Raw Rewind: 30 May 1994

Raw Rewind 1994

Craig Wilson

Welcome to the latest edition of ‘Raw Rewind‘. Today we take in the episode of Raw from 30 May 1994. On this show, the Smoking Gunns, Jeff Jarrett, Crush and Tatanka are all in action.

Champion Roll Call:

WWF Champion: Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart
WWF Intercontinental Champion: Diesel
WWF Tag Team Champions: The Headshrinkers

You can read last week’s Raw recap here.

The show begins with a recap of the King of the Ring qualifying to date, as we see I.R.S., Razor Ramon, Mabel, Bam Bam Bigelow, Jeff Jarrett, Owen Hart, the 1-2-3 Kid all qualify, leaving one place which will be decided in tonight’s match between Tatanka and Crush.

When we get to ringside, Vince McMahon announces that “anything can happen” on Monday Night Raw. He’s joined by Macho Man Randy Savage and they discuss Crush replacing ‘Gigalo’ Jimmy Del Ray in the King of the Ring Qualifier – a match which is up first. We learn that Mr. Fuji did a deal with Jim Cornette to have Crush replace Del Ray

King of the Ring Qualifying match: Crush (w/ Mr. Fuji) vs. Tatanka (w/ Chief Jay Strongbow)

Strongbow is weeks away from entering the WWF King of the Ring and gets a nice reaction. Tatanka gets an early cover with a flying crossbody but it only gets a two. Crush regroups with Fuji before offering a test of strength to the Native American. Tatanka is rightfully wary of this as Savage reminds us that the right arm that Crush is offering Tatanka was in a sling the week before.

To no one’s surprise, Crush kicks to the gut when Tatanka goes for the test of strength. He whips Tatanka into the ropes an, after three attempts, is clotheslined to the outside, as the crowd goes wild. He quickly re-enters the ring and regains control with several punches.

Crush misses a corner charge and Tatanka comes off the top with a clothesline for a nearfall. Crush is then driven head-first into the top turnbuckle as Strongbow squares up to Fuji. Tatanka gets in the way of the pair and that allows Crush to drill him with a savant kick.

We return from a break and Crush has the Native American in a bearhug. Tatanka tries to fight out but Crush hits a belly-to-belly suplex for a nearfall. Tatanka follows up with a roll-up for a two of his own and the pair trade blows.

Tatanka begins his go home no-sell routine as the crowd get behind him. However, a kidney punch levels Tatanka. Crush whips Tatanka into the ropes but puts his head down and is driven head-first into the mat. Tatanka comes off the top with a chop to the head but Crush kicks out at two.

Crush is dropped with a neckbreaker of sorts. Fuji attempts to enter the ring but is stopped by Strongbow, who chops Fuji – the worst chop you’ll ever see. Crush then heads to the outside but is stopped in his tracks by Tatanka and the pair brawl to a double count out.

Winner: Double count out

Overall: Decent little match here until the finish.

‘King of the Ring’ report with Todd Pettengill is, as ever, up next. We’re just three weeks away from the show. Todd runs down the card after saying we’re awaiting an announcement from Jack Tunney as to what the Crush/Tatanka double count out means. We also get an interview with Owen Hart, focussing on the Crush/Tatanka outcome, celebrating the fact he deserves a by.

We hear from Ted Dibiase, who is in a funeral parlour and claims that “dead or alive, everybody’s got a price for the Million Dollar Man.” He claims he’s made contact with The Undertaker, who will be the property of Dibiase once again.

Match 2: The 1-2-3 Kid vs. George South

Before this starts we get an IOPRO advert featuring Razor Ramon. They lock up to start but break when the Kid pushes South into the ropes. South attacks the ribs of the Kid and gains the early advantage. The Kid quickly fights back with a series of kicks as we learn that there’s dissension in the ranks between Adam Bomb and Kwang after the latter inadvertently cost the former his match with the Kid. From nowhere, the Kid rolls up South and that’s it.

