Smark Central’s Top 10 Raw Moments

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My top 10 Raw Moments (in descending order)

These are my ten favorite moments.  Some are very common favorites.  Some are more of my personal taste, but they are all great moments.  I probably listed about forty or so that could have been picked, but these are the ten that I went with.  I’m not going to go into full detail about what occurred.  If you want to know exactly what went down, watch the videos provided or Google it.  Enjoy.

 

10. 1-2-3 (RAW: May 17, 1993) – Upsets in sports are a common occurrence.  They’re always exciting and make people feel good that the underdog triumphed against the “evil” favorites.  I wasn’t a big sports fans growing up so my first experience with upsets was of course, wrestling.  When the wrestler known then as “The Kid” upset Razor Ramon (Scott Hall), I couldn’t believe what I had just seen.  I didn’t think it was possible seeing as how Razor was a big upcoming star and the Kid had lost on RAW for three straight weeks.  No way The Kid could win…until he did.  Out of the blue the Kid caught Ramon with a moonsault and got the pin.  The crowd went crazy and so did Razor.  It was a nice story that led a pretty good career for the 1-2-3 kid a.k.a Sean Waltman a.k.a. Syxx a.k.a. X-Pac a.k.a. Chyna’s punching bag.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghoAFLkFqPo

9. That is one, one Stone Cold stunner ha ha ha (RAW: Sept. 22, 1997) – Its funny to me how some people think once Austin became King of the Ring and he made his famous “Austin 3:16” promo that he was destined to be a main event star from that point forward.  However, one could argue that Austin didn’t really become the focus of the show until that fateful night in MSG where he stunned Vince McMahon for the very first time.  This to me was the true start of the Austin era because after this night, RAW became must watch TV thanks to Austin.  You never knew what he was going to say, do, or who he would stun next.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNpeO0eScfk

8. WCW we hardly knew yee (RAW: March 26, 2001) – Everyone knows those moments in your life of both happiness and sadness.  Mixed emotions can put different spins on the same event.  For example, the final broadcast of WCW Nitro was sad , but at the same time it was very exciting because now we were going to get some of the dream matches that we always dreamed about.  Sadly, many of those matches never came to pass, but on this night there were infinite possibilities.  It was a night where our hopes were at their highest.  Vince McMahon now owned both WCW and the WWF.  The two biggest companies were now one.  Even though in reality we knew Vince now owned the wrestling business, it would take one Hell of a storyline twist to make it interesting.  Fortunately, we didn’t have to wait long as Shane McMahon showed up on Nitro to announce that he had stepped in and purchased WCW from under Vince’s nose.  Shane promised to bring WCW back to prominence and nobody doubted he would.  As we all know, the invasion storyline bombed, but the bizarre sight of Shane on Nitro was something I will never forget.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MC3kkIndJ_g

 

7. Imitation is the sincerest form of Degeneracy (RAW: July 6, 1998, December 14, 1999, June 26, 2006) – For all that DX has accomplished together and apart, their greatest strength might have been their ability to make you laugh.  This was especially true when they satire whatever faction they were feuding with at the time.  The Nation parody was a very racially charged skit that saw HHH take the mantle of the Rock and dub himself The Crock.  However, the star of this skit was Jason Sensation who was a wrestler impersonator from Canada who did a DEAD ON (no pun intended) impression of the late Owen Hart. This guy was so good that for a moment you thought Owen had all of a sudden dropped over a hundred pounds and turned pale.  It was that good.  The corporation parody was very funny too, but it wasn’t as strong as the Nation one.  Maybe it was too soon to dip back into it or maybe the Owen impression from the first one made this one seem inferior.  Either way, this was the weakest of the three which brings us to the McMahon parody.  This was the funniest segment in RAW history.  I mean not only did HHH and HBK parody Vince and Shane perfectly, but in the back of my mind I was like “this guy is getting paid to go on national TV and make fun of his father-in-law”.  I was quite jealous afterward, but had no time to think about it during because I almos crapped myself from laughing so hard.  It was segments like this that made me grateful to be a wrestling fan.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2iPlXbsJJBc http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=Jkj6qFwc6Xs http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=xBW6ZAVn-PA

 

6. HHH is a Fucking Asshole (RAW: July 22, 2002) – HHH to me is one of the greatest heels ever and this night probably more than any other proved exactly why.  All night long HHH tried to cheer up his buddy Shawn Michaels, tired to get him to see the brighter side of things after the New World Order has been disbanded.  It took all night, but then he figured out what HBK (and every wrestling fan) really wanted to see.  HHH whipped out some DX shirts and then the music hit…and everybody went crazy…the crotch chopping, fun loving duo of DX were back or so we thought.  After some posing, HHH delivered his famous DX lines and then WHAM! He kicks HBK in the gut and pedigrees him thus crushing the hopes and dreams of everybody watching.  It was the ultimate heel moment of dangling the carrot and then viciously ripping the carrot away after we had a nibble.  It pissed me off, but that’s what HHH was good at.  He knew how to push the fans’ buttons and did it to perfection on that night.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUa442NiT3I

 

