It is another edition of RAW, but this time Vince McMahon is on to help bring up the ratings. Will it actually help, or will more people want to see Mark Sanchez crash and burn? Guess it is time to see if Vince is a bigger deal than the Sanchize.
Is That Cena or HHH?
John Cena came out to start the show. Cena said one week off felt like a year. He made fun of the tag champs and Antonio Cesaro, then asked A.J. out on a date. All really corny. Cena said that C.M. Punk stole the voice of the WWE. He said what does it matter how long Punk’s reign is if nobody wants to watch. Cena told Punk to be a man and face him at Hell In A Cell.
Segment Analysis: So Cena came out there to bury the entire roster? Geez, great start. Survey Says: 1/5
What Tag Team Division?
As Cena left the ring, Ryback came out. They exchanged looks. Ryback is facing Primo and Epico. Primo drop kicked Ryback in the knee and Epico took him out with a splash. Primo back dropped Epico onto Ryback. Ryback fought out of a Primo head lock and hit multiple clotheslines. Ryback hit the Shell Shock on both men for the win.
Match Analysis: Primo and Epico have gone from Tag Champs to jobbers. I know they are at the bottom of the chain in the tag division, but it would be nice to not job them out completely. Survey Says: 1.5/5
Brodus Clay came out to fight R-Truth, who was trying to tame Little Jimmy. He said Little Jimmy is going through puberty and just wants to dance. They started dancing until Vince McMahon interrupted and told them to dance on out of the ring as he was ready to give his State of the WWE Address.
Vince Respect Someone? HAHAHA
Vince went over all the various WWE gimmicks and said that there is room for all of it. Vince said that the best thing about the WWE is action. Before Vince could get going C.M. Punk came out and interrupted him. Vince said he disrespected him. Punk said Vince took a shot at him by not mentioning Punk, and he said it was because he would not face Cena at Hell In A Cell. Punk said he has given Cena shot after shot and he has yet to get the job done. Punk said despite all of this no one respects him, and then he asked Vince if he respected him. Vince said he is not a C.M. Punk guy. Punk said he is no longer just a spoak on the wheel. He is the wheel. Punk told Heyman he is not going to calm down. He told Vince he should be appreciating him. Punk said if he doesn’t start getting respect, he may just leave like he did last year.
Vince said Punk does not make the WWE a success, it is the WWE Universe. And Vince said right about now, they are telling people to shut up Punk. Vince said he is nothing like the greats like Bret Hart, Andre the Giant and Steve Austin. Punk said unlike Austin, he didn’t take short cuts to get to the top. He said Austin got to the top by beating up a clueless inept millionaire. And now that millionaire is a senior citizen. Punk asked Vince if he was mad. He said Vince has been slapping Punk in the face for years. Punk then slapped Vince and said that was a slap in his face. Vince said he ought to fire Punk, but instead, Punk should fight Vince tonight. And Vince will teach him about respect. Heyman said this all went the wrong way while Punk said they have Vince right where he wants him.
Segment Analysis: Very strong segment there. It seemed like Punk was airing a lot of his frustrations there. Punk was solid just like he has been. Vince sold the slap very well. I questioned why Vince was out already, but that answered it. Good way to keep viewers tuned in after a hot promo exchange. Survey Says: 4.5/5
Losers Job To Ryback Next Week
Tag Title Tournament: PTPs vs the Luchadors. Rey and Sin Cara hit dives on the outside into break. Back from break the PTPs took turns beating on Sin Cara. Cara fought off Young in the corner and hit a tornado DDT. He made the tag to Rey Mysterio who hit a seated Senton on Young. Rey hit some kicks but O’Neil broke up the pin. Sin Cara took out O’Neil with the missile drop kick. Young hit his finisher on Cara and went to hit Rey, but Rey countered and hit a 619 then a dive from the top for the win.
Match Analysis: Nothing special. Basic tag team match. Some of these matches need to break from that typical tag match mold. Survey Says: 2.5/5
Backstage, Paul Heyman said this is a must lose situation. Punk said he is going destroy Vince. Heyman then said Vince would then be out to make their lives hell.
