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WWF Superstars: February 9, 1997

A recap of “Royal Rumble RAW” airs, reminding us that false advertising doesn’t stop just because the show ended.

JIM ROSS and JAMES E CORNETTE welcome us to Sunday morning, and remind us NOT to go looking for wrestling on Monday night because RAW is on Thursday. No sir, no way, no how, Thursday ONLY, there is NO OTHER WRESTLING ANYWHERE.


THE SULTAN (with the Iron Sheik) vs. GOLDUST (with Marlena)

Christ almighty the mid-card of the WWF is *awful*. Think positive thoughts, think positive thoughts. This is loosely connected to Marlena displaying her tits to an appalled Bob Backlund 6 weeks ago, but if this is how quickly he reacts to his moral code being violated, it’s safe to say that Backlund is gonna get plenty taken advantage of during his golden years. Fans start a “USA” chant, because frickin’ GOLDUST is the FACE?!? Tolerance might be at an all-time low, but having The Gay is preferable to having The Turban. Sultan hits the Samoan drop, and goes for the camel clutch. Marlene threats to take off her top, but HUNTER HEARST HELMSLEY arrives to kidnap her. Goldust steps forward to save, but Sultan drags him right back with a belly to back suplex for the win at 3:41. Marlena fights Helmsley strong enough to give Goldust time to save his woman, but CURTIS HUGHES joins the fray, and it’s gay bashin’ time. *

FUERZA GUERRERA and HEAVY METAL vs. OCTAGON and HECTOR GARZA

FOR GOD SAKES PUT GOLDUST AND SULTAN BACK IN THE RING!!! I can’t do a WWF interpretation of a lucha libre match! They put PEPE CASAS back in the ring to officiate, because they won’t even put their own referees through this stuff. Octagon and Fuerza trade slow moving punches, and Fuerza goes to his specialty: The Awful Old Man Punch. Fuerza’s knocked to the floor, and HOLY SHIT, Octagon flies with some SERIOUS force via tope suicida!!! That might be the best version of that move I’ve *ever* seen. The hate, it’s gone! Heavy Metal and Garza mutually clothesline eachother to the floor, because they’re “twin sons!” but not. Metal nearly kills himself with a moonsault gone wrong, so they trade off where Fuerza shows off his saggy boobs. Octagon applies a fantastic armbar / headscissors submission hold, but Fuerza feels no pain since all his joints are basically paper mache. Metal re-enters the match by slipping on the top rope, and Garza nails a picture perfect moonsault for 2. Metal goes back to the top rope, because dammit he’s gonna do something right up there eventually, and hits the swandive for 2. Guerrera comes off the second rope with a chop delivered with the kind of force he uses to dab his cards at the bingo table. Garza plants Guerrera with a spinebuster, and JR gives up on this and goes split screen with:

PAUL BEARER, who’s rummaging around a locker in the men’s room. He’s sending Vader in to battle Steve Austin tonight, AND Bret on Thursday, and JR asks what the hell he’s thinking. Bearer says he’s pissed because Austin cheated Vader out of his rightful Rumble win, and he’s gonna finish him off tonight before taking care of the “whiner and crier” Bret Hart.

Back in the ring, Fuerza’s narcolepsy kicks in and on the way down his leg connects with Garza. Garza comes back with a springboard armdrag, and despite Guerrera exploding into a ball of dust off a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, the referee declares only a 2 count. Octagon uses a crucifix to end this mess at 7:59. Octagon was fantastic, Garza was ok, Heavy Metal needs a tumbling class, and … I don’t even want to talk about the rest. This is probably deserving of a rating, but it was like 4 different matches so I don’t even know what to tell you.

THE HONKY TONK MAN tries to serenade SABLE. Even Marc Mero’s so unconcerned about old Wayne’s machismo that he doesn’t bother running in to stop it.

