to Falls Count Anywhere! My name is Chris and I’m
Ready like Stagnetti.
am from roughly ten minutes
in the past.
RAW was a wild ride full of big announcements. The biggest
issue I had was some serious heat deficiency at times.
show opened with Eric Bischoff saying that Jim Ross’
match with HHH will be No Disqualification. Wow, they just
made things a whole lot worse. No one really wants to see
this match and by making it No DQ, they guaranteed that
it will go long.
good brawl, Edge and Chris Benoit fought all over the place.
Before they did though, they worked a fast little series
in the ring, including submission escapes, the Edgecution,
a German and more. Then it broke into the fight. It was
a lot like Benoit’s brawls with Kevin Sullivan back
in 1996 (wow, could it really be almost 10 years since those?)
that really put Benoit on the map as a brawler. Edge held
up his end as well. This was the best roaming brawl in ages
and I was glad to see it. The two of them were then told
by Bisch that they will meet in a Last Man Standing match.
That should be interesting.
and Lita did a segment. Trish tried to apologize to Lita,
who would hear none of it. The odd thing is (or since it’s
NYC maybe it’s the obvious thing) Lita got booed out
of the joint. She was treated like the biggest heel on the
card from where I sat. They chanted the “You screwed
Matt” chant at her and there were a few other chants
came out and Lita hit Trish with a crutch. OK, is Lita a
heel or a face? And what about Kane? Trish tries to run,
but she trips and Kane catched her leg and brings her up,
but Viscera stops him from chokeslamming her. He carries
her to the back and announces that next week, Trish has
got to pay him back with a date and some lovin’. Sweet
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, this could well suck.
the debuting HeartThrobs lost in their match with Tajiri
and Regal. What? Me not siding with Regal and the Taj? What
gives? Well, I’m not saying that they should have
beaten R+T, but they should have gotten a win, or at least
a solid beatdown, in their first match on RAW. They did
their entrance, which is what’s going to make them
it works once...
this also shouldn’t have debuted in MSG, because this
audience is going to be the wrong kinda of wicked to it.
They are very Chuck and Billy from 2002, but they do it
far better. They’re not great in the ring, and the
match got some ‘boring’ chants, but they did
a lot of dancing and stuff in the match itself, which will
help them in the long run. Regal and Tajiri win and keep
the title. They did give Tajiri their finisher after, but
it was hardly a great first impression.
Flair and HHH sent Batista’s limo on a wild goose
chase after it picked up Batista at the airport. I wouldn’t
want to have Batista in the backseat while I was trying
to take him around the city. With all that roid rage, he
may well destroy me.
and Daivari come out and talk a bit. Daivari is the best
talker on RAW. Hassan then took on Shawn Michaels and the
two had an average match, though it went longer than usual
with a commercial break. There was a lot of action, though.
The highlight for me was when Daivari went to the top and
Michaels caught him and treated him like Flair and slamming
him to the mat. That led to Hassan getting the Finishing
Touch and the DQ. They beat on Shawn a bit, and then Hogan
came. Hogan clears the ring and he and Shawn spend a long
time soaking in the applause. I swear this is the loudest
pop I’ve heard in ages. They do all sorts of posing
and head out. Hot segment, but you could also tell that
the crowd kinda blew their wad here.
Challenge, starring Chris Masters. He got a guy from the
crowd, Roman from Bayside Queens, and has him sit as Masters
puts on the Full Nelson. I noticed that Nelson doesn’t
do the interlaced fingers, but instead a handshake type
grip. Nice touch, as that’s a much stronger grip to
use. Of course, Roman can’t break it and Masters won’t
let go until the ref makes him. Lameish segment, but it
will lead to something interesting, I’m sure. Crowd
didn’t even pop that big for the Queens plug.
Dean comes out for his match with Shelton and starts his
pitch, but Jericho interrupts and brings Fozzy’s guitarist
in and they sing a song calling Shelton Benjamin a little
bitch. This allows Simon to jump Shelton and the match is
on. Shelton quickly turns the tables on Dean’s advantage
and hits the Stinger Splash and the Exploder for the win.
