WWE New Yearís Revolution
January 9, 2005
-Here at DaWrestlingSite, weíre all caught up on Royal Rumbles, so letís take a look at that OTHER January pay-per-view that WWE experimented with during the brand split era. Holy smokes, can you believe this show is already TEN years old? Maybe enough time has passed that I can stomach 2005 WWE shows again.
-From San Juan, Puerto Rico. Our hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler.
World Tag Team Championship:
Talk about a random match-up here. Itís worth noting that this is a Raw-only show, so weíre surely in for some strange pairings. Regal starts against Christian, and I truly wish this was a singles match with these two. Eugene tags and immediately dishes out a wedgie, probably the same way Lou Thesz would have done it. Christian misses an elbow drop, and Eugene delivers crawling head butts and pretends to urinate like a dog. I canít make this garbage up. The mood changes as Tomko tags in, and Iím horrified to remember that this is crappy green rookie Tomko, and not cool, solid worker Tomko from TNA. Eugene outsmarts Tomko and rides Christian like a bucking bronco, but Tomko sneaks back in for a slam. Eugene settles in as the face in peril for a round of punishment. Eugene hulks up and makes the lukewarm tag to Regal. Tomko stops Regal dead in his tracks with a hard clothesline. Regal gets isolated and suffers a bloody nose during the beat down. The fans get behind Regal during this stretch and pop for his hope spots. The goodwill evaporates as Regal crawls to the wrong corner for a tag. Eugene finally gets the hot tag and cleans house. Eugene (legitimately) hurts his own knee on a drop-kick. Eugene still manages to grab Tomko by the tights for a roll-up to retain at 12:18. Bad opener, it made the heroes look like idiots, and was generally cartoonish, *.
Eugene and William Regal © vs. Christian and Tomko
Winners and still World Tag Team Champions: Eugene and William Regal
-Christy Hemme hangs out by the pool in a bikini. Jerry Lawler slobbers right on cue.
-Christian and Tomko are storming around furious when they bump into a cool and collected Edge. Christian orders Tomko to kick Edgeís ass, but Edge talks him down by teasing a plan to help both of them. I donít remember this going anywhere, but Iíll admit my memory isnít what it used to be.
This takes place in the aftermath of their legendary Raw main event where Lita won the title. I donít remember this rematch being worth much, as Iím pretty sure Lita gets hurt again. The fans are firmly behind Lita as they lock up. Lita scores a clunky looking tackle and tosses Trish through the ropes. Lita goes for a seated senton off the apron and seems to injure her knee. Man, no wonder WWE doesnít do pay-per-views in Puerto Rico, this arena is haunted. Trish relentlessly goes after the injured knee and finishes with the Chick Kick at 3:43 to reclaim the title. Litaís injury ruined whatever they had planned, leaving us with a bad match, DUD.
Lita © vs. Trish Stratus
Winner and new Womenís Champion: Trish Stratus
-Chris Jericho is shown looking determined in his locker room.
-Maria Kanellis strips down to her bikini at the pool. Good old TV-14 objectifying of the divas.
-Eric Bischoff is confused that Edge wants out of the Elimination Chamber match. Edge explains that he doesnít want to put himself through the brutal match because guest referee Shawn Michaels will screw him. Edge wants Christian to take his place, and heíll face the winner tomorrow on Raw. Bischoff hilariously argues that he canít because it would be a bait and switch (seriously, Iím rolling in my seat over it). Edge storms out and bumps into HBK himself. Michaels assures him that heís going to call the match fair and square, unless, of course, someone provokes him. Shawn admits that heís looking forward to counting to tres when Edgeís shoulders are on the mat. Fun couple of segments here.
I seem to recall this match gets ruined either by injury, terrible booking, or a combination of the two. Maven plays chickensh!t by hiding in the ropes. They lock up, but Maven retreats into the ropes again. The fans chant something mean in Spanish, which adds a fun touch to the show. Maven plays into the heat better than I would have expected him to. He takes a mic and stands on a chair to defend his honor. Maven tells the fans he canít understand them and speaks slowly so they can understand him. Maven says he cannot concentrate on winning when the fans chant ďgibberishĒ at him. He insults the fans in Spanish and decides to take a hike and challenge for the IC title when heís back in America. Maven has a change of heart and rushes back to prevent a count-out, but Benjamin rolls him up at 6:06. Hardly a match, but it gets credit for Maven combating the audience, ľ*.