SHAWN MICHAELS, dressed like an 80’s living room and cowboy hat, joins us in the ring. JR sells him as a man who would never quit on the fans. Let’s remember that on Thursday. KEVIN KELLY is given the privilege of having his leg humped while trying to get an interview.


Michaels pimps his match with Sid on Thursday, and since Sid was kind enough to grant Shawn a rematch after the Survivor Series, he’ll do him the same favor. Uh huh. Apparently chasing the belt has made everyone nuts over the past few months, and he’s absolutely right. That’s part of what was making the current period we’re seeing so special. The belt was *everything*. After a lackluster run by Shawn (with some spectacular matches), suddenly you had hungry superstars everywhere willing to sell out their own mothers (and in the case of Steve Austin, grandma too) just to get a shot at the title. Aside from Vader whose cred has gone the way of the Dodo bird, any one of Hart, Taker, Austin, or Sid could just as easily be on top of the promotion right now and it would feel just as desperate. Anyway, Michaels trolls Bret a little by mentioning he’s whined on live TV, cried on live TV, and quit on live TV, but since Bret doesn’t want him calling him any of those names he won’t. This is the last title shot Shawn’s handing out before Mania, and he expects to get past Sid and put on another Wrestlemania Match of the Year for the 3rd year running. Baby Jesus is swimming in his tears just from the sheer volume of lies in that 4 minute piece.

FAAROOQ (with Clarence Mason, PG-13, D’Lo Brown, Two Well Dressed Men, and One Well Dressed Woman) vs. KEN RAPER

The Raper attacks before the bell, because that’s sorta how he rolls. Unfortunately, Faarooq is probably the LAST guy Raper should try and sink himself into, and he quickly learns who the big dog in this pound is. Faarooq rams Raper, and chokes him out.

Backstage, STEVE AUSTIN hypes the main event. In a nutshell: Vader’s gonna get his ass whipped.

Back in the ring, the Dominator is putting Raper down for the count at 2:17. DUD

BRET HART joins the commentary booth for the main event, smacking Cornette in the back of the head for the hell of it. SUNNY is the guest ring announcer, another speaking role she’s terrible at.

VADER (with Paul Bearer) vs. STEVE AUSTIN

Bret defends his loss to Vader, by saying it took him a little while to get back into the swing of things when he came back to the WWF – but now that he’s in his groove, nothing’s gonna stop him. Austin spies Hart at the booth, and flips him off as he makes his way to the ring. See, that’s beautiful – these are the touches we haven’t seen from anyone not named CM Punk in years. Cornette asks about respect he might have for Austin; but Hart clarifies he has zero respect, but he doesn’t underestimate the man. Austin throws the clubberin’ in the corner, going right to Vader with the power moves. That’s a seriously ballsy strategy against a man that big, but before you know it, Austin’s stomping a mudhole and walking it dry. Still, Austin’s gonna be Austin, and during his victory lap around the ring, Vader charges at him with his barrel chest and knock Austin back to reality. Austin retaliates with a clothesline, and a very vocal “STONE COLD” conglomerate has erupted now. Vader comes back with his bear paw swats, and goes into his “WHO’S THE MAN?” routine. Of course, Austin’s a cardio machine, and clips the monster. Bret uses this as a perfect time to talk about the fact Austin’s cold enough to try and injure another man rather than just win the fight. Vader works an armbar, but Austin won’t tap, so Vader picks him up and flattens him with a clothesline. With Vader back in charge, we take a break.

