WWE Raw Report CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 7/19: Ongoing "virtual time" coverage of live Raw following Money in the Bank PPV
Jul 19, 2010 - 10:06:36 PM
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WWE Raw Results
July 19, 2010
Live from Tulsa, Okla.
Aired on USA Network
Report by James Caldwell, Torch assistant editor
Tonight's WWE Raw the night after the Money in the Bank PPV opened with Raw announcers Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler narrating a still photo of John Cena and Sheamus trying to climb out of the cage simultaneously in the main event last night. And Sheamus is still WWE champ. Cole then announced Nexus leader Wade Barrett vs. Mark Henry tonight. The mystery Raw GM also announced Nexus will not be allowed ringside.
In-ring: Justin Roberts announced they're going right to the #1 contender match for the WWE Title. Out first was Randy Orton as Cole and Lawler hyped what's on the line. Apparently they have something bigger in mind later in the show, as this would seem to be the match to hype throughout two hours leading to the main event. Out next was Chris Jericho after Orton's full entrance. Jericho was sporting tape over his right elbow to sell the effects of the Money in the Bank match last night. Cole noted how many championship reigns Orton and Jericho each have, then Edge came out third to round out the field. Cole noted all three of the men can't be 100 percent after the match. After a wide shot of the arena to set the stage for the match, the bell sounded to start things off.
1 -- RANDY ORTON vs. CHRIS JERICHO vs. EDGE -- #1 contender match to WWE Title
Edge and Jericho started things off with a unified attack on Orton. They went for a double backdrop, but Orton pulled out a signature counter with a double DDT. He made a cover on Edge for a two count. Orton then went to work on Edge with a methodical attack as Jericho recovered on the outside. Orton whipped Edge hard into the corner, then went down on both hands to tease the RKO. Edge shoved him away, though, and Orton ran into Jericho for a codebreaker out of nowhere. Jericho attempted a cover, but Edge broke it up. Jericho and Edge then brawled to the outside. Edge rammed Jericho off the announce table and they cut to break with action on the floor.
[Commercial Break. The first 7-Eleven ad aired for the new Slurpee cups featuring Mysterio, Taker, Cena, and Triple H.]
They returned from break with Jericho and Edge still on the outside as Lawler reset that the winner will face Sheamus for the WWE Title at Summerslam. Jericho then crawled back onto the ring apron and Orton bumped him back to the floor. Edge and Jericho tried to crawl back in again, but Edge scampered away and Jericho took the signature spike DDT off the middle rope. Orton tried a cover, but Edge yanked Orton out of the ring. Some good sequences so far in the match. They reset at 9:00 with Edge and Orton in the ring, but Jericho yanked Edge out of the ring and went to work on Orton. Jericho tried a pin with his feet on the ropes, but Orton kicked out in time.
[Q2] At 10:00, Jericho settled into a reverse chinlock on Orton as the crowd rallied behind Orton. They came to their feet and Orton mounted a comeback with two knock-down clotheslines followed by a snap powerslam for a nearfall. Edge then tried to sneak in, but Orton dropped him with a fallaway backbreaker for another two count. Orton kicked Edge to the outside again, then he teased the spike DDT on Jericho again, but Jericho countered with the Walls of Jericho. They went to the Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13 camera shot of Orton trying to fight the hold, then Jericho pulled him back to center ring. Suddenly, Edge entered the ring and grabbed Jericho for a DDT that resulted in a two count.
Edge measured Jericho for a spear moments later, but Jericho countered with a roll-through into the Walls of Jericho. Edge fought the hold and grabbed the bottom rope for a break. Edge tried to come back with a roll-up pin, but Jericho kicked out. Edge then clotheslined Jericho over the top rope and Orton snuck in the back door. He tried the RKO, but Edge blocked with a reverse DDT for another close nearfall. Suddenly, all three men traded nearfalls before all three men hit a triple knock-down clothesline to put everyone on the mat.
They reset with Jericho shoving Edge to the outside, then Orton teased the RKO on Jericho, who blocked. Jericho teased the Lionsault, but Orton moved. Orton then stalked Jericho and finally connected with the RKO. Edge tried to run in with the spear, but Orton dropped him with the RKO. Orton then covered Edge for a three count to win as the crowd popped for Orton's victory. Post-match: Orton maintained his cool demeanor as a graphic showed Orton going to Summerslam. After a replay of the high points in the match, they showed Orton staring into the crowd with an icy glare. It's Sheamus vs. Orton at Summerslam.
