900: Raw 8/30/10

Normally, when the WWE has an anniversary show of Raw, whether it be a 5-year, or hundredth episode, they have a 3 hour show, fill it with cross-branded matches that people want to see, throw in some memorable clips from the previous episodes, have some interviews reminiscing about the past, and then end it with a pretty good main event.  That was not the case last night.  There was very little in last night’s episode that I didn’t have a problem with.  We’ll start at the beginning.

Kane confronts Bret Hart; Undertaker saves Hart; GM states that it will be Undertaker vs. Hart.
Hart comes out, and talks about this being the 900th episode, and how it’s amazing that Raw has lasted this long.  He also mentions that besides him, the only other person still around from the first episode is the Undertaker.  Now let me just stop things right there.  I know that this was just a segue to get the Undertaker/Kane feud onto Raw for the night, but “still around,” while technically correct, isn’t the best way to put that.  I don’t feel like compiling the actual statistics, but I’d bet that there are several guys on the roster that have been on more episodes of Raw than Hart has been.  Yes, he was on the first show, but he’s hardly hung around for all 900 episodes.

So anyways, the mention of the Undertaker brings out Kane, and he says that the Undertaker hasn’t been the same since he took out an icon at Wrestlemania.  Kane says he’s going to take out an icon himself, Bret Hart.  He attacks Hart, then fights off the Hart Dynasty.  Eventually, the lights go off, and Undertaker appears.  Kane leaves.  The GM sends an e-mail saying that it would be Hart fighting the Undertaker later on.  I never actually thought this match would happen because Hart can’t really wrestle, but I’ll get to that later on.

The Miz & Alex Riley def. Daniel Bryan & Kaval and Kofi Kingston & Michael McGillicutty.
This was actually a triple threat tag match, in which 3 people were in the ring at the same time.  All-in-all it was an okay match.  I didn’t really like The Miz pinning Kaval pretty cleanly, but whatever.  The match accomplished its goals:  bring publicity for the final three on NXT, and keep the feud between Daniel Bryan and The Miz going.  Maybe had this match happened later in the show, I wouldn’t have been left with such a negative attitude about the show.  However, it was early, and the memory of it was buried by the crap still to come.

Melina & Eve def. Lay-Cool by pinfall; Lay-Cool challenges Melina.
Recently, WWE had been doing better about giving the Divas more time to wrestle on Raw.  But that would be forgotten tonight.  Hell, there wasn’t even a tag made.  There’s no point in having a tag match if a tag is never made.  Melina pinned Layla with a surprise roll-up.  After the match, Lay-Cool challenged Melina to a unification match against one of them.  Melina agrees but makes it a Lumberjill match.  I like the thought of unifying the titles if it means getting rid of the Divas title, but why would Lay-Cool make the stipulation that only one of them would be in the match.  They’re both Women’s champions, why not both of them?  The heel team should not present a level playing field for the face.

R-Truth & John Morrison vs. Cody Rhodes & Drew McIntyre ended in no contest.
This match was to determine the #1 contender for the tag titles at Night of Champions, and this match never really got started.  The ref (Goose) couldn’t restore order, and get the illegal competitors out of the ring, so he called for the bell.  Both teams brawled for a bit, with Truth and Morrison getting the upper hand.  I have to ask why bother with a match?  Why not just have a backstage attack?  It’s not like by making it a match without a winner does anything that a backstage attack wouldn’t have done.

Undertaker vs. Bret Hart ended in no contest; Nexus attacks Undertaker.
Of course this match never really happened.  Was there any doubt about that?  Wade Barrett came out and complained that he should be in the match facing the Undertaker.  Taker quickly takes care of Barrett, then the lights go out for the first time.  When they come back on, Kane is in the ring, and Hart is missing.  They fight a bit, then the lights go off for a second time.  When they come back on, Kane is gone.  Nexus runs down to the ring, and surrounds the Undertaker.  Taker is holding his own, then the lights go off for a third time.  When they come back on, Barrett has Undertaker on his shoulders, then slams him to the mat.  Just Gabriel adds a 450 splash.  Undertaker tries to sit up, but does not have the strength to.

