Welcome back to the TJRwrestling reviews where we are breaking down every WCW Pay-Per-View during the “Monday Night War” era. We are just past WCW Uncensored 1997, which features some really good Cruiserweight matches, a crazy Texas Tornado Match, and had the main event deliver for the most part. We got some good storyline buildup coming into this show and the last two PPV’s have been good for the most part. I still can’t get over how bad Souled Out was. Spring Stampede was a WCW show that ran in the early ’90s but stopped for a while until WCW started running monthly PPV’s. You can check my thoughts on all of those shows, plus the ones we have covered for the site here. Will WCW continue the forward momentum? Let’s find out!
WCW Spring Stampede
April 6th, 1997
We are inside the very western looking arena and are joined by Tony Schiavone, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, and “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes. They talk about the big main event tonight between Diamond Dallas Page and “Macho Man” Randy Savage in a No Disqualification Match, as well as run down the rest of the matches on the card. It’s time for the opening match.
Ultimate Dragon vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.
Dragon takes Mysterio down quickly with a waist lock, but Mysterio changes course and puts on an armbar. Neither man can maintain control and are both back to their feet. Mysterio takes him down with a leg sweep and locks in an STF. Dragon powers out of the move and Mysterio flys into the bottom rope. Dragon hits a series of quick kicks and hits Mysterio right in the spine. He sends him into the ropes and hits a dropkick that sends Mysterio to the mat. He stretches Mysterio and does everything he can to keep him grounded. Dragon picks him up and throws him into the ropes and picks him up for a backbreaker. Dragon hits a Powerbomb and picks him up again to drop him on the top rope throat-first. That was a cool sequence. He locks in a sleeper hold and Mysterio seems to be fading away. Mysterio fights his way back to his feet, but is quickly taken out with a back elbow. Dragon picks him up and hits a Running Liger Bomb, but doesn’t go for the cover. He hits a Tombstone Piledriver, but pulls Mysterio up after two. He puts him back in the sleeper, but Mysterio fights back, hits the ropes, and connects with a spinning heel kick. It’s short-lived when Dragon takes him out with a kick to the head. He picks Mysterio up and puts him down with a suplex. He puts Mysterio in a submission hold and bridges to grab the neck. He lets up and kicks Mysterio right in the back which sends him to the outside. Dragon is out after him and tries to throw Mysterio into the guardrail, but he reverses and throws Dragon into them. They are back in the ring where Dragon puts on the sleeper hold once again. Dragon hits an elbow, but Mysterio recovers and puts Dragon in a sleeper of his own. He lets up and hits a dropkick that sends Dragon to the outside. He is right out after him and hits a somersault senton.
They go to a split-screen where Lee Marshall is backstage looking for a word from Kevin Nash. He knocks on the door to get a comment, but Syxx tells him to get lost. In the ring, Mysterio hits a springboard leg drop and grabs a near fall. He climbs up top, but Dragon is too quick and dropkicks him off and he hits the floor. Dragon kicks him into the guardrail and comes out with a senton that wipes both men out. They climb back in the ring and Dragon is wailing on Mysterio who is on the apron. Mysterio rebounds and goes for a moonsault, but Dragon is right there and hits a dropkick. That was an excellent spot. Dragon gets Mysterio in the Giant Swing and let’s go after seven revolutions. They both go for dropkicks, but neither land. Dragon is back up, but Mysterio hits a Hurricanrana for a two count. Mysterio whips him into the ropes, but Dragon takes him out with an Enziguri and a two count. Dragon throws Mysterio into the corner and hits a clothesline before climbing up and hitting a Frankensteiner, but Mysterio gets his foot on the ropes. Dragon goes for a powerbomb, but Mysterio rolls out and they exchange rollups for near falls. Mysterio hits a Hurricanrana and picks up the win after 14:55.
Winner: Rey Mysterio
Match Rating: 4.25/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: Hell yeah, that match was outstanding. We have come to expect this quality of matches from The Cruiserweight division, but this was a standout for sure. Mysterio took a beating throughout the whole match and they just hit big move after big move which never slowed down. Mysterio was really hitting his stride at this point and just putting on a clinic of how to have good matches. For the second show in a row, the match of the night might just be the opener.
