WWF: Raw is War (09.14.98)

WWF: Raw is War
September 14, 1998
San Jose, CA
San Jose Arena

The current WWF champs are as follows:
WWF Champion: Steve Austin (6/29/1998)
Intercontinental Champion: Triple H (8/30/1998)
World Tag Team Champions: The New Age Outlaws (8/30/1998)
European Champion: D’Lo Brown (7/20/1998)
Light Heavyweight Champion: TAKA Michinoku (12/7/1997)

TIME TO GET RAW! Your hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler.

Stone Cold Steve Austin meets Vince McMahon, the Undertaker, and Kane inside the ring. Now *that’s* how you start an episode of RAW. McMahon interrupts Austin’s entrance to say how sick and tired he is of seeing Austin carry the WWF title around. After In Your House: Breakdown, Vince won’t have to see him with the belt ever again thanks to his MASTER plan putting Austin in a triple-threat match with the Undertaker and Kane. Vince continues to say that he’s made a business deal with the Undertaker and Kane. They will be protecting Vince from Austin, so if Austin lays a finger on him, Undertaker and/or Kane will ANNIHILATE Austin. McMahon also adds a stipulation to the triple-threat match: Undertaker and Kane can only pin or submit Austin to end the match and win the WWF title so that Austin will get ANNIHILATED. Vince hints that this is basically a handicap match without calling it so. Since Austin will only do things the hard way, Vince will play along. When Austin loses at Breakdown, Vince wants Austin to know one thing: Mr. McMahon didn’t screw Stone Cold, Stone Cold screwed Stone Cold. Well, that’s all Austin can take. Austin slugs Vince, which brings both Undertaker and Kane to beat the hell out of him. Double Chokeslam to Austin! With Austin down and out, McMahon does his best Stone Cold impression to mock the guy. You can imagine how graceful it was. HOW HIDEOUS CAN A HUMAN BEING BE? AUSTIN CAN’T SURVIVE THESE TWO MONSTERS! Take a sip every time September 27 is mentioned during this segment. Sheesh. Once Taker, Kane, and McMahon head up the ramp, Taker is on the mic telling Austin it’s not personal – it’s just business. McMahon wraps up the segment telling Austin he’ll be defending the WWF title tonight against Ken Shamrock. Huh? Why would Taker and Kane be cool with that?

After the break, Austin is PISSED.

  • Jeff Jarrett (w/Southern Justice) vs. Road Dogg (w/X-Pac & Billy Gunn)

We’re finally getting some closure to the Jarrett/Roadie feud from 1995. So many sleepless nights for me. Road Dogg runs wild to start and hits the Shaky Knee Drop for two. An inverted atomic drop and a hotshot connects, but Jarrett low blows Road Dogg to take control. Jarrett misses a Bossman straddle, but Road Dogg does not. Next thing we know, Southern Justice yanks Road Dogg out of the ring and does a number on him. X-Pac comes to help out and brawls with Canterbury, but Billy Gunn KABONGS Knight. Next thing we know, Jarrett uses what’s left of the guitar on Road Dogg and slams the guitar neck down over Road Dogg’s throat for the three-count. (3:06) This whole feud is getting pretty fun. Nothing super personal – just a lot of tit for tat. *

When we come back, we’re backstage and Road Dogg is being helped into an ambulance. He’s having trachea problems and can’t seem to breathe well. Commissioner Slaughter tries to find out if Road Dogg’s all right, but Gunn shouts him away.

Michael Cole tries to get a word with the Rock backstage before the next match, but he’s too busy having his own problems with the Nation boys. When they can’t agree on what to do, Rock says he’ll go kick Kane’s ass and tells them to just know their roles and be ready.