WINNER: Orton at 15:10 to become #1 contender. WWE obviously saw how hot the crowd was for Orton almost winning the MITB match last night and pulled the trigger on the hot babyface in the main event of the second-biggest PPV of the year. Strong match despite the dependence on wrestlers escaping/countering/blocking trademark finishing moves for false finishes. The two and three-man spots were well-timed and well-executed in the format. Very interesting start to the show, but accomplishing the goal of getting the Summerslam main event in the hands of the audience right off the bat. (***)
[Commercial Break. For the Houston house show on Friday, WWE is advertising John Cena vs. Sheamus for the WWE Title. Also, Orton vs. Edge in a Texas Street Fight.]
In-ring: Back live, Edge was on the mic demanding Chris Jericho come back out to the ring. Lawler said Edge was ranting and raving throughout the commercial. Edge said this has gone on too long. Jericho slowly walked back out to the ring as Edge recapped this has been going on for 11 years too long. He said they've cost each other too much and inflicted too much punishment to each other for too long.
Jericho marched around the ring and grabbed a mic. He said for the first time in 11 years, they agree on something. He said it ends tonight for you, Edge.Jericho said he had a conversation with Wade Barrett last week and he admitted he's the reason Nexus has achieved the success they've succeeded. Jericho said he taught Nexus everything and he can just snap his finger to get them to do whatever he wants. He said they can end Edge's career right now. Edge said he doesn't understand it because he really doesn't think Nexus agrees with that. He said he thinks Edge would accept his offer rather than Jericho's, since Chris is claiming all of their success for himself.
[Q3] Cue of the Nexus theme music to bring out Barrett, followed by Skip, Otunga, Slater, Darren Young, Tarver, and Gabriel. Barrett said they need to stop arguing amongst themselves. He said they would be lucky to call either one of them an ally. The group started circling around Edge and Barrett said Jericho is right because they could end his career if they want to. Jericho smiled as Nexus began attacking Edge with a seven-on-one beat down. Jericho encouraged Nexus to keep beating him down, then Jericho talked some trash. They picked up Edge and Skip took Edge's own move with a big spear. Jericho told Edge this is what happens. Jericho then slapped on a Walls of Jericho. Nexus watched as Jericho locked in the hold and Edge faded out.
Suddenly, Nexus aligned to stare down at Jericho, who released the hold. Barrett said the funny thing is Edge was right. He said they would like to shut up the guy claiming to be behind Nexus's success. Nexus slowly circled around Jericho, who tried to go after Barrett, but Nexus pulled him back. Jericho and Barrett had a brawl until the numbers game caught up to Jericho. Barrett then landed some right hand strikes before screaming at him that he's nothing. He landed a big right hand before telling Otunga to do some damage. Otunga landed a uranage, then Barrett stood over Jericho's fallen body. Barrett told Jericho he didn't teach him a thing. Nexus stood over Jericho's fallen body, then slowly walked out of the ring satisfied with their work. The crowd booed Nexus as they walked away from the ring. The camera focused on Edge and Jericho KO'ed in and out of the ring before cutting to break.
JC: Very Strong open to this show, stretching out issues involving Orton, Edge, Jericho, and Nexus over the first 35 minutes of the show. Hopefully that doesn't mean 30 minutes of filler in the second hour before whatever the main angle is tonight. (Barrett vs. Henry doesn't count.)
Recap: Back from break, Cole and Lawler recapped the beat downs on Edge and Jericho in the previous segment.
Backstage: Nexus walked into their own personal locker room, then Josh Mathews stopped Wade Barrett before he walked into the door. Mathews asked Barrett if him or any individual member of the group can actually compete with WWE wrestlers, including Mark Henry tonight. Barrett said he guarantees Henry is shaking in his boots, like Mathews. Barrett said they're about to write a new chapter in the history of WWE and it doesn't reflect well for Henry. Mathews walked off, then WWE champ Sheamus came up behind Barrett. Sheamus said he has a proposal he thinks Barrett will want to here. Barrett invited him to step into his "office." Sheamus said he would rather wait out in the hallway. Barrett then walked into the locker room.