Lee Marshall is backstage and is still looking for a comment from Kevin Nash. Syxx answers the door again, but as he does, The Steiner Brothers are trying to fight their way into the room. They are held back by security and a fight breaks out between them and WCW security. Scott Steiner gets “maced” at one point to neutralize him. This is to be continued.
WCW Women’s Title Match
Akira Hokuto (w/Sonny Onoo) (c) vs. Madusa
You want to talk about a time before women’s matches were featured, look no further than this match. Hokuto won the title in what, December 1996? We haven’t heard a peep of it since. Also, it has been Madusa against a foreign opponent for every women’s match we have covered.
Hokuta starts off early by grabbing Madusa by the hair and tossing her across the ring. He stomps down on her before sending her across the ring again. She hits some rights and lefts, but Madusa comes back and gets some shots of her own in. Madusa comes off the ropes, but Hokuto takes her out with a clothesline. She pulls Madusa by the throat and chokes her from the top rope. She gets her hand around the throat and hits a chokeslam. Hokuto hits a scoop slam and covers Madusa, but she bridges up. Madusa comes off the ropes and takes her down by the hair multiple times. Hokuto climbs to the top rope, but Madusa is quick to pull her off. Hokuto starts to bite the leg and stomps down on the leg. The referee is distracted which gives Onoo the opportunity to get some shots in. Hokuto continues the assault on the ropes and picks her up for a slam, but Madusa rolls her up for two. Madusa comes off the ropes with multiple missile dropkicks and a bridging German Suplex, but she gets a shoulder up. Onoo gets up on the apron and Madusa sends him flying. Madusa picks Hokuto up for a powerbomb, but Luna Vachon jumps in the ring and kicks her leg out from under her. Hokuto covers her and picks up the win to retain the title. The match went 5:13.
Winner and STILL WCW Women’s Champion: Akira Hokuto
Match Rating: 1.5/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: I feel like I have seen this match a thousand times before and this one wasn’t much different. I will give them credit for trying to have a good match, but this fell flat. Luna interfering at the end is building to her facing Madusa, but knowing how the women are featured it won’t happen until November.
WCW Television Title Match
Prince Iaukea (c) vs. Lord Steven Regal
Regal starts the match by mouthing off to the crowd. They lock up and Iaukea works him into the corner. Regal rakes the eyes, but is quickly taken down with an elbow to the head. Regal rolls to the outside to regroup. Regal gets back in the ring but is immediately taken down with a dropkick. Iaukea gets a chin lock on and starts to ware Regal down. They raise back to their feet with Regal fighting out and grabbing the arm. Iaukea reverses into one of his own and takes Regal down to the mat with an elbow. Regal regains control with an uppercut and hits a high knee to the head. He tosses Iaukea to the outside of the ring, but he jumps right back in and hits a springboard splash for a two count. They have a test of strength that ends with Regal kicking him in the midsection. He continues to be on the offensive with an open hand slap and works Iaukea into the corner. He gets in a shot to the back and locks him in a full nelson. Iaukea hits a low blow to break the hold and tries to get Regal with a sunset flip, but Regal punches him in the head. He continues with some uppercuts and pounds on him in the corner. Iaukea comes back with a chop and en elbow and is starting to gain some momentum. They both get back to their feet and lock up again, and Regal has the advantage. He hits another uppercut in the corner and throws Iaukea the opposite corner, who leaps up, but misses. Iaukea mounts a comeback and hits some chops and a sidekick. Regal goes for a roll-up but Iaukea counters it into a roll-up of his own and gets the win after 10:01.
Winner and STILL WCW Television Champion: Prince Iaukea
Match Rating: 1.5/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: So, that match went 10 minutes, and they completed like 3 moves. It was a lot of both men hitting a move, rest hold, and repeat. Regal is a fantastic worker and the jury was still out on Iaukea at this point, so that usually leads to a subpar match. There isn’t much else I can say about the match other than I am hoping I never see it again.
After the match, Regal immediately attacks him from behind. He locks Iaukea in the Regal Stretch before letting up, only to lock it on a second time with some shots to the head with the title belt.
