[TV Recap] WWE Raw – 11/12/2012 (‘Survivor Series 2012’ Go-Home Show)

This week on Raw:

  • Jerry Lawler makes his triumphant return to the announce table after two months away recovering from his on-air heart attack. He will be joined by Michael Cole and Jim Ross.
  • Brad Maddox will take on Ryback for the chance at a “1 Million Dollar contract”. For Maddox it’s a chance at stardom; for Ryback it’s an opportunity for revenge against the man who cost him the WWE Championship at Hell in a Cell.
  • WWE Champion CM Punk will face John Cena in a preview of this Sunday’s Survivor Series triple threat main event.
  • Vickie Guerrero continues her crusade against John Cena and AJ Lee, this time presenting “audio” evidence of their alleged “affair” that cost Lee her GM job.
  • Cena will also be involved in a face-to-face with Ryback, who stared him down something fierce to end last week’s show.
  • With a week to go until the “traditional” Survivor Series match, Team Foley still needs a fifth man. Team captain Mick Foley will fill that spot tonight…and hopefully explain why he still cares now that “Team Punk” has become “Team Ziggler”.

All this and much more awaits you on the Survivor Series Go-Home edition of Raw. Click “read more” for a full breakdown of the entire show plus my own thoughts/observations/analysis/blatherings.

*****

A Veteran’s Day photo/video montage plays as John Cena narrates, dedicating tonight’s show to them.

—–

Tonight on RAW (The “Newsroom” Intro): Jerry Lawler returns to the announce table, Vickie Guerrero reveals more “evidence” of the John Cena/AJ Lee “affair”, Brad Maddox challenges Ryback for a WWE contract, Cena takes on WWE Champion CM Punk in the main event.

—–

Randy Orton makes his way out to the ring to start the show proper. Michael Cole is joined at the announce table by Jim Ross (no King yet) and they hype the Cena/Punk main event. Cole hypes Orton’s “Team Foley” affiliation for this Sunday as well as his Falls Count Anywhere match against Alberto Del Rio last Tuesday on Super Smackdown. Orton won with an RKO on the ring steps. Orton’s opponent, Dolph Ziggler, makes his way out next. Cole talks about Ziggler taking over “Team Punk” and turning it into “Team Ziggler”. Ross questions who will be the fifth member of Team Foley for this Sunday now that Ryback is out of the match.

—–

Match #1: Randy Orton Vs. Dolph Ziggler

Side headlock from Ziggler. Orton sends him into the ropes but Ziggler knocks him down. Ziggler ducks two clotheslines but Orton elevates him into the air and he crashes to the mat. Orton clotheslines Ziggler to the apron and slingshot suplexes him back into the ring. Orton goes for the pin. 2-count. Orton sends Ziggler into the corner but runs into a back elbow. Ziggler drops Orton with a sort-of dropkick and goes for the pin. 2-count.

Reverse neckbreaker from Ziggler followed by a series of rapid-fire elbow drops. Ziggler ends with a jumping elbow drop and goes for the pin. 2-count. Ziggler applies a reverse chinlock. They get to their feet and Orton escapes with a back suplex. Orton drops Ziggler with a couple of clotheslines followed by a snap powerslam. Orton sends Ziggler to the apron and pulls him through, connecting with the hanging DDT. Orton beckons the crowd to cheer, then “coils” for the RKO. Alberto Del Rio makes his way out and distracts Orton. Orton knocks him off the apron, blocks a Fameasser from Ziggler, and knocks him down for the 1…2…3!

Winner [via Pinfall]: Randy Orton (3:18)

  • Quick and harmless match. Not much to say here. (C+)

—–

Post-Match: Del Rio, Ziggler, and Ricardo Rodriguez attack Orton. WWE IC Champion Kofi Kingston makes his way out and clears the ring to help his Survivor Series partner. Teddy Long makes his way out. Long says that since Vickie Guerrero is “too busy” with the affair accusations, he’s going to do something “super” for this super show: Orton/Kingston will face Del Rio/Ziggler right…NOW.

  • Thoughts: I was really hoping he was going to make all four of these guys take on The Undertaker. Oh well.

—–

Match #2: Randy Orton/[WWE IC Champion] Kofi Kingston Vs. Dolph Ziggler/Alberto Del Rio

Kingston and Ziggler start the match off. Kingston repeatedly strikes Ziggler and follows it up with an uppercut. Kingston connects with a dropkick and Ziggler converses with his newfound partner as we go to commercial.

-Commercial Break-

Del Rio is in the ring taking it to Kingston as we come back from break. Del Rio traps Kingston in a chinlock. Kingston tries to fight out but Del Rio sends him into the corner. Ziggler tags in. He goes for a neckbreaker, but Kingston reverses into a backslide for a 2-count. Ziggler dropkicks Kingston and goes for the pin. Orton breaks the count. Ziggler traps Kingston in a reverse chinlock. He does a headstand then turns it into a bridged chinlock. They get to their feet and Ziggler throws him into the corner. Ziggler misses the splash and both men go down.

