Slamboree '94: Rick Rude vs Vader

Discussion in 'Old School Wrestling' started by enviousdominous, Apr 26, 2018.

  1. enviousdominous

    enviousdominous Behold my diction

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    Sometimes prowrestling teases us with an amazing story, that doesn't come to pass.

    Rick Rude was coming into his own as a world champion caliber character in WCW in the early 1990s. He was your typical muscular egomaniac, but he wasn't a meathead. He was damn articulate for a wrestler of that era, and when tested without any political restraints he could match wits the best of them.

    Rick Rude was on a roll when he defeated Ric Flair for the WCW International Championship at Fall Brawl 1993, and in spite of stories that I've heard about Rude having real life issues with Bill Watts regarding being underpaid, it seemed like WCW had huge plans for the Rick Rude character. I'm told that Rude was likely going to retain the belt through a DQ finish in the match against Vader, and be at the center of an eventual unification of the WCW World Heavyweight Championship and the WCW International Heavyweight Championship.

    Most of us witnessed firsthand when Rude faced Sting in a fateful match where Rude landed on the corner of an elevated platform while catching Sting, which caused Rude to blow out a few of his vertebrae. Before and during this feud with Sting, Rude was having issues with Big Van Vader.

    During a grudge match between Rude and Sting, Harley Race entered the ring with a chair with the intention of attacking Sting and giving Rude the win. Race accidentally hit Rick Rude with the chair, and for the next two months Rude was going after Vader in some blistering promos.

    Rick Rude gets a little revenge, and cuts a thunderous promo afterward:

    [youtube]5pnDVf19V2E[/youtube]

    Rick Rude interrupts an interview with Vader to insult him further:

    [youtube]al1CjTQ08jc[/youtube]

    Vader interrupts an interview with Rick Rude, and Rude makes him regret it:

    [youtube]VlvyQLYymzs[/youtube]

    This match never took place. Rick Rude would lose the International Title to Sting in an impromptu I quit match, and Sting would go on to defend against Vader at Slamboree. Fans of Vader and Rick Rude were told their match would not be taking place on the day that Slamboree 1994 was taking place.

    I feel like this match had the potential to change the creative direction of WCW. With or without this match, WCW was determined to have a Hogan vs Flair mega-match. Sting was likely to be a factor if a title unification made any sense up to Bash at the Beach 1994, and I imagine that if that were the case that Vader or Rick Rude would have been involved as well.

    Hogan was destined to flatten Ric Flair and Vader. I've had crazier theories before, but I feel that fans would have turned on Hogan sooner if Rick Rude was cutting promos on Hogan with the same level of fury that he used when cutting promos on Vader. Hogan had Roman Reigns heat in a few places while he was still running around as The Hulkster, and I don't think that Rude would have been shy about exploiting that. I think that WCW would have been far from hiring Hall and Nash, so Hogan would have likely fought tooth and nail to stay a good guy, as there wasn't anybody to give him street cred and make him into a cool heel, until eventually being forced to suffer from an "injury" and disappear from WCW for a little while.

    Rick Rude was a phenomenal performer, who suffered from a series of unfortunate events. I feel that if he had fought Vader at Slamboree 1994, it would have been career defining for both men.
     
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  2. Greg4WWE

    Greg4WWE Pre-Show Stalwart

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    I remember this. IT seems it was as close as Rude got to a "face" turn. He wasn't face here, but the crowd was certainly cheering him over Vader.
     
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  3. GhettoV1

    GhettoV1 Pre-Show Stalwart

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    Rick Rude as a face would be interesting.
     
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  4. Makaveli31

    Makaveli31 Championship Contender

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    Rude would've been Stone Cold and the NWO and considering how close Austin and Nash were to Rude in WCW I'm wondering if they didn't get the idea for a face with an attitude from Rick Rude. Both men always speak highly of Rude and Nash even went so far as to credit Rude for his success. There is no doubt Rude would've been the top guy for years to come.

    With Rude occupying the top spot I don't think Hogan would've dared to set foot in WCW. Hogan didn't want any part of Rude in the WWF. Obviously Rude's career ending injury made this all moot but I do think if Rude was given the top it would've changed the course of WCW's future.
     
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  5. GhettoV1

    GhettoV1 Pre-Show Stalwart

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    Imagine WCW Monday Nitro with Rick Rude as WCW's top star vs Sting, Lex Luger, The Giant, Goldberg or Ric Flair?
     
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  6. jpickens

    jpickens Pre-Show Stalwart

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    Would've been ten times better than anything Hulk Hogan did in WCW.
     
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  7. Goldie

    Goldie Getting Noticed By Management

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    Rick Rude was a very under rated wrestler. He could work, had a great physique and could talk.
    Its a shame he never won a world title (WCW international title didn't have the prestige of the WCW world title) - had he been around a few years later (where belts passed hands frequently) I'm sure he would have made it.

    However by summer 1994 WCW became the Hogan show- had Rude not been injured, he would have still likely been fodder for Hogan- just as Flair and Vader were.
     
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