Monday Night Raw – March 20, 2006

Monday Night Raw
Date: March 20, 2006
Location: FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tennessee
Commentators: Joey Styles, Jerry Lawler, Jonathan Coachman

So we are finally done with everything between here and Wrestlemania, unless WWE brings back some randy episode of All American Wrestling to promote the show. There is still a little more work to do to get to Wrestlemania and there are four shows left to get it all done. Let’s get to it.

The opening recap looks at Vince and Shane McMahon cheating Shawn Michaels out of the street fight at Saturday Night’s Main Event.

The Spirit Squad is in the ring to cheer about Shawn tapping and to introduce the McMahon. That means a marching band playing When The Saints Go Marching In, a bunch of confetti, and Vince dancing to guarantee a good opening. Vince praises Shane, who talks about Shawn losing on Saturday. That makes it McMahons 3, Michaels 0, including two pins on one night. Shane knows Vince is going to make it 4-0 at Vince’s greatest creation when he beats Shawn at Wrestlemania.

Vince says Shane is his greatest creation and talks about various horrible things he has done to Shawn in recent weeks. Things are all heading to Wrestlemania though and it is going to be a turning point for him. Shawn is going to crash at Wrestlemania and become his old self again. Just to make it more fun, their match is now No Holds Barred. Shane: “I love it!” As for tonight, Shawn can face HHH. Before we get to that though, here’s John Cena to interrupt.

Vince doesn’t like being disturbed but Cena tells Darth McMahon to calm down. Cena doesn’t want to wait for Wrestlemania because he took a Pedigree on Saturday. Shane gets in Cena’s face and says he doesn’t make the rules around here and threats are made. Cena wastes no time in taking the shirt off but Vince breaks it up and gets annoyed at the CENA chants. As for tonight, Cena can have HHH….when he teams with Shawn against HHH/Shane. Vince dances off as only he can, but Shane is a little unsure about this one.

Post break Shane isn’t sure about this but here’s HHH to say Vince better have a plan. Vince is going to be out there with them.

Carlito vs. Kane

Carlito ducks a right hand to start and slugs away in the corner to as much success as you would expect. A DDT works a bit better as Kane takes a full second before sitting up. The faceplant lets Kane step on Carlito’s head but he comes back with a quick Backstabber. Kane isn’t having any of that and grabs him by the throat, followed by the uppercuts. The top rope clothesline is dropkicked out of the air for two but Kane is back with a big boot. Carlito breaks up the chokeslam, only to springboard into another attempt to give Kane the pin.

Rating: C-. There wasn’t much to see here but that’s not exactly surprising. You can only get so much out of Carlito against a monster like Kane and that doesn’t exactly bode well for the Wrestlemania title match. Chris Masters and Carlito aren’t the best team in the first place and putting them against two monsters because there is no one else to get the shot isn’t a good sign.

The Blackjacks are going into the Hall of Fame. I would have thought they were in before.

Intercontinental Title: Ric Flair vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. Rob Van Dam

Shelton is defending but has no Mama. Flair and Van Dam knock the champ down to start and Flair drops a knee. Van Dam’s spinning legdrop lets Flair get two but Rob isn’t happy with the cover. The alliance falls apart in a hurry this time around so Rob gives Flair the spinning legdrop this time around. Rob hits the big running flip dive to the floor and we take a break.

Back with Flair and Van Dam both busted open as their heads collided on the flip dive. Flair stomps Van Dam in the corner but Shelton pokes Flair in the eye to take him down. Rob is sent hard into the post so Flair is left to chop away at Shelton. A Samoan drop into a suplex puts Flair down for two with Rob making a save this time around. Rob grabs a northern lights suplex for two on Shelton but Flair gets in a save of his own.

The spinwheel kick staggers Flair again and Rob follows with Rolling Thunder. Shelton is kicked to the floor and Rob adds the split legged moonsault for two. The champ brings in the title but gets kicked away, leaving Rob to miss the Five Star. Flair Figure Fours Van Dam but Shelton runs in for the cover to pin Flair and retain.

Rating: C+. I liked this more than I was expecting to and there is a good chance that this is going to shift things over to Shelton vs. Van Dam for the title. Flair has already had his title reign and there is no reason to keep him around the title picture after the losses. Van Dam needs something to get him back into the thick of things and an Intercontinental Title feud would do just fine.

We look at Saturday Night’s Main Event Cutting Edge, with Mick Foley destroying Edge. A Conchairto on the ramp was included.

