With six nights before Battleground, will sure to have be had tonight! Three more matches for the Pay-Per-View as been made since a week ago, with Dean Ambrose being able to officially get his hands on Seth Rollins, Chris Jericho and Bray Wyatt going at it, and Paige getting her rematch for the Divas Championship against A.J. Lee!
Last week featured Roman Reigns helping WWE World Heavyweight Champion John Cena fend off Randy Orton and Seth Rollins; however he also eyed him really good at the end. Will these two have a face-off before their big bout, or do they remain allies until Sunday?
Speaking of face-offs and allies, Paige and Divas Champion A.J. Lee seem to be on friendly terms right now, but that will all be put aside at Battleground. Do they still be cordial until then, or is one of the Divas try and get an advantage first?
Plus, more build for The Usos/Harper/Rowan who square off in a Two-Out-Of-Three Falls match at Battleground for the WWE Tag-Team Championship, as well as Rusev taking on Jack Swagger.
All this and much more, plus my Battleground picks, so read on!
Monday Night Raw TV Report for July 14th, 2014 – “Battle Lines Crossed”
Introduction Segment: Welcoming and Arena Promo
Michael Cole welcomes us to Monday Night Raw and the music of the WWE World Heavyweight Champion follows. John Cena walks out, displaying his titles around his neck. Footage recapping last week’s Raw ending between Randy Orton, Kane, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Roman Reigns airs while Cena makes his entrance.
It is announced that John will partner with Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose to face “Mr. Money In The Bank” Seth Rollins, Randy Orton, and Kane later tonight. Cena has the microphone and pumps up the crowd, then plugs the WWE Network, so we can watch him possibly lose his WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground in the Fatal-4-Way versus Kane, Randy Orton, and Roman Reigns.
Speaking of those wrestlers, Reigns’ theme interrupts. He make his way through the crowd and squares off with Cena in the ring. John “officially” announces him, then informs him of the irony that they are teaming tonight and wrestling each other at the Pay-Per-View. The former “Dr. Of Thuganomics” gives gratitude for the help Roman gave him last week, but realizes that Reigns is “not to be ignored.” Cena lays out a game plan, but Roman barks that he doesn’t work for The Champ. Reigns warns that “we should get rid of Orton, and Kane; then we’ll see if you’re really as good as you think you are.”
Before they go any further, Dean Ambrose interjects via the Titantron. He tells them to stop bickering and become a collective, so they can take down The Authority. Kane and Seth Rollins appear behind him, then begin the beat-down. Randy Orton joins in and all three decimate Ambrose backstage, with Rollins finishing Dean off with a Curb Stomp on a concrete platform.
Match #1: Single – United States Champion Sheamus VS. The Miz (Non-Title)
Prior to this contest, The Miz declares that he will enter the Battle Royal at Battleground for the vacant Intercontinental Championship. He then has his face, which he has dubbed “The Money-maker,” placed up on the Titantron for all to see during the bout.
Sheamus and Miz trade waistlocks and hip-tosses, then Miz gets taken to the outside. Sheamus brings him back in the ring. Miz repeatedly kicks Sheamus in the corner, but the U.S. Champ fights back and yanks Miz out of the ring. Miz counters an Irish Whip into the barricade, then soars off the top rope with an axe handle smash. Miz continues to work over Sheamus in the corner, but Sheamus reverses an Irish Whip this time, and gives Sheamus a rolling fireman’s carry.
They are still fighting on the outside, with Miz shoving Sheamus into the ring post. In the ring, Miz kicks away again, but Sheamus catches his foot. Miz tries to punch, but Sheamus comes back with axe handle smashes and a shoulder ram in the corner. Sheamus ties up Miz against the ropes and beats on him with the “10 Beats Of The Bowron.”
Sheamus climbs the turnbuckle, but Miz pulls him down and drives his head into the mat with a DDT! 1 – 2 – Sheamus kicks out! Miz attempts a submission, but Sheamus kicks him away and plants him with the Irish Curse backbreaker. 1 – 2 – Miz gets the shoulder up! Sheamus runs at Miz with the Brogue Kick, but Miz ducks and rolls him up for the hard-fought (and surprising) victory!
