Raw begins with CM Punk and Paul Heyman coming to the ring. Punk has taped up ribs. He tells everyone that they were wrong for thinking he would lose his title. He points the people out in the crowd one by one like Edge used to do. Punk talks about all the people he’s gone through. He mentions Rey Mysterio, Randy Orton, John Cena, and Ryback. He says his Anaconda Vice is stronger than any Viper, and that he is kryptonite to Cena’s Superman. Punk says he had nothing to do with the referee interference at the Hell in a Cell PPV. Punk calls referee Brad Maddox incompetent. He says Maddox screwed him out of a match a few weeks ago and may have tried to pay him back. Punk says there will not be a rematch with Ryback. Punk is interrupted by Mick Foley’s music, and he isn’t happy about it.
Punk mocks how the crowd chants for Foley. He says Foley is a homeless man who has been displaced by the storms in the North East. Foley tells Punk to “stay classy” for making light of a situation that is effecting millions of people (including me.) Foley brings up the promo he cut last month when he told Punk to create his legacy at Hell in a Cell. He says that Punk blew it. Punk wants a traditional Survivor Series match; Team Foley against Team Punk. Foley agrees. Well that was a weak way to put that match together. I really wanted to see Punk defend his title on the night that he won it a year ago. Ryback’s music hits. He storms to the ring as Punk and Heyman flee into the crowd. Don’t hit a fan Punk! The Crowd chants “feed me more” loudly. Let’s assume that this match will be Punk, Brock Lesnar, Dolph Ziggler, Del Rio, and Wade Barrett. against Foley, Ryback, Cena, Orton, and Triple H. Hence Punk naming all of those guys that he went through. He mentioned Mysterio, but I’m not sure how he fits.
Ryback vs. JTG- Hmm I wonder who will win this one? I always forget that JTG still has a job. Ryback slams JTG face first into the mat. Power slam, missed Irish whip, Thesz press. Ryback slams JTG’s head into the mat multiple times. More times than normal. He did it at least 8 times. Meathook clothesline followed by Shell Shocked. You know the drill. Ryback wins. Then Ryback actually cuts a promo!!!!! Seriously!!! He says he is hungry and will get revenge on CM Punk. He makes the crowd chant “feed me Punk.” Best. Promo. Ever.
Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett- Love Wade Barrett matches. Barrett backs Orton into the corner and breaks cleanly. Whats up with that? Rare to see from a heel. Orton whips Barrett off the ropes and hits a drop kick. Barrett rolls to the outside floor, and Orton follows him. Barrett kicks Orton in his injured arm. Orton comes back by bouncing Barrett’s head off the announce table twice. Orton tosses Barrett back into the ring and uses his stomps to every part of the body. Barrett reverses an Irish whip, but gets caught over top the ring ropes after missing a big boot. Orton clotheslines him to the outside for the commercial spot. Not a very great start to this one.
Back from break we see Orton headbutt out of an arm bar. Barrett catches him with a clothesline and stomps the injured arm. He hooks Orton in an arm bar and drops his leg across Orton’s shoulder. Arm ringer by Barrett, as he continues to work the arm/shoulder that was “injured” by Del Rio at the PPV. Barrett hooks Orton between the ropes and drives his knees into his face. Big boot by Barrett knocks Orton down onto the apron. He continues to work the arm with rest holds. Orton rolls through and hits multiple clotheslines, followed by a power slam. Barrett tries to roll outside once again, but he’s caught with the hanging DDT through the ropes. Orton signals RKO. Barrett pushes Orton on the RKO attempt, and uses a Bossman Slam. Two count. Barrett pulls back on Orton’s nose, which is awesome. Orton elbows out, and hits the RKO for the win. Not as good as their matches in the past, but still pretty solid. I’ll take it.
