McGinn’s Raw Recap – 9/1/14

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Triple H sees who can impress him the most during this week’s main event (Courtesy WWE.com)

Monday Night Raw
September 1, 2014
Des Moines, Iowa

Your announcers tonight are Michael Cole, JBL and Jerry Lawler.

Just call me Darren Young because there are “No Days Off” here at Place to Be Nation. Sure it’s Labor Day and I spent my day sweating like crazy and drinking… only the finest soda pop one can serve at a friend’s cookout. If there is Raw to be recapped, I’m still open for business. Today’s piece will definitely be reason enough why our editing staff gets paid the large compliments. So let’s get started!

BREAK DOWN THE WALLS OF JERICHO! We begin with the latest edition of The Highlight Reel as Y2J grabs the stick and is about to welcome his guest, Randy Orton, when all of a sudden, the entire Authority hits the stage. Triple H, Seth Rollins, Corporate Kane and the Viper approach the now nervous host as trouble is afoot. Jericho cracks an outrageous line saying that Randy showed up with his law firm that he called “Sellout, Suckup and Schnoz” that got a nice pop from me on my sofa. Hunter calls Jericho “the man who never grew up” but then gets down to business. Y2J retorts with a Stephanie jail joke while Hunter counters with a crack about scarves. We are off to a hot start folks!

HHH says he’s been reviewing the Cena/Lesnar match from SummerSlam and thinks it’s not “best for business” for there to be a rematch at Night of Champions. He is contemplating naming a new #1 contender for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Orton puts the crowd to sleep saying that he deserves it while Kane makes everyone ill by claiming that he should put on that crappy mask again and unleash a demon on the Beast Incarnate. Shoot me now! But before you do, listen to the outrageous pop Rollins makes when he grabs the mic and states that the “future” has already arrived. The Iowa native pops the hometown crowd and feels he is worthy since he put Dean Ambrose out of action. Not to be outdone, Jericho harkens back to 2002 and thinks he deserves the match since he was the first undisputed champion in WWE history.

Waitaminute! That’s John Cena’s music! The former champ is here! He looks hot, as in the pissed off variety, and he flashes back to WM 22 when many of the experts like Michaels and Flair thought Cena couldn’t beat Triple H. Cena says his rematch clause was authorized and if it gets taken away, Cena will take him to court. He says he will sue him for everything he is worth which is now becoming an angle more overused than the fake retirement. He reiterates that at Night of Champions, he will not only beat Brock Lesnar, he will beat Brock Lesnar’s ass!

Hunter makes fun of the lawsuit comment and says he is trying to protect John Cena from himself. He says that Cena’s career ending at the next pay-per-view is not best for business. Rollins brings up plan B (cashing in the briefcase) if something should happen to Cena, Orton reminds everyone that he hasn’t had his formal rematch yet and Jericho jokes that Orton has lost all his big matches lately including one to Roman Reigns at SummerSlam. Just when this epic segment seems to be winding down, out comes Roman Reigns to confront The Authority. Of course he stakes his claim to the title shot as well. It all culminates with six-man main event tonight featuring the heels vs. the faces to see who will earn the spot and Hunter will be at ringside.

At the end, Rollins attempted to crack Reigns with the briefcase only for Roman to pop him one for his troubles. Good stuff from Cena and Rollins while Jericho was as humorous as ever. I saved you all the trouble of leaving out all the $9.99 jokes. There were many of them!

