Monday Night Raw TV report for 09/23/2013

Once again, Raw emanates from my favorite American city, Chicago, Illinois. I’m sure this also guarantees an appearance by “The Second-City Saint” himself, C.M. Punk. After missing last week, what will he have to say or do responding to Paul Heyman’s defeat of him at Night Of Champions and being Ryback’s newest target?

The bigger story is Daniel Bryan’s loss of the WWE Championship, yet again under “suspicious circumstances.” Last week, a lot of the roster who has been fed up with the Triple H power-trip ran out to save Bryan from another attack by “The Shield.” Then on Smackdown, they were “punished” by General Manager Vicki Guerrero in a Gauntlet Match for their actions. Will the C.O.O. or General Manager Brad Maddox do the same tonight?

Natalya and Divas Champion A.J. continue well-put-together feud over the title. However, Natalya also has backup with The Bellas, so will the twins get involved again?

Rob Van Dam has been granted another shot at Alberto Del Rio’s World Heavyweight Championship – how will their rivalry, along with Ricardo Rodriguez, go-on tonight?

All this and much more, so read on!

Monday Night Raw T.V. Report for September 23rd, 2013 – “An Uprising Revenge”

Introduction Segment: In Memoriam

Vince McMahon narrates a remembrance video of Angelo Savoldi, a former professional wrestler in the WWWF. He died at 99 years recently, living from 1914 to 2013. God rest his soul.

Segment #1: Video Recap

A montage of the last eight days’ regarding the WWE Championship scenario is aired. It is spliced between shots of Night Of Champions and last week’s Raw.

Segment #2: Arena Promo

Michael Cole introduces us to Raw from Chicago, and the ring is decked out in a red carpet. On the stage are Rob Van Dam, Justin Gabriel, R-Truth, Zack Ryder, Kofi Kingston, Dolph Ziggler, The Usos (Jey and Jimmy), and The Prime Time Players. (Darren Young and Titus O’Neil).

Justin Roberts introduces Triple H and his wife, Stephanie McMahon. The power-couple walk out, with The Shield guarding the ring below the entrance ramp. They both welcome us to Raw and try for the cheap pop by naming the city. HHH addresses the issue at hand, and in a twist, Stephanie actually thanks the wrestlers on the steel for what they did last week. She commends them for “grabbing the brass ring.”

Rob Van Dam is the first to protest, however, and states that they were actually fighting for Daniel Bryan since Trips and Steph have “screwed him over.” HHH and Stephanie seemed to be shocked at their actions, because they think that the wrestlers should really be fighting for themselves. They believe that Daniel Bryan has had his opportunities and that these guys should be battling against Bryan to step up and make names for themselves to get in the WWE Title hunt.

“The Game” also speculates that their defiance was due to “frustration against ‘The Shield.'” HHH then books an Elimination Tag-Team match, with all who are on stage and Daniel Bryan taking on “The Shield!” Stephanie also gets the fans in on the activities, letting them pick who Randy Orton faces, between Rob Van Dam, R-Truth, and Dolph Ziggler. “Because what’s best for all of you, is ‘best for business,'” Triple H quips.

Still pictures of C.M. Punk’s attack on Paul Heyman then Ryback’s assault on Punk from Night Of Champions is shown, before it is made known that yes, The “Straight-Edge Superstar” will be here and give his thoughts tonight!


Match #1: Single – Kofi Kingston VS. World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio (Non-Title)

Lockup with Del Rio hurrying Kingston into the corner. He quickly kicks him in the gut, then clamps on a side headlock. Kofi shoves him off but Del Rio comes back with a shoulder block take down. Alberto aggressive early with fists-in-the-corner and a hard whip, but Kofi counters with a Hurricanrana! He clotheslines Del Rio to the floor then follows up with a somersault plancha!