Okay, one lights going off thing is fine, two (considering there was one earlier in the show) is too much, and three is comically bad.  Especially when the final one involves Nexus getting the upper-hand on Undertaker during his thing.  There was just no need for it, and it made the segment seem much longer than it actually was.

Jack Swagger def. Evan Bourne by submission; Alberto Del Rio attacks Bourne.
Jack Swagger made Bourne tap out to an ankle lock.  I would comment on more of the match, but I couldn’t really see it.  In the middle of the match, Alberto Del Rio arrives in his Bentley, they show a split-screen of him arriving and the match.  Not being much of a Smackdown viewer, I found this very stupid.  Surely they could have thought of a better way introducing him to the Raw audience other than interrupting a match that at least had the potential to be good.  Del Rio attempts to injure Bourne like he did Mysterio, but eventually, Mark Henry ran out for the save.  Unfortunately, Henry was back in his red outfit.  Uhg.

Big show confronts Straight Edge Society.
CM Punk and his group come out, and talk about some of the past indescrestions on Raw.  This was essentially an excuse for them to show more clips from previous episodes.  Punk then shows a clip from Smackdown where Brock Lesnar suplexed Big Show through the ring.  Punk takes the opportunity to call Big Show fat.  Big Show comes out and mocks Punk for using a fat joke, when there are other things in Big Show’s past that he can make fun of them about, which Big Show lists.  Big Show eventually attacks SES, ending this boring, pointless segment.

Nexus def. Randy Orton, John Cena, Sheamus, Edge & Chris Jericho in a 5-0n-5 elimination match.
This match was alright.  It was essentially the same group that fought at Summerslam, minus Hart, Bryan, Young, and Sheffield.  Jericho immediately got himself counted out.  Edge immediately got himself disqualified.  Sheamus tried to go it alone and was pinned by Heath Slater.  Cena eliminated Slater with an Attitude Adjustment and David Otunga with and STF.  Immediately after letting go of the STF, Cena was hit with a 450 splash from Gabriel, and was pinned.  Orton came in and eliminated Gabriel and Michael Tarver with RKOs, but was eventually slammed by Barrett.  Nothing else to really say about it.

“Hell On Earth”

First, this has been a bad month for former WWE Superstars: Lance Cade passes away at 29(!!) from heart failure and now Luna Vachon passes away (The Cade death gets me b/c I spent most of the Spring recovering from heart failure/heart infection and surgery, plus Cade is close to my age). We at the 1/8th Nelson, extend our condolences to the families.

When Teddy Long announced that The Undertaker would return to Smackdown this week, Kane promised that there would be “Hell on Earth”. Let’s see if Kane kept his promise…

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Trivial Pursuits – NXT 8/24/10

Down to the final 3 with no elimination this week. The night opened with Matt Striker letting each Rookie say what was on their minds. Michael McGuillicutty played to the crowd and spoke of the pride he had following in his father’s footsteps. Alex Riley called out Sheamus for when he “inevitably” wins NXT season 2. And Kaval called out Cody Rhodes for last weeks assault. Rhodes declined but MVP backed Kaval and if Rhodes didn’t want to face a Rookie he’d be more than willing to take his place. Rhodes accepted the match against MVP.

Cody Rhodes def. MVP

This was a really long match. Despite not involving a single Rookie and being the only match of the night it was pretty good. Pacing was nice and both Pros used their entire arsenal and then some. Rhodes picked up the pinfall after hitting Crossroads.

As for this weeks challenge: WWE Trivia. The questions were as follows:

Round 1:

1.Who were the two participants in the Ironman match at Wrestlemania 12 in 1996?

2.Pete Gas, Joey Abs and Rodney were members of what group?

3.”You think you know me” is the opening line to what superstars entrance music?

4.Who did Mr. McMahan lose his hair to at Wrestlemania 23?

5.The Killswitch is the finisher of which superstar?