DOLPH ZIGGLER & SHEAMUS VS. CESARO & THE MIZ (W/ DAMIEN MIZDOW)

Miz is actually on the apron with his stunt double on the outside to start. He takes a seat in a director’s chair at ringside and actually now has his own makeup artist now (Love this!) Sandow is almost acting like his personal assistant. Wouldn’t it be cool if Miz started an “entourage” faction? Maybe Ryder could join and be his Turtle! Okay, maybe that’s just me. Pretty good battle of these future Night of Champions opponents and the fans were on fire for Ziggler throughout the whole match. In the end, that genius Miz called on Sandow to go in for him and immediately ate a zig-zag courtesy of Dolph. Miz then jumped back in and scored with a skull-crushing finale for the victory. Awesome heel work and terrific execution of this unique angle. Two thumbs up! WINNERS: CESARO & MIZ

Recap of last week’s Bella stuff: Fast Forward

We now go to a new segment called “Growing up Bella.” Nikki tells us of her senior prom date, Ryan, who she was so excited to go out with. Sadly, that prom picture is the only one ever taken of those two young lovers because later on in the evening, Ryan was knocking boots with, of all people, Brie. Yet somehow, Nikki got over that and had a very successful career in sports entertainment. She flies in corporate jets, she appears on television weekly, and hell, she even dates a living, breathing god in John Cena and was able to hold in such a traumatic experience. Until now! Damn you Brie! Her life clearly was ruined on that fateful night! File this under G… for garbage!

LAYLA, NAOMI & SUMMER RAE VS. ROSA MENDES, CAMERON & EVA MARIE

Not to sound like my man Scotty C. but this was just an unwatchable excuse to hype up the Total Divas premiere this coming Sunday. It turns into a free-for-all and nothing really happens so we’ll just move on!

More highlights from the last two Raws involving clips of both cinder block episodes. When did Raw morph into Superstars?

BIG SHOW & MARK HENRY VS. ROMAN & HARPER

This match features over 1400 pounds of humanity! Just an observation but is the “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” thing a tad played out? It was one thing when Wyatt was screwing with Cena. It just doesn’t quite fit when Roman and Harper are not doing Bray’s bidding and fighting for themselves does it? Anyway, I feel like these guys are fighting all the time on free TV. The fans seem to think so too as they begin a “Sexual Chocolate” chant. One point I always make is that I thoroughly enjoy Henry and Show’s selling of these power moves. Rusev makes an appearance on the ramp way, seemingly to start some you know what with Henry. A nice, long hoss match until the Bulgarian Russian kicked the taste out of Henry’s mouth forcing the DQ. Show prevented further damage involving chairs by the Wyatts but it would appear that the World’s Strongest Man will be fighting a two-front war moving forward. WINNERS: BIG SHOW & MARK HENRY

Oh father up above, more Growing up Bella. This time, Big Boobed Bella tells us of her 16th birthday when she passed her driver’s test while poor, pathetic Brie failed. That day, her mother surprised them with a 2000 Honda Civic that is still newer than the cars driven by either host of the Steve Corino Show. Anyway, Brie stole the car and naturally got into an accident. It was then revealed that she stole Nikki’s license too and gave it to the cops. In essence, the whole accident was blamed on Nikki. But despite all that, Nikki stood as Brie’s maid of honor at her wedding last April. If my brother did that to me, he would eat all his meals through a straw! I’m now starting to get angry!

Whoa Michael Sam was invited to Raw next week. Should he accept, he’ll be given an open mic! Who knows, maybe he can find himself on a WWE roster.

Now we get a video package of Cena and his quest to obtain his rematch including clips of his burial of Bray Wyatt. When did Raw become the clip show? I’d direct you to the Superstars Recap for more but no one writes that anymore!

Oh my! Paul Heyman now has a microphone. He says that Cena suffers from over-compensatory behavior and then we see still shots of him getting thrown around like a rag doll at Summerslam. He points out that Cena was stripped of his manhood and now is failing to listen to reason. Cena is desperate to stay relevant and is trying to prove to himself that he is ready for another round with Lesnar. Heyman basically maps out that nothing Cena can do in the coming weeks will prepare him for another systematic ass kicking he will receive if he faces Brock again.