Shelton Benjamin © vs. Maven
Winner and still Intercontinental Champion: Shelton Benjamin
-Maven grabs the mic and complains that the match finish did not count. He wants a rematch right here and now. Shelton laughs it off, prompting Maven to claim that WWE now has TWO Womenís Champions, because Shelton is all lady-like I suppose. Maven says neither Shelton nor Trish have any balls, so Benjamin rushes the ring for the rematch.
Benjamin immediately hitís a T-bone suplex and pins Maven at 0:05. Kudos to WWE for booking this feud in a way that ensures neither man involved will get over.
Shelton Benjamin © vs. Maven
Winner and still Intercontinental Champion: Shelton Benjamin
-Christy Hemme is getting a topless back rub from another diva I donít recognize. These segments are becoming embarrassing.
-Chris Benoit is training for the Elimination Chamber. He looks focused.
-They show footage of Muhammad Hassan and Daivari beating up Jim Ross on Raw. They even choke J.R. with his tie! A bloody Jerry Lawler makes a late save. Todd Grisham interviews Hassan and Daivari backstage. Hassan claims the footage was biased and only showed one side of the story. It didnít show the part where Lawler and Ross insulted them and told them to get out of their own home country. Grisham asks if heís nervous about facing a legend in his first PPV match. Hassan says heís excited, because heís performing in a land where the people are used to being treated like second-class citizens, because the U.S. doesnít think enough of Puerto Rico to even make it a state! Hassan claims he and Daivari were detained at the airport for three hours while their things were searched through. Well delivered promo here, as this angle hadnít gone completely off the rails yet with faux-terrorist attacks and the like.
Muhammad Hassan (with Daivari) vs. Jerry Lawler (with Jim Ross)
Gotta love the Bush years. We have two characters of Middle Eastern heritage, who are sick of being discriminated against in the post 9/11 world in their home country, and theyíre the HEELS! And the basic babyface retort to them is ďGet out.Ē But, I digress. The match starts off awkwardly as they circle around one another, and Lawler scores a power slam. Hassan retaliates with a comically long series of power slams. Lawler bounces back with a clothesline, and Hassan retreats to ringside. See, Hassan should be a heel because heís a coward, not because heís raising valid concerns about the treatment of Middle Easterners living in the United States. Hassan undoes some turnbuckle padding, and the referee misses Lawlerís roll-up for a visual pinfall. Hassan wears Lawler down and the match suffers a slow and painful death here. Apparently there isnít a Spanish word for ďboringĒ as a chant breaks out. After using every rest hold in the book, Hassan scores a knee lift and neck breaker. Lawler has had enough and the strap comes down for a comeback. The flying fist drop connects for only 2. Jerry hits a DDT, but Daivari puts Hassanís foot on the ropes. Jerry chases Daivari into Jim Ross, whom heís afraid of. The distraction leads to Hassan planting Lawler with a reverse STO for the win at 10:43. Putrid match that exposed just how green Hassan was, plus the bad-taste of the angle makes me want to bust out some negative stars. -*
Winner: Muhammad Hassan
-Todd Grisham interviews Batista backstage. Batista says heís a wrecking machine that has the best chance for victory. Randy Orton interrupts and questions whether or not Batista will be trying to win the match or just settle for being Triple Hís stooge. Batista says Orton should be more worried about what he might do to him instead. They needed more segments and angles like this in 2005.
-Jonathan Coachman joins Jim Ross on commentary, as apparently Lawler is just too injured to continue.
Kane vs. Gene Snitsky
Oh my gawd, this show is starting to kill me. Theyíre STILL feuding over Snitsky killing Kaneís unborn rape baby. To this day, Snitsky would tell you that it wasnít his fault. Anyways, the match kicks off with a slugfest, and please, please, PLEASE let this one be short. Kane actually doesnít seem mad enough for someone who lost his baby, but he does manage to drop a bunch of elbows. Snitsky comes back with a sidewalk slam and clothesline into the corner. Sntisky pulls up the padding on the floor, but Kane back drops him onto the concrete. Despite this setback, Snitsky remains in control, and works over the back. CUE THE BEAR HUG! Kane frees himself and blocks a chair shot to make a comeback. To his credit, the fans are actually totally behind Kane at this point. Snitsky counters with a flapjack into the ropes. They struggle to their feet and compete for a choke slam. Snitsky bites the ear area. They have a miscue as Snitsky runs into the wrong position for a Kane kick. Kane has had enough of this crap and finishes with a Tombstone Piledriver at 11:37. Thoroughly boring and tedious match (albeit with a hot crowd) to cap off a Wrestlecrap worthy angle, *.
