Through the Years: Saturday Night’s Main Event #30

Saturday Night’s Main Event #30 was interesting in that the WWF was forced to move over to a different channel for it. What they did, was wind up on a burgeoning network called Fox. This episode was only scheduled for an hour, which without commercials was a lot less. That means there will be far fewer things to review on this show. I’m looking forward to the tag team match that features Hulk Hogan and Sid Justice against Ric Flair and the Undertaker!

 

– Taped to air February 8th, 1992, from Municipal Coliseum in Lubbock, Texas

 

This opens with a completely new introduction, which is no surprise given the change in network. It’s not better than the usual, but the logo was. Vince McMahon is with Bobby Heenan, and we have four matches packed into 46 minutes. Given the starpower on this show, that’s slightly alarming. Randy Savage and Jake Roberts are going to settle the score! That’s the main event of this one.

 

The Mountie (w/Jimmy Hart) vs. Roddy Piper for the WWF Intercontinental Championship

Pre-Match Thoughts: This is a rematch from the Royal Rumble, and Piper looks very strange sporting a title belt. I’ve never seen this match nor anything else from this show other than a few highlights. For all I know, it’s the same match as the one from the Rumble. Hopefully it isn’t.

Match Review: To start this, the Mountie grabbed the title belt and that allowed Hart to attack Piper from behind. Mountie throws Piper to the outside, but Piper comes in with a double clothesline to take them both out. Mountie rolls to the outside and hugs his manager, so it’s time for a noggin-knocker. Hart grabs Piper as he gets back in the ring, which allows Mountie to grab him and gain control with some kicks. We had an insert promo from Bret Hart, who has a title shot at WrestleMania 8 and was not going to WCW. Mountie hits Piper with a flying back elbow for 2, and there’s a bodyslam. Mountie misses a big splash, so Piper goes for a BULLDOG, only for Mountie to shove him into the referee. Mountie piledrives Piper, and goes for the SHOCK STICK. Hart has a cup of water to pour on Piper, and THERE’S THE SHOCK STICK. Piper doesn’t sell it at all, and he still has his shirt on. He throws Jimmy Hart over the top, and it’s time to use the SHOCK STICK on the Mountie. Awful sound effect, too. Piper covers, and picks up the win at 3:30. After the match, Piper finally takes his shirt off, and reveals a SHOCK PROOF VEST. Great moment.

My Thoughts: This match was somewhat better than the Rumble match in that it was shorter and had more content in it. It wasn’t good, but it effectively killed the Mountie’s shock stick gimmick. That’s definitely not a bad thing. I don’t remember seeing him much after this, but he nearly finished out the year before taking another break. *1/2.

 

The Undertaker and Ric Flair (WWF Champion, w/Mr. Perfect and Paul Bearer) vs. Sid Justice and Hulk Hogan (w/Brutus Beefcake)

Pre-Match Thoughts: This is going to be far more effective at getting over Sid’s turn than the Royal Rumble ever could have been. When they showed the ending of the Royal Rumble, the video was edited to have Sid be resoundly booed for throwing Hogan out of the Rumble. Like I said, the WWF would make sure future turns of the sort were in an environment they could manipulate for some time. Even the commentary was edited. This tag match is a continuation of that good booking. You have Hogan facing the guys who took his belt, and the guy who stopped him from winning the Rumble is his partner. Also, we have a press conference about who was going to be the #1 contender at WrestleMania. It was announced to be Hulk Hogan, even though Sid Justice thought it was going to be him. Sid then cut one of his best promos. You’d have to think Sid was going to turn on him here. THIS WAS BOGUS, JACK TUNNEY. THE MOST BOGUS THING YOU’VE EVER PULLED OFF. Sid’s promo before this match was very apologetic. Taker was given a jobber entrance, and Flair nearly was too. Sid and Hogan shook hands in a pre-match promo, but Sid walked off before saying anything. Beefcake walking Hogan to the ring was dumb, and a sign something was up.