Kofi jumps on the champ in the corner and punches away 10-times. He hits Del Rio with an uppercut for two, but Alberto comes back with a smacking kick-to-the-gut. Snap suplex by Alberto and a grounding chinlock. Kofi fights out but is driven down quickly again and toyed with kicks and chokes. From the outside, Del Rio boots Kingston in the head where Kofi was lying on the apron.

Kofi begins to get a little momentum back with punches and kicks. He floats Del Rio over to the apron then turns around and dropkicks him to the mat. He goes for another dive, but Alberto backs off to save himself.


Returning, Del Rio is dominating with a snapmare and kick-to-the-back. During the break, Alberto rammed Kofi into the ring post and barricade, respectively, to gain his control. Del Rio works over Kingston’s left arm, setting him up for his finisher. Kofi pushes back and sets up Del Rio on the turnbuckle. Alberto counters and manages to lock on the Cross Armbreaker, using the ropes, so Mike Chioda counts him for the break.

Kofi counters a second-rope dive from Del Rio with a front-dropkick! Kingston clotheslines and dropkicks him down. Alberto comes back with another harsh kick, but Kofi catches him with the S.O.S. 1 – 2 – kickout by Del Rio! Kofi hits the Boom Drop legdrop and psyches up for the Trouble In Paradise, but The World Champ reverses into a German suplex for two!

Alberto gears himself up but Kofi backs off and counters a tilt-a-whirl-backbreaker into a DDT for a near fall! Kofi kicks him out of the corner, but misses his springboard crossbody. Del Rio takes advantage, abusing Kofi’s left shoulder and arm. He quickly capitalizes with the Cross Armbreaker and forces Kingston to tap out!

Winner via Submission: World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio


Segment #3: Backstage Promo

Rene Young (nee: Paquette) interviews The Miz about Orton’s assault on him last week. Before he can utter a word, Triple H interrupts. He informs The Miz in the interest of safety and “what’s best for business,” he won’t let Miz go and get revenge of Randy Orton. However, he does let Miz host “MizTV” tonight, with the very special guest of Big Show.

Footage of Cody Rhodes getting “fired,” Goldust losing his opportunity to help get his brother’s job back, and Big Show knocking out “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes is shown in sequence.

“The Wyatt Family” make their entrance. (Yay!)


Match #2: Tag-Team – The Wyatt Family (Erick Rowan and Luke Harper) (with Bray Wyatt) VS. The Prime Time Players (“Mr. No Days Off” Darren Young and “The Big Deal” Titus O’Neil)

Harper and Young start off, with Luke being aggressive by pushing Darren around. Young gets some kicks and punches in, but quickly receives a big-boot. Luke switches with Erick and the other “family” member scoop-slams Darren down. He repeatedly headbutts Young, then pounds away in the corner against him after tagging Harper back in. Young crawls for a tag, but Luke cuts him off with a grounding front-facelock. It is all Wyatt Family dominating Young.

Darren eventually manages to fight back and rush to a hot-tag to Titus. He runs all over Harper, chucking him away and pounding on Rowan. Darren flies back in to take out Erick, but O’Neil turns around into a vicious clothesline by Harper for the 1 – 2 – 3!

Winners via Pin Fall: The Wyatt Family (Luke Harper and Erick Rowan) (with Bray Wyatt)

Post-match, Bray charges in and drops Young with the “Sister Abigail” tornado flatliner. “Follow the buzzards,” he declares as he poses over a downed “Prime Time Players” tag-team.


Segment #4: Arena Promo

The Miz is out to interview The Big Show. Instead of being joyful, he is “banged up and really pissed off!” Miz threatens to Randy Orton “let it be known that it’s a lot easier to knock me down than to keep me down. This isn’t over by a long-shot. Randy Orton, payback will come, and it will be ‘awesome.'”

Miz then brings out Big Show. After a replay of last week’s incidents, The Miz reviews his relationship with the 7-footer. He puts out the hard question right away, “how could you do that to Dusty Rhodes? How could you do that to a ‘living legend?’ A man who was like a mentor to you. A man who was like a father-figure to you.” He understands the hardships that Show is facing right now.

