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Martial Arts

***Official Raw Thread 27/1/03***


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Raw kicked off with a video highlight package of Hunter and his “note” that says he hadn’t been cleared to perform… but Batista could step in for him. Steiner ended up bloodied and out cold thanks to Flair, Hunter, Batista, and Randy Orton, as the seeds of the Four Horsemen were planted… or at the very least, a formidable new faction. (I disagree that THAT should have been the entire video package… where was Bischoff asking Austin to come back? That’s the biggest story to every fan out there right now.)


Main event is slated to be Triple H and Batista against Kane and Rob Van Dam… let’s hope not. Also, an update on negotiations between Stone Cold Steve Austin and Eric Bischoff.



Jeff made this challenge to Booker, second fan favorite in as many weeks, and should be another “L” for Hardy… who will tease going ballistic once again. Fan response as usual was off the charts, just the talking amongst each other tends to sound much better at Allstate. Booker and Jeff jocked for position early but Booker took control with a series of corner knife edges before catching a flying forearm and closed fisted right hands from Jethro. Hardy with a reverse chinlock and an ugly facial expression to go with it, but caught the reverse kick and then another one as Booker again asserted himself. It continued to go back and forth until Jeff missed Whisper in the Wind, then Booker would miss the scissors kick and THEN Jeff hit the Whisper in the Wind but Booker kicked out of it. Corkscrew corner rollup won it for Booker at 4:47…ala Jack Brisco. Spin-A-Roony from the Book after the victory and then Jeff hit him with a variation on a clothesline/neckbreaker and then another one that drove Booker over the top rope. He mocked the five time taunt, came off the top, but Booker sidestepped it and Jeff struck the security wall as Booker left unhappy.

RATING: 6, I wasn’t overly impressed… neither guy had any sustained momentum and Jeff did not do enough in the match to give it anything but a baby vs. baby feel. Not bad, just not what people might have expected I think… I understand the gradual turn, but don’t think it will work out well for Jeff right now either.

MEMORABLE: One Whisper misses… second does not. Second straight basic move to win over Hardy in as many weeks.

CROWD: 8, Strong early.

OUTCOME: Jeff continues challenging babyfaces, continues losing, and eventually turns into Chris Jericho circa 1997-98, but with far less ability to make it work unless he simply joins his brother on SmackDown, which would be much worse for Matt in my eyes.



Scott Steiner in the back as Coach wants some words about what happened last week. “My reaction… yeah I’m going to the ring… and I’m calling Triple H out.


Nathan Jones promo number eight thousand.


Scott Steiner made his way out to the ring for the first time in the Windy City and received pretty much a standing ovation. “See last week everybody saw what happened and Triple H, I know you’re behind the whole thing. You see you orchestrated it all, so you call yourself the Cerebral Assassin… but you don’t know me and you don’t know what I’m capable of, so why don’t you come down here and find out. You see, I’m calling you out again tonight.”


Didn’t take long, as Triple H came out wearing true Horsemen looking garb… and with no ponytail either, and sunglasses… totally marking out on his heroes. “Steiner Steiner Steiner, what are you out here so hot about huh? How long is it going to take before you get it through that thick head of yours (You Suck chant to the Game) that I’m better than you? You see it’s a fact, I told you I was better than you and I proved it. I told you I was bigger than you and I proved it. I told you I was smarter than you and last week on Raw I proved it… so now you want me to come down there and get in that ring with you one more time huh? I tell you what, maybe I’ll just prove it to you one more time. Oh, hold on though, there’s just one thing I forgot to mention, you see from now on when you call me out, you don’t just get me. (Flair, Batista, and Orton come out behind him all in Horsemen style of gear.) When you call me out, you get the Nature Boy, you get Batista, and you get Randy Orton. So now, if you still want me to come to that ring… then guys I don’t know about you but I don’t have a problem with that.”


The foursome walks down the rampway as Hunter takes off his sportcoat and glasses, handing them to Flair along with the belt, and Steiner begs for them to jump in there immediately. Hunter up on the apron slowly as Steiner breaks a pipe out from under his workout pants, that pretty much stopped any confrontations.


