Written by: Adam King
WWF RAW IS WAR
Monday, July 24th, 2000
Live from the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, TX
List of WWF Champions at the time:
● WWF World Heavyweight Champion: The Rock (6/25/2000)
● WWF Intercontinental Champion: Val Venis (7/06/2000)
● WWF World Tag Team Champions: Edge & Christian (6/25/2000)
● WWF European Champion: Perry Saturn (7/23/2000)
● WWF Hardcore Champion: Steve Blackman (6/29/2000)
● WWF Women’s Champion: Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley (3/30/2000)
● WWF Light Heavyweight Champion: Dean Malenko (4/27/2000)
~ Raw comes on the air and goes right to the intro with Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler welcoming us to the show.
~ Things kick off with WWF Commissioner Mick Foley making his way to the ring for this week’s long opening promo. Foley gets on the mic saying he was nervous last night about the first pay-per-view done under his commissionership, wanting to make sure the fans got their money’s worth and feels Fully Loaded certainly delivered. Foley puts over the Val Venis/Rikishi cage match and focuses on Rikishi’s splash from the top of the cage onto Val, saying they nearly had to scrape Val off the mat but does assure everyone he will return to action in the near future. Foley next brings up Kurt Angle’s beating at the hands of the Undertaker before saying Angle has requested a rematch, and since he’s a big fan of Angle getting his rear end kicked, Foley is happy to grant that rematch tonight here in Austin. Foley then gives props to Triple H and Chris Jericho for showing a lot of guts, pride and fortitude during their battle. Foley finally gets to the WWF Championship match and says the performances of both men made him miss competing in the ring. Foley starts talking about the controversal outcome when almost on cue Shane McMahon and Chris Benoit come out to respond to it. Benoit gets on the mic and says there was no controversy because he was plainly screwed and that Foley is a fraud. Shane calms Benoit down and says his friend is right to be mad beacuse he should be WWF Champion as they speak. Shane mentions when his father and grandfather ran the WWF, the one constant was the referee’s decision was final. Shane then shows clips on the TitanTron of Earl Hebner DQ’ing Rock and declaring Benoit the new WWF Champion and asks Foley who he is to change that ruling like that. Foley responds by telling Shane that things change then claims Shane used to be-bop to his Vanilla Ice LP 12 years ago but now that LP is in a garbage heap in Jersey. Benoit insists he proved he was the better wrestler last night and calls Foley’s decision a blatant abuse of power then demands a title rematch with The Rock tonight to prove that he is indeed the rightful WWF Champion. Foley tells Benoit he’ll consider his request but Benoit says that’s not good enough and looks to go at it with him.
However Stephanie then comes out as Shane seems puzzled as she assures her brother that she’s here for him. Stephanie grabs the mic and puts Triple H over for surviving one of the most brutal and gureling matches in WWF history. Stephanie then says she’s here to support Shane and agrees that a title rematch should be booked for tonight’s show. Foley responds by mentioning a head injury he had last year and during that moment he found Stephanie attractive but nowadays he finds himself agreeing with Jericho’s opinion about Stephanie who then slaps him in the face! Foley’s mood suddenly changes as he tells Stephanie that he could fine her or fire her right now but he’s not going to. Foley says since Shane and Stephanie like to get involved in matches they’re going to team up for the first time as a brother/sister tag team tonight against two opponents of his choosing. Foley also asks them to inform Triple H and Benoit they cannot get involved or else he’ll fire the whole bunch of them. Shane and Stephanie don’t take his news very well as this segment finally wraps up after around 18 minutes.
~ We then get a shot of the still-WWF Champion The Rock arriving at the building as we go to commerical.
