From the “hub” (shout-out to NASCAR, there!) of one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all-time, comes tonight’s Monday Night Raw. It is 24 hours removed from Hell In The Cell, and I have NO idea what happened in the most intriguing matches with the World Heavyweight Championship and WWE Championship, respectively. (Although, personally I am hoping either Big Show or Dolph Ziggler managed to walk out with the World Championship – but which one? And that WWE Creative craftily kept both kept Ryback’s streak alive as well as C.M. Punk’s WWE Title reign)
So, why waste time?
Read on to find out the many scenarios which could’ve been played out last night and are sure to continue here in Charlotte, North Carolina, including a possible local new General Manager?!
Monday Night Raw for October 29th, 2012 – “Feed Me More!”
Introduction Segment: Recap
Still images from Hell In The Cell are shown, which depict referee Brad Maddox low-blowing Ryback as he was going to Shell-Shock WWE Champion C.M. Punk. This led to Punk rolling up Ryback and Maddox fast-counting him down, therefore Punk kept his championship. Post-match, Ryback had chased Punk up to the top of the cell and did “Shell-Shock” him on the steel grates. (Ok, that was a creative way to keep both Punk’s title reign and Ryback still strong.)
Segment #1: Arena Promo
Justin Roberts welcomes the 344-day WWE Champion to the arena, and he hobbles out (ribs taped, ta-boot) with Paul Heyman and his WWE Title. C.M. Punk boasts how he proved that Ryback was not unbeatable and that everyone was wrong about the beast. Punk also runs down a list of other notable wrestlers he has defeated, including Rey Mysterio, Randy Orton, and of course, John Cena.
“The Second-City Saint” now claims that he had nothing to do with referee Maddox’s betrayal of Ryback and that said referee instead went “rogue” and is incompetent, especially since he was hired by former General Manager A.J. Lee. Punk says that he is now done with Ryback and it is time to move on, there will be no rematch.
And move on he will, as a familiar foe interrupts C.M. Mick Foley marches down to the ring and has words with the WWE Champion. Punk wonders why Foley is here, to embarrass or judge him? Foley screams that he gave Punk a choice to live up to the “legacy and tradition of Hell In The Cell, and you blew it!” Punk basically calls Mick a hypocrite, since originally he was the one that broke it by jumping off cages and using barbed wire matches.
Punk then shows off his WWE Championship, telling Foley that that is tradition, for 344 days. He then challenges Mick to a “traditional” Survivor Series 5-man tag-team match. Mick quickly accepts and before they can continue, “Feed Me” blares over the speakers.
Ryback hurries to the ring, where Punk quickly escapes to through the crowd to the back with Paul Heyman and his WWE Title. Ryback gets the crowd to chant “feed me more” with Mick still in the squared circle.
Match #1: Ryback VS. J.T.G.
(As always, I think you know how this goes, especially with a seriously ticked off Ryback). After a bunch of power moves, including a fall-a-way slam and the clothesline, Ryback yells “finish him” as he polishes off J.T.G. quickly with the Shell Shock marching Samoan Drop.
Winner via Pinfall: Ryback
Post-match, Josh Matthews asks Ryback about the situation. Ryback tells us that “revenge is a confession of pain. I am not hurt, I am hungry. And when I feast again, it will be on C.M. Punk! Feed me Punk…”
Later tonight, we will here from the FORMER World Heavyweight Champion, Sheamus! (Yea, love that title-change. Fresh start now for the picture.)
Up next, Randy Orton will meet Wade Barrett
Match #2: Single – Randy Orton VS. Wade Barrett
Double-elbow-collar tie-up begins this contest and neither man get an advantage. Orton sends Barrett off the ropes and hits a dropkick to put him outside. Barrett counters and starts to attack Randy’s weakened arm, until Orton reverses and slams Barrett’s head against the announce table and rolling him back in the ring. Barrett misses a big boot and gets dumped again to the floor.
Back live, Barrett has a reverse armbar locked on Randy, then delivers a knee-to-the-gut and takes control. Wade chokes Orton on the ropes with his knee, then nails Orton with a few knees to his head and a big boot. 1 – 2 – Orton kicks out! Wade clamps on another arm lock, but Orton reverses into an armdrag, and hits a couple clotheslines and a powerslam!
