Raw comes yo you live from Miami, Florida.
Backstage,John Laurinaitis is speaking to the WWE locker room. He said he won the right to be GM, but won’t abuse his power. Tonight, it’s Santino against Ziggler & Swagger for the United States Championship. CM Punk comes in. “We all consider you to be a giant toolbox.” Ace books Punk in a match, defending the WWE Championship against Mark Henry. “Welcome to a new era. And that era is people power.”
The Rock comes out to an incredible pop that lasted almost 5 minutes. “You still got it” chant. Rock says they made history at WrestleMania 28. “Finally, The Rock has come back…home.” He says he wants to thank John Cena, starting a “Cena Sucks” chant. He says Cena gave him a tough match, and that it was an honour to face him in the biggest match of all time. He thanked his friends, family and the millions (three times). “In 1995, The Rock was cut from the Canadian Football League. Now do you have any idea how much you have to suck to get cut from the Canadian Football League?” Ha! So true.
“For those of you that think this is the end – well The Rock says this, he guaran-damn-tees that this is just the beginning.” “Yes!” and “thank you Rocky” chants. It’s not really the beginning. It just means he’s not done after this. The loud “yes” chants started up from there followed by a “thank you Rocky” chant. Rock did some salsa moves, then a fan whistled at him. Rock turned and said the guy was a John Cena fan. He said he woke up with a vision that some people said was impossible. “Would the people like to hear that vision?…That vision is this: That The Rock one day will walk down that aisle as the jabroni beating, pie eating, trailblazing, eyebrow raising, one vision in mind, don’t need no revamping – The Rock’s going to be the WWE Champion.” Fans are chanting “Yes!” again. “Thank you. I love you. That will come true one day.”
Overall, a great segment. It’s going to be hard for him to make a serious title run if he’s not performing full-time. Should be fun to see, though.
United States Championship: (C) Santino d. Dolph Ziggler vs. Jack Swagger (D+)
Santino got worked on early but made his comeback. He went for the Cobra, but Ziggler countered with a neckbreaker. Ziggler hit the Fameasser but Swagger only got a two count, and the two started bickering. Swagger hit Ziggler with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Santino hit Ziggler with a slingshot into the corner and then the Cobra to the face for Swagger for the win at 7 minutes. Post-match, the two chased Santino. He makes it up to the stage, then Brodus Clay stood by him. “Funkasaurus” chant. He hit Ziggler with a headbutt that Ziggler sold perfectly. The segment ends with Clay and Santino dancing with the Funkasaurus girls.
Lord Tensai d. Alex Riley via KO (D)
Tensai comes out with Sakomoto by his side. “A-Train” and “Daniel Bryan” chants. The announcers acknowledged his WWE history, but wouldn’t call him by his former name. He hit a double choke bomb, and the ref stopped the match because Riley was unable to continue. Post-match, Tensai spit in his hand and gave Riley the claw.
Cena’s promo sitting in the stands and talking about second place at ‘Mania aired again.
WWE Championship: CM Punk vs. Mark Henry (B-)
Punk hit an elbow drop off the top, but couldn’t get the bulldog in the corner. Fans are chanting “Yes!” to every Punk hit landed. the Flying Elbow off the top. Punk got dumped to the outside and landed hard on his side for the countout at 13 minutes. Post match, Henry gave Punk the World’s Strongest Slam on the outside. Ace comes out and says he sees a “natural disaster” in Punk’s future. Of note, the word “Tensai” translates to “natural disaster.” A good match, and the crowd was really into it.
Chris Jericho comes out and says he and Punk should celebrate their classic match with a drink. Jericho says he’d lead Punk down the lonely road of alcoholism. He opened up a bottle and poured it on Punk’s head. Jericho actually slipped on the liquid as he went to go kick Punk, but didn’t sell it obviously. Jericho went back and grabbed a bottle of Jack Daniels, saying alcohol would go straight to his head, and smashes the bottle over his head. Excellent segment and solid mic work by Jericho. An Extreme Rules rematch in Chicago is looking more and more likely.
Sheamus comes out to a good pop, which was surprising since the crowd was so Daniel Bryan heavy. Before he can talk, Alberto Del Rio comes out and says he’s a new challenger for Sheamus. “Si! Si! Si!” chant. Awesome. Sheamus said people don’t want to see him talk, but instead, Brogue Kick somebody in the face. ADR says he’s got a match on Smackdown, and if he wins, he gets a World Heavyweight Championship match. ADR’s mic died after. Sheamus then hit a Brogue Kick to end the segment.
Backstage, Daniel Bryan with AJ, watching Sheamus on TV. Josh Mathews asks about the 18 second match at Mania, but Bryan just stares at him. Loud “Daniel Bryan” chant.
Machine Gun Kelly ringside, and gets booed again.
Kofi Kingston d. Cody Rhodes (D-)
Rhodes hit Kofi with the Disaster Kick. Big Show’s music hits, and they show stills of Big Show KO’ing Rhodes at WrestleMania. Rhodes turned around and got a Trouble in Paradise kick for the pinfall at 2 minutes.
Backstage, Abraham Washington walks to Mark Henry and asks to represent Henry for his career.
Eve came out to the ramp and talked about her WrestleMania moment in kicking Zack Ryder in the groin. “We want Ryder” chants. Her promo was terrible.
The Miz d. Zack Ryder (D)
Ryder got worked on but made his comeback. He hit the Broski Boot for a two. Ryder got tossed shoulder-first into the turnbuckle, then a Skull Crushing Finale for the pinfall at 3 minutes.
John Cena Main Event Promo
“I never thought of losing, but now that it’s happened the only thing to do is to do it right.” He says he talked a lot of smack before Mania, but wasn’t going to make excuses for losing. He meant every single thing that he said to Rock over the past year. “You’re a loser” chant. Cena asks if today would be the day he lashes out at the WWE Universe. “YES! YES! YES!” He says it won’t happen. He admits defeat, but thanks everyone who supported him, and will work his ass off to make things right again. Lame.
Cena says he’s not out now to call out Rock. “We want Lesnar” chant. “Dwayne Johnson, after all he’s been through with me, has earned my respect.” He calls Rock a champion, an inspiration and he can truly consider him the greatest WWE superstar in this industry. Another “we want Lesnar” chant. Cena says he lost to the better man, and the crowd starts chanting “Yes! Yes! Yes!” Cena starts yelling “YES! YES! YES!” as well. “Daniel Bryan, you owe me one.” He calls rock out to congratulate him on the win. But instead…
Brock Lesnar’s music hits! The crowd absolutely erupts! “Holy shit” chant as Lesnar walks around the ring. He gets in and offers Cena a handshake, but quickly grabs him and F5′s him to end the show! As the camera zoomed to his face, Lesnar says he had been waiting a long time to do that.
Three Stars of the Show
* Brock Lesnar
** The Rock
*** Chris Jericho
Final Grade: A
Wow, what a show! The crowd was what made this show even crazier, as they were hot from start to finish. A lot happened tonight: Rock said he was going for the WWE Championship, Lord Tensai finally debuted, Lesnar returned and Jericho/Punk had a nice story advance. Overall, probably a top-3 show of 2012. Daniel Bryan didn’t do anything outside of the backstage segment, but had a nice promo with the crowd once Raw ended.