(Watching Triple H is like watching someone who emulated Ric Flair in 1985. The clothes, the glasses, the ideas… it’s good he has the real thing behind him to coach him, but everytime I see the group, I see Flair and wish for the old days once again. Flair, Arn, Tully, Ole… oh where have the years gone?)


SmackDown comes to Green Bay tomorrow night for a taping, White Plains next Monday, and Philly next Tuesday for a taping.


D’Lo Brown with Teddy Long… Hurricane is Brown’s next opponent. Long does the talking “playa.” He asks why there are no black superheroes, well there was one, Black Lightning, but no one ever heard of him. He says that shooting lightning bolts out of his ass is real nice for a black hero… not fair thanks to the man. The real black superhero is D’Lo… and tonight Hurricane will feel what it’s like to be down with the brown.



JR says Shaft was a bona fide superhero… King isn’t so sure. Brown attacked the kidneys and lower back of the Hurricane, taking control very early and attacking relentlessly. Abdominal stretch but Helms reversed it into an arm drag that got absolutely no reaction at all. Brown hit his swinging variation of a side slam for a two count and Helms then countered a potential Sky High into a hurracanranna that nearly ended his career. Flying lariats from Hurricane who then scored his own near fall before using a headscissors takedown to leverage Brown to the floor, then flew to the floor with a somersault hilo plancha… and was bleeding from the mouth. Sky High found the mark at 3:59… it’s now called the Fade to Black.

RATING: 4.5-5, Disappointing actually, just didn’t click in there.

MEMORABLE: Helms’ aerial attack to the floor or his first flying lariat.

CROWD: 5, Did not care other than the high spot to the outside.

OUTCOME: D’Lo will continue his winning ways but we’ll see how well this character takes off… right now I don’t think it’s going to do all that much, though I’m glad to see Theodore R. Long back on TV.



Update on Stacy Keibler’s condition is next.


On the monitor is Vince talking to Hogan from SmackDown… and Hulk laying him out moments afterwards to end what was an amazing final segment last Thursday. Watching that footage… one Chief Morley. Bischoff comes in and Morley seems into the footage but Eric doesn’t really want to see it. Morley can’t believe Steph brought Hogan back and then even better for Eric, Hulk challenged Vince… so perhaps the thirty day deadline will change. Bischoff says Vince thrives on anger, the last thing they need is a pissed off Vinnie Mac. He has two weeks to save his job. “I’ve got an idea” is the response to Morley’s query as to what he will do.


Terri with Chris Jericho, who will face Scott Steiner next week in a number one contender’s match with Stacy Keibler. The footage rolls of what happened to Stacy last week. “First of all I don’t need the benefit of the doubt and second of all I don’t owe anybody anything. I have to go face the public and explain this entire situation, and that’s what I’m going to do right now.”


Jericho came out and Ross said he needed to apologize for the checked pants he’s sporting. “Please please please… sometimes situations occur in our lives that are completely out of our control and events happen that really puts perspective on things. I feel terrible about it I really do, I feel awful. Of course you all know what I’m talking about, I’m talking about my Number One Contender match with Scott Steiner on next week’s Raw. I mean this is huge, I get the chance to fulfill my destiny and become the World Champion at Wrestlemania. But there is something else of course and I feel terrible about it I really do and that’s why I’m going to say what you all want to hear and that is this… I’m sorry, I’m so sorry about what happened. I want to apologize…”


Christian’s music hit and out he came to interrupt. “Chris, we all saw what happened last week and believe me, you don’t need to apologize for anything. You see this isn’t a dance floor, this is a wrestling ring, and if all these fans can’t understand that, then they can all just go to hell. Stacy had no business being at ringside, and it may be a shame what happened to her but sometimes when you play with fire, you’re going to get burned. This is not your fault Chris, this is Stacy Keibler’s fault. ‘You’re out of line Christian, you’re wrong about that. The fault falls in the hands of one man and one man only, and that is Test! He never would have ducked out of the way of that chair shot and Stacy would never have been hit. I’m sorry that you have such a coward for a boyfriend and I’m sorry that all you ass clowns think I am to blame, but this is not my fault! A for bringing his precious Stacy down to ringside and B. for throwing me out of the Royal Rumble when I was distracted. It’s a shame that a guy who always talks about his Testicles has none… and


