TV REPORTS CALDWELL'S WWE RAW REPORT 9/24: Ongoing virtual time coverage of live Raw
Sep 24, 2007 - 10:11:50 PM
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By James Caldwell, Torch columnist
WWE Raw Live Report
September 24 in Milwaukee, Wisc.
The show started with acting GM Jonathan Coachman, who had a line of security guards surrounding the ring. He said he has an announcement to make that will severely affect Randy Orton's career. Coach then rolled footage of the Orton vs. Cena feud, including Orton giving Mr. Cena the RKO at the end of Raw last week. Back live, Coach said he had no idea that Randy Orton was going to brandish handcuffs last week. Due to Orton's actions, he has suspended Orton indefinitely. He said behavior such as this is unconscionable. Coach then explained that he has security around to make sure Cena doesn't attack him to take out his frustrations with Orton suspended. Coach then introduced Vince McMahon, who strolled out past the security. He said authority figures should be respected and their power should be respected. Vince said one chief offender is Triple H. He said he's tired of the embarrassment from Hunter, so he's going to do something about it. Vince said Hunter is going to walk from the ring defeated tonight, then he pointed out the cage hanging above the ring tonight for his match against Carlito. Vince didn't exactly sound confident when saying Carlito's name. He then said it would be a handicap steel cage match. The fans booed, so Vince told them too bad. Vince then announced himself as the tag partner for Carlito. Coach put on a shocked look on his face. Vince then guaranteed victory over Hunter tonight. He then brought up another embarrassment and said he owes an apology.
Vince reluctantly introduced Hornswoggle to a big pop. Hornswoggle danced out to the ring and Vince was all-smiles. He hugged Vince's leg, then Vince said he owes him an apology. Vince said he really didn't mean it when he said he was embarrassed by having Hornswoggle as his son. He said he was upset last week because he wasn't sure if he would be like his other money-hungry kids. They shared "I love yous" and hugs and everyone smiled. Vince talked about Hornswoggle having new power as a McMahon. "The power to make decisions and not to be questioned for them," Vince said. Oh someone's on a power trip tonight. Vince said he had someone special for Hornswoggle. Melina's music hit and she came out in a short skirt and low-cut top. Hornswoggle's eyes nearly popped out of his head. Melina entered the ring and Hornswoggle tried to cover his lap with his jacket. Melina played nice and said she wants to get to know Hornswoggle a little bit. She asked if Hornswoggle wants to get to know her. She called him Horny and Vince quietly urged Hornswoggle to have a moment with Melina. Hornswoggle then tackled Melina and rolled around on the mat. Vince finally pulled Hornswoggle away and Melina recollected herself. Vince then set them away on a date to have a beer since they're in Milwaukee. They left hand-in-hand and Vince reminded Hornswoggle to use protection.
With Hornswoggle off with Melina, Coach said William Regal is supposed to return next week as GM, but he should retain power. Suddenly, John Cena's music hit and security filled the ring to form a blockade in front of Coach and Vince. Cena started chucking chairs into the ring, then Coach threatened to strip Cena off the WWE Title if he lays a hand on him. Cena then charged the ring and jumped Coach. Security intervened and helped Coach and Vince escape. Cena stood tall in the ring, then Vince screamed that he should strip Cena of the WWE Title right here and right now. Vince then passed the buck to Coach to decide on whether Cena should surrender the belt. He said they're going to have a championship surrender ceremony so Cena can learn the hard way not to lay a hand on someone in authority. He said it will be up to Coach to make the final decision on the status of the belt tonight.
They came back and recapped Vince's announcement of the surrender ceremony tonight.
Cody Rhodes came out for a match, then Lillian Garcia introduced Hardcore Holly as making his return to Raw. Holly took the mic and stared down Rhodes before saying he should be in a boy band rather than in a wrestling ring. He sternly said Rhodes needs to earn his respect.
