Are you ready? Then stop questioning your heart and join me because it is time for Monday Night RAW!!!
Punk enters with mic in hand and steps into the ring. Punk says that his pride has been hurt. He begins to address his match with HHH from last night’s PPV, but before he can finish HHH’s music hits.
The Game walks down to the ring. He says that he and Punk went to war last night, and he is just as worn out as Punk. But, the fact is that today he still remains the COO of the WWE. HHH says that the next PPV, Hell in a Cell, is in two weeks. Del Rio deserves a rematch, Punk does as well. So, for the first time ever it will be a Triple Threat Hell in a Cell Match! With the business over, if Punk can’t get it through his head that HHH isn’t a part of the conspiracy, then here’s the thing. HHH has no problem going back to war with Punk right now. Punk has no problem with that either. Punk tells him to put his tie back on. Someone is playing both Punk and HHH. Someone is using them in this conspiracy, someone higher up the food chain.
John Laurinaitis comes out and says that he does believe in a conspiracy, but Punk is the one behind everything. John tells Hunter not to believe anything Punk says about him. Punk says that John is the Executive Vice President of Talent Relations, but believes he should be the COO. Punk points the finger at John for sending R-Truth and Miz out to the ring. John says that he doesn’t want to be COO, he is proud of his job. Punk works for him. HHH then steps in and says yeah, but I’m the COO – so you work for me. HHH vows to get to the bottom of the conspiracy. John wishes Punk the best in his future endeavors, and fires him! HHH says that Punk isn’t fired, not yet. Tonight HHH will get to the bottom of this conspiracy, and someone will be fired!
Justin Gabriel, Sheamus, Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne v. Christian, Wade Barrett, David Otunga & Michael McGillicutty
Justin Gabriel and Michael start things off. Justin kicks him a couple times then tags in Kofi. Kofi holds Michael against the ropes and lets a tagged in Bourne stomp across his gut. Michael hits a side slam and tags in Otunga. Otunga hits a running clothesline that slams Bourne down hard to the mat. Otunga hits an overhead slam and tags in Wade. Bourne finds himself whipped into the corner and then caught by a backbreaker. Christian gets the tag. He chokes Bourne across the rope and then connects with a couple of elbows. Bourne hits a huge high knee and crawls towards his corner. Otunga makes it into the ring just in time to pull Bourne back into the middle of the ring. Otunga tries for a clothesline but Evan uses the momentum to tag in Sheamus. The Irishman charges at Otunga and eventually hits the brutal backbreaker. He goes for the tag, but the sides clear as men rush into the ring. Out of the fray we are left with Sheamus and Christian. Otunga runs in to try and win the match, but Sheamus lifts him high into the air for the Celtic Cross. Otunga is drilled into the mat, and Sheamus picks up the win!
Winners via Celtic Cross: Justin Gabriel, Sheamus, Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne
HHH is in the back talking to a referee. Alberto walks in and says that HHH is the worst COO in history. HHH says that Del Rio deserves whatever comes to him. Del Rio says that he prays Mr. McMahon will come back to the company.
Alberto Del Rio drives to the ramp and then walks down to the ring. Ricardo Rodriguez provides the introduction.
Alberto Del Rio v. John Morrison
Morrison and Del Rio roll around with Del Rio gaining control. Morrison is kicked a couple of times and then Del Rio goes for the Cross Arm Breaker. It’s over!
Winner via Submission: Alberto Del Rio
Hugh Jackman is introduced and walks into the ring. He runs the ropes and then grabs a mic. He is excited to be here tonight. Hosting the Oscars was fun, but that wasn’t in front of 15,000 people. He then puts over his new movie.
“Excuse Me!” Vickie Guerrero interrupts! She is joined by Dolph Ziggler as she enters the ring. Vickie says that she is Hugh’s biggest fan. She totally agrees with People Magazine that he is the Sexiest Man Alive. She is sure that Jackman will agree that she is the hottest WWE Diva. Hugh admits that she is a Diva, but that’s it. Vickie introduces Dolph. Ziggler says that Hugh is interrupting his time. Dolph claims to be the greatest US Champion in history. Dolph puts over the fact that he beat 3 other men. Hugh congratulates him, but Dolph continues. He says that this isn’t a movie, this is real life. Hugh asks if Dolph is staring him down. Ziggler says Cleveland is the city of the underdog, which also means loser. Hugh says that he loves an underdog. He loves them so much that he is going to go into the locker room and find the biggest underdog he can get, and have him beat Dolph Ziggler tonight. Ziggler says that he is going to humiliate that man. Hugh is about to leave, but the crowd starts a loud, “We Want Ryder” chant. Hugh runs down to the crowd and grabs a Ryder > Wolverine sign. He brings it into the ring and holds it above his head, before heading to the back.
The Miz and R-Truth are with John Laurinaitis in the garage. They apologize if their actions last night negatively impacted John in any way.
Sin Cara v. Cody Rhodes
The commentators are split on whether or not this is the original Sin Cara, or the imposter.