- WWF Hardcore Title: Steve Blackman © vs. Road Dogg
X-Pac comes out with Road Dogg and joins the commentary mentioning he and his buddy are engaging in a friendly rivalry to see who is the better singles wrestler. Road Dogg gets in the first shots and goes for a whip, Blackman reverses it but Road Dogg hits the juke ‘n jive punches. Road Dogg goes for the big right but Blackman cuts him off with a forearm then tees off on him with right hands. Blackman brings a pair of trash lids in the ring then whips Road Dogg and whacks him in the knee with a lid. Blackman clocks Road Dogg in the back of the head with the lid then bulldogs him onto it for a near fall. X-Pac says he’s considering running in to help his pal but Road Dogg told him he wants to do this by himself. Blackman brings a trash can in and wedges it in a corner between the ropes then works Road Dogg over nearby and goes for a whip. Road Dogg reverses it and Blackman slides to stop himself from hitting the can but Road Dogg trips him into the can with a drop toehold then dropkicks him headfirst into it. Road Dogg mocks Blackman with a kung-fu pose then brings him out to the floor and waffles him with the lid. Road Dogg hits Blackman with an Atomic Drop onto the steps then nails him with the trash can from the ring. Road Dogg pulls out a broomstick as he heads back in the ring but Blackman also brings in his fighting sticks. Blackman blocks Road Dogg’s swings while getting in his shots but Road Dogg eventually connects with his stick. Road Dogg poses before taking another swing but Blackman rolls under it then works him over with the sticks. Blackman mocks Road Dogg with some DX chops then hits a back supelx while using the sticks for a near fall. Blackman then slides a chair in and whips Road Dogg but Road Dogg comes back and DDT’s him into the chair. Road Dogg takes a swing with the chair but misses and Blackman pump kicks the chair into his face for the pin. (5:29) Blackman departs when X-Pac decides he’s going take his turn challenging for the Hardcore title on Smackdown. Kind of a ‘feh’ effort from two of the best Hardcore Champions ever which is disappointing. But at least the final countdown has begun for DX. *
~ Backstage Stephanie is pacing when Triple H comes in so she complains to him about having to compete tonight. Stephanie explains how she got into this but Triple H is not happy that he just got here and is already dealing with stuff. Triple H then notices a vase of flowers on the stand and figures that Kurt Angle or Chris Jericho is setting him up again. Stpehanie asks him to read the card but Triple H angrily says he doesn’t have to and throws the flowers into the wall. Stephanie starts crying as she informs Triple H the flowers weren’t from Jericho or Angle, they were from her to him. Whoops! Stephanie then walks off unhappily while Triple H realizes his mistake as we go to commercial.
~ Back from break Shane and Stephanie both make their way to the ring and await their opponents for their tag match. Coming out first is … Lita, and Stephanie backs away in fear while Lita makes it clear she still wants the Women’s title. Shane then gets on the mic and says he and Stephanie got forced into this match but they’re like cornered animals. Shane then says it doesn’t matter who his other opponent is because he won’t let any harm come to his little sister and that he’s proud to stand with Stephanie as a brother/sister tag team when out comes … The Big Show! Shane’s eyes bug out as Show indeed comes out, making his return from being put on the shelf at Judgment Day.
- Stephanie McMahon & Shane McMahon vs. Lita & The Big Show
Shane quickly flees the ring with Show stalking after him leaving Lita and Stephanie to go at it in the ring with the crowd firmly behind Lita. Stephanie realizes this when Lita clotheslines her down to start then throws her around the ring by her hair. Stepahnie tries to flee the ring but Lita cuts off her escape and hits a suplex. Lita climbs to the top rope looking for a moonsault but Trish Stratus runs and swats her leg causing her to straddle the turnbuckle. Trish then pulls out a leather strap and whips Lita repeatedly with it while Stephanie gets in her kicks as well. Stephanie and Lita then depart the ring together while Lita is left with huge welts on her chest and that;s it for this match. (~1:35) Like I said the fans were really into this so they should have had Lita pin Stephanie, establishing an actual feud for the Women’s Title. NR
~ Back from break we find The Big Show prowling the backstage area searching for Shane and kicking doors in.