  • Kane (w/the Undertaker) vs. The Rock

They trade shots to start. Rock ducks out and yanks Kane’s legs to wrap his knee around the ringpost. Back in, Rock continues to go after the knee. Rock talks some smack in Undertaker’s direction, but then takes a powerslam from Kane. Rock gets whipped from corner to corner and slammed on his back. Kane heads up top and hits the Flying Clothesline for two. Kane chokes Rock in the corner while the crowd chants “Rocky”. He blocks a corner charge from Kane (YAY!), but Kane cuts him off with a clothesline as the crowd gasps. Kane misses an elbow drop and Rock lands the Hurricane DDT. Kane sits up first, but Rock punches him down into a corner. Kane telegraphs a backdrop and Rock gets a swinging neckbreaker for two. Crowd is PUMPED for Rock. The ref gets knocked down. Rock gives Kane a Russian legsweep and hits the PEOPLE’S ELBOW. Undertaker gets in the ring and jumps Rock. He throws Rock to the floor and follows him out for a beating. Meanwhile, MANKIND RETURNS and whacks Kane in the back with a sledgehammer. Taker sees what just happened and chases after Mankind, but in the ring Rock covers Kane and gets the three-count. (6:10) This was all very good. Rock still feels somewhat of an underdog when he’s in the ring with a bigger name, but if you are able to watch this match in context, I believe you would enjoy it more as if you’re watching a guy who is very close to becoming a big star. I’m surprised it hasn’t been on any WWE DVDs. Kane refuses his brother’s help and it takes him THREE times to sit up. Undertaker grabs the mic and looks to end his feud with Mankind tonight and tells him to bring the sledgehammer. **½

When we come back, Michael Cole talks with Mankind. He accepts the Undertaker’s challenge and jokes about how this is going to be a scientific match and may the best man win. After that, he starts beating up the oil drums that are part of the interview set.

To the ring, Dustin Runnels is in the ring complaining about the immorality around the WWF. He lets Val Venis know when *he* returns, Val Venis will repent. Val comes out to show Dustin his latest video entitled “The Preacher’s Wife”. Val is shown in bed smoking a cigar and if you can imagine, MARLENA is in bed with him. Oh boy. Runnels drops to his knees in tears and Val makes a joke about “dropping to your knees runs in the family”. Ross refers to her as “Dustin’s wife Terri”. The crowd cheers because they don’t like Dustin, but it’s a pretty horrible thing to do to a man.

Meet Steven Regal – a man’s man. There’s not a tree he can’t cut down!

  • WWF Intercontinental Championship: Triple H (c) (w/Chyna & X-Pac) vs. Owen Hart (w/Mark Henry)

Wristlock exchange to start. Triple H runs into a Belly to Belly Suplex and Owen whips him from corner to corner. WHO’S THE NUGGET NOW? Backbreaker gets two. A gutwrench suplex gets the same result. Triple H blocks a suplex with an inside cradle, but then he stands up into the ENZIGURI OF CERTAIN DOOM for two. A swinging neckbreaker from Owen sets up the flying elbow for another nearfall. As the crowd continues the “nugget” chant, Triple H counters a sleeperhold with a back suplex. BOTH MEN ARE DOWN! Triple H lands the High Knee for two. He hits the Facebuster for another two-count. Owen’s trick knee acts up as Chyna gets up on the apron. Owen hits the Spinning Heel Kick and looks for the Sharpshooter when Mark Henry pulls Chyna down to the floor. X-Pac jumps on Henry’s back, but gets flipped over. Chyna decks Henry with an elbow shot. Owen is distracted by all of this and takes the PEDIGREE to give Triple H the victory. (5:23) Henry leaves with Owen up the ramp while Triple H tries to get some chicks (or dudes, not gonna judge!) to take off their tops. Michael Cole wants a word with the Nation boys, but Henry rips the mic out of his hand to yell at X-Pac. He challenges X-Pac and “Mark’s girlfriend” Chyna to a handicap match. HENRY WILL PREVAIL! Triple H has two words for them. This felt like Owen and Triple H going through the motions. Isn’t Triple H injured anyway? *½

In the back, Mankind is loading up a dumpster with weapons to take with him to the ring while he’s singing the Seven Dwarfs work song from Snow White.