Miz pumps up Show, wanting him to defend himself. He hasn’t said a word yet, and may not get the chance, as Stephanie McMahon interjects. Stephanie scolds Miz for “berating” the Big Show. She calls his interview “questionable and border-line slander.” Miz tells her where she can put those “legal threats,” but Steph fires back degrading his character and overall career.

“You’re what we call a ‘utility player.’ When there’s a radio show that needs an appearance early in the morning, we call The Miz. When we need someone to do an appearance in some far off corner of the world, well you’re the guy that we call. And when there is a local supermarket that’s opening that needs that extra-special promotion, well Miz, you are our guy.”

Steph tells Miz that they have given Miz the “opportunities or chances.” She cites last week as an example, when he got to face Randy Orton. However, McMahon claims that Miz “failed your family. You failed your friends. And most importantly Miz, you failed yourself. Randy Orton dismembered you in this ring, and once again, you just couldn’t ‘measure up.'”

Stephanie apologies for what she is about to do – which is to promptly order The Big Show to “knock him out.” Of course, Show obliges and gives Miz the punch-to-the-face to put him unconscious. Show and Stephanie walk off.

Up next, we will find out who Randy Orton takes on!


Match #3: Single – “The Viper” Randy Orton VS. ???

Prior to the bout, Jerry “The King” Lawler reveals that …. Rob Van Dam wins the vote with 57%, so “Mr. Monday Night” makes his entrance with Ricardo Rodriguez.

The bell rings and loud “R.V.D” chants support the face. He plays along with his “point-to-himself taunt,” but Orton takes umbrage and begins with a hard kick and headbutts. He puts Rob in the corner and punches away. Van Dam flips over a bent Orton off a whip and goes for a kick, but Randy escapes to the outside for a break.

“The Viper” gets back in and spin-kicked down, then Van Dam shoves his shoulder into Orton in the corner, then kicks him to the outside. R.V.D. follows with a baseball slide, but is yanked off the apron.


Orton still in control, stomping on Van Dam’s head. He brings him over with a suplex and receives two, then clamps on the grounding rear chinlock. Van Dam comes back with quick fists and kicks. He runs at Orton with a couple of clotheslines then a kick-to-the-chin. He uses the ropes to produce the Rolling Thunder somersault for a near fall! Rob tries a split-legged moonsault, but Orton moves and sets up Van Dam for the slingshot-DDT and drives him down!

“The Viper” is gearing himself up, slowly walking around the ring. He goes for the R.K.O. but Van Dam counters with a high-kick and rolls him up with his legs! 1 – 2 – Orton kicks out! Van Dam nails a springboard kick and ascends the top rope. He wants the 5-Star Frog Splash, but Orton rises.

Van Dam still flies with a flip, but Orton cuts him off the turnbuckle the second time by crotching him. He hits him in the head with a big boot, which sends Van Dam to the floor. Orton slams Van Dam’s face into the announces table and hurls him into the corner of the barricade. The referee is counting and neither make it in.

Winner: Neither via Double-Count-Out

Post-match, Randy continues the assault, chucking R.V.D. into the steel steps and punching away on his head. Orton throws him into the other steel steps and over the commentator’s table. He rips the cover off and puts Rob back in the ring. Orton sets Van Dam on the top turnbuckle and plants him with the slingshot-DDT as he laughed. Replays are shown as personnel check on Rob Van Dam while Randy Orton looks on.


Segment #5: Video Promo

“Los Matadores” are finally coming! They will be on Raw next week.

During the commercial, World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio ran out and attacked Rob Van Dam while he was getting help. He locked on the cross amrbreaker submission.

Michael Cole changes topics and promos the new WWE ’14 video game, featuring “30 Years Of WrestleMania.”

