Monday Night Raw – All Star Power, Not Much Substance

Monday Night Raw
Date: October 12, 1998
Location: Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, New York
Attendance: 10,632
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

It’s the go home show for Judgment Day and Austin is back tonight I believe. Vince is going to be mad after the whole rape thing that happened last week. Anyway tonight main event is Austin/Rock vs. the Brothers, which has to be awesome based on star power alone. Rock is rising quickly and along with Austin is going to take everyone with him. Let’s get to it.

We recap Vince’s plot to get the title off Austin over the last five or six weeks.

Vince drove himself here tonight. This isn’t a good idea for him as you’ll see later. The Stooges help him into his wheelchair.

Tag Titles: New Age Outlaws vs. Animal/Darren Drozdov

Hawk is here too, sitting in on commentary. It’s strange to hear him without the over the top voice. Hawk is officially the alternate at this point due to his past issues, but he says he’s cool with that and that he’s sober. Droz and Roadie get us going and the champs take him down for some double teaming. The DOA, LOD’s opponents on Sunday, jump Hawk at ringside. Animal goes to the floor and it’s a big brawl. Now the Headbangers come in and break a boombox over Roadie’s head. The Bangers have a match with the Outlaws on Sunday apparently. The match is thrown out.

HHH has been stripped of the IC Title due to a knee injury so tonight there’s a one night tournament for the title. No entrants are announced yet.

Intercontinental Title Tournament First Round: Ken Shamrock vs. Steve Blackman

Blackman is returning from an injury for this match. It’s an eight man tournament. There’s actually a history here, due to a brawl from two months ago. Shamrock starts fast and hits a powerslam before heading to the injured knee. Blackman is in trouble early on and gets caught in a Robinsdale Crunch of all things. Blackman tries a quick comeback but it’s ankle lock time and Shamrock advances. Basically a squash.

Post match the Blue Freaking Blazer jumps both guys and runs away. Shamrock puts the ankle lock on Blackman again.

Undertaker is arriving in street clothes. Vince is intrigued.

We get a retrospective of Goldust to play up his return tonight.

Intercontinental Title Tournament First Round: Marc Mero vs. Val Venis

The girls that would become PMS are at ringside too. Val runs into a drop toehold to start but he grabs the arm a few seconds later. Butterfly suplex gets two. Mero comes back with a DDT for the same. Someone has arrived but JR doesn’t know who it is. Terri distracts Mero and the fisherman’s suplex gets the pin for Val to advance.

Jackie beats up Terri post match.

Paul Bearer with a briefcase was the arrival. Vince isn’t pleased.

We hear about Sable on Pacific Blue last night and Sable goes after Jackie. She drags Jackie into the arena but Mero makes the save.

Intercontinental Title Tournament First Round: Mankind vs. Mark Henry

Mankind gets Shamrock on Sunday and earlier today he said that Shamrock’s chair shots aren’t hard enough. Before the match, Henry has a love poem for Chyna. Here’s Chyna very quickly after the bell and the distraction allows Mankind to take over very quickly. Henry comes back with the power game and goes after Mankind’s leg. He goes up for a middle rope splash but Foley gets out of the way. There’s the double arm DDT and he takes his shoe off to get to Mr. Socko. Well that didn’t take long. Mankind still has the piano music.

Post match Chyna tries to ask why but Henry says it’s out of his hands and leaves.

Austin drives up in a cement truck. The Stooges say they’ll go look at it and Slaughter falls on Vince’s bad leg on the way.

Intercontinental Title Tournament First Round: Jeff Jarrett vs. X-Pac

Jarrett jumps Pac to start and pounds away on him for a bit but X-Pac comes back with a spin kick (clearly missing by 4 inches) and a flipping clothesline. Pack loads up a superplex but gets knocked to the mat. Small package gets two for Jarrett, as does a powerslam. Pac fires off the kicks in the corner but the referee goes down too. Bronco Buster is countered by a boot to the groin and Jeff goes for the guitar. Instead he finds Head in the case, allowing Pac to roll Jarrett up to advance.

Rating: D+. Nothing of note here but it wasn’t bad. The idea here was about pushing Snow vs. Jarrett in a feud that was pretty much out of nowhere. There was a story to Pac and Jarrett due to a feud from a few months ago, so this wasn’t all that bad. It was way too short to mean much of anything though.

The remaining brackets:

Ken Shamrock
Val Venis


Austin pours cement into Vince’s Corvette in a classic moment.

Here’s Austin in the arena to a big pop. He says on Sunday, he’ll beat them both up and then raise his own hand whether Vince likes it or not. Cue Vince in wheelchair with attack dogs behind him. Austin can’t quite go at them so Vince yells and makes Austin/Rock vs. Kane/Undertaker.

Vince says Austin is going to need eyes in the back of his head. Austin shouts at Vince and Vince breaks down, talking about how bad his last three weeks have been, including the Zamboni, his ankle being broken, the hospital stuff, and now the car being destroyed. Vince says if Austin doesn’t raise the winner’s hand, he’s fired. Austin says Vince doesn’t have the balls to do that but Vince says he’ll humble Austin one way or another.