Orton gets the hot tag and attacks both members of the heel team. Del Rio, now the legal man, connects with a savate kick but Orton counters with a snap-powerslam. Orton goes for the hanging DDT but Del Rio escapes and hits a superkick. Kingston tags himself in and connects with a flying crossbody for the 1…2…kick out. Kingston hits the S.O.S. and goes for the pin. Ziggler breaks up the count. Orton and Ziggler duke it out on the outside as Kingston sets up for the Trouble in Paradise. Rodriguez distracts Kingston, allowing Del Rio to hit a running enziguri. Del Rio goes for the pin. 1…2…3!

Winners [via Pinfall]: Alberto Del Rio/Dolph Ziggler (7:47)

  • Enjoyable match but I would’ve preferred just to see Orton/Ziggler duke it out. I love Ziggler’s bridging chinlock; that is the stuff of beauty. Ziggler’s count break up towards the end was also a little botched, which caused the crowd to boo loudly in protest. All in all a nice way to open the show; I always prefer a little wrestling to a 20 minute monologue to begin my night. (B-)

—–

RAW Hype: Jerry Lawler makes his announce table return.

—–

Vickie Guerrero is shown walking around backstage. The next chapter of the “affair” drama continues right after this commercial break.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Vickie Guerrero’s “Audio” Evidence of The Alleged Cena/AJ “Affair”

Vickie Guerrero is already in the ring alongside Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler gets on the mic and defines a “scandal” for those of us who have never seen a dictionary. Ziggler says it’s pretty sick he remembered that after wrestling two matches. Ziggler says he’s not out here to hide behind his former manager Guerrero, he’s here to find out the truth…and the truth can’t be denied. Ziggler then provides amusing commentary over the video evidence we are already very familiar with.

It’s Guerrero’s turn to speak, and the boos get loudler. Guerrero says that AJ Lee told her last week that she would “get the beating of her life” if they came face to face. Guerrero says she’s the managing supervisor of Raw and she won’t be threatened by anyone. Guerrero says she could’ve suspended Lee but didn’t because she isn’t vengeful. She says she has evidence Lee can’t talk her way out of and invites her to the ring. “Start It Up” plays and out she comes, walking to the ring with a very serious look on face. THIS IS SERIOUS BIDNESS.

Lee grabs a mic and immediately asks Guerrero why she’s doing this. Lee says she cost her the GM gig, but Guerrero says she didn’t cost Lee anything. Guerrero says Lee did something wrong and needs to own it. Lee says she’s not going to stand there and lie. A “Shut Up Vickie” chant starts. Guerrero tries to get her to admit her “affair”, and Lee says she isn’t threatened. After a long and awkward pause, Guerrero once again tells Lee to admit her affair.

After some more browbeating, Lee says “I ADMIT IT!”. Oh snap! Lee says “John Cena and I…are just friends” and nothing inappropriate has happened. Lee tells Guerrero to admit why she’s doing this: Vince McMahon appointed her RAW GM instead of Guerrero. Lee also brings up embarrassing Guerrero in the ring twice, and says she could do it again. Lee says Guerrero is throwing her weight around, then makes a fat joke because fuck my life. Guerrero says she’s been forwarded some voicemails that will be very interesting to everyone.

-Voicemail #1: Lee leaves a message, telling “John” that “last night was a mistake”.

-Voicemail #2: Lee wants to stop “doing this” but can’t because “when I see you…I lose control.”

-Voicemail #3: Lee says “you drive me crazy…we should be together.”

Lee accuses Guerrero of hacking into Cena’s phone and editing those messages to suit her cause. Ziggler interrupts Lee’s name-calling and says “it’s over” and that something happened. Ziggler asks Lee what was more disappointing: Cena not talking to her anymore or the nights she spent in his hotel room.

“My Time is Now” starts up and out comes John Cena stalking to the ring. Cena goes right for Ziggler, but Lee stops him. Lee turns around and slaps Ziggler, then Cena takes him down with a right hand. Ziggler rolls out of the ring and Guerrero also escapes.

  • Thoughts: This felt way way way too dragged out like they were desperate to kill time; the awkward pause in the middle, which seemed like a missed cue, didn’t help either. This storyline is total trash but props to the Ohio crowd for getting into it (most likely ironically). Let’s hope this goes somewhere soon; they’re really slow-burning this story and I’m losing what interest I have…which is not much. But on the bright side, Ziggler’s commentary on the video evidence was funny and we got a whole lot of him during this first hour so small victories can be found.

—–

RAW Hype: Cena/Punk main event.