Winner: The 1-2-3 Kid via pinfall.

Overall: A very short match and a quick win for The Kid. Tough to rate this, really.

Time for the King’s Court, this week with WWF Champion Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart joining ‘The King’ Jerry Lawler. After verbally abusing Hart’s family, Lawler introduces the WWF Champion and he receives a huge pop. McMahon refers to him as “the most respected WWF Champion in history” before quickly apologising to Randy Savage.

McMahon states “The Hitman is cool” as Lawler begins to talk about the King of the Ring tournament. He reminds Hart about their issues which saw Lawler attack Hart after his victory at last year’s event. Hart puts down his WWF title and appears ready to fight with Lawler.

Lawler then announces that Hart isn’t his only guest tonight, Hart suggests Lawler needs “back up” before ‘Big Daddy Cool’ Diesel and Shawn Michaels are introduced. Of course, Diesel will face Hart at King of the Ring for the WWF title.

Hart says that despite all the respect he has for Diesel, he will find out why he is “the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be”, which the crowd pops for and Lawler laughs at. Diesel promises Hart the “VIP treatment”, which he says stands for “very intense pain”. Michels then sucker punches Hart, allowing Diesel to hit the Jackknife powerbomb. Lawler joins in the beatdown before referees hit the ring. However, Diesel keeps them at bay as Michaels and Lawler continue to put the boot into the WWF champion. The segment ends with Diesel posing with both his Intercontinental Championship and Hart’s WWF title.

Match 3: The Smoking Gunns vs. Austin Steel and Reno Riggins

The Smoking Gunns aways get a strong reception from the fans. Bart and Riggins start this one off. Billy gets a quick tag and drives Riggins headfirst into the turnbuckle before getting a two count from a crucifix. Billy then hits a spinning neckbreaker before Bart is back in. He misses a running elbow and Steel gets the tag. He is felled with a shoulder tackle then slammed to the mat.

Bill gets the tag and hits a bulldog on Steel off the top rope. Billy slams Steel and tags in his brother, who connects with a series of falling knee drops. Another quick tag and the pair hit a suplex/dropkick double team. McMahon announces that he has heard Jack Tunney has made a decision regarding the Tatanka and Crush outcome and we’ll hear that soon.

Bart hits a big powerslam before the pair hit their Sidewinder finisher for the win.

Winner: Smoking Gunns via pinfall.

Overall: Quick win for the Smoking Gunns but little to see here. I’d almost forgotten about the two.

Todd Pettengill announces he’s spoken with WWF President Jack Tunney and next week on Raw Crush will face Tatanka again. This time, however, it’ll be a lumberjack match so that there will be a definite winner. Some of the lumberjacks will be Nikola Volkoff, Bam Bam Bigelow, I.R.S., the Bullwhackers, Mabel, Yokozuna and more.

We then get a ‘WrestleMania Revenge’ tour video hyping the upcoming dates.

Match 4: Jeff Jarrett vs. Chris Hamrick

Jarrett shouts to Randy Savage he’s looking at the next King of the Ring. Jarrett backs Hamrick into the corner but misses a punch and Hamrick takes him down with an arm drag into an armbar but Jarrett claims a hair pull and the referee breaks things up.

Another arm drag and again Jarrett claims a hair pull before using the hair to break it up and whip Hamrick into the ropes. Jarrett then drops his opponent throat-first across the top rope before laying the boots in. Jarrett connects with a very impressive looking standing dropkick. He follows up with a suplex before a diving punch from the top rope. He then places Hamrick throat-first across the second rope and drops a leg across his back.

Jarrett continues to pound away as the announcers discuss ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper coming out of retirement for this year’s King of the Ring tournament. We also learn that ‘The King’ Jerry Lawler will make an announcement later tonight.