Match Review: Hogan was being such a dick at the start of the match, which Sid eventually started with Flair. Flair rakes Sid’s eyes, but gets thrown into the corner and backdropped. Sid hip tosses Flair, and Flair takes a break on the outside. His body was actually looking kind of bad. Hogan tags in, backdrops Flair again, and hip tosses him again. Taker runs in and gets hip tossed, then has Sid knee Taker in the head. Sid tags in, and gives Taker a bodyslam. Hogan tags in for another bodyslam, and Flair runs in to get bodyslammed too. Hogan clears the ring with clotheslines, and Sid doesn’t participate in helping. Neither has Hogan participated in helping Sid do the same. Anyway, Sid tags in and kicks Taker in the gut, but Taker goes to the throat. He and Flair hit Sid with a double clothesline for 2, and follow with a double atomic drop that gets 2. Taker and Flair go for a double slam, but Hogan comes in to break it. He and Sid give Flair a double big boot, and clothesline Taker over the top. Sid didn’t like Hogan’s posing AT ALL.

After the commercial, we had Taker come in and attack Sid from behind while Hogan argued with the referee about something. Flair tags in, wrecks Sid with chops, and lets his partner get in some chokes. Taker heads up top and comes in with a punch to the throat, then he and Flair go for a double slam. Sid blocks it again, gives them a noggin-knocker, and tags in Hogan. Flair kicks Hogan in the leg after Hogan’s flurry, and it’s time for Flair to go to work. He slaps the FIGURE-FOUR on Hogan, and Sid decides to adjust his kneepads and turn his back. I WONDER WHY. Hogan breaks the hold and crawls to the corner, but the Undertaker has tagged in and takes Hogan out with a flying clothesline. Flair tags back in, heads up top, and Hogan slams him down. Sid has no interest in tagging at all, and the crowd is getting unhappy. Hogan starts no-selling chops from Flair, and he gives Taker and Flair a dobule clothesline. This time, when Hogan makes it to the corner, Sid decides to hit the showers. I thought it was great that Sid told a fan he’d slap them if they touched him. Beefcake confronted Sid, and Sid said that Hogan can help himself. So, Taker and Flair decide to double team Hogan, and get themselves disqualified for throwing the referee across the ring at 11:42. Not like they care. Beefcake gets in the ring like an idiot, which allows Hogan to power up and essentially go over two guys while Beefcake cheerleads for him. Flair takes his bump in the corner, gets clotheslined off the apron, and that’s the end of it.

My Thoughts: This was an average match that was much more about the angle than any sort of wrestling. I didn’t like how strong Hogan was made to look, especially given that they knew he wasn’t going to be facing Flair for the WWF Championship. Sid’s part in this was done well, and his comments while leaving the ring were really well done. Overall, on the WrestleMania angle scale, it’s well behind the Mega Powers breaking up, but better than the SNME angle between Warrior and Hogan. **1/4. Also, taking everything into account when it comes to WrestleMania sell shows to this point, that would make the Warrior/Hogan spot the worst of them. That’s a match that far surpasses the program leading to the match.

 

Sid Justice is with Sean Mooney in the back, and Sid said HE DOESN’T NEED ANY FRIENDS. He’s still pissed about Jack Tunney’s #1 contender announcement. Great promo. Sid said that Hogan couldn’t beat Flair on his best day, and couldn’t beat Sid ON SID’s WORST. HE IS THE MAN THAT RULES THE WORLD.

Hogan and Beefcake are with Mean Gene, and Hogan makes it very clear his issue is with Sid now. I have no idea why Beefcake has to be part of this. They’re pushing it so hard that Sid was going to smash Beefcake’s face again. Maybe he should have, it would have done good business and fit in with their motif of going over the top.

 

The Beverly Brothers (w/the Genius) vs. Sgt. Slaughter & Jim Duggan

Pre-Match Thoughts: The WWF was really trying to push Duggan and Slaughter as a team, but it never quite took off. These four were also given the jobber entrance. The match was originally supposed to have Legion of Doom in place of Slaughter and Duggan, but Hawk was hurt.

Match Review: Blake and Hacksaw lock up, and Blake goes to the eyes. Hacksaw comes back with a clothesline, and Beau hits him from behind with the scroll of their manager. Beau leaps over Blake and jumps on Hacksaw’s back, but they only get 1 on the cover. Hacksaw kicks Beau to block a backdrop, so Hacksaw’s able to make a tag. Sarge comes in with a backdrop of Blake, and he puts an abdominal stretch on him. Beau runs in to break it, so Sarge gives Blake a backbreaker for 2 instead. All four guys are in there now, and Sarge ducks under a scroll shot from Beau. He clocks Blake with the scroll, and sets Hacksaw up for his big running clothesline. Obviously, that gets the win at 2:39.

