WWF RAW 3/25/1996
Written By: Bob Colling
World Wrestling Federation presents RAW
From: San Antonio, TX
RAW opens up with Shawn Michaels making his way down to the ring for a match against Leif Cassidy.
RAW opening video
Shawn Michaels introduces his trainer and friend Jose Lothario to the fans. Lothario comes down to the ring and says at Wrestle Mania XII Shawn Michaels will win the WWF World Championship.
Opening Contest: Shawn Michaels defeated Leif Cassidy: Cassidy breaks free from Michaels in the corner after getting the advantage when they locked up. Bret Hart makes his way down to the announcers table to watch the action, which causes Jerry Lawler to leave. Michaels shoulder blocks Cassidy and follows up with a arm drags. Michaels controls Cassidy with a wrist lock and is able to avoid a wild chop. Cross body block by Michaels for a two count. Michaels goes back to a arm lock. Cassidy catches Michaels coming off the ropes and plants Michaels with a sit out spine buster. Cassidy follows up with a twisting slam. Marty Jannetty ends up coming down to the ring to cheer on Cassidy as RAW goes to commercial. Vertical suplex by Cassidy and locks in a chin lock. Michaels delivers a few jabs and rolls up Cassidy for a near fall. They trade a few rollups with each man getting near falls. Michaels has been busted open at this point. Cassidy severely botches dropping Michaels across on the ropes, and Michaels is vocal about it. Cassidy connects with a superplex and gets a near fall. Michaels blocks a second superplex by shoving Cassidy to the canvas. Michaels connects with a flying clothesline. A couple atomic drops by Michaels and delivers some more jabs. Jannetty trips Michaels as Michaels was going to come off the ropes. Jannetty tries holding Michaels in the corner but Bret Hart shoves Jannetty away. Cassidy misses a splash in the corner and is met with a super kick from Michaels. Michaels covers and picks up the win. *½
After the match, Michaels was going after Jannetty but ends up having a stare down with Bret Hart on the floor.
Vince McMahon talks to Bret Hart. Hart doesn’t consider Michaels to be a enemy but doesn’t see him to be a good friend either. Hart assures McMahon that he is going to punish Michaels at Wrestle Mania XII.
Ultimate Warrior video hyping his return is shown.
Second Contest: Hunter Hearst Helmsley defeated Aldo Montoya: HHH attacks Montoya from behind as Montoya was helping HHH’s lady friend get out of the ring. Montoya is able to get a brief amount of offense in, which included a flying cross body for a near fall. However, HHH planted Montoya with the pedigree to end the extended squash. ½*
Goldust is at the back lot which will be place he will be fighting Roddy Piper at in six days. Goldust has with him a mannequin dressed up as Piper. Goldust rubs the mannequin and breaths on it for a few moments. Goldust believes they will become one at Wrestle Mania. Goldust also says that their will be no need for Piper as fans will remember the name Goldust. Goldust proceeds to break the mannequin.
“The wait is over. The time has come. Are you ready?” Mankind debuts next week on RAW!
Vince McMahon is in the ring to interview the Undertaker and Paul Bearer. Bearer says that Diesel cost Taker a sure win at the Royal Rumble against Bret Hart and Taker did the same to Diesel at the last In Your House pay per view. Bearer notes that Diesel saw his future last week when Diesel saw himself in the casket. Taker asks his creatures if they are prepared for a feast. Taker says that due to Diesel putting his hands on Bearer, Diesel indeed saw his fate last week. “Diesel, Rest in Peace.”
A video going over both Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart’s journey to Wrestle Mania XII and the WWF World Championship is shown.
Main Event: Ahmed Johnson defeated Owen Hart by disqualification: Top wristlock by Owen to start the match but Johnson yanks Owen down to the mat. Johnson tosses Owen out of a side headlock and we see Diana Hart in the front row. Johnson shoulder blocks Owen and plays to the crowd. British Bulldog makes his way down to the ring. Owen tries to do a test of strength but can not reach Johnson’s hand. Johnson gets down on his knees but Owen delivers a few shots to get the upper hand on Johnson. Johnson catches Owen coming off the ropes connecting with a spine buster for a near fall. Johnson has a bear hug on Owen but lets go fairly quickly. Johnson gets distracted by Bulldog and this allows Owen to spin kick Johnson over the top to the floor. Owen sends Johnson into the guard railing as RAW goes to commercial. Owen still has control on Johnson until Johnson is able to drive Owen down with another spine buster. Bulldog comes into the ring and saves Owen from the Pearl River Plunge, which causes the DQ. *¼
After the match, Johnson is tripled teamed as Vader has made his way down to the ring. Yokozuna and Jake Roberts come down to the ring and clean house to end the segment.
To close out the show, we see a music video putting over WWF World Champion Bret Hart.
End of show
My Take: Michaels/Cassidy wasn’t a bad match but the few botches by Cassidy hurt the rating. Cassidy knew he messed up badly on the spot where he was to drop Michaels throat first across the top rope. Michaels was vocal about it and Cassidy looked like he knew he was in deep shit. Just something I noticed. Aside from the botches, a decent match.
Both the Goldust and Undertaker promos were just last minute hyping for feuds that don’t really need it. They seemed to just repeat what they has both been saying over the past several weeks. Didn’t over anything new.
I hadn’t seen a promo video of Mankind recently on RAW so I actually forgot about the character. As you know, it is Mick Foley playing the character. Should be interesting to see how he is used.
The main event had pretty much the same ending from a few weeks ago. It was a fairly bland contest and I didn’t like the repetitive ending. Why not allow the heels to get the upper hand going into the pay per view? It seems like all the baby faces have the advantage heading into Wrestle Mania XII.
Overall, the show didn’t offer anything new to the feuds or anything. Michaels vs. Cassidy was the only decent match but that was flawed by a few botches. Not a good show leading into your biggest pay per view of the year.
Thanks for reading.