ESTA NOCHE: Will we find out more about this ďheĒ Kane was babbling about last week? Thatís all WWE.com hints at for this week. On with the show!
-Highlights aired of the main event match from last Monday, including Kaneís apparent psychotic breakdown.
-Now Shane AND Stephanie were together in a vignette similar to the past few weeks. Stephanie went over all the stuff that has happened since Vince left with injury. Shane said theyíd ask one more time for everyone to work together, or there will be consequences. He said theyíd be watching.
-Right to the arena, in the middle of a brawl, itís Shawn Michaels and Chris Jericho at ringside. The two were fighting it out pretty good until Lance Cade came to save Jericho. Referees were down to break things up as well.
-Before Michael Cole & Jerry Lawler could get much more than a few words in, Kaneís pyro hit and he came out. The Big Red Machine had a small bag in his hand and stared down the announcers. He angrily said he was sorry to them.
-They went backstage again with Michaels and HBK still going at it. Referees and faux security separated them again.
(1) Mickie James vs. Katie Lea Paul Burchill came to the ring with Katie. Full-nelson by Katie into a roll-up by Mickie for two. Another one soon after for one. Mickie missed a shoulder to the gut and Katie took advantage. Hair pull by Katie. Hip-toss, a bit sloppily by Lea, for two. Nice shot of Mickieís face buried in Katieís cleavage there. Katie set Mickie on the top forpe and got a kick to the shoulder. Mickie tried to counter with a tornado DDT to no avail. She then hit a hurricanrana and a Thesz Press from the top for the win.
Winner: Mickie, at 3:24.
Post-match, Burchill got in the ring to hold Mickie while Katie took her title and slapped her a number of times. That brought out Kofi Kingston, who had a run-in of his own with Paul last week. I smell a mixed-tag match. Kofi laid out a challenge to Burchill for the IC Title tonight. Oh, I guess thatís for now. Burchill headed back to the ring as the commercial hit.
(2) Paul Burchill vs. Kofi Kingston, Intercontinental Title Match Match was joined in progress. Lots of cheers for Kofi early on. Inside cradle by Kingston for two. High hip-toss, again for two by Kofi. Back to the arm-bar. More athleticism from Kingston, including a standing dropkick for two. Hit a few spots, work on the arm seems to be the strategy here. Burchill turned the tide after Kofi missed a high-risk maneuver. Good heel heat for Burchill too. Burchill continued to work the ribs of Kofi, and even got a near-fall. Kofi got the feet up on a charge and made his comeback. Legdrop by Kofi, but Katie tried to distract. Mickie pulled her feet out from under her and Kofi hit the Trouble in Paradise to retain the title.
Winner: Kingston, at 5:49. This was one of those matches that was pretty decent, but it was made better by a hot crowd. Good showcase match for two relative newcomers.
-Santino Marella and Matt Striker were backstage discussing haircut techniques when Santino mentioned that he made an open challenge to the locker room to face him tonight. He said no one will remember Rey Mastrio beating him last week. Striker walked away when Kane walked up to Santino. He demanded to know where CM Punk was. Santino asked if he checked the Pepsi machine. Kane asked again and Santino then said he was in the locker room. After Kane walked away, Marella downed about a dozen Tums from a nearby cart. Product placement...thatís how you get high-class sponsors.
-Kane and CM Punk were face-to-face in the locker room. Kane said deep down inside, he knew he was dead. I bet Kaneís mask is in the bag! Kane said he needed Punk in the ring one-on-one tonight. Punk said his biggest match is in six days and Kane wants a match? Kane said it wasnít about the title. Punk said he needed to prove he wasnít a fluke, so Kane was on for tonight. Punk asked what was in the bag and Kane backed away laughing.
-Text Voting! Which of the three champions is in most danger of losing his title this Sunday at Great American Bash?
