Monday Night Raw
August 26, 2013
We dive right into the US Airways Arena where the Shield is standing at the bottom of the ramp in front of the ring. We are now joined by the KING OF KINGS, COO Triple H who is getting, half booed, half cheered. It’s interesting. Triple H, putting the Shield on the payroll. AWESOME. Many hate it, and as usual, that’s fine with me. Triple H wants to bring us back to an epic moment, a paradigm shift. He calls it the beginning of the future, and we go back to Summerslam. Daniel Bryan wins the WWE Title, then loses it. Triple H says “That was best for business, and nothing personal.” Then Triple H takes us back to last week when Daniel Bryan came back out and got beat down by The Shield. They give a close up of The Game “nodding” to The Shield. Damnit that was awesome. Then he goes into the ring and gets RKO’ed. Triple H admits “That was personal.” He explains that it was Daniel Bryan’s actions that led to last week, including insulting his wife. Triple H says tonight we can let that all pass and move on, and moves on to business. He says “Business is up, and ratings are up because of one man.” He then brings out WWE Champion Randy Orton. Triple H congratulates Randy on “breathing new life into the WWE.” Triple H has a gift from his own pocket, and he bought Orton a Cadillac Escalade. It comes rolling out, with Triple H’s theme playing. That’s how I want to drive into any parking lot. Actually I have done that, many times. Orton thanks him, and says for business this is the right decision. Orton is about to go check his new car out when Daniel Bryan comes out to a raucous ovation. He calls Orton’s car a “sweet ride”. Bryan says its better than his Honda Fit. Bryan says “I have some thank you’s of my own that I’d like to make.” Bryan thanks the WWE Universe because he doesn’t fit the WWE mold, but he gets the support anyway. The YES YES chants are rampant. Bryan then mentions John Cena. He thanks John “for giving me the opportunity to wrestle at Summerslam.” He then thanks Triple H, for ending this charade. Bryan says “What’s best for business is as narrow minded and misguided as what Vince McMahon wanted.” Bryan says the rebel in the leather jacket is now a “sell out in a suit.” Orton yaps about showing respect but Bryan cuts him off. Bryan enacts his rematch clause at Night of Champions and the face of the WWE will be rearranged. Triple H starts mocking Daniel Bryan, calling him Jiminy Cricket and singing “When You Wish Upon a Star”. He then sets up a gauntlet match for Bryan against the Shield. He will face Rollins, Ambrose, and Reigns in that order. So they didn’t destroy the car, yet.
Later tonight CM Punk will face Curtis Axel, and fans on the App can vote to ban Heyman from ringside, make Heyman the guest referee or if Punk wins, Heyman must get in the ring with him.
MATCH: Cody Rhodes vs. Fandango
Mr. MITB Damien Sandow is at the commentary table. I hope Rhodes can win this clean and we don’t get any shitty Miz run-ins. Summer Rae’s outfits are getting more and more provocative. Sure enough after a few minutes of work out comes The Miz dressed as Fandango dancing up the ramp, and Fandango is distracted enough to have Cody roll him up and get the cheap win. YAWWWNN. WINNER: Cody Rhodes
Fandango and Cody start brawling in the ring, followed by Sandow and then the Miz. Predictably out comes GM Brad Maddox to make the tag match after the break. Pathetic how predictable that was.
MATCH: Cody Rhodes & The Miz vs. Fandango & Damien Sandow
Rosa Mendes came out dancing with Miz and he remains at ringside. The match is standard TV fare until Fandango pulled his usual bailout of the match, which left Sandow alone. Miz hits the Skull Crushing Finale on Sandow for the win. The entire Fandango walking out of matches thing is getting pretty old. Oh and another Sandow loss. 0-3 since winning the MITB. WINNERS: Cody Rhodes & The Miz
We get another vignette for “Los Matadores”.
