TONIGHT: Mr. McMahon makes his return at the outset of this three-hour Raw, to give Johnny Ace a job performance review. Alberto De Rio was taken out of the World Title match at No Way Out due to a concussion; his replacement will be named tonight. It’s the go-home show for No Way Out, so the hype should be in overdrive. According to correspondents at the show, there is a Steel Cage hanging above the ring.
-After fireworks, Michael Cole intro’d the show from the XL Center in Hartford, Connecticut.
-Justin Roberts introduced Johnny Ace, who came out in his scooter. Cole and Jerry Lawler both gave conflicting rumors about Ace’s job security. Ace got out of his scooter and used a crutch to get onto the apron and into the ring. Cole claimed he still supports Ace despite putting him in a match with John Cena last week. Well that’s stupid. Ace started to do his usual introduction, but before he could get too far, Mr. McMahon’s music hit and he walked out to a huge pop. Cole said McMahon hasn’t been seen since he relieved Triple H of the GM duties and installed Johnny Ace as Raw GM.
McMahon refused to shake Ace’s hand, saying he has no idea where that hand has been. He said he’s all business tonight. He asked Ace to give him one reason he shouldn’t fire his pencil-neck butt right now. Ace responded with a smile and “People Power.” He said he empowers the people and they love him for it. McMahon asked the fans if they love him, and the said no. Ace said they’re the same people who used to boo McMahon years ago. “Fire Johnny” chant as Ace tried to compare himself to McMahon and discuss their similarities. McMahon was not happy that Ace described himself as an “astute businessman.”
He blamed Ace for TWO lawsuits that have ensued about the Brock Lesnar signing. And also, true story, Ace hiring the wrong one-legged wrestler. Why did he have to qualify that with “true story” – shouldn’t we assume all of the stories are true? McMahon also wasn’t happy that Ace rehired Big Show, who hasn’t been good since 1999. Ace was tripping all over his words and Cole and Lawler were laughing. Ace talked about how Show will beat Cena at No Way Out inside a steel cage and promoted his leadership skills. “We can’t even understand you, how are people your friend?” Before Ace could adjust on the fly, Sheamus’ music hit and he walked out.
Vince introduced Sheamus to Ace, as if Ace didn’t know who he was. Sheamus said Ace is in fact a friend, a friend who will fine you $500,000 just because, and who will hold a grudge because you bumped into him. Vince pointed out that #FireJohnny is trending worldwide on Twitter. Sheamus said Ace is a friend who just happens to be the worst GM in WWE history. Cole is back to defending Ace after laughing at his goof-ups earlier. Sheamus demanded that Ace be kicked out on his arse. Ace said Sheamus doesn’t represent the locker room. Ace said he was going to go to the back and find an opponent who will make Sheamus sorry he said those things.
Before Ace could leave, McMahon stopped him. He said that match and opponent better be impressive, as better the rest of the show. Because if they’re not, he’ll hear those two words: “You’re fired.” Well, they gave the line away there, so does that mean he won’t get fired later? McMahon’s music played, and he wheeled around in Ace’s scooter. He then sent it off the top of the ramp (a short fall that looks like it wouldn’t have done much damage).
-They replayed, in slow-mo, Vince sending the cart off the stage.
-Lawler and Cole filled the fans in on Del Rio and how a Khali chop caused him to be concussed during their Smackdown match. If that’s true, that’s impressive for a chop to do that.
-Ace came out and said the opponent of Sheamus is in a bad mood after last week.
(1) Sheamus vs. Tensai “Albert” chants by the fans right off the bat. Sheamus struggled to take Tensai off his feet, but finally did so at 1:11 by taking out the knee of his foe. Tensai went on offense, but it was short-lived. Clothesline sent Tensai over the top rope and Sheamus tumbled out as well. They went to break at 2:29.
Back at about the 6:00 mark. Tensai’s mid-section was red from the beating he has been taking. But he was on offense at this point. He whipped Sheamus chest-first into the buckle, then splashed him. Vader bomb by Tensai for two at 6:51. Sheamus recovered and rocked Tensai. Near-fall at 7:44 for Sheamus. Tensai blocked a back-breaker, just shoving Sheamus over the top rope with a hand to the face. Sheamus landed on the apron and gave the forearm shots to the chest of Tensai. Tree slam by Tensai after Sheamus came off the top rope. Headbutts by Tensai with Sheamus on the mat, just challenging Sheamus to reply. Sheamus was able to create enough separation to nail Tensai with the Brogue Kick for the win.
