Monday Night Raw – September 3, 2001: Kurt Angle: American Psycho

Monday Night Raw
Date: September 3, 2001
Location: Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Attendance: 14,890
Commentators: Paul Heyman, Jim Ross

Another week closer to Unforgiven and to the best of my knowledge, nothing has been announced for the show yet. After the last two weeks being horribly uninteresting shows, hopefully things can bounce back a little bit tonight. The problem with the Alliance stuff at this point is they don’t know what to do next with it. The Alliance is here, they’ve won a few matches, WWF has won a few matches…..and then what? That question never seemed to get answered. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of last week where Austin stole the medals. On Smackdown he tried to run Angle over and then threw the medals in a river.

Undertaker vs. Test

They fight over who is stronger to start and Taker uses….my goodness he uses a hip toss and an armdrag. Now it’s an STF, which might be better than Cena’s. Test comes back with a clothesline and some elbows to the face. Side slam gets two as does a middle rope jumping back elbow. Test hooks a Russian legsweep but Taker comes back with a rolling leg lock which is quickly broken up. The fans chant for the Leafs as Taker hits a clothesline. He loads up the Last Ride but Steven Richards of all people runs in for the DQ.

Rating: C-. Not horrible here as it was nice to see Undertaker actually let someone else get in some offense for a change. The ending kind of sucked but I think it was to allow Richards to bring in Kronik to fight Kane/Undertaker. The stuff from Undertaker was pretty nice for a change, especially the armdrags and STF about five years before he became the MMA Cowboy of Death.

Test kicks Undertaker’s head off post match.

Christian says he’s looking forward to winning the title tonight. He’s talking to an usher or something like that when fans come up and say they’ve got front row seats. They’re happy to see Edge’s brother. Christian tells the usher to make sure they’re put in the nosebleed seats so they don’t mess up the pictures when he wins the WCW Title.

Richards says that he jumped Undertaker because Undertaker played a big role in disbanding the RTC. He wants a match with Undertaker on Smackdown.

Clips from the Wrestlemania press conference where the announcement was made that it’s coming to Toronto.

Regal is talking to Tajiri and tells him if he finds a partner tonight, he can have a #1 contenders match vs. the Dudleys. Big Show comes in and speaks Japanese, apparently because he’s Tajiri’s partner.

Austin and Debra get here and the Alliance is waiting for Austin with an ovation. They have a surprise for Austin later because they’re inspired by him throwing Angle’s medals in the river last week.

Dudley Boys vs. Tajiri/Big Show

This is for the #1 contendership for one of the sets of tag titles. Show runs them both over to start and it’s off to Tajiri to face D-Von. Tarantula gets a big pop. Bubba cheats and uses a hot shot on Tajiri to give the EVIL ones the advantage. Torrie comes down and gets in Tajiri/Show’s corner as Bubba drops elbows. Apparently this is for the shot at both sets of titles. Ok then. Tajiri kicks Bubba’s head off and it’s hot tag to Big Show. He cleans house but Tajiri accidentally shoots mist at him, allowing the 3D to pin Tajiri.

Rating: D. What was the point of this again? Was there no team that they could have thrown at the Dudleys to set this up? Sadly enough there isn’t because the division was on the verge of death at this point. Not much to see here but I’m sure the Torrie and Tajiri stuff is starting up soon.

Show runs over Torrie because he’s blind so he carries her off. The Dudleys put Tajiri through the table to a big pop. Show comes back out to make the save, despite Tajiri being dead for the most part.

Shane and Booker offer to help Christian win the title in exchange for the first shot. Christian seems cool with this.

The US Champion Kanyon (I had to remind myself since he never defends the thing) at WWF New York loves Austin and sounds like the Cowardly Lion.

Stephanie comes in to see Austin and Debra to tell them that the surprise is getting closer. Austin thinks Debra is scared that Kurt Angle might be coming. Stephanie assures her there’s no chance Angle will be here tonight. Debra gets him a beer and it fizzes a bit. Uh…ok?

Shawn Stasiak vs. Spike Dudley

Stasiak pounds him in the corner and powerslams him in front of a quiet crowd. Gorilla press gets almost no reaction and the beating continues. Spike gets tripped by Stacy which means nothing as Stasiak charges into a boot in the corner and the Dudley Dog gets the pin.

Molly beats up Stacy post match.

Christian gives Edge the KOTR trophy back and apologizes for being a jerk lately. He wants to win the title on his own tonight too.

Moppy has been kidnapped and Saturn has been given a ransom note asking for $100,000. He asks Hurricane for help and using some very questionable logic, Hurricane concludes that it’s Matt Hardy’s doing.

WCW World Title: Christian vs. The Rock

Shane is guest timekeeper and Booker is guest ring announcer. After Booker introduces himself and Shane, we’re ready to go. Booker distracts Rock and Christian jumps him to start. Shane gets in some shots on the floor and Rock is in trouble due to the numbers game. Rock gets it to one on one and hammers away but Christian kicks him right back down. Out to the floor again and Booker drops Rock on the belt on the table chest first.

Now Christian sends Rock into the table as Canada Power is in control. The reverse DDT onto the knee gets two. After a quick run on the floor Rock hits the Samoan Drop to put both guys down. Shane distracts the referee and Booker slides in the belt to Christian. Rock fights back and hits the belly to belly and a DDT for two. Spinebuster sets up the Sharpshooter but Shane interferes again. Rock drills him but Booker clotheslines him on the top and a reverse DDT gets a VERY close two. Rock throws Christian into Booker and the Rock Bottom retains the title.