Next on RAW: The Big Show will be in action.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

John Cena and AJ Lee are backstage. Cena asks if she’s alright and says Guerrero/Ziggler are hitting a “new low”. Lee says it’s alright but then leads with “…never would happen?”. Cena awkwardly stutters and walks off as Lee sort of smiles.

  • Thoughts: Oh go fuck yourself…seriously? Come on. Come on.

—–

Video Clip: We see video from last Tuesday’s Smackdown where Sheamus watched the “cell phone video” of The Big Show attacking him and William Regal at the pub.

—–

William Regal is in the ring and ready to fight. Out comes his opponent, World Heavyweight Champion The Big Show. We see Show KO Punch-ing Regal from Smackdown, giving his team the win on that show.

—–

Match #3: William Regal Vs. [World Heavyweight Champion] The Big Show

Regal goes for a series of punches but Show takes him down easily. He backs Regal into the corner and hits a couple of rights to the mid-section followed by the loud chop. Show continues the assault with body shots and headbutts, followed by another loud chop. Regal tries to fight back, but Show picks him up and bodyslams him to the mat. Show misses an elbow drop, and Regal takes advantage with a bunch of lefts and forearms. But Show easily rebounds and delivers the Chokeslam for the 1…2…3.

Winner [via Pinfall]: The Big Show (1:38)

  • I’m honestly surprised Show/Regal got TV time on Raw. A total squash match but it was nice to see Regal wrestling again. And holy hell did he chest get messed up by Show’s chops. Brutal-looking. (C-)

—–

Post-Match: Show goes for the KO Punch, but Sheamus comes to Regal’s rescue. Sheamus takes him down and takes it to Show before he rolls out of the ring to escape further punishment.

  • Thoughts: I’m actually interested in the Sheamus/Show rematch. Sue me.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Kaitlyn and Layla are already in the ring for the next match. WWE Divas Champion Eve Torres is on commentary.

—–

Match #4: Kaitlyn Vs. Layla in a #1 Contenders Match [Winner Faces Torres at Survivor Series]

A whole host of quick falls for both women to start the show off. Faceplant from Layla, who goes for another pin. 2-count. Layla goes for a second rope crossbody but Kaitlyn catches her and hits an inverted DDT for the 1…2…3. Quick match.

Winner [via Pinfall]: Kaitlyn (1:09)

  • I had to sneeze, what did I miss? (F)

—–

Cole and Ross lead into a video of Jerry Lawler‘s heart attack from September. First he collapses, then they bring him to the back to work on him. It’s all in very vivid detail, with video and everything. It ends with the ambulance taking him away.

  • Thought: Thanks for reminding me of the scariest moment I’ve ever seen live. Jesus. Not necessary, like at all.

RAW Hype: Jerry Lawler returns to the announce table tonight.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Jerry Lawler Returns

Michael Cole and Jim Ross are in the ring. Cole brings up Lawler’s heart attack again then hands it to Ross who handles the proper introduction. The Ohio crowd goes nuts as the music hits. Lawler makes his way out, crown in hand. Naturally a whole lot of “Jerry!” chants start as well as loud cheers of adulation. Lawler gets in the ring and hugs Ross. Lawler feigns annoyance at Cole, then smiles and hugs him. Ross hands Lawler the mic and they exit the ring.

Lawler says the response is overwhelming and thanks the Ohio crowd. He still sounds a little hoarse. Lawler says for this night to actually happen is beyond words. He brings up It’s a Wonderful Life. He says he has lived that movie for the past few weeks and he says he appreciates the outpouring of support. He says “from the bottom of my…heart…thank you”.

  • Thoughts: Welcome back, King. I just want to say that before he ends up back on commentary and I get annoyed again.

“Cult of Personality” plays, interrupting Lawler and bringing out WWE Champion CM Punk and his adviser Paul Heyman. Punk grabs a mic and stares at Lawler who’s already over the announce table. Punk says he’s happy when Lawler left the ring when he did because otherwise he would’ve beat Lawler to death…again.

  • Thoughts: Goddammit.

Punk chides the crowd for finding him offensive while Lawler is treated like a god. Punk calls Lawler a living “zombie”. Punk says what Lawler does is disrespectful and in bad taste. Punk says Lawler thinking he could’ve gone toe to toe with the WWE Champion is in bad taste and that it results in a heart attack. Punk chides the people for sending him Tweets blaming him for Lawler’s heart attack but the actual responsibility for it falls on Lawler’s own shoulders. Punk then brings up his WWE Championship reign and how he has passed Diesel to become the 9th longest championship reign in WWE history. Punk says that in one week’s time, he will be standing in the ring as WWE Champion for one year. Punk says he’ll beat Ryback and John Cena like he always does. Punk says he’s happy Lawler’s back, but tells Lawler to try not to croak before the PPV.

