WWF RAW 1/20/1997
Written By: Bob Colling
World Wrestling Federation RAW
From: Beaumont, Texas
Stills of HBK defeating Sid to win the World Title. Stills of Austin being eliminated, and then coming back in to eliminate Bret Hart.
RAW Opening Video
Vince, King and JR hype up the show. Vince announces that Sid has a concussion and will not be here tonight.
Bret Hart comes down to the ring and begins cut a promo on Vince. Bret says that he beat Austin, just like Vince said he needed to, in order to become the number one contender. Bret says that HBK cost him the World Title. Bret says he won the Rumble and deserves a World Title shot. He wants to know here his opportunity is. He has been screwed by HBK. Austin, the WWF and by Vince McMahon. Vince seemingly is brushing off these comments, and Bret simply QUITS. Bret leaves through the crowd and Vince doesn’t try real hard to stop him.
Steve Austin comes out and cuts a promo and a non-working microphone. So, he re-does it with a new microphone. “Ever sense you came back you done nothing but cry!”. Austin says that Hart needs to stop whining. But, moments later he starts complaining as well. Austin calls out the Undertaker. Vince McMahon heads to the backstage area.
We see stills of Owen Hart eliminating his partner British Bulldog at the Royal Rumble last night.
WWF World Tag Team Champions Owen Hart/British Bulldog defeated Phil Lafon/Doug Furnas in a non-title match: Lafon and Hart start off the match. Lafon with a arm drag and goes into a wrist lock until Hart reverses into his own. Lafon takes Hart down with a fireman carry and continues his offense with a side headlock. Lafon with a shoulder block and comes off the ropes but is met with a drop toe hold. Lafon recovers and rolls Hart up but only gets a near fall. Lafon with a nice standing sidekick and tags out to Furnas. Furnas with a running shoulder tackle on both Hart and Bulldog. Furnas nails Hart with a dropkick and gets a near fall. Furnas with a overhead belly to belly suplex on Hart for a two count. Hart stops Furnas with a spinning heel kick and tags out to Bulldog. Bulldog hammers away on Furnas but is soon taken down with a hurricanrana from Furnas for a near fall. Bulldog rolls to the floor and Clarence Mason checks on his client. Lafon tags into the match and is cornered by Bulldog who rams his shoulder into the midsection of Lafon. Bulldog with a few right hands but Lafon connects with a jawbreaker and locks in a leg lock. Lafon tags out to Furnas and they double team Bulldog briefly. Hart tags in and leaps off the top nailing Furnas with a missile dropkick for a near fall. Hart has a sleeper hold on Furnas as RAW goes to commercial. Hart stomps away on Furnas and drops a elbow for a near fall. Hart steps through and goes for the sharpshooter but Furnas kicks Hart away. Furnas tries to tag out but is stopped by Hart. Furnas ducks a double team clothesline and clotheslines the champions! Furnas tries to tag out but is stopped by Hart once again. Furnas to double teamed in the corner as Lafon is distracting the referee. Furnas with a cross body on Hart and gets a two count. Hart with a kick to the side of Furnas head and goes for the cover but Furnas kicks out at two. Bulldog tags into the match and drives Furnas down with a delayed vertical suplex for a near fall. Hart snap mares Furnas and has a sleeper hold locked in. Furnas elbows his way out of the hold but Hart connects with a overhead belly to belly suplex. Hart leaps off the top and misses a flying head butt. Hart tags in Bulldog and Lafon gets the hot tag. Lafon with a clothesline on Bulldog and a hip toss. Lafon slingshots Hart into the ring and delivers a spinning heel kick. Snap suplex by Lafon on Bulldog and connects with a standing senton splash for a near fall. Lafon with a snap suplex on Bulldog and gets a two count. Lafon with a leaping tornado DDT on Bulldog and Owen breaks up the count. Lafon is tripped by Owen and gets nailed in the face with a slammy. Bulldog connects with the running power slam on Lafon and wins the match. ***
We see HBK entrance at the Royal Rumble.
