WWF: Raw Is War (11.23.98)

WWF: Raw is War
November 23, 1998
Columbus, OH
Schottenstein Center

The current WWF champs are as follows:
WWF Champion: The Rock (11/15/1998)
Intercontinental Champion: Ken Shamrock (10/12/1998)
World Tag Team Champions: The New Age Outlaws (8/30/1998)
European Champion: X-Pac (10/18/1998)
Light Heavyweight Champion: Christian (10/18/1998)
Hardcore Champion: Mankind (11/2/1998)
Women’s Champion: Sable (11/15/1998)

TONIGHT: We now not only have exclusive footage of Steve Austin’s “blackout” incident, but we will also get to the San Jose Medical Center to see how Austin is doing.

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

Vince and Shane McMahon head down to the ring. They are of course followed by the Three Stooges. Ross wants to know what’s on the “evil” mind of Vince McMahon. Lawler reminds us that Vince will be announcing a *new* impartial WWF commissioner tonight. Vince gets on the stick to announce for the record that he did not have anything to do with the Undertaker whacking Steve Austin in the face with a shovel last week on RAW. Just as a reminder, Vince does not lie. When Vince makes a guarantee, you know you can take it to the bank. Vince informs us he’ll be naming a new WWF commissioner in a few moments. Why? Because everything the McMahon family does is for the fans. The crowd doesn’t seem to agree. To show how impartial this commissioner will be, Vince McMahon tells us that he will not even be answering to Vince. Well, how is that possible? Aren’t you the chairman of the board, Vince? This new commissioner will treat each WWF superstar with equality and dignity – with the exception of Stone Cold Steve Austin. Vince will continue to make all decisions as it pertains to Austin. The new WWF commissioner is the HEARTBREAK KID SHAWNNNN MICHAELS. There’s a new sheriff in town, folks. HBK names tonight’s main event with the Rock taking on X-Pac for the WWF title. Shane seems worried. Michaels is already helping out his Kliq boys. The Corporation huddles up to get a plan going.

Kevin Kelly is shown backstage with the ICP and the Oddities. Apparently ICP was supposed to wrestle the Headbangers tonight, but they don’t feel they are ready as a team and ask the Oddities to take their match. Oh boy.

  • The Headbangers vs. Kurrgan & Golga (w/ICP, Giant Silva & Luna)

Mosh starts against Kurrgan. He tries a crossbody block off the second rope, but Kurrgan catches him in mid-air and slams him for an elbow drop. In comes Golga, he avalanches Mosh. Violent J gets knocked off the apron during the Golga Splash. Golga couldn’t care less. Meanwhile, Thrasher wraps a t-shirt around Golga’s neck and pulls back as Mosh schoolboys him for the win. (1:31) Next thing we know, the ICP join the Headbangers to stomp Golga. Shaggy 2 Dope spray paints Kurrgan, Giant Silva, and Luna in the eyes! While Luna is blinded, Thrasher cuts off some of her hair. First Sable, now Luna. N/A

We get a video package of the Kane’s insane behavior over the past three weeks.

  • Steve Blackman vs. The Blue Blazer

Blazer catches Blackman napping to start by snapping his neck on the top rope. Blackman comes back with a knockdown and sends him into the ropes before Blazer retreats to the floor. Blazer gives the people the classic Owen Hart WOO. Back inside, Blazer hits a weak enziguri (not Owen Hart esque!) and applies the Dragon Sleeper. Blackman backs Blazer in the corner, but then charges into a back elbow. Time for the SHARPSHOOTER, but Blackman reaches the bottom rope. Blazer puts the boots to Blackman, but Blackman fires back with a dropkick. A jumping shoulderblock connects and gets followed by the BICYCLE KICK from Blackman for the win. (2:57) As he goes to unmask the Blue Blazer, OWEN HART runs down and chopblocks Blackman’s leg. Crowd is all over Owen calling him a “nugget”. He and Blazer head backstage covering their ears. ½*

They show the exclusive footage of Steve Austin collapsing in San Jose. As he’s going from corner to corner like Austin is known to do, he blacks out and collapses. Ross says Austin has had headaches, nausea, and dizziness all week. Concussion, maybe?

Elsewhere, Shawn Michaels is shown talking to Vince McMahon and it seems to be heated.