Winner via Pinfall: The Miz
Segment #2: Backstage Promo
Kane and Randy Orton are talking about their attack on Dean Ambrose. They are pleased with that, but remind themselves of the bigger goal of regaining the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. There is an uneasiness between them, until Triple H walks in. he says that he trusts them both, and to worry about dealing with Cena and Reigns tonight, then figure out Battleground on Sunday. Stephanie joins him, and they make-out as a happily married couple.
“The Show-Off” Dolph Ziggler makes his entrance for a bout, next!
Match #2: Single – “The Show-Off” Dolph Ziggler VS. Fandango
Fandango clutches Ziggler with a side headlock to begin, then gives him a shoulder block. Dolph hops up and leap-frogs Fandango, hip-tosses him, but misses a front-dropkick. Fandango takes control, wearing down Ziggler with a rear chinlock. Fandango’s suddenly hits, and Summer Rae and Layla dance on the commentator’s table, distracting both competitors. Dolph takes advantage and plants Fandango with the Fameasser for the 1 – 2 – 3!
Winner via Pinfall: “The Show-Off” Dolph Ziggler
Post-match, Rae and Layla dance around Ziggler, seeming to make him jealous.
Segment #3: Backstage Promo
The cheap-plug for Sonic, a fast-food restaurant, ensues with Damien Sandow dressed as a Sonic employee. He berates another woman, then the party begins. Adam Rose and his posse walk by. They argue over a hotdog as Adam inquired why Sandow was being a “lemon” to the lady. Rose pulls the hotdog away from Sandow then shoves him on his merry way into the wall. Rose enjoys the meal on his own.
Back in the arena, Tag-Team Champions The Usos are making their traditional entrance when their opponents for Sunday, The Wyatts, assault them from behind. Luke Harper and Erik Rowan hammer away on Jimmy and Jey all over the arena; they then stand tall, predicting they will be the new Tag-Team Champions.
Up next, Rusev and Jack Swagger will have a Russian/American “Detente.”
Segment #4: Arena Promo
Podiums with the Russian and American flag are set up, with Rusev and the “Ravishing Russian” Lana already in the ring. Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter make their way down the aisle, as Michael Cole presides.
Cole questions Lana on her statements regarding America first, but is drowned out by loud “U.S.A.” chants. Lana responds in what she calls “the better language,” Russian, then compares Colter and America. She says they both choose violence to solve their problems, and calls them “stupid” because “they can’t save themselves.” She cites the Civil War as an example of the “stupidity” of the U.S. because they chose to fight each other after gaining freedom from the British. Lana wants Zeb to cop to all of America’s “mistakes.”
Colter tirades on Lana and Rusev, telling him that he is a former War Veteran. Regarding his apology, he responds, “not no, but HELL NO!” Lana depicts a picture of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who she calls the “real world leader,” on the Titantron. Colter counters with a picture of United States President Barack Obama. Colter wants an answer if Swagger and Rusev are going to go at it at Battleground, so Rusev replies “THIS IS WAR!”
A punch-up ensues, with Swagger getting the best of Rusev after clamping on a Patriot Ankle Lock.
Segment #5: Locker Room Promo
WWE World Heavyweight Champion John Cena walks into Roman Reigns’ locker room. He demands to know what they will do with Ambrose being out of action. Reigns tells Cena they will get the job done. “Believe that!”
Match #3: Single – Alberto Del Rio VS. Rob Van Dam
(Note: Both these men are in the Battle Royal for the I.C. Title at Battleground.) R.V.D. gets the best of Del Rio at first, but gets caught in the ring skirt/apron area before being kick at by Alberto. He takes control, hitting a running enziguri in the corner. 1 – 2 – Van Dam gets the shoulder up! He fights out of a rear chinlock, but Del Rio slams his bead back down on the mat. He goes for a kick, but Rob ducks and gives Del Rio a hurricanrana! He nails him with another kick, then the Rolling Thunder senton splash. 1 – 2 – Del Rio gets the shoulder up! Van Dam spin-kicks Del Rio down, but has to tap-out to the cross armbreaker submission after Del Rio got the knees up for the 5-Star Frogsplash!
Winner via Submission: Alberto Del Rio
The announcer’s put over the WWE Network again, and interesting, promote the C.M. Punk “Best In The World” documentary to air on Tuesday night on the Network. (Is this a sign?)