Mean Gene Okerlund is in the aisleway and of course, there is some breaking news that we can only hear about by calling into the WCW Hotline. He then introduces “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair who is his guest for the segment. Gene says that Flair’s return is around the corner and wants him to tell the fans about it. Flair says that two things happen tonight which are The Horsemen will come out on top, and Flair has clearance to get back in the ring by the next PPV. Flair talks about the members of The Horsemen and talks about Arn Anderson’s upcoming surgery on his hand. Gene asked him about Piper, and Flair says that he is the Hot Rod. Flair mentions that Kevin Greene is cleared to wrestle for WCW once again. Flair says that he and Greene are going to team up at the next PPV on May 18th. Flair calls out Hogan and tells him to bring the entire NWO because it’s gonna be a long night for all of them. Flair ends by saying that he wants Eric Bischoff more than anyone else.
Collective Thoughts: Kevin Greene made a lot of appearances for WCW in this time period, and this is just another one of those encounters. It’s noted by Flair that the Carolina Panthers, who he played for at the time, cleared him to appear at the event. I guess we will all have to wait and see how well he does. The Horsemen and The NWO are the two big factions in the company so it makes sense to have them go at it. The only thing that doesn’t make a lot of sense is that McMichael, who is in The Horsemen, turned his back on Greene when he joined the group.
Public Enemy (Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge) vs. Jeff Jarrett and Steve “Mongo” McMichael (w/Debra McMichael)
For those who watched Uncensored 1997, this was a match that was supposed to take place at that event, but it was switched to this show. Jarrett and McMichael cost Pubic Enemy the match at that event.
McMichael and Rock are the first two in the match for their team. Rock with a boot to the midsection and he starts working on McMichael in the corner. He throws him into the opposite corner and comes in with a clothesline. McMichael charges out and takes out the legs of both members of Public Enemy. Jarrett comes in the ring, as Public Enemy bails out of the ring to regroup. Grunge and Jarrett both tag into the match and lock up in the middle. Jarrett hits a shot to the head and hits Grunge with a facebuster. Jarrett throws him into the ropes and slaps on a really sloppy abdominal stretch with McMichael helping him for leverage. I thought I would never see Johnny Grunge being locked in a wrestling hold. He recovers and takes Jarrett down with an elbow. Grunge continues to be on the offensive with a shot to the face that sends Jarrett to the outside. He starts walking up the aisleway, but comes back after thinking about it. Rock tags into the match and he locks up with Jarrett, who gets him in a wristlock, and tags in McMichael. McMichael hits a sidewalk slam and knocks Grunge off the apron. He hits Rock with some shots to the kidneys before picking him up for a tilt-a-whirl slam. Jarrett and Grunge start going at it on the outside and he sends Jarrett into the guardrail. There is a split-screen that shows McMichael beating on Rock all the up the entranceway. Grunge grabs Debra and puts her on the table, but Jarrett wallops him with a chair. Grunge recovers and puts Jarrett on the table. He flys off the top, but Jarrett rolls out of the way and he eats the table. Jarrett covers Grunge but Rock breaks it up. Public Enemy tries to double-team McMichael, but Debra trips Rock and he takes out Grunge. Jarrett is back in and takes out both members of Public Enemy. McMichael hits Grunge and Jarrett signals for The Figure Four. Rock hits Jarrett from behind with the briefcase and Grunge makes a half-ass cover to pick up the win after 10:42.
Winner(s): Public Enemy
Match Rating: 1.5/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: Well, it was a tag team match. It was fine in the beginning, but fell apart quickly when they started brawling all over the arena. WCW loves to use the split-screen view because it seems like a lot of their matches use it. McMichael was still so green here, and it was very sloppy at times, from everyone. This was pretty below-average.
Gene is backstage, and he has breaking news again for the hotline. Kids, it’s only two bucks a minute. Harlem Heat comes in and they are ready for their four-corners match tonight. Gene asks Sherri if she will be directing traffic tonight. Sherri says they have a gameplan and that they will execute it and they will divide and conquer. He asks Booker about the match tonight. Booker says Gene has been talking about Kliq’s all night and the only one they need to know about is Harlem Heat. He says what they are dealing with tonight is the brotherhood and they will take care of Luger and The Giant tonight and then they are coming for the gold. Booker T. then says one of the most infamous promo lines ever when he calls Hogan a racial slur. Stevie Ray chimes in and says that his brother isn’t lying and that they are coming for the gold tonight. Sherri reassures Gene that they will go through who they have to and come out on top.