Momentum is back on “The Viper’s” side. Slingshot DDT and Randy is “in the zone.” Pounding the mat, Orton measures and goes for the R.K.O, but Wade counters and slams Orton down with a spinning-side-slam. Barrett gears up for his spinning elbow, but Randy ducks and drives Wade down with the R.K.O. for the victory!
Winner via Pinfall: Randy Orton
Segment #2: Office Promo
A.J. Lee is sitting down, when Vickie Guerrero walks in. The current Managing Supervisor wants A.J. to explain her affair with John Cena, to which A.J. retorts and insists that never happened. Guerrero informs her that the WWE Board Of Directors want to find out if A.J. can succeed as a performer again. Vickie’s first question is for A.J. to consider her biggest weakness, which apparently is becoming too emotionally attached “to my job.” Guerrero tells A.J. to give her one good reasons why a contract should be given when she gets back.
Match #3: Tag-Team – “The Primetime Players” (Darren Young and Titus O’Neil) VS. “Team Hell-No” (Kane and Daniel Bryan) (Tag-Team Champions) (Non-Title)
Young and Bryan start out with a quick lockup. Bryan counters a kick and drives Darren down with a dragon-screw. He kicks away until Kane tags himself in. Young jaw-breaks Kane on the ropes, but to not much affect as Kane hits an uppercut and a corner-running-clothesline. Daniel returns the favour and tags in himself again, then runs at Young with a front dropkick. He warns Kane that he will not be going out of this match, but turns around into a shoulder-block from Titus.
Scoop slam and a powerslam by O’Neil for a two-count. He switches now with Darren, and he comes in to drop an elbow on Bryan’s back, then two submissions. Bryan elbows his way out of a waistlock, and runs off the ropes with an elbow clothesline, before he tags in Kane himself.
Kane runs in the corner with a couple of clotheslines and a sidewalk slam. Kane now ascends the top-rope and nails his flying clothesline on the way to the end. Soon after, Kane Chokeslams Young and dumps O’Neil to the outside. Bryan tags himself in and grapples the “No-Lock” (Crossface) submission for the tap-out!
Winners via Pinfall: “Team Hell-No” (Kane and Daniel Bryan) (Tag-Team Champions)
Vickie Guerrero is out next.
Segment #3: Arena Promo
Managing Supervisor Vickie Guerrero walks out and proclaims that this is a new era full of integrity and credibility. She says that there is proof of an inappropriate relationship between John Cena and A.J. Lee. She then brings out John Cena (who is all too happy for being accused of an affair). Cena demands to see so-called “evidence,” which is footage from Raw, where Cena asks her out on a date. Cena disputes this as a “joke.”
Next is a hug between A.J. and John from last week, and Cena says that he was consoling a friend after she lost her job, because of Guerrero. Another controversial image is that of Cena and Lee at dinner, which Cena explains as a “business dinner,” talking about his injury and when he can return. The last video is John and A.J. getting into an elevator together.
Cena calls this a mere coincidence and after a bit of back-and-forth banter between him and Vickie, they are interrupted by Dolph Ziggler! “Mr. Money In The Bank” berates Cena shortly, until the “Dr. Of Thug-A-Nomics” pulls him to his face and threatens to never mention his name and A.J. in the same sentence again. Cena pushes Dolph down and walks off.
Up next is a Champion VS. Champion bout.
Match #4: Single – United States Champion Antonio Cesaro VS. Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston (Non-Title)
Prior to the bout, Cesaro rips on America’s “fat children.” Lockup and hip-toss by Cesaro, followed by a toss out of the corner. Kofi counters and hits a forearm and upside-down kick. Cesaro cuts off Kingston from the top with a fall-away slam, and then takes control with a scoop slam and double-stomp. Kofi battles out of a submission and front-dropkicks Cesaro to the outside, then he uses the steel steps to leap off with a flying forearm.
Kofi chucks Antonio over the announce table onto Miz (who was commentating), and then Miz angrily pulls Kofi off the apron and begins to attack.
