We’re through the first leg of the Go To Hell Tour and Lesnar soundly beat Big Show in a horrible, lop-sided DUD of a match. Shocking, I know. Tonight, we’re supposed to get the lead-up to Hell in a Cell when The Undertaker is supposed to face Brock Lesnar. Also, John Cena will defend the United States Title against a dwindling locker room. Will that person beat Cena? Probably not. Let’s find out how tonight’s RAW goes…
We start with the Kane/Rollins HR thing from last week, then get the show titles.
We are LIVE(!!!) from Boston, Massachusetts for Monday Night RAW!!!
TONIGHT: The Dudleyz vs. Seth Rollins and Big Show
Brock Lesnar starts us off, coming to the ring with Paul Heyman. There seems to be a bit of a pyro error but, whatevs. Lesnar comes to the ring with SUPLEX CITY chants. Paul Heyman talks up Lesnar’s victory at MSG on Saturday, then talks about how badly The Undertaker will get beat at Hell in a Cell because Lesnar considers that his lair. We revisit WrestleMania XXX. Again. Heyman says that ‘Taker will never “get revenge”. For what, I’m not sure since ‘Taker beat him at SummerSlam. We get clips of that. Heyman goes on and on about ‘Taker until Show finally shows up.
Big Show walks right into the ring with a mic as Brock smirks at him, leaning up against the ropes. Show says that the match at MSG was “so close”. He calls Lesnar “The Man” and offers to shake hands. Lesnar laughs and walks off. Show calls him arrogant. He says he hopes ‘Taker beats him at Hell in a Cell — like he lost at SummerSlam. Lesnar’s had enough and gets back in the ring. Then he hits a Belly to Belly and F5. And, hopefully, we’re done with this feud.
Rollins is backstage with Steph. He wants to know what’s gonna happen against the Dudleyz. He wants the match called off. Steph refuses. She tells Rollins to figure it out.
MATCH #1: Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose & Randy Orton vs. The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper and Braun Strowman)
Bray prances around the ring before the match starts. Finally, it’s Reigns vs. Harper. The fight spills outside with Reigns taking out the entire Wyatt Family. When it re-enters the ring, it’s a Pier Six with Strowman getting triple-teamed by all three guys (Orton gouges his eyes, Stooge-style, which was pretty funny) until he falls out of the ring. After break, Ambrose rolls up Harper for two. Harper ends up outside and walks around. Ambrose just lays down on the mat and invites Harper to take a free shot. Harper falls for it and Ambrose rolls him up for two. Tag to Orton who puts Harper to the mat and stomps at him. Ambrose tags in and kicks at Harper. Harper tags Strowman, so Ambrose slide kicks Strowman in the chins, knocking him outside. Ambrose flies outside but Strowman catches him, then just tosses him 5 feet. He puts Ambrose back into the ring and slams him down. Tag to Bray who hits a running clothesline in the corner for two. Bray taunts Ambrose with slaps but Ambrose hits the Comeback Clothesline. Tag to Strowman. Ambrose tries a clothesline but Strowman just hits a HUGE shoulderblock, knocking Ambrose 360 degrees to the mat. After break, Bray hits a HUGE clothesline and gets two on Ambrose. Wyatt misses the Rolling Senton and it’s a tag to Strowman who misses a corner spear. Hot tag to Orton who runs over Harper with clotheslines and a powerslam. Vintage Orton DDT and it’s RKO time — but Wyatt re-enters the ring to distract the ref. Strowman yanks Orton out of the ring and hits a headbutt on the announce table. He tosses Orton back in — but Orton gets to the corner and Reigns is all over Harper and Wyatt with punches. The fight spills outside with Ambrose and Strowman ending up in the timekeeper’s pit. Inside the ring, it’s spot central as Reigns goes for a Superman Punch on Harper. Wyatt enters the ring and beats on Reigns. Harper Superkicks Reigns. He covers but Orton stops the pinfall. Wyatt interferes again and Orton goes for an RKO. Wyatt dodges it. Harper attacks Orton and Orton nails him with the RKO instead. Reigns Spear finishes this at 15:52.
