Raw #1,003 comes to you live from Dallas, Texas.
CM Punk d. Big Show via DQ (D)
Show dominated early with power moves, but Punk eventually made a comeback. Midway through the match, Daniel Bryan’s music hits, and he comes down to the ring screaming “NO!” Back in the ring, Punk and Show are still going at it. Punk hits a springboard clothesline, but Bryan jumps in and attacked Punk, applying the “NO!” Lock for the DQ at 6 minutes. Show stares at both men, then gives Punk an elbow drop to his lower back. John Cena runs in for the save, and knocks out both guys from the ring. Raw’s new GM, AJ, skips in and books the main event for tonight: CM Punk & John Cena vs. Big Show & Daniel Bryan. Didn’t see that one coming! Overall, the match was never long enough for it to get good. The non-finish was an obvious call given the triple threat match on Sunday for SummerSlam.
Brock Lesnar and Triple H contract signing for SummerSlam. I hate how they happen sometimes and not others. It’s not even a uniform policy.
“Did You Know” involving Summerslam Axxess autographs.
Backstage, JTG is complaining to Kaitlyn about Raw being three hours and that he still can’t get a match. That’s because you suck. AJ walks in and confronts JTG, then tells him to get to the ring for his match. AJ asks Kaitlyn if she thought she was unstable. Kaitlyn says, “I can think of many words to describe you and unstable isn’t one of them.” AJ made some weird faces to end the segment.
Ryback d. JTG (D-)
JTG got minimal offence before Ryback smashed him. Ryback hit a stiff powerbomb and clothesline, following by Shell Shocked for the pinfall at 2 minutes. “Feed me more” and “Goldberg” chants throughout. That’s what JTG gets for his Twitter rants, I suppose.
Piper’s Pit later tonight. The RAWActive choices are: #Y2JPit, #MizPit or #DolphPit. I’m 100% sure that this is not a legit pole. Jericho will win this.
Summerslam pre-show match will be a US title match: Santino vs. Antonio Cesaro. It’s available on Facebook, WWE.com and YouTube.
Backstage, Roddy Piper is talking to Shawn Michaels. Piper asks about HBK facing Lesnar. HBK pauses to take a phone call, allowing Piper to leave. Only Michaels’ end of the call is heard, but it’s HHH on the other end, saying that he’s going to be late. HBK looks rattled and will surely take a beating tonight.
R-Truth d. Heath Slater (F)
Michael Cole announces that the Tag Team Championships are on the line at SummerSlam: The Prime Time Players vs. R-Truth & Kofi Kingston. Slater got a little bit of offence, but Truth quickly hit a DDT for the pinfall at 1 minute. Post match, the PTP came down and beat the crap out of Truth. Titus O’Neil hit Sky High to end the segment. As expected, no mention of A.W.. If you’ve been reading this site of late, you know I think this whole thing is bullshit. More news about the firing has come out since then, but the general idea is that it was a combination of his Kobe Bryant rape joke with his Linda McMahon political campaign attack that broke the camel’s back.
A bunch of Touts are aired from Mark Henry in London, England for the Olympics. I’m incredibly sick of Tout already.
SummerSlam’s Social Media Ambassador will be Jersey Shore’s Pauly D. Kill me now. Hasn’t the Jersey Shore fad peaked? WWE is always a few steps behind pop culture.
Sheamus/Alberto Del Rio recap. Booker T tells WWE.com that he’s cancelling their SummerSlam match. ADR responds with a Tout, and will confront Booker about it on SmackDown.
Jesus Christ, enough with the video packages and Tout bullshit. 3-hour Raw’s are fucking awful.
Sin Cara d. Tensai w/Sakamoto
Tensai gave Sakamoto a nice shove on his way down the ramp. What a gentleman. Why do the lights still change colours for Sin Cara’s matches? Tensai in control early, but Cara got the upper hand. He hits a Swanton Bomb that basically missed, then gave Tensai a headscissors and knocked Sakamoto off the apron. Cara hit a springboard tornado DDT for the pinfall at 2 minutes. Post-match, Tensai snapped and gave Sakamoto a double choke bomb and a running senton. Cara had good offence as usual, but not enough time to really display it. Tensai looks like he’s jobbing for his racist Tout, because he doesn’t appear to have any real direction right now.
Backstage, Shawn Michaels is still rattled and asking if anyone has seen HHH.
“Did You Know” is WWE’s ratings over other networks.
