Written By: Bob Colling
World Wrestling Federation presents RAW
From: Austin, TX
A opening video going over Stephanie McMahon’s quest to get respect from the WWF wrestlers. Steve Austin came out on Smackdown and demanded a World Championship match against Kurt Angle. However, Stephanie simply didn’t think Austin deserved one. Austin proceeded to pour beer on Stephanie who didn’t like that at all.
The video continues by showing clips of a handicap match that saw Rikishi/Regal/Kane destroy the Rock and the Undertaker.
Backstage at the arena, we see Steve Austin arriving to the building and being told that he has to go see Stephanie McMahon in her office.
RAW opening video
Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler welcome everyone to the first RAW of 2001! The Rock will square off against Kane while Undertaker will take on Rikishi. The winners of those matches will compete in a number one contenders match on Smackdown to face WWF World Champion Kurt Angle next week on RAW!
Opening Contest: the Undertaker defeated Rikishi: Taker gets on his motorcycle and chases Rikishi to the backstage area as Rikishi just stood at the top of the ramp for a few moments. Taker brings Rikishi back and hammers away on Rikishi with right hands and Rikishi almost falls off the edge of the ramp. They begin to trade right hands with Taker getting the upper hand as they make their way back to the ringside area. Taker rams Rikishi head first into the ring steps on the floor. They get into the ring and Taker continues to work on Rikishi with right hands and a big boot. Taker with a back elbow in the corner and connects with a running clothesline as well. Back to the floor Taker and Rikishi trade a few shots. Taker rams Rikishi head first onto the announcers table. Taker rolls back into the ring but is met with a leg drop from Rikishi. Taker comes out of a corner and goes for the choke slam but Rikishi avoids it with a head butt and super kicks Taker in the chest. Rikishi stomps away on Taker in the corner but Taker gets up and clotheslines Rikishi which gets Taker a two count. Rikishi with a uppercut and takes Taker over with a belly to belly suplex. Rikishi misses a running butt splash in the corner and is clotheslined by Taker which spins Rikishi around. Taker sets Rikishi up for the Last Ride but Rikishi weighs too much. Rikishi with a clothesline and comes off the ropes with a leg drop! Taker comes off the ropes and plants Rikishi with a DDT to win the match. *
Backstage, Steve Austin enters Stephanie McMahon’s office. Austin wants to talk about a WWF World Championship which Stephanie says Austin needs to earn. Stephanie says she has come up with a job for Austin to do for the night. Stephanie reveals that Austin must be a vendor and must sell all the hot dogs and beer. Stephanie tells Austin if he doesn’t sell all the food that he will never get a title shot. Austin attacks the vendor after the vendor touches him.
Backstage, Kurt Angle, Edge and Christian insult the Texas crowd backstage until Coach comes over and tells Angle about the number one contender mini-tournament. Edge puts Angle over as being a superhero. Coach also tells them that they are facing Chris Jericho and the Dudley Boys in a tables match! They aren’t happy about that!
Second Contest: Billy Gunn/APA defeated Right to Censor: All six men brawl in the ring until Bradshaw and Bull start off the match legally. Bradshaw with a suplex for a near fall. Bull leaps off the top rope and connects with a clothesline followed by a leg drop coming off the ropes for a two count on Bradshaw. Bradshaw catches Bull in the corner and takes Bull over with a fall away slam. Faarooq tags in and APA drive Bull down with a back suplex/neck breaker combo for a two count. Faarooq works on Bull until Bull delivers a back elbow and a big boot. Goodfather tags in and chokes Faarooq in the corner briefly. Back elbow by Goodfather and follows up with a quick elbow drop for a near fall. Faarooq clotheslines Goodfather and tags in Gunn. Gunn wants Val Venis to tag in for what she did to Chyna. Gunn works on Venis with right hands and dropkicks Venis for a two count. Gunn with a series of right hands in the corner but runs into big boot in the corner and Venis nails Gunn with a lariat. Scoop slam by Venis but Venis misses a middle rope elbow drop. Gunn with a few forearm shots and backdrops Venis. Gunn connects with a tilt a whirl slam but only gets a near fall. All six men brawl in the ring and four of them go to the floor. Gunn with a cobra clutch slam on Venis and he gets the three. *½
After the match, Gunn goes to pile drive Venis but Venis escapes as Steven Richards distracted Gunn.
