Monday Night Raw
June 3, 1996
Cumberland County Memorial Auditorium
The current WWF Champs were as follows:
World Champion: Shawn Michaels (3/31/96)
Intercontinental Champion: Goldust (4/22/96)
World Tag Team Champions: The Smoking Gunns (5/26/96)
SPECIAL NOTE: Not sure if Nitro and Raw ever happened in the same city on the same night, but both programs are emanating from the same state tonight as Nitro comes from the mountains of Asheville. Raw drew a bigger house, but Nitro beat them in the head-to-head ratings.
We open the show with Goldust laying in his “den of iniquity” where he watches movies and wears nothing but a feather boa and his IC title over his crotch. After he saved Ahmed Johnson’s last week, he’s found out that Ahmed wants his IC championship. Come and get it, big boy.
Your hosts are Vince McMahon and Jerry Lawler. Vince says it’s now official: Ahmed Johnson goes after Goldust’s IC title at the King of the Ring.
- Steve Austin vs. Bob Holly – KOTR Qualifier
Ted DiBiase is “conspicuous by his absence” since he said he would leave the WWF if Steve Austin lost to Savio Vega in the strap match. He would be in WCW by September as what should have been revealed as the sole monetary power behind the nWo. Of course, that was assumed for two and a half months until Eric Bischoff turned heel and nothing made sense after that. Whatever. This is the WWF we’re talking about now! Austin has trouble holding on to any kind of advantage here. He hits a Nikolai Volkoff backbreaker and almost smiles at the camera. There’s personality just dying to come out. Flying elbow gets two. Austin controls a chinlock as we go to commercial. When we return, Holly makes one last comeback only to fall victim to the MILLION DOLLAR DREAM. (9:14 shown) Austin will debut the Stone Cold Stunner here real soon. Just because DiBiase is gone doesn’t mean the Cobra Clutch isn’t his finisher anymore. So as if there was any doubt, Austin advances to the next round. After a loss on PPV, this took Austin WAY too long to put away somebody like Bob Holly. **
The next non-tournament match scheduled for the KOTR is Jerry Lawler vs. Ultimate Warrior. Lawler stuck his nose in the WOYAH’s business last week. He was just trying to help Marlena! Vince and King bring up the Warrior comic book, but Lawler shows some artwork of his own. He introduces King Comics and on the cover of the first issue, Lawler is stepping on a wimpy-looking and defeated “Ultimate Loser”.
- Mankind vs. Barry Horowitz
Another match announcement for the KOTR: Undertaker will finally his hands on Mankind. Jim Ross backstage gives us his thoughts on that. He thinks this will be the Undertaker’s most intense challenge to date. Can we say his GRAVEST challenge? We get some actual footage from In Your House where casket magic happened. Mankind beats up Horowitz in the corner a lot. It’s what he does. We take a commercial break. When we come back, Mankind almost immediately wins with the MANDIBLE CLAW. (3:51 shown) Silly WWF and your ratings tricks. You just had to have a commercial break in the middle of that match, huh? Didn’t want anybody switching channels there, did ya? As if this was a compelling match or something. Afterwards, Ross meets Mankind in the ring for a quick word. You can’t take his ear, Undertaker. I don’t know why you’d want to, but you can’t. So there. Mankind says of all the things he’s lost in life, he misses his mind the most. Does Mankind enjoy Mark Twain or Ozzy Osbourne? You decide! ½*
Because your cable company probably sucks and didn’t give you a refund for the “Beware of Dog” fiasco, we get to see the controversial double-pin finish to the Michaels-Bulldog WWF title match. Since the match ended in a draw, there will be a rematch scheduled for the King of the Ring.
Sega Saturn Slam of the Week: Hunter Hearst Helmsley practically killing Marty Garner with the Pedigree this past weekend on Superstars.
Vince narrates a video package of what happened last week between Goldust and Ahmed Johnson. Now over to Goldust in his “den of iniquity”. Someone needs to make a YouTube video compilation of all the movies Goldust references. Tonight, it’s ‘The Color Purple’, 1985. When he gave Ahmed mouth-to-mouth, he only did what came natural to him. He then eats a chocolate bar because much like giving Ahmed mouth-to-mouth for no reason considering he had no problem breathing, it gives him satisfaction. Lawler commends Goldust for acting in a way that a registered nurse would have acted. Goldust tells us he loves male nurses. Oh my gosh. He calls Ahmed the “Mighty Mandingo”. Alright, all I can think of now is “Django Unchained”, which is a movie I’m surprised he isn’t quoting right now. AGH! Get out of my head, Goldust!
- The Godwinns (w/Hillbilly Jim) vs. Tekno Team 2000
The lovely Sunny joins Vince and King to do commentary and to take another look at the Godwinns, who will be facing the Smoking Gunns for the WWF tag titles at the King of the Ring. This is the last we have to see chronologically of Tekno Team 2000 on Raw. Phineas stares at Sunny like some sort of creepy child molester. From the back, we hear from the Bodydonnas who say that they are currently seeking a new manager. Send in your cards and letters to the Stamford P.O. Box number listed at the bottom of the screen. Sunny of course finds it laughable that the Bodydonnas could find a manager as beautiful and wonderful as she is. TT2K work heel against the Godwinns and Phineas plays face-in-peril for a bit that takes us into commercial. When we return, there’s a HOT TAG TO HENRY! He hits the SLOP DROP on Troy for the win. (5:15 shown) Just a way to put over the Godwinns. After Henry yells at Sunny, they bring a kid into the ring to dance. ¾*
We join Clarence Mason, Esq. via telephone. While the “alienation of affection” lawsuit has thrown out, Mason feels he has another case to settle as he says Gorilla Monsoon assaulted him last week on Raw when he guided Mason out of the way when Shawn Michaels was making his entrance. Mason says ever since then, he’s been unable to “consort with his mate”. We see a clip of Clarence at ringside from a previous event with a cervical collar, his arm in a sling, and walking on a crutch. This just might be so far the dumbest wrestling angle of the year in the WWF.
- Jake Roberts vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley – KOTR Qualifier
The match isn’t really that interesting. It’s basically ten minutes of Helmsley trying to avoid the DDT until Jake finally catches him. This is Helmsley during his punishment phase for the MSG incident, so you don’t expect a lot of offense or a very strong match from him. The most interesting part of the match is Vince’s commentary when he mentions that Razor Ramon and Diesel no longer work for the WWF in any manner and are both “pawning themselves off as the stars they once were here in the WWF” by trying to make you think they are still representing his company while they are actually “under contract with a rival organization.” He’s trying to ruin the big angle that they’re afraid will turn some heads in WCW, but it just comes off sounding pitiful as WCW *finally* had something over on Vince. And so what he made these comments, most wrestling fans wouldn’t have heard this anyway because they would be watching Nitro right now to see the angle that you think you’re ruining. It’s also only been two weeks into the angle and he’s already showing signs of fear and weakness. All WCW had to do was to have Scott Hall admit on-air that they weren’t working for the WWF, which they did at the Great American Bash, and the whole ridiculous claim Vince made here is out the window. Yes, WCW gave away Raw results on the air, but the WWF isn’t completely innocent during the Monday Night Wars. WWE is guilty of re-educating their fans to believe WCW is this evil organization when they are just as guilty at times. So yeah, the DDT happens and Helmsley is already out of the tournament. (9:43 shown) Hunter gets the snake after the bell, and we’re out! ¾*
NEXT WEEK: Ultimate Warrior will join us for a very special interview! Plus, more KOTR tournament action!