AJ Lee and Vickie Guerrero are in the back. Vickie accuses her of having an affair with John Cena. AJ says she didn’t. Vickie says it’s her decision on whether or not to hire AJ back as a wrestler. She needs to make sure shes in the right mental condition. AJ says she wants to compete again. Vickie asks AJ what her biggest weakness is. AJ says she gets too emotionally attached to her job. Vickie asks her if she’s crazy. AJ looks at her furiously. Vickie says that when she comes back later she needs one good reason why AJ deserves a job.
WWE Tag Team Champions Daniel Bryan and Kane vs. Prime Time Players- PTP gets the “already in the ring jobber entrance.” Bryan and Young start the match. Young powers Bryan into the corner and pounds his back. Bryan reverses an Irish whip and uses a leg whip. He kicks Young in the chest multiple times. Kane is tagged in and hits a running clothesline in the corner. Bryan is tagged back in and hits a running dropkick in the corner. Kane tries to tag his way into the ring, but Bryan catches him and moves. They shout YES and NO at one another. Titus O’Neil is tagged and clotheslines Bryan from behind. Then he does that weird dog bark. Or maybe it’s a walrus call. I’m not too sure. Powerslam by Titus. Young is tagged back in as they hit a double shoulder block. Young pulls back at Bryan’s nose the same way that Barrett did in the previous match. Bryan elbows out and hits multiple forearms shots. Upper knee lift by Bryan. Tag to Kane.
Kane hits a clothesline in the corner. He whips Young back and forth into both corners, and hits a clothesline in each one. Side slam by Kane, followed by a clothesline off the top rope. He knocks Titus off the apron. That gives Young enough time to recover with punches. Kane counters and chokeslams Young. He pie faces Titus over the top rope. Bryan tags himself in. He hooks in the NO Lock. Darren Young taps out. Bryan raises both titles and shouts “I am the tag team champions!” Then he shouts it in Kane’s face. Kane makes the ring explode and takes back his title. Apparently Kane is now the tag team champions. Bryan exclaims that he himself is actually the tag team champions. Pretty good tag team match. I say it every week; the tag team division is thriving. If only they could rebuild the terrible Diva’s division next.
Monday Night Recap. That should be the new name of this show. We see about 25 recap videos of all kinds of CM Punk stuff. Brad Maddox stuff, Punk’s comments tonight, and Hell in a Cell recaps. I’m pretty sure it was 25 videos. I could be over exaggerating a little.
Vickie Guerrero comes to the ring. She says she has evidence of Cena and AJ’s inappropriate relationship. She calls John Cena to the ring. Cena wants her to show everyone her proof. She shows the video of Cena delivering the Anchor Man line where he asked AJ on a date. Cena said it was a joke, and that everyone understood that. Next Vickie shows the video from last week where Cena hugged AJ. Cena says he was being a good friend. Next, week see a picture of Cena and AJ sitting at a dinner table. Cena said he told everyone last week about his business dinner with AJ. Next we see a shot of AJ getting into an elevator with Cena. She was giving him the eyes, hesitated, then got in. Cena has a blank look on his face. The crowd chants “you are busted.” Cena says it’s two people getting into an elevator, and that was it. Cena says he’s been honest the whole time. He says he walked AJ to her door, and that was it.
Vickie starts to call AJ disgusting and psychotic, but Cena cuts her off. He says that AJ is more attractive than Vickie will ever be. Dolph Ziggler’s music hits. Ziggler says we’ve seen enough to draw our own conclusions. Cena grabs Ziggler by the shirt and gets serious. He tells Ziggler never to mention his name with AJ’s again. Cena pushes Ziggler down onto his ass and walks off. I guess that segment was okay. It was interesting to see whether or not Vickie would actually have any footage. The footage kept building up to make you think that she actually had something. So the segment kept the crowd intrigued and did it’s job. It’s also a nice way to start the Cena vs. Ziggler feud. This one is not a lazy way of booking.
