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Raw History: Episode 221 and Reliving Nitro: Episode 99

February 12, 2018 | Posted by Kevin Pantoja
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Raw History: Episode 221 and Reliving Nitro: Episode 99  

SummerSlam 1997 Results
Steel Cage Match: Mankind def. Hunter Hearst Helmsley in 16:24
Goldust def. Brian Pillman in 7:16
The Legion of Doom def. The Godwinns in 9:52
WWF European Championship: Ken Shamrock def. British Bulldog [c] via DQ in 7:27
Los Boricuas def. The Disciples of Apocalypse in 9:08
WWF Intercontinental Championship: Steve Austin def. Owen Hart [c] in 16:17
WWF Championship: Bret Hart def. The Undertaker [c] in 28:10


Raw History
Episode #221
August 4th, 1997 | Stabler Arena in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

WWF Champion: Bret Hart (5) since 8/3/97
WWF Intercontinental Champion: Steve Austin (1) since 8/3/97
WWF European Champion: British Bulldog (1) since 3/3/97
WWF Tag Team Champions: Dude Love (1) and Steve Austin (2) since 7/14/97

Vince McMahon, Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler were on commentary.

The Hart Foundation came out to open the show. It was an unsuccessful SummerSlam for them, until Bret Hart dethroned the Undertaker of the WWF Championship. JR, conducting the interview, recapped the finish last night. Bret spat at Shawn, who went to hit him with a chair, but caught Undertaker instead, which led to Hart winning. Bret put himself over as someone who overcame the odds last night. In his mind, Shawn Michaels showed favoritism, which means he should hold up his end of the bargain and not compete on American soil again. Bret moved on to his opponent for the next PPV, Ground Zero, the Patriot. He called his win last week a fluke. Bret lost the point a bit, repeating that Patriot meant nothing to him. Focusing on his teammates, Bret said Ken Shamrock would never get a shot at the European Title again, while Brian Pillman would never wear a dress. He’s the new sheriff in town. Owen got to speak, saying he showed compassion and it cost him, but he ended Austin’s career, so he should be champion.

JR introduced the new Commissioner, Sgt. Slaughter. He got the Linda McMahon/WrestleMania theme treatment. His first act was to officially book Hart/Patriot at Ground Zero (even though JR already said it was happening). Bret made the obvious mistake of asking who Patriot beat to get a shot. Slaughter: You! He added that Bulldog will face Shamrock again, Pillman will wear a dress and Owen gets a rematch at the IC Title when Stone Cold says so. Out came Austin, which is remarkable considering he was dropped on his head less than 24 hours earlier. Austin refused to wear his neck brace and agreed to face Owen tonight. Yea, there’s no way that goes down.

LAST NIGHT ~ Fans were interviewed about the result of the main event. They felt Undertaker was robbed and the blame was solely placed on Shawn Michaels.

At Ground Zero, the GANG WARZ leaders meet in a Triple Threat match. That’s right, the OG Nation collides. The new NOD was interviewed backstage. Faarooq threw out a bunch of threats for the PPV.

Kama Mustafa vs. Ken Shamrock
We got a recap of Shamrock throwing officials around last night. The NOD came out with Kama, but Slaughter returned to swing his Commissioner dick around and send them to the back. The Ultimate Fighter against the Supreme Fighting Machine. It’s nowhere as fun as that sounds. They brawled a bit before going outside. Once there, Shamrock was sent back in, allowing Los Boricua members to interfere and suplex Kama outside. He was sent in to eat a belly to belly and lose in 3:03. More of an angle than a match. [NR]

VIGNETTE ~ Brakkus is coming!