Hamrick clips Jarrett with a dropkick but misses a knee-first corner charge. Jarrett then works on the knee before applying a figure four leglock as the crowd chant “we want Doink”. Hamrick submits and that’s all she wrote.

Winner: Jeff Jarrett via submission.

Overall: Decent enough match here, continuing the build of Jarrett. As jobbers go, Hamrick is impressive

McMahon and Savage hype next week’s show, including the King of the Ring qualifying lumberjack match. We then head back to Lawler who announces that next week’s ‘King’s Court’ guest is from Scotland, wears “a dress” and a t-shirt with “hot Rod on it” as we go off the air.

These Raws are a bit of a chore. Some decent storyline stuff, including the ‘King’s Court’ with Bret Hart, Diesel and Shawn Michaels but very little to see here from an in-ring perspective.

Overall score – 2/5


In other WWF news…

Brian Lee was backstage preparing for his Undertaker evil twin role. Based on television, it appears he’ll be managed by Ted DiBiase.

Ginsei Shinzaki, based on his showing at the Japanese tour, was offered a spot to come in.

According to published reports, WWF is bidding in the PPV rights to the George Foreman-Michael Moorer title fight since TVKO, which usually carries the big boxing PPV shows, has no interest in it.

The WrestleMania revenge tour continues to pile up big gates every night. In Auburn Hills on 5/21, they drew double the usual crowd.

They ran shows 5/19 and 5/20 at the Nassau Coliseum and Madison Square Garden respectively with pretty much the same line-up. In the underneath matches, they traded wins (Kwang-Plugg, Howard Finkel-Harvey Whippleman, Bigelow-Mabel) while the top matches saw the same results. Finkel-Whippleman at MSG saw Finkel get his pants torn off and he was wearing WWF shorts underneath. Finkel came out to Hulk Hogan’s entrance music as a big knock on Hogan.

Monday Night Raw on 5/16 did a 3.5 rating, while All-American did a 1.7 and Mania an 0.9.

Baltimore Arena is almost sold out for King of the Ring.

There will be a tug-of-war on 6/6 on the USS Entrepid featuring WWF wrestlers against Armed Forces.

The WM Revenge tour at the Rosemont Horizon on 5/22 drew about 6,000 paid and $103,000–or slightly less than WCW drew last month for its PPV show.

Bob Holly (Sparky Plugg) is taking his gimmick seriously. He’s been on the track four times this year at the Mobile International Speedway when he’s not wrestling and has been black flagged (disqualified) all four times. On 5/14, he was black flagged for jumping the starting gun, drove around the track and tried to climb the fence to attack the flag man.

Don Muraco was the ring announcer for the 5/13 house show in Honolulu, with his most memorable snafu calling the Smoking Gunns the “Shooting Guns.” Although the Honolulu show was advertised as WrestleMania revenge tour with all the special effects, there were no special effects.

WWF will be licensing 48-page biography booklets designed for ages 7-12 on Randy Savage, Bret Hart, Undertaker, Ramon, Steiners, Lex Luger, Doink, Tatanka, Adam Bomb and Big Bossman.

To show just how weak the depth is, the “B” show line-ups this past weekend in Florida (which drew in the 1,000 range) were Yokozuna vs. Earthquake (Quake no-showed the tour and was replaced by Fred Ottman as Typhoon with no announcements made even though it was the main event), Bushwhackers vs. Smoking Gunns, The Genius (Lanny Poffo) vs. Koko Ware, Bastion Booger vs. Cuban Assassin and Duke Droese vs. Dave Heath.


All ‘Raw Rewind 1994’ pieces can be found here.


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2 thoughts on “Raw Rewind: 30 May 1994

  1. This is the time where the WWF was truly entering its lowest ebb. There’s a card coming up in June that drew 500, with a main event of Bob Backlund va Greg Valentine.

    Like

  2. Pingback: Raw Rewind: 6 June 1994 | Ring the Damn Bell

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