Are you ready? There are only 27 days until WrestleMania, so stop questioning your heart and join me because it’s time for Monday Night RAW!!!
Shawn Michaels’ music hits, and the Heart Break Kid makes his way down to the ring! Shawn jokes that the best part about the fans chanting his name is that it gives him a chance to catch his breath after coming down the ramp. He says that when he was on RAW a couple of weeks ago, things got heated between himself and HHH. Shawn really wanted HHH to face Taker and take down the streak. Shawn puts over the fact that HHH finally changed his mind. He is here tonight to find out why.
HHH’s music hits and he makes his way down to the ring. Shawn says that HHH is a man of conviction, honor and integrity. Shawn tried everything that he could to try and get HHH to accept the match against Taker, but HHH stood his ground and didn’t waiver. Shawn even went as far as to call him a coward, but HHH wouldn’t waiver. HBK compares him to an oak tree. Shawn wants to know what someone said, what someone has over him, which made him finally accept the match?
HHH starts to speak, but Michaels instead cuts him off and asks for the video truck to play the clip of HHH accepting the match.
Video Package: Taker/HHH on RAW 2 Weeks Ago
HHH says that his decision had nothing to do with whether or not Shawn is better than him. HHH is tired of listening to people talk behind his back saying that Shawn couldn’t get the job done. HHH makes his case that he is eaten up by people that call HBK a failure. Hunter calls Shawn the greatest in ring performer of all time. That being said, it’s hard for HHH to view Shawn as a loser. That’s why he is going to face Taker. He is going to end the streak, end an era – HHH is going to beat Taker not just for himself, but for Shawn as well.
Shawn says that he thought they had a problem, but obviously they don’t. He sarcastically says that HHH has everything under control. Shawn says that it killed him to tell Hunter that he couldn’t get it done last year. He watched as HHH dominated The Undertaker at WrestleMania, but then he lost. Shawn was right. Michaels says that he knows who is going to win at WrestleMania, and he’ll be right again this year. Shawn goes to leave, and then says that the reason he knows who is going to win, is because he has been made the special guest referee!
Santino v. Jack Swagger w/ Vickie Guerrero & Dolph Ziggler
Swagger drops Santino to the mat and then connects with a couple of punches.
John Laurinaitis walks down to ringside with David Otunga.
Santino hits a hip toss, and then grabs for his cobra sleeve. Laurinaitis jumps up on the apron and distracts the referee. Ziggler hits a cheap shot on Santino which sets up for the Blue Thunder Bomb from Swagger. This match is – no! Santino kicks out!
Teddy Long charges down to ringside with Kofi Kingston & Aksana.
Back from the break, Teddy and John are arguing at ringside. Santino looks for the cobra, but Dolph hits him with another cheap shot. Kofi tries to run over for the distraction but is also knocked away. Santino trains the cobra on Ziggler and knocks him out. Santino looks to do the same to Vickie, but Aksana pulls her off the apron. Swagger ducks the cobra, and locks on the ankle lock! The referee is distracted by Long and Laurinaitis fighting on the outside. Santino rolls through the ankle lock, and picks up the win!
Winner & NEW United States Champion: Santino
After the match, John grabs a microphone and is furious. He says that this is his show. Long says that it was his show, but not this week. Long then gives a present to the WWE Universe – and calls for security! Long kicks Laurinaitis out of the building!
Justin Roberts announces Santino as the NEW United States Champion! Long, Kofi, Aksana & Santino all jubilantly trumpet around the ring in celebration.
Video: The Rock’s History Lesson #1 – The Rock says that just like the Boston Tea Party, he is going to host a revolution and party tonight. There is a ton of Cena merchandise set up on a table in front of the harbor. Rock goes through the merchandise and mocks it as he throws it into the water. Rock says that the people are sick of Cena. The revolution begins tonight! The Peoples’ Party starts tonight!
Alicia Fox v. Eve Torres
Kelly Kelly is on commentary for this match.
Winner via Roll Up: Eve Torres
After the match, Zack Ryder appears on the entrance ramp. He says that he is glad that he and Eve never hooked up. Broskies before Hoeskies!
Eve Torres runs up to Zack Ryder backstage. She says that she has something to tell him – and then gives him a big kiss!