Here’s a bandaged Mick Foley for a chat. Foley says Edge is speaking the truth when he says that Foley is a big teddy bear. It’s true that Foley has never had the Wrestlemania moment and yes, a few weeks ago he would have said a town’s name, plugged a book no one would read, and then prance around with a sock puppet. Then Edge busted him open with a Conchairto and it was different.

This time it was Chinese food, because just a short while after tasting it, he wanted it all over again. Edge has awakened something inside of Foley and it is known as Cactus Jack. The BANG BANG brings out…actually just Lita this time around. The fans aren’t pleased to see her but Lita says none of them are getting any of her so just shut up. Edge is stuck in Detroit with vertigo so Lita needs to speak to the Winner the Pooh shirt wearing Foley, just for a minute.

See, Edge has an idea: let’s just have a wrestling match at Wrestlemania. That isn’t Foley’s thing, but maybe it could be his Wrestlemania moment. Foley isn’t sold and demands that Lita slap him so Edge can come out here for the cheap shot. He demands that Lita slap him so she does, drawing out Edge. Foley is ready for him though and sends Edge to the floor, setting up the Mandible Claw on Lita to keep Edge from coming in for the big beatdown. Edge is furious as Foley leaves.

Now confirmed for Wrestlemania: Candice Michelle vs. Torrie Wilson in a Playboy pillow fight.

Torrie Wilson vs. Victoria

Hold on though as Candice is carried out on a bed with her big Playboy cover behind it. Candice throws pillows at Torrie and the Widow’s Peak gives Victoria the pin in less than a minute.

Big Show vs. Chris Masters

Show starts with the big chops in the corner and shrugs off Masters’ clotheslines. A superkick drops Masters instead and another shot puts him on the floor. Show follows him and misses a big boot, crotching himself on the barricade. Masters uses the distraction to grab a chair and blasts Show for the quick DQ.

Post match another chair shot lets Masters try the Masterlock but settle for a posting instead.

Here’s Mickie James and there is a big present in the ring. She admits that she did the wrong thing on Saturday and it’s a shame because the two of them could have been beautiful together. There is a silver lining though, because now she can become Women’s Champion. That way millions of girls can look up to her, but she won’t shove them away like Trish did to her. As for tonight though, Mickie has a gift for her. Trish doesn’t come out, so Mickie has the box opened to reveal….a kidnapped Ashley.

Now Trish comes out but as she’s a few feet from the ring, Mickie tells her to stay down or she’ll….I’m not sure what she could do to Ashley in the time it would take for Trish to get inside actually but it stops her anyway. Mickie screams at Ashley but walks too close to Trish, who pulls her out to the floor. Trish goes in to save Ashley, but Mickie gets back in to give Trish the DDT. With Trish out, Mickie kisses her and smiles a lot, despite having a busted nose.

This Week In Wrestling History: Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin in the submission match. I still get something new out of that match every time I see it.

Wrestlemania rundown.

HHH/Shane McMahon vs. Shawn Michaels/John Cena

Vince McMahon is here too. Shawn charges straight at Shane, who runs into the crowd in fear. As security holds Shawn back and Vince does a little Shane dance, Shane sneaks back around (that red baseball jersey is such a great disguise) to ringside but Cena punches him out of the air and we’re ready to go. Hold on though as Vince says that’s a DQ for Cena using a closed fist.

Cena is thrown out under threats of losing the title so let’s have a handicap match.

HHH/Shane McMahon vs. Shawn Michaels

Security holds Shawn back so HHH can get in a cheap shot before the bell rings. Vince has a mic to taunt Shawn as Shane gets in a kick to the ribs. HHH comes in and gets caught with a right hand, only to grab the spinebuster on Shawn. Shane adds an elbow and hands it right back to HHH to unload in the corner.

The facebuster cuts Shawn down again and Vince declares this as brutal. Shawn fights back on Shane though and hits the forearm into the nipup. HHH comes in sans tag so Shawn fights them both off and sends HHH outside. The top rope elbow connects on Shane but HHH breaks up Sweet Chin Music. That means a crotching against the post but here’s Cena to shove Shane off the top. Security comes in for the no contest.

Rating: C-. This was another storyline advancing match as Shawn continues to want to beat the fire out of Vince, who continues to get himself in trouble by not knowing when to let something go. We should be in for a pair of good matches at Wrestlemania, as both of these stories have been set up rather well.

Shawn and Cena clean house but Vince announces himself (with his eyes bugging out) vs. Cena for next week.

Overall Rating: B. I really don’t remember liking the build to Wrestlemania this well as the Raw side has been very good. They have three big matches on the red side and they are making me want to see all three of them. Just keep things going over the last week and then make the show work well in Chicago. Rather strong show here that did everything they needed to do with less than two weeks before Wrestlemania.

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