Josh is with Christian, who says that he’s been through rough regimes so he understands how these things end. He’s interrupted by Randy Orton, who faces Christian tonight and will make him a loser just like at Summerslam. Christian said Triple H is used to using sledgehammers, and now he has a new “tool”. Good line.
CM Punk comments on the match and stipulations tonight during the commercial break.
Backstage Paul Heyman is pissed that the WWE Universe is voting on his health and well-being. Curtis Axel says he’s got this and will force Punk to make a wrong decision and lose.
MATCH: Curtis Axel vs. CM Punk
Paul Heyman didn’t come out to ringside with his Intercontinental Champion. IT’S CLOBBERIN’ TIME!! Once Punk is in the ring, Heyman comes out to the top of the ramp. Jerry has the mike, and the result from the WWE App is….Heyman must get in the ring with Punk if Punk wins, by 81% of the vote. Wow didn’t see that coming. The match is a pretty stiff war as both guys really bring it. I think these matches with Punk the past few weeks is really bringing the best out of Curtis Axel. Punk hits the GTS and gets the victory. WINNER: CM Punk
Heyman is standing at the top of the ramp stunned with his mouth open. Punk is ready, but Heyman tries to bolt. A group of referees come to push him back down the ramp. Punk goes up the ramp to get Heyman and Heyman escapes to the back. Punk stops but security brings Heyman back into the ring. Heyman keeps screaming that its all Brock Lesnar’s idea. Punk starts choking Heyman but Curtis Axel recovered to low blow Punk in the nuts. Heyman pulls a pair of handcuffs out of his jacket. Axel handcuffs Punk behind his back. Heyman starts taunting him and slapping Punk in the face. Punk comes loose and starts kicking Heyman but Axel slams Punk with a chair. This is a great segment, really putting Axel over. Axel finds a kendo stick under the ring. They continue taunting Punk, then Axel gives Heyman the kendo stick. Punk screams to “make it count”. Heyman beats Punk down, screaming things like “I LOVED YOU, I FATHERED YOU…” They continue beating Punk down outside with the Kendo Stick. Heyman keeps screaming “YOU BROKE MY HEART!!” Punk’s back is bruised and bleeding. Heyman starts crying. This is a tremendous segment for all those involved. Three characters all put over more than they already were. (With the exception of Axel, who needed it the most.)
Back from break and in the ring is JoJo from Total Divas to be the ring announcer for this Divas match.
MATCH: Natalya vs. Brie Bella
Ben and Jen? Crap, oh well. It’s a match. WINNER: Brie Bella
Out comes Divas Champion AJ, who pretty much makes fun of Total Divas as a show. Wow she turned face in one fell swoop. She calls all the divas “expendable and useless”. I LOVE IT!!! Finally someone who actually agrees with me! AJ says she’s shattered the glass ceiling and these sluts were handed 15 minutes of fame. Wow she’s even slamming the Bellas for blowing main eventers. Well indirectly anyway. She says “You in your $4,000 heels will never lace my Chuck Taylors.” AJ pretty much stole this entire Raw for me with the greatest Divas promo ever.
We go back to Raw when Ricardo told Alberto Del Rio he’s representing RVD.
MATCH: Rob Van Dam vs. Alberto Del Rio
On the WWE App, GM Brad Maddox says if RVD wins tonight, he gets Del Rio for the World Title at Night of Champions. RVD really worked Del Rio over throughout most of this match. This is a nice fresh matchup that Smackdown (and Del Rio) needed. Eventually RVD wins with that roll up where he uses just his legs, mostly because Ricardo Rodriguez kept distracting Del Rio and the Champion paid for it. So it will be Del Rio vs. RVD for the World Title at Night of Champions. Looking forward to that one.
We get an update on John Cena’s elbow surgery and the scars.
Back from break and Josh is with Ryback, He asks about the bullying and then he grabs Josh’s face. He drops Josh, picks him up and throws him down. This gimmick is awful.