Winner: Sheamus, at 9:20. Actually took longer than I thought. Tensai didn’t really look as bad as usual in there.
-They went backstage where Vince McMahon and Johnny Ace were watching the monitor with Teddy Long. Vince said Tensai’s loss was strike one for Ace. He asked Ace who will replaced ADR at No Way Out. Vickie Guerrero barged in and said two former World Champs in Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler would love to take the spot. Vince said Ace will take it under consideration…unless Teddy Long has a better idea. Long noted there are four former champions in the building tonight: Ziggler, Swagger, Great Khali and Christian. He suggested a Fatal Four-Way tonight where the winner faces Sheamus on Sunday. McMahon said he loved that idea. Ace tried to take credit for it and shooed Long away. Ace wanted a fist-bump with Vince but Vince noted he had small hands.
-Back in the ring, Tensai was taking out his rage physically on Sakamoto. He ended up being thrown over the top rope and to ringside. The assault continued there and Sakamoto was sent into the ring post. A last ditch effort to get heat on Tensai? Referees finally came out and put an end to it after Sakamoto was thrown into the barricade.
-Cole and Lawler transitioned from what we just saw to patting themselves on the back for the 1,000th episode of Raw. I hope Sakamoto comes back like Big Show did and accuses Cole and Lawler of not caring about his injuries, and instead bragging about Raw. Anyway, the latest Raw 1,000 moment was from 2009 when Seth Green guest-hosted. He even did a talking head.
-R-Truth was talking to himself backstage, then Matt Striker walked up and asked him how he felt after the attack by Big Show a few weeks ago. Truth said Little Jimmy was the one who took it the worst, staying up all night and crying. Truth said this Sunday, Show will lose to Cena. As he continued talking, a fist nailed him in the back of the head. It was Big Show. He didn’t say anything, just left Truth on the ground, motionless.
-They replayed Show’s knockout of Truth.
(2) Santino Marella & Layla vs. Beth Phoenix & Ricardo Rodriguez They showed clips of Marella vs. Ricardo Rodriguez from Smackdown three weeks ago. Beth and Layla started things off. It wasn’t long before Rodriguez got involved, but Layla, who was up in a suplex, kicked Ricardo down. Slingshot suplex by Beth. Rodriguez tagged in to face Santino, but he wasn’t keen on fighting his male counterpart. Not a lot of heat for this. Beth tagged back in and told Rodriguez to get out of the ring and stay out. Layla hammered away at Beth, but Layla connected on a springboard cross-body for two. Ricardo tried to get involved again but Layla headscissored him down while taking out Beth. Santino applied the Cobra to his arm to nail Ricardo with it but Ricardo tried to flee, only to go face-first into the post. Back in the ring, Beth went after Layla’s knee, then gave her the Glam Slam for the win.
Winners: Rodriguez and Phoenix, at 2:55. Crowd had been hot all night ‘til this. I felt bad for Layla, doing her babfyace comeback as champion to no reaction.
Rodriguez celebrated after the match as if he had done a big stroke of business. Marella grabbed hold of Rodriguez’s dress shirt and pulled it off to reveal a purple Justin Bieber shirt.
-Backstage, David Otunga was trying to suck up to Vince McMahon, attempting to get Ace’s job if he gets fired. McMahon said lawyers are parasites. Kofi Kingston barged in and asked where Ace was. Ace walked in and said Truth was not doing well. Kofi demanded Big Show tonight, and Ace granted it, saying it would be a preview of Sunday, as it’ll take place in a steel cage. “Not bad,” remarked Vince.
-Daniel Bryan was walking backstage. He’ll be joining us live next.
-Daniel Bryan came out. He said he’s nothing like CM Punk and Kane. For one, both Punk and Kane have a 95-pound distraction in AJ. He said Kane thinks it’s getting to second base when someone looks at him and doesn’t vomit. He said AJ is still in love with her, and how can we blame her? “Once you go Bryan, you’ll never go tryin’.” But he’s not interested in AJ; rather, he’s interested in the WWE Title. His Q&A will be short this week – will he emerge as the WWE Champion Sunday? Yes. Yes. Yes. CM Punk’s music interrupted.
Punk started in the aisle and said that for someone who doesn’t like AJ, he sure talks about her a lot. In fact, he and AJ have some things in common. AJ is out of Bryan’s league, and in the ring, Punk is out of Bryan’s league. He said AJ’s a little crazy, but he digs crazy chicks. He also digs his WWE Championship. He talked about beating Kane or Bryan Sunday. Bryan stopped Punk by repeating “no.” Bryan said Punk just panders to everyone. He said Punk is the voice of the voiceless, but those people are only voiceless because they have nothing intelligent to say.