Piper’s Pit with Roddy Piper and special guest Chris Jericho
Piper’s Pit results are: Jericho 55%, Ziggler 24% and Miz 21%. Cole also plugs Jericho vs. Ziggler for SummerSlam. Piper said the last time he saw Jericho was when Mickey Rourke punched out Jericho, and Jericho said last time he saw Piper was when he beat him at WrestleMania. That’s really the last time they’ve seen each other? I call bullshit. Jericho says he’s honoured to be on Piper’s Pit for the first time. Piper says the fans used to hate him just like they used to hate Jericho, but now the fans love both of them.
Vickie Guerrero and Dolph Ziggler interrupt. Ziggler said Jericho needs to hang up his obnoxious jacket with Piper’s skit after he beats him on Sunday. Jericho says he couldn’t hear Ziggler because he was focused on the bowl of spaghetti on his head. Vickie tried interrupting, but Jericho screamed at her. “WILL YOU PLEASE, SHUT. THE HELL. UP!?” Jericho says he’ll prove he’s the better man on Sunday.
The Miz is out next. “Really? Really. Really?” Miz says he’s taking over Piper’s Pit–his guest will be Ziggler, so Jericho and Piper can leave his ring now. Jericho punched Miz and took both him and Ziggler out of the ring. Overall, the segment didn’t do much. It helped Jericho as a face, but accomplished nothing.
Dolph Ziggler d. Chris Jericho & The Miz (B-)
Jericho got worked on as the lone face. Miz and Ziggler eventually argue and turn on each other, allowing Jericho to come back. Jericho hit a nice dive over the top rope to the outside. He threw the announce table top onto Ziggler and Miz, but the table itself was never used after that. Jericho hit his usual offence on Miz, but Ziggler broke it up. They eventually did a three-way spot in the turnbuckle–powerbomb into superplex that left all three laying. Ziggler hit the Fame Asser on Jericho for two, then Miz hit a Skull Crushing Finale on Ziggler for two. Miz escaped a Walls of Jericho, eventually leading to a Jericho Codebreaker on Ziggler. He pins Ziggler, but Vickie puts Ziggler’s leg on the bottom rope to break it up. Jericho’s yelling at her, so Miz tries a rollup for two. He tries for an SCF, but Jericho counters into another Walls of Jericho. Vickie hops on the apron to distract the ref, as Ziggler gives Jericho a Zig Zag for the pinfall at 12 minutes. Overall, a well done match. Hands down the best of the night. I expected Ziggler to lose given that he’s likely to win on Sunday.
Backstage, CM Punk is stretching before Eve walks in. She asks about the new CM Punk, but Punk says nothing’s different. Eve says no one believes that, including John Cena. Punk says he’ll go and tell Cena to his face.
More Pauly D tweets. This is me not giving a fuck.
Replay of Show/Punk that opened the show.
Backstage, HBK is still nervous. He got a bottle of water, but got spooked by Cena walking behind him. HBK says he’s fine and leaves. CM Punk walks in and says he’s not ‘the guy’ to complain and take shortcuts because the WWE Championship means everything to him. Punk said he’s not going to stab anybody in the back, and Sunday, he’ll do everything he can to keep the title. At the end of the night, he’s going to make sure “that it’s all about me.” A solid promo by Punk. His ‘stab in the back’ comment suggests there could be a heel turn on Sunday.
Wade Barrett video package styled like the FIght Club movie.
Layla & Kaitlyn d. Beth Phoenix & Eve (D)
Cole says Eve vs. Kaitlyn on SmackDown will determine Booker’s assistant. Layla controlled the offence early, and eventually tagged in Kaitlyn, which was when the heels got the upperhand. Kaitlyn ducked a Phoenix charge in the corner, then rolled her up for the pinfall at 4 minutes. I’m picking Eve to win on SmackDown.
Very long Triple H/Brock Lesnar video package recapping their entire story. No more video packages please.
“Did You Know” WWE Home Video has 75 out of the top 100 selling sports DVDs in America.” Very skewed stat.
