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Guest TSMAdmin

NWA Wildside Heatstroke 2002

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Guest TSMAdmin

This is a TV taping from August of 2002 (yeah, it's a little out of order from what I was reviewing), when Wildside brought in a bunch of guys who had made their names in the Northeast, such as The Maximos, Scoot Andrews, Michael Shane, the Briscoe Brothers, and The Amazing Red, plus reunited the biggest team in the company's history, Bad Attitude. What resulted was the following, which is still acclaimed as one of the best Wildside TV tapings ever.


You can get this tape exclusively from Melanie McKee, whose entire tape listing and contact info can be found at this website


Let's get to the matches.....




Tank vs. Scottie Wrenn vs. Hack Myers


This was supposed to be Wrenn vs. Tank, but at the last minute, Hack was thrown in. Hack's looking a lot like Big Vito here, and definately not like he did in ECW (unless I got guys mixed up). The match itself was your basic generic three-way match. Some basic, yet sort-of-contrived three-man spots here, occasionally two guys going at it while one is laid out there, and some punching and kicking in between. Everyone seemed a little awkward out there too, but that may have had more to do with an extra guy who neither had ever worked before getting thrown into the match than anything. Finish came when Scottie wipes out outside the ring, leaving Tank to hit the F-Bomb on Hack for the win. Not exactly the greatest start to the show.





Quiet Storm Promo


Usually, Quiet Storm's an entertaining promo just based on the fact that he grunts the work "freakin'!" more than any other man ever should in his whole lifetime. For some reason, he wasn't freakin' saying the freakin' word "freakin'!" Instead, he cut a generic promo about tearing Jeremy Lopez from limb-to-limb, hitting him with the Storm Cradle Driver, and winning the Wildside Jr. Title. Even being generic, he's still much better than any of the other Whipwreck Disciples when he speaks.


Wildside Jr. Title:

Quiet Storm vs. Jeremy Lopez ©


I was really looking forward to this, as Storm seemed like the only one of the Whipwreck Disciples who'd blend in good with a strong mat worker. I wasn't disappointed. They started with some chain wrestling on the mat. Then, Storm locked in an armbar, and just kept flowing through attempted reversals by Lopez, keeping it locked in. Both guys then rely on working the arm to get the advantage. Throughout the match, Jeremy did one hell of a job giving Quiet Storm a lot of offense, and making him look very credible, which was important since, to most of the live crowd, he was an unknown going into the match. The finish came after Storm missed a Togo Senton, leading into Lopez closing in for his elevated cross-armed DDT finisher. This was a pretty good match; the finest one I've seen Storm do so far.


WINNER: Jeremy Lopez



Scoot Andrews and Michael Shane then come out to interrupt the show. Andrews cuts a promo, cutting on the Maximos getting a Wildside Tag Team Title shot on their first night in. Andrews asks rhetorically why him and Shane hadn't gotten one ("Because you're not a team!" says Steven Prazak). Shane tries to cut a promo, but he sort of struggles, so Scoot, who sounds remarkably like Shane Douglas minus the f-bombs and McMahon/Flair ripping on the mic, takes the mic away, and challenges the Maximos (who he called "midgets", a term Scoot doesn't have the right to call anyone, based on his lack of height) to a match where if the Maximos lost, they'd lose their shot at the tag belts to Shane & Andrews.


Joel & Jose Maximo vs. Michael Shane & Scoot Andrews


I'm not any of these guys' biggest fans, but I must admit, this match wasn't too shabby. Shane and Andrews, who work a slower pace for a couple of small guys and get ripped for it from time-to-time, blended it well with the spot monkey style that the Maximos perform. After a flurry of flashy offense from the Maximos, they worked the regular tag formula (cutting the ring off, keeping one face in the ring to get beat up). Shane and Andrews pounded on Joel (I think) for a while, until he hit a nagasateru (Dan Wilson's term for wheelbarrow) bulldog on Shane to set up the hot tag spot. Jose clears house, and the Maximos hit the Spanish Fly for the win. Michael and Scoot found a way for the Maximos to be used effectively and not get exposed, which I applaud them for. Plus, putting the Maximos on early in the night to get the crowd introduced to them before the four-way tag title match later was quite the smart idea. Good match.


