Home / Culture / Monday Night RAW Recap, 4/28/2015: Triple Threat Match slated for ‘Payback’

Monday Night RAW Recap, 4/28/2015: Triple Threat Match slated for ‘Payback’

Extreme Rules was absolute flaming dogshit and highlighted much of what I’ve been going on about for the past few months.

Those who still disagree with me about the product WWE is putting forth, in all likelihood, will never be convinced of this fact. That’s ok. I mean, you guys have some real resolve. Maybe I’m wrong and Extreme Rules and RAW have been exercises in brilliance. Let me review to see if we watched the same show here (and, if you don’t wanna sit through this, just skip to the review portion):

  • Another shitty Divas match where, suddenly, we’re supposed to care about Nikki (even though she’s a heel) or Naomi (who’s suddenly a heel because…she wears glowing tennis shoes which are evil as fuck, I guess) in a match that’s a placeholder until Paige returns.
  • Lucha Dragons? Over with the crowd, everyone seems to love them. Nope. Oh, and those guys who used to be tag champs, who were far more talented and who everyone loved? Fuck them, too. NEEEEW DAY for some reason. At least they didn’t get the titles off a distraction roll-up. Oh, wait. Yes, they did.
  • A Chicago Street Fight that spilled out on the streets — except we never saw that bit because WWE thought it would please the fans more to have Ambrose and Harper drive off in a car and vanish for a half hour. And, by the way, anyone care to explain how the car returned without so much as a scratch on it? Weren’t they fighting in it the whole way? Shouldn’t the car be totaled and/or beat up? Goldust vs. Piper, this was not.
  • Cena and Rusev’s “chain match”. When I think “chain match” and “extreme rules”, I think of dudes beating the fuck out of each other with a fucking chain. Not running around, trying to tag turnbuckles while chained to one another like they’re contestants on MXC. What pretentious crap.
  • Sheamus vs. Ziggler. Dolph wins. Ziggler kisses Sheamus’s “arse”, anyhow. It’s bad enough that we even had this match in the first place (along with Lawler’s vomit-inducing pontification in which he wondered, aloud, if either guy had “washed their asses” prior to the match, which was so awful, he shut himself up), WWE couldn’t even follow through with the stipulation. This just confirms my suspicions that the match only existed for the purpose of seeing how many times WWE’s various announcers and on-mic staff could say the word “arse” in a given amount of time.
  • And speaking of stips that didn’t matter, a Steel Cage match that was designed to keep The Authority out…but didn’t. With the added stipulation that the RKO was banned…but we saw it twice. And what was supposed to happen if the RKO was used? Wasn’t it a “No-DQ” Steel Cage match? Then how do you DQ somebody for breaking a rule? We all know Rollins will either play the semantics card and say that Randy wasn’t allowed to use it. Either that, or he’ll claim to have hit a Diamond Cutter and not the RKO. Honestly, I’m not putting anything past Creative at this point. At least not since Kane asked us to imagine a dark, ominous world where El Torito was WWE World Champion a couple weeks back. What, you think that wasn’t a threat?

So, we did watch the same show. Just checking. The same one where Reigns and Show actually turned out to be the best match on the card? Yep. Sounds like the same show to me.

Is this what it’s come to? We look up at all that and say, “Eh…acceptable”?

Readers wonder why I watch the show. I watch it because it’s been better than this…and because I write for this and two other blogs and they expect some sort of output concerning the subject. I know most of you know that what we’re being given is aggravating as it is frustrating. I also know that most of you know it’s hard to admit that what you’re watching sucks “arse”, if I may.

BTW…if Bray Wyatt acknowledges that Bo Dallas is his brother, as has been rumored, just remember who the suggested that shit.

Let’s go…

We get a video montage of King of the Ring, a tournament that’s SO important, it took a five-year hiatus!

We are LIVE(!!!) from Green Bay, Wisconsin for Monday Night RAW!!!

