TV REPORTS KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT 10/27: Cyber Sunday follow-up, Batista-Jericho next chapter, more John Cena hype (virtual time coverage)
Oct 27, 2008 - 8:37:19 PM
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By Wade Keller, Torch editor
KELLER'S WWE RAW REPORT
OCTOBER 27, 2008
LIVE FROM TUCSON, ARIZ.
AIRED ON USA NETWORK
-They opened with an "In Memory of Conrad Efraim" who wrestled as S.D. "Special Delivery" Jones.
-They went right to clips of last night's Cyber Sunday happenings on PPV focused on "Stone Cold" Steve Austin being voted in as special referee for the main event between Chris Jericho and Batista leading to Batista's celebration.
-Then they went to the Raw opening followed by Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler introducing the show. They hyped the TV main event of Jericho & JBL vs. Batista & Shawn Michaels.
-Chris Jericho walked out without music. The microchip that WWE implants in wrestlers' necks that automatically starts their music as soon as they walk onto the stage must have malfunctioned. Jericho angrily and sternly said that what happened last night was the biggest screwjob in WWE history. He blamed G.M. Mike Adamle for making sure what he wanted to happen did happen. He said the fans were co-conspirators by voting for Austin. He said Austin tried to bully and intimidate him "and worst of all he didn't count to three when I had the match won." He said if he were Batista, he'd be ashamed to call himself champion. He said Batista didn't beat him. "It took an entire army to beat me, from Batista to Michaels to Steve Austin to Mike Adamle to each and every one of you hypocrites here tonight; you were all involved in this conspiracy against me," he said. He added that he's happy to have the tag match later so he can get his hands on Michaels and Batista. He said has a championship rematch clause and he will use it next week.
Adamle walked to the ring to the Raw theme music. They shouldn't ruin the Raw opening theme by associating it with Adamle. Adamle said to be sure there's no outside interference next week, he's decided to make it a cage match. Jericho tried to take the news with a brave face, but fear leaked through, like a little boy in a doctor's office who's told he'll need a shot. He stormed away. As he walked off stage, Randy Orton walked onto the stage. Orton's music played on cue.
Orton approached Adamle in the ring. Orton said he wasn't comfortable being a special referee, "and look what happened." He complained that he was on the receiving end of a Stone Cold Stunner. "That, Mike, is inexcusible," he said. He explained that he's not fully recovered and couldn't defend himself properly, so now he's going to be sure he doesn't get away with it. Adamle stood his ground and took a deep breath. Orton turned to the hard camera and addressed Stephanie and Shane McMahon. He said he needs both of them to come to Raw next week to fire Adamle. He said if they don't, he going to TNA. Okay, he didn't say that, but he did threaten to quit. "The WWE needs me a hell of a lot more than I need the WWE," he said. Then he got in Adamle's face and asked him what he's going to do about it. He accused Adamle of being spineless. He said he failed as an interviewer, as a commentator, and now as a G.M. He said he bets he failed as a husband and a father as well. Adamle slapped Orton. Orton leaned his forehead into Adamle's, shook with rage, and almost punched him, but held back. The crowd chanted "You suck." Orton headed to the back. Adamle gulped and exhaled.
-They went to a clip of a C.M. Punk interview where Ted DiBiase, Manu, and Cody Rhodes jumped him followed by Orton punting Punk's face. Then they showed Punk & Kofi Kingston headed to the entrance tunnel.
1 -- CODY RHODES & TED DIBIASE (w/Manu) vs. C.M. PUNK & KOFI KINGSTON -- World Tag Team Title match
At 2:00 the heels conferenced after taking dropkicks from both Punk and Kofi. Then they dove onto Cody and Ted at ringside. They cut to a break with the faces celebrating and the heels regrouping. Odds are great the heels will be control after the break. Commercial breaks are just killers for babyfaces.
Cody had Punk in an armbar and then turned it into a Russian leg sweep to take firm control as they came back from the break. Cole plugged the tag team main event.Punk hot-tagged Kofi at 7:00. DiBiase yanked Kofi off the top rope by his foot to turn the tables once again as the ref was distracted by Cody. The heels isolated Kofi in the corner. Lawler praised them for being better at isolating an opponent in the corner than any other team in WWE. Lawler said he's just impressed by their out-of-ring attitudes. It'd be great if when Lawler says things like that, Cole had the knowledge and gumption to say, "Well, King, you certainly had certain attitude issues back in your more youthful days." Just anything that acknowledged Lawler's past as a top heel in several promotions over the years.