He brought up the fans calling Show a sellout, but Punk is the real sellout. Punk told Bryan about a year ago, when he sat atop the ramp and spoke his mind. He said he hasn’t kissed anyone ass or compromised himself for anyone. But since Bryan shattered the glass ceiling, he’s become an obnoxious, insecure, goat-faced moron (amongst other things). “Goat-faced” chant at Bryan as Punk wisely paused to let them continue. He said that Sunday, he’s going to give Bryan a wake-up call, ironically, when he puts him to sleep. That was Kane’s cue as his pyro hit and he came out.
Kane offered to remind Bryan and Punk who he is: The man who set fire to JR, electrocuted Shane McMahon’s testicles, and tombstoned a priest. Kane said his pipe bombs are actual pipe bombs, which is why he’ll leave No Way Out as WWE Champion. “Stop! Guys, stop!” AJ walked out with a mic. AJ said she looked into Kane’s eyes last week and saw that deep down, in that tortured soul, he actually has a heart. Punk even called AJ a crazy chick. The fans applauded. “Crazy chick” chanted the fans. AJ told Bryan that you never truly get over your first love…and she knows she hasn’t. Punk made eyes at AJ as #GoatFae was the number one trend worldwide on Twitter. AJ told Punk he’s the coolest guy she’s ever known in her entire life. Bryan told her to get to the point, and she said she knows the best man will win on Sunday. Johnny Ace came on the Titan-Tron and made a match never seen before in the world: Daniel Bryan & Kane vs. CM Punk & AJ. Aside from the goat-face stuff (which wasn’t terrible, but not great), I really liked the segment. Everybody here seems to have a strong hold of their characters.
-McMahon’s warning from the top of the show to Ace was replayed.
-The Fatal Four-Way is next.
-The announcers plugged the Pizza Tracker from Dominos – in fact, Lawler showed his pizza tracking at ringside.
(3) Christian vs. The Great Khali vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Jack Swagger – Fatal Four-Way #1 Contender for the World Title Hard chop to the chest of Christian by Khali early on, then a right hand to Ziggler. The first minute was Khali’s to dominate. Khali was taken down then Christian splashed him. All three men covered him and Khali was eliminated at 1:52. No wonder he got all that offense in early. They went to break soon after.
Back at 5:37 and Ziggler dropkicked Christian down. All three men got some offense, but Christian landed an elbow off the middle rope. As Christian got the fans behind him, Ziggler snuck up from behind and rolled Christian up for two. Christian came back with a sunset flip on Swagger for two. Swagger locked in the ankle-lock. Swagger rammed himself shoulder-first into the post. Killswitch connected, but Ziggler made the cover for three at 8:37. Crowd liked that. Vickie did not. Christian rolled Ziggler up for two as Ziggler was attending to Guerrero. Face-plant by Christian on Ziggler for a near-fall. Half-crab by Ziggler, then a sleeper, but Christian broke free. Christian tried a spear, but his leg gave out. Monkey-flip into the ring-post, then a spear by Christian. Ziggler kicked out at two. They traded near-falls again. Christian came off the top but Ziggler moved and Christian landed on his feet – his knee gave out again and Ziggler gave him the Zig Zag for the pin.
Winner: Ziggler, at 12:19. Match really picked up with just Ziggler and Christian left, and the crowd sensed it too.
As Ziggler walked up the ramp, Sheamus came out to stand on the top. He went face-to-face with Ziggler and Sheamus held the title over his head.
-Natalya was talking backstage with Vince. Nattie talked about how great Vince’s match with Bret Hart at Wrestlemania was and brought up bringing back the Hart Family again. Nattie wanted to talk more about it later. Vince walked off and the Funkadactyls came up to Vince in tandem and asked if he could overrule Ace about banning Brodus Clay from Raw. They asked him to get funky, so Vince shouted “Somebody call my momma!” the lights dimmed and Clay’s music played as the Funkadactyls danced with him. Okay, that was hilarious. After that was done and Vince straightened his tie, Zack Ryder was shown to the side, mouth agape. “Woo Woo Woo, You know it!” said Vince.
-Kofi vs. Show in a Steel Cage is still to come.
-Plus, Punk and AJ vs. Bryan and Kane.
