WWF: Raw is War (01.26.98)

WWF: Raw is War
January 26, 1998
Davis, CA
UC Davis Rec Hall

The current WWF champs are as follows:
World Champion: Shawn Michaels (11/9/1997)
Intercontinental Champion: The Rock (12/8/1997)
World Tag Team Champions: The New Age Outlaws (11/24/1997)
European Champion: Triple H (12/22/1997)
Light Heavyweight Champion: TAKA Michinoku (12/7/1997)

We begin the program with an extended video package highlighting how Mike Tyson went from being the biggest Stone Cold Steve Austin fan at the Royal Rumble to getting in a scuffle with him last week on Raw. ALL HELL HAS BROKEN LOOSE. Tyson wants Austin one-on-one at WrestleMania 14. Don King will join us with some comments. Plus, the WWF champ Shawn Michaels will add in his two cents on the Tyson-Austin Incident.

TIME TO GET RAW! Your hosts are Jim Ross, Michael Cole, and Kevin Kelly.

  • Ken Shamrock (w/Ahmed Johnson & DOA) vs. Mark Henry (w/the NOD)

Shamrock brings some serious backup with him this week. Rocky is getting all the attention though it’s all negative. Henry has a sound gameplan here: use your strength and work the back to set up the bearhug. Very basic common sense approach to beating Shamrock. When Shamrock mounts a comeback, he makes the dumb mistake of trying a crossbody block and pays with a backbreaker. I don’t know if this match kills the bearhug since it’s his finish, but nevertheless Shamrock doesn’t submit. Shamrock hits Henry with a Belly to Belly Suplex. The NOD freaks out and head into the ring for the DQ. (3:19) A ten-man brawl is triggered and the Nation are forced to retreat. *

Never-before-seen footage of the casket burning gets shown. Once the flames were extinguished, Taker was missing from the casket!

  • Jeff Jarrett & Barry Windham (w/the Rock N Roll Express & Jim Cornette) vs. The Legion of Doom

Before the match, Windham cuts a promo backstage explaining why he dropped the Yosemite Sam act stating that he wants to get back to REAL wrestling with the NWA. Jarrett puts over himself as the leader of the NWA and the NWA North American champ. Cornette joins the commentary table for a few moments and touts his version of the NWA as the only NWA affiliate. Anybody else who calls themselves a member of the NWA are just imitators. He still considers the WWF as an outlaw promotion. Animal runs down Windham with shoulder blocks and clotheslines. They tag out as Hawk drops Jarrett with a Reverse Neckbreaker. Jarrett dropkicks Hawk into position for the Bossman straddle, but Hawk NO-SELLS and press slams him. The RNR Express provide some distraction as Windham catches Hawk with a clothesline from the apron to turn the tide. The NWA boys give Hawk a bunch of suplexes and elbow drops. Hawk and Jarrett KO each other to set up the hot tag to Animal. The match breaks down and Hawk levels Jarrett with a FLYING CLOTHESLINE. Meanwhile, Windham hits Animal with a piledriver. Hawk goes after Morton and Gibson causing the ref to watch all that happening. Cornette tosses the loaded racket to Windham and Animal gets blasted. Cover, 1-2-3. (5:04) So even after a piledriver and a loaded racket shot, Animal feels he needs to kick out at three. Pretty fun, short match. *½

Up next, DX will say some things. Helmsley is nude right now for some reason. Chyna and Shawn hold title belts in front of Helmsley’s nether regions for laughs.

When we come back, it appears that Shawn Michaels was allowed to be on the TV game show Pictionary hosted by Alan Thicke. Of course, Shawn can’t help but make a reference to his dick on the family show.

We go back to the locker room to hear from DX. While Chyna ever-so-gently wraps up Helmsley’s knee, he says tonight he’s going to show Owen that he’s more man than Owen will ever aspire to be. Triple H is going to flush the nugget down the toilet one more time and send him to the cesspool down south where he belongs. Shawn says he is beloved by millions and he’s the role model of the WWF for kids and parents alike. He wants to do what is best for the WWF and decides to sit out his WWF title defense against Stone Cold Steve Austin at WrestleMania 14 and let Austin and Tyson settle their differences. Helmsley adds that the modest Shawn Michaels should still be involved in some way on the biggest stage of them all. Can Shawn handle Sable? No, someone will get mad. How about manage one of the minis? No, they don’t like him right now. Well, wouldn’t you know it? Shawn is wearing a referee shirt under that sports jacket. He then decides he will be the special referee for Tyson versus Austin. I mean, he’s been such a great special referee in the past. Just ask the Undertaker.

  • TAFKA Goldust (w/Luna Vachon) vs. Vader

Goldust is dressed like Vader this week. Even Luna has a painted on Vader mask. Goldust gets a few brief shots in on Vader, but this is mostly Vader working him over with the usual KODIAK BEAR offense. Powerbomb leads to the VADER BOMB, but then the lights go out and here comes Kane and Paul Bearer. (about 3:00) Goldust and Luna are nowhere to be seen once Kane hits the ring. Vader stands up to Kane and punches the crap out of him before giving Kane a drop-to-your-knees piledriver. You can see Vader checking on him to make sure he’s still alive. Goldust tries to jump Vader again, but then Kane sits up and hoists Vader up for a TOMBSTONE to leave him lying there. Now set those corners on fire! *

Earlier today, some cameras catch Mick Foley and Terry Funk chatting in the ring laughing about their multiple personalities. Foley was holding a wrench in his hand. Was he helping put up the ring?

ENTER THE WARZONE! Your hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler.

