On Tuesday, January 2, 2007 at 12:05 AM EST WWE RAW
January 1, 2007
Commentators: Jim Ross & Jerry “The King” Lawler
Reported By: Hunter Golden of WrestleView.com
A video aired putting over the John Cena-Kevin Federline match tonight.
The opening pyro hit and JR & King welcomed us to the show.
John Cena v. K-Fed
Cena made his entrance before K Fed came out and announced a little change in their match. Federline said tonight’s match would be a no disqualification match tonight. He then introduced his personal trainer and friend, Johnny Nitro. Nitro I suppose, will be in his corner tonight.
Federline was pretty funny and brought a mouthpiece and everything for his match. Chants of “We want Brittany” rang out before he put on some ultimate fighting gloves. Just as it looked like they were going to go at it we got a commercial.
We came back to Federline working over Cena with a headlock. He had head gar on. K-Fed is a great heel. Cena almost suplexed him but K-Fed wiggled out and went back to his corner for some more advise. He took off the gloves and cracked his knuckles a little bit before Nitro handed him a chair in the ring. They put the chair in the middle of the ring and it looks like K Fed is going to try a master lock challenge. K Fed put him in a master lock but, uh, that didn’t really work out. K-Fed was losing his patience and tossed out his mouthpiece and the gloves.
K-Fed challenged Cena to a test of strength. K Fed took him down with a cross arm breaker but Cena picked him up easily and placed him on the top turnbuckle. Johnny Nitro came into the ring and Cena took him out with a clothesline before K Fed hit him with a low blow. Cena brushed it off though and went for the FU before Umaga jumped him and clocked him with the WWE Championship belt.
He left the ring and was screaming as he went up the ramp. K Fed came in and gave us a ‘you can’t see me’ before covering Cena for the three count.
Winner: K-Fed via pin fall
Nitro and K-Fed celebrated as they walked up the ramp while the referee tended to Cena’s lifeless body in the middle of the ring.
K-Fed was running around with some groupies in the back. Maria wanted to interview him but Melina wouldn’t let her. Maria got bitch slapped before Melina flew into K-Fed’s locker room.
Coach was celebrating with Federline in the back. Coach praised Federline and then pointed to Nitro and Melina. He said Cena’s night wasn’t close to being through. He said the main event was going to be John Cena v. Umaga, Armando Estrada, Coach and Johnny Nitro against Cena later tonight. Coach said we were all in for a very happy New Year.
8-Man Tag Team Match
Cryme Tyme & The Highlanders v. The World’s Greatest Tag Team & Cade & Murdoch
Cade and Robby started us off. Cade bum rushed Robby into the corner and lay the boots to him before whipping him to the opposite corner and being countered with a big boot and a cover attempt. Robby escaped harm’s way and tagged in JTG. JTG caught Cade with a drop toehold before clamping on an arm bar. Cade flung him into the ropes where Murdoch tripped him up.
Haas tagged in and whipped JTG into the corner hard and hit a double arm suplex that got a two count. Shelton tagged in and the two hit a double-team before going for a cover. Murdoch tagged in, hit some clubbing blows to JTG’s back and hit a body slam.
Cade tagged in and mounted the second turnbuckle and missed an elbow drop. Big Shaad got the tag and began cleaning house on everyone. He capped it off with a back suplex on Murdoch and got a two count. Everyone flew into the ring and was dispatched of relatively quickly. Big Shaad and Murdoch ended up being the last two in the ring and Shaad landed a big head butt, which sent Murdoch into the ropes. JTG hanged him up on the ropes and Murdoch fell to the canvas motionless while Shaad made the cover for the win.
Winners: Cryme Tyme and the Highlanders
Jeff Hardy came out to the ring for a match before Rob Conway interrupted him. Conway said he was going to be a winner this year. He said if he couldn’t beat Hardy tonight, he’d quit Raw.
Jeff Hardy v. Rob Conway
Conway hit a kick to the gut and whipped Hardy to the buckles but got rolled up in about two seconds. Yep, that’s it.