6.What is the name of the heavy metal band that performs HHH entrance music?

Round 2:

1.What Hall of Famer was the 1st Intercontinental Champion?

2.What current WWE Diva won the 2007 Diva Search?

3.Finish this WWE entrance theme: “Here comes the Ax and here comes the Smasher….”

4.What did the Dynamic Duo come to the ring on?

5.Who holds the record for the most WWE Championships?

Winner: Kaval

His prize was WWE.com would be all about him including a special feature on him. Michael Cole was not please.

That’s pretty much it for this week. Final vote has already started so go to WWE and help choose the “Next Breakout Star!”

 To see how you did on the WWE Trivia check after the jump…

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Celtic Throne: Raw 8/23/10

Sheamus opened the show by expressing his opinion that he didn’t believe Randy Orton should get another title shot, using Orton’s attack on him after Summerslam and last week as evidence.  The GM agreed with Sheamus, and told Sheamus to sit in a throne on the stage all night, and then decide who would be his competitor at Night of Champions.  So, Sheamus sat on stage all night, in the King of the Ring throne, and then chose to fight Zach Ryder, that night.  Sheamus won in 11 seconds.  After the match, Wade Barrett came out, and said that he was going to invoke the title match he had won being the winner of NXT season 1.   The GM announced that Barrett would not be the only person Sheamus would be defending his title from.  The match at Night of Champions would be a Six-Pack Challenge that would also include John Cena, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, and Edge.  All the contestants brawl, with Orton coming out as the sole survivor.

Rest of the show

  • Edge def. R-Truth by pinfall.
  • Chris Jericho def. The Great Khali by submission.  Khali tapped out to the Walls of Jericho.  As Jericho was talking to Sheamus, Khali recovered, and knocked Jericho off the corner, and to the outside area.
  • Melina def. Jillian Hall by pinfall.  Jillian actually controlled most of this match.  After the match, Team Lay-Cool said they had a surprise for Melina at next week’s Raw.
  • The Miz def. John Cena by DQ.  Miz wanted revenge for getting snubbed, but Daniel Bryan ran out and attacked The Miz.  Cena hit Miz with an Attitude Adjustment, and Bryan put him in a variation of the Crossface.
  • Vladmir Koslov & Santino Marella def. The Usos by pinfall.  Koslov got the pinfall.  Tamina protected Santino from getting attacked after the match.
  • Randy Orton def. Ted DiBiase and John Morrison by pinfall.

Closing Thoughts

So, Sheamus takes all night to decide who to face at Night of Champions, and then picks Ryder, to face that night.  It would seem Sheamus didn’t really know what he was doing.  This is what I think should have happened.  Sheamus announces that he wants to face Ryder at Night of Champions, thus exciting Ryder’s one fan.  Then the GM sends an e-mail saying that he gave Sheamus the chance to be a good champ, and pick someone that he thought was worthy of fighting for the title, but Sheamus failed him.  So, since Sheamus couldn’t chose from among the deserving wrestlers, he would have to face all of them.  This would have strengthened the image of Sheamus they’ve been building by him more concerned about keeping the title instead of necessarily beating his opponent.  This would have also kept the GM in a tweener role.

  • Can’t say that I’m really interested in another Santino love story angle.
  • I also hope the Usos losing to Koslov and Santino isn’t a sign of things to come.
  • Seeing the throne reminded me of how much I miss the King of the Ring Tournament.  I’m talking about the real tournament that consisted of 8 guys fighting it out on one show.  Not the month long thing that they called the King of the Ring tournament.
  • Wow, John Cena really is purple.

Double Elimination – NXT 8/17/10

This week there were two eliminations and after each Rookie gave a 1 minute promo on something other than why they shouldn’t be eliminated (all of them actually pretty good), Matt Striker dropped the bomb that one would be eliminated immediately. And it was goodbye for Showtime Percy Watson. As I mourned the elimination of my season 2 pick Watson gave a farewell promo only he could give. Oh yeah!

