youre right. it is signifigant. although, the other two turns you mentioned
hadn't been simmering for, oh, over a year. and neither was so numbingly
the 'E' will fuck this one up too. Orton too quick, Batista too late. plus,
dave can barely pull off a decent match. oh well.—CnotJohn
Well, they don't have a great recent track record, I'll admit. The question is whether this becomes a "Moonlighting" situation (or for a more recent example Niles & Daphne) where you tease something for so long and then have nothing to fall back on once you've used that up.
WWE Raw — 2/28/05
Live from Providence, RI.
Your hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler.
Triple H comes out alone. He's not afraid of Batista. He is the Game! He takes a page out of George Lucas' book by declaring that HE is Batista's father. THAT'S NOT TRUE!!! THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE! Hurricane interrupts and away we go. Actually, I don't think this is an actual match…just an asskicking. Triple H takes him to the floor and Pedigrees him on the ramp.
Chris Benoit vs. Muhammed Hassan (w/Khosrow Daivari).
Benoit manhandles him to start. That lasts a long while before Daivari tricks Benoit into chasing him around the ring. Hassan jumps up and levels Benoit with a clothesline. Benoit takes the Bret bump and Hassan delivers a rotating backbreaker. Nice. Hassan locks in a really weak bodyscissors. They go into the Steamboat sequence as Benoit gets two off a schoolboy and then off a backslide. Hassan breaks it up but takes a German Suplex. Daivari hands the ring bell to Hassan. Benoit gets another German and goes up top. DIVING HEADBUTT…into the general vicinity of the ring bell. They sell it as if he hit the bell, but change their minds midstream when they realize how stupid that would look. Hassan lowblows him for the DQ and walks away. *1/4
Trish shills "new" Stacker2. Why isn't it Stacker 3?
In another HUGE announcement, HULK HOGAN will now be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Batista arrives, looking like Ben Affleck's older, cooler brother.
Triple H is worried. Ric Flair, though, is a little nervous.
Christy Hemme talks about posing for Playboy.
Intercontinental Championship: Shelton Benjamin vs. Gene Snitsky.
Well, every generation has to have their Flair/Steamboat series. Snitsky rushes him but gets sunset flipped. Snitsky gets a weak tilt-o-whirl slam. He grabs a sort of keylock on the arm. Snitsky with the powerslam and the rebel yell. Shelton reverses a pump-handle slam to a reverse DDT. Snitsky tosses Benjamin away and hits a boot. Snitsky slaps him around a little on the outside and grabs a chair. Shelton dropkicks him, and Snitsky drops the chair on the outside. Shelton gets a nice Tornado DDT and finishes cleanly with the T-Bone. 1/2*
The Smackdown Rebound is Big Show and John Cena ruining JBL's celebration.
Another major announcement - The Return of Piper's Pit featuring…Steve Austin! Now if we can just get him to challenge Hulk Hogan.
Recap of Chris Masters breaking Stevie's face. We even see an after shot.
Chris Masters vs. ???
The return of jobbers! We don't even get his name. This is what wrestling should be. The jobber lays in some shots but takes a Polish Hammer. The Full Nelson finishes the job guy. See, you know why matches like this work? Because when they put a rookie over a guy we already know, we're aware that it's an artificial push. In this case, we have no initial reference point, so we can say Masters > jobber. 1/4*
JR leaves the booth for an in-ring interview with Batista. He says that ever since he joined Raw it's always been about one man…Triple H. Even when Randy Orton won the title at Summerslam. Even when Batista won the Royal Rumble. He says he could have left for Smackdown and let Triple H have Raw, but he couldn't do that. Regarding second thoughts…none. Triple H and Ric Flair interrupt. Flair gets taken out early, and suddenly Triple H loses his nerve. THUMBS DOWN, BITCH! He Demonbombs Flair so hard that David Flair feels it. Next week, Flair vs. Batista.