Before the match can start, Sin Cara’s music hits again, and the other Sin Cara makes his entrance. They stare each other down and try to get the crowd on their side. The bigger Sin Cara kicks the smaller one and whips him into the ropes. They trade back and forth exchanges and I’ll be damned if I can tell which is which while they fly in the air. It seems like the original Sin Cara hits a dropkick and the bigger one makes his way towards the back.
The match appears to never start and is simply forgotten about for the rest of the night. Wait, what?
In an office, Truth and Miz are with HHH. Miz says that they now know HHH isn’t a part of the conspiracy and apologizes. Truth says that he apologizes for his actions, even against all the Little Jimmies. They think that HHH is doing a tremendous job as COO, and apologize. HHH says fine, he accepts their apology. Since they decided to put their hands on a referee, he is charging them each $250,000! HHH says one last thing, if they like their jobs then they will have to face CM Punk and John Cena in a match tonight!
Jim Ross is in the ring and announces that Randy Orton has decided to use his rematch clause for the World Heavyweight Title at Hell in a Cell against Mark Henry! Ross introduces Henry and he makes his way down to the ring. Ross asks Henry what he has to say to his haters. Henry says he’ll deal with them in a minute. Right now, he’s never been in a hell in a Cell match. He doesn’t know much about it, but he does know that he gave Orton hell last night. He’ll do it again. Henry holds his belt and says it has his name on it. There is no man who can take it from him. Ross and the rest of the haters will never be forgiven by Henry. They never supported or believed in Henry. On behalf of all these people, he wants Jim Ross to apologize. And then, Ross himself will need to apologize to Henry. Mark tells the crowd that Ross was never high on him. He told McMahon to fire him because he was injury prone. Henry then holds the World Championship in Ross’ face. He says he doesn’t need to say anything, everything he needs to say is right here. He tells Ross to apologize. Ross obliges. Henry says that he hates ass kissers, and then grabs Ross by the tie. He begins to choke him! Ross shouts that he is hurting him. Lawler runs from the commentary booth and tries to pull Henry off of him. Jerry tries to talk Mark down. The crowd begins a loud “Jerry” chant. Henry finally relinquishes Ross. Henry then grabs Lawler and says that he is going to take Ross’ place. Jerry punches him a couple of times, but it doesn’t phase Henry. He bounces back and hits a booming World’s Strongest Slam. Henry slides out of the ring and begins to take apart the commentators booth. He throws Lawler over it and watches him crash into the chairs. Henry then hits another World’s Strongest Slam – through the table! Henry stares down the crowd before heading to the back.
Josh Mathews is on commentary to join Michael Cole.
Kelly Kelly & Eve Torres def. Beth Phoenix & Natalya
Hugh Jackman is in the locker room with Zack Ryder. Hugh introduces Ryder as the man who is rarely on RAW, disliked by the Divas and made an Internet Championship just to give it to himself. Jackman says that Ryder isn’t even an underdog he is pathetic, he’s perfect!
Dolph Ziggler v. Zack Ryder w/ Hugh Jackman
Dolph and Zack exchange blows. The crowd is strongly behind Ryder. He goes for the cover but Dolph kicks out. I should point out that Hugh Jackman is wearing a Ryder headband at ringside. Ziggler yells at Hugh and then hits a big neckbreaker. He rakes his boot across Ryder’s face. Both men go for a clothesline at the same time and crash to the mat. Vickie slaps Ryder and is yelling at the referee once Ryder gains some control in the match, and the referee sends her to the back! With the ref’s back turned, Jackman hits a pretty decent punch on Ziggler. Ryder hits his leg drop finisher, and picks up the win!
Winner via Wolverine: Zack Ryder
Swagger is in the back with Vickie and says that he can introduce her to Dolph. He just wants to have her as his manager once again. Vickie says it will great to have him in her stable with Dolph.
CM Punk is in the locker room with John Cena. He says they should get along in the ring tonight because he is very impressed with everything Punk has accomplished. They both continue to make history in this company. John isn’t worried about tonight, he is worried about the historic 3 Way Hell in a Cell match. Cena cautions Punk that history might now be made, if he gets fired tonight. Punk says maybe Cena will be the one fired; we’ll have to wait and see.
R-Truth and Miz make their way down to the ring for the main event. Truth performs a Remix of his entrance theme.
The Miz & R-Truth v. CM Punk & John Cena
Cena and Miz start the match off. Miz charges but is whipped into the corner and caught with a bulldog. Punk tags in and hits a double team slam and drops an elbow. Cover, but Miz kicks out. Truth tags in and is caught with an Armenian Toe Drop. Truth gets back to his feet and kicks Punk in the gut. Punk kicks him in the chest and then slams him to the mat. Punk pulls him towards the corner and tags in Cena. Cover, but Truth kicks out. Cena allows Truth to tag in Miz. They stare each other down before locking up. Cena with the drop toe hold that leads into an AA attempt. Miz counters into a stuttered DDT. Cover, but Cena kicks out.