Winner via Disqualification: Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston
The beatdown continues until R-Truth runs out and saves his former tag-team partner.
Segment #4: Office Promo
With A.J. again, Vickie comes in and taunts her about the relationship with John Cena. She refuses to take the job offer if it means that she has to lie, hurt John, or “shred her dignity,” still seemly denying the affair. Vickie reconsiders and tells A.J. she’s hired, only if she promises to never touch her again. And her first match is against Beth Phoenix.
Segment #5: Video Promo
It’s time for “Behind The Music” with 3.M.B. – 3-Man-Band. This was bad and them trying to put themselves over as a “legitimate” band. Enough said.
Match #5: Tag-Team – Santino Marella and “Long Island Iced-Z” Zack Ryder VS. 3.M.B. (Heath Slater and Jinder Mahal)
Jinder and Ryder begin, with Ryder hitting a second rope missile dropkick, then the Broski Boot. Mahal counters and jawbreaks Ryder off the ropes then tags in Slater. He controls, stomping away. High-knee now buy Jinder, then a grounding rear chinlock from Heath.
Zack moves out of a leaping forearm and manages to tag Marella. This breaks down, with Jinder and Ryder taking each other out, while Santino puts on and signals for the Cobra. He hits McIntyre (on the apron), but turns around into a twisting leg-neckbreaker for the 1 – 2 – 3!
Winners via Pinfall: 3.M.B. (Heath Slater and Jinder Mahal)
Later tonight, C.M Punk’s and Mick Foley’s teams will be known, while after the break, it will be A.J. Lee taking on Beth Phoenix.
Match #6: Single – A.J. VS. “The Glamazon” Beth Phoenix
Beth intimidates and pushes A.J. around until the former General Manager goes wild and jumps all over Phoenix. She punches away until Beth flips her over and begins to dominate. She throws A.J. to the outside then runs her into the ring apron. 1 – 2 – A.J. kicks out! Out of nowhere, A.J. counters into a small package for the sudden victory!
Winner via Pinfall: A.J.
Post-match, Vickie appears on stage and demands more from her. Beth attacks A.J. from behind, then the match is restarted on Guerrero’s orders.
Match #7: Single – A.J. VS. “The Glamazon” Beth Phoenix
“The Glamazon” quickly picks A.J. up and plants her with the Glam-Slam for the 1 – 2 – 3!
Winner via Pinfall: “The Glamazon” Beth Phoenix
Segment #6: Arena Promo
Former World Heavyweight Champion, “Great White” Sheamus is out now. Despite an absent championship, Sheamus still has a smile on his face because “Big Show was the better man.” Sheamus admits it took two K.O. punches to knock him out, and he says that “last night was the greatest fight of my entire life.” Sheamus is happy because he pushes a 7-foot giant to the limit and put on a show for the crowd. However, while Show had won the battle, the war is far from over. Sheamus wants another fight, and this time it will be “an all out war.” Sheamus declares that when that war is over, he will be standing “with a smile on my face and the World Heavyweight Championship around my waist.”
His former challenger and new champion The Big Show comes out, all smiles too. He claims that Sheamus is hiding the truth, that he gave Show everything he had and still came up short. Show says that he has no limits and their is no stopping him. He compares this war between them to Custer and his last stand, with Sheamus playing the role of Custer. “You can’t beat me, and you will never take this championship from me.”
Sheamus quickly picks up Show and drops him with the White Noise before exiting, while Big collects himself and his title, staring fiercely back.
Segment #7: Backstage Promo
John Cena is giving A.J. some props, to which Vickie overheard. Beth Phoenix walks up and thanks her for restarting the match, but Guerrero abruptly decides to fire her since she didn’t do the job the first time.
Match #8: Tag-Team – Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara VS. “Team Rhodes Scholars” (Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes)
Mysterio (donned in Skeleton attire appropriate for upcoming Halloween) and Cody start out with back and forth, until Rey low-dropkicks him down. Cody switches with Sandow, as does Rey with Sin Cara. Damien grasps a hammer lock, which Cara turns into a jumping snapmare. Sandow tags Cody again, and so does Sin with Mysterio, who double-team with kicks. Cody punches Rey in the gut and head, then tags in Sandow.
