Monday Night Wars: 06 April 1998

Monday Night War

Craig Wilson & Jamie Lithgow

This week’s Monday Night War marks a major milestone in the ratings battle between WWE and WCW. For the first time in 84 weeks Raw would triumph in the ratings against Nitro. On the victorious Raw we are set to see a Corporate Stone Cold and DX meet DOA in the main event. While over on Nitro Randy Savage is the victim of a mystery attack and Kevin Nash challenges Sting for the WCW Title in the main event.

All that and more as Monday Night Wars continues.

RAW

Craig

JR and Cole on commentary for Raw is War. JR tells us that DX will be here as is The Undertaker. Big IC title match tonight with The Rock defending against Owen Hart.

First out is Vince McMahon, to a tremendous amount of jeers, after Stone Cold’s arrest last week. Plenty of “Austin” chants. McMahon announces that tonight we’ll see a “new and improved” Stone Cold.

Here comes Dan ‘The Beast’ Severn, clad in title belts. We get a video package of his UFC stuff and his attack on The Headbangers last week. It’s Flash Funk that’s providing his opponent in this squash match. Early submission attempt with an armbar but Funk gets to the ropes. Severn eventually picks up the win by an armbar submission.

Backstage cameras show the new and beefed up DX are on their way to the ring. In a promo reminiscent of the nWo HHH says if the WWF want a war then they’ve got one.

Tennessee Lee joins the commentary team for the next bout pitting Steve Blackman against Brian Christopher. Lee announces that some country band will support Jeff Jarrett who will be singing at Unforgiven. Blackman gets the win via submission. After the match, Jeff Jarrett sneaks up from behind Blackman and smashes a guitar over his head.

Backstage we see DX pissing on the DOA’s bikes.

Cactus Jack comes out as we see clips from last week of the Outlaws regaining the tag titles. He addresses how he and Funk were cheated out of the tag titles and that Funk had wanted to retire as champion after Wrestlemania 14. Cactus demands an apology from the WWF fans for cheering on Stone Cold Steve Austin. He doesn’t get his apology and says it will be a long time before the fans see Cactus Jack in the ring again.

A video airs of Farooq being beaten up by the Nation. The Nation members take turns in recording the clip, allowing everyone to beat on their former leader.

The Intercontinental Championship is on the line next as the new leader of the Nation of Domination puts the belt on the line against former two time IC Champion Owen Hart. Early into this one the rest of the Nation are sent to the back. Lots of references in this one to young talent – a clear dividing line between the WWF and WCW at this point. Owen Hart has this match won with a Sharpshooter in the middle of the ring but Chyna hits the ring and smashes Hart over the back with a baseball bat.

Vince McMahon kicks off The Warzone by introducing Stone Cold Steve Austin. The champion makes his way to the ring in a suit as JR and Lawler ponder if this is a corporate Stone Cold. Vince takes off Austin’s cap and throws it into the crowd before asking the crowd to show their appreciation for the new and improved Austin. Austin asks the two police officers who accompanied McMahon to the ring to take a photo of the pair. He tells McMahon to get the film in the camera developed as it’ll be the last time he says Austin in a suit and tears it off to the delight of the WWF fans as McMahon goes mental.

The Disciples of Apocalypse hit the ring enraged at DX pissing on their bikes and call them out for a match later in the evening.

Next up Luna Vachon takes on a jobber. Goldust beats up the jobber before the bell allowing Luna to get a quick win with a headbutt off the top rope.

Another innuendo laden promo for Val Venis airs.

Marc Mero then locks up with Ken Shamrock. Early on Mero sends Sable to the back. Mero counters a Hurricanrana with a powerbomb but Shamrock slips out of a TKO attempt and looks to have the bout won until the Nation hit the ring. Shamrock grabs a chair to defend himself but is attacked from behind by Mark Henry before D-Lo hits a Frog Splash.

The first sighting of The Undertaker since Wrestlemania XIV next for an in-ring interview with Kevin Kelly. Kelly asks him if at Unforgiven his body can go through the sort of punishment it did at Wrestlemania. Paul Bearer, with Kane, interrupts The Undertaker with Kane destroying the graveside of his parents and setting it alight.

It’s time for DX to answer DOA’s challenge as the European Champion Triple H teams with the tag champions to take on Chainz, Skull & 8-Ball. X-Pac does colour commentary for this one. Near the end, all six men brawl in the ring before Skull & 8-Ball take the fight against the tag champions to the outside. DX get the win after HHH hits a pedigree on Chainz. After the match, DX attack the DOA with steel chairs until Legion of Doom 2000 make the save and brawl with DX as the show ends.

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xys0by_wwf-raw-04-06-1998-part-1_sport
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xys0ug_wwf-raw-04-06-1998-part-2_sport

Full results:

* NWA Heavyweight Champion Dan ‘The Beast’ Severn (w/ Jim Cornette) defeats Flash Funk by submission
* Steve Blackman defeated Brian Christopher by submission
* Owen Hart defeated WWF Intercontinental Champion The Rock by DQ so Maivia retains
* Luna Vachon defeats Matt Knowles via pinfall
* Ken Shamrock v Marc Mero goes to a no contest when the Nation interfere
* WWF European Champion Triple H & WWF Tag Team Champions Billy Gunn & the Road Dogg defeated Chainz, Skull, & 8-Ball

NITRO

Jamie

This week’s Nitro hails from Miami, Florida. Last week WWE’s post-Wrestlemania 14 Raw made up significant ground in the ratings war, although Nitro still edged the victory. How would WCW react to WWE upping their game? Let’s find out…

The show opened with Macho Man Randy Savage lying flat on his back in the car park. Paramedics attended to Savage who had clearly been attacked, but who by…?