- The Godfather (w/the ladies) vs. Bull Buchanan (w/Steven Richards)
This is a high-stakes match if there ever was: if Godfather wins Richards stops censoring his women, but if Godfather loses he can’t bring them out anymore. Richards even gets on the mic and says after tonight, an indecent program moves closer to becoming acceptable. Godfather decides to go after Richards on the floor but Buchanan intercetps Godfather and works him over. Buchanan goes for a whip but Godfather reverses him into the steps then rams him into the steps a second time and rolls him into the ring. Godfather stomps Buchanan down and chokes him with his boot as his ladies applaud then goes for a whip but Buchanan reverses it and hits a boot. Godfather backdrops Buchanan over the ropes but Buchanan skins the cat back in so Godfather pushes him back out and chokes him with his necktie. Godfather reaches out but Buchanan snaps his neck on the ropes then heads back in and hits an elbowdrop. Buchanan hits a suplex for a near fall and pummels Godfather down in a corner then gets in his own choke. Buchanan whips Godfather but lowers the head and Godfather kicks the face. Godfather starts fighting back then comes off the ropes and goes for a flying clothesline but Buchanan ducks it. Buchanan stomps Godfather in the chest then whips him and connects with a clothesline that gets a two count. Buchanan hot shots Godfather on the ropes as a massive “Save the ho’s” chant begins to erupt from the crowd. Godfather rolls out to the floor but Buchanan goes out and rams him into the steps before tossing him back in. Godfather starts to fight back and whips Buchanan into a corner then charges at him but eats an elbow to end that rally. Buchanan whips Godfahter into a powerslam for a two count then whips him into a corner and hits a clothesline. Buchanan whips Godfather into the other corner for another clothesline but this time Godfather sidesteps it and starts fighting back again with a pair of clotheslines. Richards goes for a chair on the floor when two of Godfather’s women try to stop him but Richards shoves one of them down and Steviekicks the other. In the ring Godfather takes control of things with a big boot on Buchanan then whips him and hits a backdrop. Godfather whips Buchanan into a corner and goes for the Ho Train but Richards cuts him off with the chair. Godfather is down as Buchanan manages to flip himself up to the top rope and connects with a guillotine. Buchanan covers Godfather for the 1..2..3 and The Godfather’s days of pimpin’ are over. (4:40) A bad match as you’d expect but the crowd got into it. Richards and Buchanan share a handshake as everyone takes one last look at the Godfather’s entourage. So where does the Godfather go from here, you ask? Maybe we’ll find out soon enough. DUD
~ We find Shane trying to hide in the parking lot behind a row of cars as The Big Show walks past him nearby. However Show spots him and Shane tries to dive over a car but fails so he runs off with Show right behind him.
~ We then see Kurt Angle making his way to the ring for his rematch with the Undertaker as we go to commercial.
- The Undertaker vs. Kurt Angle
As if Angle didn’t get squashed enough at the pay-per-view, now here it is on free TV. Angle gets on the mic and says he requested this rematch because Taker did not beat ‘Kurt Angle’ last night. Angle says Taker beat a man living in fear, just like the Austin fans live in fear of losing their welfare checks. Angle adds Taker did beat a scared man but he’s still walking and talking so he’s not waiting for another shot. Once Taker rides out to the ring on his morotcycle Angle bails out to the floor but Taker stalks him around the ring. Angle gets in a shot but Taker shurgs it off and smiles then decks him. Angle eventually slides back in the ring and wails on Taker with a flurry of right hands then goes for a whip but Taker reverses it and plants Angle with the chokeslam. Looks like Angle is getting squashed even worse then last night. Suddenly we see Shane McMahon hop over the barricade with Show still right behind him and run in the ring where Taker greets him with a right hand. Taker grabs Shane by the throat looking to chokeslam him as Show comes in and begs Taker to let him finish. So Taker tosses Shane over to him then turns back toward Angle and sets him up for the Last Ride while Show grabs Shane by the throat … then lets go of him? Shane then gets Taker’s attention interupting his powerbomb and Taker turns … when Show clotheslines him! Shane and Angle then get in their shots on Taker while Show attacks Taker’s leg with elbowdrops and legdrops. Several referees try to come in to break it up but Show scares them off as the triple-team beating continues. Show then finishes things with a chokeslam and he, Shane and Angle all leave Taker laying in the ring. (3:14) So just like that Show goes from hating Shane to being his friend again, which didn’t make sense. Almost like what WCW was doing at the time on a constand basis. The officials bring out a stretcher but Taker refuses their help as he struggles to pull himself back up to his feet. NR
~ Back from break we get a replay of Shane and friends springing their trap on Undertaker. Backstage Michael Cole interviews an injured Taker who promises payback when Show punks Taker out from behind. Show, Shane and Angle work Taker over with some neaby trash cans then Show whacks Taker’s leg with a metal pipe. Angle and Show then hold Taker’s leg in position while Shane brings in a cinder block and breaks it over Taker’s knee. The officials come back out to break this thing up but the damage has been done and Taker is down on the floor.
