good hardcore match does, resulting in Whipwreck about to pin Bam Bam after a moonsault with a trash can onto Bam Bam. Hak though tees off on Mikey’s head and pins Bam Bam to win the Hardcore Championship. The announcers put over Whipwreck’s ingenuity and heart as they clear the ring.

Perry Saturn comes out first followed by Raven, and when Raven gets in the ring he whips the belt at Saturn, and begins to pummel him. The match is assumed to be under Raven’s rules but each time Saturn tries to get a weapon, Raven assaults him and throws it out of the ring. Saturn battles back and even hits a DVD, and rolls it into a Rings of Saturn but Raven endures it for over a minute, before getting his feet on the ropes. Saturn yells at the ref, and turns around into an Evenflow DDT, picks him up and hits him again with another one. After the two DDT’s, Raven hooks the leg and gets the win. Raven leaves the ring and passes Hak backstage and the two stare each other down.

The world tag team title match sees DDP and Kanyon fending off both Konnan and Kidman, and Hennig and Windham for most of the match. They never tag out and work the entire match. Near the end, Konnan has Kanyon on the ropes and tries to drag him over to Kidman for a tag, but out of nowhere mystery figure yanks Kidman off the apron and smacks him; prompting Kidman to chase down the figure. Kanyon rebounds and hits a flatliner on Konnan, but can’t get the win. Arn Anderson comes down, nods at Hennig, and rips DDP off the apron, and hits him with a spinebuster. Hennig distracts the ref, Windham grabs Konnan and drags him to their corner to make the tag. Windham then hits a spinning clothesline on Kanyon to win the belt. The duo leave with Arn, turning at the entrance and saluting the audience with four fingers.

Backstage we see Kidman catch up with the masked man, and it’s Lodi. That’s when Raven shoots in and attacks Kidman, slamming him on several tables before throwing him through breakaway glass.

La Parka and Rey Mysterio are out next. La Parka opens up with a diving knee block on Rey when he’s handing over the title, and spends most of the match working over the knee. Rey is able to rebound a few times to get the upper hand but La Parka puts Rey down each time. Eventually La Parka opens up his chair and proceeds to motion he’s going to hit a Stroke like move onto the chair, which would crush Rey’s throat. Rey pushes La Parka into the chair, and when La Parka gets back up and charges Rey, Rey his him with an inside cradle for the win. Rey limps out of the ring, as Konnan comes down, telling Rey Kidman’s hurt and helping keep La Parka at bay.

Dean Malenko and Chris Benoit handle their match with all the respect they can muster. During the encounter men like Norman Smiley, Prince Iaukea, Harlem Heat, Perry Saturn and others come out to watch. The two mat wrestlers put on the match of the night, and easily the longest of the night, reversing each other’s submission holds throughout the encounter. Eventually, Malenko tries going for a crucifix pin, which Benoit catches him in, reverses and applies the crossface. Malenko holds on but taps out, as he can’t reach the bottom rope. The two men celebrate with the other younger faces, hoisting Benoit in the air as he holds the title above his head.

In the main event, Sting and Kevin Nash have a relatively average match but Sting near the end picks up the pace, nearly beating Nash throughout the last five minutes. Sting sets up Nash for the Scorpion Deathlock, but then Randy Savage comes out, but he doesn’t enter the ringside area. As Sting watches Savage, a man emerges from the crowd and hits a giant big boot on Sting, before hitting a powerbomb on Nash. The man is revealed to be Sid Vicious. Vicious and Savage get in the ring and assault both men, with Savage dropping an elbow on each man. Bischoff comes out and Savage says he did not disrupt the main event, so he can’t be fired. Sid powerbombs Sting through a table to end the show.