RATING: ***1/2. Fine start to the show. Now to settle in for 2 1/2 more hours of filler.
TONIGHT: Cena’s Open Challenge
King Barrett’s at ringside because WWE just can’t get over that gimmick. He gushes over Neville which comes across as overly phony.
Sheamus comes to the ring with a mic. He mocks Boston for their phony Irish mascots. He tells them that Boston should have used him as a mascot. He calls Neville a leprechaun, then taunts him. He says Neville will always be a loser no matter what and taunts him with the MITB case. He asks Neville what it’s like to be a loser. Neville tires of this and kicks at Sheamus.
MATCH #2: Neville vs. Sheamus
Neville beats on Sheamus in the corner as Barrett’s face turn ends. Barrett distracts Neville and Sheamus Brogue Kicks him to win it at around 30 seconds.
WINNER: Sheamus via Brogue Kick
RATING: DUD. Glorified squash.
Post-match, Barrett looks sorry for what he did. It’s bad enough we have one guy pretending to be somebody else in Kane. Do we really need another?
Backstage, Kane walks around in an ankle boot. (See what I mean?)
Korporate Kane’s in the ring with a mic. He says to excuse him. He’s injured. He still has a job to do, however, and he noticed that Seth Rollins doesn’t have a partner for his tag match tonight…so that partner…will be himself. Rollins interrupts and comes out to the ring and says that this isn’t going to work. He says he hates to do this because Kane “isn’t Tom Brady” — even though Brady and Kane have “deflated balls”. He says Kane can’t get what he wants because that isn’t how it works. He says that he’s not gonna play Kane’s mind games anymore. Kane retorts: his coffee cup says that he’s “WORLD’S BEST DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS”. That’s what he is. That’s what he aims for. He’s gonna bring out the best in Rollins. That’s what he’s gonna do. Rollins points out that he won the World Title and that means he’s the best. Kane says he has a poster that says “the only person that matters is the one you see in the mirror”. He doesn’t think Rollins subscribes to that. Sometimes, you have to go through hell to be the best. Rollins offers to take Kane to hell right now — and that brings out Steph.
Steph says that she’s had enough with this crap. She reveals that Rollins was the “anonymous complaint to HR” last week, violating all corporate confidentiality — but we had an HR Director who has ignored everything WWE has done for the last 30 years so, we’re even, I guess. She talks up The Patriots and says they’ll win the Super Bowl again. Steph says that Kane will face Rollins at Hell in a Cell for the WWE World Championship. Sigh…Steph says that if Kane feels he can fight tonight, he’s welcome to team up with Rollins to face the Dudleyz tonight. One more thing: if Kane can’t beat Rollins for the title, he will be relieved of his Director of Operations job.
TONIGHT: Korporate Kane vs. Dudleyz
ALSO: The Cena Open Challenge
Rollins bitches to Triple H backstage about what just happened. He says that Kane is faking everything. Triple H says that Rollins doesn’t have Kane cornered and to “do unto others what they do to you.”
MATCH #3: Natalya vs. Paige
This is happening because Paige is angry with Natalya for helping out PCB who she no longer cares about, yet has teamed up with twice since the team “broke up”. Nattie grapples with Paige and throws some elblows in the corner. Paige comes back with a roll-up. Nattie reverses. Two count. Dropkick by Nattie and Paige rolls out of the ring. Nattie kicks her down, then rolls Paige back into the ring again. Paige rolls back out and hits Nattie with a Superkick. Back in the ring, she stomps at Nattie, then puts on Body Scissors. Nattie gets to her feet but Paige falls on her for two. Abdominal Stretch by Paige. Nattie breaks it and reverses it. Paige breaks and snap mares Nattie to the mat. She misses a running knee. Nattie hits a clothesline and a Russian Legsweep. She goes for a Body Drop but Paige kicks her. Nattie hits a quick Discus Clothesline and gets two. Paige trips up Nattie and nearly gets a fall. Paige misses a slap and Nattie drops her on her ass and hits a sitting dropkick for two. Nattie tries to put Paige in a corner. Paige counters but ends up in the Sharpshooter. Paige, however, quickly gets to the ropes. Paige drops Nattie’s neck on the top rope then tries to roll her up, nearly getting three. Nattie hits another Sharpshooter — and Paige taps out! Wow. Didn’t expect that. Mark it at 6:03.