Video Promo – John Cena earlier today.
Chris Jericho & Daniel Bryan v. CM Punk & Sheamus
Jericho and Punk start the match. They exchange kicks and then leap frog each other. Punk hits a pair of hip tosses and then whips Jericho into the ropes. Chris grabs onto the ropes and tags in his partner. Bryan sheepishly enters the ring as Jericho catches his breath.
Punk backs him into the corner and then tags in Sheamus. The Great White clubs Bryan, and then tosses him onto the apron. Sheamus pulls back on his arms and then demolishes his chest. Cover, but Bryan kicks out. Punk gets the tag.
Back live, Jericho has Punk in a side headlock. Jericho hits a side slam and goes for the cover. Punk kicks out. Jericho gets behind Punk and kicks him in the back. Punk leaps to his feet and connects with a dropkick. Sheamus gets the tag. Jericho is met with a couple of axe handles and a splash. Jericho is slammed down hard to the mat. Bryan tries to run in, but Sheamus hits a shoulder block. Sheamus hits an Irish Curse Backbreaker on Jericho. Sheamus looks to climb to the top rope, but Bryan distracts him. Jericho hits a springboard dropkick that knocks Sheamus to the outside. Bryan charges and kicks him hard.
Once back in the ring, Jericho connects with a series of knees to the abdomen. Jericho applies a rear headlock. Sheamus starts to get to his feet. Jericho blocks a splash and goes for the bulldog. Sheamus pushes him knee first into the turnbuckle! Punk and Bryan get the hot tags. Punk hits his patented high knee in the corner. Bryan is laid out as Punk takes to the top rope. Punk leaps into the air for a HUGE elbow. Punk’s back has been hurting him all match, and delays the pin attempt. Cover, but Bryan kicks out.
Punk tries a roll up, but Jericho runs into the ring. Sheamus follows after. Sheamus tries to hit the Celtic Cross, but is interrupted and thrown out of the ring. Bryan leaps out of the ring after Sheamus! Jericho tries for the Walls of Jericho. Punk rolls through and hits the pin! Jericho uses the momentum of the roll to gain leverage – and picks up the win!
Winners: Chris Jericho & Daniel Bryan
Video Promo – The Rock History Lesson #2: Paul Revere
The Miz v. The Big Show
As soon as the match starts, Cody Rhodes appears. He says that he has the latest embarrassing moment from The Big Show. WrestleMania 18 – eating at the WWE Restaurant in New York, because Big Show wasn’t at WrestleMania!
Miz attacks from behind and Cody disappears up the ramp. Big Show charges out of the corner with a vicious spear. Big Show hits the Knockout Punch, and this match is over.
Winner via Knockout Punch: The Big Show
Video Promo – The Rock History Lesson #3: Overthrowing John Cena is like overthrowing the British.
R-Truth v. Kane
Truth punches Kane and backs him into the corner. Kane meets him in the face with a huge boot. Truth is backed into the corner. Kane hits a snapmare and follows with a running elbow drop. Cover, but Truth kicks out. Kane is first to his feet. He lifts Truth and whips him hard into the corner. Truth dodges on the second splash attempt and hits a spinning heel kick. Truth looks for the scissors kick, but Kane counters with a chokeslam! This match is over.
Winner via Chokeslam: Kane
After the match, Orton’s music hits. He walks his way down to the ring. Truth pulls on Kane’s ankle as Orton slides into the ring. Orton hits the RKO! Kane is flattened in the ring and Orton calls for a mic. Randy says that it’s good to be back, and then makes his exit.
John Cena’s music hits and he makes his way down to the ring. He puts over how packed the arena is tonight. Cena says that all of these people are here because finally The Rock has come back. Cena says that Rock’s promos tonight have been everything that The Rock needs to be again. Cena asks what Rock is actually saying about him? The crowd chants, “You Can’t Wrestle”. Cena says that The Rock is desperate. Last week, for the first time in his illustrious career, The Rock was shaken up. Who was the man to finally do that to him? John Cena.
