Hosted by Eric Bischoff, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, and Steve “Mongo” McMichael
Since only one title was on the line last night, three titles will be defended tonight.
Match 1: “Macho Man” Randy Savage versus the Belfast Bruiser
Eric noted that the Bruiser did a number on Regal’s facial features last night.
He then activated my acid reflux by mentioning Hogan’s “success” last night. Got any Pepcid?
European uppercut sent Savage into the middle of next month.
Vicious clothesline by Savage who then tossed the Bruiser outside the ring.
He followed the Bruiser to the floor, but ate the ring post HARD.
The Bruiser then guillotined Savage on the steel railing.
Again the Bruiser rammed Savage into the ring post.
In lieu of making him taste the steel railing, he tossed Savage over it into the crowd.
Back in the ring, the Bruiser gave Savage a short-arm clothesline for 2.
After reversing a cross-corner whip, the Bruiser charged at Savage but rammed his shoulder into the ring post.
Savage then mounted the top turnbuckle, hit the big elbow, and got the pin.
Summary: The Bruiser made it a match, but Savage stayed on top.
1-800-COLLECT sponsors the replay.
Ad for the WCW hotline.
At the entrance, “Mean” Gene Okerlund interviews Flair. Woman and Elizabeth (holding Savage’s money) join the champ. “What’s causin’ all this” preceded Flair’s “having the whole world in (his) hands” again. Flair informs Luger he’s no longer part of his clique. He then asks Elizabeth who is more man: Flair or Luger. She picks Flair, but that wouldn’t last long behind the scenes. Flair then asks Woman who has the better physique. Woman sides with the “champ.”
Match 2 for the US title: Konnan (champion) versus Mr. JL
Eric noted that “at the eleventh hour” PIllman pulled out of Uncensored citing he didn’t want to work with the Taskmaster. Meltzer mentioned throat surgery which Pillman had done several times, so I’d go with his explanation.
Mr. JL used a flying headscissors to take Konnan down.
A second one looked even prettier.
As Konnan delivered a DDT, Eric informed us that Savage is livid about Flair.
Meanwhile Konnan gave Mr. JL a senton and got 2.
Bow and arrow by Konnan, but Mr. JL took over with an arm bar.
Spinning back elbow by Mr. JL followed by a missile dropkick for 2.
Powerbomb by Konnan got 2.
A second powerbomb attempt was countered into a sunset flip for 2.
Eric activated my acid reflux again by informing us that Hogan will return to Nitro next week. Pass the Pepcid please.
Pinfall reversal sequence got a pair of 2 counts.
After a slam, Konnan mounted the top turnbuckle.
Mr. JL caught him then delivered a top rope DDT. Oh my God!
Konnan’s dead. He’s pushing up daisies. Get out the stretcher.
Somehow Konnan kicked out at 2.
Whiplash slam and somersault rollup got the pin for Konnan.
Summary: Konnan didn’t win…he survived. As did Mr. JL. On the other hand, since Mr. JL beat Malenko last night on the Main Event doesn’t his loss here make the cruiserweight tournament look weak?
At the entrance, Disco Inferno wore DDP’s rings and shilled his disco CD.
Match 3: The Booty Man versus Disco Inferno
Disco had “Monday Nitro fever” written on the back of his tights.
The Booty Man delivered two atomic drops as the Booty GirlBabe looked on.
After the Booty Man gave Disco a back elbow, he allowed the Booty Babe to touch his booty.
High knee got the pin.
Summary: Showcase match for the Booty Man. Poor Disco.
After the match, the Booty Man planted another one on the Booty Babe.
On WCW Saturday Night, Luger defends the TV title against Shark (aired 3/30, taped 3/27). Sting faces Dean Malenko Hugh Morrus. Flair will square off against “Dirty” Dick Slater, and the Belfast Bruiser will tangle with Earl Robert Eaton. Lastly, the Giant will oppose Big Bubba Rogers. But who will be the champion?
Prior to the next match, Eric mentions Bagwell’s transition onto the silver screen. Bagwell played the Warrior in Day of the Warrior.
Also prior to the next match, an ad for the WCW Magazine aired.
Match 4 for the WCW World tag team titles: Sting & Lex Luger (champions) versus the American Males
A pair of dropkicks by Riggs gave him the advantage briefly.
As Riggs charged Luger in the corner, Luger ran him over with a running clothesline.
Pair of slams by Sting to Bagwell excited the crowd.
Double hip toss to Luger by the Males followed by a Bagwell splash got 2 on Luger.
Upon receiving a cross-corner whip, Bagwell leaped to the second turnbuckle.
Unfortunately for him, he whiffed on a cross-body block.
While Luger missed a clothesline, Bagwell hit the flying forearm.
As Sting tried to slam Riggs, he got caught with an inside cradle.
Cross-body block off the ropes by Sting to Riggs got the pin.
Summary: Fast-paced tag match, but the outcome was never in doubt.