~ Out in the arena a hevaily-bandaged Chris Jericho makes an unscheduled appearence in the ring for some mic time. Jericho says last night he experienced the most violent match of his life yet still calls it the greatest match of his career. Jericho gives Triple H props for taking his abilities to the limits and exposing a side of Y2J that very few has ever seen. Jericho admits Triple H beat the heck out of him but feels he also spilt Triple H’s blood in return and liked the taste of it. Jericho also says even thought Triple H did win the match, he wasn’t quite the Game while he himself was the Hunter. Jericho then says despite the brutal beating they gave each other, he’s not done with Triple H and wants another piece so he challenges him tonight in any match he wants. Triple H appears on the TitanTron to give his answer and first puts Jericho over for proving to be a lot tougher than he expected and having the guts, heart and desire. However Triple H says Jericho also showed he’s is not in his league while he himself proved that he is that darn good. Triple H tells Jericho he has nothing left to prove to him after last night so he doesn’t feel like coming out tonight. Triple H also suggests that Jericho head back to his hotel room to lick his wounds and accept he is better than him. Jericho then says that means he’ll just have to track him down backstage and Triple H says he isn’t going anywhere. So Jericho storms out of the ring to the back then barges into Triple H’s lockerroom and the two of them tear it up. A numbers of officials storm in the room to break it up but Jericho still tries to get at Triple H.
~ We then cut outside where Shane and The Big Show are exchanging congradulations with Chris Benoit and Kurt Angle. Shane wishes Benoit luck in his match against The Rock and also leaves Angle behind to lend a hand if he’s needed. I wasn’t aware Rock even had a match with Benoit set but whatever. Shane and Show then pile into a limo and depart for the night as we get another look at them taking out Undertaker.
~ Back from break we get a exterior look at the building as well as a replay of the Triple H/Chris Jericho scuffle.
~ We then find Kane arriving at the building, much too late to help out the Undertaker when he would have really appreciated his assistance.
- Scotty 2 Hotty vs. Tazz
Scotty is looking for revenge for getting choked out some weeks ago. JR also announces that a leather strap match between Lita and Trish Stratus has been set up for later tonight. Scotty gets in the first shots and goes for a whip, Tazz reverses it but Scotty comes back with a savant kick. Scotty whips Tazz into a corner and comes off the ropes looking for the bulldog but eats an elbow instead. Tazz hammers away on Scotty in a corner when Scotty reverses positions and fights back with his own shots. Scotty goes for a whip when Tazz reverses him into the other corner and Scotty lifts himself up with the ropes but Tazz catches him and hits a whiplash slam. Tazz whips Scotty into a corner and charges but eats a boot. Scotty comes out but Tazz clotheslines him down then sets him up for a Tazplex but Scotty fights out of it. Scotty whips Tazz and connects with a forearm then whips him into a corner and this time gets the bulldog, followed by the Worm. Tazz tosses Scotty over the ropes and Scotty lands on his feet on the apron but Tazz grabs him with the Tazzmission and pulls him back in the ring to get the tapout for the quick win. (2:07) Total squash. DUD
Tazz then sees Rikishi waddling down the ramp looking for revenge for costing him the IC Title last night. Rikishi nails Tazz with several right hands then whips him into a corner and hits him with the running butt splash. Rikishi follows up with a Samoan Drop and Tazz retreats while Rikishi lets him know this issue isn’t over yet.
~ Backstage Mick Foley meets with Edge & Christian and apologizes for excluding them from his promo about last night, saying says Bradshaw and Faarooq needed ice fortheir hands and feet after all the times E&C made contact with them. However Edge rightfully points out that he and Christian still have the tag title belts and Christian also says “DQ’s rule”. Foley then tells E&C that he couldn’t decide whether the Hardys or Dudleys would get a title shot against them tonight so he’s decided to just book a three-way, meaning E&C don’t have to be pinned to lose the belts. Edge & Christian are not happy with this as Foley tells them “my rulings rule” before sending the champs on their way. However Kane then barges in the office and angrily demands a match with Big Show, Kurt Angle and Shane tonight. Foley tells Kane he’d give him that match in a heartbeat but the thing is Show and Shane have already left the building. Foley promises to come up with something he’ll like and Kane tells him to do that as he smashes Foley’s typewriter.
