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Default December 2002: Starrcade Wrap-up

December 29th, 2002

Sydney, Australia

Starrcade 2002 - Post-show party

Our locker room is a very positive place in general, but never had I seen our crew more excited and pleased than they were during this party. I couldn't blame them; I was just as excited. We all had high hopes for Starrcade, but I think the show exceeded even those.

I stood and raised my beer, and the room quieted down to hear what I had to say.

"I could toast to all of you with the way tonight went, but I know you guys don't wanna listen to me ramble on for the next half hour," I began, eliciting some laughs. "So I'll try and keep this short. First, I wanna single out Rob Van Dam. Rob, last year you won the world title in the main event, and you've been one of our hardest workers and biggest draws all year. This year your role at Starrcade wasn't to be the featured attraction, but to put a rising star heel over. You did it in a huge way, and you did it with no complaints, and I really appreciate it. A selfless attitude like that is the exact opposite of how the top stars of the old WCW behaved, and that's why our future is so much brighter than theirs was."

"Next, how about a hand for Booker T? Book, you were a rare bright spot in the dying days of WCW in the Turner era, and you've continued to perform well for us after the relaunch. You did a good job as champion, you're one of our most compelling characters, and I don't think it would surprise anybody if you win world title #6 some time in the future." Booker smiled and tipped his glass in my direction in acknowledgement. I knew he didn't really want to lose the title to Rey, which was why I structured the match so heavily in his favor. That held the match back as I knew it would, but it kept Booker from complaining and getting upset. This was my plan all along to put the title on Rey without upsetting Booker, and that's one of the reasons I positioned the tag match as the main event. Booker had been somewhat annoyed all throughout his title reign, but ironically I think he finally seems happy now.

"And how about that ladder match?" I continued. "All four of you deserve all the praise in the world. Putting a tag team match in the main event of a PPV, especially the biggest PPV of the year, raised some eyebrows. But you guys made me look like a genius, so thanks for that!" More laughs. "Punk, great job in taking that bump through the stage to pop the crowd. We all know the stage was gimmicked to protect you guys, but that was still a long way to fall. You've got guts, kid."

I looked around at the room, at the assembled faces watching and listening to me. Palumbo and O'Haire seemed in a good mood despite working in a hardcore style that didn't suit either of them (and wasn't what I envisioned when I put the match together either, but I guess you can't win 'em all.)

Scott Steiner thankfully wasn't too angry. Even with Rick being his brother, he complained about the idea of putting him over (understandable I guess, because Scott really is a much bigger star.) Rick needed to win that match for the purposes of the story though, and Scott was okay with it when road agent Bob Orton and I assured him he'd be protected in the sense that he wasn't outwrestled, and instead lost because he got cocky.

It had been a long road back for Alex Wright, who had been working some dark matches leading up to Starrcade but obviously was happy to be back on TV. He had to be even happier with how well his heel turn went. He and Mortis, collectively The Unbound, are primed to assume a significant role in our tag team division.

And who could forget the Nature Boy? Aside from maybe Sting, nobody embodied WCW more than Ric Flair. As much as the fans love cheering him, he's always been at his best as a heel, and his swerve of RVD got over big. I still don't know what Ric's long-term future holds in WCW, because I know he still wants to wrestle and I don't think that's the best idea, but for now at least he's back in the fold.

"In 2001 we let the world know that WCW was not only alive and well, but was moving away from the past and into the future. This year we showed everyone that we're ready to be a player not only in the US, but around the globe, and tonight we showed that at our best, we can put on a show as good or better than anything the almighty Vince McMahon can produce! In 2003, we'll send a message to Vince up in his ivory tower in Stamford: WCW is on the rise, and this war is far from over!"

Hall of Champions:

World Heavyweight Champion:

Rey Mysterio Jr.

Won: December 29th, 2002 from Booker T at Starrcade in Sydney, Australia

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
Booker T (#5): May 19th, 2002-December 29th, 2002 (224 days)
Rob Van Dam: December 30th, 2001-May 19th, 2002 (140 days)
Scott Steiner (#2): July 15th, 2001-December 30th, 3001 (168 days)
Booker T (#4): March 26th, 2001-July 15th, 2001 (111 days)

World Women's Champion:

Manami Toyota (4th reign)

Won: October 5th, 2002 from Etsuko Mita on Women's Wrestling Renaissance in Tokyo, Japan
((This was formerly the WWWA World Championship, the top title in All Japan Women's Pro Wrestling. The title was renamed the WCW World Women's Championship upon WCW buying AJW, and its title lineage was kept intact.))

