Monday Night Raw
Date: October 6, 2003
Location: Mohegan Sun Arena, Uncasville, Connecticut
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler
After last week’s show, the big story is HHH playing Harley Race to Goldberg’s Ric Flair by putting out a $100,000 bounty on anyone who can take Goldberg out. That opens a lot of doors for the company and WWE has decided to go through the Mark Henry door. To be fair though….actually there’s not much of a positive way to go with this. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of HHH issuing the bounty. I know it’s an old story but it works perfectly well for what they needed it to be.
Kane vs. Rosey
Fallout from last week. Rosey wastes no time in knocking Kane down and hitting a splash for an early two. That’s about it for Rosey’s offense though as Kane pops back up and hits Rosey in the face. Choking in the corner keeps him in trouble and something like a spinebuster plants Rosey again. Rosey is right back up with a corner splash and a DDT but a legdrop wakes Kane up for some reason. A roll underneath a clothesline gives Rosey an opening but he walks right into a chokeslam for the pin.
Rating: D. Rosey was trying here but Kane has already fallen all the way down to fighting comedy acts. I mean, Shane isn’t going to be taken seriously a lot of the time but he’s a step above these two at the moment. Also, if you need teams as badly as this “division” does, I see very little value in building them up and then having Kane decimate both members in short order.
Post match Hurricane comes out but gets beaten down as well. Cue the returning Shane to come in through the crowd for some cheap shots before bailing.
Post break, Kane is looking for Shane in the production trucks. After scaring some production workers, it’s back to the parking lot where Shane is just standing there. Shane dives into a limo and Kane can’t get in so he blasts the back window with a pipe. For some reason he THROWS THE PIPE DOWN THROUGH THE SUN ROOF and goes in after it, only to have Shane slip out. With Kane in the back, Shane rigs up the limo to drive forward on its own, sending it crashing into a big truck for a massive crash. JR and King go into serious mode and we cut to an abrupt commercial.
Back with medics trying to get the very bloody Kane out of the limo. It’s so tragic (and spontaneous) that we have about five different camera angles of the crash. The jaws of life are brought in as Steve Austin shows up to see if Kane is alive. Austin: “Is he still alive?” Steve never was that subtle.
Gail Kim vs. Lita
Molly Holly sits in on commentary because you can switch from segment to segment that quickly. At least she sounds shaken up. The place just goes nuts for Lita again, which is becoming the norm in a hurry. Lita gets in some right hands in the corner and thankfully Lawler isn’t being his usual self in a women’s match. A suplex looks to set up a Vader Bomb (which is WAY off target) but Gail gets her knees up.
We hit the chinlock as Gail continues to show off that great offense. She tries a neck crank, which means putting one hand on top of Lita’s tilted head and resting the other on her shoulder. You can’t even grab her chin??? A dragon sleeper looks better and a basement dropkick drops Lita again. Gail points to her head because she’s smart enough to hit a dropkick you see. Lita gets in a Russian legsweep for a breather and a spinning belly to back suplex (the Lita Bomb according to JR) is good for two.
Back up and Gail jumps from the middle rope onto Lita’s back in what I think was supposed to be a bulldog but wound up being more like a Thesz press from behind. Not that it matters as Gail rolls too far and gets cradled for two, making that move such a mess that I had to watch it twice to see what happened. Thankfully Lita finishes with the DDT a few seconds later.
Rating: F+. What the heck was that? This was just a few steps ahead of last year’s Jackie Gayda match with Gail managing to mess up things as simple as a neck crank (grab head with both hands and tilt). It’s kind of amazing that they had such solid tag matches in the last few weeks but had this bad of a singles match. I knew Molly was good but I didn’t realize she and Trish were holding things together that well.
Eric Bischoff tries to get to Kane but firemen hold him back.
HHH has a bunch of $100 bills laid out in a path to the briefcase full of cash. The question of the day is who will take Goldberg out. That kind of money could change someone’s life and buy a lot of things. It might even buy someone into Evolution. It could be Goldberg’s best friend, so the question is who’s next, because everybody’s got a price. Goldberg has friends?
Shawn Michaels wants Mark Henry tonight but Austin says no.
Scott Steiner comes out for his match with a defeated Stacy Keibler at his side. All Steiner cares about are his freaks and his peaks but sometimes the freaks mess up. Steiner recaps the Unforgiven loss and wants an apology with Stacy on her knees. This brings out Bischoff who says he’s glad to see the Big Poppa Pump that he’s known for years. As a thank you, Bischoff has hand picked Steiner’s opponent. JR: “Maybe Steiner is going to get what he deserves!” JR, if you’re going to be stupid, just be quiet.
