Jeremy Piven and Dr. Ken came out to the ring to kick things off. Piven said tonight would be like July 4th all night long. He said tonight’s show would be huge. He said Triple H would be fighting the Legacy. All of a sudden the Miz’s music hit and he came down to the ring. He demanded a match with Cena tonight. Piven and Dr. Ken ran him down pretty bad before Cena’s music hit and he came out to the ring.
Cena and Piven went back and fourth, mauling the Miz while he stood there. Cena said no one would be interested in the match. He’d have to make it interesting. So Piven made the match so that if Miz lost, he’d be banned from Raw and the Summerslam pay per view.
Evan Bourne vs. Jack Swagger
Swagger grabbed a quick go behind and began taking Bourne down to the mat repeatedly. Swagger tossed Bourne into the corner and looked for an avalanche which he missed by a mile. Bourne tripped up Swagger and looked for the standing moonsault but Swagger got the knees up.
Swagger hit Bourne with a running boot to the face before planting him to the mat with the Oklahoma Stampede. Swagger hit a huge gut wrench powerbomb soon after that to pick up the win.
Winner: Jack Swagger via pin fall
After the match, Swagger hit three Vader bombs on the defenseless Bourne. MVP came running in to make the save.
Piven and Dr. Ken are in the back with the Divas. They start talking to each other when Big Show walks in. Show wants Shaq again. Piven says it won’t happen. Show then challenges Piven to a match. Piven declines and proposes Show v. Kingston for the US title. Show likes the idea and walks off.
Mickie James & Gail Kim vs. Beth Phoenix & Jillian Hall
Mickie hit a drop kick to Beth’s head and sent her to the mat. Beth went to toss her to the outside, but Mickie held herself on the apron. They had some back and forth on the apron before Mickie knocked Beth back and hit a thesz press off the top rope.
Beth quickly recovered and tattooed James with a forearm before tagging in Jillian Hall. Hall rushed Mickie to the corner but got a pair of boots to the face on the follow up. Mickie fought out of the corner and tagged in Kim.
Kim hit a series of clotheslines and a spear in the corner. Kim followed up with a big missile drop kick. Jillian hanged her up on the top rope before Jillian looked for the hand spring back elbow. Beth made a blind tag and pearl harbored Gail from behind before hitting the glam-slam for the win.
Winners: Beth Phoenix & Jillian Hall via pin fall
A video aired putting over the Legacy-Triple H happenings from last week.
Triple H vs. The Legacy
Triple H suplexed Cody before dropping a big knee on his face. Cody fought back with a boot to the face and Dibiase came running in, only to eat a big clothesline to the face. Triple H whipped him and ate a pair of boots on the way in. Dibiase pounded him from behind only for Triple H to counter into a pedigree attempt. Rhodes rushed him and the Game back body dropped him to the mat. He tossed Rhodes to the outside of the ring and then sent Dibiase after him.
Triple H was still controlling the pace until the Legacy hit a double goozle. The two began working over Triple H, hitting a double suplex before going for a cover. Ted worked a half nelson before tagging in Cody who moved the hold to a rear chin lock. Triple H tried to follow up with some punches, but Rhodes planted him with a DDT for a two count.
Rhodes looked for a moonsault and completely missed. Triple H desperately tried to recover, and finally began to reach his feet. He cut Dibiase off before Rhodes could make the tag and then went to work on Cody. He hit a high knee and a face buster before throwing Rhodes into Dibiase. He looked for a pedigree only for Dibiase to catch him from behind and hit dream street.
Rhodes made the cover only for Triple H to kick out. Rhodes went nuts and eventually connected with a Cross Rhodes for the win.
Winners: Cody Rhodes & Ted Dibiase via pin fall
After the match, Triple H got on the mic and said things didn’t go as he planned. He said maybe he needed a gang of his own. He remembered the gangs he had and they were fun. He said he could bring Evolution back, but Randy’s a jerk, Batista’s always injured and Flair’s at the VFW signing autographs. He said though, he could make one call and it’d make a difference. And if we weren’t down for that….
Jeremy Piven and Dr. Ken are watching their movie in the back. Chavo Guerrero comes in and is psyched to meet them. He’s getting a match with Hornswoggle later tonight.
