Monday Night Raw – December 8, 1997: He Is Ready

Monday Night Raw
Date: December 8, 1997
Location: Civic Center, Portland, Maine
Attendance: 6,510
Commentators: Vince McMahon, Jerry Lawler, Kevin Kelly, Michael Cole

This is another request for reasons that I don’t remember. It’s the night after DX In Your House which means that Austin retained the IC Title and Shawn kept the WWF Title from Shamrock. It also means that Owen Hart ran in to attack Shawn after the match was over, revealing that he was still around after the Montreal Screwjob. I have no idea what to expect here. Let’s get to it.

We open with a stills package from last night of Austin vs. Rock. No mention of the world title match yet.

Here’s Vince to open things up. He talks about how Austin has been getting away with murder lately and that can’t keep going. Austin has been hitting WWF officials like announcers and referees which he did again last night. The big Austin chant is already beginning. Before there could be a DQ though, another referee came in and counted the pin on Austin to retain the title. Vince makes Austin vs. Rock tonight and cue the Rattlesnake.

Austin gets right in Vince’s face and says that he doesn’t care about the officials that are surrounding the ring. He doesn’t feel like defending the title but if he doesn’t, there will be consequences. Vince gets in Austin’s face and Austin is all like bring it on boy. Austin talks about defending the title already last night and doesn’t think he needs to do it again tonight. Someone is getting a beating tonight and Austin isn’t sure who it’s going to be yet.

Time to plug a sponsor! It’s Karate Fighters in this case which is kind of a Rock Em Sock Em Robots knockoff. Lawler beats Sunny to win a tournament but gets caught cheating, giving the chick the title.

We recap the not interesting stuff last night with the Outlaws, the Godwinns and the LOD.

Legion of Doom vs. Godwinns

The tag champion Outlaws (not yet named) are here with the Godwinns for no apparent reason. It’s a big brawl to start until we get down to Animal vs. Henry. They slug it out so here’s Hawk for some elbows. Animal comes back in with another elbow of his own before it’s off to Hawk vs. Phineas for some slow punching. Hawk hits his one wrestling move, the neckbreaker, only to miss his flying clothesline….and there go the lights. Cue Kane as the match is thrown out somewhere in there. Too short to rate but it was nothing to see at all.

Animal and the Godwinns brawl away as Kane is left alone with Hawk. A regular piledriver (huh?) is no sold by Hawk so there’s a chokeslam and tombstone to put him down. Kane leaves so the Outlaws come out for an attempted beatdown, only for Animal to make the save with a chair.

Post break the Outlaws sing a goodbye song to the “OLD”. Road Dogg issues an open challenge for anyone to face Billy, so here’s what we get.

Billy Gunn vs. Dude Love

The brawl starts on the floor and Roadie jumps in on commentary. Dude gets knocked into the announce table and Dogg gets to crack some jokes. Love comes back with right hands in the ring and a backslide for two, only to get taken down by a clothesline from Billy. Gunn misses a splash in the corner and Dude pounds away before sending Billy face first into the buckle a few times. Sweet Shin Music misses but a second attempt works a bit better, followed by the double arm DDT for the pin on Billy.

Rating: C-. For a four minute TV match between a comedy jobber and Mick Foley in his comedic persona, this was pretty decent stuff. The Outlaws would move on to feuding with Cactus Jack and Chainsaw Charlie (Terry Funk) before joining DX. In other words, we have a match that actually accomplishes something in the WWF.

Post match Billy hits a guillotine legdrop onto Dude’s face with a belt in between.

JR teaches Taka Michinoku, who won the first Light Heavyweight Title last night, some English.

Here’s Jim Cornette with Taka, but Lawler interrupts Cornette before the first challenger can be announced. Lawler says that Taka stole the title from Brian Christopher and we get some anti-Japanese jokes. The first challenger is El Unico, which is clearly Brian Christopher under a mask. Lawler and Unico stomp down Taka and there goes the mask to shock no one.

