A PLEA: Now that I know I’ve got the attention of At Least 4 Wieners, I have a question that I don’t want to come off as begging, but well, it is… If you happen to write columns For This Site or Some Other Site, and they’re not HIDEOUS – then I’d invite you to have them cross posted at my site. I don’t get a chance to do many updates per week because I get very few guest columns these days. (And I USED TO! What happened to those days???) My site, as always, is Shooting Star Press, inspired directly by Slash – and in many ways, directly ripped off!
Warning: The following program contains material that may offend some viewers. Discretion is advised.
Here’s the first offensive moment now! We replay the finish to last week’s stellar match. Thanks for reminding me. GRUMBLE!
LIGHT THE ARENA ON FIRE! KANE MAY NOT HAVE POWER, BUT BAH GAWD WE HAVE KEVIN DUNN!!! JIM ROSS and JERRY LAWLER provide the distraction from Omaha, Nebraska.
TONIGHT: Chris Benoit takes on Batista. Hmmm…I think I like THAT! Plus, the Monday Night War ERUPTS TONIGHT. Well someone play some Smash Mouth and give the president a hummer – it’s 1998 ALL OVER AGAIN! I wonder what Ken Starr thinks about all of this…
LITA vs. VICTORIA vs. JAZZ (with Teddy Long) vs. MOLLY HOLLY (in a fatal four-way for the WWE women’s title)
Victoria dumps the champion over the top rope while Jazz gives Lita an avalanche. Victoria rolls up Jazz for 2 – which only fires her up, and she slaps on a double chickenwing. Lita DDTs Jazz something AWFUL, and gets 3???? (0:57) I guess the next time we see Jazz, she’ll be backin’ the Mack. Enjoy your 4 months off honey! Molly hits a sweet springboard back elbow smash on Victoria and gives Lita a strange looking neckbreaker. She damn near rolled the dice on that one. Molly takes her time covering Lita, lying on her own back for God Knows What Reason. Victoria of course rolls her up with a bridge, and pins Molly. (1:31) What the hell are they doing??? They’ve had the belt on Molly for like 8 months or something, and the belt changes like this? I…don’t understand this company. I really don’t. Molly goes nuts, and attacks Victoria. Jim Ross calls for a commercial. This match is weird.
We return with Lita in a headlock. Victoria hiptosses her, and holds the headlock in place. Lita escapes, and bitchslaps Victoria. Kick is blocked, and Victoria gets clotheslined. Victoria retorts with a snapmare, and works the rear chinlock. Lita fights to her feet, and delivers a Russian legsweep for 2. Lawler talks about the erection he’s sporting. Victoria tries a slingshot legdrop, which misses completely – and Lita gets 2. Victoria goes for something resembling a TKO – but Lita counters with something resembling a rana, assuming you were lying on your back and your opponent kept trying to put her head between your legs so you could snap it off. That trainwreck gets 2. Inverted Twist Of Fate gets a 2. A second attempt at a pinfall also gets 2. Lita whips Victoria into the corner, who blocks a charge with a high knee for 2. Victoria sets up for a slingshot – but it’s countered with a legsweep and bridge for 2. Lita launches Victoria face first into the bottom rope, hits a spinning back suplex – and prepares for the Litasault! Victoria blocks, grabs Lita off the second rope – and hits the Widow’s Peak! 1, 2, 3! (9:41) 1/2* Right winner, BAD match. STEVEN RICHARDS hits the ring, and cries with Victoria over the win! The happy couple bounce around, while we cut to the back…
It’s VINCE MCMAHON and a VALET! The Valet CARRIES VINCE’S BAGS! I’m so gosh darn excited – and it’s lucky they cut to commercial because I was ready to explode.
Escape the rules! Watch RAW every Monday night.
ERIC BISCHOFF gets told by THE COACH that Vince is around. Bischoff groans, and tells Coach that he’s well aware. CHRISTIAN isn’t far behind, and brings the news that Vince is here! Also, Christian’s got an idea. He wants to partner with Chris Jericho against Booker T and RVD at Wrestlemania. Bischoff says to hell with that, he’s still pissed Jericho walked out on him in WCW. Instead, he books Christian against Trish Stratus.