WINNER: Natalya via Sharpshooter
RATING: **1/2. Not bad at all. Paige gets knocked down a peg and this may actually advance the “Diva Revolution” thing. Or maybe I’m too hopeful.
LAST THURSDAY ON SMACKDOWN: Owens and Ryback fought following Ryback’s match.
We get a sizzle reel starring Ryback, taking a look at his career. He does a spot where he says he’s hungry to destroy Owens and…eat him. Cuz he’s hungry.
MATCH #4: WWE Intercontinental Champion Kevin Owens vs. Sin Cara (w/ Kalisto)
Seems logical, right? Owens just destroys him in the corner and mocks him with the “LUCHA” chant. He hits a short-armed clothesline and Reverse Senton for two. Side Headlock to Cara and, honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised him Cara passed out. Cara fights back, so Owens just tosses him to the mat. He mocks Kalisto. Cara kicks at Owens and hits a couple Moonsaults. He nearly ends up in the PUPB but Cara counters with a Sunset Flip. Owens finally catches him with a kick to the head and finishes at 2:33 with the PUPB.
WINNER: Kevin Owens via PUPB
RATING: n/a – squash
Post-match, Owens attacks Kalisto as he tends to Cara, then goes for the PUPB. Ryback comes to the ring and Owens runs off and cowers into the crowd. Ryback stands tall as the segment ends.
Steph is backstage. The New Day approaches her, clapping her name. She tells them that she’s busy. Big E tells her not to be sour. She gets in E’s face and says she’s busy. Woods goes to play his trombone. She tells him not to do it or else she’ll send them to a place that makes Suplex City look like Disneyland. Also, they’ll face the Dudleyz at HITC. She leaves and The New Day can’t believe it, asking what just happened in really high voices.
John Cena does his bit about RISE ABOVE CANCER. Reigns joins in and says that all Rise Above Cancer merch on WWEShop will help fund Susan G. Komen.
We re-live the United States Championship at MSG on Saturday.
Kane comes out in full suit. He’s still limping.
MATCH #5: Kane & WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins vs. The Dudley Boyz (D-Von & Bubba Ray)
Kane offers to go first. Bubba starts with him — but Kane’s ankle gives him issues. Rollins tags himself in. Rollins taunts Bubba. Bubba just shoves him and says he doesn’t care if “Rollins is the man — the time is NOW, so let’s go”. They lock up until Bubba hits a shoulderblock, knocking Rollins out of the ring. Back in the ring, Bubba beats on Rollins, then tags in D-Von. They hit a double shoudlerblock and double elbow drop. Tag to Kane again who misses an attack. D-Von kicks at his ankle. Rollins tags back in and this is just an epic booking fail right now. D-Von hip tosses Rollins into the ring then hits a flying elbow off a run. Rollins comes back, putting D-Von in the corner. D-Von fights out and hits a neckbreaker using the buckle. Tag to Kane during that neckbreaker and he takes D-Von out with a clothesline. Tag to Rollins and the two double-team D-Von with a punch off the top buckle. Rollins hits a neckbreaker of his own. After a break, Kane hits a weak-looking snap mare to D-Von and puts on a headlock. D-Von breaks and Kane goes for a boot to D-Von but his ankle gives out. Rollins tags back in as a ringside doc tends to Kane and his ankle. The doctor tells Kane that they have to go to the back — but Rollins isn’t falling for that and he handcuffs Kane to the ring which pointlessly snap in half 20 seconds later when D-Von slingshots Rollins into Kane. The doctor finally helps Kane to the back. Rollins is pissed and tells the doctor not to do this. Meanwhile, D-Von attacks Rollins. He ends up in a Pedigree but D-Von breaks it and tosses Rollins over his head. Tag to Buba who goes white hot apeshit on Rollins with punches and a Bionic Elbow. Wassup hits the mark. They “get the tables” but Rollins dropkicks the table into them, causing a DQ (13:42) which makes no sense at all considering the Dudleyz were going to use the fucking tables and eat the DQ.
