WCW Nitro – Dec 1996 Starrcade big PPV no title match, Hogan Piper happens, N.W.O Expands


The WCW had been about one story all year and December it was still red hot, thanks largely to the debut of Rowdy Roddy Piper and the revelation last month that WCW boss Eric Bishoff was the man behind the rebel faction. A notion that made a lot of sense. At the end of November Bishoff made a speech putting all the WCW locker room on notice. They could either join the N.W.O or become a target for the N.W.O


Right away Bagwell left the tag team he was in and joined becoming Buff Bagwell. In the coming weeks the N.W.O recruited it’s midcard members for the faction. Mr Wallstreet joined. He was known to WWF fans as the IRS. IRS had been the tag partner of the Million Dollar Man (now N.W.O member billionaire Ted )and they had been managed by Virgil (now Vincent of the N.W.O). His addition could draw more parallels between the N.W.O and the WWF Million Dollar Cooperation that had existed through the majority of 1995. They also added Big Bubba Rogers formally the WWF Big Boss Man. Another wrestler that had shot to fame in the early 1990s WWF.


Scot Norton and Masarhiro Chono joined the N.W.O and took it over to Japan to franchise the gimmick to New Japan Pro Wrestling. Although Scot Norton was seen as an N.W.O midcarder on WCW TV he was a main event draw in Japan.



It was a month where the N.W.O also lost a member. The Giant who had won the battle royal at WW3 refused to choke slam Piper for Hogan. This coming after Giant had already won the number one contender title seemed to be just to fit in with the booking. The N.W.O was expanding and as with any faction expanding in wrestling it leads to less possible fresh match outcomes.


Sting continued interfering in matches but not showing what side he was on. If WCW wrestlers attacked Sting he attacked them. The same with the N.W.O counterparts. Still the N.W.O walked around with their fake Sting and one wonders why?


Confuse the audience perhaps? Confuse column writers trying to re watch and work out who was on who’s side at this point in time?


WCW also went through the trouble of a US title tournament only for the N.W.O to interfere in the outcome and make Styxx the US champion at Starrcade.


On the subject of Starrcade the event came and the main event match was Hogan Pipper. This match had some serious hype and for once Hogan was pinned. Sadly for all the match anticipation the match was not for the title.


Let me repeat the main event of WCW’s biggest PPV in 1996 was NOT for their world title!!


To make matters worse our usual reliable commentary team did not seem sure if the match was a title match or not.