By the time we’re back, Austin and Vader are trading punches at rapid speed mid-ring. Vader wins, being a good 150 pounds heavier, and Austin falls to the ropes. Vader goes to mount him, but that trick knee acts up and Vader gets punted in the pooter. He shakes it off as best as any man can shake that off, and destroys Steve with an avalanche. Seeing this, Bret talks about himself. The Vaderbomb is blocked with Austin’s knees, and suddenly Austin’s back in this and attacking like a rabid dog. As he beats on Vader, the lights go out and Undertaker’s gong hits. Bret reminds us that he’s not afraid or intimidated by the Undertaker, and nobody else in the WWF is either. The lights come on, and THE UNDERTAKER is standing behind Bret at the announce table. One soupbone knocks the Hitman on his ass, as Austin dumps Vader to the outside. All 4 guys wind up brawling in the aisle, giving us a preview of next Sunday. The referee calls for a countout at 8:30, but nobody here cares as the punches continue to fly like beads at a Mardi Gras party. **


Jim Ross, figuring this fight has no chance of ending anytime soon, signs us off and reminds us – THURSDAY, not MONDAY. In fact, if you could avoid turning on your TV to Any Channel on Monday, because there is No Wrestling Anywhere, you’ll save yourself all kinds of disappointment.

Comments

  1. Wait. Ken Raper? Couldn't they have given him a less controversial name like Mo Lester or something?

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  2. SHAWN MICHAELS, dressed like an 80’s living room and cowboy hat, joins us in the ring. Love it lol

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  3. Btw, Shawn really was a selfish drug addicted pos. Everyone he was supposed to cough up a title something suddenly happens and he just can't do it. I know wrestling is totally different now, and it's dumb to even fathom caring that much today, but he really was only about him.and not the company (which makes me feel for Bret when he's banished for something Mcmahon, Shawn, and HHH accuse Bret of).

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  4. He could've teamed with '99 Mark Henry and the team could've been called "Sexual Assault"

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  5. He added Viagra to the gimmick and changed his name to Willie B. Hardigan

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  6. Yeah, like that time he dropped the belt to Austin with a crippling back injury. What a jerk. So is Dr. Hart's opinion the only one that matters on Shawn's 1997 knee injury? Because two doctor's examined him but it's Bret Hart and the internet that know the real story?

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  7. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!March 18, 2015 at 5:31 AM

    CFB: Watching crappy wrestling so you don't have to.


    By the way, the same guys have criticized other writers' in the past -- that's what they do, so don't worry about them. They're the same guys that deconstruct movies as though they're Roger Ebert...of course, ya know....without the pay. It's all good -- ignore retards.

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  8. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMarch 18, 2015 at 6:24 AM

    Right, because the two Intercontinental titles, the two tag team titles and the one WWF title Michaels lost without ever losing a match don't count as evidence.

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  9. Did that turn up in his MRI? I'm talking about how ridiculous it is that two doctors look at his knee and determine he can't wrestle but Bret Hart throws a fit about it and the internet takes his opinion as the gospel for 20 years. And one of those tag team titles he didn't actually win in the first place and one of those IC titles he was stripped off when he was immediately suspended. When he returned he entered into a program where he essentially dropped "his" belt to the new champion.

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  10. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMarch 18, 2015 at 6:50 AM

    Which tag team title that he didn't actually win are you talking about? The phantom title win with the ropes? Because I was talking about the Triple Threat In Your House title win with Diesel.


    Look, maybe he was actually hurt when he gave up the WWF Title due to loss of smile, but the fact of the matter was that there was a pattern with Michaels pre-back injury. Whether it was his decision or a booking decision or matters beyond his control, he won a whole bunch of titles in the WWF without ever laying on his back to lose those belts.


    I couldn't care less about what Bret Hart said while he was angry and bitter over getting turfed by the WWF between 1997 and 2006. There is, however, a bunch of stuff that was put right on TV that gives an indication of someone who didn't actually job out a title.

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  11. I'm talking about the In Your House one to. It was a Dusty Finish so the good guys could close the show victorious without actually changing the titles. I agree he's lost lot of titles without dropping them in the ring but if you look at each one there could be a reason other than Shawn just being a dickhead. But my main gripe is this accepted belief that Shawn and two doctor's exaggerated a knee injury because Bret Hart said so.

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  12. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMarch 18, 2015 at 7:10 AM

    I'm telling you, it was the speech. The "I have to go home and find my smile" bit. Bret, who clearly has trouble differentiating between real life and pro wrestling storylines, just assumed the smile story was the truth, because it was said on TV.