~ Back from break we find Kurt Angle about to leave but Foley stops and yells about the ambush on Undertaker. Foley mentions Kane wants Angle tonight just like Benoit wants The Rock so he’s killing two birds with one stone by booking a tag match, Benoit and Angle against Rock and Kane. Angle then makes fun of the shorts he’s wearing.
- WWF World Tag Team Titles: Edge & Christian © vs. The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz
Once the Hardys and Dudleys are out they jump E&C on the ramp and bring them in the ring to start us off. The Hardys kick Christian back out to the floor while the Dudleys whip Edge and hit a double shoulderblock. Things settle down to Edge and Bubba Ray in the ring and Bubba whips Edge then hot shots him on the top rope. Bubba goes for the ropes but Christian trips him from the floor and Edge hits an elbowdrop before tagging out. Christian works Bubba over with punches and kicks then tags in Edge to take over on him with his own shots. Edge has Christian toss him one of the tag belts and readies a swing when the referee takes it away from him allowing Bubba to roll him up from behind for a two count. Edge drills Bubba with a DDT and Bubba tries to fight back but Edge rakes his face before hitting a dropkick. Christian tags in and helps Edge whip Bubba but Bubba coes back with a flying clothesline on both tag champs. Bubba crawls to his corner and tags in D’Von who takes it to E&C and plants Christian with a Curtain Call. D’Von covers but Edge makes the save so Bubba tosses him over the ropes. Bubba sets Christian on his shoulders while D’Von climbs to the top rope and hits him with the Dudleyville Device then covers but Matt breaks up the pin. Bubba clubs Matt through the ropes and pops Jeff off the apron and the referee keeps them from coming in and Bubba sets Christian up while D’Von climbs to the top rope for the headbutt to the groin but they add the “Wassup” for the first time. The Hardys make it in but Bubba clotheslines them both down then tells D’Von to get a table ready on the floor. Bubba and D’Von pull a table out from under the ring when Edge and Christian dropkick it into their faces. Christian holds Matt as Edge goes for a spear but Matt escapes and Edge ends up taking out his own partner. Matt nails Edge with the Twist of Fate while Jeff climbs to the top rope and connects with the Swanton Bomb. Jeff covers Edge but Bubba pulls Jeff off him and out to the floor before the three and whips him into the steps. D’Von whips Edge and the Dudleys plant him with the 3D then D’Von covers but Christian distracts the referee. Matt meanwhile climbs to the top rope and nails D’Von with the guillotine legdrop to prevent the three count. However Edge suddenly tosses Matt through the ropes then covers the fallen D’Von and steals the pin to retain. (4:13) Match was good but just felt a little too rushed. Maybe they were running on time or something. Plus E&C were able to retain against both teams so why couldn’t they get a pin over the Acolytes last night? **½
~ Backstage we find Trish Stratus in the makeup chair complaining about being in something as ugly as a strap match. Trish calls Mick Foley a sexist pig and considers suing him for sexual harassment if this treatment continues.
~ Back from break we find Jacqueline over at WWF New York signing autographs for the fans.
~ Backstage Kurt Angle complains to Chris Benoit about being in a tag match after already beating The Undertaker. Benoit tries to calm Angle down by offering handle The Rock if he’ll take care of Kane but Angle isn’t convinced.
~ Elsewhere Johnathan Coachman interviews The Rock on getting another shot at Benoit in tonight’s main event. Rock starts with the usual and admits Benoit gave Rock all he could handle but he still gave it right back to him. Rock also tells Benoit he doesn’t earn the WWF Championship by having Shane McMahon hit Earl Hebner with a chair. Rock says it’ll be the two of them one more time tonight, if you smell and so on.
~ Lita is shown making her way to the ring with a leather strap in hand as we go to commercial.