(4) Ryback vs. Willard Fillmore & Rutherford Hayes - Handicap Match The jobbers actually came to the ring and said the jobbers usually have to wait for Ryback, but tonight, they’re making him went for them. After a Whalers joke, one of the dudes got powerbombed several times in a row. The other just walked out of the ring. He tried to escape but Ryback took his head off with a clothesline outside the ring. Ryback pressed that guy over his head and tossed him over the top rope and back into the ring. Loud “Goldberg” chants. Ryback gave them his finisher simultaneously and made the pin.
Winner: Ryback, at 1:31. As long as they can keep coming up with unique jobber names, I’ll enjoy the ride.
Ryback’s big moves were replayed.
-The steel cage was lowered in the arena. The match is next.
-Hornswoggle was backstage with Vince, watching a clip of his embarrassing imitation of JR on TV. Both had a good laugh. Vince wanted to give Horny a few tips. He put on the cowboy hat and Vince did an even more exaggerated Vince impression. Pathetic. Hornswoggle was dismissed and in walked John Cena. Cena tried to give McMahon some business advice but McMahon reminded Cena he lost at Wrestlemania. Cena said if we’re measuring success in WM wins and losses, Vince has lost a LOT at Mania. Vince changed the subject to Cena vs. Big Show. He didn’t want Cena running down and helping Kofi tonight. Cena said he already had a talk with Kofi and said Vince needs to focus on Ace tonight. He talked of Donald Trump stealing Vince’s catchphrase, then advised him to use it tonight. Cena left and Otunga walked in trying to defend himself against McMahon’s “parasite” comment. Vince said nobody likes a sycophant; someone who would kiss someone else’s behind. He looked to his side and said “no offense” to William Regal, who was sitting on a couch. Regal reacted to Vince’s comment as only Regal can.
-Kofi came out for the steel cage match. The punch to Truth from earlier tonight was shown. Show was walking backstage…he’ll come out for the match next.
-On the No Way Out pre-show on Youtube, Brodus Clay takes on David Otunga.
(5) Kofi Kingston vs. The Big Show – Steel Cage Match Kofi attacked as soon as Show got into the ring, but his offense didn’t last long. Show slammed Kofi into the steel cage and did some trash talking. He got a running start and again sent Kofi back-first into the cage. Show grabbed Kofi by the arm and kicked him in the gut and mid-section several times. It was a methodical pace as Show destroyed Kingston. Hard whip into the buckle, then Kofi got his feet up on a charge. He came off the top, only for Kingston to grab him by the throat. Show threw him into the cage, and Kofi tried to climb. It didn’t work, but Kingston hit Trouble in Paradise, but Show kicked out. Show caught him before Kofi escaped the cage. Show had Kofi by the leg and knocked him out with a punch. Show walked around a while and referee Scott Armstrong signaled that Kofi can’t continue. Show walked onto the steps and out.
Winner: Show, at 7:20. Not designed to be a good match in the traditional sense, but it got over the story they were trying to tell.
Ace was shown watching backstage and smiling. A trainer came into the ring to check on Kofi Kingston.
-Later, CM Punk and AJ team up to take on Daniel Bryan and Kane.
(6) Sin Cara vs. Curt Hawkins CRZ will be proud to get another Hawkins reaction shot from outside the ring, this time during Cara’s entrance. Arm-drag take-over by Cara, then a corkscrew plancha. Hawkins tripped up Cara, then pulled him out of the ring. Hawkins tried to apply an abdominal stretch back inside the ring. Thurst kick by Cara, then a handspring back elbow. Couple light dropkicks, then another unique arm-drag. After a missed clothesline, Cara planted Hawkins with his finisher.
Winner: Cara, at 2:28. I like Cara (or at least the idea of Sin Cara), but this wasn’t his finest effort.
-They showed clips from Backstage Fallout, a WWE YouTube show. Funny that Maxine got after the guy for asking “what happened out there.” When I did announcing for basketball in college, we were specifically told NOT to ask the coach that question at halftime when we chatted on-air with him.
-The countdown clock for Mr. McMahon’s decision about Ace was at about 37 minutes.
-The exterior of the XL Center was shown in Hartford.
-The announcers discussed the top three No Way Out matches. They announced that Triple H would address the WWE Universe for the first time since Brock Lesnar sued him.
-Bryan was stretching backstage when Mr. McMahon walked up to him. He wished Bryan luck for his match and Bryan pointed out that he didn’t think McMahon would like someone like him. McMahon said he doesn’t want to judge a book by its cover. Vince said if Bryan was to walk down the street, no one would mistake him for a WWE Superstar. Bryan said he was fired from WWE once and ended up proving Vince wrong. Bryan said they’re both self-made success stories. McMahon agreed. Vince talked about Bryan’s Mania defeat and said he doesn’t think he has ever finished anything in 18 seconds. Then he walked off.
