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Raw: Nostalgia show quite the (beer) blast
By DALE PLUMMER -- SLAM! Wrestling


Where were you 15 years ago (roughly) when Monday Night RAW first aired? I'll be honest I missed it back in 1993, but I jumped on board shortly there after, and have been watching ever since (well, almost).

The 15th anniversary show comes to us from Bridgeport, Connecticut, with many former superstars slated to appear. And Vince McMahon is going to name the greatest RAW star of all-time. (I have a sinking feeling that Vince is going to name himself.)

The show starts with a nicely edited compilation of all the RAW intros from over the years. Vince, with Shane and Steph in tow, heads to the ring. Which begs the question, just where is Linda? Vince toots his own horn for a while. Vince mentions that Linda is ill, and then introduces his kids. Vince wants the family portrait taken now, but before the photographer can get in the ring, Hornswoggle joins the party. Shane pries Horny from his dad's leg as a Hornswoggle chant breaks out. Vince tells Shane and Steph he loves them, while Horny gets a kind of. The family sets up the photo-op, when Triple H crashes the ring. Triple H wants to bring out the people Vince has loved. First out is Melina, and then a blast from the past, Sunny! (As Ron Simmons would say, "DAMN!") Trips goes back even further into the past by bringing out Mae Young. Vince tries to explain away Mae Young (something about being drunk at Moolah's funeral), but Shane just walks away. Triple H has one more ace up his sleeve as Howard Finkel, Big Dick Johnson, Bastion Booger, Abe "Knuckleball" Schwartz, Pat Patterson and Jerry Brisco. Steph tells her dad he has serious problems, and it is time she embarrasses him. Steph walks over and plants a huge kiss on Triple H. (OMG, I didn't see that coming!) Vince tells everyone to go to hell. Hornswoggle looks dejected, so Triple H wonders if someone could make it all better. Out walks the Godfather, with a bevy of ladies. Hornswoggle is happy now, as the ladies dance with him.

Match #1 -- Jeff Hardy vs. Carlito -- Intercontinental Title Ladder Match

Carlito goes for a ladder, and dodges a baseball slide from Jeff. Carlito sets up the ladder and then blocks a Twist of Fate. Carlito stomps away at Jeff in the corner, and sets the ladder on him. The IC champ tosses the ladder into a charging Carlito and then slams him on it. Hardy drop kicks Carlito off the apron and onto a ladder resting against the security barrier. Hardy ascends the ladder, but is met on top by Carlito who powerbombs them both to the floor.

After the break, Jeff has a ladder in the corner and he catapults himself over for a leg drop, that Carlito rolls away from. Carlito grabs a second ladder, sandwiching Hardy's leg with one of them. Hardy is then slammed on a ladder, and Carlito starts to climb. Jeff chases Carlito down. Back on the mat, Carlito hits a chop block, and sets a ladder in the corner forcing Hardy onto it. Carlito charges, only to get back body dropped onto the ladder he set up. Hardy climbs the turnbuckle and hits a swanton bomb (barely). Jeff starts his climb, and Carlito pushes the ladder over. Hardy lands on his feet, but Carltio hits the back cracker on a ladder. Carlito goes for the gold, but Hardy catches up to him. Jeff punches Carlito off the ladder and out of the ring. Hardy reaches up to grab and retain the Intercontinental Title.

Winner: Jeff Hardy

The Grish is with HBK. Michaels talks about defending his IC title 15 years ago on the first RAW; Michaels wants to talk about last week and said the Marty Jannetty imposter was pretty good, so tonight Kennedy can take on the real thing.

It is time for our first RAW flashback. Good times, man, good times.

Santino Marella is in the ring, with Maria, and is sick of the nostalgia. Santino says he is the future so he has issued an open challenge. Before he can even finish, RVD's music hits and Mr. Monday Night is in the ring.

Match #2 -- Santino Marella vs. RVD

RVD kicks Marella out cold and follows with the five-star frog splash. RVD does his thing, and then covers for the pin.