WINNERS: The Dudleyz via DQ
RATING: *1/2. Thank the fuck christ that’s over. Wow. What a dull booking catastrophe.
Post-match, cue THEDEMONKANE. He attacks Rollins and rolls him into the ring, knocking him down with a Big Boot. He goes for a Chokeslam — but the Dudleyz come back to life and hit the 3-D even though he’s against the guy they were just wrestling. Rollins goes to leave after the Dudleyz do — but comes back to finish Kane off, putting the table back in the ring. He taunts Kane who does his zombie sit-up. Rollins hits an Enzuguri and attacks Kane from the top rope which also doesn’t make any sense considering he should have just followed up the attack. Kane catches him and chokeslams him through the table to end a segment which was, essentially, a shaggy dog story just to arrive at this moment.
EARLIER TODAY: Team Bella arrived in a limo for some reason. A black Escalade pulls up and out steps Team B.A.D. who aren’t even goddamn relevant anymore. They taunt the Bellas. Nothing happens. Aren’t you glad we got to see that?
Anyhow. Team B.A.D. gets to the ring. Banks says it’s good to be home. She put the “boss” in “Boston”. The Bellas show up. They also have a mic. Nikki says Banks is like the Boston Red Sox: overrated. She says the Sox won’t win the World Series — unlike the Yankees. She’s also wearing a Yankee hat, being the life-long Yankee fan she’s always been. She says the Yankees will “go all the way”. Naomi says that Nikki knows all about “going all the way”, ISSHERITE? Nikki pushes her “streak”. Banks says it doesn’t matter. She’s not champ now and it won’t matter who might be champ after HITC because the winner will keep the title warm for Sasha Banks. Finally, OH! There’s a match!
MATCH #6: Team B.A.D. (Tamina, Naomi & Sasha Banks) vs. Team Bella (Nikki Bella, Brie Bella & Alicia Fox)
Nikki and Naomi fight with Naomi rubbing Nikki’s head in her ass. Slut-shaming? Moves involving women’s asses? #DIVASREVOLUTION! Tag to Banks who kicks Nikki in the head and puts on a wristlock but Super Nikki breaks it and it’s a tag to Brie who weakly tosses Banks into the corner. Banks fights back and stomps on Brie’s chest. After break, Fox hits a Spinning Backbreaker on Naomi for two. Tag to Brie for a Bulldog and two count. Brie taunts Banks, then turns an elbows Naomi in the stomach before hitting IRRESPONSIBLE DRUNK MODE. Tag to Nikki who beats on Naomi. Nikki taunts Team B.A.D. but Naomi rolls her up for two. Naomi breaks the Chinlock of Doom but Nikki knocks her down for two. Nikki headbutts Naomi’s stomach in the corner and it’s a tag to Fox who hits the Northern Lights Suplex for two. Fox locks in a lazy-looking headlock as the crowd begs to see Sasha. Naomi breaks but Brie tags in and starts hitting YES Kicks which get “NO” from the crowd. Naomi fights back but Brie blocks her and pushes her back to the Bella corner and it’s a tag to Fox and another headlock. Naomi tries to break but, nope. Headlock #3. Naomi finally breaks and it’s a tag to Sasha. Sasha takes out the Bellas first, then knocks Fox into the corner. Banks hits a running knee and gets two. Brie interferes and each woman hits a spot until Banks hits the Backstabber and Banks Statement to win this at 11:43.
WINNERS: Team B.A.D.
RATING: 1/2 a *. Banks is the only real wrestler here and got all of two minutes of this bullshit. That’s so sad and a good indicator of what WWE thinks of the Divas.