Winner: Jeff Hardy via pin fall
Vince McMahon’s music hit and he came strutting on down to the ring. McMahon shook Conway’s hand, who was pretty eager to see him. McMahon said he was ready to make his new year’s resolutions with everyone /*. He said it took Conway about a minute to break his New Year’s Resolution. He said he made some resolutions of his own. Vince said he was going to stop being so damn nice. He said he was going to stop allowing people to take advantage of him. He said folks like Donald Trump wouldn’t out do him either. He said he was busy with Rosie O’Donnell (he called her Yokozuna). He said he was ticked Trump used ‘you’re fired’ on his hit TV show. He said that phrase was originated on Raw. He turned to Conway and gave everyone a ‘you’re fired!’.
Todd Grisham was in the back with Kenny Dykstra. Kenny said Flair was trying to save face after his loss last week by offering him a handshake. He said that wasn’t the real story. He said he was the future of Raw. He said this time deaths would come in fours. Gerald Ford, Saddam Hussein and James Brown already happened. He said Ric Flair’s career would be the next thing to die.
A recap of the DX-Rated RKO feud aired.
DX were walking around in the back and are apparently on their way to the ring.
DX came out to the ring and went through the usual ‘are you ready’ stuff.
Michaels said he can’t pretend what he just saw didn’t happen. He said that for the last five years, he and Triple H had faced and defeated everyone that was put in front of them. He said his personal favorites were the ‘future of the WWE’ guys. He said all those idiots had in common was that they were either A.) Not here anymore, or B.) Jerking a curtain. He said he and Triple H had stayed the test of time in the WWE. He said finally, two guys came in with some sort of goal.
HBK cited the beating they gave Ric Flair weeks ago. He said the newfound set of juevos they had grew a little bit. He said they also managed to drop DX, almost unthinkable. He said they did something to them no one /* had ever done and their ‘sets’ keep getting bigger and bigger. HBK said at New Year’s Revolution, they’d find out there’s a big difference between having a ‘set’ and knowing what to do with them. He said this Sunday, they’d kick theirs down their throat.
Triple H said he was disappointed tonight. He said he thought they were going to fly down to Miami and get into a fight, but the two girls Edge and Orton, didn’t show up. He said he heard it was a double yeast infection. He said he knew they’d be there Sunday at the pay per view because they think they’ve got them right where they want them. He said the last guy that thought that got beaten up and shoved up Big Show’s ass. He said they weren’t your regular guys, they were a lot like frosted mini wheats. They had the frosted side with sugary goodness that was nice and enjoyable. But, he said, there was the other side. He said it was the side that Orton and Edge were going to get. He said that side was two of the most ruthless bastards in WWE history. He said they’d tear flesh and break bones on Sunday. He said they’d leave them in a broken, twisted bloody heap in the middle of the ring. He said if we weren’t down with that we could ‘suck it’.
Melina v. Maria
Before the match began, Victoria’s music hit and she came out to the ring with her clipboard in hand.
Maria knocked Melina down and the two rolled around on the mat a little bit before Melina emerged with a front face lock. Maria spiked her head off the mat before Melina flipped and tried choking her out on the ropes. Victoria called both of them washed up bikini models from the commentator’s table.
Melina worked over Maria and went to give her clothesline but got spiked with a big boot from Maria. Maria landed some forearms to the face but missed a drop kick. Melina went for a roll up but Maria kicked out. Melina followed it up with a second roll up for the win.
After the match Victoria went to attack Melina before backing off and making a b-line for Lillian Garcia. She went to hit the widow’s peak before Mickie James came down to make the save. The two stared each other down on the ramp as we went to commercial break.
Ric Flair & Carlito w/ Torrie Wilson v. Chris Masters & Kenny Dykstra
Kenny and Carlito started things off. Kenny started in with some punches and kicks before Carlito hit a hurricanranna on him and chased him out of the ring. He jaw jacked with Masters long enough to allow Kenny to get the advantage. Kenny tagged in Masters while Carlito scurried away to tag Masters.
Flair landed some chops before going right for the figure four. Kenny dove in to the ring to break up the hold.
We came back with Masters working over Carlito. Kenny tagged in and exchanged some chops with Carlito before tagging Masters back into the ring. Masters hit a double axe handle off the second rope before tagging Kenny right back in. Kenny went for the cover but the ref wasn’t paying attention. Kenny slapped on a rear chin lock in order to wear down Carlito. Kenny hit a flying reverse elbow on the Miami native before going for a cover which got a two count.
