Monday's Nitro will be a blast
By BRET "THE HIT MAN" HART -- For the Calgary Sun
It's party time!
Stampede week's here and happy 30th birthday to Theo Fleury!
Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Juventude Guerrera on their marriage!
My birthday was Thursday and I bought myself a present -- a few days in Hawaii with the family.
If you've never been there you really have to do it some time. The scenery is gorgeous. Oh, and did I mention the hula girls?
Happy Independence Day weekend to my friends in the States. I've been to some kickin' 4th of July BBQs and The Macy's fireworks in New York City are excellent, but this year it looks like the biggest blast will be in Atlanta on Monday. There are already 35,000 tickets sold -- by all accounts the biggest Nitro in history! It's parallel to when Michael Jordan showed up with Chicago to play Atlanta -- a million dollar (used) house. In case you haven't heard, Hollywood Hulk Hogan, heavyweight champion of the world, will meet the fastest rising star in the history of wrestling, and still undefeated, Goldberg.
If you're wondering how you missed this, you're not alone. JJ Dillon shocked the wrestling world when he touched down at Thursday Thunder in a chartered helicopter with the last minute block buster announcement. This match could have been built up for months into a huge mega-million dollar pay-per-view event. So why put it on Nitro? It goes back to the Diamond Dallas Paige/Karl Malone vs. Hollywood Hulk Hogan/ Dennis Rodman tag war scheduled for the Bash at the Beach pay-per-view in San Diego on July 12.
This is a main event that transcends the bounds of wrestling. Mainstream media from around the world are all talking about it. There was an appearance on Jay Leno, a press conference at Planet Hollywood, DDP was on Comedy Central's Daily Show, an article in last week's Time and another one coming up in the August Penthouse. As a result of the hoopla, high ranking brass from TimeWarner/Turner Broadcasting, WCW's parent company, will be at the Georgia Dome to get a first hand, behind the scenes look at the winning formula for Nitro's success. WCW's expansion is forging full speed ahead. In Japan,where wrestling is taken as seriously as Canadians take hockey, All Japan and New Japan are the big organizations but the number one import is WCW. I'm just itching for that soon-to-come big Canadian WCW tour.
I've heard that Scott Hall might make his long awaited return this week. It'll be interesting to see which nWo faction he sides with! Buff Bagwell might make his first appearance since he suffered that nasty neck injury we witnessed on live TV a few months ago. As far as I know he isn't ready to be back in action but he wants to say a few things. I hope it's not bad news? Will this be the return of a young guy who has a bright future in our sport -- or will it be his retirement speech?
As far as the mega tag match at the pay-per-view, I like DDP and Malone as a team. Most people don't realize that when Paige was a collegiate athlete he was an All American basketball player. B'ball, on that level, is a thinking man's game that involves a lot of team work. I think the teamwork between Malone and Paige might be the key to their success at Bash at the Beach. Another big factor will be if Hogan loses the world heavyweight championship to Goldberg on Monday and he has to come to the ring with Rodman, but without the belt. That would change the entire psychology of the match. On the other hand, that means Goldberg would be world heavyweight champion when he teams with Kevin Greene against The Giant and Curt Hennig! Nobody in the nWo is in a good mood about this. There's been no word from Hogan.
Another guy that's been in a bad mood lately is the living loop-hole, Chris Jericho. He went so far as to come to the ring with a sign proclaiming himself a conspiracy victim. Hey Chris, when it's real, it's tragic but when it's an act, it's pathetic. Jericho will do anything to hold onto the Cruiserweight title, except get in the ring and fight somebody for it. At Bash at the Beach, he's forced to face Dean Malenko. There's something bugging me about Chris Jericho. In a recent interview he said that he doesn't think Malenko is the kind of guy you'd want as a role model for your kids, but have you noticed how Jericho's attitude is getting more and more like -- Shawn Michaels!? At least he's not dancing -- yet.