1 -- CODY RHODES vs. HARDCORE HOLLY
Holly landed a hard shoulder tackle in the opening sequence before driving him to the corner. They had a shoving match before Cody landed an arm drag takeover. Holly came back with a double axe handle blow to the face before landing a series of chops in the corner. Holly then lifted Cody in the air and spun him around the ring before landing the Alabama Slamma for the pin and the win. The fans cheered for Holly after the win.
WINNER: Holly in 4:00. Pretty decisive win for Holly. It had a little something extra, though, as there was tangible "respect" on the line for Rhodes trying to be that young lion advancing up the roster. This looks like a nice mid-card program to follow the next few weeks if they follow through. (*)
They showed footage from last week at New York City with Steve Austin signing copies of The Condemned DVD. Ross and Lawler talked about the DVDs flying off the shelves since it was released. They discussed the Cena vs. Orton storyline and Orton suspension.
They cut to a pre-tape promo from earlier in the day on Randy Orton cutting a promo. He said Cena is the biggest phony in WWE history, and he got himself disqualified at Unforgiven since he couldn't beat him. Orton said it's the same as giving up. He said Cena effectively took all the focus off getting himself DQ'ed by letting his dad kick him in the head. Orton said Cena's dad probably lives off his son like a bum. He said his life is wrestling and Cena tried taking that away from him. Orton said he truly enjoyed beating up Mr. Cena on Raw last night. He enjoyed the look on Cena's face when he beat up his dad. Orton talked about their No Mercy match when he beats him senseless and takes the WWE Title. He told Cena to bring his old man to Raw next week, then he will be the last man standing at No Mercy next week. Ross said Orton is on an indefinite suspension...this week.
Santino Marella came to the ring with Maria, who didn't look particularly thrilled coming to the ring with him. Ron Simmons is the opponent tonight.
2 -- SANTINO MARELLA (w/Maria) vs. RON SIMMONS
Santino tried to hide from Simmons early on by ducking out of the ring. They played a game of chase on the outside before Santino caught Simmons back in the ring with forearm blows to the back.
Simmons came back with successive left-arm clotheslines before Santino ducked out of the ring and grabbed Maria. Maria tried to convince Santino to get back in the ring, but Santino decided he had enough. He left up the entrance ramp with Maria and was counted out. Afterward, Simmons took the mic and milked his catchphrase for a while before emphatically shouting, "Damn!"
WINNER: Simmons via count out in 4:00. Just a TV match to get Simmons back in the ring on live TV. Santino continues to be a cowardly heel. (1/2*)
They aired a video package on the diva search limbo contest. Backstage, Melina was on her phone texting someone when Jillian Hall walked in and asked Melina where his boyfriend, Hornswoggle, is. Jillian asked Melina what happened to the A-list celebs she was hanging out with. Melina stopped defending Hornswoggle, then explained her secret that she made a deal with Coach to go out with Hornswoggle in exchange for a Women's Title shot. Jillian breathed a sigh of relief, then Melina explained she would need 15 showers after the date since Hornswoggle smells gross.
Backstage, Cade and Murdoch hyped themselves up before The Highlanders walked in and talked about wanting a tag title shot. Cade said they would love more than anything to give them a tag title shot, but it's up to The Coach. Robbie and Rory discussed possible matches, then suggested a kilt on a pole match. Murdoch brought up the point of what would happen if their kilts are on a pole. Robbie and Rory then flashed their crotches to the champs before flashing their backs. Murdoch liked what he saw. Cade was disgusted.
The cage was lowered to the ring as Triple H's music hit. Someone spent an unkingly amount of time in the tanning bed this weekend. Carlito then came out before Vince McJacked Up strutted out in his traditional black jeans and black tank top.
3 -- TRIPLE H vs. VINCE MCMAHON & CARLITO -- Steel cage match
Vince tried to escape right away, but Hunter cut him off. The heels started ganging up on Hunter before Hunter crotched Vince across the top rope. Carlito then returned the favor on Hunter with a low blow. He followed by tossing Hunter face-first into the cage wall.