Masters tagged into the match and dropped two elbows to Carlito’s back. He bullied Carlito into his corner and hit some big blows to Carlito’s face. Masters connected with a double under-hook suplex before slapping on the good old rear chin lock. The crowd cheered Carlito on as he fought out of the hold only to get caught in a military press. Masters went for the cover but only got a two count.
Masters hit some forearms before getting caught with a spring board back elbow that took both men down. Kenny dove into the ring and took out Flair on the other side neutralizing the tag. As he worked over Flair, Carlito was left in the ring and on the verge of getting caught in the master lock. Carlito cinched in the master lock and Carlito tried to break the hold.
Flair popped up out of nowhere and hit a chop block just in time to save the day. Kenny picked up Carlito and whipped him to the buckles after receiving the tag but missed the follow up. Flair tagged in and went to work on the youngster with chops and punches. Flair chopped Kenny to the floor and went for the figure four but Masters cut him off. Carlito and Masters began fighting up the ramp as Kenny went for a figure four of his own. Flair kicked him off and pounced on Kenny in the corner. Kenny took his legs out from under him and rolled him up with his feet on the ropes for the three count.
Winnes: Masters and Kenny via pin fall
Flair got on the mic and demanded Kenny come out and finish this like a man. Randy Orton and Edge showed up on the scene and started a beat down on Flair. Orton hit an RKO which Edge followed up with a conchairto. The two left the scene through the crowd while JR tweaked as usual.
JR and King recapped the last few moments before running down the NY Revolution line up.
K-Fed’s music hit and he came out to the ring and grabbed the mic. He said he didn’t like to tell us ‘I told you so’, but he did. K-Fed ran his mouth some more before joining Lawler and JR on commentary.
John Cena v. Umaga, Armando Estrada, Johnny Nitro and Coach
Cena and Umaga went right at it. Cena ducked under an Umaga right cross and cleaned out his partners before hitting a shoulder block on his challenger on Sunday. Cena knocked him to the floor before Nitro came in and pummeled Cena from behind only to get completely cleaned out by Cena, tossed into the ring post. Umaga came in and cleaned him out with a Samoan drop and went for a banzai drop but Cena got the knees up. Cena floored everyone in Umaga’s corner and slapped on the STFU on Umaga.
He cut off Estrada with a steel chair before taking it to Umaga, getting himself DQ’d. Nitro ran in and got FU’d for his efforts. He put the final exclamation point on Coach before making a b-line for K-Fed and grabbed him from the announcer’s table and FU’d him in the ring.
Winners: Umaga, Estrada, Coach and Nitro via DQ
Cena jaw jacked with Umaga on the ramp as we went off the air.RAW THOUGHTSThe Good-- Tonight’s Raw was pretty flat for the most part, not overly awful, but just really flat. However, there were some things here and there that I really liked, although I don’t think they were of anything overly significant.
Victoria was hilarious in the commentary booth tonight. She did a great job of rationalizing her behavior of late while giving her quest for the women’s title a real purpose. She’s pseudo psycho/ goal-driven. She has a vision of what she feels the Women’s division should be like and laid that out well tonight while giving us a little teaser to the title match on Sunday.
DX’s promo was pretty solid tonight and was a nice light lead in to the feud-ender (I’m assuming) on Sunday. They did a good job as firmly establishing themselves as standard-bearers while establishing that Rated RKO is a little above the other competition in skill, but still aren’t up to scuff. A good sustaining promo for the intensity leading up to the match Sunday.
Kenny is a pretty darn solid worker. He’s still a little wild as a youngster and works like he’s prone to making overzealous mistakes. In the past, WWE’s booked their youngsters as very talented workers, but they lack that ‘oops’ about them that establishes them as youngsters with potential, but with room for growth. It gives the viewer a reason to keep watching the character progress. Kudos to him.
While I have a lot of issues with jobbing out the WWE Champion to a celebrity dirty or clean, K-Fed was pretty enjoyable and can work the mic pretty well. His best line was on commentary: “JR you know I’m worth millions of dollars right?” The mouth-guard, headgear, all of it was fun pipsqueak heel work. It was fun for what it was.
