Scott’s Raw Recap 11/18/13

Rey Mysterio makes his big return to help CM Punk and Daniel Bryan from an attack. (Courtesy WWE)
Rey Mysterio makes his big return to help CM Punk and Daniel Bryan from an attack. (Courtesy WWE)

Monday Night Raw
November 18, 2013
Nashville, Tennessee
“Raw Country”

We go back to last week in London when the Authority took the week off and no leaders on Raw.  We head live into Nashville.  We have a huge 12-man tag team match tonight, and Big E. Langston faces Curtis Axel for the Intercontinental Title.  But then, after a week off, ON YOUR KNEES DOG.  Out comes The Authority.  Triple H and Stephanie come out holding hands looking incredibly cutsie-wootsie.  We go back to last week when Big Show mangled Randy Orton and chokeslammed him through the announce table.  Triple H says chaos rules when there is no authority to run the show.  He says Brad Maddox, Vickie Guerrero and others will be punished.  With that out comes the WWE Champion Randy Orton, and he looks pissed.  He grabs a mike and says everybody else isn’t to blame.  Orton says the power couple is responsible for everything that happened last week, and that the Face of the WWE should be protected.  Triple H gets in Orton’s face, but Stephanie says they are partly responsible for last week.  Then out comes Vickie Guerrero and Brad Maddox.  Maddox blames Vickie for last week’s debacle.  Triple H says blame is meaningless.  Stephanie says all of the handicap matches last week shows Maddox and Vickie are de-sensitized to the well-being of the athletes.  So Vickie Guerrero must face Divas Champion AJ.  Maddox must take on someone right now.  That match is no disqualification and it’s after the break.

NO DISQUALIFICATION MATCH: Brad Maddox vs. Randy Orton
Orton chases Maddox and catches him, but Maddox drills him with the microphone and then gives him a DDT in the middle of the ring.  Orton regains his composure and Orton pretty much beats the crap out of him for the rest of the match.  Orton pummels Maddox with the microphone.  The referee decides to just end the match.  WINNER: Randy Orton by referee decision

I have to say the Nashville crowd is pretty hot tonight.

We’re getting clips from “We Were Us” by Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert.  Are they married?  It seems all country singers are married to each other.

During commercial Brad Maddox was taken out on a stretcher.

INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP: Curtis Axel © vs. Big E. Langston
This is the rescheduled match from Hell in a Cell.  I have a good feeling about the big guy tonight.  He has the awesome burgundy singlet, better than the black one.  So its official that neither Axel nor Ryback are Paul Heyman guys anymore.  So that definitely means Axel loses tonight.  Axel took control early but Big E’s power curtailed any momentum.  Langston regains momentum late, hits the Big Ending and is your new IC Champion.  Finally, the big guy has earned his first big moment.  WINNER, AND NEW INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPION: Big E Langston

Randy Orton and the Shield are backstage and they now have an “understanding” that they’ll watch each other’s backs at Survivor Series.

Oh god, more of these quickie country music videos.  All night we’ll have to hear this.

We’re back and all divas are in the ring.  Oh god, Divas Musical Chairs?  No way.  I fast forward, and after a few turns they all start brawling.  Thank god I didn’t have to fast forward that far.  What a waste.  Remember in 1997 when Triple H held up that sign that said “WHO BOOKED THIS CRAP?”  Why couldn’t he have held it now?

MATCH: Big Show vs. Ryback
Typical big man match, as Ryback needs to re-establish himself now that he’s without Heyman.  Ryback actually looked pretty strong here, including hitting Shell Shock.  Big Show kicked out of it, knocked Ryback out and won the match.  WINNER: Big Show

Randy Orton tried to sneak up on Show but the big guy turned around and speared the WWE Champion.  At least this Orton/Show feud is new.

Zack Ryder is talking to a couple of country singers who’s names I didn’t get until 3MB came in calling themselves the Rhinestone Cowboys.  Hilarity ensues.

We get a promo for the History of WWE Blu-Ray.  I wonder if Graham Cawthon got royalties for that title.

Orton is backstage getting his ribs iced and he’s pissed that no one came out to help him.  I don’t get how getting speared and leaving the ring necessitated help.

MATCH: The Real Americans vs. Kofi Kingston & The Miz
Real Americans get a tag title shot with the Rhodes Brothers Friday on Smackdown.  We have an elimination match booked for Sunday.  It will be Real Americans and the Shield vs. Rhodes Brothers, Usos and a partner to be named.  Interesting.  The Real Americans have looked great lately and this match is no exception.  As Kofi looks to get a tag from the Miz, the Miz goes all Sid ala 1992 and leaves the apron.  Kofi gets caught in the Patriot Lock and has to tap out.  WINNERS: The Real Americans

A heel Miz is a good Miz.

Thank god this country stuff is only tonight.

Vickie tried to fake an injury to get out of her match, but Stephanie sees through her.  So now Stephanie is a babyface?  What the fuck is going on here?

MATCH: Vickie Guerrero vs. AJ Lee
I’m so confused.  Is the Authority supposed to be face or heel?  Vickie fakes fainting.  She needs water.  This is a waste, although we do get to see AJ.  She tries to run but Tamina stops her.  Eventually AJ gets her in the Black Widow.  Good Night.  WINNER: AJ Lee

Vickie keeps fainting.  For the love of God, end this segment.