  • The New Age Outlaws vs. Cactus Jack & Chainsaw Charlie

Billy Gunn and Road Dogg wear baseball catchers gear to the ring expecting a hardcore fight here. If the titles are on the line, I didn’t know it. Gunn and Cactus brawl for a short time up the aisle and back down to ringside. Cactus tries to low blow Road Dogg to help out Chainsaw Charlie, but Road Dogg is wearing a cup and NO-SELLS. Road Dogg punches Cactus back into a catcher mask to the face by Gunn. Chainsaw DDTs Road Dogg though for two. The Outlaws concentrate on Chainsaw for a bit – mostly kicks and punches. There’s a back suplex on Chainsaw, but he spins around in circles until he makes the tag to Cactus. He whips Road Dogg down into Gunn in the corner. DOUBLE-ARM DDT on Gunn gets two. Chainsaw starts throwing chairs into the ring like we’re in ECW. While the ref is trying to get him to stop, Cactus avoids a chairshot from Road Dogg by kicking the chair back in his face. Cactus then steals the cup out of Road Dogg’s tights and drills him with a chairshot to the cranium. On the floor, Chainsaw wipes out Gunn with a chair as well. That sets him up for the Cactus Elbow with the chair off the apron! The ref finally has enough and DQ’s Cactus Jack and Chainsaw Charlie. (5:08) Afterwards, Cactus Jack gives the ref the Mandible Claw. Chainsaw lays chairs on top of Road Dogg and gives him a MOONSAULT. This was very over the top just like in ECW. Good stuff. I’m surprised this has never been on a WWE DVD set before. **½

Video package highlighting the WWF Light Heavyweight champ TAKA Michinoku.

  • Brian Christopher vs. Pantera

Honky Tonk Man is the special guest ring announcer for this match. I guess Sunny was busy doing something or somebody tonight. Winner of this match gets a title shot against TAKA at No Way Out on February 15. Ross brings up the Lawler family tree joke. To show how unbiased he is, Lawler says he’ll shake the hand of the winner no matter who he is. Christopher is looking strong to start until he goes to the floor. Pantera does a fake dive and then does a nice tope suicida down the apron and through the ropes onto Christopher. Back inside though, Christopher blocks a handspring elbow in the corner and catches Pantera with the Full Nelson Facebuster. He dumps out Pantera and gives him a sunset flip powerbomb off the apron. Back in, Christopher eats a whole lot of boot coming off the top rope after wasting too much time. Pantera delivers a headscissors out of the corner and victory rolls Christopher for 1-2-NO! Christopher turns things around and lands a sitout powerbomb to set up the TENNESSEE JAM, but Pantera moves and rolls up Christopher for the win. (4:28) Lawler shakes Pantera’s hand and then knocks him out. *½

In the back, we hoped to hear from Chainsaw Charlie and Cactus Jack. Right after they start speaking, DX comes over calling them hardcore legends and getting them distracted as the Outlaws turn the cyclone fencing onto them. With the fence keeping them trapped, DX and the Outlaws beat the crap out of Chainsaw and Cactus. I really like this feud and I never thought I would.

  • The Headbangers vs. The Quebecers

Short little match as Thrasher plays face in peril against Les Quebecois. Hot tag comes to Mosh, the Headbangers double backdrop Pierre. The Quebecers reverse a double whip from corner to corner, but the Headbangers jump into one another. Pierre and Jacques think that’s dumb and take them down anyways. Quebecers go for the finish, but Thrasher trips Pierre up top and Mosh rolls up Jacques during the confusion for the win. (3:08) Afterwards, the Quebecers knock Thrasher to the floor so they can attack Mosh. Jacques delivers an Alabama Slam and applies a Boston Crab while Pierre comes off the top with a legdrop. Lost the battle, won the war type situation. *

  • WWF European Champion Triple H (w/Chyna) vs. Owen Hart

Goldust comes out dressed as Triple H and Luna is Chyna, obvs. He’s got the huge nose, blonde wig, the chewing gum, the crutch, and the European title. Hunterdust loses the wig pretty quickly here. Owen fights off Goldust and hits the flying bodypress out of the corner for two. Goldust does the DX crotch chop and drops the knee on Owen. He cheats with a little help from Luna on a chinlock. Owen escapes and surprises Goldust with a rollup for a nearfall. Goldust starts working the knee as we go to break. When we return, Owen is mounting a comeback. He hits an enziguri that takes the fake nose off. Owen lands the missile dropkick and the kip-up, but comes off the ropes and gets nailed with the crutch from Luna. Goldust hooks Owen for the PEDIGREE, but Owen counters into the SHARPSHOOTER and gets the tap out. (5:11 shown) Even though DX has a good laugh on the TitanTron, Commissioner Slaughter comes out and decides to award the European title to Owen. Funny how DX has treated the European title like a joke ever since they won it back in September, but then they lose it and completely freak out. They only want the European title when they can’t have it, I suppose. ¾*

Video package highlights all the media attention the Austin-Tyson incident received.

We get a response from Don King at his offices in Fort Lauderdale. Since Mike Tyson can’t fight according to the Nevada state athletic commission, Don King says he and Vince McMahon will work out another way to get these two together and settle their differences at WrestleMania 14.

Well, let’s go back to the arena to get a response from Stone Cold Steve Austin. Last week really pissed off Austin. He says he’ll beat up Mike Tyson in Tyson’s backyard, in his own backyard, and anybody else’s backyard where he wants to meet. He’ll knock the gold tooth out of his mouth and make it into a necklace. Don King says nobody can stop Tyson from making a living, but Austin doesn’t consider getting beat up by him much of a living. Awesome. He tells Tyson that he’ll be in Houston TX on February 15 and dares Tyson to show up. If he does, Austin will knock his ass out. That’s the bottom line ‘cuz Stone Cold said so.


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