They returned with Carlito and Hunter exchanging blows while Vince stood half-alive on the apron. Hunter then tossed Carlito into Vince and they bumped heads. Hunter stalked Vince, then went for the Pedigree, but Carlito caught Hunter from behind with the back stabber. Vince tried to escape through the door, but Hunter pulled him back. Vince then tried to climb over the top, but Hunter met him up top. Carlito then followed up and all three men battled on top of the cage. Vince managed to get both legs over the side of the cage wall, then he avoided Hunter's long arm reaching over the cage wall and he dropped to the floor. Hunter was stunned and Vince gloasted while looking up toward Hunter. And Carlito did all the work to help Vince escape and he gets no glory.
After a few minutes, Hunter realized Carlito was still in the cage with him since the cage wasn't raised back up to the ceiling. Hunter then tossed Carlito repeatedly into the side of the cage wall, opening him up. Hunter nailed a spinebuster and his music hit to maybe end the deal. Nope. He walked out of the cage and grabbed a steel chair before returning to the cage. He gave Carlito a Pedigree on the chair and walked out of the cage with his music hitting again.
WINNER: Vince & Carlito in 9:00. No surprise to see Carlito as the sacrificial lamb to Hunter. Apparently this is leading to Hunter vs. Vince in some sort of gimmick match at the PPV, otherwise it's another TV feud that won't mean to any dollars on Sundays. (**1/4)
4 -- CADE & MURDOCH vs. KENDRICK & LONDON -- non-title match
They joined the match in progress with The Highlanders ringside to watch the match. If Kendrick and London win, they get a tag title shot next week. The New Rockers made a comeback with flying kicks before the action broke down. Kendrick then hit the Sliced Bread on Murdoch and had the pin, but Rory and Robbie jumped in the ring and attacked the New Rockers to get the match thrown out.
WINNERS: Kendrick & London via DQ in 2:00 of TV time. Random start to a tag division feud, but it gave the tag division a little focus. Emphasis on "a little". (1/2*)
Backstage, they showed Melina's back as she was taking a shower. The camera panned left to show Hornswoggle standing behind the shower stall with a happy look on his face. He then grabbed Melina's towel once the shower water stopped. She had some water or soap in her eyes and couldn't see as Hornswoggle handed her the towel. She then started screaming when she saw Hornswoggle. He chased her down the hall to the backstage area before ripping her towel off. She managed to duck down a stairwell and kept her neck down out of camera view. Hornswoggle smiled and did a little kick before walking off camera.
Backstage, Coach pounded on Vince's office door and barged in. Coach asked if he was leaving, but Vince said he was about to take a shower. Vince started bragging about beating Hunter and making him the Big Loser. Coach said Hunter is out looking for him now and he could beat him in another match if he wants to. He told Coach to leave and get on with his business. Vince started packing his bag instead of heading for a shower.
They aired a video package on The Condemned and Santino called it a below-average movie. He said it was too violent for him. And he could have made a better main character with his charisma. He would have found a non-violent solution to settling their issues and then shared a cannoli. He gave a big smile at that thought.
They aired a video package recapping Vince (and Carlito's) win over Hunter. Backstage, Vince finished packing his bag, then he opened the door to leave, but Hunter was standing there waiting for him. Hunter asked Vince if he's proud of himself for winning, then challenged Vince to a match next week on Raw. Vince thought about it after Hunter asked if he's scared, then said, "You're on." Hunter answered, "You're screwed."
Jeff Hardy came out to a rock star reception and tossed glow sticks into the stands before Women's champion Candice Michelle came out to a hometown reception for a mixed tag match. Shelton Benjamin and Beth Phoenix were the opponents.