-Jerry Lawler rejoins Coach and J.R. on the announce team, just in time for more diva bikini action. Stacy Keibler takes a dip, and they replay clips of Maria, Candice, and Christy. Simon Dean crashes the party by throwing some guy into the pool. Stacy and Val Venis are horsing around and need opponents for a chicken fight. The Dicks, Hurricane, and Rosey each get a diva on their shoulders and I start to wonder why Iím recapping this. Christy wins by removing Mariaís bikini top. Iím too old for this nonsense.
-Itís already time for the main event! The World title is vacant after a non-finish in a match between Triple H, Edge, and Benoit. The logic behind this booking was seemingly to help Triple H rack up an extra title reign on his resume, so he could match or surpass Ric Flairís record. Batista won a Beat the Clock challenge earning him the right to be the last entrant in the match. Itís worth noting that this is only the third Elimination Chamber match in history, as they used to dust it off when it was needed, not because it the calendar switched to February. Before the match, Triple H and Ric Flair confront Batista about his intention of taking the championship for himself. Batista laughs it off, saying that Orton put him on the spot, and heís an Evolution member before all else. They agree to watch each otherís backs, but Batista ruins the mood by saying he would win the title if Triple H gets eliminated first. HHH doesnít like that possibility one bit.
World Heavyweight Championship (Elimination Chamber):
Guest Referee: Shawn Michaels
Triple H vs. Randy Orton vs. Batista vs. Chris Jericho vs. Chris Benoit vs. Edge
Jericho and Benoit start the match, which sounds like a good decision to me. They rekindle their feud and pop the crowd with knife edge chops. Their five minutes alone zooms by as they trade back and forth offense. Triple H is released from his chamber and picks up the scraps of Benoit and Jericho. Benoitís forehead gets busted open after colliding with the chain wall. Jericho counters a Pedigree with a backdrop onto the steel platform. Jericho wrenches HHH onto the steel again and suplexes him back into the ring for a 2 count. Benoit chops Jericho in the neck and gets a 2 count on a neck breaker. Edge is released into the match and he unleashes a flurry of attacks. Jericho stops Edge with a springboard drop-kick into the wall. Edge catapults Jericho, and then Triple H, into the chain wall. All four men are worn down but canít seem to pin anyone as Randy Ortonís cell door is opened. Orton cleans house on his exhausted opponents with quick attacks and goofy expressions. Jericho eats an RKO, but Benoit catches Orton in the Crossface. HHH slaps Orton while heís stuck in the hold, but Benoit breaks it to put HHH in the Sharpshooter! Benoit leaves himself vulnerable for an RKO! Edge misses a spear on Orton and hits Shawn Michaels instead! Edge spears Orton, but HBK is still down. Edge aggressively revives Shawn and suffers a Sweet Chin Music for his trouble. Jerichoís Lionsault finishes Edge at 19:17! Benoit catches HHH with rolling German suplexes! Benoit climbs to the top of a pod for the Swan Dive on Triple H! Jericho and Benoit simultaneously put HHH in their submission finishers, but Batista is released and makes the save. Batista puts down everyone and teases doing the same to Triple H before Benoit and Jericho get back to their feet. Batista throws Jericho into a camera man and finds time to slam Benoit. Batista and HHH try to dominate, but Jericho catches HHH with a bulldog into the wall. Batista spinebusters Jericho onto Benoit and pins Benoit at 26:11! Batista continues to roll and puts Jericho away with the Batista Bomb at 27:32. Itís down to Orton going it alone against a united Batista and HHH. Orton takes a Cena-like beating here so he can make a Superman comeback. Orton low blows Batista and pins him with the RKO at 32:25. Stupid Orton takes a moment to celebrate and allows a Triple H sneak attack. Orton shakes it off and bounces HHHís skull repeatedly off the wall. Orton nails the RKO, but Michaels was distracted trying to keep Batista from returning. Ric Flair sneaks into the cage and has to be restrained as well. Batista manages a clothesline on Orton before leaving. HHH struggles to hit the Pedigree for the win at 34:49. Wow, almost 35 minutes for a cheap Raw-worthy finish. Good thing the action leading up to it was well paced, well worked, MOTYC-level stuff. It evens out to a **** rating, but a few tweaks here and there would have made it higher.
Winner and new World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H
Final Thoughts: A long four star main event isnít enough to get the bad taste of the undercard out of my mouth. This was a dismal effort creatively, no wonder I was fretting for the long-term health of WWE during this time. Thumbs down.
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