WWF Monday Night RAW 3-3-97

Taped from Berlin, Germany

Airdate: March 3, 1997 (taped 2/26)

Attendance: 6,373

Hosted by Vince McMahon, Jim Ross & the Honkytonk Man

It’s time for RAW is Germany! Drive the Volkswagen down and grab some wiener schnitzel.

Opening montage.

Prior to the first match, Vince interviews Bret in split-screen.

Match 1: Bret “Hitman” Hart versus Hunter Hearst Helmsley


Rating: ***

Summary: Crappy finish to a truly good match.

After the match, “that woman,” according to Vince, gets in Bret’s face, but officials escort her away.

LIVE from WWF Studios, Austin pays a visit to the throne.

We then revisit Royal Rumble when Owen “mistakenly” tossed out Smith.

Afterward, we revisit IYH XIII: Final Four when Undertaker booted a chair into Vader’s face causing a serious blade job.

The WWF Slam of the Week features the high-impact moves between Undertaker and Faarooq from last week’s show.

Prior to the next match, we see footage from Chemnitz, Germany when Vader rolled through a cross body block from Maivia to advance in the European title tournament.

Match 2 for the WWF Intercontinental title: Rocky Maivia (champion) versus Vader (w/ Paul Bearer)


Rating: ***

Summary: Extremely good big man-smaller man match that improved Maivia’s stock thanks to Vader.

After the match, Vader clotheslined The Tooth Fairy out of Maivia. He then delivered an elbow drop down near Berchtesgaden while Bearer distracted the referee.

We then revisit RAW from two weeks ago when Jerry “The King” Lawler invited ECW to RAW at the Manhattan Center. Next, we revisit last week’s show when ECW showcased themselves quite well.

Next week, RAW is WAR LIVE next Monday at 7:57PM ET from Worcester, MA.

Match 3: Flash Funk versus the Sultan


Rating: *

Summary: Showcase match for Sultan.

We then revisit RAW from last October when Austin was a menace in the WWF Studios.

Backstage, Sid cuts a promo on Mankind and Undertaker.

RAW is sponsored by Wrigley’s Doublemint gum and WWF Full Metal: The Album.

We then revisit IYH XIII again as Owen accidentally hit Smith with a spinning heel kick which caused Smith to nail him.

Afterward, Carsten Schaefer interviews Ahmed Johnson. While Johnson accepts Faarooq’s challenge, he won’t be “by (himself).” He then leads the Berlin faithful in a “you’re going down” chant. I wonder if this guy was in attendance.

Promo for WrestleMania XIII airs. It will be LIVE on PPV on 3/23.

We again revisit last week’s episode when the Road Warriors returned to the WWF.

We then revisit Shotgun Saturday Night when the Road Warriors wanted to be invited to WrestleMania.

As Mankind makes his entrance, a pre-recorded interview featuring him speaking German airs. If my translation is correct, he asked “What happened to my fucking ear?” I may be paraphrasing.

After Vince shills the 1997 Slammy Awards, we then see footage from earlier.

Match 4 for the WWF title: Sycho Sid (champion) versus Mankind (w/ Paul Bearer)


Rating: **

Summary: Mankind carried Sid very well here.

We then revisit Shotgun Saturday Night from two weeks ago (taped 2/17) when Vega assisted Crush in his victory over Smith. Afterward, Smith called out Clarence Mason and fired him as his manager.

Ross then shills WrestleMania XIII.

We then revisit IYH XIII again as Austin’s interference helped Bret win the WWF title. Following that, we revisit RAW from two weeks ago when Austin’s interference cost Bret the WWF title.

Vince then interviews Austin from the WWF Studios. After Austin runs down Bret, he chastises Vince for making a video for Shawn Michaels. He then states that at IYH XIII, he was “sick as a dog” and had blown out his knee. Ultimately, he vows not to quit during the submission match at WrestleMania XIII.

Match 5 (European title final): WWF tag team champion the “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith versus WWF tag team champion Owen Hart


Rating: *****

Summary: Best. Match. On. RAW. Ever. Remarkable effort on both wrestlers’ parts. The chemistry between them was outstanding as they countered moves left and right. Also, at times, they sniffed out each other’s moves making the match even better. Outstanding match worth-seeking out for any and all wrestling fans.

After the match, Owen and Smith shake hands although Owen considered a sneak attack.

Conclusion: What a phenomenal show! Bret-Helmsley, Vader-Maivia, and Smith-Owen far exceeded all expectations I had for this week. If the WWF can maintain this type of show, its time as the #2 wrestling promotion would cease very quickly. Can RAW is Germany beat Nitro this week?

TV Rating: 1.9

Who won? Nope, Nitro won by a point and half. Wow! While Nitro stirred rumors of a possible Ted Turner sighting which may have influenced viewers, RAW brought the goods with a spectacular show albeit taped. Next week, both shows are LIVE with Nitro at the beach and RAW in Worcester.

Stay tuned for WCW Monday Nitro 3-10-97!

Comments? Suggestions? Send them to me at rsg@rockstargary.com and follow me on Twitter (@rockstargary202).

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