At the end of the night the 2nd elimination was announced and Husky Harris couldn’t avoid the voting this week and was sent packing. “Dashing” Cody Rhodes was furious at his Rookies elimination, got in everyone’s faces and incited a brawl to close out the show. Harris joined in and took the brunt of the retaliation and blame.

As for the matches…

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Nexus Fights Back: Raw 8/16/10

After getting defeated at Summerslam, the members of Nexus were all a bit upset.  Wade Barrett said that their narrow loss at Summerslam would not be the end of the group.  In fact, they were going to become stronger and cause more damage to the WWE because of it.  John Cena came out, and didn’t really care what Barrett was saying because he was too busy mocking all of the members of Nexus.  It was decided that each member of Nexus would choose their opponent from Team WWE, except Barrett, who was forced to take on Chris Jericho.  Barrett decides that if any member of Nexus lost their match, then they would be exiled from the group.  David Otunga told Barrett that also goes for him.

  • Wade Barrett def. Chris Jericho by pinfall.  Caught Jericho while he was attempting the Codebreaker, then hit him with his finisher.
  • Michael Tarver def. Daniel Bryan by pinfall. The Miz and Alex Riley distracted Bryan, allowing Tarver to roll him up for the pin.  Bryan attacked Miz and Riley after the match, but they got the better of him.
  • Heath Slater def. Edge by count-out. Both wrestlers were on the outside.  Edge went to spear Slater, but Slater got out of the way, and slid into the ring right before the ref counted to 10.
  • Justin Gabriel def. Randy Orton by count-out. The match was supposed to have Bret Hart instead of Orton, but the GM changed it, because he hates Hart and never wants to see him in the ring again.  Sheamus came out, and Orton left the ring to fight him.  Orton fights him through the crowd and is eventually counted out.
  • Skip Sheffield & David Otunga def. R-Truth & John Morrison. Sheffield pinned Morrison after making a blind tag.
  • John Cena def. Darren Young by submission. Young actually controlled a good portion of the match.  After the match, Nexus came out and beat him up.

The non-Nexus vs. WWE stuff

  • Jillian Hall, Maryse & Alicia Fox def. Melina, Gail Kim & Eve by pinfall. Jillian pinned Eve.
  • The Hart Dynasty unveiled new tag team belts.
  • Justin Long plugged his movie, “Going the Distance,” in a backstage segment with The Great Khali.

Closing Thoughts

I was actually pretty disappointed that Team WWE won at Summerslam.  I thought they should have had Nexus win.  Maybe not cleanly win, but someone turning on Team WWE would have worked.  It would have especially worked after Daniel Bryan was revealed as the seventh member of Team WWE.  But alas, that did not happen, so now we have a situation where The Nexus has to save some face, and show that they are still a threat.  Other than Barrett beating Jericho, no one really showed anything.  3 of Nexus’ 5 wins were not clean wins.  Back-to-back matches ending in count outs was bad booking.  Also, Darren Young was not the person I was expecting to lose.  My money would have been on Sheffield and Slater.  On the bright side, at least Young isn’t getting shipped out, and could actually hang around.

  • Finally, after nearly a year and a half, we have a new, single set of tag team titles.  They don’t look bad, but didn’t get that good of a look at them.
  • Last week The Bella Twins won a match.  This week it was Jillian Hall.  Maybe next week Gail Kim will win.
  • With Justin Long’s lack anything significant on the show, I really hope it’s a good sign that the guest host is fading away.  There had not been a guest host in several weeks, and Long’s appearance this week was a single segment late in the show.

Lance Cade dead at 29

This has been all over the internet today – former WWE superstar Lance Cade passed away from apparent heart failure.  I don’t know the details, but I do know that 29 is way to young for anyone to be succumbing to such a malady.  We at the 1/8th Nelson express our condolences to the friends and family.

In other news, Smackdown diva Tiffany has been suspended due to a domestic disturbance between her and her husband (Drew McIntyre) at a San Jose hotel earlier this week.  No word on whether this will effect her scheduled match at SummerSlam.