As with any show over seas, I have not looked at the results for this almost live edition of Raw from Liverpool, England. So let’s get into this thing since I’m almost starting on time.
John Cena Suucks! John Cena Suucks! John Cena Suucks! Cena compliments the crowd which is a good way of shutting them down. Zack Ryder is out for six months? Sucks for him. Jack Swagger is joining Team Cena. Yuck. Dolph Ziggler is officially part of the Team. Cena invites Ryback to talk business. The WWE is really trying to make everyone forget about Ryback’s lost year plus. HHH‘s music hits before Ryback can say anything. The whole Authority is out and shows off Mark Henry. Steph gets to run down England. HHH gets to sell the stipulation. He admits that he is trying to strike fear into the wrestlers back stage. Why not say, I’m only trying to put together the best team possible? Side step the question and be more heelish. Cena gets in a nice Daniel Bryan compliment. HHH tries to celebrate his injury but his heart isn’t in it. Steph sounds more harsh. Ryback won’t ever be the biggest monster ever seen. Brock Lesnar exists. HHH goes in for the big sale. Cena fires back and makes some counter points. Ryback spine busters Cena. I figured they’d draw out the answer. Cena really could have pointed out Ziggler’s win over Kane on Smackdown to help sell his team.
Jack Swagger takes on Seth Rollins. Zeb Colter exists again. It just dawned on me that with Henry on Team Authority, that means Big Show will be involved in this match. He’ll have lost to both Rusev & Henry recently. Rollins gets in a cheap shot early and goes on the offense. Swagger starts tossing around Rollins. Seth rolls outside to avoid the Swagger Bomb. Break. Swagger got Downward Spiraled into the middle turn buckle. Mitchell Cool & JBL argue over Ryback’s status in Survivor Series. JBL makes good points that Cool & Jerry Lawler can’t counter in any meaningful terms. Swagger Bomb for a two count. Patriot Lock gets broken when Rollins reaches the ropes. Swagger gets dumped outside. Patriot Lock on the outside. Swagger is distracted by Jamie Noble & Joey Mercury. He gets tossed into the post. Rollins rolls him in and Curb Stomps him for the win. The Stooges back the doctor off of Swagger. Rollins Curb Stomps Swagger again.
The WWE replays one of the few good parts of Smackdown. Dean Ambrose admits to his faults. He’s ready to take his special place in hell that Wyatt promised him. (Next Day Note: I undersold this promo. An example of using your time well even if it isn’t very much. Still sucks for the live crowd which didn’t get him in person.) They officially have a match at Survivor Series. Kane comes in and talks to Ryback. He tells Kane that he’s got it. Kane is going to be out there to help him win. Ryback will ask for Kane’s help when he needs it. Ha, his cocky ass cracks me up. Friction already coming to the surface.
Paige comes out for a match with Alicia Fox. I want to get a closer look at her new shirt. Alicia attacks quickly. Paige knees Alicia. Paige gets knocked off the apron. Fox gets in her tilt a wirl back breaker. Super kick by Paige. Ram-Paige for the win. Is that legal in the WWE? To win a match in your home town? Or in this case, home country? I expected a loss. Stephanie comes in to talk to Lana & Rusev. She asks for their firm commitment to Team Authority. Lana says they will consider it. Steph breaks out the back scratching line she used on Smackdown. It wasn’t good enough to use twice. Use another cliche.
HHH and Steph talk about Vince’s master plan with this challenge. They wonder why he’s telling them different reasons. They’re going to win, like they always do. Steph wonders what if they lose. HHH says you can’t think about it. Weird segment. (Next Day Note: Is Vince going to be more involved in this angle? Does he want them out of power? Why?) Lana & Rusev get to crow about the US Title victory. As usual, I am bored with this segment. Sheamus interrupts the Russian National Anthem. That is some poor taste by Sheamus. Rematch, next because they didn’t get enough viewers on the Network last week.
Sheamus & Rusev get a proper introduction after the break. Rusev gets the better of the early striking. Sheamus knocks Rusev out of the ring with a high running knee. Rusev counters Ten Beats. Sheamus knocks Rusev off the apron. Sheamus’s back gets run into the ring apron. Rusev fall away slams Sheamus on the announcer’s table. Front head lock by Rusev to wear down Sheamus. Rusev almost turns it into a Dragon Sleeper. Rusev moves to a reverse chin lock. Sheamus fights out. Rusev nails a spinning heel kick to go to break. Rusev with another reverse chin lock. Sheamus fights back with running blows. High running knee connect for Sheamus. Rusev drop kicks Sheamus. He catches Rusev charging in with a power slam. Ten Beats again. Sling shot shoulder block connects for Sheamus. Rusev fights out of the Irish Cloverleaf. Rusev gives Sheamus a back to belly throw. Sheamus gets hung up in the ropes. He counters into White Noise after Rusev brings him off the top ropes. Rusev ducks away from a Brogue Kick. Sheamus dives onto Rusev on the outside. Sheamus & Rusev fight more on the outside. The Stooges attack and cost Sheamus the match. First heel style win for Rusev in his entire run. How JBL is arguing that Cool & Lawler are trying to push a conspiracy onto the Authority is mystifying. HHH said at the top of the show they were going to eff everyone they could. It’s not a conspiracy when someone admits to it. Brain dead announcers.
