Tonight was going to be a long night. Jeremy & I decided not to record a review of Battleground before I start this Raw. That saves me a lot of time. I do like a point Jeremy brought up today which I hadn’t thought of, Battleground is the new Elimination Chamber. Let’s see what the aftermath brings us aside from Dolph Ziggler losing countless times to the Miz in the next month.
HHH comes down and mocks internet fans that they so desperately grasp at. Randy Orton comes down to stake his claim in for the WWE Title. Kane‘s name gets brought up for no reason what so ever. Roman Reigns comes to the ring through the crowd. How soon is Brock Lesnar coming out? (Next Day Note: I should know by now he’s only coming out for a final segment.) He is right that no one wants to see Orton vs Cena again. Reigns Superman punches Kane. HHH books him in a match against Orton & Kane. Reigns wins thru a heel screw up, right?
They fittle faddled around until after the break to start the match. Reigns starts against Orton. The heels get the upper hand earlier. “What did you think the WWE forget that Reigns & his crew ran rough shod over the WWE the last year plus?” asks JBL. Why yes, your programming has made us get used to old feuds being irrelevant quite quickly. Reigns turns around an Irish Whip from Kane into the stairs to get control. Orton is in control after another break. A Samoan Drop on Orton leads to a Kane tag in. He gets tagged by Reigns too. The Roman Empire has begun. Yuck. Orton refuses to tag in. Superman Punch to Kane. Spear by Reigns for the win. A 4 on 1 Divas match. Stephanie chums it up with the 4, Cameron, Eva Marie, Alicia Fox and Rosa Mendes. You are correct, this feud is getting TV time. I still don’t care.
As Nikki Bella goes around the ring, she “runs into” Brie. We get more Stephanie who gets to run down the quitter. She smarms it pretty well. Brie gets to call Steph a bitch several times. All four of the ladies are in the ring against Nikki. JBL tries to defend Stephanie. He’s suspiciously quiet when the heel starts the assault and Mitchell Cole & Jerry Lawler don’t call him out on it. JBL launches into the hypocrite line though. What a stupid dynamic they have going on. Saturday Night’s Main Event on the WWE Network now because we’re desperate for subscribers. (Next Day Note: I think you can tell I became fascinated with the announcers from this point forward. How the baby face announcers can’t get any logic going is beyond me. Are they ever going to tell JBL that Nikki could be assigned another partner? Are they ever going to call him out on his position or does Vince enjoy driving people batty by not closing the loop that seems to be screaming to be used like it has in wrestling for years?)
JBL goes back thru his same lines about Brie & Nikki Bella while Cool & Lawler sit there like two idiots. He then starts cheering for Bo Dallas, who is in the ring. How is that the same character? JBL should hate this guy because he’s a goody two shoes. My brain hurts already. Damien “LBJ” Sandow comes down. The announcers do point out the obvious, this match up is weird, two heels against each other. Running Bo-Dog for another victory. JBL keeps using the ’72 Dolphins reference on Bo. I know Dallas is a heel so the heel announcer is supposed to root for him but it makes no sense with JBL’s gruff, hard ass attitude in every other segment on every minute of TV he records.
Bray Wyatt tells Miami that they’re here. The Highlight Reel is all set up but no Chris Jericho is around. He is unable to make it at the moment according to Wyatt. I’m not on time so I wasn’t watching the second screen. Thanks for airing the attack on Jericho though. Sooner or later, they all fall down. I was thinking Wyatt would win but Jericho is letting him go over at Summer slam before he bails for a tour which I will be going to. The Lady wants to see “Jerry.” Wyatt created war. Wyatt points to the obvious contradiction in his character, he is trying to get the fans to boo him after letting the crowd play along with the entrance. He speaks of horrific consequences to his opponents which isn’t a baby face promo style. Flo Rida meets a bunch of Superstars back stage. The Miz looks way better in white pants and a coat that is much shorter and simpler.