Winner via pinfall: RVD

So Evolution is having a reunion, ummmm, okay. Ric Flair walks to the ring, followed by Triple H. World Heavyweight Champion Batista joins his former partners as well. WWE Champion Randy Orton walks out to the stage, and announces he won't go to the ring, because last time he was champ Evolution turned on him. Triple H says it was pretty cool, and they beat him up because he was a pain. Orton says he'd rather be remembered as a part of Rated RKO. Edge joins his former partner on stage. Batista offers that Edge runs his mouth from inside the ring. Ric Flair tells Edge and Orton to find a partner and get in the ring. Orton thought ahead and got Umaga.

Match #3 -- Edge, Randy Orton, and Umaga vs. Ric Flair, Triple H, and Batista

Edge beats Flair into the corner, but the Nature Boy counters with chops. Umaga tags in and locks in the nerve pinch. Umaga drags Flair to the heel corner and tags in Orton. Orton drops a knee, but cannot get the pin. Flair drop kicks Orton and then gets a tag to Batista. The Heavyweight champ knocks Umaga from the apron and then pulls Edge into the ring hitting a sidewalk slam. Triple H jumps in and he hits Edge and Orton with spinebusters in stereo. Umaga hits the ring, hitting the ref, and getting DQ. Umaga goes for Flair, but is stopped by Batista and Triple H. Orton and Edge head up the ramp, leaving Umaga in the ring with Evolution. Flair nails Umaga with a low blow and Batista follows with a spear. Triple H finishes the hat trick with a pedigree, while Jeff Hardy watches from the back.

Winner via DQ: Evolution

Another RAW Flashback; Austin drives a beer truck to the ring and other vehicular antics are showcased.

Hornswoggle is harassing Molly Holly and Mickie James before William Regal steps in. He tells the little guy he will be facing the Great Khali in a rematch from Survivor Series, and Finlay is stuck in Ireland, so no one can help him.

Match #4 -- Hornswoggle vs. The Great Khali

Hornswoggle slips away from Khali, but finally the giant gets a hold of him, but he is saved by Hulk Hogan. Khali waves Hogan into the ring. Hulk gets in Khali's face and Hulks up. Hogan blocks a right hand, but gets booted in the gut and then hit across the back. Khali clubs Hogan, but Hogan no sells (I mean Hulks up) and takes down the giant with a right hand. Hogan wants Khali back in the ring, but Khali won't oblige.

No Contest

Hornswoggle and the crowd egg on Hogan, and the Hulkster gets on the mic. Hogan thanks everyone for keeping the dream alive. Hogan pimps his new show. (Thanks for going on strike Hollywood; next year it's all reality TV all the time!) Hogan and Hornswoggle pose in the ring.

More RAW memories; an ode to DX.

Match #5 -- 15 Man Battle Royal -- Al Snow, Bart Gunn, Doink the Clown, The Repo Man, Steve Blackman, Pete Gas, Bob Backlund, Gangrel, The Goon, IRS, Flash Funk, Skinner, Scotty 2 Hotty, Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart, Sgt. Slaughter, and Gillberg

Gillberg is tossed by an entire group effort. Bob Backlund follows. Al Snow dumps Doink from the ring and Gangrel, too. Al Snow then hits the floor. Pete Gas and Bart Gun head to the back, along with Flash Funk and Steve Blackman. The Goon is taken out by the Repo Man, who eliminates himself. Neidhardt taunts him, but is thrown out by Skinner. Scotty 2 Hotty blocks a briefcase shot from IRS, and hits the worm. Skinner tosses Scotty, but is tossed by Slaughter. IRS eliminates Sgt. Slaughter to win the Battle Royal. Ted DiBiase joins IRS in the ring. IRS takes DiBiase's money and eliminates himself allowing DiBiase to win.

Winner: Ted DiBiase

We flashback to some slap happy times.