WINNERS: The Maximos



NWA World Jr. Title

Jay Briscoe vs. Jimmy Rave


This was another one I was really looking forward to watching. They started with some back-and-forth chain wrestling sequences, which lead to Jay working over Jimmy's knee, and Jimmy working over Jay's arm, something Rave's become famous for in the past while. These two seemed to click really well together, especially considering this was their first singles match against each other ever. The only negative point of the match was that they only got 6 minutes, though it's understandable, considering they had to go with the TV format. Jimmy won the match after reversing the J-Driller with his Northern Lights Bomb. Quick, but really good.


WINNER: Jimmy Rave



NWA Elite w/ Jeff G. Bailey Promo


Bailey starts by comparing the combined I.Q. of Iceberg and Rainman's opponents for the night, the reunited Bad Attitude team of David Young and Rick Michaels, to that of an autistic monkey. Then, he bragged about Rainman's past beatings on Rick Michaels, including the big bladejob from Freedom Fight 2002. After that, he went into angry mode, yelling about how David Young made the biggest mistake of his life by pinning Iceberg in the War Games match at Freedom Fight, and how Iceberg'll take the "ultimate revenge", aka his life, from him at any time, whether it be in the ring, at his house, or even at McDonald's when he's with his son. Another great Bailey promo.


The NWA Elite (Rainman & Iceberg) (w/Jeff G. Bailey) vs. Bad Attitude (Rick Michaels & David Young)


In a piece of fun nostalgia that got a huge pop from the locals, when the respective intro songs for either Michaels or Young played, no one came out, but then the old Bad Attitude song (aka the old Midnight Express theme) came on, and they ran out together. After clearing out the ring and working over Rainman for a minute, Bad Attitude loses their offensive edge when Iceberg enters the ring. Rick Michaels played the Ricky Morton-in-peril, which he does really well, like mostly everything he does in the ring. The Double Shot on Rainman sets up the hot tag spot. All four men brawl for a couple of minutes, as Jeff calls up someone on his cell phone. For some reason, Iceberg and Rainman leave the building while on offense during the brawl, and drive off in a car with Bailey. Pretty good, yet slightly disappointing (considering the talent of the guys in there) match up until the flat finish.


WINNERS: Bad Attitude



We then get treated to another Jeff G. Bailey promo, this time as he drives away in the car. The way he explained how the Elite wanted to leave Bad Attitude confused for the next battle was about as good an explanation for the finish as humanly possible.


Match 2 in the Best-of-5 For The World TV Title

Tony Mamaluke vs. Caprice "Ice" Coleman ©


Tony cuts a promo pre-match about how much the Best-of-5 series has meant to the past of the NWA (name-dropping Magnum T.A. vs. Nikita Koloff's series), and Tony has a big voice for a small man. Caprice's reply: "Calm down!" They go to the mat to start, where Caprice out-speeds Tony to win the exchange. Caprice then mocks Tony's selling of what looks to be his groin, followed by a Bugs Bunny-like copycatting of Tony's mini-fit. Story here is that Caprice tries to out-flash Tony like he does for most of his opponents, but Tony, learning from his loss in the first match of the series, is able to ground Caprice and slow him down to put him in an unfamiliar situation, while working Caprice's neck to set up his new finisher. The finish came as Tony reversed something to hit a version of Jeremy Lopez's cross-armed DDT finisher, followed by the Sugar Lock, which Tony calls the Italian Sleeper, for the tapout victory. Really strong match, as it fed to both guys' strengths, and held its own story while continuing the story of the series, which was Caprice Coleman's evolution as a wrestler. Too bad Caprice went down with the knee injury right after the series.


WINNER: Tony Mamaluke



Lazarus (w/Neysa) vs. Onyx


Lazarus is Lazz, the former transvestite Britney Spears impersonator, with a "serious heel" gimmick, and Neysa's his valet, who, quite frankly, wasn't exactly the greatest valet ever. Either way, the Lazarus experiment was a total and complete failure, as he just came off as the bland cross between Shane Douglas and Lex Luger, albeit smaller than both. To add to it, this match was not exactly one that set the world on fire. Besides for Lazarus's arguing and yelling at the crowd, this could have passed for your generic WWE B-level TV match. A very bland heavyweight brawl, it was. The finish thankfully came when Neysa distracted the referee so that, though it wasn't her purpose, Onyx could hit the Blackout DDT for the win. Not good.