Good to see WWE giving these two teams more than ten minutes to develop an actual full-fledged tag match. Punk got a hot-tag at 12:00 and cleaned house on the heels. He threw two slaps, a spinning backfist, and a swinging roundhouse kick to take DiBiase down. He then hit a running knee in the corner. He kicked Manu off the ring apron. Cody came up behind Punk. Cody jumped him and tackled him out of the ring. Punk blocked a DiBiase DDT and then hit the GTS for the win. Punk has now won three of WWE's seven tag or singles titles this year.
WINNERS: Punk & Kingston to win the World Tag Team Titles in 12:00.
STAR RATING: **1/2 -- Good TV tag match with a spirited celebration by the babyfaces to add real credibility to the importance of the tag belts.
-A commercial hyped that John Cena returns at Survivor Series.
-They went to Cole and Lawler at ringside for a plug for WrestleMania 25 and the ticket sales launch.
-Lilian introduced guest commentators for the next match. First Roddy Piper walked out to his bagpipe music. Then Goldust to his most excellent WWE theme song. And then the Honky Tonk Man. HTM and Lawler next to each other. These two have had some pretty big issues over the years. They kept them apart. It was Piper, Lawler, Goldust, Cold, and HTM. Santino and Phoenix walked to the ring. He addressed the guest commentators. He talked about the Honk-a-Meter, which is now at 64-11. He said in one week and one year he'll catch him, and when he does he will be the greatest IC Champion "of all the times." Santino asked the pregnant women to look at the freaks at ringside. He said that's what happens when you do drugs when pregnant. He then said Phoenix redefines grace and beauty. He was interrupted by Phoenix's music. Out walked Charlie Haas dressed as the Glamazon.
Goldust said, "I don't like cross-dressers." Lawler said the resemblance is uncanny. Santino attacked Haas before the bell and tossed him to the floor. His wig stayed on. Santino took a shot at HTM. Goldust and Piper ran to the other side of the ring to stop Santino from escaping. HTM then hit Santino over the head with a guitar.
WINNER: No contest. It's always annoying when a match begins and then ends with no decision. I know this was just a comedy skit, but it should be a bigger deal with a match is just called off. Cole and Lawler should at least say, "Well, the ref has called off the match." Or DQ'd someone. Or something.
-Lawler plugged Rey Mysterio vs. Evan Bourne for the first time ever. Great match. It's one of those matches that if WWE could plan ahead for something besides three hour Raws and WrestleMania ticket launches could have been built up for a week or two.
-A video aired on Mike Knox. Apparently he's been drafted to Raw in the secret off-the-record Draft Lottery.
-WWE Fact: WWE.com has more monthly visits than NFL.com, UFC.com, Maxim, com. FHM.com, and NASCAR.com combined.
-Batista came out to his intro song. Lawler said it was only a matter of time before he caught up with Jericho and won the title. He talked about winning the title. He had those nervous laughs between every few words that's annoying when he doesn't have a lot to say. He thanked the fans and said that belt isn't going anywhere for a long time. Cole brought up the rematch next week in a cage. Cole asked if he thinks his title reign will be short-lived. Batista laughed and said not at all. He said the cage is his playground and comfort zone. He said Jericho has nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. Batista needs to be able to give better promos to be the centerpiece babyface. It's like pulling teeth to get him to go beyond thanking the fans and saying he's ultra-confident in himself. Just a 30 second review of what he went through with Jericho recently, a few notes about how he won the title, and an expanded vision of what he wants to accomplish as champion. It seems like promos for him as just an inconvenient pit-stop between airport and nightclub. Maybe they rushed him because they wanted the Divas match to start at the top of the hour, but it's not as if short promos aren't his standard.
-An ECW commercial focused on The Miz. He's turned into a real solid heel for WWE's third brand with signs of a real upside.
-A "24/7" plug focused on the end of Shea Stadium (1964-2008), looking back Joe Namath's Super Bowl victory, Pope John Paul II, The Beatles, and three big wrestling spectaculars, the latest of which took place in 1980. Clips aired of Bob Backlund, Pat Patterson, Tony Atlas, The Wild Samoans, Bruno Sammartino, Larry Zbyszko, and Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant. Is that first modern acknowledgment on WWE TV that Hogan faced Andre before WrestleMania III?