Hype A Match Like This? Nah
Sheamus vs Wade Barrett. The two locked up then Big Show’s music hit. He sat down at ringside. Barrett took advantage of the distraction. Sheamus fought back and applied a headlock. Barrett fought out and tossed Sheamus on the apron. Sheamus came back with a shoulder tackle and another headlock. Sheamus dropped Barrett on the apron. Barrett went for a shot to the gut but Sheamus hit a knee to take out Barrett. Sheamus went for a Brogue Kick but Barrett took out the legs of Sheamus.
Back from break, Sheamus tossed Barrett to the outside. He threw Barrett to the steps but Barrett stepped over them. Barrett then kicked the steps into Sheamus. Barrett applied a chinlock back in the ring. Sheamus fought out but Barrett came back with a knee to the gut. Barrett put Sheamus in the ropes and delivered a strong boot to the face for a two count. Sheamus started coming back with some axe handles. Sheamus side stepped a charging Barrett and tossed him to the outside. Sheamus hit his rope punches. Suddenly Tensai came out and went after Sheamus and Barrett joined in. Barrett held Sheamus but he fought out and hit a Brogue Kick on Tensai and tossed Barrett to the outside. Big Show came in and Sheamus went for a Brogue Kick but Show caught him and tossed him to the outside.
Match Analysis: That was a good match and one where I was fine with the DQ ending. Barrett/Sheamus is a PPV worthy match and could be a good feud if built properly. The action was good. I expect Big Show to continue to have the upper hand on Sheamus, like a typical Show feud. Then in the end, Sheamus wins. Good stuff in the ring here. Survey Says: 3.5/5
Backstage, C.M. Punk told A.J. he was going to put Vince in a wheelchair. Punk said that anything that happens is on her head.
Antonio Cesaro defeated Tyson Kidd. It was a decent five minute match where Kidd got in some flashy offense but Cesaro won with his uppercut and the Neutralizer.
More Good Wrestling?
Tag Match: Team Hell No vs Dolph Ziggler and Alberto del Rio. Bryan and Ziggler started off. Bryan refused to tag in Kane and Dolph hit a kick to the gut. Dolph tagged in Del Rio and Kane tagged himself in. Del Rio caught Kane with a kick and tagged in Dolph who walked right into a right upper cut. Dolph went after Kane’s knees but Kane tossed Dolph over the ropes. Bryan tagged himself in and hit a dive to the outside. Back from break Kane took out Ziggler with a boot. He tagged in Bryan and he hit Ziggler in the corner with some knees. Dolph hit a roll up off the top rope. Dolph tossed Bryan into the ropes and Del Rio kicked him in the back and then Dolph hit a drop kick. Del Rio came in and applied a headlock. Del Rio hit a superkick on Bryan then tagged in Ziggler who hit a neckbreaker.
The heels exchanged tags and worked over Bryan. Bryan fought out of a Ziggler headlock with a jawbreaker and Ziggler missed on a splash in the corner. Ziggler stopped Bryan from making the tag and tagged Del Rio in himself. Del Rio hit a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker but Kane broke up the count. Ziggler came in and him and Bryan exchanged punches. Dolph took out Bryan’s knees and Del Rio came in with a kick to the chin. Del Rio charged at Bryan in the corner but Bryan moved and Del Rio went right into the post. Bryan tagged in Kane and he went to work on Del Rio. Ziggler made a blind tag but Kane caught him. The heels broke up a double chokeslam attempt and hit a fameasser for two. Kane came back with a sidewalk slam. Bryan tagged himself in and hit a missile drop kick for two. Del Rio went flying to the outside. Bryan caught Ziggler with a kick to the head. Kane tagged himself in and hit a chokeslam for the win.
