Our show kicks off with Hakushi VS the 123 Kid, who is accompanied to the ring by Ted DiBiase who winds up interfering during the match and giving the Kid the win. Afterwards while Lawler is interviewing both the 123 Kid and DiBiase, Marty Jannetty runs out to try to take the Kid out, but he’s intercepted by Sid who hits him with a bodyslam. Looks like the Kid is officially in the pocket of the Million Dollar Man.
After this, we get a Savio Vega & Skip match that I’m really not looking forward to. But right in the middle of it, Diesel comes down and shoves Skip out of his way before grabbing a mic and addressing the crowd. At Survivor Series yesterday, Diesel ended up dropping the WWF Championship to Bret Hart in a grueling “No Disqualification” match and in his frustration attacked Hart, powerbombing him multiple times. He now tells us that people are saying he should apologize to Bret and the fans. Diesel doesn’t seem to care though, saying that he slept like a baby for the first time in a year. He then points at McMahon and tells him that he’s no longer “some corporate puppet that you created, Vince” and that last night was just the tip of the iceberg. He tells us the only thing that matters are family and friends (specifically Shawn Michaels) before putting on his sunglasses and letting us know: “I’m back!”
Holy cow. WWF has never done a worked shoot like that before. I’m not even sure anyone’s ever acknowledged on the show that Vince is in charge. This was a total game changer. And if that wasn’t enough…
The final match of the evening is Owen Hart against Shawn Michaels who both put on a great show. As it draws to its end, Shawn throws Owen to the outside, but then suddenly collapses in the ring before he can follow it up. The ref comes over to check on him, but Shawn doesn’t move. Owen comes in to see what’s up before being waved away by the official. Owen looks confused and the crowd doesn’t understand what’s going on. Vince leaves the announcing table to go check on Shawn and we cut to commercial. When we cut back, there’s medical personnel in the ring giving him oxygen. The audience is buzzing with confusion and every so often the camera will cut to a different person in the crowd, each of which have a look of concern or tears in their eyes as they look on helplessly. Five minutes, two commercial breaks, and no commentary later, the show just ends with paramedics still trying to bring Shawn Michaels to.
YOU GUYS. RAW JUST CHANGED THE GAME. You wanted story? Here’s three of them, each one juicier than the last.
Meanwhile, Nitro stumbles out of the gate a match between arm-wrestler-turned-pro-wrestler Scott Norton VS Shark. I couldn’t care less about either of these guys or their feud.
This is followed up by an interview I don’t need featuring Jimmy Hart and Kevin Sullivan. I only mention it because of how Mean Gene ends it.
We then move on to a match I’m excited about: Eddie Guerrero VS Ric Flair! Well, except that Ric Flair comes out and says that “somebody must have made a mistake to think I was gonna wrestle you!” Instead he lets Brian Pillman do the honors. This is kind of a let-down, but I’ll still take it. Eddie winds up winning, which is exactly what you want to happen because it makes Eddie look great and Flair look stupid. It’s also worth mentioning how good of a heel commentator Bobby Heenan is here. He says that he’s “so tired of hearing people ask about Eddie all the time.” Everywhere he goes, it’s Eddie this and Eddie that. Heenan is such a pro that he manages to put Eddie over even while telling us how much he dislikes him.
The final match of the night is Sting VS Hulk Hogan, as teased at the end of the last Nitro. There’s really not much to speak of here because while Sting does get Hogan into the figure-four leglock, the stupid Dungeon of Doom runs out and beats both men up. So I guess this means that Sting isn’t working with them? What a mess. WCW’s next pay per view, World War 3, is about to happen so hopefully we get some concrete answers there.
Verdict: Despite the teasing us with the possibility of some promising matches, Nitro just gets too cute with it. Meanwhile, I wanted Raw to give me story and they delivered in a big way. Assuming this isn’t an anomaly, the Monday Night Wars are about to get a whole lot more interesting.
Winner this week: Raw
Score to date: Nitro 10, Raw 1
(Television Ratings: Raw - 2.3; Nitro - 2.5)