Brian Christopher vs. TAKA Michinoku
Sunny performed ring introductions in the shortest of skirts. I believe this marked the debut of the “Too Sexy” nickname. Christopher had the size advantage and used it to throw TAKA around a bit. He hit a Rocker Dropper, either angering Billy Gunn or giving him the idea to use it more. TAKA came back with a springboard dive. He used to get great air on it. Inside, Brian hit a backbreaker and some rolling vertical suplexes. TAKA countered and pulled him into an inside cradle to steal it at 3:28. Good, short fun in the division. [**]

Jerry Lawler threw a fit after the match, allowing Christopher to jump TAKA.

Backstage, Pillman refused to wear the dress. Slaughter decided that he’ll wear the dress every week until he wins a match or he’s suspended.

Hunter Hearst Helmsley w/ Chyna vs. Vader w/ Paul Bearer
Bearer got time before the match to say that if it came down to the managers in this match, Vader’s already won. He’s forgotten more about this business than Chyna will ever know. Vader didn’t even make the SummerSlam card. He pummeled HHH in the opening minute. HHH made a small comeback with corner stomps. Bearer tripped him up, causing Chyna to chase him down. She dropkicked him, but the camerawork mostly missed it. Vader went to confront her, but HHH fought him and they got counted out at 2:14. Lame. [NR]

The Patriot got to cut a generic promo backstage. He admitted there were problems in the USA, but the biggest was Bret Hart. He said his win wasn’t a fluke and that he’d take the WWF Title at Ground Zero. A bit over the top on the corny level.

The Patriot vs. The Sultan w/ The Iron Sheik
The Sultan is still around? He did a bit of a beat down, until Patriot made the babyface comeback and won with Uncle Slam in 1:45. [NR]

The Hart Foundation strolled to ringside, but Slaughter was back. He kept everyone but Bret back. Bret turned to look for his boys, allowing that no good, dirty Patriot to jump him from behind. That set up a short brawl that officials broke up.

WAR ZONE!

Shawn Michaels is brought out for an interview. Of course, Vince McMahon handled this one. A pretty negative response for Shawn. Probably his worst in the States since Survivor Series 96. Shawn didn’t appreciate the fans, Vince, Bret and Undertaker dumping the result last night in his lap. Vince asked Shawn if he was in cahoots with Bret. Shawn called him a dumb son of a gun for it, so Vince gave up on the interview and informed Shawn he was facing Undertaker at the PPV on 9/7. Shawn spoke alone, saying he never crossed pathed with Undertaker before, but he lays down for nobody. As he threatened him with a superkick, GONG. The Undertaker came out for the confrontation. But wait, Shawn hightailed it and wasn’t there when Taker made it to the ring. Taker said he was done talking and it was time to get back to taking souls. Paul Bearer interrupted on the Titantron and threatened that Kane was coming soon. Undertaker left, but his usual purple lighting turned red and nobody knew why. Great segment overall. It effectively turned Shawn heel and built Taker/HBK and Taker/Kane.

MOMENTS AGO ~ A doctor, who seemed very unsure of the terminology he was using, advised Sgt. Slaughter that Steve Austin couldn’t compete tonight.

Ahmed Johnson vs. Chainz
More from Slaughter, who ejected the factions. Putting these two in a singles match is a bad move. A random “ECW” chant broke out. Chainz targeted Ahmed’s leg, while Ahmed responded by throwing him around. Some of Los Boricuas showed up and revved up Chainz’ bike. The distraction led to the Pearl River Plunge at 2:14. [NR]

The DOA ran down and chased off Los Boricuas. The NOD also hit the scene, but nothing happened between the stables. As the NOD did their salute, they turned and jumped Ahmed. D-Lo, Kama and Faarooq whipped him, kicking him out of the group after about five or so weeks.

