Monday Night Raw
August 5, 2013
Green Bay, Wisconsin
We actually have the opening montage. It plays probably once every six weeks. The pyro goes off and we are live in Packer country. We open the show with Mrs. H, Stephanie McMahon who welcomes us. She says “It’s no secret that my dad doesn’t think Daniel Bryan is championship material. I know you and my husband Triple H disagree.” Tonight Daniel Bryan will participate in a “corporate makeover.” We get a video montage of Bryan working out, but also being at a salon with cucumbers on his eyes and getting a facial. He then heads to a Texas Roadhouse to eat a steak. Mr. Vegan. Then he gets a new suit. Out comes Daniel Bryan with his hair combed back and in a suit. Some think this is ripping off Steve Austin ala 1998, but its not really. Stephanie’s not shoving it down everyone’s throat like Vince did back then. Steph calls Daniel “sharp”. Bryan takes the mike as the YES YES YES chants start. He asks if the crowd likes it and the fans boo. So he’s supposed to look like he sleeps at the bus station? Bryan says “This isn’t really what the company wants. They want a jacked up guy with cargo shorts and a bright t-shirt and sell stuff nobody really needs.” It seems like they want John Cena, and the crowd boos. Bryan says “I respect Cena for picking me at SummerSlam because I am the best contender. He also thinks I can’t beat him.” Bryan says “Cena is all over the place and I have a scraggly beard.” He continues: “Cena is an entertainer, and I am a WRESTLER!” Bryan says Cena hasn’t seen the holes he’s crawled out of in his career. Bryan says “If John Cena gets fired tomorrow, he goes back to his million dollar lifestyle and never wrestle again. If I get fired tomorrow, you will see me in every armory and dirtbox with a wrestling ring all over the world because I love wrestling!” He will dress up in this suit for now and he will do what they want for now. In the end he says he will make Cena tap out at SummerSlam. With that out comes Mr. McMahon in these two weird dual-colored ties. Vince really has lost his mind. Vince wanted to shake Daniel’s hand but fakes him out. Vince says “You’ve given the old college try.” He gives Bryan crap about his suit not matching his shoes, but then says he’s warming up to him. Vince says “We’ve never had a dwarf as WWE Champion.” He ridicules Bryan’s physique and beard. I thought this was a company who promoted anti-bullying? Now Vince and Ryback are hanging out. He keeps ripping Bryan’s beard, calling it a compost pile. Vince’s jokes are absolutely horrendous. Vince says “If you want my influence, we have to shave that beard.” So Vince brings out some boobs with a barber chair. If you wanted Raw to get rating, bring out Brutus Beefcake. My PIC will mark out. Bryan makes the crowd chant NO NO NO. Maybe this is like Steve Austin 1998. Vince says “If these fans want you to be WWE Champion, they will want you to shave this beard.” As for being fired tomorrow, Vince says “Be careful what you wish for.” Bryan hangs his head, and gets out of the ring. He takes his jacket off and gets in the chair. Vince calls out Wade Barrett to do the deed. What the fuck? This promo started off great, but is circling the bowl quickly. He asks Barrett to leave a little part on, then he sucker punches him and shaves half Barrett’s beard off. He beats Barrett down and Bryan leaves the ring area. The YES YES YES chants start and Vince is pissed. Bryan says “You want me to change? I say NO! NO!” He takes his suit off and is wearing a new shirt that says “THE BEARD IS HERE.” Vince is pissed and steps all over Bryan’s suit jacket. That promo was effective, but Vince is so out of his league with these promos. All his quips are out of date.
Back from break and The Miz is at the announce table to annoy me and everyone else.
MATCH: Rob Van Dam vs. Alberto Del Rio
Poor Christian. Everyone loves the guy and is glad he’s here, but every time he gets a spot it’s the wrong place at the wrong time. Now RVD may have requested not wanting title matches because otherwise not picking him is ridiculous. RVD dominates the match with all his big moves, while Miz puts over him hosting SummerSlam. He’s no Randy Savage ala 1994. Not at all. Ricardo Rodriguez puts the bucket in the corner but RVD reverses the Irish Whip and Del Rio goes into the bucket. RVD rolls him up and gets the three count. WINNER: Rob Van Dam
After the match Del Rio is pissed and boots Rodriguez in the face. He beats on Ric-Rod then pastes him a few times with the bucket. Del Rio tosses Ric-Rod to the floor. Then he places Ric-Rod’s head between the ring and the steel steps and boots the steps. So was Ricardo busted for the Wellness Policy again? Or is this just to really give Del Rio heel heat? Not sure.
Back from break and in the ring is Cody Rhodes with a mike. He says “There’s a great Oscar Wilde quote that states best friends stab you in the front.” We get a video montage of the past two weeks between these Rhodes and Damien Sandow. Rhodes has spared no expense to help his former “friend”. So in the box in front of him is Sandow’s MITB briefcase, all waterlogged with seaweed sticking out of it. Out comes Damien Sandow who tells Rhodes to leave the briefcase in the ring. Cody does that and leaves the ring. Sandow goes into the ring but Cody gets back in and beats Sandow down. Sandow runs out of the ring. Cody opens the briefcase and out falls sand, water and the World Heavyweight Title contract. He throws the empty case back at Sandow while holding the wet contract.