Number One Contendership for the Wildside Jr. Title:

The Amazing Red vs. Slim J


I'm sure you're all gushing over this, just reading the two guys who were in it. Don't gush just yet. This was under expectations. Red's so much better when he's in there with larger guys, since he seems to only be able to tell a "big man vs. underdog" story when he works. Because of that, they basically worked a spotfest, with a couple of bright minutes where Slim slowed down the offense. Red did seem to get over with the audience, but that's because, I'll admit, Red does some flashy stuff that not many guys in the U.S. can do, and that stuff gets over. The hyping of the match during the match on commentary was the one time I'd ever accuse Dan Wilson and Steven Prazak of overhyping, but Red's an outsider, and they had to get him over somehow with the TV audience who hadn't seen him before. Finish came when Red missed his InfaRed (a sort-of Skytwister Press), and Slim came up behind him as he sold on his feet to hit the Anger Management for the win. Again, way under the dream match expectations, but it was a fun little thing, and I think this is what got Slim J on TNA PPV.





Then we get a promo backstage from The SAT (The Maximos & Red). This was bad. To continue....


T-N-T Promo


Tony does all the talking, which he should. He talks about how winning's expected from him and Todd, since they came from the TWA school, which he refers to as "The Academy". Then, he says that when they head to CZW "in a few weeks", they'll make the success of the Briscoes and SAT look like nothing.


Wildside Tag Team Title Four-Way-Elimination Match:

The Briscoes (Jay & Mark) vs. The Maximos (Jose & Joel) vs. T-N-T (Tony Stradlin & Todd Sexton) vs. The Lost Boys (Azrael & Gabriel) ©


Within seconds after the Lost Boys's entrance, T-N-T jump them, give Gabriel (whose neck was hurt by T-N-T in a previous angle) a cradle spike piledriver, and eliminate the champs from the match. Then, the Briscoes and Maximos work together to clean house, which in turn leads to the two teams fighting each other. T-N-T eventually tag in to fight the Maximos. The Maximos looked to be ready to eliminate T-N-T with the Spanish Fly until Michael Shane and Scoot Andrews came out, and interfered against the Maximos, which put Joel in position for T-N-T's Powder Keg (double-team reverse wheelbarrow bulldog) for the elimination. Then came the strongest part of the match, as T-N-T and the Briscoes worked a straight tag match for about 5-6 minutes, with Mark playing face-in-peril. Jay eventually gets the hot tag, which leads to a short chaos segment. Todd and Jay are eventually left standing, but Jay hits Todd with the J-Driller to become the new Wildside Tag Team Champions. Really average match until the closing stuff with T-N-T and the Briscoes, which lifted the match a bit.


WINNERS: Jay & Mark Briscoe



Post-match, both of the final teams cut promos. Tony rants and raves about how Jay dropping Todd on his head was an evil and bad thing to do (even though they did it to Gabriel the previous taping), while the Briscoes, sort of like Drake Younger (you'll get the joke in a few weeks), are just happy to be the champs.


NWA Wildside Heavyweight Title

John Phoenix vs. David Young


The match was originally supposed to be Phoenix challenging for the belt against Adam Jacobs, but for some reason, Phoenix comes out with the belt, says that Adam no-showed, and all of a sudden, David Young's the new challenger, with no explanation of why Adam's gone or David's the new challenger. They did try to explain Phoenix defending the title, as when Scottie Wrenn had to no-show a title defense (storyline no-show, not legit) in October 2001, his opponent for the night, Rick Michaels, got the belt on forfeit. But, as Dan Wilson said, it's "more confusing than a bad episode of Nitro!" They still went with the original stipulation for the match, that being that both Andrew Thomas and Speedy Nelson were refereeing the match. They started off with a hot rope-running segment, followed with Phoenix dominated the offense while David got in his hope spots. Both guys looked a little off, as, on a good day, a Phoenix/Young match could be great. This was good, but not what these two usually pull off. Finish came when Phoenix tried to come off the second rope with something, but David reversed it into a spinebuster. Both refs counted, and while Andrew Thomas stalled at 2 to keep his payoff, Speedy counted to 3, and David won the belt. Post-match, Speedy Nelson beats up Andrew Thomas, but Iceberg, Rainman, and Bailey come back to beat down Young until Rick Michaels chases them off with a baseball bat. Good match; could have been better.