3 -- KELLY KELLY & CANDICE MICHELLE & MICKIE JAMES vs. JILLIAN HALL & LEYLA & KATIE LEE
They showed a clip before the match of the Diva Costume Contest brawl. No singing from Jillian this week. The babyface women all wore pink or lavender and the heels all wore mostly black. Kelly finished Katie with the K2 power legdrop.
WINNERS: Mickie & Candice & Kelly in 4:00.
-A backstage promo aired with JBL. He said Shawn Michaels cost him one of the best business deals he's ever had. He said he and Jericho had a deal where if he helped him retain the title, he'd get the next title shot. JBL said that title is worth a lot of money. He said Michaels cost him a lot of money by not counting to three when he had the chance. He said tonight Michaels will pay because he will learn nobody crosses JBL.
-Cole plugged the main event tag match again. Lawler plugged Rey vs. Bourne.
-A commercial hyped the 800th Episode Celebration of Raw next week.
-A recap aired of the Rey vs. Kane match at Cyber Sunday.
4 -- REY MYSTERIO vs. EVAN BOURNE
During Rey's ring into, they went to an interview Grisham conducted with Rey backstage earlier. He talked about wrestling the day after wrestling Kane. Bourne walked into the picture and said for the first time in his career, Rey won't be the underdog. He said he has every intention of beating him and this is the night he's waited his whole career for. WWE continues to make a mockery of the brand splits and the big deal they make of the Draft Lottery by not even addressing why an ECW wrestler is again on Raw. They need to explain each time the nature of the working arrangement between Raw and ECW. Rey smiled and applauded an early athletic display by Bourne including a head scissors takeover. Rey then hit a flurry of moves ending with a head scissors takeover of his own. Bourne armdragged Rey, who slid right to the floor. He went for a slidekick, but Rey moved. They both popped back into the ring and stared each other down with competitive smiles. Cole said it was a stalemate as they cut to a break.
They showed that during the break, Bourne threw Rey under the bottom rope to the floor. He slid out of the ring like a Devil Ray sliding into home plate in the Philly rain in the top of the sixth. Bourne and Rey threw some elbows at each other. Rey ducked a charging Bourne, who fell to the floor after being tangled in the ropes. Rey then hit Bourne with what Cole usually incorrectly calls a senton. He didn't call it anything this time. Did someone, after all of these years, finally tell him that a senton is a back-first splash? Bourne surprised Rey with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for a two count at 7:00. Bourne kicked Rey in the ribs and went for another quick pin. He settled into a surfboard type hold. Rey kicked out. The fans were distracted by something to the right of the ring (which was squeaky this week; the mic caught the squeaks every time the wrestlers hit the ropes). If anyone attended Raw in Tucson, as always we encourage you to send us a HOLT report (Happenings Off Live TV). Thanks! Rey slipped on an attempt to springboard off the middle rope. Bourne quickly went for a pin as Rey clutched the back of his thigh. Rey kicked out, then kicked a charging Bourne a few seconds later. Rey hit a basement dropkick for a two count at 9:00. Rey springboarded with a Drop the Dime. Bourne followed with an enzuigiri just as Lawler called the match for Rey. Bourne crawled over to make the cover. He scored a two count. Bourne hit a standing moonsault for a near fall. Rey knocked Bourne off balance on the top rope, but Bourne recovered and hit a sunset flip. Rey immediately escaped and set up a 619, which connected. Bourne struggled to his feet. Rey went for a Drop the Dime. Bourne ducked and hit a victory roll. Rey rolled through and scored the pin.
WINNER: Rey Mysterio in 11:00.
STAR RATING: ***1/2 -- The best 11 minutes inside the ring on Raw in a long time. That's the type of match where jealous, threatened heavyweights backstage watch on the monitor and pick the match apart for having too many cool spots.
