Kathie Lee and Hoda on Raw

One Monday morning in 2014, John Cena appeared on the Today Show and invited Kathie Lee and Hoda to WWE Raw.

It sounded like a bad idea. After all, what possible audience overlap was there between the two shows?

How many people in waiting rooms across the country would even remember to watch wrestling that night?

But although Hoda Kotb had no experience with WWE…

…Kathie Lee Gifford (rhymes with “differed”) had often featured wrestlers as guests on her old show with Regis Philbin. So maybe it wasn’t so absurd to flip the script and have daytime TV invade wrestling?

Well, it was.

And so, in a segment that rivaled anything from the nadir of the Guest Host era, Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford (ɡɪfɜɹd) got live mics and an open forum on Raw.

Obviously, the duo would need a WWE Superstar to put them over, and that duty fell to poor Adam Rose, who pranced to the ring with the wine moms and his Rosebuds.

Draped in expensive feathered robes, Kathie Lee and Hoda looked like Ric Flair, if Ric Flair were a lecherous senior citizen with no dignity and a drinking problem.

Along the way, Hoda pointed a lot and made faces. Was she in pain? Was this her tough wrestler face?

When they got into the ring, Hoda once again scowled…

Kathie Lee and Hoda on WWE Raw

…before she and Kathie Lee meaningfully locked eyes.

It was time.

What time?

Wine o’clock, of course!

And the crowd just held their breath until they could see the dresses beneath the robes.

Kathie Lee and Hoda grabbed their mics, and that’s when the segment hit its first snag.

I should note that this was the first Raw of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and as such, WWE had installed a pink ring rope, recorded testimonials and PSAs, and invited cancer survivors like Joan Lunden onto the show.

So naturally, Hoda’s first words were about how she was excited to be on Raw supporting the Susan G Komen Foundation.

And the crowd booed.

“What did we do?” asked Kathie Lee, bewildered but amused.

Now, a lot of problems have come to light regarding that charity, such as it not giving enough of its money to research…

(Artist’s conception)

…or “pinkwashing” products that may, in fact, cause cancer.

But I doubt that’s what the Raw crowd, many of them carrying signs supportive of boobs…

…had in mind when they let Kathie Lee and Hoda have it. No, this reaction was instinctive.

Regardless of their reception, Kathie Lee and Hoda wanted to “par-tay”, and nobody could party like Brooklyn. Woooo! At last, the crowd cheered.

Pressing her luck, Kathie Lee continued. “My mother was born in Brooklyn!” And the crowd cheered significantly less.

And it was all downhill from here.

Normally when I write about a segment that bombed, I’ll point out when the audience booed. In this case, the audience booed the whole thing from start to finish. So whenever I do mention here that the fans booed, I mean they booed louder than usual.

Kathie Lee and Hoda agreed that nobody partied like they do on (in unison) …


I’m not saying these ladies were, I don’t know, inebriated

…but there were two glasses of wine at their table.

And their show was basically a salute to day-drinking.

And JBL said their blood type was Merlot.

Hoda scowled some more. Is she by any chance related to Morton Downey, Jr?

(actual Wikipedia pic)

Kathie Lee and Hoda toasted to Monday Night Raw….

…but Hoda nearly gagged on her wine.

“That’s delicious by the way”, she insisted, since this was Kathie Lee’s ownwine brand.

And the fans booed even louder.

As long as there were drinks, the ladies figured, there ought to be dancing, too.

“Do you want to see Hoda do her crazy dance for me?” asked Kathie Lee of the crowd.

Absolutely no one did, but Hoda did it anyway.

As Hoda cut loose like your aunt at the tail end of a wedding reception, Kathie Lee Gifford snuck up from behind and—what else?—

—smashed a wine bottle on Hoda’s ass. Truly this is what viewers tuned into WWE Raw to see.

Now it was Kathie Lee’s turn to dance. For her, that meant bobbing her head and—geez—bending over…

…demonstratively sticking her ass out so Hoda could get her receipt.

You know what this meant…


Fortunately, Adam Rose intervened before Kathie Lee and Hoda could come to blows. It was now wine o’five, far too late for this segment to go on any longer.

Kathie Lee and Hoda teased a trust fall into the Rosebuds, but only Hoda followed through.

Kathie Lee, on the other hand, wussed out, prompting boos from the crowd. Or maybe because the front row could see clear up Hoda’s dress.

Either way, Kathie let go of her inhibitions (finally!) and let the Rosebuds carry her and Hoda away.

The Raw feed was then interrupted by a Wyatt family vignette, garnering a huge pop for the backwoods cult. Why couldn’t WWE have combined the two segments?

But the night was not over for Kathie Lee and Hoda! Backstage, Brandi Rhodes got a word with the Today Show hosts, who said the following about Adam Rose:

Kathie Lee: “He doesn’t stop. He’s suckin’ on something right now…”

Hoda: “Yeah, that’s what Adam does.”

Kathie Lee: “He didn’t offer us any of it.”

For the record, they were talking about lollipops.

They also laughed about the crowd’s jeers. “We’re proud,” said Hoda. “We heard it’s a badge of honor when you get booed. Is it?

“Uhhhhh….” answered Brandi.

And Adam Rose led the pair away for some more partying.

So there you had it: in the least surprising scoop in WWE.com history, Kathie Lee and Hoda couldn’t get enough boos.

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