Backstage, Stephanie McMahon teases Austin about eating all his product. Austin tells her he is having problems with his mustard and squirts mustard on Stephanie! After a commercial break, Austin is seen backstage drinking several beers.
Backstage, Stephanie McMahon is talking to Vince McMahon over loud speaker. Vince is trying to calm Stephanie down. Trish Stratus comes into the office and Vince changes his tone seemingly trying to hit on Stratus. Vince tells Stephanie that Test will get a WWF Intercontinental title shot against Chris Benoit. Clearly done because Trish manages Test. Stephanie rips on Trish Stratus after Vince McMahon hangs up the phone.
Backstage, Michael Cole interview the Dudley Boys. D-Von says it is time to testify and bow down to the man. D-Von proclaims that Edge, Christian and Kurt will lay motionless through a table. Bubba says this has been turned into a personal match.
A video showing Raven defeating Steve Blackman on Smackdown to win the WWF Hardcore Championship.
Raven comes down to the ring and says that this is the first day of the “Year of the Raven”. Raven insults the intelligence of Texas fans. Raven calls his reign of terror the Raven Effect. Raven is cut off by Tazz.
Third Contest: WWF Hardcore Champion Raven defeated Crash Holly and Tazz to retain the title: Raven with a trash can lid shot on the floor a few times. Raven wraps a noose around Tazz neck and sends Tazz over the guard railing into the crowd. Raven continues to whack Tazz with a trash can lid. Tazz has the Tazz Mission on Raven but Raven low blows Tazz to break free. They are backstage and brawl into the women’s bathroom. Tazz shoves Raven’s head into a toilet that has urine in it! Raven sends Tazz into a coffee station and tosses Tazz into a few walls. Several wrestlers show up and start brawling all trying to win the championship. Raven whacks a 2×4 over Crash Holly’s head and Raven pins Crash to retain the title. *
After the match, Raven runs away from several wrestlers.
Steve Austin comes down to the ring and says he only has one new years resolution which is getting a WWF World Championship match! Austin demands to get his title shot tonight and calls out Stephanie McMahon to come down to the ring. Stephanie McMahon comes down to the ring and isn’t happy. Stephanie asks Austin who does he think he talking to. Which Austin answers by saying “a complete bitch”. Stephanie claims to have not see Austin sell any of the food she told him to sell. Stephanie insults Austin by calling him a redneck. Austin reveals that he sold all his beer and food to the APA and Jackie! Austin puts the vendor strap on Stephanie saying he doesn’t need it anymore. Austin only cares about his WWF World Championship match. Stephanie tells Austin she will not be embarrassed like her father has been thanks to Austin. Stephanie says she is a woman of her word and announces that Austin will wrestle William Regal. Stephanie announces that the winner of Austin/Regal will be added to the number one contenders match on Smackdown who gets a World Title shot next week on RAW. Austin tells Stephanie that he will not be playing games with Stephanie and threatens to make 2001 hell for Stephanie. Austin pulls off the vendor strap and rips off Stephanie’s shirt! Stephanie runs to the backstage area.
Before the next match, Kurt Angle, Edge and Christian mock their opponents for being embarrassed on Smackdown.
Fourth Contest: Dudley Boys/Chris Jericho defeated WWF World Champion Kurt Angle and WWF World Tag Team Champions Edge/Christian in a tables match: All six men brawl in and out of the ring. D-Von nails Edge with a clothesline in the ring and delivers a few right hands. Christian is clotheslined as well but Edge hits D-Von with a spear. Angle tags in and works on D-Von with a few right hands and a back suplex. Christian tags in and clubs away on D-Von followed by a side Russian leg sweep. Edge enters and takes D-Von over with a snap suplex. Angle quickly tags back but is met with right hands from D-Von. D-Von runs into a big boot in the corner and Angle tags out to Christian. D-Von continues to be worked on for a few moments. D-Von drops Christian with a neck breaker and tags in Jericho. Jericho with a series of clotheslines and knocks the heels to the floor. Jericho with a forearm smash on Christian and everyone begins to brawl again. Bubba scoop slams Angle and the Dudley’s hit the What’s Up! Bubba calls for a table and D-Von slides a table into the ring. Edge sends D-Von into the guard railing. Bubba goes to back suplex Angle through the table but Christian pulls the table away. Christian goes for a suplex on Bubba but Bubba avoids it. Jericho saves Bubba from going through the table courtesy of Angle. Angle goes for the Olympic Slam on Jericho but Jericho gets out of it and briefly has the Walls of Jericho on Angle. Edge saves Angle but turns right into the 3D sending Edge through the table! **
Backstage, Test yells at Trish Stratus for messing around with Vince McMahon. Test wants a match with Albert but Trish says she had nothing to do with Albert leaving Test. Trish says she knew Test was the star of T&A. Trish tells Test he has a chance to become the WWF Intercontinental Champion. Test thinks about it and leaves with Trish.
