Live from San Antonio, TX this is the Raw Deal…
This week’s Raw wasn’t technically live. It was taped about an hour before it aired “live” and then they taped an episode immediately after because they’re headed to Australia. Spoilers for next week’s show are out there. I’ll try to avoid them. I don’t know if that’ll be a success on my part. Onto the show.
We started the show with a John Cena promo. He was all energetic to start because the Texas crowd was hot, but he soon got into his SERIOUS VOICE~! mode. He got all emotional talking about how he assembled this team because if he didn’t then the Nexus would take over Monday Night Raw. Actually, the Nexus wouldn’t take over shit if the WWE roster actually worked together like they say they do. Remember last week when Edge and Jericho got beat down? Would that happen if, say, 20 guys from the Raw roster came out to beat up Nexus? Of course not. I know. Play dumb, it’s part of an angle. It’s just tough when you have these guys be a unit in some instances, yet in others they are not seen at all. Jericho comes out to say he’s pissed off (didn’t use those words of course) that Cena claims to be the leader of the team. So Cena says fine, you be the leader. Cena spoke about how it’s not about him or Jericho, but about saving WWE from Nexus. He said Jericho loves the business, so he should think about that instead of worrying about who the leader is. Jericho said as soon as the threat of Nexus is gone at Summerslam he’s going to get rid of Cena.
They were about to fight when the Raw GM interrupted with an email. The problem with this? Cole is reading off a paper that is sitting on the computer. They can’t even fake a fake GM right? Is it that hard to have a guy read it off the screen? We can see the screen is some Microsoft Word document, which Cole isn’t even looking at. His eyes are below him reading a paper. They announce that the Summerslam match is now a 7 on 7 elimination match, which is better (and longer) than a one fall match. We’ll get a Seven Nexus Guys vs. Seven WWE Guys match later in the show while Jericho & Cena will team up later against yet to be determined opponents. Thanks for telling us…white piece of paper that sits on the computer. I was able to enjoy Cena for most of this promo because he played off Jericho. If he talks by himself he’s annoying as hell these days. With Jericho as fodder he can show how good of a talker he is. And of course Jericho was great.
Since people will ask, they had the email end with somebody saying “if you’re not down with that I got two words for ya” as a way for people to think HBK or HHH is the GM. I doubt it. They did it teasing Austin too. It’s just a tease. I don’t think Shawn’s coming back in a non-wrestling role. Sorry folks.
Sheamus came out to sit at ringside to scout the next match. No Sheamus on commentary? I’m disappointed, fella.
Randy Orton d. Jey Uso (*)
If you don’t know, Jey is the Uso that spells his name wrong. Jimmy is the other one. Orton won in about three minutes. It should have been one, really. Orton hit his DDT and then the RKO for the win.
Post match, Jimmy attacked Orton and Sheamus came in. Orton avoided the kick while Jimmy did not. Sheamus turns back to Orton and BOOM…RKO! I’m John Madden, apparently. Immediately after that The Miz’ music strikes up. He’s cashing in! Let’s get excited with Michael Cole! The ref goes to wake Sheamus up while Miz waits. Orton slithers (see, I used a WWE term – I secretly work for them), slaps Miz in the face and BOOM…RKO! Immediately after, he went nuts with his “STUPID~!” routine, which probably was in character rather than that time with Kofi Kingston when it was legit. The crowd loved this and were going nuts as Orton’s music ended the segment. I have to say they are doing an incredible job of putting the RKO over. It reminds me of the Stunner circa 1997 when Austin was destroying everybody with it.
Backstage, Edge talked to Dibiase about how he wishes he was on Team WWE instead of somebody like Khali. Meanwhile, Ranjin Sideburns Singh was standing nearby listening without Edge knowing. Oh that crafty Ranjin! It’s like he’s on the writing team and he knows where the segments are being taped! He actually is. Just saying. Maryse, by the way, was looking boobtastic in a tight dress.
Time to plug my Randy Savage column from earlier on Monday. I’m proud of it because he was my favorite wrestler growing up. Please check it out.
In the ring, Miz and Sheamus were arguing. I guess it wasn’t an official use of the briefcase for the second week in a row. That could get old fast. The GM buzzed in and Cole read off the paper that they would team up later against Cena and Jericho in the main event. So far The Miz has nothing to do at Summerslam, by the way. I was hoping for Bourne vs. Miz. Who knows?
Summerslam flashback: Ultimate Warrior beating Honky Tonk Man to win the IC title in squash fashion. This was an awesome moment then and now. We were going nuts for it.
Backstage, Edge was on the phone when Khali came in. He was angry about Edge’s comments, which Ranjin told him. Khali even talked in English: “You and me. Now!” Reminds me of that epic “You, me, Summerslam” promo that Undertaker did a few years back. That’s why the writers get the big bucks.
Edge vs. Khali went to a no contest (NR)
Lawler was not on commentary (high five!) because he was preparing to be on the jobber team that would be losing to The Nexus. The match barely happened. The Nexus came out, Edge & Ranjin bailed leaving Khali. They circled around him, then left a passage for him to get out. And he did. First time that’s happened. Maybe Khali is their leader and he can cut promos for them too? That would be fantastic!
We get to see the guys against The Nexus: Mark Henry (loser), Goldust (loser), Yoshi Tatsu (loser), Jerry Lawler (loser), Evan Bourne (loser even though he was booked well for about a month) and The Hart Dynasty – no not THD! Don’t they have other bums they can stick out there? THD is a great team that shouldn’t be associated with the pile of losers. Where’s Santino & Kozlov?