JJ Dillon was non-committal on the status of Savage and the WCW World Title match booked for Spring Stampede – Savage is scheduled to face Sting for the title. However he did reveal that there was additional footage of the car park incident, which may shed some light on who attacked the Macho Man…

In an otherwise pointless and forgettable match, Konnan nailed Norman Smiley with a sick looking cradle DDT. This was a signature move for K-Dogg, but rarely looked this devastating.

Back in the car park Savage was shown wearing a neck brace and being taken away on a spine board. For some reason he was also hooked up to a drip.

Raven appeared in the crowd during Diamond Dallas Page’s US Title defence against Buff Bagwell. Taunting him over the microphone, Raven distracted DDP enough to hand the count-out win to Bagwell. Buff then demanded that the ring announcer hand him the US Title belt – Luckily Buff is supposed to be an idiot because none of his actions made any sense here – To the crowd’s delight DDP hit the Diamond Cutter on Buff to end the segment.

We were shown the “additional footage” from the car park. A red and yellow Dodge Viper was shown speeding away from the scene with Vincent and The Disciple left behind telling people to step away because it’s “nWo business”….

Hogan hit the ring to cut his weekly promo. There was no Bischoff this week, but most of the nWo were in attendance. Not present were Scott Hall, who has been absent for a few weeks because he was in rehab at this point. Hogan gave him a shout out though. The aforementioned Bischoff was missing, as was Savage obviously. Kevin Nash once again declined to join Hogan and interestingly Konnan was also missing. Anyway, Hogan dropped hints about hitting “speed bumps” on his way to arena and backed Nash to defeat Sting for the WCW Title later in the evening. He also suggested that Nash would hand the title over to him…

Goldberg took his record to 69-0 with a win against Hammer. His streak is now heavily referenced during his appearances. Post-match Saturn punished his fellow Flock member by locking on his Rings of Saturn submission. The rest of The Flock looked shit scared of Saturn here. Goldberg didn’t, because had already left by this point.

Roddy Piper came out and ruined the mystery over who attacked Randy Savage. Granted it was glaringly obvious, but Piper let slip that he saw Hogan commit the attack; mystery over. He then randomly name dropped Goldust before saying that he was “coming after Hogan”.

Eddie Guerrero berated Chavo for being a loser and embarrassing Grandma and Uncle Mando. He then threw his nephew into a match against The Ultimo Dragon. Predictably Chavo lost and Eddie wasn’t happy.

We were reminded that Dean Malenko decided he was “going home” a couple of months ago at Uncensored…

Déjà vu from last week – and the week before that – when Bret Hart made the save for The British Bulldog and Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart after the pair were attacked by the nWo’s Curt Hennig, Brian Adams and Rick Rude.

With very limited promo time Chris Jericho begged Dean Malenko to come back, made fun of Prince Iaukea (he called him Prince Nakumaki), dissed Juventud and squeezed in an Eddie Grant reference – Latter day Jericho might have become a bit stale and repetitive, but in 1998 he was outstanding.

Prince Iaukea showed up at ringside during Jericho’s match with Juventud. With Juvi refusing to submit to the Lion Tamer (aka The Walls of Jericho) Iaukea took it upon himself to through in the towel for Juvi.

Scott Steiner was accompanied to the ring by Vincent and an unidentified trophy.

Kevin Nash was accompanied to the ring by Konnan. Big Sexy was also wearing a Randy Savage shirt. In a reference to the recently fired Syxx (who returned to WWE as X-Pac the previous week) Nash suggested that he better not wear the shirt for too long in case Savage gets fired – Nash and Hall regularly wore Sean ‘Syxx/X-Pac’ Waltman’s shirt before he was fired while recovering from a neck injury – Nash also fingered Hogan as Savage’s attacker and threatened to sort Hollywood out if he steps out of line at Spring Stampede. Finally, and with hindsight highlighting the irony of this statement, Nash said that he has no intentions of just handing Hogan the title should he win it…

The main event ended in the usual fashion when Hogan blatantly interfered by attacking Sting, thus costing Nash his title opportunity. This cued the usual run-ins from the nWo, Piper and The Giant. Points of interest here were Nash and Konnan refusing to attack the babyfaces. The show closed with Konnan holding Nash back from Hollywood Hogan.

Full Results:
* El Dandy, La Parka & Psychosis def. Judo Suwa, Shiima Nobunaga & Magnum Tokyo
* Booker T (c) def. Disco Inferno to retain the TV Title
* Kidman def. Lenny Lane
* Konnan def. Norman Smiley
* Buff Bagwell def. Diamond Dallas Page (c) by Count Out in a US Title match
* Goldberg def. Hammer
* Ultimo Dragon def. Chavo Guerrero Jr.
* Lex Luger def. Barry Darsow
* Brian Adams & Curt Hennig def. Jim Neidhart & The British Bulldog
* Chris Jericho (c) def. Juventud Guerrera to retain the Cruiserweight Title
* Scott Steiner def. Sick Boy
* Sting (c) def. Kevin Nash by DQ in a WCW Title match

Ratings

Raw: 4.7      Nitro: 4.6

Raw v Nitro April 6 1998

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