JBL, Cole and Booker are the guys on the mics.

Cole gives us our KOTR ladder:

  • Dolph Ziggler vs. Bad News Barrett
  • R-Truth vs. Stardust
  • Dean Ambrose vs. Sheamus
  • Neville vs. Luke Harper 

Seth Rollins leads us off, followed to the ring by J&J Security and Kane. Everyone is somehow friends again, despite Kane chokeslamming the shit out of all three of the guys he’s standing next to right now. Rollins says that Orton learned what everyone has known for a long time: you cannot outsmart Seth Rollins. He built and destroyed The Shield and he cashed in the MITB case at the right time to become champ. He’s a fighting champion, a valiant champion. The crowd tries a “WHAT” chant and, also, “YOU SUCK”. But, hey, they graduated from “YOU SOLD OUT”, so that’s good. Rollins takes all credit for his win. Kane looks incredulous. Rollins says he hit an “SKO OUT OF NOWHERE”, much to the amusement of his kiss-ass security guys. Most of all, he’d like to thank Kane for being the “Crypt Keeper”. He stutters and says he didn’t mean to say that. Kane isn’t a “relic”. Rollins says he did a good job guarding stuff.

Kane isn’t happy and says, without him, Orton would be champion — especially since Rollins cheated and used the banned RKO to win the match. And there’s WWE’s giant middle finger to the fans. They exchange un-pleasantries — until Orton shows up at the top of the ramp.

Orton points out that even Kane says that Rollins cheated to win last night — so that means that Orton should get another shot at the title. Orton appeals to Kane — who says that Orton has a point.

Reigns interrupts for more talking, walking down the first and only deck of this tiny little WCW Saturday Night-sized arena. Rollins wants to know why Reigns is out here. Reigns says that Rollins is missing his “giant” — and that’s because he put him through a table and dumped another table on top of him. He says it’s HIS turn to get a title shot. Crowd’s not happy about that. Rollins does a sarcastic cheer and says that both Reigns and Orton lost to him — so neither guy deserves a shot at the title.

Kane clears his throat to interrupt. He says that both Orton and Reigns make compelling arguments. So, hold on a second, playa! Tonight, it’s Rollins and Kane vs. Orton and Reigns — and the fans will decide who Rollins defends the title against at Payback.

Kane’s music hits and I’m half-hoping the REAL Kane comes out to trash everyone involved with this mess of an opening segment.

NEXT: Ziggler vs. Barrett in the first match of the KOTR tourney.

MATCH #1: Dolph Ziggler vs. Bad News Barrett (1st Round of the King of the Ring Tournament)
Ziggler attacks but Barrett trips him up, kicking Ziggler in the legs. He beats Ziggler in the corner, then hits a running elbow off the ropes. He drops an elbow and stomps at Ziggler and whips him into the ropes. Ziggler kicks Barrett and dropkicks him. Barrett rolls out of the ring. After a break, Barrett has Ziggler in a headlock. Ziggler breaks and fights back with clotheslines and a Stinger Splash in the corner. Barrett catches Ziggler in mid-air on a follow up but Ziggler rolls him up for two. Barrett goes for the Fireman’s Carry of Doom but Ziggler counters into a DDT for two. Barrett comes back, slinging Ziggler into the corner, then hits the Wasteland. Two count. He misses a Bullhammer and Ziggler counters with a Superkick. Close two count. Sheamus shows up in, what I’m sure, is the first of many screwjob finishes. He yells at Ziggler to remember last night when Ziggler kissed some “arse”. Distraction. Bullhammer. Done at 8:17.
WINNER: Barrett via Bullhammer
RATING: **. Nothing special, plus it’s really getting hard to rate matches positively when they’re interrupted with loads of commercials.

Sheamus grins as he realizes that his mission is accomplished.

TONIGHT: The tag team match with Kane and Rollins vs. Reigns and Orton

NEXT: The New Day.