The Godwinns vs. The Headbangers
The teams traded some basic stuff early. The Headbangers showed their speed advantage, while the Godwinns played up their power. Vince announced that Dude Love would replace Austin against Owen Hart tonight. As the Headbangers got close to winning, the Godwinns won with a Slop Drop to counter a rollup at 3:51. Not awful. The crowd didn’t care and it didn’t stand out either. [*]

Bob Holly vs. Brian Pillman
Goldust and Marlena joined the front row for a closer look at Pillman in a dress. The dress stuff made for an entertaining match. Pillman used the dress to cover Holly’s face, while we also got spanking and up skirt spots. Holly missed a diving leg drop, giving Pillman the upper hand. Marlena and Goldust waved around a bra, causing Pillman to freak out and confront them. While he did that, he got counted out at 2:24, so he must wear the dress again next week. More of an angle than a match, but what we got was fun. [NR]

WWF Tag Team Champion Dude Love vs. Owen Hart
Bret Hart joined commentary for this match. Sgt. Slaughter hung around ringside to keep things civil. Owen jumped Dude before the bell, but Dude fought back with clotheslines. His size remained a problem for Owen. He ran him over and blocked a hip toss before hitting one of his own. Dude was sent outside for a commercial break. Returning, he missed an elbow on the ramp. That’s not a bump many would take a night after coming off the top of a Steel Cage. Owen hit a missile dropkick and enziguri that sent Dude back outside. Owen applied the Sharpshooter and the crowd erupted as Steve Austin made his way to the ring. He went after Bret and I love that their feud refused to die. While Slaughter and officials keep them apart, he whacked Owen with Owen’s own Slammy, giving Dude the victory in 8:24. Nowhere near their best effort. Dude probably held back a bit after getting roughed up at SummerSlam, while Owen didn’t bring much either. [*½]

Dude Love celebrated with some groupies to close the show. I’m about 95% sure one was his wife.


Reliving Nitro
Episode #99
August 4th, 1997 | The Palace at Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, Michigan

WCW World Heavyweight Champion: Hulk Hogan (2) 8/10/96
WCW United States Champion: Jeff Jarrett (1) since 6/9/97
WCW World Tag Team Champions: The Outsiders (3) since 2/24/97
WCW Television Champion: Ultimo Dragon (2) since 7/22/97
WCW Cruiserweight Champion: Alex Wright (1) since 7/28/97

So, this episode is three hours because it was hyped as the 100th in Nitro history. According to the WWE Network, it’s actually episode 99. There was some strange “lost episode” that aired via internet only or something, apparently.

Michael Buffer introduced things in the middle of the ring. ARE YOU READY? The usual trio of Tony Schiavone, Larry Zbyszko and Mike Tenay handled commentary.

NITRO GIRLS!

“Hollywood” Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff strutted to the ring. Hogan bragged about how he would beat Lex Luger in front of a bunch of motor heads at Road Wild, but WCW went behind his back and booked the match for tonight. Hogan called himself a God and then his theme began to play ahead of schedule. He told Jimi to hold on, as he finished by saying he’d beat Luger tonight and defend against Scott Hall (What?) at Road Wild.

Curt Hennig vs. Mortis w/ James Vandenberg
After a short feeling out process, Hennig scored with a dropkick. A Vandenberg distraction gave Mortis the upper hand for a moment. Hennig knocked him outside with a knee lift, before giving Vandenberg a right hand. Back inside, Hennig hit the running neck whip to set up the Hennigplex for the finish at 3:47. I was hoping for something more, though this was fine. [*¾]

VIDEO PACKAGE ~ The transformation of Sting was chronicled.

Chavo Guerrero Jr. and Hector Guerrero vs. Dean Malenko and WCW United States Champion Jeff Jarrett w/ Debra
To reiterate their relationship, Hector sung “We Are Family” during his team’s entrance. Chavo and Dean opened with quick back and forth. Loud “Jarrett sucks” chants when he and Hector went at it. Hector took the heat segment. As he was set up for the Figure Four, Chavo entered with a cheap shot on Jarrett. Hector nearly won with a small package, but then got hit with the Electric Chair Drop. Jarrett cut Chavo off as Dean made Hector tap to the Texas Cloverleaf in 4:51. Surprised there was no hot tag. It was mostly there to put over Dean and Jeff as a unit, but it did the job. [*½]

Mean Gene tied Kimberly in appearances as he looked to get a word with Raven in the front row. Stevie Richards interrupted to say he’s worked on the new contract for two weeks. He wanted Raven to follow the trail he blazed in WCW. Raven looked at the contract and spat in Stevie’s face. Gene hilariously said, “HE SPAT IN HIS FACE” in his deepest voice possible. Stevie blocked a Raven punch and said he wasn’t going to get abused anymore. Raven smirked and backed away. The Raven stuff has been quite fun.

