Scott & JT’s Vintage Vault Refresh: Monday Night Raw 11/14/94

*** Scott & JT’s Vintage Vault Refresh reviews are a chronological look back at WWE PPV and TV history that began with a review of WrestleMania I. The PICs have revisited these events and refreshed all of their fun facts that provide insight into the match, competitors and state of the company as well as their overviews of the match action and opinions and thoughts on the outcomes. In addition, Jeff Jarvis assists in compiling historical information and the Fun Facts in each of the reviews. Also, be sure to leave feedback on the reviews at our Facebook page. Enjoy! ***

Monday Night Raw #86

November 14, 1994 (Taped November 7, 1994)
Fernwood Resort & Country Club
Bushkill, PA
Announcers: Vince McMahon & Ted DiBiase

1) Bob Backlund defeats 1-2-3 Kid via submission with the Crossface Chicken Wing at 5:02

Fun Fact: It has been announced that Bob Backlund will face Bret Hart at Survivor Series in a submission match. Backlund has taken every opportunity to slap the crossface chicken wing on anyone he can. Last week on the King’s Court, the 1-2-3 Kid was the guest. While the King made jokes at the Kid’s expense, Backlund came into the ring to slap the hold on the Kid. However, Bret Hart came out to make the save. This week, Kid and Backlund will battle with Hart in the Kid’s corner.

Scott: The original version of this match was not on the Network as the tape had issues. Finally it was found somewhere else and we can bring it to you. The Kid starts off so fast with strikes and aerial maneuvers, but eventually the experience takes control and Bob starts to work the Kid over. With Backlund getting his big title match at Survivor Series, this is a fun warm up for the challenger. Backlund tries the CFCW but the Kid reverses and tries to put his own version of the move. Eventually Backlund puts the move on and gets the win but he wouldn’t let go after the bell and Bret Hart came out to break it up. The two men brawled out to the floor. A decent little opener that with some more time could have been really good. Grade: **

JT: We are back in Bushkill this week via videotape as we inch ever so closer to this year’s Survivor Series. Vince McMahon is steering the ship as always and this week he is joined by Ted DiBiase in the booth so just like a year ago, it looks like we will be rotating color announcers for the time being. We waste no time in getting right to action with our first match, one that was hyped up quite a bit a week ago. Th #1 contender for the WWF Title Bob Backlund is tasked with fighting off the pesky upstart 1-2-3 Kid, a final roadblock before he reaches San Antonio for a crack at the gold. DiBiase says his money is on Kid getting locked in the old Cross Face Chicken Wing but Kid was able to avoid the attempt a week ago. Kid attacked Backlund before the bell and kicked and punched away, completely frustrating Bob and grabbing a near fall on a backslide. Kid followed with a spin kick for another near fall and then trapped on a short arm scissors as DiBiase invokes George Foreman as a comp for Backlund, even breaking down their game plans. Backlund turned the tide with a hard forearm and went to work on the arm as Vince reminds us of Bob’s reign of terror of late. After a break, Bob is still working the arm and Vince lets us know that Bret Hart is watching the match closely backstage, just as he promised a week ago. Backlund goes for the CFCW but Kid ducked him and locked in his own version of the hold until Backlund slipped free. Bob went to the arm again but Kid landed a flurry of kicks to fight him off and grab a near fall. Kid kept unloading his offense but whiffed on a dive off the top rope, which DiBiase predicted would be a mistake before it happened. Backlund stalked Kid and pounced, grabbing the CFCW and nabbing the submission win. Backlund kept the hold locked in after the bell until Hart showed up and forced him to release. Officials flooded the ring and kept Backlund and Hart apart but Backlund was able to momentarily lock him in the CFCW before quickly releasing. Backlund grabbed a mic and let Bret know that it was just a reminder of what he will feel at Survivor Series. Bret would chase Bob down the aisle and briefly lock on the Sharpshooter before letting go. He would tell Bob the same thing: he could have kept on the hold tonight, something he will do in nine days. This was a nifty little match with some solid psychology and a good showing by Kid, as always. Plus it helped add a lot of last minute heat to the big WWF Title match. Backlund looks great and is certainly ready for his huge PPV bout, an amazing statement considering where things were a year ago for him. Grade: **

2) Mabel defeats Black Phantom with a sidewalk slam at 2:00

Scott: It seems like Men on a Mission as a team is pretty much dead as Mabel has worked singles and Mo is absent. The match is literally awful with a lot of stumbling around. DiBiase spends the match talking about The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade and making fun of fat people. Grade: DUD