The New Day are out, feeling great. Nobody cares until Woods declares them champs and thanks all his “clappers”. Woods tries to transform “NEW DAY SUCKS” into “NEW DAY ROCKS” but the crowd isn’t buying it.

MATCH #2: Big E (w/ Xavier Woods & Kofi Kingston) vs. Tyson Kidd (w/ Cesaro & Natalya)
Initial back and forth sees Kidd kicking E in the head and hitting a Springboard Missile Dropkick. E bails from the ring. Kidd chases and kicks E in the face. He tosses E back in and runs at him. E hits a weak clothesline, Xavier Woods holds on to Kidd’s foot — and Big E WINS?! Are you fucking serious? Wow. Talk about your major falls from grace. Time was 1:21.
WINNER: Big E
RATING: DUD. I’d say that this was a squash and shouldn’t count but seeing as though these guys were major competitors and opponents as of just last fucking night, that’s just complete bullshit.

LAST NIGHT: Cena and Rusev played Slap the Turnbuckles and Rusev lost. ‘Murica!

AT PAYBACK: John Cena vs. Rusev for the United States Championship because Russian Chain Matches don’t solve anything.

TONIGHT: Cena invites another mid-carder to job to him.

NEXT: Ryback in action.

When we come back, Bo Dallas is introduced as Ryback’s opponent. Dallas says that Ryback’s actions at Extreme Rules were “reprehensible”. He calls the Wisconsin fans “cheeseheads” and says that Ryback can walk away right now in order to clear his name.

MATCH #3: Ryback vs. Bo Dallas
Ryback manhandles Dallas. Dallas trips him up and beats on him, laying the ring’s side matte over him. Headlock by Dallas. Ryback breaks. Dallas goes to a buckle and flies at Ryback, who catches him in a Spinebuster. Ryback hits a Meathook and Shell Shock to complete the squash at 2:17.
WINNER: Ryback via Shell Shock
RATING: n/a – squash

Bray Wyatt’s video edit hits and the arena goes dark. Another edit and Bray’s standing behind Ryback. Ryback turns and runs at Bray, who catches him and hits Sister Abigail in one deft move. He does the Raven as we go to commercial.

NEXT: Cena wants somebody to beat him. Please?

John Cena’s out to yack a bit. Cena says he beat Rusev last night and the CHAMP IS HERE — just in case anyone missed Extreme Rules. He calls the chain match “brutal” when it was anything but. He says that Lana somehow got another match out of The Authority. Then he basically says that Rusev has a “pimp hand”. Nobody reacts. Cena says that he “kids” about spousal abuse. Anyhow, he’ll never surrender and all that. You’d think that would be it but, no. Cena hits the cheap pop with a Vince Lombardi reference. The challenge is open and the person taking the bait challenge is:

Heath Slater. I need more fuckin’ wine. This beer isn’t doing shit.

What’s more? SLATER WANTS TO FUCKING TALK. Slater says he’s going to take advantage of a “crushed John Cena”…yet, if Slater wins here, it would not surprise me. He says he’s better than Aaron Rodgers. Rusev comes in out of nowhere and knocks Slater down, then Superkicks him…soooo, we’re not having the match then?

Lana shows up and SHE has a mic. Rusev grabs the mic and tells her to back off and go backstage. She does. Crowd wants Lana as Rusev screams at everyone and tells them that they’re all quitters. At Payback, Cena will quit, too. After Payback, he’ll be saying “I Quit”. Oh, and there’s the Russian flag.

Backstage, Kane’s pacing. Rollins shows up and he wants “clarification” about the “fan decision”. Kane says it’s gonna be the WWE App that settles everything. Rollins asks if Kane’s out of his mind. Kane gets in Rollins’ face. Rollins says that Triple H and Steph will have something to say about this. Kane says that Rollins carries himself like he’s “the man”. Kane says that he thought Rollins could handle himself, no matter what. The choices are:

  • Randy Orton
  • Roman Reigns
  • Or both at the same time

Rollins yells some more.