The Giant vs. Joey Maggs, Lenny Lane, and Scott D’Amore
What a star-studded jobber lineup. Giant threw them all around like the scrubs they are. He Chokeslammed all three and won at 1:35. [NR]

Post-match, Randy Savage and Elizabeth came out. Surprisingly, Savage was on the stage instead of in the crowd. He baited Giant to come get him and Giant obliged, heading into commercial.

VIDEO PACKAGE ~ Lex Luger highlights were shown.

High Voltage vs. Public Enemy
Tenay hyped this as the fourth match between the teams. Yikes. Rocco got worked over, with High Voltage honestly showing some decent tandem offense. Their inexperience showed, as they stopped to taunt instead of capitalizing. Grunge got a mild tag and they went for their signature table spot. High Voltage avoided it and Rocco went through the table on his own. He must’ve gone through more tables than he put people through. High Voltage had the advantage, but wasted a ton of time. That allowed Grunge to win with a rollup in 5:13. Far too long. I get the idea of High Voltage being inexperienced, but they just came off looking dumb. The match was nothing special. [¾*]

The Nitro Girls returned. Alex Wright randomly came up behind them, dancing and stealing the show. Best moment ever. Mean Gene came over to interview him (tied at 2 with Kimberly), but chastised him for speaking in German. Wright threw insults and threats at his opponent at Road Wild, Chris Jericho, while also running down America.

Non-Title Match: WCW Cruiserweight Champion Alex Wright vs. Scotty Riggs
Scotty’s finally done with the American Males theme. Still has the gear, though. They worked at a fast pace, with Wright nailing the character stuff. He stopped to dance, continuing to draw a lot of heat. I’m glad he’s not just anti-American, it’s just a part of his character. Riggs got going with a slew of 80’s offense, before hitting an enziguri. They fought up top, where Wright shoved Riggs to the mat. He won with a beautiful missile dropkick in 3:46. That’s a trademark Jericho move. A squash, but an entertaining one. [NR]

HOUR TWO! Bobby Heenan replaced Zbyszko.

Mean Gene brought out Lex Luger for an interview. Luger put Hogan over as being important to wrestling. He ended by guaranteeing to make history and slap Hogan in the Torture Rack tonight.

Chris Benoit vs. Syxx
The pop for Benoit was very audible. Biggest I’ve heard for him so far. He hit the first big move, nailing a vicious looking clothesline. Syxx cut him off with a spinning heel kick, but Benoit came back with a tope suicida. Syxx hit one of his better Bronco Busters, which he did while Benoit was hung up in the tree of Joey Lawrence. He added a Michinoku Driver, but missed a somersault off the top. Benoit started in with the chops, preparing Syxx for Flair at Road Wild. Benoit set up a back suplex off the top, but Jeff Jarrett ran down and attacked him for the DQ in 4:00. That was an awesome four minutes. Lots of action crammed in until the cheap finish. [**¾]

Mongo arrived as Benoit’s help, bringing out Dean Malenko. The pairs brawled ahead of their Road Wild match. The Horsemen sent them packing before a commercial.

The Nitro Girls danced some more, giving Kimberly a 3-2 advantage.