United States Champion Antonio Cesaro vs. Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston- I’m excited for this champion vs champion match. I hope they don’t mess it up. Cesaro cuts a promo about how fat kids are in America. He talks about obese Power Ranger kids Trick or Treating. That made me laugh. Miz is on commentary. Cesaro grabs Kofi by the hair and slams him to the mat. He elbows him in the head. Kofi cartwheels, and catches Cesaro in an Irish whip. Cesaro counters, Kofi gets his boots up, and kicks him through the turnbuckle. Miz talks about some crappy movies he will be in. One is an ABC Family Christmas movie. Really? Cesaro hooks in a unique head submission. Kofi elbows out, is high kneed, rolls out of back body drop, and front dropkicks Cesaro to the outside floor. Kofi follows him out. Cesaro Irish whips Kofi, but he jumps up on the steps and uses a flying cross body. Miz distracts Kofi causing Cesaro to take over.
Kofi fights back and throws Cesaro into Miz. Miz attacks Kofi for the disqualification. Miz and Cesaro double team Kofi. R-truth comes running down for the save. Truth does a retarded dance and clotheslines Cesaro over the rope and to the outside floor. I knew they would screw that match up. Of course they wouldn’t want to put on a solid Cesaro vs Kofi match. They would rather make it short and use it to build a future match. Why couldn’t they have just let them wrestle for 15 minutes before the interference? 5 minutes isn’t enough. It’s a disgrace to wrestling. For the 97th consecutive week we get the same terrible format. All short and pointless matches except for the ones at the top of the hours.
AJ Lee and Vickie Guerrero are in the back. Vickie wants to know about the pillow talk and the kissing with Cena. Vickie says she will put AJ on the roster if she admits it. AJ says she wont do that because nothing happened. She says the WWE means everything to her, but Vickie isn’t worth hurting John for. Vickie hires her. She says if AJ ever puts her hands on her she will be gone from the company. Vickie puts her in a match with Beth Phoenix. AJ’s mood changes suddenly. She says “thanks Vickie” and smiles.
Behind the music with 3MB. It’s a sit down interview with everyone’s favorite band. Jinder Mahal says he’s the class clown and the fun one. McIntyre is wearing a cowboy hat. He makes fun of Bono. The interviewer wants to hear them perform. Slater doesn’t want to be pressured. He says the interview is over. They put up their 3MB logo. Michael Cole says “absolutely riveting.” Jim Ross says that was the worst interview in the history of WWE. I can’t wait to hear them play. I look forward to it. My favorite bands of all time are System of a Down, Greenday, and 3MB.
Zack Ryder and Santino Marella vs. Heath Slater and Jinder Mahal w/ Drew McIntyre- Mahal stomps Ryder to start. Ryder gets the knees up in the corner and hits a missile drop kick. Running forearm in the corner followed by the Broski Boot. Slater comes in for the distraction. Mahal guillotines Ryder off the ropes. Tag to Slater who stomps Ryder. Hard whip into the corner before a tag to Mahal. More stomps and tags. Mahal whips Ryder into Slater who hits a flying forearm. More tag teaming. Ryder tries to fight out and moves away from a corner splash. Hot tag to Santino. Stupid split, stupid hip toss, stupid saluting fist drop. He dumps Mahal over the top rope. Santino puts on the stupid Cobra glove. Mcintyre hops up on the apron and is hit with a stupid Cobra strike. Slater hits his finisher for the win. Not sure what his finisher is because I’ve never seen him win a match. That match wasn’t very good. Ryder and Santino teaming up makes me vomit. Everyone seems to be talking about 3MB on Twitter. So they are doing their jobs. Those three are now relevant.
Beth Phoenix vs. AJ Lee- I swear Beth switches between heel and face every week. I thought she was a face? I don’t see her enough to remember. Beth intimidates AJ into the ropes. AJ finally gets in her face and is pushed out. The craziness builds as AJ is pushed to the mat. The look in her eyes has changed. Running Thesz press by AJ. She jumps onto Beth’s back and is snapmared off. Hard kick to the head by Beth. She tosses AJ to the outside floor and follows her out. Beth picks AJ up and drives her back into the apron. She tosses her back into the ring for a two count. AJ comes back with a quick inside cradle for the three count. AJ wins and Beth is in shock. Vickie Guerrero comes out to the stage. She says she demands more from AJ. Beth jumps AJ from behind. Vickie wants AJ to do better and restarts the match. Beth hits AJ with the Glam Slam. She covers AJ for the 3 count. This time Beth wins. That was a different kind of angle. I’ll take it. The match is still not long enough though.