My Thoughts: Slaughter felt extremely disingenuous in this role and I just couldn’t buy it. Hacksaw teaming with him made no sense given that they feuded with each other when Slaughter was on top, too. I don’t like the pairing at all, it was a bad idea. The match was fine, but having a guy who just turned babyface hit somebody with a foreign object to win the match doesn’t make any sense at all. *.

 

Jake Roberts vs. Randy Savage

Pre-Match Thoughts: I’m looking forward to catching a match between these two again. It was a great, but ultimately very one-sided feud given the plans the WWF had for Savage. I’m somewhat surprised the cobra bite and Jake’s slap of Elizabeth were shown again. Jake also had a promo, and said if Elizabeth showed up, something would happen. It’s funny they went back to Texas again for a match between these two. Savage’s promo was perfect, he gave off the impression of being crazy enough to be shaking at this moment. He said it was time for Roberts to see how insane he was!

Match Review: Savage wound up hitting the ring in a sprint, but Roberts ducked to the outside just in time. Savage flies over the top and posts him, so we’re underway! Roberts tries to run, but gets grabbed by the arm and pulled into the post again. Savage grabs a chair and throws it in the ring, but the referee gets rid of it. After choking Roberts with his boot, Savage measures him for an elbow that busts his nose wide open. Roberts pokes him in the eye, then throws Savage hard over the top so he can take a break. Roberts rams him into the buckle when he gets back in there, and over the top he goes again. Roberts posts Savage twice, the second time with the camera zoomed in so Savage had to really doink himself with it.

After a commercial, Savage pops Roberts with a back elbow, as they were back in the ring. Savage goes for the double axehandle, but Roberts stops it and hits Savage with the DDT! He wants the referee to count Savage out, no cover needed. He sees Savage getting up, so he hits him with a short clothesline. He signals for the DDT again, but Savage backdrops him over the top. Savage then sees Roberts hanging onto the rail, so he flies out with BOMBS AWAY, knocking Roberts’ throat into the rail. He throws Roberts back in, FLYING ELBOW, and that’s it at 5:25. Feud over. Savage wants to drop another elbow, but a few officials get in the ring. He jumps over them anyway, with ANOTHER FLYING ELBOW! Savage gets the bell, but Jake rolls out of the ring and ends it. Or so we thought.

My Thoughts: I think it was great booking to have Savage win this clean, putting Roberts out of his picture. The WWF booked this well in that they moved Jake onto the next thing almost immediately after the match, trying to make people forget. This was a better match than the Tuesday in Texas match, and Savage looked very strong in a way that ensured he would look like a legitimate contender against Ric Flair. **1/2, best match on the show.

 

Elizabeth runs out to celebrate with Savage, but Jake is lurking back at the entrance curtain. Jake says it isn’t over yet. For some insanely dumb reason, they cut this off with the intention of showing it another time.

 

This was a decent enough show, not quite as good as the best SNME episodes, but not bad either. They did well building up to Hogan/Sid, but I don’t like the idea to not show the Undertaker’s turn. This was their biggest audience, so that made absolutely no sense at all. They also didn’t market Savage/Flair in any way whatsoever. Really, I don’t know what was going on with this show when the purpose was to sell WrestleMania. Entertaining but very much confusing. Next up, it’s WCW matches from Clash 18 to SuperBrawl 2!

Wrestling Time: 23:16. Half of this featued wrestling and half didn’t. For this length of show, I find that odd. When I start watching the hour-long Raw episodes, I wonder what I’ll find.

Best: Sid turning on Hogan. This one thing was better than everything else.

Worst: The disjointed build. I do not understand some of this.

Card Rating: 5.5/10. It was decent, no better than that.

Written by Sage Cortez

Sage is a boisterous Los Angeles sports fan. Unsurprisingly, like many other loudmouth LA fans, he also likes the Raiders and a range of combat sports.

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  1. IIRC Money Inc was scheduled to defend against Sarge and Duggan and LOD/Disasters were suppose to be in a street fight and Bulldog/Berzerker as part of the WM 8 WWF preview

    Those are the changes I recall offhand

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