-Next, a former mystery main event from Raw’s past will compete.
-The latest Memorable Moment was from January 11, 1993, the first Raw episode. It was Ziggler’s favorite episode. He also brought up Bobby Heenan attempting to crash the party.
-Heath Slater was in the ring to take on the former Raw main eventer. He got the mic and said he’s a future main eventer and they shouldn’t be focused on the past. “It’s Slater time!” he shouted. But then “It’s Vader Time!” hit.
(7) Heath Slater vs. Vader “Let’s go Vader” chants after two lock-ups. Vader unloaded on Slater in the corner, but Slater fought back. Vader ran right over Slater when Heath hit the ropes. And another. Hard shots to the back of the head. “You still got it” chants for Vader. Vader with an elbowdrop for two. Suplex found the mark for two at 2:04. Vader knocked around Slater again. Slater tried to slam Vader, but Vader collapsed on him for two. Belly-to-belly throw as crowd chanted for the Vader Bomb. It connected nicely for the win.
Winner: Vader, at 3:17. Somewhere, Matt Striker is marking out.
-A Be A Star video was shown from Hartford earlier in the day. David Otunga, Stephanie McMahon, and kids were interviewed.
-AJ was backstage, freaking out over her match. Punk walked up and said he wouldn’t let anything happen to her. He said it’d be a glorified handicap match. He said they can trust each other, unlike Bryan and Kane. “And we really like each other!” Punk didn’t exactly agree with that. Punk told her to just stand on the apron and not do anything crazy. AJ planted a kiss on Punk’s cheek and walked off.
(8) Kane & Daniel Bryan vs. AJ & CM Punk During Kane’s entrance, clips of Sheamus vs. Kane from Smackdown were shown. High knee, but Punk couldn’t hit the bulldog out of the corner. Instead, Kane booted him down. Bryan came in and laid kicks into Punk’s chest with “yes” chants by him and the fans. Punk with a scoop slam for two at 1:38. Elbow off the top from Punk missed and Kane tagged in. Punk went to make the tag but realized it was AJ and stopped short. Punk was hit and knocked into the corner. He brushed up against AJ and the official indicated a tag was made. Even Cole didn’t think this should happen. AJ walked up to Kane and smiled. She batted her eyelashes and skipped around Kane. Then she stood behind him. Kane turned around and AJ jumped into his arms. She applied the Greco Roman Lip Lock to the Big Red Machine. “Yes” chants from the crowd. AJ then hopped down and Kane tagged Bryan in the chest. Kane then walked to the back. Bryan charged at AJ, but she tagged Punk. Punk knocked Bryan down and hit the elbow from the top. It was enough to get the win.
Winners: AJ and Punk, at 4:57.
Kane was shown looking on from atop the stage as AJ sat Indian-style in the ring, Bryan recovered on the outside, and Punk tried to make sense of what was going on in the ring.
-Mr. McMahon’s decision will come in just over three minutes.
-Mr. McMahon walked out again, this time flanked by a number of security guards. In the ring, Vince said he has a soft spot for Connecticut, and that Stephanie was even born in Hartford. He said one life began in Hartford, and it’s only poetic that one life, professionally, ends tonight. McMahon called Ace to the ring. Ace limped down to the ring with his crutch. The scooter was shown at the side of the stage. And we got another replay of the scooter falling off the stage. Man, they’re acting like that was 20 feet up.
Ace told McMahon he shouldn’t have done that to the scooter, and that Vince didn’t need to bring security, as he’d never hit McMahon. Vince said they’re not for him…but for Ace. He said they’re going to accompany a certain someone out of the ring and out of his business. Ace wanted to discuss what he’s done for WWE since he took over. He said Vince needs him and the fans need him. Ace asked to be kept in charge of the era known as People Power. Vince said he has two words synonymous with him as well. McMahon was about to deliver the money line, but Big Show’s music interrupted.
Show volunteered to help McMahon with the job review. He said Ace made some mistakes, but he gave him an ironclad contract, which gives him the opportunity to say whatever he wants. Vince COULD fire him, but he’d have to pay him millions of dollars per year, for many years, to do absolutely nothing. Show said Vince would never pay someone something without getting anything in return. Show said it’s not Ace’s fault, but McMahon’s. He did everything McMahon asked of him, from movies to photo ops, everything. Show said he finally gets to be what he really is: A giant. Show said McMahon should be more concerned about the other John. On cue, the fans chanted “Cena.”