Primo Colon vs. Carlito
Primo hita right hand and backed Carlito up into the corner. He went for a big Irish whip into the corner and connected. He hit a hurricanranna and a series of strikes. Carlito blocked his punches and tried to throw him to the apron, but Primo held up and hit a shoulder thrust and a springboard.
Carlito fled to the floor where Primo hit a suicide dive. They went to the inside of the ring and slugged it out before Carlito got the advantage hitting a slingshot suplex. Carlito hit a body slam before dropping an elbow for a two count and cinching in a chin lock.
Primo fought out of the hold and hit a series of drop kicks before connecting with a monkey flip. Primo charged his brother only to run into the post. Primo reeled back and Carlito looked for a back stabber, but Primo rolled him up. Carlito kicked out and ducked under another Primo clothesline and hit a back stabber for the win.
Winner: Carlito via pin fall
Piven showed up on the titan tron. He said Hornswoggle caught a case of adult chicken pocks and couldn’t compete, but his cousin Mark could…
Mark Henry vs. Chavo Guerrero
Henry rushed Chavo to the corner and connected with a big head butt. Chavo tried to faintly hit Henry and then he ran off. Henry brought him back in hard way, only for Henry to pick him up and show him off to the crowd before planting him with a world’s strongest slam.
Winner: Mark Henry via pin fall
After the match, Henry found Hornswoggle under the ring. He hit a tad pole splash and they danced.
United States Championship
Kofi Kingston vs. Big Show
Kingston tried some strikes, only for Show to catch him in a front face lock. Kingston tried to fight back meekly before Show body slammed him to the mat. Kofi fought back again and got caught and body slammed to the mat.
Show hit a Vader bomb on Kofi in the corner, only for Kingston to get his feet on the ropes. Show hit a snap mare before stomping on Kofi’s midsection. He wrapped up the champions legs and rolled him up like a ball in a submission attempt.
Show went for a second Vader bomb, only for Kofi to fight back. Kingston hit a drop kick to the leg before hitting Trouble in Paradise out of nowhere. He went to the top rope and hit a huge Ernie Ladd double leg drop for a two count. Kofi quickly recovered but so did Show, and the champion ran directly into a spear. Show beat the crap out of Kingston in the corner, causing a disqualification.
Winner: Kofi Kingston via DQ
Jericho joined in on the fun after the match, leaving Kingston a mess in the ring.
Piven and Dr. Ken came out to the ramp and say they’re big Orton fans. They’re picking Randy’s friends as lumberjacks. They run down the crowd a bit before the heels come out as lumberjacks.
John Cena vs. The Miz
They started off fast with Miz attempting to out strike Cena and he fails. Cena avoids the outside at first before Miz eventually knocks him to the floor. Masters slapped on a master lock and after a struggle, Cena passed out for a great near fall.
Miz went to work, choking Cena out in the corner while Dr. Ken mocked him. Miz hit an Irish whip only to get caught with a set of boots in the corner. Cena came off the rope and hit his bulldog before connecting with an inverted power bomb. Cena gave his big taunt and went for a five knuckle shuffle, only for Orton to pull down the top rope. The Legacy went to work on Cena, whipping him into the barricade and the ring steps.
After laying the boots to Cena for quite some time, Orton got his licks in, stomping away on the gut of Cena. The action went back to the ring where Cena out of nowhere countered Miz and hit an FU for the win… weird.
Winner: John Cena via pin fall
After the match, Cena caught Jeremy Piven trying to come off the top rope. He used Piven as a battering ram to knock the heels out of the ring. Dr. Ken tried to blindside him with the pimp cane he was holding, only for Cena to turn around and no sell it. Cena picked up Ken and tossed him into the heels.
Show Thoughts– Its been a while since we had a really bad Raw, so I guess we were due.
The celebrity experiment is something I hope people don’t automatically dog on every time there’s a bad guest. SNL, the Muppet Show and Madd TV have all had a plethora of celebrity guests and if anything, we’ve come to learn over the years that some will be great, and others will suck. Tonight’s show was the later.