MATCH #4: R-Truth vs. Stardust (1st Round of the King of the Ring Tournament)
Truth hits a quick flipping cover for a one count. Star comes back with some stomps, then kicks Truth in the head. Two count. Star kicks Truth in the head after laying down. Star claws at Truth’s face and yanks at his arm. Truth breaks but Star tosses Truth to the ring and does a cartwheel. BOOKER: “What was that?” COLE: “Cartwheel.” BOOKER: “I know that, but, WHY?!” Star yells at the crowd. Truth hits a kick to the Star’s head. Two count. Star hits a Russian Legsweep. Two count. Counter pins for a couple two counts. Star goes for the Disaster Kick but Truth counters with the Lie Detector — and wins?! What alternate universe am I in here?
WINNER: R-Truth via Lie Detector at 3:14
RATING: 1/4*, if that. Look, I get that the mid-card is supposed to be supporting the show but don’t give me raw cookie dough and tell me that this is fully cooked.

STILL TO COME: The big tag match

MATCH #5: Adam Rose (w/ Rosebuds) vs. Fandango
Some running around and Fandango hits a dropkick. Rose bails from the ring, then trips Fandango when he chases. Rose gets back in and chokes Fandango on the middle rope. Rose taunts the crowd with the Fandango. Fandango hits chops and tosses Rose from the ring. He hits a NICE flipping splash, nailing Rose and landing on his feet. Impressive. Oh, but, Rosa’s there to distract Fandango so that Rose can hit the Party Foul and win the match at 1:49. Right when you thought Fandango had escaped this bullshit and started to climb the ladder back into contention. Here we go again.
WINNER: Adam Rose via Party Foul
RATING: DUD. Are you surprised?

Post-match, Rosa taunts Fandango, drifting around some sort of pseduo-accent. She makes out with Adam Rose.

Renee Young is backstage with Brie Bella. Brie talks up Daniel Bryan and how he would compete at anytime. WWE cares about Daniel Bryan. Naomi shows up and pops Brie in the mouth, then declares that WWE doesn’t care about Brie or Bryan. Mm-k.

MATCH #6: Brie Bella (w/ Nikki Bella) vs. Naomi
Brie hits a couple presses and the two women yank at each other’s hair. Naomi comes back with a forearm, then stomps at Brie. She bulldogs Brie into the buckle and hits a backbreaker. Two count. Naomi chews gum as her evil  LED SHOES OF DOOM change color. What is this gimmick supposed to be anyhow? Naomi hits a Legdrop and covers for two. Chinlock of Doom is put on. Bie finally breaks and tosses Naomi into the corner. Brie and Naomi fly at each other and do…something. Both women are down. They get up. Brie hits a clothesline and dropkick, followed by a knee to the gut. Brie hits a knee to the face and missile dropkick. Two count. Naomi elbows Brie in the jaw and rolls her up for the win at 3:37.
WINNER: Naomi
RATING: 1/2 a *. At least it was short.

STILL TO COME: The tag team match.

ALSO: Vote for the main event at Payback.

Dean Ambrose is out for a match as Cole reminds us that Harper and Ambrose stole a car last night.

MATCH #7: Dean Ambrose vs. Sheamus (1st Round of the King of the Ring Tournament)
The Kiss Me Arse match is over and I’m still hearing the word “arse” about six times too many. Ambrose and Sheamus exchange lock-ups and headlocks and holds and, finally, Sheamus hits a shoulderblock. Ambrose tries to trip Sheamus and ends up putting Sheamus into a leglock. He locks Sheamus into an armlock but Sheamus fights out. Sheamus hits an uppercut. The two trade shots until Ambrose puts Sheamus into the corner, clotheslining him. Ambrose tries a Bulldog but Sheamus counters it. Ambrose knocks Sheamus out of the ring and tries for the Flying Psycho but Sheamus evades that. After a break, Ambrose breaks a headlock, but Sheamus hits a knee to the gut. Sheamus taunts Ambrose with kicks to his head. Finally, Ambrose manages to hit the Rebound Clothesline, but both men are down. After getting up, it’s a fistfight with Ambrose getting the best of it. Sheamus finally grabs Ambrose and slams him to the mat. Sheamus calls for the Brogue but misses. Ambrose rolls him up at two.