Nikki Bella makes her way to the ring for an apparent Tag-Team match. Stephanie McMahon walks out and tries to convince her that this is all Brie’s fault, since she quit over her husband, Daniel Bryan. Stephanie insinuates that Brie left Nikki all alone and “abandoned” her. McMahon changes it to a two-on-one bout.
Match #4: Two-On-One – Nikki Bella VS. Cameron and Alicia Fox
Fox and Bella wrestle for a bit, then Alicia trades with Cameron. She is taken down by Nikki, then thrust into Alicia on the apron. Nikki plants Cameron with the Alabama Slam, but Alicia breaks up the cover. The two-on-one comes into play as both Fox and Cameron work over Nikki. A running sidewalk slam is tried by Alicia, but Nikki counters with a springboard crossbody. She begins the comeback, but Fox yanks her off the top and finishes this one.
Winners via Pinfall: Alicia Fox and Cameron
Segment #6: Video Promo
Michael Cole puts over the new WWE 2K15 video game, and a video airs of the downloadable character one can bet when they pre-order – Sting!
Segment #7: Office Promo
Randy Orton walks into Triple H’s area and insinuates Kane can’t be trusted. Triple H tries to reassure him.
Segment #8: Backstage Promo
Goldust and Stardust are interacting with each other and want to go back to a “more bizarre” place.
Cesaro makes his way to the ring, sans Paul Heyman. Speculations begin prior to the break.
Match #5: Single – Cesaro VS. Big E. (with Kofi Kingston)
(Note: All three of these men are in the Battle Royal for the Intercontinental Championship) The bell rings and Cesaro jaws at Big E to begin. He turns him over with a German Suplex, but gets caught in a one-arm slam by Big E, then shoved into the barricade from the apron. Cesaro returns the favor, flapjacking Big E into the crowd. He gets back in the ring as the count begins. Big E. gets back in the ring and Cesaro double-stomps on him. He slaps Big E. around, then nails him in the back with a stiff forearm. Cesaro Tiger-bombs Big E. then mount-punches him.
Big E. picks up Cesaro and rams him into the corner a couple of times. He tosses Cesaro with a couple of belly-to-belly suplexes, then splashes Cesaro on the mat. Cesaro exits the ring for a quick break, then uses the top rope to jawbreak Big E. He grabs a chair from under the ring and hurls it at Kingston, then goes to hit Big E. with another one. Kingston grabs the chair away and Big E. plants Cesaro with the Big Ending! 1 – 2 – 3!
Winner via Pinfall: Big E. (with Kofi Kingston)
Cole announces that Bad News Barrett (who has been out with an injury) will be attending Battleground to give the winner of the Battle Royal the Intercontinental Championship.
Recap of Chris Jericho’s return is shown, complete with Wyatt Family stare-down and beat-down, then he makes his way to the ring.
Segment #9: Arena Promo
Chris Jericho is in the ring with a microphone. “Welcome to ‘Raw Is Jericho!’” Jericho is happy to be back in WWE, which he calls home. He says he has “grown up” here over the last 15 years, and recalls all his accomplishments and everyone he has seen since August 9th, 1999, when he debuted. He halts when it comes to Bray Wyatt. “I have seen and done it all in WWE, or at least I thought I had, until I saw Bray Wyatt.” He calls Bray an “anomaly,” and wonders why he has targeted him. “Y2J” warns Bray that he can get “crazy,” and he has the whole WWE Universe in his hands.
Bray now interrupts on the Titantron. Laughing, Bray asks Jericho, “do you remember what it was like to be a child, Chris? To be so full of energy and hope. Running through the grass, skipping stones. No worries about whatever horrors tomorrow may bring.” He compares Jericho and life now to when he was a kid, saying that children are “frail” and vulnerable. Bray inquires why Jericho hasn’t been here to “save us,” like he said he would for a long time. He proclaims there is a “constant” in their lives, which is Bray laughs at the end, then asks Jericho if he’s “afraid of the dark.” (Great show, by the way!) The lights go out and Harper and Rowan appear in the ring when they are turned back on.
Jericho fights out of a possible double-team, and backs away up the ramp. He walks right into Bray, who nails Chris from behind and plants him with Sister Abigail on the stage!
Match #6: Single – Eva Marie VS. Divas Champion A.J. Lee (Non-Title)
(Note: Paige is on commentary.) A.J. wristlocks Eva, which is turned around on her. A.J. comes back with a front-dropkick, but is pushed into the apron on the outside. Marie locks on a surfboard stretch in the ring, which Lee struggles out of. Eva knees her down and gives her a backbreaker. She picks her up in the same position again, but A.J. reverses into the Black Widow, forcing Eva to give-in!