Lawler gets back on the mic and says he’ll try not to, but the only thing on life support is Punk’s reign as WWE Champion. Heyman feigns a heart attack, as Punk pretends to revive him and “call for help”. Heyman then sits up, magically okay. Heyman points at Lawler and laughs. Punk says Heyman almost gave him a “heart attack”.

Mick Foley makes his way out to the ring to break this horrifyingly awkward segment up a little bit. Foley talks about respect, and Punk says Foley should respect Heyman for almost having a heart attack. Punk asks what Foley is doing out here since they are no longer captains of opposing Survivor Series teams. Punk tells Foley to worry less about him and more about the gaping hole in “Team Foley”. Foley says he’s not worrying about that because the WWE Universe will be picking the final member of the team at Survivor Series. 

Punk says the WWE Universe can’t think. Punk tells Foley to change his team name to “Team Worthless” and goes on a “worthless” tangent until Foley emphatically tells him to “SHUT UP!”. Foley yells at Punk about how Lawler was dead but they brought him back to life thanks to miracles and medicine and prayers and such. Foley switches gears to Survivor Series and says either Ryback or John Cena will strip him of the WWE Championship. Punk says there isn’t anything in the world that Foley can teach him and says nothing about this concerns him.

Foley says part of it does concern him as he has a parting gift: he will be the special guest enforcer during the Cena/Punk match tonight. Foley tells Punk to “have a nice day” and books it, leaving Punk and Heyman to think about the news.

  • Thoughts: That…that was a lot to take in. Punk was in full glorious heel mode but the way they turned Lawler’s near-death into a long Punk joke is going to be divisive. Also Foley was not on his game tonight and shows no interest in “Team Foley” which he honestly shouldn’t. I don’t know. This was seriously a lot to chew on. A good segment overall but I need longer than five minutes to process it.

—–

Brad Maddox is backstage, getting ready to face Ryback tonight.

—–

RAW Hype: 8-man tag team match, next!

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

CM Punk and Paul Heyman are backstage. Punk tells Heyman to “fix” the situation. Heyman says they may be out of options, then brings up the whole Brad Maddox situation. Punk just yells at him to fix it and walks away.

—–

Sin Cara is making his entrance as we go back to the arena. His partners Justin Gabriel and Tyson Kidd are already in the ring and the final member of the team Rey Mysterio makes his way out next. Cole officially welcomes Lawler back to the announce table. Lawler says he has missed this. The heels are already in the ring.

—–

Match #5: Rey Mysterio/Sin Cara/Tyson Kidd/Justin Gabriel Vs. The Prime Time Players (Darren Young/Titus O’Neil)/Epico/Primo

Gabriel and O’Neil start the match off. O’Neil takes him down with an uppercut then deadlifts him and drops him to the mat. Young tags in and O’Neil front suplexes his partner on Gabriel. Epico tags in and connects with a suplex. He goes for the pin. 2-count. Epico traps Gabriel in a reverse chinlock. Ricardo Rodriguez makes his way out and gives Rosa Mendes a note while Epico yells at him from the ring.

Meanwhile back to the match, Gabriel hits a spinning heel kick on a distracted Epico. Primo tags in, and so does Rey Mysterio. Primo reverses an Irish whip and goes for a powerbomb. Mysterio reverses it into a hurricanrana. He then pulls Primo to the outside. Springboard moonsault from the apron by Mysterio. All eight man yell at one another on the outside as we go to commercial.

-Commercial Break-

O’Neil throws Mysterio into the apron as we come back from break. O’Neil rolls him back in the ring, then delivers a couple of backbreakers before negligently throwing him to the mat like yesterday’s garbage. O’Neil follows up with a bearhug, looking for a submission victory. Mysterio escapes but O’Neil takes him down with a shoulder block. Primo tags in and goes for a cover. 2-count. Front chancery applied by Primo. They get to their feet and Mysterio rolls through a sunset flip to kick Primo right in the temple. Young gets the tag and prevents Mysterio from tagging.

Young tosses Mysterio into the corner but Mysterio hits a hurricanrana out of nowhere and sends Young into the second rope. Kidd gets the hot tag and hits a springboard dropkick. Enziguri by Kidd followed by a running dropkick for a 2-count. Kidd kicks Young and flips to the apron. He goes to the top rope and hits the Buff Blockbuster. Kidd goes for the Sharpshooter but Primo hits a Backstabber. Gabriel dropkicks him out of the ring, O’Neil throws him to the outside, Mysterio hits O’Neil to the floor, yadda yadda, leaving Kidd and Young in the ring. Young goes for a tilt-a-whirl gutbuster for a 2-count.

Young goes for a powerbomb but Kidd counters with a hurricanrana. Mysterio tags in and hits the 619. Gabriel then tags in (I guess?) and hits the 450 Splash for the 1…2…3!