5. New GM brings Ruthless Aggression (RAW: July 15, 2002) – By this time, WCW had officially been gone for six months (including the WWE version) and slowly the talent that should have been around for the Invasion finally started to trickle in.  Hogan, Flair, Nash, Hall had all come back and had big impacts, but most fans expected them to return at some point.  However, there was one name that no one saw coming especially when Vince McMahon came out and announced that he would appoint general managers for both RAW and Smackdown.  Shortly thereafter during a typical backstage interview with Booker T, we got a glance of a familiar face that shook Booker’s hand and then was quickly gone.  It was so funny because Booker like the rest of the audience had to do a double take to make sure he was seeing what he was actually seeing.  “Tell me I did not just see that”.  Whether that was planned or not didn’t matter because Booker was thinking what we all were “Did we really just see Eric Bischoff, the former WCW Vice President, the man who tried to drive WWE out of business walking onto RAW”?  We would have our answers minutes later when Vince indeed announced Bischoff as the RAW GM.  If that wasn’t enough, Vince delivered the cherry on top when he gave Bischoff an over the top hug that made every last jaw in the wrestling world drop.  Bischoff then churned out an epic worked shoot promo that reminded us why he was so hate able to begin with.  Despite losing the wrestling war to WWE, as a character, Bischoff still seemed to have the goods. I have to give Vince credit too.  When he wants to, he can still blow us away.  The last vestige of impossibility from the WCW buyout had dropped.  Now, anything and anyone was possible.

 

4. The shoot heard from the Best in the World (RAW: June 27, 2011) – What hasn’t been said about this moment.  We’ve all had our say on it, but here’s why it’s in my top ten: It was the most honest moment in the shows near twenty year run.  That’s saying something.  Shoots, even worked ones are a very rare occurrence in wrestling.  Not many people get the chance to just rip the company they work for and the people they work with without some kind of ramifications.  We all cheered when Stone Cold stunned Vince, we all cheered when Bischoff got put into a garbage truck, and we all cheered when John Laurinitis got FU’ed throught a table.  Why?  Because bosses suck and when you see someone stand up for themselves, it’s a moment that is so satisfying and relatable.  Now add to that the frustration of being a wrestling fan for the six years prior and you can really see why so many people were drawn to this promo.  It wasn’t just about Punk Vs John Cena, it was Punk Vs the World.  Punk called himself the voice of the voiceless which sounds cheesy now, but back then it wasn’t just a marketing gimmick.  It was real.  He was speaking for all of us, the diehards, the ones who have poured our hard earned money into this company since the day we potty trained.  It was Punk’s finest moment and one that will live on forever.

 

3. “Not as much as you…Brother” (RAW: February 18, 2002) – What hasn’t been said about Hulk Hogan and The Rock.  They are arguably the two biggest icons EVER in professional wrestling.  However, it never seemed as their paths would cross.  Hogan had left WCW by the time Vince bought it and the Rock was taking more and more time away to make movies.  As luck would have it, the stars would align once more as Vince vowed to bring the New World Order to the WWF to destroy it.  At No Way Out, Vince stood by his word as he trotted out the original NWO of Hogan, Hall, and Nash.  On RAW the next night, you knew the impossible might occur and indeed after Hogan ran down the fans, the Rock entered the arena.  What followed was one of the most surreal moments I’ve ever seen.  Time stood still as these two mega stars both simultaneously panned the arena while the fans went crazy alternating chants of “ROCKY” and “HOGAN”.  Wrestling’s past and its present exchanged an exciting war or words until the inevitable occurred. Rock challenged Hogan for a match at WrestleMania and after another crowd induced delay, Hogan accepted the challenged.  Rock sealed the deal with an electric Rock Bottom and the feeling of joy that coursed through my body is simply unexplainable.  My two childhood heroes were going to have a match on the biggest stage of all.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnkWZ2ivE6k

 

2. 10…9…8…7…6…5…4…3…2…1(RAW: August 9, 1999) – This was it.  After months of anticipation, one of my favorite WCW wrestlers was finally coming to the big time.  I really felt that justice was done.  After watching established WWF wrestlers jump ship to WCW for greener ($) pastures for the duration of the Monday night wars, it was nice to see WWF finally hitting back.  Even though I knew Jericho was coming that night, I never could have guessed the dream scenario of having him verbally spar with the Great One on his first night with the company.  To me the Rock was the master of the mic.  No one could ever come close to touching him, but I also knew Jericho would give him a run for his money and after nearly ten minutes of back and forth, I could barely breathe from the laughter.  Jericho had made one of the most memorable debuts ever and things would never…e e e ever be the same A-GAIN.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=32OPyEAraU4&feature=related

 

1. Foley is Champion (RAW January 4, 1999) –

Ironically enough I began this list with an underdog story and now I am ending with one.  Mick Foley was one of the biggest underdogs of all time.  On this night he won the WWF title from the Rock in one of the most memorable moments by anyone’s standards.  Foley, with nothing more than a sweat sock on his hand and a ripped up button down shirt became the WWF champion.  It was one of the loudest reactions for a title change I’ve ever heard which didn’t surprise me because Mick had a gift of being able to get emotion from his fans.  We loved him for his honestly which showed through in his heart-felt, sometimes gut wrenching promos and for ultimately being one of us – a crazy dreamer who loved wrestling more than anything.  We knew that no one sacrificed his own body for our entertainment like Mick did and we loved him for it.  This night was so special because of who Mick was as a performer and a person.  He took us on this journey with him through WCW, ECW, Japan, and finally the WWE and this night was the culmination of a ten year journey that lead him to his ultimate goal.  This is my all time favorite RAW moment.  It was such a genuinely joyous moment.  I never felt so happy for someone that I didn’t know because even though, it was “scripted”, it felt real and that’s all you can really ask from a show that’s supposed to be “fake”.

 

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