Farooq defeated Bart Gunn in 5:15 after the Dominator: Jim Ross with a quick jab at WCW by saying the fans don’t need to sit through Robin Hood to see their matches. Bart Gunn seemingly had Farooq done after a running bulldog. Only for the Nation to attack and Farooq connects with the Dominator. *1/2
Vince McMahon comes down with Gorilla Monsoon and apparently a huge announcement will be made, next!
Vince and Gorilla Monsoon (who gets booed) are in the ring. Gorilla says that he can not change the fact that Austin won the Royal Rumble. However, he will not be entitled to a World Title shot at Wrestle Mania 13 Gorilla says Undertaker, Vader, Bret Hart and Steve Austin will all be involved in a 4 way no disqualification match and the winner will face the World Champion at Wrestle Mania 13. Steve Austin comes down to the ring and reminds Gorilla that Bret quit. Austin calls Gorilla a jackass. Austin goes over to Vince and Gorilla.. Bret Hart comes back into the ring and accepts his invitation to the match. Hart and Austin proceed to brawl in the entrance way. Bret sends Austin into the ring steps before a commercial
Undertaker comes down for his match, and he and Bret go at it until Austin attacks Taker.
The Undertaker defeated Steve Austin via disqualification: Austin and Taker brawl on the entrance ramp with Taker getting the upper hand sending Austin into the ring steps. Taker rolls into the ring and is stomped by Austin. Austin goes for a backdrop but is whipped down to the mat by Taker. Taker with a wrist lock and walks to the top rope before diving down across Austin’s arm. Taker chokes Austin in the corner for a few moments. Taker works on Austin with a uppercut in the corner and a overhand strike. Austin asks for a timeout but Taker doesn’t stop. Taker goes for a backdrop but Austin connects with a swinging neck breaker and follows up with several boots. Austin with a back elbow and goes for the cover but Taker kicks out. Austin comes off the ropes with several forearm drops and rakes Taker’s eyes. Taker with a shot to Austin’s ribs but Austin is able to go back to kicking Taker. Austin chokes Taker on the middle rope and rams Taker head first into the corner. Taker with a back elbow and hammers away on Austin with right hands. Taker charges towards the corner but is met with a big boot. Austin with a double axe handle coming off the middle rope and gets a two count. Jerry Lawler leaves the commentary table and tells Austin to work on Taker’s ribs. Taker low blows Austin and goes to pick up Austin but Austin connects with the Stunner! Back from commercial, Austin drops a forearm to Taker’s chest and gets a two count. Austin with several forearm drops and taunts the fans. During the break both men went for a clothesline and collided in the middle of the ring. Austin is on the top rope but Taker crotches him by kicking the top rope! Taker hooks Austin up for a superplex but is shoved off and Austin leaps off the middle rope with a forearm drop and gets a two count. Taker sits up quickly and is met with several right hands. Austin misses a clothesline and turns around to be met with one! Vader runs down to the ring and tries to attack Taker but is choke slammed! *½
After the match, Austin hammers away on Taker while Bret Hart runs down and all four men start brawling in the ring. Hart hammers away on Austin while Vader and Taker are trading punches and kicks. Hart runs down Austin on the entrance ramp and drags Austin back to ringside. Hart sends Austin into the ring steps. Taker with a back suplex on Vader in the ring. Hart and Austin continue to brawl to close out the show.
End of Show
My Take: I thought the opening segment with Austin/Hart was decent. Hart is really being booked as a crybaby and that kind of hurts his character in my opinion. Him quitting is also lame since it was obvious that he would comeback later on in the show.
A good tag team match with Bulldog/Owen/Lafon/Furnas. All four men put on a good showing and the fans were interested in the match.
Faarooq/Bart Gunn wasn’t all that bad considering it was just a squash match.
Taker/Austin put on a good brawl to close out the show. The aftermath to the match continues all the stories between those four men. A entertaining way to close out the show for sure.
Thanks for reading.