MATCH: Ryback vs. Mark Henry
We have a rematch from Metlife Stadium back on April 7. I was so pumped about that match and it didn’t deliver. Shame. Now both guys are on opposite sides of the fence from then, so this match is different. Ryback takes a beating and then leaves the ring, so Henry wins by countout. That heel way of losing is getting very stale. It seems like everyone is doing that now. WINNER: Mark Henry
The Bellas are on and I’m fast-forwarding.
One of those annoying bitches’ boyfriends is coming out. WWE Champion John Cena makes his way down with his ugly yellow t-shirt. I’m sure this promo will be riveting. He says “This is familiar to me. I’m the target, but usually it’s somebody no one likes. This time it’s a true fan favorite.” He says this forces the WWE Universe to choose. Cena says “Many of you easily choose Daniel Bryan.” Cena has this weird accent going tonight. Cena is pissed that Bryan shouldn’t judge him by his shirt. Oh I get it. Cena has the old “Thuganomics” accent going on. Ugh Cena’s elbow looks terrible. He says “Bryan talks about working in armories and gymnasiums. Maybe that’s where he belongs.” Cena is dogging Bryan’s indy career. Is that smart? Cena gets the crowd to chant “You can’t wrestle”. Well he says “You don’t become WWE Champion 11 times by being lucky.” He’s definitely got a heel slant here, and the crowd’s chanting “boring”. Cena thinks the WWE Universe wants the Summerslam title match right now. Cena’s promo was better than I thought. With that out comes Raw MITB Randy Orton. Orton says “John you never cease to amaze me. You’re aware of the target on your back, not the target in front of you.” Orton says its all about his briefcase. Orton says “It could happen anytime from here to WrestleMania in New Orleans. The point is, the champ is here.” With that he raises the briefcase. Then out of nowhere the Shield comes down to the ring. Bryan, Cena and Orton in a six-man tag tonight? The Shield surround the ring and there’s Daniel Bryan! Wow I’m a genius! Not really, the writers are just predictable. So that means out come Brad Maddox to book the match! My god how original! Just go to commercial, come back and have the match. I agree with my PIC Justin Rozzero. Get rid of the GM altogether. It’s a colossal waste.
MATCH: Tons of Funk vs. Rowan & Harper
This is a test to see if Rowan is as bad a wrestler as everyone thinks he is. I guess doing nothing but punches and kicks isn’t a great indicator of anything. Harper and Rowan win easily. WINNERS: Rowan & Harper
Bray Wyatt gets up from his rocking chair and gets in the ring. Rowan & Harper have Brodus Clay held up and Bray hits his finisher. Follow the buzzards. Is Kane joining the family? Well after saying that Kane’s pyro goes off and he’s backstage. Kane says “When you pull wings off the buzzards, you can’t follow them.” Kane says you can’t dismember and mutilate everyone, although he likes the concept. Kane says he is the devils’s favorite demon and Bray Wyatt won’t be saved at SummerSlam from a ring of FIRE. I wonder if that means its Kane vs. Bray Wyatt in an inferno match at SummerSlam?
Back from break and Josh is backstage with CM Punk. Punk says “I want to talk about Curtis Axel’s father Mr Perfect. At least when he was managed by Bobby Heenan, Perfect thought for himself.” Punk will take out Paul Heyman’s puppet, then is coming for Paul. Punk talks about Brock Lesnar. “The Beast will get neutered by the Best.”
MATCH: Kaitlyn vs. Layla
We go back to Friday night when Layla turned heel on Kaitlyn and is AJ Lee’s girl now. Layla is acting like the old “Lay-Cool” days. I wonder if Kaitlyn is slowly falling down the ladder now. Bummer. Kaitlyn was about to go for the spear when Divas Champ AJ comes out. Layla ducks the spear and when AJ distracts Kaitlyn, Layla clocks her with a kick and gets the win. Wow Kaitlyn’s sliding further down the ladder. WINNER: Layla
MATCH: Christian vs. Heath Slater
If they love Christian so much as #1 contender, why is he “already in the ring”? That’s weak. Sorry I find crap like that stupid. 3MB is great, even though they never win. A good bunch of jobbers. Better than the awful jobbers in TNA. At least these guys, including McIntyre and Mahal can wrestle. Of course they lose here too with a Christian spear. WINNER: Christian
MATCH: CM Punk vs. Curtis Axel
Punk has on a hoodie similar to the Gracie Jiu-Jitsu one, but with is bolt logo. That might be a purchase. Punk heads up the ramp and they start brawling on the stage. Heyman bolts to the back. They finally get back in the ring and Punk takes control. Bryan may be the better wrestler but Punk is still more over. The match goes back and forth when Punk takes control as Heyman returns to ringside. Punk continues to dominate, then decides to go after Heyman. Punk gets DQ’ed but who cares. WINNER: Curtis Axel by disqualification
Brock Lesnar’s music hits and the Beast comes down. Punk is ready but Axel pulls Punk out of the ring but Punk hits the GTS. Punk and Lesnar go back and forth and Punk takes control with kicks to the head. Punk jumps off the announce table and hits a double axe handle. Lesnar recovers and hits a german suplex. He drags Punk into the ring and is going for the F5 but Punk jumps out and hits Lesnar with a chair. He goes after Heyman with the chair but Lesnar recovers to grab Punk and hit the F5. Lesnar then grabs the chair and pummels Punk with chair shots. I can’t wait for this one at SummerSlam.