We get a history of Shawn destroying the Hart Family over the last few months.

Kurrgan vs. Flash Funk

Jackyl is on commentary here and he talks about how tonight is the start of a revolution. This is the same kind of monster dominance that you would expect. Kurrgan pounds Funk down, Funk gets in a few shots, the Claw ends Funk quickly.

Post match Kurrgan won’t let go of the hold and the referee reverses the decision. The other members of the Truth Commission can’t get Kurrgan off Flash either.

Some stills explain the world title match last night.

Shamrock was mad last night.

Hour #2 begins.

Here’s DX to open the second half of the show. Remember at this point it’s just Shawn, HHH and Chyna. HHH talks about how last night Sgt. Slaughter thought he could chop down a guy like HHH but that just wasn’t going to happen. There’s a card table set up in the ring. Shawn talks about schooling Shamrock last night before shifting over to the Hart Family, who he refers to bodily waste. As many times as you try to flush it, a tiny piece keeps coming back up. Owen Hart is that small piece and Shawn is tired of having him around.

Shawn wants Owen to come out here, so DX is going to sit down and play a little game of strip poker until Owen Hart comes out here. He guarantees full nudity tonight no matter how long the game takes. They sit down for the game as DOA is riding to the ring for their match. This should be interesting, but it’s DOA so that isn’t likely.

Disciples of Apocalypse vs. Los Boricuas

The poker game has moved to the floor after a break. This is Skull/8-Ball vs. Perez/Estrada here I believe. Shawn has lost his shirt already. The Puerto Ricans are destroyed for awhile until they start double teaming to take I think Skull down. Skull takes Perez down but there’s no referee to count. The card game is still going on at ringside while the match is going on. Estrada beats on Skull as Shawn loses his shoes and socks. Skull hits a swinging neckbreaker to put Estrada down and it’s a double tag. Everything breaks down and Savio hits Skull in the back with a board for the pin.

Rating: F. This was so boring and I have no idea why these teams fought so many times. They feuded for the better part of a year and the bikers almost never won a single thing. The match wasn’t any good and the wrestlers in it were nothing interesting either. That sums up a good bit of 1997 on Raw actually.

The poker game has moved back to the ring and Chyna still hasn’t lost anything. There go Shawn’s pants and here come the Headbangers. DX destroys them on principle and Shawn brags a lot, but here’s Owen for the run in and run away.

Buy the PPV replay!

Jeff Jarrett vs. Vader

This is Jeff Jarrett to debut in the ring tonight after jumping back from WCW. Before the match starts though, here’s the Artist Formerly Known as Goldust to flash Vader. The chase is on and we have no match. Scratch that as Jeff wins by countout. Ok then.

Salvatore Sincere vs. Marc Mero

Mero almost got knocked out in a toughman contest fight last night by Butterbean but wound up hitting him with a stool for a DQ. Before the match, Mero calls Sincere a jobber with a stupid gimmick (JR: “Yeah and you’re a Badd Badd Man) and brings out his property, Sable. She’s in a potato sack but takes it off to reveal a barely there swimsuit. Sincere dropkicks him to the floor and I guess it’s another countout.

Here’s the Nation for the IC Title match tonight. Austin comes out in jeans because he still hasn’t said he’ll defend the title. Vince yells at him and threatens to strip Austin of the belt, but Austin says that’s cool because he wants the world title. He isn’t being stripped, but rather forfeiting the belt. Rock is officially the champion but there’s a Stunner for him to end the show. Austin tells Vince he’s coming for the title and there’s nothing Vince can do about it.

Overall Rating: C-. This wasn’t about wrestling but DANG was it fun. Austin is clearly way too big for the Intercontinental Title at this point and he’s more than ready to fight for the world title. Perhaps he could get there by say….winning the Royal Rumble? That’s coming up in a few weeks so why not? Oddly enough no Undertaker tonight but I think he’s gone due to Kane. Fun but not good show this week.

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and check out my ebook of 1998 Monday Night Raw reviews at:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00B9K3POI

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