March 26, 2001.
That was the last time wrestling fans had the pleasure of watching an episode of WCW Monday Nitro, before the organisation was bought by WWE.
Nitro had been a staple of Monday nights since September 1995 and, though the company had been circling the drain for a while and the product was a shadow of what it once was, it was still incredibly sad to see it go.
Even on its last episode it was providing fans with memorable moments, as Booker T beat Scott Steiner to become the five-time, five-time, FIVE-TIME WCW Champion, and Ric Flair wrestled Sting for the final time in a sentimental main event.
While Nitro had been at times frustrating, perplexing and depressing over the years, when it was good it was great and some of the biggest moments of the Monday Night Wars happened on it.
There has been a bit of revisionist history (mainly by those that won the war, go figure) that WCW was pure wrestle-rubbish 99% of the time. That’s simply not true, and the following should help dispel that harmful myth.
10. It’s Me, It’s Me, It’s La…Park…A
When Randy Savage was booked against LA Parka on the July 7th, 1997 episode of Nitro, it just seemed like a typical, random match that fans of the show had come to expect to see.
Given their respective statuses on the card – Savage was a solidified main eventer, Parka a little bit of novelty midcard fun – most would have expected a routine victory for the Macho Man.
This was emphasised by the fact that they cut away from the WCW ‘Chairman’s’ entrance to show a recap, while superstar Randy made a long walk to the ring flanked by nWo pals Scott Hall and Elizabeth.
The bout was short and one-sided as anticipated and Hall walked to the commentary booth in the middle of it, as Savage went for the big flying elbow to wrap things up while the prone Parka lay there, ‘unconscious’ according to the announcers.
But then he got his feet up and nailed a stunned ‘Mach with a…Diamond Cutter?
The man under the hood was, of course, everyone’s favourite Yoga Dad, Diamond Dallas Page, masquerading as the skeletonised luchador.
It was a great angle and an expert reveal, as nobody had a clue it was DDP under there and provided a rare moment of someone getting one over on the New World Order.