Winners [via Pinfall]: Rey Mysterio/Sin Cara/Tyson Kidd/Justin Gabriel (10:00)

  • That was a fun 8-man tag team match with a really crazy final 2 minutes (the “everyone gets a move in” spot). Really entertaining stuff capped off by Gabriel being the one to get the win with the 450 which is something I totally approve of. I wish they had saved this for Survivor Series; but then again maybe there’ll be a rematch this Sunday due to the crowd response. (B)

—–

Kofi Kingston narrates a video for the National Guard, then Justin Roberts leads the Ohio crowd in saluting the National Guard members in the audience. Classy.

—–

Brad Maddox is still getting ready in the back when Paul Heyman shows up. Heyman takes a walk with Maddox to discuss business.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

A hype video for Fandango plays where he salsa dances with a beautiful lady. I miss the second O.

—–

The Miz is on the phone backstage. He says he’ll find a way to be on Survivor Series. Dolph Ziggler walks over and says he knows Miz is going to beg for a spot on “Team Ziggler”. Ziggler says he was mistaken and says he’s not “Team Ziggler” material. Miz and Ziggler argue. Mick Foley shows up and Ziggler yells at him too for letting the WWE Universe decide who ends up on his team this Sunday. Foley announces a match: two members of Team Ziggler and two members of Team Foley. Ziggler picks The Rhodes Scholars and Foley picks whoever the WWE Universe picks for his team and Kane. Ziggler walks off. Miz then asks Foley to be on the ballot as the potential fifth member of Team Foley, and after a passionate plea, Foley agrees.

  • Thoughts: A potential Miz face turn? Hell yeah.

—–

RAWactive Hype: Cole announces the three people we could vote for as the potential fifth member of Team Foley: Santino Marella, Zack Ryder, and The Miz.

—–

R-Truth makes his way out for the next match of the evening. Cole announces he will meet Antonio Cesaro for the U.S. Title this Sunday at Survivor Series. And speak of the devil, out comes Cesaro. Cesaro lambasts Truth for talking to “Little Jimmy” because he used to be a proud superstar who became a joke. Cesaro then says the United States was the same, a once proud country that became a joke. Cesaro says on Sunday he’ll show everyone why you don’t mess with a true superpower. Cesaro is going to scout Truth’s match, which is next.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Match #6: R-Truth Vs. Tensai

We join the match in progress with Truth breaking out of a reverse chinlock. Tensai takes him back down with a shoulder block. Truth fights back with forearms but Tensai karate chops him and brings him to the mat for a 2-count. Tensai works over Truth’s left arms. Cole and Lawler have a field day with Cesaro’s “purse” on commentary. Truth ducks a couple of fists and delivers a front-facing dropkick. Truth drops Tensai throat-first on the top rope then hits a Missile, erm, kick for the 1…2…kick out. Truth follows up with an Ax kick, followed by a spinning heel kick and a sort of Flatliner for the 1…2…3!

Winner [via Pinfall]: R-Truth (Time Not Recorded)

  • A nothing match but Truth getting the win gives him momentum for this Sunday I guess. (N/A)

—–

Post-Match: Cesaro tries to run down Truth on the mic, but Truth grabs the mic. He says a terrible knock knock joke then says he’ll knock Cesaro’s teeth down his esophagus this Sunday. Cesaro jaws at Truth as he walks away.

—–

WWE ’13 Plug: We see a playthrough of Ryback/Brad Maddox (Maddox being a CAS). Ryback obviously beats the trash out of him. Cole mistakenly says Ryback is going to beat Maddox. Hopefully that was just a dumb flub.

  • Thoughts: I just bought this game a couple of days ago and can’t put it down. HOWEVER, those character models are ugly as hell. They look like last-gen but in HD. That’s my video game talk this week.

—–

Brad Maddox is heading to the ring for his match next!

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

WWE Rewind (Presented by K-Mart): Brad Maddox challenges Ryback to a match last week. Vince McMahon comes out and offers Maddox a “million dollar contract” if he can beat “Big Hungry” next week (which is now this week, bro).

—–

Earlier on RAW…: Vickie Guerrero showcases her new evidence of a John Cena/AJ Lee affair. Jerry Lawler returns and CM Punk/Paul Heyman interrupt the feel good moment with something that probably pissed off a lot of people. Also Mick Foley is special guest enforcer for the Punk/Cena main event.

—–

Justin Roberts lays down the “million dollar contract” stipulation for the next match. Brad Maddox makes his way out first, with no music. An ambulance backs up next to the entrance stage. Maddox loses his cocky swagger and nervously walks to the ring. Picture in picture interview time, where Maddox says he has no regrets and after tonight no one will ever forget his name. And out comes his opponent Ryback who does his usual entrance. We see Maddox’s low blow from Hell in a Cell. EMT’s make their way ringside with a stretcher.