After the match, Luger grabs the tag belts and celebrates like he won the NBA title. Meanwhile, Sting shows sportsmanship toward the Males.
Match 5 for the WCW World title: “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (champion w/ Woman and Elizabeth) versus the Giant (w/ Jimmy Hart)
As Elizabeth made her way to the ring, she tossed Savage’s money into the crowd.
Doug Dillinger, Eddie Guerrero, and Jim Duggan had to restrain Savage from going after her.
Woman returned to slap Savage.
Unsuccessfully Flair tried a pair of shoulder blocks as he hit the mat each time.
Two gorilla press slams by the Giant as Eric pat Flair on the back for beating another big man in the sport—Vader back at Starrcade ’93. Um...who does he work for again?
Flair tried to escape, but the Giant put him over his shoulder and carried him back to the ring.
Chops to the Giant’s chest had ZERO effect.
Vertical suplex by the Giant caused Woman to scream loudly.
Eric mentioned that on 8/11 WCW will hold a new event called Hog Wild in Sturgis, SD.
A cross-corner whip by the Giant resulted in a Flair flip.
Flair landed on the apron, mounted the adjacent top turnbuckle, but got caught.
Giant proceeded to give him a backbreaker.
The Giant mounted the top turnbuckle, but missed a splash by a mile. Wow!
After giving Flair a cross-corner whip, the Giant charged at Flair, missed, and sailed over the top rope to the floor just like last night.
As Elizabeth distracted referee Randy Anderson, Woman gave some wire to Flair.
Flair used the wire to choke the Giant on the floor.
With the Giant on his knees, he shoved Flair down twice.
Elizabeth got Anderson’s attention again as Flair kicked a 60-yard field goal on the Giant. YEE-OUCH!
As Flair distracted Anderson, Woman used the wire to choke the Giant.
After Flair hammered the Giant with a forearm to the back, he mounted the top turnbuckle.
As you should have guessed, he…♫ came…down…the…hard…way.♫
Giant channeled his inner Jerry Lawler and pulled down the strap.
Both Elizabeth and Woman jumped into the ring.
Suddenly Arn runs in with a chair and WALLOPS the Giant in the back with it.
The Taskmaster also got into the ring and took the chair from Arn.
The Giant turned around and saw the Taskmaster with the chair.
That earned the Taskmaster a chokeslam.
Unfortunately for Arn, he suffered the same fate.
Jimmy Hart jumped in the ring as the bell rang.
Summary: Creative finish considering it is difficult to book a loss without a title change. The highlight of the match definitely is the Giant mounting the top turnbuckle. It’s a sight to behold.
Did the Giant just do a face turn?
Conclusion: Lots of action this week with an intriguing main event that did NOT include Hogan. Thank God. The main story of the program that manifested was the Flair-Savage money angle. We’ll see how that progresses as the weeks go by. I wonder how the go-home show for RAW was counterprogrammed.
TV Rating: 3.10
WWF Monday Night RAW
Taped from San Antonio, TX
Airdate: March 25, 1996 (taped 3/11)
Hosted by Vince McMahon and Jerry “The King” Lawler
Prior to the first match, Michaels made his entrance with the Kliq Cam. It reminds me of the “cam” footage on ECW Hardcore TV although not as violent.
Match 1: The “Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels versus Leif Cassidy
Can you tell this is Michaels’ hometown? The crowd hung on his every word.
Including one more person—Jose Lothario—who made his way to the ring for the first time in Michaels’ corner.
Speaking of Lothario, he got the microphone and promised a victory at WrestleMania XII.
Bret came to the ring to supply color commentary as Lawler left.
Flying body press by Michaels got 2.
Vince promises all types of falls in the Iron Man match this Sunday. I wonder how many we’ll see.
Leapfrog by Michaels countered into a powerbomb by the geeky Cassidy.
Uranage slam by Cassidy. You don’t see that move every day.
Yet another spectator made his way to the ring as Marty Jannetty came to watch his partner not stink it up like Shinobi try to beat Michaels.
Vertical suplex by Cassidy as Michaels is BUSTED OPEN!
Bret mentioned nine cheerleaders who beat up Michaels in Syracuse. Wow, that’s harsh.
Excellent pinfall reversal sequence got several 2 counts.
Cassidy botched a hotshot that would have seriously changed the course of wrestling history had Michaels gotten severely injured.
As Cassidy placed Michaels atop the top turnbuckle, he joined him then gave him a top rope superplex. Wow!
Cassidy tried it again, but Michaels gave him a front suplex down to the mat.
Michaels followed up with a top rope clothesline.
After a kip-up, Michaels delivered an atomic drop.
He followed that with an inverted atomic drop. I believe that was a receipt for the botch.
As Michaels tried to come off the ropes for a flying forearm, Jannetty tripped him.
While Jannetty held Michaels in the corner, Bret left the broadcast table and pushed Jannetty.
