Monday Night Raw
April 14, 2014
We begin with the entire roster on the top of the ramp wearing Ultimate Warrior t-shirts, and Michael Cole mentions Warrior’s passing last week. Jerry Lawler then intros a wonderful video package on his career. God this sucks. Another piece of all our childhoods is gone. The bell then tolls ten times. Yes, I have a tear. Don’t we all? Tonight we will honor the Warrior with I’m sure vignettes on great moments. Yes I am an impulsive buyer and I will buy an Ultimate Warrior t-shirt. We will have current storyline stuff tonight. We also have one of my favorite wrestling hooks ever; TOURNAMENTS. We look for a #1 contender for the Intercontinental Championship, and we begin an eight-man tournament to find it.
Before continuing I wanna thank Brad Woodling for pinch hitting for me last week while my DirecTV dish was hanging by a thread. Great job Brad!
MATCH: Alberto Del Rio vs. Rob Van Dam (Tournament First Round)
Damn I love tournaments. To be coincidental, it was because of the Ultimate Warrior’s World Title win at Wrestlemania VI that forced an Intercontinental Title tournament, won by fellow hall of famer Mr. Perfect. Del Rio and RVD’s feud in 2013 for the World Title was not the best so it’s nice to see these two get another chance to put on a solid match. It indeed is a pretty good match that RVD wins with the Froggie to move on. WINNER: Rob Van Dam
No Daniel Bryan tonight as he’s on his honeymoon with Brie. We go back to last week when he celebrated his Wrestlemania win and Triple H poo-pooed it. Then the awesome brawl with the Shield at the end of the night.
Backstage and Triple H shakes hands with Randy Orton and Batista. What’s passed you by? Hehehe….
Our first Ultimate Warrior moment of the night takes us back to Summerslam 1988, when Warrior destroyed that hump Honky Tonk Man to win the Intercontinental Title at Madison Square Garden.
Back from break and Triple H is talking with Orton and Batista and he says the Shield is a bigger problem than Daniel Bryan. Triple H says maybe nobody can stop them, except them as a group. Both Batista and Orton say they want to be champion and couldn’t care less about Triple H’s problem.
MATCH: Rhodes Brothers vs. Rybaxel
This match seems kind of random. But hey, anytime the Rhodes Brothers are in the ring it’s exciting. This match is just happening while the announcers pimp the Network and talk about Daniel Bryan’s honeymoon. I love JBL, but he can’t get sucked into these insipid conversations and needs to get back to the match. Solid match, and in somewhat of an upset, Ryback hits Shell Shock on Cody for the win. I’m pretty stunned. Wow they actually have new entrance music, a morph of their two themes. WINNERS: Rybaxel
We get a sneak peak of the awesome shit show called WWE Legends House.
Another vignette for Bo Dallas. Not a fan.
New Divas Champion Paige comes down to the ring. We go back to last week when she beat AJ Lee to win the title.
MATCH: Paige vs. Alicia Fox
So what did she do with the NXT Women’s Title? She actually is holding both belts. She should walk around with both of them. Although maybe that would make her too heelish. She does have that pretty bad ass submission finisher, which she uses to get the victory. I’m loving all these divas using submission finishers. WINNER: Paige
MATCH: The Usos vs. Randy Orton & Batista
Last week Orton & the Animal beat the snot out of the champs, and the champs want redemption. Batista still has his machine gun pyro, which I thought was his babyface stuff. This match is much more like a match than what happened last week. The match ends when the Shield come in out of nowhere and beat Orton to dust. WINNERS: Randy Orton & Batista by disqualification
The Shield surround Batista and Reigns knocks him out with the Superman punch. We’ve wanted to cheer those guys, and now we legitimately can.
Our next Ultimate Warrior moment of the night is Warrior’s crowning achievement, beating Hulk Hogan at Wrestlemania VI for the World Title.
Backstage Orton and Batista are licking their wounds when they run into Triple H and Stephanie. Triple H simply says “Told you”.
MATCH: Cesaro vs. Mark Henry (Tournament First Round)
Paul Heyman comes out to continue gloating about Brock Lesnar “conquering the streak”. Well, where is he? We get pictures of Taker after losing at Mania. I know Heyman can beat this like a dead horse, but to really hammer home the loss Lesnar needs to be on camera more. Cesaro has no entrance music, and that’s a crime. Short match, and Cesaro hits the Neturalizer with an incredible feat of strength. WINNER: Cesaro
Back from break and Triple H is telling Brad Maddox to find the Shield and tell them that they’re in the main event tonight but they won’t know their opponents. Why is Brad Maddox even around still? The General Manager concept needs to die and quickly.
Out comes the gorgeous Lana to put over Alexander Rusev.
MATCH: Alexander Rusev vs. Xavier Woods
Little NXT alumni match action. Of course Rusev wins handily. WINNER: Alexander Rusev
The guy is a beast and must be pushed. R-Truth comes in to break the submission hold and Rusev kicks him in the face.
Our next Ultimate Warrior moment takes us to the Spectrum in Philadelphia for Summerslam 1990 when Warrior beat Rick Rude in the steel cage to retain his World Title. Their match one year earlier at Summerslam 1989 is better and my favorite Warrior match of all time.