Segment #6: Backstage Promo

The Bella Twins are warming up when Randy Orton walks up. He threatens that what he did to Rob Van Dam is “only a fraction of what I’m going to do to your boyfriend, Daniel Bryan.” He asks Brie to “upgrade to a real man,” but she declines, saying she’s already got a “man, and real champion in Daniel Bryan.”

Randy warns her that he is “what a real man looks like. It is what a real champion looks like. It’s what the face of the WWE looks like. Something that your little ‘goat-face’ troll of a boyfriend Daniel Bryan will never, ever be.”

Segment #7: Office Promo

Stephanie McMahon is watching footage of her wedding to Triple H from Triple H’s new DVD, “Thy Kingdom Come.” (Okay, that was a cheap plug. Sorry!). Divas Champion A.J. Lee walks in and complains about her tag-team match with the other Divas. Stephanie lays down the law, ordering her to compete, “or maybe you won’t be Divas Champion for much longer.”

Fandango and Summer Rae make their entrance for the next contest.


Match #4: Single – Fandango (with Summer Rae) VS. Santino Marella

Fandango and Santino dance around, literately, to start off, then they get into it. Santino misses a crossbody off the ropes, so Fandango takes advantage with stomps and a knee-to-the-get. He whips him hard front-first into the turnbuckle and gets a two-count. He grips on a scissors lock and later an abdominal stretch. Marella reverses into a backdrop, does the splits, and hip-tosses Fandango over.

He pulls out the Cobra and wants to use it, but Summer Rae distracts him, allowing Fandango to fly off the top with the legdrop. 1 – 2 – 3 and he takes this bout!

Winner via Pin Fall: Fandango (with Summer Rae)

Up next, the hometown hero returns! C.M. Punk will be out!


Segment #8: Arena Promo

To the loudest pop of the night, “Cult Of Personality” blares and the man walks out! C.M. Punk takes in the adoration, donned in a Duncan Keith Chicago Blackhawks N.H.L. jersey. Blisterous/goosebumpy “C.M. Punk” chants ring out. Michael Cole announces that Brad Maddox has booked Ryback versus Punk for the Battleground Pay-Per-View.

“The Straight-Edge Superstar” tells the crowd they have “ruined a bad mood.” He says that he hasn’t smiled in about a week, however tonight changed that. The reason though was because of Night Of Champions. He truly feels bad for “letting everybody down. Paul Heyman pinned me in the middle of the ring. It’s going to read in ‘…Sports Almanac’ that C.M. Punk lost to Paul Heyman.”

Punk says he is really down after his recent loss and wonders if he should be doing this anymore.

“I’m thinking maybe I don’t know if I can do this anymore. I’m thinking maybe I don’t deserve to wear this sweater. I don’t deserve to perform in front of the GREATEST WRESTLING CROWD in the world. I’m thinking that I’ve let everybody down so bad that I don’t deserve to say that I’m from Chicago, Illinois. But then I come out here, to one hell of an ovation. And I put this sweater on and I wear it with pride, because I remember back in May being down three games to one against a very, very tough Detroit Red Wings team. And we all know how that ended, because The Blackhawks didn’t feel sorry for themselves. The Blackhawks didn’t feel like they let everybody down. No, they shut their mouths; they kept their eyes forward; they put their heads down; and they came back to tie it. And then not only did they tie it, they took it to a game seven; and they took it to a game seven overtime! And that is the ‘Chicago Way!’ Ya, maybe we lose. Ya, maybe, sometimes, the other city gets the better of us. Sometimes we get beat up. But we pick ourselves up by our boot straps and we go to work the next day. And I’m proud of this team, and I’m proud of this sweater. God … (blanked out from here.) So if, if I have let you down, I apologize. But do not give up if I am down three games to one. I’m gonna come back and tie this son-of-a-bitch up and I’m going to overtime, and I’m going to win! BECAUSE THAT IS THE ‘CHICAGO WAY.’ WE FIGHT! And I’m here live and in living colour. Chicago Illinois, I want to fight. And I don’t care if it’s Curtis Axel, I don’t care if it’s Ryback, I don’t care if it’s Paul Heyman…”