-Todd Grisham was backstage with John Cena, who was staring intensely into the camera. Grisham revealed that JBL challenged Cena to a New York City Parking Lot Brawl for this Sunday. Cena said heís tried to put on a happy face for the McMahons the past few weeks, but he canít do it anymore. Cena said for those who know the match, they know why thereís no smile on his face. He said it wasnít so much a match, but a war. He said the match was in a parking lot surrounded by cars, with any weapons available and anything goes. Cena said he doesnít like JBL and that they go all the way back to WrestleMania 21. Cena said it was fitting that theyíre fighting at the Great American Bash, as JBL claims to be a Great American and Cena canít wait to Bash him through a car. He said he has a challenge of his own, and Cryme Tyme walked in. Cena challenged him to find any two partners, and if heís got a pair, meet them in the ring for a six-man tag match. Good, long promo to preview the match, if not a bit overly-scripted and The Rock-ish. Actually sounded like a preacher preaching at times too. But at least no poopy references.
-Santino was in the ring out of break, and wasted no time asking the person who accepted his challenge to come out. Whoever it is, theyíre ďdeaf meat.Ē Uh-oh....itís Beth Phoenix.
(3) Santino Marella vs. Beth Phoenix Apparently, Santino bashed women in his latest episode of Santinoís Casa on WWE.com. What about when Maria and the whole diva roster kicked his butt? Beth was about to punch him but Santino began feeling her material, a la George Costanza. Beth picked Santino up and slammed him and got some more offense in. Santino (ďwith the power of a manĒ) whipped Beth into the buckle. Marella missed a charge, only to get rolled up by Beth for the win.
Winner: Beth, at 1:27. Iím torn on this one. I like that theyíre giving Beth something to do and I donít mind the wrestling men thing (plus it was kind of a fluke win), but this seems to turn her face when she was such an awesome heel.
-Kelly Kelly was warming up backstage for her match next.
-Also, CM Punk faces Kane tonight.
-Kelly Kelly came out for her match. Before her opponent could come out, the new World Tag Team Champions came out. Ted Dibiase took the mic and said he doesnít care that she has a match, they have something to see. He then told her to leave. Cody said theyíve received a lot of criticism, with people saying they went bad. He said theyíre not theyíre fathers....theyíre better. Cody said his ďwhen youíre this talented, you donít pay duesĒ line. Ted said theyíre in their early 20s, so in 10 years, theyíll be entering their prime. Hacksaw Jim Duggan interrupted by coming to the ring.
Duggan wanted to talk to them from the heart, because he knows their fathers and has been in the ring with them. He said, like them, he was old-school. He said his generation always respected those that came before them. Duggan gave them their dues as performers, but said as people, they have a lot of growing up to do. Duggan was going to leave, but Cody brought him back because he wanted to talk to him. Cody said when he thinks about ďgrowing up,Ē he thinks of a 54 year old man coming out in gym shorts trying to relieve his glory days, when they werenít that glorious to begin with. Ted quoted Steve Austin, saying unless you think you have what it takes to be a champion, you shouldnít be in WWE. He then asked if Duggan really thought he has what it takes to win a title. Dibiase noted Duggan carries the same 2X4 from 25 years ago and does the same lame chants, begging for a reaction. He called it pathetic, then called Duggan pathetic. ďIf anyone needs to grow up, itís you.Ē The tag champs then left the ring as Duggan was left, head hanging. Holy shit, that was awesome.
As the tag champs walked to the back, JBL was on the video screen. He liked what he saw in the tag champs, and then asked them to main event tonight with him. The two seemed to accept the offer.
-Up next: CM Punk vs. Kane.
(4) Kane vs. CM Punk Punk tried to slide under Kaneís legs, but Kane grabbed his hair to stop him. That was unique. Punk used his educated feet to knock Kane out of the ring. Kane got pissed and went for a chair, but stopped short of picking it up. He backed his way to ringside and dodged a baseball slide from Punk, who he then hit with an uppercut. Corner clothesline from Kane. After a near-fall, he bodyslammed the champ then hit a low dropkick for two. Crowd was behind Punk. After fighting out of a rest-hold, Punk tried for a roll-up, but couldnít get the big man down. Enziguiri by Punk, then a knee in the corner. He followed it up with another one. Still, Kane threw Punk off on a bulldog attempt. Punk then tried taking Kaneís legs out from under him. High-risk time, as he came off the top with a cross-body for two. He couldnít get Kane in the GTS, but Kane grabbed his throat. Punk somehow kicked Kane in the head, but was pushed out of the ring on a springboard attempt. Punk sent Kane face-first into the ring post, then came off the apron with a bulldog. Referee John Coneís count got to nine when Punk got into the ring to beat the count.