Fifth Contest: WWF Intercontinental Champion Chris Benoit defeated Test to retain the title: Test with a quick full nelson slam to start the match. Test with a back elbow and a gut wrench power bomb for a near fall. Benoit goes for the Crossface but Test avoids it. Test goes for the pump handle slam but Benoit slides off and almost gets the Crossface on Test again but Test reaches the ropes quickly. Benoit works on Test in the corner and drives Test down with a back suplex for a near fall. Benoit rams Test shoulder first into the ring post and delivers a leg drop. Benoit continues his offense with a backbreaker and begins to trade blows with Test. Test connects with a big boot and heads to the top rope. Albert runs down to the ring but is taken out by Test with a top rope cross body to the floor! Test sends Albert into the ring steps and is met with a few chops back in the ring. Tilt a whirl slam by Test but Test isn’t able to put Benoit away. Test hit’s the pump handle slam on Benoit and heads to the top rope again. Trish shoves Test off the top and Benoit covers Test to retain the championship. *¾
After the match, Test and Albert brawl for a few moments until several referees come down to break it up.
Backstage, William Regal talks to Debra. Regal wants Debra to tell Steve Austin his good news. Regal says that there is a special referee for his match with Steve Austin tonight!
Before the next match, Kaientai cut a promo with the mystery voice telling the crowd what they most likely aren’t saying.
Sixth Contest: Hardy Boys defeated Kaientai: Taka and Matt Hardy start the match with Matt ramming Taka head first into a series of turnbuckles. Jeff clotheslines Taka from the apron and tags in. Hardy’s with a double team suplex on Taka. Matt holds Funaki on the floor so that Jeff can run the railing and clothesline Funaki. Taka takes the Hardy’s out with a moonsault on the floor. Taka tags in Funaki and they double team Jeff briefly. Funaki hammers away on Jeff in the corner but Jeff comes back with a few right hands Jeff misses a splash in the corner and Funaki bulldogs Jeff! Taka tags in and scoop slams Jeff. Taka leaps off the middle rope but is met with a double boot. Jawbreaker by Jeff and Matt gets the tag. Matt cleans house and connects with a middle rope leg drop on Funaki. Taka super kicks Matt and Funaki nearly wins the match. Jeff goes to leap off the top rope to take out Taka on the floor but botches it terribly and lands on the ring post. Matt with the Twist of Fate on Funaki and Jeff manages to hit the Swanton Bomb to win the match. **¼
After the match, the Hardy’s brawl with Perry Saturn and Dean Malenko before just heading to the back.
Backstage, Kane and the Rock are shown walking to the ring!
Seventh Contest: Kane defeated the Rock: Rock hammers away on Kane after charging the ring. Rock with a leaping clothesline but Kane stops Rock’s offense with a side slam. Kane kicks Rock on the back a few times and delivers overhand shots to the lower back of Rock. Rock with a few right hands and rams Kane face first down onto the canvas. Rock sends Kane over the top to the floor. Kane rams Rock back first into the guard railing and uppercuts Rock sending Rock into the crowd. Kane stalks Rock in the crowd and scoop slams Rock on the concrete floor! Rock slowly makes his way back to the ring but is cut off and yanked over the railing back to the ringside area by Kane. Kane heads to the top rope as Rock is back in the ring and connects with a clothesline for a near fall. Kane works on Rock with a few right hands in the corner. Rock blocks a right hand and gets a few shots in until Kane catches Rock coming off the ropes and power slams Rocky! Kane stomps away on Rock hammers away on Kane and connects with a Samoan Drop! Rock continues to work on Kane with right hands and ducks a clothesline. Rock plants Kane with a DDT and almost wins the match! Kane uppercuts Rock but Rock is able to connect with a belly to belly suplex. Kane stops Rock dead in his tracks with a big boot. WWF World Champion Kurt Angle marches down to the ring to watch the action. Kane clotheslines Rock to the floor and Angle goes to hit Rock but Rock blocks it and Rock Bottoms Angle on the floor! Rock enters the ring and met with right hands from Kane. Rock with a spine buster and goes for the People’s Elbow! Kane sits up and grabs Rock by the throat but Rock breaks free and knocks Kane to the floor. Rock with a running clothesline knocking Kane down onto the entrance way. Rock is nailed from behind by Angle with the championship! Kane choke slams Rock in the ring and picks up the win. ***
Backstage, Kurt Angle jumps into a car to get away from any possible beating from the Rock.