Miz and Cena are in the ring as we come back. Miz kicks Cena in the head, but Cena dodges the next kick and makes it to his feet. Miz hits his backbreaker to neckbreaker combo and goes for the pin. Cena kicks out and Miz starts to argue with the ref. Truth steps between Miz and the ref to calm down his partner. Truth gets the tag and cinches on a rear headlock. Truth charges and hits a rough clothesline. Miz gets the tag and kicks Cena multiple times. Cena almost makes it to his corner after hitting Miz, but Miz makes it to Truth first and Truth pulls Cena back towards the corner. Truth slaps him across the face and goes for the cover. Cena kicks out, and Miz enters the ring off a tag. Miz punches and stomps on Cena, who is seated in the corner. Miz taunts Punk, which provides just enough time for Cena to sneak in a punch. Cena then takes out Truth, but this gives Miz enough time to send Cena down to the mat. Miz charges, but misses with a corner splash. Cena leaps off the mat and makes the hot tag. Punk takes out Miz with a heel kick and then hits a suplex on Truth. Punk hits the high knee on Miz and follows with the running bulldog. Punk goes for the springboard clothesline and connects. Punk calls for the GTS and lifts Miz up on his shoulders. Miz fights off the move, but almost crashes into Turth. Miz is pushed into Truth by Punk, and then gets hit with the GTS! This match is over!
Winners: CM Punk & John Cena
HHH’s music hits and he comes out from the back with mic in hand. HHH tells Punk good match, and then fires The Miz and R-Truth.
The shot moves to the back where the locker room is sitting around talking about what just transpired. HHH walks down the hallway and Scott Stanford asks him about the firings. Before he can respond, Miz and Truth run up from behind and jump him. The locker room comes to the defense of the COO and throws Miz & Truth out of the building. A furious HHH walks away into the building/sunset.
The opener for the show was back to the HHH dominated segment theme, which would ultimately close out the night with Trips walking away towards his office in a scene out of one of those really campy John Wayne Cowboy movies that the human race has tried to wipe out of their collective consciousness.
The Cena/Punk/Del Rio triple threat makes sense for the PPV. I don’t think Rio really adds anything to this feud, but maybe I should give him another chance. I thought he was bland upon first debuting, but warmed up to his character over time. As of late I just not cared about him or his inclusion into the summer’s big Cena/Punk storyline. The angle has been extrapolated out to include everyone from Vince McMahon to Kevin Nash, so it’s kind of a free for all anyway.
I apologize for the brevity in the recap of the Diva match; okay brevity might be giving it to much credit. BUT, a little girl rode by my house on a pony with her mom holding the reigns, and I simply couldn’t pay attention to my TV as I tried to figure out why the hell that was happening. Legit.
The 8-man tag was forgettable other than the strong face presence of Sheamus. It’s an interesting turn for a character that I actually am enjoying more as a face than as a heel.
The Sin Cara thing was… whatever. I grew tired of watching the original one, so the last thing I want to waste time on is watching the original compete with the imposter. Why? Because in the end we are going to have Sin Cara back – but I still will have been tired of him already. At least when they did this with the Undertaker in ’94 there were supernatural powers involved. The closest Sin Cara gets to supernatural powers is with his psychedelic lighting.
Awesome Truth was fired. Which for the record means that Awesome Truth v. Air Boom was a real match that happened last night, because the WWE is having a competition to create the dumbest tag team names in history, apparently.
I was really impressed with Hugh Jackman tonight. Yes, it was a bit cheesy the way he was plugging his movie, but as the audience we have to understand that that is why he was there. At least they kept the trailers to the commercials and not as an actual segment on the show. It was a big deal for Dolph to get that air time with him, and just as big of a deal for Ryder to get that endorsement. No fan can say that Ryder isn’t getting pushed by the WWE anymore. This is his chance; if he blows it fans can’t blame the WWE for not backing him. Don’t get me wrong, I hope he succeeds, but I hope he realizes that this is his time. It’s not every day that one of the most decorated actors on the planet endorses a WWE Superstar.
I enjoyed watching Punk get the hot tag instead of SuperCena. The match was pretty solid, and certainly enjoyable.
I want to take a moment and thank someone who I have never acknowledged in any of my RAW Recaps. Mark Simmons has been one of my best friends since the days we sat next to each other in 6th grade. He is the one person who got me interested in wrestling again, and the person who introduced me to WrestleView. I’ve never publicly thanked you, but without you I wouldn’t be here. So from the bottom of my heart – thanks for all of the encouragement and support over the past 11 years. Go Cowboys!
I do read every single e-mail you guys send, even the Facebook comments below, and really appreciate hearing your thoughts. Send me some e-mails, and have a safe week everyone!
Visit WrestleView daily for unique columns, recaps, audio and more including my column That’s a Wrap! Also, check out my radio show for the WrestleView Radio Network called The Teacher’s Lounge with co-host Anthony “Mr. V” Valvo. If you’re a VIP member, you don’t want to miss it!