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Wrestling > TNA

Raw from JHawk's Beak
Posted by Jared "JHawk" Hawkins on Nov 4, 2002, 23:23

Raw from JHawk's Beak (11/4/2002)
by Jared "JHawk" Hawkins

I was watching Starrcade 94 today (trying to numb my senses early since I was expecting the worst), and did you know that Triple H used to throw a dropkick? I was impressed!

And for those of you who are asking, I have not forgotten about Today in Wrestling History, but I haven't really seen anything relevant to cover lately. That will change on Saturday though, as right here on www.thesmartmarks.com, we will analyze Montreal on its fifth anniversary.

Before we get to business tonight, does anybody know where Joe Everyfan can get a copy of the NFL rulebook? It feels like they're changing the rules every week now. Let's just say I saw a call or two in the NFL yesterday that contradicted every call I've ever seen in similar situations and I'm confused as hell.

On the subject of the NFL, props to Joe Theisman for acknowledging that the referees in general will indirectly cost a defense that's down in the final two minutes. If you missed it (and judging by the ratings, you did), the Jaguars were down a touchdown to the Giants and probably had a chance to get the ball back, but the referees took their sweet time spotting the ball. I've been seeing this a lot lately, particularly in college football, where 40 seconds will run off the clock while the 25 second play clock expires. Stop taking teams out of close games by lollygagging to the line of scrimmage already.

Anyway, onto wrestling. Last week on Raw, Kane finally beat Triple H in a casket match while Eric Bischoff announced who would be in the Elimination Chamber. Shawn Michaels was told he had a week to decide if he wanted in the Elimination Champion, and at the end of the night cost Triple H the casket match. Then on SmackDown, Eric got to kiss Stephanie McMahon in an attempt to actually get more TV time than his alleged World Champion. Does any of this actually mean anything? Let's find out.

Segment 1

F-View shows Easy E watching the tape of Bischoff and Steph snogging on SmackDown. Then he looks in the mirror all disgusted as we cue the opening.

Live from the FleetCenter in Boston, Massachusetts. And the Holy Bible Kid is backstage!

Three Minute Warning (w/Rico and kickass new music) vs. Mr. Extreme and American Dream Bubba Ray Dudley

Last week, Jamal and Rosey beat the shit out of Spike Dudley and indirectly cost Bubba and Jeff the World Tag Team Championship later that night. Four way brawl to start. Hardy with a nice dropkick off of a throw by Jamal, and then it's a springboard off of Bubba's back onto their opponents. And he hit it flush too! Bubba with the senton bomb (and it works!). Jeff in, and a clothesline to Jamal gets two. Bubba in, and he gets Jamal with a sunset flip, but the blind tag allows Three Minute Warning to get the advantage. "Rico sucks" chant as Rosey works over Bubba. Double headbutt, but Bubba ducks, and since only Samoans can hurt other Samoans with headbutts, they stagger. Jeff tags in, and he springboards over Jamal's back with a dropkick to Rosey. Over the top goes Rosey, but Jamal whips Jeff to the corner...and Jeff comes back with a Whisper in the Wind that forces Rosey to make the save. Rico in, but here's Little Spike Dudley to pull him to the floor and hit him with the Dudley Dawg. However, Jamal drops Spike ribs first onto the guardrail. In the ring, Bubba with a neckbreaker to Rosey, Wuzzup Legdrop by Jeff, "Jeff, get the tables!" Flip Flop Fly, but Jamal gets a chop to the throat before the elbow. Jeff still manages to get Poetry in Motion and goes for the Swanton, but Rosey shoves him off the turnbuckle. Jamal with a Samoan drop, and he pins Hardy at 6:19. Well, I'll be damned, that was pretty good for guys who aren't that good.

Victoria is with Ivory backstage (did she come over in the Big Show trade?), and apparently Trish accepted Victoria's challenge on Heat for a hardcore match. Ivory has Trish next, but tells Victoria she'll save some of her pretty face. Victoria explains what she'll do at Survivor Series. Ivory: "And they thought I was nuts."

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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I'll probably get a lot of hate mail for this, but that was actually a pretty good little opener. Jeff actually hit his spots, and while it was a bit of a train wreck, they got the crowd popping and kept me entertained. See that, WWE? You put some sports in my sports entertainment and I give you some props.

I'm not sure how Ivory ended up on Raw unless she's part of the Big Show trade, but wow, that's like five women who can wrestle in the division now!