Collective Thoughts: That is one of the most infamous promos of all time. You can tell when Booker says it he regrets it immediately. Sherri is just looking at him trying to play it off. The rest of the promo was full of intensity, and this was a match where Harlem Heat could prove they could go in the ring.
WCW United States Title Match
Dean Malenko (c) vs. Chris Benoit (w/Woman)
They lock up in the ring and Malenko pushes Benoit into the corner, but the referee breaks it up. Malenko takes him down to the mat with an arm drag and gets a kick to the midsection. Benoit comes back and knocks him to the outside, but Malenko quickly rolls back in the ring. Malenko takes the leg of Benoit and starts locking in as Woman looks on from ringside. Back to their feet, Benoit takes Malenko down with a shoulder block and he slides to the outside to regroup. Malenko jumps back in the ring and both men exchange moves before Benoit gains the advantage with a hammerlock. Malenko shrugs him off and we have a standoff once again. Benoit continues by working on the arm and keeping Malenko grounded. Malenko gets back to his feet and reverses pressure before taking Benoit out with a Belly to Back Suplex. He slams Benoit’s head into the corner and rolls him up for a two count. Benoit hits chops as Malenko comes in and stops him in his tracks. Malenko comes back with some shots to the head, and works Benoit into the corner, and stomps away. Woman screams from ringside as Malenko has Benoit tied up and in some trouble in the middle of the ring. He throws Benoit into the ropes, who ducks a clothesline, but Malenko hits an arm drag on the way back and continues to keep him grounded with an armbar. Benoit powers out and picks Malenko over his head to slam him down. That was some straight power right there. Benoit hits a suplex and covers him, but only gets a two count. He hits Malenko with a short-arm clothesline and chops away at the chest. He throws Malenko into the ropes and locks in an abdominal stretch. I swear that is a WCW staple submission hold. Malenko powers out and knocks Benoit to the mat, but the camera missed it because it was panning the crowd. Benoit isn’t out long though and continues to stomp on Malenko in the corner. He hits a neck breaker and covers for another near fall. Benoit hits a kick to the midsection and takes him over with a snap suplex. He hits some chops in the corner, but Malenko fights out and hits a clothesline. He goes for a suplex, but Benoit reverses it into a reverse suplex. That sends Miss Jaqueline down to the ring, and she immediately goes after Woman. For those who don’t know, these two were involved in a tag team match last month and went toe to toe. Jimmy Hart runs down to the ring and flys right by the women fighting at ringside as Benoit hits a Diving Headbutt on the inside. Hart grabs The US Title, but Guerrero stops him in the aisleway. Guerrero and Hart exchange words as Benoit takes a suplex from the inside to the floor. They continue fighting on the outside, as Arn Anderson comes down and hits Malenko from behind. That brings Kevin Sullivan down to the ring who hits Benoit in the back of the head with a Kendo Stick. The referee throws the match out as Sullivan, Hart, and Jaqueline take Guerrero to the back. It should be noted that Guerrero has The US title with him, which is Malenko’s. The match went 17:53.
Winner and STILL WCW United States Champion: Dean Malenko
Match Rating: 3.25/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: It breaks my heart to say this, but that was not the best match I have seen these two have. It was good, but not great. It had a lot of rest holds and high impact offense, but other than that, not much else. Both men would go on to be mainstays in the company for years to come, so they would have more opportunities to have more solid matches. The ending was an overbooked mess, but these two overcame it the best they could.
After the match, Benoit and Malenko are both confused by what happened and stand face to face in the ring before Malenko rolls out of the ring and starts the pursuit for his championship title.
WCW Tag Team Title Match
Kevin Nash (c) (w/Syxx, and Ted Dibiase) vs. Rick Steiner
This is a one on one match for The Tag Team Titles. Scott was taken out earlier in the night, which left Rick to try and capture the titles on his own. Also, Scott Hall is MIA currently, which leads us to a singles match for the titles. Nick Patrick is coming down to the ring with them as well, which means he will be the referee for the match.
