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The SmarK RAW Rant – May 31 2004

June 4, 2004 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarK RAW Rant – May 31, 2004

– Live from Montreal, QC.

– Your hosts are JR & King.

– So I’m a bit late, but I was moving from Alberta to Saskatchewan with my girlfriend, and didn’t really have access to TV on Monday. And then my usual non-motivation kicked in, so it took me a while to get up the desire to review the show, plus I’ve been doing the job-hunting thing here (although the biggest export appears to be bureaucracy), thus limiting my time further. I think I’m fine from here on in, though.

– Opening match, RAW tag titles: Spinal Fusion v. La Resistance. Big pop for the champ, as expected, and a pretty good pop for the challengers too. Guess that’s the power of fake hometowns. Edge starts with Conway and they fight over a lockup, but Edge wins a wristlock battle and trades off with Benoit. Benoit unleashes the CANADIAN VIOLENCE and gets a snap suplex out of the corner for two. Edge gets caught in the La Rez corner and worked over, however, as Grenier goes for the arm and the crowd starts chanting for him. Crazy Quebecois. Single-arm DDT into an armbar and he works the arm for a bit, but Edge slugs out and gets the Edge-O-Matic, as the crowd has now picked sides and appears to be on the La Rez bandwagon. Benoit gets the lukewarm tag and destroys them, putting Conway in the Sharpshooter (and STEPPING ON HIS HEAD on the way over, just because he’s awesome), and then Grenier, but Conway breaks it up. Benoit hits him with the rolling germans for his troubles and goes up, but whiffs on the flying headbutt and the challengers for their finisher. Edge breaks it up and Benoit gets the crossface on Conway, but Grenier breaks it up and we take a break. Back with Benoit stuck in a chinlock, and Grenier releases to choke him out. Whip into the corner, but Benoit comes back with chops and an enzuigiri. Hot tag Edge, and he gets a flying forearm on Grenier and a leaping DDT, but he spears Benoit by accident and the double-team neckbreaker finishes Edge at 12:51 to give them the tag titles. Solid match with a molten crowd. *** Good for Conway, as Edge & Benoit had been built up so big that whoever beat them was gonna get a good rub from it. Grenier can crawl under a rock and die for all I care, but Conway is the guy they need to be pushing right now.

– Meanwhile, Uncle Eric once again reasserts his control with Regal, this time booking Eugene in another match, and also forcing Coach to apologize…Tonight, In This Very Ring!

– Back from the break, Coach is in the ring to issue his sincere, heartfelt apology to Master Eugene. He in fact DOES have lots of friends…including Kane. With friends like that… Apparently Kane just wants a hug. Maybe that’s his question for Lita? We get a heartfelt male bonding moment, and then a heartfelt attack from Coach that allows Kane to lay out Eugene and set up our main event for tonight. Well, the ratings showed that the drawing power of Eugene wasn’t exactly that of the people he hangs out with, but it’s worth a shot.

– Meanwhile, Coach and Eric celebrate their brilliant scheme, but William Regal is OUTRAGED, SUNSHINE! When he finally turns and kicks Eric’s ass, it’s gonna be huge.

– Victoria the Dancing Fool v. Jazz. That entrance has GOTS to go. If only for my own sanity. Jazz takes her down to start and works a facelock into a bridge. Victoria flips out of it and does the splits, but gets an elbow dropped on her head. Legdrop from Jazz and she hits the chinlock, while Victoria is still doing the splits. Nice touch. That gets two. Jazz sends her into the corner, but gets hit with a high cross for two. Jazz comes back with a dropkick and goes for the double-arm chickenwing, but lets it go for some reason. Into the STF, but Victoria makes the ropes. Jazz stomps her down again, but Victoria bails to escape and tries a sunset flip back in, which gets two. Jazz knees her again, but walks into a powerslam, which sets up the Jigglesault, but Jazz counters with a rollup for two. Victoria gets her own for the pin at 4:11. Please turn her heel again after she jobs to Gail Kim at the PPV. *1/2