JACK SWAGGER (W/ ZEB COLTER) VS. CURTIS AXEL

No Ryback since he’s hurt but returning from the DL is none other than Zeb Colter. This one doesn’t get very far before Bo Dallas appears on the stage and is joined by three members of the audience. Swagger makes short work of Axel with the Patriot lock to get back in the winner’s circle. WINNER: JACK SWAGGER

After the match, Dallas introduces Jack to three Americans who were let down by Swagger after losing to Rusev at SummerSlam. We first meet Ritchie, who is a farmer who bet an entire month’s salary on Jack and lost his entire life’s savings on the subsequent rematches. The bank then took his farm because of Swagger’s loss. Next we meet Angelo, who immigrated to this country to be a tailor. He was so upset that he failed his citizenship exam meaning that he will be deported back to Italy. Finally there’s Jennifer, whose son used to look up to Jack. After he lost however, Jennifer’s son now wants to be more like Vladimir Putin! Damn you Jack Swagger! Damn you! Bo says that Swagger can turn this around by simply bo-lieving! Awesome stuff. Love me some Bo Dallas and you should too! Tremendous character development. Get used to it boys and girls. This guy is here to stay!

TITUS O’NEIL (W/ HEATH SLATER) VS. ADAM ROSE

Man this show needs to be two hours again! Did I say that out loud? Rose’s bunny attacked Slater that led to Cole saying “Peter Cottontail is beating the hell out of Slater!” What the hell? Rose rolled up O’Neil and this one is toast! WINNER: ADAM ROSE

Oh HELL NO! Growing up Bella Part 3. This time, that menace to society Brie was on the verge of flunking out of school and not graduating with her class. She didn’t want to be tutored by her sister, so she actually made Nikki take her final exams for her. Nikki never told anyone about this… until now! This Brie needs to be locked up! She must be stopped! I must be the one to stop her!

RUSEV (W/ LANA) VS. ZACK RYDER

You don’t need me to tell you what happened here. Lana did shoot on Labor Day and said we all suck. I do believe Zack got in more offense than Cena did at SummerSlam, so there’s that! WINNER: RUSEV

Is it asking too much to have a match that is over four minutes? Is Vince Russo back in the fold? Mark Henry comes out, Rusev runs like a bitch. Everything old is new again! Henry is going to induct Rusev into the international wing of the hall of pain. Here’s hoping he succeeds!

Hunter and Stephanie chat about the Bella stories while I proceed to stab myself with Phillips Head screwdriver. Steph has a big announcement apparently and I have a rather large wound now on my right leg! Let’s move on!

Aww Steph wants to give back and recognize Nikki for her courage in telling her stories. I’ll admit, I wouldn’t kick Nikki out of bed for snoring too much, particularly in that gown she wore tonight. Fans chant “boring,” but I think they are being too kind. In the end, she grants Nikki a title match for the Divas title. Brie comes out to the typical Bella music though Stephanie cut it off and declared that only Nikki is now allowed to come down to the insipid theme. Brie acquired some proverbial “grapefruits” in the last week and finally confronts her evil sister. This fight goes nowhere so out comes AJ Lee, of course! AJ reminds everyone that she is the rightful #1 contender for the pink and silver strap and wants to leave the Bellas out of this. Now it’s Paige’s turn to make an entrance, however, she only gets maybe five seconds of actual talking time. Nikki wants Brie to quit, I contemplate quitting life. Brie looks as though she is going to fold like cheap lawn furniture but ends up snapping and shoving down her sister and Paige becomes collateral damage. AJ grabs the belt and skips right into Stephanie who demands that she hand over the title. Lee obliges and skips away thus ending a segment (and paragraph) that went entirely too long!

NEXT WEEK – Chris Jericho faces Bray Wyatt in a steel cage. Here comes the rubber match dozens of us were waiting for. Bray says it’s time for Y2J to pay for his sins.

JIMMY USO (W/ JEY USO) VS. GOLDUST (W/ STARDUST)

This is a follow up to the recent heel turn of the Dust Brothers who performed a pair of savage attacks on the Usos last week. Goldust attempts to apologize for his actions though the Usos are having none of it! Now that we have a traditional heel/face dynamic added to this rivalry, I think this could be the match of the night if it’s signed for Night of Champions. The chemistry these four guys have is off the charts and given 12-15 minutes, they can tell a tremendous story. In this one, outside distractions led to Jimmy eating a final cut for an easy Goldust win. After the bout, the gold ones brutalized the injured knee of Jey, who writhed around like Shawn did against Power & Glory over 20 years ago. WINNER: GOLDUST

Sneak peak at Total Divas: Season 3. I’ll be honest guys, I don’t care!