Segment 2

Non-title match scheduled for one fall: Trish the Cheating Bitch vs. 99.4% Pure Ivory

Ivory with a cheap right hand to start. Nice heel tactic. Quick suplex for a count of 2. And here comes Victoria to the broadcast booth. Trish with a nice lariat and a cover for 2. Bitch kick for 2. Ivory comes back with...something sort of resembling an X-Factor to regain the advantage. Victoria's headset isn't working, which they pass off as her ignoring them. Nice save. Ivory with a gutwrench suplex for 2. Fireman's carry, but Trish floats behind with a sunset flip for 2. Trish with some forearms, but Ivory with an elbow. Up to the top turnbuckle, but Trish with a handstand headscissors. Ivory comes back with a quick roll up for 2. Ivory to the corner, but Trish kicks her off and hits a fucked up bulldog for the pin at 3:21.

Tonight, Booker T and Kane vs. Triple H and Chris Jericho. Forget that Jericho and Hunter hate each other too. Wait! Victoria hits Trish with a bottle of water as she heads to the locker room (then slaps Lawler for good measure), and it's on like neckbone! Victoria sends her hard into the Titantron, and here come the referees to try to break these two up.

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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Well, that women's match was quite decent up until the finish. Are you finally convinced that the botched top-rope bulldog in the Jackie Gayda match wasn't all Gayda's fault now? Some good action, and a good little brawl with Victoria and Trish. They've actually got me somewhat interested in the Women's Title match for Survivor Series, which is good, because Brock vs. Big Show is almost enough to make me avoid the show (and this is coming from a Brock Lesnar fan). And sadly, some fans I know that don't follow the websites are buying into Show as title contender.

Segment 3

The New England Patriots are in attendance. Bill Belichick loosened the leash?

F-View shows Victoria running into a locker room to hide, and Someone Feed Terri wants an interview when she calms down because she seems crazed. Victoria flips, chokes Terri out, then starts stripping her.

RNN Breaking News: Randy Orton says his shoulder has 32% mobility now, so keep e-mailing so he can come back sooner.

Bischoff is pissed that the production guy put an F-View camera in his office, and as he fires the guy, in comes The Man WHOO! and Hungry Hungry Hippos, and the belt is where it belongs...being held by Ric Flair. Triple H is upset because he can't get a cup of coffee because he doesn't want to look over his shoulder for Michaels. Oh, and while he's pissed anyway, why has Hunter been treated so poorly? Did I miss something? And the Elimination Chamber is proof of this because he doesn't know what it is. Bischoff says that's intentional, but Hunter deserves to be part of history. Bischoff kisses his ass, presumably to goad him into agreeing to the match. Hunter thinks Bischoff's either screwing him, or he's being influenced. And Flair shows Bisch kissing Steph as proof. Christ, Steph's getting more airtime than Hunter this week and she's not even there. Hunter compares it to putting on Kane's mask to screw a mannequin. So they're both stiff?

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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HHHater Clock: One segment, 4:23, and nothing really accomplished. Still, it took almost 30 minutes to get him on TV this week. Sadly, I was more intrigued by Victoria beating the crap out of Terri than anything else in this segment. Non-wrestling sequences need to have purpose, and establishing that a certain World Champion isn't happy isn't it.

Segment 4

Tag Team Contest scheduled for one fall: Lance Storm and William Regal vs. Tommy F'N Dreamer and Al Snow

If we can be serious for a moment, tomorrow is Election Day, and most people take that for granted...but he's interrupted by a Scott Steiner video on the Titantron. Log into thenewtnn.com to win an autographed copy of Hulk Hogan's book. Dreamer and Storm start, but William Regal is immediately brought in. Snow is in now, but Storm grabs Snow's legs from the outside. Regal begins to work over it. Psychology? On Raw? Wow! Storm goes for a half crab, Snow fights it, but Storm goes back to the leg. Regal in, and he also goes to work on the left leg. Snow is able to counter with a monkey flip, but Storm comes in with a chop block and covers for 2. Leg scissors as Dreamer starts a "USA" chant. More work on the leg, but Snow gets a clothesline in. Hot tag to Dreamer, and he works over both men. Dreamer sets Storm up for a DDT, but Regal nails him from behind. Dreamer recovers and takes Storm down with a Death Valley driver, but Regal kicks Dreamer in the side of the face, and Storm covers for the pin at 3:37.

HBK talks to a production assistant, who stooges off Triple H's whereabouts.

Batista is backstage, and he's NEXT!

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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Well, that's your worst match of the night thus far, and it wasn't actively bad, just rather bland. Regal and Storm really need to get 10-12 minutes to show what they can do, particularly Regal, who is as technically sound as anybody but can't play to his strengths in the era of three minute matches. Why couldn't they interrupt the necrophilia videos for the Scott Steiner videos instead though?