RANDY ORTON vs. VAL VENIS (with wet towel) (for the WWE intercontinental title)
Randy doesn’t seem at all interested in Val’s exhibit, and attacks with a high knee to the midsection. In the corner, Orton stomps away – but breaks long enough for Val to strike back with a dropkick. Val applies an abdominal stretch, and just before Orton makes the ropes, he drops down and rolls him up for 2. Orton rolls outside the ring, but Val follows and clubs his forearms at Orton’s back. A whip into the apron is reversed by Orton, and Val hits back first. Into the ring they go, where Orton whips the back into the turnbuckle, and then drops knee after knee after knee on Val’s back. The crowd chants for their favorite in this match, who is of course “FOLEY! FOLEY!”. Bow and arrow submission is applied by the champion – and held until Orton nearly gets counted down himself! Orton stands and does the “BANG BANG!” spot a couple of times, allowing Val time to fire back with some shots to Randy’s midsection. Orton gets backdropped, and Val chops away. 10-punch count-a-long scores, as does a uranage for 2! He follows with a spinebuster, but takes his time following up due to a sore back. Val slowly heads up for the Money Shot – but Orton catches and slams Venis off the top. Seconds later, RKO, and we have a winner. (5:14) ** Come hell or high water, this kid is going to get over HUGE.
Taken straight from The Monday Night War (WHERE IS MY COPY ALREADY???), Eric Bischoff calls out Vince McMahon to a fight just before Slamboree 1998. Not seen: Bischoff scores the victory at the PPV. Yes, the match DID happen – but we’ll never see THAT.
ERIC BISCHOFF flips backstage that someone played the video, while THE COACH can’t imagine who played it. SHERIFF AUSTIN strolls casually into the room. He says he gave the okay to play it, but it shouldn’t matter because Bischoff’s 25 years younger than Vince. “Vince specializes at getting his ass whooped. Remember kid, you’ve got the ace up the sleeve, you’ve got the karate thing!” He keeps calling Bischoff kid, and reminds Eric he’s the only man to have made out with Vince’s wife AND daughter and still be here to talk about it. And the best part? Vince still signs his paycheques. Austin wants to know how making out with Linda was, but Bischoff starts off on a fantasy about Stephanie. VINCE MCMAHON is of course right behind him, and Eric clues in much faster this week. “He’s standing right behind me isn’t he?” “Uhhhh, maybe.” Slow 180 degree turn… Vince, of course, is not taking the comments in stride and promises to take Bischoff out of the fantasy and into reality. He leaves. Austin: “You’ve got him right where you want him kid.”
BATISTA runs on the spot while RIC FLAIR rants as ONLY he can rant! RANDY ORTON hovers around as well. I’m not quite sure WHAT Flair was saying, but it involved Benoit and winning the Rumble, and Evolution… TRIPLE H enters, tells Evolution he wants them to listen to what he has to say in the ring, and leaves. Flair: “Let’s follow the champ!” and struts. I don’t think Flair’s had this much fun in years…
As promised, EVOLUTION enters to Triple H’s music. 6 hours later, Hunter starts to speak. He reminds us that Wrestlemania’s main event is now a Triple Threat match – defending against both Chris Benoit and Shawn Michaels. Hunter is no longer upset, stating all they do is stack the cards – but he remembered just who the hell he is. “I am the Game…” etc. He apologizes for being human and forgetting just how awesome he truly is. The fans helpfully point out that he sucks. “As hard as it is for me to accept how great I am, it must be killing all of you.” Triple H reminds us that week after week, month after month, year after year, millennia after millennia, he is still the World’s Heavyweight Champion. Ever get the feeling he’s going to die just so the announcers can remind us that the new champion never actually beat Triple H to win the belt? Not that Hulk Hogan would MIND winning it under those conditions, I’m sure… Hunter wonders if Wrestlemania will be the end of Triple H? “Is this going to be the night that it’s Game Over? NO!” And the reason? “This is Wrestlemania XX!” Hunter promises to stamp his place in history at Wrestlemania – which we all have no doubt that he will. In fact, all of this is discussed in The Book Of H – which Bryon Frazier reviewed recently. CHRIS BENOIT walks the ramp – and brings a microphone in his pants! He immediately tells us how much he respects Triple H, but says he’s getting just a LITTLE tired of hearing Triple H talk. “The time for talking is done.” Hunter suggests that Benoit step into the ring and show Evolution how tough he really is. So he grabs a chair, and does just that. Now THAT is funny. Evolution backs off – then circles. Orton distracts Benoit JUST enough for Batista to club Benoit in the back of the head, and everyone stomps away! SHAWN MICHAELS saves the day, but only because he has JESUS POWER – and cleans house. Benoit thanks him by slapping on the Crippler Crossface!!! Triple H tells them all to back the hell off and let Benoit kill Michaels. Having seen enough, the glass shatters and SHERIFF AUSTIN comes out on his 4-wheeler, and chases Evolution around the ring a couple of times in it. I don’t know why I find that idiotic 4-wheeler so damn funny, but I laugh every time I see it. Austin wants the Benoit/Batista match to start now, and if ANYONE gets any ideas about interfering, they will not make it to Wrestlemania. We take a break while Shawn looks hurt that Chris would dare attack him.