Steiner gets in the ring and looks like he is ready to go. He goes right after Nash, but is quickly taken down with an elbow to the head. Nash puts him in the corner and hits some high knees and another elbow to the side of the head. He throws Steiner into the corner, but he gets a foot up and takes Nash out with a suplex. He hits a power slam and continues pounding on the head of Nash. Steiner tries to hit the ropes, but Syxx pulls them down and sends Steiner flying to the floor. Syxx stomps on him on the outside as Nash and Patrick talk amongst themselves in the ring. Nash steps over the ropes and rolls Steiner back in the ring himself. He hits a Sidewalk Slam and covers him for a two count. Nash puts him throat-first on the second rope, and that allows DiBiase to get a shot in of his own. Nash continues to pound on Steiner and sends him into the ropes to hit a big boot. Nash picks Steiner up and hits The Jackknife Powerbomb, but Steiner kicks out. Nash pulls him back up and hits an elbow to the back of the head and continues to stomp away. Steiner is slow to get up, but has enough to hit Nash with a low blow and both men are down. DiBiase and Syxx circle the ring as Steiner hits Nash with a top rope Bulldog, but Patrick stops the count at two. He hits Nash with some clotheslines, but is hit from behind by Syxx. He knocks him off the apron, and the distraction allows Nash to take him out. Syxx starts taking off the turnbuckle pad as Nash hits another elbow to the head. DiBiase jumps up to help out and Nash drops Steiner face-first on the exposed steel. Nash picks him up and drops him down a second time. DiBiase jumps up on the apron and tries to reason with Nash saying “that’s enough”. Nash drops Steiner again and DiBiase pleads with him again before just leaving the ringside area. He picks Steiner up to hit The Jackknife again. He covers him, but Patrick is reluctant to count. Nash makes him and he picks up the win after 10:20.
Winner and STILL WCW Tag Team Champions: Kevin Nash
Match Rating: 1.5/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: The story behind the match is a little more interesting than the actual in-ring action. Obviously, DiBiase and Patrick telling Nash to cool it didn’t sit well with him and both men went to the back looking on in disgust. This was a standard match with a lot of power moves and two Jackknife Powerbombs. Steiner didn’t put up much of a fight aside from the flurry of offense he had briefly. The story was that he was injured previously and couldn’t hang with Nash in the match.
Mean Gene is backstage with Lex Luger and The Giant, who will be battling for a shot at the WCW Heavyweight Title. Gene says they have a monitor in the back and all three of them saw what just happened with The NWO. Gene asks The Giant about Harlem Heat and he says that he knows this is the doing of Hogan putting brother against brother and friends against friends. The Giant says he travels the world with Luger and knows if he is beat tonight then Luger deserves a shot at the title and vice versa. He says that you have four athletes that are going to leave it all in the ring tonight. Gene says they all know what the title means, and Luger comes in saying that he knows what is on the line tonight and that The NWO makes him sick to his stomach. Luger says that Hogan is the emblem for The NWO and won’t be distracted by it. Luger says they are there to put some prestige back to the name of WCW. He says all four men have one goal, bring the title back to WCW.
Four Corner Number One Contender Match
The Giant vs. Lex Luger vs. Booker T. vs. Stevie Ray
This match is essentially a Fatal-Four-Way match in that the first one to score a victory will win the match and get the shot at Hogan and The WCW Heavyweight Title. It will also be under tag team rules, so everyone will have to tag in and out. Hogan was originally scheduled for the match, but Stevie Ray replaced him.
Luger and Booker T. start off the match and size each other up. Booker hits a high knee to the midsection and hits Luger in the head with a right hand. He sends Luger into the ropes and goes for a Harlem Sidekick, but Luger ducks under and presses Booker over his head only to slam him down to the mat. Booker gets back on the offensive and slams Luger’s head into the turnbuckle and continues beating on him. He sends Luger into the corner, but Luger comes out and takes him down with a clothesline. He tags in his brother, who hits Luger immediately. Ray comes in and gets hit with a clothesline, and right hand from The Giant on the apron. Luger covers him for a two count before tagging in The Giant. He stands toe to toe with Ray as Luger tries to get the fans into the match. Ray hits a kick to the midsection and works The Giant into the corner. He tries to throw him to the other side, but The Giant reverses it and hits him with a clothesline. Booker comes in the ring and gets picked up and thrown down by The Giant. Booker and Ray have some words on the outside as Sherri tries to break it up. Ray gets back in the ring and tags Luger from behind before taunting The Giant to his face. The Giant and Luger lock up and The Giant tries a clothesline, but Luger ducks and tries a scoop slam only to be flattened. They both make tags to the members of Harlem Heat and it will now be brother vs. brother.