Intercontinental Title Tournament Semi-Finals: Ken Shamrock vs. Val Venis

Shamrock jumps Val during his entrance and throws him into the steps before the bell. Into the ring and there’s the bell, but Shamrock has a huge advantage. Shamrock works on the back and puts on a reverse chinlock which he releases very quickly. Val hits a big boot but Shamrock kind of no sells it in a weird way. Ken comes back with a pair of suplexes and then a Boston Crab. Val FINALLY makes a rope before starting a comeback. He has to bump and grind though so his big boot only gets two. Shamrock quickly chop blocks him and the ankle lock puts him in the finals.

Rating: D. Again this was more or less just a squash. Shamrock has steamrolled everyone in his matches so far tonight and it would make sense to have him win at this point. The match wasn’t all that entertaining and I wasn’t a fan of all the back work before we finally got a chop block and an ankle hold for the win. To be fair though it lasted five minutes so how much can I complain?

Before Val can get up Goldust returns and does his mind games with Val before hitting Shattered Dreams.

Mick tries to console Vince about his car and tries to get the briefcase and the keys out of the car full of cement.

Rock says he isn’t worried about the Brothers because he’s beaten both of them, which makes him #1 contender. He doesn’t like being Austin’s partner, and here are Henry and Brown to complain about Rock not being partners with one of them. Rock says shut up and that’s about it.

Intercontinental Title Tournament Semi-Finals: X-Pac vs. Mankind

Mankind suplexes out of a headlock and pounds on Pac in the corner. They go to the other corner but X-Pac hits a spin kick out of the corner. They head outside and Mankind grabs a chair which is dropped pretty quickly. A kick in the corner drops Mankind and ther’es the Bronco Buster. Foley comes back with a forearm and hits a neckbreaker on the floor, but here’s Shamrock. He pops Mankind in the previously injured knee with a chair, allowing Pac to roll him up for the easy win.

Rating: D+. This didn’t have time to get anywhere, but flash back with me to the review of last week’s show. This is another great case of matches between guys of completely different styles. There are still differences today, but rarely are they this striking. The match was ok but the ending didn’t help it much.

Post match Shamrock destroys Pac with a neck hold and we go to a break before the match.

Intercontinental Title: Ken Shamrock vs. X-Pac

HHH is on commentary. Pac can barely move but keeps fighting as much as he can. Shamrock stays on the neck including a dragon sleeper while Shamrock is on the floor and Pac is on mat. X-Pac comes back with a pair of spin kicks but he can’t follow up on the cover. There’s the Bronco Buster but again he can’t follow up. There’s the ankle lock but we get a rope break. The hold goes on again and this time it’s over, giving the title to Shamrock.

Rating: D. The problem again here, and this isn’t their fault, is that having about four minutes just isn’t enough. The idea here was that with Pac being so hurt the match wasn’t entirely fair, but Shamrock will take it because he’s becoming evil. For his three matches, Shamrock only wrestled less than fifteen minutes. That’s not a bad night’s work.

Kane/The Undertaker vs. Steve Austin/The Rock

Ok so apparently Rock IS #1 contender. I think what messed me up last week was that he was #1 contender to a title that had no owner, so I thought Kane and Undertaker would be considered the contenders. Say it with me: it’s a brawl to start. Kane and Austin go to the floor while Rock beats up Undertaker. Austin and Rock double team Taker down but he sits up. We start with Austin and Undertaker while Kane is on the floor.

Here comes Paul Bearer, which is good as I had forgotten he was here. Taker hits a clothesline for two before working over the arm. Austin comes back and wraps Taker’s leg around the post before tagging in Rock. He loads up the People’s Elbow but Taker sits up. Rock kicks him right back down before hitting the elbow in a move that I’m sure has been on highlight reels before.

Kane distracts Rock so Taker can hit a HUGE chokeslam. Off to Kane now as Brown and Henry come out too. Back to Taker for some choking and then to Kane again. Rock finally comes back with a DDT as the referee tells them seven minutes left. Kane blocks the tag and drapes Rock over the top before tagging in Taker again. Kane hammers on Rock on the floor but comes back in for a Samoan Drop.

A double tag brings in Austin to face Undertaker again and things pick up. Austin can’t quite drop him as Henry and Brown beat down Rock on the floor. Austin gets caught in the ropes and Taker pounds away. That doesn’t last long as Austin escapes and hits a clothesline for two. Thesz Press is broken up by Kane and the security guard from earlier with the dogs run in and hits Austin with a stick before unmasking to reveal Big Bossman. The match is thrown out.

Rating: D+. This is one of those matches that sounds better on paper than in reality. This was more about Austin getting beaten down by Vince’s guy which is ok, especially when the main event on Sunday is about Austin vs. Vince with the title and the Brothers being thrown in. Not a bad match but the important thing here again is to have Rock rubbing elbows with these top guys.

Austin gets beaten down to end the show.

Overall Rating: C-. This is a hard one to rate because of the tournament sucking up the middle of the show. The matches weren’t good but they had to do it at some point given HHH’s injury. It’s interesting looking at the main event scene here as it’s clearly all about Vince vs. Austin and everything else is thrown in on the side. The perk though is that the main feud is so awesome and works so well that it’s easily accepted. Not a horrible show here but the tournament hurt it a lot.

Here’s Judgment Day if you’re interested:

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  1. Rocko says:

    So just ran a story saying this Raw might be the greatest Raw ever. They must really love that cement corvette moment.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Well we’re officially into the time where the Attitude Era is the GREATEST ERA EVERZ, meaning that we can overlook how stupid parts of it were and focus on how some of the good parts were really the BEST MOMENTS IN HISTORY.