  • Thoughts: That’s some ominous sh*t right there. Lawler’s “It’s my ride” joke was funny though.

—–

Match #7: Ryback Vs. Brad Maddox [If Maddox wins, he gets a million dollar contract]

Maddox immediately bails to the outside. He rolls back in to break the count then immediately rolls back out. Maddox rolls back in once again. He tries to hide in the ropes but Ryback pulls him off and pushes him to the mat. Maddox tries a kick but Ryback catches it and slingshots him down to the mat. Ryback follows it up with a slam and then proceeds to smash the back of Maddox’s head against the mat seven times in a row.

Ryback begs off for a second, then starts slamming Maddox’s face into the mat repeatedly. Ryback throws Maddox into the corner and he flips and falls to the mat. Ryback tells Maddox he’s dead then connects with a running powerslam. Ryback sets Maddox on the top rope then hits a running clothesline, sending Maddox over the top rope and onto the floor. Ryback rolls him back into the ring. Maddox picks himself up via Ryback’s legs, but Ryback grabs him and delivers a hard power bomb followed by two more. The ref checks on Maddox as Ryback waits in the corner.

Ryback fuels himself via “Feed Me More” chants then connects with the lariat. He stacks Maddox, marches, then connects with the Shell Shock for the 1…2…3!

Winner [via Pinfall]: Ryback (5:32)

  • I’m going to make a bold statement: Maddox did the best job of selling Ryback’s offense than anyone else on the roster. He got completely annihilated and there were moments where even I was wincing (those power bombs were especially hard to watch). This made Ryback look like a goddamn monster. Wow. Sad Maddox didn’t get a chance to get any offense in though but that’s the peril of being labeled a referee first, wrestler second. (C+)

Post-Match: EMT’s put Maddox on a stretcher as Ryback leads a “Feed me more” chant. Ryback then goes to the outside and dumps the stretcher, sending Maddox to the floor. Ryback picks him up and hurls him into the crowd barrier. Ryback revs up and hits the Lariat once again, this time on the floor. He yells “I…HIT…HARD!” then picks Maddox back up. He carries Maddox down the aisle and rams him into the back of the ambulance. Ryback opens the ambulance doors and throws Maddox in. He angrily slams them and off goes the ambulance as Ryback leads another “Feed me more” chant.

  • Thoughts: And Ryback now looks even more like a monster. Hats off to Maddox and Ryback. That was some intense sh*t right there.

—–

RAW Hype: Punk/Cena main event (Foley = Special Guest Enforcer)

Next on RAW: Sheamus takes on David Otunga.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Earlier on RAW…: Ryback sends Brad Maddox away via ambulance. You just watched/read that right? We see commercial break footage of the ambulance leaving the arena.

—–

RAWactive Hype: Decide the final member of Team Foley! Will it be The Miz, The Miz, or The Miz? I’m thinking The Miz. The results will be revealed after this match.

—–

David Otunga is already in the ring. His opponent Sheamus makes his way out next. We see clips of Sheamus attacking The Big Show earlier tonight.

—–

Match #8: Sheamus Vs. David Otunga

Sheamus backs Otunga in the corner and goes for a clean break, but Otunga cheap shots him. Otunga hits a series of forearms but Sheamus responds with a back elbow. Otunga shows off his body and trash talks Sheamus. Regal, Michael McGillicutty, and Aksana are watching the match backstage. Sheamus knocks Otunga down and mocks the Otunga pose. Otunga runs right into a polish hammer, then is on the receiving end of a series of shoulder blocks in the corner followed by a bunch of forearms.

Sheamus continues the assault with a series of kneedrops. Sheamus picks Otunga up and walks around the ring before connecting with the White Noise. Sheamus goes to the corner and gets the “Brogue” chant going as he beats his chest. Sheamus connects with the Brogue Kick and covers for the 1…2…3!

Winner [via Pinfall]: Sheamus (2:23)

  • Not much to say, except Sheamus’ offense looked good and Otunga was entertaining in his brief moments. (C)

—–

Post-Match: Sheamus gets on the mic and says he hopes The Big Show was watching because this was what was going to happen to him on Sunday. He says he’s going to take Show down and get his World Heavyweight Championship back. We then cut to the TitanTron, where Show is beating on Regal backstage. Show says “no, this is what’s going to happen at Survivor Series” then proceeds to KO Punch Regal. Sheamus quickly exits the ring and runs to the back.

  • Thoughts: So that’s why they randomly cut to people watching in the back. Right on.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Backstage Josh Matthews is standing in front of the Trainer’s Room. He reports on the condition of William Regal who was just KO Punch-ed five seconds ago. Matthews reports that Regal has regained consciousness but suffered a concussion.