Booker T w/ Stevie Ray vs. Vincent
Vincent is such a scrub. He’s always the corner man for nWo guys, but nobody accompanies him to the ring. Vincent jumped Booker before the bell, but it didn’t matter. Booker still kicked his ass. He went to walk away, only to get met with a clothesline from Stevie. Booker hit the Harlem Sidekick to squash him in 0:49. [NR]

We’re tied at 3 as DDP came out for an interview with Mean Gene. DDP was asked about Ric Flair’s recruitment of Curt Hennig, since he faces Flair tonight. He said he used to respect Flair, but can’t anymore if he hangs out with the likes of Hennig. Did you not watch WWF 1992? They been buddies for a while.

The Barbarian vs. Wrath w/ James Vandenberg
I miss the Faces of Fear. These two big men wailed on one another. Wrath went up top and hit a flying clothesline. He posed to no reaction from the crowd. After a short stint outside, Wrath avoided the Kick of Fear. Barbarian came off the top and got caught with the Death Penalty for the finish at 2;58. [NR]

Meng showed up and stood over his partner, getting in Wrath’s face. Vandenberg told his client “not now” and they left.

They’ve been hyping a major Steiner Brothers announcement all night. It’s time for the reveal. The Steiners were joined by Ted Dibiase! Mean Gene interviewed them in the ring, with Dibiase claiming he saw the error of his ways and left the nWo. He’s out to destroy what he helped build. He nearly called the Outsiders the WWF Tag Champions, but stopped himself before saying Federation. The Outsiders interrupted atop the stage. If Dibiase isn’t nWo anymore, then he’s a dead man. They are 4-Life, after all. Nash threw some insults and they left.

Nitro Girls are back! 4-4.

Konnan vs. Psychosis w/ Sonny Oono
Konnan’s crusade to run through the luchadores continues. Despite their familiarity and styles, this was clunky and slow. They tried for fast stuff, it just came off weird. No matter, as it was short. Konnan hit the 187 and Tequila Sunrise to win in 1:49. This was bad. [NR]

Rey Mysterio Jr. came out on crutches to confront Konnan. Konnan kicked away a crutch, so Rey used the other to batter him. HIS LEG IS FINE! At least until his next surgery.

Damien and Silver King vs. Ernest Miller and Glacier
During the ridiculously overdone entrance for the martial arts duo, commentary hyped how things were turning around for WCW. None of the action in this was any good. Miller took some horrible bumps and looked lost. Glacier had bad chemistry with everyone. There was a lot of confused standing around. None of it worked. Miller won with a roundhouse off the top in 3:22. Awful. [DUD]

Next up, Eric Bischoff made his way to the ring with a big smile. He ran down WCW, the Giant and Larry Zbyszko for last week. Bischoff called out JJ Dillon, who obliged. Bischoff stated that he’ll sue Giant if he ever touches him again, but promised to kick Larry in the face if he touched him again. Dillon laughed it off, saying he’s sure Larry heard him loud and clear.

HOUR THREE! No commentary change.

The Nitro Girls hung out with commentary. Kimberly takes a 5-4 advantage. We’re in hour three, this is uncharted territory after being tied consistently on two hour episodes. Bobby got in a bit of dancing with them.

Diamond Dallas Page vs. Ric Flair
I’m debating if I should count Kimberly’s appearance during DDP’s entrance as another point for her. During Flair’s entrance, Curt Hennig came out to shake his hand, further irking DDP. Interestingly, this was a first time ever meeting. Neither man got a clear advantage in the beginning. DDP found an opening as he delivered a sitout powerbomb. That brought Hennig charging to ringside as a commercial break hit. Returning, Flair had turned the tide. He Flair flopped after some DDP rights and lefts, before giving us the Flair slam off the top. A Hennig distraction gave Flair an opener, but he was taken down by a clothesline shortly after. Commentary kept hyping Road Wild as an “adult-themed PPV.” Flair applied the Figure Four, though DDP was close enough to the ropes to grab them. DDP applied his own Figure Four, so Flair poked the referee in the eye. Hennig tried a run-in, but DDP pulled him into a hilarious small package. DDP caught a leaping Flair with a clothesline. He called for the Diamond Cutter, but Hennig jumped in the ring for a DQ finish at 7:33. Nowhere near as good as it could’ve been. They were more focused on building towards DDP/Hennig. [**] 

He had brass knuckles of some kind and got hit. DDP tossed them aside and fought off both men by himself. He sent them both packing.