-As Rey and Bourne congratulated each other on a good fight, the lights flickered to ref and Kane came out to his music. Kane beat up Rey. Bourne had already left the ring. Kane went for the mask. Bourne made the save with a kick. Bourne and Rey double-teamed Kane including hitting a high-low Eliminator-style. Mark Henry came out to save Kane, apparently. Bourne dove at him, but Henry caught him and rammed his back into the ringpost. Kane, meanwhile, chokedslammed Rey. Henry pressed and powerslammed Bourne in the ring. The crowd booed as the big nasty heels stood over the fallen heroes. Good angle to set up a tag match especially younger fans can get behind, wanting to see the smaller underdogs battle the big bullies. It does stunt the styles of Rey and Bourne a bit, but they're good enough to create a good tag match by running circles around Henry and Kane on offense and selling convincingly when taking a beating.
-Cole and Lawler were shown on camera. They plugged a "Smackdown vs. Raw 2009" videogame available Nov. 9. Then they threw to a John Cena personality profile video, focused on his youth and his dreams as a kid to be a pro wrestler. They showed Cena with cardboard belt cutouts. His father and brother narrated the video. It's the type of story told that makes any 12 year old think he, too, could someday be WWE's top star. They marched right through his days playing football, going to college, going to California to train to be a wrestler, to his Smackdown debut against Kurt Angle. Very good video package.
-John Morrison and The Miz walked out. They had the ECW logo next to their name and Lilian did introduce them as being "from ECW." Miz said some fans think they crossed the line referring to DeGeneration X as "Geriatric X." He said as talented and gifted as they are, fans may be jealous. Morrison said if the fans don't get it, it's not their problem. He said they're going to prove they're better than DX by beating them on Raw next week. Miz said tomorrow night on ECW they'll have a very special edition of The Dirt Sheet with "an examination of the rise and soon-to-be-fall of this prehistoric pair." Morrison said after they beat them, the enlightened few can join them in saying, "Be jealous!"
-They showed Batista warming up backstage with the newly won title belt around his waist.
-A Smackdown commercial aired hyping the return of the Casket Match featuring Undertaker. No opponent was named, but it seemed as if they were promising a casket match.
-After another plug for next week's Raw, they showed a clip of Orton slapping Adamle and asking Shane and Stephanie to fire Adamle next week. It's good they revisited that as it was a distant memory by this point.
-After Jericho's ring entrance, they went backstage to a brawl between JBL and Michaels. JBL had apparently jumped Michaels and threw him around the hallway and into a locker room before slamming the door shut. They showed Jericho smiling from inside the ring. JBL's ring intro then took place. He seemed especially pleased with himself as he walked to the ring. Then Batista's ring entrance took place. Cole wondered if it'd be a two-on-one match. Lawler said he got word through his headset that Michaels wouldn't be able to go. The ref explained the news to Batista, who didn't look pleased, but resigned himself to the challenge.
5 -- CHRIS JERICHO & JBL vs. BATISTA & SHAWN MICHAELS
The bell rang at 10 minutes before the top of the hour. Batista tossed Jericho to the mat. Jericho immediately tagged JBL in. Jericho and JBL doubled on Jericho for two minutes. Batista fought back and knocked Jericho and JBL to the floor. He celebrated as they cut to a break.
Back from the break, Jericho had Batista in a chinlock. Batista fought out of it almost immediately, but walked right into a boot. He countered with a clothesline, but a JBL distracted gave Jericho an opening with an enzuigiri. They double-teamed Batista until 10:00 when he mounted another comeback. He hit Jericho with a single-arm sideslam, then took a shot at JBL on the ring apron. He set up a Batista Bomb, but Jericho escaped and hit the Code Breaker. Jericho was slow to roll over and make the cover, thus protecting the integrity of his finisher when Batista kicked out of his finisher - which he did. Jericho tagged in JBL at 11:00. Jericho rolled to the floor. Lawler said he hurt himself delivering the Code Breaker. JBL went for a Clothesline from Hell, but Batista ducked and speared JBL. With both men down, Jericho crawled back to the ring apron and reached for a tag. Michaels then walked to the ring, clutching his ribs. The crowd popped as Michaels reached for a tag and worked the corwd. The ref cut of Jericho's interference, but that meant he didn't see Michaels's tag. The ref ordered Michaels out of the ring as JBL held Batista as Jericho swung the belt. Batista ducked. Batista then gave JBL a Batista Bomb for the win. The show ended with Batista smiling and holding his belt in the air.
WINNERS: Michaels & Batista in 13:00.
STAR RATING: ** - Solid main event tag. Pretty formula and unspectacular, but nothing wrong with it, either. The main downside if you looked for one would be that Jericho and JBL seemed weak since together they couldn't beat Batista.
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