The legacy of WCW Nitro is that the show helped change the wrestling industry for the better. WCW having their show run directly against Raw on Monday nights allowed the wrestling business to grow when both products became hot around the same time. Fans still talk fondly about the Monday Night Wars today due to the nature of importance behind each week of television.
We will look back at the best matches from Nitro that provided great memories for the viewers. The following matches range from mat classics to exciting moments to important times for WCW. Fans of the product will all remember just how much these matches meant at the time and still provide value today. Find out where your favorite ranks with the top ten matches in WCW Nitro history.
10 Goldberg vs Hulk Hogan (July 6, 1998)
The match itself wasn’t anything remarkable, but the story playing out in the ending made Goldberg vs Hulk Hogan a masterpiece. Goldberg headed into his first-ever title shot for the WCW Championship with his undefeated streak on the line against Hulk Hogan.
Nitro often had the reputation of booking major matches with DQ finishes to build for the PPVs. This night was different as fans got the payoff they wanted. Goldberg defeated Hogan to continue his streak as the new WCW Champion as fans in the Georgia Dome lost their minds in excitement.
9 Randy Savage vs "La Parka" (July 7, 1997)
The rivalry between Randy Savage and Diamond Dallas Page led to the fans of WCW getting a tremendous moment. Savage apparently faced off with La Parka in a typical match fans expected Savage to win with ease.
La Parka however started putting up a strong fight. The crowd exploded when he hit the Diamond Cutter and unmasked to reveal it was DDP under the mask all along. WCW utilized the masked luchador look to help set up a huge moment in the fun match.
8 Brian Pillman vs Jushin Thunder Liger (September 4, 1995)
WCW selected the duo of Brian Pillman and Jushin Thunder Liger to have the first match ever on Monday Nitro. The two wrestlers had a great track record of delivering classics during the early 90s in the cruiserweight division.
Liger and Pillman picked back up their rivalry for the important match and started Nitro off with a bang. Casual fans mostly remember the surprise appearance of Lex Luger that night, but diehard fans remember the outstanding opening match of the episode.
7 Ric Flair vs Randy Savage (June 17, 1996)
Randy Savage and Ric Flair had an underrated rivalry that extended from WWE to WCW. The move of Savage joining WCW would see him get the chance to oppose Flair again quite a few more times. This match in 1996 was among the better performances of each man that year.
Savage appeared to have the match won on a few occasions before interference from the Four Horsemen. Chris Benoit and Arn Anderson were taken out by Savage, but Steve “Mongo” McMichael using his briefcase as a weapon allowed Flair to steal the win.
6 Goldberg vs Sting (September 14, 1998)
The momentum of Goldberg made him the new hottest star of WCW in 1998. However, fans still had loyalty and admiration for Sting as he held that role for the past seven years in the company. Sting was getting a newfound buzz after joining the nWo Wolfpac face faction.
The two beloved wrestlers faced off with Sting going blow for blow with Goldberg. Every time Sting came back with a huge move, it made the fans believe this would be the night that streak ended. Hulk Hogan’s interference allowed Goldberg to win after an exciting match.
5 Ric Flair vs. Eddie Guerrero (May 20, 1996)
WCW never gave Eddie Guerrero a fair chance to move into the main event picture. However, there was one short program with Ric Flair that allowed him to work with a bigger name. Flair delivered a strong performance allowing the newcomer to look good against him.
Guerrero stepped up to the occasion putting out his best effort against the top star. Flair eventually survived the comeback to score the win as most expected. However, the audience viewed Eddie as a bigger star due to the match. WCW sadly did nothing with this as he moved back to the mid-card.
4 Rey Mysterio vs. Blitzkrieg vs. Juventud Guerrera vs. Psychosis (April 19, 1999)
The cruiserweight division was often responsible for the most exciting matches on Nitro every week. This fatal four-way stole the show during this April 19, 1999 edition of Nitro. Rey Mysterio, Psychosis, Juventud Guerrera and Blitzkrieg all were on their A-game this night.
1999 was a rough year for WCW as things started to drastically fall apart. Most of the episodes of Nitro disappointed, but the cruiserweights still treated it like a huge event. Fans were able to at least witness these guys giving them a special performance in between the awful content.
3 Goldberg vs Raven (April 20, 1998)
The Raven’s Rules stipulation would see Raven put his United States Championship on the line against Goldberg just one night after winning the title. Goldberg had his toughest task yet in the undefeated streak looking to overcome Raven and his Flock to win his first belt.
Raven’s Flock would get destroyed by Goldberg one by one in glorious fashion. Fans prevented Raven from running into the crowd for the count-out to retain the title. Goldberg hit his finishing moves to a massive pop as the audience exploded when he won the United States Championship.
2 Bret Hart vs Chris Benoit (October 4, 1999)
Bret Hart and Chris Benoit were given the freedom and time to deliver a classic match in late 1999. This match was dedicated to the late Owen Hart just months after he passed away. Owen’s brother Bret and friend Benoit delivered a classic while honoring the lost loved one.
Both wrestlers were known for their technical wrestling skills and put it on display this night. Bret picked up the win to a huge ovation before looking to the sky to show love for his brother. This was a feel-good moment after an all-time great WCW match.
1 Sting vs Diamond Dallas Page (April 26, 1999)
The best match in WCW Nitro is one that doesn’t get enough love all these years later. Diamond Dallas Page defended his newly won WCW Championship against Sting during the April 26, 1999 edition of Nitro early in the show.
Both men provided an outstanding performance with the action-packed match winning over the crowd. Sting countered the Diamond Cutter to hit the Scorpion Deathdrop to win his fifth WCW Championship. Page won the title back later in the show, but this match was must-see television for any wrestling fan.