Show called Cena “the golden goose, the cash cow.” He said the goose will get his feathers plucked at No Way Out. Cena came out and jogged to the ring. Cena claimed he was out on official business. Cena said Show blamed him for not defending him, then the fans for turning their backs, then McMahon for asking him to do all that stuff. Cena asked if he was going to blame McDonald’s next for putting chicken nuggets on sale. He said he should be blaming Ace for giving him that contract, because now we’ve had to listen to Show’s rants. For once, everything revolves around Show and he’s finally stacked the deck in his favor.
But what happens if Show doesn’t beat Cena? Cena said if Show doesn’t beat him at No Way Out, with all he has going for him, there’s no more excuses and nobody left to blame. If Show doesn’t pummel Cena at No Way Out, then Show will only be the world’s largest disappointment. And with the iron-clad contract, Show will have to show up every week and listen to the fans call him a sell-out. “If you don’t win, what happens then?” Vince stepped in and said he’ll be at ringside on Sunday, seated next to Big Johnny. And if Show is that disappointment that people think he is, then Vince will say those famous two words to Ace. Show grabbed Cena by the throat, but security got involved. They were quickly disposed of, so Johnny and Vince tried to break it up. Johnny fell to the mat and Vince took a Knockout punch. It seemed to show a lot of light, but the fans bought it big time. Upon replay, it didn’t look as bad. Johnny ordered Show out of the ring as medics checked on the fallen Vince.
(edited by geemoney on 11.6.12 2315) @gregmparks - live Tweeting of Raw and Impact, wrestling thoughts and other slices of life.
McMahon is so above and beyond everything Big Johnny does, it's laughable.
Good win for Ziggler tonight. I might be wrong, but I thought I heard the crowd chanting for him instead of Christian at the end. He's over (and can get over without Vicki) and he's talented. He deserves a run. About damn time! indeed.
Nice black eye on Cena.
It was nice to see Vader. Too bad they never let him dominate like that when he was working for them.
Ryback needs to stop with the marching. I'm waiting for him to bust out the trombone. Feed him three. Hopefully this winds up with a match against Goldberg at Mania.
Somebody call my momma!
It’s so hard for me to sit back here in this studio, looking at a guy out here, hollering my name! When last year I spent more money, on spilled liquor, in bars from one side of this world to the other, than you made! You’re talking to the Rolex wearin, diamond ring wearin, kiss stealin, WOOOO wheelin dealin, limousine ridin, jet flyin son of a gun. And I'm having a hard time holding these alligators down!
Originally posted by CruelAngel777Who was "the wrong one-legged wrestler" Vince was talking about? If that is a reference to hiring Zack Gowen so long ago, then who was is the right one-legged wrestler?
Zack Gowen. Vince wanted to hire him, but WWE hired someone else before eventually bringing Gowen in too.
You wanted the best, you got... the Out of Context Quote of the Week.
"£8.70 for a measly 16 out of your average fag machine." (dMr)
I haven't seen Vader since I saw him in his jammies in a hotel to Toronto after an indy show a couple months ago!
Hey, what you do in the comfort in your hotel room is your own business!
I know 3 hour RAWs won't work long term, but this one seemed fine. Granted I was watching the Kings/Devils game and was able to skip some of the show's commercials to catch up.
Yea Ryback has to stop the marching, just like Cena has to stop acting like nothing's serious to him. It looks unnatural, and distracts from the physical feat they're trying to get over. Also, he should stop trying to kill a guy on live tv with clotheslines.
Had a lot of fun watching Vader's match. The crowd was hot tonight and they made that match a nice moment for older fans.
Originally posted by geemoneyHe blamed Ace for TWO lawsuits that have ensued about the Brock Lesnar signing. And also, true story, Ace hiring the wrong one-legged wrestler. Why did he have to qualify that with “true story” – shouldn’t we assume all of the stories are true?
This might be a regional thing, but it's a common turn of phrase used to emphasize the outrageousness of an event. As in, as outrageous as it sounds, it's true.
And also, yes, that is absolutely a true story re: Ace hiring the wrong one-legged guy to a developmental deal.
Vader's still got it. I don't care how old he is. I don't care if they don't do another monster heel run with Brock, but could they please do one with Vader? I'd accept him as the guy who beat CM Punk.
Dolph was the best choice to replace Del Rio. Hope he wins it, or at least gets put on the path to winning it.
Punk winning tonight seems to indicate he's losing at NWO, though. I dunno, I think there's better people for him to lose it to.
Originally posted by geemoneyVince talked about Bryan’s Mania defeat and said he doesn’t think he has ever finished anything in 18 seconds. Then he walked off.