After Cassidy missed a monkey flip in the corner, Michaels hit him with Sweet Chin Music.
Summary: Despite the botch, this was Snow’s best match in the WWF. Nevertheless, he never stood a chance of winning here.
After the match, Michaels confronts Jannetty. Immediately Bret turns Michaels around to face him. Lothario gets between them before any fisticuffs could transpire.
Match 2: Aldo Montoya versus Hunter Hearst Helmsley
The future Justin Credible gets a shot at the man who will be “in the ring to my left” at WrestleMania.
Michelle Snickler got a second cameo on RAW as this was match #2 for Helmsley at this taping.
To promote the Ultimate Warrior they spotlighted his run-in at the end of WrestleMania VIII with 62,167 in attendance. Of course, they don’t tell you the paid attendance.
Don’t forget to watch the Slammys this Saturday night at 11pm ET. I believe the crowd chanted “kill the clown” at Doink when he made an appearance. Yikes!
Like a gentleman, Montoya opened the ropes for Snickler to leave the ring.
Helmsley took advantage while Montoya had his back to him.
Hip toss and slam by Montoya, but a splash only hit knees.
Helmsley performed his best Booty Man imitation and delivered a high knee.
A formal bow preceded a vertical suplex by Helmsley.
A knee drop by Helmsley earned a 2 count.
Back elbow by Helmsley got a trio of 2 counts.
Sunset flip by Montoya, but Helmsley put a boot between the eyes to thwart it.
After receiving a cross-corner whip, Montoya leaped to the second turnbuckle, hit a flying body press, and got the pin!
Helmsley lost his prelim match before WrestleMania?
Just kidding, he got 2.
Dropkick by Montoya followed by a flying headscissors.
Clothesline by Montoya who then mounted the top turnbuckle.
Flying body press got 2 for Montoya.
Next, he set up for a back body drop, but Helmsley stopped, hit the Pedigree, and got the pin.
Summary: For a minute there, I thought we’d see an upset. Wishful thinking. Helmsley moves on to lose to face the Ultimate Warrior at WrestleMania.
On the backlot, Goldust stands next to a Piper mannequin. Of course, with no repercussions, he lays on the suggestive language extra thick. He then tosses the mannequin into the wall demolishing it.
The Undertaker’s music plays in the arena as he and Paul Bearer make their way to the ring.
Before the Undertaker interview, Dok Hendrix shills a jacket from the WWF Store for 3 monthly installments of $59.95. Yikes!
Next week on RAW, Mankind debuts!
In the ring, Vince interviews the Undertaker with Paul Bearer. Highlights from both the Royal Rumble and IYH VI are shown. Following that, the casket gets destroyed, Diesel nails Bearer, and finally the casket for Diesel is revealed. Undertaker refers to his fans as “creatures of the night.” Solid promo.
Cast your ballot for the Slammy Awards.
Hendrix sings “Badstreet USA” to the live crowd in San Antonio.
Another training video of Michaels is shown. Um, do I have to ask what’s on Nitro?
Another training video of Bret is shown. Seriously, this is change-the-channel type of programming.
RAW is sponsored by Burger King and Starburst.
Match 3: Ahmed Johnson versus Owen Hart (w/ Jim Cornette)
While Johnson showed off his power against Owen, Diana Smith was shown sitting in the front row.
As a test-of-strength was teased, the “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith came to the ring.
After Johnson placed Owen on the top turnbuckle, Owen leaped at him.
Johnson caught him and almost dropped him. Whew!
Bear hug by Johnson, but he released the hold due to Smith’s distraction.
Owen made him pay with a spinning heel kick sending Johnson down to the floor.
Prior to the commercial break, Owen made Johnson taste the steel railing. It must have tasted like the Prince Edward mussels at Cappy’s.
When we return, Johnson ate another spinning heel kick.
He then gave Owen the spinebuster.
Just as Johnson set up for the Pearl River Plunge, Smith ran in and nailed him.
Summary: Too short to mean anything. The match resembled what was transpiring on the other channel, but it didn’t come off as well.
After the match, Johnson ducks a clothesline then delivers a double clothesline to both Owen and Smith. Vader runs in and hammers Johnson. As Cornette held referee Jack Doan, Owen and Smith hit running clotheslines in the corner on Johnson. Vader hits the running body block as Yokozuna comes to aid Johnson. He’s followed by Roberts. Yokozuna clotheslines Vader over the top rope to the floor as the faces clear the ring.
Bret Hart video closes out the show. Stuff like this doesn’t quell the rumors of Bret’s retirement.
TV Rating: 2.80
Who won?RAW definitely had the hard-sell for WrestleMania going strongly; however, Nitro eked out the victory as I’m certain viewers were curious how they would follow the debacle that was Uncensored. Next week the post-WrestleMania RAW opposes a Hogan/Booty Man versus Taskmaster/Arn tag match main event on Nitro. The ratings war is definitely heating up.