We return, and it looks like a match has already started…
CHRIS BENOIT vs. BATISTA
Benoit’s working over Batista’s leg with a series of stomps, and ties it up in the ropes. The RAWZone starts just as Batista hiptosses Benoit. Apparently Michaels is not just livid, but he’s irate as well. He can’t be any worse than some of the customers I backbill speak to on the phones. Benoit goes for the Sharpshooter, but Batista kicks him away. Benoit’s attempt at a shoulderblock is blocked by a shoulderblock (yes…that’s right) and Batista drops an elbow. Batista tries a bearhug, while Chris tries to hammer out. They fall, with Batista maintaining a waistlock hold. Chris forces a break, and gets trapped immediately in a half crab. When that won’t make him tap out, Batista flips him right over with a slam, and gets 2. In the corner, Benoit gets hit with an avalanche – which gets 1 before the ref sees Benoit’s foot under the rope. Benoit comes back with a hiptoss – and dodges an ANGRY avalanche attempt seconds later! He slips into the German position, but Batista elbows him in the head. A spinebuster is hit seconds later, but only gets a 2! Batista goes for a suplex, but Benoit slips off the back and hits a German suplex! Upon standing, Batista gets hit with a second, and this time Benoit’s rolling – and hits 2 more! Thumb to the throat, and Benoit heads up!!! Flying headbutt misses the target – allowing Batista to put up Benoit in a powerbomb position! In MIDAIR, Benoit hooks the arm, and turns it into the Crossface!!!! Batista taps!!! (somewhat longer than 6:20) **1/2 Excellent big man vs. small man match! Seems like Chris has had a series of these lately…
SHERIFF AUSTIN attempts to get ERIC BISCHOFF drunk, who’s too busy whining about facing Vince. “Where’s the Eric Bischoff who led Nitro to beat RAW 83 weeks in a row?” He left his balls at home when he signed with the WWE…oops, sorry. Austin gives Bischoff 3 options. Leave, and get fired. Go through with the fight, lose, and get fired. And then there’s the 3rd option – go out there, turn back into Eric Bischoff, become the leader and confident man he used to be, and whip that man’s ass. “Eye of the tiger! Survive! Kick ass!” Bischoff stares into the distance…
ROB VAN DAM and BOOKER T vs. LA RESISTANCE (in a non-title match)
Lawler states that because La Resistance enters together, they’re more of a cohesive unit than the champs – and I applaud the fact that he’s remembered he’s a wrestling announcer. Of course, JR blows him off, telling him he’s looking for subliminal messages that aren’t there. Lawler: “It’s not even subliminal!!!” Thank you Jerry. I still stand by the idea of Booker T and RVD as tag-team champs being the dumbest idea of the new year. Dupree takes down RVD with a shoulderblock, but takes a spinning heel kick from Van Dam soon after for 2. Booker comes in, so RVD elevates Dupree allowing Booker to hit a high Harlem sidekick. Conway distracts Booker, and Dupree knocks him out of the ring. From there, Dupree discusses the release of Saved By The Bell seasons 3 and 4 on DVD with the referee while Conway drives Booker back first into the ringpost. He’s rolled back in, and Dupree gets 2. Conway comes in and gets a back elbow for 2 – and moves to the rear chinlock. Booker fights up, but gets backdropped. Dupree is back in, and takes his second Harlem sidekick of the match. He tags back out, having accomplished little. They try to double team Booker, which fails, because he’s Harlem sidekicking everything in sight. Van Dam hits a step over heel kick and elbows Conway in the face. Rolling Thunder hits Conway, but Dupree comes in and chops away. Booker hits the Book End on Conway, and hits the axekick on Dupree! Van Dam with a Five Star, 1, 2, 3. (4:37) *1/2 Messy finish, but not bad. Lawler thinks the wrong guy was pinned, but lord knows I couldn’t keep up since everyone was in at the same time. I imagine they’ll have a rematch though to settle whatever issue Lawler was trying to start.
Here’s some shots of Mick Foley’s bloody and swelled face after last week – and it’s NOT pretty. I hope to god it’s makeup. JR interviews him next!