The Bad-- I just felt Raw was hopelessly flat and everyone was just filling in the remaining blanks heading into the pay per view on Sunday. There wasn’t a whole lot of passion and the ring work was a sharp down turn from the past three weeks, Troops show included. I didn’t have huge expectations for tonight’s show, but it was eerily reminiscent of the shows of this fall which lacked emotion and intensity.
The Ugly-- Other than just getting Vince on TV, the firing of Rob Conway was utterly pointless. Not the way you want to start off hour #2.
Overall- C- --- There’ve been far worse Raw episodes but this falls under the typical show before a pay per view category. Nothing really great, just trying to make a little buzz before the show, which I don’t know if WWE was particularly successful with tonight.
K-Fed def. John Cena
Cryme Tyme & The Highlanders def. The World’s Greatest Tag Team & Cade and Murdoch
Jeff Hardy def. Rob Conway
Melina def. Maria
Chris Masters & Kenny Dykstra def. Ric Flair & Carlito
Umaga, Coach, Armando Estrada & Johnny Nitro def. John Cena
Who’s Hot, Who’s Not?
2. John Cena
4. Ric Flair
1. Rated RKO
4. Kenny Dykstra
Match of the night: Kenny & Chris Masters v. Ric Flair & Carlito *1/2
Power RankingsWWE Champion: John Cena (Last Week: WWE Champion)—Not the best of nights for Cena, despite being the major focal point of the show. His coming out on top heading into the pay per view almost makes me wonder if they’re going to go with a short title change with Umaga this Sunday.
Intercontinental Champion: Jeff Hardy (Last Week: IC Champion)—Considering he’s got a cage match coming up on Sunday, you’d figure he’d get a little time to work his feud with Nitro a bit, but alas, he rolled up Conway and called it a night. I’m banking on him losing his belt on Sunday. Nitro’s getting a pretty big on camera push.
1. Umaga (Last Week: 1)—He looked strong this week and looks, by traditional WWE booking standards, like he’ll at least come out on top Sunday, however whether that means he wins the belt or not is certainly up for debate.
2. Randy Orton (Last Week: 2)—Orton and Edge both sustained their heat from last week, although a run in was all we saw of them. The match on Sunday is for the titles, so I’m interested to see if they actually go with a change or a Rated RKO win. At least these two look semi-strong heading into Sunday.
3. Edge (Last Week: 3)—See Orton
4. Triple H (Last Week: 4)—Cut a very good promo tonight with HBK to set up the blow off match on Sunday. Other than that, this week was a quiet one for DX.
5. HBK (Last Week: 3)—See Triple H.
6. Kenny Dykstra (Last Week: 7)—Kenny’s ranked a lot higher than he probably should be but with a second win over Flair in as many weeks and Carlito being on the losing side, he gets the bump up to #6. Expect him to be a big piece of the Intercontinental Championship scene in 2007.
7. Carlito (Last Week: 6)—Slips a bit due to being on the losing side of the tag match tonight, but for all intents and purposes looks pretty even with Masters for the most part. Seeing as he’s got more wins to his credit lately, he stays ahead of his current rival by a hair.
8. Chris Masters (Last Week 9)—Masters is inching his way up the card. With Flair and Johnny Nitro both on cold streaks compounded with others like Shelton and Eugene being involved in other things, he’s capitalized and moved up the rankings a bit. A win over Carlito Sunday could vault him up to within striking distance of the top five. A loss could send him right back down, especially if Flair and Nitro win their contests at New Year’s Revolution.
9. Johnny Nitro (Last Week: 8)— Despite having a rough go of it in the wins department lately, Nitro has been getting a lot of camera time and has been showing a lot of improvement on the mic. He looks in position to knock Jeff Hardy off and win the IC Championship belt back, but a loss could really hurt him in the long run.
10. Ric Flair (Last Week: 10)— Flair’s had a rough last few weeks. He’s been beaten down by Rated RKO twice and jobbed to Kenny twice to boot. Luckily for Flair, no one’s come from behind him to push him out of the top 10, although if he doesn’t win on Sunday, he’ll be perilously close to dropping out.
New Year’s Revolution Picks
John Cena v. Umaga
--Umaga is going to come out on top here with either a DQ or count out victory. That much I feel confident in saying. Whether he walks out with the WWE Championship in hand is a big question mark, which I’ll admit, feels a little good. I can’t remember the last time a Cena title defense was in real question. Either or, expect this to trudge on to the Royal Rumble and be settled there.