Mysterio drop-toeholds Rhodes into the middle turnbuckle, then tags in Cara to help him double-team a jumping seated-senton. Mysterio shoots Sin to the apron, where he hits a springboard moonsault on Rhodes, while Rey-Rey flips over the ropes with another senton on Sandow.
Back live, Damien is controlling Sin Cara, then tags in Rhodes again. Huge stalling standing suplex by Cody for a near-fall. He and Sandow switch in and out again, until Cara reverses an Alabama Slam by Cody into a sunset flip for two. Sin drives Cody down with a headscissors/arm-slam combo, then manages to get the hot-tag to Mysterio, who flies off the top rope with a seated senton!
Flying headscissors, but he is cut-off the apron by Sandow and he is quickly tagged in. Russian legsweep and the “elbow of distain” is dropped on Mysterio for two! Cody comes back in and stomps on Mysterio in the corner. Mysterio counters a suplex attempt by Damien into an inside cradle for another near-fall!
Cody back in and beats down Mysterio. Double-suplex attempt by Rhodes and Sandow, but Mysterio reverses into a double-DDT. Rey-Rey crawls over to Cara and slaps hands! Springboard crossbody by Sin Cara and an elbow to the face, enziguri on Sandow for two!
Cara hits a hurricanrana on Cody, setting him up for the 6-1-9, but Rhodes escapes, only to duck a baseball slide and throw Mysterio into the steel stairs. Cara falls on Cody with a twisting plancha, but soon misses a senton bomb on Sandow. The “Intellectual Saviour” picks up Cara and drops him with the neckbreaker for the final 1 – 2 – 3!
Winners via Pinfall: “Team Rhodes Scholars” (Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes)
Segment #8: Backstage Promo
Mick Foley is plugging the new WWE ’13 videogame with Kaitlyn, telling her (and us) that you can “kick C.M. Punk’s butt will all three faces of Foley!” Paul Heyman interjects and questions Mick’s priorities, as to why he’s talking about a game and not assembling his Survivor Series team. Foley counters, saying that superstars have lined up to help him out. Paul says that Foley is a target, and WWE Champion C.M. Punk “who’s mission now is to personally victimize you at Survivor Series and remind you once again that he is the best in the world.”
Segment #9: Arena Promo
Following a sincere video montage promoting Breast Cancer Awareness, Mr. Vince McMahon with many other WWE wrestlers and superstars are on the ramp. He introduces lead campaigner John Cena, along with Dorothy (Vice-President of Marketing for Susan G. Komen For The Cure) and Eric (the nephew of Susan G. Komen). Cena puts over this campaign and the WWE superstars for “backing this cause, every WWE employee and every single WWE Superstar agreed that we should all join and help the fight.”
Cena puts over the WWE Universe (fans) for also joining the fight, by purchasing the gear and allowing the check of $1,000,000 (one million) dollars to be donated to the Susan G. Komen For The Cure foundation. (Way to go!)
Dorothy is very grateful to all involved, and Cena replies with the same thanks to them, as well as all Breast Cancer survivors in the arena tonight.
Match #9: Single – Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez) VS. Justin Gabriel
Del Rio aggressive, kicking away at Gabriel into the corner, then a suplex. Gabriel ducks and baseball slides under Alberto, then flips him over via a monkey flip. Justin counters with a corner headscissors, but gets kicked in the head and his arm tied up in the rope/dropped on by Del Rio. Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker from Alberto for a near-fall. Big back drop for another two-count, and then a huge stomp to Gabriel’s head. Justin eventually boots Del Rio out of the corner and hits a spin kick, followed by a springboard moonsault.
Gabriel misses a corner splash and gets taken down with a running enziguri, then quickly gives up to Del Rio’s Cross Armbreaker!
Winner via Submission: Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez)
Up next, it’s pick ‘em time!
Segment #10: Arena Promo
Paul Heyman is in the ring and introduces the man on the cover of the WWE ’13 video game and who is “unquestionably the best in the world” WWE Champion C.M. Punk. He saunters out, now attired in a hoodie and his WWE Title around the waist.