CHRISTIAN and TRISH STRATUS bump into eachother, and Christian explains that he had absolutely nothing to do with tonight’s match idea. Christian also doesn’t want a competitive match. “The last thing I want to do is hurt you. It’s the complete opposite of what I want to do.” Christian says he’ll lay down, and she can cover him for the win. After that, they can hang out, go back to the hotel. “And since I laid down for you…maybe you can lay down for me?” Trish is of course COMPLETELY spooked by that – and Christian backs up, stating she just passed the CLT, or the “Christian Love Test”. And now that he knows she wouldn’t hurt Jericho, he feels a lot better. She looks…scared to death.
Here’s a recap of the one-sided Orton/Foley feud – starting with the push down the stairs right after Bad Blood in June, all the way to the beatdown last week. The potato punches are shown in slow motion… Absolutely nasty.
And now, JIM ROSS has a very special sitdown with a beaten up MICK FOLEY.
JR: “Mick, last week’s RAW was extremely disturbing. The world witnessed 3 men unmercifully beat another man. Now you’ve asked for this time and we’re more than happy to oblige you, but you must be sitting there in horrific pain.”
Mick: “Well for the most part JR, I’ve been in some type of pain for most of my career, since I was 19 and I set about wrestling in a completely different style. I accepted then that pain would come with the territory, that injuries would come with the territory. But I never before needed a neurologist to explain my injuries to me. The thing that kept getting to me was why if I was hit in the temple 6 or 7 times would the blood start rushing down? Would my eyesight become blurry with blood in the eyeball? I’m used to pain, I’m used to injuries, I’m not used to throwing up in the middle of the night. I’m not used to losing my balance, I’m not used to be scared. Injuries never used to scare me, until now.”
JR: “Mick, during this assault we heard time and time again from Randy Orton ‘stay down Mick, stay down’. Why didn’t you just stay down?”
Mick: “Instinct? That’s the only thing that I can really think of. I don’t even remember being aware of all that much. Until the moment I went home and watched the video tape I thought maybe I’d been beaten up for 30 seconds. I was aware I was being beaten, but I had no idea how prolonged it was, and I think it was just instinct that I kept getting back to my feet. And I was watching that beating, the one thing that kept going through my mind was ‘where’s the help?’ How in the world could I be beaten up for 6 minutes continuously without a single soul out there to help me?”
JR: “That had to tear your guts out.”
Mick: “Well I was under the assumption that I was somebody who was respected within wrestling. Looked up to… Loved to some degree. And to think that with my life possibly on the line that I wasn’t worth saving is something that tears me up emotionally. I try to rationalize the behavior of the wrestlers, and I think deep down there’s an awful lot of guys who haven’t fully forgiven me for my actions, or action of December 15th. I feel that there’s some guys who feel that I’ve broken some unwritten wrestler’s law when I walked away from that match with Randy Orton. And I think that some guys see that one night as overshadowing the entire rest of my career.”
JR: “With the results of Monday night’s beatdown, can we safely assume that Mick Foley’s career is over?”
Mick: “Can we safely assume my career is over? I have a big, big problem with giving Evolution that type of power. I have a big problem with giving Randy Orton that kind of power. If he wants to be the guy that spit in Mick Foley’s face, that’s fine because he did. If Evolution wants to say they’re the guys that put Mick Foley on a stretcher for the first time in his career, fine because they did. But I just cannot give them the power to tell me when my career is over. There’s this pain in my gut, this hatred that burns at me, that eats at me like a cancer, and I’m longing, I’m longing for the days of the old Mick Foley, the commissioner Mick Foley who made people laugh. I don’t laugh anymore JR, and I don’t want to be the guy sitting back looking back at Evolution as the guys that took that part of me away. So when you say is it safe to assume my career is over, I would say that that’s not really a safe assumption to make. If you want to make safe assumptions, you can assume that next week, March 1st, I’m gonna walk to the airport, and I’m gonna walk up to the plane, and I’m gonna board a plane bound for Atlanta. I think it’s safe to assume that I’m gonna take that plane and I’m gonna make my way to RAW, and I think it’s safe to assume that there’s gonna be HELL TO PAY FOR THE THINGS THAT WENT DOWN. So you tell Randy Orton, you tell Batista, you tell Ric Flair that it’s safe to assume that THEIR ASS IS MINE. BECAUSE ON MARCH 1ST, NEXT MONDAY, MICK FOLEY IS COMING TO RAW.”
TRISH STRATUS vs. CHRISTIAN
Christian goes over the agreement with Trish once again, and lies down. 1, 2, kickout with authority!!! Trish looks really pissed now, and gives Christian a piece of her mind before walking out. On her way out of the ring, Christian slaps her ass. NOW it’s on. She mouths right off – with the “don’t GO there sister”, so he clotheslines her to Hell…AND BEYOND! He picks her up by the head, apologizes until she’s on her feet – and then slaps on the Walls Of Jericho! Trish taps like crazy… (1:27) DUD Christian’s not REALLY in the mood to let go though, and holds for another 30 seconds. Posing – the boos rain down. “Where’s your boyfriend now huh?”
