As much as fans today can complain about how bad WWE PPVs are, it’s still much better than what WCW was presenting. It’s still remarkable to look back and see how WCW seemed to go out of their way to present some of the worst shows imaginable. It’s easy to remember the later years but the early 1990s were pretty terrible too. That’s especially true for 1995 where the company was suffering under Hulk Hogan’s ego and too many bad creative moves. The problem was for every actually good PPV match, WCW would have two or three bad ones.
It may be easier to count the actually great WCW PPVs rather than the bad ones because there are so many of them. Sure, a few had good matches to spark it but a PPV is always judged by the ending. And WCW had some of the worst finishes of all time from horrible matches to just baffling moves that made fans angry they paid to see them. Here are the 10 worst WCW PPV endings ever as a reminder once more of how badly they could screw up shows.
10 Starrcade ‘97
This was supposed to be the moment WCW put WWE behind it for good and took over the wrestling world. Instead, it was the beginning of their end. After 14 months, Sting was finally going to crush Hulk Hogan and win the WCW title. At least, that’s what should have happened. Instead, Hogan dominated an out of shape Sting and then pinned him cleanly.
The announcers tried to sell it was a fast count as Bret Hart came out and somehow was able to restart the match. Sting did win but the celebration was not what it should have been. WCW had managed to ruin one of its best builds which would harm it big time down the line.
9 SuperBrawl IX
If one wants to know just how bad WCW was in 1999, just consider that for one of their first big PPVs, the main event was Hulk Hogan vs Ric Flair. Yes, instead of Goldberg or any of the young stars on their roster, WCW went for a battle of two legends seen numerous times already.
To be fair, both men did their best and the crowd was hot but that didn’t excuse how this shouldn’t have been finishing a 1999 show. It ended with David Flair turning on his dad to help Hogan retain the title and they celebrated with Torrie Wilson and Kevin Nash. It’s no wonder WCW went so downhill that year.
8 Uncensored ‘95
1995 was a very bad year for WCW before “Nitro” premiered. Hogan’s ego was running rampant and causing some messes of otherwise top-notch feuds. Uncensored was quite possibly the worst show of the entire year thanks to the horrible main event. Hogan was to face Vader in a strap match. Flair interfered which led to Hogan easily handling both men then somehow winning the match by dragging Flair around the corners.
Then a masked man who was supposed to be Arn Anderson came out only for the real Anderson to hop outbound and gagged as the masked man was Savage. Throw in the Renegade and it’s no wonder this show remains so hated.
7 Halloween Havoc 2000
By late 2000, it was obvious how WCW was sinking fast. Yet it’s still amazing how they put together a show this bad. The worst had to be the fact that Booker T vs Scott Steiner for the World title was the second-to-last match on the card.
The main event was Goldberg facing Kronik. Yes, a handicap match that would have been a lame finisher for a “Thunder “episode headlined one of WCW’s biggest shows. It was a four-minute squash and astounding how WCW actually thought this was the perfect closer for what was once one of their marquee PPVs.
6 Halloween Havoc ‘92
The problem with Bill Watts running WCW was the man was way too old-school for 90s audiences. At Havoc, Sting and Jake Roberts faced off in a “Spin the Wheel, Make the Deal” match. With options like a steel cage, Texas Deathmatch and more, the wheel landed on...a coal miner’s glove match. As in, just climbing up a pole to grab a loaded glove to hit the other guy. The match was meant to end with Jake being bitten by his cobra but the snake wouldn’t cooperate. So Jake had to hold it to his face and writhe in fake pain. No wonder he left WCW immediately after this show.
5 Starrcade ‘99
This was bad enough at the time but even worse afterward. The main event had promise, with Bret Hart facing Goldberg for the WCW title. With the ref down, Bret put Goldberg into the Sharpshooter as Roddy Piper raced to the ring and ordered the belt rung. Yes, it was Montreal with Bret in the role of Shawn Michaels and a tired NWO reformation.
Worse was that during the match, Bret took a nasty kick to the head that would end up giving him his career-ending concussion. This ended up being the end of Bret’s main career to make this show even worse in hindsight.
4 Slamboree 2000
As terrible as David Arquette winning the WCW World Title was, this may have been even worse. The main event was WCW using the horrible triple-decker cage from the “Ready to Rumble” movie. The idea was to climb up the cages to where the belt was hanging over the structure. DDP was about to win it when Arquette pulled the “ultimate swerve” and hit him with a guitar to let Jarrett regain the belt. Then Mike Awesome threw Kanyon off the cage onto the ramp which was no-sold. A horrible capper to one of the worst WCW angles ever.
3 Road Wild ‘98
Jay Leno in the main event. That alone guarantees this is one of the worst wrestling shows ever. WCW Champion Goldberg was stuck in a battle royal between the two NWO factions while the “Tonight Show” host teamed with DDP against Hogan and Bischoff.
Chris Jericho calls the moment where Hogan sells a Leno armbar for photographers one of the lowest points in the business. Kevin Eubanks helped Leno get the pin and Goldberg saved them from a beatdown...then botched the simple “everyone raises arms in victory” pose. A definite loser for PPVs.
2 Halloween Havoc ‘95
It’s not just one of the worst endings to a WCW PPV ever but has to rank as one of the worst for any PPV in history. The show was already a mess but saved the worst for last. After a monster truck battle, Hogan had tossed the Giant off the roof of the arena. The Giant showed up looking perfectly okay for a terrible match.
Jimmy Hart turned on Hogan to have the Giant win by DQ and thus win the belt. Lex Luger attacked Hogan and then came a guy dressed as a Mummy but called the Yeti whose attack on Hogan was laughable. Even by WCW standards, this was ridiculous.
1 Halloween Havoc ‘98
Thankfully, even WCW didn’t lose their minds enough to think that the Hulk Hogan-Ultimate Warrior rematch should have been the main event of the show. If it was, it would rank among the worst PPV main events ever thanks to its utter wretchedness. Instead, Goldberg and DDP managed to win back the crowd with a terrific match for the WCW title that’s one of Goldberg’s best. Too bad the PPV audience didn’t see it.
Incredibly, no one had thought to warn the cable company that the show was going to run past its three hour time so as soon as the main event began, the feed cut out. WCW had to refund hundreds of thousands of dollars and show they could ruin even a good finish.