Segment 5

My Future Wife shows Test his fan mail. Publisher's Clearing House? Oh sorry. She reads to demonstrate, and I swear that I did not write the first one she read! She reads another, and apparently the Testicles are swelling with pride by starting a fan club. And Stacy has convinced him to finally get that elusive haircut! Isn't that why the Un-Americans were split up in the first damn place?

Batista vs. Justin Credible

Justin Credible gets time on Raw? Throat Beell and clothesline by Batista to start. Credible gets a couple of kicks to the face, but Batista gets what's best described as a rolling fireman's carry. High angle power bomb, goodnight, Justin. Batista gets the pin at 1:24, and Barry Horowitz used to get more offense than Justin Credible did here. JR still puts Credible over though.

Flair and HHH are backstage, and HHH is going to the ring to try to settle this. Oh yay.

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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HHHater Clock: 2 segments, 4:48, at least two more segments to go.

I wish they could have used somebody else to put Batista over in his first appearance, but that is one hell of a way to bring him in. This is reminiscent of the old school Wrestling Challenge squashes where one guy just dominates the opposition until he either gets over or ends up in obscurity a la Outback Jack. Batista has a great look, his power stuff looks vicious as hell, and if he shows any technical ability and charisma at all, he could be championship caliber within a couple of years.

Segment 6

And here comes Hunter's obligatory boring ass interview. He's sick of waiting for HBK, so let's do it right now. "Your career ended once in Boston. Let me see if I can make lightning strike twice in the same place." But Shawn isn't coming out, so Hunter warns that if he accepts the Elimination Chamber invite, there will be no next time. He guarantees victory at Survivor Series. And here comes Booker T, who wants to be told Hunter didn't say that. The crowd sings along with the "five time" WCW Champion bit. Hunter says Booker can't hold his jock, but that's because he wouldn't want to hold another man's jock in the first damned place. Booker says he's sick of seeing Hunter with that belt, so he's taking it. I expected a pop for that... "You think you run this damn show, right? Well, you don't run Booker T!" Booker's thinking of only one thing: "Don't hate the player...hate The Game!". And now it's time for Y2J(2) to make his appearance. Jericho's sick of Booker T saying "sucka" because he's not a "sucka". And he'll prove it at Survivor Series by regaining the World Title and eliminating Booker himself. The Spinnaroonie has nothing compared to Jericho's "Juke and Jive". O...K... And even though he doesn't like Hunter, they're partners tonight, and right now the T stands for "trapped". Here comes the 2-on-1, and wait for it...THERE'S the pyro, and here come Kane to run off the heels. One question: Where the hell is RVD?

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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HHHater Clock: 3 segments, 13:48. And I actually liked this segment. Hunter's babbling was quite short, Booker and Jericho each got some mic time to put themselves over, and they set up tonight's main event. And all in less than 10 minutes.

Now that Terry Taylor is officially a road agent, do you think he can bring The Red Rooster out of mothballs long enough to team with Chris Jericho so that Booker can call them "Cocksucka"?

Segment 7

It's time for Stacy to unveil Test's new haircut...

One fall: The Hurricane vs. Test (w/My Future Wife)

Not to sound queer or nothing, but he actually looks good with short hair. Not as good as Stacy though. Nobody looks as good as Stacy despite what the Miss Smartmarks voting might tell you. Test begins by pounding Hurricane away with elbows in the corner. Oh my God, what a full nelson slam! More elbows in the corner. Clothesline against the corner. Hurricane is trying to fight back, but Test sets up a powerbomb. Hurricane counters with a sunset flip for 2. Another Test power bomb is countered with a rana. Alleged Shining Wizard gets 2. Hurricane goes for a blockbuster, but Test moves out of the way. Hurrichokeslam is set up, but Test avoids it. Pumphandle slam is set up, but Hurricane lands on the apron and hits a reverse neckbreaker over the ropes. Back in the ring, but Test catches Hurricane with the Roll of the Dice for the pin in 3:42. And Stacy's got the stick... *cough* ...and Test has a big announcement to make. He doesn't want to say it, but Stacy kisses him. That would make me change my mind. Test: "I love my Testicles!" You know that T-shirt is being printed even as we speak.

Video for the Elimination Chamber. It's hard to tell from that, but it appears to be like a Hell in the Cell with a curved roof.

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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Call me silly, but I think I liked a Test match. Hey, Hurricane got in a decent amount of offense, there were a couple of innovative moves, and Stacy got to bend over on camera quite a bit. But if Stacy keeps kissing him on camera...eh, I won't do anything about it because Test can kick my ass, but I'll be pissed.