The Miz waits in the ring for Dolph Ziggler. Both guys are from Hollywood. I am enjoying the Johnny Cage sun glasses. The Miz ducks away from Dolph early. Miz gets drop kicked into the barricade. Miz kicks Ziggler as he gets back into the ring. Ziggler only gets in nine elbows. JBL with the obligatory Montreal heart attack joke. Ziggler shoulder blocks Miz. Ziggler can’t get Miz onto the apron. Ziggler hits the steel post. We get a commercial. Miz knees Ziggler in the gut. Ziggler rolls up Miz but he recovers to stay in control momentarily. Miz misses a corner charge. Ziggler nails some clothes lines that look Daniel Bryan-ish. Miz with the Side Effect for a two count. Ziggler plants Miz with a DDT. A near fall for the Miz. Ziggler turns a figure four into a small package. Miz locks in the Figure Four. Ziggler makes it to the ropes. Fame Asser by Ziggler gets a two. Ziggler goes for a super kick which the Miz tries to avoid. Ziggler hits the Zig Zag for the win. (Next Day Note: Looks like I was wrong about the amount of losses to the Miz for Ziggler. He’ll lose at Summerslam for sure.) The Miz is still the IC Champ. HHH tells Seth Rollins that he doesn’t need to face John Cena at Summerslam. They need to shut down Dean Ambrose for good. Cesaro thinks he can get the job done. He’s no longer a Heyman guy. Cesaro gets to impress HHH with a loss to Dean Ambrose.
AJ Lee and Paige are teaming again. They had a very solid match last night. They are taking on Emma & Natalya. Emma starts against AJ. The Women’s Division is pretty small these days. Paige gets caught by Emma in the ropes. Natalya is the exception in this match for size. Natalya puts Paige in the Sharpshooter. AJ Lee tags herself in. Shining Wizard on Natalya who doesn’t realize the tag happened. Black Widow Submission for the win. Paige pulls AJ down by the hair. She tosses AJ out of the ring. Good move on the WWE’s part. Make Paige a heel since AJ’s being cheered. This is my house now according to Paige. (Next Day Note: Paige seems to be getting a character out of this change which will help immensely. She’s still a blank slate.)
Fandango is taking on Zack Ryder who is with Summer Rae & Layla El. The crowd still remembers how to “Woo Woo Woo.” Ryder misses a middle rope drop kick. Fandango misses. Rough Ryder gets the win after Layla pushes Fandango’s leg off the ropes. Flo Rida segment I don’t care about even if Heath Slater is in it.
Stephanie McMahon gets arrested for battery. The good guy announcers still don’t mention an appropriate comeuppance. Stephanie, it’s not your building. You are renting that building from whoever owns it not being whatever sponsor is on that thing. This segment is taking too long. Where is HHH? Why are the announcers explaining Miranda Rights? HHH finally shows up. You did it on national TV. Of course this arrest make no sense in terms of the WWE Universe where people do far worse don’t have the law pick them up.
HHH is mad back stage. He says that family always comes first. HHH talks himself into staying until the end of the show for the big announcement. Pointing out the discord is interesting. What is that setting up? Rybaxel is ready to take on Big E & Kofi Kingston. Ryback starts against Big E. I was pretty surprised by the Usos win last night. Ryback spine busters a distracted Big E. I go to get my dogs water. Ryback rolls through on the top rope cross body for the win. Wow, that was weak. Xavier Woods comes out to talk to Big E & Kofi. They need to focus. No more playing nice. Kofi & Big E approve. (Next Day Note: We need someone to replace 3MB, right? The tag division could use them since the Usos won’t take on the Dusts.)
Prime example of doing far worse, the Wyatts attacking Jericho in his locker room. It wasn’t in a ring. It’d never happen in a real sport no matter how many times Tonya Harding gets mentioned. It’s not like she went unpunished. Lana & Rusev come out. Before she can give another spiel, The Great Khali shows up. I liked this more methodical beat down of Khali that led to the Accolade tap out. Still think the “Crush” gimmick is mind numbingly dumb. Stardust gets a black & gold globe. They talk of the Cosmic Key again. The crowd is happy.
Dean Ambrose saunters down to the ring. Renee Young gives us an update from the Authority’s locker room. Ambrose clothes lines Cesaro over the top rope. Ambrose dives onto Cesaro. Ambrose runs into the ring post shoulder first. Cesaro starts to work over the shoulder. Cesaro super upper cuts Ambrose as he goes for a sling shot plancha. Jerry Lawler finally spelling the law out to JBL. Novel concept. Took several hours to hone. Tornado DDT by Ambrose turns things around. Ambrose with the suicide dive. Sling shot clothes line. Cesaro fires back with one of his own. Cesaro stomps at Ambrose in the Tree of Woe. Cesaro goes shoulder first into the post. Ambrose tosses him there twice again. Ambrose hits Cesaro with a chair.
HHH comes out for the big announcement. Randy Orton comes out. Roman Reigns attacks. Looks like they’ll finish their mini-feud that started with the Shield break up but got masked by the four way dance for the titles. They focused more on Reigns vs John Cena. The crowd loves Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar. The poor announcers have to act shocked. HHH exits the ring. I like Paul Heyman’s promos so much that I flipped to USA even after my DVR cut it off. I had caught up too. I don’t feel the need to try and recreate his fine work. – Kevin