Announcers: Cole and Lawler sold they didn't know what to make of that. They proceeded to bring in John Cena from backstage for a video interview. The crowd popped for Cena on TV. A cut over his eye was prominent from the PPV to sell the effects of the cage match. Cena said he's not going to cry or complain about losing the WWE Title match at the PPV. He said he brought it upon himself after not taking Barrett's truce a few weeks ago out of selfish pride. Cena said he wants to meet Wade Barrett and Nexus in the ring tonight. Lawler asked why he would do that. Cena said they made his life miserable and cost him everything. He referenced the group's line that you're either "Nexus or against us," then said his statement right now is that if you can't beat 'em... He walked off the set, leaving the sentence hanging in the air as they cut to break with the crowd gasping at the prospect of Cena joining the group. Nice tease for later in the show.
Announcers: Back live, Cole and Lawler re-visited Cena's comments to reinforce the tease that he might consider joining the group. Lawler said he doesn't want to finish the statement Cena started.
In-ring: Eve came out for a Divas match to let the first 45 minutes of the show breathe. Maryse then came out with Ted DiBiase to face Eve in a familiar Divas division match-up. Lawler and Cole discussed Maryse trying to climb the MITB ladder in the match last night before Ted DiBiase joined the announcers to discuss the match.
2 -- EVE TORRES vs. MARYSE (w/Ted DiBiase)
Maryse talked trash to Eve before the match started, so Eve slapped her. DiBiase noted Maryse will become #1 contender to the Divas Title if she wins tonight. Eve then hit a kick to the face out of the corner and made a cover. Maryse put her foot on the bottom rope in-between the two and three, but the ref didn't see it and awarded Eve the win. DiBiase, agitated, jumped into the ring and screamed at the ref. Suddenly, John Morrison hit the ring in street clothes and sporting a bandage over his left arm to jump DiBiase. Morrison nailed a kick strike to the face, then hit Starship Pain. Morrison stood tall over DiBiase with a more serious demeanor as Maryse sold agitation with things falling apart again. Morrison stared down Maryse as he left the ring, then helped DiBiase recover as DiBiase stared down Morrison.
WINNER: Eve at 1:15. Too short to amount to much, but nice follow-up on DiBiase vs. Morrison to set up what appears to be a singles match at Summerslam. (n/a)
Backstage: They showed WWE champ Sheamus walking down the hallway with a determined look on his face.
NXT tomorrow: Time for the NXT Season 2 Rookies to stand out. Only one episode before another round of eliminations.
In-ring: Justin Roberts introduced the WWE champ Sheamus. Cole recapped Sheamus still being champ thanks to Nexus as he posed in the ring with the title belt. Cole also gave a plug for Sheamus vs. Orton at Summerslam, if Sheamus remains WWE champ. Sheamus's music stopped and the fans booed, which drew a smirk. Sheamus said the record should show he's beaten Cena in a tables match, fatal four-way match, and steel cage match. He said it's no longer a fluke because he's beaten him three times. Sheamus said Cena is in his past now and he's in the back of the line. He said Cena should have done what he did earlier tonight by demanding a truce with Nexus. Sheamus said one year ago, no one had heard of him or Nexus, but now they are the two most powerful entities in the entire WWE.
[Q5 -- second hour] Sheamus said they don't have to like each other, but they've agreed to stay out of each other's business. He announced the truce is in effect, which also means trouble for Randy Orton. He said Orton doesn't stand a chance against him. Sheamus vowed to become the longest-reigning WWE champ of all-time.
Suddenly, The Miz's theme music hit. Miz had the MITB briefcase in hand while the U.S. Title belt was around his waist. Lawler asked if Miz is going to cash in his briefcase right now. Cole plugged Miz being the future of WWE before he began a promo telling Sheamus he has a Miz problem now. Miz said he controls the fate of the WWE Title right now because he possesses this - the MITB briefcase. Miz told Sheamus that every time he's in the ring, he'll be watching him closely. Miz said that should Sheamus beat Orton at Summerslam, maybe Randy hits him with an RKO and he walks out to cash in the briefcase. Or, perhaps he'll jump him in a backstage interview.
Miz said maybe he waits and waits for the moment that his entire career has been leading to: main-eventing WrestleMania. The crowd was mixed with their reaction here. Or, Miz said, maybe he forgets about that and cashes in tonight. Miz smirked and told Sheamus he can call him his celebrity stalker because he'll be watching every breath he makes and every step he takes. The crowd laughed at the musical reference. Sheamus cut off his catchphrase and told him he's Sheamus and Miz is nothing.
