Back in the early 1990’s one of the best and most high profile female professional wrestlers in America was Debrah ‘Madusa/Alundra Blayze’ Miceli. For over ten years Miceli wrestled in the big leagues. Sandwiched between her two WCW runs as Madusa was a two year stint in the WWF as Alundra Blayze. After leaving the wrestling scene in 2001 she became a successful monster truck driver, something she continues to be involved in. Despite capturing titles in both America and Japan – including the WCW Cruiserweight Title – and a successful monster truck career, there is one championship and one incident in particular that she is remembered for. On the December 18th 1995 episode of WCW Monday Nitro, Miceli marked her first WCW appearance in two years by throwing the WWF Women’s Championship in the bin.
In the early 90’s Miceli made a name for herself as Madusa, a member of The Dangerous Alliance in WCW. This often forgotten, yet star-studded, stable was led by Paul E. Dangeroulsy (aka Paul Heyman) and featured stars such as a pre-Stone Cold Steve Austin, Arn Anderson, Larry Zybyszko and Rick Rude. Miceli’s role in the group was largely that of a valet for Rick Rude. Upon leaving the group it became clear that this lady could wrestle, after facing Rude in a couple of inter-gender matches.
At the tail-end of 1993 the WWF resurrected its women’s championship and brought in Miceli to revive the dormant division. Re-christened Alundra Blayze Miceli became a three time WWF Women’s Champion over the course of her two year stay. Then in late 1995, and depending on what you read, Miceli’s contract either expired or she was released due to cost-cutting measures. Either way, the WWF were asleep at the wheel on this one as Miceli left the company while still recognised as their Women’s Champion. As a talented performer with a history in WCW, and in possession of a WWF title belt, there was only one place Miceli was headed next. Cue Eric Bischoff…
At the start of the December 18th episode of Nitro Miceli interrupted commentators Eric Bischoff, Steve ‘Mongo’ McMichael and Bobby Heenan. She introduced herself as Madusa, brought out the WWF Women’s Championship belt and dropped it in a strategically placed trash can. She closed by reinforcing that her name was Madusa and not Alundra Blayze and said “that’s what I think of the WWF Women’s Championship belt.” After she left the announce position Bobby Heenan was left with a genuine look of shock on his face, while Eric Bischoff was clearly trying to conceal a massive grin.
Why was Bischoff so obviously giddy with excitement? Because it was his idea. The stunt was initially met with a degree of trepidation from Miceli, who has since stated that she regrets it, but was ultimately executed with great conviction. One can sympathise with Miceli’s position here. If you had just started a new job and your boss told you to do something what would you do?
If the return of Lex Luger on the debut episode of Nitro can be considered a coup for WCW then the binning of the Women’s Title Belt can be considered a definite kick in the nuts for the WWF. The stunt was carried out purely as a jab at the WWF; it had no purpose or context within WCW television at the time. I mean it was a further three or four years before Miceli would even be used on a weekly basis on TV. Within WCW the stunt, and Madusa to an extent, were forgotten about within a week.
Over in the WWF the stunt was never publically acknowledged, obviously, however it may have had a further reaching impact than even Eric Bischoff intended. No, I’m not referring to the fact that it took three years before the Women’s Title was resurrected. Nor am I referring to the rumours suggesting that Debrah Miceli is far from welcome in WWE or its Hall of Fame. A little under two years after Miceli left the WWF with the Woman’s Title, Vince McMahon found himself in the exact same position, only with the stakes much higher. Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart was staring at the WWF exit, while holding onto the WWF Title. One has to wonder how the events of December 18th 1995 played on Vince’s mind on November 9th 1997, at the Survivor Series.
All previous ‘A Moment in Time’ articles can be read here.