Booker and Ray get in the ring and stand face to face. Ray shoves Booker and they lock up. Both men get hammerlocks on one another and Ray goes for a clothesline, but Booker leaps out of the way and they fist pound after a brief exchange. Booker makes a tag to Luger and he gets a kick to the midsection and slams him headfirst into the turnbuckle. Ray fights back and takes Luger down to a knee and makes a tag to Booker. He comes in and starts working on Luger and hits a Sidewalk Slam. He misses an elbow and Luger tags The Giant into the match. He hits a headbutt and a clothesline to Booker and knocks him to the mat. He hits Booker with a chop to the chest and hits a scoop slam. He comes off the ropes with an elbow, but Booker rolls out of the way. Ray comes in with no tag, but is quickly thrown out by the referee. That gives Booker the chance to work The Giant into their corner and both men take turns getting shots in. Booker kicks The Giant to the face and kicks his knee out from under him. Booker makes a tag to Ray and he comes in and continues the assault on The Giant. Ray tries a leg drop, but The Giant rolls out of the way. The Giant hits a boot and tags Luger into the match. He hits a scoop slam and hits a few elbow drops. Ray lures Luger to the corner and slams his head into the turnbuckle. He makes a tag to Booker who comes in and is taken down quickly. Luger signals for the rack, but Ray snuffs that out. Booker hits a clothesline and covers Luger for a two count. Luger hits some elbows and ducks a clothesline, but is taken down with another Harlem Sidekick. He puts Luger into their corner and both members of Harlem Heat double-team him. Booker makes a tag to Ray who hits Luger with a clothesline and continues to wear him down. Luger starts to make a comeback and hits a suplex, but Ray gets a tag to Booker. He comes in and hits The Giant on the apron and comes off the ropes for a scissors kick that has Luger down on the mat. Booker comes off the ropes, but Luger rolls out of the way. Booker makes a tag to Ray, ad Luger is there to tag in The Giant as well. The Giant clears the ring of both men, and signals for The Chokeslam. The Giant, rather than hitting the move, tags in Luger who racks Ray. He gives up and Luger gets a shot at the title. The match lasted 18:18.
Winner: Lex Luger
Match Rating: 2/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: The match was fine, but nothing spectacular. All four men got ample time in the match, although, everyone knew that Harlem Heat wasn’t going to win the match. The most surprising thing during the match was The Giant letting Luger put Stevie Ray in the Torture Rack to pick up the win after he could have beat him alone. It would lead to Luger getting a shot at Hogan, and spoiler alert, I will be covering that match that takes place on Nitro in a few months.
They have a commercial for WCW Slamboree 1997, which surprise, will be the next show we will be covering. It’s time for the main event.
Savage is shown walking down to the ring with Elizabeth. He is talking to himself and says that it’ll be free Slim Jim’s for everyone tonight. Gene is backstage with his opponent, DDP. Gene says that Page has WCW on his shoulders tonight. Page says that sometimes you have to defend what is right. He says that tonight Savage came into his territory, and he will take care of him tonight. Gene turns to Kimberly and she says that tonight is an important match. She says that Page has been stewing about this match for a while now and that she likes to keep him in a positive state of mind, but tonight is different. It’s time for the main event.
No Disqualification Match
“Macho Man” Randy Savage (w/Elizabeth) vs. Diamond Dallas Page (w/Kimberly)
Page charges in the ring and Savage leaps out of the ring to avoid him. Michael Buffer continues the introductions even with all the chaos, so that’s pretty funny. Savage grabs the mic from Buffer and says that tonight is Page’s last night on earth before getting in the ring. Page charges at him which causes Savage to get out on the floor again. Page comes out after him, but Savage is there to take advantage. He hits Page, but it doesn’t last long until Page is slamming his head on the guardrail before rolling him back in the ring. He knocks Savage down to the mat and picks him back up for another slam. Page goes for The Diamond Cutter, but Savage grabs the top rope and knocks Page out of the ring. Savage jumps over the ropes and charges Page into the guardrails. They work into the crowd and head all the way outside. Savage grabs a garbage can, but Page grabs it from him to wail on him with it. They work back through the crowd with Page maintaining control. Savage hides behind Kimberly as they get back to the ring, and that allows Elizabeth to rake the back and give Savage the advantage. He drops Page throat-first on the guardrail and comes off the top with a double-ax smash. Savage throws him into the stairs and kicks Page in the chest. He throws Page into the other set of stairs and slaps him in the face. Savage rolls Page back in the ring and starts to lay the boots to him. He folds up a chair and slides it in the ring. Savage lays into Page with a chair shot to the back. He pushes the referee out of the way, who was telling him to cool it, before jumping out of the ring and slapping David Penzer. He throws another chair into the ring, but Page grabs it and hits Savage with it. Both men are down on the mat.