—–

WWE airs a video for “The Wounded Warrior Project” narrated by Kevin Costner.

—–

Kane is walking the halls backstage. Daniel Bryan walks over and repeatedly yells Kane’s name until he stops. Kane asks what he wants. Bryan sarcastically wishes him luck tonight with his new partner. Kane says he doesn’t have a new partner, they have a new teammate. Bryan says that if Foley asked him to team with someone else he would’ve refused. Bryan guilts Kane about teaming with someone else. The camera closes in on Bryan as he says that they should go to Foley and demand they only team with each other. Bryan turns and Kane is gone. Cue the “NO!” yelling. He starts sniffling.

  • Thoughts: That was cool. I like Team Hell No in small segments. Bryan is so damn good.

—–

The Rhodes Scholars make their way out for the next match. Cole plugs Main Event which will feature Team Hell No/Rhodes Scholars for the WWE World Tag Team Championship. The pyro explodes and the lights go out, bringing out KaneJustin Roberts reveals Kane’s partner, and the fifth member of Team Foley: The Miz. Miz makes his way out, but is interrupted by the music of Daniel Bryan. Bryan makes his way out and does the “NO!” thing. He grabs a Miz sign, threatens to rip it, but composes himself and forces himself to shake Miz’s hands. Bryan raises his and Kane’s hands up as we go to commercial.

  • Thoughts: Oh my god I love Bryan’s jealousy. This is excellent.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Match #9: Kane/The Miz Vs. The Rhodes Scholars (Damien Sandow/Cody Rhodes)

The match is already in progress, with Kane on offense against Sandow. Bryan is at ringside cheering his partner on. Miz tags in and hits a running knee. He goes for a pin. 2-count. Miz ducks a clothesline and hits a series of lefts in the corner until the ref breaks them up. Miz hits his running seated clothesline and goes for the pin. 2-count. Kane tags in and hits a basement dropkick followed by a pinning attempt. Sandow slips out of a powerslam and tags out to Rhodes. Kane pulls him into the ring, then tags Miz in. Miz and Kane hit a double team elbow. Rhodes reverses an Irish whip but gets a kick to the face. Miz back drops Rhodes to the floor as the crowd cheers. Miz hits a flying axhandle off the apron then rolls him back in. Miz gets distracted with Bryan, allowing Rhodes to hit him with a Disaster Kick.

Sandow tags back in and connects with a Side Russian Legsweep, followed by the Elbow of Disdain. He goes for the pin. 2-count. Rhodes and Sandow continue to work Miz over, and Sandow locks on a reverse chinlock. Bryan sarcastically cheers on Miz. Miz gets to his feet and tries to elbow his way out. Sandow hits him but Miz responds with a backbreaker/neckbreaker combo. Both men are down.

Kane gets the hot tag and attacks the also tagged in Rhodes. Rhodes slides under Kane’s legs and hits an uppercut. But Kane responds with a shoulder block followed by two running corner clotheslines. Kane connects with a side slam for the 1…2…kick out. Kane heads to the top turnbuckle and hits the clothesline. Sandow tries to interfere but runs into a right hand. Kane clotheslines Sandow out of the ring. Bryan goes after Miz, but Miz sends him into Rhodes. Miz then rolls Rhodes back in and Kane connects with the Chokeslam for the 1…2…3!

Winners [via Pinfall]: The Miz/Kane (Time Not Recorded)

  • A pretty good tag team match all things considered. Miz and Kane worked well as a team and Miz especially seemed really excited to be working as a face for once. He had the Ohio crowd eating out of his hands. Bryan was great as well being the sarcastic emotional support and trying to suppress his jealousy to no avail. I just hope this is the extent of Miz/Bryan/Kane. (B)

—–

Post-Match: Bryan tries to raise his own hand in victory along with his partner and Kane isn’t having it. He and Miz raise their hands, then Miz and Bryan start arguing.

  • Thoughts: This should be fun for a little while.

—–

Next on RAW: Punk/Cena with Foley as special guest enforcer.

—–

-Commercial Break-

—–

Mick Foley makes his way for his Guest Enforcer duties. Cole and Lawler pimp the high ticket sales of Wrestlemania XXIX. WWE Champion CM Punk and Paul Heyman make their way out next. Punk checks Heyman’s watch to see if it’s clobbering time and, well, it is. Phew. Cole and Lawler pimp K-Mart and their special WWE deals. “My Time is Now” hits and out comes Punk’s opponent John Cena. Cole pimps the triple threat match at Survivor Series and says if Cena wins, he’ll have a record 11 title reigns.