Speaking of who, Paul Heyman wheels out on a scooter, singing “start spreading the news. I’m gonna be ‘king of the hill.’ The ‘number one.’ ‘Best in the world.'” He introduces himself, but C.M. Punk cuts him off and threatens that he will “catch a bigger beating than you did at Night Of Champions because we’re not in Detroit, we’re in Chicago. And I have 18,000 people that are going to bail my ass out of jail when I get my hands on you!” Another rendition of boisterous “C.M. Punk” chants explode.

Heyman doesn’t want a reminder of Punk’s beat down at Night Of Champions, because he has been recovering physically ever since. “But ha-ha on you, because I take solace in the fact that I can walk through saying ‘I beat C.M. Punk.'” Heyman says it’s not Punk’s fault, but “geography.”

“You’re from Chicago, the ‘second-city.’ Second-place teams, second-rate citizens, second-class parents. To which you can attest, and let’s face facts, ‘the second-best in the world.'” Heyman displays a still photo of him covering Punk at Night Of Champions.

“When I jump out of this ring and make a move to you, can your two ‘goons’ get to me faster than I get to you,” C.M. warns. “I’m no longer going to break your face, I’m going to rip your face off!” Heyman tells Punk that “if you do make a move, I want you to keep in mind. Not only can I beat you, I beat you with both hands tied behind my back. And with that, ladies and gentleman, a bid you all a ‘bear ado.'”

Paul E. discovers his scooter won’t move, which puts a smile on C.M. Punk. He bolts after Heyman, but Axel and Ryback come out of nowhere to lay a beating. Punk begins to fight them off as Heyman covers himself. He charges off the stage and dives at Ryback, laying punches down.

He throws him into the side of the Titantron, then kicks down the Intercontinental Champion. Ryback comes again and hurls him into the same side, then onto an equipment box. Ryback picks up C.M. and military-presses him through a table, onto concrete! Heyman suddenly “heals,” standing up and hopping off the stage. He hands the microphone to Ryback, who proclaims that “this is what happens to bullies.”


C.M. Punk is just getting up and wards off the help of referees and a trainer.

Match #5: 10-Diva Tag-Team – The Bella Twins (Brie and Nikki), The Funkadactyls (Cameron and Naomi), and (with Eva Marie) VS. Alicia Fox, Layla, Aksana, Tamina Snuka, and Divas Champion A.J. Lee (Non-Title)

Natalya and Alicia start off with a lockup and quick roll-up by Natalya. She tries for the Sharpshooter but is shoved into the corner. Fox kicks away in the corner and delivers a big boot. She clasps on the grounding rear chinlock, which Natalya fights out of, but is quickly slammed down.

Natalya moves out of the way of a flip-over by Alicia, then tags in Brie. She hits a jumping clothesline and a couple of dropkicks, then runs into Fox against the ropes. A.J. is tagged in and pulls Brie down from behind. She throws her shoulder-first into the post, but her kick gets caught and is planted with the sit-down facebuster for the sudden victory!

Winners via Pin Fall: The Bella Twins (Brie and Nikki), The Funkadactyls (Cameron and Naomi), and Natalya (with Eva Marie)

Segment #9: Backstage Promo

The Shield ponders if the “powers-that-be” were put in a compromising position or not with their 11-on-3 match. “Remind me, refresh my memory, what happens every time our backs are up against the wall?” questions United States Champion Dean Ambrose.

“Oh, I don’t know. We just revolutionized the entire industry. We just changed the game from the inside out. We make everyone in this locker room stand up and take notice,” replies Tag-Team Champion Seth Rollins. “And most importantly, we win. Because we’re winners. We’re studs and tonight, we’re going to our jobs. Simple as that,” proclaims Ambrose. “Believe that,” declares Tag-Team Champion Roman Reigns.


