WWF Raw report|
Jan. 10, 2000
Live from St. Louis, Mo.
The good guys got their revenge and took over control of Raw this week, messing with the heads of the top heels in the company in the process. The WWF accomplished this necessary break in the pattern of the heels humiliating the babyfaces without resorting to bringing back Vince McMahon. Instead Rock, with the support of the rest of the WWF roster, used leverage to dictate what happened on Raw, much to the disgust of Triple H. It is important for a promotion to periodically give fans something to be happy about - a sense of revenge and accomplishment and hope. The WWF knows that and delivered this week on Raw.
The program began to hype the Royal Rumble. They have one more edition of Raw and two more Smackdowns before the PPV to solidify the undercard, but this show did an excellent job of launching the hype for the main event - Triple H defending against Mick Foley. At the end of the program, subtle steps were taken toward a new phase of Foley's WWF stint. He took off the mask, bled, and went "bang, bang" for the first time in a long time. Ross did not drive home those points. He left them floating out there for viewers to figure out for themselves. Astute viewers will see hints that the Cactus Jack persona is coming back - the most serious, most hardcore version of Mick Foley's characters - and the one who is most likely to give Triple H a run for his money in a title match.
The show had a good stride to it, a real purpose, and every match led to the next. There weren't any breakthrough angles or interviews, but the suspense of the long opening segment and the intensity of the last five minutes - combined with a few spurts of great in-ring action (especially Triple vs. X–Pac) led to a very solid edition of Raw. It entertained and accomplished its goal of selling the PPV.
About fifty WWF wrestlers walked to the ringside. Rock was the final one to arrive, and he stepped into the ring and began, "Finally, The Rock has returned to St. Louis." Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler wondered what was going on. Rock said the wrestlers asked him to be their spokesperson. Ross wondered, "For what?" Rock said, "As unaccustomed to public speaking as The Rock is, I will do so." He called for Triple H and Stephanie to walk out. DX sat in the back watching the monitor. Rock told Triple H and Stephanie that if they don’t listen to their demands, he has an entire roster of WWF wrestlers ready to walk out and wrestle for a new wrestling organization - the WRF, the World Rock Federation. Rock said step one was reinstating Mick Foley. Triple H then reinstated Foley, but added, "Not because you say so. It was already in the works. We were going to reinstate him today, anyway." Ross acted skeptical. Rock said Foley was in the parking lot. Rock also said he was tired of stipulation matches. Triple H promised not to force him into any more strange matches...
Mick Foley walked out through the crowd. He asked Triple H for a title shot. Triple H said okay. The Rock said since the WWF Title match was set, he was going to throw his name in the mat and participate in the 30-man Rumble. Sensing they had Triple H and Stephanie’s backs against the wall, Foley and Rock decided to make some suggestions for matches "right here in St. Louis tonight." He suggested Billy Gunn vs. Road Dogg to find out who the toughest of the New Age Outlaws is. Triple H reluctantly agreed. Foley told Hunter that he said X–Pac is just as good as he is, so he thought Hunter should wrestle X–Pac to find that out. X–Pac grinned backstage, as if he was trying to hold back his happiness at the opportunity to prove himself. Rock then suggested The Acolytes team with himself and Foley against all four DX members... [C]
Ross and Lawler discussed the events of the first segment. They went to footage of what happened in the DX locker room during the break of the Outlaws and X–Pac complaining to Triple H about what happened. They walked out of the room, leaving Triple H and Stephanie behind...
(1) Road Dogg pinned Billy Gunn at 4:25 clean. Gunn hit Road Dogg with a Stinger Splash and then went for the Famasser, but Road Dogg reversed it into a slam and a quick three count. Road Dogg approached Gunn looking for a handshake. Gunn chose to walk out of the ring alone as a disappointed Road Dogg looked on...Mankind tied up the imitation Mankind to a chair backstage. Mankind yelled at him as he tied him up... The Hardys and Terri signed the backstage clipboard to wrestle later on the show... [C]
(2) The Hardy Boys (w/Terri) beat Kurt Angle & Steve Blackman when Matt pinned Blackman at 2:48. Angle told the fans in St. Louis that he and their Rams have a lot in common, but there is one difference - he beats people with winning records. Great comment (I admit to being biased, but fact is the Rams haven’t beat a winning team all year, and lost to both teams they faced with winning records) and very topical. Ross talked about this night being a dream come true for him since Triple H and Stephanie have been put in their place by The Rock. Lawler pointed out Angle has yet to be pinned in the WWF... Mankind asked Mideon (fake Mankind) if he has any idea what he plans to do to him. Foley said he will tell anyone that the "fake Mankind is all tied up." He then ordered Mideon to laugh (they haven’t acknowledged it is Mideon)... Edge walked out of the Helmsley’s locker room. He told Christian that Hunter was pleased by their suggestion. Christian said that was great...