Hector Garza and Lizmark Jr. vs. Villanos IV and V
The guys paired off from the start, bringing some quick exchanges. The Villano boys showed off some tandem offense. Garza got an awkward tag and took a double gut buster. Due to the lucha rules, there was no need for tagging, keeping this going at a wild pace. Everyone got some offensive dives in, highlighted by Garza’s Tornillo. Once back inside, the Villanos pulled some twin magic to rollup Lizmark and steal it at 4:58. This was fun. The crowd wasn’t into it other than a few spots, though. [**¼]

Fine, I didn’t count Kimberly’s appearance with DDP. Mean Gene tied it at 5 as he introduced JJ Dillon to try to get Sting to sign a contract. JJ had a big contract ready, because WCW needs him in the fight against the nWo. When Dillon noted that he had an opponent for him, it caused the MAN CALLED STING to rappel down. JJ informed him that the contract was to face Curt Hennig. But, why? You want him to help with the nWo and you book him against Hennig? That makes no sense. Rightfully, Sting ripped up the contract. He walked away to close the segment.

More Nitro Girls! Barring something crazy, Kimberly wins 6-5!

WCW World Heavyweight Championship: Hulk Hogan [c] vs. Lex Luger
This might be Hogan’s first defense since Roddy Piper way back at SuperBrawl. Luger won the early feeling out process. He overpowered Hogan, which frustrated the champion and drew some “Hogan sucks” chants. Hogan took over with some punches and stomps. Luger provided us with his always awesome loud selling. It makes me miss Mike Sharpe. After a commercial, Hogan applied a bear hug to kill some time. He eventually hit the Leg Drop for a near fall. The crowd didn’t react to that as much as you’d expect. Hogan missed a second, so Luger fired up with SCREAMING CLOTHESLINES. The nWo ran out, which meant SCREAMING CLOTHESLINES GALORE! Hall, Nash, Savage, it didn’t matter. Luger put Hogan in the Torture Rack and Hogan submitted at 8:58. The match was nothing of interest until the leg drop spot. The fans ate up everything following that, leading to a furious finish. I’ll give it a small bump in rating because of the moment. [**]

The fans EXPLODE for Luger bringing the title back to WCW. Various WCW guys, including heels like Alex Wright, joined Luger’s celebration. After heading backstage, we got footage of the party continuing. They removed the nWo paint from the title. To the nWo’s locker room, Hogan threw a massive fit.

Raw MVP: Shawn Michaels
Raw LVP: Chainz
Nitro MVP: Alex Wright
Nitro LVP: Ernest Miller

Raw Rating: 
2.7
Nitro Rating: 4.4

5.75
The final score: review Not So Good
The 411
Raw: Not the best way to bring us the fallout from SummerSlam. The Michaels/Undertaker stuff was excellent, while Bret/Patriot had some build. I even though they did a solid job with Austin despite his inability to compete and the Pillman stuff was surprisingly fun. The DOA/LB/NOD stuff continued to be of little interest, none of the matches were really any good and I couldn’t get into some of the people who got shine. 5.0

Nitro: There was no need to make this show three hours. It was weighed down by several things that didn’t need to be on the card. The Miller & Glacier tag sucked and things like PE/Voltage just felt like added on fat. Despite several occurrences like those, the show succeeded in the big moments. Obviously, Luger’s win was huge. The DDP/Hennig angle got good forward movement, Dibiase joined the Steiners, the angles involving Sting and Raven were hit upon and of course, Alex Wright danced into my heart. 6.5

legend

article topics :

Monday Night War, Nitro, RAW, WCW, WWE, Kevin Pantoja

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