Segment #10: Arena Promo

Daniel Bryan is out, also to a loud ovation and chants of his name. “You guys are awesome!” He recalls the “conspiracy” about him asking official Scott Armstrong fast-counting Randy Orton down, and then subsequently winning and being stripped the WWE Championship with in twenty-four hours.

Daniel yells that it doesn’t matter which Randy Orton will show up, because, “I TAKE BACK WHAT IS MINE – THE WWE CHAMPIONSHIP! No fast-counts, no guest-referees, NO EXCUSES! I sick of Randy Orton hiding behind his bosses skirts, and in Buffalo, there will be no more hiding. Because the next day, when he wakes up from the beating that this ‘B+ goat-faced troll’ gives him, when all their plans to screw me over have failed, he is going to here one word etched over, and over again in the back of his brain. It’s going to be a word that’s going to haunt him for the rest of his miserable life, and it’s going to be the word that the entire arena will be chanting after I win at Battleground. And that word is this: ‘YES, YES, YES, YES…’!”

The Shield interrupt and march down to the ring. Before they get to Bryan, two men in street clothes ambush and assault them. They are dragged off by security, but is revealed to be Cody Rhodes and Goldust/Dustin Rhodes! The Shield are shocked as Cody and Dustin/Goldust bring them to the back.


It is announced that Dolph Ziggler will challenge Dean Ambrose for the United States Championship this Friday on Smackdown!

Match #5: 11-On-1 Tag-Team Elimination – The Shield (United States Champion Dean Ambrose and Tag-Team Champions Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns) VS. “The Show Off” Dolph Ziggler, Zack Ryder, The Usos (Jey and Jimmy), Daniel Bryan, “The Prime Time Players” (“Mr. No Days Off” Darren Young and “The Big Deal” Titus O’Neil), Kofi Kingston, Justin Gabriel, R-Truth, and Rob Van Dam. (Non-Title)

Jimmy Uso and Seth Rollins begin, with Jimmy giving Rollins a smacking uppercut. Ziggler is tagged in and headbutts Seth. He whips him into the corner but is pushed back into The Shield’s corner by Seth. They switch up and isolate a beating on Dolph. Seth locks in a half-crab and tags Ambrose, who stomps away. Dolph ducks a clothesline and hits a dropkick, then jumps for the tag to Rob Van Dam. He comes in, all bandaged up on his chest and left arm.

Van Dam hits clotheslines and a kick, then goes for the Rolling Thunder, but hops over a moving Dean. R.V.D. comes back with another kick, then a springboard kick, but misses a running shoulder-ram in the corner. Ambrose takes advantage with his bulldog-DDT finisher and eliminates R.V.D.


Ambrose is now working on Kofi Kingston, who is also taped up against his left shoulder and arm. Dean focuses on that “injury,” wearing down Kingston with an armbar/wristlock. He whips Kofi into the corner, who counters with a springboard crossbody for two! He tries to tag, but Dean holds onto the left arm and then plants him with his finisher to take him out.

Titus O’Neil is now in and takes it to Ambrose. It’s power on power, as Roman Reigns enters. They lock up and Reigns corners Titus, allowing Rollins to slug away and Ambrose to choke him. Roman headbutts Titus and taunts him. O’Neil begins to battle back, but Reigns soon catches him with the spear to get rid of him, and he does the same to Justin Gabriel and Zack Ryder quickly. It’s now three on six!

Daniel Bryan comes in and flies all over Reigns with clotheslines. He tags in Jimmy Uso, who superkicks Roman and Jey follows up with the Superfly Splash. 1 – 2 – 3 and Roman Reigns is pinned for the first time in WWE, according to Michael Cole!