And there's the MacBook Pro buzzing with an email from the anonymous Raw GM. Cole stepped to the podium and read an email that should Miz want to cash in his MITB briefcase tonight, he should take a seat at ringside. Cole read that Sheamus is in action right now against this man. Cue up Evan Bourne's theme music to bring out Bourne. Well, there was no sign of Bourne, initially. A ref came running down to the walkway to tell Sheamus to get in the ring. Miz sat down in a chair ringside for a good look at the action. Finally, Bourne walked out still getting dressed for action. Was this a rib on Bourne? Was he taking a Kurt? Awkward set up. The announcers tried to cover by suggesting it was a spontaneous decision and Bourne wasn't ready. Of course, the GM would have had to convey a separate email to someone backstage to cue up Bourne's music. From a kayfabe sense, only Michael Cole should know who Sheamus's opponent would be, so how would anyone know to tell Bourne he has a match? Anyways...
3 -- WWE champion SHEAMUS vs. EVAN BOURNE -- non-title match
Sheamus tried an early pump kick, but Bourne ducked while still fixing his trunks. Bourne then cleared Sheamus to the outside with a kick strike. Sheamus smashed the announce table in frustration while Miz smirked and waved his briefcase in Sheamus's face. They cut to break with Sheamus still complaining on the outside.
Back from break, Sheamus was in control of the match as Miz continued to watch. Sheamus continued to dominate as the crowd tried to rally behind Bourne. Bourne tried to come back with a head scissors, but Sheamus countered with a back breaker for a two count. Sheamus went back to work on Bourne, who got to his feet and landed kick strikes to the thigh. Sheamus then paintbrushed him across the face, so Bourne fired off a kick to the head. Bourne mounted some offense, then hit a heel kick to the face. Sheamus got up and Bourne answered with another kick. Bourne then tried a roll up, but Sheamus kicked out. Bourne followed with a knock-down kick and Bourne went up top to tease the Air Bourne. Sheamus rolled to the outside, though, so Bourne redirected his attack with a flying splash on the floor.
[Q6] On the floor, Sheamus shoved Bourne into a cameraman as the ref was in the middle of a ten count. Bourne made it back into the ring, but Sheamus crotched him across the middle rope after using the ref as a shield. Sheamus then hit his big bicycle kick that floored Bourne and took the air out of the building. Sheamus made the cover for the win as Miz mockingly applauded ringside.
WINNER: Sheamus at 10:31. Decent TV match that kept Sheamus strong and kept Bourne in the main event picture with a decent showing against the champ. Sheamus gave him good offense to make sure Bourne got over his signature spots in the match. The key is to reinforce that Bourne belongs in the picture even if he loses. (*1/2)
Post-match: Miz suddenly hit the ring with the briefcase in hand. He landed multiple case shots to the stomach and back as the crowd popped. Miz thought about whether to cash in the briefcase, then he grabbed Sheamus from behind. He teased the Skullcrushing Finale into the briefcase and he connected after a struggle. The crowd popped for the potential cash-in. Miz then decided to cash in the MITB briefcase right then and there. Justin Roberts made it official and Miz took off his t-shirt to prepare for the match. The ref checked on Sheamus, who continued to be out cold in the ring. Miz was like a caged animal preparing to fight.
Suddenly, R-Truth's music hit and Truth ran to the ring. Miz decided to wave it off and he grabbed the briefcase. Truth's beat down didn't work and Miz scampered away with the case in hand. Cole said the bell never rang to make the match official, so Miz still has the case. With Truth chasing off Miz, Sheamus collected himself in the ring and struggled to his feet. They managed to accomplish one thing here: the first babyface pop for Miz possibly ever. Nice tease for a cash-in by Miz, but Truth was positioned as a heel for one night by ruining a potential moment for the audience wanting to see something historic.
Backstage: Miz clutched the MITB briefcase as Josh Mathews asked him what his reaction is to R-Truth interfering in the cash-in process. Miz said Truth just cost him the WWE Title because he had Sheamus KO'ed. He vowed to take it out on Truth. Miz said he has an entire year to cash in his briefcase - whether that's tomorrow or July 17, 2011. He said he will eventually take his rightful position as WWE champion.
Announcers: Cole and Lawler reset the action before Cole fed to a flashback clip from Summerslam 1998 to reinforce the magnitude of the Summerslam PPV.