Charlotte is backstage and gives a monotonous, robotic promo, then Woo!. Hooray.
TONIGHT: John Cena’s Open Challenge
EARLIER TONIGHT: Brock took out Big Show.
Summer Rae is in the ring. She says that “Summer may be over but Summer is just getting started.” She brings Rusev to the ring. She wants to spend an entire segment paying tribute to Rusev via video package. Fuck this with a chainsaw. Rusev is smiling and says that he’s flattered. He says when they first started out, he didn’t like Summer at all but, as time went on, he could not imagine anyone else he’d like on his arm. Summer stutters through the next portion. She says she has to ask him something. She gets down on one knee and she pulls out a ring box. She asks Rusev to marry her. Rusev just paces and sorta begs off. He says he doesn’t know. Summer begs him. She tells him to say “yes”. The crowd chants “NO”. Rusev tells everyone to shut up because it’s his choice. He says…yes! They embrace and kiss. She goes to put the ring on his finger — but Rusev interjects. He says yes…but not yet. He shuts the ring box. He says that they must prove that they are worthy first. He must have gold around his waist first before gold goes around Summer’s finger. He leaves and Summer looks depressed. Rusev hold the ropes open for her and tells Summer to get her ass out of the ring. They leave.
THIS THURSDAY ON SMACKDOWN: Roman Reigns and Randy Orton face Bray Wyatt and Braun Strowman. AGAIN!
John Cena comes to the ring to finish this show off. It’s Open Challenge time. The opponent is…
All righty then. Not a bad idea…except Ziggler doesn’t show up. Christ…it’s the fucking New Day. And they’ve beaten up Ziggler. The crowd shits on this. Woods asks Cena about “getting serious” and he asks if Ziggler’s beating is “serious enough for him”. Kofi wonders who will accept the Open Challenge and do their stupid little goofy cutesy act. Kofi says everything is BIG in Boston. There’s only one competitor who can match the BIG moment.
MATCH #7: John Cena (champion) vs. Big E (challenger) (w/ Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston) for the WWE United States Championship
Cena hits a headlock. Big E breaks it and shoulderblocks Cena as Woods screams that his name is “Big E for a reason”. After a break, Big E slams Cena to the mat twice and gets two. Cena comes back with a roll-up. Two count. E puts Cena to the mat and it’s a two count. Cena gets to a corner and E tells him to get up. Cena does and E misses a corner spear. Cena runs at E who counters with a Spinebuster and Warrior Splash. Two count. Cena rolls off the mat and E hits him with a big Warrior Splash. Two count. Cena gets up and fights back, hitting punches but E just runs at Cena and knocks him down with a clothesline. Two count. E runs at Cena who ducks and slings E over the ropes and out of the ring. Cena goes outside and to tries an Irish Whip but E reverses and Cena goes into the stairs. E rolls Cena into the ring and gets two. Cena gets to his feet and starts hitting punches. He shoulderblocks E who doesn’t go down. He tries a crossbody. E catches him but Cena counters and puts him to the mat. 5Ks hits. Cena goes for the AA but The New Day helps E out, pulling E off his shoulders. Charles Robinson tosses The New Day from the ring instead of DQ’ing them. Big E grabs the trombone. He misses Cena by a mile. The ref sees this. Doesn’t DQ E for that either and, suddenly, this is a Seahawk game. Cena hits an AA to win this at 9:54.
WINNER AND STILL CHAMPION: John Cena via AA
RATING: *. Boring, listless and pointless. A match with Kofi is obvious and nobody honestly cares or believes that’s gonna have a different result.
Post-match, The New Day runs in for a beatdown. Ziggler comes into the ring and accidentally Superkicks Cena. The Dudleyz show up but The New Day overpowers them. Kofi hits two TIPs on Bubba. The New Day stands tall as we go off the air.
OVERALL: Eh…started well enough but constant tag matches and another boring, soulless Open Challenge does not a good RAW make.
Er, that’s it.