  • D’Lo Brown & Mark Henry vs. Gangrel & Edge (w/Christian)

Lawler refers to Henry as “Sexual Chocolate” after the poem recited to Chyna last week. Brown and Edge start the match here. They run the ropes ending with Edge hitting D’Lo with a headscissors and following up with a pair of armdrags. Tag to Gangrel, he and Edge land a double back elbow. The Brood continue to dominate as they hit D’Lo with a DOUBLE TEAM DDT out of the corner. That was epic. Henry runs in, but he’s taken over with a double hiptoss. Brown takes down Edge with a dropkick to turn the tide. Henry tags in and slams Edge for a jumping elbow drop. Back over to D’Lo, he slaps Edge hard in the corner. WOO! Running Ligerbomb by D’Lo connects. YOU BETTA RECOGNIZE! Henry tags and delivers a tilt-a-whirl slam. WHOA. Brown and Henry continue to dominate Edge for a few more minutes. D’Lo misses a splash off the top rope setting up a hot tag to Gangrel. Well, it wasn’t *that* hot. He gives Henry a big neckbreaker move. The match breaks down as Henry gets whipped into D’Lo. Henry doesn’t go down. To the floor, Edge pescados onto D’Lo while Henry gorilla press slams Gangrel. Hey look, it’s CHYNA. She shows up at the stage which gets Henry all distracted. Gangrel rolls him up for the three-count. (7:06) Henry doesn’t even care about losing the match. Of course, D’Lo does. Chyna agrees to the date – NO SEX. Henry is beyond happy right now. *½

We go to the San Jose Medical Center where Steve Austin talks to the doctor like he’s a dummy. He suffered a concussion. DUH. The doctor wants him to take a few weeks off from wrestling. Ross asks him how he’s doing. When he gets out of the medical center tomorrow, he’ll figure out what he’s going to do next. The Undertaker is going to have HELL TO PAY!

KABOOM of the WEEK – presented by the JVC Kaboom Box!: RAW, 11/16/98. The Undertaker whacks Steve Austin the face with a shovel.

Backstage, we catch WWF Commissioner Shawn Michaels fraternizing with D-Generation X.

  • Goldust vs. Marc Mero

If you’ll recall last night on HeAT, Mero fired Jacqueline after she costs him a match with Big Boss Man. So yeah, Mero is now single and ready to mingle. Goldust controls Mero to start, but misses a corner charge allowing Mero to come back with Mr. Wrestling II knee lift. Hey look, it’s TERRI RUNNELS. Mero hits a crossbody block for two. She’s wearing a whole lot of nothing. Now JACQUELINE comes down to ringside. Goldust gets distracted by Terri and Mero rolls him up for two. He comes back on Mero and hits a Running Bulldog for two. There’s a ten-count corner punch to Mero. Time for Shattered Dreams. When Terri gets up on the apron, Jacqueline gets in the ring and low blows Goldust! WHAT. Terri then gets in the ring, stomps Goldust, and then gives Mero SHATTERED DREAMS! (3:59) Terri and Jacqueline share a high five and I think we’ve got an alliance here. ¾*

Back at the San Jose Medical Center, a doctor asks for an autograph from Steve Austin. Ross asks Austin about the “buried alive” match with the Undertaker. Austin gets HOT. Ross then tells Austin to get some rest after he just got him all fired up.

WWF REWIND << presented by Glover for N64/PC. RAW, 11/16/98: the ending of the Austin/Rock WWF title match.