So many punchlines, all of which would have ruined Bryan's WWE career. Three hours, seven Vince segments. It was good to see the Chairman, but only because it's been six months or so.
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Michael Cole can't alternate between face, heel, guy who laughs at/buries awfulness and serious match-caller. Much less do all of those on the same show.
Vince doing the money line in the opening promo told me it wasn't coming later on, it's kind of like Kane's ringposts pyro in that way. And so for the second straight PPV, we get a nonsensical, last-second stay of execution for Ace, presumably so Cena can 'choke' another chance to get rid of Laurinaitus when Big Show... I'll say falls through the wall of the cage by 'accident'. Because like any great titan of business, Vince will let the outcome of a match determine if he goes through with firing the guy or not. (Did You Know?: If Florida State had beaten Oklahoma in the 2001 Orange Bowl, there would have been no XFL.)
I think I've figured out Ryback. He's not wrestling, he's working out. He comes out to his Titanton, he's doing lat pulls. He powerbombs Fillmore, he's doing double-arm curls (5 reps). He clotheslines Hayes, that's a one-armed cable punch. Tossing Hayes back into the ring is a military press. His finishing move is a fireman's carry with some high-stepping cardio to up the intensity. All with little charisma, and no positive crowd reaction. Over and over again and again.
Vader looked good in the match, particularly considering he has no knee cartilage. The more-than-usual smarky crowd helped here (and most all night long). There was a shot of Vader after the match where you could see the joy of getting another shot in front of a crowd of that size. Made me smile too.
Ricardo was the comedy highlight of the night for me. Good for Ziggler - though I want to see what happens with him and Swagger before I believe this is any kind of a push, rather than an emergency injury replacement. If anyone has a clue which way AJ is going Sunday, you're a better clue-picker-outer than I - they've purposely left it open for however many rewrites come up between now and No Way Out. The WMD to Vince was only impressive the second time, because they used the NYPD Blue "shakey cam" angle, with the setting turned up to 6.7 on the (Wendi) Richter scale.
The show was entertaining. But can they do it for three hours week-in and week out?
Sheamus vs. Tensai was a good old-fashioned hoss-clubberin' match that was (unsurprisingly) the best match Tensai has had since his return. If Albert is allowed to use his stiff style from Japan, Sheamus is the perfect guy to take it and match him blow-for-blow. I would've accepted Tensai/Sheamus as an emergency fill-in match for the PPV but obviously Ziggler vs. Sheamus will be terrific as well.
Man, did I mark out for Vader. I like the idea of an old star making a cameo every week leading up to RAW 1000, though theoretically, these cameos could be used to get a new guy over. Like, say La Resistance come out next week as the returning stars and it turns out they're the next tag team for Ryback.
"It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone." --- Bart Giamatti, on baseball
This was an enjoyable show, best in a few weeks. Boy did they need it. Can't say I enjoyed anything about the cage match though, I'm tired of seeing talented guys like Kofi being sacrificed to a waste of space like Show.
Highlight of the Sin Cara match was the really loud, angry fan shouting "Bring Rey Mysterio back NOW!" or something along those lines. Cara just doesn't connect with the audience.
Really enjoyed seeing Vader, he looked better than the last time we saw him (impossible for him not to, really) but "You still got it" is a bit of a stretch. Painful to watch him getting up, and I fear for Heath Slater's health after the Vader Bomb.
The show was littered with nods to longtime fans, which I will always appreciate.
I am glad Vader got that moment for him, but putting him on full time? No. The show was good. Vince knows the dickhead boss role so well that it makes Johnny look pale in comparison. Show taking out the tag team champs prior to a PPV may not be the best thing in the world. Ziggler deserves that spot even if the match is going to get buried behind Show/Cena and the Triple Crazy threat.
Bryan and Punk bringing up the Pipe Bomb promo makes me wonder if they are going to turn both of them. If you watch Punk's promo or promos during that month leading to MITB, he talks about changing the title around, ice cream bars and bunch of stuff that has not come to pass. What really made me question it was Bryan cutting a face promo with Vince. I could be off, but it seemed that they were setting something up at MITB.
I have no idea what was said during Cena/Show due to the wife putting the little one to sleep, but I figured it was another Cena jokey promo. Vince taking the WMD was not shocking. It looked weird on replay. The highlight has to be Ryder's expression. Why he is not on TV anymore, I have no idea.
The Wee Baby Sheamus.Twitter: @realjoecarfley its a bit more toned down there. A bit.
I was on the fence about No Way Out, but then they revealed that HHH is going to talk and now I'm all in!
