TV REPORTS CALDWELL'S WWE RAW REPORT 8/6: Ongoing virtual time coverage of live Raw
Aug 6, 2007 - 10:32:00 PM
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By James Caldwell, Torch columnist
WWE Raw Live Report
August 6 in Buffalo, N.Y.
The show started cold with Vince McMahon walking backstage. Coach approached him and welcomed him back to the show. McMahon then told Coach to send every WWE wrestler to the ring for the opening of the show. When asked why, McMahon said he is expressing his freedom of expression as a citizen of the country.
After the regular Raw intro aired, referees and jobbers led the entire roster to the ring. With everyone on the Raw roster in or around the ring, Vince McMahon's music hit and he walked out on stage. His voice was quite hoarse. He has a number of subjects to cover tonight. McMahon started by returning to the limo explosion angle from two months ago. After the footage aired, McMahon said he staged his own demise because he needed to know whether the fans really cared. He said he's a sensitive human being and he needed some positive reinforcement. McMahon said the outpouring of sympathy and concern was overwhelming.
He then brought up the U.S. Congress. "What?" chants led to a repeat of McMahon saying United States Congress. McMahon said he'll talk about his version of the hypocrisy of the news media. And then his immediate family. Coach walked out on stage a few minutes late and McMahon gave him a brief look before telling everyone in the ring that they're going to have a good ole' fashioned battle royale tonight. He said the winner will become the new general manager of Raw. Coach was flabbergasted. He then called for the bell.
1 -- BATTLE ROYALE TO DETERMINE NEW GM
The divas bailed from ringside while the male wrestlers began brawling in the ring. Umaga tossed people out of the ring left and right. Jerry Lawler had a good laugh when King Booker was eliminated from behind by Sandman after he kept looking at Lawler ringside. They cut to break with about 12 men left in the ring.
Back from a break, there were about eight or nine men left in the ring. A bunch of wrestlers tried to gang up on Umaga, but they were unable to dump him over. Umaga then picked up his dominance with a Samoan Spike to Venis for an elimination. Umaga then tried to eliminate Kendrick, but he took himself over the top rope. There goes the favorite. Mr. Kennedy was out next, then Hacksaw Duggan. Final four came down to Shelton Benjamin, Cody Rhodes, Carlito, and Sandman. Sandman struggled to keep his shirt on while Shelton battled with Cody. Sandman and Shelton then had a bit of an odd exchange. It looked like Sandman was wearing cement shoes out there. Well, he was a construction worker at one time. Cody tried to rally the crowd with a flurry of offense on Shelton while Carlito tried to create movement with Sandman. Shelton then tossed Cody over the top rope, but Cody skinned the cat back into the ring. Carlito quickly tossed him over the top rope, though.
Sandman got hung up top and Shelton cat jumped to the top turnbuckle and flung Sandman down to the center ring. Carlito and Shelton started fighting on the apron and Sandman ran them off the apron to apparently win the match. The crowd exploded. Fans thought of all the possibilities. A new direction in WWE. A new dawn with Sandman as GM. But, suddenly, all of that was dashed when William Regal snuck back into the ring from out of nowhere and threw Sandman over the top rope to win the battle royale.
WINNER: William Regal in 14:00 to become new GM. This all begs the question of whether Regal was in the ring when the bell sounded ala Hornswoggle. Oh wait, there are different rules for an Open Invitation Battle Royale vs. a Completely Random Battle Royale with No Explanation of Rules Ahead of Time. Obviously, desperate times call for recycling storylines with the Regal as GM program. (*1/2)
After the match, Regal killed about five minutes of time celebrating and parading around the ring while they dug up some commercial break footage of Regal coming up lame during the match and sneaking under the ring to sell an injury. Lame.
They recapped the end of the battle royale then cut backstage where McMahon and Coach were going over some papers. McMahon said he is holding in his hands two different letters from Congress. He said two committees want to investigate WWE at the same time. McMahon said it's like Barney Fife running an investigation. File that one away for the fall hearings. He said back in the day, President Benjamin Franklin - and Coach cut him off and said Franklin was never a president, but he was on the $100 bill. McMahon said Coach must be worried about his job, but not to worry because he will be William Regal's assistant. Coach was indignant.