Sheamus comes to the ring. Michael Cole says their match at the PPV was one of the most competitive matches ever. Jim Ross says its one of the best slobberknockers ever. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. Best joke of the night by far. Sheamus talks about having a smile on his face. He says Big Show was the better man that night. Sheamus says it was the greatest fight of his entire life. He says he took a 7 foot giant to the limit. That is why he came to the WWE. He puts the match over to be much more than it was. Sheamus says the war is far from over. Oh god no. Please don’t. Just end it. I beg you. No more. Big Show’s music hits. He comes out with the World Heavyweight Championship held high. Big Show says Sheamus is smiling because he’s hiding the truth. He says Sheamus gave him everything he had and still came up short.Big Show says he’s never had to dig that deep to win before.
Big Show says “if you come at me with a war, it’ll be like Custer’s last stand, and you’re gonna be Custer.” Haha what a terrible line! Big Show calls him a “red headed ginger snap.” He says Sheamus will never take the championship from him. Sheamus asks Big Show if he’s ever seen a ginger snap. Get it? A ginger that snaps? I get it. It’s not funny, but I get it. He picks Big Show up and hits White Noise. Then he exits up the ramp as Jim Ross acts like it was the most impressive thing he’s ever seen. So let me get this straight. Big Show is the new champion, and the first segment he’s involved in is to put over the ex champion? Yeah, this title reign is gonna go swimmingly. That was probably the worst segment of the night. But there have been plenty of bad segments, so I’m not sure. What a boring promo. I would have been more entertained by going outside and sitting in the hurricane for those five minutes.
John Cena and AJ Lee are in the back. He congratulates her on being back in the ring. He hugs her. Vickie Guerrero is spying on her. She walks up smiling after AJ walks off. Beth Phoenix walks up to Vickie and thanks her for restarting the match. Vickie says she didn’t do her job the first time. Vickie fires Beth Phoenix. Beth acts surprised. Goodbye Beth. Great decision to leave a company where Diva’s don’t matter. She joins Gail Kim and many other great wrestling women who have made the right choice. I’m sure there will be a spot for Beth in TNA.
Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara vs. Team Rhodes Scholars- Rhodes and Mysterio start the match. Tie up to start. Rhodes is whiped into the corner, but hits a shoulder block. Mysterio uses a kick to the face after a bunch of reversals. Tag to Sandow and Sin Cara. Sin Cara flips around the ring, but Sandow backs into the corner. After all that flipping Sandow finally just kicks him in the gut. Funny spot. Sin Cara takes control with some lucha libre stuff. Tag to Rhodes. Sin Cara hits him with some kicks. Tag to Mysterio followed by a double team kick. Rhodes takes over with boring brawling before tagging Sandow. Snapmare. Tag to Rhodes. They come in and out quickly. Rhodes whips Sin Cara into the corner, misses a charge, and is hit with a drop toe hold into the corner. Mysterio and Sin Cara hit some flippy double team stuff. They both hit 450 splashes to the outside on a heel. That’s a commercial spot. God I hate the Free Credit Score band. 3MB > Free Credit Score.com band.
Back from break we see Sandow attempt three different covers on Sin Cara. This guy has a unique arsenal. Rhodes is tagged and uses a hanging vertical suplex. I guess he thinks he’s the son of the British Bulldog too. Rhodes hooks in an arm submission for a rest hold. Sin Cara kicks Rhodes multiple times, but Sandow is tagged in. Sandow chokes him. He powers Sin Cara into the corner and makes the 84858484t49r9rth tag of this match. Sunset flip by Sin Cara for a two count. Flying head scissors. Hot tag to Mysterio. Flying senton on Rhodes. Tilt-a-whirl head scissors. Rhodes kicks Mysterio, throws him under the bottom rope, and Mysterio rolls through to his feet. Pretty impressive spot. When Mysterio climbs back up on the apron he’s knocked off by Sandow. Very smart move by Sandow. Mysterio was on his side after all. Sandow is tagged in and uses a Russian leg sweep followed by The Elbow of Disdain.