Segment 8

Chris Jericho gets a Desire video, thanks to his new theme music done by Saliva, "King of my World". Lots of clips from the Undisputed Title reign, and I rather like the song.

Backstage, Jericho and ChrisTIAN enjoyed the video, and that's proof they're not suckas. Christian has RVD tonight, and Jericho wants RVD out of the Elimination Chamber. Christian wants that spot, and they're already arguing over who would get the title. Christian calls him a sucka, and Jericho storms off, but F-View follows him...right over to HHH and Flair. Hunter warns him about HBK, and if he shows up, he's "our problem" even though Jericho's not the target. Jericho asks if Hunter's ex-wife has been given Bischoff's own Three Minute Warning...and HBK's been watching from around the corner.

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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HHHater Clock: 4 segments, 15:24 and rising. Heaven forbid Jericho get one segment to put himself over without this guy on screen. Another segment that's serving to hype the main event tonight, but it's segments like this that make people so anti-Triple H. He's not on camera much as far as actual screen time goes, but he's been on "live" in 50% of the segments so far with at least one more to go. On the bright side, at least Jericho has been given a similar amount of TV time thus far.

Segment 9

One fall: Rob...Van...Dam vs. ChrisTIAN (World Tag Team Champion)

If he's all alone, why is he a tag team champion? Just a thought. Huge "RVD" chant at the bell. Did anybody else notice WWE is running Philadelphia opposite Ring of Honor on Saturday night? Beautiful spinning leg lariat by RVD, followed by a dropkick and a clothesline to send Christian to the floor. Baseball slide, and he goes for a standing moonsault to the floor, but Christian side steps and RVD lands on his feet. RVD places Christian over the guardrail, but misses the corkscrew legdrop over the guardrail. Christian begins to work over RVD on the floor (but he doesn't target the leg). Back in, and Christian gets a powerslam for 2. Into a chinlock, and the crowd tries to rally RVD. What a hot crowd tonight! RVD elbows out, but Christian gets a knee to the midsection for 2. Choke against the ropes. RVD blocks a kick and connects with a stepover spin kick. Forearms, and RVD stumbles hitting the ropes, but recovers and takes Christian down. Nice save. RVD goes for a spin kick against the corner, Christian ducks, but RVD lands on his feet on the floor and comes off top with a flying bodypress for 2. Christian regains the advantage and gets the inverted backbreaker for 2. Christian's frustrated now though, so he heads to the floor for a chair. Swing and a miss, and Charles Robinson grabs the chair. Legsweep by RVD, then shoulders in the corner...but he gets caught after the backflip. Christian to the top, but RVD catches him and tries a backdrop, but some flip flopping gets RVD the advantage to set up the Five Star Frog Splash for the pin in 6:38. Well, hot damn, another pretty good match, this one the best of the night.

We still have a tag team match to come tonight!

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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Am I watching the right show? Because the majority of the focus has been on the in-ring action, and this has been the best Raw in at least two months. Did somebody actually listen to the negative feedback over the last couple of weeks? I've been digging this show, and I'm praying the main event focuses mostly on Booker and Jericho so they don't ruin my good mood.

Segment 10

Christopher Nowinski is coming to the ring. He was looking forward to Boston since it's like home and all, but the town has gone down the gutter since he left. How could people be stupid so close to Ivy League schools? Because their lives are run by Harvard graduates. Then he says their combined IQs couldn't produce enough heat to thaw out Ted Williams' corpse. Not cool, Chris. He then proceeds to piss on every Boston sports icon, and even I'm pissed at that and I'm not a Boston fan. (Larry Bird's not a great man?) As Shakespeare said: "What does everybody want?" Oh, it's just Al Snow to interrupt. Sorry. "Why don't you just ground me, Dad?" And look behind you, Chris, because Maven is standing in the ring (and even though he's part black, I thought it was Crash Holly at first). Clothesline, clothesline, and I gotta say that formerly broken leg looks pretty healed up to me. Snow with a shot of his own for Nowinski, and I assume that's another Big Show trade transaction.

Kane is backstage, and Goldust is there to congratulate Kane for teaming with Booker. Kane wants left alone, but Goldust is banned from ringside, but he wants Kane to get his freak on. Kane chokes him, and Booker walks in, so Kane lets go. Booker says to ignore the mind games. Booker: "Who would have sex with a dead body?" And Goldust raises his hand... "What? I was young and stupid!"

