The SmarK RAW Rant – May 16 2005
– Stomach flu is a bitch, and between that and work, it took me a while to get to this.
– Live from Omaha, NB
– Your hosts are JR & King
– Opening match: Muhammad Hassan & Khosrow Daivari v. Chris Jericho & Shelton Benjamin. Big brawl to start and the heels get dumped, and the faces follow with stereo pescados. Back in, Jericho goes after Daivari with chops and a backdrop suplex. Shelton comes in and works the arm, but gets jawbroken and Hassan comes in instead. Shelton clotheslines him out of the corner, but goes after Daivari and gets caught with a backbreaker. Daivari goes to the surfboard and Shelton fights out, and gets a clothesline, but Hassan cuts off the tag. Double suplex gets two. Hassan goes back to that deadly surfboard, but Shelton escapes with a samoan drop and it’s hot tag Jericho. He gets rid of Daivari and gets the enzuigiri on Hassan, setting up a high cross for two. Daivari makes the save and Jericho gets rid of him and puts Hassan in the Walls, but then goes after Daivari again and walks into the WMD at 6:01. Pretty average tag formula opener. *1/2
– Meanwhile, Benoit and Tajiri reminisce about ECW and decide to have an “ECW rules” match, much to William Regal’s chagrin. Benoit and Regal effortlessly understanding Tajiri’s Japanese here is pretty funny.
– And of course, we have to remind everyone that HHH isn’t here, so we show a video of him leaving last week. That leads to Flair asking Eric to call HHH and bring him back. When that doesn’t work, he goes to Batista instead and blames him. Dave calms things down and claims that it’s not his fault. Oh sure, poor Snitsky gets dumped from the show and then Dave steals his catchphrase! Flair and Dave do some male bonding, because Dave is obviously stupid and has never seen a Sting match in his life.
– Ric Flair v. Christian. Flair is clearly the face this week. Christian overpowers him to start and struts, and that earns him a slap. Flair gets the old rollup in the corner for two and elbows him down, but goes up to the top and gets slammed off. There wasn’t even any LOGIC to that one. Christian hammers away in the corner and it’s almost a Flair Flip, but age and bad back conspire against it. Tomko gets his cheapshot in outside anyway. Christian suplexes Flair back in for two. They trade shots and Flair wins the chop battle, and it’s a Peep Flop. Flair goes for the figure-four, but gets slugged by Tomko and Christian gets the rollup, with the ropes, for two. Flair then one-ups him by reversing, holding the TIGHTS in addition to the ropes, and getting the pin at 3:23. Short and inoffensive. * Flair gets double-teamed by the heels, so Batista saves. Oh, Dave, Dave, Dave. If anyone else is seeing Flair turning on Batista and setting up himself, Christian, Edge and HHH forming the new Evolution, hands up.
– Meanwhile, Edge confronts Lita and acts all threatening and scary, just to really hammer the point home.
– And now, another thrilling episode in the Masterlock Challenge, and it’s another day, another plant. This time Stevie Richards returns from surgery to attack Masters and set up a feud that will truly sell out any arena in the country. Of course, Gorilla Monsoon used to say the same thing about Brooklyn Brawler v. Red Rooster, so take that as you will.
– Chris Benoit v. Tajiri. This is of course ECW Rules, which means no disqualification or countout, all but 200 people have to leave the arena, and both cheques bounce. Benoit hammers him to start, but gets caught in the Tarantula. He fights back with chops, but Tajiri tries the handspring elbow, so Benoit goes low and hits him with a german suplex. To the floor, where Tajiri gets splatted on the stairs, and Benoit puts him on the table out there. Then, for the heck of it, sets up a ladder in the ring and climbs up. It’s weird that two people who were having such fun remembering ECW together would then go to such lengths to kill each other. Anyway, Coach and Uncle Eric come out to stop the match before any true carnage can result, somewhere around 3:33, because Eric hates ECW! And there shall be no ECW mentioned on his show! And no ECW signs! No talking about ECW at all! ECW ECW ECW! We’ll see if this very subtle strategy will succeed where, apparently, announcing matches would have failed.