Winner via Submission: Divas Champion A.J. Lee
Post-match, A.J. places her Divas Championship on the announcer’s table, then sits atop of it and has a friendly chat with Paige using the commentator’s microphone.
Segment #10: Office Promo
Triple H and Stephanie are chatting when Kane walks in. “The Big Red Monster” doesn’t trust Randy Orton at all, but The Authority basically to deal with it.
Match #7: Single – “The Inspirational” Bo Dallas VS. ???
Prior to the bout, Dallas calls El Torito “the biggest little man,” then wants his next opponent to have just as big a heart. Out walks probably the biggest heart, literately, on the roster, as Bo’s challenger is The Great Khali.
Khali dominates Dallas, chopping him big in the corner a few times. Bo tries a few of his own, but Khali just chucks him over to the floor. Bo comes back with a low dropkick, then Bo-Dogs him off the apron to the floor! The referee counts and Khali is done!
Winner via Count-Out: “The Inspirational” Bo Dallas
Post-match, Bo tries to give Khali a pep-talk, but he just gets chopped backwards.
Segment #11: Office Promo
Seth Rollins is now in The Authority’s office, and he signals that he will cash-in if Kane, Randy, Roman, or John “can’t get the job done.” Paul Heyman now walks in and offers “Plan C” to Stephanie and Triple H.
Up next, it’s the return of “The Nature Boy,” Ric Flair!
Segment #12: Arena Promo
Rene Young is in the ring and welcomes back the 16-time World Champion Ric Flair! “The Nature Boy” struts out to the ring. Flair recaps his history in Richmond, and gets the crowd to “ask your mothers and fathers!” After gloating and “whooing” Rene, she wants his pick on who is going to win the Fatal-4-Way for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Ric chooses Cena, then Roman Reigns interrupts and walks to the ring. he and Flair shake hands, and “The Nature Boy” walks off.
John Cena’s music now plays and the WWE World Heavyweight Champion greets Flair with the World Heavyweight Championship. He runs down to the ring and joins Reigns.
It is announced that Chris Jericho will face Luke Harper this week on Smackdown!
Match #8: Two-On-Three – Roman Reigns and WWE World Heavyweight Champion John Cena VS. “Mr. Money In The Bank” Seth Rollins, “The Viper” Randy Orton, and Kane (Non-Title)
Cena and Rollins start out, as do the fans with the usual “Let’s go Cena/Cena Sucks” chants. Rollins side headlocks Cena, but John comes back with a shoulderblock takedown. Orton now in and also side headlocks Cena. The WWE World Heavyweight Champ leap-frogs Orton and pushes him down. Randy tags in Kane, and “The Big Red Machine” dominates. Cena switches with Reigns, who stares-down with Kane. Both slug away at each other, with Roman getting the better after a headbutt.
He delivers punches in the corner, but Kane shoves him off and hits an uppercut. Reigns comes back with a leaping slug off the top, then takes Orton off the apron. Kane comes back with a running body block, while Rollins is in and repeatedly kicks Roman in the corner.
Kane now has Roman clutched in a chinlock, then the two punch at each other again. Roman fires back with a jumping forearm and both men are down! Reigns crawls and gets the hot-tag to Cena! The Champ is all over Seth with shoulder tackles and a spin-out backdrop. He hits the Five-Knuckle Shuffle Fistdrop, but Kane distracts Cena as he went for the A.A. Rollins and Randy take control, with Orton covering Cena for two! Cena struggles out of a wristlock, but is brought down with a backbreaker by Randy. 1 – 2 – Cena kicks out!
Kane back in and legdrops Cena on the canvas. 1 – 2 – Cena gets the shoulder up. He punches Kane a couple times and picks him up in an Attitude Adjustment position, but collapses forward for lack of strength.
Rollins now works over Cena, wearing him down, then gives him two suplexes in a row. Cena reverses a third with one of his own, then gets the second hot-tag to Roman! He is all over Kane, Rollins, and Orton. Reigns front-dropkicks “The Viper” from the floor to the apron, then Superman Punches Kane! He clotheslines Rollins over the ropes (who may be legit hurt with a knee injury), then Samoan Drops Orton. He sets up for the Spear, but Kane intercedes and pounds away. He and Orton stomp on Reigns, causing referee Charles Robinson to call for the bell.