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

  • WWF Hardcore Championship: Mankind (c) vs. The Big Boss Man vs. Ken Shamrock

Ross and Lawler discuss that the WWF Hardcore title is all Mankind has left. Essentially a handicap match due to Boss Man and Shamrock’s allegiance to the Corporation. Mankind gets away from Boss Man and Shamrock and levels them with clotheslines. He takes Shamrock to the floor and up the aisle only to then throw Shamrock into a charging Boss Man. Mankind gives Shamrock a suplex on the rampway, but then gets blasted by Boss Man. We go back to being a handicap match here as Boss Man chokes on Mankind with his night stick while Shamrock punches him in the face. Vince and Shane McMahon watch from the top of the ramp. The night stick comes in handy some more as they bust on Mankind’s ribs. Mankind finds a broom from under the ring and jabs Shamrock and Boss Man. The handle gets broken over Shamrock’s back. Over to the announce table, Boss Man saves Shamrock from Mankind’s attack. Shamrock smashes a soda can over Mankind’s head. Back inside the ring, Boss Man whacks Shamrock with a chair by mistake. Next thing we know, Mankind gives Boss Man a DOUBLE-ARM DDT on the chair! Mankind headbutts Shamrock to the floor and whips him into the steps. Some fan gives Mankind a tube sock or a “Mr. Socko” impersonator. Boss Man saves Shamrock from the MANDIBLE CLAW and it looks like everything is going according to the McMahon plan. Mankind applies the MANDIBLE CLAW on Boss Man, but Shamrock saves the day. Shamrock gives Mankind the Belly to Belly Suplex on the chair. WAIT A MINUTE, BOB HOLLY and SCORPIO appear at ringside. Shamrock applies the ANKLELOCK to Mankind. For some reason, Scorpio distracts the ref while AL SNOW jumps in the ring and whacks Shamrock with Head! Snow and Holly head back out through the crowd while Scorpio sticks around to hold onto Boss Man as Mankind rolls over on top of Shamrock for the three-count. (8:25) Wrestling is so crazy sometimes. Shamrock and Boss Man continue to beat up Mankind as they head back through the curtain. Insanity. This was one entertaining mess. **½

Hey look, there’s a hearse outside the San Jose Medical Center. We go to Steve Austin’s room where the Undertaker and Paul Bearer attempt to smother Steve Austin to death. WHAT. HOW IS THIS NOT ATTEMPTED MURDER? Once Austin is out, Taker cuts a promo on him telling Austin that this is his “last ride” and drags him out of the hospital to the hearse. This is a great time for a commercial! When we come back, Taker and Bearer put Austin in the back of the hearse and drive away. WHAT IS HAPPENING?

  • WWF Light Heavyweight Championship: Christian (c) vs. Duane Gill

Duane Gill is as Joe Plumber as it gets. The crowd has to be wondering why they are getting a squash match on RAW. Inverted DDT on Gill gets two. Gill tries to come back with a Stinger Splash, but big time misses. Christian lands a gutbuster off the shoulders. He dumps Gill out in front of Edge and Gangrel for a stomping. Next thing we know, AL SNOW and BOB HOLLY jump the Brood boys out on the floor. Meanwhile, Christian hits the IMPALER on Gill and covers him, but SCORPIO flies in and splashes Christian. He puts Gill on top of Christian and Gill gets the win and the WWF Light Heavyweight title. (2:28) Well, now I want to see him turn into Gillberg. Kevin Kelly catches Gill in the aisle and Gill says this is the best thing that’s happened to him beside the birth of his son. ½*

We catch up with the Undertaker and Paul Bearer trying to bury Steve Austin in a graveyard. Bearer says Austin crossed the line, but Austin goozles Bearer. Taker has to choke Austin and hold him in place while Bearer puts an ether rag on his face. Taker decides burying Austin alive is too good for him, so he’s got other plans to “embalm” him alive. WHAT. Now Austin will know what pain is.

  • The Godfather (w/three hos) vs. Tiger Ali Singh (w/Babu)

If the Austin angle is getting you down, here’s some prostitutes! Godfather gives Singh a chance to get his ass kicked or spend a night with one of his Buckeye whores for cash. Steven Regal shows up and tries to talk Tiger Ali Singh out of the deal. They end up double-teaming Godfather as VAL VENIS makes the save. Well, of course he would help out a pimp. Refs and agents run down to help get these two sides separated. As they head out, Godfather shares two of the whores with Val. According to Meltzer, there’s a rumor going around that Val and Godfather will become a team with the name “Supply and Demand”. No match.

In the locker room, we catch Shawn Michaels talking with ref Earl Hebner. Oh boy.