– In the ring, a pillow fight between Christy and some other chick just serves as a backdrop for Viscera to make his weekly move on Lillian. It involves cotton candy, as do most of the great romances. This is of course leads to Viscera showing off his crooning skills with some Barry White while Lillian looks on with a “deer in the headlights” gaze. I know just how she feels. Much like a car crash or that Britney Spears reality show, I was horrified by the proceedings, but just couldn’t look away.
– Meanwhile, Kane assures Lita that Edge is no threat to her.
– Meanwhile, Shelton and Jericho talk things over, and poor Shelton gets assaulted by cheap plugs for Jericho-related endeavors.
– RAW tag titles: Rosey & Hurricane v. Maven & Simon Dean. Stacy is now with the heroes, apparently becoming the Tammy Sytch of 2005 by jumping from tag team to tag team. Maven grabs a headlock and gets nowhere, as Rosey slams him and Hurricane splashes him. Maven comes back with the dropkick for two and Hurricane is superhero in peril. Dean gets the neckbreaker for two and the heels pause to pose. Jesse Ventura would undoubtedly approve. Simon hits the chinlock, but Hurricane escapes it and it’s hot tag Rosey. Backdrop for Maven and he slams Dean on Maven. The heels get distracted with Stacy, although Maven moreso, and the heroes double-team Maven for the pin at 3:24. Pretty bad. 1/4*
– Randy Orton joins us, looking like a cancer patient or something. Seriously, cycling off the roids isn’t pretty. His suit is hanging off him like he’s in a Talking Heads video or something. Apparently he can’t be drafted because he’s injured, and really that’s the whole point of the promo. Vince then joins us to offer a rebuttal, as I wonder what alien species took over his body when no one was looking and allowed him to heal from two torn quads that fast. Vince clarifies that no one is exempt, and makes fun of Orton’s new look. The draft will take place all through June, thus robbing me of having it in Calgary when I go there later this month. I was waiting for an RKO to kill the legend of Vince, but none comes.
– Gold Rush finals: Edge v. Kane. Slugfest to start and Kane boots him down, then gets a suplex and some choking. Edge takes him down into the corner and slugs away, but gets tossed. Kane drops him on the railing and they head back in, where Kane pounds away in the corner. Clothesline and Edge bails to the apron and necksnaps him, but gets choked down in the corner. Finally a low blow turns the tide and Edge baseball slides him to the floor as we take a break. Back with Edge working on the leg in none-too-exciting manner. Dehabilitate count from JR: One. They head out and Edge stays on the leg, and back in for more of the same. Kane fights up and slugs away in the corner, then follows with a corner clothesline. Another one gets two. Snake Eyes and another clothesline get two. Edge comes back with the Edge-o-Matic, and sets up for the spear, but Kane catches him. Edge kicks him in the knee and gets the DDT for two. Another spear misses and Kane sideslams him, but Edge bumps the ref and spears Kane. He grabs the briefcase, which Lita steals “for safe keeping” according to JR. And then, in a move that NO ONE possibly saw coming, she gives it back to Edge to use on Kane, and it gets the pin at 15:29. JR is shocked and appalled. So are the dorks who post to Matt Hardy’s website and compare it to 911. But still, a marriage has been destroyed! Even though it’s one caused by rape! Which the WWE doesn’t do! What a harlot! Match kind of sucked, running way too long and featuring some stuff with the knee that didn’t figure in the finish, as Edge’s big finish is now hitting people with a briefcase. *1/2
Next week: Edge v. Batista, with Christian and Flair likely to get involved.
The Inside Pulse:
Well, most of the wrestling sucked, but they’re at least going somewhere a little bit interesting for a change by seemingly pushing Edge to the top in place of HHH and also setting up E&C screwing Big Dave over bigtime.