Shawn Michaels’ music hit and out he came, microphone in hand. “It seems to me that Chris Jericho is out here telling you and the entire world what it takes to be a man… and he’s doing it while wearing those pants. Chris Jericho, a man takes responsibility for his actions, whether they be right or they be wrong. A man doesn’t hide underneath the ring and jump another man from behind. See where I come from and here, on the mean streets of Chicago (cheap pop, and Michaels whispered that to Ross and King), a man looks the other man right in the eyes and says I’m coming to fight. In fact it goes a little something like this. Chris Jericho, get ready… because I’m coming to fight.” Michaels tossed his mic and sprinted down the ramp, knocked Christian down first on the floor but then the two double teamed him inside the ring, but Michaels took control of the situation, tossed Christian over the top and set up for Sweet Chin Music off an Irish whip but Jericho held on and bailed out to a nice “ohhhhhhhhh.”


Victoria destroying a trash can with a kendo stick as Steven Richards urges her on, and on the trash can is taped a glamour promo photo of Trish… as the first ever Diva Chicago Streetfight is next. Trish on her way to the ring as well.


(As predictable as it gets as far as Jericho talking about next week’s match and then blaming Test… did not really expect to see Christian but that was a nice touch. I cannot wait to see Michaels vs. Jericho at Wrestlemania, because to me Chris is the new generation’s HBK. Serious dream match for me as well.)


WHACK OF THE NIGHT (Lorillard): Hurricane saving Trish from Richards’ implant DDT and then a Stratusfaction on Vic ending the mixed tag.


MATCH 3: TRISH STRATUS VS. VICTORIA (WWE Women’s Title - Chicago Streetfight)

Ever since Richards became part of this angle… it has really died in my opinion and the two have had but ONE, count ‘em ONE decent match together, and it was on Raw, not on PPV. I expected more than what I’ve gotten from this one. As Trish was entering, Victoria came with her pool cue and crushed Trish in the back, Richards came along with her. Victoria reversed Stratus into the steel steps and then in the ring Vic held up the Women’s Title as Richards urged on applause. Vic heaved Trish into the crowd and then Stratus fought back with a temple kick and a clothesline off the apron that got a two count from Charles Robinson. Vic sort of posted herself attempting a corner charge and Stratus brained her with a trash can lid from the floor before firing in a can, and a kendo stick. Trish played the cymbals with lids around Vic’s head, set up a trash can awkwardly in the corner… but caught a lid shot in the head attempting the catapult… Victoria then catapulted Trish underneath the can face first into it, but Stratus seriously blocked it and it wasn’t as good as it sounds. Victoria ascended to the top, took another lid shot and the Stratusfear but could not quite get a three count. Stratus booted Vic through the bottom rope and then hit a variation on a Thesz Press (sorry Lou) off the apron and took Vic down… looked good though. Richards had a fire extinguisher planned for Trish but she ducked and then Steven trying to figure out why it didn’t work blinded Victoria instead… then Trish with a seated dropkick with the ropes… she kendo’d him a couple of times before nearly being beheaded with a kick, but SOMEHOW kicked out of it. Stratusfaction was coming but Steven stopped that on the apron and eventually Trish would fall hard into the barricade on her face… out cold and that would be it on the outside. They rolled her back in but Richards helped Victoria leave as the referee begged for them to leave.

RATING: 5.5, Not bad… if only that could have been on PPV rather than what we got at Survivor Series.

MEMORABLE: Trish taking that final shot into the barricade… looked good. Jazz’ return and emphatic intensity.

CROWD: 7, Pretty hot for it, and it deserved it… not the best of all time but far from the worst (women’s competition)

OUTCOME: Jazz vs. Trish will be the feud going into Mania… they may work Vic out of it or it may be a three way. Lita may play a role in it in the near future also.



As Vic and Richards were leaving, as I surmised LONG ago, out came Jazz…shoving Victoria and entering the ring where she beat the trash out of Trish with the chickenwing and an emphatic DDT. Fisherman’s buster polished things off for Jazz, okay it didn’t… another DDT from Jazz, proclaiming herself to be the best. She then locked on an STF and screamed at Trish, who was completely defenseless. “I’m back baby!” It took three referees to get her out of there, and Richards and Victoria watched a lot of it. (Finally, Jazz vs. Trish is the feud that got things started in late 2001, early 2002… Molly and Trish kept it up, this is a good thing for the Women’s division.)