Rating: C+. I liked this more than the Rhyno match last week but it was basically the same idea. Rock running through the WCW midcard is fine as they offer quick challenges to him without wasting something big like Booker vs. Rock. It’s clear that match or something similar is happening at Unforgiven, but naturally that’s not important enough to announce yet.

Rock tells Booker to just bring it and it’s on, but Shane jumps Rock and the beatdown commences. The APA makes the save.

Stephanie and Debra go into schoolgirl mode because the surprise is here.

Stephanie comes to the ring to make fun of Canada and their grammar issues. Also why would Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving? Is it because they want to be more like Americans? This comes off like a bad standup comedy bit. They shouldn’t celebrate Labor Day (today) either because they don’t do anything. Speaking of hard work, Stephanie brings out the hardest working man she knows: Austin.

The surprise is a new truck. Debra runs down all the features which takes WAY too long. One of them is the paint job. It’s black. That’s not exactly a feature. It also has a radio and mirrors. She’s really not that good at this. It has power steering and power brakes. Debra is talking about the words written on the tires. Just get to Angle destroying the thing already because you know that’s what this is building to. Debra invites Austin to come see the truck because she wants a ride.

Austin goes to the back and looks at the truck, including the leather which he really likes for some reason. He gets in the back of the truck and says he’s King of the World. FINALLY Kurt comes out of the back and hits Austin with a pipe, chains him up to something in the truck bed and speeds away in the truck.

Matt Hardy/Lita vs. Ivory/Hurricane

The guys start things off and Matt is so fired up that he gets put in position for a superplex. The fans chant for Hurricane as Ivory raises the roof. Men vs. women is cool here. Off to Lita who hits her headscissors but walks into a facejam for two. Off to the men and Matt can’t fire the crowd up at all. Ivory gets speared down but Saturn comes down to break up the middle rope legdrop. Eye of the Hurricane gets the quick pin. This was worthless.

Saturn beats up Hurricane post match.

Storm comes up to Christian and makes fun of him for losing. He makes fun of Toronto and Edge makes fun of Storm for various issues.

Debra does the first logical thing in the history of wrestling kidnappings and CALLS THE POLICE. The Alliance has a TV in their locker room and the truck pops up on it. Where is this feed supposed to be coming from? Austin is also blindfolded despite not being so when they left. Angle rants about the stolen medals and says this inspired him. Angle takes him to the edge of the bridge they’re on and Austin apologizes for throwing the medals away. Kurt lifts him onto the edge but doesn’t throw him. He says we need a higher bridge and it’s back to the driving.

Intercontinental Title: Lance Storm vs. Edge

Huge pop for Edge of course. Storm jumps him during his posing but Edge is ready for him. Storm comes back with an enziguri to send Edge to the floor. Springboard clothesline back inside gets two. Edge gets beaten on for a bit but comes back with clotheslines and a spinwheel kick. Edge-O-Matic gets two. Superkick and Edgecution are blocked and there’s the Maple Leaf. Edge finally makes the rope and Storm stays on the knee, but gets rolled up for Edge to retain.

Rating: C. This wasn’t bad at all. Canadians are good at having wrestling matches and this was no exception. To be fair Storm was trained by Stu so did you expect anything but quality? I like both of these guys though so that probably has something to do with it. Granted this was just a way to set up what comes next.

Christian comes out with a chair for the save and cracks Edge with it to turn heel. He adds a one man Conchairto, which I think is the debut of that move. Those were some great chair shots.

Rob Van Dam/Rhyno vs. Jeff Hardy/Chris Jericho

This is Jeff’s return after destroying himself and a table in a ladder match with RVD from two weeks ago on Smackdown. Rob and Chris start things off and a jumping enziguri puts Van Dam down and it’s off to Jeff. The fans chant at Hebner so the match doesn’t get much attention. Jeff pulls Rob off the top and does the legdrop between Rob’s legs. Rhyno and Chris fight so the Swanton gets no count. It also hurts Jeff’s ribs which is the call of the Rhyno who works the injury over.

The fans chant ECW as a belly to belly suplex looks to set up the Gore. Jeff moves and it’s hot tag to Jericho. Rhyno is sent to the floor and Rob counters the Walls. Chris dropkicks Rhyno off the apron and Rob knocks Jericho down and hits a standing moonsault. He tries a German suplex but Jericho rolls through for the pin, just like Edge did in the last match.

Rating: C-. This was more or less a shortened version of last week’s main event which wasn’t all that good. That being said, the only way to fit this massive roster on TV every week is with a tag team main event so there isn’t much of a shock there. Jericho and Van Dam faced each other at the PPV I believe in what was probably one of the best matches of the night.

Back to the American Kidnapping Hero who has found a higher bridge. Austin begs for a bit and Angle continues to be psycho. Angle says he’s going to make Austin think about it, which means we’ve got bills to pay so let’s take a break.

Back with Debra crying in the ring for Austin’s life. This is really bad stuff. Back to Angle and Austin with Austin showing those acting skills as he begs. The payoff for this is Angle demands a rematch at Unforgiven which he gets, and then shoves Austin into a kids’ swimming pool and steals the truck. Yeah seriously, that’s it. Quick question: WHERE DID HE HAVE THE POOL? Did he leave it on a bridge in Toronto for the last hour and no one moved it? That’s a stretch even for a wrestling storyline.

Overall Rating: C-. Well it was a little better but that’s still not saying much. The Christian turn was good and we FINALLY set up a match for Unforgiven, but at the same time it’s still not an interesting show given what they have to work with. That sums up the Alliance in a nutshell: they had everything and gave us nothing of note.

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