Renee is with Curtis and Heyman. Paul says Punk is a petulant child who keeps getting punished.
MATCH: Christian vs. Randy Orton
These two have always had great chemistry dating back to their feud a couple years ago. The match is a back and forth affair until Orton takes control before the break by throwing Christian over the ropes to the floor. Christian regains control and gets a few near falls. I love how Jerry tries to justify that Orton is a little “more arrogant”. Same ol’ announcing tactics, as they try to convince something that’s not there. Orton really hasn’t changed, he just hangs with the heels now. Christian with a tornado DDT off the top rope for 2. Orton hits the hanging DDT but Christian pushes off the RKO attempt. Christian goes for the spear but Orton leap frogs it. Christian recovers to hit a shorter spear for two. This has been a really good match. Orton goes for the RKO but Christian reverses into a Killswitch attempt, but Orton shields the ref and thumbs Christian in the eye. He hits the RKO for the win. WINNER: Randy Orton
Daniel Bryan is on the Titantron, mocking Orton for his cheap win. He talks about the Escalade that Orton received from Triple H earlier. Bryan asks “Will beating you at Night of Champions make me the face of WWE?” He answers YES, and then the camera widens to see Orton’s car with the word “YES” spray painted all over the car.
Back from break and Orton, Triple H and Brad Maddox are around the Escalade. Triple H is pissed that the entire locker room enjoyed what happens. Triple H says that the entire roster will be on the stage during Daniel Bryan’s match and if any interfere or look the wrong way they will be fired.
MATCH: Titus O’Neil vs. Jack Swagger
Kofi Kingston made a funny tweet about Randy Orton’s car. Remember when Kofi did it to Orton a few years back with his personalized NASCAR? Titus wins the match with some kind of stand up flapjack or something. WINNER: Titus O’Neil
Out of break we get a vignette with the Wyatt Family. The promos establish him as a great character, but we need better matches. We are introduced to a “sister Abigail” in Bray Wyatt’s diatribe. New character?
Brad Maddox is talking with medical when CM Punk comes in. He wants Paul Heyman, pure and simple. So Maddox gave Punk a match with Curtis Axel and Heyman at Night of Champions. Heyman can’t worm his way out of it.
Another Los Matadores vignette? We needed two of them?
GAUNTLET MATCH #1: Daniel Bryan vs. Seth Rollins
The entire WWE roster is on the stage. Sadly this won’t be as good as if they had a full-blown PPV match. Renee Young tries to interview any of the people on the stage but no one will answer for fear of firing. Bryan keeps putting Rollins in submission moves, and then he throws himself at Rollins outside and puts him over the announce table. They continue battling inside the ring. This match is indeed as good as advertised, better than I expected. They both head up to the top rope and Bryan hits an awesome German Suplex. Bryan wins with a running knee. WINNER: Daniel Bryan
GAUNTLET MATCH #2: Daniel Bryan vs. Dean Ambrose
Ambrose runs right in and starts wailing. Ambrose though is caught in the YES Lock out of nowhere but Roman Reigns interferes for the DQ. WINNER: Daniel Bryan
GAUNTLET MATCH #3: Daniel Bryan vs. Roman Reigns
The entire Shield walk in to batter Bryan. WINNER: No Contest
Triple H then walks through the roster, a look of disgust on his face. He widens the gap in the middle, and as the Shield continue beating the crap out of Bryan, out comes Randy Orton to pick the bones. He gets in the ring and hits an RKO. Triple H pretty much taunts the roster as he and Orton walk away. The Shield stands over a prone Bryan. With that we’re out.
SCOTT’S TAKE: With every week of beatings, Daniel Bryan’s momentum grows and grows and grows. The Punk/Heyman storyline is the juiciest in the company right now. Oh yeah and AJ Lee’s promo was easily the highlight of the night. Triple H’s Power Trip? EXCELLENT. Just start using the Evolution theme and get it over with.