Clash of the Champions was in Las Vegas because that’s where the National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE) convention was. WCW did succeed in stealing the spotlight from rivals WWF. Head honcho Vince McMahon, Diesel, The Undertaker, and Jim Ross were all in Vegas for the event, but WCW got much larger crowds at their booth, because they had Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage. Executive Vice President Eric Bischoff even gave a speech saying WCW is where the stars are and the Titanic Wrestling Federation has WCW rejects like Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and Mark Callaway. WWF is still the No 1 promotion in the World, but they definitely didn’t look like it in Las Vegas.
Yokozuna hasn’t been on WWF TV lately because he has been ordered by Vince McMahon to lose weight for his own health, before they’ll let him back on the road. However, he still appeared on WWF’s behalf at the NATPE convention in Las Vegas.
Crusher Jerry Blackwell, died from pneumonia complications at age 45. He was regarded as one of the best big-guy workers ever, but the obesity had led to poor health. He was mostly known for his run in Verne Gagne’s AWA in the early 80s and was one of Hulk Hogan’s frequent early opponents in those days and in fact, he was the first big 400+ pound wrestler to allow Hogan to bodyslam him, which helped get Hogan over as a powerhouse which is the gimmick he still uses today against big monster wrestlers. He also had a run in the WWF in the 70s and feuded with then-champion Bob Backlund.
Rumour has it that The Undertaker is being pushed as the new “Figurehead” of WWF.
WCW wrestler named Frank Anderson, who they mainly use in Europe because he’s famous there, was arrested and convicted on charges of purchasing and possessing HGH growth hormones. Two days after he was convicted, WCW had him filming promos for the upcoming European tour. Basically, it calls into question WCW’s drug policy when a worker is convicted of possessing illegal drugs and not even suspended.
ECW champ Shane Douglas makes waves by trying out for a color commentary slot in the WWF. Douglas is one of the hottest indy stars at the moment and currently holds the ECW World Tag Team titles, the IWCCW Heavyweight title and the PWA Heavyweight championship.
Michael Hayes of Fabulous Freebirds fame also received a tryout for the color commentary slot in WWF. Hayes is currently working for GWF and NWA Dallas, and is the reigning NWA North American Heavyweight champion.
As mentioned before, Weekly Pro Wrestling magazine is putting together a huge show in Japan featuring wrestlers from 11 different promotions. However, this week, a competing magazine called Weekly Gong is trying to put together a similar show on the same night at an arena right next door and has gotten one or two promotions to pull out of the other show and join theirs. They’re also trying to get wrestlers from U.S. promotions like WCW and ECW to appear as well.AJPW has long been an isolationist promotion, refusing to work with anyone else, but they’re even considering getting involved in one of the shows, although they would want their promotion’s match to be the main event and rivals NJPW wants that spot also.
Dan Spivey has signed a contract with WWF, adopting the name “Waylon Mercy” a character based on Robert De Niro’s portrayal of Max Cady in the 1991 remake of Cape Fear. Like Cady, he has jet black hair, white attire with a Hawaiian shirt, and several strange tattoos. The character was introduced on Monday Night Raw through a series of vignettes that always had Spivey speaking in a calm yet sinister manner, finishing with the phrase “Lives are gonna be in Waylon Mercy’s hands. You know what I mean?”
A 22-year-old student training at the New Japan dojo named Hiromitsu Gompei died this week after undergoing brain surgery from injuries suffered in training. Gompei reportedly took a bump wrong on his head during training and was rushed to the hospital and immediately taken into brain surgery, but didn’t survive.
WCW publicizes its firing of the small-but-expendable Brian Armstrong for failing a steroid test. Both WWF and ECW are rumoured to interested in giving Brian Armstrong a tryout.
According to WWF insiders Bret Hart was close to joining The Kliq in September, 1994. Hart was drinking with Nash, Michaels, Hall and Waltman, and that’s when talk of a Kliq started. Nash and Hall wanted Bret to be their figurehead, since he is the WWF Champion. They reasoned that he could fight their corner with management, and they respected him as an in-ring performer. At the time, Nash was on the cusp of being Vince McMahon’s chosen champion. Bret declined the offer and things may have been very different had Bret agreed to the pact. Trying to enlist Bret Hart to The Kliq is also the reason for the frosty relationship between Shawn Michaels and Kevin Nash, since Michaels has personal problems with Hart being the bigger draw of the two.
WCW will be raising PPV prices from $24.95 to $27.95, and they’re hoping the increased price won’t lead to less buys.
Following several weeks of negotiations, NJPW wrestlers Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, and Dean Malenko finally commit to entering WCW, and join the new Cruiserweight Division. The trio had initially been reticent to accept Eric Bischoff’s offers due to his poor track record for handling wrestlers whose appeal is workrate-based. The trio agreed to sign, though, after New Japan’s Masa Saito intimated to them that New Japan their primary source of income at the time would release them should they not sign with its Western business partner. The main behind-the-scenes proponent of hiring the three is Kevin Sullivan, whose latest concept is for WCW to differentiate itself from the WWF by featuring a flank of world-class workers.
ECW tag team Public Enemy (Rocco Rock and Johnny Grunge) are rumoured to be on the shortlists of both WCW and WWF. With their wild brawling style, and the inclusion of tables, the team has quickly became one of the more popular acts in the company.
WWF’s new backstage announcer Stephanie Wiand has been pretty much awful and it hasn’t gone unnoticed by the company, who have all but taken her off TV for the most part.
John Tenta leaves WCW and moves on. According to our sources Tenta could be returning to WWF to reform The Natural Disasters with Typhoon as Jim Ross is keen to strengthen the tag team division with more top tag teams.
The WWF bolster their tag team division as The Can-Am Express (Doug Furnas and Phil LaFon) have signed a contract and is expected to be managed by Alundra Blayze. WWF head booker Jim Ross hopes that The Can-Am Express will become a key part of the Post-Hogan “New Generation” as WWF continues to push work-rate based workers. The Can-Am Express is rumoured to be put in a storyline with Sunny and The Bodydonnas.
WCW and Maxx Payne have parted company after his contract expired. Maxx Payne is rumoured to sign with Paul Heyman’s ECW and given a darker character than his WCW gimmick.
NJPW saw a title change last night, as the previously vacant IWGP World Tag Team titles was won by Tarzan Goto and Yoshiaki Yatsu. The titles has been vacant since The Steiners Brothers left NJPW for WCW.
The signings of multimillion-dollar-free-agents Jake “The Snake” Roberts and Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat have provided a much needed boost in revenue and ratings for WWF. The two aging stars are currently engaged in a heated feud.
Jim Duggan sustained a Broken Jaw during the recent WCW TV tapings. He left the ring under his own power, which indicates he probably will not miss any time with this injury.
On the latest episode of ECW Hardcore TV Paul E. Dangerously referred to the Dangerous Alliance as the greatest gathering of talent ever and that he has a big surprise. At ECW CyberSlam he will debut his next big signing. A Internationally recognized top wrestler and a legitimate contender to the ECW World Heavyweight title. He has found superstar that he will manage in ECW and it is one of the greatest Stars in Pro Wrestling.