WINNER: David Young



OVERALL THOUGHTS: This was quite an enjoyable tape. Any tape where 6 matches are 80 or higher is, by far, a keeper in my book. The matches are shorter than ones on the tapes I normally review due to the TV format, but they're still able to fit a bit into the 8-15 minute slots that they get. "Match of the Night" honors go to the Mamaluke/Coleman match, as it was executed perfectly, and worked really well. The only really bad stuff was the opener and the Lazarus/Onyx match, but those are short enough where you can forget about them quickly. Dan Wilson and Steven Prazak, again, were really good on commentary. Again, I recommend you buy this one from Melanie.




Now, onto some extras, which you can get from Melanie, whose site, again, can be found here. Most of this stuff's from recent Wildside TV episodes.



Jeff G. Bailey w/ Iceberg Promo


This was very basic, yet pretty high-concept for a wrestling promo. All you see is Iceberg, standing with his belt in a big spotlight amongst darkness, as you hear Jeff talk off-camera about how Iceberg is "the rage of a man beating his wife in his trailer, the madness of a bomber who kills families, the frenzy of a student who slaugheters his peers, the venom of the guy who raped your daugher, the fear you can't ignore", and that the fear is an encurable disease aimed straight at you. Bailey states that the ring is the dumping ground for the bodies he leaves in wake, and that Iceberg doesn't feel guilt, and even feels sorry for those who do feel it. Bailey then says that "there is no greater power you can hold over a man than inflicting pain upon him". Jeff then comes on-screen, hands Iceberg his vegetable peeler, and just repeats the words, "You know what to do". This was just excellent, fine piece of genius promo work from Bailey.


Tony Mamaluke Promo


This was taped right before Tony's scheduled submission match at Hardcore Hell with Rainman, which never happened due to Tony's girlfriend needing to go to the hospital the day of the show. Tony talks about how Jeff G. Bailey made Tony's matches in his quest to become World TV Champion into a personal issue, due to his constant interference. But, he's glad now, because Rick Michaels, that night, made a match with him and Rainman at HH where Bailey was banned from ringside, and how he'd achieve his destiny now. You could tell that Tony's time in Wildside really improved his promo work.


Rick Michaels/Salvatore Rinauro Segment


This was filmed right after Salvatore's big Jr. Heavyweight Title victory over Slim J. He forces the cameraman to follow him to Rick Michaels's office. Rick's on the phone, but Sal just wants to have some drinks with him. Rick hangs up the phone, and Sal tells him that not only is the Rookie Of The Year (complete with the pointing at the "R.O.Y." on the ass of his tights) here, but the new Jr. Champion has arrived. Rick, who's irritated, asks Sal what he thinks the best part of being a champion is. Sal replies, "The chicks dig me?", and Rick says that it's defending the title, and that he'll have an announcement about who Sal would be defending the belt against at Hardcore Hell on the next show. Sal's mad, so Rick asks him if he still wants to party. Sal says yeah, and gets a cup of water in his face for his reply. This was a really funny segment, and Salvatore and Rick have a unique comedic chemistry together.


AJ Styles & Jeff G. Bailey Turn On Steve Martin


This took place in the summer of 2000, I believe. AJ Styles was wrestling Rick Michaels, and he hits a top-rope flatliner on Rick. Steve Martin (then-Wildside owner) runs down to the ring to count the fall since the referee's knocked out, but AJ gets up off of Rick. AJ then gives Martin a flatliner as Jeff G. Bailey celebrates on the apron, the crowd pops huge, and Al Getz has an orgasm on commentary (well, it sounded like it). Jorge Estrada (looking a thousand times different than he does now) comes out to talk to his then-tag team partner, and gets a flatliner for his troubles. Rick and AJ pound over Martin as Bailey cuts a promo on Martin until JC Dazz runs everyone off. Great heat, though I didn't understand who was heel and who was face by the end, since Getz and the crowd were cheering on the guys acting like heels.


AJ Styles/Jeff G. Bailey Promo


This is the week after. Bailey goes on and on about how Jorge Estrada, JC Dazz, and Steve Martin are all embarrassments to him, and how he didn't care about Martin going out in front of the people and bawling his eyes out after the turn happened. He asked if AJ cared, and he said yes....but then went on a rant ala Billy Mays, the guy who sells that OxiClean crap, and Patrick McGovern's illegitimate father, about how great his abs are and how greatly in shape he is. Bailey ends by giving AJ credit for all of this happening. Bailey was good, as usual, and AJ was downright hilarious with some of his mannerisms and such. Why ANYONE books AJ as a face, I have no clue.