WWF European Champion William Regal comes out and cuts a promo about how Steve Austin has to go through him to get a WWF World Championship match. Regal insults Austin’s lack of intelligence. Regal is done with Austin’s antics. Regal introduces the special referee for the main event… Stephanie McMahon!
Main Event: WWF European Champion William Regal defeated Steve Austin in a non-title match: Austin with right hands and a Thez Press to control Regal early on. Austin rams Regal head first into the top turnbuckle several times and delivers a knee lift to Regal’s midsection. Austin chokes Regal for a few moments while Stephanie demands he breaks the choke. Regal comes back with a few forearm shots but Austin tosses Regal over the top to the floor. Austin rolls to the floor and rams Regal face first into the ring steps! Austin also slams Regal head first onto the announcers table. Austin mounts Regal on the announcers table while delivering right hands. Austin drops Regal throat first across the guard railing and follows up with a clothesline on the floor. Austin tosses Regal to the floor again and flips off Stephanie. Austin continues to slam Regal face first into the ring steps and guard railing. Several snap suplex by Austin and goes for the cover but Stephanie slow counts and acts like she has something in her eyes! Austin kicks Stephanie to the floor but is met with forearm shots from Regal. Regal stomps away on Austin in the corner and delivers more forearm shots. Austin turns the tables with right hands of his own as a new referee comes down to the ring. Regal low blows Austin and knocks the new referee to the floor. Regal rolls Stephanie back into the ring but Austin hammers away on Regal. Spine buster by Austin but Stephanie is in the corner recovering. Austin grabs Stephanie and is quickly rolled up by Regal. Stephanie fast counts Austin and Regal wins the match! **
After the match, Stephanie announces Regal as the winner and Austin as the loser.
End of show.
My Take: Taker/Rikishi was a fairly basic brawl. Their seemed to be a couple of spots in the match that didn’t really flow all that great, but it didn’t kill the match completely. Thankfully Taker went over as Rikishi trying to be a upper card heel is just not working out.
A fine six man tag match for television purposes. Everyone managed to showcase a couple of moves for the most part. Gunn is a perfect mid-card baby face. He should never be moved out of that spot on the card.
I took the hardcore title segment as being a comedy segment. I liked that Raven actually got a promo in the ring which seemed like perhaps he has better things going for him soon. Hopefully he does have something big coming up as Raven is a very good character.
The tables match was rather quick, which was to be expected but it was still enjoyable little contest.
I should point out that their was really way too much Steve Austin for the first hour of the program. He had multiple backstage segments and a in-ring promo with McMahon going over the same stuff they talked about in the backstage area. Their wasn’t any real need for all that, in my opinion.
Test/Benoit was a decent title match where I thought Test looked pretty good. Test hit his power moves and really looked impressive here. Despite being the Intercontinental Champion, Benoit seems to missing any real challengers to his championship.
Hardy’s/Kaientai was a solid fast pace tag team match. Kaientai are a respectable team when they are pushed right. Clearly, they aren’t considered assets to WWF as they are more like a comedy team. Good positioning on the show as well.
Kane/Rock was a good television match. Even though it wasn’t a clean win, it is a big win for Kane. Their wasn’t any real dull spots for the contest as they had a consistent pattern of action throughout the contest. I can’t complain with the segment.
Austin/Regal was a really simple match that had the predictable outcome. I do love the fact that Regal got the win though. If they continue to pair Regal with the McMahon family I would have to think he is going to be getting a monster push.
Overall, the wrestling on the show wasn’t all that bad. Rock/Kane was the match of the night as I enjoyed that one a good deal. Hardy’s Kaientai was a solid little spot fest match as well so. The only thing I didn’t like about the show as the overkill of Austin segments. I’m sure he was on the show quite a lot considering they were in Austin, TX but I didn’t think the ten minute in-ring promo was necessary for the given angle. Solid show, though.
Thanks for reading.