Renee is with Brock and Paul and Lesnar says “I am both the Beast and the Best.” Heyman tells Renee to deliver a message. “CM Punk will not make it to SummerSlam, because next week I will not be an advocate, I will be a wrestler. CM Punk vs. Paul Heyman.”
MATCH: Fandango vs. Kofi Kingston
Kofi’s return match after his recent surgery. Kayfabe it was Ryback putting him through three tables. This will be a fun match. It won’t get PPV time so it won’t totally develop. Fandango’s a little sloppy here, including where he goes for a spin kick but he’s off kilter so his butt goes in Kofi’s face. The Kofi gets momentum and hits Trouble in Paradise for the shocking win. I kinda call it shocking. Didn’t think they’d have Fandango job clean like that. WINNER: Kofi Kingston
Backstage Triple H is on the phone when his wife comes in crying because Vince bit her head off about the opening segment. Triple H snaps and says Vince has lost it; the great Vince McMahon is old and out of it. HHH says “I don’t know what he has planned at SummerSlam but I will not let the ship go down.” That’s what I want to hear!
In the ring is Zeb Colter with his Real Americans. Zeb rips Green Bay for not having the “American Heart” and he rips cheese. When Zeb was in the main events his promos were great. Now he just rips sports teams and cities like boring heels do.
MATCH: Real Americans vs. The Usos
Possibly a #1 contenders match? The heels are dominating the hotter team of late, a team that has really stepped up and put on great matches with Rollins and Reigns but can’t wrest the titles from them. The Uso make a comeback and the match really picks up some steam. Bodies being thrown all over the place. Cesaro comes off the top rope with a move and Jey hits a boot to the face for a two count. Swagger and Jimmy brawl outside. Swagger hits a forearm to Jey when the ref wasn’t looking and Cesaro hits the Equalizer for the three count. WINNERS: Real Americans
MATCH: Dolph Ziggler vs. Big E. Langston
Very match-heavy Raw tonight with short but effective backstage pieces. This Raw has been well formatted and doesn’t feel disorganized. I’m surprised this is now and not in two weeks in Los Angeles. Dolph controls early with his speed. Big E starts roughhousing and takes the middle portion of the match. Dolph ducks a charge into the corner. Dolph’s pops are solid, but they need to be better. He needs to be World Champ again. Mid-match out comes Kaitlyn who grabs AJ and they start brawiling. AJ gets in the ring and the girls brawl in the ring. Dolph is distracted and Big E hits a clothesline. Big E hits the Big Ending on a limp Dolph for the three count. That was a weird ending as we had a DQ ending two matches ago, but not here for the same reason. Eh it gives Big E a needed win. WINNER: Big E. Langston
Big E and AJ will be on Miz TV Friday night on Smackdown. We get a piece for that summer camp reality show on USA. Josh interviews two of the contestants.
MATCH: Daniel Bryan, John Cena & Randy Orton vs. The Shield
We have a commercial break midway through the intros, then a video recap of Punk/Lesnar from earlier. So maybe they are short on time? Why bother with this and not just get to the main event? Cena’s deformed elbow is taped up. It’s been a while since we’ve had the Shield in a main event six-man tag match. This actually feels fresh. Bryan wrestling with his hair still back in a pony tail. Looks like 1995 Triple H. Except for the beard. Bryan’s getting beat on until he boots Reigns in the head but he can’t get the tag. Cena gets tagged but the ref didn’t see it. Rollins throws Bryan into Orton, then Bryan gets Ambrose into the YES Lock. The others come in to interfere and the ref calls for the bell. WINNERS: Bryan/Cena/Orton
Bryan cleans house and celebrates but Orton RKO’s Bryan. The Shield come back in and he and Cena clean house. Cena then eats an RKO. Does Orton cash the briefcase in. He decides to give the briefcase a shot. He gets in the ring, as Cena is out. The Shield come back down the ramp and Orton backs off. Cena recovers but Reigns spears him. Bryan takes a beating and Orton just leaves with the briefcase. Shield give Bryan the Power Bomb as Orton watched from the ramp. With that we’re out.
SCOTT’S TAKE: Good Raw with a lot of in-ring action and some interesting storyline twists to add to SummerSlam’s card.