They showed a video clip on Triple H returning at Summerslam.
Backstage, Todd "soccer host" Grisham hyped Hunter before interviewing King Booker and Sharmell. Booker said Hunter and Jerome Lawler are phonies and he is the only true king in the WWE. He said the loser of tonight's match between himself and Lawler will have to place a crown on the winner's head next week on Raw at MSG.
They're continuing the Cena vs. Carlito Summerslam feud with Cena on the Cabana tonight.
Highlanders were in the ring. Snitsky then walked out thirsty for some Scotch.
2 -- SNITSKY vs. RORY HIGHLANDER (w/Robby)
Snitsky with a clothesline and pumphandle slam on Rory for the win. He drooled on the way out of the ring, then Robby checked on Rory.
WINNER: Snitsky at 0:15. Who cares? Honestly. (n/a)
Backstage, McMahon was talking to a random man. Coach then approached McMahon with a cell phone and said it's his accountant. McMahon took the call from George the Accountant and asked if the other shoe dropped. He then told him to open them (financial books) up. Nothing to hide. Audit everything. And the same thing will happen this time: they're going to end up owing him money. He hung up and said he's being audited by the I.R.S. and the news media is going to have a field day with all sort of angles on his audit. Maybe he's laundering money through a Colombian drug cartel. He said the difference between the news media and the WWE is not a damn thing. They're both in the entertainment business and facts don't mean anything anymore. He said they could roll all the news media shows into one extension of Entertainment Tonight. McMahon sighed deeply as Coach smirked, then he walked away. The punchline was a camera shot of Irwin R. Schyster sitting in a chair in the background reading the Financial Times newspaper. That's a classic piece of manipulation from McMahon, using his TV forum as his soapbox. As a viewer, maybe you're a little frustrated while McMahon is acting like a spoiled brat who had his box of 365 crayons taken away for bad behavior, then McMahon pulls the rug out with a funny punch line to remind you that the product, the show, the...oops...deaths, shouldn't be taken seriously, effectively belittling a real issue at hand.
Jillian Hall walked out with the concert headset mic on. She asked Lillian about her new album, which Lillian plugged. Jillian polled the crowd to see if they want to hear Lillian sing. The crowd said they wanted to hear Lillian, but Jillian jumped in and started her poor rendition of a Britney Spears song. Mickie James interrupted and bounced to the ring for a match.
3 -- JILLIAN HALL vs. MICKIE JAMES
Mickie had a flurry of offense early on, but Jillian came back with a full nelson face buster for the win. After the match, Jillian crouched on the mat and stared down Lillian, who wasn't sure how to react. Neither was anyone else.
WINNER: Jillian in 2:00. A good flurry at times, but inconsequential. (1/2*)
Backstage, Coach offered reluctant congratulations to William Regal. Coach reminded Regal that he's executive assistant. Regal then said he's always wanted to be host of a game show. He told Coach to find some contestants, come up with a set, and help him run the Dating Game show.
Carlito came out for the new and not-yet-improved Cabana. He said some people think Carlito doesn't have any juevos, but he's not afraid of anybody. Carlito said things went so well last weekthat he decided to have the same guest on his show this week. John Cena's music hit and he came out to a strong pop, but the boos were more noticeable this week. He jumped in the ring and stared a hole in Carlito while the boos showered down.
Meaning business, Cena shoved Carlito down to one of the reclining chairs before putting on a big smile. He said Carlito has allowed him to host Cena's Cabana tonight. Cena said Huey Lewis will be here, but first, the current WWE champion, John Cena. He started interviewing himself while Carlito just sat there dumfounded. It's like the news segments on Airplane. Only fewer accents. And far less comedic brilliance. Cena then asked for footage from last week of Carlito nailing the back stabber on Cena last week to score a win. He then said he couldn't help but notice another individual in the video: someone in his underwear and looking metrosexual. Cena then cut a promo on Randy Orton. He said the champ is here. His alter-ego Jay Leno said the catchphrase is a little clichéd, and he can see Cena at the biggest party of the summer. Cena then did his top three reasons for trashing the Cabana and beating the crap out of Carlito.