Winner: Punk, via count-out at 5:24.
After the match, Kane got mad and threw chairs in the ring. Instead of high-tailing it, Punk avoided the chairs and Kane got back in the ring to attack. He put Punkís neck/throat in the chair and went to the top. Batistaís music hit before Kane could come down on Punk. He still had time to do it, but instead got down and waited for Batista. The Animal speared Kane and nailed him in the skull with a chair. Batista helped Punk up, so Punk offered his hand. Batista responded by saying he was saving Punkís ass so he could take him on Sunday, then patted him on the cheek. Punk then shoved Batista and Batista spinebustered (spinebusted?) Punk. Even though Punk took the beating from Batista, it was nice to see Punk fight back.
-They showed what happened to JBLís limo last week. Tonight, he, Dibiase and Rhodes face Cena and Cryme Tyme.
(5) Chris Jericho vs. Paul London Didnít London get trained by HBK? They didnít mention it, only saying London has tried to emulate HBK and has always looked up to him. Jericho dominated London and threw him out of the ring as London, as always, landed with a thud. Y2J choked London on the middle rope. Lance Cade was at ringside, brandishing a chair in case Michaels came out. London came back with a spinning heel kick, but missed a slingshot clothesline. Jericho did more damage to London and even began to beg Michaels to come out. Walls of Jericho and itís over.
Winner: Jericho, at 2:59. Good squash for Y2J.
-Jericho grabbed the mic and told London to make this loss a turning point in his career....does he want to follow Jerichoís path of righteousness, or HBKís path of cheating and lying? He said Michaelsí path leads to pain whereas his leads to greatness.
HBK then came out, but only to the top of the stage. Cade held the chair ready and Jericho was in the ring, fists up, ready for a fight. HBK had a mic and said by now, everyone knows that he canít change Jerichoís mind, and there is no way heís changing Michaelsí. HBK said there is one thing they do agree on: This Sunday, the worst is yet to come.
-Jamie Noble told Layla it was time they hook up (he knows sheís been looking at him). He said they could be the new power couple. She said she doesnít date short men. He told her too look it up on the internet, 5'6" is average height for a man. He did his ďthe next person I see, Iím gonna beat up for youĒ thing. Snitsky walked over and told Noble to keep the noise down, he could hear him down the hall. Snitsky walked away and Layla told him hereís his chance. Noble called Snitsky back over and trash talked him. Layla said he didnít have to do this. Noble said Snitsky got a ride on the pain train to ďNoblesville.Ē Noble grabbed Layla and told Snitsky to follow him to the ring. The best part was Noble yelling off camera to Snitsky as he was walking to the ring.
-In the arena, Noble and Layla walked to the ring. Snitsky then walked out. Noble attacked Snitsky upon his entrance to the ring, but Snitsky through him off. Noble came back for more but Gene was more than happy to dish out more punishment. Pumphandle Slam and Snitsky, with a black eye courtesy of a broken nose by Punk, did some yelling. Once Snitsky left, Layla got on the apron like she was going to go comfort Noble, but then thought twice and left.
-Next, itís six-man tag main-event time.
-The McMahon/McMahon video from the top of the show aired.
-The results from the mobile text voting: Punk is in most danger of losing his title (55%), then Mark Henry with 25% and Triple H with 20%.
-Cole and Lawler went over the G.A.B card.
JBL had to walk to the ring like a commoner with his limo destroyed last week. He walked out with his partners as the show went to a commercial.
(6) Ted Dibiase & Cody Rhodes & JBL vs. Cryme Tyme & John Cena Cena vs. JBL seems to be getting top billing over the title match. JBL didnít accept Cenaís offer to start off with him, so Rhodes did instead. He paid the price too. Shad tagged in and hit a hard clothesline, then a press slam. Well, Rhodes slipped out of the slam and tagged Dibiase. Double-underhook over-head suplex by Shad for two. JTG came in and a double-team led to a two-count. Dibiase and Rhodes came back with a double-team of their own on JTG. Rhodes did some punching and strutting, reminiscent of his father. JTG blocked the last one though and hit a neck-breaker, but the pin was broken up by JBL. JBL finally came in and threw some hard punches at JTG in the corner. He egged on Cena, who had to be held back by referee Marty Elias. Dibiase and Rhodes took advantage of the distraction. Dibiase went low with a dropkick after tagging in and began to work on the leg of JTG. They continued working the leg as the show went to what is likely the final commercial break.