Pyro blows above the ring and a giant banner of the X-Box version of WWE ’13 flows out of the structure. Paul Heyman begins to announce their picks for Survivor Series.
The first is The Miz, followed by “Team Rhodes Scholars” (Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow). The last is Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez)
C.M. Punk now takes the mike, and says that Survivor Series will be a celebration of one year of him being WWE Champion. Punk wants to take a “delusional, completely out of his mind, disrespectful, so-called ‘legend’ Mick Foley and put him out of his misery.” Punk claims that Foley’s wanting for spotlight is gone, and he will teach Mick Foley “how to survive.”
Mick Foley now walks out with microphone in hand and contests Punk’s “survival comment.” Foley calls it “weaseling” instead, and has a problem referring to Punk as a “man.” Foley announces his team to face-off now, starting with the Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston.
Next are the Tag-Team Champions, “Team Hell-No,” followed by Randy Orton. Punk is impressed by Foley’s team, but assumes that Mick is wrestling too, and he says his team will take everyone else out first then pick apart the “Hardcore Legend.” However, Punk assumed wrong, because Foley informs him that he will not be competing, instead will be, of course, Ryback!
“Feed me more” plays as the man himself approaches the ring. Suddenly, the two teams engage in a brawl, except for C.M Punk who manages to escape again tonight to the safety of the stage with Paul Heyman and WWE Championship. Punk is clutching the title as Ryback stares him down, with Team Foley striking first in dominance as Raw goes off the air.
End Of Raw.
Reporter’s Rumblings – By Moe Tapp
Tonight’s Raw was very good follow-up to the Pay-Per-View and great build already to Survivor Series. Analysis:
Excellence: The awesome way the kept the WWE Championship on Punk without hurting Ryback’s credibility. That was creative and something newer in the last few years. Well-done! Opening promo – that was a nice surprise to have Mick back and pick up his feud with C.M. Punk. Great that they made the match at S.S. already, again giving plenty of build time and now a guarantee that Punk will continue to be champion, and Ryback will still be very strong.
The subtle (I didn’t pick up on it) that all of the team members for both sides were in competition or made significant enough appearances to look strong, and they all won their matches. (Nice foreshadowing!)
Promo between Sheamus and Big Show (plus Show as new World Heavyweight Champion!). Very serious and straight-to-the-point of two guys just fighting over a championship and to prove who is the better/stronger individual continually. Simple formula and it works, plus Show and Sheamus really do have nice chemistry both on mike and in ring together.
Excellent, excellent match between “Team Rhodes Scholars” and Mysterio/Cara. That was a fantastic wrestling bout, mixing the two styles of high-flying with classic heel tag-team work and moves. I now wish it was Mysterio/Cara on Team Foley instead of “Team Hell-No.” Oh well, still beautiful technicians all of them!
For the sincere and genuine, “excellence” goes to WWE’s work with the Susan G. Komen Foundation for Breast Cancer Awareness and Research. No matter what anyone says about WWE, when it comes to charity, they are top-notch as always, and this is another shining example of them giving back to the community in a positive light. Kudos!
Bogus: Wade Barrett jobbing – I understand that Randy needed to win, but they could’ve “fed” him someone different. Wade’s character needs another rebuild, as he’s kind of tanked since coming back, unfortunately.
Most of the Vickie/A.J. segments – the first couple were ok, but then it got too “shoved down the throat.” If this storyline is going to continue, they have to spread them out over the WEEKS, not ONE SHOW!
I know she’s leaving, but I didn’t like the way Beth got “fired.” It was kind of lame and she should’ve had a greater send-off, especially for all she’s done in the Divas division.
3.M.B. – enough said!
Alberto Del Rio – his act is getting stale. Especially the routine of losing a pay-per-view match, then coming on Raw the next night and “aggressively” putting down a rising star/wins (Justin Gabriel tonight). Then he engages in the same feuds and promos. He needs to go a way for a while and come back refreshed.
In general, great Raw and looking forward to the feud of Ryback/Foley/Punk and their teams for the next few weeks, as well as Show/Sheamus, in particular.
As always, until next week, Be Excellent Wrestling-Online Readers and Wrestling Fans!