Darren Young is now in and gets faceplanted on the turnbuckle by Rollins. Ambrose is tagged back and he takes control. Young is worn down between the remaining “Shield” members for a bit, and is done away with eventually. Ziggler is back in and hits a nice dropkick then stomps away in the corner. Seth soon counters, driving him face-first into the middle turnbuckle. Ambrose covers, but Ziggler kicks out!

The U.S. Champ continues to punish Dolph in the corner with punches, but is suddenly caught with the Zig-Zag out of an over-the-shoulder carry and eliminated! Rollins is the only man left for The Shield, and is facing five others. He takes he strategy of wrestling Dolph alone away from the others.

Ziggler counters a run with an elbow and high-jumping DDT! He tags in R-Truth who runs over Seth with clotheslines and a spinning elbow off the ropes. He drops him with a front-suplex facebuster for a close call, but misses a scissors kick and is stomped on to be taken out! Rollins surveys the four men left he has to go against. Daniel Bryan directs The Usos and Ziggler to each side of the ring, then they all enter and stomp away at Rollins, much like The Shield has frequently done to numerous wrestlers.

Ambrose and Reigns run back out to try and help, but are quickly taken out with double-plancha splashes by The Usos! It is Rollins and Bryan left, with Bryan pushing Seth to the mat and diving after him with a headbutt! Bryan runs and nails the knee-to-the-face to complete the bout!

Winner/Survivor via Pin Fall: Daniel Bryan

Daniel Bryan celebrates alone in the ring to the pleasure of the fans, as Michael Cole speculates that he could be the new “locker room leader” and WWE Champion by the end of Battleground, to close the show.

End Of Raw.

Reporter’s Rumblings – By Moe Tapp

Another great Raw that I thought went very smoothly, one segment to the next. There many highlights, (one of which I’m sure you can guess without reading further!), and as always the Chicago crowd makes the show more exciting, so bonus points for them! Onto the analysis:

Excellence: Great matches between Kofi/World Heavyweight Champ Alberto, Prime Time Players/Wyatt Family, and Orton/Van Dam. Decent match for Fandango/Marella and the Divas Tag-Team (actually flowed pretty well.) Promos by The Shield, (this is what they need to get back too) and Daniel Bryan. Awesome main-event! Much like Wrestling-Online’s Colin Vassallo said about last week’s ending to Raw, this also provided for some really “exciting T.V.”

I thought it was great match that the crowd was heavily into and played out well, with the pacing of the eliminations. Awesome surprise also with Goldust/Dustin Runnels and Cody Rhodes running out. Loved “security” hauling them out too, to add realism that they are no longer “contracted” wrestlers on the roster.

Of course, the “top of the heap” belongs to the entire C.M. Punk segment. Everyone involved, including the fans, made that piece. Once again Heyman and Punk are “masters of the microphone” and in particular, Punk tonight was at his best. That was one of the better oratories I’ve heard him spew in a long while. I could feel the “fire/passion,” and after this feud subsides, he needs to be back in the WWE Championship picture, complete with another extremely-long reign. I believe Punk and Daniel Bryan are the two most-over wrestlers in WWE right now, and they are being used to their just about their full-potential, which is brilliant.

Bogus: Opening promo and the MizTV segment fell kind of flat. I did like Stephanie’s speaking of how Miz has fallen in the last few years, star-wise, but Miz was just kind of dull. I’m not really excited for “Los Matadores.” Right now, there is no real purpose to the Tag-Team Division (where were “The Real Americans” tonight?”) and I think the addition of them may clutter the scene; plus all three of the tag-teams (“The Shield,” The Usos, and “The Prime Time Players”) are involved in the main storyline, so “Los Matadores” will probably have no significant feud to kick them off and just be lost.

Once again, left with a suspenseful ending and wanting more after a livening edition! So until next week, which will be the final show (already!) before Battleground, Be Excellent Wrestling-Online Readers and Wrestling Fans!

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