Rhodes was in this time against Shad, still cutting off half the ring like a good heel duo. Cena almost bowled over the ref in an attempt to get at JBL. Rhodes mis-fired on a bulldog and both men were down. Cody got up first and cheap-shotted Cena off the apron. Dibiase came back in and ended up trading punches with Shad. Cody back in, but he missed a moonsault. Shad leapt and made the tag to Cena. He was all over both tag champs and JBL hopped off the apron to avoid him. Cena FUíd Dibiase, then hit the Throwback on Rhodes. To the top, Cena hit the legdrop on a bent-over Rhodes, which looked like it overshot (thatís a tough move to do and often looks ugly). He locked the STFU on Rhodes, but JBL came in causing a DQ.
Winners: Cena and Cryme Tyme by DQ, at 14:46. Very good main event. By the numbers booking, but thatís good sometimes.
JBL goaded Cena into following him backstage. Cena chased after him, but then lost him. He ran down a hallway (and past a Pepsi machine, of all things). He went out the exit and cautiously looked for JBL. Cena couldnít find him and was eventually sucker punched by JBL from behind (possibly with something metal?), then propped Cena, sitting up, against a car. JBL got in a car of his own and apparently slammed into Cena. We didnít see it of course. JBL got out of the car, surveyed the damage and that was it. WWE sure likes to go to that "someone gets hit by a car" well often.
What a bad finish to by far the best match of Cryme Tyme's lives. Rhodes and DiBiase are great. Cena's promo was really good, although some of the figurative language was a too melodramatic. Also, why'd he keep talkin' like a cowboy. I wish Punk and Batista had gotten promo time though.
I hope Shane and Stephanie's recourse is to rehire King William Regal to bring order as the general manager.
That was a terrific RAW. It felt like a 1998 episode where Anything Can Happen!
I'll count the awesome:
Shane and Stephanie threatening to ruin the good times by showing up next week if everyone still won't pull together.
Smashing cutting to a Y2J and HBK pull apart, then Kane carrying around a Burlap Sack and scaring the crap out of everyone. Lillian and the ringside crew FLEEING IN TERROR was great. The apology from Kane was unexpected.
Mickie's boobs vs. Katie Lea Burchill's boobs. Then Kofi dropping trou during his run in. I haven't laughed that hard at a depantsing since Evolution powerbombed Scott Steiner out of his pants and revealed his purple speedo underpants.
Burchill having the best TV match he's had in years against Kofi. His counter everything Kofi does into a flapjack offense was awesome.
Santino talking to Matt Stiker's slick new do. Kane asking for Punk. "Did you check the Pepsi machine?"
Punk admitting to Kane there are naysayers who don't believe he should be World Champion and knowing he has a lot to prove.
Beth Phoenix intimidating Santino with her big biceps. Santino begging off being punched in the face and then sexytime groping said biceps.
John Cena cutting a pretty good serious big money promo in response to the Internet overdoing the ridiculous complaining about JBL is Poopy last week.
Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes cutting a career-making heel promo on Hacksaw Jim Duggan that instantly made me their fan.
Punk proving nothing by winning his match with Kane via countout. Kane tossing chairs, beating the crap out of Punk, wrapping the chair around his neck, and attempting to murder him from the top rope. Batista running in, refusing Punk's friendship. Punk trying to stand up for himself and getting spinebustered. As a CM Punk non-fan and one of those very detractors Punk spoke of, this was all pure entertainment for me.
Jericho busting out the double underhook backbreaker and the Lion Tamer. Then his promo to the fallen Paul London to follow Jericho's lead and not be like Shawn Michaels. Jericho is currently performing at a Godly level.
Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes (in Ted's third TV match, if you can even call when he won the title with Rhodes a match) performing at a near-Brain Busters level of tag team wrestling. The quick tags. Keeping Cryme Tyme on their side of the ring. Rhodes's leg gravevines and tags. It was beautiful.
Attempted vehicular homicide actually fitting the themes of both the Parking Lot Brawl and the car crash logo and graphics for this year's Great American Bash.