Steph re-asks Lana & Rusev about their inclusion on Team Authority. Together we will crush Team Cena by Steph. (Next Day Note: How I didn’t type Ugh or Yuck after that comment is a sign of self restraint.) Seth Rollins welcomes Ryback to Team Authority. They try to sell this as a big turning point. The problem with that is the Authority had backed off TV recently. Rollins tells Ryback doesn’t need advice from Kane. It’s not Big Man, it’s Big GUY. Ryback cracks me up with so little. They are really hitting you over the head with his switch in alliances.
Los Matadores are taking on The Miz & Damien Mizdow who have Hornswoggle in their act for the time being. The little people are not involved in the match. The Miz is in the match first. Mitchell Cool says Fernando & Diego since they don’t care who is who. The Miz works up the crowd over tagging in Damien Mizdow. Miz with the corner clothes line. Miz pounds on Diego. Mizdown gets in for a moment. Fernando tags in. Head scissors take over. Cross body gets a two count. Mizdow saved the pin. The Miz kicks Fernando in the face. The Miz reverses a suplex in from the apron. He pins Fernando with Mizdow holding down Fernando’s leg. Dolph Ziggler & John Cena are back stage. Dolph doesn’t like their odds. The Big Show offered his hand last week! On TV. Don’t you at least mention his name? Dolph has his back when Cena gives him a chance to back out. HHH comes in and rains on the already dreary parade. No John Cena at ring side for Ziggler’s match.
Luke Harper gets another weird eye video. Dolph Ziggler gets to look confused. Ziggler looks too concerned attacking Henry early. Henry misses a charge into the corner. Ziggler over shots the DDT. They blow another spot going to make up for it. Henry gets pitched outside. Ziggler gets tossed into the barricade. Ziggler dodges a charge. Henry falls into the time keeper’s area. Henry tosses a chair into Ziggler’s face. Ouch. Henry throws the stairs into the ring. He goes to World’s Strongest Slam Ziggler on the steps when Big Show makes the save.
What the hell is up with the new Kofi Kingston? Dolph Ziggler is having a pow wow with Big Show when John Cena arrives to act shocked that Big Show helped. The trio acts surprised when Sheamus joins them. We need to have coordinated feud friends. AJ Lee is taking on Brie Bella. Brie goes for a pin early after a running knee. Brie either says something to Nikki or Nikki distracted her. AJ gets in a DDT. Brie recovers to hit the Brie Mode Drop Kick. Black Widow submission win. Nikki attacks from behind. Rack Attack. JBL continues to be terrible at making arguments. Mark Henry runs down Ryback after welcoming him to the team. As if you weren’t beaten over the head enough yet about the turn.
Tyson Kidd is taking on Adam Rose. Another Smackdown replay. I know why Jeremy doesn’t bother to watch. Hip toss by Rose. Kidd hangs Rose to dry. Erick Rowan shows up. Kidd has a reverse chin lock on Rose. Rowan stalks around ring side. “She’s not here” says Rowan. Rose fights out. Spinebuster by Rose. The Bunny climbs to the top rope. Rose talks him down. Kidd locks in the Sharp Shooter for the tap out win. We don’t care about the Bunny. The Bunny apologizes to Rose. Rose back kicks him in the gut. The Bunny is left in the ring. Why is Mitchell Cool defending the Bunny and not valid points JBL makes? I’m banging my head. Team Authority needed more TV time because they don’t have enough depth on their roster to support the amount of TV they produce. Steph talks down to her team. Brilliant way to get them to come together.
According to Bray Wyatt, we all have our flaws. Speak for yourself pal. Dean Ambrose learned to be a dirty sinner from his dirty daddy. Wyatt assures Ambrose that he hasn’t seen real evil. He is real evil. I like his stuff but I think it gets too cartoony even for his style of character.
John Cena is taking on Ryback who has the entire Team Authority around ring side. They replay the top of the show. Ryback power slams Cena. Ryback tosses Cena out in front of Team Authority. Ryback pounds away on Cena. He tosses him back in the ring. Kane barks at Ryback. Cena knocks Ryback into him. Ryback is in control when we come back. Ryback gives Cena a sling shot belly to back suplex. At least that’s what I’d call it. Ryback moved around to make it spine buster like too. Ryback methodically beats on Cena. Ryback gets lazy. Cena gives him a belly to belly suplex. Ryback gives Cena a Thesz Press and then a splash. Ryback goes for Shellshock. Cena counters. Ryback with a power slam. Cena back drops Ryback. Guerrilla Press Slam into a power slam by Ryback. Cena counters out again. Ryback power bombs Cena. He kicks out at two. Cena counters out of a Razor’s Edge into an STF. Ryback breaks it. Kane runs interference. Ryback gives Cena a spine buster. Kane attacks Cena to cause the DQ. Kane argues with Ryback. Seth Rollins tries to play peace keeper. Ryback drops Rollins. Kane clocks Ryback. The rest attack Cena. Sheamus comes out. Where are Ziggler and Big Show? Why are you idiots not coming out together? You don’t need your entrance music! Ryback makes the save. Kane tries to choke slam him. Ryback gives him Shellshock instead. He leaves without saying anything. Luke Harper tosses Dolph Ziggler at the feet of HHH & Steph. He’s a team playa’. Wow, what a chance for Luke Harper. (Next Day Note: It makes no sense for Harper’s character to want such validation but whatever. Sheamus, Big Show and Ziggler were all back stage, knew they could get attacked at any time but they decided to go their own separate ways? Babyfaces are always really stupid.) – Kevin