Summerslam flashback: They went back to Summerslam 1998 at MSG with Jim Ross's voice introducing the PPV. It was Austin vs. Taker for the WWF Title. They showed clips of the high points from the match, with Ross calling the action, before showing Austin prevailing as champ.
Backstage: Sheamus had an ice pack on his head walking down the hallway with a medic checking on him. He walked past the Bella Twins and Gail Kim, who were giggling. He shouted at them this isn't funny. Randy Orton then walked up to him and said it's too bad what happened to him out there. Orton said being champ makes him a target. He said he doesn't care who the champ is at Summerslam because that person will be wearing a giant bulls-eye. He said he won't be hitting that bulls-eye with a spear or an arrow, but with an R-K-O. Sheamus sold that he didn't want to hear any of this after a rough night at the office.
Backstage: They showed Cena contemplating his life and future. Lawler posed the question of whether Cena will really join Nexus tonight.
Muscle & Fitness promo: They showed a heavily, heavily airbrushed cover for the new Muscle & Fitness magazine featuring John Morrison on the cover.
In-ring: Santino and Kozlov came out together for a tag match. Already in the ring were William Regal and Zack Ryder.
4 -- WILLIAM REGAL & ZACK RYDER vs. SANTINO MARELLA & KOZLOV
Santino and Ryder started things off as Cole plugged Raw coming up on the 900th episode of the series next month. Santino then tried a handspring move, but Ryder ducked underneath him and Santino kinda fell to the mat. Santino then tagged in Kozlov and Regal entered for Ryder. Kozlov then tagged in Santino, who instantly lost control of the match to Regal. Regal screamed as he executed a signature left-arm lariat for a two count. Ryder followed with some offense to keep the heels in control on Santino. Ryder tried to follow with a top rope dropkick, but Santino moved out of the way. Kozlov then tagged in to no reaction and worked on Ryder. Kozlov landed a big powerslam and scored a two count when Regal tried to interfere. Kozlov followed up with the Iron Curtain on Ryder before Santino begged to tag in. Santino then hit his sailor's salute diving fist drop on Ryder for the win.
WINNERS: Santino & Kozlov at 2:55. Poor Ryder. And the Santino and Kozlov team must continue. The match was fine and harmless, overall. (*)
Backstage: They zoomed in on the Nexus logo on Heath Slater's t-shirt. Wade Barrett talked to the group before walking down the hallway in anticipation of facing Mark Henry with Nexus banned from ringside.
In-ring: Nexus's theme music hit and Wade Barrett walked out to the ring alone and looking confident. They stretched out his intro for a while, then Mark Henry came out sporting a bandage over his forehead to sell the effects of the MITB match.
5 -- WADE BARRETT vs. MARK HENRY
The bell sounded and Barrett ducked under the ropes to stand on the ring apron for some space from Henry. Barrett heelishly demanded Henry back up, so he re-entered the ring. Henry knocked him down with a head butt and Barrett rolled back to the outside. Barrett took his time re-entering the ring and they locked up with Barrett landing a knee to the gut. Barrett tried a head butt, but Henry no-sold and shot him a look before landing a big chop to the head. Henry followed with a knock-down clothesline for a one count. Henry went back to work on Barrett, who came back with a head butt and right hands that staggered Henry.
Barrett tried a running clothesline, but Henry countered with a powerslam for a two count. Henry then dragged Barrett to the corner for a big move, but Nexus came out on stage. Henry was distracted momentarily, which allowed Barrett to cut him off on the second rope. Barrett then lifted Henry in the air for his overhead slam finisher, but Henry kinda slipped off and Barrett just dropped him hard to the mat. Barrett made a cover for the win.
WINNER: Barrett at 3:20. Fine TV match. Barrett scored a needed win to give the group some measure of credibility in the ring, while enhancing their heel heat with the distraction for the win. Henry isn't exactly a strong babyface character, but it was fine. (*)
[Q8] Post-match: Nexus joined Barrett in the ring as Barrett held his back selling the effects of slamming Henry. Barrett demanded John Cena come out and meet them right now. They replayed Barrett finishing off Henry as Cole suggested Barrett proved Nexus is just as good individually as a group. Except for the distraction, of course. Cole was basically defending Nexus, which can be interpreted as him secretly being the leader of the group or WWE simply needing the "voice of the show" to endorse Nexus, even if it lacked credibility. They cut to a shot of John Cena walking backstage in anticipation of the final segment.