Winner Gets A Shot At Rainman's World TV Title

David Young vs. Tony Mamaluke


This was filmed in January/Febuary 2003. This was a rematch from the previous taping, since Rainman interfered in the first match. This match was brilliant. They started off with some chain wrestling on the mat, including some headscissors by David to start the working of Tony's bad neck (which was the focus of his storyline with Rainman since the finish of their match at Christmas Chaos 2002). David continues the working over of Tony's neck and spine throughout the match, and Tony decides to focus on David's knee, which was the focus of David's only major injury that required surgery, which happened in 1997, says Dan Wilson. They also worked in that David used his power to regain the advantage, while Tony used his speed to out-do David. At one point, David had a Boston Crab locked in to attack the spine, and Tony pulled on Andrew Thomas to get the ropes. I thought it was imaginative. They started doing the bigger, more impactful moves near the end. At one point, David went for a suplex, but Mamaluke hooked David's bum knee, and locked in the Italian Sleeper as he was being lifted. However, since no work went towards David's neck, it didn't effect him as much, and he was able to get to the ropes. David went in for the kill, his Spinebuster, but they played up that his knee gave out on him during the lift, and therefore Mamaluke got time to recouperate before David went for the pin. Finish came when Tony got a chop block in, followed by a kick to the knee, and then locked in the Sicillian Crab (an Argentine Leg Lock; it's a half crab with the guy's knee bent over your own neck), which David eventually tapped out to. Post-match, David and Tony bury the hatchet and shake hands. Incredible match, with really deep psychology, though I think it went over the radar for some of the fans in attendance. THIS is your Wildside Match of 2003, thus far.


WINNER: Tony Mamaluke



Tony Mamaluke & David Young vs. Iceberg & Rainman (w/ Jeff G. Bailey)


It was originally Stone Mountain teaming with Tony, but earlier at the taping, Jeff G. Bailey announced that he got a 50-foot restraining order on Stone Mountain, so he had to give up the spot. So, Rick Michaels brought in the only guy who had pinned Iceberg besides Stone Mountain, David Young, to team with Mamaluke, who he bonded with after their great match at the previous taping. By the way, Scott Hudson, former WCW/Global announcer, is doing color with Dan Wilson. This will come into play later. Besides for some early offense by Young and Mamaluke, including Mamaluke trying to take the monster Iceberg down by attacking the knee, the match was all Elite offense, with the exception of a hope spot here or there. The Elite started by working over Mamaluke's neck. Then, they did a hot tag spot, where Young got in a flurry of offense until he went for a high knee to Rainman's head in the corner, but missed, and jammed his knee on the top turnbuckle. Iceberg and Rainman then worked over David's knee, until David gets a hot tag to Mamaluke, and chaos ensues. Eventually, Iceberg and Young go outside the ring, and Tony goes after Bailey. But, Rainman hits Tony in the neck with brass knuckles. Rainman then hits a Dark City Street Cutter (piggyback cradle Stunner) on Tony, but he kicked out at 2.99999999999999999 in one hell of a false finish. Rainman locks in his new submission, the Hillside Stranger (cobra clutch/camel clutch combo) on Tony as Iceberg chokes David with a cord outside the ring. Tony passes out, and the Elite win. Post-match, Rainman refuses to let go of the hold, as Dan Wilson goes ballistic at the commentary booth, and Scott Hudson over-acts a tad bit. Dan goes to the ring as Rainman lets go of the hold, and asks Bailey if he's proud of it. Iceberg then knocks Dan down with a body attack (aka non-squash avalanche). Jeff then gets ahold of an electric shaver, and shaves Dan's hair off. Cracked me up when Andrew Thomas fell down laughing at the site of the horror. Then, the locker room empties. Hell, Jacey North, the man that Dan mocked for a year and a half on commentary, was the first to his rescue. Andrew Thomas then takes over the commentary booth, and says, "Who's the jackass now? Dan Wilson." Really good match, followed by an excellent post-match angle, my second favorite so far this year. I'll review my favorite overall angle from this year next time, and yes, it involves Jeff G. Bailey and Iceberg.


WINNERS: Iceberg & Rainman





Next time, I'll be taking a slight detour from Wildside, as I'll be reviewing IWA Mid-South's Ultra Styles Clash Weekend: Night One. The extras for next time include the angle teased above, and a certain 93 minute match from earlier this year.


Thanks for reading,

Thomas Green

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