Previous Champions (since January 2002):
Etsuko Mita: January 9th, 2002-October 5th, 2002 (269 days)

United States Heavyweight Champion:

AJ Styles

Won: December 29th, 2002 from Shane Douglas at Starrcade in Sydney, Australia

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
Shane Douglas (#2): April 1st, 2002-December 29th, 2002 (272 days)
Rey Misterio Jr (#2): October 14th, 2001-April 1st, 2002 (169 days)
Kanyon: August 5th, 2001-October 14th, 2001 (70 days)
Rey Misterio Jr: May 13th, 2001-August 5th, 2001 (85 days)
Booker T: March 18th, 2001-April 30th, 2001 (44 days)

Cruiserweight Champion:

"Fallen Angel" Christopher Daniels

Won: September 22nd, 2002 from American Dragon at War Games in Greensboro, North Carolina

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
American Dragon: August 11th, 2002-September 22nd, 2002 (42 days)
AJ Styles: April 21st, 2002-August 11th, 2002 (112 days)
TAKA: December 30th, 2001-April 21st, 2002 (112 days)
Jushin Liger: August 5th, 2001-December 30th, 2001 (147 days)
Shane Helms: March 18th, 2001-August 5th, 2001 (140 days)

World Television Champion:

Fit Finlay (2nd reign)

Won: July 29th, 2002 in a tournament final against Hugh Morrus at Monday Nitro in Bozeman, Montana

Previous Champions (since July 2002):

World Tag Team Champions:

The Hardys (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy, 2nd reign for both individually and as a team)

Won: December 29th, 2002 from True Heroes in a ladder match at Starrcade in Sydney, Australia

Previous Champions (since March 2001):
True Heroes (Lance Storm and CM Punk): October 27th, 2002-December 29th, 2002 (63 days)
The Hardys (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy): July 14th, 2002-October 27th, 2002 (105 days)
True Heroes (Lance Storm and CM Punk): December 30th, 2001-July 14th, 2002 (196 days)
The Natural Born Thrillers (Chuck Palumbo and Sean O'Haire): January 14th, 2001-December 30th, 2001 (351 days)

Prediction Scores (out of a possible 17 points):

((+3 = correctly predicted Rey Mysterio Jr. as the next World champ on the Great American Bash prediction card))

K-Necton: 12 (+3)
tg01: 12

Uncrewed: 11 (+3)
Kijar: 11
Satyr24: 11
Cro Cop Rules: 11

deanohbk: 10 (+3)
Dead_Jester: 10 (+3)
Wolfman84: 10 (+3)
michgcs: 10
JMike: 10
DavidCorperial: 10
Ian carlisle: 10

evileddie10: 9 (+3)
jscotty: 9 (+3)
DiamondKnucklez: 9
GnarlsFunk: 9
chrismday: 9
BHK6: 9
SomeLazyMagic: 9
cbacon87: 9 (+3)

Rateddc: 8 (+3)
Danny_H22: 8
Pteroid: 8
DGenerationMC: 8
Happy0wns: 8
odan: 8 (+3)
GingeyOne: 8
Nobby_McDonald: 8

bonnie: 7 (+3)
Beejus: 7
smw88: 7
crackerjack: 7
sportsfanmas: 7
KnowYourEnemy: 7
Destiny: 7

Warhawk8492: 6
thecoolestjedi12: 6

2Sweet: 5

Final Standings in UFS Prediction Contest after 6 shows:

1. Uncrewed: 64

2. deanohbk: 58 (25:50)
3. evileddie10: 58 (29:47)

4. Satyr24: 57 (24:00)
5. K-Nection: 57 (35:00)

6. Dead_Jester: 56 (32:26)
7. bonnie: 56 (38:46)

8. jscotty: 55

(9. Warhawk8492: 54)

BHK6: 53
odan: 53

GnarlsFunk: 52
Wolfman84: 52

sportsfanmas: 50

crackerjack: 49
Happy0wns: 49
Ian carlisle: 49
Rateddc: 49

smw88: 48

chrismday: 47

DGenerationMC: 46

michgcs: 45

Beejus: 44

Cro Cop Rules: 43
Kijar: 43

cbacon87: 41

tg01: 40
Nobby_McDonald: 40

Danny H22: 37

DavidCorperial: 34

GingeyOne: 31

LordofGustav: 30

Purotastic: 29
2Sweet: 29

SIser187: 26
KnowYourEnemy: 26

shawn michaels 82: 22
DiamondKnucklez: 22

The Lariat: 20

franticloser: 18

Jackets: 15
Destiny: 15

Gravyb0y: 11

Crossface: 10
JMike: 10

Greggyb: 9
Briskout: 9
SomeLazyMagic: 9

smartman: 8
Pteroid: 8

thecoolestjedi12: 6

Grades of interest:

Hardys vs. Heroes: 99
Corino vs. RVD: 90
Rey vs. Booker: 89, just short of an A

Many thanks to K-Nection for the poster! I personally think he outdid himself this time.

Lots of math here, so if you think I've made a mistake somewhere, bring it to my attention. I'll be PMing the top 8 finishers sometime soon, probably tomorrow, about the UFS. If any of the top 8 would prefer to give up their spot in the UFS draft and book WWE's Royal Rumble show instead, PM me to tell me so. Otherwise I'll extend the option to book that show to the #9 finisher, Warhawk.
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