Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Raw Review - January 6th, 2003

WWE Monday Night Raw
January 6th, 2003
Phoenix, Arizona

World Heavyweight Champion - Triple H (since 12/15/02)
World Tag Team Champions - Booker T & Goldust (since 12/15/02)
WWE Women's Champion - Victoria (since 11/17/02)
Commentary - Jim Ross & Jerry "The King" Lawler

Pose Down Challenge between Triple H & Scott Steiner... wow that's a lot to unpack 

The Dudley Boys show up to start the show only for Eric Bischoff and Val big dumbass Venis or... SEAN MORLEY rather, to ruin the party. Bischoff says it's the first Raw of 2003 and we are gonna start the new year with a new attitude. They show replays from 12/23 Raw where JR & King overcame the odds and beat Regal & Storm thanks to the Dudley's. I thought he was gonna pick on JR & King again, but he's here to punish Bubba & D-Von with a handicap No Disqualification Match. 

1) The Dudley Boys (Bubba Ray & D-Von Dudley) vs. Batista, Jamal, Rosey, & Rico (w/ Ric Flair) - No Disqualification Match
Well, at least Batista is in the mix to change things up a little. I was so bummed when he just brought out 3MW. Batista stays at ringside and 3MW eats shit which allows for his big moment to shine. He throws Bubba & D-Von around. 3MW is back in and its a big assault on the Dudleys. Morley throws fists to Bubba on the outside. Eric still has a mic and is yelling and shit. Batista sizes up his former mentor D-Von in the ring and drops him. He goes for the pin, but the ref is reluctant. Bischoff forces him to count, then Batista pulls up D-Von at two because he's not done I guess. This allows Bubba a chance to try to turn things around, but he gets caught in the figure four by Ric Flair instead. Okay.. where are the babyfaces? I'm tired of writing all this shit. Jamal hits a splash, Batista hits the Batista Bomb and it's over this time for real.

I'm not rating this, by the way. The beating continues for a minute post match. Bischoff slaps D-Von and says "I told you, 2003 would be Eric Bischoff's year." 

Back from commercial, William Regal and Lance Storm are berating JR & King at the announce booth for what happened last week. The Dudley's are still in the ring and Regal & Storm decide to beat them down now. Brass knucks to Bubba's face and a damn sharpshooter on D-Von. Bubba is bleeding as Regal & Storm head to the back.

Triple H is backstage flexing in a mirror. Flair shows up and says the "project"--- assuming that's Batista, is going well. He hypes H up for the pose down later. Steiner walks up out of nowhere and gets in his face. Steiner says he kicked his ass in the arm wrestling match, now he's gonna kick his ass in the posedown and he's gonna kick his ass at the Royal Rumble. 

JACQUELINE AND TRISH are backstage getting ready for their match coming up next!

TONIGHT: Kane & Rob Van Dam vs. Chris Jericho & Christian

2) Trish Stratus & Jacqueline vs. Victoria & Molly Holly (w/ Steven Richards)

This was actually pretty fun. Simple heel vs face work. Jackie gets isolated, Trish gets the hot tag and has a great run. Chick kick for a nearfall. Jackie spears the hell out of Molly trying to break up a count only for Steven Richards to help Victoria reverse a roll-up on Trish for the win.

Match rating - **1/4

Booker T & Goldust make fun of Eric Bischoff in an interview with Terri. Bischoff is seen watching this on a screen and is LIVID. He yells that he isn't gonna put up with this disrespect. Morley tries to calm him down. Bischoff makes Regal/Storm vs. Book/Goldy for later with the tag titles on the line. 

Chris Jericho is out to announce his entrance in the Royal Rumble so he can enter the main event of WrestleMania. SHAWN MICHAELS is back and interrupts him. They go back and forth with insults that beat around the bush of HBK entering himself in the Rumble also. HBK taunts him by saying he should enter at #1 like he did to prove himself. Jericho sees through this and says if he has to go through HBK to win... why doesn't he just kick his ass right now? In the middle of this out of nowhere, RANDY ORTON walks his ass down to the ring to give us an update on the mobility of his shoulder after injury. He says when he's better Shawn better not come near him and BOP. Shawn decks his ass, Jericho attacks Shawn. Here comes ROB VAN DAM who breaks up a walls of jericho attempt. Orton attacks Van Dam then Christian comes down. Orton & Christian give RVD the boots then KANE COMES DOWN FOR THE HOT ASS SAVE HOLY HELL. This got hype very quickly. Kane, RVD, & HBK stare down Jericho, Christian, & Orton as they retreat.

3) Booker T & Goldust (c) vs. William Regal & Lance Storm - World Tag Team Championship Match

This match is the definition of an overbooked mess, but it’s honestly a hoot to watch. They do a bunch of referee shenanigans with three different referees being involved in total, including Sean Morley. The crowds hot for it at all as they don’t wanna see Book & Goldy lose, but in the end they get screwed and do indeed lose the tag titles after Regal rocks Booker with the brass knuckles and Morley counting the three count. Regal & Storm lose to JR & King one week then become tag champions the next. This kinda sucks.

Match rating - ***

Replay of Marc Mero in 1997 bringing out Sable in a sack and her taking it off to reveal her nude body with hand paint on her titties. 

4) Test (w/ Stacy Keibler) vs. Christopher Nowinski (w/ D-Lo Brown) 

“Well... I’m glad to know that information here on the worst Monday in January.” -Jim Ross 

D-Lo is here because Nowinski asks him to join him bc he can relate to how prejudice everyone against D-Lo because everyone is prejudice against him for being a college graduate. Backstage, Nowinski asks D-Lo if he can be “down with the brown tonight” and D-Lo says “damn right” so here we are. D-Lo gets involved from the jump trying to go after Test. Match finally gets going and Test wins after a minute or two, but D-Lo drops his ass post match. 

Match rating - **

So, apparently Shawn Michaels and Randy Orton will both be ringside for the Kane/RVD-Jericho/Christian tag match later. Backstage, Jericho & Christian argue about who’s going to win the Royal Rumble. Orton comes up and tells them to focus on tonight’s match instead. 

Triple H & Scott Steiner are backstage oiling themselves up for the pose down. 

The Pose Down between Triple H & Scott Steiner takes place. Jonathan Coachman is hosting. Ric Flair is also here. H picks six “random men” from the crowd to be the judges. They all are obviously plants. But yeah. They do the posing which is hilarious and all the guys vote for H. Steiner says this is rigged so they do a push up contest per Triple H. As soon as Steiner gets in position the six judges attack him and H & Flair leave the ring. Steiner fights all six men off and presses one and throws him. Steiner tells H to get his ass back in here as H & Flair back away up the ramp. 

5) Chris Jericho & Christian (w/ Randy Orton) vs. Kane & Rob Van Dam (w/ Shawn Michaels)

Simple Raw main event tag formula here and it’s a load of fun. Just a bunch of shit goin on. Orton and HBK get involved in the floor. HBK super kicks Orton for laying boots to RVD and damn, Orton looked awesome in every small thing he did here. In ring, Van Dam was enjoyable as usual and great heel work from Jericho & Christian. After an attempted conchairto on Kane, Shawn and Jericho fight through the crowd leaving RVD and Kane to finish off Christian for the win. 

Match rating - **1/2

Backstage, Bischoff & Morley are still with Regal & Storm. They’re super happy with how Raw ended and Eric finally feels in charge. And he gets a phone call... and VINCE MCMAHON IS COMING TO RAW NEXT WEEK. 

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