JT: We head back down to the ring for our next bout as Oscar raps Mabel out to the ring for a bout with the Black Phantom. Mabel is still getting a pretty good solo push, slotted to hook up with Lex Luger, Adam Bomb and the Smoking Gunns to battle the Million Dollar Team at Survivor Series. Mabel runs through his usual somewhat impressive power offense as DiBiase talks shit to set up the PPV match. Vince talks about the WWF stars that will be a part of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day float as Mabel eventually finishes the Phantom with a nice sidewalk slam. Grade: DUD

*** Todd Pettengill is in the house with this week’s Survivor Series Report. We are getting close to Thanksgiving Eve, just nine days away, so time is ticking to call that cable company and get your order in! Here are the matches discussed:

Bret Hart w/ British Bulldog vs. Bob Backlund w/ Owen Hart – WWF Title Submission Match
Undertaker vs. Yokozuna – Casket Match w/ Special Troubleshooting Enforcer Chuck Norris
Guts ‘N’ Glory: Lex Luger, Adam Bomb, Mabel & Smoking Gunns vs. Million Dollar Team: Tatanka, Bam Bam Bigelow, King Kong Bundy & Heavenly Bodies
The Bad Guys: Razor Ramon, 1-2-3 Kid, British Bulldog & New Headshrinkers vs. The Teamsters: Diesel, Shawn Michaels, Jim Neidhart, Owen Hart & Jeff Jarrett
Clowns ‘R’ Us: Doink, Dink, Wink & Pink vs. The King’s Court: Jerry Lawler, Queasy, Cheesy & Sleazy

That is the full card so don’t waste any more time. Order now and relax on Thanksgiving Eve! ***

3) Jeff Jarrett defeats Gary Sabough via submission with the figure four at 3:13

Scott: During the Survivor Series Report, Chuck Norris referred to the Royal Rumble when about a million heels helped Yokozuna put Undertaker in the casket. This guy is one of them. Jeff Jarrett was a relative newcomer to the company at the time, and today he takes on the former Italian Stallion from the Jim Crockett Promotions days.Vince continues to promote the Macy’s parade, and for DiBiase, who’s a heavily involved heel it’s odd for him to try and act goofy. Jarrett wins easily. Grade: DUD

JT: Back to the ring, it is time for Jeff Jarrett to strut to the ring to battle with good old Gary Sabough. Vince pitches a special commemorative limited edition Survivor Series program, available now for $10. Do it. Vince talks about Jarrett’s potential to work in a tag setting at Survivor Series, wondering if he can coexist with his fellow Teamsters. DiBiase jokes about buying Sonny Bono as Jarrett grabs early control of the hefty Italian. Sabough found a seam and landed a few shots but Jarrett quick cut him off and took over. DiBiase talks about keeping his stable happy with money and Vince notes that Jarrett will battle Fatu on Action Zone this Sunday. Sabough eventually landed a couple of punches but whiffed on a terrible dropkick attempt and from there it was ball game as Jarrett worked the leg and finished off the big man with the figure four. Grade: DUD

*** Vince McMahon promotes the Survivor Series Hotline, featuring a special Opinion Poll about the show. We then head to the grave yard where IRS is again letting us know that even the deceased owe taxes, because sooner or later everyone pays IRS. Being six feet under is not a tax shelter. ***

*** After a break, Jerry Lawler heads to the ring for this week’s King’s Court. He sets the tone with a joke and then brings out his guest, Owen Hart. Lawler asks Owen how excited he is for Survivor Series and the King of Harts says when Bob Backlund locks that Cross Face Chicken Wing on his brother Bret, that will be it. He also vows that he will never throw in the towel like Arnold Skaaland did back in 1983. He also claims it is the same exact towel as Skaaland chucked in the ring on that fateful night. Lawler reminds us that Backlund never gave up in 1983 and is still WWF Champion in his mind and Owen assures Bob again that he will stay strong and that the British Bulldog will be the won to throw the towel in on behalf of Bret. Lawler and Owen make some jokes about the Bulldog and then welcome him out to join the party. Bulldog emerges toting a pink and black towel, the one he will have in his holster in San Antonio. Bulldog tells Lawler that Bret Hart is the WWF Champion and not Bob Backlund and after Survivor Series that will still be true. Owen vehemently disagrees and says the Sharpshooter doesn’t stand up to the CFCW. When Backlund locks the CFCW on he wants Bulldog to let Bret suffer in agony before eventually throwing in the towel. Bulldog says he will not throw the towel in the ring no matter what and Backlund will not be able to lock Hart in the hold. ***

