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[1997-02-24-WWF-Raw] Legion of Doom vs Headbangers

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Vince promises a big surprise as the Headbangers make their way to the ring, and sure enough, it's the returning Legion of Doom, who Vince is now willing to call the Road Warriors! They picked a great night with the right crowd to bring them back. Gotta love the "Nitro Sucks!" chants. Vince makes a big point about there being no fan censorship in the WWF, which is funny considering the company's track record. Weird that this isn't a squash where they steamrolled the Headbangers considering it's their first night back. This match should have gone two minutes. It's more competitive than you'd think, and the finish is a DCOR. Weird.

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Agreed, the finish always confused me. I have no idea why they didn't go over strong here. Unless the RW hadn't signed on full time yet and this was just a one night deal at first?

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Glad we got to see Sabus jump from the R

 

I couldnt believe my eyes with how competitive this was. It was almost like LOD decided to prove they could sell to lesser opponents given their reputation. Crowd was rabid for them early on and kind of maligned by the end. Headbangers have been put in some interesting positions so far in 1997.

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When Vince was hyping this up earlier, Paul E totally no sold this surprise. But the crowd seems happy to see LOD back. Vince's "unbelievable" is more dramatic than his version for the BWO. Vince had to enjoy the "Nitro Sucks" chant as the announcers kept quiet for a few seconds for it to be heard. WWF style using superstar line. I want to say they got rid of that sometime in 97. Not exactly the satisfying finish you'd want for the return match of LOD. They still do the Doomsday Device after match.

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We begin with a clip of Sabu diving off the "R" onto Team Taz, a cool spot that I think the cameras missed earlier. Then a return that blindsided everyone, as the Road Warriors are surprise opponents for the Headbangers. This match actually isn't bad at all, but yeah, it's weird to see the Roadies work a semi-long, competitive match and go to a DCOR. They probably had to stretch segments out tonight because of the depleted roster, but this is probably a sign that the LOD had a rocky road ahead of them.

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Glad we got to see Sabus jump from the R I couldnt believe my eyes with how competitive this was. It was almost like LOD decided to prove they could sell to lesser opponents given their reputation. Crowd was rabid for them early on and kind of maligned by the end. Headbangers have been put in some interesting positions so far in 1997.

 

Watching this I was amazed when the match wasn't an LOD squash, or even an LOD win, but it made for a much better match than I was expecting. I thought this was pretty fun, helped by being in the close and intimate setting of the Manhattan Centre with the hot crowd. As Soup says, I think LOD went out there determined to show they could a. still go and b. show they were willing to do business with other teams. I know a lot of people are down on it, but having gone back and watched all the RAW's and PPV's in 97, the LOD run is actually pretty decent and their TV matches are fairly consistent and enjoyable throughout the whole year. This also kicks off a pretty good run for the Headbangers, who while they are unpolished and rough, bring good fire and energy to the matches they are in.

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LOD gets a massive pop for their return. The match went too long & they wrestled the wrong opponents especially if they were wanting to protect The Headbangers which they did here. It should have been some jobber team. Nonetheless, this has some fun crowd moments with them chanting "Nitro sucks!" & "Bischoff sucks!" to Vince & Lawler's amusement.

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Awesome powerbomb by Animal and he looked good. Hawk did a great dropkick too. This was a total squash and all of sudden Bangers take over.

Double countout but they get to Doomsday Device which is a good compromise.

 

Crowd is hilarious chanting Nitro sucks and Bischoff sucks during this shitty show with a skeleton crew with all the stars (Bret, Austin, Foley etc in Europe). Nitro was way better during this period. Now there is a sappy video tribute to Shawn set to Tell Me A Lie. What a shit show!

 

Best part of this match is Lawler says Vince is out of touch. Doesn't know Nine Inch Nails & Marilyn Manson. Vince says some of it is fun. Then King says Butthole Surfers and Vince's "I beg your pardon" is hilarious and CRACKED ME UP!

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Echoing the surprise at how competitive this ended up being. Double countout seems like a bit of a strange decision for an LOD return match, but the return itself was a pretty awesome moment that the crowd bought into. 

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