In-ring: Nexus was still assembled in the ring as Cole repeated the line that Barrett may have proved Nexus is just as strong individually as a group. They recapped the end of Henry vs. Barrett, then cut back to the ring. Michael Tarver started a promo for Nexus by suggesting they will make Cena's life miserable if he doesn't join the group. He said Cena needs to show some remorse for assaulting Darren "weird haircut" Young and the rest of the group last night. Tarver said if he does, then maybe they will consider ending this feud. Tarver said everything that's happened is on him. Tarver paused.
John Cena's music hit and Cena slowly walked out on stage to a big pop. Cena looked into the crowd as he contemplated what's up next. Cena walked to the ring and stood on the ring apron as his music stopped. Nexus was in a straight line in the ring as Cena addressed them from the ring apron. Cena thanked them for meeting him in the ring, then he slowly entered the ring. Cena recapped Nexus costing him two WWE Title matches since they've arrived on the scene. He said he's apparently not part of their big picture and Sheamus made a truce with them. He said he should have done that a long time ago.
Cena paused before saying, "I'm sorry, guys, uh..." He said he's putting himself in front of all them to look them all in the eye. Barrett said their answer is no. He said he's not interested in a truce or any type of peace. Barrett said he wants something much, much bigger. Barrett paused for a "Cena, Cena" chant. He told Cena not to listen to the fans, but listen to him. Barrett said he wants Cena to join the group. He wants him to join the Nexus. Cena stared blankly ahead. Barrett said Cena can achieve something ten times greater than everything he's accomplished in his career. He said Nexus is the present and future of WWE, and together, they would be unstoppable. Barrett told him he doesn't have much of a choice because "you're either Nexus or against us."
The crowd screamed for Cena not to join the group as he stared down at the mat contemplating things. Cena looked up at the Nexus group and stared them down before looking into the crowd. Cena just shook his head and said he can't do it. The crowd popped. Barrett took a deep breath and said that's very unfortunate because they have a very different proposition. He told Cena he could leave the ring and show the world he's a coward...or, he could stand in the ring and they will give him the most vicious beating Nexus has every given. Cena stared ahead again and shook his head from side to side. Cena teased backing away, then he left the ring.
[Q9 -- over-run] Cena started to leave up the entranceramp, then he stopped at the top of the ramp. He said he needs to say one more thing. Cena said whether he does it by himself or does it with help, he will take each and every one of the Nexus group down. Cena started walking back to the ring. He said the peace offering was just a test to see how Nexus would react. Cena said he got his answer. He said he's been quietly forming a team. "A team that will take down Nexus at Summerslam," he said. Cena said Nexus wanted him to join the group, but now the Nexus is history at Summerslam.
Edge's music hit and out came Edge selling ribs to join Cena on the entrance ramp. Edge and Cena together. That's a sight. John Morrison came out next with a determined look on his face. R-Truth was out next. Great Khali was out next. Does this tie together Ranjin Singh wanting a more aggressive Khali? Or, is that too logical? Anyways, Chris Jericho came out sixth to join Cena's group. And the final member of Cena's team is...Bret Hart. There's your big surprise on the show, which popped the crowd huge.
Hart walked out on stage and slapped hands with Cena, then Team Cena stormed the ring and chased off Nexus, who ran through the stands to the top of the stands. Team Cena stood tall in the ring with Bret Hart smiling as Nexus stood their ground at the top of the arena. Lawler protected Nexus by saying he knows Nexus will regroup and come back with something, but look at the team Cena has assembled. They closed with a final shot of Team Cena standing tall in the ring. PYB (3) talk time: 13:26.
CLOSING THOUGHTS: Very strong episode of Raw advancing from the MITB PPV to Summerslam. Virtually everything on the show had a purpose and the action on the show was strong throughout. It came across like WWE recognized a sense of urgency to hit the ground running hyping their second biggest PPV of the year and they set up two strong matches for Summerslam in the process. Bret Hart's surprise return was pretty big too after a strong show-closing segment where the audience was hanging on everything Cena was doing or saying. I'm not sure about some of the picks for Cena's group e.g. R-Truth and Khali, but WWE can focus on Cena, Jericho, and Edge as the top players going into the match. Well done from WWE tonight.
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