HBK stands in front of HHH's locker room, but resists the urge to knock.

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COMMERCIAL BREAK
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Well, apparently Maven's back about two weeks sooner than expected, and while I'm not sure how most of you feel about the ensuing matchup, I'm impressed that they have a feud that essentially writes itself (Maven vs. Nowinski) and they're actually going to go with it. Now if they don't fuck it up by saying "You slept with Nidia on the set, you bastard," they might have something.

Segment 11

Tag Team Main Event scheduled for one fall: Y2J(2) (World Tag Team Champion) and Hungry Hungry Hippos (World Heavyweight Champion w/The Man WHOO!) vs. Booker T and Kane

Call me crazy, but I think HBK gave his answer when he jumped HHH in last week's main event. Just a thought. Booker and Jericho start (thank God). Jericho pounds away at Booker and chokes him in the corner. Booker comes back with a leg lariat and starts chopping away. Jericho takes Booker down with a sleeping neckbreaker, and there's the tag to Hunter. Right hands by the champ, and Booker actually sells them. Wow, it's old school night on Raw. Booker with right hands of his own. Clothesline by Booker, and here's the tag to Kane. Trips is immediately to the corner for the tag. Choke lift by Kane, and he tosses Jericho down. Punches, elbows, but Jericho comes back and gets a flying dropkick for 2. Jericho runs in, and Kane simply tosses him into the air. Flair distracts the referee, Trips takes Kane's knee out, and we have the wrong guy playing face in peril tonight. Hunter holds Kane's knee against the ringpost as Jericho levels it with a chair. Jesus Christ, I made out a small "Katie Vick" chant. Boston fans are SICK! Hunter works over the knee as a "Y2J" chant starts. Jericho is tagged in, and he continues to work over the leg. Good strategy from a "real" standpoint...keep the bigger man grounded, because if he can't stand, he can't use his power. Triple H back in, and he's still focusing on the left leg. JR calls HHH a hoss...I can't wait to read the message board comments about that statement. Hunter into a figure-four leglock. Jericho helps Hunter get leverage, but they get caught. Jericho back in, but Kane is able to drop Jericho. Tag to Hunter, and Hunter keeps Kane from tagging in Booker T. Double suplex attempted, but Kane blocks it and suplexes both men at once. Wow! Hot tag to Booker, and he's working over both men with clothesline. "HBK" chant starts as Booker gets the floatover sunset flip for 2. Booker gets Jericho with a power bomb. Flair to the apron...down he goes! Down goes Triple H! And instead of following up, there's a SPINNAROONIE! Booker clotheslines both men down. Scissors kick to HHH, but Jericho makes the save at 2. Jericho puts Booker in the Walls of Jericho, and Kane clotheslines Jericho from the top rope to break the hold. So much for working over the leg. Down goes Earl Hebner, there's the leg lariat, and up to the top...but Booker misses the missle dropkick. Pedigree atttempted, but in comes HBK with Sweet Chin Music. He rolls Hebner in, and Booker covers HHH for the win at 10:27 to a nice pop. And HBK has the stick at the top of the ramp. Long story short...he accepts the spot in the Elimination Chamber. Of course, we're already running long and he has to spend about two minutes before giving his answer. HBK guarantees victory. Well, you can't all guarantee victory guys, because only one guy can win.

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END OF SHOW
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Decent enough main event, even with Kane being the face in peril. OK, the match was a bit bland and a bit boring prior to the hot tag to Booker T, but solid psychology prior to that. Of course, all that work on the leg meant nothing once Booker T made the tag, but I appreciated the effort.

The final tally on the HHHater Clock: 5 segments, 31:38, 10:27 of it wrestling time. In fairness though, the last two minutes of that was HBK's promo, and the show didn't end until 11:11 Eastern, so read into that what you will. It seems like Hunter was never off the TV, but Jericho had a similar amount of airtime, so I won't argue.

What I did like was the focus on the wrestling. No, there weren't any five star classics, and I doubt anybody will remember what the lineup for this show was two weeks from now. But even the bad wrestling wasn't so bad that I found myself reaching for the remote to check in on Monday Night Football. Having such a hot crowd always helps the atmosphere. Is it a thumbs up show? Compared to the crap that they've put out the last few weeks... I'd have to say hell yeah to that.

A couple of quick questions though:

1. So Hunter won't job clean in a non-title casket match?

2. So Hunter won't job clean in a tag team match?

3. Since RVD was never in the final segment, does he have any shot in hell of winning the Elimination Chamber?

4. Was that video of the Elimination Chamber supposed to be our big explanation of what the hell it is?

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