Cena embraces the mockery of The Rock and makes fun of his own appearance. Cena says it doesn’t matter because he was still able to shake him up. The Rock’s best stuff of late have only been in pre-recorded or via satellite segments. Cena says that come WrestleMania, he wants the real Rock to show up. Not the jokester, but the best Superstar in WWE history. Cena is tired of waiting, and calls for The Rock to come down to the ring.
The Rock’s music hits and he gets into the ring. He says that finally, The Rock has come back to Boston. Rock says that he is here to look Cena in the eye and tell the world what he sees. The Rock says that he sees fear. The hometown crowd starts to chant for Cena. Rock continues – fear that he is going to take everything away from Cena. Rock denies that Cena shook his confidence. Rock says that he has never been more confident of anything in his life. The crowd starts to chant, “tooth fairy”. Cena laughs and points it out. Rock says that Cena will forever go down in history as the little boy who was The Rock’s bitch. Rock heads to the back.
Cena says that Rock claimed he would rip his throat out. That’s what he is going to have to do to beat Cena. If Rock thinks that Cena is afraid, he is crazy. The crowd cheers. John tells the crowd that he must win his match at WrestleMania, because everything is at stake. It’s because of that very reason that Cena is going to be the son of a bitch that beats The Rock’s ass! Cena’s music hits and he jumps into the crowd to celebrate! Cena takes a swill of a beer from a female fan and then throws it at the camera. He slides back into the ring and pumps up the crowd. After soaking up the positive response, Cena heads back to the crowd. He kisses his wife and introduces her, his father and other members of the family as the show goes off the air.
The opening segment was a fairly old school approach to storytelling. It was pretty much what you would expect from HHH and HBK at this stage in their careers. I felt like the special guest referee reveal lacked some punch, but maybe that’s because we’ve known about it for the past six months. Damn spoilers. Plus, how am I supposed to believe that HHH wouldn’t already know that HBK was the special guest referee. There is no way a decision like that one isn’t run by the COO of the company.
Santino picked up a Championship! I don’t how long he’ll hold it, and sure it is mainly about furthering the feud between Laurinaitis and Long – but it is still well deserved. The match itself had a very Attitude Era feel in terms of all of the action at ringside.
The Rock’s History Lesson #1 was a really funny segment. Generally I’m not a fan of the pre-taped vignettes with Rock, and there was even mild booing when Rock first appeared. However, that was quickly turned around by a hell of a promo.
Broskies before Hoeskies cracks me up every time.
Well, I can’t really blame Zack Ryder. I mean, have you seen Eve Torres?
John Cena’s pre-taped promo should have come across as passion filled, but honestly I was bored.
The big tag match was pretty solid. Punk hits the elbow drop better than anyone I’ve seen in a long time. In terms of execution it stacks up with Savage’s.
If you take anything from the matchup between The Miz and The Big Show let it be this – in real life, Big Show never would lose to Cody Rhodes.
R-Truth is hysterical. I don’t care if he isn’t the best wrestler in the world, he makes me laugh. His character adds another dimension to the show.
I absolutely loved the hometown reaction that Cena received in Boston tonight. It didn’t appear that the WWE anticipated that reaction, especially not with the strong vignettes from Rock. As much as I want to leap into the pool of excitement that I’ve been stirring lately, I wouldn’t read too much into it unless Cena can sustain it outside of Massachusetts. I’m hoping we get another Rock/Hogan scenario, where Cena gets his due. It could be a tremendous catalyst for an already historic career.
The Rock was a bit thrown by the crowd. He wasn’t at his strongest tonight in the ring. Plus, being sandwiched by Cena promos almost made him… dare I say it… forgettable.
I have no real complaints about RAW tonight. There was a lot to it, and it had just enough for almost every kind of WWE fan. Besides, Santino winning a Title ALMOST makes up for Alicia Fox being on the show.
The Teacher’s Lounge (Saturday)
“The Teacher’s Lounge” is a weekly podcast archived every Saturday on the Wrestleview Radio Network featuring hosts David Stephens and “Mr. V” Anthony Valvo. The show reviews all of the news from the week, tosses out Gold Stars and Detentions, PPV previews and special guests. Past Interviews include: Colt Cabana, Hernandez, Sara Del Rey, CZW Owner DJ Hyde, Shane Douglas & more!