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

  • No DQ Match: The Undertaker (w/Kane) vs. Mankind

Both guys have sledgehammers. The ref gets Mankind’s sledgehammer away, but Mankind applies the MANDIBLE CLAW which makes Taker drop his. They brawl on the floor as Mankind whips Taker into the ringside dumpster. Mankind grabs a ladder, but Taker kicks back at him and takes Mankind over to the announce table. Taker slams Mankind’s injured hand on the steps. After that, Taker rips apart the steps, puts Mankind’s injured hand on the bottom step, and then slams the top half of the steps on the hand. OUCH. Taker leans a wooden table against the ringpost and throws Mankind through it. Not the usual table we’re used to seeing, but a table nonetheless. UT then whacks Mankind with the table and they go back inside the ring where it’s safer. Undertaker punches on Mankind as they go back out to the floor. Mankind’s face is bruised from Kane dropping the sledgehammer on him at SummerSlam. His hand trying to block the blow is why it’s bandaged. Off comes the Mankind mask. Taker tries to hit Mankind with the sledgehammer while Mankind is sitting against the ring steps. Of course, Mankind moves and it makes a big sound. Mankind walks into Kane, who then Chokeslams Mankind onto the timekeeper’s table. Taker is still swinging the sledgehammer and misses. Mankind arms himself with a chair and goes to town on UT, but then gets the chair booted back in his face. CHOKESLAM to Mankind! Now there’s a TOMBSTONE onto the chair. WOW, that looked brutal. Now Taker wants to take it up a notch and grabs the sledgehammer. As he looks to lower the boom on Mankind, THE ROCK shoots out of the dumpster and saves the day. Rock grabs Mankind and throws him over the barricade to prevent UT and Kane from grabbing him. Taker and Kane – armed with sledgehammers – go looking for the Rock. No contest. (7:10) There was LOTS accomplished in this match. First off, Rock and Mankind are now clear babyfaces while the Undertaker (especially) and Kane are now clear heels. It was also another chance for the Rock to be affectual in a situation with the other bigger stars, so he gets the rub there as well. Not as good as their other classic bouts, but it allowed you to see the Undertaker get scary violent which was exactly what’s needed right now. **½

  • Gangrel vs. Edge

Edge runs through the crowd and leaps off the top rope onto Gangrel to start the match. Gangrel avoids the Downward Spiral, but Edge stops him up top with an Electric Chair Facebuster. Gangrel comes back with an arm trap suplex and then a release tiger suplex. Running bulldog gets two. Edge stops another bulldog from happening and puts Gangrel up in the corner. He then gives Gangrel a neckbreaker out of the corner. Edge comes off the top rope, but misses. Edge blocks the Impaler DDT and dumps out Gangrel. Now Edge tries a plancha, but goes splat. Whoops. IMPALER DDT on the floor! There’s your double countout. (3:36) Gangrel grabs his liquid and says something about the blood of Gangrel flowing through his veins, and that eternity is forever. Okay then. *½

Did you guys know there’s an evening gown match happening tonight?

  • Chyna & X-Pac (w/Triple H) vs. Mark Henry

They remind us why the New Age Outlaws aren’t around. Whoa, Triple H does a gorilla dance when Henry comes down to the ring. DAS RACIST. Chyna doesn’t understand how handicap matches work. Henry immediately throws X-Pac over the top ropes in a very NASTY manner. D’Lo Brown comes down to ringside to support Henry. And now Jeff Jarrett and Southern Justice head down. X-Pac avoids a corner charge and kicks Henry around. Triple H grabs a chair. Chyna and X-Pac then double suplex Henry. Holy crap. That gets two as Henry presses X-Pac onto ref Jack Doan. Henry forces X-Pac into a corner and avalanches him. He continues to throw X-Pac around and it’s impressive. Chyna gets a tag as X-Pac kicks Henry back. Chyna SPEARS down Henry, but Henry throws her off. She slugs Henry and then tags out. X-Pac catches Henry with a spinning heel kick. Bronco Buster connects! Another tag to Chyna, but D’Lo grabs hold of her foot. X-Pac baseball slides into D’Lo and goes out with him. Chyna comes off the middle rope, but Henry powerslams her in mid-air for the three-count. (3:54) CHYNA AIN’T DONE WITH MARK HENRY – not by a long shot. Not Flair/Steamboat, but it was quite entertaining. *½

Backstage, we see Jacqueline getting ready.