Only things I didn't like:
JBL getting disqualified for breaking up a pin attempt.
Originally posted by John OrquiolaSmashing cutting to a Y2J and HBK pull apart
That was like the best Producing that Kevin Dunn has ever Kevin done. I LOL'd. The escalation from Shane to Steph to Shane & Steph Together being all "guys, seriously" was funny too.
Burchill having the best TV match he's had in years against Kofi.
Kofi came off as more of a star wrestling Paul Burchill than he did wrestling Jericho. They need to sign this crowd and tour with them.
Batista running in, refusing Punk's friendship. Punk trying to stand up for himself and getting spinebustered. As a CM Punk non-fan and one of those very detractors Punk spoke of, this was all pure entertainment for me.
Ah but. Punk getting chumped means Punk retains.
Wait, what happened to Rey Mysterio? I thought he was good.
Cryme Time really looked great in the ring as did Paul Burchill against Kingston. Even Snitsky looked good but that was because of his opponent.
The last segment sucked but it appeared that Cena got out of the way and disappeared. At least the wrestling gossiping sites are working it that way. BTW - that segment in the parking lot was filmed in advance.
Still don't know where they are going with the Kane angle...
If JBL had just lined Cena up against that car door to deliver a crushing boot to the skull, that would've been damn near a perfect Raw. Instead, they leave a bad taste in everyone's mouth. It reminded me of that classic Hogan/Rock promo before Wrestlemania 18, which was undermined in that same show by the NWO running a truck into an ambulance carrying the Rock.
Isn't London also a former HBK student? I'm surprised they didn't add that to the storyline as well, unless London comes out next week inspired/disgusted by Jericho's postmatch speech.
Beth's win over Santino could've included a few more power moves. I've never seen Beth wrestle so....is flukily a word?
(edited by Big Bad on 15.7.08 0239) ďHow is it that I am a good actor? What I do is I... pretend to be the person Iím portraying. Youíre confused. Case in point: in Lord of the Rings, Peter Jackson comes to me and says ĎI would like you to be Gandalf the Wizard,í and I said ĎYou are aware that I am not really a wizard?í and Peter Jackson said ĎI would like you to use your acting skills to portray a wizard for the duration of the show.í So I said ĎOkayí and then I said to myself ĎMmm.. How do I do that?í And this is what I did: I imagined that I was a wizard, and then I pretended, and acted, in that way on the stage. How did I know what to say? The words were written down for me in a script. How did I know where to stand? People told me where to stand." -- Sir Ian McKellen, Extras
I think my very favorite part about Santino is how even though he seemingly can't wrestle, only speaks broken english, and has no loveable qualities at all, he still manages to find friends to hang out with.
Santino obviously had the line of the line, that totally caught me off guard.
Hooray for C.M. Punk Asking Logical Questions to Kane: "Who is 'he'?" and "what's in the bag?" But it's like Lost...even when people think to ask the important questions, they just aren't given answers.
I don't agree with continuing the "fluke champ" plot. Punk beat Edge and JBL in one night, not long after making the finals of the King of the Ring tournament. He's established as a successful RAW guy even if he's relatively new to the show. He doesn't need to face the superheavyweights to prove a point. Although, Snitsky selling the injury a week later doesn't hurt Punk's image. I do miss the Anaconda Vice.
The Batista confrontation was awkward. The audiences are too conditioned to pop for a big move, and when the more established guy gets to do it, it hurts the new, smaller champ.
BUT seeing PUNK fight off JBL, Kane, and Snitsky suggests he's ready to rumble against Batista. The recent RAWs have sold me on that match. That's smart work.
Another strong show for me, but I admit I had to tape the show after getting sucked into the Home Run Derby.
"To be the man, you gotta beat demands." -- The Lovely Mrs. Tracker
Originally posted by Super Shane SpearI think my very favorite part about Santino is how even though he seemingly can't wrestle, only speaks broken english, and has no loveable qualities at all, he still manages to find friends to hang out with.
Did you see the look on Striker's face though? He didn't seem too interested with what Santino was saying.
It's like they're daring me to watch their shows. A change in the announce teams was necessary, but this is a zero-sum adjustment. Nothing bold. Nothing fresh. Lawler would work much better as a GM for either show.