There’s going to be a 7-on-7 Divas Elimination Tag match at Survivor Series.  The Total Divas girls (captained by Ben Morse) vs. AJ and the rest of the roster that has talent (captained by ME).  Kaitlyn and AJ are on the same team.  See my hatred of Total Divas has even led to some détente.

BROADWAY BRAWL: Dolph Ziggler vs. Damien Sandow
There’s a bunch of musical instruments in the ring, so I guess you can use them as weapons.  The match isn’t bad, as the instruments have been used.  Sandow continues to show his vicious side since losing the MITB match.  Ziggler’s selling like a madman as Sandow’s throwing him into everything including a steel chair stuck in the corner.  Wow JBL throws a Jeff Jarrett reference out there.  Nice.  Ziggler gets momentum and puts all the drums through Sandow’s head, then Ziggler goes all Jeff Jarrett on Sandow and drills him with a guitar for the victory.  Boy he needed that victory badly.  WINNER: Dolph Ziggler

Ziggler even did the Jeff Jarrett walk before hitting Sandow.  Even better.

Randy Orton barges into The Authority’s office and demands to know if he has their confidence.  Stephanie says “They’ll think about it.”

John Cena’s talking to those two country singers from earlier.

Back from break and World Champion John Cena, whose left arm is in a sling, joins us.  Cena is happy for the Nashville ovation, and he says he has added wardrobe tonight, meaning the sling.  We go back to last week when Alberto Del Rio went after Cena’s left arm.  Then to Smackdown when Del Rio attacked Cena during an arm wrestling match.  Cena’s been watching the footage over and over which is why he’s in a foul mood.  He talks about his injury and the fans and the usual verbal vomiting.  He does say that maybe he came back too soon due to his ailing left arm.  He says maybe he shouldn’t be champion.  Then he looks at the crowd and the blah blah blah.  Sunday in Boston Cena says he gets to wrestle in front of his family.  He says pain is temporary and pride is forever.  Out comes Alberto Del Rio for his go home promo.  He says Cena’s speech made him cry.  Cena says Sunday he’ll make Del Rio tap.  Del Rio says if Cena can hold the title up Sunday, then hold it up right now using your left arm.  The one in the sling.  Eventually they start to brawl and Del Rio begs off.  Cena’s music plays.

Mike Strahan is Raw’s guest host next week.  Really?

The Rhinestone Cowboys come down to the ring.  I cry when I see what Drew McIntyre has become.

MATCH: Rhinestone Cowboys vs. R-Truth & Xavier Woods
Woods looks like Rick James.  Cole acknowledges that Woods is from NXT.  Pretty one-sided, as Woods gets the pin with a pretty sweet Lost in the Woods.  WINNERS: R-Truth & Xavier Woods

Triple H and Stephanie tell Orton that they do have confidence in Orton, which means no interference on Sunday.  What side are they on?  I guess with Daniel Bryan out of the picture they’re babyfaces again or something?

We go back to Saturday in New Orleans when the WrestleMania XXX tickets went on sale.  Wow Sheamus, I forgot I’ll have to deal with his babyface crap when he comes back.

Oh so those guys are some band called Florida Georgia Line.  They sing.

TWELVE-MAN TAG TEAM MATCH: CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, Rhodes Brothers & Usos vs. The Shield & The Wyatt Family
This could end up being one of those fun memorable main events that seemingly come out of nowhere.  This is actually good booking on a go home show before a PPV.  Give Bryan and Punk a lighter workload tonight and let the mid-carders do the yeoman’s work.  We already have tension between the Wyatts and The Shield.  This match is starting pretty early so we could be in for a nice long main event.  As I watch the Shield I wonder who the babyface would be.  It would probably be Reigns.  Similar to Batista.  Daniel Bryan gets tagged in at one point and the energy in the building goes through the roof.  He can be WWE Champion someday.  Eventually Bryan gets overwhelmed as the Shield and the Wyatts start to work together.  Two commercial breaks for this match.  Punk tags in and the fun really begins.  He hits a double neckbreaker on Ambrose/Reigns.  Punk got Ambrose in the Anaconda Vice but it’s broken up.  What a fun main event with bodies flying everywhere.  Punk’s team wins when he hits the GTS on Ambrose.  WINNERS: The Good Guys

The Real Americans and the Wyatts are attacking Punk & Bryan until out comes the returning Rey Mysterio!  He cleans house and I guess he’s the mystery partner Sunday!  The faces clean house.  With that we’re out.

SCOTT’S TAKE: Most of this show was utter crap, but the main event was a lot of fun.  I feel like The Authority thing is stepping back now that Bryan isn’t in the WWE Title picture.

If you have any comments or questions hit me up at ScottC@placetobenation.com and on Twitter @scottcriscuolo.  Also follow our good friend Graham Cawthon, @thehistoryofwwe.

Here’s Graham Cawthon’s “Raw Tweet of the Night”!

@HistoryofWWE I think the issue with WWE since the fall began is few things feel organic. “YES!” was organic. Orton’s crybaby stuff feels forced.

Author: Scott Criscuolo

Scott Criscuolo is a co-founder of the Place to Be, co-host of the Place to Be Podcast, and was in the radio business for 10 years. He loves all things pop culture, and someday he will be the ghost writer for Triple H's autobiography. Send Scott an email