Piven and Dr. Ken were horribly under prepared and seemingly could have cared less. The opening segment was absolutely awful and John Cena corniness actually ended up SAVING it from being a complete train-wreck. I liked that they moved heel with them in the closing segment, but I can’t help but think that should’ve been the way they went with it the majority of the show. Still, their lines were bad, their delivery was worse.. it was brutal. Easily worse than the pre-taped ZZ Top stuff.
The tone was set early on and it really crushed the first hour of the show. The crowd was absolutely dead for even the Triple H handicapped match. Even the DX mention didn’t get much of a reaction. It wasn’t until Mark Henry showed up that the crowd showed any signs of life.
The booking the entire night was pretty perplexing. For one, it started off with a bad opening promo, but got weirder with Swagger pretty much bulldozing Evan Bourne a week removed from Bourne giving him a solid run for his money. Swagger won and that’s not the issue… him running over Bourne was. Its not so much a ‘holding him down’ argument as it is mystifying that they’d erase the booking from the previous week. The lack of heat for the MVP run in was perplexing.
The Triple H handicapped match was pretty solid stuff. Cody’s a step behind Ted in singles matches, but he’s the better half when they get paired up. Triple H did a good job of having the two bump around in the early going only to assume more and more control as the match progressed. It had a nice flow to it even though the crowd was absolutely narcoleptic.
The Show-Kingston match was a lot of fun. I’m a huge fan of Kofi in matches with big men. It just caters to his strengths better. If he refines his selling, he’ll be a smaller guy who could potentially get over higher up the card. Show was Show. He’s been awesome this year.
Mark Henry was fun tonight. A cool comedy squash with Chavo that was probably the highlight of the night. I dunno if that’s a bad thing or a good thing, but Henry’s been one guy whose been handled really well since coming over to the brand.
I actually really, really liked the main event until the finish of the match, which was both rushed and out of nowhere. It completely annihilated the Miz and honestly, it didn’t do any favors to the heels who were unloading on Cena on the outside. The antics afterwards were fun, but outside of that, this was a well-worked match with the worst possible finish. It was disappointing to say the least.
In sum, this was just a really messy show. Poor writing, poor booking, bland action and a crowd that was absolutely killed early on and never recovered. Not every Raw is going to be a hit, but tonight was pretty bad even by ‘bad WWE standards’.
Overall Grade: D-
Jack Swagger def. Evan Bourne
Beth Phoenix & Jillian Hall def. Gail Kim & Mickie James
Cody Rhodes & Ted Dibiase def. Triple H
Kofi Kingston def. The Big Show
Mark Henry def. Chavo Guerrero
John Cena def. The Miz
Who’s Hot, Who’s Not?
1. Mark Henry
2. John Cena
3. Triple H
4. Kofi Kingston
1. Big Show
2. Randy Orton
3. The Legacy
4. The Miz
Match of the Night: Mark Henry vs. Chavo Guerrero *1/2
4 Points= World Title defense/win
3 Points= Singles PPV Win
2 Points= Tag PPV Win
2 Points= TV Singles Win
1 Point= TV Tag Win
0 Points= Loss
WWE Champion: Randy Orton 11-9-5, 29 pts. (Last Week: WWE Champion)— Surprisingly, a really quiet night for Orton. Not much on the radar to really comment.
United States Champion: Kofi Kingston 16-4-1, 29 points (Last Week: US Champion)— So after months and months or searching, they’ve finally found a strength of Kofi’s and that’s working with big men. He’s put on some super fun stuff with Show. Cultivate that, work on his selling.. Kofi could be a smaller guy with a real future. He’s shown me more upside working with Show than he has in the last two years he’s been with the company.
1. John Cena 18-10-3, 40 points. (Last Week: 1)– All over the place tonight. He really helped save the opening segment in a lot of ways, and on the sell, was AWESOME in his match tonight. The finish to that match though was really bad. Really, really bad.
2. Triple H 4-6-3, 6 Points (Last Week: 2)–So I disliked him last week and here I am again liking him this week. Great early offense with him having Cody and Ted bump all over the place. I just kept thinking Dorothy and the flying monkeys. Gradually though, the odds began to take their toll and Cody and Ted became more cohesive. Makes sense. Not a barn burner of a handicapped match, but pretty solid and well-worked none the less.