—–

Main Event: John Cena Vs. [WWE Champion] CM Punk (w/ Paul Heyman) [[Special Guest Enforcer = Mick Foley]]

Side headlock by Punk. Cena sends him into the ropes, and Punk knocks him down with a shoulder block. Cena leapfrogs Punk and takes him down with a hip toss followed by an armdrag. Cena keeps the arm bar applied. Dueling Cena chants drown out the commentators. Punk gets to the ropes to force a break, and escapes to the outside. Foley looks on ringside as we go to commercial.

-Commercial Break-

Punk launches off the top rope and hits Cena on the floor with an axhandle as we get back from break. Punk rolls Cena back in and goes for a reverse neckbreaker, but Cena reverses it into a sunset flip for a 2-count. Punk responds with a clothesline and goes for the pin. 2-count. Punk goes for a cravate-style hold to wear Cena down. Cena breaks out but Punk immediately jumps on his back and applies a sleeperhold. Cena starts fading and falls to one knee. Cena fights the fatigue and gets back up, smashing Punk into the corner.

Cena and Punk trade forearms, punches, and kicks. Spin kick from Punk ends the exchange, but Cena hits the ropes and delivers the two shoulder blocks followed by the slam. Cena signals for the Five Knuckle Shuffle but Punk rolls him up for a 2-count. Punk finally connects with a neckbreaker and goes for another pin. 2-count. Running knee in the corner from Punk followed by a short arm clothesline. Punk heads to the top turnbuckle but misses the flying elbow.

Cena gets up but misses the Five Knuckle Shuffle. Cena hits a slam and finally hits a quick Five Knuckle Shuffle. Cena goes for the Attitude Adjustment but Punk elbows his way out and hits a back kick for the 1…2…kick out. Punk signals for the GTS but Cena slips out and goes for the A.A. Punk slips out and locks Cena in an MMA-style submission (I don’t know what it’s called). Cena pulls himself to the ropes, breaking the hold after a 4-count.

Punk rolls to the apron and goes for the springboard, but Cena side steps and locks on the STF. Heyman rolls in and goes to hit Cena with the WWE Championship, but Cena releases the hold and stares him down. Foley runs over and pulls Heyman out of the ring. Punk catches Cena with a kick and goes for the pin. 2-count. Punk goes for the GTS, but Cena counters and locks on the STF once again. Punk crawls and scratches and finally gets to the ropes, causing Cena to release the hold.

Punk rolls to the floor and starts heading up the aisle, but Ryback starts marching down. Punk goes to exit through the fans but Cena grabs him and rolls him back in. Punk tries for the GTS but Cena slips out once again and hits the Attitude Adjustment for the 1…2…3!

Winner [via Pinfall]: John Cena (13:20)

  • Pretty good TV match from Cena/Punk but they weren’t exactly bringing their A-game (which is fine since they have a more important show coming up this weekend). I’m surprised this got as much time as it did, and I’m even more surprised Cena won the match clean. Weird. I feel like they should’ve ended it with Ryback meat-hooking both dudes. But I’m not a booker. (B)

—–

Post-Match: Ryback gets into the ring and stares Cena down. They stand in front of the WWE Championship. Ryback is all intense, Cena looks a little nervous about it. Cena walks towards him and they both pick up the Championship. Punk gets on the apron and swipes at the belt to get it back. Ryback and Cena drop it and scare Punk off the apron. Ryback and Cena then pick up the Championship again, this time not upside down and Punk jumps back on the apron saying “that’s mine” as we fade to CSI re-run.

  • Thoughts: The fact they had to re-do the ending of the show on the fly after holding the belt wrong is awesome and made me laugh. Otherwise this was a weak way to end Raw in my opinion. Just seemed sort of…blah. Maybe that’s because I desperately wanted Ryback to flatten Cena. Either way this didn’t sell any tickets to Survivor Series but it did make sure those who were already going to buy it had a reason.

*****

Overall Show Grade: B

  • What I Liked: Ryback/Maddox, 8-man tag team match, Maddox being insanely awesome at selling for Ryback, Daniel Bryan being super jealous of Kane teaming with someone else, a potential Miz face-turn (please let it happen), Antonio Cesaro’s commentary, Jerry Lawler not being dead, the Jerry Lawler return segment (yes even the Punk mocking Lawler’s heart attack stuff), Fandango vignette, Cena/Punk, Cena/Punk/Ryback redoing the final shot after a flub.
  • What I Didn’t Like: The Vickie Guerrero “evidence” segment (felt too long and forced), AJ Lee now wanting to date Cena (it makes sense but it’s still infuriating), the video package of Jerry Lawler’s heart attack complete with sound and video, the Divas match (and the fact it was a total afterthought), Mick Foley’s utter ambivalence about his Survivor Series team.
  • Overall Thoughts: Solid episode/go-home show but I doubt that it sold many buys. Much better than previous weeks.

—–

Follow The Pro Wrestling Nerd on Twitter

“Like” The Pro Wrestling Nerd on Facebook

Advertisements
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: