WWF Monday Night Raw – May 27, 1996
Commentators: Vince McMahon and Jerry “The King” Lawler
King of the Ring Tournament Qualifying Match:
Goldust [WWF Intercontinental Champion] (w/ Marlena) vs. The Ultimate Warrior
Result/Analysis: Double Count-Out (12:42 shown). At least there’s a match this time unlike their IC Title fiasco at In Your House in April and the theatrics seen there. Both guys are eliminated from further competition in the KOR Tournament. How tragic … At one point, Ahmed Johnson carries Goldust back to the ring as Goldust flees. This sets up Johnson chasing the Intercontinental Title. Oh, I can’t wait. The King walks at The Warrior after the match ends with Marlena’s director’s chair in hand but Warrior chases him off. I guess Lawler and Warrior will be working something? That’s equally thrilling. Warrior mostly no-sells Goldust offense around Goldust stall tactics but he does allow a few moves and a rear chinlock. I felt like I was watching a 1989 Warrior match yet without the feels. Neither guy could do the job here given their standing. Goldust will face The Undertaker in the Casket Match on the re-air of “Beware of Dog.” Warrior is sporting his personalized “Warrior University” trunks for this one. He was all about selling his merchandise and making a buck.
Vince recaps Sunny’s night at Beware of Dog, first debuting as co-manager of The Godwinns and then locking lips with Billy Gunn of The Smoking Gunns before they recaptured the Tag-Team Championship. From there, “Wildman” Marc Mero was able to outlast Hunter Hearst Helmsley and then … the lights went out with power lost to the building and the WWF losing its satellite feed for over an hour. Vince says the three advertised matches that went on in the dark will happen again tomorrow night LIVE on pay-per-view. That buyrate had to be shockingly low. A rough time for the WWF this was. One of the matches to re-air will be the Caribbean Strap Match between Savio Vega and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Speaking of Austin, he’s standing by now with “The Million-Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase. Even though Austin lost to Vega, DiBiase discounts the result being the match took place in the dark so who knows how many turnbuckles Savio touched. DiBiase believes wholeheartedly that Austin will defeat Vega that he’s willing to forfeit his career in the WWF should Savio win. Vega, on the other hand, will become DiBiase’s personal chaffeur should he lose.
Non-Title Tag-Team Match:
The Smoking Gunns [Billy & Bart] (c) (w/Sunny) vs. The Bodydonnas [Skip & Zip]
Result/Analysis: The Smoking Gunns via pinfall (9:20 shown) when Bart pins Zip after rolling through on a flying crossbody press. Hillbilly Jim sat ringside to discuss lovesick Phineas and Sunny’s betrayal. These teams were transitioning from heel to babyface and vice versa but fans were slow on the take so The Gunns play it straight while The Bodydonnas mostly do the same. Boring match here that The Bodydonnas control. Bart is in the ring for the vast majority so you can imagine dozing off. The Godwinns come out since Phineas wants a word with Sunny but Henry talks him down. What they needed to do was find a bimbo who actually had the hots for hog farmers. Anyway, The Bodydonnas actually wrestle a decent match but the champs go over. At KOR, The Godwinns will get their re-match with The Gunns. And that feud would drag on from there. Yawn.
Rating: * 1/2
Vince and King recap Shawn Michaels versus The British Bulldog from IYH. The end result? A draw. Therefore, WWF President Gorilla Monsoon has ordered a return match for the WWF Championship at King of the Ring. I’ll double down my bet on Shawn in that one.
King of the Ring Tournament Qualifying Match:
Vader (w/ Jim Cornette) vs. Ahmed Johnson
Result/Analysis: Vader via pinfall (9:03 shown) following outside interference by Owen Hart. Two behemoths go toe-to-toe and the live crowd is lit. You don’t equate to Ahmed to being in good matches but here’s one of the few. The mastadon Vader goes on like he’s a prized bull in a back alley fight while Ahmed counters with a mentality and attitude that he’s mixed up in a bar room brawl. The punches thrown are stiff. Clotheslines leave their mark. Vader gladly sells Ahmed’s power moves to make him look far more credible than he’s been. Cornette interjects himself, first hitting Ahmed with the tennis raquet then being thrown around like garbage and slung into Vader. Owen was on commentary is hilarious. He’s confident on winning KOR again because there’s no one that can beat him. Damn, I love that guy. Vader hits a splash from the middle rope and a corner splash but Ahmed survives both. Ahmed impressively suplexes Vader after that. Vader misses a moonsault off the top rope and Ahmed levels Vader with more clotheslines and works in a powerslam. Nice. Cornette is brought into the ring at this point so Owen has enough. With the referee’s back turned, Owen, his left arm in a cast, ascends to the top rope and comes flying off to connect with Ahmed’s head. Vader covers Ahmed, who’s now knocked out, and gets the pin to advance on in KOR.
After the match, Ahmed is stretchered backstage as Vince speculates a concussion. Goldust sneaks up as the paramedics wheel the stretcher toward an ambulance and orders mouth-to-mouth. Goldust resuscitates Ahmed himself leaving gold paint on Ahmed’s mouth. Ahmed wakes up and goes beserk as he hunts for Goldust, who has fled. Bob Holly takes a choking for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Marc Mero is present and points the way to Goldust’s dressing room. A stage hand stands in front of the door so Ahmed crashes through him and the door busts. No Goldust, however. Ahmed walks off as RAW concludes.
The Verdict: Hamstrung by Beware of Dog not yet finished, the WWF scrambled to produce a RAW that built toward KOR as unfinished business awaited. They pulled off an acceptable show. The Ultimate Warrior was forced into action. Sunny debuts as manager of The Smoking Gunns. Vader works with Ahmed Johnson and they surprise with a solid Main Event. The angle with Goldust and Ahmed caps off the night. Michaels and Bulldog will have their return match at KOR, too.