Back from the break – we replay most of the previous match while JR condemns Christian to the pits of Hell.
Backstage, TRISH STRATUS is being helped away.
THE COACH stops by ERIC BISCHOFF’s locker room – and wants to talk to him. “Hey, I understand if you’re puking your guts out. Get it all out!” In his karate gear – Bischoff emerges! And he’s not at all scared. “When I was running WCW I went head to head with Vince McMahon. You know what happened? I beat him at his own game.” Amen brother! “Not 1 week, not 2 weeks, but 83 consecutive weeks I beat Vince McMahon. You know how I did it? I took each and every one of his stars starting with Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, Roddy Piper, Bret Hart, you name ‘em, I took ‘em and I made them bigger stars. And Eric Bischoff became #1. And then you know what happened? Let me give you my version of history. Vince McMahon didn’t beat Eric Bischoff. I had victory in my grasp. You know what happened? Time Warner came in and threw in the towel. Vince McMahon and everyone else around here may think Vince McMahon won the battle, but tonight Eric Bischoff is going to win the war.” Well, he was on the right track right up until he started to tell “his version” – but I think he got the point across…
NEXT WEEK: Mick Foley returns, while Shawn Michaels and Chris Benoit team up against Randy Orton and Batista.
VINCE MCMAHON arrives to make his major announcement. The announcement is… interrupted by STACY KEIBLER and JACKIE GAYDA. Jackie apologizes for the interruption – and Vince is all ears. Stacy wants a chance to prove to Vince that she and Jackie are the hottest divas in the WWE, at the biggest stage of ‘em all, Wrestlemania XX. Vince suggests that they do it right now! Stacy does cartwheels while Jackie plays with Vince’s hair. He quickly gives in – and books them against Torrie Wilson and Sable in the first ever Playboy Evening Gown Match. KANE apparently wants in on the match – because he angrily storms out. “You promised, you promised me that he would DIE! So I buried him alive, and now he’s back. DON’T PLAY WITH ME! You know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s him. My brother, The Undertaker. He never sleeps. He’s been tormenting me day and night. And if you don’t do something to stop him…you’ll be the next one that gets buried alive.” Vince tells him to settle down – and makes Kane vs. The Undertaker at Wrestlemania, but this time someone will rest in peace. Kane happily lights the turnbuckles on fire. With that out of the way – Vince can finally make his announcement. He reminds us that on Smackdown!, Brock Lesnar was on his knees begging for a match with Goldberg. His only problem is that nobody could contain the two in this type of a match. Of COURSE this draws out SHERIFF AUSTIN. “WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING HERE?” Austin says if he doesn’t give the people what they want, he’ll be in violation of the law. The fans give a “HELL YEAH” for the Lesnar/Goldberg match. And because the match might be too violent for a normal referee, Austin volunteers. “What’s in it for you?” “That ain’t none of your damn business.” With that – Vince agrees, and makes the match! And tonight, we get to find out just what kind of a referee that Austin is…because he’s now the ref in the Bischoff/Vince match.
VINCE MCMAHON vs. ERIC BISCHOFF
Vince and Bischoff stare eachother down before Bischoff offers the hand of friendship. Vince shakes…and pulls him in with a knee to the gut. Vince chokes Bischoff out on the ropes, and Austin orders a break. Bischoff comes back with some karate kicks – and hits a heart punch! Swoll would be so proud. Vince attacks in the corner, which Austin again orders to break, and we get an extended censorship bleep. Vince shoves Austin, so Austin knocks him out with one right hand. Bischoff gets in on it and kicks at Vince’s back for awhile. Vince escapes, blocks a kick, and clotheslines Bischoff. Bischoff rolls out – and runs away, but Vince is on him. He chokes Eric outside the ring – when suddenly the fans pop because BROCK LESNAR’s in the ring… Austin turns around, and gets nailed with the F5!!!! He wipes his mouth while Bischoff and Vince continue to fight… This is definitely a no contest (3:06) DUD while JR screams about this SHOCKING development.
Perhaps we’ll get some answers about THAT on Smackdown!
Welcome, everyone, to the latest EXCLUSIVE, JAM-PACKED and DECIDEDLY MEDIOCRE edition of Inside The Ropes, and whether you love it or you hate it, you better get used to it, because I'm the best thing going today. Wooooo!