I have a lot of problems of the logic around the main event angle. Not the "Ace only gets fired if Show loses" part, because people making immensely important decisions based solely on the outcome of a match is one of my favorite insane wrestling tropes; it's wrestling, of course everything, including the fates of billion dollar companies and the sex lives of non-employee spouses should be determined by wrestling matches. But I'm still stuck on the whole idea of the power structure in the company since the top angle is so wrapped up in that very issue. But that (and Vince's continued obsession with being such a shitty human being re: JR, and I don't even like JR that much) aside, there was a lot of great stuff on the show.
Sheamus has found a great niche over the last month selling the idea of what a beating he can take and making his matches feel a lot bigger. I'm happy for Ziggler getting another PPV title shot because I love Ziggler, but Tensai/Sheamus - aided in a big way by Sheamus bleeding just a little - felt like it could have actually been a better PPV-worthy title feud than the original Sheamus/Del Rio plan if they hadn't thrown away Tensai's first loss. They matched up well.
What were Tensai and Sakamoto doing out in the ring the whole time between the end of that match and when he started berating and attacking Sakamoto? That Vince skit in the back wasn't short at all.
Is there a possibility that whoever was behind the Golden Age of NXT is now in charge of writing the Ryback jobber spots? They keep upping the ante with these guys. I didn't think "Stan Stansky" could be topped, but "Rutherford 'P.S.' Hayes"? Holy shit! The crowd's relationship with Ryback is weird. They were exceptionally smark-y last night, but you still get the "Goldberg" chant no matter what until he does something huge and the crowd just kind of gives up and buys into him. I kind of hate his attire and have no idea what to make of the marching stuff, but I'm one of those people who saw potential for something HUGE with this guy at SummerSlam when he did his impromptu "I CAN FIX THIS!" rant and then killed half the WWE team, so I really want them to make this work. I guess it's just a matter of which way they go: do you keep feeding him jobbers and cap it with Gillberg to embrace the pseudo-Goldberg thing? Or do you have Cena lose, Show look dominant and then tease a Show vs. Ryback staredown?
Kofi/Show was the best Kofi/Show no-stakes steel cage match, probably. I really liked Kofi's brief comeback segment that started with what looked like a poorly done cage throw that was actually an intentional escape spot. And Kofi taking Show down with single kicks like that looked really impressive, while they still gave Show the "OK, enough of that" knockout shot to end it. I'd rather see someone like Kofi programmed to actually have a shot to beat Show, but still, that's the right way to book that match with those two when you have a PPV main event ahead for one of them.
AJ in the Punk/AJ vs. Kane/Bryan match...that was some Bugs Bunny shit there. Amazing. She literally broke out the Bugs Bunny offense playbook on Kane, and it was the best. (Except the shot of the sore on Kane's lip that we got right before the Bugs Bunny Kiss). The finish seemed kind of strangely abrupt as far as making Bryan look good, but I can't complain given how much Punk/AJ/Kane committed to making that whole thing work. Punk as a put-upon guy who is finally in the position of having his love of crazy chicks come back to haunt him deserves a little more praise.
If Del Rio's out for a while, put the mask on Ricardo and have him work double duty. Sin Cara needs something, anything to do (and to be on SmackDown full time and to get rid of the ring lights and a new theme), and Sin Cara befriended by mysterious new masked wrestler who is secretly Ricardo Rodriguez is better than anything else I can think of outside of "Tyson Kidd becomes The Calgary Kid and teams with Sin Cara".
That Vader segment was kind of heartwarming. I was genuinely nervous everytime he got up off the mat because of his storied history of knee injuries and replacement, but that was such a great potential final showing for Vader, especially in light of his infamous last appearance and how misused he was in general in the comapny. Man, you could really see how much he appreciated the crowd response, and the Vader Bomb was, without qualifiers, amazing. I don't know that they can do anything else with him (unless his kid is further along than I assume), but that was such a nice segment that I don't really care either way.
Within 10 minutes, Lawler referred to Lassie and Gunsmoke and called Rodriquez "Ricky Ricardo."
I've complained about this before, but these old guys name-dropping old TV shows do nothing to connect the WWE to key demographics. "Gunsmoke" went off the air in 1975, 3 years after I was born, and I'm old.
"To be the man, you gotta beat demands." -- The Lovely Mrs. Tracker
Scott, that's a hell of a story. I'm pretty jaded myself at the moment. I just happen to be a person who sat through the ascension of HHH from DX to uberheel, to Austin walking out, to the return of HBK, to Steiner's return.