WWF REWIND: RAW, 1/9/95. Not a typo. They show us highlights of the Harvey Wippleman and Howard Finkel “tuxedo match”.

  • Evening Gown Match: Sable vs. Jackie (w/Marc Mero)

Pretty much Sable rips at Jackie’s gown, gives her a SABLEBOMB, and takes off what’s left of the gown. Some pixelated boobies appear. Sable wins totally unscathed. They zoom in on a particular chick in the crowd who we will soon know as “Tori”. Once Mero and Jackie head back to the locker room in disgrace, Sable takes off her gown anyways, you know, for the fans. Sheesh, I guess Brock is a “butt” guy. Another thought I have is, imagine the mental gymnastics Vince had to go through to explain this stuff to the USA Network. N/R

Michael Cole speaks with Ken Shamrock before his WWF title shot. He means Stone Cold no disrespect, but Shamrock is the “calm before the storm”. IS KEN SHAMROCK QANON?

  • WWF Championship: Steve Austin (c) vs. Ken Shamrock

FUN FACT: This is Austin’s first singles match on RAW since he regained the WWF title from Kane the night after the King of the Ring. Still got his t-shirt on, Austin and Shamrock trade shots to start. Shamrock fights back and applies a headlock on the mat. Up to their feet, the crowd is chanting for Austin. Shamrock gets flipped backward over Austin’s shoulders and then he blocks a clothesline to drop Austin to the mat in the armbar. He tries for the Anklelock, but Austin escapes to the floor. Man, Austin working HEEL tonight. McMahon has DRIVEN him to this point. Off comes the t-shirt. Austin trips up Shamrock and wraps the knee around the post. There’s a vertical suplex, but Shamrock kicks out at one. Austin hits another, but again Shamrock kicks out at one. Try three. Austin takes Shamrock to the apron for an elbow to the throat. Back in, Austin finally gets two. He applies a headlock onto Shamrock down on the mat. Shamrock fights out and gets a fisherman’s suplex, but Austin blocks a hurracanrana with a powerbomb. Flying elbow from Austin gets two. Now Austin applies a chinlock. Shamrock escapes and rolls away from a Boston crab, but then they trade sleeperholds. Austin backs Shamrock into the corner and buries shoulders into the gut. Looks like Austin wants a superplex, but Shamrock headbutts him down. Austin catches Shamrock in the bread basket on the way down, but Shamrock still manages a crossbody block for two. Austin rakes his boot laces across Shamrock’s face. Hey, that’s not nice! Austin grabs the chinlock again. Shamrock gets out of the chinlock again, but gets thrown to the floor. On the outside, Shamrock reverses a whip into the steps. More ringside violence ensues. Austin does his signature backdrop piledriver counter on the floor. In the ring, Shamrock stays in control and locks in a Boston crab. Austin slowly reaches the ropes and his trick knee acts up. How many times have we seen that tonight? Austin stomps a mudhole in Shamrock. There’s a double-KO. Here comes the Undertaker and Kane who look like they missed their cue. No contest finish. (12:00) Taker CHOKESLAMS Shamrock while Kane handles Austin. The Rock and Mankind head to the ring to save the day. Mr. McMahon is on the ramp looking confused. While Rock and Mankind brawl with the Undertaker and Kane, Austin finds a chair and wallops the two brothers. Still armed with the chair, Austin stalks McMahon back to the locker room to end the show. Pretty decent match. I liked seeing Austin doing his little heel things like “thumbs to the eye” and the low blow to show how pissed off he was at everything. **½

Are the Rock and Mankind on Austin’s side or do they just plain don’t like the Undertaker and Kane? WHAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN? SuNDAY NiGHT HeAT from Sacramento is NEXT!

Until then, so long for now.


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