Sheamus rushes Ambrose, but Ambrose sidesteps and Sheamus leaves the ring. Ambrose hits the Flying Psycho, then tosses Sheamus back into the ring. Ambrose goes top rope but Sheamus evades, then grabs Ambrose for a shoulderbreaker for two. Sheamus goes for White Noise but Ambrose counters. Two count. Sheamus hits the Cloverleaf — but Ambrose forces a break. Ambrose is outside the ring ropes. Sheamus goes for the Ten Beats but Ambrose fights out and drops Sheamus’s neck on the top rope. Ambrose hits a nice elbow off the top rope, NEARLY getting the fall. Sheamus rolls out of the ring and Ambrose chases. The two men fight outside with Ambrose killing Sheamus with ringpost shots. Sheamus hits the Brogue. So Ziggler suddenly shows up to attack Sheamus, sending him to the next round at 12:34, which makes no fucking sense, but that’s par for the course as of late.
WINNER: Sheamus via DQ
RATING: **3/4. Would have been *** if it wasn’t for the ill-timed DQ spot.

Post-match, Ambrose is furious.

TONIGHT: The big tag match.

ALSO: Vote for the Payback main event.

Damien Sandow is in the ring. He goes into old school Sandow mode and begs the crowd’s indulgence. He says he’s not gonna lie to anyone. He came out here in a blue bathrobe and that ended badly. He was told he wasn’t “entertaining”. That’s when he started to imitate people. He settled into Miz-dow. That caused him much disrespect and, ironically, respect with the WWE Universe. He thanks the fans for their support and says that, without them, he wouldn’t be there today. He asks what’s next…and Curtis Axel shows up.

Aaaaand, he has a mic. He insults Sandow for trying to be somebody else. Axel imitates Hogan. Miz-dow imitates Axel imitating Hogan, then imitates Axel. The crowd is amused by all of this. Axel tells Sandow to leave the “Axe-man’s ring”. Sandow imitates that, too. Boy, this went south quick. Axel attacks. Sandow fights back and then does the Hogan “ear” move. He goes for the Atomic Legdrop but does the Elbow of Disdain instead.

ON SMACKDOWN: Cesaro and Kidd take on The New Day for the WWE Tag Team Championship in a rematch.

Bray Wyatt does a needless promo, seeing as though we already know who he attacked.

THIS WEEK: WWE Network has stuff that nobody in their right mind would watch.

ALSO: Dweebs send in their videos, hoping to be Tough Enough hopefuls.

MATCH #8: Neville vs. Luke Harper (1st Round of the King of the Ring Tournament)
Neville hits a nice Hurricarana to throw Harper from the ring. About 37 counters later, Neville hits a nice Frankensteiner. Neville goes for a dropkick but Harper blocks it and covers for a two count. After a four minute break, Harper is in control which is broken. Neville tosses Harper out of the ring but rushes back in. Neville evades his boot in the corner and hits a Springboard Moonsault, tosses Harper back in the ring and gets two following a Standing Shooting Star Press. Harper takes over again and goes for the Sitting Powerbomb but Neville counters into a German Suplex in stride. Neville tries a Frankensteiner but Harper counters with the Sitting Powerbomb for two. Harper picks Neville up but Neville fights back with a punch to the face. Harper beats Neville in the corner. He puts Neville on the top buckle but Neville fights out and kicks Harper in the face. Neville hits a nice Super Powerbomb and hits the Red Arrow for the win at 10:12.
WINNER: Neville via Red Arrow
RATING: ***. Good match.