Match Analysis: Another good wrestling match on RAW. Bryan and Kane are the most over act in the WWE. I don’t think there is any question about that. They just need to know where they are going with the whole act in the end. Hopefully it leads to a big push for Bryan. Ziggler meanwhile is still lost in the shuffle and Del Rio is getting to that point as well. But good action from all men involved. Survey Says: 3.5/5
Jim Ross failed to talk Vince out of his match tonight.
How Has Larry King Had 8 Wives?
Larry King was out there to interview Miz. Miz said it was his birthday and the audience should sing Happy Birthday to him. Larry King said no one cares. Larry said he’s replacing his boring guest with a new guest, Kofi Kingston. Miz said he doesn’t know who is more irrelevant, Larry King or a never was Champion. Miz said he’s had more Championships than King has wives. Miz told King to get off the stage before he suffers another divorce. Larry’s wife splashed water in Miz’s face and Kofi went after Miz. Kofi hit a crossbody off the stage on Miz.
Segment Analysis: Larry King was not needed there. And it appears Kofi is going after another mid-card Championship again. That seems to be Kofi’s spot for the rest of his career. He’s good there, but you don’t want to be known as a mid-carder for life like him. Survey Says: 2/5
Second Semifinal in the Tag Team Tournament. The heels took their turns working over Zack Ryder. Ryder eventually took Cody out with a faceplant and tagged in Santino. He went for the Cobra but Damien Sandow distracted him. The distraction allowed Cody to hit the Disaster Kick for the win. After the match, Heath Slater, Jinder Mahal and Drew McIntyre took out the faces.
Backstage Paul Heyman tried to apologize for C.M. Punk. Vince accused Heyman of poisoning Punk’s mind. Heyman told Vince that he hopes Punk doesn’t do to him what Brock Lesnar did to HHH.
Eve beat Kaitlyn to retain the Divas Title.
Backstage Bryan and Kane argued to Larry King. Kane thought King was Skeletor.
WHAT A MANEUVER
As Vince McMahon walked to the ring, C.M. Punk jumped him from behind. Punk rolled Vince back into the ring. Vince got back to his feet and went after Punk but Punk got the upper hand again with a kick to the head. Punk slammed Vince’s head onto the announce table. He grabbed a head set and mocked Vince’s “WHAT A MANEUVER” commentary from his play by play days. Vince escaped Punk and shoved him into the ring post and tossed him over the announce table. Vince told Punk he would teach him about respect. Vince jumped Punk again. He threw Punk back into the ring and grabbed a kendo stick. Punk told Heyman to get his WWE Title. Vince stopped Heyman and took him out with a punch. Punk grabbed his own kendo stick and the two hit each other. Punk lost his but before Vince could go to work Punk hit a low blow. Punk had Vince up for a GTS until Ryback came out. Punk bailed. John Cena came down and tossed Punk back in the ring. Punk ate a clothesline and escaped out of the ring. Vince told Punk he hoped he learned something about respect. It appeared Punk got into a shoving match with a fan in the crowd as Vince was talking. Vince said it was decision time. He said Punk has to choose between facing Cena or Ryback at Hell In A Cell by next week. Punk sold fear as the show went off the air.
Segment Analysis: I thought it was a strong ending to a good show. The Punk/Vince brawl was good. Some people will complain about Vince getting in so much offense, but Punk had the upper hand until Ryback came out. The crowd was very into the whole segment which made it better overall. Ryback got a pretty big pop. And they did a good job of making you want to tune in next week. Survey Says: 4/5
I thought this was a very good episode of RAW. Maybe the best since the move to 3 hours. There were two solid wrestling matches on the show. One had a DQ finish but it made sense for the long term. The show itself felt like it had less filler. Outside of the opening with John Cena I thought everything ranged from okay to very good. Both segments involving Punk and Vince stole the show. Punk was very good in his promo delivery and the brawl with Vince was great. I liked the ending. Punk now has to make a decision for his opponent. My guess is he chooses the injured Cena. A solid episode of RAW that I am giving a 7.
Until Next Time,
Follow Me On Twitter @JCWonka