In the back, Show and Henry are talking about their collective plates. Show doesn’t want Mark to lose sight of their deal where they become the most dominant tag team in WWE. Henry agrees but says he has to take care of Rusev on his own for the good of America. Show supports his partner and they walk away. I have grown to like these two working together. I can easily see them putting over new teams like the Ascension down the road or maybe even having a last hurrah run with the belts. I’m just glad they aren’t shoehorned into the Dust Boys/Usos program because I believe that will be awesome enough as it is.

JOHN CENA, ROMAN REIGNS & CHRIS JERICHO VS. RANDY ORTON, SETH ROLLINS & KANE

It’s a three hour show guys. Did we really need to see all six entrances? You couldn’t give a match more than four minutes but I can watch six guys do their usual routines down the aisle for what feels like a half hour? What is this WrestleMania? Reigns and Orton start us off and their long-awaited rematch from SummerSlam will happen next week on Raw! Fans are batty for Rollins even when he slides out of the ring for a little Memphis stalling. Triple H and Steph look on but the crowd is still chanting for idiotic things like JBL. It’s a very so-so crowd tonight. Kane also looks absurd fighting in dress slacks but no shirt. I’m not saying he should put the mask back on. Maybe he should just go away!

Jericho looked eager to impress as his hot tag segment jazzed up the tepid audience. He applied the Walls of Jericho on Rollins after dropping Kane and Orton with a pair of forearms. This led to a boat load of finishers including an AA to Kane by Cena and Rollins grazing the former champ with a kick from the top rope. Just as we were about to go to another break, Y2J connected with a codebreaker on Rollins. This isn’t 1993 so matches don’t end during commercial breaks, so when we returned, Jericho became of face-in-peril. Not much Cena to be had through two breaks which is being played up by the announce team. How can you impress the brass if you can’t get in the ring? When he does finally come in, a melee ensues and all parties get involved. Cena AA’s Kane a second time and does his “U Can’t See Me” in the direction of The Authority. Then in a bit of a surprise move, he tags in Reigns who spears Kane back into parts unknown. Three seconds later, this one is history! WINNERS: CENA, REIGNS & JERICHO

After the match, Cena jaw jacks with Triple H before Rollins attempts a sneak attack. Super Cena saw right through it and AA’d Mr. Money in the Bank on the announce table. Upon celebrating with his teammates, Cena grabbed a fan’s sign that read “Tag Me In” as the announcers hyped up the double main event for next week.

This Raw was good when it had to be but struggled with too much fluff and garbage throughout. I never need four segments of Bellas unless jello is involved. Furthermore, all of the matches, with the exception of the main event, the tag match with the Wyatts and the Uso/Goldust bout were all Attitude Era short. The segments with Miz and Bo Dallas were strong but otherwise, the show was dragged down by highlights and non-wrestling. Jim Ross would not be pleased. It does seem like they are trying to make Night of Champions a bigger deal than usual and I’m glad they are putting all these rematches on Raw now so that the actual pay-per-view card won’t feel like a rerun of SummerSlam.

So now that the long weekend is over and it’s back to work for all of us, let’s be thankful that we have the ability to go to work everyday and can make a living while supporting our loved ones. We can’t say the same for Angelo. He’s probably on the slow boat back to Italy by now.

Damn you Jack Swagger! Damn you!

Join the conversation by following me on “The Twitter” @DmcG4881. Still not enough? Hear me weekly on The Steve Corino Show every Friday and be sure to ask us questions @SteveCorinoShow.

Author: Dan McGinn

Dan McGinn is a former Minor League Baseball announcer, a five-star General in the #sweatervestarmy and an all around babyface who you should be happy to take home to dinner. He also happens to write about wrestling.