- Lita vs. Trish Straus – Strap Match
As Lita charges down the ramp Trish tries to flee from the ring but Lita quickly cuts off her escape. Trish tries heading over the barricade but Lita gets in her shots with the strap then rolls her in the ring. Lita removes Trish’s shirt and works her over with the strap then takes a swing but ends up hitting the referee. Lita takes Trish out with her own Twist of Fate then climbs to the top rope and connects with a moonsault. Lita covers but the referee is still out while Stephanie comes in readying a swing with her Women’s title belt. Lita catches Stephanie and dares her to take the swing then turns and catches Trish trying to sneak up on her. However that allows Stephanie to swing her belt at Lita but she badly whiffs with it and Lita sells it anyway. Either that the swing generated enough wind to knock her over. Stephanie then rolls Trish on Lita as the referee revives and counts the three for the cheap pin. (1:38) Again the crowd was in Lita’s corner until the finish. DUD
~ Kane is shown kicking stuff around as he makes his way to the ring for our main event as we go to commercial.
- The Rock & Kane vs. Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit
Once everyone is in the ring Kane goes after Angle on the floor while Rock tells Benoit to “just bring it” and those two go right at it exchanging shots. Rock gets the advantage and whips Benoit into an elbow but Benoit comes back with a chop and whips Rock into his own elbow. Benoit works Rock over in a corner with more chops when Rock reverses positions and fights back with his own shots then looks for the Smackdown but Benoit blocks it. Benoit goes for a whip when Rock reverses it and hits a belly-to-belly throw but Benoit jabs him in the eyes. Angle gets the tag but runs into a clothesline and Rock tags in Kane who lifts Angle up with a double choke then drops him. Kane traps Angle in a corner then unloads on him with rights and caps it off with an uppercut. Kane whips Angle but lowers the head and Angle kicks the face but Kane no-sells it and clotheslines him down. Kane whips Angle into a corner but eats an elbow and Angle comes out but runs into a tilt-o-whirl powerslam. Kane climbs to the top rope and connects with the flying clohtesline then grabs Angle by the throat to end this but Benoit breaks up the chokeslam. Kane decks Benoit but Angle is able to hit a chopblock to the knee. Angle and Benoit double-team Kane’s knee before Angle applies a legscissiors while adding some elbowdrops but Kane fights out of it. Benoit tags in and comes off the ropes but Kane connects with a boot. Kane whips Benoit but Benoit rolls under a right hand and dropkicks the bad knee then works the knee over. Angle tags in and helps Benoit slam Kane on the mat by the knees then continues kicking away at the bad knee. Angle applies a spinning toehold then goes into a leglock but Kane legdrops Angle’s face to break the hold. Kane tries to hobble over to his corner when Angle tries to prevent the tag but Kane nails him with an enzuigiri. Both men are down trying to reach their corners and Angle tags Benoit while Kane makes the hot tag to Rock. Rock hammers away at Benoit with rights and drills him with a DDT then turns and drops Angle with a right. Rock plants Benoit with a spinebuster and goes for the People’s Elbow but Angle interupts it with a clothesline. Kane hammers away on Angle and uppercuts him over the ropes while Rock slaps Benoit in his own Crossface. Benoit tries to hold on while Angle tries to flee the match up the ramp but Kane chases him down on the stage. Kane presses Angle up when Shane comes out and whacks Kane from behind with a chair but it has no effect. Kane takes the chair away from Shane but The Big Show comes out as well and blindsides Kane for the save. Show scoops Kane on his shoulders and drives him into the wwf.com logo on the Titatron then does it again. Shane then goes in the ring to help Benoit (who’s still in Rock’s Crossface after all this time) but Rock is up and ready for him. Shane runs out of the ring but Rock chases him up the ramp and catches him with an elbow then stomps on him. However Angle whacks Rock from behind with a chair then Benoit goes out and helps Angle stomp Rock down as this match is pretty much over. (~8:45) Shane then adds in a choke on Rock while Show continues working over Kane when the referees break it up. Shane poses with his new posse over their fallen Rock and Kane, showing the new force in the WWF as we fade to black. **
Conclusion: The WWF follows up a great pay-per-view with a pretty poor Raw. Most of the in-ring action was non-existant except for the three-way tag match and you might have noticed almost all of the matches had the heels coming out on top. Plus the way the three main angles from Fully Loaded were continued leaves you feeling that nothing was really settled at the pay-per-view. At least Shane teaming up with Big Show, Angle and Benoit (along with Edge & Christian) made for a pretty cool stable which looked to be the next big force in the WWF, but even that died out fast due to several factors. Thumbs emphatically down for this show.