Sting & Ricky Steamboat v Rick Rude & Steve Austin (Clash of the Champions XVIII, 1/21/92)
Rude's sell of an atomic drop might seriously be the best signature sell of anyone ever. I thought the regular + inverted atomic drop double sell in the 2/22 Saturday Night match was incredible - and of course it was - but he might out do himself here. And that's going some way, I'll tell ya. Austin has the long hair here so he hasn't reached the level he would 5 or 6 months later, and this is the kind of Austin that's almost glaringly the least of the Alliance. You get to see all five of them on this show; Austin's a fair step below the rest. He isn't bad or anything, and for the most part he holds up his end perfectly well, but the last couple minutes start to get really awkward and sloppy while he's in there. Although the last couple minutes are sort of a mess anyway, so you can't blame him and him alone for that. Sting and Steamboat are pretty great as the two babyfaces stooping to the heels' levels because they've been a pair of big enough pricks to warrant it, blatantly cheating at points by doing the Hogan 'fingernails down the back' spot and doing multiple switcheroos behind the ref's back. Crowd eats it all up of course, backing them up every time they plead innocence. Steamboat's impression of Rude's gyrating hips must be seen to be believed. Actually you can't even call that a "gyrating hips" impression; looked more like a white man trying to do a Beyonce impression on a surfboard. We also get the same transition spot that Rude used against Dustin in the Worldwide match later in the year where he drives his knees into the opponent's balls from his back, and, well, that's an awesome transition spot and I kinda wish someone would steal it today. Sting and Steamboat both take a turn as face in peril and it's solid if unspectacular. Actually thought Steamboat looked a little off at points, and you don't see that every day. Good match, which isn't surprising, but you know they've got something great in them.
WCW 1992 Project