Page pulls himself back up and tries a right hand, but Savage ducks and hits Page with some shots of his own. Page rebounds and brings him out of the corner, but is quickly hit with another clothesline. Savage catches a foot from Page and turns him around, but is met with a clothesline. The referee starts to count both of them down. Kimberly eggs the fans on to get behind Page, but Savage has other ideas and slams him down to the mat. Savage grabs Page by the hair and kicks him in the head before slamming him down again. Page tries to pull himself up again, but gets out down a third time. Savage goes to the outside and throws Penzer to the side again and grabs the ring bell. He climbs up top with it, but Kimberly grabs it from him. Savage comes off the ropes, but Page gets both feet up. Page signals for The Diamond Cutter, but Savage fights out of it and hits a low blow. He covers Page, but only gets a two count. He grabs the referee, slaps him, and hits him with a piledriver. The referee got a piledriver. He takes the belt off of his pants and starts whipping him with it before throwing him out of the ring. He turns his attention to Page and climbs up top and hits The Flying Elbow, but there is no referee. Nick Patrick jogs down to the ring and tells Savage to cover him while Nash looks on from the aisleway. Savage tries to slam Page again, but he reverses it into a Diamond Cutter. Nick Patrick is hesitant, but ends up counting Savage down. It went 15:38.
Winner: Diamond Dallas Page
Match Rating: 3/5 Stars
Collective Thoughts: This was a solid main event with Savage acting like an absolute madman. He hit announcers and even hit the referee with a Piledriver. Page fought tough throughout and was on the defensive for most of it, but still pulled it together enough to pick up the win. Patrick counting Savage down was a turning point for The NWO and he paid for it when Nash hit him with The Jackknife. Page picking up the win here was huge and actually said in some interviews afterward that Savage was the one that put him over and sent his career to the main event.
After the match, Nash grabs Patrick as the rest of the NWO comes down to the ring. Bischoff looks on in disgust as Nash is trying to get Savage to come to. Bischoff points at Patrick as Nash continues to have his hand on his shirt. He kicks Patrick hits him with A Jackknife Powerbomb. The NWO gets in the ring to start working on Page, but Savage grabs Kimberly first and goes to slap her before being stopped by Bischoff. The fans are chanting for Sting as Savage continues to grab her by the hair. He shoves Bischoff to the mat and slaps him in the face as the rest of The NWO chases Savage away.
The announcers talk about the upset they just saw with Page beating Savage. They talk about the NWO on the verge of implosion before sending the show off the air.
Overall Show Rating: 6 out of 10
This show, much like a lot of matches on it, was good, but not great. The show started off so strong with the Mysterio/Dragon match and slowly made its descent downward as it went on. Where the show fell a little flat match wise, it made up for in the actual storytelling. The feud between The Outsiders and The Steiner Brothers is at a boiling point and they would go on to battle throughout the next couple of months. Luger winning a shot at the title was a turning point and he would cash in the shot in August, which is one of my favorite wrestling moments ever. Conspicuous by his absence on this show was Sting, who made his impact felt last month to end Uncensored. We are in the middle of the slow build of the Sting character we would come to know in the second part of his career. Either way, the show was about average for 1997 so far, and again, its leagues better than Souled Out. It’s time for Slamboree!
What did you think of WCW Spring Stampede 1997? Loved it? Hated it? Didn’t see it? Either way, keep the conversation going over @collectiveheel on Twitter and let me know your thoughts. While you are there, feel free to check out my new Podcast Network, The Heel Turn Collective. We have new content every week including an AEW review show every Friday. Take care of yourself. Take care of each other. I will be back soon enough with some more Collective Thoughts.