MATCH: Jack Swagger vs. Sheamus (Tournament First Round)
We already have one semifinal set as Cesaro will face Rob Van Dam. It has been announced the winner of this tournament will face Big E for the Intercontinental Title at Extreme Rules. I honestly don’t think Sheamus needs to be in this tournament. He’s a former WWE and World Champion, but there’s better mid-card guys who could use some shine instead of a “glorified” mid card guy who doesn’t need the IC Title. What he needs is a heel turn. Swagger gets the ankle lock on but Sheamus kicks out of it. As anticipated, a Brogue Kick finishes things. WINNER: Sheamus
Sheamus is limping after the anklelock.
We get a vignette for NXT’s Adam Rose. I like the character, and the couple matches I saw on NXT were pretty solid too.
It’s “Warrior Week” on the WWE Network, and it should be.
MATCH: Big Show vs. Damien Sandow
Sandow keeps yapping about nonsense, as he’s pretty much become fodder. Show walks in and Sandow keeps yapping. Finally Big Show knocks him out. WINNER: No Contest
The fans now clap during Bray Wyatt’s theme song. Cole says that members of the WWE Universe are following the “false prophet”. I would tread lightly here, because you don’t really want to insult any of the WWE Universe. Only Triple H can do that. Bray says the world is vile and putrid. He says he is different. He always tells the truth, whereas John Cena lies behind his porcelain smile. He calls Cena out, and John obliges. Cena says the last thing the WWE Universe needs is another push so he won’t go there. That’s pretty funny. He says this needs to be fun, and the Wyatts are always so serious. He says they have to get to Happy Hour. Cena makes fun of all of Bray’s female relatives (pretty much female pictures with the Wyatt guys’ faces on them). Cena was annoying, Wyatts were cool.
MATCH: Santino Marella & Emma vs. Fandango & Layla
So Fandango dumped Summer Rae. Weird, I wonder why. Emma’s “dilemma” move is pretty much an upside down version of Tajiri’s “Tarantula”. Layla gets the win. WINNERS: Fandango & Layla
Backstage Stephanie is scolding Kane for sucking against The Shield. She does one of her “fake angry” promo and calls Kane weak and a shell of his former self. He kicks the chair over and stares at his old mask in a glass case. He takes the case off and picks the mask up. He says he’s taking Daniel Bryan to Hell. So we are getting a Kane/Daniel Bryan match at Extreme Rules? Ugh why god why.
Another Bo Dallas “Bolieve” vignette.
We go back to last week when Warrior cut his final poignant promo. Still gives me chills. The next “Wrestlemania Rewind” on the Network will be Hogan-Warrior from VI this Wednesday night.
MATCH: Dolph Ziggler vs. Bad News Barrett (Tournament First Round)
The winner gets Sheamus in the semifinals. This is Barrett’s first match in the new gimmick. During the break before the match we get another Adam Rose promo. The match is solid enough, as Barrett pulls out ol’ Wasteland but doesn’t get the three count with it. Never liked that move as a finisher. Dolph hits the Fame-asser but Barrett kicks out. Both guys have hit some big moves here in what’s probably the best match of the four tourney matches. Barrett hits the Bull Hammer for the win. WINNER: Bad News Barrett
He delivers some bad news, and its that he’s winning the belt. The semifinals are RVD vs. Cesaro and Sheamus vs. Barrett.
Next week Daniel Bryan will face Kane. So it looks like the old Kane, mask and all is back next week.
Sheamus will face Batista this Friday on Smackdown.
MATCH: The Shield vs. Alberto Del Rio, Jack Swagger, Fandango, 3MB, Titus O’Neil, Rybaxel, Alexander Rusev, Bad News Barrett
What the fuck is this? An 11-on-3 handicap match. How original. So they can pin one guy and they still win? So who cares if there’s eleven guys on the other side? Eventually it turns into a brawl and it ends. WINNER: Shield by disqualification
We get a full scale brawl as the Shield tries to fight off this entire gang of heels. The Shield is beaten down, and who comes out….Orton, Batista and Triple H….to EVOLUTION’S THEME MUSIC! FUCK YEAH BITCHES!!!!!! I love the Shield, but sorry, EVOLUTION IS ABOUT TO PASS YOU BY. The guys get in the ring and beat the Shield down. Reigns tries to fight back but Orton hits an RKO. Then Batista hits the ol’ Batista Bomb. Triple H is beating on Rollins. Then Orton RKO’s Rollins. Ambrose tries to fight back but he gets Batista Bombed. Then Batista and Orton do the Power Bomb/RKO combo to Ambrose. Triple H gets the mike and tells Reigns “Believe….in Evolution.” Then he Pedigrees Reigns. The music fires up and I am smiling. With that we are out.
SCOTT’S TAKE: We honored the Ultimate Warrior and the greatest faction of the 2000’s is back together. All in all a pretty good night. You know who also belongs in Evolution? Graham Cawthon, purveyor of thehistoryofwwe.com. Follow him on Twitter @thehistoryofwwe. Here’s Graham’s Raw Tweet of the night!