Wrestlemania Recall is Molly Holly doublecrossing Hurricane and winning the Hardcore Title. Christian then jumps her and wins the title.
Sure enough, Flair vs. Batista next week, and Triple H will be in Flair's corner.
Chris Jericho vs. Maven.
Jericho dominates with his usual. He hangs Maven across the top rope and springboards into a dropkick. Maven comes back by dropping Jericho's face on the top turnbuckle. Maven chokes him against the ropes and slaps him in the face. Jericho comes back with the enzuigiri. Jericho misses a charge but comes off the top with an elbow and finishes with the Walls of Jericho. 1/2*
Mic time for Y2J. He challenges 5 other superstars to a ladder match. The stakes…well, we don't know yet. Possibly the IC title because Shelton's got nothing better to do. So, Jericho, Christian, Hassan, Benjamin, Benoit, and…Masters?
New Wrestlemania promo featuring Cena and JBL in "A Few Good Men." Pretty good.
Christy Hemme comes out to thank all of us and preview her Playboy cover. Fitness model and Stacker 2 shill Trish Stratus interrupts. She accuses Christy of stealing her spotlight. Trish tries to spray paint the display, so Christy slaps her. Trish hits her with the chick kick and spray paints "slut" on Christy's back. NEW--NEW--NEW TRISH ORDER!!!
How far has Hootie fallen…**shakes head**.
Billy Graham parties with Stacy and Interchangeable Diva #3. Randy Orton interrupts and gets a pep talk from Graham. This is the second time in the past few weeks that a veteran has offered advice. There's a resentful heel turn right there for the taking. Orton says he was thinking of making an impact and he just happens to have a copy of the Smackdown magazine with Undertaker on the cover. Orton will so be jobbing to that magazine.
Edge says something about being overlooked. I don't know. I wasn't paying attention.
Street Fight: Edge vs. Shawn Michaels.
You know it's a "Street Fight" because they are wearing street clothes. Michaels takes off his belt and punches Edge with it. They brawl to the crowd. Michaels borrows a camera and snaps a shot of Edge. Michaels hits him with a trash can. He pulls out a ladder to a huge pop. Edge cuts him off with a chairshot, though. Edge sets up the chair and DDTs Michaels into it after a failed try. Michaels starts to bleed as we go to commercial. We come back from commercial to find Edge with a chokehold on Michaels. Michaels fights out of it and grabs the ladder. Edge dropkicks it back into his face for two. Edge goes up top, but Michaels knocks the ladder into him, sending Edge all the way to the floor. Shawn planchas onto him. The ladder gets set up in the corner. Michaels tries to whip him into it, but Edge reverses to a drop toehold into the ladder. ONE, TWO, THR-NO! Edge splashes him off the ladder. ONE, TWO, THRE-NO!!! Michaels blocks a chairshot and catapults Edge into the ladder. Michaels hauls off and hits Edge with a wicked chairshot. Edge misses a swing with a Kendo stick, so Michaels delivers a flying forearm and kips up. He knocks Edge's head out of the park with a Kendo stick shot and goes up top. Elbow Drop! TUNING UP THE BAND! It misses! Edge low blows him with the chair. Edge sets up for the one-man conchairto. Michaels punches him in the giblets to counter. Michaels goes for a chairshot, but Edge hits the Spear. ONE, TWO, THRE-NO!! He tries for another one, but runs right into SWEET CHIN MUSIC! Shawn falls on top for the win. ****
After the match, Kurt Angle comes out of the crowd and attacks Michaels. He delivers the Angleslam and accepts Michaels' WrestleMania challenge.
Final Thoughts: Well, it was pretty lackluster up until the end. Trish being a bitch was pretty good, though. The final match redeemed the show when I thought it would be just standard. It looks like they're going to try to squeeze everyone into Mania, which I've always maintained was a mistake. Just go with the absolute best. Disappointing show with a few big announcements and a great match at the end.