CM Punk & John Cena d. Big Show & Daniel Bryan (C+)
Bryan and Cena start out. Show asks for a tag, but Bryan yells “NO!” repeatedly. Duelling “let’s go Cena/Cena sucks” chants. Cena and Punk kept trying to one-up each other, and all the tags were made without their partners’ consent (no-look back tags). Cena got worked on early, and Punk eventually tagged himself in. Punk went for a cover on Bryan, but Show fell on top of him to break it up. Punk is hurting and looking for a tag, but Cena is still recovering on the outside. Show winds up for a KO punch, but Bryan tags himself in and yells at Big Show to get out. Show gets out and sits in a chair at ringside. Punk and Bryan both go down. Cena tries to tag in, but Punk gets up and hits a pair of shoulderblocks, then a spinning side slam and winds up for the 5-Knuckle Shuffle! He bounces off the ropes, but Cena tags himself in and hits Punk’s running knee bulldog before winding up for a GTS. Punk is upset, so he grabs his title and leaves. “It’s clobbering time!” Bryan rolled Cena up for two, then Cena hit a quick Attitude Adjustment for the pinfall at 14 minutes. Post-match, Show sneaked back into the ring to go after Cena who was celebrating, but Punk runs in and hits Show in the head with the title to save Cena. Cena turns around and goes face to face with Punk. Punk extends his hand for a handshake, but Cena does nothing. Punk leaves angrily to end the segment. The idea behind the match was good, but the execution was lacking. WWE did well to protect Show, Punk and Cena, though.
Backstage, Josh Mathews talks with CM Punk. Punk said Cena only cared about himself, and is upset that Cena didn’t shake his hand. Punk says it’s the ultimate sign of disrespect, and at SummerSlam, he’s going to teach John Cena and everybody about respect.
Damien Sandow d. Christian
Christian was getting worked on when Brodus Clay’s music hits. Christian got a rollup for two, but Sandow hit a neckbreaker for the pinfall at 2 minutes.
Backstage, HBK is still nervous. He turns around and bumps into Brock Lesnar, who’s smiling with crossed arms. HBK walks away and Lesnar is still smiling.
Brock Lesnar’s music hits, and he comes out with Paul Heyman. It’s your generic contract signing setup in the ring. Heyman says no one wants this match more than HHH, because it’s the most important and personal fight of HHH’s career. It’s a challenge to HHH’s standing in the company. It won’t be a match on Sunday, but a merciless beatdown. Heyman invites HBK to come to the ring, but doesn’t expect him to because he’s afraid. Heyman says people from Texas have a yellow streak up and down their spine.
HBK’s music hits, and he walks down but stops at the bottom of the ramp. A few moments later, Triple H’s music hits. HHH signs the contract, then Lesnar. Lesnar tosses the clipboard at HHH’s chest, then quickly leaves the ring and goes up the ramp with Heyman. The show is still on, but this looked like the ending of Raw. I guess a Michaels’ beatdown?
More Touts over ADR/Booker T.
Backstage, Triple H and Michaels are talking. HBK says he’s in HHH’s corner, but HHH will need to beat him. “You know where my heart is on this.”
Cena/Punk recap from tonight.
Backstage, Matt Striker with Big Show backstage. He asks a stupid question before a loud horn is honked. Striker leaves, and it’s HBK being blocked by Paul Heyman. HBK is screaming to move, but Heyman won’t do it. There’s nothing behind him, why don’t you just back up? Lesnar runs and and pulls Michaels out of the car. Lesnar bumps into the camera, cutting off the video. The audio is still working, and Michaels is getting his ass kicked.
After the commercial, the car windshield is broken, and the drivers’ side mirror is off. Everyone is trying to figure out what happened. HHH comes out and asks what happened, but AJ says Lesnar took HBK.
In the arena, Lesnar is carrying Michaels on his shoulders. Lesnar hits an F5 in the ring, then applies a Kimura armbar. HHH runs out, but Heyman stops him at the bottom of the ramp, saying Lesnar will break HBK’s arm if HHH takes another step closer. HHH doesn’t know what to do, but Lesnar “breaks” his arm anyways. Heyman is screaming, “oh my God you broke his arm!” HHH runs in and chases Lesnar out, but Michaels is selling the injury. HHH is staring at Lesnar at the stage as the show fades to black.
Three Stars of the Show
Final Grade: D-
Aside from the triple threat match, the show was largely forgettable. There was nothing really left to do before SummerSlam, so what we got was essentially 3 hours of filler. Lesnar breaking HBK’s arm is payback for losing at Extreme Rules to Cena, so Lesnar can be built up again. But history shows HHH’s broken arm healed in about a month, so the damage isn’t even that bad, although I’m sure HBK will sell it for longer. As with almost all of the 3-hour shows so far, there are far too many short matches, too many video packages and a criminal amount of Tout nonsense. Punk teased a potential heel turn on the show, but other than that, not much else progressed.