5 -- Intercontinental champion JEFF HARDY & Women's champion CANDICE MICHELLE vs. SHELTON BENJAMIN & BETH PHOENIX
Jeff ran over Shelton with a flying clothesline in the opening minute. He then used the air surrounding a kick to send Shelton to the outside. Candice knocked Beth from the apron to the floor, then Candice landed a splash on Beth and Jeff landed a splash on Shelton. The babyfaces returned to the ring for a pre-commercial pose.
The match continued with Beth in control of Candice with a mat hold. Candice came back with elbow smashes before Shelton and Jeff took tags. Jeff hit the Whisper in the Wind, but Shelton quickly came back with a kick to settle into a mat hold. Jeff tried to fight out, but Shelton smashed Jeff across his knee. They had a mid-air collision, then the divas took hot tags. Candice nailed a flip on Beth and covered her upside down, but it was good for a two count only. Jeff then entered the ring and went down to both knees for Candice to run off his back and splash Beth in the corner. Shelton then pulled Jeff to the outside and Beth gave Candice the cradle suplex for the pin and the win.
WINNERS: Shelton & Beth in 10:00. Nice mixed tag match. Good energy with the crowd hot for Candice and Jeff. Of course, Candice takes the loss in her hometown. Nice victory for the heels to give them some momentum chasing the respective titles. (**)
Backstage, Coach held an impromptu press conference with random individuals holding cameras and notepads. He said he might strip Cena of the WWE Title, then he said Orton's suspension is for 24 hours only. See, now WWE can say they suspended Orton for a Wellness violation. Ah, it all makes perfect sense. Coach said he hopes Mr. Cena is watching when he potentially strips his son of the title tonight. The reporters tried to get a final word with Coach as he walked away.
Ross and Lawler confirmed that next week's main event is Triple H vs. Vince McMahon.
Coach and security personnel were in the ring and they aired a video package on Vince passing the buck to Coach at the top of the show. Coach recapped Cena having the deck stacked against him, then said one of the longest title reigns in 20 years could be ending tonight. He said the decision is up to Cena. His music didn't hit, so Coach demanded Cena come out. His music finally hit and Cena walked out with a stern look on his face and with the belt wrapped around his waist. Coach told Cena to relax, as it would be a shame for his title reign to end this way. Coach reminded Cena of the beating his dad took last week to protect the belt. Coach said that due to Cena's arrogance, the beating may have been for nothing. He demanded that Coach finally show him the respect he deserves. Coach said that if Cena is contrite and full of apology, he might let Cena keep the belt.
[Q9 -- over-run]
Cena had the floor and weighed his options while staring out to the crowd. Coach took off his jacket, then Cena took off his shirt. Coach said Cena has left him with no choice. Time for the easy way or the hard way speech. Easy way: hand over the belt and leave with a shred of dignity. Hard way: security will take the belt and haul his ass out of the building. Cena didn't respond, so Coach assumed it was hard way. Suddenly, a bell rang and it rang again. Lillian Garcia just received an important announcement from Mr. McMahon that Cena will not be stripped of the belt tonight. She further announced that McMahon has ordered a tables match between Cena and Coach tonight. A referee was in the ring and the bell sounded. Ross and Lawler speculated that Mr. McMahon had a change of heart tonight. Cena grabbed Coach from around the neck and said Coach doesn't know anything about respect.
6 -- WWE champion JOHN CENA vs. THE COACH -- non-title match
Cena teased an FU through the table, but opted for an STFU on the mat. He then pointed to the table after Coach tapped out repeatedly and lifted Coach up in the fireman's carry position. He then dropped Coach through the table with an FU as the crowd exploded. Cena then held up the WWE Title in the air as Hornswoggle suddenly walked out on stage. Hornswoggle smiled and Cena smiled. Cena then took the mic and said, "Thank you...Mr. McMahon." Lawler laughed uproariously as Ross recapped the trick played by the other Mr. McMahon.
WINNER: Cena in 1:00. One of those endings to put a smile on viewers's faces after a weak show last week. Hornswoggle continues to add quality entertainment to WWE TV. (n/a)
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