Scott Steiner vs. Spike Dudley
Joined in progress with Steiner pressing him to the floor….and let’s cut to the bloody Kane being removed from the limo. Back in the arena, Steiner is suplexing Spike like he’s…well like he’s Spike Dudley actually. JR gets annoyed at Lawler for asking how he can call this match as Spike comes back with a running headbutt to the ribs. The Dudley Dog is countered with a suplex and the push-up elbow sets up the Downward Spiral for the pin. Not enough shown to rate due to the Kane thing but it was Spike Dudley vs. Scott Steiner. I think you can figure it out pretty easily.
Post match Steiner gives him a super Angle Slam but the Dudleys run in for the save. Test comes out and pulls Steiner away from a 3D.
Goldberg beats up La Resistance for trying to collect the bounty. I love how their method was just beating him up instead of, you know, hitting him with a pipe or something.
Back at the limo, Bischoff asks a witness what he saw. THE WHOLE THING WAS SHOWN ON TV! Anyway Bischoff blames it on Austin, including if Kane dies tonight.
Here’s Chris Jericho, flanked by Coach, Lance Storm and Christian, for a chat. Jericho isn’t surprised by what happened to Kane because Austin is causing all of this. It was Austin who told Kane to unleash his inner monster and that’s messed up the entire show. We’re in Connecticut tonight and Jericho wants to appeal to the board of directors: Austin needs to be relieved of all of his power here on Raw.
Jericho even has testimonials from people whose careers have been ruined by Austin, starting with Coach. Everyone knows Coach and Al Snow won fair and square at Unforgiven but Austin wouldn’t have that. Instead Austin gave his boy JR a rematch so the teams changed again. Now Coach is backstage doing interviews again despite being the best looking option.
Next up is Christian, who retained the Intercontinental Title both at Unforgiven and then the next night on Raw. Then Austin called him a CLB and made him defend the title in a ladder match! We see some highlights from the match with Rob Van Dam winning the title and it’s all Austin’s fault.
That leaves us with Storm, who Jericho says has been deemed boring. Now he’s reduced to coming to the ring to watered down techno music and doing a bad dance. Storm says Jericho is completely wrong though, because Storm is having fun, meaning we get a little dance. He thinks Austin is doing a great job as GM while Jericho is doing a great job of being a jack***.
The beatdown is on but Austin comes out….and doesn’t change much as Jericho is smart enough to realize Austin can’t do anything. Van Dam comes out for the real save and Austin complains about not being able to fight. The tag match is made for right now. This was all it needed to be and I could go with Storm getting a bigger push as a result.
Lance Storm/Rob Van Dam vs. Christian/Chris Jericho
The villains take their time getting in so we’re joined in progress with Rob in trouble. That’s broken up with a kick to the chest and it’s off to Storm….as the fans go silent. An enziguri takes Jericho down but he’s up fast enough to break up the Maple Leaf. Everything breaks down and Rob dives onto Jericho for a double knockdown. Storm hits a better looking dive and throws Christian back inside, only to get beaten down.
Jericho knocks him off the top and drops Storm face first onto the exposed barricade. We hit the chinlock for a bit until Christian throws Lance into the corner for a good stomping. The Walls are reversed so Jericho settles for a dropkick instead. Storm knocks Jericho back though and rolls over for the tag to Van Dam as things speed up again.
The middle rope kick to the face and a hot shot have Jericho in trouble. A split legged moonsaut gives Rob two and Christian is dropped onto Jericho for the, ahem, suggestive landing. Rolling Thunder onto both gets two and Rob scores with the Five Star on the illegal Christian. Jericho is back in with the Lionsault for two and grabs the Walls but Storm tags himself in. A missile dropkick finishes Jericho to give Storm the big pin.
Rating: B. Take four talented guy, let them have some time, and get a good match. On top of that, Storm gets a rub by pinning Jericho clean. That’s the kind of thing they need to do: elevate some people and see what they can do. If Storm can get a following or some charisma, he could be quite a solid midcard player.
Another recap of the car crash. Included: a shot of the back window shattering upon impact with the truck. That’s the same window Kane smashed with the pipe. Nice job guys.