REWIND (Starburst): Storm and Regal saving Morley… then Morley announcing the Title match for right then and there… and the challengers stealing their gold back.


MATCH 4: DUDLEY BOYZ VS. LANCE STORM & WILLIAM REGAL (World Tag Team Championship – Tag Tables Match)

Rules for this one are only one member of the team has to go through the wood to end it, the Dudleyz attacked the Champions before the bell as they were raising their respective flags… then Bubba broke the Maple Leaf over his knee, which I’m sure a ton of so called Canadian smarts will be up in arms about. 3D on Storm at 1:51 as the Champs were getting killed, so certainly they would win. Wazzzzup on Regal at 2:13. It was time for the tables as Chicago broke into a HUGE ECW chant but in another stroke of genius… D-Von couldn’t find any tables. Neither could Bubba… no tables anywhere as the Dudleyz could win it just as soon as they found a table. Atop the ramp appeared Morley, who had a table in his hand… saying the Dudleyz couldn’t be stupid enough to think he’d put them in a Tag Title match with their tables as the stipulation. They began coming up the ramp and he told them if they lay a finger on him, he’s firing both of them. As Morley lured them to the end of the ramp basically… Three Minute Warning attacked the Dudley Boyz. (Yay… cough.) Rico directed traffic as his boys worked over the Dudleyz. Bubba came back in though after 3 Minute Warning had gone for D-Von in the ring, but quickly the high Samoan Drop changed things. Spike ran out, brought Rico off the apron the hard way, Dudley Dog on Jamal but Rosey crotched him to save his own… then Rico with a spin kick knocked Spike off the straddle and hard to the floor. The table set up by Rosey and Rico as Storm and Regal were still struggling but basically back up… and Rosey along with the Champions powerbombed D-Von through the table. Chief Morley brought the gold in and handed it personally to the Champions.

RATING: 7, Two weeks in a row of an awesome angle… this one was another way to get everybody over… and even utilized Rosey and Jamal effectively, not in an actual match.

MEMORABLE: The first two minutes of Dudley dominance.

CROWD: 9, Jacked.

OUTCOME: Storm and Regal and Morley vs. Dudley Boyz continues into No Way Out.



Footage from the trip to South Korea and then to Japan last week.


Bischoff smiling in the back as Hunter, Orton, Batista, and Flair enter. Triple H wants to know what the hell is going on, with Steiner running around like a deranged lunatic swinging a pipe and then he finds out that Scott gets the chance to become the contender next week on Raw. “What if he wins? Yeah… what if he wins. You know what Eric, on second thought… I don’t think WE are worried about this Number One Contender’s match… are we.


Matt and John in the back, Tough Enough III Champions… very nervous but ready to show their stuff, this is what they’ve trained so hard for. Al Snow comes out and says they damn well better be ready… telling them to go and make him proud. As they take off for the ring, Christopher Nowinski appears to have been listening in.


Rob Van Dam and Kane in the back as Kane says he told Rob he had to throw him out of the Rumble. RVD says that was cool, he did say it was a little early in the match, could have thrown other people first. But that was the Rumble, tonight they’re a team again, an undefeated team. Power and agility… “You got the choke slam and I’ve got the Five Star Frog Splash… and the Van Daminator… and the Van Terminator… and the split legged moonsault… and the Rolling Thunder. (Kane not quite as happy now.) Did I mention you got the choke slam?” Kane says as long as they have each other’s backs, Hunter and Batista don’t stand a chance. (Very funny stuff, great chemistry we’ve seen between them… only Booker and Goldy have them trumped.)


Footage of the crowning of two new Tough Enough Champions from last Thursday night. I have no problem with John or especially Matt, but still think Jonah has much more potential overall than John… no offense to him.



