What the World Was Watching: Monday Night RAW – September 25, 1995

Vince McMahon recaps the ending of last night’s Triple Header main event at In Your House 3.  McMahon says that Jim Cornette and his attorney – the yet to be named Clarence Mason –  forced WWF President Gorilla Monsoon to strip Diesel and Shawn Michaels of the titles based on a technicality.  However, Monsoon has demanded that Owen Hart and Yokozuna defend the titles tonight and face Diesel and Michaels at a later date.  So that “guaranteed title change” the fans were supposed to get?  Well, forget about it now!

McMahon and Jerry Lawler are our commentary team and they are live from Grand Rapids, Michigan.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the tapings attracted 1,500 fans.

Call 1-900-747-4WWF to hear from the winners and losers of last night’s In Your House 3 pay-per-view.

Opening Contest:  Marty Jannetty pins Skip (w/Sunny) (8-5) after a flying fist drop at 7:40 shown:

This was Jannetty’s return to the company after spending more than a year on the independent circuit and making a few appearances in Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW).  Jannetty’s ring attire leaves something to be desired, wearing a black tank top and a pair of Rocker-like tights.  Nevertheless, Jannetty is very over with the crowd as they give him a nice ovation for his entrance and chant his name throughout the bout.  Jannetty also appears to be having the time of his life in the ring, giving Sunny a hug when she thinks Skip is behind her, avoiding her slap so that Skip eats the blow, and dancing in the ring like a schoolgirl.  Dean Douglas is shown taking notes in the aisle, but no WWF version of the ECW Triple Threat would be forthcoming.  As expected, both men’s technical skills click but Skip gets in very little offense as Jannetty hits a Rocker Dropper and finishes with a flying fist drop.  Rating:  **½

McMahon recaps the controversy surrounding last night’s Triple Header match as Owen Hart could not lose the tag team titles because he was not recognized as a tag team champion.  It is clarified that Owen and Yokozuna will face the Smoking Gunns in a title match tonight.

Dok Hendrix tries to get fans to buy an In Your House 3 t-shirt for $20 (not including shipping & handling!).  I wish I knew what was on that classic WWF tape, though… 

WWF Tag Team Championship Match:  The Smoking Gunns (20-3-1) defeat Owen Hart & Yokozuna (w/Jim Cornette & Mr. Fuji) (15-0-1) when Bart pins Owen after a Yokozuna splash at 10:16 shown:

The Gunns appeared to be dead in the water a few months ago but they have steadily rebuilt themselves in the tag division, winning six straight matches and defeating the Blu Brothers in a de facto number one contenders match at SummerSlam.  As has been the case for the series of matches between these two teams, the Gunns fare well against Owen but struggle significantly against the bigger Yokozuna, who slows the match to a crawl when he tags in.  This time, though, the Gunns have learned to deal with Yokozuna’s fatness as Bart avoids a Yokozuna splash when he covers Owen, causing heel miscommunication, and the Gunns regain the titles to a massive pop.  This was a shocking result because the company seemed to foreshadow a future encounter between Diesel and Shawn Michaels against Owen and Yokozuna, so it was surprising when the Gunns won the titles outright.  The result marks the last time Yokozuna would ever go into a match as a champion, while Owen would have to wait another year to win some gold, which would happen against…the Smoking Gunns.  Rating:  ***

After the match, Diesel and Shawn Michaels come out to congratulate the new tag team champions.

Hendrix interviews Monsoon, who announces that Diesel will defend the WWF title against the British Bulldog at In Your House 4, with the winner facing Bret Hart at Survivor Series.  Also, Shawn Michaels will defend the Intercontinental title against Dean Douglas at the next pay-per-view.

The Undertaker (w/Paul Bearer) (11-1) beats The British Bulldog (w/Jim Cornette) (10-4-1) via disqualification when King Mabel interferes at 7:34 shown:

This is a good example of a “dream match” that was available when the Bulldog turned heel and that is being given away on free television due to the Monday Night Wars with WCW.  Many wrestlers are scouting this match, with Waylon Mercy shown watching things from somewhere in the lower arena and Mabel and Mo watching from the aisle.  The Bulldog appears very motivated by this new singles push and he keeps things moving against the Undertaker, who also appears to welcome wrestling against someone new and moves at a faster than usual pace for his zombie character.  Basically the Bulldog throws everything at the Undertaker, which fails to finish him, so we get a made for TV finish as Mabel wanders into the ring and gives the Undertaker a belly-to-belly suplex to draw a disqualification.  Rating:  **¾

After the bell, the Bulldog and Mabel do a brief two-on-one beatdown until Diesel and Shawn Michaels make the save.  Owen Hart and Yokozuna come out to aid the heels, but the Smoking Gunns back up the Two Dudes with Attitudes.

McMahon puts over the WrestleMania XI special on FOX despite the fact that it is airing on a Saturday night at 11 o’clock.

McMahon recaps the end of the Razor Ramon-Dean Douglas match at In Your House 3 and how that has set up a match between Razor Ramon and the 1-2-3 Kid on the next broadcast.  Lawler says that he has heard rumors that the Kid is negotiating with Ted DiBiase.

Tune in next week to see Bret Hart face Jean-Pierre LaFitte in a rematch from In Your House 3!  Also, Razor Ramon squares off against the 1-2-3 Kid!

The Last Word:  The end of the main event with everyone streaming out was fun, especially because you did not get those finishes on RAW during this era.  However, the main event did very little for the Bulldog’s main event credibility.  His ring work was good, but he needed to go over the Undertaker to be considered as a threat to Diesel in a few weeks time.  The title switch to the Gunns was a big moment as well, as the last title change on RAW was earlier in the year when they defeated the 1-2-3 Kid and Bob Holly for the belts.  However, the tag team division has no depth and it is unclear who the Gunns are going to be feuding with now that they have the titles.

Monday Night War Rating:  1.9 (vs. 2.7 for Nitro – Lex Luger vs. Meng)

Up Next:  WWF Superstars for September 30, 1995!