3. Mark Henry, 6-0, 12 Points (Last Week: 4)— I think Henry’s going to be a major player in the coming months. The squashes may grate on some folks who’d like to see him pushed more aggressively, but I’m a firm believer in a strong foundation and that’s essentially what they’re building with Mark right now. His charisma as a baby face is actually pretty great and he’s got chemistry with the crowd. His work has finally come around as well, so the rubber’s finally beginning to meet the road on a guy who had a high ceiling once upon a time.
4. Big Show 5-8-1, 9 Points (Last Week: 3)–At this point, I could care less about seeing anyone else on the show it seems, but Big Show is regularly a highlight. His offense has gotten so great since February and Jericho highlighting his strengths just makes him all the more better. Easily the best big man in the world right now.
5. Cody Rhodes 10-9-3, 13 points (Last Week: 5)— As a singles wrestler, I like Ted better right now, but in tags, Cody shines. Maybe I’m just a sucker for Buddy Roberts types, but he’s a great ‘flying monkey’. The last few weeks he’s started to come around a great deal.
6. Ted Dibiase, Jr. 9-7-3, 10 Points (Last Week: 6)–See Rhodes.
7. Jack Swagger, 2-4, 4 Points (Last Week: 10) — Of the mid card log jam on Raw right now, I think Swagger’s the guy with the most upside by a country mile. He adds something the WWE has lacked since releasing Kurt Angle in 2006, and that’s a mat/slam based wrestler. I think the potential is there for sure, but its amplified by his style. I think he’ll be a guy the WWE looks to elevate in the coming months.
8. The Miz 2-7-2, 3 Points (Last Week: 5)— Poor Miz. Plain and simple. That ending tonight was atrocious and you have to feel bad for the kid in a lot of ways, because he’s really done what’s been asked of him. Hopefully Raw’s loss will be Smackdown or ECW’s gain.
9. Evan Bourne, 2-3, 4 Points (Last Week: 9)— I’m totally baffled as to why he didn’t get a little more offense in tonight. The loss was more or less expected, and IMO, is the right call, but don’t TOTALLY overwrite your booking from the previous week.
10. MVP 5-6-2, 8 Points (Last Week: 8)– Not in action.
Batista 8-4, 16 Points (Last Week: NR)
Chris Masters 0-0-1, 0 Points (Last Week: NR)
Santino Marella 4-2, 9 points (Last Week: NR)
Shawn Michaels 6-3, 10 pts. (Last Week: NR)?
Carlito Colon 5-7-1, 7 Points (Last Week: NR)
Primo Colon 4-8-1, 4 Points (Last Week: NR)?
Brian Kendrick 1-6-0, 2 Points (Last Week: NR)
Hornswaggle 4-0-0, 7 Points (Last Week: NR)
Jerry Lawler 1-0, 1 points (Last Week: NR)?
Festus 1-1-0, 1 Points (Last Week: NR)
Chavo Guerrero 1-9-0, 1 Points (Last Week: NR)
Jamie Noble 0-3, 0 Points (Last Week: NR)?
Jim Duggan 0-0, 0 points (Last Week: NR)
Matt Hardy 3-8-0, 4 Points (Last Week: TRADED TO SMACKDOWN)
William Regal, 3-10, 4 points (Last Week: TRADED TO ECW )
Goldust 2-1-0, 2 Points (Last Week: TRADED TO ECW)
Kane 7-7, 12 Points DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN?
Mike Knox 3-3 4 points (Last Week: DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN)
JTG 2-4, 2 points (Last Week: DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN)
Big Shaad 2-3 2 points (Last Week: DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN)?
Charlie Haas 0-0, 0 points (Last Week: DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN)
Dolph Ziggler 0-3, 0 Points (Last Week: DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN)
CM Punk 9-7, 17 Points DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN
Rey Mysterio 11-6, 22 Points DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN
Chris Jericho 6-7 13 pts. DRAFTED TO SMACKDOWN
JBL 1-6, 4 points (Last Week: 7) RETIRED
Mr. Kennedy 1-0-0, 1 Points (Last Week: RELEASED)?
Sim Snuka 1-0, 1 Point (Last Week: RELEASED)