“Crash” by 12 Stones… pretty good song for the boys. They came out together, Snow with them… and then worked each other in an exhibition match. Both guys looked good for their first match, considering the nerves… kept it basic but certainly didn’t stink up the joint out there. John countered a hip toss into a takeover of his own and hit a somersault dropkick for a near fall. Out ran Nowinski… ramming Snow off the ringpost hard and grabbing a mic. “Stop the match, I’ve seen enough. Now we all know that I didn’t win Tough Enough… it’s not that I’m bitter or anything, but the last thing I need is the two of you out here rubbing it in.” Out ran Tommy Dreamer with his Singapore cane and Nowinski high tailed it through the fans. Dreamer on the mic now… “What I think Christopher Nowinski was trying to say was congratulations, Matt and John, on winning Tough Enough III. And I just want to let you guys know how lucky you are to be standing in a WWE ring on your fourth day in this business… in front of a packed house right here in Chicago! (He’s going to crush them.) So on behalf of myself, all the boys in the back, and every veteran both past and present… welcome to the WWE.” Dreamer shook Matt’s hand and then took huge shots on both of them with the stick to the head and celebrated.

RATING: Not a ratable thing… but both held their own and I love what Dreamer did. For all of us who have clawed from nowhere into somewhere… and for all of those who are still trying to claw into somewhere… that gave them much more respect than the other winners, because that’s what we all wanted to see happen to them.

MEMORABLE: Solid crisp work and both looked like they were right at home, Dreamer’s welcome speech… I got my own welcome two weeks ago to my newest group.

CROWD: 7, Did not bury the guys… the entire thing got over pretty good and no weaknesses were exposed.

OUTCOME: We will see… should be interesting.



Sean O’Haire tells us all to take a step away from reality… take a drink, have a smoke, take time away from the family. Don’t feel bad… this is what people do. “Hell, I’m not telling you anything that you don’t already know.” (I love this character, the bad conscience… and “Hell” certainly was appropriate.)


Bischoff on his way to the ring with a frown and carrying a manila envelope, probably a contract for Austin in it. “Stone Cold Steve Austin is not here tonight. (Boos but not that loud because they knew it.) Ah ah, do not blame me. Don’t put that on me. When Stone Cold Steve Austin left WWE in June of last year, this is the explanation we were given as to why he left. (Footage from the infamous Confidential from last June.) Well that was certainly one side of the story, but in life there are always two sides to every story and I am here and I am proud to tell you that Stone Cold Steve Austin has taken me up on my offer and he is going to tell each and every one of you his side of the story in Raw magazine! Right here in Raw magazine, Stone Cold Steve Austin is going to talk publicly for the first time about the comments made by Vince McMahon, his buddy, good old JR, and he’ll talk about his recently divorced wife, Debra. The Rattlesnake, Stone Cold Steve Austin, is going to tell you exactly what he thinks uncensored, unedited, about Triple H… about the Rock… he’s going to cover it all. But Steve, I hope we take the next big step and I hope you accept my invitation to make your return at No Way Out and then come back home to Raw. And Steve, I know you’re watching at home and I know each and every one of these fans in this arena in Chicago want to remind you as to why you should seriously consider my offer. (Austin chant begins as we see the Stone Cold tribute “My Sacrifice” Desire video from last year.)


(Comment: Bischoff broke the Raw Magazine out of the envelope, with Austin on the cover… and it appeared on the Tron. My guess is THAT particular strategy to try and win people back to the publication will be successful at least for a month… I generally get all the mags anyway from various sources and some fans… but that one I may get a couple of copies of for numerous reasons.)


The show went to black with the final Desire shot of Steve staring off from the ring, just a head shot.


Raw crew will be in Minneapolis on Friday, MSG on Saturday, Binghamton on Sunday, home of the Bears, then DC on Monday for Raw, Houston and Fresno next Saturday.


Jim Ross answers King’s questions by saying he talked to Austin and Steve hasn’t said no to coming back, thinking very seriously about it.