I’m very excited for the Benjamin vs. Jericho IC Title
and Tomko are out to complain and Christian complains about
the Christian Coalition not giving him as big a reception
as they gave Hogan. Then, to another huge pop, comes Vincent
Kennedy McMahon, all recovered from his injuries. He announces
that there’s going to be another draft lottery, and
there will be no exclusions, so this may be where they switch
Cena and Batista to get fresh match-ups. Christian says
that he’s a main eventer and McMahon makes a match
for next week with Christian and Batista. Nice rub there,
event is JR vs. HHH. H gets an OK reaction. So does Ross.
The match itself is long and slow and is mostly Jim Ross
hyper-selling and then blading. JR did give Trips one punch
and that sorta got a strong reaction. There was something
going on in the stands that drew attention away from the
ring, but it wasn’t hard. This was a boring segment
until Batisa’s limo showed up and Big Dave came to
the ring. He traded with HHH for a while, but then Flair
jumped him, allowing the bad guys a temporary advantage.
This led to Batista working over Flair and HHH getting a
chair and hitting Dave with it.
wrestling, you're never too old for this s***.
he then went for the Pedigree, Batista back dropped him
out of it and then waffled HHH in the melon with the chair,
dragged JR over and had him pin HHH. This got a great reaction,
but they could have done it five minutes before. The crowd
actually counted along with the ref as he counted the pin.
Good ending to a match almost entirely without heat.
No one else has been released.
word floating around that Brock Lesnar has been made a nice
offer as a last ditch effort to clear up his status. The
offer was supposedly less money than he was making before
and he would still have to travel to house shows, but it
would also come with the dropping of the suits. Interesting.
I am a huge science fiction geek. Most of the folks who
know me know that to be fact. I was once at a convention
where I was chatting with a writer of fanzines who said
that there is little over-lap between the two worlds. I
pointed to Arnie Katz, fanzine editor of the zine Flicker
(available on eFanzines.com) who also runs a wrestling website
and runs a section by April Hunter in every Flicker. I also
pointed to the famous photos of Blassie with some of the
attendees at an LA con. And I mentioned SpaceMan Frank Hickey
and the Mummy from Gene LeBelle’s promotion. What
I forgot was the greatest tag team of the future: The New
NWA was trying to compete with the WWF in every way, including
coming up with cartoonish characters. They created LaserTron
(there’s another column) and the Masters of Disaster,
but they hadn’t been able to come up with a gimmick
that really competed with the WWF’s characters. Then
two young wrestlers were put together and given the gimmick
that they were from the future. They were Chris Champion
and Sean Royal and they were called The New Breed. This
was the era of the in-studio taping and they were great
in the ring. They destroyed jobbers and did interviews after
the matches. They were great! The gimmick of them being
the wrestlers of the future was cool, as was the fact that
they came to the ring to the strains of ‘You’ve
Got To Fight For Your Right to Party.' That song, playing
at NWA arenas, was a huge change.
had a couple of feuds, one with the Rock ‘n Roll Express
which was solid and the two teams had a couple of great
matches. I was reading on the legendary John Hitchcock’s
site about a match where Champion came off the top to the
outside and landed on his knees on the concrete. I can’t
remember that, but wow. I do remember that they had a few
matches with the Road Warriors and at least one with The
Midnight Express. The guys were two top workers. I’d
say they could have been huge if they hadn’t had a
couple of bad beats.
Champion was in a car accident and broke his arm. Sean Royal
couldn’t keep it up on his own, so he left the business.
Champion came back with his arm in a “robo-cast”,
a regular cast with PCBs imbedded in it. Most of the NWA
fans at that point wouldn’t have known that they were
just cosmetic, but it was an awesome angle for a guy supposedly
from the future. After a year or so of jobbing, Champion
gimmick of wrestlers from the future could have caught on,
and they probably would have succeeded in the WWF at the
time. The guys had talent and they worked so well, but they
just never got the ball to run with. Still, of all the characters
that Dusty created, The New Breed might be my favorites.
all for this edition. On Friday, I’ll have more!
about today's column in the forums!