  • The New Age Outlaws vs. Scorpio & Bob Holly (w/Al Snow & Duane Gill)

They are really pushing the JOB Squad tonight. Gill is wearing a JOB Squad t-shirt despite being a champion now. The crowd is doing the O-H-I-O chant. WILD stuff. Road Dogg delivers the Shake Rattle and Roll followed by the Shaky Knee Drop to Holly. He comes back with a pumphandle powerslam to Road Dogg. Holly tags in Scorpio and Road Dogg tags out to Gunn. Scorpio has a nice fast exchange with Gunn. Holly runs into a press slam. Gunn does a crotch chop with the crowd. Hilarious. Road Dogg tags in and does his charismatic thing. Scorpio connects with a spinning kick to the head. Tag to Holly, he kicks down Road Dogg and delivers an inverted atomic drop and a clothesline for two. Road Dogg punches back, but runs into a boot in the corner. Scorpio tags in and comes off the top, but Road Dogg brings up his foot to block. Hot tag to Gunn, he runs wild on the JOB Squad. Holly stops Gunn up top, but Gunn finds a tornado DDT on Scorpio. The match breaks down as MANKIND appears with the leaf blower. He whacks Gunn in the face with the leaf blower and gets out of the ring. Scorpio covers Gunn and gets the three-count! (5:23) Once the match is over, the BIG BOSS MAN and KEN SHAMROCK appear to get their hands on Mankind again. THERE IS SO MUCH HAPPENING. Shamrock gets the leaf blower away from Mankind and whacks Al Snow and Bob Holly. Somebody turn off that leaf blower. The Three Stooges leave with the New Age Outlaws to end the segment. **

We catch the hearse pulling up to a funeral parlor. Looks like Austin is going to get embalmed alive. Oh boy. Taker lays Austin on the embalming table and cuts another promo on Austin while Bearer gets prepared. Jim Ross is losing his shit. As Taker starts “speaking in tongues”, he pulls out a sharp object and prepares to lance Austin. Next thing we know, KANE appears for the big save. While Kane is beating up Taker, Bearer attempts to stab Austin with a pair of scissors. Austin stops Bearer at the last second and gets away from Bearer. Austin manages to get away as Bearer waddles after him. While Kane and Undertaker are fighting, we lose video transmission. ARE YOU TELLING ME WE’RE SUPPOSED TO BELIEVE THERE’S BEEN A CAMERAMAN FOLLOWING THEM AROUND THIS WHOLE TIME? No, this is stupid.

  • WWF Championship: The Rock (c) (w/the Big Boss Man & Ken Shamrock) vs. X-Pac (w/the New Age Outlaws)

Ross is still beside himself over what just happened. Commissioner Shawn Michaels heads down and sends all the seconds back to the locker room. Michaels remains at ringside to watch the match. Slow start with headlocks and shoulderblocks. The “Rocky Sucks” chants start up. Rock punches away on X-Pac and finds a swinging neckbreaker before sending him to the floor. X-Pac chops back on Rock, but then gets tossed crotch-first to the ringpost. Back inside, Rock puts the boots to X-Pac and clotheslines him down for two. Time for a chinlock on X-Pac. Vince and Shane McMahon appear at the top of the ramp. X-Pac breaks free and hits a roundhouse kick. BOTH MEN ARE DOWN! X-Pac finds another spinning heel kick for 1-2-NO! Here comes the Bronco Buster. X-Pac gets caught up on Rock’s shoulders for a Samoan Drop. That gets two. While Rock argues with the ref, he turns around into the X-FACTOR! Slow cover, 1-2-NO! Ross is certainly not being objective here tonight. X-Pac charges into a powerslam, but kicks out at two. Rock finds a chair and brings it in the ring. Shawn Michaels takes a chair away from Rock and then BLASTS X-PAC WITH THE CHAIR! Hold up. Ross is so mad tonight. The CORPORATE ELBOW connects and it’s academic as Rock regains the WWF title. (8:32) The McMahons head down to the ring to celebrate with their champion while HBK holds up Rock’s arm in victory. The Outlaws head down to chase off Rock as HBK embraces Vince and Shane. Boss Man and Shamrock come out to beat up the Outlaws and X-Pac. Vince, Shane, Rock, and Michaels are all shown crotch-chopping at the top of the ramp to end the show. **

What a strange episode of RAW. So many swerves! Plus, an embalming attempt on a person who happens to be alive! IS THIS EVEN WRESTLING, FOLKS? I’ll let you decide. Until next time, so long for now.

LIVE on PPV from the General Motors Place in Vancouver, BC, Canada on December 13!
MAIN EVENT: WWF Championship: The Rock (c) vs. Mankind
MAIN EVENT: “Buried Alive” Match: Steve Austin vs. The Undertaker

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