4) Aldo Montoya defeats Brooklyn Brawler with a high cross body at 2:38

Fun Fact: Peter Joseph Polaco began his wrestling career in 1992 when he travelled to Alberta, Canada to train at the Hart Brothers training camp. There he was trained by Lance Storm and Chris Jericho, both of which had graduated from the school the year before. After graduating from the camp, he began wrestling in different promotions in the New England area under the name P.J. Walker. He started working for the WWF in early 1993 as an enhancement talent, a role that he would have for nearly two years with the WWF. Finally in late 1994 he was signed to a WWF contract by Pat Paterson and given a new persona, Aldo Montoya. Through his career he would also work for ECW, taking on the name he is most known for, Justin Credible. 

Scott: What exactly is… Aldo Montoya? Sure he’s Portuguese and he’s a… Man O’ War. But what’s with the jock strap on his head? Once again, Vince couldn’t just put this guy in new tights and give him a normal gimmick, instead we need the moronic headgear and the goofy music. Another Doink, to be honest. He was given a decent jobber to work with and the match itself wasn’t the worst. The highlight of the match was Ted DiBiase destroying the USA Movie liner so bad that Vince had to redo it. Grade: DUD

JT: Our final match of the night features the big debut of Aldo Montoya, the Portuguese Man ‘O’ War. He is sporting the colors of Portugal and also rocking a very interesting jock strap type of headgear. Brooklyn Brawler grabs a headlock and follows with a shoulder block but Montoya dodged an elbow and took over from there. Montoya showed up some nice speed and even took to the air, crashing into the Brawler on he floor with a tope. And it is now time for DiBiase to read, and butcher, this week’s USA promo copy: Young Guns, this Wednesday at 9PM. He will never do it as well as the Macho Man. In fact, he butchered it badly enough that Vince rereads it as to not piss off USA. Brawler turns things around and gets a few more blows in until Aldo makes his comeback and wins with a high cross body off the top rope. Not a bad debut at all, despite the headgear, as Aldo buzzed around the ring and cut a nice pace when in control. Grade: DUD

*** Ted DiBiase hops in the ring and tells Aldo Montoya that he was impressed, which is not an easy task. He offers Montoya an opportunity of a lifetime to jump the line of those waiting and join the Corporation. Montoya responded in Portuguese so DiBiase pull out a wad of cash to make things more clear. Montoya now speaks English and tells DiBiase to take his money and shove it in his ear. Montoya leaves as DiBiase flips out in the ring. ***

*** After a break, Alundra Blayze heads out to talk about her upcoming WWF Women’s Title defense against Bull Nakano in the Tokyo Dome on November 20. Blayze says it is an honor to represent the WWF as Ladies’ Champion and she will return to the USA with the gold. ***

Final Analysis

Scott: The matches were the usual crap but with Survivor Series around the corner the builds were good, including the cool brawl between Bret and Backlund in the aisle. I’m sure Backlund isn’t used to this type of television but he has settled in nicely in this crazy heel role. We have a debut of the Portuguese Man O’ War Aldo Montoya, with the bizarre jock strap on his head. We have a couple more shows to go before we head to San Antonio and one of the big things besides the feuds is the uncertainty of who will be announcing Survivor Series with Savage gone and Jerry Lawler competing. Final Grade: B-

JT: Despite lacking the strong tag match of a week ago, I actually thought this was a better episode of Raw top to bottom than the one we saw seven days ago. I really enjoyed the Bob Backlund vs. 1-2-3 Kid bout and it added a lot of extra heat to the Survivor Series WWF Title match. They doubled down on that with a really good King’s Court as well as I thought both Owen Hart and British Bulldog turned in strong performances to hype their roles in the match. Ted DiBiase was solid on commentary, better than he was earlier in the year for sure. He balanced talking about the Corporation with calling the action nicely enough. And even though he looks goofy, I thought Aldo Montoya’s debut was a strong one, looking both crisp in the ring and getting the rub of telling off DiBiase. We didn’t get much focus on the other Survivor Series matches, but the card has been estabished fairly well all things considered. We have nine days and two shows to go for our final hard sells. Until then… Final Grade: B