Cena held up a coconut glass. 3) These are the only nuts Carlito will ever have. 2) Carlito would rather swallow a banana. 1) That is cool. Cena then punched Carlito in the face and started beating him down before Randy Orton slipped into the ring. Cena saw him coming, though, and avoided the RKO. Orton bailed, then Cena dropped Carlito with the FU. He ripped off his t-shirt, then William Regal walked out. He told Cenar that if he wants a fight, he has one. Regal told Orton and Carlito to decide who faces Cena tonight. Or something like that.
They aired a video promo hyping the return of SNME on Saturday, August 18 on NBC. Is that really necessary?
Backstage, Carlito and Orton talked to Regal about who should face Cena tonight. Orton said Carlito beat Cena last week and he's facing Cena for the WWF...er...E Title at Summerslam, so they decided Umaga should face Cena. Regal liked the idea, so he booked it. McMahon then told Regal to have a seat. He said he likes the match, but he needs to confide something in Regal. And a few million other viewers. McMahon said he needs to address his family. He said Shane was nowhere to be found after he was blown up while Stephanie cut a very impassioned promo the same day she talked to three attorneys about her share of the family fortune. McMahon said his wife was being "consoled" by one of his lifelong friends and employees, Basil DeVito. He said he needs to bring the family back together. It's time for the goodness in him to come out. Stay the course. Nothing can stop the family from getting back together. Nothing can stop them.
King Booker and Sharmell came to the ring for the Booker vs. Lawler match.
4 -- KING BOOKER (w/Sharmell) vs. JERRY LAWLER
Booker bailed to the outside early on after Lawler took the initial control. Back in the ring, Lawler nailed Booker with straight right hands before Booker took a shortcut in order to gain control. Booker slapped on a hammerlock while demanding the ref ask Lawler if he wanted to give up. Crowd got hot with a "Jerry" chant as Lawler came to his feet and broke the hold with jabs to the ribs. He went for a dropkick, but Booker moved and went back on the attack. Sharmell distracted Lawler, then Booker walked into the axe kick for the win. After the match, Booker and Sharmell celebrated while Ross talked about Lawler having to crown Booker on next week's Raw.
WINNER: Booker in 7:00. Standard TV match. Crowd was into Lawler, which helped the match flow well. (*1/4)
They cut backstage where Mr. Kennedy was walking to the ring with his trademark goofy smirk.
Ringside, Jim Ross gave us an update on Bobby Lashley. He said Lashley has a torn rotator cuff and Dr. James Andrews will perform surgery on Lashley Tuesday morning. They don't know the severity of the injury, which will be determined during surgery. Mr. Kennedy's music interrupted before Ross could finish the medical update. Kennedy asked a quick question about what Lashley is hearing right now. He said Lashley - and everyone else from now - is hearing... Kennedy. He continued to shout his name, then the video faded out to a commercial. Odd.
Backstage, Orton and Carlito gave Umaga a pep talk about taking out Cena tonight.
A graphic came on the screen for WWE Dating Game. In the ring, William Regal was standing behind a podium with the Jeritron plasma screen hanging over his head with the game show graphic. Bachelor #1 was Hacksaw Duggan. He said he has his suit, tie, and a massive piece of wood. Ron Simmons was bachelor #2. Regal said he likes his smoking, gambling, and he has a very limited vocabulary. Simmons said his catchphrase. Bachelor #3 was Santino Marella. Sporting a sling, Santino sat in his chair as Regal said he was brutalized by Umaga last week, just like he brutalizes the English language. "I'm in pain," Santino said with a smile. Regal then introduced Maria as the contestant for the game. Maria and her leggy dress sat down in a chair while Regal explained the rules of the game. Question #1 was directed at Duggan for how she knows he would be on his best behavior. He said he wouldn't call her a hooooooo. Question #2 was for Simmons, who said he would bring Maria spam! for breakfast. Santino cut off Maria and told her just to pick him. Maria thought it was a horrible Santino impression from bachelor #3. Maria asked Simmons what war he would go back and stop. 'Nam! Simmons said. Santino cut off Simmons and Duggan and told Maria that the other bachelors hate puppies and babies. Duggan and Santino went nose-to-nose and Duggan told Santino to stand up because he couldn't tell if Santino was already standing up.