The Nexus d. Seven Dudes (*1/4)
This was elimination style like Summerslam is going to be. Basically this match was about showing how dominant The Nexus team was. It sure helps when you’re facing a team of losers, but that was the point too. We haven’t seen a lot of them in the ring on Raw, so it was something of a showcase here. Basically they took turns tagging out, they would pin one guy, then tag somebody else in and have that person hit their finish for the win. My question in why is Wendy (aka Heath Slater) doing Dolph Ziggler’s finisher for his fall? It looked like The Zig Zag to me. Come on Wendy, be original at least a little bit. I still have no idea if any of these Nexus guys can work a full match over 10 minutes, which is probably what WWE is thinking too since they have yet to book any of them to do that. The worst part of this match was that we had to listen to Cole on commentary by himself. He’s not exactly Vin Scully, or one of those British SOCCER~! (that draws me heel heat in the UK) announcers that does the games by themselves. The whole thing ended after about 14 minutes with Barrett finishing off Bourne with his as yet named slam off his shoulders.
Post match, after the clothesline/spinebuster/450 sequence on Evan “no longer pushed” Bourne, The Nexus talked about how they are a cohesive group set out for one goal while WWE’s team is too busy fighting with eachother. I thought it was an effective way to put over the angle because it makes them look like the favorites going into the match despite the fact that they are less experienced. I just thought it took too long and the crowd didn’t give a shit by the end of it because as soon as they saw the Raw team they knew how it was going to go.
Backstage, Miz and Sheamus talked. Basically there’s no trust there. We get it…fella. Really, fella. Really.
Alicia Fox d. Nikki Bella (DUD)
They are really putting Alicia over strong. She is so smart that she had Jillian come out to take care of the other Bella while she finished off the Bella in the ring. See? That’s because the Bellas are so good! Alicia won with her “Can You Dig It Sucka?” kick. Post match, Jillian sang, so Alicia gave her the kick too. You realize Jillian’s going on about six years of employment with one of the worst gimmicks ever (bad singer), which was after the worst gimmick ever (chick with the mole)? Let’s give her a round of applause to her for surviving so many roster cuts. I don’t think she’s a bad performer. It’s just a brutal gimmick.
Ted Dibiase d. John Morrison (1/2*)
If this was on Smackdown this would be a 12 minute match. Instead it’s on Raw, so they get two minutes. Morrison has some facial hair scrub for the first time I can remember. You know what that means? Heel turn coming. Well it doesn’t have to mean that, but it likely does. R-Truth was at ringside. When Maryse, looking excellent in a tight dress, jumped on the apron Truth tried to get her down. Dibiase shoved Truth away, then Morrison charged in, bonked heads with Truth and Ted rolled him up for the win. The idea here was to build tension between Morrison and Truth, who are both jobbers on Team WWE. I do think Morrison is turning heel in the near future, by the way.
While they argued up the aisle, Cena looked on with a concerned face. Oh poor Cena. I am in tears here. Or not.
There’s a WM26 special on August 7 on NBC. I won’t be home, but I like those shows with the cool video packages. It will focus on Undertaker vs. Michaels to remind us how much we miss HBK.
There was a video package highlighting the formation of Team WWE from last week. Seemed late in the show to do this since they spent the whole show hyping it up. By the way the said Bret wasn’t there because he was training in Calgary. He actually got married over the weekend, so I assume he was on a honeymoon.
Backstage, Josh interviewed Orton. He said he doesn’t care who’s champion at Summerslam. He’s walking out with the belt via RKO. I’m assuming we won’t see his 2004 Summerslam win as a flashback huh?
Another plug. This time for my second appearance on The Small Package podcast for about an hour. Make sure you check out thejohnreport.net this week because I’ll have an announcement about the start of a weekly TJR podcast that I will be recording on Wednesday with my buddy Jason. The first one will be a Q&A, so if you want a question answered check the site out to find out how you can ask a question. I’m looking forward to it.
Sheamus & The Miz d. John Cena & Chris Jericho (**)
It’s Sheamiz vs. Cenacho. This was one of those instances where a long match (at 13 minutes) doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a great match. It was fine. Basically Jericho worked with Cena for the majority of the match before turning on him at the end with the Codebreaker, which was the predictable ending. I couldn’t get into the match very much because you knew it was coming. They all worked hard, though. The chemistry was pretty good. Not amazing. Tthey put The Miz over Cena here, although I doubt it will even be remembered because it was only due to Jericho turning on Cena. And Miz isn’t even on Summerslam as of yet, so what does it really do for him? Post match, Jericho put the Walls on Cena, who then put the STF on Jericho. Khali came out, so Edge came out to spear him. R-Truth and Morrison came out. Khali chopped Morrison down. Then they all argued with eachother while the fans were left to wonder if they could get it together for Summerslam.
So when does Vince McMahon call Steve Austin to save the WWF? That’s a 2001 flashback, people.
Three Stars of the Show
1. Chris Jericho – Back at the top where he belongs.
2. Randy Orton – Continues to be on a roll.
3. “You and me. Now!” – Feel free to use that on the ladies, fellas.
Worst Moment of the Week
The Bellas theme song. God, that shit is brutal. And I’m not using God’s name in vain. He hates that song too.
5.5 out of 10
Last week: 8
A step down from last week’s great show in part because the in-ring action just wasn’t very good. The angle progression was okay in terms of showing that The Nexus is a strong faction, but
I think the booking for Nexus vs. WWE is clearly calling for one of the WWE guys to turn on the team to help Nexus win to become something of a leader for that group. The question is who?
Keep checking out thejohnreport.net for exclusive articles that are only posted on my blog. We update daily, so give it a read!
On Wednesday we’ll record the first TJR podcast that will be a Q&A, so be on the lookout for that. I’ll make a post later on Tuesday asking for questions. Think of some good ones for me!
Thanks for reading.
John Canton – firstname.lastname@example.org
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