[C]... Backstage Chris Jericho told Chyna and The Kat that he was wrong last week to not want to work with her. He suggested she sign them up for a match against The Hollys so they can showcase their teamwork. He tried to take the IC Title belt from her, but she held on. Jericho walked away, and she signed the sheet... Ross said Val Venis was engaged to Edge’s sister. Val came to the ring and acknowledged the engagement...
(3) Val Venis pinned Edge at 3:34 with a fisherman's suplex. Good action. Afterward, Edge and Val shook hands and hugged. Lawler said maybe Val is okay with the engagement. Edge told Val, "You may have been the best man tonight, but you won’t be the best man at your sister’s wedding." He said Christian would be. Val shook hands and hugged Christian, seeming to be fine with it. Kinda strangely uneventful, but refreshingly unpredictable... Backstage X-Pac tried to tell Gunn, Road Dogg, and Triple H that their arguing is exactly what Rock was trying to cause... [C]...
(4) The Hollys beat Chris Jericho & Chyna (w/The Kat) when Hardcore pinned Chyna. at 2:47. In the end, Chyna reached for a hot tag, but Jericho turned his back to get the fans to cheer louder for Chyna. Chyna seconds later was pinned... Foley poured hot coffee over the head of the fake Mankind... X-Pac told Triple H he better have meant what he said about him being as good as he is. Triple H said he meant it, and that’s the problem... [C]
(5) Triple H (w/Stephanie) pinned X-Pac at 3:11. X-Pac hit the Bronco Buster and then climbed to the top rope. Stephanie shoved X-Pac off the top rope, causing him to crotch the turnbuckle. Triple H and Stephanie left X-Pac in the ring alone. Very goo, stiff action for the three minutes it lasted...
(6) Rikishi Phatu & Too Cool beat Al Snow & Head Bangers when Rikishi pinned Mosh at 2:28. After six-way chaos in the ring, Rikishi pinned Mosh after his sitdown piledriver. Snow spazzed out after the match. Rikishi danced with Too Cool afterward... Mankind said he was thinking of making the fake Mankind watch an hour of Al Snow matches... [C]...
Mankind untied the fake Mankind, then told him not to mistake kindness for weakness. He then left the room, but warned him not to leave the room without his permission. The fake Mankind cowered...
(7) D-Lo Brown & Godfather beat The Dudleys via countout at 3:20 when the Dudleys tried to steal the ’hos from ringside... Mankind walked up to Torrie and told her he admires her sweaty, heaving, voluptuous breasts. He said he knows she has heard he is a good kisser, but he has compiled a list of 17 other things he’d like to do with those. She was appalled. He told her he was in dressing room no. 3. He slapped her on the ass and said, "Bring a friend. There is plenty of Mankind to go around"... [C]
Ross said it was very uncharacteristic of Mankind to make such comments. Then Mankind’s plan played out. Torrie brought Kane to dressing room no. 3. Kane barged in and attacked the fake Mankind, dragging him into the stairwell and swinging at a lead pipe at him... DX discussed the situation backstage. Triple H and Stephanie said DX have to stick together or else they are going to get their asses kicked. X-Pac, Gunn, and Road Dogg didn’t seem pleased with Triple H’s suggestion and reacted with sarcasm... [C]... The two rapid-fire commercial breaks made up for the extra-long first segment that started the show. Without WCW opposition in the second hour, Raw may shift an extra commercial break into the second hour from now on to strengthen the first hour...
(8) Test & Bossman beat Test & Big Show when Test pinned Albert at 0:55. Albert and Bossman argued after the match, so Big Show returned to the ring and chokeslammed both of them... They showed the competitors in the main event getting ready backstage... [C]
(9) Triple H & Road Dogg & Billy Gunn & X-Pac beat The Acolytes & Mankind & The Rock when Triple H pinned Mankind at 10:23. Before the match Triple H tried to get other DX members to give him high-fives in a show of unity. They refused.
At 5:00, The Acolytes had X-Pac dazed, but X-Pac made a comeback with a DDT and tagged in Triple H for the first time. Mankind also tagged in for the first time and went to work on Triple H. Triple H showed ass big time, selling like a ragdoll for Mankind. When Triple H reached for a tag, other DX members dropped off the ring apron and walked away. Triple H stomped and kicked his feet in protest. Rock and Acolytes brawled with the other DX members to the back, conveniently making it a one-on-one battle. Mankind gave Triple H a double-arm DDT. When Foley put on Mr. Socko, Stephanie grabbed his leg. Triple H intervened and took over. He checked on Stephanie, then nailed Mankind with a stiff bell shot (ouch!) followed by a Pedigree through the ringside table. The move looked great. Triple H finished off Mankind with a Pedigree in center ring for the three count. Afterward, a bloody Foley got up off the mat, ripped off his mask, and began to aggressively beat up Triple H. He threw him to ringside and slammed him over the head with the steel ringside stairs. He used pieces of the ringside table weapons as Stephanie looked on concerned. Foley threw Triple H back into the ring, only to clothesline him over the top rope to the floor. Ross showed intensity in his voice that was reminiscent of his Mid-South days in 1987... Good job in starting to focus on the Royal Rumble PPV.