Teddy Long says Mark Henry destroying Shawn Michaels last week will go down in wrestling history. Long needs to stick to thuggin n buggin because history isn’t his strong suit. Henry is going to claim the bounty and then win the World Heavyweight Title.
Randy Orton/Ric Flair vs. Mark Jindrak/Garrison Cade
Yes they’re still trying to make this team work. Orton works on Cade’s arm to start with JR saying these are two of the best young stars in WWE. An uppercut puts Cade down and a clothesline does the same to Jindrak. The announcers discuss books as Jindrak backdrops Flair to silence.
It’s back to Cade as this crowd is almost eerily silent. Flair takes over again as I’m wondering why WWE thinks Cade/Jindrak getting squashed is a good idea. Cade’s right hands don’t work and something like a bulldog to Orton is greeted by the same silence. Jindrak does the top rope spinning clothesline and a spinebuster/dropkick combination drops Flair. Not that it matters as Orton RKO’s Jindrak to give Flair the pin.
Rating: F. I don’t often notice the crowd reactions but EGADS this was bad. Not that the wrestling itself was the worst but there was no fire, no heat and no interest from anyone. Hopefully this ends the sticking of the toe into the Jindrak and Cade water because it’s completely not working.
During the break, Flair and Orton were celebrating when they ran into Maven and Trish Stratus. Maven doesn’t think much of the win and asks about a rematch with Cade and Jindrak (SOMEONE SHUT THAT MAN UP!). Flair tells Maven to shut up and a match is made for next week. Ric: “I’ve had more World Championships than you’ve had women.” I take it that’s a yes.
Steven Richards/Victoria vs. Maven/Trish Stratus
Fallout from Victoria joining forces with Molly and Victoria because there isn’t another worthy woman to team with Trish against Molly and Victoria here. Richards chops Maven in the corner but walks into an atomic drop. Maven’s good looking dropkick doesn’t get much of a reaction but a tag to Trish gets….well it’s not much but at least it’s something. The Thesz press (with Victoria sliding underneath Trish, who landed off to the side) has Victoria in trouble and a Matrish into a hurricanrana puts her down again.
Richards breaks up the Stratusphere though and Victoria hits a slingshot double legdrop to the chest. It’s off to a bearhug and Lawler is back to his normal self about the visuals. Trish shoves her away and brings in Maven for the clotheslines. Everything breaks down and Victoria gets kicked to the floor. A Chick Kick to Richards sets up Maven’s spinning faceplant for the pin.
Rating: D. Still not good but at least Maven and Trish had some good looking stuff. This was another bad tag match though and that’s not what this show needed in front of a dead crowd. The young guys are terrible right now and someone like Maven, who was supposed to be a bigger deal off of Tough Enough, isn’t doing anyone any favors.
Post match Victoria sends Trish into the steps.
Mark Henry vs. Goldberg
Non-title and Rodney Mack is sent to the back. Goldberg charges into the ring in a rare visual and Henry pounds him down to start. Some corner splashes crush Goldberg again and there’s a gorilla press drop. Three straight clotheslines don’t do much damage to Henry, who comes back with a Rock Bottom of all things for two. Another splash hurts Goldberg’s ribs and a shoulder breaker switches things up to the arm. Goldberg gets in an armbreaker to slow Henry down a bit but a Boss Man Slam cuts Goldberg down again. A slam looks to set up the spear but here’s Mack with a chair for the DQ.
Rating: D-. Somehow that’s the second best of the final three matches. This was Goldberg being destroyed for a few minutes and then not even getting to pin Henry. Let me repeat that: Goldberg, who won the World Title less than a month ago, isn’t getting to pin Mark Henry. I have no idea how this is supposed to make sense other than setting up another match later on, because GOLDBERG isn’t allowed to get a clean win here. If they wanted to further kill the crowd, they somehow managed to pull it off.
Post match Shawn runs in to superkick Mack, only to have Goldberg miss Henry and spear Shawn by mistake. Goldberg gives Henry the Jackhammer to end the show.
Overall Rating: D-. Somehow this show wound up being about Shane McMahon’s attempted murder of Kane and HHH, who wasn’t actually on the show. Other than that it was a bunch of terrible matches (save for that one rather good tag match), even more recaps/updates on Kane nearly dying and blaming Austin for everything. This show left me deflated, and that’s not a good sign when we have over a month before the next time these guys are on pay per view. Absolutely terrible here with the main focuses being Shane and Goldberg keeping the title warm for HHH. Figure out what the fans want, because this isn’t it.
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