More quick tags from Rhodes and Sandow. Mysterio uses a small package for a two count. Sandow grapevines the legs to stop the hot tag. Rhodes comes in with a knee drop. Stomps on the mat followed by a two count. Damn, I really thought stomps would do it! Running kick by Rhodes. Another tag. Double team suplex is countered into a double DDT. Hot tag to Sin Cara, who was just injured a few minutes ago. Not really enough time to recover in my eyes. Springboard senton by Sin Cara. Some flippy stuff followed by a hand stomp. Springboard arm drag. Sandow is dropkicked to the outside. Hurricanrana sends Rhodes into the ropes. Mysterio goes for the 619, but Rhodes rolls to the outside floor.
Mysterio follows and is thrown into the steps. Running 450 to the outside by Sin Cara. Enzuguri kick to Sandow from the apron. Sin Cara attempts a Swanton Bomb, but Sandow moves. Sandow hits Sin Cara with his finisher, which is called “The End” in English. He gets the three count for the win. Excellent match. A classic typical tag team match that featured a lot of different styles. I really liked it. It was a bit slow at times, because I’m not really a huge tag team wrestling fan, but overall it was great. Match of the night for sure. That match had everything that anyone could ask for. Well done. That was also probably the best performance that Sin Cara has ever had in WWE. He didn’t get injured, so that’s a good start. I saw him do a few things that I haven’t seen before, like stomping the hand. Mysterio was at the top of his game. Sandow is great. Great. One of the top 5 best wrestlers in the company for sure.
Mick Foley and Kaitlyn are in the back. Foley is talking to her about the new WWE 13 video game. Paul Heyman comes up to him and tells him that he should be finding a team. Foley says that the superstars were lining up to be on his team. Foley says his team is set. Heyman says that Punk is looking to victimize Foley at Survivor Series.
Vince McMahon and all the wrestlers are on the stage. The picture is at the top. This follows a Breast Cancer package. John Cena is in the ring with representatives of the Susan G Komen foundation. He thanks the people for buying the gear and helping. There is a drum roll as Cena reveals a one million dollar check. The representatives are happy and talk. Good stuff.
Alberto Del Rio w/ Ricardo Rodriguez vs. Justin Gabriel- “Already in the ring jobber entrance” for Gabriel. How quick will this match be? 3 minutes? Del Rio kicks Gabriel to start. More kicks in the corner. Snap suplex for a one count. I love one counts. Snapmare, back kick, one count. I love one counts. Gabriel drives under a whip, monkey flip, ducked clothesline, springboard clothesline, two count. Boo two counts. Gabriel fights Del Rio in the corner, reversed Irish whip, head scissors to the outside out of the turnbuckle. Baseball slide to the outside by Gabriel. He tries to get back in the ring and is kicked. Del Rio breaks the arm over the ring ropes. Del Rio hooks in an arm lock. Gabriel fights out, but is caught in a tilt-a-whirl back breaker. Another hard kick to the back. Del Rio torques the arm of Gabriel over the front of his body. Another arm lock. Gabriel fights back and is bumped to the mat again. Running stomp by Del Rio. More kicks on the mat followed by a two count. A third arm lock. It’s getting repetitive.