Regal cut them off and told Maria to make her pick. Fans popped for Duggan, popped louder for Simmons, then booed Santino. Maria went with bachelor #2 and Ron Simmons walked to the other side of the curtain and hugged Maria. Regal was about to announce the prize pack, but Santino cut off Regal and said he is already a couple with Maria. Simmons told Santino to Scram! Santino said no one could make him leave the ring. Umaga's music then hit and he walked to the ring. Simmons left with Maria. Santino then bailed before he could take another beating from Umaga.
Backstage, Coach was checking his messages, then a red-headed man walked into the shot and presented a summons for Mr. McMahon. Coach signed the summons, then the red-headed man handed Coach a copy for McMahon to have. Coach went ahead and read the first few pages. He smiled, then said he has to find Mr. McMahon.
Umaga was still in the ring after the break. John Cena then came out for the main event match.
5 -- WWE champion JOHN CENA vs. IC champion UMAGA -- non-title match
Umaga quickly went on the offensive without wasting much time. He ran over Cena with a hard clothesline, then picked up Cena as the vocal male fans chanted, "Cena sucks." Cena made a short comeback before Umaga nailed him in the face with a spin kick, clearing Cena to the floor. Cena held his head in pain as they cut to a break.
Back from break, Cena was in Umaga's clutches in center ring. They had a test of strength of sorts, then Cena tried to catch Umaga with an FU, but Umaga crashed down on Cena's back. Umaga went back on the attack while Cena staggered around the ring. Cena suddenly came back with a top rope splash attempt, but Umaga caught him in mid-air for a powerslam spinning sidewalk slam that shook the ring and popped the anti-Cena fans.
[Q9 -- over-run]
At the top of the over-run, Umaga went up top for a big splash, but Cena moved and slapped on the STFU in center ring. Suddenly, Orton and Carlito hit the ring and jumped Cena. The ref called for the bell on a DQ. Orton and Carlito placed Cena in the corner, then they tried to rally Umaga for the big rear splash, but he didn't like being told what to do. He dropped Orton, then Carlito. The fans cheered, but they were slightly confused. Umaga then surveyed Carlito and Cena, who were both in position for a charging rear splash. He went for Carlito, but Carlito moved and bailed to the outside. Regal then came out and announced Carlitar and Orton vs. Umagar and Cenar on next week's Raw from MSG.
WINNER: Cena via DQ in 8:00. Too much happening for Umaga's half-attempted babyface turn to mean much. Crowd was hot for the Cena-Umaga match-up while it lasted, which isn't a surprise. Umaga has been consistently one of the best workers on the roster in 2007 and his chemistry with Cena is good. (*3/4)
Backstage, McMahon big footed his way past the roster just like the night he was blown up. He walked past Paul London, who tried to keep a straight face for McMahon. He told him to keep the smile on his face. McMahon walked out the exit door again, then turned to see the same two guys sitting in the loading dock area talking to themselves. He turned and looked back at the arena again, then walked to the white limo again. He carefully approached the door handle, then stepped inside the limo again. Before McMahon closed the door, Coach ran up to the limo and handed McMahon the summons. He told McMahon to read it. McMahon accused Coach of reading it, so he demanded that Coach explain the summons. Coach said he's being served by the state of Connecticut with a "paternity suit" for an illegitimate child. He said there's another McMahon running around somewhere. McMahon took a deep breath as the show signed off. Somehow, this is going to end up with Eugene as McMahon's illegitimate son.
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