Date: November 27, 1991
Location: Baltimore Arena in Baltimore, MD
Source: Steve Austin podcast, Armpit reader Justin Newbould
Diamond Dallas Page got a late start in the pro wrestling business, working as a manager while bouncing at a nightclub he owned, and then segueing into being a part-time wrestler. Firebreaker Chip was a short, but heavily muscled, journeyman who was hired by WCW in 1991 as part of a mid-card tag team with Todd Champion as the Patriots.
Dusty Rhodes hired Page as a manager in 1991, as he was very tall and had a good look. Later that year, he transitioned back to being a pro wrestler again. Dusty put him in a tag team with his good friend Scott Hall. Even though Page was green and already in his mid 30s, he was a tireless worker and spent almost all his off days at the WCW Power Plant training center. Firebreaker Chip also spent time at the Power Plant, so the two knew each other from there.
DDP’s first match in WCW was November 26, 1991, in Salisbury, MD teaming with Hall against Chip and Champion. Champion had a similar background as Chip, and was tall, muscular, and had the look WCW wanted. Champion was billed as a veteran of the Desert Storm Persian Gulf war, and both he and Chip had worked as jobbers previously (Chip for the WWF and Champion for the NWA).
The next night, in Baltimore, was their second match together, and the second match of DDP’s WCW career. At the time, WCW arena business was in the toilet. The company was still under Jim Herd and had just fired Ric Flair, and the “We Want Flair” chants were a common occurrence at the house shows where WCW had run for years, such as Baltimore. By this time, Flair was already entrenched in the WWF, so the chants had died down somewhat. Still, Baltimore was a hardcore wrestling crowd.
DDP later told the story and claimed 6,000 people were in the building, but the real number was less than 1,500. WCW hadn’t drawn a crowd of 6,000 in a long time, and it would be a long time before they ever did again. The Arena was known to be quite run down, and even the wrestlers who loved Baltimore all concurred the building was not a fun one to work in.
Still, the crowd was jacked, which made the wrestlers excited and work more intense. Chip was twisting DDP’s arm and working pretty stiff, and DDP told him to lighten up. He didn’t, so DDP told him if he didn’t lighten up then he’s got a receipt coming.
Chip apparently didn’t lighten up, so DDP came back with kicks that were stiff as well. After the match, Chip went through the curtain and DDP was not far behind him. It wasn’t long before Chip was screaming at him, saying things like, “Motherf*cker, if you don’t know how to kick, you shouldn’t be kicking out there!”
DDP fired back, explaining the kicks were a receipt for “ripping my f*ckin’ arm off.” At this point they were up the stairs, in a hallway next to the lockers. They’re now belly to belly, chest-bumping each other. While DDP is several inches taller, Chip was enormously thick and muscular (this was just as the WWF was about to crack down on steroid use, but use was still rampant in WCW). The commotion caused the Steiners, Lex Luger, and Sting to pop their heads out and see what was going on.
Chip threw the first blow, hitting DDP’s temple with a right hook that split him open. DDP, with his bouncer experience, immediately kneed him in the gut and got him in a front face lock. Chip had nowhere to go, stuck in the guillotine, and DDP said he had done this all the time taking guys out in his nightclub. He was going to take Chip outside and settle it, Chip was trying to get out, saying things like, “I thought you were my friend!”
DDP was cautious about letting him loose again and getting hit. He finally let him go, and Chip stormed away. DDP went after him, not to fight some more, but to talk it out. But Paul Heyman stopped him and said to just let him go.
Later, Scott Hall told DDP, “Dally, you just got over more than you would in 100 matches.” Hall was referring to getting over with the boys in the back, not the fans, as much of the locker room resented the Patriots for being jacked up bodybuilders who didn’t have the talent to match the push they were getting. And in his second match, DDP had his doubters as well.
DDP said Chip was the nicest guy, and afterwards they hugged and had a beer. The irony is that DDP was going to marry Kimberly just four days later (December 1), and if the fight had continued and gotten worse, he possibly would’ve had a black eye at his own wedding.