Eric Bischoff is in the ring and is a little choked up. He wants the crowd to know how much this means to him. Bischoff says he sees the same people year after year, and he is here to take their money. Bischoff says the Vince is dependant on him reinventing the business. Bischoff is interrupted by Chris Jericho. Bisch wants to know what Jericho is doing, seeing as he fired him a few years back. Jericho tells him to shut up. Y2J says he remembers getting fired, but thanks him for the time off. Jericho remembers to push the PPV. Bischoff tells Jericho to forfeit his match. Jericho retorts and punches Bischoff. Orton tries to get the jump on Y2J but Jericho is able to lock in the Walls of Jericho and Orton taps. Y2J picks up the belt and stands over Orton.

Match #6 -- Hardcore Holly and Cody Rhodes vs. Cade and Murdoch -- World Tag Team Championship

Dusty Rhodes is at the announce table to see his son win the tag title. (Sorry, had some technical difficulties during this match.) Hardcore Holly hits the Alabama Slam on Murdoch. Dusty hits the ring to celebrate.

Winner via pinfall: Hardcore Holly and Cody Rhodes

All the celebrities that have been on RAW are featured. The we have a Diva flashback.

Jillian Hall is in the ring to serenade us all. Trish Stratus returns to shut her up. Trish is happy to be back and see everyone. She calls Jillian's act, well, bad. Lita joins the party and gets right in Trish's face with Jillian egging her on. Lita tells Jillian her voice is horrible and to shut up. Jillian is tossed to the mat by Trish and Lita. And then they chop her in the corner before she runs to the back.

Raw flashes back to some lighter moments. Real good times ... and then we take a look at the weddings that have been on RAW.

Lita is watching in the back with Kane, and they have an awkward moment. Ron Simmons puts things in perspective, "DAMN!"

Match #7 -- Ken Kennedy vs. Marty Jannetty

Kennedy starts with an arm bar, but Jannetty counters with a drop toe hold. A low drop kick sends Kennedy to the mat. Kennedy responds with a low drop kick off his own, and then locks on a half crab. Jannetty gets to the ropes to break the hold. Kennedy taunts Jannetty and puts the boots to him. Marty hits an enzuguri and then a back elbow. Jannetty gets a two count after a suplex. A clothesline sends Jannetty to the mat, but Marty counters the Green Bay plunger and hits the Rocker dropper. Jannetty climbs the turnbuckle, but gets hung up by Kennedy. Jannetty counters the drop again, and nearly gets a roll-up win. Kennedy hits an inverted DDT and covers for the win.

Winner via pinfall: Ken Kennedy

WHAT YOU THINK
Who do you think will be named the top star in Raw's 15-year history?
Vince McMahon - 39%
Steve Austin - 33%
Undertaker - 8%
The Rock - 8%
Someone else - 7%
HHH - 5%
Mick Foley - 1%
After the match, HBK saves Jannetty from a further beat down. Kennedy gains the upper hand and hammers away at Michaels. Triple H walks down the ramp, allowing Michaels to toss Kennedy. Michaels puts on the DX shirt, and we have another DX reunion.

Vince gets ready to go to the ring.

It's time to name the greatest superstar in RAW history. Vince gets the envelope and reads the name of Vincent Kennedy McMahon. Before Vince can give his acceptance speech, Mankind hits the ring. Vince tells Mick to hit the road. Instead Mr. Socko clamps onto Vince's mouth. Then the lights go out, and the bell tolls. The Undertaker makes his entrance, and Vince is still laid out in the ring. Taker grabs Vince by throat and chokeslams him to the mat. Undertaker poses in the ring as the arena goes dark. The lights come up and Undertaker is gone. The shattering of glass echoes through out the building, and Stone Cold Steve Austin hits the ring. Austin was going to congratulate Vince, but he's just lying there. Steve proposes a toast, lies down next to Vince and spills his beer. So Austin helps Vince up, toasts Vince and RAW, and then delivers a Stone Cold Stunner. Austin then calls the fans the greatest superstars on RAW, and that's the bottom line because Stone Cold said so! Austin calls out the entire locker room for a beer bash to end the show. Vince comes to, but Austin knocks him off the apron.

Dale Plummer has been writing for SLAM! Wrestling since 2003. Dale is wondering who the greatest RAW reporter in history is. Dale votes for whoever had to cover the Katie Vick storyline with Kane and Triple H.