– Randy Orton v. Shelton Benjamin. This is non-title. Shelton takes him down into a rollup to start, for two. Orton uses the CLUBBING FOREARMS to pound him down, but walks into a boot and gets clotheslined out of the corner. Randy grabs a headlock and overpowers him, but misses a dropkick off a criss-cross and Orton gets the standing dropkick. He undoes a turnbuckle, because he’s EVIL, while Batista distracts the ref for what can only be considered a ridiculously long time. They slug it out and Benjamin goes down and out. Back in, Orton sends him into the STEEL, but Benjamin blocks and they collide for the double KO. Batista uses the moment to send Benjamin into it himself, and Orton gets two. We take a break, and return with Batista low-bridging Benjamin to earn himself a trip to the back. Ah, it’s just like the good old days of SNME. Back in, Orton gets two. He sends Benjamin into the STEEL and gets two. We hit the chinlock, which Benjamin quickly fights out of, and comes back with an elbow and a backdrop. Orton tries a monkey-flip, but Benjamin lands on his feet and gets the powerslam for two. He runs into a boot on a blind charge and Orton goes up with a high cross, but Benjamin rolls through for two. Slam attempt is countered to the neckbreaker by Orton, which gets two. Benjamin gets a backslide for two, so Orton takes a pretend walk, and then sucker-punches him when he chases. Back in, Benjamin catches him with the Exploider for the pin at 13:47. The stuff before the break was pretty dull, but it picked up good after that. **1/4

– Oh, yay, the Diva Search. If you want a good laugh, read the official rules and regulations on wwe.com. And they’re gonna waste 15 minutes of RAW a week with this crap?

– HHH graces us with his presence. It’s relatively to-the-point this week with him, as he shows us a Hell in the Cell video package to get over the brutality and stuff.

– Bad Blood rundown:

– Chris Benoit v. Kane
– Randy Orton v. Shelton Benjamin
– Victoria v. Gail Kim
– HHH v. Shawn Michaels

– Meanwhile, Eric sends Johnny to fetch Eugene.

– Matt Hardy v. Garrison Cade. The Matt facts show decided signs of pussy-whipping this week. Matt works a hammerlock until Cade makes the ropes. Matt dodges Cade coming out of the corner, but gets caught with a hotshot. They have killed Matt so completely dead that even this crowd won’t get behind him. Cade slugs away for two. We hit the chinlock, but Matt fights out and dumps him. Matt follows with a pescado, and back in gets the Side Effect for two. Cade comes back with a short clothesline and goes for a powerbomb, but Matt backdrops out and gets the YODELLING LEGDROP for two. Well, he must be a face again. Twist of Fate finishes clean at 3:41. Cade is apparently “red hot”. Note to JR: Anyone doing the clean job to Matt Hardy is the very opposite of that term. *1/4

– Meanwhile, Uncle Eric admits to being behind Kane’s attack on Eugene, and chalks it up to tough love. Attaboy.

– Highlight Reel time, although Jericho is looking a lot like Trish Stratus this week. She takes some cheapshots at the crowd, and the Highlight Reel, until Jericho storms out to brawl with Tomko. He puts Trish in the Walls, but gets booted by Tomko and they proceed to beating him down.

– Eugene v. Kane. Eugene tries dodging Kane’s punches to start, and then takes him down for two. Rollup gets two, but Kane kills him with a clothesline. Eugene tries a sunset flip, but gets caught by Kane and tossed into the corner. Eugene recovers and goes up with a double axehandle attempt, which Kane blocks with another shot and gets two. Kane tosses him and tries to take the countout win, but Eugene fights back up again. Kane suplexes him and chokes away. More choking. He whips Eugene into the corner and slugs him down, and it’s MORE choking. I hope the people who reported on the “great” Benoit-Kane matches at the house shows weren’t just trying to play a sick joke on us. Kane slugs him down again and hits the chinlock. Kane uses the CLUBBING FOREARMS, but Eugene is TARDING UP. He starts no-selling and makes the superman comeback, sending Kane to the floor with a hella-weak dropkick. Kane gets pissed and tosses some chairs into the ring, drawing the DQ at 6:47. LAME. It’s the old “we’re supposed to be thrilled that the face wins by DQ” ending. Slow match. ѕ* Kane pounds on Eugene, but Benoit makes the save, as the lameass buildup for their title match continues on its sucky course.

The Bottom Line:

A couple of good matches in the first hour make this another good effort, but you can really feel the momentum being sucked out of this show by trying to push Kane as a legit contender again, and the Eugene stuff in particular ate up WAAAAAY too much time on this show. I really like the character, but oversaturation will kill anyone dead.

See ya in a few…


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Scott Keith

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