Projected Match Rating: ***; Projected Winner: Umaga via DQ
World Tag Team Championship
Rated RKO v. D-Generation X
--This one I’m beginning to question a bit, although my brain is saying this is, well, a no-brainer. Rated RKO has really been built up decently in the past two weeks, which would point to a DX win, but with the language in the DX promo, you’ve got to wonder if they may be putting some sort of screw-job thing together to let Edge and Orton out with a win, which, let’s face it, they need a TON more than HBK or Triple H at this point. All things considered the titles are on the line as well which leads me to believe Rated RKO are sneaking out with the belts. My head tells me to go with DX, but I’ll be a gambling man here and pick Rated RKO. Projected Rating: ***1/4; Projected Winners: Rated RKO
Intercontinental Championship—Steel Cage Match
Jeff Hardy v. Johnny Nitro
--I think this is the only safe bet of the night. This will likely be like most of stipulation matches between these two, with lots of spots that will keep the match entertaining, but the outcome really isn’t in doubt. I expect Nitro to come away with a clean win here. Projected Rating: **3/4; Projected Winner: Johnny Nitro
WWE Women’s Championship
Mickie James v. Victoria
--To be honest, I’m really excited about this match up. If given the proper time, it could be very, very good. The feud has been built up nicely, but I find it hard to see WWE put the kibosh on James at this point, after being so relentless in putting her over as the successor to Lita and Trish. Victoria has been booked very well, although I think a little TOO strong to be seen as winning the match. Considering I’ve picked all heels up to this point, I’m going to go with the face and pick Mickie James to retain her title. Projected Rating: **1/2; Projected Winner: Mickie James
Carlito v. Chris Masters
--Another match I’m pretty excited for and it’ll likely kick off the show. These two put together a pretty fun match back in April at Backlash and this feud has been done well. WWE has really put the breaks on Carlito pretty hard. In August, one could have made the argument he was one of the most over guys in the company. Right now that reaction is waning a bit. However, I don’t see them dipping him below Masters. That being said, Masters has REALLY been as strong as I’ve ever seen him in this feud and deserves to be rewarded for his work. I think that reward will come, but not in this feud. Carlito gets back on track and likely challenges Nitro for the IC title heading into the spring. Projected Rating: **1/2; Projected Winner: Carlito
Ric Flair v. Kenny Dykstra
--Here’s another feud that’s been set up well. Dykstra will get his third win over Flair which will elevate him, while Flair can be pretty well protected as the commentators will likely put over the chair shots from Edge and Orton as the reason Flair isn’t at full strength. Moves both men on well while accomplishing the goal of putting over Dykstra. Projected Rating: **; Projected Winner: Kenny Dykstra
Eugene v. “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan
--I’m not expecting much at all here. Eugene definitely gets the win in what I’m sure will be a total filler match and with the women’s title match, serve as filler between big matches. Projected Rating: *; Projected Winner: Eugene
-- This should be a decent pay per view. The line up is pretty good and all the matches have received at least SOMETHING in the way of build, which is something that can’t be said of many WWE shows these days. This’ll be a total heel-fest as I’m seeing it being a possibility that every heel could walk out Sunday with a win, or at least with the upper hand. I don’t think it’ll ultimately happen, but it could. In addition, this is the first show I could conceive of EVERY title on the brand changing hands in one night. So this has been a well-built show and I think will deliver on some levels and as usual, disappoint in others.
Happy new years to all my loyal readers! Starting tonight, I’m going to be adding a few new things to the weekly recap. In an attempt to better get a gage of where wrestlers are on the card, I’m going to start keeping track of their win-loss records. It’ll give us a better idea of where everyone is and I figured it’d be interesting to do to see where everyone ends up at the end of the year.
Also, I’m going to start doing a running predictions piece for the shows before a pay per view. This way you guys can see for real, how utterly clueless I really am with regardless to the wonderfully not-so-real sport of Professional Wrestling.
Finally, I’m going to start posting reactions and fan feelings regarding each show the day following Raw broadcasts. We like the idea of reader participation here, so I’ll let you guys send your thoughts to me (via email please), and we’ll post a few. Make sure you leave your name and maybe even where you’re from so you can possibly see yourself!
Happy New Year to all and keep enjoying WrestleView.com!