    I'll admit to never having seen the MRIs or spoke to his doctors. HBK could be telling the truth, he could be lying. I don't know.


    And by the way, having the good guys close that In Your House victorious meant that Shawn and Diesel were acknowledged as having won the titles, and then they were stripped of them the next night, which fits into what I was saying before. It may not have been an "official" title win, but people who say the show watched Raw the next night thinking they were the tag team champs. Although we're probably arguing semantics at this point.

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  13. With Lawler as their manager.

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  14. Their finisher could have been called the Frat Party.

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  15. I think this is a gimmick from HartKiller at this point. It has to be

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  16. Great points, Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!

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  17. Don't forget he threw a curse tantrum about how he's not dropping the belt or appearing for weeks before Mania with Austin. He knew he had the company by the balls And it took Taker physically threatening him to get him to drop the belt. He denies it but the story has been corroborated many times.

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  18. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!March 18, 2015 at 10:11 AM

    Thanks!

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  19. Yes, Undertaker himself says that IF Shawn put up a shit about dropping the title he would have taken care of it but it didn't get that far. The guy rehabbed a career ending injury so he could work WM and even then he gets no credit for it.

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  20. If anyone felt cheated by the ending of the In Your House match that's on the booking. They booked themselves into a corner with the stipulations of the match so they do a Dusty Finish to get out of it for that night. Shawn/Diesel win and spear to be champions to send the crowd home happy but aren't really champions. I don't see how that one comes down to Shawn being an asshole who refuses to drop the title.

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  21. It's not. Shawn faking an injury has never been proven. Doctor's say he was hurt, Bret Hart says he wasn't so Bret's opinion is the accepted truth despite Bret himself being bitter and paranoid. Shawn dropped the IC belt to Jannetty, he was sitting at home with the belt when he was suspended and stripped of it - he didn't refuse to drop it, it was taken from him. When he came back he started a program acting like he was still champion that resulted in him putting over the new champion fair and square. He probably could have dropped the title to Dean Douglas, but, like Austin, they probably didn't want their next big star jobbing a secondary title months before Wrestlemania, especially for the sake of benefiting Dean Douglas.

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  22. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMarch 18, 2015 at 12:59 PM

    Where did I, personally, use the words "Shawn is an asshole who refuses to drop the title"? I didn't. All I was doing was pointing out instances (of which there are several) where Shawn won a title and then lost by means other than actually being defeated in a match.

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  23. They attempted to not bury Hart personally, because he’s one of the legends they bring out when needed. But they left out all the details that would give one a perspective of what really happened. They talked about the Michaels’ knee injury and told the story that Hart thought Michaels created the fake knee injury to avoid dropping the title to him. In actuality, Michaels was booked to lose to Sycho Sid on a live TV special in Lowell, MA (which was also the beginning of the Dwayne Johnson backlash when they had him beat HHH for the IC title less than three months after his debut and it was way early and the fans turned on him after being completely behind him as the new young star up to that point), not Hart. He showed up that day, and claimed a career ending knee injury and gave the lost my smile promo and handed Vince the belt and refused to even lose in his “last career match.”

    Of course, he was back two months later, without having surgery, and as good as ever. What he also missed was WrestleMania, where he was going to lose to Hart, but the title match by that point was Undertaker beating Sid. Ratings were down and Vince at the time blamed it on pushing smaller guys, so he went with the big guys in the title match, and Mania that year did 237,000 buys. Of course, it also started the turnaround since the Hart vs. Austin I Quit match that turned Austin babyface was on that show.

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  24. What's wrong with discussing a movie in critical terms?

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  25. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!March 18, 2015 at 5:21 PM

    Nothing really - just like there's nothing wrong with discussing a blog post in critical terms. But then there's a line between critical discussion and just being a douche.

    That's pretty much all I have to say on the subject. :)

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