Winners via Disqualification: Roman Reigns and WWE World Heavyweight Champion John Cena
Post-match, Cena gets back in and shoves Kane out. He and Orton go at it, but Kane tries a clothesline. Cena moves and Kane clotheslines Orton. Cena tries an A.A. on Kane, and Roman then goes for a Spear, but Orton swerves and hits Cena! Orton R.K.O.’s Kane and poses, but Roman comes back and Spears him! Reigns is standing tall as Kane, Orton, and the WWE World Heavyweight Champion are laid out around the ring to close the show.
End Of Raw.
Reporter’s Rumblings – By Moe Tapp
This was a great “go-home” edition of Raw, setting the stages for Battleground. Of course, the main focus was the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Other gems included the new feud between Chris Jericho and Bray Wyatt, Bo Dallas, and yes, The Miz! Onto the particulars, plus my picks for the Pay-Per-View.
Excellence: The spotlight on the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. It is great that any four of the wrestlers could win, even though I have a strong feeling of who it will be (explained in picks). Also, while some might think that Ric Flair’s appearance should’ve been more, I think it was awesome that he was asked who he thinks will win. This places even more importance on the WWE World Heavyweight Championship and the Fatal-4-Way itself, since Flair is a 16-time World Champion and one of the “epitomes” of this business.
As always, both Jericho and Bray are gold on the mike. It was cool for “Y2J” to walk down memory lane over his last 15 years, calling out all the amazing and whacky experiences he has head. I like the continuity and implication by Wyatt that Jericho did declare he was here to save us, yet he only shows up once a year or so for a few months at a time; puts a nice twist to this new rivalry.
So happy that Miz got a win; I’m really enjoying his new personality and hopefully this is a much-needed reboot/push for him. The real boost would be for him to win the I.C. Title; he is a main-event player and can be again – this would be the kickoff. Same situation with Bo Dallas; even though he may not be a main-eventer just yet, an I.C. Title win will get him to the next level, and he is ready now for it.
Liked the weird interaction between Divas Champ A.J. Lee and Paige. It was different. Overall though, I don’t care if they love or hate each other, I just want to see them wrestling as they are fantastic at it, and can hopefully restart the Divas Division.
Absolutely loved the debate between Rusev/Lana/Colter/Swagger. This has actually got me interested in all, and both Lana and Zeb are superb on the mike.
Was a little surprised that Alberto Del Rio got the win, but glad overall a lot of Raw featured matches between the contestants for the Intercontinental Championship Battle Royal. Much like the WWE World Heavyweight Championship scenario, this also places extreme importance on a very prestigious title.
Bogus: Unfortunately, as great as they have been, I couldn’t really understand what Stardust and Goldust were talking about, and I thought it was a meaningless compared to other promos/matches they’ve had recently.
Didn’t care for the Adam Rose/Damien Sandow promo, or the Ziggler/Fandango match. Dolph needs to be re-pushed again, and they need to end the Fandango/Layla/Summer Rae triangle; it’s getting repetitive.
I understood why they did it, but the constant promos with The Authority also got to me after a bit. Overdone. Not liking Nikki Bella’s spot right now; I hope they don’t go with the too-predictable team split on them too.
Poor Wade Barrett and Seth Rollins; just as they were getting major new pushes, they go down with legit injuries. Here’s wishing them speedy recoveries and continued push when returning.
Pay-Per-View Predictions: A.J. Lee/Paige will be a double count-out/no contest to continue the “feud” until SummerSlam. Harper/Rowan over The Usos and new Tag-Team Champions. Swagger defeats Rusev via DQ, also to continue the rivalry. If they wrestle, Rollins and Ambrose will be an all-out brawl, but Seth gets the win by nefarious means. Either The Miz, Ziggler, Del Rio, Cesaro, or Dallas for the I.C. Championship. WWE World Heavyweight Champion John Cena will retain, because they can’t play constant “hot-potato” again with the Championship and SummerSlam is probably their second or third biggest PPV, so they need the “company guy” to headline.
All-in-all, a good night for Raw, and looking forward to some of the results from Battleground next week! Until then, Be Excellent Wrestling-Online Readers and Wrestling Fans!