TOMORROW ON THE KING OF THE RING SPECIAL:

  • Bad News Barrett takes on R-Truth
  • Sheamus takes on Neville

PLEASE VOTE: The Main Event at Payback

MATCH #9: Roman Reigns & Randy Orton vs. Kane & WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins (w/ J&J Security – Jamie Noble & Joey Mercury)
Reigns and Rollins start. Several arm bars and counters later, Rollins is taken down and he rolls outside the ring. Rollins gets back in and Reigns hits a Tilt-a-Whirl Slam. Orton tags in and drops Rollins on the top rope. After some stomping, Reigns tags back in, putting Rollins on his shoulders. Rollins escapes and bails, tagging in Kane. Reigns drops Kane to the mat.  Orton tags in and Kane beats on him, then drags him to the heel corner. Rollins tags in, stomping at Orton. Rollins dumps Orton to the outside of the ring. After a break, Rollins has Orton in a headlock. Orton fights out but Rollins clotheslines him to take him down for two. Rollins picks Orton up and clotheslines him a couple times. Kane applauds because their friends again. Orton comes back with a belly to belly suplex. Hot tags on both sides. Reigns takes Kane down with clotheslines and ten punches in the corner. Clothesline off the top rope. Samoan Drop to Rollins who tries to run interference.

The fight spills outside and Kane regains control, shoving Reigns into the ringpost. Both men get back into the ring. Kane whips Reigns into the buckle and tags Rollins. Rollins stomps at Reigns. Reigns fights back but Rollins hits a kick and Reigns goes down. Two count. Tag to Kane. Sidewalk Slam for two. Bear Hug but Reigns breaks. Kane kicks him down. Two count. Tag to Rollins. Mudhole stomps. Tag to Kane and him and Reigns trade shots. Hot tag to Rollins who nails Reigns and tries to splash him in the corner. Reigns evades, slams Rollins to the mat and it’s a hot tag to Orton. Orton misses the first powerslam but hits the second one. Kane comes in and tries to Chokeslam Reigns. Reigns breaks it and dispatches Kane. Reigns hits a Superman Punch on Joey Mercury. All hell breaks loose with Orton hitting the Elevated DDT on Rollins. Orton goes for the RKO but Rollins rolls him up for two. Orton gets up but Rollins hits a kick to Orton’s head. Everyone ends up outside except for Rollins. Rollins leaps at everyone and hits J&J and Kane. J&J involve themselves. Kane beats up J&J and then uppercuts Rollins, rolling him back into the ring. Reigns hits a Superman Punch and Orton finishes Rollins with an RKO to win this thing a 18:40.
WINNERS: Randy Orton & Randy Orton
RATING: ***. The main flaw was that the match didn’t need to be anywhere near 20 minutes long. There is a nice satisfaction, however, of Rollins eating an RKO to end this thing.

Post-match, Kane reveals that Rollins will face:

Randy Orton & Roman Reigns in a Triple Threat Match. Surprise. 

Rollins is not happy. Reigns hits a Spear on Rollins. Everyone goes home happy as we go off the air.

OVERALL: **1/4. Not a bad show. The first half of this thing was junk but it recovered which is ironic, since RAW never seems to do that. The thing that’s missing is that each episode doesn’t appear to be “about” something. It has no personality past being a bunch of matches with a couple marquee bouts. 

Er, that’s it.

About Matt Perri

Matt Perri
Matt Perri is one of those literary Ronin you’ve never heard of until he shows up and tells you he’s a literary Ronin. He’s a native Californian, a film buff, old school gamer geek, and a sports/entertainment fan. A lifelong Giants, 49ers and Sharks fan, he also covers the world of pro-wrestling, writing recaps for WWE Monday Night RAW and Total Divas at Scott’s Blog of Doom. You can follow the guy on Twitter via @PerriTheSmark as well as here at The Workprint and his own blog, We Hate Your Gimmick.

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