Match started with Kane and Batista… and Kane found himself in trouble early. Kane slammed RVD onto Batista, enough for a two count, then tried to attack Batista quickly, before he could rise to his feet. Heat on Rob and finally the tag to Kane, who attacked Hunter and Batista effectively, disposing the latter to the floor. Flying lariat off the top as Orton wasn’t able to stop it in time, tag to Rob… Kane tried to help with a rocket launcher styled Five Star Frog Splash but it missed, then Flair, Orton, and Batista all attacked Kane on the floor viciously. Batista took Kane’s mask off on the floor and held it up for all to see, as Kane used his hair and his hand to stop it… then ran up the ramp leaving Rob, the legal man, alone in the ring. Rolling Thunder on the Game and a Five Star coming but he saw Batista and went for a crossbody but was caught in a vicious spinebuster. After the sit out powerbomb, it was over… the foursome attacked Rob but Freakzilla reappeared with his lead pipe. Jericho from behind then tried to attack Steiner but took a belly to belly… but that was all Hunter, Flair, Orton, and Batista needed… they had the pipe out of his hand and again Steiner was defenseless. Sit out powerbomb from Batista on Steiner as Orton sold it as did everybody else… I love this grouping together now… looks so much better. Again Scott bleeding and then finally after a low blow, Flair locked on the figure four while Orton threw boots at Steiner’s face. Pedigree finished it off for the second consecutive week. They left but Jericho was still there… he took off his shirt and posed over Steiner… kissing his own bicep before dropping an elbow and doing the pushups. Rights to Steiner, who was out cold, then the Walls of Jericho as the show ended.

RATING: 7-9, The latter number for the aftermath.

MEMORABLE: Another great postmatch assault.

CROWD: 8-10, Hot and were great all night, not the best they’ve been but pretty good.

OUTCOME: Steiner wins next week… sets up a good situation.



OVERALL IMPRESSIONS: A little light on wrestling on this night, but the Jericho/Michaels angle, the Bischoff/Austin tease, the Steiner early confrontation and the hot main event angle, and no match was all that bad other than D’Lo and Helms, which just did not click. Two good weeks in a row as I see it… enjoyed both shows, which both had a new intensity.

RATING: 6.5, Enjoyable and very entertaining.

MATCH OF THE NIGHT: Probably Booker/Jeff though the Tag Title match was much hotter overall.

STAR OF THE NIGHT: Stone Cold Steve Austin… I’m not kidding.

SPOT OF THE NIGHT: Spinebuster on Rob…


CHARACTER TURNS: Jazz returned as a heel.


from http://www.wrestlezone.com

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After RAW - immediately after they went off the air, HBK came in for the save, ending his scrum with Y2J with some Sweet Chin Music. At that point, all eyes in the ring went to Steiner. HBK talked to him, RVD rolled into the ring to check on him, and two refs came down as well. As I mentioned earlier, Steiner appeared to be in a tremendous amount of pain, and I have to question the intelligence of whoever suggested him taking a Demon Bomb from Batista. That was beyond stupid.


Is Steiner really injured?

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Guest Rudi El Fire
He asks why there are no black superheroes, well there was one, Black Lightning, but no one ever heard of him.


How about;



War Machine

Jax (bionic arms version from Mortal Kombat)


/sad comic book mode

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Guest Jerichoholic
(As predictable as it gets as far as Jericho talking about next week’s match and then blaming Test… did not really expect to see Christian but that was a nice touch. I cannot wait to see Michaels vs. Jericho at Wrestlemania, because to me Chris is the new generation’s HBK. Serious dream match for me as well.)


I totally 100% agree with that. And btw, Raw looked decent. Some good feuds being built up and the new faction is looking good. The whole Austin thing is developing nicely. And the Jericho swerve was good, everyone thought he was gonna turn face but yet again he swerves back to the land of the heels.

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Raw surprisingly got a 4.1 rating this week, surely good news for the WWE. Something must be making more people tune in, the Horseman faction development perhaps?
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Guest Jerichoholic
Originally posted by Peter

Raw surprisingly got a 4.1 rating this week, surely good news for the WWE. Something must be making more people tune in, the Horseman faction development perhaps?


And also people anticipating Austins return.

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I thought Raw was quite good this week.


The womens match was quite good and Jazz made a welcome return. They just need to get a few of the other women involved too like Ivory, Molly and Jakie...instead of the usual Victoria/Trish.


Not too sure of the Jeff Hardy heel turn as of yet, cant see it changing Jeff much.


Booker T Goldust, Christian, RVD, Kane - need a decent angle!


I like the HHH, Batista, Orton group - but Steiner just sucks.


Loved Dreamer hitting those TE3 winners :)


D-Lo looks like hes finally going to get a push, they might even add Jakie or Jazz with him too, which I think would be a good idea.


Overall a much better show than usual.

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