TV REPORTS KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT 11/20 (hour two): DX & Cena & Flair vs. Show & Orton & Edge & Kenny, Lita vs. Mickey
Nov 20, 2006 - 10:22:00 PM
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By Wade Keller, Torch editor
NOVEMBER 20, 2006
AIRED ON USA NETWORK
Hardy vs. Nitro in a ladder match continued. They replayed Hardy's Swanton Dive onto the ladder several times. Nitro threw a ladder at Hardy, and caught around his neck. Nitro then knocked Hardy over with a dropkick. Lawler said it was like a ring toss game. Nitro grabbed another ladder from under the ring and threw it into the ring. Nitro gave Hardy a neckbreaker, then rammed the ladder onto his stomach. He set the ladder up in center ring. Hardy reversed a Nitro whip and sent Hardy into the ladder. Hardy then set up the original ladder in center-ring. He climbed one side as Nitro climbed the other side. Hardy sunset flipped Nitro off the top onto the mat. Hardy then leaped off the top rope and propelled himself off the top of the ladder with his hands and landed with a legdrop on Nitro's chest. Ross said Hardy's spine has to be "screamin' here" after that atomic-drop like impact. Hardy easily surviving that landing does make moves like Cena's FU seem pretty pedestrian. Hardy had Nitro trapped under the ladder, then he climbed it and pulled down the belt to win.
WINNER: Hardy at 18:00 to retain the IC Title.
STAR RATING: ***3/4 -- We've seen enough ladder matches over the years to not be easily impressed by big spots, but those big spots were well executed. Nitro's buiding a rep with these types of matches. They shorten careers, but they also earn the respect of WWE fans, for better or for worse. That's one of the more memorable Raw matches in a long time and better than the Christian vs. Rhino cage match last week on prime time TNA Impact.
-They showed some Baltimore Ravens acted nuts at ringside.
-Backstage, Grisham interviewed Dusty Rhodes. Dusty said Spirit Squad have a rude awakening coming at Survivor Series. "Tonight, Nicky, let me tell you what. I'm gonna make your back crack, your liver quiver, and your knees freeze." Fun promo. Vintage Dusty, actually. Fans who didn't see his work in his prime can see why he drew based on just that.
3 -- DUSTY RHODES vs. NICKY OF SPIRIT SQUAD
No polka dots, thankfully. Dusty didn't get much of a pop based on the TV feed, but they did find some fans cheering and bowing during his ring intro. Ross acknowledged that Piper had "successful surgery" just a few days ago. Nice of WWE to explain Piper's departure from the Survivor Series line-up, rather than assuming every viewers was following the story on WWE.com this past week. Dusty messed with Nicky early, teasing a bionic elbow, sending Nicky backtracking. Nicky poked Dusty in the eyes to get control at 2:00. Ross said Survivor Series will be the first time Dusty and Flair have ever teamed, to the best of his knowledge. Anyone out there know of a time they teamed? Dusty hit a couple bionic elbows at 3:00, then dropped his elbow and scored the clean pin.
WINNER: Dusty in 4:00.
STAR RATING: 1/2* -- Not bad, actually. Not much to it, but not bad.
-Backstage, Edge and Lita were being kissy-facey. Orton and Maria walked up to them. Orton said Maria is 100 percent recovered from the beating Umaga gave her couple weeks ago. She asked if Edge thinks Team RKO can win tomorrow and at Survivor Series. Before they could answer, they were distracted by a ruckus elsewhere backstage. The camera followed them into Cryme Tyme's locker room. Orton said that as long as Cryme Tyme are in the tag division, they're going to have the tag belts a long time. Edge interrupted Cryme Tyme's rant against them and said he has no idea what they're saying. Edge said he is down with black people as he spent a lot of time getting down with Whitney Houston music videos as a teenager. It's sad that anytime black guys show up on Raw, it's racially newsworthy. They began watching "See No Evil" in animated fashion with Maria sitting between them.
4 -- LITA vs. MICKEY JAMES
Coach came out and made Mickey wear a hood over her head. Ross said that was ridiculous. Lita beat her up for a minute, then DDT'd her, moonsaulted her, and pinned her.
WINNER: Lita in 1:30.
STAR RATING: n/a
-Lita grabbed the mic afterward and said that win was another shining example of how she is the most dominant champion the women's division has ever seen. She said for seven years people like Cena and DX and the fans have disrespected her. She said the fans have a short memory and forget who she is and what she's done. She said she single-handedly revolutionized women's roles in "the WWE." She said before her all women were eye candy. She said there were no moonsaults and Litacanranas. She said she made sacrifices such as tearing apart her knee or breaking her neck or being berated by fans, she inspired a generation of women. She said without her, there would be no Mickey James or Trish Stratus. Officials tended to James at ringside. Lita said after Survivor Series, she's going to beat Mickey and then walk away from WWE. She said it will be her last match because she's retiring as the greatest champion ever. Ross and Lawler reacted with shock. That's been coming for a while, as Lita has planned for months to leave WWE when her contract expired this fall.
-They cut to Edge backstage who nodded as he watched Lita celebrate her win. Orton asked if Edge was ready to head to the ring. As they headed toward the entrance tunnel, Nicky and Show joined them. They said they were ready.
-As ring intros took place for the main event, Ross and Lawler previewed the entire line-up for Survivor Series.
5 -- RIC FLAIR & JOHN CENA & TRIPLE H & SHAWN MICHAELS vs. BIG SHOW & EDGE & RANDY ORTON & KENNY
They brawl began before DX made their way to the ring. After a minute of brawling, they came out and helped clear the ring of the heels. Once again, DX were given the top star treatment ahead of Cena. When Edge was left alone against all four babyfaces, he got bug-eyed, then got knocked around for a minute. Michaels hit a top rope elbow. Show entered the ring and knocked around the faces. He man-handled DX and set up a double-chokeslam, but Flair kicked him between the legs from behind. DX kicked him betweenthe legs, then Cena shoulder tackled him out of the ring. The match had yet to officially begin at this point.
The tag match was in progress as they returned. Kenny grounded Michaels briefly. Michaels quickly came back, but Kenny then tagged in Orton. Orton gave Michaels the (Ron) Garvin Stomp. Show tagged in and gave Michaels a big boot and a running legdrop. Hunter landed on Show from behind with a forearm to break up a pin attempt. Ross said regarding Kenny, "He's sitting at the grown up table tonight." That's a good way to put it. Raw has portrayed so few wrestlers as being "grown ups" relative to Cena, DX, Edge, and Orton lately that when you see someone new in the mix like Kenny, it feels out of place and noteworthy. Michaels fought back against Edge with some chops. Orton tagged in and went for an RKO, but Michaels blocked it. At 5:00 Michaels hot-tagged Cena who went into his full finishing routine on Kenny. When he lifted him for an FU, Big Show nailed him in the face with a big boot, then fended off Flair, Hunter, and Michaels. Eventually the faces overwhelmed Show with a flurry of offensive moves. They knocked Show to the floor. Cena then gave Kenny an FU for the win.
WINNERS: Cena & DX & Flair in 7:00.
STAR RATING: *1/4 -- How did they get through that match without once mentioning Flair's past with Hunter in Evolution?
-After the match, everyone on Survivor Series ran into the ring for a battle royal type brawl. Ross broke out a variatioin of his signature line, "It's breaking down in Baltimore."
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