Gabriel tries to roll through the arm lock, but Del Rio holds on. He finally fights out, rolls through a tilt-a-whirl, gets the boots up in the corner, and hits a jumping kick. Springboard moonsault by Gabriel. Awesome move. He misses a splash in the corner and is hit with a running enzuguri. Del Rio hooks in the Cross Arm Breaker. Gabriel taps out. Del Rio wins. Del Rio is no longer hooking in the Cross Arm Breaker with the spinning action. He’s now hooking it in against the mat. Perhaps he will begin to do both. It’ll be things like that that make Del Rio look more like a threat. He’s been buried so much in the past that it’s so hard to take him seriously anymore. He couldn’t even do in 500 matches what Big Show did to Sheamus in one night. All of his title reigns have been failures. Slowly they are trying to rebuild him. Pretty solid match. It wasn’t 3 minutes like I guessed. More like 7-10. Justin Gabriel is getting more and more impressive with his rebuilt arsenal. There is no rush on him, but someday he could become a Kofi Kingston-like mid carder. That’s his ceiling. Then he can look forward to being a million time Intercontinental and United States Champion just like Kofi, John Morrison, and Shelton Benjamin.
Paul Heyman is in the ring. He introduces CM Punk as the best in the world. Punk hobbles to the ring in a new WWE 13 hoodie. There is a random explosion and the WWE 13 banner falls from the sky. Heyman makes sense of it by saying its a larger than life presentation for a larger than life personality. Heyman says Punk is the greatest WWE Champion of all time. Heyman says he was asked to put together a team for Punk. The first guy he chose was The Miz. Next he names Team Rhodes Scholars. I guess this match wont be near as big as we thought it could be. It’s just a random mediocre match. Heyman’s next pick is Alberto Del Rio. No Lesnar? Screw this match. This is waste of time. Punk says he will teach everyone how to survive. Ugh I hope this match does not main event the PPV. Big Show vs. Sheamus better not main event either. I’ll seriously take Cena vs. Ziggler as the main event.
Mick Foley comes to the ring. He says Punk has weaseled his way out of things. He has a problem referring to Punk as a man. Punk wants Foley to turn his good ear towards him and listen. Punk repeats that he had nothing to do with the referee. Foley announces his first guy as Kofi Kingston. Yawn. How about a tag team? It’s Daniel Bryan and Kane. Punk and Bryan in the same match. YES YES YES. My lights just blinked. I’d prefer for the power to go out so I don’t have to see the rest of this. Foley announces Randy Orton next. Are we seriously supposed to believe that these teams were chosen by these guys? It’s just a bunch of combined feuds in one match. How would both guys come up with counters for the other without knowing what the other was doing? Realistically this doesn’t make sense. Punk says that they will eliminate everyone so that he can have Foley one on one. Foley says he wont be competing. He will be the manager. Really? So Foley isn’t even wrestling in it? This is awful. Foley introduces Ryback as the last guy. Shocker. They all brawl. Punk and Heyman exit up the ramp. The faces fight off the heels. Punk raises his championship. Ryback stares. Rhodes is back in the ring and is hit with the Meathook. Shell Shocked. Raw mercifully ends.
Well that was garbage. Another pretty much worthless show. What is the problem? Everyone says Raw needs to go back to two hours. I disagree with that. Is there not enough wrestling? Because there is enough. They are doing a nice job of filling Raw with wrestling. The problem? The matches aren’t good enough quality. Whether its because they are mostly too short, or because they don’t pair up the right people, the matches just aren’t good enough. They have the opportunity to put on high quality wrestling matches each week, but they choose not to. Granted that the matches are better now than they have been in the past, but it’s still under par. I do like how they are using Antonio Cesaro, Del Rio, Gabriel, Barrett, Sandow, Bryan, and Punk in good ways, but the booking is all wrong. What can Daniel Bryan really do with Darren Young or Titus O’Neil? What can Cesaro really do when he’s given 5 minutes a night? What can Del Rio really do when he’s booked the same way for 3 straight years? Surprisingly, the only one that they are using the right way is Wade Barrett. He is in high quality matches each week. Why can’t they do that with Bryan, Punk, and Cesaro? Quality should be the main focus. Do that and Raw will be good.
My biggest problem of the night? No explanation to the involvement by referee Brad Maddox? So they are just admitting that they couldn’t come up with a good finish to the Punk vs Ryback match, so they just did something random that required no explanation? How pathetic.
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